View Full Version : October 10, 2003

10-12-2003, 11:02 PM
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A 71-year-old man from Arapahoe County is the 44th human to die from West Nile Virus, state health officials reported yesterday. The man from Littleton died on September 20th from West Nile Encephalitis. This is the fourth West Nile Virus-related death for Arapahoe County. Also reported yesterday were 166 new human cases of West Nile Virus in Colorado, bringing the state's total to 2,336. This death and these new human cases are for individuals who were infected with West Nile Virus in late August through mid- September. More information on West Nile Virus can be found by calling the Colorado Health Education line for the public at 1-877-462-2911.

President George W. Bush and Colorado Congressman Scott Mcinnis expect to know within two weeks whether or not a compromise can be worked out on Mcinnis' legislation that would overhaul the national forest policy. Supporters of the "healthy forests initiative" contend that the federal government should ease restrictions on logging projects in order to reduce the risk of wildfires, regardless of lawsuits that have been filed by environmental groups. A number of amendments to the bill were added in the U.S. Senate, many of which are not acceptable, according to Mcinnis. He said that "we have to negotiate between the two, and it is hoped that there will be some conclusion within the next ten days." Mcinnis said that he wants a final bill with serious policy impact, not just a political impact.

Joe V. Romero, 18, accused of first-degree murder for the slaying of former Walsenburg Mayor George Turner, 91, has been declared mentally incompetent to stand trial. Romero is accused of pulling turner from his bed on July 17th, 2002, stabbing him more than a dozen times, slashing his throat and finally stuffing him into a closet where he was later found dead. District Judge Claude Appel, basing his ruling on the opinions of state psychiatrists who examined Romero and found him unable to stand trial on the murder charge or even understand the charges against him, ordered Romero to be taken to the Colorado Mental Health Institute in Pueblo for treatment. Turner's son, David Turner, of Albuquerque, said that he cannot accept an insanity or mental incompetency plea and that he would fight the state law that allows such an outcome in the violent stabbing death of his father.

Referendum A will be up for discussion at a public open forum to be held next Wednesday on the Adams State College Campus in Alamosa. Referendum A proposes to allow the Colorado Water Conservation Board to borrow up to $2 billion for public and private water projects by issuing bonds. Don Shawcroft of Conejos County and a representative from Save Colorado's Water will argue for the pro side, while State Rep. John Salazar with either former State Sen. Bill Thiebaut of Pueblo or Wally Stealey, will be present for the con side. The form will take place at 6pm Wednesday in Carson Auditorium.

A meet the candidates forum was held at John Mall High School in Walsenburg on Wednesday evening. Candidates for mayor, city council, city clerk, city treasurer and school board were present-to-present short speeches on their candidacies. The most interest was shown in the mayor's race with incumbent Maurice Brau and Current County Commissioner Charles Montoya speaking about the needs for growth and how to handle spending deficits. The most terse situation took place over the city clerk's race. Current city clerk, Maylyn Gale Picknell Rhynhart received some criticism of her work from one of her opponents and the mayor. Rynhart defended her work in the position in seeking re-election. The election is coming up on November 4th.