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Powers to be widened, new boss at Carson, more

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Powers to be widened

The Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments has allocated $6.5 million — $3 million in federal funds and $3.5 million in state funds — to widen Powers Boulevard from Fountain Boulevard to Platte Avenue.

The area has long had congestion and safety problems, and the Colorado Department of Transportation asked PPACG to fund the project. The Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority has already given $4 million so that rights-of-way for the project could be purchased.

Groundbreaking is expected this fall. CDOT will oversee the project, because Powers is a state road. — JAS

Bruce charge dropped

A charge of assault against anti-tax activist Douglas Bruce has been dropped by the Denver District Attorney's Office. The charge was instigated by Dede Laugesen of Colorado Springs Government Watch.

She alleged Bruce assaulted her in the Denver courthouse April 10 when he tried to grab her phone as she filmed City Councilor Helen Collins. Collins was there to support Bruce as he went through a court hearing on a possible probation revocation. (Bruce was convicted a few years ago for tax evasion, which is on appeal.)

In a statement, Laugesen said she experienced a "violent and unprovoked" assault, but that the DA's office "must act within the boundaries of the law," which she said mandate a "relatively high" bar for assault. Bruce called the warrant "idiotic" in an email to media. — PZ

New boss at Carson

Last week, Army Maj. Gen. Paul J. LaCamera handed off command of the 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson to Maj. Gen. Ryan F. Gonsalves. An armor officer, Gonsalves has commanded tactical units at various levels and served in key positions on both the Army and Joint Staffs. He comes from his role as director of operations, readiness and mobilization for the Army in Washington, D.C.

In a related move last week, Command Sgt. Maj. David M. Clark transferred senior enlisted responsibility to Command Sgt. Maj. Michael A. Crosby, who came here from a leadership role in the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. — PZ

Jenkins gets nod

A year after his father David was given the Lifetime Entrepreneurship Award from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs' College of Business, Chris Jenkins received the Distinguished Service Award at UCCS' commencement ceremony last week.

The honor is bestowed by the CU Board of Regents to recognize "outstanding achievement associated with the state or nation," UCCS said in a news release.

Chris Jenkins sits on numerous boards and is active in tourism ventures, the arts, UCCS and downtown development. — PZ

City, county cry disaster

The city of Colorado Springs and El Paso County are hoping for federal money to fix damage caused by recent flooding.

Both have made disaster declarations and estimated losses. It's thought that $8.2 million worth of damage has been done to city roads, stormwater infrastructure, parks and trails. The county, meanwhile, thinks it's taken a $2.4 million hit.

State officials will ultimately decide whether to seek a federal disaster declaration for Colorado, which would usher in federal money. If it's approved, the city and county would have 75 percent of their repair costs covered by the feds.

APPR books announced

The Pikes Peak Library District has announced In the Kingdom of Ice and Smarter Than You Think as its selections for 2015's All Pikes Peak Reads, with a theme of "Transformation @ Elevation."

In the Kingdom of Ice: The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette — about the 1879-81 Arctic journey of American Lt. Commander George De Long — is the fifth major book by Hampton Sides, who's leading Colorado College's new Journalist-in-Residence program. Smarter Than You Think: How Technology Is Changing Our Minds for the Better comes from Wired and New York Times Magazine contributor Clive Thompson.

APPR's teen selection is Gene Luen Yang's American Born Chinese and its children's picks are Wonder by RJ Palacio and I'm Gonna Climb a Mountain in My Patent Leather Shoes by Marilyn Singer. For more, see bit.ly/1RlTaQ5. — EA

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