Thursday, April 5, 2012

Thursday April 5, 2012

Snowpack in Colorado is way below average, but reservoir storage isn't all that bad. The Natural Resources Conservation Service says snowpack was only 52% of average on April 1st.  Streamflow forecasts  have decreased by 20 to 40% of average from those issued last month.  Reservoir storage is tracking at near to above average volumes across the state.

A Red Flag Warning has been issued by the National Weather Service warning of low humidity and wind gusts up to 40 mph in the Grand Junction area.  Adverse fire conditions are expected to continue into tomorrow and again on Sunday.

LNFF 9-1-1
Chilling accounts of the early hours of the deadly Lower North Fork Fire. It apparently began to burn out of contol early in the afternoon of March 26th, but evacuation orders didn't come until more than four hours later.  The 3 people who died in the fire had called 9-1-1 to report the nearby fire but were told it was under control.  A task force has been set up to look into the controlled burn that apparently started the fire, and the firefighting efforts in the early hours of the fire.

A task force set up to review the Lower North Fork Prescribed Fire is hitting the ground running.  The US Forest Service is analyzing and studying events associated with the prescribed burn days before the deadly Lower North Fork Fire broke out.  The Review Team says it expects to complete its analysis in 10 to 14 days.

A Delta County couple who last month pled guilty to a count of cruelty to animals says they didn't know they were supposed to be in court yesterday on summonses for 11 additional counts concerning feeding of their horses and cattle.  According to the Montrose Daily Press, a warrant was issued yesterday for Patricia and Charles Keune when they failed to appear.  The Keunes surrendered their livestock to Delta County authorities at the time of their plea on the initial cruelty count.

A bill to require a photo ID to vote in Colorado has died in the State Senate.  The Republican sponsored bill would have sent the question to voters.  Democrats killed the bill saying it discriminated against people most likely not to have photo IDs, including minorities, homeless and the elderly.

The Fruita City Council is sending a letter to the District 51 School Board, saying students and families there are footing too much of the district's budget cuts.  The board last week voted to change boundaries for attendance, moving some students in the city to Loma Elementary to ease overcrowding.  The Daily Sentinel says the Fruita Council believes the district is heaping an unfair amount of its budget shortfall on Fruita.

A bill requiring a judge's intervention in cases where juveniles are considered adults when charges are filed is moving closer to the governor's desk.  Proponents of the bill say the power of district attorneys may be overused.  Opponents say prosecutors, not judges, are best equipped to make charging decisions. The bill's up for a final vote in the Senate.

The McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area has a Facebook page. The NCA says the new page is a way to keep the public engaged, sharing trail and water conditions, news photos, videos and other information about McInnis Canyons.