November 2015
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News for Norther Colorado and the world

Friday, November 27, 2015

ProgressNow: Daily News: Colorado

Federal farm bill backs ag and small-town businesses that support it

When Mike Brady opened Pelican Jo’s Pizzeria in Windsor in 2011, money was so tight he couldn’t even afford a menu board. The country was battling back from the Great Recession, and getting a bank loan seemed impossible. “If you walked into a bank and said you wanted to open a restaurant, it was like cockroaches when the lights went on,” he said. Help came from a surprising source: the federal farm bill, which includes a pool of money to help improve the economic stability of rural communities and small towns across America.

Colorado insurance director involved in Udall dispute leaves job

An administrator with Colorado’s Division of Insurance who was at the center of a dispute with U.S. Sen. Mark Udall’s office over policy cancellations due to the Affordable Care Act will leave her job for a different state position. Jo Donlin is set to serve in the Division of Professions and Occupations as a health care adviser, according to an e-mail sent to staff Thursday and obtained by The Denver Post.

U.S. Rep. Cory Gardner bags groceries at Longmont Lucky’s

Several of Thursday morning’s shoppers at Longmont’s Lucky’s Market got their purchases bagged by a Colorado congressman.

Denver Post hosts gubernatorial debate Tuesday night

Gubernatorial candidates Tom Tancredo and Scott Gessler won’t be attending the debate The Denver Post is hosting Tuesday evening, but there’s no doubt their fellow Republicans will mention them.

Audit raises more questions about Secretary of State’s budget

Colorado auditors found that the department failed to follow rules when conducting roughly $80,000 worth of financial transactions.

Republican Sen. Herpin apologizes for ‘insensitive’ gun remark

Sen. Bernie Herpin, a Republican, said he was trying to make a point about how last year’s Democrat-sponsored gun laws have been ineffective in reducing gun violence. “There’s nothing I can say to relieve their pain; I certainly didn’t intend to add to their pain,” Herpin said. But talk of his comments has spread rapidly and so has the criticism.

RELATED: Herpin explains why it was ‘good thing’ Holmes had large ammo magazine

School-board recording bill fires up Colorado House, heads to Senate

School boards would have to tape record all of their executive sessions, even portions their attorneys previously declared off-limits, under a bill that produced fireworks in the House amid charges that Democrats are sore losers. Some Republicans claimed the only reason Democrats introduced House Bill 1110 is because reform candidates beat union-backed rivals in some of last year’s school board races. “This bill is an attack on education reform,” said Rep. Kevin Priola, R-Henderson, who was visibly upset.

Bill to slow Colorado’s adoption of Common Core dies in committee

The Senate education committee on Thursday night rejected a bill that would slam the brakes on the Colorado Academic Standards, including the Common Core and the testing adopted with it, after six hours of passionate pleas from both sides to do right by students. Senate Bill 136, sponsored by Fort Collins Republican Vicki Marble, would have delayed testing for a year while an independent task force examined both the standards and a cost-analysis of implementation. It died on a 4-3, party-line vote.

Colorado bill to ease hydroelectric development passes House

The Colorado House today passed a bipartisan bill that streamlines and coordinates the permitting process for hydroelectric facilities. House Bill 14-1030 mitigates the complexities of the permitting process for hydroelectric facilities that produce 10 megawatts of energy or less. Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush, D-Steamboat Springs, and Rep. Don Coram, R-Montrose, believe their bill will create more jobs in rural communities.

Pot growers not singled out in agricultural tax code proposal

Marijuana growers in Colorado avoided being singled out in an agriculture tax measure that advanced Thursday. The bill codifies tax practices for greenhouses and nurseries, which are considered agricultural property and not commercial property in most cases. That makes them eligible for lower property taxes.

Public input sought on water plan

A measure to ensure that the public will have input to a proposed statewide water plan cleared a Senate committee Thursday.

