News, January 14th

GARCO BOARD SUPPORTS WATER RIGHTS PROTECTION BILL

Glenwood Springs—Western Slope Congressman Scott Tipton says the federal government has no business taking away private water rights that happen to be on federal land.  That’s why he’s moving forward with his “Water Rights Protection Act.”  He’s gaining a lot of support.  Yesterday the Garfield County Board of Commissioners unanimously endorsed Tipton’s bill.  The measure is co-sponsored by Boulder Democrat Jared Polis.  Commission Chairman John Martin some of the privately held water rights date back to the 1870’s.

GARCO COMMISSIONERS OUTRAGED OVER INSURANCE HIKES, DEMAND MEETING WITH GOVERNOR HICKENLOOPER

Glenwood Springs—Garfield County Commissioners want to have a face-to-face meeting with Governor John Hickenlooper over what they deem to be unfair and unjust insurance rates under the Affordable Care Act.  The board signed a letter written by County Attorney Frank Huftless to the governor outlining grievances with the rate structure.  Officials say Garfield County should be lumped in with resort areas where the rates are significantly higher.

CARBONDALE RANCHER AND FORMER CONGRESSMAN STRANG DIES

Carbondale—Former Western Slope Republican Congressman and longtime noted
Carbondale rancher Mike Strang died this past weekend.  Family members say Strang passed away on Sunday at his ranch home after a long illness.  He was 84 years old.  Strang served one term in Congress after being elected in 1984.  Strang went back to the ranch for good in 1986 when then Democrat Ben Nighthorse Campbell defeated him. Strang also served in the Colorado legislature in the 1970’s and shocked fellow Republicans when he introduced a bill to legalize marijuana.  The bill didn’t go anywhere but it fueled the decades-long discussion about legalized weed. Mike Strang is survived by his wife Kit, daughters Bridget and Laurie and a son, Scott.  Strang’s son, Lathrop was killed in a skiing accident in 2008 on Mount Sopris.   Funeral arrangements are pending.

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