Salazar heads to Steamboat

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U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar will be in Steamboat Springs on Wednesday for one in a series of regional issues workshops he hopes will guide his legislative agenda.

Salazar, the Democratic former state attorney general who defeated Republican opponent Pete Coors in the November election, is in the midst of a 10-stop tour of Colorado communities that he hopes will shed light on the issues affecting various regions of the state.

Salazar has invited local elected officials, including City Council members and county commissioners, to attend the 3:30 p.m. meeting in Olympian Hall at Howelsen Hill, a scheduler in Salazar's Denver office said Monday. Salazar has asked those officials to brief him on the top priorities of the region.

"He wants to come out with a good idea of what issues are important to each specific area he is visiting," the scheduler said.

The meeting is open to the public, but most of the time allotted for the workshop is to discuss the issues with local elected officials, spokeswoman Jen Clanahan said. Members of the public who wish to express some of their concerns or issues should do so through any one of Salazar's offices across the state or in Washington.

Salazar has divided the state into 10 planning regions. The senator hopes the 10-stop tour will help identify concerns and priorities for every part of the state. Salazar will use the information gathered from the issues workshops to develop his legislative agenda.

"Coloradans know best what they need in order to improve their lives, their communities and their land," Salazar said in a statement. "Gathering their concerns and priorities will help me develop my legislative agenda in Washington, D.C."

Salazar held issues workshops in Fort Morgan and Greeley on Saturday and in Colorado Springs and Pueblo on Monday. The tour will take him to Alamosa, Durango and Montrose today. The senator will be in Grand Junction on Wednesday morning before arriving in Steamboat later in the day. Other stops include Thornton, Boulder, Broomfield, Golden, Littleton and Castle Rock.

Also on Wednesday, Salazar will host a 10:45 a.m. meeting at the Senior Recreation Center in Grand Junction to discuss Social Security. Salazar will hear concerns, answer questions and express his reservations about President Bush's plans to overhaul Social Security, Clanahan said.

--To reach Brent Boyer call 871-4234

or e-mail bboyer@steamboatpilot.com

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