New Year, New Laws: What’s New on the Books
Along with a new wall calendar Coloradoans will also be bringing into focus several new laws in 2017. From beer to bucks to bud tenders, from livestock to right-to-die, here’s the Leadville Today lowdown on what’s new on the books as of January 1, 2017.
Starting January 1, earnings for minimum wage earners increased from $8.31 to $9.30 per hour for non-tipped workers and will increase by $0.90 per hour every year until it reaches $12 an hour on Jan. 1, 2020. Anticipate to see that on you next paycheck. For those workers who rely on tips as part of their wage, they will see an hourly increase from $5.29 to $6.28 per hour starting January 1, tipped workers will make. Colorado law mandates tipped wages remain set at $3.02 less than non-tipped wages.
Not since the shake-up of prohibition laws has the Colorado liquor industry seen such a sizeable change to the laws than those which went into effect January 1. Although most agree that the impact to Leadville and Lake County liquor sales will be minimal, the passage of Senate Bill 16-197 allows retailers to add up to four new alcohol-selling locations, as long as they buy up all the existing licenses within 1,500 feet in cities of more than 10,000 people, and 3,000 feet in smaller jurisdictions. In phases, grocers could add up to 20 locations by 2037, when state licensing limits fall away. The new law also has the state repealing it’s 3.2 beer law within the next two years, which means stronger beer available to you at the same place you buy your groceries.
While the liquor industry expands its reach, the medical marijuana business will see a contraction of sorts as caregivers will be facing tougher rules when it comes to the number of plants they can grow at home. According to state law, that number is dropping from 495 to 99 plants. Starting January 1, primary caregivers will be the only person allowed to grow and provide medical marijuana to a patient if they utilize a caregiver. Licensed medical marijuana growers will also be allowed to sell medical pot.
But the primary caregivers growing medical marijuana will have to register the location of their grow, their patients’ registration numbers in the medical program and plant counts with the state.
Transporters will also have to tell the state the number of plants or amount of medical marijuana going to each patient, as well as who the product is going to. The law says any information from voluntary registrants will be kept private, though their grow locations would be verified by the state.
The law says most of the new facets going into effect January 1 are aimed at protecting growers and patients from law enforcement operations targeting illegal grows, after some agencies voiced concerns over a lack of knowledge of who was growing legally and who wasn’t.
When it comes to animals, a new regulation known as the Veterinary Feed Directive is now law as of January 1. This will require livestock producers to get prescriptions like penicillin directly from their vets instead of over the counter, essentially limiting the use of antibiotics specifically to disease treatment.
Known as Proposition 106 or less formally as Medical Aid in Dying, this new law requires a mentally competent patient to have a six month prognosis and get two doctors to approve requests for a life-ending medication. Once approved, that medication must be self-administered. Colorado is the fifth state to allow medically assisted suicide.
In all, 25 new laws were passed in the 2016 legislative session that ended last May. The 71st session of the Colorado State Legislative Session will convene on January 11, 2017. Stay tuned to Leadville Today for reports from the Golden Dome.
Sobriety Court Sees Success in Lake County
As the calendar flips to the New Year, the financial hangover left behind by holiday spending will linger through the month, however there could very well be another, more expensive side affect of seasonal merriment that awaits some Lake County residents: a DUI (Driving Under the Influence) arrest. Drunken drivers demonstrated some unfortunate side effects of holiday cheer as DUI arrests were made across the state over the recent holidays. But for Leadville residents there could be a silver lining found in those shots of silver tequila.
Three participants in the Lake County Sobriety Court are expected to graduate from the intensive monitoring and supervision program in a Jan. 13, 2017, ceremony that will also help mark National Impaired Driving Month. The ceremony at the Lake County Courthouse in Leadville will be the 34th graduation since the Sobriety Court was founded in 2010. The program is one of 713 such courts in the United States helping get repeat DWI offenders off the roadways by providing them with the treatment needed to return to being productive members of society while emphasizing public safety.
