News in Brief |

News in Brief

So far, Burlingame Ranch opponent Toni Kronberg has risen to the challenge of a debate on the controversial worker housing project.

Burlingame proponents, who call themselves HOPE [Housing Our People Environmentally] issued the debate challenge last week.

The event, to be filmed by GrassRoots TV, will take place Thursday from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the downstairs meeting room at the Pitkin County Library, according to organizer Frank Peters. The public is welcome.

Local radio newscaster Jim Lawrence has agreed to moderate.

Outspoken Burlingame foe Dwight Shellman has indicated he won’t be able to attend on Thursday, due to a scheduling conflict, Peters said. As of yesterday morning, only Kronberg had signed on to argue the anti-Burlingame position, he said.

For the pro-Burlingame side, the debate team could include any of a number of active HOPE members, including City Councilwoman Rachel Richards, County Commissioner Mick Ireland, Marty Horowitz and Jackie Kasabach, Peters said.

HOPE has scheduled a follow-up debate on April 14 at 7 p.m. in the City Council chambers, if there’s interest.

An emergency resolution passed by Pitkin County commissioners Tuesday will help the airport move forward with some summer construction plans.

The resolution accepts up to $18 million in grants from the Federal Aviation Administration for future projects at Sardy Field. Although the airport had been looking at a multimillion-dollar shortfall for some summer projects, some of this money and some financial wrangling will close that gap, according to airport Director Jim Elwood.

A contractor’s bid to relocate the airport’s taxiway and build a new airport rescue and firefighting building came in over budget earlier this year, threatening the projects. But Elwood said more recently the contractor has reduced its bid amount by more than $600,000 and the airport has slightly reduced the scope of the project.

Along with a reduced price from the project’s engineer and money from the FAA, the airport’s shortfall has been reduced to $550,000.

Ted Askew concludes his run as KAJX’s classical music DJ this afternoon. Askew has been tapped by Minnesota Public Radio to join its team at Classical 24, a national classical music service produced by Minnesota Public Radio, American Public Media, and Public Radio International.

Askew will be the overnight announcer, broadcasting to an audience of approximately 1 million listening on between 200 and 300 stations. “It’s a great opportunity that I just couldn’t pass up,” Askew said.

Peter Johnson, a veteran of classical music radio, will take over the afternoon broadcast at KAJX beginning tomorrow. KAJX Executive Director Brent Gardner-Smith said the station plans to carry on its normal programming through the spring while a permanent replacement is found for Askew. He also said the change would not affect programming involving the Aspen Music Festival and School.

Colorado Department of Transportation crews will clear away the rock material that remains behind a barrier along Highway 82 today.

The rocks, at Shale Bluffs just upvalley of Brush Creek Road, have been behind a cement barrier since a slide this winter. The cleanup work will be done between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., near mile marker 35. Upvalley traffic will be reduced to one lane in that area.

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