Republican Mesa County Commissioner Cody Davis shows himself walking on the banks of the Grand Valley Canal in his latest TV ad. The Grand Valley Canal is also known as the Government Highline Canal, and technically, public use of the Grand Valley Canal maintenance roads is trespassing. Signs are posted all along the canal banks with the warning “NO trespassing. Violators will be PROSECUTED.” No one has ever been arrested or charged with trespassing for walking, biking, jogging or skiing on the canal banks, though, according to former three-term Mesa County Sheriff Stan Hilkey, who said that trespassing on the canal banks is “basically the lowest priority misdemeanor there is” for the Sheriff’s Department. Trespassing on the canal banks is akin to a time-honored pastime, which is probably what led Cody Davis to trespass on the canal banks — obviously without even thinking about it — in his latest ad.
The only thing that would make it legal would be if he or his family owns the land on which he is seen walking and has given the Bureau of Reclamation or Grand Valley Water Users an easement.
Republicans violating laws is normal in Mesa County.
Mesa County Republicans violate laws all the time. It’s consistent, and nothing new. It’s almost a time-honored pastime.
Lost ballots, DUIs, plagiarism, double-dipping, assault, embezzlement, fraud, shoplifting…
Republican State Rep. Laura Bradford from Collbran was busted for a DUI in Denver in 2012.
In 2013, newly-elected Grand Junction City Councilman Rick Brainard assaulted his girlfriend just four days after he was elected to City Council. He plead no contest.
In 2007, Republican County commissioner candidate Janet Rowland was caught plagiarizing columns she wrote in the Grand Junction Free Press and in 2019 used CMU President Tim Foster’s name and position at CMU in one of her campaign ads in violation of the law, which prohibits Foster from using his position as head of CMU to stump for candidates.
In 2014, Republican former State Senator Steve King pleaded guilty to embezzlement, forgery, second degree forgery, theft, and first degree official misconduct.
Republican former Grand Junction Mayor Reford Theobold, also known as the “Ten Commandments Mayor,” was busted for shoplifting Big Hunk Candy Bars from Cabela’s in 2016.
In 2017, all three Republican Mesa County Commissioners — Rose Pugliese, Scott McInnis and John Justman — publicly admonished a Collbran landowner for violating the law by hosting commercial events on his property for years without required permits, and then they rewarded him by making his activities legal.
Republican Mesa County Clerk lost 574 ballots from the 2019 election, a case of neglect so severe it can be classified as criminally negligent
You get the idea.
It goes on and on and on. There’s plenty more where that came from.
So the moral of the story is if you want unethical, self-important lawbreakers in office, vote for Republicans in Mesa County.
If you’re tired of Republican lawbreakers in office and you want someone with integrity in elected office, vote for someone else.
But let’s cut Cody some slack, as long as the rest of us can also keep trespassing on the beautiful banks of the Grand Valley Canals, too, without facing any consequences, too.