DUI Test Tips What to Do After Obtaining a DUI

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These days there can be dramatic increases in penalties for driving drunk on the road. The rules are becoming more and more strict and all for the benefit of humanity. The rise in the air polluting vehicles and accidents resulting in deaths need to be reduced so that everyone can travel safely on the road until safer enforcements for driving are manufactured. 

Hence, it’s totally understandable if you’re stopped on the roads for driving unsafely by law enforcers and asked to take a test. However, if that test comes out positive and you aren’t at the fault of drunk driving, being taken to jail due to it can be unfair. Even if you got to have a bit before driving and were steering safely while obeying traffic rules, getting detention for it can be prejudicial.

Even if a person is arrested for a DUI or DWI charge, there are many ways that people have and can get out to if. However, it can also depend upon the severity of the case. In the chances of a misdemeanor or hit or run, there is no chance of bail. 

If you think you’ve been put in jail for an unreasonable claim by some officers, which happens a lot, make sure to equip up for getting out of detention safely. You must learn how to defend yourself against this case and fight for your rights and your name getting clean. The following guide can be one of the things that can help you get out of the wrongful crime case and a dependable lawyer another. Read on!

 

What is a DUI Charge?

A DUI is short for driving under the influence and is a charge that can result from the sobriety test coming out false or through the judgment of the police of the driver. If a driver shows symptoms of being under the influence of drugs or alcohol, he/she can be arrested by the police for DUI. However, this kind of arrest can easily be proved wrong in court if there was no substance use. 

The consequences of a DUI can be severe, depending on the effects of driving or the US state. You can be evicted of your license, put on probation, serve jail time and community service, pay higher car insurance rates, and more. There can be a lot more that may or may not be included in your sentence for a DUI, starting with a license suspension. That’s why it’s always good to get help from a solicitor or attorney anytime you are convicted of such a crime and not make any rash decisions yourself.

 

What You Need From a Lawyer

Every wrongful crime attached to an innocent individual needs to be taken to court for getting justice against the wrong judgment of a police officer. Looking at the vast history of wrongful verdicts and punishment of unconcerned people to the case and how they served time in jail in the country, staying quite in a jail cell and serving time won’t be justice on oneself. Even if the crime was committed in a slight manner, the penalty for the DUI is significant enough to succumb to. For this, you will need an expert lawyer that understands you well and has most of the following features of handling a DUI case:

 

Law Knowledge

When looking for a proficient lawyer to take on your case, you need to narrow down to find one who has expertise in it. Lawyers never practice a cluster of different laws; rather, they are well-versed in one or two. For this reason, it’s only helpful for you to choose a familiar Orange County DUI lawyer. Make sure to get reviews on different agencies in your area and find a lawyer who has something to back up his professional claims. 

Skill in the Area

Any DUI lawyer would work when you’re in a hurry, but you need to check first if the lawyer has enough skills to assist in a complicated case as well. Find an attorney who has experienced an issue similar to yours and has the knowledge and abilities to get you out of detention swiftly. Your lawyer should be able to ask you comprehensively about your case through extensive questions and sessions. 

Information

Every lawyer has substantial information to provide their clients with their previous cases. They will understand the nature of your case better than you if they are really experienced in handling DUIs. When dealing with a lawyer, they will have to do more talking than you as a lawyer has quite a lot of information regarding taking a case rationally. A proficient attorney will tell you how to handle the case in the soundest way, not to make it worse.

Communication

The most valuable out of all the traits of a good lawyer should be constructive communication. They should be able to clearly and attentively communicate with you. A thorough attorney always makes a few sessions with their clients to get the whole scenario and make things clear for you. They should also be professional enough to make conversation comfortable between the two of you and create friendly grounds to develop understanding and a casual lawyer-client relationship. 

 

Best DUI Defense Tips

Although most of the detail can be supplied to you by your lawyer on how to handle your case well in court and come out of it clean, having a little knowledge of it yourself won’t hurt and make grounds for solving issues quickly. You will also be able to know if your lawyer is giving the right advice or not. 

The following are some defense tips that can help you efficiently work your way out of a DUI case, whether wrongful or not. 

The law can be bent from both sides, so you have to be careful and have all the information you can find to help yourself. Keep reading to get enlightened on how to reduce your penalty or end it all for once:

 

The bad traffic stop

When a driver on a public or residential road is obeying every traffic rule and shows no sign of wrongdoing or provides suspicion, a police officer has no right to disturb his/her drive. If a police officer provides no reason for making you stop midway through your journey and goes on to ask for your license, they are not following the rules. When this is the case that you were stopped in your drive, you can represent it in court and place the blame on them. The judge will rule out the fault on the law enforcer’s side as well and may reduce your penalty. 

Gather Witness Testimony

There are always witnesses in a criminal case. In this case, these can be your passengers as well or any bypasser. It will help your situation if you are to get their testimonies and present them in court with yourself. Their testimonies implementing that you actually did not have anything to drink or used a substance that had caused you to drive unsafely. Or that you were, in fact, not driving dangerously or emitting any traffic rules when you were stopped. 

Violations by Officers

Law enforcers rarely obey all the rules when dealing with a suspect and tend to take actions that don’t get acknowledged by the offended as violations. When stopped or warned not to make any movements by police officers, suspects usually obey orders and submit. This is advised for their safety, but the officer doesn’t have the right to tell the suspect what to do without a trigger from them or their behavior. Hence, if you can prove this behavior violations by the police officers, you can exclude all the evidence they have against you and get out of court by clearing your name. 

Not Abiding by Proper Testing Procedures

For ruling out a DUI, police officers are needed to take special measurements by the law. These steps have a setting for the occurrence and should not be forced on a suspect unless otherwise told. The law enforcers are provided testing kits and devices that help them test suspects for the level of a substance in their system. 

If the apparatus isn’t maintained right or miscalibrated, you can turn the fault on them. But even when the proper device is used, sometimes the test results can be untrue as breath is the way to rule out substance use. And this method can have flaws and be false. For this taking, a proper blood test is needed to be known for a fact that there wasn’t any substance use or alcohol consumption, and the substance in breath was something that was not harmful. 

 

Conclusion – Avoid These Mistakes 

Now that you have most of the information needed for knowing your rights and ways you can handle the case, you need to make sure that there is no mistake on your part. Your lawyer can help you out as much as they can; the rest depends on you for rectifying your case correctly in front of the jury.

