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Week in Review

Daniel Jenkins woke up at about 2:30 a.m. Tuesday to sounds of his dog, Muhammad, barking and glass breaking. He ran into the kitchen and saw a whole wall engulfed in flames.Dustin Weller and his wife Samantha woke up to Jenkins bursting through their door screaming that there was a fire. In shock and half-awake, they ran out of the duplex at 2119 Blake Ave. with barely any clothes on. Dustin had just purchased the duplex with his father in September.One person went to the hospital for smoke inhalation, and someone else was treated for a cut.The fire started on the south side of the house where there used to be a deck with storage below it. There was speculation about whether or not a propane grill on the deck or gasoline for lawn mowers below the deck caused the fire. But Glenwood Springs Fire Department Chief Mike Piper said the damage was extensive enough that it would be very difficult to determine the cause. The propane and gasoline contributed to the blaze, he said.Firefighters fought the blaze until declaring it under control at 4:16 a.m. and clearing the scene around 8 a.m.

After a contentious debate attended by nearly 100 people, Glenwood Springs City Council cleared the path Thursday night for eventual construction of a city trail to the southern part of town.Council voted 4-2 to proceed with building a concrete trail between Hager Lane and the Roaring Fork River near the Sunlight Bridge, and continuing a little more than a mile south. They also authorized city staff to use condemnation if needed to acquire property for the trail, which has been planned since the early 1990s.Weve worked very, very hard for many, many years, and now weve come to the point where a critical piece of this trail system is not built and needs to be built, Mayor Bruce Christensen said.More than 40 people spoke to council about the issue; about 15 opposed the trail plan, with many of the others favoring it and several offering mixed opinions or suggesting compromises.

A man with a big plan met with the directors of the Colorado River Water Conservation District Wednesday to promote his idea for a 400-mile pipeline to carry water from Flaming Gorge Reservoir in Wyoming and Utah to eastern Colorado. The pipeline would connect into a utilities trench along Interstate 80 and cross into Colorado south of Laramie, then connect with municipal water systems as far south as Pueblo.Aaron Millions $3 billion, privately funded project would bring between 165,000 and 250,000 acre feet of water annually to Front Range homes, ranches and farms. An acre foot of water is 350,000 gallons or the amount of water a family of four would use on average in one year.Flaming Gorge Reservoir is fed by the Green River and impounds more than 3 million acre feet of water.



Lack of affordable housing in the area is a growing problem for the Grand River Hospital District. Human resources director Michael Weerts told the Garfield County commissioners Monday that employees are leaving because they cant find a place to live or rent, and that could affect the organizations ability to provide quality care.The district, which employs 300 people in the Grand River Medical Center and E. Dene Moore Nursing Home, has between a 5 and 15 percent vacancy rate at a given time, Weerts said.The key to having quality people (is keeping them) over time so they gain experience, he said. People come to the valley to take jobs offered by the hospital district only to leave because they cannot find an affordable place to own or rent.

The Roaring Fork School District Re-1 recently settled legal proceedings against T&S Properties, whose property it had condemned for the expansion of Glenwood Springs High School.RFSD had appraised the property at $465,000, and the property owner, Terry Fattor, had appraised it at $900,000, according to RFSD. After negotiations and mediation in district court, the final amount paid for the property is $711,250.T&S Properties used to sit behind the True Value Hardware store on Grand Avenue and 15th Street. Fattor couldnt be reached for comment.The $38.1 million cost to expand the high school was funded by a bond issue passed by voters in November 2004.


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