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1
CDOT names contractor that will rebuild collapsed stretch of U.S. 36 in Westminster

A contractor has been chosen to rebuild the recently failed, crumbling section of U.S. 36 in Westminster.

The Colorado Department of Transportation on Wednesday named the contractor that will be tasked with rebuilding the stretch of eastbound U.S. 36 in Westminster that caved in over the weekend.


Bruce Finley, The Denver Post
A large crack along eastbound U.S. 36 between Wadsworth and Church Ranch boulevards on July 14, 2019.

State transportation officials selected Kraemer North America to rebuild the severely damaged stretch between Wadsworth Boulevard and the Church Ranch Boulevard/West 104th Avenue exchange, CDOT said in a news release.


The roadway collapsed as a retaining wall failed over the weekend, CDOT said.


The rebuild will be streamlined through the use of a “competitive contracting method” known as Construction Manager/General Contractor, according to CDOT.


The use of this process will “get the damaged road rebuilt as safely and as efficiently as possible,” officials said. CDOT designers and consultants David Evans and RJ Engineering also are part of the project. When design work is complete, construction costs will be determined and replacement work will begin.


There is currently no price tag or timeline for the project, officials said.


The High Performance Transportation Enterprise, an arm of CDOT that oversees express and toll lanes, among other projects, will investigate and determine what caused the catastrophic failure, including hiring independent experts, while CDOT focuses on rebuilding.


“We are pleased to have selected Kraemer so that we can transition to beginning permanent repairs to U.S. 36 eastbound,” CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew said in a statement. “We once again thank the public for their patience during the response phase, and as we shifted towards an interim traffic pattern over the past two days. Safety has been and remains our highest priority, and we remind travelers to drive carefully in this work zone.”


Kraemer, on its website, says the company has been in business since 1911, across four generations: “Kraemer is a full service heavy civil contractor serving three primary markets: transportation, rail, and marine.”


Kraemer’s corporate headquarter is in Wisconsin. The company has a Mountain West Region office in Castle Rock.


Late last week a crack developed along a section of the eastbound highway’s surface, expanding to a 200-foot stretch. The highway section was partially closed Friday afternoon, with one lane on the shoulder staying open. At about 9 p.m. Friday, the one remaining lane also was shut down as CDOT crews and engineers “used ground-penetrating radar to examine the soil under the road and found a void in the road base between 150 and 200 feet long and about 10 feet wide,” CDOT said.


On Saturday, the large crack developed into a sinkhole as the roadway shifted, heavily damaging a retaining wall.



A bicycle route along eastbound U.S. 36 between Wadsworth and Church Ranch boulevards has been closed because of the damage.


On Tuesday, eastbound traffic was routed into two lanes on the westbound side of the highway with a concrete barrier separating the east and westbound lanes.


“This is a stable interim traffic pattern that will be sustainable until eastbound U.S. 36 is rebuilt,” CDOT said in its news release. “Travel in this area will be slower than usual, so motorists are advised to expect some delays and give themselves extra time when traveling the corridor during peak periods.”


Denver Post reporter Jon Murray contributed to this story.


 





Source: CDOT names contractor that will rebuild collapsed stretch of U.S. 36 in Westminster

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2
House holds two Trump officials in contempt in census dispute

The Democratic-controlled House voted Wednesday to hold two top Trump administration officials in contempt of Congress for failing to comply with subpoenas related to a decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

WASHINGTON — The Democratic-controlled House voted Wednesday to hold two top Trump administration officials in contempt of Congress for failing to comply with subpoenas related to a decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.


The House voted, 230-198, to hold Attorney General William Barr and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross in criminal contempt. The vote, a political blow to the Trump administration, is largely symbolic because the Justice Department is unlikely to prosecute the two men.


The action marks an escalation of Democratic efforts to use their House majority to aggressively investigate the inner workings of the Trump administration.


Four Democrats opposed the contempt measure: Reps. Jeff Van Drew of New Jersey, Anthony Brindisi of New York, Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania and Jared Golden of Maine. All but Lamb are in their first term and all represent swing districts. Independent Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan, a former Republican, supported the contempt measure.


President Donald Trump abandoned the citizenship question last week after the Supreme Court said the administration’s justification for the question “seems to have been contrived.” Trump directed agencies to try to compile the information using existing databases.



The White House called the vote “ridiculous” and “yet another lawless attempt to harass the president and his administration.”


The Justice and Commerce departments have produced more than 31,000 pages of documents to the House regarding the census issue, and senior officials from both agencies, including Ross, have spoken on the record about the matter, the White House said, adding that Democrats continue to demand documents that the White House contends are subject to executive privilege.


“House Democrats know they have no legal right to these documents, but their shameful and cynical politics know no bounds,” White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.


Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, said the contempt vote was an important step to assert Congress’ constitutional authority to serve as a check on executive power.


“Holding any secretary in criminal contempt of Congress is a serious and sober matter — one that I have done everything in my power to avoid,” Cummings said during House debate. “But in the case of the attorney general and Secretary Ross, they blatantly obstructed our ability to do congressional oversight into the real reason Secretary Ross was trying for the first time in 70 years to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census.”


While Ross and other officials have claimed the sole reason they wanted to add the citizenship question was to enforce the Voting Rights Act, “we now know that claim was nothing but a pretext,” Cummings said. “The Supreme Court said that.”


At the direction of Barr and Ross, “the departments of Justice and Commerce have been engaged in a campaign to subvert our laws and the process Congress put in place to maintain the integrity of the census,” Cummings said.


The contempt resolution “is about protecting our democracy, protecting the integrity of this body. It’s bigger than the census,” he said


Ross called the vote a public relations “stunt” that further demonstrates Democrats’ “unending quest to generate headlines instead of operating in good faith with our department.”


Democrats prefer to “play political games rather than help lead the country” and “have made every attempt to ascribe evil motivations to everyday functions of government,” Ross said.


