Colorado hires new education official
DENVER – A former Arizona state lawmaker who served as Wyoming’s schools chief is Colorado’s new education commissioner.
The Colorado State Board of Education voted unanimously Monday to hire Richard Crandall to replace Robert Hammond, who retired in June.
Last month the board named the 48-year-old as the sole finalist for the job, but it had to wait at least two weeks before hiring him under state law.
Crandall, a Republican, resigned his seat in the Arizona Senate after being appointed by Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead to lead the state education department there in 2013. That position was eventually ruled unconstitutional by the Wyoming Supreme Court, which reinstated the state’s elected school superintendent.
Crandall will start his new job Jan. 19.
No extension for drilling comments
GRAND JUNCTION, – The Bureau of Land Management will not extend the public comment period for proposed cancellations and changes on several oil and gas leases in Colorado’s White River National Forest.
The Sentinel of Grand Junction reported that despite requests from Mesa County and Republican state lawmakers, the public comment deadline will remain Jan. 8 for 65 drilling leases, including several in the Thompson Divide area.
The BLM said in a letter that there has already been plenty of opportunity to comment.
The Pitkin County Commission recently wrote to the agency in favor of closing public comments.
The BLM’s proposal calls for the cancellation and modification of leases in the forest near Pitkin County. Mesa County officials say the industry that would drill those wells is headquartered in their county.
Heavy rain, snow in N.M. forecast
ALBUQUERQUE – Widespread rain and snow showers are expected in large areas of New Mexico this week.
The National Weather System says a storm system will move across the Four Corners Monday afternoon and Tuesday, producing rain and snow before tapering off Tuesday afternoon.
Much of southwestern New Mexico will get snow, with snow levels dropping from around 7,500 feet on Monday to 4,500 feet by Tuesday morning.
Snowfall amounts in that region are expected to total 3 to 6 inches below 7,000 feet and 4 to 7 inches above 7,000 feet.
Forecasters say there’ll also be moderate to locally heavy snowfall in northern, central and eastern New Mexico, with a mix of rain and snow in the Rio Grande Valley but little snow accumulation along the river.