Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Finally. You can do something about Rocky Flats. GET THE DATA.

Dr. LeRoy Moore, who retired a few years back from part-time teaching at the University of Colorado in Boulder, has spent countless hours, since 1979, trying to keep track of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant: the scene of major environmental crimes, the scene of the infamous "Operation Desert Glow" FBI raid and the subsequent "Ambushed Grand Jury", the scene of remediation plans cut from $30 billion to $10 billion, the scene of various cover-ups, the scene of a hand-off from DOE to U.S. Fish and Wildlife, and now the scene of developers eager to build roads and houses, all within what he believes is the path of radioactive dust, still left behind at the scene.

Countless hours of video testimony reveal some saying its safe (CDPHE), and some saying they would never allow their kids to take a field trip there (scientists and workers). Click on Rocky Flats in the index to the right to read (and watch) more.


So now Dr. Moore has come up with a RADICAL PROPOSALLet's sample breathable dust in surface soil at Rocky Flats and examine it for its plutonium content and see what the data says. Whoa. Totally rad. He's been asking Fish & Wildlife and CDPHE to do this but they've refused, saying it's safe already!

Dr. Moore has assembled a team of scientists, experts in the field, to collect samples for analysis on the down-wind side of the Refuge. We all could then look at the data -- though Dr. Moore is quick to say that sampling only shows what's present where and when the samples are collected. What really is needed, he emphasizes, is a long-term program dust sampling, because what's in the dust on the surface is being constantly changed by the actions of burrowing animals. A sample collected today will show what's found today.

It's going to take some money to do this, not much, around $7000. Here's where we come in. We are not scientists or experts, but we can cough up a few bucks to support this critical work. All of the donations will go to the actual sampling and testing costs.


Go to www.rmpjc.org. (this is a well-established non-profit - your donation will be tax deductible). Click on the donate button (have your credit card ready). MAKE SURE YOU DESIGNATE YOUR CONTRIBUTION FOR "RF SAMPLING", otherwise it will go into their general fund.

We need to raise this money by the end of April. That gives us about 30 days. Thirty days to tell your friends - its time to GET THE DATA. Donate now.

This is a different kind of donation. We're not asking you to help elect some guy who may or may not win; or who may or may not do what he said he would do. This is an ACTION donation. You are helping to pay for scientific research.

We all want to be safe and for our future generations to be safe. Plutonium continues to be dangerously radioactive for 240,000 years, and that's a lot of generations.

And if you are still not convinced, here's Dr. Moore:

The biggest hazard remaining at the site of the former Rocky Flats nuclear bomb plant is tiny plutonium particles that are known to remain in the soil. Particles on the surface can be picked up by wind and carried far and wide. They are too small to be seen but not too small to endanger one's health for decades to come if they are inhaled or taken into the bloodstream via a scraped knee or elbow. Children are especially vulnerable.

One danger is the prospect of building the 470 Beltway along the downwind side of the Rocky Flats site which would stir up a lot of dust. Another is U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service plans when funds are available to open most of the Rocky Flats site as a wildlife refuge that allows public recreation. This means family picnics and kids playing at a plutonium-contaminated site.

Local citizens concerned about this hazard have invited two scientists to collect and analyze a small number of dust samples from Rocky Flats. Their results could underscore the need for a larger study. About $7,000 must be raised to fund their work.

Best, LeRoy
To support this research with a tax-deductible donation, go to www.rmpjc.org and click on the "Donate now" button in the right column, then designate your donation "for RF sampling" (if you don't make such a designation, your donation will go to the general fund). Or you can send a check marked "for RF sampling" to Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, P. O. Box 1156, Boulder, CO 80306.

And by the way, thank you Dr. Moore, for never giving up in bringing truth to light. We appreciate your work.

DenverDOG on the Move

From a new site - DenverDOG.org - for dog park people

The last Parks and Rec Public Amenities Committee meeting was held on March 24th. A video of the entire meeting can be seen at http://denver.granicus.com/ViewPublisher.php?view_id=11.

Here are some highlights:

Points of interest stated by Parks and Rec. Planner,Gordon Roberston:

*Parks admitted that their original dog park survey was not scientific.

*Off-leash areas in Denver must be fenced. Public feedback has indicated that the citizens of Denver do not want unfenced areas. Fenced areas are more desirable, easier to operate and maintain.