Ross told the oversight committee that the March 2018 decision to add the question was based on a Justice Department request to help enforce the Voting Rights Act.


Democrats disputed that, citing documents unearthed last month suggesting that a push to draw legislative districts in overtly partisan and racist ways was the real reason the administration wanted to include the question.


Democrats feared that adding the question would reduce participation in immigrant-heavy communities and result in a severe undercount of minority voters. They have pressed for specific documents to determine Ross’ motivation and contend the administration has declined to provide the material despite repeated requests.



“The real issue we should be debating” is why Democrats are afraid to ask how many citizens live in the United States, said Rep. James Comer, R-Ky. Contrary to Democrats’ claims, Ross and other officials have cooperated with the oversight panel and provided thousands of documents, Comer said.


“If the Democrats can’t impeach President Trump, they will instead hold his Cabinet in contempt of Congress,” he said. “This is just another episode in political theater.”


In a letter late Wednesday to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Barr and Ross asked Democrats to postpone the vote, saying they have shown a “clear record of cooperation” with Congress. The contempt vote “is both unnecessarily undermining” relations between the two branches and “degrading” Congress’ “own institutional integrity,” they wrote.


Trump has pledged to “fight all the subpoenas” issued by Congress and says he won’t work on legislative priorities, such as infrastructure, until Congress halts investigations of his administration.





Source: House holds two Trump officials in contempt in census dispute

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3
Suspected driver arrested in connection with hit-and-run that killed Parker bicyclist on July 4

A person has been arrested for investigation of hit-and-run in connection to an Independence Day crash that killed a Parker bicyclist.

A person has been arrested for investigation of hit-and-run in connection with an Fourth of July crash that killed a Parker bicyclist, a Douglas County Sheriff’s Office tweet said.


Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock will give details about the arrest Wednesday morning, the tweet said. The name, gender and age of the suspect have not been released.


Edward “Chuck” Vogel, 64, died when he was hit by a vehicle at about 6:25 a.m. July 4 in front of the Parker Core Knowledge Charter School, 11661 Pine Dr.




Vogel’s family had made a public plea that anyone with information on the incident come forward and contact the sheriff’s office. “Our father and husband deserves justice.”



A vehicle suspected to have been involved in the fatal collision had been found shortly after the crash. It was abandoned.


After the crash, investigators believe the driver headed south on Pine Drive and turned west onto Main Street and then into the Victorian Village Townhomes, where the vehicle was discovered.





Source: Suspected driver arrested in connection with hit-and-run that killed Parker bicyclist on July 4

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4
United Airlines vendor loses contract at DIA, tells state that 439 jobs will be terminated

More than 400 employees of Prime Flight Aviation Services will lose their jobs after the company's contract with United Airlines at Denver International Airport ends.

More than 400 employees of Prime Flight Aviation Services will lose their jobs after the company’s contract with United Airlines at Denver International Airport ends.


Prime Flight Aviation told state labor officials Tuesday that its contract with United will end Sept. 18 and that its 439 employees have been notified that all the positions will be terminated. The company said it expects many of the workers to be hired by its successor.


Most of the employees clean the planes’ cabins. Others work in inventory and are supervisors.



United Ground Express, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Airlines, will start cleaning the cabins at DIA in October, the airline said in an email. United Airlines spokeswoman Erin Benson said that current employees will have to reapply, but United Ground Express is helping them with the process.


Prime Flight Aviation’s contract was up for renewal and United Ground Express won the contract as part of the competitive bidding process, Benson said.





Source: United Airlines vendor loses contract at DIA, tells state that 439 jobs will be terminated

Colorado Chat Rooms - USA Chat Club

5
House condemns Trump ‘racist’ tweets in extraordinary rebuke

In a remarkable political repudiation, the Democratic-led House voted Tuesday night to condemn President Donald Trump's "racist comments" against four congresswomen of color.

WASHINGTON — In a remarkable political repudiation, the Democratic-led House voted Tuesday night to condemn President Donald Trump’s “racist comments” against four congresswomen of color, despite protestations by Trump’s Republican congressional allies and his own insistence he hasn’t “a racist bone in my body.”


Two days after Trump tweeted that four Democratic freshmen should “go back” to their home countries — though all are citizens and three were born in the U.S.A. — Democrats muscled the resolution through the chamber by 240-187 over strong GOP opposition. The rebuke was an embarrassing one for Trump, and he had appealed to GOP lawmakers not to go along, but there were four Republican votes for the resolution.




The measure carries no legal repercussions for the president and the vote was highly partisan, unlikely to cost him with his die-hard conservative base.


Before the showdown roll call, Trump characteristically plunged forward with time-tested insults. He accused his four outspoken critics of “spewing some of the most vile, hateful and disgusting things ever said by a politician” and added, “If you hate our Country, or if you are not happy here, you can leave!” — echoing taunts long unleashed against political dissidents rather than opposing parties’ lawmakers.


The president was joined by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California and other top Republicans in trying to redirect the focus from Trump’s original tweets, which for three days have consumed Washington and drawn widespread condemnation. Instead, they tried playing offense by accusing the four congresswomen — among the Democrats’ most left-leaning members and ardent Trump critics — of socialism, an accusation that’s already a central theme of the GOP’s 2020 presidential and congressional campaigns.


Even after two-and-a-half years of Trump’s turbulent governing style, the spectacle of a president futilely laboring to head off a House vote essentially proclaiming him to be a racist was extraordinary.



Underscoring the stakes, Republicans formally objected after Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California said during a floor speech that Trump’s tweets were “racist.” Led by Rep. Doug Collins of Georgia, Republicans moved to have her words stricken from the record, a rare procedural rebuke.