For one, you must never until the end admit to anyone you were at fault or, in fact, committed a DUI. Your statement can be recorded or extracted from different sources like a call or social media to hold it against you. In such a situation, even your lawyer will not be able to help. The second thing to do is get counseling as soon as you enter the detention. Use your family, friends, or lawyer to get advice on your case. Instead of giving away any statement or behaving rashly, allow people to calm you down and get advice on what to do next.

 

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Federal court evaluates whether Colorado law can require web developer to make web sites for same-sex couples

Colorado News

By Colleen Slevin, The Associated Press

A Colorado web designer should not have to create wedding websites for same-sex couples under the state’s anti-discrimination law because it would amount to forced speech that violates her religious beliefs, a lawyer told an appeals court Monday.

Kristen Waggoner, a lawyer for Alliance Defending Freedom, told a three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver that the issue for designer Lorie Smith, who is a Christian, is the message and not the customer.

“No one should be forced to express a message that violates their convictions,” Waggoner said during the virtual hearing.

She is trying to revive a lawsuit challenging the state’s law, which her group also targeted on behalf of Colorado baker Jack Phillips in a case decided in 2018 by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The high court decided the Colorado Civil Rights Commission had acted with anti-religious bias against Phillips after he refused to bake a cake for two men who were getting married. But it did not rule on the larger issue of whether a business can invoke religious objections to refuse service to LGBT people.

On Monday, Chief Judge Timothy Tymkovich asked what Smith would do if she was approached by a straight wedding planner asking her to create four heterosexual wedding sites and one for a same-sex wedding. Waggoner said Smith would not take that job.

Colorado Solicitor General Eric Olson questioned whether Smith should even be allowed to challenge the law since she has not started offering wedding websites yet.

But if she did, he said her argument would mean she would refuse to create a website for a hypothetical same-sex couple named Alex and Taylor but agree to make the same one for an opposite sex couple with the same names. He said that would be discrimination under the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

In the case of Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop, Olson said the Supreme Court could not agree on whether cakes are a form of expression. However, he said a subjective decision about whether a company’s service amounted to speech was not a workable way of determining discrimination.

“The company cannot discriminate who it serves based on a protective class status,” he said.

However, a divided three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last year found in favor of two Christian filmmakers who said they should not have to make videos celebrating same-sex marriage under Minnesota’s anti-discrimination law because the videos are a form of speech protected by the First Amendment.

The court reinstated the lawsuit brought by Carl and Angel Larsen of Telescope Media Group in St. Cloud. They also are being represented by the Scottsdale, Arizona-based Alliance Defending Freedom, which was found in 1994 by Christian leaders concerned about religious freedom.

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Mesa Region goes from being a coronavirus success story to a cautionary tale

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People wear masks as they walk on Main Street in Grand Junction in August 2020. (CPR News)

By Stina Sieg, CPR News

When Stacey Mascarenas tested positive for COVID-19 in August, she had no idea how she’d contracted it. Her friends, family and coworkers all tested negative. Mascarenas, who lives in the small town of Fruita, always made sure to wear a mask when going out in public.

What she didn’t know was that within a few months, Mesa County would go from being a Colorado coronavirus success story to having one of the highest COVID-19 infection rates in the state.

Looking at the data, “I mean it is a spike, like a 90-degree spike,” she said.

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Mascarenas is a spokesperson for Family Health West, which runs Fruita’s Colorado Canyons Hospital and Medical Center. She explained that Mesa’s hospitals had all worked together to prepare for a surge that hadn’t arrived, even as coronavirus battered Colorado’s resort towns and big cities earlier this year.

Instead, Mesa County became the first in Colorado to get permission from the state health department to reopen restaurants and gyms. By early September, it was one of three counties able to open their economies wider than anywhere else in the state.

In a news conference, Gov. Jared Polis called Mesa a “long leader from the very start” in reopening.

“And they’ve been very successful — thus far,” he said, and quickly rapped on his desk. “Knock on wood.”

It’s been a bit more than two months since that news conference, and according to the latest data, Mesa County has had more than 3,600 cases. About half of those were in the last two weeks.

For context, it took the county the first four months of the pandemic to record its first 100 cases.

The surge started after Mesa County got permission from the state health department to scale back coronavirus restrictions. But Mascarenes said she doesn’t think that’s to blame. She said it was something else.

“People just kind of got complacent,” she said. “And we’re seeing the effects of it.

Local hospitals still have enough capacity to treat new coronavirus cases for now, she said, but since last week, they’ve prohibited visitors, except for in a few special circumstances. All around them, the county is locking down the most it’s been since spring. Public gatherings of any size are no longer allowed. Mesa County’s main, sprawling school district — one of the first in Colorado to offer in-person instruction during the pandemic — switched back to remote learning for all its middle and high schools effective Monday. Schools in District 51 had not been in remote learning since the end of the last school year.

District 51 spokesperson Emily Shockley said school officials are urging people to be cautious, “and maybe just have those tight-knit family gatherings for Thanksgiving and Christmas and those other holidays this winter.”

The district will decide next week whether middle and high schools can return to in-person classes after the Thanksgiving break.

“So we’re just going to have to see how it goes and just ask people to be on their best behavior,” Shockley said, “and we’ll see what comes of it.”

It’s not just schools that are at stake. Local businesses are also taking a hit. They can no longer hold events and must limit their capacity to 25 percent, except for those with a special designation from the local health department. Jeff Kuhr, executive director of Mesa County Public Health, explained that these restrictions can be reversed, but it will require the help of all residents.

“We really are trying to make a plea to the individuals of, you know, ‘Do your best and do your part, and have some pride in our community,’” he said.

Health officials said that includes wearing a mask in indoor, public spaces — or when people are unable to socially distance.

However, the reality is that when you walk into a grocery store in the county, there’s often at least a handful of people without masks. That’s difficult for Mascarenas to accept.

“Oh, it just infuriates me,” she said, “because this is why we’re seeing the increase in numbers.”

For her, it’s a public health issue and also a deeply personal one. She remembers going to bed one night when she was still struggling with COVID-19 and wondering if she was going to die.

“It goes through your head,” she said. “It was scary.”

A man runs through Canyon View Park in Grand Junction, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020. (Barton Glasser, Special to The Colorado Sun)

Mascarenas said she prayed more than she ever had and lived in fear that she had given the virus to her mother, who has pre-existing health issues.

“I don’t know what I would have done,” she said.

