A woman's work is never done: In anointing Sandy Martin its 1994 Businesswoman of the Year, the Northwest Business and Professional Woman's Organization cited Martin's fifteen years of service and "unselfish commitment" to the city of Arvada, as manifested in her work as director of human services for the city. Unfortunately for Martin, Arvada didn't have the same commitment to her. Two weeks before the October 20 award banquet, City Manager Neal Berlin sacked Martin. Her termination came just days after Berlin fired Martin's top aide, Gabriel High, herself a former Arvada Woman of the Year.

High and Martin, both of whom are considering lawsuits against the city, won't discuss the reasons for their abrupt dismissals, although some insiders attribute the firings to personality conflicts between Berlin, City Attorney Steve Klausing and the two women. Other wags suggest it may simply come down to the fact that the men did not intend to go down alone. Klausing recently reached a "mutual agreement" with the Arvada City Council that he resign, and the council ousted Berlin three days after he fired Martin. Unlike Martin and High, however, the boys will get plenty of cash to cushion the blow: Klausing's contract allows him to collect six months of salary and benefits, and Berlin has reportedly worked out a $150,000 severance package for himself.

Read alert: Denver's dailies put their creative writing talents to the test every spring and fall, trying to put the most positive spin possible on the most recent newspaper circulation figures, issued every six months by the Audit Bureau of Circulation. But public accounts of the ABC audit for the period ending September 30 read more like a mystery novel than the standard boosterism. While the Denver Post touts its highest daily circulation in history (and glosses over a slight Sunday drop), the Rocky Mountain News's figures are nowhere to be found. The tabloid blames the blank on a "technical systems issue," according to publisher Larry Strutton, quoted in his own paper. "This is not unusual. Typically, dozens of papers are not in this preliminary report." In the meantime, though, Post house ads are making much of the missing figures--and the fact that for the first time in over a decade the News hasn't published the preliminary results.

Also frequently among the missing at the News: Jay Ambrose's page 2 editor's note--the reading of which has become one of this town's greatest guilty pleasures. ("Say! There's something going on in Bosnia! Check it out...") According to newsroom sources, Ambrose is late with his copy so often that other editors have taken to ghostwriting the sappy salutation.

Say! What's up with those wacky Broncos, anyway...

Parting shots: As a final image for Bruce Benson's campaign, it was a doozy. By election eve the Republican gubernatorial candidate had retooled his advertising, grafting black-and-white attacks on Roy Romer's record onto the tail end of the infamous October apologia, in which the candidate, clad in old jeans (complete with worn pocket), turned his back on the camera and told all. Although Benson's confessions about his DUIs and a messy divorce were axed from this last ad, the final shot was repeated, with Benson facing resolutely forward and promising "leadership" with a peculiar grimace.

Maybe he was regretting how much he'd spent on his quixotic campaign--and remembering how his wallet was once so stuffed it actually could rub a hole in his pocket.


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