Annual State of the County Report Focuses on Growth

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Today county officials delivered their state of the county address, and the main topic on the agenda was growth.

Mesa County is growing at an unprecedented rate transforming from a rural to urban area right before our eyes.

Mesa County Commissioner Craig Meis says, "Fruita's grown tremendously over the past few years. They're seeing a lot of development. We're anticipating the same thing in Whitewater and possibly even out in Loma and Mack and even possibly in Gateway with sewer infrastructure that is going in." While the county has seen a lot of growth, officials say they're handling it well.

Commissioner Janet Rowland says, "I think 2007 has had great success for Mesa County. We are in a very good shape in many, many ways both as a county government as well as citizens within our county."

From 2007 to the beginning of 2008 the county has increased by 4 thousand citizens. In addition the labor force has increased 4 percent and the county property value increased 34 percent.

There are new jobs in Mesa County because unemployment is currently 3.4 percent which is lower than the 5 percent unemployment for the state. Wages have gone up too. Average hourly pay went up from $15.75 to $16.10.

The county has already enacted an energy master plan in which the county uses recycled asphalt saving over 450 thousand dollars. The county plans to expand 29 Road through North and Patterson.

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