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With the senate passage of postal reform yesterday, U.S. Senator Mark Udall called on his house colleagues to pass the bill and to protect rural post offices. Senator Mark Udall (Udall Audio)… the bill cuts the number of post offices that could be considered for closure in Colorado from the 71 originally under study. About 25 rural post offices could be saved under the Udall amendment. The bill passed the senate by a 62-37 vote and now heads to the house where it will need to be passed and then signed by President Obama before the May 15th moratorium expires.

Colonel Robert McLaughlin, garrison commander at Fort Carson, says that the army has heard citizen concerns during public meetings in Trinidad, La Junta and Colorado Springs, and that those concerns will be taken into consideration regarding helicopter training flights over southeastern Colorado. McLaughlin says that the helicopters will follow an established corridor from Fort Carson to the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site northeast of Trinidad. He said that low-level flights will only take place within the training site boundaries. Helicopters must maintain altitude outside the designated flying area. McLaughlin said that pilots will have to stay more than a half-mile away from any residential houses or ranches when the training flights are being executed. McLaughlin said the army is reviewing input received from citizens around the region and state and that there will be an announcement in late July as to the army’s plans regarding the low-altitude training flights.

Autopsy results released yesterday by the Monte Vista Police Department say that Sarah Beasley, 29, of Monte Vista, the female victim of a double homicide on February 13th, was shot four times. Beasley was found inside a home in the 500 block of Lyell Avenue that belonged to John Salazar, 54. Salazar was found in the driveway of the home and was shot five times. According to the autopsy report, only one of the shots to Beasley was fatal. Just what that shot struck was not released. There were no signs of drugs or alcohol in Beasley’s system, according to the report. Both Salazar and Beasley were shot with a small-caliber weapon, but investigators have yet to determine if it was the same weapon. At the time of the killings, police said they were looking for a 5-foot-7-inch, overweight “person of interest”, who was seen leaving the area in a black ski mask, black jacket, black pants and gloves. Anyone with any information in the case is asked to call Crimestoppers at 719-589-4111.

A petition consisting of 1,000 no-confidence signatures was presented to the Trinidad school board on Tuesday night in regard to district superintendent Manuel Rodriguez. A crowd of around 250 people packed into the Trinidad Middle School Auditorium and heard 12 people speak about the job Rodriguez is doing as superintendent. Only one of the 12 spoke out in support of Rodriguez. Kelley Ferdula, chairman of the concerned parents and community organization called for Rodriguez to be ousted from his position and imposed a deadline of May 8th for the board to vote on the issue. Ferdula said that if the board ignores the deadline, concerned parents and community’s next line of action would be an orchestrated effort to recall board members. The board did not address the group’s remarks or signatures, instead vowing silence and taking in what the group had to say.

Adams State College has announced that it will initiate $12.7 million in new construction and renovations this year, the bulk of which will go towards the overhaul of two residence halls. The work will be financed by a bond issue, the revenue for which will come at first from the school’s cash reserves and then, from a fee approved by students in 2008. The Girault and Coronado residence halls will receive a $6.9 million refurbishing to cap off work that has been done on other sections of the dormitories. The highlight of the new construction will come with a $3 million high-altitude training center, which will be completed in the spring of 2013, just to the north of Plachy Hall. The 85,000 square-foot bubble will include a 200-meter, 8-lane track with a synthetic rubber surface and will serve as the indoor home to ASC’s cross-country and track-and-field programs. The remainder of the funds will go toward the construction and renovation of other athletic facilities and the physical education department.