*Denver is already in the top 1/3 of the nation in providing per capita dog park amenities. Parks hopes to do even better in the future with a dog park every one mile so people can walk to them.

continue reading at DenverDog....

Monday, March 29, 2010

The Mayor's Little Reader

by Dave Felice

Mayor John W. Hickenlooper and his wife, Helen Thorpe, call their son, Teddy, "our little reader."  Fortunately, Teddy does not have to depend on the Pauline Robinson or Athmar Park Branch Libraries, both located in economically disadvantaged and ethnically diverse neighborhoods in northeast and southeast Denver.  In the mayor's budget slashing campaign, Pauline Robinson and Athmar Park are both closed on FRIDAY, SATURDAY, and SUNDAY.  Teddy's Park Hill Branch, in a more affluent neighborhood, is open on Friday and Saturday. 
The Byers Branch, which also serves a disadvantaged population in near south-central Denver, is being closed entirely because the mayor thinks the historic library isn't needed.

Totalitarian Democracy in Denver

by Phil Goodstein

In recent decades, as the Democrats have established an unbreakable stranglehold over Denver, the city has had a kind of totalitarian democracy. "Totalitarian democracy" was a snide term coined during the Cold War to depict dictatorial societies where the ruling party expected everyone to enthusiastically agree with its decisions. While dissent was sometimes permissible at lower levels, once the authorities had decided, the populace was virtually required to go along with their leaders.

Goodstein's Naysayer

by Phil Goodstein

The government claims that, in face of the epic recession, prices are stagnant. Simultaneously, Xcel is again raising its rates. Along with RTD bus fares and the cost of Denver Water, its charges have drastically escalated over the past decade. The more Xcel hikes its prices, the more its primary apologists, goody-goody environmentalists, herald it.

In 2006, Xcel's 20-year franchise with the city expired. Far from calling it to account for its constantly soaring charges, with the assistance of the Sierra Club, John Hickenlooper actually managed to raise taxes on ratepayers while giving Xcel free reign in exchange for a few feeble "green" gestures. Recently, the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), under reform chairman Ron Binz, has authorized a two-tier rate schedule for Xcel. This will permit it to build more generating plants to provide more electricity to permit greater growth and sprawl. (The more environmentalists have projected themselves as partners with Xcel, the more energy-consuming houses have become.)

While the environmentalists celebrate the PUC's measure as a breakthrough and a fairer means of charging customers, they failed to observe the obvious: it is a rate hike amidst supposed zero inflation. It does nothing to challenge the monopoly of Xcel or ask why there is an ever greater demand for electricity amidst the endless promises of "green" builders. The rate hike shows the utter hollowness of the environmentalists in confronting utilities and the existing system. As such, the environmentalist apologists for Xcel are the associate Naysayer of the Month.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mediator Dominance

The not-canceled meeting called by Parks and Rec (PR) to get input from the PRAB Task Force was quite interesting. The meeting was totally framed and controlled by the Mediator, Elizabeth Suarez of Community Mediation Concepts. Calling in the “mediators” to get feedback seemed extreme. Maybe it indicates the mental state of the government staffers – fear that the crowd may become unruly and not do as they are told.

The room was replete with PR staffers – Patterson named 10 staff members in the room, and I’d include another 5 in the hallway. Some individuals tried to force their over-arching question on to the floor, but it was proclaimed that the question of whether or not fee-based events were going to be allowed (or were even legal) had already been settled.

Dividing the group into four separate subgroups insured that:

Only 25% of the people would get to hear any one statement by an individual

At least four people talking in the room at the same time would make it difficult to hear what the people at your table were saying (an issue that was raised and ignored)

Staff note takers controlled what got written down and how

In translation to the flip charts, comments were reduced to sound bites

The staff imposed limit to 4 topics would exclude questions regarding the legitimacy of the process, its legality, etc.

Isn’t the Task Force capable of running its own “feed-back” meeting, perhaps even coming up with its own draft of a policy statement, rather than let staff manipulate their comments and present their version, and then write the final version however they may want?

Joe Anderson’s comment seemed appropriate, “It just gets crammed down your throats. You’re against it, they’re just goin’, how can we get it over with quick and get it t’crammin’”.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Blizzard in Denver 7:41 pm March 23, 2010

Yes, that's Kokopelli bending over in front of a small birch tree.

