PROST considers use o/ rec /unds
No boost in to)n se)er rate
Limited monies available 3 A9
Current /ees deemed ade2uate 3 A20
The %agosa *prings
PAGOSA SPRINGS* ARCH-LETA CO-NTY* COLORADO 84447
?OL-@E 403 C NO. 46* TH-RSDAY* A-G-ST 46* 2042
Take care, save a bear
Local sales tax figures show year of growth !y $d &incher Staff Writer
A Colorado Department of Revenue report released last week indicates the sales tax collected by Archuleta County and the Town of Pagosa Springs for June 2012 was $637,361.43, which is down $3,971.16 or .62 percent compared to June of last year; however, the year-to-date sales tax revenue is up .93 percent over 2011. These are the revised numbers received by The SUN on Aug. 12, and not quite as alarming as the first report received on Aug. 9. The number was originally $618,359.94, which is down $22,972.65 or 3.58 percent for the same comparison, which threw the year-to-date number down to only a .26-percent increase over 2011. The confusion came about because there was a difference between
what the county actually received in sales tax and what was reported by CDR. Diane Sorensen, finance director for Archuleta County, gave credit for catching this error to Pagosa Springs Town Clerk April Hessman. The CDR report has since been updated and corrected, and Sorensen vows in the future to tie the amount in the report she receives from CDR to the amount actually received by the county treasurer to provide accurate reporting. Breaking it down by category, retail trade, which is the biggest source of revenue, was $287,247 —$18,997 over last year and up 7.1 percent from last June’s $268,250. The second largest sector, accommodations and food, brought in $113,677 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $104,625 last year, an increase of $9,052 or ! See Sales +,
!y Jindsey !righ/ Staff Writer
SUN photo/Lindsey Bright
-is/ric/ 0i1d1i2e Manager Adrian Archu1e/a prepares /o anes/he/i:e a ;ear cap/ured in /he Aspen Springs area 1as/ =ee>? !ears /ha/ ha@e ;ecoAe nuisances in neigh;orhoods are /rapped, /agged and re1oca/ed? !ears /ha/ re/urn and resuAe nuisance ac/i@i/ies are eu/hani:ed, so Pagosans are reAinded /o /a>e e@ery precau/ion /o no/ a//rac/ ;ears =i/h 2ood /ha/ /he aniAa1s see> prior /o /heir hi;erna/ion?
Info sought in school break-in !y Handi Pierce Staff Writer
An attempted burglary at Pagosa Springs High School Tuesday night has law enforcement officials on the lookout for a suspect and the owner of a bike possibly connected to the incident. According to Det. Scott Maxwell of the Pagosa Springs Police Department, a double-pane window of the school’s weight room was discovered broken early Tuesday morning. An early investigation by Maxwell and Officer Floyd Capistrant revealed that the rock was likely used to break the window, but a “significant amount” of blood found at the scene may mean the culprit cut themselves on the hand or wrist, Maxwell reported. David Hamilton, the school’s principal, said it is unclear if the suspect went out of the weight room and further into the school. At press time, Hamilton was still examining security footage. The PSPD’s K-9 unit later trailed a scent from the scene to a bicycle in the yard of a residence on Eighth Street. The resident reported no ! See /reak-in +,
SUN photo/Randi Pierce
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So far during the 2012 summer, seven black bears in the Pagosa area have been trapped by Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials. Out of those seven bears, two were euthanized in Pagosa. Another one was euthanized in New Mexico. Another one of the bears was killed while crossing the road. All in all, this summer, three black bears have been euthanized in the Pagosa area, and a total of four killed while crossing a street or road. In addition, wildlife officers for Archuleta County have reported receiving around 50 reports of bears entering homes this year. Two of these incidents have ended in the death of the bear, the animals killed by homeowners. The most recent incident took place around 4 a.m. Monday morning at a house located off of U.S. 84. In this incident, the bear had entered the house previously, and the homeowner had taken the necessary precaution in making the bear feel unwelcome. The first time, the bear fled. On Monday morning, however, Wildlife Manager Doug Purcell reported that the bear was in the house instead of fleeing from the homeowner, and it stood its ground. An investigation ensued and found that the owner was in the right to shoot the bear. Purcell explained that a person must be protecting life, whether human or substantial livestock, to be justified in killing a bear. Seeing a bear in the garage or walking across the porch, Purcell said, is not reason enough for killing a bear. If you have issues with a bear in the yard, garage or house, contact one of the wildlife officers in the area by calling Archuleta County Combined Dispatch at 731-2160. Dispatch will then direct your calls to the on-duty wildlife officer. Wildlife Manager Mike Reid said ! See /ear +,
TTC reports project results !y $d &incher
Index Opinion A2 Letters A3 Obituary, Service A7 Corina (artine+ ,a-.e+ /err0 Der2o.0 Outdoors A10 3.S. agen70 .ee2s -o7a- -an.s 97riti7a- ha;itat< =or Pagosa s?0ro7?et Sports A12 (a2ie L0n7h a 2e2;er o= histor0-2a?ing tea2 Business A16 Co-orBest ti7?ets on sa-e noCD (an0 a7tiEities p-anne. Public Notices A17 PREVIEW LiEe Per=or2ers 2 CrossCor. H4 S3DOK3 H8 C-assi=ie.s 28 PagosaSUN.com
Jennifer Green, the director of the Town Tourism Committee, reported to the Pagosa Springs Town Council that May 2012 was the strongest May on record in terms of the collection of lodgers tax, with an increase of $2,133.33 or 9.8 percent over 2011. Year to date, the increase over 2011 is $13,480.57, or 10.81 percent. In a follow-up interview, Green said, “Lodging tax numbers have been up for the last 12 months, but I anticipate July is going to be down because of the fires.” Green explained that, due to the Waldo Fire in the Colorado Springs area, outof-state tourists may have mixed up Colorado Springs and Pagosa Springs, or it could just be that statewide tourism numbers are down because of all of the fires the state experienced during the first part of the summer. In any case, “Fourth of July was a little lighter than usual.”
Revised numbers for April show that the lodgers tax total was up to $16,863.65, just slightly higher than 2011, and the preliminary number for June, $38,302, is 6.13 percent higher than last year, but there is still one more payment coming in. There were 4,444 requests to the TTC for the Pagosa Springs Official Visitor Guide (published by The SUN) in June, and, at 112 percent, it was a significant increase over last year’s June figure. Most of these leads came from www.colorado. com. The traffic numbers for the Visitor Center were also up to 6,840 people for June, which is an increase of 2.3 percent over June 2011. According to Green, these numbers come from the Chamber of Commerce and are easier to collect than tax figures, so they provide a quicker indication of tourism figures. However, Green explained that there isn’t a direct correlation between the number of people who ! See Tourism +,
SUN photo/Randi Pierce
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A2 $ The Pagosa Springs SUN $ Thursday, August 16, 2012
Abandoning the middle ground
Should the Community Development Corporation facilitate a Wal-Mart Community Benefits Agreement?
American voters face critical decisions in November and it would be a refreshing change of pace if they think carefully about issues and are afforded accurate information prior to the day they make a decision. Such a move might engender moderation, for a change. One of the main reasons this scenario will likely not take place on the large stage is that a torrent of political noise blinds people to arguments and evidence that do not harmonize with their established beliefs. Much of the noise is produced by slanted and often false information foisted on the electorate by some of the “news” media and by campaign advertising — as well as by the use of banal and emotional terms and concepts by candidates and their minions. The task of thinking clearly about issues prior to a vote is rendered difficult; the middle ground is lost. A good example of crippling cognitive dissonance (as well as the effects of slogan-laden rhetoric) can be seen in the results of a recent poll of Colorado voters taken by the AARP regarding the November election. Those polled (and we must remember who commissioned the poll and that organization’s interests) were non-retired voters age 50 and older. They were asked about concerns related to the upcoming vote. As could be expected, economic concerns topped the list. A majority of the Boomers are worried about prices rising faster than incomes, about health care costs, about a lack of financial security concerning retirement and about paying too much in taxes. Three of four polled believe they will have to delay retirement. Well more than half do not think they will have enough money saved for retirement. The majority believes they will have to rely on Social Security and Medicare. Ninety percent of those polled think the next president and Congress need to strengthen Social Security and Medicare. The overwhelming majority believes this can be done only with bi-partisan effort (wishful thinking is not always a bad thing, though most often misguided). On a more realistic note, they state candidates have not done a good job explaining positions on Social Security and Medicare. Blindness and the loss of moderation? Remember, the majority of those polled also think they are paying too much in taxes. “Strengthen Social Security and Medicare” at some point means bolstering funding. All federal programs and departments should be made more efficient, with every attempt made to cut waste. But revenues are also key to the survival of vital programs and their effective application. The answer lies on the middle ground, but misinformation and partisan rhetoric keep too many voters off that turf. Some suggest drastic cuts to other federal programs will be necessary. Surely this is the case, but a significant number of people who push for stronger Social Security and Medicare refuse to accept cuts to defense. We’ve lived in a culture of fear since 9/11, foisted on us by members of both parties, and the thought of not spending more than most of the rest of the world’s military powers combined is unacceptable to many voters. What, then, is left? Education? Aid to the infirm, the destitute? Infrastructure? It is going to take cuts everywhere, and it is going to take additional revenues. The answer is in the middle, on moderate ground. We believe this holds true on any issue. But, no. The sloganeering is too intense, the spurs to extremism and partisan responses on both sides of the political fence are too great. The middle ground has no slogans, no recourse to patriotic songs, to empty, emotional rhetoric. And yet, it is the only ground on which all Americans can survive. With all the dissonance, how many of us realize this? Karl Isberg
Poll results (94 Votes)
Yes, it falls within the CDC’s “Yes, absolutely. We need to charge — 50 percent “I’m anti-Wal-Mart. Smaller “I don’t see any reason to do it. towns like this need to protect Wal-Mart’s Wal-Mart— it brings work together. It’s not all about No, but it should advise the profit. There needs to be give town — 15 percent their small businesses and help in money.” and take.” them grow. ” No, it has no place in the process — 35 percent This week online: What should be done to decrease bear-human encounters? Vote at www.pagosasun.com
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Taken from SUN files of August 18, 1922 If the practice is not stopped, the heavy hand of the law will descend upon the Pagosa boys who have been in the habit of utilizing the river near the town pumping station as a swimming hole. Owing to the fact that hunters at various times have failed to close all gates at the Ed. Waechter ranch on Coal creek, thus releasing his cattle from pasture, Mr. Waechter has been compelled to enforce nontresspassing orders, signs to that effect being placed about his holdings. The new steel truss bridge across the San Juan River at the east end of Pagosa Street was still listed on August 1 among the federal aid projects “on which plans are being prepared.”
Taken from SUN files of August 20, 1937 The new registration and information station located at the top of Putnam Hill three miles west of town for the purpose of registering cars going to the upper Piedra section, with Sam Ruybalid, as registrar, reports the following states represented: New Mexico ranks first, with Texas second and Oklahoma third, Arizona fourth. These people were all sight seers and fishing parties visiting the upper Piedra section, which is one of the beauty spots of this section as there are thousands of miles that are unmarred by the hand of man, not to mention the many miles of trout streams that start along the continental divide. Fred Harman is now art editor of a new Hollywood magazine, which is named “Ride Magazine.”
