NEWS, JANUARY 16TH

Parachute, CO / Williston, SD–Authorities in Williston, South Dakota aren’t saying much about the two Garfield County men suspected in the disappearance and death of a math teacher from Montana. Police Chief Jim Lokken confirms that 47 year old Lester Vann Waters Jr. and 22 year old Michael Keith Spell of Parachute are both in jail awaiting extradition to Montana. The men were arrested in Rapid
City, South Dakota and investigators believe the two abducted 43 year old Sherry Arnold of Sidney, Montana, killed her and buried her body. Authorities are asking farmers in a three county area from North Dakota to northeast Montana to check for signs of disturbed soil where she may be buried. Arnold was last January 7th when she went out for a jog. One of her running shoes was found along the road.

GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (AP) – Authorities say an ice climber has
died after a 60-foot fall in southwestern Colorado.
Th man had suffered a broken hip in the Sunday fall and went
into cardiac arrest during a rescue operation.
Paramedics were unable to revive him.
His name hasn’t been released. He was climbing on the Bridal Veil Ice Falls east of Telluride in San Miguel County.

DENVER (AP) – Colorado’s high-risk health insurance pool has
asked the federal government for nearly $15 million more than
planned because claims have been higher that expected.
The state spent an average of $22,500 per patient in the first year of
the program. Reports from other states show the average is about
$11,500 per patient. Colorado received $90 million out of a $5 billion federal pool
for coverage for high-risk patients who could not get insurance.
Steve Larsen, who oversees the high-risk pools for the federal
Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, says his
office will shift money from states that haven’t used theirs as
fast to states that are incurring higher costs.
Larsen says eight other states are seeking supplements to their
original budget.

DENVER (AP) – Some 30,000 state employees in Colorado are
waiting to see how Gov. John Hickenlooper wants to change their
workplace rules.
In his annual address to lawmakers last week, Hickenlooper
criticized Colorado’s personnel policies as “antiquated” and said
he would submit a proposal to change them.
Hickenlooper says the state constitution is full of obsolete
rules and procedures and should be changed.
He hasn’t said what he wants to change. State employees think he
may be talking about rules forbidding the hiring of out-of-state
residents for certain jobs, or seniority rules that allow senior
employees to “bump” newer ones in some cases if a job is
eliminated.

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