Business Briefs – 2/24/2006

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Westmoreland Coal’s 2005 without lost-time accident

Westmoreland Coal Co.’s mines completed 2005 without a lost-time accident and set a company coal production and sales record of nearly 30 million tons. The previous record was 29 million tons in 2004.

The Savage Mine has operated 1,465 days without a lost-time accident. The Beulah Mine has operated 480 days; the Jewett Mine has operated 463 days; and the Rosebud Mine has operated 459 days.

Oil and gas lease sale nets $11.8 million

The Colorado State Office of the Bureau of Land Management sold 129 parcels totaling about 134,582 acres at its quarterly oil and gas lease sale.

The transactions earned $11.8 million, which will be divided between the state and the federal government.

All leases come with general requirements to protect the environment from oil and gas activities. Additional specific stipulations are also included, such as limits on seasons when drilling can occur and restrictions on surface occupancy by oil and gas operators.

Office of Dispute Resolution announces grants program

The Office of Dispute Resolution is offering mini-grants for community conflict resolution and restorative justice services in Colorado.

Community conflict resolution allows parties and communities to resolve disputes without litigation. Restorative justice services allow the community, offender and victims of crime to shape social behavior and develop respect, understanding and accountability. Grants of $15,000 to $20,000 will be available for new organizations. Grants ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 will be available for expansion of services. Matching funds are not required, but will increase the applicant’s chance of receiving an award.

Applications are available at The deadline is March 20.

CH2M Hill one of ‘100 best’ to work for

CH2M Hill has been named one of America’s top employers by Fortune magazine for the second time in the last three years.

Fortunes’ annual ranking of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” is determined through a nomination and application process. Two-thirds of the score is based on how randomly selected employees respond to the Great Places to Work Trust Index, a survey measuring the quality of the workplace culture.

CH2M Hill was selected, in part, because of its competitive compensation and benefits packages, open and accessible communications practices, employee-ownership culture, learning and development opportunities and work/life balance programs.

UBS tops all-Europe for fifth year

UBS has placed first for the fifth consecutive year in Institutional Investor magazine’s annual All-Europe Research team.

The magazine surveys investors in European equities to determine which brokerage firm analysts did the best job. The results reflect the opinions of more than 1,700 buy-side analysts and portfolio managers of almost 500 institutions who manage an estimated $4.1 trillion in European equities.

Rounding out the top 10 were Citigroup, Deutsch Bank, Lehman Brothers, Credit Suisse, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs International, Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein and J.P. Morgan.