Dinosaur Social Services office staffed with local

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Recent history

The Moffat County Social Services office in Dinosaur has faced uncertain times since its only employee was arrested five months ago.

• June 25: Carla Roloff, a Dinosaur resident who worked with Moffat County Social Services for 12 years, is arrested on suspicion of selling methamphetamine, at least once from inside her office.

• June 26: Social Services begins sending employees from the Craig office to the Dinosaur office once per week.

• Nov. 26: Dinosaur resident Carmen McKay's planned first day of work as the new clerk at Social Services' Dinosaur office.

• Dec. 4: Roloff's next scheduled court appearance, when she may accept a plea agreement with the 14th Judicial District Attorney's Office.

After five months of uncertainty, Moffat County Social Services staffed its Dinosaur office with a permanent clerk from the town.

Carmen McKay, who starts this week, will staff the office from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Wednesdays.

That constitutes a change from the office's previous hours, which consisted of being open for three hours on each of four days per week. Officials said this would help keep some uniformity with the far-away branch and that hours could be expanded if the need arises.

Specialized technicians will visit the office once a month to help train McKay and assist Dinosaur residents.

The office temporarily was staffed with employees from the Craig office - who traveled 90 miles to Dinosaur once a week - since the former Dinosaur staff person was arrested in June.

Carla Roloff, a Dinosaur resident who had worked for Social Services since 1996, is charged in Moffat County District Court with two counts of distribution of a Schedule 2 controlled substance, a class 3 felony. Law enforcement officers reported Roloff sold methamphetamine from her office on at least one occasion.

Her next court appearance is a plea hearing scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Dec. 4.

Replacing Roloff with another Dinosaur resident was not always a certainty.

Since the arrest, county officials considered a few alternatives for the Dinosaur branch's future, such as making the temporary travel arrangement for Craig employees permanent.

Dinosaur Mayor Freda Powell, however, asserted it would be best for the citizens she represents to have a local face at Social Services.

Powell said she did not want Social Services to follow the path of other resident services, such as a local judge to hold court proceedings in Dinosaur. Those services seemed to disappear when it became necessary for officials from Craig to travel to Dinosaur, Powell said.

Upon hearing of McKay's hire, Powell was happy to hear the office had some stability restored.

"I'm very glad they filled it with a local resident," she said. "I think if someone local fills the office, they wouldn't have to travel and (the county) is more apt to keep the office open."

Social Services Director Marie Peer said she agrees with Powell that hiring a Dinosaur resident was the best course to take.

"They can watch and listen for needs that we would never hear about here," Peer said.

McKay did not return phone calls by press time.

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