MUST READ: Local News Briefs …
Five elementary schools in School District 51 are participating in a Universal Breakfast Program for the current school year 2013-14: Chipeta Elementary, Clifton Elementary, Dos Rios Elementary, Nisley Elementary and Rocky Mountain Elementary.
What that means is that children attending any of the schools listed will not be charged for their student eating breakfast at school. Based on the high percentage of eligible Free and Reduced students at each of the above schools, these schools are eligible to participate in this federal program.
Meet the head librarian
Joseph Sanchez, the new director of Mesa County Libraries, is traveling throughout the county to meet with local residents at a series of open-house events. Here’s the schedule:
• Orchard Mesa open house — 5-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 5, Orchard Mesa Branch Library, 230 Lynwood St.
• Fruita open house — 5-7 p.m. Monday, Sept. 9, Fruita Branch Library, 324 N. Coulson St.
Your newest city councilor will be …
The GJ City Council is getting ready to choose a replacement for former councilor Rick Brainard who resigned in July. They will appoint the new member for the at-large seat at the Sept. 5 city council meeting. The following have thrown their hat in the ring for the job: Teresa Black, Riecke Claussen, Charles Michael Elliott, Tom Kenyon, Barbara Traylor Smith and Reginald Wall. Michael Colthrap withdrew earlier this week due to a work schedule conflict. Spoiler alert: Read Jim Hoffman’s column on page 15; he’s got some insider knowledge and reveals who they will appoint.
Lunchtime centering prayer
A new ecumenical Centering Prayer group is joining the four already meeting in the valley. It will begin on Thursday, Sept. 5, and meet weekly from 12:15-12:45 p.m. at First Baptist Church (at the corner of Seventh and Grand). Centering Prayer is a form of monastic prayer done in silence and is a means of deepening one’s spiritual life. For more info, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reining them in
A Facebook group called “Rein in the Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce” has recently unveiled a new website, GJChamber.info, to highlight their grievances against the local chamber.
The site addresses the GJ Chamber’s expansion into influencing local political government, among other topics, with links to published media articles and local opinion pieces.
Burn season is back
Fall burn season will start Sept. 1 and continue through Oct. 31. Before burning you are required to obtain a burn permit. Grand Junction, Lower Valley and Clifton fire departments issue permits for their response areas. The MC Health Dept. issues permits for all other areas in Mesa County. Burning is allowable only for dry weeds, garden waste, irrigation ditches, and tree or shrub trimmings less than 1-inch in diameter.
Permits cost $15. For more information go to http://www.gjcity.org/GJFDBurnPermits.aspx.
Horse gather coming up
The BLM has refined its wild horse removal estimate and is scheduled to begin gathering 15-25 wild horses from the Little Cliffs Wild Horse Range Sept. 3 to conserve range conditions for horses. Horses to be removed will be 5 years old or younger. The BLM believes the range can sustain 90-150 horses, but the current herd population is at 155. A gather at Little Cliffs has not been held since 2007.
This gather will employ a bait- and water-trapping technique not used before on this range. No helicopters will be used for this round-up.
Airport gets some financial help
The U.S. Dept. of Transportation recently awarded a competitive grant to Grand Junction Regional Airport for $3.69 million to construct a new terminal building. Other regional airports in Colorado received grants as well including Alamosa, Gunnison, Pueblo and more, but GJ’s was the biggest amount in this round of awards.
More library news
Patrons of Mesa County Libraries should be aware of two upcoming closure dates for all library locations and the seasonal addition of Sunday hours at the Central Library. Here are details:
• LABOR DAY: All Mesa County Libraries locations will be closed Monday, Sept. 2, for the Labor Day holiday.
• SEASONAL SUNDAY HOURS: The Central library will be open 1-5 p.m. on Sundays beginning Sept. 8.
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Current Basalt officials say the town government has violated the Colorado Taxpayers’ Bill of Right by increasing the property tax mill levy over the prior years 10 times since the mid-2000s. Two former mayors contend the mill levy could be adjusted in any given year as long as it didn’t exceed the mill levy in 1994. It’s a $2 million question.