Taken from SUN files of August 16, 1962 The rain last Saturday certainly helped settle the dust and also greened some of the pastures and some of the lawns around town. To date this has been a very dry summer. Ranchers are haying and rains at this time of the year often times delay this job. This is not the case this summer, though. One of the very important issues in the general election in November will be the reapportionment controversy. The plan that will benefit not only Archuleta County, but the entire state, will be amendment number 7. This amendment does give everyone in the state equal representation on a population basis in the house of representatives and then provides for equal representation in sparsely populated areas in the state senate.
Taken from SUN files of August 13, 1987 Acknowledging that “real funding problems” will be encountered by the time the 1988 district budget is prepared, the School District No. 50 Joint Board of Education considered a proposal to apply to the State Budget Review Board for additional funds. Such a move, if taken is unprecedented in the School District No. 50 Joint’s recent history. “We started looking at our 1988 funding,” said District Business Manager Mamie Lynch, “and we saw that the District would not be able, without receiving new money from the State, to add dollars to our teacher salary base.” Lynch said the average teacher’s salary in School District No. 50 Joint is approximately $3500 less than the average salary for other public school teacher in Colorado.
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XHOME OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST AND HOTTEST MINERAL SPRINGSZ Owner and Publisher $ Terri House Managing Editor $ Karl Isberg Reporter/Writer $ Randi Pierce Lindsey Bright Ed Fincher Advertising Manager $ Shari Pierce Advertising $ Mike Pierce Head Pressman $ Robert Penton Assistant Pressman $ Brint Castolenia Mailroom $ William Thomas Classi!ed Advertising $ Missy Phelan Sandy Isaacson
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Thursday, August 16, 2012 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — A3
Letters Messy Dear Editor: Democracy is an inherently messy process; but we’re at the abyss. Let’s see, bankers (those too big to fail fat cats that we hated to bail out, then they used our tax money for bonuses) and we are actually considering electing one of them as president? So, besides being slick at finance (companies Mitt’s firm purchased either went BK,paid for by taxpayers), jobs were shipped overseas or the lucky few paid off the debt he borrowed to buy them. Heartless comes to mind. What are his qualifications? Highly successful at avoiding taxes, but gives 10 percent to his church. But about qualifications: He doesn’t know the difference between sheiks (leadership term) and Sikhs (not Arab, but an eastern religion). Mitt let the Brits know he thought they’re incompetent, told every Arab in the world they’re culture is second rate. Well, we’re just getting to know him. Hates Obama Care, loves Romney Care (Mitt’s Mass. health plan, almost identical to each other), thinks corporations are citizens, except he refuses to disclose his tax history as he’s, “not a business!” So, we’re actually thinking about electing the fox to be in the chicken coop! If we do, then surely America continues to fade as a super power, jobs don’t come back, our educational standing continues downward and the middle class … well, don’t blame anyone else. Dave Blake
Shocking Dear Editor: Who does the BoCC actually represent? Is it the county voters who elected them? Town is already represented by the mayor and town council, so if not the BoCC then who? The county residents near the proposed Wal-Mart development are so much more impacted by the negatives of the project than those town folk living far away in the downtown core. Anyone reasonable, without a political agenda to support the town can see that. But, the town’s share of the sales tax will be spent by town on core residents’ wants and needs. Town has no concern for county residents near the proposed Wal-Mart. So the BoCC needs to represent the county voters here. For months, county residents have taken the time to attend BoCC meetings to ask for representation on this matter. But, to no avail. The chair, Clifford Lucero, who is running for reelection this year, claimed that it was strictly a “town matter.” No need to step in to represent the county voters. Poor decision. Then, when it became apparent that the town required ownership of Alpha Drive which is in the county, everything changed. Suddenly the county decided to get involved. Not to represent county voters, but to “help” the town acquire Alpha for their pet project. Poor decision. First Todd Starr, the county attorney, rendered a legal opinion that the county did not own Alpha Drive. But, then he became a political emissary for Lucero and Wadley, both running for reelection this year. At the town’s second Wal-Mart design review he ensured the town that the county would “help” them acquire Alpha Drive. Poor decision. Who sent Starr from one commissioner to the other to establish this initiative? Mitchem? It violates the intent of the Sunshine Law. Poor decision. In the BoCC meeting last week where the commissioners finally decided to weigh in, Wadley gave an eloquent defense of private property rights. This was insincere, given that he voted to hand over a quit claim for Alpha Drive and deed to the town. This gives the appearance of a transfer of ownership, but no owner has been established. The Alpha Rockridge Metro District has been the defacto owner for years, maintaining Alpha Drive. This enables the town to take Alpha by eminent domain — a taking of private property. Poor decision. I don’t know which is more shocking, a Republican enabling the taking of private property or a Democrat taking property away from the 99 percent and giving it to the Walton 1 percent. Who are these guys serving? The town, of course. Poor decision. Wadley and Lucero refused to even consider adding a contingency requiring a Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) to make sure
there is no dark, empty building if Wal-Mart ever vacates, nor money for the Town to Lakes Trail, etc. to mitigate the negative impacts to the county constituents. Poor decision after poor decision. I am so grateful that we will have choices this coming election. It is time for a change! Mike Hayward and Julie Simmons will represent us. We can demand the representation we deserve. Susi Cochran
Guns and love Dear Editor: OMG! Is it possible that I must agree with Jim Sawicki? Jim opined last week that restrictive controls on guns in general, and assault weapons in particular, produce no reduction in gunrelated crime. I agree. There is no credible evidence that gun restrictions reduce gun violence. We fixate on the mass killings such as occurred at the Sikh temple, the Aurora theater, the Arizona political gathering, Virginia Tech, and Columbine. We miss the point with such fixation as those deaths, while tragic, are a very small portion of our homicides. CDC reports the U.S. gun-related death rate as 3 per 100,000; whereas, the United Kingdom’s rate is under 0.1 given their nationwide restrictive gun laws. The number of homicides and suicides from firearms in the U.S. approach those from vehicle accidents, and that’s a lot of death. We have more guns than people in our country, and I believe that abundance makes any local gun restriction ineffective in reducing death rates. Washington, DC, and Denver have restrictions with no positive results; whereas, New York City dramatically reduced its homicide rate using better policing with no change in gun laws. Our Constitution guarantees a right to bear arms, and that right was affirmed as an individual right by our Supreme Court. Gun restrictions might have an impact only if aggressively enforced on a national level, but there is no appetitive for federal control over our right to own and carry weapons. I don’t believe our gun ownership makes law abiding citizens measurably safer. I can’t recall any mass killer being taken down by a citizen with a concealed weapon. A few assassins were subdued by quick acting citizens using their bare hands. Most assassins were dispatched by police or committed suicide with their own weapons. Where does our freedom of gun ownership leave us? “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance (Thomas Jefferson).” We each must be alert to situations and persons that seem to pose a credible threat of taking lives. What is our protection in the long term? Love. Practicing the Lord’s greatest commandment would reduce bullying and isolation, provide more accessible mental health care for troubled citizens, and cause each of us to practice peaceful resolution of our differences. We can reduce gun violence by reducing violence in all its forms. If that is my belief, then let it begin with me. So, Jim Sawicki, I love you man. I apologize for any of my writings that made you out to be mean spirited. You are worthy of respect and all the rights of a citizen. Jay Davison
One left Dear Editor: Once there were two climate skeptics with creditable credentials, now there is one. Richard Lindzen, MIT professor of meteorology and global warming skeptic recently presented a seminar to Sandia Lab’s Climate Change and National Security organization. Professor Lindzen is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society. (Sandia National Labs is the nation’s engineering lab. Sandia’s primary business is nuclear weapons, but also undertakes a wide variety of engineering projects that are in the national interest.) Professor Richard A. Muller is professor of physics at the University of California, Berkeley and former MacArthur foundation fellow. Neither Professor Lindzen nor Professor Muller believes in computer models. Both cited the average temperature rise (about a degree F) during the 20th century as evidence for or against global warming. Lindzen says it doesn’t amount to much and
believes that in the future clouds will moderate the effect of global warming. Muller believed the same until he and his associates undertook the Berkeley project, a statistical study of 1.6 billion temperature reports from16 pre existing archives. (The study was partially funded by the billionaire climate change skeptics, the Koch brothers.) These data show that global land temperatures have increased by 1.5 degrees C over the past 250 years. The best fit of the data is with CO2 concentration. The graphs are published on Berkeleyearth.com. These data changed Muller’s from a skeptic to a believer. I believe the professors’ emphasis on average temperatures to be misguided. What is important in agriculture and engineering are the temperature and rain fall extremes. Before 1950, the numbers of record high and low temperatures were about equal. In the past decade, the numbers of record highs exceed the lows by a ratio of 2 to 1. This year the ratio is 9 to 1. (thinkprogress.org/climate). An early freeze or no rain spells the death kneel for a farmer. Engineers must design to the extreme case. This past summer in some locations, the cooling water was so warm, nuclear reactors had to reduce power. However, it is unwise to base conclusions on yearly records, as natural fluctuations may be misinterpreted Professor Muller points out that how fast global warming takes place depends to a large extent on China. China is adding a one gigawatt power plant every month. Awhile back, I suggested a one gigawatt power plant for Pagosa; recall this plant would burn 6,000 tons of coal with 30,000 tons of CO2 emission per day. Planet earth has only been on the stove for about ten years and every year, we turn the burner up a click. Who is right, Lindzen or Muller? The data favor Muller and global warming. Bob Dungan Arboles
Personal Dear Editor: It boggles the mind how the Town Council and BoCC are ramrodding Wal-Mart through, despite many citizens’ disapproval of the project. What makes the whole matter even more difficult to digest are the lies, secret deals and lack of transparency that have been going on for many months. BoCC quit claims Alpha Drive over to the town when they don’t even own the land? And Alpha Drive is going to be the main road into WM? (That had to be a misprint in the paper.) Alpha Drive ownership has still not been resolved? There have to be records. Alpha Homeowners believe they own it because they have been paying for the upkeep of the road thru their Metro Road District taxes for many, many years. One has to ask why WM chose the site they have when it impacts so many homeowners, small businesses, is adjacent to wetlands, and obstructs a grand view? (Wouldn’t a better site be in the newly purchased vast acreage on 84 that the county has big plans for?) Question for Mayor Aragon and BoCC Chairman Lucero: Would you want want WM in your backyard? Remember, leaders, your rulings are supposed to reflect the wishes of the majority of citizens, not personal agendas or personal gains. Marilyn Falvey
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Arrogance Dear Editor: In response to your article, “BoCC deals with seniors issues,” it is apparent to me that arrogance is condoned from some of the county’s staff by the BoCC; several seniors pleaded with the board and indicated they were harassed by the senior center’s director, but yet nothing was done. Commission-
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2012 Add-On Contributors
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A6 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — Thursday, August 16, 2012
