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News in Brief

EL JEBEL – The city of Aspen and Roaring Fork Transportation Authority will host an informational meeting and comment session in the midvalley next week.Two presentations are planned – one by RFTA on the bus agency’s future plans and one by the city on the Entrance to Aspen and what’s on the horizon. Public feedback on both issues is welcome and a question-and-answer session will follow the presentations.The meeting will take place Wednesday, March 14 at the Eagle County Community Center in El Jebel, starting with an open house from 5 to 6 p.m., presentations by each group from 6 to 7 p.m. and comments/questions from 7 to 8 p.m.

ASPEN – Pamela Phillips watched from the back rows of the Pitkin County Courthouse as her lawyer argued that evidence from a September search of her Aspen home should be returned. A decision was not made by District Judge James Boyd.Phillips is suspected of conspiracy in the 1996 pipe-bomb murder of Gary Lee Triano, her ex-husband. Arizona law enforcement has been investigating Phillips and Ronald Young – whom police allege paid Young to slay Triano. Many items were seized by police and ATF agents in the September search, and taken to Pima County, Arizona. Phillips’ lawyer argued that taking the items to another state violated a clause of the warrant requiring authorities to “safely keep” evidence.Assistant District Attorney Gail Nichols called the entire hearing “ridiculous” and said she felt the Pima County authorities could safely keep the objects seized. Arizona law enforcement was on-hand in Aspen last December when Ronald Young, whom police apprehended after “America’s Most Wanted” aired an Aspen check fraud case involving him, was set free. Young was connected to the murder after police in Yorba Linda, Calif., found weapons, a map of Tucson (where Triano was slain), and divorce papers for Triano and Phillips in a car Young rented in Aspen.The police affidavit from the search of Phillips’ home details recorded conversations that include threats, blackmail, money drops, a secret romance and evidence of conspiracy in the 1996 slaying.

ARAPAHOE BASIN – Construction is set to begin this spring on Arapahoe Basin’s $3 million expansion into Montezuma Bowl, a project that will represent the ski area’s largest addition of new terrain in its 60-year history.The White River National Forest gave A-Basin the final approval last week to construct Zuma Lift, which will provide skiers and riders access to 400 acres of intermediate and advanced terrain in Montezuma Bowl.Crews will begin work this spring beginning with the installation of the bottom lift terminal, said ski area spokesperson Leigh Hierholzer.”It will not affect the operations on the front side of the mountain, so we are still going to stay open until early June,” Hierholzer said.The new terrain is scheduled to open next season. (Summit Daily)


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