But her mom has not gotten COVID-19, and months after her own diagnosis, Mascarenas said she is doing pretty well, though she has a constant dull headache and sometimes still loses her sense of taste. Despite those few unmasked people she sees at the grocery store, she thinks that locals have started to take COVID-19 seriously, as it begins to affect them personally.

“It’s getting the attention now that it deserves, that it deserved you know, a while ago,” she said. “Hopefully, we’ll start seeing a decline.”

It hasn’t happened yet. Just a few days ago, Mesa County blew past its record number of daily cases.

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Facing a seismic shift this year teachers leader their means through permanent adjustments to schooling

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Where there were once cracks in Colorado’s education system, Education Commissioner Katy Anthes now sees chasms, laying bare persistent inequities across schools and districts that have only worsened with the pandemic.

“The really hard lesson is just how much we’ve been patching things together for so long,” Anthes told a group of parents, teachers, school and district leaders, education advocates and policymakers gathered Friday to discuss how Colorado schools are coping during the coronavirus. “And you guys have been doing an amazing job patching things together, but I think this is really ripping those patches off and making us think much deeper about equity.”

The conversation, convened by the Colorado Education Initiative and the Colorado Children’s Campaign, drew school and district leaders from urban, suburban and metro pockets to explain the struggles they face during the pandemic, as well as the successes they’ve had and the kinds of innovation they see possible. 

One key takeaway across districts: The shape of school before the pandemic is now history.

“We are navigating this seismic shift in education,” said Karen Quanbeck, superintendent of Clear Creek School District RE-1 in Idaho Springs. “And my gut is, we’re not going back to pre-pandemic learning, and there’s pros and cons to that.”

“Technology has shoved its way into instruction,” Quanbeck added, “and that’s exciting, but it is so challenging.”

The pandemic has illuminated long-standing inequities

Anthes rattled off a list of areas where cracks in education have paved the way for inequities, including in dilapidated school buildings and ventilation systems, and in workforce challenges with an inadequate number of staff members and substitutes to manage classrooms during quarantines.

Those inequities penalize students who have historically been underserved by public schools, said Michael Thomas, superintendent of Colorado Springs School District 11.

“The elephant in the room, from my vantage point, is not every kid matters,” Thomas said. “And I think we have significant data to show that if every kid mattered we wouldn’t see the predictable inequities that we can predict by ZIP code, by race, by language acquisition, etcetera.” 

COVID-19 has exposed the serious funding gap in K-12 across the country at a time schools need significant resources to respond to the individual needs of every single student who shows up in their classrooms, Thomas said.

Thomas said he wants to see the state take action in prioritizing education rather than simply touting education as a top concern. “If you’re deeming K-12 as a critical service, but you don’t resource it as such, I think we’re going to be set up for a second wave of failure for our students and our staff.”

Adams 12 Five Star Schools in Thornton set up its own learning pods inside schools this fall to try to keep many of its students from being left behind. About 4,000 students were served, mostly kids whose parents’ work keeps them from participating in online and hybrid education, students with disabilities, those learning English and those living in poverty, Superintendent Chris Gdowski said.

Parents and students pick up backpacks filled with school supplies at the central administration offices of Adams 12 school district in Thornton on Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. (Kevin Mohatt, Special to The Colorado Sun)

The pods, staffed by a variety of employees, including bus drivers, before- and after-school child care workers and paraprofessionals, have shown how adaptable and responsive a school system can be and strengthening working relationships across different departments, Gdowski said. 

Other students across Colorado run the risk of losing academic ground because they don’t have access to a reliable internet connection. This is especially true in rural communities.

In West Grand School District 1-JT, in Kremmling, Superintendent Darrin Peppard said internet connectivity continues to pose problems. Among them, wireless hot spots — devices that allow families to get an internet connection in communities without broadband — aren’t always reliable. In some rural areas, even basic cell service is unavailable.

“Hot spots are great, but if you don’t have cell service, they’re just another item to set on the desk,” Peppard said.

MORE: Northwest Colorado gets a gigabit broadband boost from U.S. Department of Agriculture

In La Veta School District RE-2, in southern Colorado, Superintendent and Principal Bree Jones said most kids have some kind of internet access but it’s not adequate — and “no current way to overcome that.” Students might rely on hot spots that run out of power after about a week or that are too slow or they’re using radio or satellite internet that is too slow for streaming, she said, noting that she can’t take part in a Zoom meeting from her home.

The district has some of the only fiber optic lines in its community, so it has brought students into school during the pandemic — with permission from the state — so they can complete their schoolwork.

Rural districts are figuring out creative ways to work around the digital divide, but the solution can’t center on ordering more hot spots, Jones said.

Anthes has repeatedly said broadband is a necessity for schooling. 

“Broadband and internet connectivity is (an) essential school supply, but yet we don’t have that across our state,” Anthes said. “And I’ve heard many of you lament you’ve been promised this for 15-20 years, and you haven’t seen it come to fruition, and I agree with you. And so, I really hope that this can double, triple down our emphasis on infrastructure.”

A fresh approach to attracting teachers and overcoming academic losses

District leaders echoed one another in their concerns for the future of Colorado’s educator workforce as many struggle to keep schools up and running while having to quarantine teachers and students.

Jones stressed the need for leaders to be thoughtful about the message they’re sending to aspiring teachers. If they’re not careful, they could worsen the recruitment and retention crisis that was going on before COVID hit.

“Historically when we’ve been in situations like this, we have intentionally or unintentionally sent a message to young people that we don’t need or want them in the profession, that we won’t have jobs for them,” Jones said. “And I think we have to be so careful and so intentional about what our message is right now.”

The superintendent acknowledges all the budget uncertainty districts face but said that can’t stand in the way of trying to attract quality teachers to schools.

“When we think about the mess and the complexity, we need excellent people coming into education to meet that challenge,” she said, “and we need to make sure that as an educational community that’s the message that we’re sending.”

More than one superintendent highlighted the need to tend to the mental health of teachers already in the field. As much as education leaders worry about the social-emotional well-being of their students, they are equally concerned about how well their teachers are coping with the disruptions caused by COVID-19.

Justin Castilla works on a laptop in a classroom in Newlon Elementary School early Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020. (AP Photo, David Zalubowski, Special to The Colorado Sun)

Education leaders also acknowledged how much support their students will need in overcoming the academic losses they’ve suffered during the pandemic. Gdowski, of Adams 12 Five Star Schools, posed the idea of making summer school a more mainstream part of the academic year — not only for those students who are struggling.

