Delta County

Elise Thatcher

Congressman Scott Tipton wants to introduce legislation that would exchange leases on the Thompson Divide for new drilling rights near Paonia and Rangeley — a plan that’s nearly identical to a proposal by the oil and gas industry last year.

Elise Thatcher

Two weeks ago, the coal mine near Paonia owned by billionaire Bill Koch laid off more than half of its employees. The Koch owned Oxbow Mining company hopes to expand operations again in the future and rehire some of the workers.  In the meantime the layoffs are creating hardships for a number of communities.

Mike Ludlow: “It’s very sad time around the mine, you know to lose your income and lose your job is real traumatic, so it’s very painful decision for us.”