News, November 1st

Glenwood Springs–Glenwood Springs’ 2013 budget is expected to be approved tonight by the city council. The 11.7 million dollar budget exceeds this year’s expenditures by about 300 thousand dollars. City Manager Jeff Hecksel says some fees may see a slight increase but overall service levels will remain the same next year. He says if the current upward trend in sales tax revenues continues, some city jobs that were eliminated during the recession may be restored and some employees might even see a pay raise. Tonight’s council meeting begins at 7.

Denver–On a much grander scale, Governor John Hickenlooper is about to lay out his budget for the state of Colorado soon. Gradual improvements in Colorado’s economy allowed lawmakers to avoid additional cuts to K-12 education and other state services last year. Some services may be restored in 2013 with sales tax revenues on the rise. The Governor is expected to ask for more funding for Medicaid. Lawmakers will make their own budget proposal next year. The next fiscal year begins July 1st.

Glenwood Springs–Far too many military veterans and young people are homeless in the Roaring Fork Valley and many more are about to be on the streets. That’s why a number of service groups in the valley are changing their focus this holiday season. Feed My Sheep, Lift-Up, Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army and other groups are paying special attention to helping struggling veterans and teens after a recent study revealed the disturbing trend. Some organizations say other vulnerable groups are being neglected.

Aspen–Aspen billionaire Bill Koch is planning a big dedication of his new energy project that produces electricity from methane but Mayor Mick Ireland isn’t invited. Ireland supports the methane project but he’s angry over Koch funding the opposition to the city’s campaign to build the Castle Creek hydroelectric plant. Aspen voters will consider the plant on the ballot next
Tuesday. Koch’s project is using methane from one of his own coal mines and it was paid for by the Aspen Skiing Company. Ireland says he’ll stay away from the November 9th dedication.