Minturn’s future in flux
Ryan Summerlin May 28, 2014
MINTURN — While Minturn conducts a nationwide search for a town manager, the town reached downvalley for a veteran administrator.
Former Eagle Town Manager Willy Powell was hired recently as Minturn’s “acting” town manager. Powell said he expects to work for the town for between six and 12 months.
Former manager Jim White was put on paid administrative leave in April, and the town and White came to what was called a “mutual” decision for him to leave not long after. Council members started searching for an interim town manager before starting a search and found Powell, who retired last year from the manager’s job in Eagle. He had held that job since the 1980s.
‘STATE OF FLUX’
“We started with (Gypsum’s) contract as a template so we wouldn’t be re-inventing the wheel.”
The town will also soon have new policing services and a new town attorney if things go according to plan, says Mayor Hawkeye Flaherty.
“We’re kind of in a state of flux right now, trying to tie up many loose ends so we can get back to business,” Flaherty said. “Council’s been working hard, staff’s been working hard, to try to get all these changes taken care of.”
Jay Brunvard, town treasurer, says the town is also in the process of contracting with the Eagle County Sheriff’s Department for police services, as Minturn’s current predicament has the town with no town police services whatsoever, relying on the sheriff’s department’s regular patrol through the area for protection.
“(The sheriff’s department) has a limited amount of time (dedicated to Minturn patrol), but, of course, if there’s a problem, (the sheriff’s department) is there in a snap,” Brunvard said. “We’ve had trouble all along with having police officers, not trouble with the cops, but trouble keeping them.”
Flaherty says the town is taking a cue from Gypsum as to how it should be policed.
“We started with (Gypsum’s) contract as a template so we wouldn’t be re-inventing the wheel,” Flaherty said. “They’ve been real helpful in trying to make sure that we do this right, so that’s been a good thing … the contract negotiations will be dealt with in executive session, but the final product will be available to the general public.”