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Local News

  • SWAT officers face probe for consulting, no approval was given for workshops drawing on Columbine experiences

    A training sergeant with the Port Huron, Mich., Police Department says he sees nothing wrong with paying for a few Jeffco SWAT members’ insights and training based on their experiences at Columbine and Platte Canyon high schools.

    “This is a needed service,” Sgt. Scott Pike said last week after learning that several Jeffco SWAT team members were under internal affairs investigation for forming a consulting and training company without approval through their chain of command.

  • LIght show snowballs: Grant Ranch resident illuminates the neighborhood

    Santa Claus will never miss Vern Lowerys house, even on the foggiest of Christmas Eves.

    Its not so much that Lowery is particularly naughty or nice. Rather, Lowerys annual lighting display is enough to give even the most red-nosed reindeer a slight case of glow envy.

    Yeah, Xcel Energy loves me this time of year, Vern Lowery said.

    The reason why is the estimated 25,000 to 30,000 Christmas lights that adorn Lowerys property each holiday season.

  • Brrrrringing the music: Columbine High band a colorful addition to frosty Parade of Lights

    Santa Claus, like the post office, doesnt let rain nor sleet nor dark of night keep him from his appointed holiday rounds. And a little cold weather didnt stop the Columbine High School marching band from escorting the ecstatic elf during Denvers Parade of Lights.

    The Rebels band performed admirably in Rudolphs absence Friday and Saturday, guiding St. Nick through the downtown parade to the tune of Here Comes Santa Claus.

    We feel very honored, said Christina Simpson, one of the bands drum majors.

  • Ken-Caryl Metro District to close pool, adjust facility hours

    The fallout from a failed mill levy increase on the November ballot could mean a change in lifestyle for some residents in the Ken-Caryl Metropolitan District.

    Among the most significant changes discussed during the districts Nov. 27 budget public hearing were the advent of user fees for swimmers, adjusted operating hours and the closure of the Bradford Pool.

    Bottom line, most of the changes here that are being proposed are user fees, said Darrell Windes, district manager. Throughout the election, one of the things the vote-no campaign proposed was turning to user fees.

  • Just the ticket: Grant Ranch offers residents amenities and security

    Though Grant Ranch Boulevard spans a distance of only 2 miles, drivers should be careful: Within that single neighborhood, one could technically get a speeding ticket from up to four different law enforcement entities.

    One of the many things that make Grant Ranch unique is that the community is part Denver, part Lakewood and part unincorporated Jefferson County.

  • No county employees show up to speak at hearing on '08 budget

    No county employees and only two county residents spoke at a public hearing Tuesday on Jeffco’s proposed $385 million 2008 budget, even though county employees will bear the brunt of the cuts that made the ’08 budget come in nearly 3 percent less than 2007’s.

    “(The budget) is significantly less than the actual operational budget for 2007,” said Jim Moore, county administrator, during a brief PowerPoint presentation Tuesday.

  • Foreclosed properties: Keeping up appearances

    News of rising foreclosures and the subprime mortgage debacle has captured headlines of late, but one aspect of the foreclosure problem has been a quiet calamity.

    As homes go into foreclosure and are vacated, they often become run-down and subsequently drag down the property values of nearby homes, making everybody’s bottom line suffer.

    Jeffco Commissioner Kathy Hartman told a group representing various South Jeffco homeowners that neighborhoods must come together to keep up the appearance of vacated homes to prevent area property values from falling.

  • South Jeffco Republican elected GOP caucus chair

    South Jeffco Republican Mike Kopp said last week that his election to chair the state Senate’s GOP caucus will directly and indirectly benefit his constituents.

    “I will have an opportunity, a more formal opportunity, to have influence in the Republican caucus, and, hopefully, even though we’re in minority status right now, that influence will have a broader reach ee into the Senate,” Kopp said.

  • Foothills board begins process of finding new director

    Bob Easton, executive director of the Foothills Park and Recreation District, announced last week he is leaving his position, ending more than 31 years as a district employee.

    Easton, who began working for Foothills in 1974 as superintendent of parks, will serve as executive director through Dec. 31. He plans to continue Foothills’ campaign for a mill-levy boost as a part-time consultant through June 2008.

    “As far as why, it just seemed like the right time,” Easton said. “Thirty-one years here has been a very rewarding career for me.”

  • West Chamber honors Courier columnist for contributions

    Hannah Hayes might be best known among Columbine Courier readers for her written skirmishes with Kelly Weist in the weekly “Both Sides Now” editorial-page feature.

    But it was Hayes’ contributions in the holistic health care field that earned her recognition at the West Chamber’s annual Celebrate Women Breakfast.

    Hannah and Donn Hayes are the wife-and-husband team behind OHCO — or the Oriental Herb Co. — that is best known for the health supplement Cold Snap.