Did you ever notice that some old Denver houses have the front porch enclosed only on the north side? That's for storms like the one we are getting right now. It's kind of a minor blizzard so far, but when it blows in hard from the north or northeast (it's especially cool when it starts with thunder the way this one did), and it's heavy with moisture, it sticks "to the side of the barn" and everything else, including the trees and wires. The roads immediately clog up and the drifting begins.

I love every kind of weather, mostly when I don't have to go out in it except to take a picture or two. Sitting by the fireplace, checking on the snow from time to time, editing video of well-paid bureaucrats telling the irate people what they can and can't talk about. (You'll see what I mean in the next post.) What fun.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Mayor Requested to Reschedule Meeting

As received by email:

March 22, 2010

Hon. John W. Hickenlooper, Mayor City and County of Denver
1437 Bannock Street Denver, Colorado 80202

Re: City's Failure to Give Public Notice of Admission Based Task Force Meeting on March 23, 2010

Dear Mayor Hickenlooper:

Your appointees to the senior management of the Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR). Manager Kevin Patterson and Senior Advisor Chantal Unfug, have actively subverted public knowledge of, and participation in, a major DPR policy initiative that is of vital interest to the citizens of this City, including myself.

Patterson and Unfug are holding a meeting of the Admission Based Special Events Policy (ABSEP) Task Force tomorrow, March 23, from 3-5 pm, in the Webb Building. No notice of this meeting has been given to the general public, to the city's Registered Neighborhood Organizations (RNOs), or even to those of us who have requested notice of meetings relating to the controversial issue of allowing commercial businesses to hold paid-admission-only events in Denver's public parks.

I request that you direct DPR to postpone the March 23 meeting, and reschedule that meeting for a date, time and place that have been widely publicly announced.
This is part of a continuing pattern by which Patterson and Unfug have limited meaningful public involvement in this issue, and have actively misled citizens concerning the terms of the draft ABSEP. These are only the most recent occurrences:

• DPR circulated a draft of the ABSEP at a public meeting on December 10, 2009. At that meeting, Unfug stated the following to the public:

"The three parameters that I wanted to outline for you that we heard loud and clear from the community, uh, was to ensure that the Department always prioritizes free and open to the public events in our parks."

"To do that, we have drafted in the policy a section that says that no more, uh, there shall not be admissions based events more than thirty, more than one every thirty days."
[Verbatim excerpt from video recording of December 10,2009 Parks and Recreation Advisory Board public hearing.]

This statement was false when made, because the draft circulated at that meeting stated that an Admission Based Event could be held every 15 days in a particular park, i.e., two paid~ admission events every 30 days.

• The Parks and Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) was scheduled to consider adoption of the ABSEP at its meeting on February 11,2010. Nine days before that meeting, on February 2,2010, Unfug sent a revised draft of the ABSEP to the PRAB. She gave no notice of the revised draft to the genera1 public, to RNOs, or even to City Council members. (As a result, when Council President Jeanne Robb sent the February 2010 issue of her "E-Talk in 1 0" newsletter to her constituents in early February, she attached the old version of the draft ABSEP. She was required to issue a revised version when she became aware of the revised draft several days later.)

• The revised draft of the ABSEP, that had been concealed from the public and the Council, increased the number of paid~admission events in a particular park to five events every 30 days. Since the policy did not specify the length of such events, a park could be besieged with paid~admission events every day of the month, and every month of the year.

• Dozens of angry citizens descended on the February 11,2010 meeting of the PRAB. PRAB voted unanimously to reject Unfug's revised draft and send it back for major revisions covering many issues. The PRAB told Patterson, Unfug and other OPR staff at that meeting to reconvene the ABSEP Task Force and to make sure there that there was ample outreach to and engagement of the public in connection with further revisions to the draft ABSEP.

• On February 26, 2010, Unfug sent an e-mail announcement that the ABSEP Task Force would convene on March 23, 2010 in the Webb Building from 3-5 pm to consider a furtherrevised draft of the ABSEP. This email was sent only to City Council members and staff, and the members of the PRAB. No notice was sent to the general public, to RNOs, or to those of us who had requested notice of further meetings regarding the ABSEP.

