As Aspen found out in last year’s mayoral race, you never know just who’ll be jumping into politics.  Eagle County and the vast 3rd Congressional district have someone like that to deal with now…

Democrat Arn Menconi, who takes pride in the fact he’s been arrested for demonstrating in Washington and New York 4 times in the last 3 years, is the latest candidate throwing a hat in the ring trying to oust Republican 3rd District Congressman Scott Tipton.  The other top Democrats in the race are Glenwood Springs City Attorney Karl Hanlon and former Steamboat Springs state Representative Diane Mitsch Bush.  Menconi says he’s been inspired by the young people from Florida who organized last weekend’s “March For Our Lives” after 17 of their friends and teachers were killed last month.  Menconi criticizes Bush and Hanlon for not being Democratic enough…  running to the middle and not taking clear stands on issues like a call for actual gun regulation.  Menconi tells the Vail Daily his 3 key campaign points are a ban on assault weapons, a ban on fracking, and impeachment of the President.  He criticizes Mitsch Bush and Hanlon as being “half-hearted” in backing the new student-led anti-gun movement.  Menconi founded the Snowboard Outreach Society nearly 20 years ago, and he’s served 2 terms as an Eagle County Commissioner.  He’s petitioned his way onto the June primary ballot, collecting more than 1500 signatures around the district.

Police in Eagle County have a mystery case on their hands, but fortunately they have a live victim, not a dead one.  She’s a 31-year-old woman who apparently got attacked early this week, and was deposited in a dumpster in the Sandstone neighborhood of Vail.  She was found by police before dawn Tuesday, her hands zip-tied together, and having lost her ability to talk, but she was conscious and breathing, though cold and suffering several injuries.  The woman was sent to Vail Health for treatment, and was later interviewed by detectives.  One thing police are saying as of late Wedneday is this does not appear to involve a sex crime.  Also, the man who was walking by and found the woman Tuesday morning is not a suspect in the case.  But Vail detectives say they are working on a lead.  Before being found some 13 hours later, the victim had last been seen around 4 Monday afternoon in Avon.  If you have any info that could help police solve this case, you’re urged to call them at 970-470-23-72.

Not talking baseball here, but the owner of the major leagues’ Arizona Diamondbacks is involved in a controversy here in the valley.  He’s Earl Kendrick, and he was sued 3 years ago by Texas developer Bradley Schlosser.  The Aspen Daily News reports they’ll be in Pitkin County court next month, battling that action out.  Schlosser & Kendrick both own houses along McLain Flats Road just outside Aspen, in the White Horse Springs subdivision.  Their case is set for a 3-day April trial, the 9th thru 11th, with Schlosser and his wife claiming Kendrick improperly cut down 16 cottonwood trees along the property line they shared, in order to improve his own views.  Kendrick is reportedly countersuing over the Schlossers’ use of a driveway through his property to get to theirs.  It’ll be nothing if not interesting.

Tobacco could soon cost more, in more of the valley than just Aspen.  Basalt is considering making changes just as the Pitkin County city did, in an effort to cut down on smoking and other tobacco use in town, by both kids and adults.  The Aspen Times reports town council voted 4 to nothing this week in favor of a new ordinance to raise the minimum tobacco-buying age in Basalt to 21 instead of 18, and to require a license at any business that wants to sell tobacco products.  Councilmembers say they were impressed with Aspen’s stance, and they hope local voters will follow their lead and approve a new town tobacco tax.  Basalt’s ballot proposes a 2 dollar a pack cigarette tax, 40 percent on other products.  The only difference with Aspen’s voter-approved referendum is the size of the cigarette tax, that was 3 bucks a pack in Aspen.  And that election’s underway now, with ballots in voters’ hands.  Be sure to turn yours in at town hall by Tuesday evening the 3rd, at 7:00.

Your news this morning is sponsored by the upcoming  Castle Creek Bridge/Hallam Street Improvement Project at the entrance to Aspen.  The work there starts work Monday the 2nd.  If you don’t think you know enough about the project, look all the info up at castle creek bridge dot com…  then next week be sure to do things to make it easier on yourself by being cautious in the area, and maybe riding RFTA.  Again that site with the info is castle creek bridge dot com.