NEWS

STORM FORCES SCHOOLS TO CLOSE ACROSS WESTERN COLORADO

Glenwood Springs—Classes were canceled today for students from kindergarten to college age across most of Western Colorado.  Snow, high winds, icy roads and low visibility from this latest blast of winter led to the closure of campuses from Grand Junction to Aspen.  In fact, most of the state has been under a winter storm warning.  Air travel is also extremely limited.  Nearly a third of the flights out of Denver International Airport have been canceled with more expected as the snow continues to blanket the state and create problems.  Up to a foot of snow is expected at DIA before the storm moves out of the state.  Avalanche danger is also considered extreme in the central and southwestern mountains.

HEAVY SNOW LEADS TO LIGHT X GAMES ATTENDANCE

ASPEN (AP) – Though many people came to see the 2016 X Games open in Aspen, heavy snowfall kept visitors away later in the games.More than 49,300 people came to see competitions Saturday, setting a single-day attendance record, but as snow continued to fall crowds were put off from the events Sunday, with only about 15,200 people coming out. Snowboard superpipe silver medalist Arielle Gold says heavy, fresh snow can make tricks harder and that expectations should be low with a foot of fresh snow on the ground. According to figures from ESPN, the X Games attracted 102,600 spectators over its four-day run. The heavy snow also made traffic to Aspen slow, which  officials say also could have turned some people off of seeing events.

ANVIL POINTS MONEY MAY BE RETURNED TO NW COL COUNTIES

Glenwood Springs—Millions of dollars in mineral lease revenues from the old Anvil Points clean up may finally be returned to Garfield County and neighboring communities thanks to the efforts of Colorado’s senators.  Under an agreement co-sponsored by U. S. Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner, the Federal Government would be forced to return the long-overdue oil and gas revenues that were collected to clean up the Anvil Points Naval Oil Shale research site about 10 miles west of Rifle.  Bennet says after the clean up in 2013, tens of millions of dollars should have been distributed to the Mineral Leasing Act but instead the money remained in an unused Interior Department account.  Bennet says royalty revenues are rightfully due to counties in northwest Colorado.  Senator Cory Gardner says the amendment requires the Federal Government to deliver on it’s promise.  Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado Executive Director Bonnie Peterson says counties are pleased that there may finally be a resolution to the delivery of federal mineral lease funding that’s been withheld for nearly 20 years.  She says the money will be a big help to western slope communities still trying to recover from the recession.

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