• DPR's public relations staff issued the March 2010 issue of their e~mail newsletter, "News from Denver Parks and Recreation," on February 28, 20 I O. Under "March Public Meetings," the newsletter states: "There are no public meetings currently scheduled for March." As of today, March 22, the DPR web page that lists "Public Meetings and Notices," has no listing for the March 23 ABSEP Task Force meeting.

• At the PRAB's meeting on March 11, 2010, during the public comment section of the agenda, I addressed the issue of the draft ABSEP, and urged that there needed to be "an open, transparent public process . . . to reach out to the wider community and engage the public in discussion of the proposed policy." I also expressed concern about "the staff's past secrecy about drafts of the policy," and requested that the public receive the draft "well in advance of the Task Force meeting." As of today, March 22, no revised draft has been made publicly available.

The conduct of DPR. Patterson. and Unfug in actively undermining public awareness of and attendance at what should be a public meeting of the ABSEP Task Force. violates, at the very least, the spirit of both the Colorado Open Meetings Law, C.R.S. § 24-6-401 et seq., and the City's own Open Meetings Law, Denver Code § 2-3 1 et seq. As stated in the Denver Code, it is "declared to be the public policy of the city that the formation of public policy is public business and should be conducted in public, and that the public should be entitled to the fullest possible access to the deliberations and proceedings of public bodies." (Section 2-31.) (The PRAB is one of the enumerated "public bodies" to which the Open Meetings Law applies; members of PRAB serve on the ABSEP Task Force.)

Please exercise your authority as Mayor to direct senior management of DPR to postpone the ABSEP Task Force meeting currently scheduled for tomorrow, March 23, and to reschedule that meeting for a date, time, and place that have been widely announced to the public.

Sincerely yours,

cc (by email): David R. Fine, Esq., City Attorney City Council Kevin Patterson Chantal Unfug Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Other Interested Parties

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Rocky Flats – Still Unsafe After All These Years - Part 3

Carl Spreng of the Rocky Flats Environmental Restoration department of the Colorado Public Health and Environment testified at the House Committee on State, Veterans, and Military Affairs on March 9, 2010. He even has his own YouTube clip, posted Dec 5, 2009, which I put up here, before his testimony.

The first part of the testimony was eliminated due to sound problems. Caution: sound may be loud.

Hickenlooper on Horseback

We waited for over an hour for Mayor Hickenlooper to show up, and when he did, the parade finally got started. But the Mayor opted only for the photo opportunity part, and did not join the parade. (Note to Mayor's Office: Make sure he is wearing a cowboy hat when he is on a horse.)

On a more serious note, Hickenlooper the Gubernatorial Candidate, appearing on the Mike Rosen radio show, took a call regarding the new registration fee for the Occupational Privilege Tax. Hickenlooper called the fee "crazy". Later, on the radio but "off the record", His Honor called the tax itself "wrong-headed". Listen for yourself: 10am on Thursdays show,March 18, about 15min in.

Please email the Mayor at MileHighMayor@DenverGov.org or call his office at 720 865-9000 to voice your opinion. The fact that he is running for the Governor's office may mean he will actually listen now, and, who knows, maybe even do something to stop this crazy, wrong-headed fee on a tax on a privilege.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Rocky Flats – Still Unsafe After All These Years - Part 2

Jon Lipsky was the Special FBI agent who organized and conducted the FBI raid of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant in 1989. To read more, buy the book "Ambushed Grand Jury".

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Rocky Flats – Still Unsafe After All These Years - Part 1

You may have heard of Rep. Wes McKinley’s "sign" bill – HB 10 – 1127 (or maybe not). He, former foreman of the Rocky Flats Grand Jury way back in 1992, he of the “standing on the courthouse steps about to defy the Federal government” infamy, he, still now gagged as to the Grand Jury testimony he himself heard, but of which he may never speak, he, Rep. Wes McKinley, puts forward a bill every year calling for the now-renamed Rocky Flats Wildlife Refuge to have a sign warning people of the potential danger they might be exposed to if they go on the site. You know, a “this coffee is hot” warning, but this time about something you can’t see, hear, smell, taste or feel; the deadly scourge of plutonium, which lingers on.

Lingers on in the form of 14 pounds of it still buried (below 6 feet) at Rocky Flats, subject to the soil churning that goes on naturally from prairie dogs, snakes, mice, worms, ants and other critters that work the top 16 feet of soil. Lingers on in the form of a “talcum powder fine” plutonium dust that blows in the wind from time to time in the foothills, one invisible particle away from your lungs and permanent attachment.