Letters n Continued from A3
ers, don’t forget these people have rights and, yes, I bet they vote. I have a suggestion for the commissioners: send the senior center director to the same class you sent your road and bridge superintendent to learn how to deal with people at taxpayers’ expense. I have a couple of questions in regard to that, one being shouldn’t having good public relations skills be part of the job description and how many other employees would have been terminated for such behavior? I would like to add that the county has many good employees that are very professional and service oriented. I have called the road and bridge department and talked to the superintendent about road matters and was told things like it will never be done and there is no money to do so. (What kind of attitude is that?) On the bright side, we have choices. I voted for Clifford in 2008 and today I wish I could have my vote back, but instead like many others of his constituents, I will be casting my vote for Mike Hayward and Julie Simmons in November. I didn’t vote for Steve Wadley in 2006 and I won’t in November 2012 neither. It’s time for a change downtown, seems to happen every two to four years, who knows someday we might get it right. Chester Freeman
Rose-colored Dear Editor: Two weeks ago James Porter hit the nail on the head with his letter pointing out that this election is between “two diametrically opposite political philosophies” — Democrat (more government, higher taxes, increased spending, and more dependence on welfare) and Republican (less government, lower taxes, reduced spending, and individual responsibility). The selection of Representative Paul Ryan as Romney’s vice-presidential running-mate brings that difference even more into focus. So, if you are one of those folks who believe “the man” when he shows up at your door and says, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help;” if you see no hypocrisy in attacking Governor Romney for his lack of transparency because he has only released two years of tax returns, while President Obama continues to keep sealed his academic (Occidental, Columbia,and Harvard), Selective Service, passport, Illinois Bar and Illinois Senate records; if you think it is OK for Senator Reid to abdicate his Constitutional requirement to pass a budget by refusing to even discuss the House budget, let alone vote on it for three years; if you approve of the Senate (with the president’s encouragement) refusing to discuss and/or vote on any of the numerous bills passed by the House and forwarded to the Senate, thereby subverting our Constitutionally mandated legislative process; if you have no problem with the president legislating from the Executive Branch via Executive Orders and Executive Agency (EPA, HHS, DHS, etc.) regulations in violation of the Separation of Powers enshrined in our Constitution; if you think continuing with the status quo and blathering about the proposed Ryan budget “ending Medicare as we know it” is a viable approach to solving the problem of Medicare’s over $30 trillion in unfunded liabili-
ties, the increased strain of “Baby Boomer’”retirements, and the fact that the Hospital Insurance Trust Fund will be exhausted by 2024 (Medicare as we know it will die then if not reformed); if you think we can continue to run the government with over $1.5 trillion in deficit spending each year — with 40 percent of every dollar spent being borrowed, mostly from China and Japan; if you are comfortable with the fact that just the required or mandatory entitlement spending (Medicare, Social Security, interest on the debt, etc.) exceeds the total revenue collected by the IRS starting last year (basically all of the government’s daily operation to include the Department of Defense is paid for with borrowed money); if you believe that problem is the government does not collect enough taxes rather than the government spends too much and wastes too much; if you think ignoring problems and continuing to make personal attacks is the solution rather than engaging in a reasonable discussion of policy differences — well then you need to carefully lift your almost opaque rose-colored glasses (not too far, you might let in too much light) and make sure you can find the Democrat bubbles on your ballot this November. Jim Huffman
Bright Dear Editor: “This land is your land; this land is my land From California, to the New York Island …” In 1940, Woody Guthrie penned these words, set them to an old gospel song, and created a hymn to the dreams of the ordinary man. This vision of a verdant land in which we share the bounty and the sacrifice, living as a community, touches us all in our heart’s core. Now compare the vision of Scott Tipton, evidenced by his voting record. His very first vote was to defund virtually our every effort to help our less fortunate neighbors. For example, health care and nutrition for poor women and children, after-school and child care, substance abuse and mental health programs, community health clinics and nutrition assistance for low income pregnant women. Other defunding votes included Public Radio, NOAA and NASA. Meanwhile, he has voted 18 times to protect the $5 billion in subsidies to big oil, the world’s wealthiest and most profitable companies. He has voted 134 times against programs and funding to protect clean air and water, and 98 times to weaken the agency responsible for the protection of the air we breathe and the water we drink. And particularly ignominious is his sponsorship of HR1581, the complete give-away of our Roadless Forests, from which come that clean air and water, to industry. Three times he has voted for the Ryan Budget, which converts Medicare into a voucher system, deeply cuts health services for the poor, gives huge tax cuts to the very wealthy, and has been declared immoral by the Council of Catholic Bishops. Robin Hood in reverse is not what Jesus taught. Fortunately, we have a bright young alternative; his name is Sal Pace. Sal is a moderate, with a welldeserved reputation of working across the aisle in our State House. And most refreshing is his promise to replace petrified ideology with
moderation and rational thought. Christopher Isensee Durango
Deny Dear Editor: Town of Pagosa Springs’ Comprehensive Plan is incorporated in Town’s Land Use and Development Code (LUDC). Wal-Mart’s permit should be denied for following reasons: Walmart development violates LUDC requirements and intent of Comprehensive Plan: No meaningful dialog with citizens in impacted area. Exterior lighting plan omits required hours of illumination. WalMart seeks flexibility to be open 24 hours, but LUDC limits lighting until 11 p.m. Diverse land uses. Studies incorporated as appendices to Comprehensive Plan explicit about separating diverse land uses. Large horse properties and 24-hour superstores inconsistent land uses in immediate vicinity of one another. Established property owners’ rights transgressed. Buffering and screening. Broken buffer wall ineffective screen for Alpha residents living above and looking down upon proposed site. Aspen Village approved plan consistent with Comprehensive Plan. 93,000-square-foot building with large traffic volumes substantially violates plan. Comprehensive Plan requires major retail/commercial developments located away from uptown, keeping commerce healthy in core area and preventing “sprawl” in rural county areas. Second major grocery outlet uptown precludes major grocery store locating in core downtown. Comprehensive Plan establishes town’s commitment to protect scenic environment and beauty. Wal-Mart near golf course and scenic lake view corridor inconsistent with Plan. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers questions location choice, when alternative sites available. LUDC is explicit: road improvement costs must be bonded. Last Design Review Resolution gave one year warranty; LUDC requires three year warranty. Legal and technical violations and tainted process: Record corrupted by falsified notarized document, procured by fraud, relied upon by town to move Wal-Mart’s application forward. Deeded Open Space not legally reconfigured to support project. False statements made by James Dickhoff and Wal-Mart relied upon. Two deeds recorded in county records are false. Staff falsely alleged Wal-Mart won’t significantly alter traffic impacts to area, compared to previously-approved project. Traffic will increase by 20 percent, a threshold significant to CDOT. Alpha Drive not legally acquired by town. No documentation offered to substantiate county’s “ownership” of Alpha Drive when quit-claiming rights without warranty of title to town. Wal-Mart failed to document legal authority to place additional three accesses to its project from Alpha Drive; Plat (1972) restricts accesses to two. Planning board member Natalie Woodruff is conflicted and proceedings have been tainted. Woodruff must determine whether county’s quit claim is sufficient to
•Off of 750 ml and 175 ml bottles• give town authority to allow three additional accesses via Alpha Drive. Her office relied upon deeds showing a non-existent entity as co-owner of Open Space. As county assessor, she is arbitrator for homeowners whose property valuations may be appealed, due to impacts of a Walmart nearby. Enforceable Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) is required to assure project conforms to Comprehensive Plan and makes Walmart’s verbal representations fully enforceable. Must be negotiated in advance of project approval to be meaningful. If Planning Commission proceeds and approves project, remedy is available by appeal to Town Council, followed by appeal to state and/or federal courts, resulting in potentially expensive litigation and possibly resulting in civil or criminal charges. Susan Junta
WINES & LIQUORS
Non-Sale Items Only • Coupon not valid for beer purchases
Next to River Center - Hwy. 160 East Pagosa Springs Open 9 a.m. - Midnight Mon.-Sat. Open 9 a.m. - Midnight Plan - Closed Sundays Sun. ahead Open 10 a.m. - 10 p.m. Colo. State Law
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Sunday, August 26, 2012 • 12:30 PM !""#$%&'&()*+#$*+,%#-#$+./(+#012'&.(3#45
Off Hwy 160 in Pagosa, turn onto North Pagosa Blvd. (between Shell & Conoco stations) and go 1.2 mi. Turn right onto Northlake and go 7/10 mi.; then right onto Windward Drive to end (Peninsula Pl). You’re there!
Lengths Dear Editor: It is amazing to see the lengths that some people will go to find something, anything, they dislike about the Affordable Care Act. The diatribe by Mr. Bynum in last week’s SUN seems to single out the confusing and lengthy verbiage of the bill as his most major objection (Wow … a law written in legalese. Go figure!) and the fact that a single government administrator will be responsible for overseeing large portions of the law. But, as usual with the “Obamacare” critics, Mr. Bynum fails to point out what actual operating provisions of the law he finds so distasteful. Is it the ability to keep our kids on our policies until they are 26? The inability of insurance companies to refuse to pay when we get sick, to refuse us insurance for preexisting conditions? The requirement that insurance companies use the majority of our premiums to pay for actual healthcare instead of CEO bonuses? The exchanges that will allow us to compare companies and policies? The restrictions on premium increases? The requirement to pay for all preventive examinations? The removal of lifetime caps? Or is it the increase in Medicaid
This is really excellent furniture and household. Most is in “as new” condition. If you need furnishings or décor, come see this before buying elsewhere!
FURNISHINGS & HOUSEHOLD Oak Slat King Size Bed • Queen Mission Style Bed • Bent Iron/Heavy Post Queen Bed Southwest Design Fabric Sofa • Leather (Look?) Loveseat • Leather Arm Chair TV Cabinet-Entertainment Center • 6-Drawer Tallboy Chest • Bedside Cabinets W/Drawers Ornate Mexican Style Dining Table W/Glass Top • Heavy Hardwood Dining Chairs (Match Table) Occasional Tables • Southwest Style Lamps • Tall Plastic Storage Cabinet • Rocking Chair Hardwood Drop Leaf Desk • Assorted Stools • Framed Round Beveled Mirror • Toshiba TV Apex Digital DVD Player • 2-Drawer File Cabinet • RCA HTS-7000 DVD/CD Changer/Receiver Brother MFC 465CN Multifunction Machine • Wall Mirrors • Ornate Cheval Mirror Southwest Design Area Rugs • Cot • Stepstool • Assorted Bedding, Coverlets, Throw Pillows Sheets & Towels • Gibson China • Old Mantel Clock • Iron Wine Rack • Glassware • Utensils Small Kitchen Appliances • Kenmore Floor Machine • Taylor Bath Scale • Nice Contemporary Hardback Books Loma, AZ Pottery Dishware Set w/ Serving Pieces
Art & Decor Dwayne Blackhorse Signed Navajo Pot • Navajo Baskets • Tarahumara Pottery Southwest Iron Crosses • Southwest Iron Art • Iron Art Wall-Mount Coat Rack • Iron Aspen Wall Art Framed Western & Southwest Prints • Antique Sad Iron W/Handle
SPORTING GOODS, OUTDOOR, & MISCELLANEOUS Trailblazer Mtn Bike • Huffy “Cavern” Bike • Grizzly BB Rifle • Golf bag W/Clubs “Little Giant” Aluminum Ladder • Aluminum Extension Ladder • Canopied Porch Swing Outdoor Fireplace • Ice Chests • As New Round Charcoal BBQ • Patio Umbrella Plastic Stacking Patio Chairs • Wind Chimes
And so much more! Be sure to see more pics on our website: www.treasureauctionservice.com
G V K U «D Y T W Q V K U X «I P K NW H «T Q ( (970) 385-4273 !"##$%&''$())$*)*+,,-($"&$.-/$0(1+2*-0
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Advertise your business in the guide visitors use.
