Local Elections

Your Evening News - February 10th, 2015

Feb 10, 2015

Hotel Jerome Sold for $69.1 Million to Auberge Board Member

The historic Hotel Jerome sold for $69.1 Million on Monday according to Pitkin County assessor records. The sale makes it one of the largest commercial real estate transactions for a single property in downtown Aspen in recent years.

The new owner is Houston businessman Dan Friedkin. He also bought an adjacent property for $3.35 Million that was once the Aspen Times office. Friedkin is the majority shareholder of Auberge Resorts Collection – the company that manages the Jerome, along with other high-end hotels.

The seller was Chicago-based Don Wilson, the managing partner of DRW Real Estate. He bought the 93-room hotel on Main Street out of foreclosure in 2009 for between $25 to $36 Million, according to conflicting media reports. DRW then invested over $20 Million on a major renovation of the 113,000 square foot building in 2012.

Tony DiLucia is the hotel’s general manager. He says he couldn’t more pleased to have Friedkin as the new owner.

“So, here is a guy that truly wants to be in the hospitality, hotel business. Again, it’s handing over stewardship. Don did his magic with his team and re-did this whole hotel which we are so grateful for. They are into the whole what this hotel means to our community.”

All operations and staff will remain the same at the Hotel Jerome.

Your Morning News - February 4th, 2015

Feb 4, 2015

Spring Elections Starting to Ramp Up

Municipal election campaigns in towns on both ends of the valley are in full swing. In Aspen, yesterday marked the beginning of election season. It was the first time nominating petitions could be picked up by potential candidates. They need 25 signatures from registered city voters to make the ballot.

As of 5 p.m. yesterday, only city planning and zoning commissioner Keith Goode had picked up a petition. He will run to fill one of two City Council seats that are open. They are currently held by Adam Frisch and Dwayne Romero. The mayor’s seat, held by Steve Skadron, is also up for grabs. Frisch and Skadron have said they plan to run. Romero is still considering it.

Aspen City Clerk Linda Manning explains why the dates for submitting petitions changed this election.

“The nominating petition period has been extended to longer than what is normally expected. In the past elections, potential candidates wouldn’t pick up their nominating petitions until April. For this election, because it is a mail ballot election, all of the dates get pushed forward. So the nominating petitions starts today, Feburary 3, and at council’s direction, will be extended until March 9.”

In Glenwood Springs, the ballot has been finalized for this spring’s election. It includes eight candidates. Two out of four open seats will be contested. Planning and Zoning Commission Chairwoman Kathy Trauger, former Aspen Councilman Tony Hershey and West Glenwood resident Kathy Williams have declared their candidacy for the at-large seat. In addition, there will be a three-way race for the Midland Ward 1 seat currently held by Ted Edmonds, who is running for re-election. He is being challenged by Steve Davis and Rus Arensman.

The other two seats that are up, in Wards 3 and 4, look to be uncontested. The incumbents are Todd Leahy and Mike Gamba.

The election in Glenwood Springs will be held April 7th. In Aspen, ballots will be counted on May 5.

Welcome to Valley Roundup, a review of the top news stories in the valley in the past week.

The lodging review continues in Aspen and for the city council, this week, it was a mixed bag.

Meanwhile, the city employees reviewing those plans are looking for a new home of their own.

A proposed pot growing operation faces the NIMBY wrath in Silt.

Do we love the Maroon Bells too much and is that a problem?

Should Garfield County voters have the chance to vote for commissioners by district instead of at large?

Aspen and Glenwood Springs are going all mail balloting this spring

And what’s the lowdown on uphilling? That’s a conference coming on that topic.

Your Evening News - January 16th, 2015

Jan 16, 2015

Explore Booksellers Bought by Non-Profit Group

Aspen’s Explore Booksellers has a new owner. A corporation under the umbrella of the Public Interest Network purchased the historic building and book business for five million dollars. The sale closed earlier today.

The bookstore opened as usual on Friday, but with new owners. Previous owners Sam and Cheryl Wyly listed the property in June. Since then, efforts have formed around preserving the business – Aspen’s only bookstore.

The Public Interest Network stepped in and the sale was finalized Friday. Real estate broker Bob Ritchie represented the buyers.

