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YuCount Newsletter DECEMBER 2017

Post Date:12/05/2017 2:30 PM

Administrator's Message

Greetings! It is really hard to believe I’m writing this for the last month of 2017; time has flown this year unlike any other, it seems. I hope you all enjoyed the time with family and friends for the recent Thanksgiving holidays and that you are well on your way to making the best of our upcoming Christmas holidays as well.  Recently, the Board of Supervisors agreed to consider funding a PTO/vacation buyback program, which they will officially vote on during the Board meeting December 18. If approved, employees who have applied by the deadline to receive payment for time off, from a minimum request of 5 hours to a maximum of 20 hours, will receive a check on or around December 22, just in time for the holidays.  Please express your appreciation to the Board members when you see them. The Board is not required to offer this benefit and it is a truly a generous act on their part to make this happen. Going forward, the budget will determine during the spring budget process whether to include this provision in future years. That way, everyone knows well in advance whether this benefit will be available in future years. 

I wish you all Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year!  All my best wishes to you and yours, for this year and for a new year full of possibilities!!


Susan K. Thorpe
Yuma County Administrator

County elected officials from across the state recently met in Chandler, Arizona during the Arizona Association of Counties Annual Conference.   The three-day conference allows elected officials the opportunity to share their vision of how County Government should be shaped in the future. The conference featured learning labs, networking, and discussions for the upcoming legislative sessions. 

County Administrator, Susan Thorpe, explained that AACo gives Yuma County an opportunity to bring forward proposals and ideas of what the county wants to see accomplished during the legislative session. It also allows the county to share those ideas with the other counties and come to a consensus through the Board of Directors of what will be put on the agenda for the legislative session.

The Yuma County Public Works Department is always seeking new, cost-effective ways of keeping county streets safe.

Right now they are In the process of outfitting intersections traffic lights with a retro reflecting tape.  According to the Federal Highway Administration, there are many benefits.  The yellow tape is being installed around the back plate of traffic signals making the signal itself more visible at night and especially if there is a power outage. 

With the Holiday Season upon us, it is a good time to remind everyone there are scams in our community.

The most recent scam is when someone calls your home and identifies themselves as being with the Yuma County Sheriff's Office.  The caller will say that there is a warrant for your arrest and you need to pay money to avoid being arrested.

Always remember:
1.  No law enforcement in Yuma County will call your house and request any payment over the phone.
2.  They will not ask for credit card information.
3.  They will not speak about warrant information.
4.  When in doubt, ask the caller for a contact name and phone number for verification.

For more information regarding scams, you can get help visiting the Arizona Attorney General's website.

Yuma County recently celebrated National Adoption Day.  Dozens of families visited the Yuma County Juvenile Courthouse to officially seal their Forever Families. 

One-by-one, families entered the courtroom, typically a place most people want to avoid, but, on National Adoption Day, the courtroom is the place to be.

Visit our website to learn about Adoption Day.  You can find more information on the National Adoption Day website. 
I have keys, but no locks, a space but no room, and I can enter but can't leave. What am I?

How do you make the number one disappear?

ANSWER: You put a g in front of it and it's gone.


Join us in December for a Lunch and Learn on Anxiety!

During this session, participants will learn; what it is, how is it diagnosed, strategies to keep it under control, and how to overcome anxiety.

There will be a session on Thursday, December 7, 2017, at the Main Library and Friday, December 8, 2017, at Heritage Library.

To register, please log in to your HRintouch portal. Once there, click on the “Health & Wellness” tab, and then on the Lunch & Learn option. 

Lunch will be provided and space is limited!

We look forward to seeing you there.

The holidays are right around the corner and that means food, fun, parties, and lots of online shopping. Online shopping can be a great solution allowing us to find the perfect gift and saving time, but it can also end with identity theft, malware, and other cyber unpleasantness. Rather than letting it ruin your holiday season, you can take a few simple security precautions to help reduce the chances of being a cyber victim.

When purchasing online this holiday season - and all year long - keep these tips in mind to help minimize your risk:

Do not use public computers or public wireless Internet access for your online shopping. Public computers and wireless networks may contain viruses and other malware that steal your information, which can lead to identity theft and financial fraud.

Secure your computer and mobile devices. Be sure to keep the operating system, software, and/or apps updated and patched on all of your computers and mobile devices. Use up-to-date antivirus protection and make sure it is receiving updates.

Use strong passwords. The use of strong, unique passwords is one of the simplest and most important steps to take in securing your devices, computers, and online accounts. If you need to create an account with a merchant, be sure to use a strong, unique password. Always use more than ten characters, with numbers, special characters, and upper and lower case letters. Use a unique password for every unique site.

Know your online shopping merchants. Limit your online shopping to merchants you know and trust. If you have questions about a merchant, check with the Better Business Bureau or the Federal Trade Commission. Confirm the online seller's physical address, where available, and phone number in case you have questions or problems. Do not create an online account with a merchant you don’t trust.

