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Wine tasting proves popular Page 14

Snow Drags at Mt. Massive Page 15

Eleven to compete at state Page 22

Herald Democrat

Leadville, Colorado

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Vol. 137, No. 7 • 75 cents

Olsen steps down, Bertolas and Rimbert step up by Ryan Fitzmaurice Herald Staff Writer Brad Littlepage rescinded his resignation as the chair of the Lake County Democratic Central Committee on Feb. 9, and called for the removal of county commissioner candidate Bud Elliott and his registered agent Harry Camp as officers of the Democratic Cen-

tral Committee over a controversial agenda item to discuss the ethics of Ken Olsen’s candidacy. The move by Littlepage eclipsed a shuffling of the democratic candidates running for county commissioner, with Olsen stepping down as a candidate and Tyrone Rimbert and Ron Bertolas announcing their

candidacies for District 3 and 2 respectively. Because of Olsen’s withdrawal of his candidacy, an ethics conversation was never had and the call for Elliott and Camp’s resignation was never addressed. An email sent to the Democratic Central Committee on the afternoon of Feb. 9 an-

Tuesday morning accident

nounced Littlepage’s decision to remain the democratic chairman. Littlepage cited the Colorado Democratic Party Plan of Organization and Rules. “If a chair of any central committee resigns before the end of the regular term, the resignation must be presented in writing to the state chair. A vacancy shall be declared when these written notifications of resignation are accepted,” the rules state. Littlepage sent a notice of resignation as chairman, along with his decision to drop out of the race for county commissioner, on Feb. 1 to 30 individuals involved in the Democratic Central Committee, as well as the Herald Democratic and Leadville Today. Littlepage said despite this, he never sent the notice to the state

chair. “I didn’t even think of it,” Littlepage said when asked by current county Commissioner Mike Bordogna if he intentionally omitted sending his resignation to the state chair. The Democratic Central Committee, which planned to accept Littlepage’s resignation on Tuesday, was unable to do so before Littlepage’s rescission of his resignation. “They can go to the state and fight it, because I’m not resigning,” Littlepage said during the meeting. Littlepage said he rescinded his resignation because of concerns he had when he saw an ethics conversation on the agenda regarding Olsen’s candidacy. Continued on page 2

Special districts are holding elections Photo by Ryan Fitzmaurice

A Chevy S-10 tumbled down the embankment at approximately 8:20 a.m. Tuesday at the eight-mile marker on Colo. 91. No injuries were reported.

Police department under investigation by Marcia Martinek Herald Editor The Leadville Police Department is currently under investigation by the office of the Fifth Judicial District Attorney, which is being assisted by the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. The investigation is into “irregular practices regarding the handling and storage of items of evidence, and possible financial improprieties” occurring at the police department,

according to a news release from District Attorney Bruce Brown. Brown said his office initiated the investigation on Jan. 14 at the request of Leadville Mayor Greg Labbe. The release goes on to say that no timetable exists for a conclusion of the investigation, no arrests have been made and no criminal charges are currently pending. Information will be released as it becomes available. The City of Leadville is currently recruiting for a new police chief. Former Chief Mike Leake

resigned his position on Dec. 22, 2015. At the time, thenLeadville Mayor Jaime Stuever would not comment on the resignation, saying it was a personnel matter. He said he did not ask the chief for the resignation but also indicated that Leake didn’t have much choice in the matter. The Herald subsequently learned that Leake had been arrested and charged with driving under the influence in Aurora on Feb. 21, 2015, leading to his spending seven days in the Arapahoe County detention facility this past October.

by Ryan Fitzmaurice Herald Staff Writer Many Lake County special districts are holding elections in 2016. The deadline to apply to run for a board of a special district is Friday, Feb. 26. Those interested should obtain, fill out and turn in a self-nomination and acceptance form to the designated election official of the district. The elections will be held May 3. St. Vincent General Hospital District There are two open seats for the St. Vincent General Hospital District Board of Directors. Dennis Johnson and Byron Copley, the incumbents, are expected to run for the seats, according to Karen Onderdonk, St. Vincent director of community relations. Self-nomination forms should be obtained from and turned in to Jennifer Robbins, the designated election official for the district. Election information and contact information for Robbins can be found in the Herald’s Feb. 4 public notices.

Leadville Sanitation District The Leadville Sanitation District will have three director seats open for the upcoming election. Howard Van Voorst, Robert Vigil, and Sherrie Popovich, the incumbents of those seats, will all be running in the election. Lake County resident Jane Gowing will also be running for a seat on the sanitation district. Self-nomination forms should be obtained from turned in to Angelina Salazar. Election information and contact information for Salazar can be found in the Feb. 11 public notices. Parkville Water District The Parkville Water District will have three director seats open. Currently only two incumbents are running in the race. Chairman Mark Glenn and Vice Chairman Gary Slifka will both be on the ballot. No additional self-nomination and acceptance forms have been turned in yet, according Continued on page 2

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