NEWS, AUGUST 6TH

DENVER (AP) – Two groups trying to get measures on the November ballot in Colorado are turning in petition signatures. A group that wants to regulate large political contributions, Colorado Fair Share, said it turned in more than 176,000 signatures on Monday. That’s about 82,000 more signatures than it needs to qualify for the ballot. The signatures must now be verified by the secretary of state’s office.
The measure would ask members of Congress to support a constitutional amendment to authorize limits on campaign contributions.
Meanwhile, Personhood Colorado said it turned in 112,121 signatures in support of a measure to outlaw abortions. The measure also would ban embryonic stem-cell research. Voters defeated similar measures in 2010 and 2008.

CARBONDALE – A U.S. Forest Service decision that barred winter operations of an alabaster and marble mine in the Crystal River Valley has been overturned. An appeal officer determined there isn’t enough evidence that the mine would have a serious impact on bighorn sheep. Owners of the White Banks Mine south of Carbondale applied for a 20-year permit, saying year-round operations are necessary to make the mine economical. The Forest Service says the ruling is temporary until new rules can be drawn up. The company contends it has the right to go ahead with its plans.

ASPEN – Two Aspen-area golf courses are about to get new owners.
The sale of River Valley Ranch in Carbondale is expected to close Monday, and a sale is pending of Lakota Canyon Golf Club in New Castle. Golf courses were once offered as amenities for real estate surrounding them, but many courses are in financial straits because of the recession.

ELK SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) – Firefighters are working to contain a lightning-sparked wildfire in steep terrain in Moffat County.
The Wolf Fire is burning 5 miles south of Elk Springs. It was listed at 6,100 acres and 40 percent contained on Monday. Steep terrain on the southern end of the blaze is making it difficult to fight the blaze there. Crews hope to have it fully contained by Friday.
No homes are threatened but the area is considered critical habitat for wildlife and there are some oil and gas facilities within three miles. Another fire that was also sparked nearby by lightning on Friday, the Divide Fire, has been fully contained at 408 acres.

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