Glenwood Springs—The Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association
is going to have some competition next year. Last night, the Glenwood
Springs City Council voted unanimously to put the 2012 tourism marketing
contract up for bid. The council decided to follow the direction of the
newly-formed tourism board.
Glenwood Springs—Western Slope Congressman Scott Tipton held an
informal roundtable discussion about the Hidden Gems wilderness
protection plan. Several people connected to the outdoor recreation
industry expressed deep concerns about lawmakers like Democrat
Congressman Jared Polis pushing for additional wilderness
preservation saying jobs will be lost and Colorado’s economy
will suffer.
Denver—The Colorado Oil and Gas Association, (COGA) announced
it is dropping it’s lawsuit against the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation
Commission over the drilling regulations that were passed two years
ago. Officials with COGA say the rules are too restrictive but they
received assurances from Governor Hickenlooper that the industry
will get a fair shake when it comes to development.
Western Colorado—It’s been cold but not cold enough and not for long
enough to put bark beetles into a deep freeze. While some parts of
Colorado where the beetles have done the most damage have experienced
30 below temperatures, forest service officials say it takes at least a week
of that kind of weather to kill the ravenous bugs.

DENVER (AP) – The former ethics chairwoman for Pinnacol
Assurance says the decision to leave the company’s board was hers.
Former Gov. Bill Ritter replaced Debra Lovejoy on the board of
the state-chartered worker’s compensation insurance company. The
move came after the company spent $318,000 on a trip to a luxury
resort in Pebble Beach, Calif. Of that, $6,000 was spent to cover
expenses for Lovejoy and her husband, including spa visits and
Lovejoy told Denver’s KMGH-TV that she decided not to reapply
for her position. She said she and other board members only receive
about $100 a meeting and have worked hard to build up the company.
In the interview, she raised the issue of whether the trip was
appropriate given the recession, but said the question wasn’t as
simple as it appeared.

Colo. lawmakers propose synthetic pot ban

DENVER (AP) – A week after the Air Force Academy in Colorado
Springs suspended 25 cadets accused of using synthetic marijuana,
Colorado lawmakers are moving to join dozens of states considering
banning chemicals used in fake pot.
A Senate bill would ban synthetic cannabinoids sometimes sold as
Spice or K2. The federal Drug Enforcement Administration has issued
a temporary ban of some of the 10 chemical compounds, but at least
20 states are moving ahead with their own state bans.
Colorado’s version would make synthetic cannabinoids illegal to
possess or sell, and it would make no exception for people with
legal clearance to use medical marijuana.
Colorado law allows people to buy real marijuana if they have a
doctor’s recommendation.

Hickenlooper asking Denver businesses about jobs

DENVER (AP) – Gov. John Hickenlooper toured Colorado after his
inauguration to ask business owners their ideas for improving the
economy. On Friday the governor takes the tour to his backyard with
a public jobs meeting in Denver.
Hickenlooper planned to meet with dozens of business owners and
local officials at the University of Denver. The meeting is part of
what the Democratic governor calls his “Bottom-Up Economic
Development” plan.
The governor says he is asking for ideas from business owners
before submitting economic development plans later this year. The
Denver meeting is the governor’s ninth and is open to the public.