Emergency Intermountain Alliance Meeting 09/24/13

The Intermountain Alliance met today with representatives of different departments of Boulder County Government. The minutes of this meeting contain a wealth of information for Boulder mountain residents recovering from the recent floods. [download id=”1921″]

These minutes include reports from Jamestown, Bar-K, Ward, Nederland, Raymond/Riverside, Allenspark, Lyons, Gold Hill as to what their prioritized, unmet needs are. I would encourage members of the listed communities to review these minutes. If your community is not listed, you might want to find a representative to join the IMA.

Garry Sanfaçon, whom the Boulder County commissioners appointed as the Flood Recovery Manager, called on the Boulder County Department representatives attending the meeting to address these concerns.

Many of these questions have more detail on the new recovery website: BoulderCountyFlood.org

A summary:

Roads – George Gerstle, Boulder County Transportation

Anticipating 2-3 weeks to open Boulder Canyon

Boulder County Transportation is focusing on getting something, at least temporary, to each community, reasonably safe, plowable in the winter, by the time the snow flies.

Private crossings – culverts and bridges

Boulder County is encouraging landowners to acquire a free, fast-tracked permit and advice on the appropriate size culvert. Keep in mind that Boulder County does not know where the road will be when permanent roads are built so you might have to move your installation.

Boulder will also work with landowners on private bridges on a case by case basis, offering advice re: type and size.

For more info you can call Chad Schroeder 303 441 3900.

There is the possibility that the National Guard or the Army Corps of Engineers may provide temporary crossings of rivers and help to move cars that are stranded on the other side of rivers. More information later.

Transportation Available:

  • RTD is running a route from Nederland to Boulder
  • VIA is providing service through Sunshine Canyon mid-day into Boulder
  • The Climb from Gold Hill is operating
  • VIA will provide anyone in Boulder a ride to the Disaster Assistance Center in Boulder

Debris Removal

Dumpsters placed in Raymond/Riverside

Jamestown will get portapotties and handwashing stations when access is available.

Transfer stations (Nederland: 303 258 7878; Allenspark: 303 747 2107) will continue to accept flood debris at no cost. No food or hazmat.

FEMA will need to be contacted about removing flood debris like trees and other large detritus.

Housing and Human Services

  •  Running Disaster Recovery centers in Boulder
  • Providing debris removal, clean up boxes, FEMA contact, Community Food Share
  • Hope to provide clean up boxes to mountain communities soon
  • Will plan to send a group of core county staff coming into each mountain community for 1-stop opportunity for mountain residents to ask questions, register, get cash cards if needed; in Nederland and Allenspark, more info about locations soon, like what we did with the FEMA registrations
  • Because of the low vacancy rate in the Boulder area, housing for displaced folks is going to be a sticky issue. IMA has taken on the responsibility to use its network to help to mitigate this situation and develop housing resources for those folks who want to stay in the mountains.

Land Use

  • All residents are encouraged to obtain building permits for restoration type repairs. Contractors must be licensed if you use a permit and this helps keep down recovery fraud.
  • There will be no fee for electrical, plumbing, flooring, drywall, etc permits, except a small tax that might be anywhere between $4 and $15. These permits will be available over the counter at Land Use right away.
  • If flooding did not rise above 15” and electrical wires did not get wet,  repairs can be made without a permit.
  • Building regulations are being revised and will hopefully be done by the end of October.
  • Structures that are 50 years or older can have exterior repairs if you bring photos to Land Use to help them make decisions quickly about your project

Public Health

  • Working on assisting people in securing or replacing propane tanks
  • Captain Jack and other sites have been categorized and will be inspected
  • Free well water testing will be available. Residents should coordinate groups of people to bring water samples down to Boulder for testing


  • Available from Mental Health Partners
  • Mental Health vouchers will be available from United Way as were provided after the $ Mile Fire
  • BOCO Sheriff’s department Mountain Advocates can provide immediate assistance at 303-815-2980
  • Also available from Disaster Behavioral Health Group. Contact Pam Sherman at 303-606-6803 for more information.

Sheriff’s Department

  • Two additional ambulances have been assigned to the mountain communities at present.
  • Patrols have increased in areas where people have been evacuated. There have been no reports of looting or robbing.
  • The road block in Sunshine Canyon helps keep out people who don’t belong up here. Volunteers need valid addresses that they are going to.
  • Mountain Deputies are in the mountains for their entire shifts.

Foothills United Way – Amy Hardy (ahardy@unitedwayfoothills.org)

  • Fund is for ALL communities but mountain residents need to apply now so that they aren’t overlooked.
  • Steering committee meets by phone Monday, Wednesday, Friday to approve grants to non-profits and other expenditures.
  • $30,000 has already been given to Premier Bank for cash assistance cards.
  • Mountain 501(c)3s should apply. Amy will put the application on the IMA Google Groups. No time limit for application but get it in soon.
  • Mental Health vouchers will be available asap especially for Jamestown and Lyons. Contact Amy at ahardy@unitedwayfoothills.org
  • Paid recovery coordinator positions will be available in Jamestown and Lyons.
  • United Way can mobilize over 5000 local volunteers for communities if needed
  • Working with ColoradoHelpNow.org

Boulder Relief – Stephen Konieczka        spkonieczka@gmail.com 303 943 4482   1033 Walnut, Boulder

  • Newly formed organization with 4000 volunteers
  • Go to boulderfloodrelief.org to register to volunteer or if your community needs help
  • Clean up materials, construction materials, large trucks, etc are available, and can verify that people are legitimate if referred to your community.
  • Can find what you need to help

VIA Transportation – Nicole Cavalino

  • VIA coordinating with FEMA sites Disaster Assistance Centers
  • Call 303-447-2848 Call Center for transportation in Boulder metro area
  • Serving ALL not just seniors and disabled
  • On-demand service in Nederland is working again starting 9/25/2013

FEMA Claims

  • Not everyone will qualify for FEMA claims.
  • Many people have lost their cars and have no transportation. Relief organizations must be aware of special needs of mountain residents. Resources need to be consolidated so assistance can be given in the mountain communities. FEMA claims may be mostly for loss of wages, loss of jobs or inability to get down to jobs.
  • FEMA and Mike Chard from OEM are working on the unemployment picture.

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