Archive

  • Sections: News Published

    Rep. Bob Rankin pushing two bills in legislative session

    Fresh from his re-election victory last November, and set to dive into the 70th session of the Colorado General Assembly this week, Colorado Rep. Bob Rankin (R-Carbondale) already had been hard at work for more than two months in his new role as a member of the bi-partisan Joint Budget Committee (JBC), which oversees the state’s $26.9 billion annual budget. “It’s really good to have a person from the Western Slope on that committee,” Rankin told The Sopris Sun during an interview on Jan. 3 in Carbondale, explaining that while he is the sole Western Slope member on the JBC, his position give him the chance to “ask questions about things that might affect us over here,” issues that might not be raised or addressed by representatives from districts in eastern Colorado. Rankin, 72, says of himself on his Facebook page, “I am a constitutional and fiscal conservative who believes in limited government, less regulation and support of free market capitalism.” His district includes Garfield, Rio Blanco and Moffat counties in northwest Colorado. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Some RFTA riders riled over crowded 133 lot

    Area bus riders might be forgiven for being a little upset at the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority about the availability of parking spaces at the Carbondale Park & Ride lot, acknowledged the transit agency’s CEO Dan Blankenship recently. But, he promised, things will improve in the spring or summer. “We’re in the height of the busy season right now, and the lot’s overflowing,” said Blankenship in an interview in late December. But RFTA planners had been working on a solution, including the purchase of a lot next to the Park & Ride at a cost of $425,000 and making plans to expand the parking lot, plans that he had hoped would come to fruition before the end of 2014. But, he said, the agency got a nasty surprise when construction estimates for another Park & Ride expansion project in New Castle came in last fall at more than twice the $500,000 estimate. At that point, he said, he and his board were worried that RFTA was at the mercy of contractors who already had plenty of work, and who were putting high-premium prices in their estimates for anyone trying to get more work out of them. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    New group promoting “middle-income” senior housing

    An ad-hoc group of Carbondale-area residents is hoping to convince a developer to build a new, “middle-income” senior housing center in the Carbondale area, as a way of helping senior citizens to stay in the Roaring Fork Valley rather than being forced to move away in their old age. A development partner is talking with the group, but a representative told The Sopris Sun this week that the idea is too preliminary to be discussed in any detail, although a potential site is under contract and the company is starting to interview architects for the project. The representative declined to comment for the record about the project or the development company that is considering it. The group has been dubbed the “Senior Coalition to Determine and Address Senior Housing Needs in the Roaring Fork Valley,” although it is known simply as The Coalition among its advocates. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Celebrating a great 2014, thanks to all of you!

    As another year wanes and The Sopris Sun approaches its sixth birthday, the board would like to thank our donors, advertisers, contributors and readers for your continued support. As a non-profit, local newspaper, we constantly strive to better connect our community and provide information valuable to Carbondale’s diverse population. With those ideals in mind, we certainly have had a year worth celebrating. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Ice, snow update tops weekly report

    Ice and snow, and continuing unseasonably warm temperatures, were the leading issues in Town Manager Jay Harrington’s Dec. 26 memo to the town’s employees, board of trustees and other recipients. “The streets and parks crews have been dealing with snow and ice issues from the last storm,” Harrington reported, detailing the use of “scoria … a product obtained from volcanic ash [and] an inert substance that does not contain silica or other harmful substances” to provide traction for motorists at intersections. Concerning ice, Harrington wrote that the town’s two ice rinks remained closed last week, due to the warm temperatures and to the blanket of snow that fell around Christmas time. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Carbondale’s Creative District gets boost after Pryor visit

    The process of getting Carbondale certified as its own Creative District got a boost last week with a visit from Wendell Pryor, a consultant from Chaffee County who has been hired to assist the Carbondale Council on Arts and Humanities in the three-year certification process. Pryor, who also is the director of the Chaffee County Economic Development Corporation and is listed as a lecturer at the University of Colorado Denver Graduate School of Public Affairs as well as at Colorado Mountain College, is being paid by the state to help Carbondale through the Creative District process. Meanwhile, said CCAH Executive Director Amy Kimberly, the Carbondale Creative District has $15,000 in grant proceeds and other contributions to kick-start the process in its first year. She said the district has been told to expect another $10,000 in grant money in year two, and a final grant of $15,000 in year three, which is the year that certification is to occur. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Dentists developing near Alpine Bank

    In keeping with Carbondale’s growing reputation as a healthy place to live and work, the town is about to get yet another large medical office facility — a dental office on a now-vacant lot between Heritage Park Care Center and Alpine Bank, near the corner of Village Road and Highway 133. This will be the town’s second new, enlarged medical business, following recent completion of the Roaring Fork Family Physicians of Valley View Hospital facility further south along the highway. The new dental office is being built by Doctors Matt and Taylor Verheul (pronounced ver-heel), and their partner, long-time local dentist Eugene Covello. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Hetty Van Kesteren: Indonesia native loving life in Carbondale

    Considering her diminutive stature, Hetty Van Kesteren’s joyful and easy laugh can seem out of context until you grasp the emphasis in her statement “I have found my place in life.” Born in Jakarta on the Indonesian island of Java, Hetty is the epitome of a person who has lived a multi-cultural life. When she was a child, Indonesia was a Dutch colony, used for its oil, spices and sugar plantations. Both of her grandfathers came to Indonesia from The Netherlands and married Indonesian women. She grew up with 11 brothers and sisters, and her father managed a medical opium company. Indonesian labor was cheap, and Hetty grew up with servants who lived on the outskirts of town in “gedecks” — poorly constructed housing with dirt floors. “We spoke Dutch at home, Indonesian to the servants, and learned Oxford English in school. The natives were Hindu, but my family was Catholic so I went to Catholic school,” Hetty told The Sopris Sun. read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    Jaywalker “Big Bus” heads back to the reservation

    For the past five years, the Carbondale-based Jaywalker Solutions Program has been taking program clients—men in early recovery from the disease of addiction—to the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in southwestern South Dakota to do volunteer service work. The project is a partnership with Pine Ridge-based organization Re-Member, whose name is a play on words addressing both the need to remember the history of what occurred in the past to Indian people and, in the words of Re-Member Director, Ted Skantze, “to put back together what’s broken.” read more →
  • Sections: News Published

    C’dale, RE-1 resurrect 2007 housing plan

    The Carbondale Board of Trustees and the Roaring Fork School District board agreed this week that work should continue on the eight-year-old plan to build a housing project on what is now a well-used soccer field in between the Third Street Center and the Bridges High School building (formerly Carbondale Middle School). Exactly how that is to be accomplished, however, remains something of an open question. read more →