Groups mum on 1B
The Colorado Springs Police Protective Association and the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 5 have declined to endorse County Question 1B, the stormwater measure that would create a regional drainage authority and raise $39 million a year in fees paid by property owners. That bucks the trend of support from influential groups and individuals, such as the Regional Business Alliance and Colorado Springs Forward.
Mayor Steve Bach, however, opposes the measure.
PPA executive Robin Rogers says the 950-member police group doesn't oppose 1B; it merely hasn't endorsed it. "We asked questions and the questions went unanswered," she says. Citizens for Responsible Stormwater Action, the group behind the "yes" campaign, tells the Indy that it's unaware of any unanswered questions. Local 5 has chosen not to weigh in.
The Citizens group has raked in another $46,000, bringing their total to $243,975. Money came from a concrete business in Massachusetts, a Montana investment firm, Colorado Springs Forward and Richard Skorman.
Citizens for Cost Effective Government, a 527 organization opposing the measure, has taken in another $25,000 from a Wichita, Kansas, investment group and from Carol Bogosian Living Trust, Colorado Springs. The group, which has raised a total of $35,000, spent $28,000 recently on radio ads.
As of Monday, 74,118 people in El Paso County had voted: 40,975 Republicans, 15,384 Democrats, 16,774 unaffiliated and the rest from minor parties. Voting continues through 7 p.m. Tuesday. For information, go to tiny.cc/40reox — PZ
DaVita buying CSHP
Colorado Springs Health Partners, which has over 100 physicians and 11 locations, is in the process of being acquired by Denver-based DaVita Healthcare Partners, one of the leading providers of dialysis services in the country.
DaVita plans to formalize a "partnership" with the physicians group. It's part of an expansion by DaVita into areas other than dialysis. In 2012, DaVita paid $4.4 million for HealthCare Partners, which provides integrated care to some 800,000 patients in five states.
But it's not all good news for DaVita, which has been the subject of suits and investigations into its business practices. In recent days, it settled with the U.S. Attorney's Office for $389 million to resolve charges that it violated the False Claims Act by paying kickbacks in order to garner referrals to its dialysis clinics. — JAS
Halter ad disputed
A spat arose this week between 5th Congressional District candidates over taxpayer-funded trips.
Jarred Rego, spokesman for Rep. Doug Lamborn, issued a statement saying a television ad by Democratic challenger Irv Halter "blatantly misstates" Lamborn's actions by alleging he got $1,700 in taxpayer funds for a trip to Brazil and bought People magazine with tax money.
Rego says the Halter camp is misreading House records. "Congressman Lamborn was NOT reimbursed for a trip to Brazil because that is not how the process works and because he has never been to Brazil," Rego said in an email.
Rego said a staffer bought the magazine subscription, which was canceled when Lamborn learned of it.
Halter's spokesman, Ethan Susseles, fired back that Lamborn has used taxpayer money to go to 28 countries during his time in office, including Germany, Japan, Italy, Israel and France, some several times.
The tiff comes a week before the Nov. 4 election, as Halter amps up TV ads and Lamborn lays low. — PZ
Give! aims for $1.4 million
The Give! campaign is upping its game.
Last year, Give!, a joint project of the Independent and the Pikes Peak Community Foundation, raised $1.1 million for 59 local nonprofits. This year, it aims to raise $1.4 million for 75 local nonprofits.
Give! has raised a total of $3.4 million for 113 community groups since 2009. It uses a platform that allows donors to fund multiple charities that impact different areas of the community. Gifts can be large or small (250 matching granters help stretch those dollars), and givers get all sorts of goodies. This year, there's schwag from local business, free beer, concert tickets, a chance to win a two-year lease on a new Subaru, spa packages and more.
The campaign and indygive.com both go live Saturday, Nov. 1. Those who want to learn about the prize options and contests, and also about Give!-related events including a masquerade carnival on Nov. 8, should visit the website to sign up for the mailing list. — JAS
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