OFF LIMITS

Bonds on the run: Denver officials may not know how to open an airport on time (much less on budget), but they clearly understand how to stop certain complaints before they ever get off the ground. For proof, check out one of those pesky property-tax notices popping up in mailboxes across town. Sure, the bills are considerably higher than last year's, but don't get so googly-eyed that you miss the line at the bottom of each statement: "Note: No airport bonds are paid by these taxes."

The theme is repeated in an accompanying letter to property owners explaining the joy of mill levies and the fact that some of the money goes to cover principal and interest on voter-approved bonds for "non-airport construction projects." Get the message? If not, it's repeated two sentences later: "No airport bonds are paid by these taxes."

Good thing, too, or the tab would be considerably higher. Mayor Wellington Webb currently is struggling to keep Denver International Airport's official construction budget below $2.875 billion. This, of course, is the same project that former aviation director George Doughty--who promised he could build a four-runway, 100-gate airport for $1.2 billion--said could cost $2.7 billion only "if you gold-plate the terminal building."

A bite of the Big Apple: Everyone from Will Perkins to what remains of the Colorado tourism board can rest easy--at least until June. Terry Schleder, the woman who masterminded Boycott Colorado, has moved to New York, at least temporarily, to join forces with Chip Duckett of New York! Boycott Colorado. Duckett's production company, Out in NY '94, is trying to raise over a million bucks for AIDS charities by StonewallWeek in June; Schleder's efforts after the passage of Amendment 2 cost Colorado at least a hundred times that much. Duckett was so impressed with Schleder's work, in fact, that "of course we snagged her and dragged her to New York," he says.

"Now that Amendment 2 has temporarily gone away and the boycott is lifted," Schleder explains, "the time is right to put my energy into our civil rights movement by fighting the AIDS epidemic with a national perspective."
But she hasn't lost her local perspective entirely: Next week Schleder returns to Colorado for her Denver County court trial. Her alleged crime: handcuffing herself to the gate of the governor's mansion last August to protest the soft-on-gay-rights stance of Pope-gawker Bill Clinton.

It's my party: Moneybags oilman Bruce Benson, former chairman of the Colorado Republican Party, is the latest name to crop up as a possible challenger to Governor Roy Romer. Benson recently landed another prestigious position: chairman-in-waiting of the Denver Zoo, to which he donated a hefty $250,000. Hey, spending that same amount with the Democrats--as did Swanee Hunt--lands you an ambassador's post in Austria...Don't look to the Boulder Camera for spendthrift behavior. The paper's management stunned the newsroom with its announcement that as part of upcoming office renovations, editors were expected to paint the walls.

 
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