The Home Front: Ex-Colorado Republican Party chairman charged with voter fraud

The former chairman of Colorado’s Republican Party has been “charged with voter fraud and forgery,” reports KDVR. “Steve Curtis, 57, is accused of filling out and mailing in his ex-wife’s ballot for the 2016 presidential election,” the station reports. “Curtis was the state’s GOP chairman from 1997 to 1999 and currently hosts a talk radio show on KLZ-560 AM. He made his first court appearance Tuesday morning in Weld County.” “We’re not going to talk about this,” Curtis told a KDVR reporter when asked if he voted for his ex-wife in November’s election. KDVR talked to his ex-wife, who said, “I had no idea what would go on in someone’s mind to cast my ballot for me illegally, actually to go to all the trouble to forge my ballot.” Meanwhile, Denver7 reports how Curtis, who is also a talk-radio host, spoke out about voter fraud prior to last year’s election. “It seems to be, and correct me if I’m wrong here, but virtually every case of voter fraud I can remember in my lifetime was committed by Democrats,” he told KLZ 560.

“Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams called a federal report inflammatory and irresponsible for its claim the sheriff’s office failed to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “The report, released Monday, covers the week of Jan. 28 to Feb. 3. It listed 206 examples of immigrants who were alleged to have been released from custody by local jails despite requests from federal agents to hold them. In one instance, on Dec. 7, 2016, ICE requested Weld officials hold an inmate. Weld sheriff’s deputies released the inmate Feb 3. The requests, often called “detainers,” have taken on a greater role in the immigration debate under President Donald Trump, who strenuously opposes local policies that grant leniency to people in the country illegally. Reams said the report completely misrepresents the facts. He said the problem rests with ICE.”

The Glenwood Springs Post-Independent reports on an allotment squeeze between ranchers and a federal agency. “Garfield County ranchers are fighting a proposed Bureau of Land Management order that would cut a cattle grazing allotment on federal lands in half. They say it would kill their family businesses,” the paper reported. “Jack Farris, a rancher near Parachute, approached the Garfield County commissioners Monday for support against the order, which he said will cut his family’s income by 50 percent, putting them and many others for whom they run cattle out of business. Farris said he knows of about 10 other ranching families around the Roan Plateau that will face the same fate if this order is successful. The permitees have submitted a protest to the local field office’s proposal.”

“John ‘Dutch’ Wierenga suffers from pulmonary and cardiac diseases and relies on supplemental oxygen to breath,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “He worries about what it could mean for him if Ursa Resources proceeds with seeking approval for an oil and gas well pad that could be less than 500 feet from his house. ‘I ain’t sure I’ll live through the well drilling, with the dust, the fumes and everything,’ he said Tuesday as he relaxed among the cottonwoods shading the nearly six acres where he and his wife Margaret live near the Colorado River … Wierenga is among supporters of state legislation that would change current 1,000-foot minimum setback requirements between oil and gas operations and schools, so that the setback would be measured from school property lines rather than school buildings themselves.”

Meanwhile, The Longmont Times-Call reports the local city council passed a symbolic anti-fracking proposal called The Climate Bill of Rights and Protections. “The vote on Tuesday came in part from what seemed like an urge to resolve an exhaustive three-month process, fearing that tabling it again could consume more council attention away from other pressing issues,” the paper reports. “The fallout has resulted in the rare agreement of displeasure from both anti-fracking activists and the Colorado oil and gas industry, both of whom view the measure’s success as a direct threat. Many of the bill’s earliest and most ardent supporters turned their back on the measure following its revision, arguing that the ordinance has become nothing more than an rudderless vessel.”

The Pueblo Chieftain reports how the city is getting help for homelessness from its northern neighbor. “The fallout has resulted in the rare agreement of displeasure from both anti-fracking activists and the Colorado oil and gas industry, both of whom view the measure’s success as a direct threat. Many of the bill’s earliest and most ardent supporters turned their back on the measure following its revision, arguing that the ordinance has become nothing more than an rudderless vessel.”

“Despite requests from local business owners, Fort Collins will not prohibit people from lying on downtown sidewalks and plazas,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins. “The City Council on Tuesday approved on second reading an ordinance that would prohibit kneeling or lying down within 10 feet of a restroom and leaving personal belongings unattended in public areas.”