After a delay exceeding 90 minutes, No. 2 House Democrat Steny Hoyer of Maryland ruled that Pelosi had indeed violated a House rule against characterizing an action as racist. Hoyer was presiding after Rep. Emanuel Cleaver of Missouri stormed away from the presiding officer’s chair, lamenting, “We want to just fight,” which he apparently aimed at Republicans. Despite Hoyer’s ruling, Democrats flexed their muscle and the House voted afterward by party-line to leave Pelosi’s words intact in the record.


Some rank-and-file GOP lawmakers have agreed that Trump’s words were racist, but on Tuesday party leaders insisted they were not and accused Democrats of using the resulting tumult to score political points. Among the few voices of restraint, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Trump wasn’t racist, but he also called on leaders “from the president to the speaker to the freshman members of the House” to attack ideas, not the people who espouse them.


“There’s been a consensus that political rhetoric has gotten way, way heated across the political spectrum,” said the Republican leader from Kentucky, breaking his own two days of silence on Trump’s attacks.



Hours earlier, Trump tweeted, “Those Tweets were NOT Racist. I don’t have a Racist bone in my body!” He wrote that House Republicans should “not show ‘weakness’” by agreeing to a resolution he labeled “a Democrat con game.”


Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, one of Trump’s four targets, returned his fire.


“You’re right, Mr. President – you don’t have a racist bone in your body. You have a racist mind in your head and a racist heart in your chest,” she tweeted.


The four-page Democratic resolution said the House “strongly condemns President Donald Trump’s racist comments that have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color.” It said Trump’s slights “do not belong in Congress or in the United States of America.”


All but goading Republicans, the resolution included a full page of remarks by President Ronald Reagan, who is revered by the GOP. Reagan said in 1989 that if the U.S. shut its doors to newcomers, “our leadership in the world would soon be lost.”


Republican leaders lobbied GOP lawmakers hard to oppose the resolution.


McCarthy called the measure “all politics,” and No. 3 House GOP leader Liz Cheney of Wyoming said the four Democrats “are wrong when they attempt to impose the fraud of socialism on the American people.”


The showdown came after years of Democrats bristling over anti-immigrant and racially incendiary pronouncements by Trump. Those include his kicking off his presidential campaign by proclaiming many Mexican migrants to be criminals and asserting there were “fine people” on both sides at a 2017 neo-Nazis rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that turned deadly.


And the strong words in Washington come as actions are underway elsewhere: The administration has begun coast-to-coast raids targeting migrants in the U.S. illegally and has newly restricted access to the U.S. by asylum seekers.


Trump’s criticism was aimed at four freshman Democrats who have garnered attention since their arrival in January for their outspoken liberal views and thinly veiled distaste for Trump: Ocasio-Cortez and Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. All were born in the U.S. except for Omar, who came to the U.S. as a child after fleeing Somalia with her family.


The four have been in an increasingly personal clash with Democratic Speaker Pelosi, too, over how assertively the House should be in trying to restrain Trump’s ability to curb immigration. But if anything, Trump’s tweets have served to ease some of that tension, with Pelosi telling Democrats at a closed-door meeting Tuesday, “We are offended by what he said about our sisters,” according to an aide in the room who described the private meeting on condition of anonymity.


That’s not to say that all internal Democratic strains are resolved.


The four rebellious freshmen joined Rep. Steven Cohen of Tennessee and a handful of others who wanted the House to vote on a harsher censure of Trump’s tweets. And Rep. Al Green of Texas was trying to force a House vote soon on whether to impeach Trump — a move he’s tried in the past but lost, earning opposition from most Democrats.


At the Senate Republicans’ weekly lunch Tuesday, Trump’s tweets came up and some lawmakers were finding the situation irksome, participants said. Many want the 2020 campaigns to focus on progressive Democrats’ demands for government-provided health care, abolishing the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency and other hard-left policies.


“Those ideas give us so much material to work with and it takes away from our time to talk about it,” Sen. Mike Braun of Indiana said of the Trump tweets.


AP reporters Jill Colvin, Zeke Miller and Jonathan Lemire and Congressional Correspondent Lisa Mascaro contributed.





Source: House condemns Trump ‘racist’ tweets in extraordinary rebuke

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6
U.S. Army recruiter allegedly solicited girls as young as 10 for sex while calling himself “Colorado batman”

Arapahoe County Sheriff's deputies have arrested a U.S. Army recruiter for investigation of soliciting girls as young as 10 years old for sex after he allegedly used selfies of himself posing as "Colorado batman."

Arapahoe County sheriff’s deputies have arrested a U.S. Army recruiter for investigation of soliciting girls as young as 10 years old for sex after he allegedly sent selfies calling himself “Colorado batman,” the sheriff’s department reported.


Ken Hardcastle, 31, has been arrested for investigation of internet luring of a child and internet sexual exploitation of a child, according to Arapahoe County District Court records.


“Sexy? Think again,” the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a tweet. “We worry there may be other victims. If he’s chatted with your daughter, call 720-874-8477.”


The sheriff’s office released photographs of Hardcastle that were allegedly used to lure children including one identifying himself as “Colorado batman” and another in which he is half clothed, the tweet said.








Source: U.S. Army recruiter allegedly solicited girls as young as 10 for sex while calling himself “Colorado batman”

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7
Colorado / Ask Amy: Tips on how to handle a drama machine
« on: July 16, 2019, 05:38:24 AM »
Ask Amy: Tips on how to handle a drama machine

Dear Amy: How do I keep a relationship casual with a friend whose hobby is creating drama?

Dear Amy: How do I keep a relationship casual with a friend whose hobby is creating drama?


“Emma” and I are members of an informal social group which communicates a few times a week. We also attend different types of group events once or twice a month.


The group has an ongoing group chat on a messaging app, and Emma is the most vocal contributor. She often overshares about her own life, or just generally complains. She and I had a casual friendship for years until she started dating another member of the group — in secret.


