Freezing temps lead to school delays today; Denver Mayor Mike Johnston heads to DC

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School Delays

Milder weather is in the forecast for today, but it hasn’t arrived yet… and the cold is having an impact on school start times.

Classes in most Boulder Valley School District schools are starting two hours later than usual today, because of continuing cold weather and wind chill.

Classes for the district’s mountain schools, which include Nederland, Gold Hill, and Jamestown schools, are canceled today.

For those with delayed starts, the school day will end at the usual time, according to the District website.

The district says morning athletic practices are canceled, as are morning classes at Boulder TEC and Arapahoe Ridge. Afternoon sessions are not affected.

In  the St. Vrain Valley School District, classes  will be online only today, also due to cold weather. The Daily Camera says some of their afternoon athletics and other activities will go on as scheduled, since the weather forecast calls for the day to be warmer by then. The Camera says individual high schools will have more specific information about their scheduled activities.

CU Boulder is also on a delayed start today, with campus opening at 10 this morning. Classes and labs scheduled to begin before that are canceled, according to the Camera. Those set for 10 o’clock or after are on their regular schedules.

Dr. Charlie Klauer is an associate professor of industrial and systems engineering at Virginia Tech. She says, in cold weather, don’t drive if you can avoid it 

“When there is ice, when there is a sheet of ice on roadways, people just need to stay home. Even if you have a four wheel drive, four wheel drives do not brake better than a regular car.  There is no reason to be out on icy roadways. So stay home. “

9News is reporting that Denver Public Schools, Jefferson County Public Schools, Cherry Creek Schools and Aurora Public Schools are all closed today, because of the cold weather and dangerous driving conditions.

Finally, the cold has led to cancellation of today’s session of the Colorado General Assembly, according to Colorado Politics.

Cold Weather

The extreme cold resulted in at least forty-four people staying at the East Age Well Center in Boulder this past weekend, where an overflow warming center was set up by the city.

Boulder Reporting Lab says the emergency warming center opened as the dangerously cold weather set in late last week. In addition to a spot indoors, the facility offered showers, snacks, and hot drinks.

At the same time, the Boulder Shelter for the Homeless added at least twenty beds for people to use during the cold snap.

In Longmont, the Daily Camera says the Homeless Outreach Providing Encouragement nonprofit is staying open through tomorrow, due to the ongoing wind chill threat. They’re at Journey Church, at 2000 Pike Road.

Elsewhere, the extreme weather resulted in more than eleven hundred flights being delayed or canceled at Denver International Airport yesterday. 9News, citing the flight tracker FlightAware, said 358 flights were canceled and 779 were delayed. Affected airlines were United, Frontier, and ten others.

MLK Day Events

The cold weather also had an impact on Martin Luther King Day events yesterday. In Denver, the 39th annual observance was scaled back to just the march and parade, known as the “Marade.” The Marade usually ends with a program at Civic Center Park, but that was canceled.

One of the Marade participants told the Denver Gazette that discrimination and racism doesn’t stop because of frigid temperatures, so showing up at the event was important.

Johnston To DC

Denver Mayor Mike Johnston will be in Washington tomorrow, and his agenda includes asking the Biden administration for help in resolving Denver’s migrant crisis.

Johnston and some 250 other mayors are gathering in the nation’s capital for the U.S. Conference of Mayors. Immigration is expected to be a key issue there, along with housing, homelessness, and public safety.

A surge of some 37,000 people have come to Denver  in the last year, most from Central and South America. The city has spent $38 million to feed and house them.

Johnston and the mayors of New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Houston have already asked the Biden administration for a long-term solution to the issue. Biden has asked Congress for $1.4 billion to pay for shelter and services for migrants. But the coalition of mayors wants $5 billion, as well as help in getting migrants authorization to be legally employed. That’s according to the The Denver Gazette.

BoCo EV Charging Station Grant

Boulder County is getting a nearly $5 million grant to add more charging stations for electric vehicles.

The money from the U.S. Department of Transportation will go toward adding charging stations in the areas that need them the most, according to a press release. That includes rural areas and mobile home communities.

The 4.9 million dollar grant is meant to expand public access to EVs, and in turn, help reduce carbon pollution.

Motor vehicles account for most of the carbon pollution in Colorado. Officials say the new charging stations are an important step in helping Boulder County reach its goal of an 80% reduction in carbon pollution by 2030, and carbon neutrality by 2035.

New Mountain Lion Hunting Restrictions

State wildlife officials are banning the use of audio devices by mountain lion hunters.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife voted unanimously last week to ban devices that play sounds that lure mountain lions near them, such as the sounds of prey animals in distress. Critics say playing such audio gives hunters an unfair advantage.

Wildlife officials also voted to end Colorado’s April mountain lion hunting season. Licensed hunters can still hunt mountain lions from November through March, according to the Denver Post.

Hunters have legally killed about five hundred mountain lions a year for each of the last ten years, which is below the state’s usual limit.

Jackie Sedley

Jackie Sedley

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