News for Wednesday, June 27, 2012

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Broncos pledge $50,000 to wildfire relief efforts

(AP) — The Denver Broncos have pledged to make a $50,000 donation to assist with relief efforts as wildfires continue to burn across Colorado. Broncos owner Pat Bowlen also encouraged the team's fans to help provide relief in any way they can. Bowlen expressed sympathy for residents affected by the fires, particularly those who have lost their homes or have been evacuated.

Colorado blaze too dangerous to assess damage

AP) — A raging wildfire destroyed dozens of houses overnight and charred land on the edges of the Air Force Academy on Wednesday, while thick smoke and intense, towering flames kept officials from learning the full scope of damage to Colorado's second-largest city. The wildfire doubled in size overnight to about 24 square miles, and has so far forced mandatory evacuations for more than 32,000 residents, Colorado Springs emergency management director Brett Waters said. Among those urgently evacuated Tuesday evening were residents at the U.S. Air Force Academy. The fire burned about 10 acres of land along the southwest boundary of the academy's 28-square-mile boundary, but no injuries or damage to academy structures have been reported. Steve Cox, an aide to Mayor Steve Bach, said Wednesday morning that the blaze has consumed dozens of houses elsewhere. A more precise figure wasn't available because of the intensity of the fire.

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Going Out

Going Out… ….with kids Family Cast & Blast Sunday, July 1 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. Wyman Museum Free

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Chuck Grobe defeats incumbent to advance in commission bid

Chuck Grobe, a Republican candidate running for Moffat County Commission’s District 2 seat, said Tuesday night his sights are now set on November's general election. More than 1,950 Moffat County voters cast a ballot in the Republican primary election contest between incumbent Moffat County Commissioner Audrey Danner and Grobe. According to the final, but unofficial, results, Grobe earned a slot in the general election ballot by securing 1,238 votes, or 63 percent. Danner received 719 votes, or 36 percent.

Baumgardner wins Republican Senate District 8 primary with 58 percent of the vote

State Rep. Randy Baumgardner has earned his chance to return to the Capitol as a state senator. Baumgardner easily defeated incumbent state Sen. Jean White, of Hayden, on Tuesday night in what proved to be one of Colorado’s more heated Republican primary elections this cycle. The Denver Post reported Baumgardner won all seven counties that comprise Senate District 8. The final vote tallies showed Baumgardner won with 58 percent of the vote. “Honestly, I’m just glad it’s over,” Baumgardner said after he learned about his victory. “I came to the realization that up or down, I was ready for it to end. I was tickled people thought enough for me to support me, even with all the bad press out there and all the inaccuracies. I thank all of them who stood with me and supported me.”

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Low water, high temps put river access in doubt

Wildfires aren't the only concern caused by this summer's drought and high temperatures. In Steamboat Springs and Routt County, commercial users of the Yampa River have been asked to stay out due to low water levels and rising temperatures. The same measure could soon be implemented along the river further west in Hayden and possibly Craig. Ron Dellacroce, park manager for Yampa River State Park and Elkhead Reservoir, said water levels are nearing record lows at Yampa River State Park access points.

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Youth basketball camp gives kids a chance to play with Bulldog stars

“I’m worn out,” was the first thing Eric Hamilton said after concluding basketball camp Tuesday. The Moffat County High School boys basketball coach hosted a camp for fourth through eighth grade boys in the MCHS gym Monday through today, and said even though it wasn’t a long day, the energy from campers kept him working hard. The three day camp was an opportunity for aspiring players to learn the fundamentals of basketball and to “play the right way,” Hamilton said. “We just want to give them a good foundation and hopefully teach them how to practice the right way on their own,” he said. “These kids aren’t going to remember everything but we’re hoping to inspire them to work hard.”

Moffat County Commission to seek legal counsel over Department of Interior rules

The Moffat County Commission will begin exploring legal options for a potential lawsuit against the U.S. Department of the Interior. The decision was unanimously approved by commissioners following a recommendation by the Moffat County Land Use Board to challenge certain federal regulations on wild and scenic river designations, recognition of revised statute 2477 roads on federal lands, and a ban on energy exploration in Vermillion Basin. Although the regulations are in the Bureau of Land Management’s Little Snake Field Office’s recently approved record of decision, a potential lawsuit would be filed against the U.S. Department of the Interior and not directly at the BLM’s local office.

