OVERSTREET PICKED TO LEAD STEAMBOAT PARKS AND REC
The City of Steamboat has hired a new Parks and Rec Director. John Overstreet has been serving as the Interim Director of the department since July. He now takes the position permanently. The city received 140 applications for the position, narrowed those down to the 25 most qualified candidates, and then invited a few of those for interviews. In the end, the city felt they would be best served by the man already serving in the position. Overstreet has a Masters of Science in Management from the Florida Institute of Technology, as well as additional certifications in Community Leadership and FEMA training. He also had a letter of recommendation from Governor Hickenlooper. He has served on a variety of boards and committees, including the Colorado Municipal League Liaison for the Colorado Park and Recreation Director’s Section, the Colorado Youth Corps, and the Denver Regional Council of Governments.
TIPTON TO LOOK FOR LONGER-TERM SOLUTION FOR PILT FUNDING
While the new Farm Bill includes funding for the Payment In Lieu of Taxes Program, it only does so for one year. The Farm Bill itself is a five-year bill, and lawmakers from Colorado are pleased the funding was included, but Congressman Scott Tipton says there needs to be a longer-term solution for the program. Counties that contain large amounts of non-taxable federal land receive the payments to help county and city governments provide necessary services to residents. Those services include fire fighting, road maintenance, and more. Tipton says he will be working on a longer term solution for the funding, so counties and municipalities can prepare their budgets accordingly. Pictured: Scott Tipton
CHAMBER AMBASSADORS TO HOLD CHILI CONTEST
The Craig Chamber Ambassadors are giving chili cooks the chance to show off their stuff at the Yampa River State Park’s Ski and Skate event next month. The Chamber Ambassadors will host the 9th annual Chili Cook-off at the event February 15th. Space is limited. The entry fee is $15 for Chamber members or $20 for non-members. Visitors to the event can sample the chili and vote for their favorite. The Ski and Skate will include activities such as cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and ice skating. For more information about the chili contest, call 824-5689.
FARM BILL INCLUDES FOREST HEALTH MEASURES
The Farm Bill conference report unveiled this week includes three measures to improve forest health. The National Forest Insect and Disease Treatment Act, would create a program to designate new national forest acreage suffering from insect and disease epidemics for expedited treatments. Areas treated through the pilot program would prioritize the preservation of old-growth and large trees, if possible, as well as wilderness areas, while still promoting forests that are resistant to insect and disease damage. The Permanent Stewardship Contracting Authority Act would permanently reauthorize nationwide Stewardship Contracting authority for the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management. The contracts support public-private partnerships that create Colorado jobs, reduce fuel loads on public lands and allow the private sector to turn the problem of excess biomass into profit. The bill also contains a version of the Sodsaver Prairie Protection Act, which would modify crop insurance premium assistance for insured crops grown on native sod converted to cropland. It’s projected to save taxpayers $200 million over 10 years, and would encourage conservation of grasslands that pheasants, ducks, and other wildlife use as a habitat.
BROPHY’S BILL DIES ON PARTY LINE VOTE
A bill introduced by State Senator Greg Brophy would have set a 3-year deadline for a State Supreme Court decision after appeal on a death penalty case. Brophy’s Swift Justice Act was heard before the State Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday. It died on a party-line vote. Brophy was one of Governor Hickenlooper’s biggest critics when the governor indefinitely suspended the execution of death row inmate Nathan Dunlap. Brophy is also running for Hickenlooper’s seat in the next election. In a statement released yesterday Brophy said, “Victims and families of the most heinous crimes committed deserve justice. We have the ability to complete a thorough and accurate appeals process in a responsible time frame. We are very good at preserving the rights of the accused, but we must do a better job of preserving the rights of victims.” Pictured: Greg Brophy
BAR BILL IS ADVANCED IN COMMITTEE
Colorado cities and towns could have the power to extend bar hours under a proposal advanced by state lawmakers. Lawmakers voted 12-1 to pass the bill yesterday out of the House Local Government Committee. The proposal would let municipalities decide whether to let bars stay open until 4:30 in the morning. Current law prohibits the sale of alcohol from 2 to 7 in the morning. Democratic Representative Crisanta Duran, one of the lawmakers sponsoring the bill, says the purpose is to try to improve public safety by avoiding the large crowds during closing time. Mothers Against Drunk Driving opposes the bill, arguing that it could lead to more intoxicated people on the roads.
IN HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
Steamboat goes to Summit. The girls play at 5:30 and the boys at 7:30.
Meeker goes to a triangular in Palisade at 5.
Moffat County is on the road to Grand Valley.
In alpine skiing:
Steamboat goes to Loveland.
Hayden goes to Rangely. The girls play at 5:30 and the boys at 7.
Meeker hosts Soroco. The girls play at 6 and the boys at 7:30.
Little Snake River Valley is home against HEM. The girls tip off at 4:30 and the boys at 6.
Moffat County hosts Olathe. The girls play at 6 and the boys at 7:30.
Rangely goes to a dual in Ignacio.
Steamboat is home against Palmer at 6:30.
The Denver Broncos will play the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII February 2nd at the Meadowlands in New Jersey. Due to NFL restrictions, 55 Country will not be allowed to carry the game.