Copy and space deadline for the winter edition of the Pagosa Springs Official Visitor Guide™ is August 17, 2012. Contact your advertising representative to reserve your space (970) 264-2100 A publication of The Pagosa Springs SUN
Thursday, August 16, 2012 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — A7
Letters n Continued from A6
for the poor and uninsured? Since a third of this country is already covered by government funded healthcare, what is it that people like Mr. Bynum so strongly object to? I would suspect it has less to do with government control and more about seeing the poor (whom they consider slackers and ne’erdo-wells), getting something free from their taxes. Once again, it is all about hate and fear, and less about the creation of a rational health care system, whom even their own candidate has praised in speeches overseas. I am sure there is prejudice amongst populations around the world ... sometimes even violent hatreds ... but this seems to the be the only country where a significant percentage of the population is willing to work against their own best interests, if only they can keep some subclass from getting the same benefits. As happened with Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, the overblown, outrageous and misguided attacks on healthcare reform will fade as the benefits are woven into the fabric of society; and eventually, the angry protagonists like Mr. Bynum will move on to some other dire threat to our freedoms, accept the benefits of others who have worked to improve things, all the while pretending they were for the programs all along. F John Lozen
Sheriff Dear Editor: Most of us realize that this republic is in trouble, but what do we do? One of the most powerful offices for a person to hold is that of sheriff. The county sheriff has the lawful and constitutional authority to defend county citizens from unlawful and unconstitutional actions, whether it be by the local government, courts, citizenry or the federal government’s encroachment into our lives. Every sheriff and deputy took an oath of office to uphold and defend the Constitutions of Colorado and the U.S. The county sheriff is the first line of defense for us here in Archuleta County, but what if he doesn’t stand for the constitution? We elected our sheriff, and we can hold him accountable to us and to defend us against tyranny, but what do we do when he refuses to attend a constitutional sheriff’s convention, or send a representative, even when it is fully paid for? Every sheriff in the U.S. received such an invitation, and many citizens across the U.S. are willing to pay for their sheriff to attend this convention so they understand what the people want from them. Do we want a constitutional sheriff, or do we just ignore the Constitution and accept the growing tyranny? If you want to join many others in encouraging Pete Gonzalez, or your local sheriff, to attend this conference sponsored by the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, Sept. 16-18, 2012, in Las Vegas, please email me at truth@ thecountyguard.org for brochures and website information to give the sheriff. We should easily be able to donate enough to cover all expenses for our sheriff or representative to attend, and join the growing sheriff movement to
defend local citizens against the growing threats we all face, and return to our Constitution. Will Archuleta County citizens step forward to get involved and encourage Pete Gonzalez to stand for us? Jeff Maehr
Museum Dear Editor: The logging and railroad industries played an important role in the economic and social development of our county in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The historical society museum has a display of items from this time period in our history, but would like to expand it. We have many visitors to the museum who are interested in this particular part of our history. We ask that anyone with memorabilia from these industries who would be will to loan or donate to the museum to please contact Shari Pierce at 946-3137. We ask that the items be from this area. If photos are available that could be scanned for our collection, that would be most welcome. Thank you to the community for helping us to preserve our history so that we may enjoy it now and in the future. Shari Pierce
Pledge Dear Editor: Pledge of Allegiance, so clean, so pure “back then.” By “back then,” I mean up to and during WWII. I was watching an old movie the other night, “Room for One More,” filmed when I was a teenager — the culture was so pure, so sweet, so sound, so respectful, so patriotic. What caught my attention was the Boy Scout meeting at the end of the movie when the troop recited the Pledge of Allegiance in a very solemn, meaningful tone: “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republicfor which it stands: one nation indivisible with liberty and justice for all.” That described us and united us as a nation — simple and pure— ——“indivisible with liberty and justice for all.” But, then, following WWII, I suppose to express our thankfulness, the pledge was amended in this way: “One nation indivisible, under God, with liberty and justice for all.” It seems to me that that was the beginning of our political turmoil, as folks began to place their personal vision of God into their political decisions and slowly, over time, resulted in our current lack of unity for the good of all — extremism. As a devoted Christian, my heart aches for a return to our original Pledge of Allegiance, which served this country well during its early days of hardship, trials and tribulations. Listening to those Boy Scouts recite that original pledge warmed my heart, but also brought tears to my eyes. I bet most of you young folks never knew the original pledge. Too bad. Patty Tillerson
Immunization Dear Editor. I read the article in last Thursday’s paper about vaccines and our kids starting school. I was pretty frustrated when I read the article. That article only stated part of the Colorado immunization law. According to the National Vaccine Information Center (nvic. orb), “Exemption is obtained by
submitting to the student’s school a statement of exemption signed by one parent or guardian or the emancipated student or student of eighteen years of age or older that the parent, guardian or student is an adherent to a religious belief whose teachings are opposed to immunizations or that they have personal belief that is opposed to immunizations.” For these reasons: medical, religious and personal, a parent in the state of Colorado may not immunize their child and it’s actually not required to immunize our children (C.R.S. 25-4-903). The school systems and health organizations are always trying to re-word things in a manner so that parents feel as if they have no choice but to immunize. I know this is very controversial issue, but feel that parents should accurately know their rights when it comes to immunizations. I’m a mother of three and two don’t receive immunizations for medical reasons and one it’s my personal choice. Thank you for allowing me to express my concerns., April Unger
Origins Dear Editor: Those who deny the Christian origins of our country or have never been taught them are invited to consider the facts concerning just our nation’s capitol and compare them to the anti-religiosity of today. The capitol rotunda is adorned with huge Christian paintings: 1) Columbus landing, planting crosses, leading a prayer and naming the land San Salvador (Holy Savior); 2) the 1613 baptism of Pocahontas; 3) others illustrating prayer services and Bible studies; 4) the 56 signers of the Declaration of Independence, 29 of whom were preachers holding seminary degrees. In 1782, Congress allocated funds for the printing and distribution of 20,000 copies of its official Bible to schoolchildren and for public use. On Dec. 4, 1800, Thomas Jefferson authorized use of the rotunda for church services (eventually by four congregations with a weekly average attendance of 2,000 by 1857). President Jefferson himself attended and ordered the marine band to provide the church music. This rotunda use lasted 100 years. President Jefferson also had Congress authorize
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funds for the construction of churches for use by Native American converts to Christianity. Then, President Garfield, a general, war hero and minister, in 1858 wrote a letter about preaching revivals and baptizing 31 people. (Source: David Barton, capitol tour guide and founder of Wall Builders, Aledo, Texas.) One recent example of today’s contrasting anti-religious protagonism is the Chick-fil-A incident. When Chick-fil-A supports traditional marriage, it is called “bigotry,” but when Amazon pledges 2.5 million dollars to help abolish traditional marriage, it is called “equal rights.” Fortunately, there is reason for hope when millions turn out to help Chick-fil-A set a world sales record and affirm their appreciation for the company’s stand on true Biblical marriage. One fallout of this was that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel attempted to cause a boycott of Chick-fil-A. However, under legal and public pressure, he settled for a statement that Chicago’s values are not Chick-fil-A’s, as if he is the judge of what is a value (defined as estimable) or that Chicago’s “values” are better than Chick-fil-A’s. Actually, his (and other’s) advocacy of same sex “marriage,” abortion, homosexuality and deprivation of religious freedom are not values at all but aberrations and violations of constitutional, natural and divine laws (e.g., Lev. 18:22 ff.; Jer. 1:5; Matt. 19:5). It is incumbent on each of us to imitate the Chick-fil-A supporters and help restore the values of our country’s historic Christian heritage. Our best opportunity will come in November when we should elect a president and congressman who will reverse the current immorality and advance moral principles. “The God who gave us life gave us liberty … Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction that these liberties are the gift of God?” — Thomas Jefferson. Eugene Witkowski
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be 500 words or less be signed by the author include the author’s phone number There is no guarantee letters will be published and The SUN reserves the right to edit letters.
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Friday, August 24 Silent Auction @ 6:00 PM Live Auction @ 7:45 PM Ross Aragon Community Center
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All proceeds from the auction support the Humane Society animal shelter, helping to provide a safe haven for homeless animals in our community.
A8 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — Thursday, August 16, 2012
Bears n Continued from front
that the reason for the increase in activity is not that the bear population has surged. Bear population, he explained, tends to be fairly stable due to female bears giving birth only every two years. This
year, however, there was an early snowmelt, then a late freeze. This affected the main food source for the black bear — oak brush acorns. Reid has been working in this area for over 20 years. During that time, he says there was only one
other year that has come close in terms of the number of bears being spotted in residential areas; and no other years with as many reports of bears in houses. In the past three weeks, increases in bear sightings could
site (www.visitpagosasprings.com) that will increase user interaction by incorporating a new phone app. “I call it my stalking tool,” Green joked. “This year we have started integrating with Internet Honey,” Green said. “It is a marketing analytic solution. It’s allowing all of our marketing efforts to go into one tool, so that we can start to see correlations between social media efforts and Visitor Guide requests. When we launch the new phone app., which is in development, we will be able to register GPS connectivity, so we will know, if they have requested a Visitor Guide, whether or not they actually come to Pagosa.” The QR code that is on all of the new trailhead signs around the area will also link into the system, so the
TTC can keep track of how many times those are scanned. Summer and winter itineraries for one, three and five-day visits have been developed and posted on the website, as well, which will allow families to plan their vacations before they arrive in Pagosa Country. The last thing Green reported on was “Red, White & Brews,” a music festival that took place on the Fourth of July in Yamaguchi Park, and was meant to generate revenue to raise money for fireworks. Unfortunately, due to fire restrictions, this year’s fireworks display was cancelled, but the fireworks will still be there for next year. The TTC publicly and wholeheartedly thanked festival organizer Melissa Buckley for her efforts. firstname.lastname@example.org
Construction collected $15,054 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $9,783 last year, an increase of $5,271 or 54 percent. Finally, mining collected $33,010 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to only $6,048 last year, a significant increase of $26,962 or 446 percent. Some sectors, though very small in the overall scheme of things, also showed significant growth and may reflect the birth of new businesses over the last year, namely the health care and the educational services industries. Health care rose from only $15 worth of tax revenue in June 2011
to $571 this year, an increase of $556 or 3707 percent, and educational services went from $401 to $1,038, up $637 or 159 percent. As has been pointed out in an earlier SUN article by Jim McQuiggin, the one sector that has thrown a wrench into the system is transportation and warehousing, which shows $72,495 for last year, but only $556 for this year. This is why May and June are the only down months this year, but this anomaly is expected to disappear next month since there were no revenues from transportation and warehousing in July 2011. email@example.com
Tourism n Continued from front
stop at the Visitor Center and how many people stay in local hotels, nor is there a relationship between those who stop at the center and those who have requested Visitor Guides. “I’ve actually found that eightythree percent of those who stop at the Visitor Center,” Green said, “did not request a Visitor Guide before they came to Pagosa.” Green also reported that a photo of a double rainbow over Lake Pagosa was featured during a newscast on Denver’s NBC affiliate, Channel 9, which generated significant exposure for the town. This was indicated by a jump to 5,144 fans for the Facebook page. The TTC is close to finishing enhancements to the tourism web-
Sales n Continued from front
8.7 percent. A number of sectors showed minor fluctuations, some up and some down, but with no real change compared to last year. These include manufacturing, wholesale trade and the information industry. However, a number of the medium-sized business sectors, especially construction and real estate, showed noteworthy improvement, and could be an indication of changes in the local economy. Real estate brought in $20,026 worth of tax revenue in June 2012, compared to $13,817 last year, an increase of $6,209 or 45 percent.