Moffat County Commission meeting agenda

When: 8 a.m. Thursday Where: Moffat County Courthouse, 221 W. Victory Way Agenda: • 8 to 8:05 a.m. Call to order, Pledge of Allegiance, moment of silence

Moffat County School Board workshop and board meeting agendas

Moffat County School Board workshop When: 4 p.m. Thursday Where: Vocational and agricultural shop, Moffat County High School, 900 Finley Lane Agenda: • Public hearings on policies 2113, employment of superintendent, and 4331.3, professional growth incentive plan

The Memorial Hospital Board meeting agenda

When: 6 p.m. Thursday Where: TMH conference rooms A, B and C, 750 Hospital Loop Agenda: • Call to order by Chairman Don Myers

Letter: Think before you smoke

To the editor: This is to the cigarette smoker assumed to have caused the Sand Creek fire: What were you thinking? Can't you read? Didn't you see how dry it is? How inconsiderate you were when you tossed that cigarette out of your car

Letter: Unions and teachers shouldn't mix

To the editor: Two articles in the Craig Daily Press by local teachers are interesting. One claims teaching is her passion. I appreciate that and we need more of the same. Several things come to mind about what she wrote. First, I would hope our children will be taught more than just how to retrieve information on the Internet. Eighty to 90 percent of young people I encounter in a business situation today could not make change if they had to without a computer.

Editorial: Do not burn after reading

It was a fire likely ignited due to an ignorant act, and one that could have meant potential disaster for residents and homes in our community. But, almost as quickly as the Sand Fire grew from the embers to cover 2,000 acres, public service agencies responded and contained the blaze, limiting damage. For those agencies, as well as the private companies who contributed voluntarily, the editorial board is grateful. The teamwork, skill and dedication to fight the fire should be appreciated and never forgotten. Last week's fire also underscores a few key points, the editorial board believes.

Senior Spotlight for June 27: The sun was having a field day over the weekend

The sun was having a field day over the weekend. More sun tan lotion, please. I forget to use my sunglasses sometimes, so I go around looking for a shady place to rest my eyes, if nothing else. And, I always take water with me. July is peeking around the corner, and we'll probably get some cloudy days then.

Briefs for June 27: Presentation on public health goals today

A presentation introducing proposed five-year public health goals for Moffat and Routt counties will take place at 6 p.m. today at The Haven Community Center, 300 S. Shelton Lane, in Hayden. The presentation, part of the Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association Board's meeting, is open to the public. “The 2008 Public Health Act requires local public health agencies to submit an improvement plan to the state board of health every five years,” the VNA reported in a news release. “The proposed goals and action plans announced at the meeting would be the focus of the five-year local public health improvement plan for communities in Routt and Moffat counties.” For more information, call Evette Joyce at 871-7613.

Nora Ephron, writer-filmmaker, dies at 71

Among the injustices about the death of Nora Ephron is that she isn't around to tell us about it. "She was so, so alive," says her friend Carrie Fisher. "It makes no sense to me that she isn't alive anymore." Ephron, the essayist, author and filmmaker who challenged and thrived in the male-dominated worlds of movies and journalism and was loved, respected and feared for her devastating and diverting wit, died Tuesday in Manhattan. She was 71. Ephron died at 7:40 p.m. at New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center, her family said in a statement Tuesday night. She died of leukemia.

LaRoche, Zimmerman help Nationals rout Rockies

Adam LaRoche homered twice, Ryan Zimmerman collected his 1,000th career hit and also homered, and the Washington Nationals routed the Colorado Rockies 12-5 on Tuesday night. Ian Desmond went 4 for 4, Michael Morse had four hits and Tyler Moore also connected for the Nationals, who had a season-high 21 hits, which tied the club mark since the team moved to Washington in 2005. They had 11 extra-base hits, the most since becoming the Nationals. Dexter Fowler and Jonathan Herrera homered and Jordan Pacheco had three hits for the Rockies, who have dropped 15 of 19.

Police blotter for June 27

Moffat County Jail Thursday, June 14 Ernest James Thomas, 63, of Aneth, Utah, was booked into Moffat County Jail on suspicion of failing to drive in a single lane and driving under restraint. Paul Romero Mendoza, 45, of Colorado Springs, was booked into Moffat County Jail on a warrant. Friday, June 15 Shaun Paul Cisneros, 32, of Clifton, was booked into Moffat County Jail on suspicion of reckless driving and driving under the influence of alcohol.

Craig City Council passes fire ban

The Craig City Council took swift and unanimous action Tuesday to enact a fire ban in the wake of searing temperatures and raging wildfires throughout the state. “To me, this makes so much sense,” council member Byron Willems said before the vote. “It’s so obvious. In my lifetime, I’ve never seen it this dry.” The ban takes effect immediately and prohibits all fireworks and open burning inside city limits. Lighting campfires in permanent pits at recreation sites also is off-limits.