The Home Front: Will voters dissolve a county council in Colorado for ‘general uselessness’?

“Former Weld County Council members on Monday banded together to urge county commissioners to disband the council via a ballot initiative in November,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “Two former council members sent letters and two more spoke during the public comment portion of the Board of Weld County Commissioners meeting, citing concerns of partisanship, a slow audit process and general uselessness of the county council as reasons to ask voters whether the council should disband.”

“Suspected members of a recently busted Mesa County drug ring are accused of trafficking major amounts of methamphetamine into Mesa County by way of Nevada and California, then selling the product using local dealers and a Clifton-area storefront, according to recently unsealed court records,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “Recently unsealed affidavits describe in detail the extensive investigation, which has been ongoing by local and federal drug investigators since October 2016. The investigation has so far netted 25 pounds of methamphetamine and resulted in 11 arrests, according to earlier reports.”

“A Longmont City Council member’s allegation that male council members have harassed female members is unfounded, according to an attorney whose Denver office of a national law firm the city hired to conduct an independent investigation of the complaint,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “Laurie J. Rust has written council members that — under federal and state civil rights and anti-discrimination laws and Longmont’s own city regulations governing workplace harassment — she concluded that ‘the allegation of a hostile work environment based on sex … was not founded.'”

“The U.S. needs much more cooperation from China to deal with North Korea and its continuous threats toward this country, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., said Wednesday,” according to The Pueblo Chieftain. “Gardner, a Republican is chairman of the Senate Subcommittee on East Asia and the Pacific, and has been focusing on North Korea in recent years. He authored a new law last year that mandated sanctions against North Korea.”

“Fort Collins voters are a step closer to deciding whether the city may provide high-speed internet service to homes and businesses,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins. “However, there are a lot more steps to be taken before the proposed service becomes a reality. The City Council on Tuesday approved on first reading an ordinance setting ballot language for a measure in the Nov. 7 election seeking voter permission to establish a telecommunications utility. Second reading of the ordinance is Aug. 15.”

“The employee who Routt County Treasurer Brita Horn claims made a $5.8 million error that deprived local taxing entities of millions of dollars worth of their revenue for more than two months is speaking out and contesting her recent dismissal from the county,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. “Rani Gilbert, who was fired from the treasurer’s office in July for reasons unrelated to the property tax error, said she thinks Horn is wrongly blaming her for the mistake. “I just want the people of my community to understand she has convicted me of something I did not do,” Gilbert said. “I’ve gone way out of my way to do the very best I can for Routt County.”

“One of three sitting Thompson School Board members has announced her intention to run for reelection, and two former district employees have joined the race for the remaining two seats that are up for grabs this November,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “Wednesday was the first day to take out petitions to appear on the ballot for the school board, and candidates must return those with 50 valid signatures by Sept. 1. Paul Bankes, Barb Kruse and Lori Hvizda Ward drew petitions to run for seats on the board.”

“The first signs of the emerald ash borer beetle have been found in Lafayette, according to officials,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “The discovery comes four years after investigators first found the invasive pest in Boulder in 2013. Officials said in a news release that on Aug. 3, a Boulder County forester identified an ash tree on private land in the vicinity of Arapahoe Road and North 95th Street as potentially infested with EAB. The suspect tree still is within a quarantine area established to try and prevent the human-assisted spread of emerald ash borer, officials said, noting that Tuesday, the insect specimen was confirmed by experts with Colorado State University as being emerald ash borer. Officials don’t know whether the bug arrived in Lafayette by natural spread or via accidental human transport, such as in firewood or other raw ash material. The pest also has been confirmed in Gunbarrel and Longmont.”

“Overtime costs at the Denver Sheriff Department continue to skyrocket, reaching $14 million last year despite a hiring spree that added nearly 200 deputies to the roster and pledges to change employment practices that could curb excessive spending,” reports The Denver Post. “The sheriff’s department is on track to spend nearly as much on overtime in 2017; the department paid $6.4 million for 133,933 hours of overtime during the first six months of the year, according to data provided by the Denver Department of Safety.”

“Spectranetics became part of Philips’ Image-Guided Therapy Business Group, which generated $2.2 billion in revenue last year,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “Spectranetics was the largest of five local companies whose stock is traded on a major exchange, based on the total value of all of its stock. “Spectranetics is a highly complementary addition to our Image-Guided Therapy business group and will strengthen its position in a ($7 billion) growth market,” van Houten said in a news release. “The completion of this acquisition will accelerate the realization of our strategic expansion into therapy devices.”