“So often in the past, summer school has been labeled as something that is almost a punishment and it’s remedial in nature and if you screwed up, and you haven’t done right in getting your courses completed during the school year, your reward/punishment is to go to summer school,” Gdowski said. “And moving forward, we have so many kids who have done all the right work, have participated and given their best and yet they’re still very far behind.”

Kids are especially behind in math, he said. He believes that extended learning in the summer for kids across academic levels — with time for both studying and fun together — are increasingly important. But districts don’t currently have the resources for that kind of programming, Gdowski said.

Another important component to helping kids succeed in the future: keeping a range of learning modes in place to meet the different needs of different students.

Anthes sees promise in districts continuing to build on the different models of instruction — such as remote, hybrid and pods — that they’ve developed during the pandemic.

“I think one of the innovations coming out of this is, how can we consider those models moving forward,” she said, “even when we’re not in a pandemic?”

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  • Facing a “seismic shift” this year, educators pioneer their way through permanent changes to schooling
  • Rising insulin costs force 40% of Colorado diabetics to risk health by rationing its use, Colorado AG’s report says
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Climbing insulin prices compel 40% of Colorado diabetics to run the risk of health and wellness by allocating its usage Colorado AGs report says

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More than 40% of Coloradans with diabetes responding to a survey said their insulin costs are so high that they dangerously ration their own use of the lifesaving drug at least once a year, according to a state attorney general’s report. 

Insulin costs for Colorado patients rose 262% in the past 10 years, a massive increase that the new report from Attorney General Phil Weiser’s office attributes to lack of competition among drugmakers and distributors, and their “lockstep” price increases that have drawn lawsuits over alleged collusion. 

Results of the insulin inflation have real and severe consequences for Coloradans’ health, Weiser said, expanding on a report required by the Colorado legislature. Rationing insulin or fasting to control blood sugar levels are medically hazardous and an awful consequence for nearly 74,000 state residents who rely on the drug for diabetes control.

The high level of rationing among the nearly 400 residents who gave information for the report “is a painful, jaw-dropping statistic that underscores what the problem is,” Weiser said.

The state AG investigation, ordered as part of a groundbreaking 2019 bill capping copayments for insulin at $100 a month, zeroes in on the lack of real price competition in an insulin market dominated by just three manufacturers and three pharmacy benefit managers who buy and distribute the drug. The benefit managers negotiate price discounts in the form of “rebates” from the manufacturers, but there’s little way of knowing whether those savings are ever passed on to the consumer, Weiser said. 

The bill commissioning the study gave manufacturers exemptions from disclosing information if they could claim a trade secret, Weiser said. “It’s not easy to get our arms around what is happening there,” he added.

Pandemic job losses and wage cuts pushed even more patients over the edge who were already in hardship from ongoing Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes costs.

Patient advocates called the report an important step that validates the real crisis among diabetics who struggle to manage their disease every day.

“Hell yeah, that rings true,” said Gail deVore, a patient advocate who has worked with legislators and the AG’s office to highlight insulin costs and seek solutions. “Even somebody like me who knows how to get certain insurance coverage, I haven’t always been successful. It’s a rare day when my insurance company turns me down, but they have. When you fork out $350 for a bottle of insulin, you figure out how to ration it so you can make it to the next one.”

MORE: Racial and income gaps in diabetes management and access to care are worse than ever in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

State Rep. Dylan Roberts, D-Eagle County, who cosponsored the 2019 bill placing copay caps and ordering the study, said the report shows what the legislature can do to further protect patients and he will bring bills to do that.

For diabetic patients, Roberts said, “Insulin is like oxygen, without it you cannot survive. It’s a public health crisis that people can’t afford such a basic necessity of life.

“We were the first state in the country to cap insulin copays — we know that was just a start,” he added.

The AG’s report to the legislature recommends a number of steps that state or federal government can make quickly to ease insulin costs for patients: 

  • States pooling together their Medicaid purchasing power to negotiate better prices for all state residents living with diabetes.
  • Extension of the 2019 insulin price cap to demand more pricing transparency at each step of the supply chain, including from benefits managers and wholesale distributors. 
  • Studies and eventual legislation or administrative decisions requiring Medicaid to pay for insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitors (CGMs), and possible extension of those mandates to state-regulated private plans. Such monitors can cost $8,000, with more for implanted pumps shown to best regulate blood sugar levels. Many studies have shown sharp racial disparities in who can afford the technology. 
  • Federal action to change drug patent laws to open the way for generic competition for “biosimilar” versions of insulin.
  • FDA approval of purchasing insulin from foreign suppliers, where prices are often a fraction of what is charged in the United States. 

“The recommendations are wonderful,” deVore said. Patient advocates would back any of the “creative ways we can make sure (insulin is) available to our residents, to make sure we are a healthier state.”

A spokesperson for PhRMA, the trade association, said the report accurately pointed out that cost layers from distributors and insurance companies nearly double the manufacturer’s cost of producing insulin. 

“No one living with diabetes should be forced to ration or go without their life-saving insulin because they can’t afford it,” PhRMA director of public affairs Nick McGee said. “That’s why we’ve advocated for real policy reforms that states like Colorado can pursue to make the system work better for patients and why manufacturers have long offered robust patient assistance programs that offer insulin for free or at reduced cost for those who need help.”

Drug manufacturers, however, have lobbied in many states against extending price caps to the uninsured or underinsured. 

The patient response portion of the study was not a scientific, demographically calibrated sample of the entire state, Weiser said. It took responses from 391 residents of 44 of the state’s 64 counties. He is confident, though, that all the concerns and potential solutions reflect the insulin debate of recent years. 

“I’m comfortable saying it’s illustrative,” he said, not “bulletproof.”

The first half of the 2019 legislation was considered a pioneering bill nationwide, limiting the out-of-pocket costs of insulin to $100 for patients covered by state-regulated health insurance plans. DeVore said she knows many patients who have already realized significant savings from that bill.

Advocates and the AG report, however, note that the legislation leaves out many people covered by other types of plans, including plans created by large, self-insured employers throughout the state.

National representatives for the pharmaceutical trade did not respond to requests for a reaction to the AG report.

Drug manufacturers have pushed back hard against consumer price caps in many states. The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America is challenging in court a Minnesota law from earlier this year allowing patients with “an urgent need” to get a 30-day supply of insulin for no more than $35.

Roberts said he hopes the report’s extensive look at industry pricing practices will help lure even more co-sponsors for 2021 legislation.

“I don’t think the free market is working. I wish it would. A free market would bring pricing down,” he said. “Insulin’s been around 100 years, and the fact just three companies still hold patents is not the way the free market should be working.”