The Lake County Sobriety Court provides an alternative to incarceration for eligible offenders, helping reduce correctional costs and enhance community safety. Of the 48 participants who have enrolled in the voluntary program since the court’s inception, 33 have graduated, and 90 percent of participants have not reoffended.
“Presiding over one of the 5th Judicial District’s sobriety courts is among the most meaningful and rewarding assignments I have,” said Lake County Judge Jonathan Shamis, who presides over the Sobriety Court. “It can change the life of the participants, improve the lives of their families and make our community safer.”
Judge Shamis is scheduled to deliver the keynote address during the graduation ceremony. Nationally, DWI courts like the Lake County Sobriety Court reduce recidivism by as much as 60 percent, according to the National Center for DWI Courts.
Nearly 80 problem solving courts are in operation in Colorado, including adult and juvenile drug courts, family/dependency and neglect drug courts, DUI/DWI courts, adult and juvenile mental health courts, veteran trauma courts and truancy courts. To learn more about DWI courts: CLICK HERE.
Leadville Election Results 2016: Yes to Glenn, No to Jail
After a record turnout and Lake County voters showing up to the courthouse until the last possible minute to cast their ballots, the results are in:
Local voters determined there were more questions than answers concerning Referendum 1A, also known as the Lake County Justice Center initiative. The 1.5% sales tax increase was voted down at the polls yesterday by a margin of 14.8%, meaning it’s back to the drawing board for proponents looking to build a new county jail and courthouse facility.
Republican Mark E. Glenn secured the seat for Lake County Commissioner, District 3 with 51.58% of the vote, beating out Democratic contender Bud Elliott. Rounding out the Board of County Commissioners by no surprise is Democrat Sarah Mudge (2,206 votes), who ran uncontested and has secured her seat since the June primaries. Glenn and Mudge will be replacing commissioners Bruce Hix and Mike Bordogna.
Judge Jonathan Shamis retains his position as Lake County Court Judge, confirmed by 1,852 votes of confidence. Judge Shamis was initially appointed to the position in July 2013.
It’s been a long race that is finally run. Newly elected officials across the state will be sworn in on Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017. For full statewide election results visit The Denver Post. Lake County’s decisions by-the-numbers can be viewed HERE. Thanks for voting and stay vigilant!
Bruce Brown Re-Elected as District Attorney
Final returns this week from the Colorado Secretary of State reflect
that Bruce Brown has been re-elected to a four-year term for District Attorney in the Fifth Judicial District, which encompasses the counties of Clear Creek, Eagle, Summit and Lake.
District Attorney Brown, upon receiving the results indicated that, “I am grateful for the opportunity to continue to serve the people in court as their prosecutor. It has been an honor to be the elected District Attorney since 2013, and I am buoyed by the prospect of building on the accomplishments the District Attorney’s staff has achieved. My thanks to the voters for returning me to this important office. I will be working hard to assure the public is well protected, victims’ rights are honored, and that each person accused of a crime has their
Constitutional rights respected and given fair opportunities to participate in a course of rehabilitation whenever appropriate,” Brown said.
2016 marks the 30th year of law practice for District Attorney Brown, who will be sworn into office for his next term on Jan. 10, 2017. District Attorneys in the State of Colorado are limited by law to two terms, unless otherwise approved by voters. The Fifth Judicial District maintains a two term service limit.
Brown was opposed by Defense Attorneys Bruce Carey, Republican nominee from Eagle County, and Sanam Mehrnia, an unaffiliated candidate from Summit County. Election results are posted HERE.
Tiny House Could Mean BIG Trouble in Leadville
With the local housing crunch reaching an all-time high and no plan in place to help residents, the search for a reasonably priced place to live has many thinking about tiny houses.
But it’s “Buyer Beware!” when it comes to these small dwellings, according to Lake County Land Use and Building Codes, which don’t necessarily roll out the welcome mat for these alternative domiciles.
