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Alamosa County expands solar

Posted: Thursday, Aug 21st, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY, A 1041 permit transfer the Alamosa County Commissioners (ACC) unanimously granted SunPower Wednesday morning set the wheels in motion for the California-based company's third Valley facility, the Hooper Solar Project, to break ground this fall.
"We are all ready to go," said SunPower Permit Compliance Manager James Diven yesterday about the project during the 1041
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Dogs have their day in Alamosa

Posted: Thursday, Aug 21st, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- Alamosa city council went to the dogs last night.
Councilmen unanimously approved a resolution establishing a dog park at Lee Fields east of the city recreation center. City Parks & Recreation Director Heinz Bergann said he hoped to see the park in place before the end of the year.
He added he hoped to see a
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SLV demonstrates love in a good pair of jeans

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 20th, 2014
Courier editor
VALLEY -- San Luis Valley residents and businesses are sending love to Haiti -- in blue jeans.
When local Pastor Jeff Maskevich approached Farm Store Manager Brenda Cooper at the Monte Vista Co-op about a cash gift to help build church benches at a Haitian mission he founded in Kilbetay, she went a step further and donated 120
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Alamosa board reviews sex ed

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 20th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA, During an Alamosa Board of Education (ABOE) conversation about curriculum Monday night, the concern was instead parent approval more so than meeting any outside standards regarding the Alamosa School District's sex education policy.
In a second policy reading, the ABOE took into consideration whether it is appropriate and necessary for parents to state their reasons for
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Mysterious pattern found in field

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 19th, 2014
Courier staff writer
LA JARA -- What happened in Dave Valdez' oat field last Friday is still up for debate.
While out chopping alfalfa, Valdez discovered a section of his oat field west of La Jara was flattened all the way to the ground, and all of the crops stems in the afflicted area were settled in an easterly direction.
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Photo session at falls proves fatal

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 19th, 2014
Courier editor
HINSDALE COUNTY -- Trying to get "the perfect shot," a 22-year-old Michigan man fell to his death at North Clear Creek Falls on Friday.
Hinsdale County Sheriff Ron Bruce reported that Dylan Michael Jarsma, 22, from Kalamazoo, Michigan, died Friday morning after apparently losing his footing at the top of the falls where he was taking pictures.
Jarsma's
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Several injured in ATV accidents

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 19th, 2014
Courier editor
VALLEY -- ATV accidents this weekend resulted in some serious injuries and one felony arrest.
Shelly Whelchel, 47, of Fort Worth, Texas, was arrested on DUI and felony vehicular assault charges on Saturday after rolling a 2014 Polaris RZR on Embargo Creek Road, Forest Service Road 650. Her passenger, a 52-year-old female from Amarillo, Texas, was flown to
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Wolf Creek Village decision delayed

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 19th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- A decision expected this week regarding the Village at Wolf Creek proposed land exchange has been delayed again.
Rio Grande National Forest Public Affairs Specialist Mike Blakeman said on Monday the review process is taking longer than expected at the regional and federal levels, so the decision that was anticipated to be handed down this week
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County gets legal with weeds

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 19th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY, A plan is in place to manage Alamosa County's noxious weeds.
Earlier this month, the Alamosa County Commissioners (ACC) unanimously approved the Alamosa County Noxious Weed Management Plan, which also brings the county into compliance with the Colorado Noxious Weed Act.
"Prevention, early detection and early treatment are the most cost effective means for weed
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Conservation districts arise from the dust

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
Program Director
The Rio Grande Watershed Conservation and Education Initiative
VALLEY -- The Dust Bowl of the 1930's covered 300,000 square miles of territory located in Kansas, Texas, western Oklahoma, eastern Colorado, and New Mexico.
With successive storms, the wind and the flying dust cut off wheat stalks at ground level and tore out the roots. Blowing
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Water forecasts, curtailments, increased

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- A wetter year than expected has brought the Rio Grande up to 95 percent of the long-term average and the Conejos River system to 71 percent.
The way the Rio Grande Compact works, however, nearly half of the flows on the Conejos River system must currently be sent downriver.
Colorado Division of Water Resources Division 3
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Details sketchy on Aragon murder

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
ALBUQUERQUE N.M. -- There are no police reports at this time on the shooting death of former Antonito resident Clifford Aragon.
Aragon, 58, was shot and killed in Albuquerque last week after an incident in which a man claims he was attacked by Aragon and then shot him in self-defense.
The Albuquerque Police Department has not released much more information
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Devil’s Playground cleanup continues

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY, Soon it will look like no one was ever there at all.
Over the next six weeks, the defunct Oriental Refinery south of the Rio Grande Railroad tracks in Alamosa will endure a mighty cleanup, said Alamosa County Code Enforcement Officer Jinger Tilden in an interview Tuesday. Conoco Phillips, site owner and reclamation overseers, is
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Alamosa TCAP writing scores are up

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA, While 2014 Transitional Colorado Assessment Program (TCAP) writing scores decreased across the state, the Alamosa School District's (ASD) did the opposite in nearly all grades tested.
The Colorado Department of Education (CDE) Thursday released the 2014 TCAP writing, reading and math scores.
The ASD saw improvements across the board in writing, but math and reading scores
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Well rules heading into home stretch

Posted: Friday, Aug 15th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- Years in the making, rules to govern wells in the San Luis Valley are likely one meeting away.
In Alamosa yesterday Colorado Division of Water Resources State Engineer Dick Wolfe told the advisory group assisting his office in developing the rules that he expects next month's meeting to be the last one before he submits groundwater
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Alamosa County arrests ‘two-bit’ thief