Roberts’ brother, Murphy, was a Type 1 diabetes patient who died after a diabetic seizure on a hike caused a fall and a head injury. Roberts has said that while his brother had adequate health care, he would have wanted others to advocate for less fortunate patients.

“People are rationing their insulin and dying,” he said. “I can’t think of a reason not to do something.”

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  • Rising insulin costs force 40% of Colorado diabetics to risk health by rationing its use, Colorado AG’s report says
  • Gov. Jared Polis will select one of these three people to serve on the Colorado Supreme Court
  • These Coloradans survived coronavirus during the first wave. Here’s what they want you to know now.
  • Looking for beauty in an era of sameness, my psyche kept time with a solitary hummingbird
  • Opinion: DPS board’s vote delaying science-tech high school fails students, parents

via Straight News https://coloradosun.com/2020/11/17/insulin-price-ration-colorado-diabetic/

https://endlessvideo.com/watch?v=JhtyTTsnHaA

Gov. Jared Polis will certainly select one of these three people to offer on the Colorado High Court

get headlines https://thecherrycreeknews.com

The retirement of Nathan B. Coats, the last Republican-appointed judge on the Colorado Supreme Court, has cleared the way for Gov. Jared Polis to make his first pick for the high court.

Polis, a Democrat, is expected to announce his choice this week. Former Gov. John Hickenlooper appointed five current justices and former Gov. Bill Ritter appointed one to the seven-member panel. 

Polis will choose from three finalists selected by a nonpartisan committee. All have decades of experience practicing law in Colorado, though only one, Maria Berkenkotter, has prior experience as a judge. The other two, Andrea Wang and Timothy MacDonald, are longtime attorneys. 

The Colorado Sun reviewed the finalists’ applications to get a better sense of their backgrounds and why they want to be a Colorado Supreme Court justice. Here’s what we found:

Judge Maria Berkenkotter

Maria Berkenkotter currently works for the Judicial Arbiter Group, which is composed of former judges. Before that, she served as chief judge in the 20th Judicial District, which encompasses Boulder County, from 2013 to 2017. She also served as a district court judge in the district.

Berkenkotter, a graduate of the University of Denver Sturm College of Law, was also a finalist for a position on the Colorado Supreme Court in 2018, but Hickenlooper selected Carlos A. Samour instead. 

If she is appointed to the bench, Berkenkotter will be returning to the Colorado Supreme Court; she clerked for former Justice Howard Kirshbaum from 1987 to 1988.

In 2016, Berkenkotter presided over the high-profile trial of Dynel Lane, who was convicted of cutting the fetus out of another woman in Longmont. Berkenkotter sentenced Lane to 100 years in prison. 

She highlighted the case in her application for the Supreme Court. “This was an emotionally charged and challenging case that presented a number of difficult issues,” she wrote.

In her application, Berkenkotter said her specialty is civil litigation, but has on multiple occasions represented the state of Colorado in federal courts on criminal cases and appeals cases, the latter of which is central to what she would be doing as a member of the Colorado Supreme Court.

“Through these cases,” she wrote, “I gained extensive experience addressing a broad range of appellate issues.”

In her personal statement, Berkenkotter said she was certain she was ready to serve on the court and that her experience as a judge prepared her for the role. 

“I know how to work to build consensus, to listen carefully, to challenge my own views and thoughtfully consider the views of others, to stand my ground, to have difficult conversations when necessary, and to respectfully disagree when consensus is not possible,” she wrote.

A search of state and federal databases reveals she has never given to a Colorado political candidate. In her application, Berkenkotter said she is not active in partisan politics.

Andrea Wang

Andrea Wang was admitted to the Colorado Bar in 2001 after graduating from the University of Colorado Law School. Since then, she has practiced as a civil litigator, most recently as an assistant United States attorney.

In her application, Wang said she transitioned to her current role after her mother died.

“As I reflected on what was important to me, I decided I could, and should, do more for the community,” she wrote. 

Her time in her current position, she said, has been the “most rewarding” role of her career. 

Prior to serving as a federal lawyer, Wang worked in private practice, focusing on business litigation and specializing in natural resource and energy litigation at Davis Graham & Stubbs. There she “handled cases at both the trial and appellate levels,” according to her application.

She also wrote she worked on pro bono cases and served as the chair of the firm’s diversity and inclusion committee.

As an assistant U.S. attorney, she typically represents the federal government in cases where it has been defrauded. She said her cases commonly involve public lands and all of them “arise from conduct in Colorado, or impact agencies located in Colorado.”

MORE: Read more politics and government coverage from The Colorado Sun.

Wang wrote that her current cases are tried in the federal courts, but in private practice she has worked on cases before the appellate courts of Colorado and before the Colorado Court of Appeals and the Nebraska Supreme Court. 

Like Berkenkotter, Wang also clerked for a Colorado Supreme Court justice. Wang worked for Chief Justice Mary Mullarkey from 2001 to 2002.

“I would be honored to continue my public service as a justice on the court where I started my career, 19 years ago,” she wrote.

In 2011, the Colorado Supreme Court appointed her to serve as a member of the Colorado Supreme Court Hearings Board, whose members conduct disciplinary hearings and trials and issue decisions on attorney discipline. Wang stepped down from that position when she joined Colorado’s U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Wang is currently defending the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in a federal court case filed by an Aurora gun seller that is challenging the bureau’s decision to revoke its license.

Wang wrote in her application that she would cease to be involved in partisan politics if appointed to the Colorado Supreme Court. Federal and state campaign finance databases show she has given to Democratic candidates and causes in the past.

Timothy MacDonald

A Denver resident since 1998, Timothy MacDonald graduated from the University of Michigan with a law degree and a master’s in public policy. He is currently a partner at the national law firm Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer and the managing partner of the firm’s Denver office, a role he’s held full time since 2014. He’s been with the firm since 1998 and a partner since 2006.

Though never a judge, he has argued cases before the Colorado Supreme Court. He wrote in his application that he has “handled nine appeals before the Colorado Supreme Court, the Colorado Court of Appeals, the (10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals), and appeals at the District Court.”

After law school, MacDonald clerked for Emilio M. Garza on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, based in New Orleans.

In his application, MacDonald said he filed his first brief in the Colorado Supreme Court in 2000, and that his history of working on appeals before the court has provided him with “a deep appreciation for clear writing, solving complex problems, and judges who understand the practical realities of their decisions.”