Break-in n Continued from front
knowledge of the incident or the bike. Police are now seeking information about the incident, which is believed to have taken place between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m., as well as the owner of the bike, which is a small, blue and white bmx-style bike with “Frisco” on the frame. Anyone with information is asked to contact Maxwell at 2644151, Ext. 241. firstname.lastname@example.org
be expected and now might continue to rise until November. This is because the bears have entered hyperphagia, their preparatory phase for hibernation. During this time, bears need to consume 20,000 calories per day. To reach this caloric intake, bears must consume a massive amount of food. One acorn, Reid said referencing a recent study, contains about one calorie. That’s a lot of acorns. However, bears are very smart creatures. Learning the days a neighborhood puts out their trash and the houses that normally have easy-to-access trash cans filled with leftovers is easier for a bear than to scour a forest during a drought year, foraging for scant berries and acorns. If a bear has been a consistent nuisance in a neighborhood — entering houses or garages — wildlife managers such as Reid will set a trap in that neighborhood. The trap itself is a large metal cage. Once a bear is trapped, the wildlife officer is called. The bear is administered a tranquilizer. Reid explained that the officer wants to use the lowest dosage possible, because, when the bear is relocated 50 miles away, the officer must keep watch over the bear until it is fully awake and capable of defending itself. After the tranquilizer has put the bear into a sound sleep, the animal is tagged, with a tag in both ears, and has a chip placed just underneath the skin at the back of the head. “This is not something we like to do because we know what it means to the bear,” Reid said, and then explained that although a bear is relocated 50 miles away, typically the bear will find its way back. This summer, one relocated bear was back at the house in 52 hours. Bears, Reid said, have been known to find their way back from 200 miles way. “It’s normally not the bear’s fault. It’s the human’s,” Reid said, referring to problem bear-human encounters. This thought was reaffirmed as Reid was driving this reporter around neighborhoods in the Pagosa Lakes area, pointing out negligence in bear-proofing homes. One man came up, saying a bear comes to his neighbor’s house every night, because the neighbor leaves the trash sitting there. “I haven’t had one bear problem all year,” the man said, adding, “The bears aren’t doing anything wrong. It’s the humans.” In the neighborhoods, the majority of residents left their garbage cans outside with either no bearproof closures or inadequate ones. “Bears are very strong animals.
A bungee cord is not going to stop them,” Reid said. Leaving garbage out overnight in cans that are not bear-proof is a huge problem because it is an attractant to bears. Bears have supersensitive noses, able to smell something up to five miles away. Garbage, as everyone knows, has a smell. While to humans it might make the stomach turn, for a bear it means an easy way to pack on needed pounds for hibernation. Reid says that one option for people who have neither a garage nor shed in which to put their garbage can is to call the trash service and request a bear-proof receptacle. If a person leaves a garbage can out overnight, they are attracting bears to their property. It is the person’s responsibility to protect their house. If a bear is a nuisance, they should ask themselves, “Am I doing anything to attract bears to my property?” Because even if the person is, the bear will still be the one to blame and possibly will be killed for it. Colorado Revised Statute 33-6131 states that, “It is unlawful for any person to place food or edible waste in the open with the intent of luring a wild bear to such food or edible waste.” There is also Wildlife Commission Regulation 021, which reads, “No person shall fail to take remedial action to avoid contact or conflict with black bears, coyotes or fox, which may include the securing or removal of outdoor trash, cooking grills, pet food, bird feeders or any other similar food source or attractant.” However, before the person can be fined, the individual must first be given a warning. Reid said that proving intent is very difficult. Plus, he added, when looking at all the garbage cans left out by residents, neither he nor the other wildlife officers have the time to give that many warnings. Another common problem Reid pointed out are open garage doors and open first floor windows. Just this summer, the Pagosa area of Parks and Wildlife has received over 50 reports of bears inside homes. “Once a bear finds out there is more food inside, he’s going to try to go back,” Reid said. If a person just baked or cooked and leaves the window open, a screen will not keep a bear from getting inside the house. If there is a deck on an upper story and a tree nearby, a bear will be able to get onto that deck if it smells something. If there is a window open on that deck, a bear will have no problem getting inside.
If keeping the windows open is important during the summer, it is recommended that bars be put on the outside of the windows to keep the bears out. “This is bear country,” Reid said. “People who move here are moving to bear country.” Black bears are native to this area of Colorado and their presence in the area predates that of humans. Black bears may be brown, cinnamon or blonde in color. They are naturally shy and wary of people. Purcell explained that the reason trash is dragged into the woods by a bear is because the bear is trying to get away from people. He added that bears are not naturally nocturnal, but often travel at night in order to avoid humans. In order to keep bears wild and keep bear-human conflicts to a minimum, remember to do the following: • Keep garbage in a well-secured location; and only put out garbage on the morning of pickup. • Clean garbage cans with ammonia regularly to keep them odor-free. • If you don’t have secure storage, put items that might become smelly into the freezer until trash day. • Don’t leave pet food or stock feed outside. • Bird feeders should be brought in at this time of year — birds don’t need to be fed during the summer. • If you have bird feeders: clean up beneath them, bring them in at night, and hang them high so that they’re completely inaccessible to bears. • Don’t compost. Bears are attracted to the scent of rotting food — and they’ll eat anything. • Allow grills to burn for a couple of minutes after cooking to burn off grease and to eliminate odors. Clean the grill after each use. • Clean up thoroughly after picnics in the yard or on the deck. Don’t allow food odors to linger. • If you have fruit trees, pick fruit before it gets too ripe. Don’t allow fruit to rot on the ground. • Close garage doors. • Keep the bottom floor windows of your house closed when you’re not at home. • Do not keep food in your car; lock car doors. • Talk to your neighbors and kids about being bear-aware. For more information, go to the Living with Wildlife section on the Colorado Parks and Wildlife website: http://wildlife.state.co.us/ WildlifeSpecies/LivingWithWildlife/Pages/LivingWith.aspx. email@example.com
Corrections • An error in last week’s SUN (Page 1, “Be smart in bear country”) left a sentence that suggested residents, “wipe their garbage cans out with some pneumonia.” While the idea seems interesting — and some SUN staffers believe pneumonia could repel bears — it is not accurate. Wipe the garbage cans out with ammonia and, if you see this mistake mentioned by Jay Leno on
The Tonight Show, please tape the segment and bring it to The SUN office so we can watch it. • SUN staff incorrectly identified Susie Cochran as Susie Kleckner in an article in last week’s issue (Page 1, “BoCC supports town on Wal-Mart issue”) and apologizes for any inconvenience it may have caused.
Thursday wouldn’t be Thursday without ... SUN photos/Mike Pierce
Above, Det. Scott Maxwell of the Pagosa Springs Police Department examines a broken window at Pagosa Springs High School Wednesday morning. Left, Maxwell and Ofcer Floyd Capistrant look at a bike connected to the crime scene. Ofcials are seeking the owner of the bike — a bmx-style, blue and white bike with “Frisco” on the frame.
COMMUNITY CENTER NEWS
Volunteers needed for anniversary celebration By Cheryl Bowdridge SUN Columnist
The Ross Aragon Community Center is marking ten years in operation, and we are hosting a celebration Sept. 14, 6-11 p.m. We are looking for sponsors to help with this free event. People of all ages will be entertained by D.J. Dude, enjoy delicious food and have the chance to win door prizes. Enjoy photos from the past and present; hear how the center started and about our direction and continued focus.
If you are able to donate a food item, door prize or cash donation to make this event a success, contact Cheryl Bowdridge at 2644152, Ext. 32.
Calendar Thursday, Aug. 16: Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m. Friday, Aug. 7: Pickleball, 8-10 a.m.; Mah Jongg, 12:30-2:30 p.m.; Duplicate Bridge, 12:30-4:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 19: Grace Evangelical Free Church, 7:30 a.m.-noon; Church of Christ, 10 a.m.-noon. Monday, Aug. 20: Pickleball,
8-10 a.m.; Pagosa bridge 4 fun, 12:30-4 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 21: Hoopsters, 8-9 a.m.; yoga, 10-11:30 a.m.; Mah Jongg, 1-3 p.m.; Duplicate Bridge, 5:30-10 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 22: Pickleball, 8-10 a.m.; Tai Chi, 11 a.m.-noon; Dulcimer, 3-4 p.m. The center hours are Monday– Friday 8 a.m.–5:30 p.m., Saturday and Sunday by appointment only. The center is located at 451 Hot Springs Blvd. Phone, 2644152, e-mail, communitycenter@ centurytel.net.
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Thursday, August 16, 2012 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — A9
PROST considers use of waning rec funds By Randi Pierce Archuleta County coffers for parks and recreation projects are waning, but the county’s staff and elected officials have an eye to the future, making for questions concerning that funding. It is no secret that assessed property valuations have declined in Archuleta County (and much of the country) following the economic downturn. Before that downturn, county voters approved a five-year ballot measure, known as 1A, that deBruced the county, meaning it could collect property tax revenues above limits imposed by the Taxpayer Bill of Rights. For four years, the county collected 1A funding for facilities, technology and training, roads, and parks and recreation. Then came the lower property value assessment and the sunsetting of the five-year measure. Now, the county is left with a finite amount of 1A funding that will no longer be bolstered by property tax revenues, and several large projects on the horizon, namely in the parks and recreation realm. Because of that, the commissioners and County Administrator Greg Schulte met with members of the county’s Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Trails (PROST) task force Monday evening to discuss how the remaining $358,000 from 1A should be spent, as well as other parks and recreation funding the county has saved up. PROST was originally formed after the passage of the 1A measure to recommend to the commissioners how the parks and recreation portion of the 1A funding should be spent,
mainly through vetting community projects and recommending them to the BoCC for funding, but the group has recently begun transitioning to a more advisory role, such as drafting park rules and regulations. “What we have is what we have,” Schulte said of the remaining 1A parks and recreation funds at the beginning of the meeting. Schulte noted that the county needs to be mindful about how remaining funds are spent, especially in light of three “priority” projects the county is working on. The first of those projects, Schulte explained, is the Town-to-Lakes Trail — a joint project with the Town of Pagosa Springs. The first phase of the trail, on the west side of Pagosa Springs, is moving into design work and is anticipated to be constructed in 2013. “That’s becoming a reality,” Schulte said of the project, which would ultimately connect downtown Pagosa Springs to the Pagosa Lakes area with a bike/pedestrian trail. The second project mentioned by Schulte is the county’s as-yetunnamed open space park near the airport (a naming contest is currently underway, see www.archuletacounty.org for details). A road leading to the 120-acre park and parking lot are slated for construction in September. The third project is the county’s 95 acres located near the fairgrounds, along U.S. 84. The BoCC is set to consider adopting a master plan for that site later this month. “We have quite the agenda for parks, recreation and open space,” Schulte said in summary. Schulte then noted that grants available for any of the above projects would likely require matching funds from the county, or that the
Corina Martinez Valdez Corina Martinez Valdez passed away Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012. Rosary will be held at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church Thursday, Aug. 16, at 6 p.m. Funeral Mass will be Friday, Aug. 17, at 10 a.m. at Pope John Paul II. Full obituary will follow.
applications for grants would be bolstered by the county specifying funds for the project. In addition to 1A funding for parks and recreation, the county has a fund balance of $165,000 in the Conservation Trust Fund, which is lottery proceeds given to counties for recreation and outdoors projects. Schulte explained that the county receives $100,000 per year for the Conservation Trust Fund, with $30,000 of that given to the Town of Pagosa Springs through a five-year agreement that will end in 2014. The remaining $70,000 given to the county annually pays the debt service for the 2010 purchase of the 95-acre parcel. That leaves about $523,000 in funds not already appropriated for projects (funds that have been approved, but not paid out) for the county to put towards its three priority projects, Schulte said. Schulte then questioned how the county should treat the remaining funds. Should the county put a moratorium on funding small community projects? When would that moratorium take effect? Should some funds be kept aside to continue funding small community projects? Commissioner Clifford Lucero noted that his preference was to not eliminate funding for small projects completely, but for the county to be careful with its spending with the large projects on the horizon. Commissioner Steve Wadley agreed, suggesting that perhaps a specific amount of money could be set aside to fund small, worthy projects. Commissioner Michael Whiting, too, agreed, suggesting a cap on funding for projects to focus as
The Dermody family welcomes anyone who would like to celebrate the life of Jerry Dermody to join them at the South Conference Room of the Ross Aragon Community Center Saturday, Aug. 18, from 1-5 p.m. Come whenever you can. Refreshments will be served and storytelling is encouraged.
