Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Tuesday January 15, 2013

Rescuers in Gunnison County have released the name of a man killed in an avalanche near Marble Sunday.  37 year old James Lindenblatt of Summit County died after being buried in the slide.  Two men with him escaped uninjured and were able to dig Lindenblatt out of the snow, but he had already died.  The area was extremely unstable and the mission was described as dangerous. The body was removed by helicopter yesterday.

A couple of days without an inversion was nice, but it's over and the inversion is back in place leading air quality experts to call for burn restrictions.  A Do Not Burn advisory is in effect through at least tomorrow when another call will be made. An ordinance in the City of Grand Junction prohibits burning in non-EPA approved stoves and fireplaces.  The advisory is voluntary in the rest of Mesa Delta and Montrose Counties.

Two State Senators today are introducing legislation to provide in-state tuition rates to any undocumented student who graduates high school or receives a GED in Colorado, is admitted to a Colorado college or university and provides an affidavit stating they have applied for lawful presence, or will as soon as they are able.  The Colorado ASSET bill is expected to be assigned to committee today.

Things are looking up in the grand valley if building permits are any measure.  The Daily Sentinel says more than 3,300 permits were issued last year, after a couple years of decline. Single family home permits were up about 100 compared with 2011 and Mesa County's chief building official says one reason is builders are snapping up bank owned lots at reduced rates.

A former Mesa County couple have entered a plea agreement to wrap up a reported $53,000 welfare fraud case.  Tony Padilla, Jr. and his wife Venica plead guilty to single counts of theft in exchange for the dismissal of 27 other charges.  No jail time was ordered, but the two must pay restitution to the Mesa County Department of Human Services. Venica Padilla had been a caseworker with DHS.

Brady Trucking's efforts to use property it owns along the Colorado River may be in the hands of city voters.  The Grand Junction City Council says it'll decide tomorrow night whether to put a zoning question on the April ballot. According to the Daily Sentinel, Brady has been fighting to use the land since 2006 and has spent about a half million dollars cleaning up the property near the river.

The future of a proposed uranium mill in Montrose County is now in the hands of state regulators.  Environmental groups have been challenging a license issued for the mill.  The Daily Sentinel says a judge yesterday ruled legal requirements have been met and regulators can now rule on whether to grant a license to Energy Fuels for the proposed mill.