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Alamosa Chief District Judge Pattie Swift has scheduled an October trial to resolve issues with the San Luis Valley’s first water management subdistrict. The trial will deal with issues that have been raised in objector’s invocation of the court’s retained jurisdiction. Former Chief District Judge O. John Kuenhold, who is now retired, approved the formation of the first sub-district and subsequently its water management plan. After the Colorado State Supreme Court upheld Kuenhold’s decision, the first sub-district began using fees from landowners that had been held in escrow pending the higher court’s decision for operation and water purchases. Several San Luis Valley entities and individuals have challenged the sub-district, its plan and most recently its annual replacement plan and have asked the court to address their concerns. Last Friday, attorneys for objectors filed a motion seeking a determination that sub-district #1’s annual replacement plan is not in effect until pending objections over it are resolved. Therefore, wells operating under the plan should be shut down. They asked Judge Swift for a truncated briefing schedule so that the pending May 25th motion could be resolved before the end of the irrigation season. Swift scheduled a week-long trial for October 29th. She scheduled a status conference for 9am on Friday, June 8th, to finalize the modified case management order for the trial.
The Del Norte School District Board of Education is entertaining the idea of asking for a mill levy override this year because the district’s funds are strapped. The coming school year will be victim to several cutbacks, including culinary arts courses, which have been a part of the school since the 1970’s, and a physical education teacher. Some classes and other educator positions have also been absorbed, in addition to the elementary principal position. The district has been operating at a deficit for the past 3 years. The district is considering a mill levy override of around 9 mills, which would cost a home valued at $100,000 and additional $6.75 a month or $78.80 a year, according to district funding documents. The district asked voters for a mill levy override two years ago, but it failed. The district currently collects 20 mills, which is considerably less than surrounding districts. The board will make a decision on the mill levy override at its June meeting.
With waters warming and rivers running clear, Colorado Parks and Wildlife is inviting anglers young and old to take advantage of Colorado’s Annual Free Fishing Weekend this Saturday and Sunday. The agency traditionally sets aside the first full weekend in June to promote sport fishing. For this weekend only, anglers are not required to have a valid fishing license in order to wet a line. While no fishing license is required during the free fishing weekend, all other regulations remain in effect, including bag and possession limits, and restrictions on bait in certain waters. Anglers should consult the 2012 Colorado Fishing Brochure for regulations and restrictions. For more information, go to http://wildlife.state.co.us.
Patrons of the annual Friends of the Alamosa Public Library Summerfest Book Sale tomorrow through Sunday will be astounded at the change in the shed where the sale is held. Book sale chairman Rhonda Borders said that new shelving units contributed by the Monte Vista Public Library were put together by Paul Patterson and his crew and have been stocked by friends of the library members Tim Dellett, Gena Akers, Don Thompson and Dr. Kris Steinberg. The shelves allow the friends to stock more books than in the past. The City of Alamosa has provided the friends with sheds, located north of the Alamosa Post Office and west of Cole Park, for the books. The city also has installed new fluorescent fixtures so that the lighting is much better. An estimated 30,000 books will be on display for the sale that runs from 11am to 5pm tomorrow, June 1st, from 9am to 5pm on Saturday, June 2nd, and from 10am to 2pm on Sunday, June 3rd. Hardcover books will sell for $1, paperbacks for 50 cents, paperback romance novels five for $1 and some books at special prices. DVD’s and audiotapes will also be available.
The 2012 Photography Show is now on display at the gallery of the Spanish Peaks Arts Council at 132 W. Ryus in La Veta. Local photographer Janey Waldrep awarded prizes to winners in four categories in a competition of over 50 outstanding photos. Photographers from Denver, Pueblo West, Alamosa, Westcliffe, Beulah, La Junta, Lamar, McClave, Las Animas and the La Veta/Cuchara area are featured in the show. Summer hours at the gallery are now Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10am to 3pm and Sunday noon to 3pm. Call 719-742-3074 for more information.