Moffat County Commissioner Saed Tayyara made a challenge in blood on his first day in office.
Tayyara said he would donate $500 to the United Way and the Hospital Foundation on behalf of county employees who donated blood at the Center of Craig on Feb. 8.
In turn, Tayyara challenged the Craig City Council, the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Forest Service to encourage their employees to donate blood Feb. 8. He planned to challenge the council to donate to charities on behalf of any employees who may give blood.
Tayyara's challenge was one of the only surprises during the first day he and Tom Gray served as commissioners.
The pair was sworn into office by county Clerk and Recorder Elaine Sullivan before an audience of about 50 people. They joined Commissioner Darryl Steele, who has been in office for two years.
Steele moved his seat in the commissioner chambers to the center of the table. The commissioners elected him as board chairman, and Gray was elected vice chairman.
The newly elected commissioners showed some early signs of following up campaign pledges to improve relations with the City Council.
City Manager Jim Ferre and Councilman Don Jones attended the swearing-in ceremony, and Ferre returned to the meeting for the intergovernmental agency. He had not been invited to previous intergovernmental meetings at the courthouse.
"I think we're going to see a big change in cooperation with the city and county, and not just a benefit to one," Steele said.
The commissioners named Tayyara county liaison to the council. Tayyara will attend City Council meetings to keep the lines of communication open between the two governments.
"The point is, we happen to represent the same taxpayers and we are going to communicate," Tayyara said.
As far as the commissioners knew, Tayyara is the first county liaison to the City Council. When Tayyara served as Craig mayor in the 1980s and early 1990s, he served as city liaison to the county.
The commissioners filled vacancies on county advisory boards and divided ex-officio duties to those boards among themselves.
Gray replaced Les Hampton, who served as commissioner for four years before losing the Republican primary election to Gray.
Tayyara replaced Marianna Raftopoulos, who was term limited after serving as commissioner for eight years.
Rob Gebhart can be reached at 824-7031 or firstname.lastname@example.org.