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News in Brief

PAONIA Highway 133 is now open to traffic full time.A major rockfall at mile marker 29, near Paonia Reservoir, had kept the road closed since late April. The Colorado Department of Transportation announced Wednesday that the slope above the road has been stabilized.There will be occasional single-lane closures through Thursday, May 17, in order to repair the damaged roadway and barriers.For more information or updates, go to http://www.cotrip.org and check “Alerts & Restrictions,” or dial 511 toll-free from anywhere in the state.

A river runs near itASPEN The Pitkin County commissioners on Wednesday gave the go-ahead for Scott Russell to shore up the eroding bank of the Roaring Fork River below his home.Russell is building a house on River Bend Road just west of the Lazy Glen subdivision. He appealed a special hearing officer’s decision denying him the right to shore up the bank as he wanted, which would give a lower window a better view. Commissioners denied the appeal but gave Russell the option to work with county staff to shore up the home.”It’s unbelievable how fast the bank is eroding,” Russell said. But neighbors spoke out against his plans, saying Russell is trying to gain a better view by cutting down the bank.”It’s a scary situation,” said Russell’s neighbor Joan Mecseri. “He should’ve known better than to build that close to the river.”Mecseri hopes Russell can stabilize the riverbank and revegetate without gaining an advantage in view.”It’s a much bigger problem than just this,” said Catherine Berg, a planning engineer with community development. Berg said the bank will continue to erode and that it is important to stabilize the area, then look at the long term problem all along the stretch.”It’s called Mother Nature,” said Commissioner Patti Clapper, saying that’s what happens when you build near a river.Commissioners rejected Russell’s plans to rebuild a stairway to the riverside and directed Russell to work with county staff on bank stabilization.”This project is essentially a Band-Aid on the problem,” said Commissioner Michael Owsley. “Rivers tend to want to go straight. … And from a geological standpoint, there’s not going to be a neighborhood there one day.”

ASPEN The city of Aspen’s Environmental Health Department will host its first E-Waste Collection days this week: May 11 for businesses and May 12 for residents.For the residential recycling day, citizens should bring their old electronics to the Rio Grande Place parking lot across from Community Banks between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. The event will accept televisions, stereos, computers and monitors, cell phones, printers, fax machines, and most small things that can be plugged in. Guaranteed Recycling Xperts will be on hand to help remove Aspen’s unwanted electronics. GRX is a true “end-of-life” electronics recycler; the company does not resell any equipment and breaks down the components for recycling.For the business recycling day, Aspen based businesses should call John Miller at GRX at (303) 667-8555 as soon as possible to schedule a pickup on May 11. There will be a slight charge for this service.Recycled electronics are 300 percent richer in copper and other metals than mined ore. Each computer monitor contains on average 6 pounds of lead. Dropping off old or broken-down electronic components at the event will help keep the Pitkin County Landfill safe.For more information on the event, call the Environmental Health Department at 920-5039.


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