Ok, so Rep. Wes won’t give up. People joke about his “sign” bill, but he doesn’t care. He ran for office to address this issue in the first place, and he’s now running for his fourth term, and he’s not about to quit – ever. Last time around he got 76% of the vote.

So this time around the “sign” bill got more attention than usual. McKinley assembled a passel of witnesses to testify before the Committee. And testify they did: scientists, Ph.D.s, nuclear workers, and even the lead FBI agent – Jon Lipsky – from Operation Desert Glow, the 1989, one-of-a-kind ever, raid of one federal agency by another.

As a result, I ended up with more than 7 hours of videotape. After reviewing it I realized its importance as an historical record. I’m going to be “depositing” it on YouTube, unfortunately limited by their 10-min maximum, but putting it all up none the less in multiple parts.

At the hearing there was talk of the US Fish and Wildlife Department’s not being able to open the Refuge for at least another 15 years. So when the Committee voted to “table indefinitely” it seemed like case closed on the “sign” bill.

But I want to make sure that there is a record of what was said in 2010, spoken by the individuals themselves, because 15 years is nothing to the likes of plutonium-239, what with its half-life of 24,100 years.

So without further delay, here’s Judy.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

New Tax Masquerading as a Fee - Updated

Click above to enlarge

Denver business owners are well aware of Denver's Occupational Tax, unknown in most cities, requiring the quarterly payment of $12 per employee (formerly known as the Head Tax) for the "privilege" of working in Denver. Since raising this tax would have required approval by the voters (TABOR), a new fee has instead been created to bleed more money for City coffers from the hard-hit Denver business owners.

This is a fee to register to pay a tax that you are already paying. Absurd beyond belief! It is also retroactive to Jan 1, but you are granted an extension to pay before June 1. How accommodating!

The unintended consequence will be the closing of many marginal businesses that were not making any money and will now cease to exist just to get rid of this fee/tax. If you had been continuing to pay the tax ($48 per year per employee, including the owner) in the hopes of starting up again, you will now have to pay an additional $50 every two years for the privilege of paying the tax. Many entrepreneurs will choose to not pay by closing their businesses in Denver.

That's what I plan to do.

Update March 17: Councilwoman Jeanne Faatz pointed out that she (and Councilman Brown) voted against the bill in City Council, which approved it last year. Too bad Faatz and Brown are the only Council members who seem to realize that the "funds" they deal with are in real money, taken from real citizens, and not some kind of play money that doesn't matter. My guess is that this new tax/fee will actually decrease the income from the Occupational Tax.

Update March 18: See also The Denver Daily News

Update March 19: Fee on Tax is "Crazy", Tax itself "Wrong-headed" - Mayor Hickenlooper on Mike Rosen show  Starts at about 15:15.

Denver Needs (to Imprison) More Elephants

Video update of construction at Denver Zoo's Duck Pond

Let's face it, a metro area of our size has got to have more than two imprisoned (zoo) elephants. The Denver Zoo currently houses only Mimi and Dolly, and they are getting tired of each other after all of these years.

Bring on the Bulls

So Denver is in the process of building an “Asian Tropics” exhibit and will spend $50 million to greatly expand the capacity to “house” elephants – as many as 12 – on this two acre site.

Read all about it here and here.

P.S. I wonder if Duck Pond will get a new rubber bottom, as Grasmere Lake in Washington Park did a few years ago, to keep the plutonium-laced water from "leaking" into the ground water.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Whose Parks are They?

Guest editorial by Tom Morris

Citizens tend to forget that the questions at issue and the things to which they apply are public.  This country was founded on the idea that people have a right to govern themselves.  When approaching government we have a right to demand not ask.

The parks are under assault by the Hickenlooper administration.  Taking zoning control from council and giving it to an appointed government official is in conflict with our constitution.  Fencing off and charging for access to the parks is in opposition to our city charter.  Eliminating the peoples' right to file a protest over zoning in our parks is a denial of our rights.

We are obligated to demand our rights.  It is not a privilege to claim our parks.  If we don't exercise our rights, they will be taken by an aggressive and ambitious bureaucracy.  It is irresponsible not to protect our rights.

