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The 273-156 vote in congress last week to override President Bush‚€™s veto of a bill to expand a popular children‚€™s health program left supporters of the bill 13 short of the two-thirds majority needed to prevail. All three Colorado Republicans in the house, Doug Lamborn, Tom Tancredo and Marilyn Musgrave, all voted to uphold the veto. All four Colorado Democrats in the house, Diana Degette, Mark Udall, John Salazar, and Ed Perlmutter, voted to override the president. Comments on the votes given fell along party lines. Marilyn Musgrave said that she preferred a tax credit for families instead of ‚€œputting more people on a government-run program‚€Ě. Diana Degette said that those supporting the veto ‚€œfailed to stand up for America‚€™s children‚€Ě. Mark Udall called the bill ‚€œbeyond disappointing‚€Ě. John Salazar accused Bush and other republicans of distorting the bill and leaving over ‚€œ100,000 children in Colorado without healthcare‚€Ě.
U.S. Senator Ken Salazar has proposed $200,000 for the SLV Regional Medical Center as part of $1.7 million Salazar is requesting for Colorado projects throughout the state. The request would be included in the 2008 Labor ‚€“ Health and Human Services ‚€“ Education Appropriations Bill that is currently before the U.S. Senate. Salazar said that the hospital funding would help purchase software toward an information technology system upgrade to improve patient care in the pharmacy, laboratory, radiology and nursing departments. He said, ‚€œThese projects will make immediate differences in the quality of life for Colorado families‚€Ě. If the senate approves the bill, the bill would then be reconciled with a parallel version in the U.S. House of representatives.
Louis Dallafior, 82, of Walsenburg, was pronounced dead at the scene of an accident that occurred last Thursday night on U.S. 160 on Wolf Creek Pass. According to the Colorado State Patrol, the accident occurred at 8:19pm. Dallafior was eastbound in the westbound lane of traffic at the wide sweeping curve just above the ski area when he struck a westbound Volvo semi tractor-trailer head-on. Both Dallafior and the truck driver attempted to avoid the accident, but the car ultimately struck the front of the semi. An autopsy will be performed on Dallafior to determine if there was a medical reason for the accident. The cause of the accident remains under investigation.
The Alamosa city manager and city attorney told council members last week that the city had received a check for $20,894 from former Alamosa City Manager Michael Hackett for the overpayment in his final check. City Manager Nathan Cherpeski told councilors that the check had cleared. The city council voted to seek repayment from Hackett back in August for an overpayment in his final paycheck that was brought to light by an audit. The check Hackett sent to the city includes a $1,953 contribution to the International City/County Management Association, however Cherpeski determined that the donation to ICMA was never made by the city so he told council that that money would need to be refunded to Hackett.
The Trinidad-Las Animas Chamber of Commerce will hold a candidate forum tomorrow night beginning at 5:30pm at the Massari Performing Arts Center on the Trinidad State Junior College Campus in Trinidad. Voters will get the chance to ask their questions through a media panel. Candidates for Trinidad City Council and for the Trinidad District 1 School Board will be present. All those interested are welcome to attend.