At the meeting of the new Mesa County Board of Public Health (BOH) scheduled for tomorrow, Monday, September 11, 2023, the County Commissioners hope to impose a new Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) (pdf, page 10) on the Board of Health that will tie the BOH tightly to most County policies and procedures eliminate the BOH’s ability to control their own meeting agendas, and allow the Commissioners block discussion of any subject the commissioners don’t like.
In the wake of Commissioner Janet Rowland’s recent coup over the Mesa County Public Health Department, if the the past is a predictor of future behavior, under Rowland the Health Department is likely in for a significant reduction in its ability to respond to public health threats, and area residents will likely face more danger from emerging health threats.
Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland succeeded in imposing her political will on the Mesa County Public Health Department yesterday after appointing two final conservative members to the Mesa County Board of Public Health (BOH).
Health Department employees point out Rowland made all the new appointments to the Board of Health without consulting a single person at the Health Department.
“The fact that they keep appointing people to our Board that so clearly do not support the work that we do feels like a spit in the face every time,” one employee said.
In a July 18, 2023 video posted on Rumble.com — the online video platform right wing extremists turn to after being banned from YouTube and Facebook — indicted former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters optimistically starts off a half hour interview by saying “I always have a smile on my face because I know the best is yet to come.” She explains why she just fired her criminal defense attorney, Harvey Steinberg. She told her attorney,
“If you can’t get me off on two misdemeanors, how are you going to fight seven felonies and three misdemeanors?”
A person the Mesa County Commissioners appointed to the Board of Health yesterday, Stephen D. Daniels, is a strong supporter of anti-vax conspiracy theorist and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. (RFK), according to his social media accounts. Posts on the same sources also reveal Daniels is anti-immigrant, anti-gay, anti-Disney, and a climate change denier who opposes Colorado’s new family and medical leave law, which gives workers paid time off to care for a new baby or a loved one who has a serious health condition.
Presidential candidate RFK, whom Daniels supports, opposes vaccines that prevent dire illnesses in children and adults, like polio, measles and smallpox. In 2017, Scientific American wrote that “For more than a decade, Kennedy has promoted anti-vaccine propaganda completely unconnected to reality,” and if his anti-vax advocacy “leads to even a small decline in vaccine rates across the country, it will result in the waste of untold amounts of money and in all likelihood, the preventable deaths of infants too young to be vaccinated.”
Vitor Yahn, one of the people Mesa County Commissioner Janet Rowland appointed to the Mesa County Board of Public Health on an interim basis after the original Board resigned en masse, has himself resigned from the Board.
The entire original Board of Health resigned after Rowland pressured them relentlessly to fire Health Department Director Jeff Kuhr, and they refused, and Rowland threatened to fire them all. It was questionable whether the move would have been legal, but the Board resigned rather than face a hearing with a predetermined outcome.
Rowland has been accusing Dr. Kuhr of financial wrongdoing for months, but Mesa County District Attorney Dan Rubinstein investigated Dr. Kuhr and found insufficient evidence that Kuhr engaged in any financial wrongdoing, or acted to benefit himself in any way.
EDITORIAL from the June 1, 2023 edition of the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. Reprinted in full, with permission. Link to original editorial is here.
This editorial explains what’s been going on with the Commissioners’ months-long, defamatory attack on Mesa County Public Health Director Jeff Kuhr.
Can the BOCC sink any lower?
“Let us not assassinate this lad further, senator. You have done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last?”
— Joseph Welch, special counsel for the U.S. Army, to Sen. Joseph R. McCarthy during hearings in 1954 on whether communism infiltrated the U.S. armed forces.
Mesa County commissioners are in the midst of a relentless campaign to remove Dr. Jeff Kuhr from his position as executive director of Mesa County Public Health.
They’ve tried every trick in the book, some a little more unseemly than others, but none as low as the character assassination they’ve planted in the public record that unfairly swipes at Kuhr’s reputation without giving him an opportunity to defend himself.
Commissioners are acting much like the disgraced Sen. McCarthy, whose role in the Army-McCarthy hearings was described as “judge, jury, prosecutor, castigator, and press agent, all in one,” by Harvard law dean Ervin Griswold.
The public can now keep track of the effort to recall School District 51’s Board President Andrea Haitz by going to SignForKids.com, where people can find out where to sign petitions, get trained in how to gather signatures, donate to the effort or volunteer to help. The organizers need to gather 15,000 valid signatures of registered voters within the next two months.
The website states the public’s grievances against Haitz:
Andrea Haitz was elected to the District 51 Board in 2021, promising transparency.
Instead, Haitz has turned local control of school dollars over to extremist organizations, turned fundamental parts of her job over to expensive lawyers, denied student pleas for mental health services, and used her office for family political gain.
The biggest decisions at District 51 are now being turned over to outside interests and fringe extremists who don’t represent Mesa County families.
Updated 5/6/23 to reflect support for the REOPEN movement by the violent, seditious hate group The Proud Boys, anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists, and the homophobic comments Rowland made on a statewide political TV show in 2006.