This is not Tea Party posing.  This is what responsible citizens do.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Another Brilliant Idea

Let's see - the City has agreed to pay $6.5 million for a property assessed at just over $1 million, and now this:

Councilors mull interim uses for future rec site
by: Kathryn Richert/YourHub.com
Article Contributed on: 3/10/2010 10:53:23 AM

A dog park and community garden is being explored for the temporary use at East Colfax Avenue and Josephine Street, which will eventually become a recreation center.

Denver City Councilwoman Carla Madison said she is getting positive feedback for the idea for the site. It will likely be empty for three to five years between when the old Church in the City building is torn down and when additional funds are raised to build the Central Recreation Center.

Since a proposed off-leash dog area at City Park is receiving mixed reactions, a dog park at the nearby site might be a better option since it wouldn't be using park land, Madison said.

She said since a dog park would be temporary, it could be a good test to see if it works.

The site, on the northeast corner of Colfax and Josephine, is likely large enough to accommodate a dog park and garden, Madison said.

Safety has become a concern for neighboring East High School because transients have taken up residency at the vacant site.

The school likes the idea of partnering with the community on a joint space, such as a garden, but isn't as keen about a dog park, said East's principal John Youngquist.

"A dog park feels like we wouldn't be able to participate," Youngquist said.

It is unknown when the city will demolish the old Church in the City site, Madison said. A gas station that's also on the site will be staying put for now, she added.
Even though other suggestions have been made, a dog park and garden are the only practical ideas mentioned so far, Madison said.

A group of representatives from neighborhood associations surrounding the site is being formed to look at temporary, affordable uses for the site that the city can operate.

The site borders Madison and Councilwoman Jeanne Robb's respective districts.
An interim use could be in effect as early as this summer, but more likely this fall, Madison said.

Ambrose for Council in District 1

This will be mail-only special election for residents of District 1 in northwest Denver. I urge you to support Larry even if you do not live in District 1, as we need more people on City Council who will reject the current "rubber-stamp" attitude of most Council members.

Score one for the people

La Alma mural - photo by Dean Sanchez

from Dean Sanchez:
Yesterday Kelly and I attended a meeting at City Council Woman Judy Montero's office to discuss La Alma Recreation center. In attendance were Kevin Patterson Manager of the DPR and R. D. Sewald Director of Legislation Services City Council Liaison.
After once again reminding them of our (the community's) position and commitment to preserving La Alma, the City informed us that they will not be closing or transitioning our Community Center. The city was able to move around money and delay a Denver paths project to give us funding for another two years. This being said, LCAG will continue to work to ensure that La Alma continues to be a vibrant, long lasting resource to the community.
There was also some discussion about the La Alma pool renovation, which becomes somewhat confusing. After attending the last two pool meetings, there was some misinformation about the actual budget amount that was in the bond to remodel the pool. Officially, as of yesterday afternoon according to R. D. Sewell, there is a budget of $1.8 million dollars to rebuild La Alma's pool and bathhouse. La Alma Community action Group with the community will work with the City to make sure that we use this money wisely and get the most benefit for our kids.

I can not thank you enough for your commitment and all the hard work you have done to make the city realize that La Alma is successful viable commodity, that will always lead the example of what Recreation Centers should be. We must stay involved to make sure that we not overlooked again. To guarantee that our input and participation is recognized, Kevin Patterson will take lead on all matters pertaining to our Recreation center.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

McKinley Press Conference 3-9-10 - Jon Lipsky

Update (3-11-10):
House Bill 10-1127 was Postponed Indefinitely by a roll call vote of 6 - 5.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Criticality at Rocky Flats

In an exclusive one-hour interview to Denver Direct, Jon Lipsky, former FBI agent who led the raid on Rocky Flats Nuclear Plant in 1989, reveals his observations on evidence that a "criticality" occurred there.

from Wikipedia:

A criticality accident, sometimes referred to as an excursion or a power excursion, is an accidental nuclear chain reaction in a fissile material, such as enriched uranium or plutonium. This releases neutron radiation which is highly dangerous to humans and causes induced radioactivity in the surroundings.