After soliciting the views of me and two other members of the group, she sent a follow-up email basically telling us multiple reasons why our advice was wrong and how we can’t judge the nature of her relationship, even though that was basically the advice she sought.


She further told us that we were wrong because we wouldn’t reinforce her decision to disregard advice from her therapist.


It seems she has had a crush on nearly every male member of the group at one time or another, whether or not the person has a partner.


I am worried that anything of substance I tell her about myself might become fodder for her drama machine. I have tried to avoid getting into more serious topics, but she keeps asking to get together to talk — one-on-one.


She really wants to have this “deeper” friendship with me, but I don’t feel safe doing that. How do I set a boundary to keep the relationship casual without causing a rift in the larger group?


— Walking a Tightrope


Dear Walking: Your instincts regarding this drama machine are sound. Follow them. You should assume that anything you say can (and will) be used against you. Drama addicts need fuel to accelerate and sustain their narrative and — when they lack story elements of their own creation — they will instinctively turn to others to fortify their supply.


Unfortunately, honesty (“You’re indiscreet and so I want to keep our relationship casual”) will be conflated by her into a feud of some kind, and so the best technique is to deflect, and/or ghost.



When “Emma” appeals to you or solicits anything personal, you should either not respond, or delay responding. When you do, resort to something opaque and noncommittal like, “Umm, interesting question; I don’t really have anything to add.” If she wants to get together, you should claim to be busy, tired, or binge-watching an about-to-expire program. You should not gossip about or offer up any opinions about her to the group.


In short, back away slowly, and then keep your distance.


Dear Amy: My husband and I have been married for eight years. We have three kids together.


Recently, he left his social media account open. I snooped (and know it was wrong). I learned that he is trying to reconnect with former high school girl friends by inviting them to lunch/dinner. He was not going to tell me about this.


It has been over 20 years since these friendships have had any merit, and in my opinion, I do not see the point. In fact, with as much public social media postings we all see, I feel that he has already caught up with their lives.


What are your thoughts on this? Do you think I’m overreacting?


Should he reconnect with the old friends (single or married)?


— Wondering


Dear Wondering: Yes, your husband should reconnect with old friends, if he wants to. You should, too! But these reconnections should be conducted in full view of the family.


I infer from your question that your husband is private-messaging various people (only women, it seems) and inviting them to private get-togethers. That’s not cool. The optics, as it were, are not good.


Transparency is important in marriage, if for no other reason than to avoid this sort of dust-up. You two should talk about this. You can start by copping to viewing his private messages. He may try to make the whole conversation about that. If you stay calm and don’t get defensive, he will have his say, and then you can have yours.


Dear Amy: I’ve grown very tired of your continuing focus on LGBTQ issues. This is a small segment of the population and you give them too much weight in your column.


— Upset


Dear Upset: Happy Pride month! People are people, and human relationships have resonance far beyond a person’s sexuality. If you can’t recognize fellowship, then you’re just not trying hard enough.





Source: Ask Amy: Tips on how to handle a drama machine

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8
Denver council approves Peña Boulevard rebuild as new members show climate philosophy

Denver International Airport will have its entrance road rebuilt, despite a rocky approval process that gave new council members a chance to speak up on climate change and automobiles.

Denver International Airport will have its entrance road rebuilt, despite a rocky approval process that gave new council members a chance to speak up on climate change and automobiles.


In an 11-1 vote, the reconstituted Denver City Council on Monday approved a $94 million project to rebuild ramps and interchanges while adding lanes to parts of Peña Boulevard’s final approach to the airport.


Airport officials said the project — potentially the first phase of several — was meant to improve the flow of shuttle buses and other vehicles near the airport. But transit advocates said it was a road widening project that would encourage more automobile driving, and they won some support from two new council members.


“Climate change is real and we need to take steps, we need to take immediate bold steps to make sure that we take care of our planet … increasing lanes and adding more single-occupant vehicles is not the answer,” said newly elected Councilman Chris Hinds.


He abstained from the vote, saying he hadn’t had time to vet the project properly


Newly elected Councilwoman Candi CdeBaca was the sole “no” vote. “We know our planet is on fire. We know what the risk is of induced demand,” she said. “Why aren’t we doing better?”


Newly elected Councilwoman Amanda Sawyer echoed the comments on climate change, but said the airport ultimately had to serve many people.


“Being able to provide different options, even if that’s by road … I think is valuable in this case,” she said.



Future airport plans are focused on widening the rest of Peña, but those phases aren’t yet planned or funded.


Longtime council members were more supportive of the project, either because they didn’t see it as a true widening or because they saw a need for continued automobile support.


Council President Jolon Clark said he was excited to hear the new members talk about climate change. But he said that the added lanes were meant to resolve “chaos,” including with a lane dedicated for shuttles, rather than cramming in more cars.






Source: Denver council approves Peña Boulevard rebuild as new members show climate philosophy

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9
Bureau of Land Management moving HQ to Grand Junction, Cory Gardner says

The Bureau of Land Management will move its headquarters to Grand Junction, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner said Monday, ending years of lobbying efforts by officials in Colorado.

The federal Bureau of Land Management will move its headquarters to Grand Junction, U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner said Monday, ending years of successful lobbying efforts by officials in Colorado.


“Today is a historic day for our nation’s public lands, western states, and the people of Colorado,” said Gardner, a Yuma Republican, in a press release. “Relocating the Bureau of Land Management to the Western Slope of Colorado will bring the bureau’s decision makers closer to the people they serve and the public lands they manage.”


Details of the relocation – such as how many employees will move to Grand Junction and what the economic benefits will be – have not been made public by BLM. Gardner’s announcement came a day before the agency was expected to announce the news and provide further details. The Washington Post reported the Interior Department expects to move about 80 employees.


During a stop in Vail on June 10, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said there was value in moving the BLM headquarters out of Washington but offered no insight into which city would be chosen.