A self-described legal “generalist,” MacDonald called himself a “civil litigator who handles trials and appeals of all kinds.” He said he typically represents businesses and commercial interests, and that trial work makes up 65% to 70% of his practice and appeals the other 30% to 35%.

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He wrote that he has worked on a “broad array” of pro bono cases. “I have committed myself to pro bono work in our state because I understand how fortunate I have been in my life and believe that I have an obligation to give back to our community,” he said in his application.

MacDonald is currently representing the city of Boulder in a challenge to its 2018 municipal ordinance limiting large-capacity gun magazines and assault weapons. He has for more than 20 years represented the Hopi nation in various disputes. 

“My representation of the Hopi has been one of the true treasures of my professional life,” he wrote. 

The son of immigrants, MacDonald said he is interested in becoming a Colorado Supreme Court Justice because it would be the culmination of years working on behalf of the less fortunate. 

“I seek this position because I want to commit myself fully to serving the public,” he wrote.

MacDonald wrote in his application that he would cease to be involved in partisan politics if appointed to the Colorado Supreme Court. Federal and state campaign finance databases show he has given to Democratic candidates in the past, including Mike Johnston’s 2018 gubernatorial campaign and 2020 U.S. Senate campaign; U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse’s campaign; U.S. Rep. Jason Crow’s campaign; and Amy Klobuchar’s 2020 presidential campaign.

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  • Rising insulin costs force 40% of Colorado diabetics to risk health by rationing its use, Colorado AG’s report says
  • Gov. Jared Polis will select one of these three people to serve on the Colorado Supreme Court
  • These Coloradans survived coronavirus during the first wave. Here’s what they want you to know now.
  • Looking for beauty in an era of sameness, my psyche kept time with a solitary hummingbird
  • Opinion: DPS board’s vote delaying science-tech high school fails students, parents

via Straight News https://coloradosun.com/2020/11/17/gov-jared-polis-will-select-one-of-these-three-people-to-serve-on-the-colorado-supreme-court/

https://eachnow.com/watch?v=JhtyTTsnHaA

Colorado governor reveals brand-new coronavirus restrictions aimed at preventing lockdowns

Colorado News

Gov. Jared Polis announced new coronavirus restrictions Tuesday aimed — at least temporarily — at preventing about half of Colorado’s counties from being forced into lockdown as COVID-19 sickens more people and fills more hospital beds each day.

The new mandates are intended to give counties with a worsening COVID-19 situation another chance to improve before returning to an all-out stay-at-home order as the Democrat issued in the spring. 

Coronavirus is running so rampant in many counties — including Denver, Adams and Jefferson — that they should already be locked down under metrics defining the state’s old dial system. Roughly half of the state’s counties Tuesday morning were teetering on the edge of having such bad rates of coronavirus cases and hospitalizations that they would meet the criteria for a lockdown.

COVID-19 IN COLORADO

The latest from the coronavirus outbreak in Colorado:

  • LIVE BLOG: The latest on closures, restrictions and other major updates.
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  • TESTING: Here’s where to find a community testing site. The state is now encouraging anyone with symptoms to get tested.
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>> FULL COVERAGE

“We clearly need a more drastic shift in behavior,” Polis said at a news conference at the governor’s mansion in downtown Denver where he announced the new restrictions. “Absent intervention, it just keeps getting worse.”

Polis changed the state’s dial system to make the red level — which used to be the point at which counties were forced to lock down — less severe.

Counties at that level must now shutter indoor dining. Other businesses will only be able to operate at minimal capacity. Counties at the red level are not, however, required to fully lock down.

It wasn’t immediately clear on Tuesday afternoon which counties would be moving to the red level. Polis said an executive order laying out the details of the changes is forthcoming.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment says a new level — purple — will be added to the bottom of the dial for counties facing an even worse coronavirus situation. The changes to the dial will be effective on Friday.

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, who was also at Tuesday’s news conference with Polis, asked people to follow the new rules to prevent further restrictions from being enacted.

Polis and local officials have resisted the idea of issuing new lockdown orders for weeks, fearful, mainly, of economic fallout. Instead, they’ve been pleading with the public to adhere to mask-wearing restrictions and social-distancing guidelines. 

Gov. Jared Polis speaks to reporters at a news conference on Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. (Jesse Paul, The Colorado Sun)

Recently, Coloradans have even been urged — and required in some places, including Denver — to cancel plans with people outside of their households.

None of those requests or last-ditch mandates, however, have been effective, and Polis was forced last week to prepare in earnest for hospital capacity to be surpassed in the coming weeks. 

As of Tuesday morning, about 1,300 Coloradans were hospitalized because of the coronavirus — by far the highest number since the pandemic began. The state’s seven-day average daily case count has surpassed 4,000, another record. Colorado’s test positivity rate average over the past week is 12.61%, well above the 5% level considered acceptable by the World Health Organization. 

“Do I expect these case numbers to be dropping in the next week?” Dr. Eric France, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s chief medical officer, said on Thursday. “I don’t know that they will.”

Also on Tuesday, Polis confirmed that he will call a special session of the Colorado legislature, urging lawmakers to swiftly pass bills that can help people weather the economic effects of the new restrictions. He said the state has been forced to act in lieu of new federal relief. 

Polis said he hopes the legislation will “bridge us to the vaccine.”

The governor said the details of the special session are still being ironed out, but that they are expected to be finalized before the end of the week.

Among the topics state lawmakers are expected to tackle are:

  • Small business relief in the form of delayed tax payments and direct emergency assistance 
  • Housing and rental aid
  • Child care support
  • Expanded broadband access

This is a developing story that will be updated.

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  • Colorado governor unveils new coronavirus restrictions aimed at preventing lockdowns
  • Facing “seismic shift” this year, Colorado educators pioneer through permanent changes to schooling
  • Rising insulin costs force 40% of Colorado diabetics to ration its use, AG’s report says
  • Gov. Jared Polis will select one of these three people to serve on the Colorado Supreme Court
  • These Coloradans survived coronavirus during the first wave. Here’s what they want you to know now.

via Straight News https://coloradosun.com/2020/11/17/colorado-governor-new-coronavirus-restrictions/

http://domaintransfer.info/watch/JhtyTTsnHaA

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https://danpabon.com/on-twitter-robots-spread-out-conspiracy-theory-concepts-as-well-as-qanon-chatting-factors/

On Twitter robots spread out conspiracy theory concepts as well as QAnon chatting factors

Colorado News

Are you being deceived by a robot?
Alina Kvaratskhelia/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Emilio Ferrara, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism

Americans who seek political insight and information on Twitter should know how much of what they are seeing is the result of automated propaganda campaigns.