Jon Lipsky and Wes McKinley will be holding a press conference at the Capitol tomorrow, Tuesday, at 12:00 noon. See you there.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Call for Task Force Housecleaning

ABSEP Task Force Meeting (5-17-09) with Parks and Recreation Manager Kevin Patterson (foreground) with event promoters Paul Weiss (Councilwoman Madison's husband) and Al Kraizer

Denver, Colorado
March 5, 2010

Kevin Patterson
Manager, Denver Parks and Recreation
201 West Colfax Avenue, Department 601
Denver, Colorado 80202

Mr. Patterson:

Deliberations to re-draft the proposed Admissions Based Special Events Policy (ABSEP) present an excellent opportunity to evaluate the ABSEP Task Force to achieve appropriate community representation.

Here are significant factors to consider:

Actual "community" participation has been and continues to be far outweighed by city employees and promoters.

Everyone on the task force is a member of the community in some fashion. The Task Force needs broad-based representation from Registered Neighborhood Organizations, emphasizing but not limited to those RNOs in the vicinity of impacted parks.

It is a conflict of interest for Parks and Recreation personnel to be in voting/decision-making positions; staff does not represent the public and is obligated to support the decisions of supervisors.

It is inappropriate for members of the same household/family to be on the Task Force.

Actual, potential, and/or perceived conflicts of interest need to be disclosed.

Some members are identified with “community” affiliation when in fact they have a vested business interest in the outcome.

Several members of the “original” Task Force either did not participate or are now gone.

Several members now have an invalid affiliation; members are no longer representing the groups they were named to represent.

Some Task Force members have direct relationships with city officials which may impact decisions by those officials.

From the outset almost three years ago, there was lack of fair representation from the neighborhoods and inconsistent participation. As the decision of the Parks Advisory Board to redefine the policy implies, the stakeholders need to be properly identified and all stakeholders need to have a full opportunity to thoroughly evaluate the proposed policy.

At present, there is a strong public perception that the Task Force was established to carry forth a decision already made by the city administration without regard to public opinion. The current composition of the Task Force is out-of-date and imbalanced.

We urge you to immediately take steps to correct this imbalance by limiting the number of city employees, removing inactive members, and improving true neighborhood participation.

Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Cindy Johnstone (cindy.johnstone@comcast.net)
ABSEP Member, Friends and Neighbors of Washington Park

Larry Ambrose, (lda@earthnet.net)
ABSEP Member, Sloan’s Lake Neighborhood and Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation

Dave Felice (gelato321@aol.com)
ABSEP Member, Greater Park Hill Community and Inter-Neighborhood Cooperation

Medical Marijuana Blah, Blah, Blah


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Go Larry, Go!

Larry Ambrose for City Council
Join Larry Ambrose and his supporters,
The American GI Forum Hall,
1717 Federal Blvd, Denver, 80204
Saturday March 6, 2010
4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Free food and beverages.
Meet your City Council District #1 candidate and next City Council Representative for Northwest Denver, Larry Ambrose.
Find out how and why Larry will be our voice and best choice to serve the community and constituents.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Billboard Ordinance Public Hearing - Monday, March 8

(by email)
On Monday, March 8th at 5:30pm the Denver City Council will hold a public hearing on the proposed billboard zoning ordinance change. The proposed bill is "Council Bill 80, Series 2010." The proposal will grandfather in out-of-compliance billboards the city identified and ordered cease-and-desist orders to remove. However, the proposed bill, as written, will grandfather in these billboards, keeping them in our skyline though they are illegal.

Please contact the city council and tell them NOT to grandfather any out-of-compliant billboard in Denver. Encourage them to investigate and inspect all 150 non-conforming billboards in Denver before they make any revisions to the current code. We should NOT be giving breaks to the billion-dollar billboard companies.
(Go to Protect Denver Skyline to get the contact information for your city council member.)

The advertising companies are lobbying hard for the passing of this bill. Why? If this bill is as minor as these billboard companies are selling it to the city council, then why are they pushing so hard for its approval? Even more frustrating is that Carla Madison allowed the billboard lobbyists and owners to sit at the same table as our city council members during the Blueprint Denver Committee meeting on January 27.

Please mark your calendar and attend the March 8th Denver City Council Hearing.

Denver City Council - Public Hearing - Outdoor billboard zoning ordinance change

Monday, March 8th at 5:30pm
1437 Bannock Street, Rm 450

Please contact Protect Denver Skyline if you would like to get involved. Thank you.

Jennifer Gonzalez
Protect Denver Skyline