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From the Publisher

From the Publisher

Colorado is making some big changes this year. We covered two of them: the legislation regarding cage-free chickens and the 10-cent fines for plastic bags. I think there are good reasons for both regulations. As noted in Erin Malcomís article, a free-roaming chicken is healthy and happy, and produces better, tastier eggs, which makes consumers healthy and happy.This year, Colorado is joining other states that have banned plastic bags. The results of those bans is not black and white, but I think anything we do to try to keep plastics off the ìstreetsî and out of the ocean is a plus. People say they forget their cloth bags, but once you get into the habit, it becomes routine. Just keep your bags in the trunk for now, and youíll remember when you see signs in front of the grocery store reminding you to bring in your eco-friendly bags.Another change in Colorado this year is an increase in the minimum wage. On Jan. 1, the statewide hourly minimum wage increased by $1.09, to $13.65 for regular employees and $10.63 for tipped employees. In Denver, the only city to set its own minimum wage, the regular rate will increase to $17.29 an hour.In January, we wrote about the controversy over the Flying Horse North and the El Paso County Board of County Commissionersí decision to approve the FHN sketch plan changes despite claims from many residents that the BOCC did not adhere to the EPC master plan.Another BOCC unanimous approval last month caught our attention when residents attended the board meeting to dispute the rezoning of Homestead North at Sterling Ranch. Again, residents felt it was an issue of increased density vs. the county master plan.Also, in this monthís issue, we have a included articles featuring a few of our D 49 athletic teams and their accomplishments. Please check out the photos and stories on Pg. 13. I want to thank Karen Hobson, too, for sending us a write-up about a special event at Falcon Elementary. These stories are why we started the NFH. When Falcon was smaller and much less populated, it was easier for us to ìfind outî about happenings in the area. Now, we are relying on you. Please let us know whatís going on with your kids, your families, your lives.I would like to welcome Dr. Jim Humphries back with his veterinary advice column. This month, he discusses the need to ensure that pets and horses, etc., have a warm place when itís frigid outside. Itís February, a month that hosts American Heart Month, Black History Month, Valentineís Day, Presidents Day (Feb. 17), Groundhog Day (Feb. 2), which has passed by the time we are on the stands. I can only hope that it was cloudy and Mr. Groundhog did not see his shadow, ending whatís been an arctic-like winter!Happy Valentineís Day (check out how much money we spend on this day in the article, “Spending is up for Valentineís Day”).See you in March,– MichelleCORRECTION: In Januaryís issue, we botched our first issue of 2023. Instead of crediting our excellent book review columnist for her review of ìMeredith, Alone,î we credited the author of the book, Claire Alexander. One of those mistakes that makes you crazy as an editor. Anyway, Robin Widmar is our book reviewer and she wrote the review for ìMeredith, Alone.î

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