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Local News

  • Stitches in time: Jeffco inmates trim sentences by sewing hats, blankets for those in need

    Though he toils in the confines of the laundry room at the Jeffco jail, the handiwork of inmate Ivan Garcia is often found in unexpected places like hospitals and food banks.

    And as his co-workers dig into the daily drudgery of folding towels and blankets, Garcia sits down at a work station that typically isn’t included among the clichés that often populate jailhouse portrayals: a sewing machine.

  • Evening of the Arts show goes on at Ute Meadows

    The halls at Ute Meadows Elementary School were jammed the night of April 18, as families and schoolchildren enjoyed art in all its forms.

    The South Jeffco elementary held its ninth annual Evening of the Arts a day late due to weather, but the wet spring storm that pounded the area April 17 didn't damper the excitement.

    "This is amazing," said Beth Raczynski, a kindergarten specials teacher and volunteer at the school. "It's beyond words to see what each of the kids came up with."

  • County assessor expecting a lot of protests on assessments

    Jefferson County Assessor Jim Everson expects more than 20,000 protests to flood his office when property owners get valuation notices May 1.

    Everson fears Jeffco residents won’t like the disconnect between actual property values now in the weak economy and the valuations based on sales data for June 2008.

    "Every assessor in the state is having the same problem," Everson said in his second-floor office April 16. "People are going to feel there's a disconnect. Most people think in current terms."

  • A virtual education: Jeffco schools to offer online degree for high school students

    Jefferson County Public Schools is offering high school students the opportunity to take classes and earn diplomas online, without ever stepping foot in a classroom.

    The 21st Century Virtual Academy is a newly created option school within the district. Enrollment is available to all Colorado residents under age 21 for no charge. Classes are accredited and comply with state standards.

  • IREA holding pivotal election

    Results should be available Wednesday in pivotal elections for three seats on the board of the Intermountain Rural Electric Association.

    The three challengers all have been endorsed by IREA Voices, a group of co-op members who say IREA is mired in fossil-fuel thinking and lacks transparency in the way it does business.

    In District 5, challenger John Masson is facing off against incumbent Bruff Shea; in District 3, Mike Galvin is challenging Gene Sperry; and in District 7, Charles Bucknam is seeking to unseat George Hier.

  • Community remembers Columbine with candlelight vigil

    As former Columbine teacher Alan Cram handed out candles Sunday evening for a vigil to remember those who died on April 20, 1999, he pondered the lessons of the tragedy 10 years later.

    "I'm still concerned about the kids," Cram said. "It's too easy to let kids go off and do their thing. Without having support, it's pretty lonely out there. We need to be available for them."

  • ‘Sloppy’ accounting leaves Jeffco short of Head Start funds

    A fund that Jefferson County taps to meet its matching requirement for Head Start preschool services apparently is not large enough to cover the county’s obligations for this fiscal year.

    County staff determined last November that the social services fund will run dry before December, leaving the county $650,000 short for Head Start — and in violation of federal law.

  • Citizen budget panel gets down to brass tacks

    Two months after its first meeting, the Citizen Budget Review Panel is finally getting down to the nitty-gritty.

    April 14 marked the group's fifth meeting and was the first time members discussed issues among themselves without county officials in the room.

  • Controlled burn in progress at Mount Falcon

    Seeing smoke around Mount Falcon Park today?

    Don’t panic. Jefferson County Open Space natural resource crews are taking advantage of the snow-covered park to burn slash piles.

    “It was an opportunity to burn the slash piles,” said Thea Rock, spokesperson for Jeffco Open Space. “The snow on the ground contains the fire.”

    Burnings started Monday and ended Wednesday.

    Rock said she didn’t know if any other burns are scheduled at this time.

     

  • Remembering Columbine: Law enforcement officers still struggle with memories, criticism

    "I had never prepared to work a scene like that — to walk into a school that should be loud and filled with laughter and instead see bullet holes. When you see dead children and a dead teacher, it's so senseless."

    — Investigator Kate Battan

    For the law enforcement officers who responded to the shootings at Columbine High School 10 years ago, life has never been the same.