The Home Front: Big money politics as TV ads target Greeley’s local elections in Colorado

Your morning roundup of stories from the front pages of newspapers across Colorado

The Home Front: Big money politics as TV ads target Greeley’s local elections in Colorado

“A political committee launched what is thought to be the first TV ad campaign in Greeley municipal election history, buying a 30-second ad that will run through Election Day, Nov. 7,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “The committee, Greeley for a Stronger Economy, is supporting mayoral candidate John Gates, Ward 2 candidate Brett Payton, at-large candidate Eddie Mirick and Ward 3 candidate Michael Fitzsimmons. The Denver-based committee made waves late this past week after it spent nearly $50,000 on mailers supporting those same candidates. The ad, which premiered Wednesday night, appears to be a response to a Greeley Tribune article detailing $1,500 in contributions from Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., to three different city council candidates. In the ad, an ominous-voiced narrator intones Polis, a “Boulder Democrat” is “trying to handpick Greeley’s City Council,” and urging voters to select Gates, Payton, Mirick and Fitzsimmons.”

“The decades-long effort to keep pedestrians safe on North 12th Street near Colorado Mesa University isn’t getting any easier,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “It started with installing medians and crosswalks and moved on to orange flags for pedestrians and students to carry across North 12th Street so drivers would see them. Now, flashing lights alert drivers to people crossing the street at three places along North 12th Street between North and Orchard avenues. That didn’t make a difference for 24-year-old Christopher Walker and 20-year-old MyKayla Moore, bicycle riders who collided with cars in the Mesa Avenue crosswalk during separate incidents over the course of three weeks in September and October.”

“A coalition of environmental groups has filed a lawsuit in federal court to stop construction of Chimney Hollow Reservoir southwest of Loveland, calling the project “a terrible idea” and claiming it will cause irreparable damage the Colorado River,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “The lawsuit, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Denver, asks the judge to throw out the records of decision by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S Army Corps of Engineers, claiming they violated the National Environmental Policy Act and the Clean Water Act in approving the project. Northern Water plans to build the reservoir to hold Windy Gap water from the Colorado River, diverting it in wet years for use in dry years. Several entities hold Windy Gap water rights but, because it is a junior water right, cannot pull them every year.”

“In the well-known movie ‘Field of Dreams,’ W.P. Kinsella’s hero builds a baseball diamond in the middle of his Iowa cornfield because an inner voice keeps telling him, ‘Build it and he will come,'” reports The Pueblo Chieftain. “Naturally, the hero’s friends and neighbors think he’s crazy. But sure enough, old-time ballplayers like Shoeless Joe Jackson materialize out of the corn and play games for those with the faith to see them.”

“Anthony Grimaldi was sound asleep when the gunshots began,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins. “His apartment’s bedroom window overlooks the parking lot where a heavily armed man fatally shot two people and wounded a third before turning the gun on himself in the early morning hours of Oct. 19. Grimaldi tried to convince himself that the pops outside his window were fireworks. His bedroom fans had helped drown out the noise. When he realized that the noise that startled him awake was gunfire and saw police closing in on the building, he grabbed his pistol and moved into an interior room near his apartment’s front door. He waited there, wondering if the gunman would charge up the stairwell or break down his door.”

“A man’s trusty horse was not so trusty when it ran away with all his gear Wednesday night. Routt County Search and Rescue members were contacted about the incident at about 8:15 p.m,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. “The 50-year-old California man was hunting on Rabbit Ears Pass. Incident Commander Darrel Levingston said the man had dismounted his horse while hiking.”

“The latest set of campaign finance reports from the Loveland City Council and mayoral election reveal a certain quality that helps candidates get ahead in the race: having deep pockets,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “The two candidates reporting both the highest earning and spending totals, mayoral candidates John Fogle and Jacki Marsh, are also putting more of their own money into their campaigns than the other candidates. In the week that has elapsed since the first round of campaign finance reports were due, Fogle pulled even further ahead of his competitors in total campaign donations received to date. Fogle, who is currently a city councilor from Ward III, also had more available campaign money than any other candidate during the previous reporting period. In the latest batch of reports, which were due Oct. 24, Fogle noted $6,845 in additional campaign contributions in the week since the first campaign finance reports were due Oct. 17.”

