Commissioners to assess COVID-19 risk-level

New Director of Social Services Ruth Horn updates Saguache County Commissioners after five days on the job.

SAGUACHE — Nov. 17, 2020 As many of the counties in the San Luis Valley moved to the fourth highest level of COVID-19 risk designation, Saguache County Commissioners agreed to await results from testing this week before announcing a risk-level change.


Fortified with 1,000 test kits, county public officials conducted three hours of testing in Center and two hours in Moffat on Nov. 17, followed by more testing in Saguache and Crestone the next day. Results are available 48-72 hours after the lab receives samples, so commissioners will make a determination once they hear the results.


Five days into her new Social Services Director position, Ruth Horn updated commissioners during their Nov. 17 meeting. In addition to reaching out to other directors in the Valley for introductions, Horn looked at how Gunnison County and Custer County approach social services.


“I tried to get a different point of view,” Horn explained, noting scheduled meetings with other directors. “Costilla County mirrors us more than any other county in the Valley,” Horn said.


Horn also discussed finances, grants, department policies and plans for sharing turkeys for Thanksgiving.


Emergency Manager Robert Woelz fielded questions about his 170-page Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) drafted for 2019. In addition to a separate five-year hazard mitigation plan, the EOP details daily logistics for present and future reference. Commissioners approved changes to the plan.


Considering a new COVID-19 risk designation for the county, Woelz encouraged commissioners to “move in unison with other cou nties in the Valley to keep everyone on the same level.”


Following his update, Woelz headed to Center and Moffat to assist Saguache County Public Health officials with COVID-19 testing (roughly 300 total).

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