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Local News

  • New Montessori school targets the younger set

    Preschool is considered by many to be the first fundamental step in a child’s education. But for some, an early start on learning can’t come early enough.

    A new South Jeffco Montessori school is attempting to address that need, offering programs for infants only 6 weeks out of the womb to children as old as 3 — the age at which traditional preschool typically begins.

  • County considering rules for distressed properties

    The Jeffco commissioners are poised to enact a distressed-property ordinance designed to prevent foreclosed homes from becoming flophouses, nearly a year after the county lobbied the state legislature to allow such measures.

    The proposed ordinance, which the Sheriff’s Office revised after the commissioners earlier this year criticized a previous version as too intrusive on property rights, could be passed in as little as 60 days.

  • County zeroes in on blighted bus benches

    Ugly, decaying bus-stop benches are an epidemic in South Jeffco, and the county is planning to address the problem by revamping its advertising-vendor policy, officials said at an Aug. 2 meeting with the county commissioners.

  • A good judge of character

    Chief District Judge Brooke Jackson was just over a year into his judicial career when he was assigned the highest-profile cases in Jefferson County history — the lawsuits filed following the 1999 shootings at Columbine High School.

    He was also handed his first death-penalty case after only two weeks in the job.

  • Planning board frowns on legalizing short-term rentals

    The Jeffco planning commission voted 6-1 Wednesday night to reject a recommendation to legalize short-term vacation-rental houses in unincorporated Jefferson County.

    During the three-hour hearing, 14 parties spoke against and three people spoke in favor of the proposal, which included some moderate restrictions. Opponents included a couple of HOAs from Littleton and numerous residents of Evergreen.

  • Chatfield swim beach reopens

    Officials reopened Chatfield State Park’s swim beach Thursday, following the fourth closure this summer due to high levels of E. coli bacteria in the water.

    The contamination was likely due to recent heavy rains, the park said, which can wash material into the reservoir, and high temperatures, which can encourage bacterial proliferation.

    Closures were initiated on July 7, July 20, July 27 and August 3.

    A similar closure happened last year, though such events are not necessarily an annual occurrence, a spokeswoman said.

  • Blues Festival benefit concert set for Clement Park

    Sixteen blues bands will take the stage Aug. 6 at Clement Park for the Blue Star Blues Festival, an event to benefit an organization that helps provide music therapy to children with life-threatening illnesses.

    The day-long inaugural festival will feature artists Mike Zito, Ana Popovic and Tommy Castro as headlining acts.

  • Wife of state Sen. Kopp dies

    South Jeffco resident Kimberly Kopp, widely known as the wife of Sen. Mike Kopp, died July 30 after a three-year struggle with cancer.

    After initially being diagnosed in 2008 with cervical cancer, doctors declared Kopp cancer-free a year later. Celebration of her recovery was short-lived, however, as she was soon after diagnosed with another type of cancer, small-cell carcinoma of the perimetrium, a rare condition about which most doctors knew little, the senator said in a news release.

  • Rustic rules in overhaul of county Open Space lobby

    A recent remodel of the county Open Space building represents a step into sylvan tranquility and a move away from the land of cubicles.

    The $35,000 aesthetic renovation, which was completed in early July, makes the building’s entrance and lobby more closely resemble a state park visitor center. Reclaimed wood forms rugged benches, and large wildlife photographs are prominently displayed on informational stands.

  • 16 county businesses caught selling liquor to minors

    Sixteen Jeffco liquor providers were cited for providing alcohol to a minor in a recent large-scale sting operation, marking a significant increase in the percentage of stores cited over previous years.

    Ten of the stores are in South Jeffco and include a mix of convenience stores, independent establishments and a grocery store.

    As part of the yearly sting operation, underage sheriff’s cadets attempted to purchase beer without providing identification at 70 county businesses.