NEWS, JULY 9TH

ASPEN, Colo. (AP) – Officials from the U.S. Forest Service are meeting with local authorities today to discuss fire bans in western Colorado. Forest officials, local sheriffs and fire chiefs will review moisture content in trees and soils before considering any easing of the bans. Gov. John Hickenlooper yesterday said he’s lifting the statewide fire ban he ordered last month.

MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) – As crews close in on full containment of a massive wildfire that forced more than 30,000 people from their homes in and around Colorado Springs, some are concerned about the effect the blaze will have on the area’s economy. The Denver Post reports early estimates place the property damage well in excess of $110 million. But Fred Crowley, an economics professor at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, says the economic impact will be “millions upon millions of dollars.”

DENVER (AP) – Gov. John Hickenlooper says cool, wet weather has allowed him to lift the statewide fire ban he ordered last month. The governor said yesterday that “Mother Nature is finally giving us some relief,” and extreme fire conditions have abated in all of Colorado’s 64 counties. Many counties still have bans in place.

LEADVILLE, Colo. (AP) – One of the main highways to Leadville is closed after the road washed out in heavy rains that also caused a mudslide in northern Colorado. CDOT closed U.S. 24 near Tennessee Pass today and there’s no indication when it might reopen. Meanwhile, Highway 14 near the High Park burn area has reopened after the third mudslide in as many days.

DENVER (AP) – The Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles says computers are back up after being shut down briefly because of the weather. The outage briefly affected DMV offices statewide today. KUSA-TV reports power was knocked out at a state facility in Lakewood, which shut down a computer system that the DMV uses.

BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. (AP) – Summit County residents are lining up for a chance to buy into community solar gardens to save money. The gardens, which have not been built, would allow individuals, businesses and local governments to buy solar energy generated at the garden to offset their energy bills without installing panels or arrays on their own property.

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