“The problem with Washington is too many policy makers are far removed from the people they are there to serve,” Gardner said. “Ninety-nine percent of the land the BLM manages is west of the Mississippi River, and so should be the BLM headquarters.”


Gov. Jared Polis had previously said Grand Junction would be the best location for the new headquarters, but Denver would also be a good place for it.


“From an economic development perspective for our state, Grand Junction would be a site that would make a bigger contribution to our state, but we support anywhere in Colorado that wants to move forward,” Polis told The Denver Post last month.


On Monday, Polis said he was “thrilled” with the announcement. “As I stated to Secretary Bernhardt many times, Grand Junction is the perfect location for the BLM because of community support, location closer to the land BLM manages and the positive impact it will have on our western Colorado economy,” the Democratic governor said in a statement.


Not everyone in Colorado was thrilled with the announcement. The Center for Western Priorities, a Denver-based conservation group, called it nothing more than a public relations stunt.



“More than 90 percent of BLM staff already work outside of Washington, DC, and the agency has dozens of offices across the West. Moving senior BLM leadership would only turn the agency into an afterthought, rather than a core piece of the Interior Department,” said Jennifer Rokala, the group’s executive director, in a news release Monday.


“Since Interior Secretary Bernhardt is stonewalling the congressional committees that would approve a spending request like this, it’s clear this is not a serious proposal. It’s merely an attempt to drain the Interior Department of career officials who have expertise in running the agency.”


Gardner first proposed the idea of moving BLM headquarters at a Senate hearing in 2016. After President Donald Trump’s election later that year, the senator organized support within the Trump administration and in Grand Junction, his office said Monday.


The city is 60 miles west of Rifle, Bernhardt’s hometown, on Interstate 70.


“As a native of Colorado’s Third Congressional District, Secretary Bernhardt knows the lands well and I applaud his leadership on making this move a reality,” said U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, a Cortez Republican who represents Grand Junction in Congress.


Last year, Colorado’s senators sent a letter to then-Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke encouraging him to visit and consider Grand Junction. The support of Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet could prove key if Bernhardt struggles to get Democratic backing in Congress for the move. Some Democrats, including Rep. Diana DeGette of Denver, have been skeptical it is the best use of money.





Source: Bureau of Land Management moving HQ to Grand Junction, Cory Gardner says

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10
Analysis: New Denver council members taking office today change the math

Five new members take their seats Monday on the 13-member Denver City Council -- an event that will shift the calculus for developers pushing new projects, activists seeking new legislation and also for Mayor Michael Hancock.

Five new members take their seats Monday on the 13-member Denver City Council — an event that will shift the calculus for developers pushing new projects, activists seeking new legislation and also for Mayor Michael Hancock.


In years past, the council has approved most of the development proposals that reach its desk. The spring election flipped two formerly growth-friendly seats — Districts 5 and 9. That could change the outcomes for close projects, because it only takes four votes to defeat the most controversial rezonings. But it’s unclear how the other new members will tilt.


Three of the new council members beat incumbents, while the other two rose to the top of crowded fields for open seats. Before this year, only three incumbents had lost since 1987.


Those who knocked out incumbents are the most likely sources of change on council.



In District 5, Amanda Sawyer defeated Councilwoman Mary Beth Susman. Sawyer says she’ll give residents more power to fight against development, and she already has signaled concerns about increasing density in the East Denver district. For example, she’s skeptical of the city’s plans to allow eight-story development along parts of the planned East Colfax Avenue bus rapid transit route. Council members have a lot of sway over votes about development in their districts. Sawyer’s views could reshape proposals or set up new conflicts on council.


In District 9, Candi CdeBaca defeated Councilman Albus Brooks. The district includes downtown, the River North development area and residential neighborhoods in northeast Denver. CdeBaca has said she’ll keep a much greater distance from developers and business interests than Brooks, who collaborated with developers to deliver “inclusive growth.” CdeBaca also aims to rein in the power of the “strong mayor” system, positioning her against Hancock.


In District 10, Chris Hinds defeated Councilman Wayne New. Hinds falls closer to the “YIMBY” philosophy of encouraging density and new transportation options. He drew more of his support from Capitol Hill, an older and less expensive area near downtown. Look for him to replace Susman and Brooks as one of the council’s resident urbanists.


Members who won open seats are more closely aligned with the council members they’re replacing.



In District 1, Amanda Sandoval replaces Councilman Rafael Espinoza, who didn’t run for re-election. She was endorsed by him and used to work as his chief of staff, once describing herself as the “Rafael translator.” She’ll look for a role as a negotiator between developers and residents, but she didn’t run on an explicitly pro- or anti-development platform. Her family has deep roots in local politics.


In District 3, Jamie Torres was endorsed by outgoing Councilman Paul López, who was term-limited and won election as city clerk. A current city employee, Torres wants to build up civic engagement across the district, where the population is nearly 50 percent Latino, according to 2015 estimates. She’ll have to deal with a continuing wave of gentrification and development. She’s “probably more YIMBY than NIMBY,” she said in an interview, but she wants “guardrails” to preserve neighborhood character.





Source: Analysis: New Denver council members taking office today change the math

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11
U.S. 36 stretch collapses, forcing closure of eastbound lanes and CDOT blitz to re-build bridge approach 45 feet above ground

The highway from Boulder to Denver is collapsing at a bridge approach 45 feet above ground, concrete slumping away off a widening chasm as fast as an inch per hour with a 5-foot drop over the weekend.

The highway from Boulder to Denver is collapsing at a bridge approach 45 feet above ground, concrete slumping away off a widening chasm as fast as an inch per hour with a 5-foot drop over the weekend.


This destruction related to environmental conditions — weakening of saturated clay under a 5-year-old stretch of U.S. 36 adjacent to a former reservoir near Broomfield — forced the closure of eastbound lanes and triggered a Colorado Department of Transportation blitz Sunday to re-route 14,000 commuters on free buses. The collapse between the Church Ranch Boulevard and Wadsworth Boulevard exits left a 200-foot gash resembling the fault line of an earthquake.


