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KSJD Newscast - November 24, 2015

KSJD Local News Headlines

  • New Wings, a program that helps Montezuma County school children with major behavioral problems get back on the right track will be doubling in size next year.
  • As the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission works on a statewide plan for managing mountain lions, the agency asks to hear more from Western Slope officials.

A program that helps Montezuma County school children with major behavioral problems get back on the right track will be doubling in size next year. New Wings, which serves students ages five through 12, is located in Cortez. Its current capacity is 10 students, but six more are on a waiting list. On Monday, Social Services director Josiah Forkner and two area school administrators, Alex Carter and Scott Cooper, outlined their plan to the county commission. Forkner wants to use  $110,000 from his department next year to fund an addition to the building. Forkner said, “These aren’t bad kids. They just can’t operate in a regular school environment.”

As the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission works on a statewide plan for managing mountain lions, the agency needs to hear more from Western Slope officials. That was the message given to the Montezuma County commissioners by wildlife biologist Matt Thorpe at a recent meeting. Thorpe said Parks and Wildlife is hoping to move from a small scale to a regional level in managing mountain lions. He said interest in the issue is high and noted that a plan for an $820,000 study in the Salida and Westcliff area that would have involved killing more mountain lions to improve deer populations was put on hold because of a public backlash. Thorpe said he would like lion-hunters to be able to use electronic calls, which are currently banned.