The Home Front: Boulder County commissioners file protests aimed at drilling plans

“Boulder County commissioners have filed two formal protests with the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission aimed at plans submitted last month by 8 North LLC, a subsidiary of Extraction Oil and Gas LLC,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “The county filed two protest documents — one for each proposed drilling area — according to a Monday news release. “As we have stated in the past, we continue to be very concerned by recent drilling and extraction proposals to develop oil and gas within unincorporated Boulder County,” Commissioners Cindy Domenico, Deb Gardner and Elise Jones said in a joint statement Monday. 8 North LLC, a subsidiary of Extraction Oil and Gas LLC, has applied for a state drilling and spacing order on a 1,280-acre area between Arapahoe and Baseline roads in the Lafayette-Erie area; as well as a 2,720-acre area between Oxford and Quail roads, also along East County Line Road.”

“One-time congressional candidate David Cox spent the weekend in jail after the Western Colorado Drug Task Force said it found more than 80 marijuana plants and several loaded weapons within reach of his children at his Palisade home,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “Cox, who ran an unsuccessful bid for Congress in 2014 and tried to get elected to the Colorado House in 2010, was arrested Friday on suspicion of felony possession with intent to distribute, two misdemeanor counts of child abuse and a potential special drug offender charge. District Attorney Dan Rubinstein said an additional felony charge will be levied against Cox in connection to an illegal hash lab, adding that if convicted on all counts, Cox could face a mandatory minimum sentence of 32 years.”

“Weld County Council members, plagued by infighting and calls for resignations in the past year, on Monday seemingly found one thing to bring them all together: The Board of Weld County Commissioners,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “Those commissioners voted 4-1 to put the council’s fate on the Nov. 7 ballot, making Monday’s County Council meeting potentially historic. The oversight board charged with reviewing all aspects of county government meets just once per month, and if voters approve ballot measure 1A, Monday will have been the council’s last meeting in its 42-year history. If Monday marks an end, the Weld County Council didn’t go quietly, reaffirming its right to exist through a resolution and roundly condemning the commissioners’ move to squash the council in the months following a council-approved audit into commissioners’ performance.”

“Sharon Hoberg was sitting in Denver International Airport waiting to board a flight to Iowa for her cousin’s wedding when her phone rang,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. “I got the call and they told me that I had invasive ductal carcinoma,” said Hoberg, who owns and runs Valley Appraisal, Inc. in Craig. “When they say that, you are in shock. The first thing I wanted to know is if it was advanced. You don’t know anything at that point, and it’s just fear. It was probably the most fearful moment I’ve ever had. I can’t even describe it.” Homberg had made getting a mammography a part of her yearly routine for the last 19 years. And until this May, she had never needed to have a technician, nurse or doctor call her back after the screening. But this time, it was different.”

“A ballot referendum that would affect the top echelons of Larimer County’s government has landed its focus on a single job: that of Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith,” reports The Coloradoan in Fort Collins. “Larimer County commissioners are asking voters if term limits should be removed for the offices of assessor, clerk and recorder, surveyor, treasurer and sheriff. Those offices have three-term limits, allowing their occupants to hold them for 12 consecutive years. Commissioner Tom Donnelly, who described himself as a driving force behind the question, described those jobs as technical in nature and requiring a certain degree of expertise. Term limits artificially force out qualified people and deter others from seeking office, he argued.”

“Next time a Loveland resident has a heart attack, it may be a police officer instead of an emergency medical responder who initially renders life-saving actions,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “Thanks to a donation of 20 automatic external defibrillators made to the Loveland Police Department by McKee Medical Center as part of the HEARTSafe Community initiative, on-duty officers will now carry the devices in their patrol vehicles. AEDs are devices that provide electricity to shock a person’s heart back into rhythm if it stops.”

“As the Denver Sheriff Department prepares to introduce a new way for inmates to communicate with their family and friends, the city’s police watchdog is raising questions about whether the department should reinstate face-to-face meetings at the jails,” reports The Denver Post. “In-person visits better maintain family and community bonds, which, in turn, help inmates succeed once they are released from jail, independent monitor Nick Mitchell wrote last week in his 2017 semi-annual report. “The reasons to encourage in-person visitation — particularly between parents and children — are powerful,” Mitchell said. “So before any contract is finalized, we need to talk about whether depriving kids of in-person visits with their parents is consistent with our values as a city.” The monitor also is warning city officials that modern video visitation can be costly to inmates’ families, most of whom are low-income, who probably would be required to pay fees if they chose to use a home computer to chat with inmates.”

“The Vail 2027 Housing Plan envisioned the town purchasing deed restrictions on 1,000 new or existing units over the next decade,” reports Vail Daily. “The plan seems to be paying some dividends. The latest proposal is from Sonnenalp Properties. That firm has proposed rebuilding Solar Vail, a 24-unit building which the firm already owns. The replacement plan is for 65 studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments. Of those, 25 percent would be offered to individuals or other businesses in Vail. Sonnenalp Properties has proposed imposing deed restrictions on all 65 units and acquiring deed restrictions on another nine units, to replace the number of currently deed-restricted units there.”

“Opponents of the proposed annexation of east Boulder’s Hogan-Pancost parcel are planning a filibuster at Tuesday night’s hearing at the City Council,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “But that’s a strategy that can only work if the council is unwilling to schedule a third meeting on Hogan-Pancost, and it’s not clear, at the moment, that it is. Debate has raged for about three decades over whether or not the 22 acres of land at Hogan-Pancost, adjacent to the East Boulder Community Park, is appropriate for annexation into the city and for eventual development.”

“The Cañon City Police Department asked members of the Cañon City Council on Monday to approve stricter education requirements on job postings for top officer positions,” reports The Cañon City Daily Record. “In current job descriptions for the positions — deputy police chief and commander — the city asks that applicants have an associate’s degree, with a preference of a bachelor’s degree. Under the revision, the department would ask for applicants for both positions to have a bachelor’s degree. The change would not affect officers who are currently in those positions. The council, which featured some opposition during the discussion, approved the job revision as part of its consent agenda.”

“Prosecutors pursuing claims of corruption involving ex-El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa dismissed all counts against one of his two co-defendants Monday, telling a judge their case had effectively fallen apart days ahead of a trial,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “The about-face came as former sheriff’s Cmdr. Juan “John” San Agustin prepared to face a jury beginning Nov. 7 on charges of kidnapping and false imprisonment, both felonies. The announcement set off a round of clapping from his supporters in court. “This case has been built on nothing,” one his attorneys, Iris Eytan of Denver, said in fiery comments in court in which she suggested San Agustin was indicted for political reasons. San Agustin, 47, stood at Eytan’s side during a media briefing after a judge accepted prosecutors’ request to drop charges. He declined to address questions. Eytan said the dismissal wasn’t contingent on any agreements to testify at upcoming trials for Maketa or a third person charged, Paula Presley. She wouldn’t say if she expected her client to be called as a witness at their trials.”