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DENVER (AP) – A judge is set to hear oral arguments in May in a lawsuit challenging the federal government’s auctioning of leases for natural gas development on public land on the Roan Plateau.

Environmentalists filed the lawsuit in 2008 seeking to cancel the leases. They say that when the Bureau of Land Management developed a plan allowing for hundreds of wells to be drilled on the plateau, it ignored thousands of comments from some Colorado towns and others who wanted to protect the largely untouched top of the plateau from development. They also say the agency’s environmental analysis of the potential impacts of development was inadequate.

The BLM has said the plan was developed after years of study and public input and that it includes environmental safeguards.



Grand Junction Republican Glen Gallegos announced Friday that he will seek election to the University of Colorado Board of Regents for the Third Congressional District seat.

Tilman Bishop of Grand Junction, the current regent, is not seeking re-election.



Gallegos, 61, is a graduate of Western State College and the University of Northern Colorado, and attended graduate school at the University of Denver.

He has 26 years experience in public education as a teacher, coach, principal and executive director of instruction for districts in Eagle and Mesa counties.

He also has 14 years experience with his family business, The Gallegos Corp., where he was the president of operations overseeing multiple projects and at times a workforce of almost 1,000.

Gallegos currently serves on the Governor’s Education Statewide Leadership Council, the Grand Junction Visitors and Convention Bureau, and the District 51 Strategic Planning Committee. He served on the Mesa State College Board of Trustees and was chairman of the board.

He and his wife, Diane, have four children. His youngest daughter, Erin, is a senior at the University of Colorado.

The city of Glenwood Springs will refinance a series of bond issues approved by city voters in 2000 for new fire department facilities. The refinancing will give the city a net savings of more than $302,000 over the next nine years.

According to city finance director Michael Harman, the general obligation bonds were issued in 2001 as the city’s share for construction of the new downtown fire station, as well as to upgrade the West Glenwood station and purchase fire equipment.

The current balance on the bond debt is $2,085,00 at an average interest rate of 4.98 percent. The new refinanced rate is to be 2.19 percent, according to a memo from Harman to Glenwood Springs City Council for its Jan. 5 meeting. The cost to refinance the bond issue will be $25,000.

Council unanimously approved the bond refinancing, which is scheduled to close on Feb. 1.


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