In Case You Missed It: County Commissioners Officially Approve Collbran Landowner’s Illegal Activity

Colby Olford broke the law for years, then the Mesa County Commissioners caught up with him — and rewarded him for it.

The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reported on March 15 that Mesa County’s three Republican County Commissioners publicly admonished a Collbran landowner for violating the law by hosting commercial events on his property for years without required permits.

Then they rewarded him by making his activities legal.

Colby Olford, owner of the 29-acre Five Winds Ranch at 17496 Kimball Creek Road in Collbran, had been violating the law since 2013 by putting up structures and hosting weddings and commercial events at his property without the legally-required permits. His neighbors complained repeatedly to the County about the noise and other negative impacts on their lives and property by the constant partying at Olford’s place, lodging seven complaints in just 2015 alone.  The County Attorney even sent Olford multiple letters warning him to stop his legal violations, but Olford ignored all of them and kept the parties going.

Then in March, 2017, Olford had the audacity to plead ignorance of the law at a public hearing. Commissioner Scott McInnis said to Olford “I’m trying to find any boundary that’s been complied with. I can’t find it.”

Mesa County Commissioners John Justman, Rose Pugliese and Scott McInnis

Then, after complaining that Olford had intentionally flouted the law for years and kept doing it even after being warned to stop by the County legal department, all three Commissioners officially granted Olford a conditional use permit (pdf) allowing him to keep booking parties at his place. The permit allows him to host up to 20 events per year with up to 225 guests per event, with some requirements like dust suppression in his parking lots, ending music at a certain time and limiting flood lighting.

But by now we all know how much regard Colby Olford has for rules, don’t we?

The moral of the story: It evidently pays big to disregard the law in Mesa County.

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