Headlines — March 28, 2022

Headlines March 28, 2022

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    Headlines — March 28, 2022 Alexis Kenyon

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Wildfire Near NCAR Facility Fueled Weekend Worries

Teams of firefighters from around the region continue to battle a blaze near the National Center for Atmospheric Research in southwest Boulder. As of Sunday afternoon, officials reported the fire had burned nearly 190 acres and was 35% contained. 

Approximately 19,000 people were placed under mandatory evacuation orders Saturday evening. Evacuation orders were all lifted at 5 PM yesterday, and all roads except for NCAR road are now open again.

Fire officials do not expect to extinguish the fire for several days and urge residents in the area to remain vigilant.

There have been no reported injuries, or structures lost to the fire. The cause is still unknown, but investigators believe they have identified the origin point. 

The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office asks that anyone near the trails south of the National Center for Atmospheric Research before or around 2 PM on Saturday that has any information that could help with the investigation to call 720-564-2679 or email [email protected].

All BVSD Schools Open Today

All Boulder Valley schools will open and operate as normal today. The district ensured that all buildings and schools were in good shape. Schools within the areas that were evacuated this weekend will have portable HEPA air purifiers that will remain on a few days past 100% fire containment. 

The district urges any students or staff displaced by the fire to reach out to principals and supervisors for support. Boulder Valley School District will continue to monitor the situation and have emergency plans prepared if the situation worsens.  

Judge Awards Colorado Protestors $14 million Due to Excessive Police Force

George Floyd Protesters from Denver’s 2020 Black Lives Matter demonstration were awarded $14 million from a lawsuit against the city of Denver last week. After three weeks of testimony and video evidence, the court ruled that Denver city police used excessive force when containing the protest and violated protesters’ rights. 

Those involved in the case say this is one of the first direct cases dealing with accountability of violence during the 2020 George Floyd demonstrations. Timothy MacDonald, a lawyer for one protester, said in his closing statement, that the jury should send a message to Denver and its police about protestor rights.

While Denver allows discretion to police with “less lethal” measures of force, the jury determined police violated protesters’ rights of free speech and rights to be protected from unreasonable force.

Colorado Senate Passes Bill To Allow Hospital Visitors 

Colorado Senate has passed a bill to encourage hospitals to allow more visitors for patients experiencing health emergencies.

Over the past few years, because of COVID-19, hospitals have restricted visitors. While hospitals and nursing homes may continue to require testing and protective gear, the bill creates a baseline of rules that would require hospitals and nursing homes to allow at least one visitor per patient. 

Opponents of the bill say healthcare facilities should be able to make their own safety protocol decisions. Sen. Rhonda Fields, an Aurora Democrat who opposed the bill said “I don’t see our state mandating what a hospital should do. I don’t think it’s our lane to do that.”

While many expected the bill to fail the senate vote, it passed by a close margin on Friday. It now faces a second Senate vote before it can go to committee hearings. After that, it will need to pass the house and then get the governor’s signature. 

Bill To Allow Bar Operating Hours Voted Down

The Colorado legislature has decided against extending bar and nightclub hours past 2 AM for the third time since 2012. House Bill 1142 would have allowed bars and clubs to extend their hours of operation by two hours.

Colorado clubs and bars are currently only allowed to operate between the hours of 7 AM and 2 AM. This bill would have allowed bars to either close two hours later or open two hours earlier after seeking permits from state and local licensing authorities. 

Final Redistricting Map Will Be Voted On By City Council Members Tuesday

 Denver’s City Council will vote on their new council district boundaries tomorrow. Lawmakers initially approved Map D during their regular meeting this week in an 11-2 vote.

The redistricting process faces a tight window after a delayed release of U.S. Census data and the voters’ decision to move to move up municipal election by one month.

Residents can voice concerns about the new district map tonight during a community meeting. 

Climber Injured In Fall At Eldorado State Park

Around 1:30 PM on Saturday, the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office received reports of a climber who fell on the West Ridge in Eldora Park. Rescuers from the Rocky Mountain Rescue Group and Mountainview Fire Protection District hiked the surrounding area and could find them within 25 minutes of the call. 

The 36-year-old climber was found on the ground with severe injuries. Rescuers stabilized him and carried downhill one mile before he was transported to a Boulder area hospital to treat his injuries. The rescue took approximately three hours in total. 

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    Headlines — March 28, 2022 Alexis Kenyon

Alexis Kenyon

Alexis Kenyon

Alexis Kenyon is an experienced radio reporter with more than 15 years of experience creating compelling, sound-rich radio stories for news outlets across the country. Kenyon has master's degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, Graduate School of Journalism in radio broadcast and photojournalism. She has worked in KGNU's news department since 2021 as a reporter, editor, and daily news producer. In all her work, she strives to produce thought-provoking, trustworthy journalism that makes other people's stories feel personal. In addition to audio production, Kenyon runs KGNU's news internship program and oversees the department's digital engagement.
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