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THE ROCKIES’ BIG BREAK

STRIKE UP A HANUKKAH CELEBRATION »INSIDE & OUT, 1D

Dedicated space for kids can be child’s play. »3D

Agreement in principle reached with Minnesota Twins outfielder Michael Cuddyer. »sports, 1C

Today’s Daily Deal

Las Brisas $30 of Latin Fusion Food & Drink for only $15

50% off See Page 2 for additional offer details Please register at www.DenverDailyDeals.com

to get deals emailed to you every morning DP-6728143

Voice of the Rocky Mountain Empire

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 17, 2011

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Online» Exclusive, free downloads from banjo virtuoso Bela Fleck. »heyreverb.com

Building review expands A state agency that oversees school construction will also do its homework on the safety of sites other than Neenan’s.

THE TOY TESTERS

By Eric Gorski and Jennifer Brown The Denver Post

A

bby Gabbard, 4, plays with Bristle Blocks in her classroom Thursday at the Goddard School in Thornton. This fall, Goddard preschoolers tested more than 100 submissions by major toy companies to get a fix on the best educational toys. »story, 3B | video of the toy testing, denverpost.com/extras Mahala Gaylord, The Denver Post

NATION & WORLD

The agency that oversees school construction in Colorado will expand its investigation of structural engineering on past projects beyond schools built by one company, the division’s head said Friday. Expansion of the inquiry comes as a potential construction problem was found at another school built by the Neenan Co., which is under scrutiny because of unsafe conditions that closed one of its schools and a growing list of more minor issues at others. Kevin Klein, director of the state Homeland Security Division, said he has no reason to believe problems will emerge beyond the Neenan projects. “While I do not have evidence that structural engineering problems exist in schools other than those identified in the Neenan review, I am not going to be comfortable until we have completed our review of other projects,” he said. In a statement, Neenan president Randy Myers said, “We would welcome a consistent, statewide review process that does what The Neenan Company’s current third-party peer review process does — assure everyone that their local schools are safe for students and educators.” The latest concern at a Neenan school was discovered at York International School, a renovated and expanded Mapleton Public Schools building that was dedicated just this week in Adams County. A preliminary structural review found “minor outstanding issues” that require additional study, but no life-safety concerns, said Whei Wong, SCHOOLS » 17A

$ 6 8 MIL L IO N B IT E P O SSIB L E

SAVING AND SPENDING

WITNESS SAYS HE SAW SEXUAL ACT IN SHOWER

4.2 percent

$1 trillion

The rate at which the Social Security payroll tax will remain.

Keeps the government funded through Sept. 30.

Mike McQueary’s testimony at a preliminary hearing for two Penn State officials accused of covering up the incident was the most detailed public account yet of the child sex abuse allegations. »2A

Senate leaders agreed on compromise legislation to extend Social Security payroll tax cuts and jobless benefits for two months while requiring President Barack Obama to accept demands for an accelerated decision on a controversial oil pipeline from Canada. A vote is expected today.

A spending bill approved by the House on Friday provides more than $900 billion for the Defense Department, Homeland Security, public works, foreign aid, veterans benefits and a wide range of health, education and labor programs. »story, 5A

JAPAN PLANT IS IN “COLD SHUTDOWN” The Japanese government declared Friday that the tsunami-stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant had ceased to leak substantial amounts of radiation. »18A

BUSINESS

FILL GAS TANK WITH HOLIDAY CHEER Colorado motorists are enjoying an early holiday gift at the fuel pumps with gasoline priced below $3 a gallon at dozens of metro-area stations. Weak consumer demand is one reason. »5B

B Fraud charges against former CEOs of Fannie, Freddie. »5B B Bad financial news bashes Europe, hurts markets. »6B B Delta expands flights from N.Y., including to Denver. »7B

Jeffco schools grapple with scope of cuts By Electa Draper The Denver Post

DENVER & THE WEST

THOROUGH REVIEW PLANNED IN MAKING BID FOR ’22 GAMES The head of a committee named on Friday to explore a future Winter Olympics bid for Colorado plans an aggressive approach to examining the benefits and potential downsides of trying to land the 2022 Games. »1B

“We’re no longer going to be seeking to process uranium in Colorado.” John Hamrick, Cotter Corp.’s vice president for milling operations »denver & the west, 1B

INS I D E Business » 5-7B | Comics » 5-7D | Lottery » 2B | Markets » 6B | Movies » 4D | Obituaries » 7B | Puzzles » 5-6D

Jefferson County schools are getting their first look at what $68 million in potential budget cuts over the next two years might look like. The possible reductions include the elimination of 590 full-time-equivalent positions, including 175 posts at high schools, 65 at middle schools and 226 at elementary schools. The remaining 124 layoffs would affect administrators, business staff, custodians, technicians, coaches, aides and other instructional staff during school years 2012-14. Jefferson County Public Schools Superintendent Cindy Stevenson is in her 10th year of the budget process, she said, but she’s never faced anything on this scale. The projected shortfall could be as large as $70 million, on the heels of $60 million in cuts over the two previous years. “My first year, I thought the world would come to an end because the budget officer said we had to reduce JEFFERSON » 17A

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