The Home Front: Federal and state officials are investigating a ‘potential mine discharge and fish kill’ in Boulder County

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

“A potential mine discharge and fish kill in the upper portions of Boulder County’s Left Hand Creek linked to an Environmental Protection Agency Superfund site is being investigated by federal and state officials, it was announced Wednesday,” reports The Boulder Daily Camera. “Superfund project managers for both EPA and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment were notified Monday of discolored water and dead fish in Left Hand Creek downstream from the Captain Jack Mill Superfund site, according to a news release. The EPA and the state health department are investigating to determine if the fish kill is related to cleanup activities at the site. The number of fish killed is unknown at this time but is estimated to be in the low 100s.”

“A field that sits between homes and behind parks inside Greeley’s most isolated neighborhood doesn’t look like much more than an open space,” reports The Greeley Tribune. “Before it became city property, the empty landscape, the East Memorial Natural Area, was farmland and, later, an oil and gas site. ‘While we call it a natural area, it doesn’t have much appeal for use,’ Greeley Natural Lands Coordinator Karen Scopel said Wednesday as she stood on the land with Greeley Park Planner Sarah Boyd and Recreation Superintendent Scott Schuttenberg. The field won’t look that way for much longer, though. Each of the city officials have bigger plans for the land. Depending on what residents want to see, the field will be transformed into a park that could include an interactive channel of water for children to play in, an archery range, a hammock grove tucked away in a quiet area and a lookout tower where kids can see all of the land.”

“After hearing arguments about prison gang-run gambling rings and shankings contrasted with a detailed discussion about the difference between being fired and being forced to quit, 21-year-old Taylor Schwarz came to a conclusion,” reports The Grand Junction Daily Sentinel. “The criminal cases are more fun,” said Schwarz, a Colorado Mesa University criminal justice major who attended a special session of federal judges from the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals at the college.”

“Longmont businesses have already saved millions by upgrading water and electrical appliances in the past several years, and city officials next month are starting a pilot program with the goal of connecting more small and minority-owned businesses to cost-reducing green initiatives,” reports The Longmont Times-Call. “The Longmont Sustainable Business Program will officially launch following the pilot, which will last five months and include up to 15 businesses whose water- and energy-use reduction and waste diversion strategies will be tracked.”

“It was, to paraphrase architect Jack Mousseau, a bitter pill. But one that will have to be swallowed if Pueblo City Schools’ (D60) mission of providing a high-quality education as a high-performing school district is to be fulfilled,” reports The Pueblo Chieftain. “On Tuesday, Mousseau, a principal in the Denver-based MOA Architects, presented to the board of education an in-progress review of a district-wide master plan and facilities assessment commissioned by the district.”

“Summit County is urging people who wish to vote in person to do their research on the issues and candidates before coming in to cast their ballot,” reports Summit Daily. “The length of this year’s general election ballot is so extensive that voters are taking a long time, as much as 40 minutes, to read through all the different propositions, amendments, initiatives and local issues before making a decision. County clerk and recorder Kathleen Neel said that she predicts a higher than average midterm election turnout this year, and is concerned about extended lines at polling locations in the county on Nov. 6.”

“About 15 percent of active voters in Routt County have already cast their ballots,” reports The Steamboat Pilot. “Routt County Clerk and Recorder Kim Bonner said her office has received 2,498 ballots as of Wednesday, Oct. 24, which is 10 days after ballots were mailed. There are 16,588 active voters in the county, according to the Secretary of State’s office. More voters are participating in early voting this year. In 2016, 1,030 voters had turned in their ballots nine days after they were mailed, and in 2014, 1,466 voters had submitted their ballots by this point according to data from the Secretary of State’s office.”

“Loveland residents will be asked during a special election this February to authorize the city to establish a city owned and operated retail broadband utility,” reports The Loveland Reporter-Herald. “The Loveland City Council voted 5-4 Tuesday to send the issue to voters instead of council members approving the utility and $93 million in bonds to pay for the network.”

“Parking rates rose for the first time in a decade for the 2017-18 ski season,” reports Vail Daily. “The biggest complaints, though, revolved around the loss of 30 minutes of free parking. The Vail Town Council at its Tuesday, Oct. 16, meeting approved a rate structure for the 2018-19 ski season. There were only two big changes: setting a pass price for the new Red Sandstone parking structure and a return to two hours of free parking.”

“One person is dead and two others were injured after a multi-alarm fire in West Fort Collins on Wednesday morning,” reports The Coloradoan.

“With the Nov. 6 general election less than two weeks away, many candidates are making one final push to garner support from constituents who may still be on the fence,” reports The Cañon City Daily Record. “U.S. Congressman Doug Lamborn made a couple of stops in town Wednesday, one of which was to the Cañon City Rotary Club, where he talked about the economy, the historically low unemployment rate and an optimistic future. Lamborn, the Republican representative from Colorado’s 5th Congressional District, has been in the U.S. House since 2011.”

“Monday will mark one year since 16-year-old Nathaniel Czajkowski was shot and killed while dining with friends at a fast-food restaurant in the early morning hours of Oct. 29, 2017,” reports The Gazette in Colorado Springs. “A suspect hasn’t been identified, but Colorado Springs police say they believe someone — likely multiple people — knows who pulled the trigger and why. Police agreed to discuss details from the case with The Gazette in hopes it may generate new information that could lead to an arrest.”

“Colorado is rich in resources: rivers that help supply the West, some of the country’s largest natural gas reserves, lots of wind and sunshine fueling a robust renewable energy industry, and public lands that support a $28 billion outdoor recreation economy,” reports The Denver Post. “Disagreements over how to manage those resources — and which ones take priority — are front and center in the Colorado governor’s race, especially when it comes to energy. The centerpiece of Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Polis’ energy policy is his goal that 100 percent of the electricity on the state’s grid come from renewable sources by 2040. Republican state Treasurer Walker Stapleton’s energy policy has few details when it comes to promoting renewable generation, but he embraces what he calls an “all-of-the-above” approach — while taking special note of the “230,000 collective jobs and $32 billion” economic impact of Colorado’s oil and gas industry.”

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