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Today's News

  • School board approves contentious $3.7 million for charters

    The Jeffco school board has earmarked an additional $3.7 million for charter schools in the 2014-15 budget, a move that sparked cheers and jeers at a packed meeting last week.

    The new board majority, which campaigned last year on giving district parents more school choice, backed the appropriation to address funding inequities faced by charter schools. 

  • Commission candidate cites incumbent’s ‘disconnect’

    Columbine area resident John Flerlage, a former Marine, is determined to bring his leadership qualities to Jefferson County government. 

    Flerlage, a Democrat, is running against Jeffco Commissioner Don Rosier in District 3, which covers South Jeffco. The incumbent Republican is seeking his second four-year term on the GOP-controlled commission.

    Flerlage, who ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2010, is hoping to bring his fiscal, environmental and local approach to Jeffco leadership.

    A Marine for most of his life

  • Hickenlooper talks of sacrifice, service

    Gov. John Hickenlooper spoke about the meaning of service and sacrifice during an appearance Sunday morning at Columbine United Church in Littleton. 

    Hickenlooper, as part of the church’s “I Am Third” lecture series, told the congregation how he learned about selflessness as a child when his father was dying of cancer.

    Hickenlooper’s mother, who was his father’s primary caretaker, had promised to attend her son’s school play, but his father’s illness kept her away. 

  • Jeffco Open Space facing additional costs for Peaks to Plains Trail

    The initial phase of the Peaks to Plains Trail project is facing escalated costs, Tom Hoby, director of Jeffco Parks and Open Space, told the Jeffco Open Space Advisory Committee on April 3.

    The total cost of the trail connection from Golden to the Jefferson County line is now in the $75 million to $100 million range — more than three times the original estimate of $30 million to $35 million, Hoby said. 

  • Program targets child abuse, neglect

    Jefferson County is partnering with Denver on a program designed to prevent child abuse and neglect by educating parents. 

    SafeCare’s goal is to provide parents with needed tools and skills, said Mary Berg, deputy director of the Jeffco Human Services Division. 

    Many cases of abuse and neglect are caused by a lack of parenting skills or knowledge, Berg said. 

  • County formulating disaster recovery plan

    Jeffco’s Emergency Management Office has started work on a disaster recovery plan, a first for the county, to identify which agencies are responsible for different phases of a recovery effort. 

    The agency, part of the Sheriff’s Office, is also re-evaluating its current response plan to find areas of improvement and cooperation with the county’s municipalities.

    County Commissioner Don Rosier said the lack of a recovery plan caused a delay in the transition to recovery after last fall’s flooding. 

  • Judicial system plans truancy strategy

    A two-year grant will help the judicial system in Jefferson County identify the causes of truancy and help steer youths away from jail and back to the classroom.

    The grant, worth up to $70,000 a year, will fund implementation a problem-solving approach similar to family and drug courts. The focus is on treatment and on providing services that address underlying problems. 

  • Habanero peppers suspected in hospitalization of students

    Habanero peppers have been identified as the irritant that sent seven students from the Jeffco Open School in Lakewood to the hospital on Monday.

    West Metro Fire Rescue evacuated the campus Monday afternoon after 30 students and one teacher's aide were affected by the then-unknown substance. All of those affected were decontaminated at the school by West Metro.

  • Teachers union declares impasse

    Talks between the school district and the teachers union ended abruptly Monday evening when the union declared an impasse and left the bargaining table.

    “It has become clear … that this year’s bargaining process is broken and is disrespecting a 45-year tradition that has made us great,” said Stephie Rossi, bargaining chair for the Jeffco Education Association. “The JCEA team cannot meet the board’s interests if we don’t know what they are.”

  • Ex-fire chief pleads guilty to 3 counts in embezzlement

    Former Inter-Canyon fire chief David MacBean pleaded guilty Monday to three charges in the theft of more than $647,000 from the fire district.

    MacBean, who was indicted last October, seven months after he was asked to step down as chief, entered guilty pleas in district court to two counts of theft and one count of embezzlement of public property. MacBean's sentencing is scheduled for June 24; he faces up to 27 years in prison.