County Profile, Organizational Structure, & Strategic Plan
Elbert County Profile
Here you find an overview of Ebert County's History, Demographics, and Culture
Elbert County, named for former Colorado territorial governor Samuel H. Elbert, covers 1,851 square miles on the Great Plains southeast of Denver. It is bordered to the north by Arapahoe County, to the east by Lincoln County, to the south by El Paso County, and to the west by Douglas County.
Ever since it was established in 1874 Elbert County has been shaped by its transportation networks, beginning with establishment of the Colorado Gold Rush’s Smoky Hill Trail in the mid-nineteenth century and continuing through the railroad and interstate highway eras. Today Interstate 70 runs across the county’s northeast corner and the community of Agate, while State Highway 86 connects the communities of Ponderosa Park, Elizabeth, and Kiowa in western Elbert County and US Highway 24 links Simla and the small community of Matheson farther south.
Owing to its proximity to the Rocky Mountain foothills, western Elbert County contains more tree cover than its neighbors farther out on the plains. The county also features a multitude of seasonal streams and creeks: Running Creek, Kiowa Creek and the three branches of Bijou Creek flow northward into the South Platte River, while Big Sandy Creek eventually feeds the Arkansas River.
To this day, the County remains rooted in its western heritage. Over 30,000 head of cattle are raised and it is also one of the state’s top producers of horses and other draft animals. Elbert County also ranks in the top third of Colorado counties in wheat production. Elbert County’s culture mirrors its rural traditions of farming and ranching. The annual Elizabeth Stampede and Rodeo, for instance, has been a mainstay of the small town for more than fifty years and has become one of the most popular annual events on the Colorado plains. The county 4-H program and schools districts’ support of Future Farmers of America (FFA) ensure these proud traditions will endure.
While farming and ranching families form the core of Elbert County’s identity, we also recognize we are called home by many who work in the Denver metro area. The County’s major towns and community growth in the western portion of the County are roughly a 25-minute drive from nearby the nearby towns of Castle Rock and Parker, and less than an hour commute to the Denver, Aurora, and Colorado Springs areas.
This proximity to these employment centers, quiet home life, and relatively low tax burden continue to make Elbert County a very desirable place to live. The 2022 estimated population in the County totaled 27,262, marking a 17.6% increase from 2012. By 2050, the state demographer projects the population to increase modestly to 37,673. During the recovery from the 'great recession' over the past decade, Elbert County has experienced an average annual rate of population growth of 1.8% as projects entitled in the late 2000's began building. This pattern of recession followed by growth is anticipated to continue with an average population growth of 1.4% annually over the three decades to come.
Regardless of where an individual lives or how they make their living, citizens of Elbert County recognize and treasure the unique heritage we all share. Protecting the production value of our lands, water supplies, and quality of life for all remains a priority for the Government of Elbert County.
This chart depicts the many functions and services provided by the county to all citizens. Though all elected officials work together in support of our residents, the Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) and other Elected Officers have very specific statutory responsibilities (as show below) and are solely responsible to the voters for the operations of the departments assigned to them. The BOCC oversees the majority of its executive responsibilities through the County Manager whereas the other Elected Officers directly manage their operations. Specific roles and functions for each department are provided in the narrative portions of each office and departments individual section of this document.
STRATEGIC PLAN - MISSION, VISION, VALUES AND GOALS
Elbert County provides essential statutory services and supportive infrastructure to our citizens in a professional, respectful, and cost-effective manner while creating a working environment that supports their endeavors, western lifestyle and rights as individuals.
Elbert County will be recognized by its citizens and employees as the best place to live, work and conduct business in Colorado through responsive, effective, transparent, and professional management.
Above all else, Elbert County Government values the following:
- Honesty, integrity, and respect for the rights of individuals
- Quality citizen/customer service
- Respect for its western culture and history
- Clear communication and transparency
- Efficiency and fiscal responsibility
- Recognition of employee and citizen contributions
- Seeking of partnerships and collaborations
- Organizational planning for future needs
- Cooperative leadership and professional development
Based on the mission and values of Elbert County Government, there following overarching goals have been identified. They describe the ways in which the County strives to achieve the Vision Statement. Goals are not prescriptive; instead, they provide a roadmap for decision making. With each annual budget the County strives to make measurable progress in furthering the accomplishment of one or more of these goals:
Goal 1 – Maintain and promote a financially sustainable County government that is transparent and effective.
Goal 2 – Ensure a qualified, trained, and efficient workforce.
Goal 3 – Deliver plans, updates, and status to citizens via multiple channels while ensuring open two-way communications.
Goal 4 – Plan for continuity of government in case of disaster, infrastructure failure, or economic impacts.
Goal 5 – Support growth and economic activity in the County.
Goal 6 – Continuously improve the quality and effectiveness of services to our citizens.