BILL WILL ATTEMPT TO REDUCE RENEWABLE ENERGY MANDATE
A bill that will be introduced in the 2014 Colorado Legislative Session will seek to reduce the mandate for rural electric companies set by Senate Bill 252, which was passed during the last session. 252 mandates that rural electric cooperatives receive 20 percent of their power from renewable energy sources, a move expected to cost rural customers significantly more on their electric bills. While the bill, when first introduced proposed a 25 percent mandate, a bill by Representative Ray Scott of Grand Junction will reduce that mandate even further, to 15 percent. Ray says he hopes the new number will be a compromise both sides can agree on. Senate Bill 252 was one of the most controversial bills in the 2013 session, and was one of the issues that led to secession efforts by rural counties.
WILDLIFE OFFICERS START ANNUAL TRACKING OF WILDLIFE
Although the main big game hunting seasons have ended, Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s researchers and biologists are preparing for another busy time of the year. Beginning in early December through late March, CPW employees will climb aboard aircraft and fly across large swaths of wildlife habitat in search of big game animals to classify by sex and age while others will gather biological data on the ground. Late-season hunters and outdoor recreationists are advised that they may see low-flying helicopters or airplanes and are urged to be patient while critical monitoring is conducted. In addition to a thorough inventory of thousands of animals, CPW staff will coordinate the helicopter capture and radio-collaring of 75 elk, 90 moose, 20 desert bighorn sheep, 25 Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep and 1,300 mule deer, including 800 does, 400 fawns and 100 bucks. With the data collected, agency researchers and biologists will be able to track the progress of several wildlife management efforts and ongoing studies. They will also gain a clearer picture about the overall health of big game, allowing wildlife managers to form population models, management strategies and set future hunting license numbers.
BLM RESTRICTS TRAVEL ON WOLFORD MOUNTAIN
The Bureau of Land Management will begin its annual winter restrictions on motorized travel north of Kremmling in the Wolford Mountain Travel Management Area December 15th to help reduce stress on wintering big game herds. These restrictions to motorized travel will remain in effect through April 15th in most areas. The Wolford Mountain area includes public lands between Highway 40 and Grand County Road 2, also known as Back Troublesome Road. The seasonal restrictions are extended in two areas of Wolford Mountain to protect nesting raptors. Snowmobile use is restricted to routes marked with orange diamonds on the kiosk maps. All other travel routes and areas on BLM lands on Wolford Mountain will be closed to all motorized use. Horse, foot, and ski travel typically will be permitted throughout the area during winter travel restrictions. Changing conditions may cause the restrictions to be modified, so it’s recommended you check often for restriction updates.
HUCKABEE SHOW ENDING, COMMUNITY ASKED ABOUT REPLACEMENT
This is Mike Huckabee’s last week on the air. 55 Country carries the Mike Huckabee Show, but the ex-governor and former presidential candidate has announced he is ending his show. 55 Country General Manager Frank Hanel has expressed interest in carrying another talk show, but is first trying to gauge the interest of the community. A survey is posted on the right side of this page, listing several options for a replacement, including Rush Limbaugh and Dennis Miller. Huckabee’s last show will be Thursday.
RCOEM SUGGESTS SAFETY RELATED GIFTS FOR CHRISTMAS
The Routt County Office of Emergency Management is suggesting some practical gifts for Christmas this year. The Office is using the holiday season to get their winter weather preparedness tips out, by suggesting gifts that will help someone get through a tough winter. Those include an emergency weather radio that will provide critical weather alerts in your area. A winter weather survival kit is another gift idea. The kits are intended to stay in your car, and include items such as a flashlight with extra batteries, snack food, water, and extra clothing and blankets. The Office also suggests a home emergency kit. Cell phone adaptors are also considered a good gift, and should be kept around your house, so that if power is out for any extended period of time, you will have a means of communication. For a complete list of safety tips, and gift ideas from the Routt County Office of Emergency Management, click here.
PRESENTATION PLANNED FOR SENIORS AND THOSE WITH DISABILITIES
The Northwest Colorado Center for Independence is hosting an emergency preparedness event next week for seniors and those living with disabilities. The presentation, entitled “Living Life to the Fullest” will be led by Red Cross volunteer Daniel Bingham. Transportation is available if necessary. It will be held in the library of Sunset Meadows in Craig, December 20th from 2 to 3 in the afternoon. If you’d like more information, call 620-3897.
YULE LOG HUNT UNDERWAY
The Tread of Pioneers Museum’s Annual Yule Log Hunt is underway. Each year museum staff places the log somewhere in the Steamboat area, and then releases a clue a day as to where it can be found. Those clues will be broadcast each weekday on 93.7 102.3 KRAI and 55 Country. Whoever finds the log gets a $150 Steamboat Chamber gift certificate and a framed piece of artwork. Today’s clue is found below.
Alert the authorities of impending doom.
Hunger strikes, noise fills the room.
Sounds near the river, now more subdued.
Keep on your path, follow the clues.
IN HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
The Soroco boys and girls host North Park at 4:30.
Meeker’s boys and girls go to Olathe. The girls play at 5:30 and the boys at 7.