Pay online with one credit card. A safer way to shop on the Internet is to pay with a credit card rather than debit card. Debit cards do not have the same consumer protections as credit cards. Credit cards are protected by the Fair Credit Billing Act and may limit your liability if your information is stolen or misused. By using one credit card with a low credit limit for all your online shopping, you also limit the potential for financial fraud to affect all of your accounts. Always check your statements regularly and carefully.

Look for "https" in the Internet address (URL) when making an online purchase. The "s" in "https" stands for "secure" and indicates that communication with the webpage is encrypted. This helps to ensure your information is transmitted safely to the merchant and no one can spy on it. Alternatively, look for the lock symbol (it’s sometimes green) in the Internet address bar.

Do not respond to pop-ups. When a window pops up promising you cash or gift cards for answering a question or taking a survey, close it by pressing Control + F4 on a Windows computer and Command + W on a Mac. These could be social engineering attempts designed to convince you to open malware or click on a malicious link.

Do not auto-save your personal information. When purchasing online, you may be given the option to save your personal information online for future use. Consider if the convenience is really worth the risk. The convenience of not having to reenter the information is insignificant compared to the significant amount of time you’ll spend trying to repair the loss of your stolen personal information.

Use common sense to avoid scams. Don't give out your personal or financial information via email or text. Information on many current scams can be found on the websites of the Internet Crime Complaint Center and the Federal Trade Commission.

Internet Crime Complaint Center
Federal Trade Commission

Review privacy policies. Review the privacy policy for the website/merchant you are visiting. Know what information the merchant is collecting about you, how it will be stored, how it will be used, and if it will be shared with others.

If you encounter problems with an online shopping site, contact the seller or the site operator directly to resolve any issues. You may also contact the following:

- Your state’s Attorney General's Office or Consumer Protection Agency
The Better Business Bureau
The Federal Trade Commission

For more Cyber Security resources, please visit the IT Security Division under the Information Technology Services Department website pages.

Have a great Holiday Season and remember...CYBER SECURITY STARTS WITH YOU!

On Saturday, November 4, local chief treasure hunter Tim Hardy joined several of our Juvenile Court 10's (the 10 club membership is comprised of individuals that believe that kids can succeed if they are rated on a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the highest score),  along with approximately 40 of our Kids At Hope (KAH) youth for an awesome event. Together, they participated in a Kickball Tournament at Joe Orduno Park in San Luis, Arizona.

Beginning in the morning, the championship game finished up late in the afternoon. There were a total of four teams with KAH from various Juvenile Court programs. Each team was made up of Juvenile Court 10’s along with KAH.

For lunch, Chef Leo Mendez (aka. Juvenile Court Deputy Director) cooked up hot dogs with all the fixings along with assistants Lili Lugo, Monica Calderon, and Stephanie Gonzales. Lili Lugo, Arturo Caro, and Juan Rodriguez shared MC and announcer duties while Emmie Roman and Dave Sherman kept everyone on a tight schedule and the score.

In the end “Club M” was crowned as KAH kickball champs and  MVPs Julian Linarez and Jordan Medina were selected for their outstanding teamwork and athletic effort throughout the day.

The following Juvenile Court 10’s participated:

1.      Juan M. Linarez (event organizer)
2.      Monica Calderon
3.      Emmie Roman
4.      Liliana Lugo
5.      Rosalba Gomez
6.      Arturo Caro
7.      David Sherman
8.      Elizabeth Hormaeche
9.      Ariel Acosta
10.   Henry Cabrera
11.   Cesar Figueroa
12.   Francisco Esquivel
13.   Phillip Aitken
14.   Isaac Gonzalez
15.   Lora DeLeon
16.   Ismael Garcia
17.   Gabriella LaChica
18.   Leo Mendez
19.   Luis Torres
20.   Ruben Esparza
21.   Carmen Gardea
22.   Julian Solorzano
23.   Stephanie Gonzalez
24.   Edna Lugo
25.   Christina Charles
26.   Tim Hardy
27.   Beau Gonzalez
28.   Zach Harrison
29.   Carla Zepeda (Court Security and Referee)
Maria Mendez, Acquisitions Specialist (Yuma County Main Library), has been chosen as the Yuma County Library District’s Employee of the Month for December 2017. This award recognizes an employee that inspires us with her effort and attitude. Maria received a mounted certificate, a name plate in the book of her choice, an Employee of the Month pin, and her photo will be hung at the Yuma County Main Library during the month of December.
Congratulations Maria!