RELATED: Our water is hot topic

RELATED: Water roundtable seeks public input

Colorado lawmakers take shots at 50-year U.S. 36 management contract

State lawmakers Thursday took their shots at a proposed 50-year contract that allows a private company to manage the Boulder Turnpike and to collect tolls from the highway’s travelers. Legislators also hinted they may introduce a bill this session that forces more public input on future public-private highway ventures.

RELATED: CDOT director says U.S. 36 contract with Plenary will close within two weeks

RELATED: CDOT beaten up in Round 2 of U.S. 36 public meetings

Colorado spacecraft tax break gets stratospheric support

It’s “up, up and away” for a tax break that is designed to grow Colorado’s aerospace industry.

RELATED: Colorado legislature considers aerospace-related property-tax break

Students protest budget cuts

Biogas bill to benefit Weld County moves forward

Young bill on safe medication disposal clears Colorado legislative committee

Attorney to challenge Wright in House race

Grand Junction attorney Yeulin Willett is challenging Rep. Jared Wright to be the Republican nominee for House District 54.

Speaker Mark Ferrandino’s valentine has Enstrom Candies smiling

RELATED: House speaker buys boxes of famous toffee to give to his colleagues

Public comment sought on plans for HUD flood-relief grants

The public is invited to comment on Colorado’s action plan for allocating flood-relief funds through federal Community Development Block Grants.

RELATED: Owner of Evans mobile home park sues city over floodplain

Poll: Western voters OK with well-planned oil and gas development

Western voters are more likely to support congressional candidates willing to protect nature and public lands, a new poll finds. But a majority of those polled also favor energy development — of solar and wind, in particular — within limits, according to the survey commissioned as part of Colorado College’s annual State of the Rockies project.

Environmental groups ask to join court fight over Fort Collins fracking moratorium

Proponents of a five-year ban on fracking in Fort Collins and two environmental groups are seeking to join the court fight over the moratorium. Citizens for a Healthy Fort Collins, the Sierra Club and Earthworks filed a motion with the District Court on Thursday asking to intervene in a lawsuit filed by the Colorado Oil and Gas Association that seeks to overturn the moratorium.

Report: Thompson Divide drilling likely to fail

The second report in as many days questioning the economic viability of natural gas leases in the Thompson Divide says the holdings are more likely to reap a loss rather than turn a profit for drillers.

RELATED: City opposed to Thompson Divide lease extension

Noble Energy, Anadarko, Encana support tightening Colorado air rules

Three of Colorado’s biggest oil and gas companies and a national environmental group are maintaining their support of new, tighter regulations the state is proposing. The rules are meant to cut pollution from wells, pipelines and processing plants and improve air quality across the state.

RELATED: Energy industry, environmentalists partner on proposed emissions rules

RELATED: Companies: New oil, gas air rules right for state

Drought puts state officials on edge

Colorado officials are worried that declining levels in reservoirs on the Colorado River could have an impact within the state. “The storage in Lake Powell is going down, after 2012-13, two of the driest years on record,” said John McClow, a Gunnison attorney who represents the state on compact matters.

Court rules inbounds avalanches are inherent risk of Colorado skiing

Colorado Muslim Society medical volunteers awarded grant for public health initiative

Boulder admits to downtown surveillance program

Boulder has installed three cameras on the municipal campus and has been continuously videotaping the area between the municipal building and the Main Public Library and the area to the east of the municipal building since the beginning of the year.

Colorado Springs mayor Bach pondering second term bid

Frustrations show in splits among Colorado Springs council members

Sheriff’s candidate promises zero crime

Pueblo’s smokeless tobacco regulation working well

The JeffCo school-board donnybrook: Get used to it, Colorado

It was just one more skirmish in the war over education policy being waged in the state, where clashes now seem to come at a regular clip.

CU-Boulder student leaders planning alternative 4/20 event

Slain officer’s dad wants to ask jury for mercy in death penalty case

Denver deputy to appeal discipline for slamming handcuffed inmate


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