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Week in Review

CANYON CREEK ” Ashley Schwartz sat in her silver Honda on the shoulder of Highway 6 at the intersection of Canyon Creek Road, wondering if she would be able to sleep in her own bed Thursday evening.

Schwartz lives about four miles up Canyon Creek Road near where the New Castle Fire burned 1240 acres in June. Thursday evening around 6 p.m. heavy rains caused multiple debris flows, closing the road to residents.

“We can’t get in or out,” she said.



“Do you think we’ll be able to go home tonight?” Schwartz asked a Garfield County Deputy.

“It may take a couple of hours,” was his reply.



Garfield County Commissioner Tresi Houpt has a chance to give local government a voice on the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.

On Thursday, Democratic Gov. Bill Ritter named Houpt as one of five new members to the COGCC. The five additional commission members are part of a reform outlined in House Bill 1341. It’s meant to provide a greater diversity of expertise and broadens the panel’s mission.

“I’m absolutely honored to have been selected by the governor. I think this is an incredible opportunity for the state of Colorado to really put together a reasonable and responsible and well-balanced approach to permitting applications,” Houpt said. “We now have people on the commission who have environmental backgrounds, public health backgrounds and wildlife backgrounds.”

The 301 Fire on Holmes Mesa in Rulison was 100 percent contained on July 8.

Crews were again pulled from the fire lines for about an hour July 8 as dry thunderstorms moved into the area producing erratic winds up to 42 mph with some lightning, according to a press release from the Rifle Fire Protection District. No rainfall was recorded in the area.

Fire crews completed their objective of a 100-foot cold trail around this 180-acre fire. Nevertheless, hot spots and smoking debris may occasionally be seen within the burned area’s interior. The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office and the Rifle Fire Protection District will have patrols in the area.

Although open for less than two years, Glenwood Meadows already accounts for more than a fifth of all sales tax revenues being generated in Glenwood Springs, according to a new report.

That news may not be all that surprising, considering that total city sales tax revenues grew by 32 percent last year, the first full year the new shopping complex was open. Perhaps more notable, a new breakdown of city sales tax revenues by region shows that Glenwood Meadows was only part of the reason for the banner sales year, as growth occurred across many parts of town.

The data is revealed in a report issued by city finance director Mike Harman.

It shows that of the nearly $14.9 million in revenue last year, 21.4 percent, or $3.2 million, came from Glenwood Meadows. That development opened in late 2005 and is anchored by the Target and Lowe’s Home Improvement big-box stores.

Glenwood Meadows’ revenues quadrupled over 2005, as it didn’t open until late that year. However, revenue growth occurred almost all over town, with the exception of Roaring Fork Marketplace, which dipped 1.2 percent.

The suspect in the West Glenwood Springs fatal shooting appeared for formal filing of charges Wednesday.

Jesus Hernandez de Jesus, 33, was arrested in Clifton on June 26 on suspicion of first-degree murder and felony menacing. He appeared in a red jumpsuit and had court proceedings translated to him in Spanish by an interpreter using headset devices. Red jumpsuits are given to prisoners held in a maximum security part of the jail.

Ninth Judicial District Judge Daniel Petre indicated that the first-degree murder charge alone carries a minimum sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole to the maximum sentence of the death penalty.

Police believe that Hernandez de Jesus shot to death his 20-year-old nephew, Ricardo Navarrete-Prudencio the night of June 25 at the Ponderosa Lodge. It’s alleged that Hernandez de Jesus shot and killed his nephew because of an affair he had with Hernandez de Jesus’ wife in Florida. Navarrete-Prudencio told his mother he feared for his life and planned to return to Mexico that week to avoid his uncle, according to an arrest affidavit.


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