The Loveland Reporter-Herald reports on drought conditions in the area. “As nearly half of Larimer County faces severe drought conditions, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office requested the use of extreme caution Tuesday with sources of fire ignition,” the paper reports. “While an official fire ban has not been declared in Larimer County, commissioners of Boulder and Denver counties have put bans in place there. Climatologist and drought specialist Becky Bolinger with the Colorado Climate Center said dryness does not necessarily contribute to grass fires — including several major fires this month on the Front Range and Eastern Plains — persistent drought conditions could lead to fires in higher elevations in the coming months, she said.

“Boulder County Sheriff’s Office investigators believe that the cause of the 74-acre Sunshine Fire west of Boulder was a campfire on Boulder open space,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “Investigators say that evidence at the fire’s point of origin near the Centennial Trailhead indicated the blaze was started by a campfire in what appeared to be a transient camp, according to a release. According to the release, the fire was surrounded by rocks in a “hastily fashioned ad hoc campfire ring of sorts.” Investigators found moisture and kicked up dirt, which led them to believe an attempt was made to extinguish the campfire at one point in time.”

The Aspen Times reports on a ski area’s plans for summer recreation. “A summer plan that features new hiking and biking trails but also opens the national forest at Snowmass to new uses such as an alpine coaster is favored for approval by the U.S. Forest Service,” the paper reports. “The White River National Forest released a Final Environmental Impact Statement Tuesday along with a draft Record of Decision on Aspen Skiing Co.’s summer use proposal for Snowmass Ski Area. The decision outlines Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliam’s selected alternative and rationale for approval.”

“The line between free speech and hate speech became a little blurry for some students this week at Fort Lewis College when a ‘campus preacher’ proselytized about specific groups, including homosexuals,” reports The Durango Herald. “Keith Darrell with the Whitefield Fellowship in Bellbrook, Ohio, said he visits campuses across the country to preach the Bible. He set up shop about noon to 5 p.m. Monday in front of the library and the College Union at FLC, where he shared his belief that gay people are sinners, among other self-held convictions.” A student allegedly “poured coffee on the proselytizer’s Bible, which lay on the chair, according to witnesses.” He “was arrested on suspicion of malicious injury to property, obstructing a police officer, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct, according to jail records.”

The Cañon City Daily Record reports on seniors learning to use social media in a mini college class. “The class was one of many being taught this week to local senior citizens at Pueblo Community College’s Fremont Campus as part of the school’s annual Senior Mini College,” the paper reports. “The class was open to anyone who had never tried social media or those who wanted to learn how to navigate social media sites, such as Facebook. The majority of the class revealed they already had their own Facebook accounts. Many said they used Facebook to keep track of their kids and grandkids.”

Can FoodMaven fix the food industry’s waste problem? That’s what The Colorado Springs Independent asks in this week’s cover story. “FoodMaven is an agriculture-tech startup, founded in August 2015 by Dan Lewis, president/chief innovator, and Patrick Bultema, CEO/chairman,” the paper reports. “Its stated goal: keep food out of landfills. Food companies at every point between the dirt and the dinner table sign contracts with FoodMaven. When extra food shows up at their loading docks — most often produce, meat and dairy, which can’t sit in a warehouse for an indefinite amount of time — FoodMaven takes it off their hands, stores it and sells it to commercial and institutional kitchens across Colorado Springs and Denver. In the Springs alone, FoodMaven sells to 120 restaurants, plus school districts, senior living centers, caterers and even the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.”

The Gazette in Colorado Springs reports on a crime-solving couple who “tracked down their stolen credits cards,” but stumbled upon “something bigger.”

“Denver Police Chief Robert White may have violated his department’s policies for handling complaints — and perhaps a city ordinance — after the district attorney last year questioned how the chief’s second-in-command ran an investigation, a Denver Post review of the policies has found,” reports The Denver Post. “Already, the city has launched an independent investigation and a criminal probe into the actions of Deputy Chief Matt Murray. But the situation also raises questions about who in the police department’s administration knew about a May 17 letter written by then-District Attorney Mitch Morrissey that expressed concerns about Murray’s actions and how those people responded once the letter came to their attention.”

Denverite reports how President Donald Trump’s proposed $6 billion cut to HUD would affect Denver.


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