In loving memory of Steven R. Poleski 2003-2012. Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, Love leaves a memory no one can steal. Missing you all my heart and soul, Your Mother, Dee Poleski
much of the funding on the large projects at their starts as possible, and stating that, even if the county does not receive another dime for parks and recreation, PROST serves a vital role in providing input for operating and management plans for county-owned parks. Whiting also suggested the county shy away from committing to more than one year of funding for small projects, stating he wouldn’t make a multi-year commitment to the community that he may not be able to keep. PROST member Larry Lynch noted that the board had also discussed a moratorium in light of waning funds, with PROST Chair Gwen Taylor adding that the board had discussed timing and limits on funding. Taylor suggested that an amount be appropriated for funding small projects throughout the remainder of 2012, with that pot of money topped off to $25,000 (an amount bandied about at the meeting) for 2013. In response to a question from PROST member Tom Carosello, Schulte said it is unlikely the county would be able to contribute any money from its general fund to parks and recreation projects in the coming years due to revenue decreases. Discussion then circled back to the consensus by the commissioners to have some funding available for small projects before the BoCC tasked the PROST group with determining what dollar amount should be set aside for small projects for the remainder of 2012 and the whole of 2013. But, the answer to the question of available funding for projects remains unanswered, with PROST unable to discuss the matter further at the meeting due to noticing requirements (discussion topics and possible decisions are to be included in an agenda published prior to meetings). PROST will likely discuss the matter at an upcoming meeting before presenting a recommendation to the BoCC in another public meeting for consideration. firstname.lastname@example.org
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Certified Arborist Chris Pierce has spent the last 15 years in Pagosa Springs working with native trees and vegetation. If you care about your trees and vegetation, call Chris for professional care and answers to your questions.
Phone: (970) 731-3846 Cell: (970) 946-3925 Chris@PagosaTrees.com Visit us at www.PagosaTrees.com
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A10 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — Thursday, August 16, 2012
Outdoors Staff Writer
Last week, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Agency added a designation to it’s final ruling on three rare Colorado plants. In the final rule, the agency has designated 50,000 acres of critical habitat for three rare Colorado plants, the Parachute beardtongue, DeBeque phacelia and the Pagosa-area-exclusive Pagosa skyrocket, scientific name Ipomopsis polyantha. It was in 2010 that the Pagosa skyrocket was listed as an endangered species, which has survived since the ice age. The summer blooming plant grows between 30 and 60 centimeters tall and generally has white flowers speckled with purple. “Currently occupied acres do not adequately provide for the conservation of the species, because of a lack of redundancy,” the rule states. “We consider these units essential for the conservation of the species,” the rule continued. In order for the Pagosa skyrocket to grow and survive, there must be six physical and biological features in place: 1) Mancos shale soils; 2) elevation from 6,400 to 8,100 feet, with suitable precipitation; 3) cold,
dry springs, and winter snow; 4) plant communities comprised of barren shales, open montane grassland understory at the edges of open Ponderosa pine or clearings within the ponderosa pine; 5) good pollinator habitat, including ground and twig nesting areas, connectivity between areas and the availability of other floral resources; and, 6) light to moderate or intermittent disturbances to the soil. Out of the 50,000 acres, four units totalling 9,641 acres in and around Pagosa Springs have been designated critical habitat. The majority of the land, 6,975 acres, is private land. However, critical habitat designations do not affect activities by private landowners unless there is federal funding or authorization. In the pages of comments published in the final rule, there are several comments suggesting that critical habitat should not be designated on any private lands. The response from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Agency is that, while there are few protections for plants on private lands, the language of the Endangered Species Act states that the designation must be placed on lands, “on which are found those physical or
biological features essential to the conservation of the species.” The remaining land ownership is broken down as following: U.S. Forest Service 1,710 acres, Town of Pagosa Springs 599 acres, Archuleta County 115 acres, State Land Board 110 acres, Colorado Department of Transportation 63 acres, Federal Bureau of Land Management 42 acres and Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife 28 acres. The Pagosa Springs Unit is the largest of the four unities at 6,456 acres. The unit is located at the junction of U.S. 160 and 84, south along U.S. 84, west along County Road 19 and east along Mill Creek Road. This unit has the majority of Pagosa skyrockets. The rule states that, “While these lands currently have the physical and biological feature essential to the conservation of Ipomopsis polyantha, because of a lack of cohesive management and protections, special management will be required to maintain these features.” The main threat to the flower in this unit is agricultural or urban development. The Dyke Unit, 1,475 acres, is located at the junction of U.S. 160 and Cat Creek Road near the historic town of Dyke. The main threats to
U.S. agency deems local lands ‘critical habitat’ for Pagosa skyrocket By Lindsey Bright
the flower in this unit are highway maintenance, grazing, agricultural use, Bromus inermis encroachment, potential development and a road that was constructed through the skyrocket population. The Eight Mile Mesa Unit, 1,146 acres, is completely on lands in the Pagosa Ranger District. This unit is located on the west side of U.S. 84 just south of the intersection of U.S. 160 and 84. Threats to this unit include a road running through the site, recreational use, horseback riding, dispersed camping, and hunting and firewood gathering. The O’Neal Hill Botanical unit is the smallest unit, consisting of only 564 acres of land in the San Juan National Forest. The threats to the species in this unit are road maintenance, low levels of recreation and a utility corridor. Since much of the critical habitat is on private lands, special management consideration are required. The special management options for the Pagosa skyrocket as presented in the published rule are introducing new Ipomopsis polyantha, establishing permanent conservation easements, developing zoning regulations that could protect the species, establishing conservation agreements on private and Federal lands to identify and reduce threats to the species, eliminating the use of smooth broom and other competitive species in areas already occupied by the flower, promoting and encouraging habitat restoration, developing other regulatory mechanisms to further protect the species, placing roads and utility lines away from the species, minimizing heavy use of habitat by livestock and minimizing habitat fragmentation. More information is available at www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/ species/plants/3ColoradoPlants/ index.html. firstname.lastname@example.org
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Photo courtesy Phyllis Wheaton
From left are weed warriors Stephany Bouchier, Diane Gutman, Nancy Ray, Ros Wu, Al Bouchier, Gary Hopkins and Ian Roth.
The Gopher Meadow Weed Pull By Phyllis Wheaton Special to The SUN
Thanks to seven volunteer weed warriors who battled weeds in Gopher Meadow last month, the weed population and potential for spread in the Turkey Springs area of the San Juan National Forest is greatly reduced. The four-acre meadow had an unhealthy infestation of invasive musk and Canada thistles. Volunteers Al and Stephany Bouchier, Diane Gutman, Gary Hopkins, Mike and Nancy Ray and Ian Roth removed a huge seed source of the thistle, which will limit its spread in an area bisected by a popular bicycle trail. The volunteers rode their bicycles to the project site and were met by Pagosa Ranger District representative Paul Blackman; recreation, trails and wilderness staff; and Ros Wu, wilderness program manager, who provided tools and trash bags. Musk thistle lives two years and reproduces only by
seed, producing up to 20,000 seeds per plant. Canada thistle spreads through its root system and with seeds. Volunteers minimized reproduction and spread by removing seed heads. To destroy seed viability, all seed heads were put in plastic bags with a bit of water, then bags were sealed and placed in the sun. This helps the seeds rot before they are disposed of in the trash. The weed problem in Gopher Meadow has been strikingly reduced, but has not been eradicated and will require follow-up treatment. If you would like to help manage invasive weed infestations, learn to identify invasive thistles (not all thistles are invasive), carry a plastic bag with you when you hike or ride in the forest, pop off those seed heads and dispose of them properly. For information about volunteering for similar projects, or to do surveys for invasive species adjacent to trails within Pagosa Ranger District, contact Ros Wu at 264-1529.
Volunteer shuttle drivers needed at Navajo State Park By Janet Marie Clawson Special to The SUN
Navajo State Park is looking for volunteers to join our team of shuttle drivers. In return for 48 hours of volunteer time and good driving skills, you can earn an annual parks pass, valued at $70. If you can drive a utility vehicle or a golf cart, then you can drive one of Navajo State Park’s shuttle vehicles. The volunteers drive shuttle vehicles between the overflow parking lots and the marina for three-hour shifts on weekends and holiday Mondays, such as Labor Day.
The vehicles are covered, passenger utility vehicles and shuttle drivers should have a valid driver’s license. No special operator’s license is required. A one-hour training session is required. Besides being a great opportunity to meet new people and to
spend time outdoors in a beautiful setting, you can earn a free annual pass to all 42 Colorado State Parks after volunteering for 48 hours. To sign up for the shuttle driver program or other volunteer opportunities, call Navajo State Park at 883-2208.