Pamela Gutierrez, Library Assistant I Youth Services (San Luis Library), has been chosen as the Yuma County Library District’s Employee of the Month for November 2017. This award recognizes an employee that inspires us with her effort and attitude. Pamela received a mounted certificate, a name plate in the book of her choice, an Employee of the Month pin, and her photo will be hung in the San Luis Library during the month of November.
Congratulations Pamela!
County Attorney
Dallin Marcy-Attorney II

Jordan Amezcua-Admin. Support Specialist
Jeff Davis-Emergency Comm. Supervisor
Carolina Hodges-Admin. Support Specialist

Superior Court
Christy Garcia-Collections Specialist
Jeffrey Breeden-Collections Supervisor
Rosalie Vargas-Office Specialist II

County Administrator's Office
Anna M. Rojas-Agenda Specialist
Ginger Hamilton-Records Technician

County Attorney
Brenda Luna-Paralegal

Development Services
Roman Vega-Senior Civil Engineer
Alan Quintero-Senior Civil Engineer

Rocio Amador-Housing Manager

Christina Charles-Probation Officer I
Rosalba Gomez-Probation Officer I

Public Defender
Alba Marron-Legal Secretary II

Public Works
Kelly Fricke-Administrative Supervisor
Ricky Moser-Equipment Operator

Jenny Dickman-Office Specialist II


Dare to dream big…Registrations are now open for the Yuma Territorial Marathon and Half Marathon.  Take part in the next upcoming run that will be held on January 27, 2018.  Get your “Finisher” medal out of all the awards you receive in your life. The Marathon Finisher medal will be the one you want to keep around your neck forever. Last year, we had a total of 23 county employees participate from various departments who started and crossed the finish line.

Upcoming Runs hosted by the City of Yuma Parks and Recreation – Registrations will be posted soon.
December 16, Reindeer Roundup -West Wetlands Park
January 6,  New Year’s Resolutions -West Wetlands Park
February 10, Great Yuma Road Race – Start at 16th Street end in Gateway Park
March 3, March On City Finals - West Wetlands Park



Beginning in January 2018, employees will receive a tax form called the 1095-C that will contain important information about their health care coverage.  Employees who receive the 1095- C, please keep it with your tax records.

An employee will receive the 1095-C if they were :
• Enrolled in health care coverage with Yuma County Blue Cross Blue Shield of AZ plan at any time in the calendar year 2017
• Worked an average of 30 or more hours per week or was considered a full-time employee during the calendar year 2017

As part of the new health care law, also called the Affordable Care Act, requires all employers to send the 1095-C to participating employees who had health care coverage during that calendar year.

You can review this blank 1095-C or visit the IRS website.

We will continue to keep you informed on this important tax document.

For questions, please contact: Benefits at 928-373-1013


The focus of this event was to promote healthy lifestyles of Public Housing and Housing Choice Voucher (HCV) residents/participants.  Crossroads Mission donated ten (10) cooked turkeys with side dishes and was served to all 139 individuals.  There was a dessert contest participated by 12 housing residents of both Section 8 and Public Housing programs.  These desserts were served as part of the dinner plates.  All drinks were donated by Pastor Jose Manuel Castro from Gethsemani Baptist Church in San Luis AZ. 

The event was planned and organized by the Housing Department Family Self Sufficiency (FSS) staff, spearheaded by Francisca Payanez.  It was held in the Community Building of the Housing Department on Nov. 16 and over 139 individuals and community organizations participated. Other community partners that participated and provided health and informational services are as follows:

1.       Sunset Community Health Center – took blood pressure and exhibited their  “Mind and Body “  program using drums. 
2.       Regional Medical Health Center - provided Mobile screenings on Cholesterol and  Glucose. 
3.       National Community Health Partners.
4.       Campesinos Sin Fronteras.
5.       Yuma County Tobacco Use Prevention Program.
6.       Yuma Regional Cancer Center - providing informational exhibits/brochures.

On July 15, 1918, County Assessor, A.B. Ming filed a letter received from D.G. Henderson, State Tax Commission, with the Clerk of the Board regarding the Arizona & Swansea Railroad Company. The letter stated the railroad was not exempt from taxation per Chapter 91, Session Laws of Arizona 1909 and requested the property owned by the railroad be added to Yuma County's 1918 assessment and tax roll.  The Board agreed to the request and moved to add the property for a total of $19,724.07.  The property included two locomotives: One was 68 tons and estimated at $8,239.25 and the other a 55-ton locomotive that had been dismantled.  There were a baggage and mail coach, 3 box cars, 4 flat cars, water, and roadway tank, a Ford Motor Car (estimated value $275) and tools, equipment, and furniture for the railway stations at Swansea and Bouse in the amount of $5,082. The last item listed was 42.2 miles of telephone line at $20 per wire mile for a total of $844.  Board members were: Ike Proebstel (Chairman), F.E. Elliot, and B. F. Hopkins.

Submitted by:
Ginger Hamilton
Yuma County Administration
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