RANGELY | Crossing Rangely’s Main Street is hazardous, according to a White River Village resident who spoke to the Rangely Board of Trustees at the March 26 meeting. The resident, who rides a scooter, said he has had a couple close calls on the highway and asked about installing caution lights or some kind of warning at the crosswalks.
Mayor Andy Shaffer said the town has been working with the Colorado Department of Transportation to add “bump-outs” and some flashing signs to create visual alerts for drivers.
Interim Police Chief Ty Hamblin said crosswalks are legally treated like school bus stops—if vehicles don’t stop for pedestrians, drivers can be ticketed, as pedestrians have the right-of-way. Hamblin and Town Manager Lisa Piering are taking action to further educate the public in proper crosswalk etiquette. Hamblin is also researching grants to purchase a new portable speed trailer to alert drivers of their real-time speeds.
The marijuana debate returned to the table Tuesday, as “a few” retail marijuana operations have asked about opening stores in Rangely. In 2013 the Town approved Ordinance 682 prohibiting the operation of marijuana cultivation facilities, marijuana product manufacturing facilities, marijuana testing facilities and retail marijuana stores. Citizens can petition the board to change the ordinance, or the board can vote to change it.
Hamblin said he has contacted Parachute Chief of Police Sam Stewart regarding the impact of recreational marijuana stores in Parachute. According to Stewart, the pros of having the marijuana stores in town are that they comply with all regulations; are great to work with since they have great security and well-maintained buildings; and the companies donate time and money to the community. The cons include increases in homelessness and drug-related crimes, increased accessibility by children, and that the businesses are not locally owned. Stewart believes the issue should be brought to the voters.
Hamblin’s biggest concerns are “how much easier is it going to be for somebody who wouldn’t normally have access to it [marijuana] and how it’s going to affect our youth.”
The board did not come to a decision and will continue to research the issue.
A human trafficking awareness trailer will be coming to Rangely April 29-30 to educate the community on the dangers of human trafficking. It will be at the high school and junior high for one day for students to learn how to stay safe as well as recognize the signs of someone who might be a victim of human trafficking. Colorado Northwestern Community College and the Rangely Police Department asked the board for $700 in funding to place the trailer at the CNCC campus another day and on Main Street for a small amount of time. Trustees approved the request.
The CNCC Flight Team asked for support to attend the National Intercollegiate Flying Association (NIFA) competition. CNCC has qualified for nationals five times in the last 10 years and took second place to the Air Force Academy. CNCC is the only two year college in the region. The team is trying to raise $25,000 to help with lodging, food, aircraft rental, registration and travel for the upcoming competition. The board agreed to donate $1,000 to the CNCC Flight Team.
By Brittny Campos | Special to the Herald Times