County officials maintain stage two fire restrictions |

County officials maintain stage two fire restrictions

The smoldering remains of the Golf Course Fire burn scar were visible in a clearing just south of Golf Course Road.
Lance Maggart / Sky-Hi News

Grand County will remain under stage two fire restrictions for at least another week.

Grand County commissioners, along with Grand County Sheriff Brett Schroetlin and local fire district officials, held a public discussion Tuesday in Hot Sulphur Springs regarding the stage two fire restrictions implemented by the county in early July. Schroetlin noted some improvements in the local fire outlook but said the fire danger for Grand County has not significantly changed and recommended the county remain under stage two restrictions for at least one more week.

According to Schroetlin, Grand County currently meets six out of seven factors on the Standardized Federal Fire Matrix. The matrix is a list of seven specific fire hazard factors related to moisture content in fuels, firefighting resource availability and drought indicators along with other factors. Typically fire restrictions are implemented if at least four out of the seven factors are met.

East Grand Fire Chief Todd Holzwarth raised questions with the commissioners regarding permitting of specific construction related activities, such as welding, which are otherwise prohibited by the current stage two restrictions. County officials noted the restrictions approved by the commissioners allows otherwise prohibited activities to continue if permits are obtained for those activities. Grand County Attorney Bob Franek noted the county had previously permitted fireworks displays for the Fourth of July after stage two restrictions were approved.

When the commissioners approved stage two restrictions on July 2, the resolution approved by the county included a sunset clause. The resolution states the restrictions will remain in effect for 30 days unless the commissioners take further action to either extend or eliminate the restrictions prior to that time. County officials said they will address the issue of potentially extending the resolution at their next meeting on July 24.

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