Colorado Front Range vehicle traffic already has been choked this summer as CDOT contractors work to widen Interstate 25 to make room for more vehicles. And CDOT officials on Sunday were bracing for major metro Denver disruptions. They said they’ll pay the Regional Transportation District about $70,000 a day for the free bus transit through Tuesday as alternative routes for cars and trucks are set up.


“We’ve seen the separation at up to an inch an hour. You just cannot have people going through here,” CDOT director Shoshana Lew said Sunday evening, standing with engineers on the highway as crews cut through concrete and tried to assess stability.


“If working from home is a viable option, the next few days might be a good time to think of it,” Lew said.


“Be patient, especially during the early part of this week. It is an unusual situation. We know many people will be frustrated. Focus on safety.”


The highway was closed at the Wadsworth and Church Ranch exits, and officials said they’re hoping to route traffic both ways into the three westbound lanes by the end of the week.


RTD officials issued a bulletin warning that buses will face the same traffic detours as other vehicles and that riders are likely to face standing-room conditions and delayed travel.



State officials recommended that drivers use Colorado 93 to West Sixth Avenue, Wadsworth to Interstate 70, and Highway 7 (Baseline Road) to Interstate 25.


The officials said U.S. 36 must be rebuilt and were planning conversations with contractors on Monday. Lew said “it’s too soon” to estimate how long eastbound U.S. 36 will be closed.


At the scene, CDOT worker Mike Martinez was part of the “all hands” effort to assess damage, tied off using a climbing harness and rope near the top of the bridge as he looked at support structures on the side of the collapsing concrete. Emergency crews hauled in tons of dirt to try to shore up the saturated clay under the bridge approach. Others were sawing through concrete where the approach meets the bridge, exposing steel bars under the concrete.



Among dozens of CDOT crew members in green vests and orange helmets preparing to work into the night, engineer Stephen Harelson ventured a preliminary assessment. “This has nothing to do with the concrete,” Harelson said. “It is a slope failure in the clay embankment.”


State highway maintenance workers discovered a crack in the highway Thursday night. By Friday at noon, Lew said, officials recognized a much more difficult challenge. On Sunday night, the chasm was widening.


No rail transit options exist between Boulder and Denver, though tracks are in place. Similarly, no rail alternative to highway vehicle travel exists between Denver and Colorado Springs. Gov. Jared Polis has said he favors creation of better alternatives to vehicle travel as the state’s population grows.


“We’re lucky that, in this area, there are lots of other options for getting around on other roads,” Lew said at the scene. “And we’re lucky that the Flatirons Flyer (bus) provides another way to get out of traffic.”



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Source: U.S. 36 stretch collapses, forcing closure of eastbound lanes and CDOT blitz to re-build bridge approach 45 feet above ground

Colorado Chat Rooms - USA Chat Club

12
Trump tells liberal Democratic congresswomen of color to go back to the “crime infested places from which they came”

President Donald Trump on Sunday assailed a group of Democratic congresswomen of color as foreign-born troublemakers who should go back to the "broken and crime infested places from which they came," ignoring the fact that the women are American citizens and all but one was born in the U.S.

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump on Sunday assailed a group of Democratic congresswomen of color as foreign-born troublemakers who should go back to the “broken and crime infested places from which they came,” ignoring the fact that the women are American citizens and all but one was born in the U.S.




Trump’s tweets drew a sharp rebuke from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who said the president wants to “make America white again.” Republican Rep. Justin Amash of Michigan, a Trump critic who recently took steps to leave his party, called the remarks “racist and disgusting.”


Trump was almost certainly referring to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York and her allies in what’s become known as the squad. The others are Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. Only Omar, from Somalia, is foreign-born.


With his remarks, Trump again inserted himself into a rift between Pelosi and the liberal congresswomen, after offering an unsolicited defense of the Democratic speaker days earlier. Pelosi has been seeking to minimize Ocasio-Cortez’s influence in recent days, prompting Ocasio-Cortez to accuse Pelosi of trying to marginalize women of color. “She is not a racist,” Trump said Friday.


On Sunday, Trump’s tone changed.


“So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run,” he said in tweets. “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”


He added: “These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!”


Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Puerto Rican descent, was born in the Bronx, New York, and raised in suburban Westchester County.


Pressley, the first black woman elected to the House from Massachusetts, was born in Cincinnati.



Omar, the first Somali native elected to Congress and one of its first Muslim women, was born in Somalia but spent much of her childhood in a Kenyan refugee camp as civil war tore apart her home country. She immigrated to the United States at age 12, teaching herself English by watching American TV and eventually settling with her family in Minneapolis.


Tlaib was born in Detroit.





Source: Trump tells liberal Democratic congresswomen of color to go back to the “crime infested places from which they came”

Colorado Chat Rooms - USA Chat Club

13
Nuggets’ Michael Porter Jr. on social media: “People act like you’re not human”

While Michael Porter Jr. outwardly tries to practice patience, understanding that his path to the NBA hasn’t been as seamless as that of other elite prospects, his frustration as a 21-year-old is apparent.

Put yourself in Michael Porter Jr.’s NBA-sized Pumas.


It’s been nearly 16 months since you’ve played a competitive basketball game. It’s been almost exactly a year since your second back surgery. Your Summer League teammate says you remind him of a video game player after going up against you in training camp. Your coach says you have the chance to be special.


Forty eight hours before you finally get to respond to the growing hype, finally with your play and not your words, you drive along the baseline during a scrimmage, take contact in the air and come down awkwardly with a knee sprain.


As quickly as that, your Summer League debut is shot. You’re no longer the answer to who else NBA executives are excited to see outside of No. 1 pick Zion Williamson.