“Right now they plan to operate it exactly how it’s been operated. They’ve rehired all of the same employees.”

Karen Setterfield is the real estate agent who worked with the sellers.

“I call it a win-win-win. It’s good for the buyer, the seller, it’s good for the community, it’s good for the bookstore and the property and it’s good for Pyramid Bistro, the tenant in the property.”

Ritchie says the new owners plan to bring to Explore interesting speakers and talks, and deepen ties with the Aspen Institute.

Welcome to Valley Roundup, a review of the top news stories in the valley in the past week.

This week you went to the polls, we take a look at some of the key races – what they mean and what could be the path forward for development and the future of Snowmass’s Base Village.

In non-election news, the Aspen Airport has a new director and our panel will give him some advice.

Speaking of travel, this summer was the best for tourism in the history of the State of Colorado and this winter, into 2015, could top that. We’ll chat about the pluses and minuses of the busy seasons.

And on the Download, you’ve heard of tweeting and facebooking – we’ll introduce you to an Aspen bartender and entrepreneur who wants the term “soapboxing” to be just as ubiquitous.  

Elise Thatcher

This page will feature the returns from local, state, and national elections. It will be updated after the polls close and through the night.

You can also hear the returns and analysis live on Aspen Public Radio starting at 6pm this evening.

UPDATE 10:55pm: Several local and state races are still coming in or too close to call. For a look at many of the races across the state, check out this page from the Denver Post.

UPDATE 9:09pm: Amendment 67, the "personhood amendment", has failed according to projections from NPR News.

UPDATE 8:23pm: NPR News projecting a win for Cory Gardner over Mark Udall for U.S. Senate in Colorado.

UPDATE 8:13pm: Early results are starting to come in from Garfield, Eagle, and Pitkin Counties. Garfield is seeing Commissioner Tom Jankovsky, Congressman Cory Gardner for U.S. Senate, and Congressman Scott Tipton in the lead. Pitkin is showing a lead for Senator Mark Udall.

UPDATE 7:42pm: Early results are starting to come in from both Eagle and Garfield Counties. Garfield County officials believe they have a 67% turn out, but have not yet released results. Eagle County shows leads for Sen. Mark Udall, Congressman Scott Tipton, and Governor John Hickenlooper.

UPDATE 7:04pm: The polls have closed in Colorado. Stay tuned for updates as the results come in.

UPDATE 6:36pm: Polls are still open in Colorado until 7pm. Expect results, updates starting around 8pm from Aspen Public Radio News.

A Town meeting in Basalt got heated this week as community members and elected leaders discussed development downtown.

After scrapping a controversial ordinance, the City of Aspen is trying to find out what citizens want in local lodging.

The only contested race in Pitkin County this election is between commissioner Rob Ittner and democrat Patti Clapper. We speak with both of them.

Carbondale is getting a new laboratory that tests marijuana for contaminants.

And, Aspen’s Wheeler Opera House is saying “goodbye” to its long-time executive director.

Good afternoon and welcome to Mountain Edition.

A memorial service is planned for a long-time Aspen firefighter and teacher.

And the applications are in for who wants to rent the old power house building in Aspen...that used to house the Aspen Art Museum.

Aspen area voters will see a tax question their ballots asking for money to fund ambulance service.

Meanwhile, downvalley voters will choose between a Garfield County commissioner and a candidate with some very different viewpoints.

Elise Thatcher

If someone has a heart attack-- or breaks a leg-- in the Aspen area, there’s a small fleet of ambulances ready to pick them up. Even if the  person is up a dirt road near Independence Pass or on top of Aspen Mountain. But there’s a key part of that access that’s becoming a big problem. And the ambulance district is asking for a half million dollar budget increase to pay for it.

Meet the Snowmass Council/Mayoral Candidates

Oct 17, 2014

Snowmass Village town council/mayoral candidates debated on Thursday night. Click "listen" below for the edited or raw versions of the forum.

    Meet the candidates:

BILL BOINEAU
Born in Durham, North Carolina, Bill Boineau grew up during what he calls “interesting times.”

“My parents exposed us to many current events of the time, from the segregation and desegregation of schools and the 1960s Civil Rights movement, where I watched as authorities tear-gassed demonstrators.”

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