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Screenshot from GrassRoots TV

Aspen Valley Hospital is only seeing a “slight volume” of patients with symptoms of COVID-19, according to an update from CEO Dave Ressler in Thursday’s Pitkin County virtual community meeting. Since the beginning of the outbreak, the hospital has admitted 18 patients. One is still in the hospital, and “all but two” of the other patients were discharged to recover at home.

Screenshot from GrassRoots TV

Aspen Valley Hospital has admitted 10 patients with symptoms of COVID-19 since the outbreak began. Two are currently at the hospital; one is in critical condition. In Pitkin County’s online community meeting Thursday, Dave Ressler, the hospital’s CEO, said patient volumes are light but they are seeing sicker patients than before.

Garfield County

Pitkin and Garfield Counties are working together to expand broadband to remote areas of their counties by creating the Garfield Pitkin Broadband Authority Board. 

At the joint work session on Tuesday, Pitkin County and Garfield County approved moving forward with the formal creation of the board, which will be responsible for the long-term operations of the fixed-wireless broadband service. 

Tammy Terwelp / Aspen Public Radio

Governor Jared Polis has issued a public health order with new, aggressive measures to slow the spread of COVID-19.

 Gatherings and events are now limited to no more than 10 people.  Retail stores are allowed to remain open with fewer than 10 people in the store at once. Restaurants can still have take-out service, but only five or fewer people can wait for food at a time.   The new order will run through April 17. 

via Pitkin County

Health officials and community leaders livestreamed answers to questions from residents about COVID-19 during a Pitkin County community meeting Monday. Local leaders emphasized the importance of social distancing to stem the spread of the virus, and they provided updates on topics ranging from testing for coronavirus to getting food to people who need it.

The Pitkin County Incident Management Team and Pitkin County Public Health Department are hosting a virtual community meeting on Monday, March 16 at 3 p.m. MST. 

Participants can watch the Community Meeting at https://zoom.us/j/571198559​ Meeting ID: 571 198 559.

It will also be streamed by Grassroots and Pitkin County.

You can also listen only to the meeting by calling (669) 900-6833 or (929) 205-6099, meeting ID 571198559# 

Molly Dove / Aspen Public Radio

Editor's Note: This interview is part of a series on the Basalt mayoral race that takes place on April 7. Aspen Public Radio Morning Edition host and reporter Molly Dove sat down with all three candidates, Bill Kane, Rob Leavitt and Bill Infante in their favorite place in Basalt.

Molly Dove / Aspen Public Radio

Editor's Note: This interview is the second in a series on the Basalt mayoral race, taking place on April 7. Aspen Public Radio Morning Edition host and reporter Molly Dove sat down with all three candidates, Bill Kane, Rob Leavitt and Bill Infante, in their favorite place in Basalt.

Basalt mayoral candidate Rob Leavitt sits in a wooden chair sipping on hot tea alongside the Roaring Fork River in Willits. Looking straight ahead across the river, he points out the lot is empty and he wants to keep it that way. Encouraging slow growth in Basalt is one main reason why he is running for mayor.

Molly Dove / Aspen Public Radio

Editor's Note: This interview is the first in a series on the Basalt mayoral race, taking place on April 7. Aspen Public Radio Morning Edition host and reporter Molly Dove sat down with all three candidates, Bill Kane, Rob Leavitt and Bill Infante, in their favorite place in Basalt. 

Sitting at a small table in CC's Cafe, Kane, a Roaring Fork Valley resident for 46 years, said his previous experience as Basalt's town manager, paired with other leadership and communication experience, makes him the best candidate to be mayor.

City of Glenwood Springs / Facebook

The City of Glenwood Springs is holding its first virtual town hall Tuesday to discuss the city’s infrastructure and 2020 projects.

Jonathan Godes, the mayor of Glenwood Springs, says it will allow more residents to be informed by getting information directly from the city council.

City of Champaign Police Department

The Town of Carbondale released the names of the four finalists for the chief of police position Tuesday. 

The four candidates are Lee Damuth, Sean Dugan, David Shaffer and Kirk Wilson. 

Final Application of Basalt River Park / Town of Basalt

The Basalt River Park project has been long-debated, but a plan for the campus could be finalized as early as Thursday at town council's meeting. 

The proposed $1 million project includes public portions, like the park itself and an outdoor area for concerts and other events. It also includes privately-funded commercial spaces and 24 residential units, both affordable and market-rate. 

Alex Hager / Aspen Public Radio

Tuesday night, Snowmass Town Council discussed the latest plans for a redevelopment of Snowmass Center. This week’s meeting focused largely on parking. Some council members, including mayor Markey Butler, said current plans don’t include sufficient parking. 

via Google Streetview

 

Carbondale is moving forward with plans to reduce traffic and improve bike and pedestrian access on 8th Street, which intersects Main Street near the end of downtown. The town says people raised concerns about narrow sidewalks and limited access for bikes on a street with plenty of car traffic in residential areas.