In a move akin to appointing an arsonist as fire chief, Mesa County Commissioners Cody Davis and Bobbie Daniel appointed Commissioner Janet Rowland to the Mesa County Board of Public Health yesterday, Tuesday, April 25.
Rowland has been an outspoken enemy of public health for years.
She fought Covid-19 precautions before vaccines were available and disseminated disinformation about the virus that was linked to QAnon. Her social media posts promoted the notion that Covid-19 was no more deadly than the flu. She said things on social media about the virus that contradicted public health messages instructing people in how to stay safe and reduce spread of what was then a largely deadly virus.
In the days after the tragic October, 2021 accidental shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins by Alec Baldwin while he was rehearsing a scene with a prop gun on the set of his movie, Rust, Colorado House Rep. Lauren Boebert relentlessly spewed vile, unconscionable jokes about the incident at Baldwin’s expense.
Boebert grinned as she wore a creepy T-shirt joking about the tragedy while out shopping.
Tina Peters’ trial on felony charges for election tampering has been delayed again, this time until October 17, according to the Daily Sentinel.
The reason given was that the federal government still hasn’t turned over the electronics they seized in the case.
Kyle Clark of 9News in Denver interviewed Tina on March 30, and at the 1:15 mark into an 11 minute interview, Tina said,
“Today they just moved my trial out again, until October 17, so this could be moved out for decades…
Clark asked Tina about her take on Donald Trump’s indictment. Towards the end of the interview he asks Tina if a year and a half from now, she and Trump might both be in prison.
“Just like Donald Trump’s indictment, my indictment has nothing to do with the facts.”
Tina now has her own show on Rumble.com once a week in which she hawks deeply discounted “My Pillow” merchandise:
There is also now a page about her on Wikipedia.
The above mailer was recently sent to homes of prospective Grand Junction voters by the Best Slope Leadership Project, a 501 (c) (4) social welfare group based in Grand Junction.
Andrea Haitz and Greg Haitz are a married couple who over the last few years have been seeking more power in Grand Junction. Andrea is currently District 51 School Board President and Greg is trying to get onto Grand Junction City Council in the upcoming election.
New information was revealed about “Tammy Bailey” during Tina Peters’ obstruction trial, which just concluded yesterday afternoon.
Mesa County’s many, many supporters of Donald Trump (pdf) must be super-bummed this week to find out Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch has acknowledged that Fox News anchors Laura Ingraham, Lou Dobbs, Jeanine Pirro, Sean Hannity, Maria Bartiromo and others knowingly lied to them by repeating Donald Trump’s fraudulent statements that the 2020 general election was “rigged” and he actually won.
Murdoch acknowledged under oath in a deposition in the $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit brought by Dominion Voting Systems against Fox Network, that Fox News hosts knowingly lied to viewers by endorsing false election fraud claims while at the same time they were privately ridiculing such claims. Murdoch further admitted he should have ordered Trump allies like Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, who were lying to the public about the election, off the air, but didn’t.
Wondering what’s next on Tina Peters’ Law & Order docket?
Well, you won’t have to wait too long for the next episode.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, 2/28, at 3:00 p.m. Tina has a one-hour, in-person hearing in Courtroom 2 of the Mesa County Justice Center about her upcoming obstruction trial, Case No. C392022M364. That’s the case about her using an IPad to record a Court proceeding in violation of Court rules and kicking a cop in the bagel shop.
Tina’s jury trial on obstruction charges starts the next morning, Wednesday, March 1 at 8:30 a.m. in Courtroom 2. That’s Judge Bruce Raaum’s Courtroom. You should be able to access the 2/28 hearing and the 3/1 trial online via the Court’s WebEx system via this link to Judge Raaum’s Courtroom. Her obstruction trial is scheduled over two days, and should continue on Thursday, March 3 starting at 8:30 a.m.
Colorado Mesa University President John Marshall attended President Biden’s 2023 State of the Union speech in Washington, D.C. on February 7 at the invitation of far right wing extremist House Rep. Lauren Boebert, who spread lies about the 2020 election and supported the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
This article was authored by Erik Maulbetsch and originally appeared 2/2/23 in the Colorado Times Recorder.
Former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters took her conspiracy promotion to a new level this week when she implied that law enforcement murdered two family members of her former staff members in order to compel them to testify against her.
Appearing on Joe Oltmann’s far-right podcast, Peters falsely stated that the brothers of her former deputy Belinda Knisley and staffer Sandra Brown were both killed in separate unsolved hit-and-run accidents prior to the Mesa District Attorney offering them plea deals in exchange for their testimony.
Former Mesa County Clerk Tina Peters is at it again, begging people to send her money while she awaits trials in March on obstruction charges (for recording in a courtroom and kicking a cop) and on multiple felony charges related to her election tampering.
Now Tina is using a free Christian crowdfunding website called GiveSendGo.com, that was originally created with the idea of helping religious people raise money for missions. GiveSendGo’s website says the “reason we started GiveSendGo” was “to share the Hope of Jesus through crowdfunding with everyone who comes to our platform.”