“I got hurt that last play of the scrimmage,” Porter told The Denver Post this week. “I was so sad, but after that initial madness and sadness, you kind of just gotta reset. … It sucks, man, I was really looking forward to this. I’ve been waiting for like a year and a half, I can wait a few more days.”


RELATED: Michael Porter Jr.: An oral history of the Nuggets’ draft-night steal


Porter, the Nuggets’ celebrated rookie, was on hand in Las Vegas to watch others play on the stage that he himself expected to dominate. He hung with his teammates, high-fived various college coaches and sat longingly on the bench in comfortable sweats.


The decision to rest Porter was precautionary. This past Tuesday, as the Nuggets prepared to play the Celtics in their second Summer League game, Porter stood among his teammates laughing and joking. He understood why the Nuggets were being careful even if it gnawed at him.


“It was so minor of a thing to where, I’m just happy it wasn’t anything bigger,” Porter said. “I’m good now. I could play today if they would let me. I really wanted to play in this, but this isn’t what I’m working for. I’m working for the season.”



While Porter outwardly tries to practice patience, understanding that his path to the NBA hasn’t been as seamless as that of other elite prospects, his frustration as a 21-year-old is apparent. The growth of social media, which coincided with Porter’s rise through the AAU circuit and his short time at Missouri, has proven difficult to navigate.


“That’s why I get off of social media so much,” said Porter. “I hate people like building this hype around me and then I can’t play or something and then everybody’s hating. It’s kind of hard, people act like you’re not human. Like, I see that stuff. I gotta take a break from looking at all that stuff.”


The pitfalls of social media are numerous. It can dangerously validate one’s worth while simultaneously undermine one’s confidence. Porter has gotten to the point where sharing viral videos of himself dunking or raining 3-pointers only stokes his doubters. The former No. 1 player in the country doesn’t need any added pressure on his 6-foot-10 shoulders.



“Social media is such a good thing to develop your brand and everything,” Porter said. “When I get on the court and play, I’ll probably get it back, start posting stuff, but like for now, while I’m rehabbing and getting ready to play, I don’t like looking at all the negativity.”


What the Nuggets ultimately get from Porter next season is a mystery. The first clues will come during preseason. But for now, it’s unclear how many minutes he’s slated to play and it’s unclear how willing the Nuggets will be in extending him. Perhaps the NBA’s latest load management trend finds its way to Denver.


“Just trying to temper everybody’s expectations, when you miss a whole year it doesn’t happen right away,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone said at his exit interview in May.


Porter is a tantalizing piece that, until he can stay healthy, remains unrealized potential. The Nuggets are still deep even without him. For that reason, they have the luxury to tread lightly with last year’s lottery pick. The burden he’s carrying is already heavy enough.






Source: Nuggets’ Michael Porter Jr. on social media: “People act like you’re not human”

Colorado Chat Rooms - USA Chat Club

14
Kickin’ It with Kiz: Of all the strange things that could happen to Broncos in 2019, this might be the wackiest …

I predict the Broncos will have a 10-6 record. Why? The offensive line has improved with the addition of assistant coach Mike Munchak and rookie Dalton Risner. Quarterback Joe Flacco never had the receiving weapons in Baltimore that he does now. And the defense will rank in the top five of the NFL again, because Kareem Jackson can be like T.J. Ward with how physical he plays.

I predict the Broncos will have a 10-6 record. Why? The offensive line has improved with the addition of assistant coach Mike Munchak and rookie Dalton Risner. Quarterback Joe Flacco never had the receiving weapons in Baltimore that he does now. And the defense will rank in the top five of the NFL again, because Kareem Jackson can be like T.J. Ward with how physical he plays.


L.A., analytical thinker


Kiz: If this Broncos team makes the playoffs, Vic Fangio will be coach of the year. After waiting more than 60 years to get a head coaching gig, that would be pretty cool, wouldn’t it?


I say the Broncos win seven or eight games, max. Too many things need to go right for this team to reach its potential. The defense won’t be as staunch as it’s being made out to be, and the offensive line has issues because Garett Bolles at left tackle is a sieve/holding machine.


Greg, realistic thinker


Kiz: Broncos Country and John Elway have the same flaw. There’s no patience for rebuilding.


For everyone predicting the Broncos will go 8-8 or 6-10 in 2019? Do not be jumping back on the bandwagon at mid-season.


F.E., orange Kool-Aid drinker


Kiz: The beauty of bandwagons? No middle seats, so the view is always good.



In my 63 years on this earth, your column on Lindsey Horan and the U.S. women’s national team is among the best I’ve ever read. And as an avid reader/fan that also has lived in New York, Boston, Germany and Florida, I’ve devoured too many sports columns to count. Kiz, you were right on point as far of how women, in sports and life, have often been relegated to second-class citizenship. I can only hope the other players on the team follow Megan Rapinoe’s lead and boycott any visit to the White House. It would, however, be really interesting to see what would happen if Vice President Mike Pence met with Rapinoe and suggested she have “conversion therapy.” This could be the first time a vice president was ever pummeled by 15 women.


Jerry, proud American


Kiz: The staffers here at Kickin’ It Headquarters are lovers, not fighters. So we would never advocate violence. But Pence vs. Rapinoe? Now there would be a debate we’d pay to see.


The problem we have with the USWNT is the anti-America stance taken by the abnormal players on the team. It’s as though they forgot “who” they are representing and chose to denounce its leader and its anthem. That would be America, Kiz. They put being LGBT above allegiance to their country.


Terry, Denver



Kiz: Well, so much for freedom of speech, peaceful disobedience, and other ideas many Americans hold dear. But, in the wake of the World Cup victory, Rapinoe repeated what she has long insisted: “You can’t win a championship without gays on your team … That’s science, right there!”


And today’s parting shot blasts me for realizing far too late what a big mistake it was for the Rockies to part ways with infielder DJ LeMahieu.


