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  • Sections: News Published

    Alternative 4: What it does and doesn’t do

    Opponents of gas drilling in the Thompson Divide area rejoiced recently after the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) proposed recently to cancel 18 oil and gas leases in the hotly contested back-country region, and significantly reduce the size of seven others. But there remain 40 leases located within the original boundaries of the 225,000-acre region known as Thompson Divide, that were left in place under existing lease rules and stipulations, as well as the seven leases that were reduced in size, all of which still are open to exploration and mineral extraction. And as part of its recent proposal, the BLM has predicted that under its proposed Alternative 4, which cancels some leases and shrinks others, those leases essentially left whole and developable could represent several hundred wells drilled over a total land mass of more than 50,000 acres. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    “Bottle bombs” found at RVR

    Police on Monday discovered several devices, described as “bottle bombs,” at the fishing pond in River Valley Ranch. But while the devices might have caused harm if disturbed by an unsuspecting or curious bystander, according to Carbondale Police Off. Michael Zimmerman, that did not happen. “Fortunately, the items had been improperly mixed and did not explode, so officers were able to dispose of (them) properly,” Zimmerman said in a press release. The devices, according to Zimmerman, initially were noticed by an RVR resident who was near the pond when he saw one of the “bombs” at the edge of the slightly frozen body of water. The resident approached to examine the item, concluded it might be hazardous and called police, Zimmerman told The Sopris Sun on Monday. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Shop Small this season

    As a “Neighborhood Champion” of Small Business Saturday, the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce is actively supporting its 475 members and local businesses with a Shop Small campaign, launching to coincide with American Express’ nationwide Small Business Saturday on Nov. 28. In the run-up to Small Business Saturday, the Carbondale Chamber is distributing Shop Small merchandise and encouraging members to promote the retail day now considered to be one of the biggest retail spending weekends for consumers, according to a press release. Chamber members include boutiques, restaurants, studios, galleries and outfitters across Carbondale and the Roaring Fork Valley. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Fire district supporters miss campaign deadlines

    The organization that campaigned for passage of a Carbondale fire district tax hike owes the Colorado Secretary of State’s office $500 for twice filing its campaign finance reports late, according to state records. The organization, an issues committee named Citizens for a Safe Community, missed its campaign contributions and expenditures filing deadline on Oct. 13. The report was filed instead on Oct. 20, drawing a seven-day penalty of $50 per day from the Secretary of State, totaling $350. Next, the committee missed its filing deadline of Oct. 30, filing it instead on Nov. 2, according to documents on file with the state. That drew a three-day penalty of $150. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Police arrest man on allegations of sex with a minor

    Carbondale police on Monday arrested a 24-year old Carbondale man on charges that he had “consensual sex” and other “inappropriate contact” with a local 13-year-old girl. Daniel Rodden was arrested after a relative of the alleged victim contacted Carbondale police back in late August or early September about the relationship, according to Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling. Schilling said it took that long for police to compile sufficient evidence to convince a judge to issue an arrest warrant. Part of that evidence, he said, was “forensic” information, meaning it was based on scientific analysis, worked up by the Ninth Judicial District Attorney’s office. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Trustees go forward on energy tax, pull back on recreation tax

    The Carbondale Board of Trustees (BOT), at a work session on Tuesday, moved forward with a plan to impose a tax on energy use by town residents, but turned away from a proposed new sales tax aimed at providing funds for projects involving parks, the arts, recreation and trail connections. Energy-use tax The so-called “energy use fee,” which would be tied to the use of electricity and natural gas in residential property around town, is seen as a way to both encourage energy conservation by town residents and to provide funding for the town’s ongoing efforts to reduce its “carbon footprint” by installing alternative-energy technology on public buildings, businesses and homes. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Bumper hay crop year drives down prices

    Roaring Fork Valley ranchers were able to “make hay while the sun shines,” as the saying goes, growing a bumper crop of hay this year. But ranchers who depend on income from all that hay may not be enjoying the kind of sales that would make this a year for significant profits as well as massive production. That, according to one area expert, is because there currently is a lot of hay available for sale but not a lot of buyers, because most of the growers on the Western Slope experienced the same great hay-growing weather and hay does not travel well over long distances. Pat McCarty, who retired in July as the Colorado State University Extension agent for Garfield County, confirmed for The Sopris Sun on Monday that 2015 was a good summer for growing hay. “There is a gigantic crop,” said McCarty, who lives on Morissania Mesa near Parachute. “But, along with it, the demand is down in the entire area,” he added. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Private air service targets Bonedale

    ASCENT Private Air Club has targeted Carbondale residents and visitors in a new marketing campaign. “By focusing exclusively on travel to, from and within the Rocky Mountain West, ASCENT allows members to fly on private aircraft for a fraction of the cost of other nationally-focused private aviation services,” said an ASCENT press release dated Nov. 6. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Carbondale trustees “punt” on trash ordinance

    Carbondale’s elected leaders on Tuesday once again “punted,” in the words of Trustee Allyn Harvey, on a proposed revision to the town’s trash-collection ordinance that has been under discussion for at least six years. Harvey, speaking on the KDNK radio station Wednesday morning, used that word to describe the lack of action by the Board of Trustees (BOT) at their regular meeting the night before. The town government has been trying for all those years to come up with ways to modify the trash-hauling system in Carbondale that would increase residents’ access to recycling and composting collection services, consolidate trash pickup days and reduce the number of trash trucks that regularly ply the town’s streets and alleyways. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Voters OK school bond, C’dale fire district tax hike

    Voters overwhelmingly approved a $122 million bond issue for the Roaring Fork School District, and a 1.75-mill property tax for the Carbondale Fire District on Tuesday. The school district and fire district drew strong support from citizen committees who worked to get the ballot questions approved. “I want to thank Tom Adgate and the citizens committee for all their hard work,” said Carbondale Fire District board member Gene Schilling. “We still have a lot of hard work to do over the next two years to develop a plan to bring back to the voters that will sustain the fire district over a longer term. I would also like to thank voters for their vote of confidence and anyone else who helped pass the mill levy.” Roaring Fork School District Superintendent Diana Sirko told The Sopris Sun in an e-mail, “We sincerely thank our three communities for their incredible support of the bond election. We take our responsibilities to our taxpayers very seriously, and will work hard to use the dollars conscientiously to support high quality educational facilities for all of our students, now and into the future. We are also extremely excited to begin addressing the housing needs of our staff to attract and retain the best teachers to work with our students.” read more →