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City election campaign roundup: endorsements, money
At the April 2 city election in Colorado Springs, voters will elect a third of the nine-member City Council and a mayor. They'll also decide whether to allow firefighters to collectively bargain with the city administration. From the campaign trail:Endorsements: • Colorado Springs Forward, a group of local business and local leaders who want to influence public policy, is urging voters to oppose Issue 1, the firefighter measure.…

Conversion therapy ban and birth certificate bill make progress in Colorado Legislature this week
Two major updates have come out of the Colorado Legislature this week, with potential impact to the state's LGBTQ community. Both the bill to ban conversion therapy and the bill to ease the path toward changing gender on birth certificates have been cycling through the Legislature for years with little progress in Republican-controlled committees.…

Art on the Streets sculpture vandalized, Downtown Ventures searching for missing piece
Though Downtown’s Art on the Streets program has seen isolated incidents of vandalism and theft, generally the community has been respectful of the public art on loan to the city from the program's many contributing artists.…

Aroundtown examines what love means to us
Love can be complicated in all of its forms; in these divisive times, it’s worth examining exactly what love means to us.…

SET is going all out for The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
Springs Ensemble Theatre plans to go all out for The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.…

EPA will look at regulating PFAS chemicals
On Feb. 14, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) held a conference in the city of Fountain to announce plans to address toxic chemicals that have been found in the area’s drinking water, and in the water of communities across the nation. [content-1] The chemicals at issue: PFASs, man-made contaminants found to have originated primarily, in the Fountain area, from firefighting foam used by the Air Force Academy for training purposes. The EPA’s plan outlines steps to develop new analytical tools for four key areas: human health and ecological effects, significant sources of these chemicals, cost and effectiveness of treatment methods, and how best to support stakeholders.…

Independence Center celebrates accessible health care
It's a widespread problem: The majority of medical providers lack the proper equipment and training to give patients who use wheelchairs a complete check-up.The Independence Center sought to change that this fall by using $75,000 from its board-run IC fund to buy accessible medical equipment for providers serving Medicaid and Medicare recipients in Southern Colorado. Available items included the UpScale accessible exam table, which has an adjustable height and built-in scale; Hoyer-type lifts, devices used to transfer patients from wheelchair to table; and the portable loop system, a listening device that feeds audio directly into hearing aids. Back in June, we reported that the Independence Center planned to donate accessible tables and lifts to at least seven medical clinics in El Paso County, and use the remaining money for loop systems. The nonprofit ended up donating tables and lifts to nine medical practices, and gave portable hearing loop systems to three, CEO Patricia Yeager announced at a luncheon Feb. 8 celebrating the donations. The providers who received the equipment were selected from a list of 23 nominees, Yeager says. Patients submitted the nominations to the Independence Center.…

Labor of love: Stargazers celebrates 10 years
Attendees stream out the doors and into the Stargazers Theatre and Event Center's foyer, bustling from excitement after the evening's entertainment. One woman makes a bee-line to co-owner Cindy Hooton and her husband John as they greet their guests with flyers of the upcoming shows.…

Of course the MAC has an unconventional Valentine's Day celebration
Looking for an unconventional date night for Valentine’s Day?…

MAT's Murder of the Heart is a definite V-Day mood
All the sugary sweetness of Valentine’s Day can be a bit much for some people, but is it enough to drive you to... murder?…

Campaign roundup: A town hall, endorsements, a new voter is born
UPDATE: Late yesterday, we heard from Tom Strand and share his comments: I have checked and met with three staff attorneys of the City Law Office.…

Transgender man files discrimination charge against local company
At 31, Dashir Moore left his family and friends behind in Atlanta for a new life in Colorado Springs. His dream?…

Senate votes to reauthorize Land and Water Conservation Fund
The U.S. Senate has passed a massive public lands package that includes legislation to permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The package, Senate Bill 47 — which encompasses more than 100 bills addressing land exchanges, national parks, wildlife conservation, recreation and more nationwide — soared through on a vote of 92 to 8. It now goes to the House for consideration. Colorado Republican Sen. Cory Gardner issued a statement championing the legislation's passage.…

Chick-fil-A executive's planned speech at AFA draws criticism
A speaker at the Air Force Academy's Character and Leadership Development Symposium on Feb. 21-22 has drawn the attention of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation.Rodney Bullard, vice president of Chick-fil-A's vice president of corporate social responsibility, is an Academy grad, but the MRFF says Chick-fil-A has a record of funding anti-LGBT groups. Chick-fil-A has been working on changing its image, as we report in the Feb. 13 issue. In a letter to Academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, MRFF demands the school withdraw its invitation to Bullard and calls the decision to invite Bullard "another wretched example, in a long line of such despicable instances, of fundamentalist Christian-based homophobic oppression by USAFA." The MRFF likened the invitation to asking "Harvey Weinstein to speak at a USAFA forum on women’s civil rights." Weinstein is a Hollywood producer facing charges of sexual assault. MRFF also notes the Academy has invited other speakers in the past which MRFF deemed inappropriate, thus leading MRFF to accuse the school of "pushing a sectarian, fundamentalist Christian, religious extremist agenda." MRFF represents 12 LGBT clients among the Academy's cadet wing, staff and faculty, the letter says. We asked the Academy to respond to MRFF's protest of Bullard's appearance but didn't hear back before the Independent's press time.…

HSPPR launches online Bite Blotter to track domestic animal attacks
Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region launched an online "bite blotter" to track moderate-to-fatal bites from domestic animals.…


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