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 13th, 2014
ALAMOSA COUNTY -- After Daniel Steven Espinoza's friend turned him down when he asked for money, Espinoza apparently didn't take no for an answer.
He allegedly went back to his friend's house when he wasn't home and took a bottle containing several hundred dollars in quarters. Espinoza, 26, was taken into custody on charges of burglary and theft.
Authorities received
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County collects tires, school supplies

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 13th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY -- Within four hours last Saturday morning, 3,950 tires were turned in to Alamosa County, resulting in hundreds of school supplies and almost $2,000 collected for the Valley elementary schools.
"We had a great turnout from the community," said Alamosa County Code Enforcement Officer Jinger Tilden Wednesday in an interview about the tire collection, which was
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Markey shares goals for state

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 13th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- Colorado State Treasurer Candidate Betsy Markey believes the office should do more than manage investments and pay bills.
"I would like to bring more innovation into the office," she said during a recent visit to Alamosa.
The Democratic candidate for the state's top fiscal office said she believed the treasurer should be involved in helping move
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County debates marijuana excise tax

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 13th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY -- Should the Alamosa County Commissioners (ACC) present a marijuana excise tax decision to voters, it won't likely happen until after the November 2014 election.
In a work session last week, the ACC met with the Alamosa County Land Use Department (LU) to follow up on an initial marijuana cultivation and production discussion in July,
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Residents give input on lottery funding

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 13th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- Colorado's lottery ticket to the future should balance preservation with growth, San Luis Valley residents told Great Outdoors (GOCO) leaders during a recent planning session in Alamosa.
Using the consultant The Civic Canopy, GOCO is working on a plan for the future and is conducting public meetings around the state to gather local input. Alamosa was
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Aragon killed in N.M.

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 12th, 2014
ALBUQUERQUE, NM -- Clifford Aragon, 58, formerly of Antonito, was murdered last Monday night in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Details are sketchy, since the alleged killer is still on the loose.
Apparently, Aragon and another man were together at a location in the city when a person dressed in black confronted them and began shooting.
Aragon was also reported
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Celebrate Colorado grown

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 12th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA -- Potatoes, peaches, corn and cantaloupe were on display Sunday when the Choose Colorado Tour hit Safeway in Alamosa to celebrate local foods.
"We are here today to educate the public about the bounty of Colorado products available," said Colorado Proud Marketing Specialist Wendy White. "People make a difference when they select a Colorado product. They are
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EEOC is suing Mountain King

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 12th, 2014
DENVER -- MountainKing Potatoes, the name under which Smokin' Spuds, Inc. and Farming Technology, Inc., operate a potato warehouse in Monte Vista, created a hostile work environment by allowing managers to sexually harass female employees, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit it filed Friday, according to a press release.
The EEOC also charged, according
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City delays cell tower approval

Posted: Tuesday, Aug 12th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- Alamosa city officials face the challenge of accommodating telecommunications while preserving aesthetics at the city's southern gateway.
After spending the majority of their August 6 council meeting hearing presentations, recommendations and discussions regarding a proposed 120-foot Viaero cell tower on Railroad Avenue at Alamosa's southern entrance, the council on a 6-1 vote sent the matter back
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SLV Fair ends Friday with Round Robin

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
MONTE VISTA -- Grand and Reserve Champions in the swine, beef, horse, sheep and goat species competed in the SLV Fair Round Robin show Friday morning at Ski Hi Arena in Monte Vista.
In addition to showing their own species, the competitors were required to show an animal from each of the species during the competition.
The Round Robin show
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Tu Casa to receive Governor's Award Monday

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
VALLEY -- Tu Casa, Inc. will be awarded the 2014 Governor's Service Award for Outstanding Nonprofit Organization, on Monday, August 11, at the State Capitol. The Governor's Service Awards are presented in recognition and appreciation to individuals, community/civic leaders, various organizations, and AmeriCorps members for their outstanding contribution to volunteerism and service throughout the State of Colorado.
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Alamosa County inmate numbers remain low

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA COUNTY -- Inmates are not overcrowding the Alamosa County Jail too much this year.
In the past, the jail, which was built to accommodate about 50 inmates, was accustomed to housing 100 plus inmates. On Wednesday, Alamosa County Sheriff Dave Stong told the Alamosa County Commissioners (ACC) during their regular meeting the inmate population was still
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Cycle slides off Hwy 160

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
Jim Campbell, 69, of Alamosa was transported to the hospital in Alamosa Thursday afternoon with minor injuries after the 2009 Harley Davidson motorcycle he was driving slid on Highway 160, and he was thrown off. According to the Colorado State Patrol, Campbell was heading west on Highway 160 when traffic slowed, causing him to lose control of his motorcycle.  His
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Bear causes fatal crash

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
ANTONITO -- A New Mexico man died yesterday afternoon when his motorcycle hit a bear on Colorado 17, approximately 13 miles south of Antonito.
The Colorado State Patrol had not yet released the name of the deceased, pending notification of next of kin, but stated that he was a 63-year-old male out of Aztec New Mexico.
According to the
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BBQ heats up Alamosa

Posted: Friday, Aug 8th, 2014
Courier editor
ALAMOSA -- They came, they cooked, they conquered.
And they'll be back.
Only in its second year, one of Alamosa's newest events -- SLV Beat the Heat BBQ, Brews and Chili Competition -- drew about 30 contestants from local cooks to national celebrities who competed for top honors in the Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) sanctioned event.
"We
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