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Log Cabin Republicans disinvited from Western Conservative Summit

The Colorado Statesman

The organizers of this year’s Western Conservative Summit — billed as “the premiere summer destination for Americans who still believe in freedom, family, faith, and the future” — this week told a Republican organization devoted to advocating for gays and lesbians that it can’t formally participate in the June conference in Denver.

Phil Washington — The Accidental Transit Manager

The Colorado Statesman

Forty years ago a 17-year-old African American youth residing in the tough Altgeld Gardens public housing project on Chicago’s Southside decided his best escape was to enlist in the United States Army. (Nearly a decade later, another young man, named Barack Obama, would arrive there as a community organizer.) Twenty-four years into his career Phil Washington had risen through the Army enlisted ranks to Command Sergeant Major, stationed at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs.

Budget heading back to JBC

The Colorado Statesman

The House finished its work on the 2015-16 budget Thursday, returning it to the Joint Budget Committee to work out differences with the Senate version.

But last-minute drama could have sent the budget back $20 million out of balance.

The annual budget bill passed on a 45-20 vote Thursday morning. Eleven Republicans voted for the 2015-16 budget along with the House’s 34 Democrats.

The day before, the House went on a bit of spending spree, approving a dozen amendments to the $26.4 billion budget.

GJ, Glenwood Springs elect new council members

The Colorado Statesman

A businessman and a planner won the Glenwood Springs city council at-large seats in Tuesday’s municipal election, and in Grand Junction the victors were a self-proclaimed forward-thinking progressive and a former corporate executive.

In Glenwood Springs, businessman and homebuilder Steve Davis won the Ward 1 election with 59.38 percent of the vote and Planning and Zoning Commission chair Kathy Trauger won the at-large seat with 62.32 percent.

Both victors are in agreement that the narrow, dangerous Hwy. 82 bridge through central Glenwood Springs needs to be replaced,

Wayposts

By
The Colorado Statesman

Davidson leaving Clerks Assoc.

Former Secretary of State Donetta Davidson announced this week that she is stepping down as executive director of the Colorado County Clerks Association on June 30.

Yesteryear

A new convention center, and a visit from the first lady

The Colorado Statesman

Twenty-five Years Ago this week in The Colorado Statesman … Construction companies handed Denver Mayor Federico Peña a “giant skeleton key, finished in brilliant gold” to the new Colorado Convention Center, which was set to open on time and on budget. “Each of you need to share in the celebration,” said Phelps Construction president Jerry Morgensen as he handed the enormous key to Peña.

Colorado Water Plan all about West Slope water diversion

The Colorado Statesman

GRAND JUNCTION — James Eklund, director of the Colorado Water Conservation Board, told Club 20 in late March that the “seven points of consensus” thus far approved as a preliminary step in finalizing the Colorado Water Plan requested by Gov. John Hickenlooper represent a “new paradigm” in Front Range and Western Slope relations regarding water, but it’s really the same old paradigm: The Front Range wants and needs the Western Slope’s water.

Six of the seven points mention a “TMD,” short for transmountain water diversion.

‘Economic gardening’ supports local business efforts

The Colorado Statesman

It was 1987, and Chris Gibbons had a big problem. He was the business affairs director for the city of Littleton, and the biggest employer in town, Martin Marietta, had just announced that it was closing its Littleton operation and cutting 7,500 jobs.

To fill that huge hole in the local economy, Gibbons could have tried the traditional economic development strategy, focusing on luring another giant out-of-state company by offering it tax incentives, utility rebates and workforce training subsidies.

How does the world see race?

The Colorado Statesman

The 67th annual Conference on World Affairs at the University of Colorado Boulder campus kicked off with a provocative keynote address by Pulitzer Prize winning columnist (2004) Leonard Pitts of the Miami Herald. In a century when our first African-American president has called for a vigorous national dialogue on race and his African-American Attorney General, Eric Holder, has suggested we are all too cowardly to engage in an honest discussion of race, Pitts stands out as a voice that regularly addresses racial issues.

Returning to the political fray

The Colorado Statesman

Writing about politics is what I’ve always wanted to do.

There was a time when I would have said I wanted to be the next Helen Thomas, front row center at the Presidential press conferences. Granted the first and last question. Ending the conference with the tried and true phrase “Thank you Mr. (or, let’s be honest, Madame) President”.