July 20, 2022
Black And Latino Students Are More Likely To Get In Trouble In Boulder Valley School District
Black and Latino students in the Boulder Valley School District are more than three times as likely to be suspended as white students. That’s according to a story by the Boulder Reporting Lab, based on data provided by the school district.
In 2020, BVSD reformed its disciplinary policies and removed police from schools in an effort to avoid these disciplinary inequities.
They trained educators to resolve conflict without punishment and streamlined rules across classrooms. Since the introduction of the reforms, fewer students have been suspended or referred to the police, but the disparity between white students and students of color remains the same.
According to data provided to Boulder Reporting Lab by the district “Latino students were about 3.5 times more likely to be suspended than white students during the 2021-22 school year, That figure reflects a disparity dating back more than a decade. While Latino students made up nearly 20% of BVSD’s 29,000 students, they accounted for about 44% of the suspensions.”
The data shows that Latino students are punished for the same behavior as white students, such as fighting, threats of physical harm, disobedience, and possession of tobacco and marijuana. The school district started monthly meetings to create solutions. Cultural competency training may be included to aid in fixing the problem.
Aurora Agrees To Build More Pallet Shelters For Homeless
Aurora city council agreed last week to build 30 new pallet shelters for those experiencing homelessness. According to the Sentinel, the decision comes after outreach workers report the city’s newly enacted camping ban is not pushing unhoused people out of city limits but shuffling them from one location to another.
The new shelters will add to the 60 existing prefabricated shelters at Salvation Army-run sites at Restoration Christian Fellowship on East Sixth Avenue and the Salvation Army warehouse on Peoria Street.
Pallet shelters offer short-term privacy and places to store belongings for homeless people in Aurora and are a suitable option for those who cannot bed in a congregate shelter.
As the city places a ban on unauthorized camping, there has to be enough shelter space before sweeping. Prior to Monday’s vote, council members showed support for building small shelters in may over expanding shelters at the Aurora Day Resource Center.
Aurora city council unanimously approved building the new shelters but not without pushback council member Danielle Jurinsky argued that the city should place multiple people into each 8 X 8 shelter saying “I’m a firm believer in beggars can’t be choosers, and, I mean, we’re helping people get off the street.”
Conservationists Unveil Wolf Restoration Plan
Advocates say the wildlife protection plan is the first step in fulfilling Coloradans’ 2020 vote to reintroduce gray wolf populations to the Rocky Mountains.
The plan outlines twelve habitat blocks for wolf reintroduction, including Rocky Mountain National Park which spans across the Western Slope. The habitat blocks were chosen based on the availability of elk and other prey while keeping a distance from humans and domestic animals.
Advocates hope the reintroduction of gray wolves will help ecosystems thrive by checking elk populations. Since the eradication of Colorado’s wolves, which ended in 1945, elk populations grew to rates too high to work sustainably within the ecosystem, leading to what the report calls “a slowly building ecological disaster and biodiversity loss.”
“Wolves have a tremendous impact on biodiversity and ecosystem health,” said Johanna Hamburger, of the Animal Welfare Institute’s terrestrial wildlife program. “By reducing overbrowsing by elk and deer, wolves improve the quality of riparian habitat, which benefits beavers, songbirds, amphibians, and fish. The plan lays out a path forward that would restore balance to landscapes across the Western Slope.”
Also outlined are procedures for minimizing wolf attacks on livestock and compensation in the case that agricultural losses occur, and prohibits the killing of wolves preying on livestock on public land.
City Council Unanimously Passes Councilwoman Sandoval’s ADU Rezoning For Regis Neighborhood
On Monday night the Denver City Council voted 12-0 to approve Councilwoman Amanda P. Sandoval’s rezoning to allow accessory dwelling units in the Regis neighborhood in north Denver. This is Sandoval’s third neighborhood-wide rezoning. And will allow 1,025 properties in District 1 to build ADUs.
BLM Is Roundup More Horses Despite Protests.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management or “BLM” issued a low-flying helicopter to begin rounding up and moving almost 750 wild horses on select rangeland in the western Colorado region. The process will begin on Friday, despite weeks of protest from wild horse advocates, national mustang groups, and Gov. Jared Polis.
The BLM says high temperatures and drought make conditions unsustainable for the horses and the land across the East Douglas Rangeland.
The BLM will round up the horses and relocate them over the course of the next month to a holding facility in Utah. Gov. Jared Polis, who vocally opposes the roundups, requested that the BLM allow a state veterinarian to be on-site to ensure the horse’s welfare.
Xcel Pushes Back New Billing System For Solar Panels
If you are a Colorado homeowner and have solar panels on your property there is a chance that you are collecting extra solar energy and selling it to Xcel. More than 60,000 homeowners in Colorado have solar panels. Many of them have started to complain that Xcel, who is buying the reserve power for 8 cents, is shortchanging people. During peak summer hours, Xcel charges consumers up to 17 cents for power. Homeowners say, if they are collecting more sun, they should be getting more of that profit.
Xcel says they don’t have the ability to share that profit because of a lack of “smart meters,” which track how much sun solar panels collect.
The Colorado Solar and Storage Association officials say, Xcel has known about this new prime time energy rate since 2016 and “expressly studied solar customers as a subgroup in early trials,” they said in The Colorado sun. “There is no excuse for singling out this customer group and allowing such an extended delay.”
The Colorado Solar and Storage Association, told The Colorado Sun, “Most solar owners will have to wait for full benefits until Xcel installs smart meters for all the 1.5 million electric customers it serves,”
Xcel told the solar association and regulators that most of the solar power users will not get their time-of-use smart meters until late 2023. Pushing back the billing system again.