The code reads that dwelling units are required to be no less than 600 sq. ft., meet Lake County snow and wind loads, the 2012 International Residential Code and other local requirements, and have an approved source of water and method of sewage disposal.
So for those of you who have been considering a remodel or may already have something underway this summer to take advantage of the recent rental crunch, you’d better make sure that you have done so by the book. For example, accessory structures are not for human habitation and are not permitted on property that doesn’t have a permitted primary structure. That’s right that RV or camper parked on your property that you are using as a “temp house” is illegal if you don’t have a permit in place for the primary structure that you plan to build, fix-up, etc. No more perpetually camping out on your property if you don’t have a permit in place to build that house!
So what about those smaller structures many have on their property? Well, if they are less than 200 sq. ft. and being used as tool and storage sheds, playhouses, and similar capacities, then you’re good to go. However these spaces can NOT be used as temporary housing or a rental property during race season.
For more information on building and land use permit requirements please contact Lake County Building and Land Use at 719-486-2875 or visit their website.
If you’re looking for more information regarding drinking water, gray water and sewage disposal permit requirements, then the Lake County Public Health Agency is the place to get additional requirements. Contact the local Director of Environmental Health Jackie Littlepage at firstname.lastname@example.org, 719-486-7481 or stop by 112 West 5th Street. More information is available online HERE.
Also, keep in mind that proper emergency access and defensible space may also be required by the Leadville/Lake County Fire Department. For more information on fire and emergency requirements please call Deputy Chief/Fire Marshal Steve Boyle for more information: 719-486-2990 or email at email@example.com.
It’s also a good time to remind Lake County residents that if you are renting any lodging during race season – or any time of year – then be sure to be registered and pay your lodging tax requirement or you could face a ticket and fines for violating the code. Here are the details of the Lake County Lodging Tax.
If you rent out your Leadville/Lake County home for the race season, holidays, or spring break, you are responsible for paying the appropriate taxes. While some homeowners are under the impression that those guidelines are only applicable for rental periods OVER 30 days, that is not true, according to the Lake County Clerk and Recorder’s Office. These transactions are subject to the lodging tax as well.
If you rent out your home for under thirty days, under State law you are required to collect 2.9% state sales tax, 4% county tax, and 1.9% lodging tax and remit it to the Colorado Department of Revenue. If you do rent your home – or any part of it – please contact the Clerk’s office at 719-486-1410 to begin the paperwork for this process.
So there you have it, more restrictions and less solutions; more regulations and less representation concerning local needs. If you’re building this summer, you’d better make sure you’re doing it by the books, because people are watching and taking note of violations in their neighborhoods and reporting them accordingly. But by all means, keep those hammers swinging and those saws a-buzzing – you’re going to need the extra cash to pay your rent!
Leadville Group Started to Support Breastfeeding Moms
With Mother’s Day less than a week away, it’s the perfect time to bring readers good news about the newly formed La Leche League (LLL) of Leadville.
According to local organizer and recently accredited LLL leader Thea Gab, La Leche League is a free mother-to-mother breastfeeding support group and resource, with a recent group started locally. Leadville’s LLL meets on the 2nd Monday of every month at 6:30 p.m. in the AMAX Room at the Lake County Public Library.
La Leche League (LLL) was started in the 1950s by a group of 7 women who wanted to breastfeed their children, but felt that they didn’t have the support and information they needed. LLL has gone on to become an international organization with a mission “to help mothers worldwide to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support, encouragement, information, and education, and to promote a better understanding of breastfeeding as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and mother”.
All LLL leaders have breastfed children themselves and are trained to offer support over the phone. Some offer home visits also, and they can direct you to other resources for more complicated issues. LLL holds monthly series meetings where mothers gather to share their support, encouragement, and wisdom with each other. Having a community of mothers who share their experiences has been shown to help mothers who wish to establish breastfeeding.
There are so many moms who want to breastfeed but end up struggling with pain or other issues. Breastfeeding should never be painful, not even for a minute, so it’s important to get help early if there are any issues before they turn into bigger problems.