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This is really nice merchandise. Come check it out! FURNISHINGS & HOUSEHOLD Stickley Oval Dining Table • Henkel Harris Cedar Sideboard • Stickley Corner China Cabinet • Queen 4-Poster Bed • Stickley 6-Drawer and 4-Drawer Chests • Pyramid Chest of Drawers Harp-Style Dining Chairs • Roper Refrigerator • GE Upright Freezer • Antique Starr Player Piano, circa 1818 • 60+ Rolls Player Music • Marble Top Book Cabinet Bamboo Loveseat, Chair & Ottoman • Round Leather Table • Oval Iron Leg Side Table • Upholstered Side Chairs •Henkel Harris Standing Silver Chest • Buckaroo Side Cabinet Leather Rocking Chair • Entertainment Center • Sony Trinitron Color TV • Black-Washed Cedar Chest • Bamboo-Look Glass Top Table • Chinese Style Small Chest • Vanity Stool Unique Faux Elephant Foot Low Table • Glass Top Tea Cart • Map Top Coffee Table • Oriental Carpets • Assorted Nice Southwest Style Lamps • Bev Doolittle Framed Art Nice Southwest Art • Framed Floral Prints • Chain Saw-Carved Bear • Small Office Fridge • Small Metro Shelves • 4 Drawer Legal File Cabinet • Card Table & Chairs Orek XL & Miele Upright Vacs • Calphalon Pots & Pans • Fans • Assorted Seasonal Decorations • Southwest Pottery Dishes & Mugs • Keurig Coffeemaker Mod HS1132
SHOP, YARD, & PATIO EQUIPMENT Honda HS 1132 Hydrostatic Tracked Snow Blower •Craftsman 5 HP Electric Start 22” Snow Blower • Massey Ferguson 20” Snow Blower • Portable Wood Splitter Sears Electronic Digital Radial Arm Saw; 2.5 HP; W/Cabinet • Shop Smith Mod 10E: Combination Lathe, Sander, Table Saw, Etc w/ Lathe Tools • New Delta Universal Tenoning Jig Mod 10E New Delta Hollow Chisel Mortiser Mod 14-651 W/Bits • Delta 10” Contractor’s Table Saw on Wheels • Engine Stand • Generic Portable 5000W Gas Generator (6250W Surge) Weedeater Brand Power Mower • Stihl Chain Saw • 18 Gal Shop Vac • Fimco Sprayer Tank • Craftsman 1 HP Air Compressor • Tow Hitch • Caution Cones • Halogen Shop Light Saw Horses • Hoses & Sprinklers • Leaf Blower • EZ Up Portable Canopy • Weber Gas Grill • Ornate Iron Deck Chairs • Ornate Iron Round Table W/2 Chairs Ornate Iron Plant Pedestal • Ornate Iron Barometer/Thermometer • Plastic Adirondack Chairs • Matching Glazed Plant Pots • Irrigation Pipe • Pruning and Gardening Tools
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SPORTING GOODS & CAMP GEAR
Maple Gun Cabinets (2) • Remington Mod 700 .280 Rem W/Scope • Belgian Browning 30-06 w/ Nikon Scope Savage Mod 110D 30-06 Bolt Action • Marlin Mod 60 .22 Cal W/Simmons Scope • Marlin .22 Cal Remington Mod 1100 12 Ga • Remington Mod 1100 20 Ga • Remington 11-87 12 Ga; 3” Shell 1833 Millbury Civil War Musket • Thompson “Seneca” 45 Cal Cap & Ball • Thompson “Cherokee” 45 Cal Cap & Ball Belgian WWII Revolver (Hitler’s Army) • Ruger .22 Cal Single Six Revolver • .380 Semi-Auto Pistol; New in Box Jennings Mod J22 Slide Action .22 Cal; As New, In Box • Mowrey 50 Cal Muzzle Load Pistol; Never Fired, NIB Crossman As New Air Rifle W/Scope • Gamo Varmint Hunter .177 Pellet Rifle W/Scope • Soft Rifle Sleeves
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Thursday, August 16, 2012 —The Pagosa Springs SUN — A11
Pagosa veterinarian serves with U.S. endurance riding team By Sophie Kennedy SUN Intern
Pagosa veterinarian Dr. Dwight Hooton of Elk Park Animal Hospital flew to the United Kingdom Wednesday, Aug. 15, where he will serve as team vet for the USA team at the Longines FEI World Endurance Championships at Euston Park, near Newmarket, Suffolk, UK, beginning today. The main event, which takes place Saturday, Aug. 25, is a 100-mile race that must be completed within 18 hours. It is the closest competition to the Olympics in endurance horse riding. If and, as Hooton says, when, endurance riding becomes an Olympic sport, the World Endurance Championships would be the qualifying race. Hooton, who has been practicing in Pagosa Springs for the last four years, will be responsible for the medical care of the U.S. team’s seven horses, six of which will compete among 160 horses from all seven continents.
Hooton, who is also the team’s acupuncturist, will begin daily evaluations of the team’s horses as soon as he arrives and will continue to do so up to the day of the race. Seven and one-half to eight hours later, when the top horse/rider teams begin to cross the finish line, Hooton will resume evaluations and apply recovery treatment to the horses before they return to the United States. This year, Hooton’s role is especially important as this is the first time in 14 years that the United States team is in a position to bring home a team medal. “This year, our biggest competitors — France, Germany, the UAE and Australia — expect us to be serious competition and we expect to be on the podium,” explained Hooton. The coach of the U.S. team called on Hooton to serve because of his experience as a vet, acupuncturist, chiropractor (although he will not be serving as the team chiropractor) and former endurance riding judge.
Hooton was also considered an ideal candidate for team vet because of his experience in lameness diagnosis and treatment. Lameness is the most common cause for a horse’s failure to complete an endurance race. Hooton has been a vet since 1987. He received his degree from Colorado State University. He became certified in and began practicing acupuncture in 1992. Though Hooton may be an experienced and sought-after endurance vet, his experience as an endurance rider is less impressive. “I did one endurance ride and realized that it was way too much work for me,” he said. “Also, I happen to be six feet six inches tall and weigh two hundred pounds. I’m not exactly built to be a competitive rider, I’m just too big. So, I just stick to trail riding.” That, and helping World Endurance Championship riders bring home the world title. For updates on the championships and the U.S. team, check out ridecamp.com or endurance.net.
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Navajo State Park offers two programs for kids on Aug. 18 By Janet Clawson Special to The SUN
Fall is approaching and soon nature’s creatures are going to be seeking extra food. Learn how to make a pine cone bird feeder to attract birds using just pine cones, peanut butter and bird seed. Pine cone bird feeders are a good way to invite feathered friends to your backyard.
This project is easy enough for even young children to enjoy. Bird lovers can gather at 9 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 18, at the Rosa Campground Visitor’s Service Building/Showers. Budding artists can gather at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug.18, at the Rosa Campground Visitors Service Building/Showers, and learn about another culture and the unique art form called Gyotaku. Gyotaku
(guh-yo-tah-koo) is the Japanese art of fish painting. It was developed more than a century ago as a fisherman’s method of recording the size and species of his catch. People developed this technique since they often could not read. Freshly caught fish were painted with a non-toxic ink, and covered with a piece of rice paper. The paper was then carefully smoothed down, and removed to make an exact size copy of the fish. Once the print was completed, the fish could be washed and prepared for a meal. By using this technique, Japanese fishermen were able to both record and eat their catch.
Since its useful beginning, Gyotaku has become an art form. Prints are no longer just plain black ink outlines, but colorful reproductions of the original species. Gyotaku art has been displayed at museums around the world. This could give you some new perspective on the concept of art and how it can be a part of everyday life. Children of all ages are welcome to attend. All events in the park are free with a Colorado State Parks pass — either a $7 day pass or a seasonal pass. Call 883-2208 for more information or log on to the park’s website at www.parks.state. co.us/Parks/Navajo.
Be aware of water temperatures when fishing By Colorado Parks and Wildlife Special to The SUN
Photo courtesy Linda Muirhead
Kevin Muirhead caught this cutthroat trout (and others) during a trip to Crater Lake on Saturday, Aug. 11.
Busy beavers and fantastic fish on Williams Creek interpretive walk By Robert Emmons Special to The SUN
Join in on an adventure along Williams Creek where you will see a real, live beaver dam, as well as talk about fish in the creek and the macroinvertebrates that they eat. This walk will take place Tuesday, Aug. 21, from 9-11 a.m. Be prepared to hike through willows and brush off trail and possibly get your boots muddy. Wear walking shoes/boots, a hat, and bring sunscreen and drinking water. Long pants and bug spray are a must. To get there, drive north on Piedra Road (CR 600) to FR 631 for about 20 miles to the Bridge Campground. Park off to the side of campground entrance (do not block gate). Carpooling is suggested as there is limited parking space. Please leave your furry friends at home.
Drought conditions and low water flows throughout the state have Colorado Parks and Wildlife reminding anglers to monitor water temperature when they are out fishing. Several water-specific recommendations have already been released this summer; however, aquatic biologists recognize that fish can be stressed due to temperatures in many different coldwater fishing locations. “Handling fish in waters that are 68 degrees and above can put undue stress on them, causing mortalities and compromising the fishery as a whole,” said Ken
Local Forrest Henry Rackham, of Pagosa Springs, was named to the Dean’s List at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill., for spring term 2012. Rackham is a junior majoring in environmental studies.
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Kehmeier, senior aquatic biologist. “We ask that anglers keep in mind the production opportunity of a fishery and not solely the fishing opportunity. Get out and fish, but bring along a thermometer and try to fish early in the day for the best opportunities.” For more information about fishing in places not affected by low flows, visit http://wildlife.state. co.us/Fishing/Pages/Fishing.aspx.
301 N. PAGOSA BLVD. • (970) 731-4101
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A12 — The Pagosa Springs SUN — Thursday, August 16, 2012
By Randi Pierce Staff Writer
Last weekend, Aug. 10-12, Zach Graveson, 18, a recent graduate of Pagosa Springs High School, competed in the Mountain States Cup Series Final in Telluride and took home the state championship in downhill mountain biking, age 15-18 class. Like many children, Graveson learned to ride a bike when he was very young, but he has only begun to mountain bike seriously in the last three years. In that time, he has suffered a broken collarbone three
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EYE CARE !"#$%&'&()*+&,-.&,-/0#) 12345,!"()67808*"(), 960%0(8&&:,!"(80;8,1&(),36;;&)),<%"=%0#, 10%=&,3&7&;8*"(,">,?%0#&),@,36(=70))&) !0%&,!%&:*8,@,4()6%0(;&,2;;&$8&: Dr. Jon Zissman, Optometrist
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Mamie Lynch, right and inset, played for the All American Red Heads, the first professional women’s basketball team, for several seasons in the early 1950s. The team is set to be inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame in September.
The Red Heads are one of 12 in the class of 2012 to be inducted into the hall — an honor that requires 18 of 24 votes from the Honors Committee for election into the hall. The group will be inducted on Friday, Sept. 7. Part of that history-making team is Lynch. Lynch began playing with the Red Heads in 1950, when she was a senior in high school, and played for the team during the 1951 and 1952 seasons. “I think it’s pretty good recogni-
tion of the team as a whole,” Lynch said of the honor. For Lynch, being on the team was a first foray into the real world, traveling, being on her own and playing the game she loved as part of the seven-member team. “Every day was a beautiful memory, really, because I was a little girl from Arkansas who had hardly been on my own,” Lynch said. Lynch said she will probably not be able to make the ceremony to see the induction. Lynch said the induction and
events surrounding it are pricey ($750 to attend the induction), and with having only played on the team for a few seasons, she feels the prices are too high. But, there or not, Lynch, along with the rest of the Red Heads, continue to be honored for their part in basketball history. The Red Heads were inducted in to the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in Knoxville, Tenn., in 1999, and, in 2011, were the Trailblazers of the Game recipients. email@example.com
Pagosa’s Graveson wins mountain bike title By Sophie Kennedy
Mamie Lynch a member of history-making team In 1950, Mamie Lynch, now a Pagosa Springs resident, began playing on a basketball team that had already been making history for 14 years — the All American Red Heads. The team was similar to the Harlem Globetrotters — a women’s entertainment team that played men’s teams, using men’s rules — and was in existence from 1936 until 1986. According to the team’s website, they beat the men’s teams about 80 percent of the time. Now, that team is making history again by being the first women’s basketball team inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (named after the game’s inventor, James Naismith) this September. The Hall of Fame is located in Springfield, Mass., near where Naismith first introduced the new game to his P.E. class of 18 men at the YMCA International Training School on Dec. 21, 1891. According to a press release from the hall, the team was the first professional women’s basketball team. “The All American Red Heads are known as the female version of the Harlem Globetrotters and the first women’s professional basketball team. The team regularly played more than 200 games per season, winning 70 percent of them while touring thousands of miles reaching 49 states, Canada and the Philippines. Over six decades (1936 to 1986), the team broke social barriers and stereotypes playing in small towns and rural hamlets, as well as Madison Square Garden and Chicago Stadium,” the press release stated.
times, “some stitches here and there” and, last year, a torn ACL. Now, Graveson is back and better than ever. He took home the title after finishing first in the final race of the series in Telluride. Graveson finished with a time of 3 minutes, 14 seconds, beating 21 competitors, including six riders from Telluride who regularly ride the course. The points Graveson scored at the final race, combined with those in three previous races, put him in first place in the series by 30 points. Graveson had a rough start to the series when he competed in Photo courtesy Pat Francis
Pagosa’s Zach Graveson crosses the finish line at last Saturday’s Mountain States Cup Series race at Telluride. Graveson placed first in the Mountain States Cup Series Final and took home the state championship in downhill mountain biking, age 15-18 class.
