NORTHWEST COLORADO NEWS AND SPORTS FOR SATURDAY, APRIL 13TH

CRAIG CHAMBER POSTS PETITION AGAINST S.B. 13-252

The Craig Chamber of Commerce is asking residents to join together in opposing Senate Bill 13-252, which targets rural energy producers, increasing their costs for both the providers and customers. Residents can do their part by signing an online petition. Details about the bill and its impacts are on the petition page.  Each time someone signs, an e-mail will be sent to every Colorado Senator asking them to stop the legislation. Chamber staff will also personally contact Colorado Senators to share the scope of opposition to the bill. You can increase the impact your signature has by filling out the “Why is this important to you?” section.  After signing the petition, you can take advantage of the “e-mail your contacts,” and “share on Facebook” options to gather as many signatures as possible.  You can find the petition by clicking here.

 

RABBIT EARS PASS CLOSED YESTERDAY MORNING DUE TO ACCIDENTS

Winter conditions caused a series of car crashes on Rabbit Ears Pass yesterday morning.  State Troopers say the first crash occurred when the driver lost control and rolled his vehicle.  Three autos trying to avoid the accident, were involved in another wreck.  A short time later, a semi was rear-ended while climbing the pass.  No one was seriously injured in any of the incidents, and no citations were issued.  The accidents caused Highway 40 to be closed for about 3 hours.

 

RESIDENTS URGED TO USE CAUTION DURING SPRING BURNING PROJECTS

In preparation of the spring growing season land owners have begun ditch and debris burning to clear fields and other areas of dead vegetation.   Fire is often used as a land management tool to promote grass regeneration, replenish nutrients to the soil and remove trash from the land.   Early spring offers optimal conditions for burning. Green-up is underway in grasses but brush and timber are not yet in green-up stage.  The dead vegetation in grass and brush will carry fire through green plants and can pose fire control issues.  Observing the following proactive recommendations provide a safer environment for debris and ditch burning:
• Contact the Moffat County Sheriff’s Office before striking the match – 970-824-4495 or 970-824-6501

• Know the predicted weather conditions for your burn day – erratic winds can quickly push a fire out of control in dry fuels

• Don’t burn on windy days

• Notify your neighbors of your plans to burn so they don’t panic and call in a false fire report

• Have a shovel and water with you to extinguish the fire

• Dig a fire line where you want the fire to stop if vegetation is continuous and will carry the fire beyond your planned burn area

• NEVER leave a fire unattended

• Vist http://www.crh.noaa.gov/gjt/  for weather information

Should an agricultural or debris fire damage other private, state or federally managed lands you could receive a fine or be held responsible for the cost of those impacts.

 

PANEL TO STUDY GUN RESTRICTIONS FOR THE MENTALLY ILL

A panel would study how to restrict the mentally ill from having firearms in Colorado under a bill introduced in the state House.  The proposal introduced Friday from Democratic Representative Beth McCann would establish a bipartisan panel of lawmakers, mental health professionals, and firearm experts to meet and issue a report to the Colorado Legislature by January 2015.  It’s a significant departure from what McCann was considering.  She quickly pulled a proposal last week that would have allowed psychologists to refer individuals to the national background check system to prohibit them from having firearms.  That proposal was criticized as potentially violating due-process rights.  McCann says she wanted to take a more careful approach with her latest bill.  It was prompted by the Aurora theater shooting. The suspect had been seeing a university psychologist.

 

BILL TO CREATE UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE IN COLORADO DIES

An ambitious plan to make Colorado the first state with universal health care has been spiked by its Democratic sponsor.  Senator Irene Aguilar of Denver backed off her sweeping bill to have Colorado abandon Medicaid and Medicare entirely and move forward with single-payer health care. The change would have required a big series of new taxes, and Aguilar conceded Friday that she didn’t have enough support to get it done.  Democrats are still pushing to expand health assistance to needy adults with a Medicaid expansion, part of the new federal health care law.  Governor John Hickenlooper has said that Colorado will expand the health assistance.

 

ACLU APPEALS SCHOOL VOUCHER DECISION

The American Civil Liberties Union of Colorado has filed a petition asking the Colorado Supreme Court to overturn a state appeals court ruling that found the Douglas County school’s voucher program did not violate the state constitution.  The ACLU said Thursday the program, called the Choice Scholarship Program, violates the state constitution because it provides money to religious schools.  Americans United for Separation of Church and State also joined the appeal.  The school district says the ruling was a huge victory for the students and parents of Douglas County.  The Douglas County program offered up to 500 students $4,575 in state funds for tuition at private schools, including religious schools.

In high school sports:
Yesterday:

In girls soccer:
Moffat County beat Rifle (7-0).

In boys lacrosse:
Steamboat beat Glenwood (21-0).

In girls lacrosse:
Steamboat fell to Grand Junction (14-3).

In girls tennis:
Steamboat topped Evergreen (7-0).

Today:
In baseball:
Meeker hosts a double header with Rangely.
Steamboat is home for a double header with Palisade.  The first game starts at 2.
Moffat County’s double header with Cedaredge has been postponed.

In girls soccer:
Steamboat hosts Wheat Ridge at noon.
Moffat County hosts Coal Ridge at 11.

In boys lacrosse:
Steamboat welcomes Valor Christian at 3.

In girls lacrosse:
Steamboat goes to Fruita Monument at 10.

In track:
Hayden, Steamboat, Rangely, Soroco and Meeker go to Glenwood at 9.
Little Snake River Valley goes to the Tiger Invite in Rock Springs at 9.

In boys swimming:
Moffat County goes to Montrose at 9:30.

In girls tennis:
Steamboat is on the road to Ralston Valley at 10.