LLL of Leadville welcomes all who could benefit from the meeting series. Their next gathering is Monday, May 9 at 6:30 p.m. in the AMAX Room at the Lake County Public Library. You can also call or text Thea at 303-842-7577 with questions or for support.
Colorado State Forest Service Grant for 2016
The Colorado State Forest Service (CSFS) and Leadville/Lake County Fire Rescue (LLCFR) have been awarded a grant from the Colorado Water Conservation Board, due to the efforts of several partners in the Arkansas River Watershed Collaborative. The grant will pay to thin 40 acres of lodge-pole pine on State land in the Twin Lakes area in an effort to protect the Arkansas River Basin’s water supply. This work will begin on State land this spring.
This grant will also provide funding for a Wildfire Mitigation Coordinator and Caroline Schaefer has been hired for this position. Part of her responsibilities will be to help interested homeowners in the southern part of Lake County to assess risks to structures during a wildfire event. The coordinator will be trained starting April 11 by the Colorado State Forest Service (CSFS) to assess risks and to create a map showing the home wildfire risk ratings.
Information will be going out to homeowners via the Home Owner Association’s in the area detailing more about this program but homeowners can contact Schaefer directly at 503-539-9483.
Leadville Airport Recognized at Northwest Conference
“Ladies and gentlemen, prepare for take-off!” because the Leadville/Lake County Airport was recognized last night at the Northwest Mountain Region Conference for its “Support and Dedication of Resources to the Development and Operation of the Lake County Airport.”
Lake County Public Works Director Brad Palmer was on hand to accept the award on behalf of the airport staff and Lake County.
Palmer, whose department oversees airport operations, attributes one of the keys to success at the airport is the team being “great at leveraging a dollar.” So whether it’s buying necessary operational and snow- removing equipment, or negotiating the latest revenue-generating hanger lease, the Leadville/Lake County Airport is always working the deal.
The annual conference was held this year in Seattle, Wash. and provides the opportunity for industry professionals to share information regarding airport programs, safety initiatives, and current FAA policies. The Northwest Mountain Region includes Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
In addition to representing Leadville and Lake County, attendance at the conference fulfills continuing professional development requirements in most states. One PDH may be earned for each hour of attendance in formal program sessions.
Here is the formal outline of the award of recognition accepted last night on behalf of the local airport.
In Recognition of Your Support and Dedication of Resources to the Development and Operation of the Lake County Airport.
Lake County Airport in Leadville, Colorado is North America’s highest public use airport at an elevation of 9,927 feet. It is heavily utilized by both the military and aerospace companies that specialize in high altitude/mountain helicopter flight training.
In 2009, Lake County assumed the operation of the airport and has made an extraordinary effort to modernize the airport and to meet all applicable design standards.
Lake County is a small, rural county and is not always able to fund large capital projects. But the county is extremely committed and works hard to find innovative approaches to develop and operate the airport:
- The Lake County Public Works Department provided earth and tree removal around the airfield, eliminating long standing obstructions that would have used the county’s Airport Improvement Program entitlements for years to come.
- Fill dirt and timber were used on other projects around the county or sold to developers to finance other airport projects.
- County road equipment was used to maintain access to the airport and keep the runway cleared of the 160 inches of annual snow fall.
- Old hangars were salvaged to help finance a new snow removal equipment building.
Lake County has repeatedly shown it is committed to partnering with both the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the State of Colorado, contributing considerably more than just local matching funds to airport projects, and using county equipment and personnel to accomplish projects whenever grant funds are limited.
Lake County takes extraordinary pride in its airport, has an active community outreach program, sponsors annual summer and fall fly-ins, and conducts training and disaster drills at the airport for local emergency responders.
Lake County is a superb example of a “can do” attitude and the FAA wishes to acknowledge and commend Lake County for its innovation, support, willingness to take on the seemingly impossible, and the flexibility to do whatever it takes to keep the Lake County Airport a safe and thriving facility.
