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The Journal (Cortez)
– Last fall, Southwest Memorial Hospital laid off 40 employees after when cash on hand dwindled. Cash on hand has already improved. The governing board also changed its mind about letting Dr. Doug Bagge go, and re-negotiated his contract. He has been an orthopedic surgeon for 23 years. ∞ An eagle nest on private property has come to the attention of the Montezuma County Planning Department. The bald eagle was removed from the endangered species list, but it is still protected under Colorado law. If construction of a structure disturbs a nest, a landowner can be fined. ∞ As of January 2, Cortez had received 23.6 inches of snow which was 111% of the average snowfall through the end of January. Weather watcher Jim Andrews said it is a good start, but because of the exceptionally dry 2018, it’s going to take a lot more to get the area caught up. ∞ It appeared to be another wood stove caused fire that destroyed a home on County Road H. Four people and all pets got out of the house due to the fact that a daughter woke up just after 5:00 a.m., smelled smoke, and woke everyone up. Alvin Martin, two children, and their father were residents. ∞ Southwest Colorado eSchool allows sixth graders through 12th graders to attend school on-line whenever they want. It takes an average student about 35 hours a week to stay up to date, and students can visit a “local” student center for tutoring and camaraderie.
San Juan Record (Monticello) - The newspaper chose the top 10 news items in 2018. The first was “San Juan County elects the first Native American dominated County Commission in Utah state history." Number five was “Bill Boyle steps down as San Juan Record editor.” Number six was, “Bluff completes first year as newest-oldest town in San Juan County.” ∞ Legal fees are eating up San Juan County’s money. In the past three years, the county has suffered over $2.5 million dollars in legal fees, most of which went to suits about voting rights. County Commissioners increased the 2019 budget by $300,000 in December and earmarked $238,404 of that increase for legal fees.
The Mountain Ear (Nederland) - Edith Lovejoy Pierce said, “We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day.” The Nederland Fire Department held its annual awards banquet. Chief Rick Dirr handed out all sorts of awards: for time served, most calls made last year (Iain Irwin-Powell responded to 208 calls), training hours, search and rescue success, most hours worked (Fred Fialco worked 610 hours), and career calls.