Mountain Town Roundup |

Mountain Town Roundup

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Colorado Mountain College is poised to extend tuition waivers and health benefits to domestic partners of full-time college employees.

CMC President Stan Jensen said the college board of trustees “expressed their support” for domestic partner benefits at their Nov. 5 meeting in Edwards.

Domestic partnership offers rights similar to marriage for same-sex couples and for unmarried heterosexual couples.

The concept has legal status in some states and countries, and has become a controversial flash point in U.S. politics in recent years as part of the battle over gay rights.

Jensen said formal, final action on domestic partner benefits was tabled until January to give the college’s insurance carrier, United Health Care, more time to come up with criteria establishing the definition of domestic partner.

Other schools offering benefits to domestic partners in Colorado include Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction, the University of Colorado and the University of Northern Colorado.

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– Glenwood Springs Post Independent

DENVER – Exchanging cash for natural gas, steelmaker Nucor Corp. has agreed to help finance the development of gas wells by Encana Corp., the companies said Thursday.

Encana will use Nucor’s support to develop a 50,000-acre oil and gas lease on federal land, called the “Big Jimmy,” in Rio Blanco and Garfield counties.

The agreement will enable Encana to drill up to 4,000 new wells over the next 20 years – doubling the company’s well count in Colorado, said company spokesman Doug Hock.

– The Denver Post

VAIL – The Steadman Clinic is citing costs and “uncertainty regarding health care trends” as its reasons for pulling out of a partnership with the Vail Valley Medical Center and the town of Vail to build a new medical office building.

The town of Vail announced Friday that the Steadman Clinic withdrew from the project – a decision the town learned about Thursday.

“Obviously I’m disappointed – we’re all disappointed,” said Vail town manager Stan Zemler. “At the end of the day (Thursday), we met at the hospital and we were informed they made this decision. We were definitely a little caught by surprise.”

The town, hospital, Steadman Clinic and Steadman Philippon Research Institute announced the partnership in 2011. The proposed project included two buildings: the town’s portion, which was to include a new municipal building; and the medical portion, which was to include an office building. The buildings would have been built on the current town municipal site. The town and the medical partners would have also built joint underground parking beneath both facilities as part of the deal.

– Vail Daily

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