Congratulations to the airport staff, board and public works department and other county officials for their continued dedication to this important facility!
Leadville Nonprofit Gives Scholarships to Women
When it comes to established philanthropic groups, Leadville has a wonderful, cross-section of nonprofit organizations that offer a variety of support and services for Lake County residents. And one of them just celebrated 100 years. So, Congratulations to the local chapter of Philanthropic Education Organization (PEO) was organized January 20, 1916 in Leadville. The group raises funds for women’s education, locally and internationally.
P.E.O. was founded on January 21, 1869, by seven students at Iowa Wesleyan College in Mount Pleasant, Iowa. This circle of kindred spirits has grown from that tiny membership of seven to nearly a quarter of a million members in chapters throughout the U.S. and Canada, including Leadville.
In fact, if you’ve enjoyed the beauty of the poinsettias around town every winter, you’ve reaped the benefits of his groups unique fundraising efforts. Dollars raised from the sales of these Christmas plants, along with other contributions turn into educational opportunities for women, with more than 90,000 who have benefited from their POE’s grants, loans, awards, special projects and stewardship of Cottey College. Locally, that means an annual scholarship every spring at the student Class Day for Lake County High School.
One hundred years strong is certainly a testament to a well-established, successful, and accountable nonprofit in Lake County. If you or someone you know would be interested in getting involved, or perhaps making a financial contribution, please contact Natalie Armstrong, PEO Chapter AF, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone at 719-293-9023.
Give, But Wisely To Established, Leadville Non-Profits
The charitable giving season is underway! If you haven’t already, you will be receiving donation solicitations from your favorite organizations, many of them Lake County nonprofits. So give generously, but when you do give, be assured that the group or entity that you are writing a check to is a verifiable Lake County nonprofit.
To that end, Leadville Today (LT) did a bit of research and spent some time talking to the nice folks at the Colorado Secretary of State’s Office to develop a list of charitable organizations that are not only in good standing, but have gone through the process of establishing themselves as a viable Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax-deductible entity; and any more, that’s real important.
LT strongly recommends giving to a group that has done its homework, gone through the process, regardless of how arduous it is. The checks and balances these organizations are held to, are healthy for any entity that is accepting donations, particularly on behalf of local residents.
According to officials from the Secretary of State’s Office, a loosely formed group or organization that solicits contributions may not only be breaking the law, but places the local community’s fundraising reputation at risk. This is also a cautionary tale for those individuals who are putting themselves at a personal liability risk for participating in such efforts. Better know the facts and do the research yourself, rather than take someone else’s word for it.
In addition, LT cannot recommend those “non-established” entities which are not registered with the Secretary of State’s Office, using a “pass-through” fiduciary agent. Initial interviews with some of these you-can-use-our-nonprofit-status-to-pass-through-your-money-and-we’ll-take-a-percent” foundations. Interviews with a couple of these organizations found the staff to be ill-prepared to answer even some of the most basic questions about how they operate.
Additionally, these “pass-through” agents do not appear to really understand or know the communities and entities they represent. Besides, even the non-profit world is beginning to take a closer look at the pitfalls of “fiduciary agents,” especially as the IRS commits to taking a closer look at these models which have popped up in recent years as the process of establishing “nonprofit” status has become more involved and costly.
In a recent local meeting , it was stated that “people who want to donate to the Leadville community generally don’t necessarily have a mechanism to do that?” What?
The truth is that, Leadville has two of the OLDEST nonprofits in Colorado, not to mention a host of others who have long-term, proven track records of not only fiduciary responsibility but programs that are thoughtful, sustainable, and actually make a difference.
So in case, for some unknown reason, you want to make a donation and are having a hard time finding a mechanism to do that, LT has put together a list. These are not only REGISTERED agents in GOOD STANDING, but many have been approved and monitored by GuideStar, a nonprofit that gathers and disseminates information about every single IRS-registered nonprofit organization.
