NORTHWEST COLORADO NEWS FOR TUESDAY, JUNE 11TH

CRAIG AWARDED MEMBERSHIP IN HISTORIC TRAIN REGISTRY

Craig will be awarded membership in Union Pacific’s Train Town USA Registry as part of Union Pacific’s ongoing efforts to highlight cities with a historical connection to the railroad. The city received an official Train Town USA resolution signed by Union Pacific Chairman Jim Young in a special presentation at the historic railroad passenger car Marcia. Union Pacific launched its Train Town USA Registry as part of the railroad’s 150th anniversary celebration in 2012.  The presentation will be made this afternoon at 4:30 at the Marcia Car across from the VFW on East Victory Way.

 

TIPTON JOINS LAWMAKERS IN OPPOSING BLUEWAYS DESIGNATIONS

Yesterday U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis joined forces with House Natural Resources Water and Power Subcommittee Chairman Tom McClintock, Representative Scott Tipton, and other Republican Members of the Water and Power Subcommittee in a letter to Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell regarding the National Blueways Order, which claims the authority of the Secretary of the Interior to designate entire river watersheds as “National Blueways.” The letter comes on the heels of a Water and Power Subcommittee hearing where Shoshone Conservation District Supervisor Russell Boardman testified against a Blueways designation of the Yellowstone River watershed. His testimony cited a complete lack of Interior Department outreach to his district and others in Wyoming despite the Interior’s targeting of the Yellowstone River for the designation, which could undermine local water management and private water rights. The letter requests an explanation from Secretary Jewell for the lack of public process.  It also expresses concern about the involvement of controversial Interior official Rebecca Wodder in promoting Blueways designations. In January 2012, Wodder was forced to withdraw from her nomination as Assistant Secretary for Fish, Wildlife and Parks due in part to her promotion of land and water management policies that would be economically destructive to rural communities.

 

FISHING DERBY SET FOR SATURDAY IN STEAMBOAT

The Steamboat Optimist Club and Trout Unlimited, will host their 31st Annual Fishing Derby and Pancake Breakfast Saturday at Fetcher Pond.  The free pancake breakfast will be served from 8 until 10:15 and the fishing derby will start at 9. Derby judging will be at 10:30. No licenses are required, and the pond is wheelchair accessible.  Organizers ask people to leave pets at home.  There will be prizes for best Huck Finn and Becky Thatcher costumes, biggest fish, first fish and most fish. Bait and some fishing poles will be supplied, and the pond will be stocked with trout.  For more information call 846-9783.

 

WILDLIFE OFFICIALS URGE RESIDENTS TO PROTECT SMALL LIVESTOCK

Small livestock owners who live in areas where wildlife might be nearby are being asked by Colorado Parks and Wildlife to take extra steps to protect their animals.  A recent incident near Paonia in which a bear killed 40 chickens provides a reminder that wildlife will aggressively seek sources of food. Not only bears, but mountain lions, bobcats, coyotes and raccoons also prey on livestock. Small domestic animals such as chickens, goats, miniature horses, sheep and pets are particularly vulnerable.  Animals should be taken into a building at night. If a pen is used, the top should also be covered.  Livestock owners should also keep pens and barns clean because most wildlife has a powerful sense of smell. Predators are opportunists and have good memories; if they find sources of food at one residence or farm, they’ll go looking for more at similar places.  To learn more, click here.

 

US FARM BILL PASSES SENATE

The 2013 Farm Bill passed the United States Senate yesterday.  Democrats say the bill reforms farm policy to better support farmers and ranchers, consolidates and streamlines programs, and would reduce the deficit by $23 billion.  It passed with a broad, bipartisan vote of 66-27.  Republicans dispute the reduced deficit prediction and say the bill still includes too much money for food stamp programs.  The Farm Bill, which governs our national agriculture, nutrition, private lands conservation, and forestry policy, is supposed to be reauthorized every five years. However, the 2008 bill expired and has been operating on a short-term extension ever since.

 

WYOMING SEXUAL OFFENDER WANTED ON SIMILAR CHARGES IN TEXAS

A Rock Springs man found guilty in District Court on June 7th of two counts of Sexual Abuse of a Minor in the First Degree is facing similar charges in Texas.  Sweetwater County Sheriff Rich Haskell said 41-year old Grady Hodge is wanted by authorities in Burnet County, Texas, for over a dozen counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child and Indecency With a Child.  Hodge is fighting extradition and hearings on the matter have been scheduled.  He remains in custody at the Sweetwater County Detention Center while his pre-sentencing investigation is conducted. Each count of Sexual Abuse of a Minor in the First Degree carries a maximum possible penalty of 50 years of imprisonment, a $10,000 fine, or both.

 

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