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Community-college transfers who attended four-year colleges, but didn’t graduate, are now eligible to receive associate’s degrees, provided they accumulated the necessary 70 credit hours. Governor John Hickenlooper signed SB45 into law last week adopting the new policy. Under the bill, colleges are required to notify students that they are eligible for the degrees beginning next year. Representative Tom Massey, of Poncha Springs, sponsored the bill. Massey said, “We can increase the number of degrees and credentials that we offer in Colorado”. He said, “It helps the two-year and the four-year institutions because now you can see a clear path by being in school and getting credit for the work you’ve done. It gives students impetus to continue on to their four-year degrees, but even if you’ve gone as far as you’re going to go, at least the work you’ve done is recognized.”

Alamosa Police shot and killed a male suspect early yesterday morning following what is believed to be a domestic violence incident. Officers were called to the San Luis Valley Regional Medical Center at about 4am yesterday morning to meet with a female who had cuts to her hands. After interviewing the victim, officers identified the suspect and attempted to make contact with him on Cottonwood Drive in Alamosa. The male suspect had barricaded himself inside his bedroom and after lengthy negotiation efforts, emerged from the room, challenging the officers with a weapon. Officers fired on the suspect and wounded him. No officers were hurt in the altercation. The suspect was taken to the San Luis Valley Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation has been called in to conduct the investigation into the incident. The names of the suspect, officers and domestic violence victim have all been withheld pending notifications of family and until the CBI investigation is complete.

A public hearing for suspended Trinidad City Manager Ed Gil De Rubio to determine his future with the city has been scheduled for May 1st. Gil De Rubio was placed on paid leave on March 6th following a 4 to 3 city council vote. The action has divided council for nearly 2 months and any sort of action at previous meetings has continued to delay the issue. Trinidad Mayor John Rino says that the process has been frustrating, both for the council and for the community. Gil De Rubio’s attorney, Dennis Malone, has informed council that he will not be able to attend on May 1st because of a prior engagement. Rino said that he feels this is just another delay tactic being employed. He said he thinks Malone owes it to his client to be there for him on the 1st. Rino said that council doesn’t plan to change the date and will still plan to hold the hearing on May 1st.

Authorities were still searching for a San Luis area man, who was believed to be armed, late Friday night. The incident began Friday morning when the suspect allegedly threatened a water commissioner and later a Costilla County Sheriff’s deputy with a gun. The sheriff’s office narrowed its search for the man to a residence, which they then surrounded, however, after obtaining warrants to enter the home they found that the suspect had already escaped. The man remained at large as of Friday night. Authorities believe that he is still armed and dangerous.

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment announced on Friday that Colorado’s jobless rate for March was unchanged from February, holding steady at 7.8% in March. The rate was down from 8.5% in March of last year, however. The department says that Colorado gained about 2,600 non-farm payroll jobs in March, with the gains coming from the private sector. The largest gains were in leisure and hospitality, manufacturing, education and health services. The national unemployment rate for March was 8.2%.