“Denver Water is fighting a push by a global mining giant to increase by 43 times Colorado’s limit for molybdenum pollution of streams, including headwaters of the Colorado River above Denver’s drinking-water reservoir,” reports The Denver Post. “Freeport-McMoRan subsidiary Climax Molybdenum has asked the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to relax the water quality limit for molybdenum in streams used for domestic water statewide to 9,000 parts per million from 210 ppm. It also wants the limits for waterways tapped for agricultural irrigation raised to 1,000 ppm from 160 ppm. The change could cut water-treatment costs at the company’s open-pit Climax Mine above Leadville, where the company produced about 16 million pounds of molybdenum in 2016, down from 23 million pounds in 2015.”

“Turn the clock back to Feb. 2, 2014, if you want to know when state transportation officials got really serious about keeping Interstate 70 open,” reports Vail Daily. “Those efforts will continue in the winter to come. That day — a go-home Sunday after feet of snow had fallen the previous week, drawing thousands of weekend visitors — another foot or more of snow fell in a matter of hours. A combination of heavy snow, overwhelmed road crews and a significant percentage of drivers with inadequate tires shut down the highway for hours. There were reports of people being on the roads for 10 or 12 hours between Edwards and Denver.”

‘Clifton has lived in a tent west of Durango for about nine months,” reports The Durango Herald. “He suffers from chronic back pain, especially when hiking up and down mountains to access his campsite. He smokes cannabis to help ease the pain. But the pain has grown increasingly worse in recent months, and his supply of marijuana has grown scarce, prompting him to visit an herbalist late last month who recommended a regimen of teas and other natural remedies to alleviate stress and pain. ‘I live 15 miles up on a mountain,’ said Clifton, who declined to give his last name. ‘I’ve had two back surgeries, so my legs just don’t carry me no more.'”

“A man climbing on the First Flatiron on Thursday afternoon fell to his death, the second person to die following an accidental plummet off of the iconic Boulder landmark since August but only the second in nearly a decade,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “Boulder County Sheriff’s Office Cmdr. Kevin Parker said that the man — who has not been publicly identified — did not appear to be using any kind of climbing gear, but rescuers were searching the area for any signs of a backpack or gear on Thursday afternoon. He added that it does not appear the man was with anyone else at the time of his fall, and investigators aren’t sure how far he fell.”

“Rob Brown, the executive director of the Fremont Economic Development Corp., was appointed earlier this year to the Economic Development Commission,” reports The Cañon City Daily Record. “The EDC was created by the Colorado General Assembly to promote economic development in Colorado. It consists of 11 members, with three members appointed by the Senate, three appointed by the House, and five appointed by the governor. Brown was appointed to the commission by Senate President Kevin Grantham.”

“Two 13-year-old boys behind an alleged “kill list” at Sabin Middle School modeled a deadly plot after the Columbine High School shootings and seemed intent on carrying it out, an officer testified Thursday,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “Eric (Harris) and Dylan (Klebold) are their heroes and they planned on honoring them by following through with their plan,” said Colorado Springs police officer Isaiah Wright. During a detention hearing before 4th Judicial District Judge G. David Miller, Wright described what a prosecutor called the boys’ “infatuation” with the mass killers. The officer said the Sabin suspects adopted the Columbine killers’ nicknames “Rebel” and “Vodka” and even planned on buying similar clothing ahead of an attack. The judge ordered that one of the defendants remain held without bond at Spring Creek Youth Services Center, calling the teenager a threat to himself and others. The second boy will return to Miller’s court Nov. 3 for a similar detention hearing.”

“Vice President Mike Pence on Thursday told a ballroom full of Republicans in Greenwood Village that a unified GOP will fulfill a key campaign pledge of President Donald Trump by enacting tax reform legislation,” reports ColoradoPolitics. “I’m going to make a prediction tonight: We’re going to pass the largest tax cut in American history, and we’re going to pass it this year,” Pence told about 300 donors at a fundraiser for the Colorado Republican Party at the Denver Marriott Tech Center. Republicans cut the price of the least expensive tickets to the event a week ago from $275 to $150, responding to what party officials called high demand for cheaper seats. Outside before the dinner, under grey skies that threatened snow, dozens of protesters marched in the familiar, distinctive red robes and white bonnets worn by characters in the dystopian novel and TV show “The Handmaid’s Tale.” Organizers said they wanted to bring attention to what they call Pence’s “far-right, archaic agenda for women’s rights and health.”

“Finding a place to rent with your furry companion can be a headache,” reports Denverite. “On top of finding somewhere that’s actually in your budget, there’s the matter of pet rents, pet deposits, pet policies.”

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About the Author

Corey Hutchins

is a journalist in Colorado, and Columbia Journalism Review's Rocky Mountain correspondent for the United States Project. Follow him on Twitter @CoreyHutchins and email him at CoreyHutchins [at] gmail [dot] com.

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