Colorado pays homage to the accurate calibration of commercial weighing and measuring equipment this week, as Gov. Jared Polis declared March 1-7 “Weights and Measures Week.”
“Guaranteeing the accuracy of weights and measures is one of the oldest and most important activities of government,” says Hollis Glenn, director of the Division of Inspection and Consumer Services. “Every citizen and every business has a direct financial interest in seeing that transactions are fair to both the buyer and seller.”
The power of Congress to “fix the Standard of Weights and Measures” is enshrined in the Constitution, and at the state level, the Colorado Department of Agriculture has the responsibility for the accuracy of scales and meters. Their jurisdiction also extends to packaged products at stores, warehouses, packing plants and storage facilities. Those products must be properly identified, contain the amount of product on the package and list a responsible party.
The other agency responsible for measurements, the Division of Oil and Public Safety, inspects gas stations and tests fuel samples for accuracy.
The agriculture department has 16 inspectors who certify scales and check packages. Their work includes ensuring that the scales for weighing luggage at Denver International Airport are accurate. The state’s Metrology Laboratory has custody of the official standards and provides calibration services in mass, length, volume, time, frequency and grain moisture.