MONTE VISTA — “I don’t think the position should be about writing tickets so much. It should be an education and a service to the community,” said Monte Vista’s new Community Service Officer/ Code Enforcement Officer, Manuel Lopez about his new position.
Lopez was officially sworn in as the new community service officer at a Monte Vista City Council meeting on Jan. 21. He is now a couple of months into the job and working hard to focus on education before citations.
When asked what his biggest challenge has been so far as the community service officer in Monte Vista, Lopez answered saying, “Me having never filled the position before, I’ve been learning as far as the job goes. I honestly believe it should be more of an education-based deal. Not just going out and handing out citations. But trying to make personal impressions on the community.”
Lopez also shared that the colder weather is currently one of the hardest challenges.
“Nobody wants to get out and clean their yard in the middle of a snowstorm,” said Lopez.
When asked what he hopes to accomplish in his new position, Lopez shared that he has been putting together a “useful public service program,” which is run through the State Probation Office.
Lopez has been utilizing the program to help clean up litter around the railroad tracks, ditches, and even connecting with the landfill and theater to help with public service.
“I’m actually trying to utilize this 'useful public service' for exactly what it’s called,” said Lopez. “It is a public service and so putting these guys who need hours out in the community and trying to get them involved in the community and actually cleaning it up.”
As part of his efforts to spread awareness on code in the community, Lopez plans to send out a monthly newsletter. The newsletter will be on the city’s website. Lopez hopes it will help inform citizens about municipal code, and other things the city has going on.
Lopez also wants to be available to the community and said that if people have issues or questions, he’s happy to have them reach out to him by email at [email protected].