News in Brief | AspenTimes.com

News in Brief

Zuena picked for Basalt Town CouncilJoe Zuena, the chairman of the Basalt Planning and Zoning Commission, was appointed Tuesday night to fill an opening on Town Council.Zuena has been a Basalt resident since 1987 and a member of the planning commission for six years. That board handles most of the town’s land-use duties. Zuena was on it in 1999 when it approved a comprehensive master plan that dictates where Basalt grows and the type of development it prefers.His planning expertise came through during an interview with the council Tuesday night. Zuena said one of the biggest issues facing the town is balancing the desire to preserve open spaces with the need to grow. Citizens need to be engaged to help determine if they are willing allow buildings to go higher, with fourth floors, in return for preserving open space, he said. Aspen is facing that same issue.He also said he thinks Basalt needs to somehow keep some land undeveloped and in reserve for the future to help attract or accommodate high-tech businesses.Zuena, who is in the property management business, will be sworn into office at the Nov. 22 meeting. He fills a seat vacated last month when Tiffany Ernemann resigned. She moved out of Basalt and had to surrender her position.Zuena was one of six people who applied for the seat.Worker dies in rig accidentA fall off a derrick killed a drill-rig worker Monday near Battlement Mesa. Larry D. Hill, 42, of Moab, Utah, was pronounced dead at the scene Monday, Garfield County Coroner Trey Holt said.”He was trying to fix something on the rig,” Holt said. “He wasn’t tied off.”Hill fell 75 to 80 feet off the rig, Holt said.Rig workers are required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to wear safety belts, said Herb Gibson, Denver area director. “We do require fall protection when people are working at heights,” he said.OSHA is investigating the accident and will issue a report in a few months if it finds OSHA regulations were violated, Gibson said.The accident occurred at 5:30 a.m. on Union Drilling Inc. Rig 32, which was operating near Battlement Mesa.An autopsy was scheduled for Tuesday. Results of tests for alcohol and drugs will take between a week to 10 days, he said.Gibson said it was the first drill rig fatality reported in Colorado this year. “Any fatality is tragic, but we’re glad there aren’t more. We want to challenge the energy companies to make work as safe as possible,” he said.Union Drilling did not immediately respond to phone calls. (From the Glenwood Springs Post Independent)Report: Man claiming he was glued to toilet made prior allegationDENVER (AP) – A man who sued Home Depot claiming a prank left him glued to a toilet seat had made a similar allegation about a public restroom in his hometown, a former town official told the Rocky Mountain News.Bob Dougherty sued the home-improvement chain last month, alleging employees at a Louisville, Colo., store ignored his pleas for help after he got stuck on a restroom toilet seat in October 2003.Ron Trzepacz, former director of operations in Nederland, where Dougherty lives, told the News in Tuesday’s editions that Dougherty came to him in the summer of 2004 claiming he had been glued to a toilet seat in the town’s visitor center but pulled himself free.Trzepacz said he inspected the bathroom and found “no indication that anything had been on the toilet seat.” He said no police report was filed. The town administrator did not immediately return a call.Dougherty called Trzepacz’s claims “nonsense” and said, “I don’t even know the guy.”

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