Nearly four years after my collaborators and I revealed how automated Twitter accounts were distorting online election discussions in 2016, the situation appears to be no better. That’s despite the efforts of policymakers, technology companies and even the public to root out disinformation campaigns on social media.

In our latest study, we collected 240 million election-related tweets mentioning presidential candidates and election-related keywords, posted between June 20 and Sept. 9, 2020. We looked for activity from automated (or bot) accounts, and the spread of distorted or conspiracy theory narratives.

We learned that on Twitter, many conspiracy theories, including QAnon, may not be quite as popular among real people as media reports indicate. But automation can significantly increase the distribution of these ideas, inflating their power by reaching unsuspecting users who may be drawn in not by posts from their fellow humans, but from bots programmed to spread the word.

Bots amplify conspiracy theories

Typically, bots are created by people or groups who want to amplify certain ideas or points of view. We found that bots are roughly equally active in online discussions of both right-wing and left-wing perspectives, making up about 5% of the Twitter accounts active in those threads.

Bots appear to thrive in political groups discussing conspiracy theories, making up nearly 13% of the accounts tweeting or retweeting posts with conspiracy theory-related hashtags and keywords.

Then we looked more closely at three major categories of conspiracies. One was a category of alleged scandals described using the suffix “-gate,” such as “Pizzagate” and “Obamagate.” The second was COVID-19-related political conspiracies, such as biased claims that the virus was deliberately spread by China or that it could be spread via products imported from China. The third was the QAnon movement, which has been called a “collective delusion” and a “virtual cult.”

These three categories overlap: Accounts tweeting about material in one of them were likely to also tweet about material in at least one of the others.

The link to right-wing media

We found that the accounts that are prone to share conspiratorial narratives are significantly more likely than nonconspirator accounts to tweet links to, or retweet posts from, right-leaning media such as One America News Network, Infowars and Breitbart.

Bots play an important role as well: More than 20% of the accounts sharing content from those hyperpartisan platforms are bots. And most of those accounts also distribute conspiracy-related content.

Twitter has recently tried to limit the spread of QAnon and other conspiracy theories on its site. But that may not be enough to stem the tide. To contribute to the global effort against social media manipulation, we have publicly released the dataset used in our work to assist future studies.

Emilio Ferrara, Associate Professor of Computer Science; USC Viterbi School of Engineering; Associate Professor of Communication, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

via Straight News https://northdenvernews.com/on-twitter-bots-spread-conspiracy-theories-and-qanon-talking-points/

http://abc.action.news/watch?v=JhtyTTsnHaA

Did you miss our previous article…
https://danpabon.com/viewpoint-flow-of-spots-fantastic-american-outdoors-act-now-resembles-an-election-year-show/

Viewpoint: Flow of spots Fantastic American Outdoors Act now resembles an election-year show

Colorado News

For all the hype and excitement with which the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA) was advertised by U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt and President Trump, it appears their signature conservation legislation was nothing more than an election-season façade.   

Signed into law in August, the GAOA was sold to the American public as permanently and fully authorizing the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at $900 million annually, and creating a five-year trust fund to reduce the multi-billion-dollar backlog in maintenance and infrastructure for national parks and other public lands. 

Much to the surprise of the Republican-controlled Senate, Bernhardt failed to submit two lists to Congress by a Nov. 3 deadline that detailed funding for priority projects. Not only that, but the secretary is engaged in a last-minute effort to block the intended implementation of LWCF funding and cement fringe anti-public lands views embraced by his leadership at Interior.

Cody M. Perry

The process and expectations for LWCF that Congress set forth in the Great American Outdoors Act are clear. Congress asked that this administration meet the deadline for submitting specific fiscal-year 2021 program allocations and project lists. 

Not only did the delayed delivery of these lists arrive late and lack basic information, they raised alarm bells around projects that had suddenly gone missing, including a $1 million project slated to protect working agricultural lands in the San Luis Conservation District.

Now more than ever, Colorado communities — and indeed communities across the nation — are anxious for LWCF money to start flowing during a time of economic uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Our outdoors are over-loved and increasingly busy places with record visitation almost everywhere. This trend will continue. 

READ: Colorado Sun opinion columnists.

The landmark legislation passed earlier this year has huge potential to help preserve and manage lands while addressing the needs of rural Western communities by diversifying and strengthening local economies.

However, Bernhardt has his own agenda, unresponsive to the needs of the American people. Bernhardt has injected a litany of new restrictions to keep our local partnerships from accessing LWCF funds. 

Congress has specifically, repeatedly voted down arbitrary restrictions when passing the Dingell Act and then the Great American Outdoors Act. The GAOA is still an achievement we can be proud of as Americans, and one we ought to defend and build upon. Unfortunately, defend it we must.

In hindsight, all the pompous back-slapping and fallacious comparisons to Teddy Roosevelt at the White House bill-signing ceremony for GAOA should tell you beyond any reasonable doubt that neither Gardner, Bernhardt nor Trump has taken our public lands seriously. 

For Bernhardt, a Colorado native, this was just a minor retasking of an entire federal institution in providing a photo-op for a political party during the 2020 election season. One that invested more in keeping a couple Senate seats than the American lands that shape our very character.

It is imperative that every action of Bernhardt’s is watched to ensure he isn’t able to further sabotage or ignore the laws of this land. I call on Congress to now finish its work on LWCF spending for fiscal-year 2021 without regard to the Interior Department’s extralegal attempt to rewrite this incredibly popular and successful program. 

It is abundantly clear that Bernhardt doesn’t care about the lands and waters these funds are intended for. After building the biggest land conservation legislation in a generation, he sure wasted no time attempting to tear it all down.


Cody M. Perry is a filmmaker based in Grand Junction, specializing in stories about the Colorado River Basin’s land, water and people.


The Colorado Sun is a nonpartisan news organization, and the opinions of columnists and editorial writers do not reflect the opinions of the newsroom. Read our ethics policy for more on The Sun’s opinion policy and submit columns, suggested writers and more to opinion@coloradosun.com.

