San Miguel County will celebrate the Sheriff’s Office Annex this week. On Oct. 27, the board of county commissioners will have their meeting there on site, and then break to have the ribbon cutting for the facility at noon. They’ll also walk through the space and tour it just before.

The multi-use space has been years in the making. Jennifer Dinsmore, the Sheriff’s Office chief administrative officer, said she’s been working with Sheriff Bill Masters as project manager for the annex the last five years.

It was two weeks ago that staff started moving into the multi-use space. If an emergency event took place, the facility is set up and ready for that. It’s designed as an EOC, emergency operations center, for a large-scale practice event or a real emergency situation. 

There have been a few delays as a result of the COVID pandemic, so some technology is still being installed, however. But, mostly it’s ready to go. 

In the same space, in the EOC and training room, the commissioners plan to have their monthly meetings there, instead of in the Lone Cone Library or the Glockson Building where they used to take place. 

The room can be easily transformed, though, by setting it up with certain equipment in an emergency situation. 

No jail will be on site, as that was not part of the plan. Instead, there are rooms for questioning and also evidence, with administrative spaces for staff and deputies to work.

Wendy Crank, the director of Juvenile Diversion, will have an office at the annex, as will the Colorado State Patrol. Sean Krentsa, the Sheriff’s Office IT coordinator, will also have space to work, too. 

Dinsmore said while she’d love to work in Norwood as often as she can, likely it will be one day per week, since she needs to be in Ilium for much of what she does. 

She said there are other important aspects of the annex, including the local internet “brain” that will be housed there. Now, the facility will become the new “carrier neutral location,” which is the main access point for fiber cable internet for Norwood. The internet brain is currently in the Glockson Building, but will be moved in the near future, though doing so will require a temporary shut-down of the internet in town. 

By spring, the whole building will run off mostly solar power, something Dinsmore said is exciting. 

In what has been a long process, she told The Norwood Post she’s grateful to the many people who’ve made the annex project a reality.

“The contractors and county employees,” she said, “And the community for their patience.”

Dinsmore gives thanks to Charles Cunniffe Architects, of Aspen, with Dave Rosenfeld as the lead. Jaynes Corporation, of Durango, was the contractor with David Hawthorne as the construction manager. Werner Catsman, of Placerville, was the tech advisor. 

Masters said he thanked them all, including Dinsmore for her management of the annex project, in a news release. 

“We couldn’t have done it without them working together so well,” Masters said. He also thanked his employees and the Norwood community. 

Other contractors included William Babbel, for the state and national flags, along with C.A.M. Electric, Precision Plumbing, Coolings Plumbing and Heating, Switchback Construction, Doc Williams Landscaping, Souther Construction, Sun Glass and more. 

The state’s Department of Local Affairs donated $1 million to the new $3.8 million annex.