Where were you back in November?


Stephen, ahead of the curve





Source: Kickin’ It with Kiz: Of all the strange things that could happen to Broncos in 2019, this might be the wackiest …

Colorado Chat Rooms - USA Chat Club

15
We’re playing for him: Angels honor Skaggs with amazing game

When the Los Angeles Angels think about Tyler Skaggs in the months and years ahead, Andrew Heaney is grateful they'll have the memory of one incredible night to assuage their sadness.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — When the Los Angeles Angels think about Tyler Skaggs in the months and years ahead, Andrew Heaney is grateful they’ll have the memory of one incredible night to assuage their sadness.


With Skaggs’ name and No. 45 on all of their jerseys Friday night, the Angels played practically perfect baseball throughout their first home game since their 27-year-old teammate’s death.


After they completed a combined no-hitter and a 13-0 victory over Seattle, the Angels gathered on the field and placed those No. 45 jerseys on the mound until it was more red than brown.


The Angels then stood reverently in a circle to pay one more tribute to the ebullient, lanky left-hander who definitely would have called them nasty.


“For us, it’s emotionally therapeutic,” said Heaney, Skaggs’ best friend and fellow starting pitcher. “After the game, we ran out on the field and everybody was celebrating. Like three hours earlier, I don’t know about everybody else, (but) I had tears in my eyes. You’re sort of reliving your bad memories, bad thoughts. Just for tonight, and maybe moving forward, it can change your mindset. When you think about him, you’re thinking about the loss of a friend, a teammate. But moving forward, hopefully you think of his jersey, you think of his name, (and) it brings back positive memories.”



This too-good-for-Hollywood evening began with a touching pregame ceremony honoring Skaggs, who was found dead in his hotel room July 1 in Texas on the first morning of a road trip.


The Angels and Mariners all stood solemnly on the Big A field while Skaggs’ mother, Debbie, delivered a heartbreakingly perfect strike with her first pitch.


When the game began, the Angels were fearless and nearly flawless.


Taylor Cole opened with two perfect innings before Félix Peña pitched the game of his life, allowing just one walk in seven hitless innings. Together, they threw the 11th no-hitter in franchise history on the night before what would have been Skaggs’ 28th birthday.


“I know he’s here today, and he was looking over us, and he’s definitely a part of this,” said Cole, a 29-year-old reliever making only his 33rd career big-league appearance. “We love him, we miss him, and we’re always going to be there for him.”



The surreal details piled up as the Angels absorbed the enormity of their night.


As Mike Trout noted, they scored seven runs in the first inning and finished with 13 runs and 13 hits — and Skaggs’ birthday is 7-13 — July 13th.


The last combined no-hitter in California was thrown in Oakland on July 13, 1991 — the exact day Skaggs, a California native, was born.


“Tonight was in honor of him,” Trout said. “He was definitely looking over us tonight. He’s probably up there saying we’re nasty. What an unbelievable game to be a part of. I’m speechless. This is the best way possible to honor him tonight. It was pretty crazy.”


Trout rarely swings at the first pitch in any at-bat, yet he hit a thunderous 454-foot homer on the first pitch he saw from Seattle’s Mike Leake in the first inning. After an uncommonly slow trot around the bases, Trout pointedly looked up in the direction of Skaggs’ family in the stands.


The two-time AL MVP finished with two doubles and six RBIs in the latest spectacular performance of his six-game tear since the death of his close friend.


Trout echoed Heaney’s thoughts about the importance of being able to remember this magical night alongside the trauma caused by Skaggs’ sudden death. The well-liked pitcher controlled the Angels’ clubhouse stereo system with an iron fist, but he also eagerly shared pointers and encouragement with his teammates — including Peña, who repeatedly thought about Skaggs’ constant exhortations to focus while he completed the no-hitter.


“He wouldn’t want anything else,” Trout said. “When I think of him, it’s that joyful laugh. He wouldn’t want us to be upset. … Whenever you think of him, it’s tough to tell yourself he passed. But (after) tonight, when you think of Tyler, think of the day we wore his jersey to honor him and honor his family and honor Carli. Peña and Cole threw a no-hitter. Just positive thoughts.”


Trout and the Angels’ other team leaders devised the plan to wear Skaggs’ jersey last week, hoping to make a special memory for Skaggs’ parents and his wife, Carli. They had no doubt of a strong first pitch by his mom, a longtime softball coach at Santa Monica High School.


But even the best player in baseball couldn’t have imagined just how special it would turn out to be. The Angels dominated every aspect of the game after a pregame ceremony that made many of them quite emotional.


“In a sense, it did open up the wounds a little bit, because it reminded us of the reality that Tyler is gone, we really miss him, and we would rather have him here,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said. “It brings the emotion back, but I don’t want to say it’s a negative thing.”


Not much about the Angels’ season had been memorable before the past two weeks. Skaggs was likely the most reliable starting pitcher in an up-and-down rotation that has kept Los Angeles stuck near .500, with fading hopes of ending their nearly decade-long playoff victory drought.


Although Skaggs is gone, he won’t be far from the Angels’ minds and eyes. His locker will be kept untouched for the rest of the season, and his competitive catchphrase — “We’re nasty!” — is now emblazoned on the clubhouse wall.


The Angels will spend the rest of the summer trying to make more happy memories to compete with the sadness they’ll never entirely forget.


“I think it’s going to be tough this season,” Trout said. “Obviously we’re going to remember him always. It just seems like everything we do at the stadium, he always comes up. You walk by his locker every day. Every time you’d go up to him, he’d have that smirk on his face. Either sarcastically, jokingly, or he was trying to put a smile on your face. We’re always going to be thinking about him. It’s always going to be emotional. It’s different for everybody. It’s just something we’re going to have to get through.”


___


More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports





Source: We’re playing for him: Angels honor Skaggs with amazing game

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