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  • Opinion: Passage of landmark Great American Outdoors Act now looks like an election-year show
  • Colorado governor unveils new coronavirus restrictions aimed at preventing lockdowns
  • Facing “seismic shift” this year, Colorado educators pioneer through permanent changes to schooling
  • Rising insulin costs force 40% of Colorado diabetics to ration its use, AG’s report says
  • Gov. Jared Polis will select one of these three people to serve on the Colorado Supreme Court

via Straight News https://coloradosun.com/2020/11/18/great-american-outdoors-act-opinion/

https://mimizo.ru/video/JhtyTTsnHaA

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https://danpabon.com/chaffee-county-asks-for-more-time-research-of-controversial-nestl-water-bottling-plan/

Chaffee County asks for more time research of controversial Nestlé water-bottling plan

get headlines https://thecherrycreeknews.com

Chaffee County’s commissioners want more analysis of a plan by Nestlé Waters North America to pump as much as 65 million gallons of water a year from the Upper Arkansas River Valley for bottling in Denver. 

After several meetings in the last two months featuring hours of public input — virtually all of it opposing the plan — and executive session discussions with attorneys, the county’s three-member board of commissioners on Tuesday announced a plan to hire an economic analysis firm to study the economic impacts of the water-pumping proposal. 

“I want to make the best decision I can with just three people here trying,” Commissioner Greg Felt said on Nov. 10 as he floated the idea of hiring an economist to study Nestlé’s request for a 10-year permit to pump and bottle water from a network of wells on the Arkansas River. 

Nestlé, the world’s largest food and beverage company, began drawing water from the valley in 2009 as part of a 10-year permit. That permit allowed the company to drill wells, build a pipeline and truck water to Denver for bottling under the Arrowhead brand. The company acquires water from the Upper Arkansas River Water Conservancy District every year to augment flows in the river and replace its removal of groundwater. 

Last year the company asked for a permit renewal and, after pandemic delays, the county began studying the request in October. Chaffee County’s commissioners have heard from dozens of residents that a lot has changed in the decade since Nestlé first arrived.

“I’m not sure why this is a negotiation to keep this contract as opposed to end this contract and make a path for Nestlé leading out of our community,” said Angie Thompson during public comment on Nov. 10, when residents expressed concerns over climate change, Colorado’s prolonged drought, population growth and Chaffee County’s evolving economy that is growing less reliant on natural resource extraction. 

Nestlé earlier this year announced a plan to replenish all the water it sucks from watersheds and offset the carbon impact of bottling and transporting water. That “zero environmental impact” sustainability plan was followed by news that the international conglomerate was exploring the sale of bottling operations in the U.S. and Canada. The possibility of a sale troubled Chaffee County commissioners. The board drafted new permit rules that, if approved, would require local approval of a new owner to operate under the Nestlé permit. 

Nestlé Waters North America was amenable to the new requirement. And the company earlier this month, in response to local input, crafted new conditions for the permit that would direct more Nestlé money into the local community. 

“Our goal is to address the concerns we heard with the following conditions,” Larry Lawrence, natural resources manager with Nestlés Waters North America, said during the Nov. 10 hearing. 

The new conditions divide the company’s contributions to the county into two tiers based on how much water is extracted for bottling. 

When the company pumps less than 125 acre-feet, or roughly 41 million gallons a year, the school districts in Buena Vista and Salida would get $15,000 a year for the length of the 10-year contract and up to $10,000 more a year for each school district depending on matching funds. (The company funded a $500,000 endowment for the county’s schools in 2009.)

The Ruby Mountain Springs is below the wells where Nestlé pumps water for bottling in Denver. (Jason Blevins, The Colorado Sun)

Also in that 125 acre-feet tier, the company would direct $5,000 to $10,000 a year to support local training of truck drivers so the company could better meet its goal of hiring local drivers to pilot tankers between its pumping station in Johnson Village and Denver. Also Nestlé said it would contribute up to $20,000 a year to local charities, depending on matching support. 

If Nestlé pumps more than 125 acre-feet, the contributions to local schools, driving training scholarships and local charities would increase. 

Last year, Nestlé Waters North America reported it drew 89 acre-feet of groundwater from its wells below Ruby Mountain.

The new plan has Nestlé committed to contribute $400,000, up to $800,000 over the 10-year permit for the first tier and $675,000 to more than $1.3 million, depending on matching support, if the company pumps more than 125 acre-feet, said Caitlin Quander, Nestlé’s attorney with  Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck.

One of the standards for a 1041 permit issued by Chaffee County requires that projects do not have “a significantly adverse net effort on any segment of the local economy.” The 1041 permit process gives local authorities more voice in so-called “activities of state interest” that include new communities, roads, infrastructure and industrial projects.) A 2009 economic study as part of Nestlé Waters North America’s 2009 permit found the plan did not have a negative impact. But the county commissioners want to revisit that analysis. 

The meetings in October and November were held virtually, with only a few people speaking live before the commissioners and most speaking through the Zoom platform. The virtual process included lengthy discussions in the Zoom chat room, where residents floated all kinds of ideas. One idea that galvanized residents entailed the company taking over a local water operation at the Nestlé facilities. Another had the company supporting recycling efforts in the county. 

Felt, the county commissioner, said last week that the conversation was yielding good ideas and he wanted time to more closely study the resident suggestions.  

Commissioner Keith Baker said this week that many residents were expressing concerns about the increasing cost of recycling in the county. 

“That doesn’t fall at Nestlé’s feet,” Baker said, “but some members of the public are asking me to consider or asking me to present a way to get Nestlé to underwrite the county’s recycling program.”

Lawrence on Tuesday said the company would be fine with further study, but wanted more details on the permit to continue water pumping operations, which expires Dec. 31 following a one-year extension related to pandemic delays. Lawrence said Nestlé “may or may not” present its own economic study as well. (The company has developed a fishing easement on its property allowing access that likely contributes to the area’s economy.)

Nestlé Waters North America has provided a fishing easement near its property on the Arkansas River. (Jason Blevins, The Colorado Sun)

The commissioners will meet again on Dec. 8 to discuss a contract with an economic advisory group — the cost of which will be covered by Nestlé Waters North America — as well as the possible extension of the company’s permit during the analysis. 

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  • Chaffee County calls for more time, study of contentious Nestlé water-bottling plan
  • As HIV infection rates rise in Colorado, pharmacies can now prescribe preventative pills
  • Opinion: Passage of landmark Great American Outdoors Act now looks like an election-year show
  • Colorado governor unveils new coronavirus restrictions aimed at preventing lockdowns
  • Facing “seismic shift” this year, Colorado educators pioneer through permanent changes to schooling

via Straight News https://coloradosun.com/2020/11/18/nestle-chaffee-county-water-bottling-arkansas-river/

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