News in Brief
Town of Vail switching to 100 percent wind power, tooThe town of Vail will likely sign an agreement this week to offset 100 percent of its electricity use with wind power credits, Town Manager Stan Zemler said.The agreement follows Vail Resorts’ announcement last week that it will buy wind credits equal to all of its electricity use at its five ski resorts, retail shops, hotels and other properties.The town’s initiative would offset 20 million kilowatt hours of electricity use over three years, Zemler said. Over three years, the credits will take 28 million pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere, the equivalent of taking 2,600 cars off the road or planting 3,700 acres of trees.The deal will cost the town about $12,000 per year in addition to its current electricity bill, Zemler said. It will have to be renewed each year, but the initiative is a long-term commitment from the town, Zemler said. (The Vail Daily)Basalt polling relocatedThe polling place location scheduled for Pitkin County Precinct 9 in Basalt has been moved to a new location: St. Peter’s Episcopal Church at 0200 Elk Run Drive.Pitkin County Republicans and Democrats have no decisions to make in this year’s primary. Every race is uncontested.For more information, contact Bryce at the elections department, 429-2709. Surface-use initiative backers fall shortOrganizers have come up far short in collecting signatures for a state ballot initiative aimed at providing fair compensation for property owners affected by energy development.But John Gorman, a Glenwood Springs real estate agent who heads the group Colorado Landowners for Fairness, says he’ll be back for another try. Next time, he says, he’ll start out knowing a lot more about the state citizens’ initiative process.”We’re not going away. This issue isn’t going away. Our overwhelming experience has been to find out that this issue has tremendous traction among the citizens of Colorado,” Gorman said.Gorman did not submit signatures by the state’s deadline of 3 p.m. Monday. The Secretary of State’s Office required 67,829 valid signatures to put the measure on the November ballot. Gorman said he hadn’t tallied up how many signatures had been gathered, but it was probably less than half what was needed.He said his group didn’t have enough time to circulate petitions.”It was our naiveté of thinking that the legislature might do something, and then after that it was the very vigorous and effective delaying tactics of industry that delayed us so much that the first day of our signature-gathering drive was about five weeks ago,” he said.Initiative supporters had held off on acting this spring while awaiting the outcome of efforts by state Rep. Kathleen Curry, D-Gunnison. She unsuccessfully sought to pass a bill addressing the rights of surface owners on property where underlying mineral rights are being developed. (Glenwood Springs Post Independent)
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Aspen’s Christmas season may be turning Red for all the wrong reasons. As numbers increase in Pitkin County, avoiding the state’s Red level will be “very challenging,” county epidemiologist says.