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At a Thursday afternoon press conference, Utilities CEO Jerry Forte had bad news and good news about the fire Monday that severely damaged and shut down the downtown Martin Drake Power Plant. The good news: The fire was largely confined to the southern wing of the building, which houses Unit 5, a 51-megawatt generator that… Continue Reading Forte says Drake shutdown might last a while

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Drake Plant’s near-disaster

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Drake Plant’s near-disaster

Chief says Drake fire could have been worse Colorado Springs Fire Chief Chris Riley did not mince words in describing what could have been. Riley, recapping the fire department’s quick and massive response to the serious fire Monday at Martin Drake Power Plant, praised what he called the quick and courageous response of firefighters on… Continue Reading Drake Plant’s near-disaster

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Update: Fire at Drake Power Plant causes plant shutdown

At 9:40 PM Monday morning a serious fire broke out in the downtown Drake Power Plant, sending plumes of black smoke hundreds of feet in the air above the plant. Observers described flames shooting out of the southeastern part of the Drake complex. The fire was contained at 11:45 a.m., said Kurt Dennison, spokesman for… Continue Reading Update: Fire at Drake Power Plant causes plant shutdown

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One death is a tragedy — a million deaths is a statistic.” That epigram, often attributed to Joseph Stalin, neatly sums up two characteristics of our species: sentimentality and innumeracy. We don’t like to think about large numbers, big data or inexorable fate. We’d much rather focus on our own lives, the lives of those… Continue Reading Here’s a comparison to warm up your mind

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Council watches as powers erode

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Since 1991, Colorado Springs residents have often voted to limit the powers of City Council. In that year, city voters instituted the local Taxpayers Bill of Rights (TABOR) charter amendment that forbade Council from raising taxes without voter approval and limited annual city revenue growth. A companion measure phased out a half-cent capital improvements tax… Continue Reading Council watches as powers erode

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Four bills under consideration by the state Senate are somewhat misleadingly called the “telecommunications modernization legislative package.” According to the folks pushing HB 1328-133, they will “protect consumers, deliver the benefits of competition, protect 911, create a broadband fund and establish a streamlined process for private investment.” The state House already passed the package by… Continue Reading Beware of four bills sailing through Capitol

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Enduring groups built city’s base

Gen. William Palmer founded Colorado Springs in 1871, hoping to build a peaceful, prosperous and temperate city. Palmer’s vision may have been influenced by the purple prose of Fitzhugh Ludlow, who published “Heart of the Continent” in 1868, three years before the first stake was driven here. “When Colorado becomes a state,” Ludlow grandly predicted,… Continue Reading Enduring groups built city’s base

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Weinstein, MRFF fight near and far

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Weinstein, MRFF fight near and far

As charitable foundations go, the Military Religious Freedom Foundation punches way above its weight. In 2012, the organization brought in $584,347 in contributions and grants, and spent $582,136. That’s below the $1 million threshold that many rating agencies use in deciding whether a foundation merits evaluation, and is dwarfed by national giants with much lower… Continue Reading Weinstein, MRFF fight near and far

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What does Mark Ferrandino most desire as he finishes up his final session as speaker of the Colorado House of Representatives? There are lots of potential answers, but one comes to mind: Ferrandino, a Denver Democrat, would like to figure out how to snatch back the $120 million in tax increment funding that the state… Continue Reading Legislative action brings out rest of C4C story

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City, task force take separate stormwater paths

  Larry Small, the articulate former Colorado Springs vice mayor, defines as well as anyone the problem of asking voters to pass judgment on paying for stormwater projects. “Stormwater funding is always a hard thing to sell,” Small said. “And if it fails, it’s not the kind of thing that you can bring right back… Continue Reading City, task force take separate stormwater paths

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