Headlines Jan. 13, 2022
Colorado Health Officials Hopeful Omicron Will Decline Soon
Colorado Health officials report that COVID positivity rates continue to rise sharply. However, hospitalizations have remained around the same. Modeling projections of possible omicron-related hospitalizations suggest that the current number — almost 1500 cases might rise closer to 2000 in the next few days. This projection data helps medical staff to prepare for more hospitalizations as researchers learn more about Omicron.
The surge in New York, which saw some of the first Omicron cases and which has among the highest number of hospitalizations in the country, is expected to decline soon. This suggests that Colorado might follow suit in the near future.
Boulder Schools Prioritize In-Person Classes Despite Absenteeism
Boulder Valley schools might need temporary online learning in some classes because of COVID outbreaks. According to an email sent to parents by Dr. Rob Anderson, the Boulder district superintendent, absenteeism among students and school employees surged following winter break. But despite staff shortages, Anderson says school officials continue to prioritize five days a week of in-person learning throughout the district.
Adams 14 Board Votes Again to Fire Management Company
For the second time in recent months, the Adams 14 school board voted to sever ties with its management company, MGT. Tuesday’s vote came as a surprise to state education officials who say they might need to take drastic measures to improve the low-performing district. This could mean such changes as closing down schools or merging them into other districts.
Meanwhile, the district moved students to online learning this week because of COVID and staffing shortages.
King Soopers Workers Hold Denver Rally
The United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 7 is holding a rally today near a Denver King Soopers to support workers striking against the grocery store chain. Workers say King Soopers – a chain owned by grocery giant Kroger – has continued to operate using unfair labor practices such as low pay and unsafe working conditions.
Local 7 members in the Denver Metro area voted in favor of the strike by a near unanimous margin. Workers say the company has prospered over the pandemic, while employees struggle on low wages and risk their lives going to work.
Colorado Wildlife Officials Legalize Hazing Wolves
Colorado wildlife officials have adopted a new rule allowing ranchers to haze wolves who are getting too close to their livestock. The new rule was passed on Wednesday but it came too late for a North Park cowboy whose dog was killed by a grey wolf last weekend.
The Colorado Sun reports that Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials (CPW) confirmed the killing was the work of a wolf pack that killed a heifer on a neighboring ranch on December 19th. The dog’s owner wishes that he was able to kill grey wolves who try and attack his dogs and livestock. But it is illegal to kill grey wolves in Colorado where grey wolves are considered endangered. Killing a grey wolf in Colorado is punishable by up to a $100,000 fine, a year in jail, and a lifetime loss of hunting license privileges.
Hazing means that ranchers can now use rubber bullets, guard animals, scare devices like propane cannons, range riders, as well as several non-lethal projectiles and “fladry”, which are flags hung along fence lines. Hazing must not result in injury or death to a grey wolf, and if a rancher believes hazing techniques may have injured a grey wolf they must report the incident to Parks and Wildlife within 48 hours.
Town Hall Meeting for Reimagine Policing Program
The Boulder Police Department will hold a town hall meeting Thursday as part of its ongoing Reimagine Policing program. This event will focus on the CALEA Accreditation Process. The process ostensibly promotes the efficient use of resources such as employee recruitment, management of investigations, use of authority and force, and engagement with at-risk and juvenile populations.