Local News

  • Former state representative Witwer named to state reapportionment commission

    Boundaries for Colorado’s 35 state Senate and 65 state House districts are being redrawn this year, and former state Rep. Rob Witwer will be holding one of the pencils.

    Witwer, an Evergreen native who served in the state House from 2005 to 2009, was appointed last week by House Speaker Frank McNulty to the 11-member commission.

    Redistricting of state legislative boundaries takes place every decade, following the U.S. Census. Districts are drawn to reflect population changes, with each district ideally having about the same number of residents.

  • Loss of teachers among concerns at budget forum

    The elimination of scores of teaching positions and the potential demise of the Outdoor Lab program were among concerns raised April 16 by a small group of constituents at a Jeffco Public Schools budget forum in South Jeffco.

    Board of Education member Paula Noonan and school staff fielded questions at Columbine High School about the district’s budget, which faces cuts of nearly $40 million in the coming academic year. Jeffco’s reliance on temporary classroom buildings and the use of instructional coaches were also of concern to attendees.

  • D’Evelyn teacher arrested in connection with photos of female students

    A D’Evelyn High School music teacher was arrested April 15in connection with photos taken of female students.

    Matthew Taylor, who teaches instrumental music and coaches the school’s marching band, was scheduled to appear in Jefferson County court on April 16 at 10 a.m.
The Sheriff’s Office arrested Taylor, 38, on suspicion of unlawful sexual contact, a misdemeanor, in connection with photos that allegedly contain inappropriate images of clothed students.

  • Jeffco puts projects on back burner

    Jefferson County tabled funding last week for numerous multimillion-dollar projects, including a long-sought work-release facility designed to ease congestion at the county jail.

    Though more than $116 million in construction had been proposed, only $76 million in potential loans could be issued, mandated by the county’s 2009 approval of certificates of participation, a complex financing mechanism that leverages existing assets — such as the Taj Mahal — to pay for new projects.

  • $83 million in projects planned for Jeffco airport over 20 years

    Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport could see nearly $83 million in new projects over the next 20 years, a revision to the facility’s master plan indicates.

    The revised plan, which the county was set to approve Tuesday, calls for runway enhancements and other projects that will help Jeffco’s airport accommodate an anticipated surge in traffic from large corporate jets over the coming decades.

  • Board cuts two school days from 2011-12 calendar

    The Jeffco school board took steps toward positioning the district for sweeping budget reductions last week, trimming two days from the 2011-12 school year and cutting the number of credits required for high school graduation.

  • A testament to healing

    In assembling the final pieces of a documentary about life after the Columbine shootings, Steve LuKanic and his fellow producers took 120 hours of footage and narrowed the material down to only 90 minutes.

  • Tipsy’s to be closed for two days due to violation

    Tipsy’s Liquor World will be closed for two days in April due to a liquor license suspension the store was dealt March 31 in connection with wine being sold to a heavily intoxicated customer.

    The inebriated patron, who later drove himself home, was found late on Jan. 2 lying in Tipsy’s parking lot, partially under the truck of a customer who was shopping at the store’s deli.

  • Cause of flood at Taj Mahal undetermined

    Jefferson County has yet to specify the cause of a water-pipe rupture from which thousands of gallons gushed through the administrative wing of the Taj Mahal in February, but officials last week identified the incident’s total damages at $1.4 million.

    About 6,750 gallons of water flowed for about 45 minutes on Feb. 3 from the broken pipe above the county attorney’s office on the fifth floor, damaging 35,000 square feet of office space, said Dan Brindle, director of facilities and construction management.

  • Jeffco ranks 11th in state for quantity, quality of life

    Jefferson County’s rates of morbidity and mortality ranked 11th out of 57 Colorado counties, an extensive national study released last week by the University of Wisconsin reveals.

    Under the County Health Rankings study, more than 3,000 counties were assessed in areas ranging from rates of sexually transmitted infections to high school graduation percentages.