Angel Fire, N.M., and placed 12th after crashing mid-race. But, by his second race, Graveson turned things around; he finished first in the race at Crested Butte, over the weekend of June 22-24. Things continued to look up for him when he finished second in his race at Aspen. With his new state champ title, Graveson also received a state champ jersey, gear for his bike and, of course, “some medals and stuff.” Coming off this big win, Graveson was quick to thank his family for their constant support, Peddle and Powder for taking care of him and being a great sponsor and, as he says, most importantly, “I have to thank the Lord. I couldn’t do it without Him.” Graveson’s sponsor, Peddle and Powder, a local shop in Pagosa,
has been sponsoring him for the last two years, providing him with parts, service and lots of support. “He’s an awesome kid, really phenomenal. We are so proud of him. We have been so blessed to sponsor him; he has really brought us a lot.” says Lisa Pherson, who owns the shop with her husband, Bill. The couple are so devoted to Graveson they shut down their shop the last two weekends to attend his races. Lisa shared some information, which Graveson failed to divulge. “Zach won that race despite an injury. During his Saturday practice, he wrecked hard, ripped his shorts and injured his hip and thigh. But he got up the next morning and raced anyway. He just eats, drinks and sleeps downhill.”
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Thursday, August 16, 2012 —The Pagosa Springs SUN — A13
FOOTBALL Big changes ahead with Pirate football travel, league By Ed Fincher Staff Writer
The Pagosa Springs High School football team is facing a dramatically different schedule for the upcoming season due to a change in leagues mandated by the Colorado High School Athletics Association. “We are a 2A school in football,” explained PSHS Athletic Director Sean O’Donnell. “For all other sports we are 3A, but only 2A for football.” PSHS is in the Intermountain League, according to Archuleta School District Superintendent Mark DeVoti, but since the only 2A schools for football left in the league after last year’s student count were Bayfield and Pagosa, both schools were forced to move to the Western Slope League. “From the league we had last year,” O’Donnell said, “Centauri High School, Salida High School, and Buena Vista High School all have less than 300 kids this year, so they have all dropped down to 1A.” Monte Vista was already down at the 1A level last year. “There’s a committee at CHSAA that decides the cut-offs for all of the different classifications,” O’Donnell explained. “It turns out this year that the cut-off number was 300 for 2A football.” He expressed frustration at the arbitrary nature of this decision, but he elaborated that statewide CHSAA had to have a certain minimum number of schools in each classification. “Cortez played in our league last year, but they have close to 800 kids, so they are a 3A football school.” O’Donnell went on to explain that Cortez had petitioned to be able to play at the 2A level last year, but according to CHSAA rules they are only allowed to do that for one year, and now they are back up at the 3A level. “Then Alamosa ended up going to Colorado Springs to be in the TriPeaks league,” O’Donnell continued, “which left Pagosa and Bayfield sitting down here in an island all by ourselves without a league.” He explained that Alamosa was originally in the Tri-Peaks league; they had not been in the Intermountain League for very long, and they didn’t waste any time going back, because they were used to playing those schools. O’Donnell related that, in the end, “We were asked to do what was best for the classification, not necessarily what’s best for us, so we ended up being in the Western Slope League, which created a phenomenal amount of travel and expense.” “We had a dilemma,” explained DeVoti. With the prospect of some extremely long road trips, “Do you send an extra bus driver? Do you pay for a hotel room and stay overnight? Or do you drop out of athletics?” There were six 2A schools in the Western Slope league: Grand Valley, Coal Ridge, Basalt, Aspen, Gunnison and Olathe. “They weren’t exactly happy about Pagosa and Bayfield coming in, either,” O’Donnell said. “They’re very upset. They don’t want to have to drive down here.” Things could have been much
worse for Bayfield and Pagosa if O’Donnell hadn’t stood his ground with the Western Slope schools. “Bayfield and I had to fight for them to change the schedule,” he explained. The Western Slope teams were going to flip-flop their schedules, where everyone a team played at home last year would play away this year, then just plug in Pagosa and Bayfield. This meant that Pagosa and Bayfield would have been making all of the trips up north, but none of the northern schools would have had to travel down here. “I appreciate the fact that the Gunnison football coach stood up and supported us and came up with a better idea,” said O’Donnell. The athletic directors worked out a system of travel partners, where two schools that are close to each other will travel to play another pair of neighboring schools one week, then the next week the pattern will switch and those two schools will do the travelling. “Chances are it could snow,” O’Donnell worried. “That’s why we scheduled it the way we did. We put those long trips at the beginning of the season, so we’ll be going to Aspen the second week of September.” Lizard Head pass and Leadville are possible routes, but if all goes well and the weather cooperates, the plan is to go over Red Mountain Pass. “The worst-case scenario is you’ll have to go all the way to Moab and then to Grand Junction to go around, which is a possibility.” Not only was the route an issue, but the logistics of the trip were a concern. “We investigated different ways of making the trip,” O’Donnell said. The cheapest way would be to have two bus drivers, with one driving up to the game while the other slept, then switching so the fresh driver made the trip back after the game. However, the cheapest way is not always the safest, O’Donnell explained. “You’re talking about a guy that’s going to get on the bus at six o’clock in the morning, with the other bus driver and the rest of the team, and he’s going to spend the whole day riding all the way to Aspen. He’s not going to sleep. There’s no room for him to lie down and sleep and relax. He’s going to stay awake, and then we’re going to put him on a bus at eleven o’clock at night in Aspen and tell him to come all the way home in the middle of the night.” DeVoti also brought up the point that as soon as the bus gets back to Pagosa after a long trip from Aspen, the kids still have to get in their own cars and drive home. O’Donnell continued, “It came down to, I don’t care what it costs; we’re not going to be a news story. We don’t want that publicity. If we’re going to put students at risk to save money, we’re going to have a hard time defending that.” Another option O’Donnell considered was based on what Durango does. “If you wanted to give your kids the absolute best competitive
advantage, the best thing would be to go up Thursday, stay the night and then play Friday.” As a 5A school, Durango is forced to travel great distances to find teams to compete against, so the team will often have a short practice after school on Thursday, get on the bus, travel as far as they can, stay Thursday night in a hotel, then get up Friday morning to finish the trip. That way the players are fresh, relaxed and ready to play the game. “But then you’re still talking about staying again Friday night,” O’Donnell said. “We’re already in declining budgets. This was a frustrating situation. We looked at it every different possible way we could and this is the way it worked out. It was definitely not, in any way, shape or form, our choice.” There had to be a compromise between not paying for hotel rooms at all, which is not safe, or paying for two nights’ worth of hotel rooms, which is too expensive. PSHS Coach Olin Garrison laid out the plan. “We’re going to leave at about six o’clock in the morning,” he said, “and we’ll make some scheduled stops along the way to get out and stretch and have lunch. Then, hopefully, we’ll get there in time to go through a pretty good stretching routine and get them back into the right frame of mind to play a football game.” Garrison explained that the bus can hold 40 people, and there will be 30 players between varsity and JV, along with himself, three assistant coaches and one volunteer. Added to this will be the gear and equipment, which will not all fit in the compartments below the bus. “It’s going to be pretty demanding to keep focused,” Garrison said, “especially with teenagers.” Garrison had another idea to help mitigate the cost of getting a hotel room for the entire team after the game. “Like with Aspen, we’ll find a smaller town, away from Aspen, that’s not quite as expensive to stay the night.” Garrison explained that there will be four games that will require travel: Aspen, Coal Ridge, Gunnison and Alamosa. However, only Aspen and Coal Ridge are far enough away to force an overnight stay. With three assistant coaches and one volunteer, Garrison said there is no need for additional chaperones. “I’m old enough and grumpy enough,” Garrison laughed. “They can quadruple me.” “The way we get out of this,” O’Donnell explained, “is we either have to change the cutoff number between 1A and 2A so those schools in our area move up to where we are, or their numbers need to come up so that they move back into our classification, or, if 1A football had a different method of choosing their playoff qualifiers, they might be interested in doing a combination league.” Out of the three options, the last one is not only the most cost-effective, but also the only one that there is any way of controlling. “This is not unheard of,”
career at the college level. When asked what he thinks his prospects are for next year, Graveson responded, “I’m feeling really good about it all. I’m really exited to race. Moving up to the collegiate level means I’ll be able
to compete in more advanced races on a national level. And, for the first time, I’ll have a coach to teach me how to eat and train and really take myself to the next level. I’ll be able to get more hours on the bike than ever.”
O’Donnell said. “They do multiclassification leagues.” However, because each classification has a different method for determining who qualifies to be in the playoffs, “It’s hard sometimes to even get those schools to play us,” O’Donnell complained. “If they’ve got a team they think is going to be good enough to make the playoffs, those schools will typically not play the 2A schools because it hurts their chances of making the playoffs, which is frustrating.” Another possibility that was considered would be to play independently. “There is a wildcard system,” according to O’Donnell. “You earn points for winning or losing according to the classification of the team you’re playing and their record. If you beat teams with good records, you get more points. That’s how you qualify for the playoffs. It was feasible, but then we couldn’t schedule anybody, because from about the middle of September on, everyone else has league games, and there’s no one to play.” O’Donnell explained that local school officials tried every option possible before finally arriving at the current plan. “We even investigated splitting that Western Slope League in half, into a north and a south, and just trying to do something with Olathe, Gunnison, Pagosa and Bayfield. That didn’t work either. That fell through.” O’Donnell finished by saying, “I know there’s a perception out there that we wanted to be in this league.” However, he emphasized, “It is not by choice.” Garrison had the last word on the subject: “These are some good football teams. Olathe has been in the state playoffs before. Aspen’s in the playoffs a lot. Coal Ridge is pretty good. We have to raise the bar, and we’ve already talked to our kids about that.” He finishes by cautioning, “We got stuck in with the Western Slope League, and we’ve got to do a lot of travelling, but we’ll just have to handle it. I don’t want too much said about it, because I don’t want our players to use it as an excuse.” email@example.com
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Graveson, who hopes to take mountain bike racing as far as he can, will start this fall as a freshman at Fort Lewis College where he plans to study geology and continue his mountain bike racing
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