Please consider donating to their cause. Thanks for giving!
Advocates of Lake County – Established in 1983, the Advocates of Lake County’s mission is to assist any victim of crime, violence, or other traumatic event, primarily victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.
Full Circle of Lake County – Full Circle provides opportunities, education and caring relationships to help Lake County become a place where youth make healthy choices, families thrive and the community is united.
Friends of the Lake County Public Library – Friends of Lake County Library raise money that enables our library to move from good to great– providing the resources for additional programming, much needed equipment, support for children’s summer reading and special events throughout the year.
Helping Hands of Lake County – A privately held company in Leadville, CO. Awards small grants for food, clothing, rent, utilities, medical assistance, and medication. Applicants must be a US citizen and a resident of Lake County for at least one year. – This group is an arm of Lake County Human Services. Contact Joann Cirullo for assistance: 719-486-2887.
Partnership for Lake County Recreation (PLCR) – A small, community organization committed to quality improvement of community culture, education, parks, and recreation. The mission of Partnership for Lake County Recreation (PLCR) is to support the development of diverse recreational opportunities in Leadville, Lake County, and surrounding areas. PLCR believes these opportunities will result in a healthier, more unified community and an enriched quality of life for residents and visitors alike.
Lake County Search and Rescue – is a non-profit volunteer backcountry Search and Rescue organization serving Leadville and the surrounding area of Lake County, Colorado.
High Mountain Institute (HMI) – has been the school “where nature and minds meet” in Lake County since 1998. HMI has a strong commitment to Lake County. Since 1998, HMI has awarded over $550,000 in scholarships to students enrolled in Lake County public schools. Each year, HMI offers two full scholarships to our semester program to juniors at Lake Country High School. We also offer a full scholarship to a student at Lake County Middle School for our High Peaks Adventure summer program, and we run a free, week-long introduction to the wilderness for 20 Lake County middle school students each summer
Lake County Civic Center Association – Founded in 1971, the LCCCA is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit corporation. They own and operate the Heritage Museum, the Old Church, Heritage Park, and the Colorado Mountain History Collection. LCCCA operating funds are generated through membership dues and revenue from the museum and the Old Church.
Leadville Trail 100 Legacy, Inc. – In 2002, the Leadville Legacy Foundation was created as a nonprofit foundation, the charitable arm of the famous Leadville Trail 100 race series. Their mission was to address the ever-increasing needs of the Leadville and Lake County communities. The Legacy fund thrives through generous contributions from individuals and corporations, as well as a portion of the Leadville Race Series entry fees with every dollar going directly to meet the needs of the community.
Friends of the Leadville National Fish Hatchery (FLNFH) is a Lake County nonprofit. All donations are used for improvements and projects at the LNFH such as the construction of the picnic pavilion.
Leadville-Lake County Sports Hall of Fame – The Leadville-Lake County Sports Hall of Fame (SHF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded in 2002. Governed by a nine member board, the organization strives to those who have been outstanding in athletics or have given meritorious service to the athletics and/or recreation within our community.The SHF serves as the official sports Hall of Fame for the City of Leadville, County of Lake, and the Senior High Schools of Climax, Leadville, and Lake County.
Leadville Arts Coalition – The Leadville Arts Coalition, promotes the arts in Leadville/Lake County. Contact the group via email at: email@example.com.
National Mining Museum – The National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum is a federally chartered non-profit corporation. Their operations and growth depend entirely on contributions, memberships, admissions, and gift shop sales. Support goes toward conserving the great heritage of the mining industry, and to inform and educate the public on the importance of mining in everyday lives.
Leadville Boom Days – is a Colorado Mountain Festival and historical celebration of the Old West, with gunslingers, burro races, contests of mining skill, and a street fair with over 100 food and craft booths. It is always the first full weekend: August 5 – 7, 2016. Three days of fun, food, arts and crafts, and activities for the whole family! Donations help offset the costs associated with putting on this event.