City of Glenwood Springs via Facebook

Glenwood Springs holds a ribbon cutting ceremony for the 27th Street Bridge at 2 pm. Wednesday. The bridge reopened in late December after months of construction and delays. Now, the city says things are running smoothly so far, and all that remains are a few finishing touches.

Elise Thatcher

Colorado is holding its first presidential primary in 20 years on March 3.

Ballots were mailed to registered voters on Feb. 10. If you are a registered as a Democrat or Republican, you will receive that party's ballot. If you are not registered with a party, you will be sent both party's primary ballots and will be allowed to only return one. 

5280fire.com

Joseph Deras started his new role last week as Glenwood Springs Chief of Police. He recently moved to the valley from Gilroy, CA, where he was police captain. Deras says he wanted to move to Glenwood Springs to leave behind the fast-paced lifestyle in California.

Morning Edition host and reporter Molly Dove visited Chief Deras in his office to talk about his new role. She asked about his transition to Roaring Fork Valley life.

Danny Eastwood via Creative Commons

The Town of Snowmass Village signed a resolution in support of a state bill that would repeal language banning local governments from regulating plastics. 

Existing language, signed into law in 2017, preempts local governments from requiring or prohibiting “the use or sale of specific types of plastic materials or products or restrict or mandate containers, packaging, or labeling for any consumer products.”

Creativity103 via Creative Commons

A recycling dropoff center in Basalt shut down on Friday after Pitkin County pulled funding, and Basalt and Eagle County couldn’t pay new higher rates to keep it open. Now, the town and Eagle County will host a pair of events where people can bring hard-to-dispose of items, such as large electronics, paint, motor oil, tires and yard waste. 

 

City of Aspen

The City of Aspen is moving forward with an updated budget and timeline for the next phase of affordable housing at Burlingame Ranch. The planned development would include 79 affordable condos adjacent to the existing Burlingame Ranch, which is across from Aspen Pitkin County airport.

Candidates for Basalt Town Council, Basalt mayor and the Carbondale Board of Trustees on the April 7 ballot were announced Monday.

Running for the three open town council seats are incumbent Jennifer Riffle and newcomers Tiffany Haddad, Glenn Drummond, David Knight, Elyse Hottel and Kirk "Dieter" Schindler. The three candidates with the highest number of votes will be elected onto the council. 

Elise Thatcher

Monday is the deadline to turn in nomination packets to run for Basalt Town Council and Carbondale’s Board of Trustees for the April 7 election.

As of Thursday, Carbondale City Clerk Cathy Derby said the three candidates who are up for re-election picked up packets, as well as two new candidates. So far, only trustee Marty Silverstein dropped off his paperwork. 

via Wikimedia Commons

 

 

On Wednesday, the Pitkin County Board of Commissioners will consider raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco to 21. Under the new measure, the county would fine retailers $1,000 if they are caught selling to underage people.

via Google Earth

Wednesday and Thursday night, the City of Aspen is hosting public open houses to gather input input on an affordable housing development at the Aspen Lumberyard near the Aspen Airport Business Center. 

Previous meetings gave the city guidance on what kind of facilities will be included in the project. Public input and conversations with city council identified desires for housing, parking space, childcare facilities and easy access to public transportation.

Molly Dove / Aspen Public Radio

The City of Glenwood Springs filed a motion Monday to intervene in Rocky Mountain Resources’ lawsuit against Garfield County.

The controversial mining company operates the Mid-Continent Quarry just north of Glenwood Springs. It filed federal and state lawsuits suggesting Garfield County has no authority over their limestone mining operations after the county cited the company for violating their special-use permit.

Elise Thatcher

Starting Tuesday, Basalt residents who want to run for one of the three open Basalt Town Council seats or for mayor can pick up their paperwork and start gathering signatures.

Basalt Town Councilman Bill Infante will hold an event that morning at Starbucks in Willits from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. to answer questions from potential candidates.

Colorado Department of Revenue / Division of Motor Vehicles

Beginning Thursday, Jan. 2, immigrants who are in the U.S. illegally can be issued a valid state driver's license from the Glenwood Springs Division of Motor Vehicles.

The Colorado Road and Community Safety Act, passed in 2013, allowed undocumented immigrants to obtain these drivers licenses, but only from four Division of Motor Vehicle offices in the state.

Vaping360 via Creative Commons

Just after Christmas, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration raised the nationwide minimum age to buy tobacco and nicotine vaping products to 21. Pitkin County health officials, who had previously sought local regulation to reduce youth tobacco use, are still pressing on with plans to make the same change in the county.

Alex Hager / Aspen Public Radio

Across the nation, upgrades are coming to the way wireless signal reaches the phone in your pocket. Small cell technology, as it’s called, will lead to the installation of lots of new transmitters. Due to a combination of state and federal regulations, Aspen will not have much control over that process when the cells come to town.

Vaping360 via Creative Commons

Colorado has the highest rate of youth electronic cigarette use in the nation, and use among high schoolers in Pitkin County is among the highest in the state. Now, the county is considering measures to change that.

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