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Mill Levy Advisory Council

The Mill Levy Advisory Council makes recommendations to our executive director on how best to address the needs of Denver residents with intellectual or developmental disabilities.


The council is comprised of seven voting members who are Denver residents as well as a non-voting representative from Denver’s Community Centered Board.

Current board members of the Mill Levy Advisory Council are:

  • Dr. Barbara "Ann" Pierce, Denver Human Services, retired (co-chair)
  • J.J. Tomash, BehaviorSpan (co-chair)
  • Tim Lomas, Boulder County (CAC member)
  • Kendall Rames, Urban Peak Denver
  • Lauren Weinstock, Artist/Writer/Advocate
  • Jennifer Beck, Rocky Mountain Human Services (non-voting member)

Read member bios [PDF]

The advisory council convenes at least quarterly.

Nov. 14, 2019 (Thursday)
1 – 3 p.m.

Denver Human Services, East Office
3815 Steele Street, Denver, CO 80205

  • View agenda.
  • For purposes of room capacity, please let us know you're coming with your RSVP.
  • If attending, please allow plenty of time to find parking. Please arrive on time.
  • If you'd prefer to participate via phone, the call-in number is 720-388-6219 and conference ID is 323-906-53#. Our call-in line is limited to the first 25 callers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions about the Mill Levy Advisory Council:

The Mill Levy Advisory Council serves as the voice of residents in the City and County of Denver. It reviews current needs and gaps in existing services to make recommendations for essential services and bold innovations to the executive management team at Denver Human Services on the administration and dispensation of dedicated mill levy dollars to best serve residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD).

The mill levy dedicated to serving people with I/DD in Denver was approved in 2003 by nearly 70% of Denver voters, and then further defined in a 2017 ordinance.

The council may seat up to seven voting members, all of which are required to be Denver residents. Additionally, one delegate selected by the Community-Centered Board (CCB) participates as a non-voting member. See member profiles to learn more about current council members.

The council must hold at least four council meetings per year and may schedule additional meetings or executive sessions based on needs to meet its goals. Meetings are announced on the DHS website, supported by social media posts and stakeholder outreach. For more information, see Article V of the council bylaws.

The council often meets at Denver Human Services’ Castro building at Federal and 12th, as this location intersects with several public transportation options and has accessible meeting rooms for public attendance. The council may choose to schedule meetings at other locations as well, and all meetings offer a call-in option to allow remote participation for those that may not be able to attend in person. Meeting details, including location, are announced on this web page.    

As identified by its members, the council’s stated values are courage, loyalty, empowerment, and sustainability.

  • Courage. Be courageous; go beyond the ordinary to push boundaries and create something workable.
  • Loyalty. Maintain good relationships and trust. Demonstrate commitment to the process, to individuals and families with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and to the greater Denver community.
  • Empowerment. Be responsive to needs in a way that empowers and includes people.
  • Sustainability. Build something that lasts beyond the money we spend on it.

Through these values and their work, the council strives to build faith, trust, and hope with the Denver community.

After discussion, review, and public engagement, the council may vote to make statements of recommendation to DHS about needs identified throughout the discovery process. Potential bidding opportunities that result from this process can be found here.    

According to the Denver Revised Municipal Code (DRMC § 2-33), all meetings of a quorum of a public body are required to be open to the public, and DRMC § 2-32(2) clearly states that advisory boards are considered public bodies.

In addition to these requirements, the council appreciates transparency of business and actions. Anything considered public business is covered at meetings accessible to the public, including operational actions such as adopting bylaws. 

Council members serve a two-year term. Council bylaws make an exception to this rule for the initially seated council, which prescribes that three members continue service for an additional year to stagger future appointments to the council, creating a structure that carries forward knowledge and practices to new members. Council members can be appointed for up to two consecutive terms before taking a break of no less than one year.

A conflict of interest is defined as a situation in which the concerns or aims of two different parties are incompatible. This includes any situation in which a person is in a position to derive personal benefit from actions or decisions made in their official capacity.

Members who have a potential or existing conflict of interest must recuse themselves from discussions or votes where the conflict is implicated. This is identified in the council bylaws as a primary duty for all council members. 

A recusal means that a council member will take no official action regarding the issue at hand. This means that the council member will not be involved in discussions or provide information regarding the issue. There is no limit to the number of recusals. The decision to recuse will not be held against any council member. The goal is to be as transparent and fair as possible.

To recuse oneself, a council member will announce that he or she has a conflict and state the nature of the conflict, announce that he or she is recusing, and leave the room. This is to ensure that it does not appear as though the recusing council member has influenced the remaining members of the council. The recusing member will not be involved in any discussions related to the issue resulting in the conflict.  

DHS is aware that the system that supports people with intellectual and developmental disabilities is varied and complex. DHS’ mill levy program manager works as a liaison to the community of existing providers and services, including the Denver Community-Centered Board (CCB), Rocky Mountain Human Services (RMHS).

Additionally, it is expected that all members of the council will scan for and identify existing efforts that seek to address the needs of Denver residents with I/DD. As the CCB for Denver and a contractor with DHS through mill levy dollars, RMHS’s mill levy programs are of particular interest to the council. The council structure accounts for this by holding two unique members: the first is a CCB delegate that serves as a non-voting member. This person is a source of information from RMHS to the council as it relates to current programs and potential historical or institutional knowledge. Additionally, the council elects one of its own members to sit on RMHS’s Community Advisory Council, which meets to discuss mill levy programs and other related community topics. 

The council welcomes all voices of our community. The agenda contains a 20-minute period, most often held at the end of meetings, in which community members may sign up to make a comment. All commenters have two minutes to present their comment to the council.

We ask that all members of the public state their name, how the funds might impact them, and whether they are a Denver resident before commencing with their comment. 

The council does not directly engage or remark on comments that are made during the public comment period. However, you may see your topic of comment engaged in later meetings, as part of council investigation or discussion.

Any information shared by various individuals, families, professionals, and other members of the community is vital to informing the big picture and is a valued part of the process to deliberate issues and determine recommendations.

The council focuses its discussion and recommendations on the needs, gaps, barriers, and opportunities that are identified in the community through various personal and professional expertise, public engagement, and investigation. The council does not review or directly recommend specific pitches or proposals from community providers. 

After the council makes a statement of recommendation, DHS completes further discovery to evaluate options to move forward. Potential bidding opportunities that result from this process can be found here.

Once the RFP/RFA process closes, DHS follows set practices to evaluate the bids received. DHS’s purchasing and contracting procedures align with city code.

Some other information you may find helpful:


You May Also Find Helpful



Get more information about Denver's I/DD Mill Levy.


Mill Levy Advisory Council By-Laws [PDF]


Needs Assessment Final Report [PDF]


Needs Assessment Summary [PDF]


Mill Levy RFI Overview [PDF]


Learn about bidding opportunities and find out about doing business with DHS


Get Started »

For more information about the Mill Levy Advisory Council, email us at



Main Office, Richard T. Castro Human Services Center
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Denver, CO 80204


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