Leadville Elks, aka: Lodge no. 236, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks of the United States of America – The Elks are community.
No matter where you go in the country, an Elks Lodge is right around the corner. With more than 850,000 members and 2,000 Lodges nationwide, Elks are providing charitable services that help build stronger communities.
St. George Community Meal Program – A community of nourishment and faith by serving 5 free meals a week, providing a food bank and helping many people in need.
- First Baptist Church of Leadville
- First Presbyterian Church of Leadville
- Good Shepherd Lutheran Church of Leadville
- Leadville Assembly of God Church
- Community Church of Leadville
- Leadville Holy Family Parish in Leadville operates under the Diocese of Colorado Springs
- Leadville Colorado Congregation of Jehovah’s Witness
It’s worth noting that two of the oldest non-profits registered with the Colorado Secretary of State are in Leadville! Any guesses to which groups they are? Answer.
TTThat’s All Folks . . . . Until Spring for Paving Project!
“Due to bad weather and declining temperatures it has been decided to suspend paving and some other work for the winter,” read last week’s press release from SGM, the engineering firm responsible for verifying that the Mountain View and Mt. Massive Drive road construction work is completed according to the project’s plans and specifications. “Mt. Massive Drive will get a temporary compacted surface of milled asphalt, and all intersections along Mountain View and Mt. Massive will be paved with hot mix. Concrete work will continue until complete.”
So that’s where things stand on a Monday morning, however, the multi-million dollar road construction project has experienced its share of challenges.
According to John Hollenbeck project manager for ACA out of Buena Vista, finding a reliable, local labor force was among them.
“You’d hire ten guys and have to let 5 of them go, because they weren’t who they said they were,” Hollenbeck stated to Leadville Today, insinuating that the laborers misrepresented their skill levels. “Or they couldn’t pass a drug test,” he concluded. That fact, combined with other projects that ACA had going on, created a somewhat bumpy ride of stop and go activity on a project that now ends short of its contractual completion goal.
In addition, Lake County Road and Bridge has had to step in and help during several points in the project, or the construction wouldn’t have made it to this “stop-point.”
In fact, Lake County Commissioner Bruce Hix, who is the local contact point for the project (firstname.lastname@example.org or 719-486-4100), posted on the Lake County Public Works Facebook Page:
Bruce Hix Many thanks to Brad Palmer and the Road & Bridge crew for pitching in and helping the contractor to get this job done before cold weather hits. Without the help of these hard working operators and drivers, the project would not be this far along. We appreciate the sacrifice of their weekends and long work hours. Good work guys!
Over the next two weeks, according to ACA’s Hollenbeck, residents along Mtn. View Drive will see the concrete company fill in and smooth out the transitions to adjacent streets, and to a lesser degree, private driveways. However, the pavement striping for Mountain View Drive will not be completed this year. The project will resume work in the spring when conditions permit.
While they can never pinpoint an exact date due to weather and fuel conditions, the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), is planning a prescribed burn in Twin Lakes this Wednesday, Oct 28. Residents and passersbys will see significant smoke in the air as the fire will burn southwest of Twin Lakes at the headwaters of the Reservoir. As a result, temporary road closures may be necessary to provide for public and firefighter safety.
The projects involve burning to reduce the accumulation of hazardous fuels, restore and maintain healthy and diverse forest ecosystems and maintain and enhance wildlife habitat. Partial partnership funding comes from Habitat Partnership Program.
According to the USFS, Prescribed fire is an important tool in reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire across the landscape and can help prevent extreme fires by reducing hazardous fuel buildup and restoring the forest to a more historical state.
Prescribed fires also minimize impacts to air quality when compared to wildfires. Safety for the public and firefighters is the top priority when considering any prescribed fire operation on the landscape.
More information is available by calling the Leadville Ranger District at (719) 486-0749. Readers can also follow the USFS on Twitter for up-to-date information about these prescribed burn projects: @PSICC_NF, #TwinLakesRX.