All about U — and Broomfield

Today is the first day that clerks have to open voting service and polling centers. Broomfield Clerk Jim Canderlarie, left, staffer Daniel Misssap, holding the U he decorated, and staffer Michael Susek, right, along with election judges.

Broomfield Clerk and Recorder Jim Candelarie, staffers and election judges opted to show off their wooden U today, the first day that all clerks must open the minimum required number of Voter Service and Polling Centers.

VSPC’s, as they’re called, are where county residents can vote in person, get a replacement ballot, get a ballot of one wasn’t mailed to them and more. Most counties have a list of their voting center locations on their website.

Broomfield’s U.

Secretary of State Wayne Williams is handing out the U’s as part of the UChooseCO campaign to educate unaffiliated voters that they can participate in the June 26 primary election, but they can only vote one ballot. The campaign has a web pageFacebook page, a Twitter account and its own hashtag, #UChooseCO.

At least every week day between now and the June 26 primary the Secretary of State’s office will highlight a wooden U or two. They’ve been decorated by lawmakers, county clerks, a former mayor and a former governor. Check out more decorated U’s on Facebook and Twitter.

Jeffco, Broomfield county clerks talk elections with Secretary Wayne Williams

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams visits the Jefferson County Clerk’s office Thursday. From left to right, Gary VanDeStouwe, director of elections and technology; Shawna Weir, mail ballot and UOCAVA supervisor; Secretary Williams; and Cody Sawnson, deputy director of elections. (SOS photo)
Broomfield Clerk Jim Candelarie and Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams. (SOS photo)

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams visited two county clerk’s offices, in Jefferson and Broomfield counties, Thursday during a whirlwind trip that also included a speech before the civics organization  Progressive 15 before heading to the Western Slope.

Williams met with Jefferson County Clerk Faye Griffin and her staff, and Broomfield Clerk Jim Candelarie and his staff.

“It’s important to actually view their operations and talk to their people to see if there is anyway our office can help,” he said.

Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, right, visits with Jefferson County election officials Thursday. He is with Gary VanDeStouwe, director of elections and technology, and Clerk and Recorder Faye Griffin. (SOS photo)

Last week, Williams met with Gilpin County Clerk Colleen Stewart and her staff in Central City, Clear Creek County Clerk Pam Phipps and her staff in Georgetown and Elbert County Clerk Dallas Schroeder and his staff in Kiowa.

“Wayne’s pretty responsive,” Candelarie said. “I enjoy working with him.”

He talked to the secretary about several issues, including witness verification of ballot signatures.

Griffin said she always enjoys talking to Williams, especially as an election nears. The coordinated election is Nov. 7.

Former House colleagues praise Bill Berens; funeral services set for Saturday

Broomfield Mayor Bill Berens poses for a photo in the city council chambers. (The Denver Post)
Broomfield Mayor Bill Berens poses for a photo in the city council chambers. (The Denver Post)

The men and women who served with Republican Bill Berens in the state House on Friday praised the lawmaker for his devotion to the city of Broomfield and daring to speak his mind to make Colorado a better place.

“Bill Berens was a dapper, friendly soul,” said Sen. Mary Hodge, D-Brighton, who was chairwoman of the House Local Government Committee when Berens was a member.

“I recall that many of his contributions to our discussions began with ‘When I was mayor of Broomfield, we … ,’  or ‘In Broomfield, we ….’ He was very proud of his city and the role he had played in its progress,” she said.  “I’ll miss him at United Power legislative lunches where we would reminisce about ‘the good old days.’ May he rest in peace.”

Berens died Monday at the age of 66 after battling cancer for seven months. His funeral service is scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday at the Nativity of  Our Lord Catholic Church in Broomfield.

The Broomfield Enterprise and The Denver Post chronicled the life of Berens, a civil engineer who served four terms as Broomfield mayor and one term in the House before being swept out of office in the Democratic tidal wave of 2006.

“Rep. Berens and I opposed one another in two House races,” said Rep. Dianne Primavera, a Democrat. “He defeated me in 2004. I defeated him in 2006. Despite being competitors, he and I respected one another and had a cordial relationship.  He even offered several times to teach me to play golf! Ironically, my story has been one of a cancer survivor. Sadly, he had a different outcome with his illness. I’m still in shock at his passing.”