Good morning! We’re ready to hit this week hard with a newsletter full of the kinds of essential topics that touch everybody: Water, broadband, teachers and politics. But first!
The Colorado Sun is hosting a conversation with Sen. Michael Bennet — this Friday at noon at the University of Denver! If you don’t have lunch plans, come grab a bite and preview Super Tuesday with Colorado’s senior senator and recent presidential candidate.
Bennet will reflect on lessons he learned in Iowa and New Hampshire, the influence of money on national politics and other issues.
As a Colorado Sun member, here’s your link to RSVP to this free event to guarantee space in this limited room. We hope to see you for lunch!
The event is free, but here’s your link to RSVP to get space in this limited room. We hope to see you for lunch!
Let’s fry this bologna* already, shall we?
*not a preview of Friday’s menu
The Latest from The Sun
To bridge the cultures of Mexico’s border region and a neglected Colorado neighborhood, just add water
The bridge at San Luis Rio Colorado in Mexico played host to a spontaneous party in spring 2014, when the Colorado River again flowed here during the pulse flow. (Luke Runyon, KUNC)
“If I’m going to be an authentic Colorado River advocate, I need to be an advocate from the source to the sea. The heart of the river is in the Delta. The womb of the river is in the headwaters in Colorado.”
— Water policy analyst Jorge Figueroa, co-founder and director of El Laboratorio, a Latino-led environmental innovation laboratory based in Denver
The little trickle of water under that bridge in the photo above is the rare evidence of a once-strong ecological connection between Colorado and Mexico. But as the water of the overtaxed Colorado River dries up, activists and planners are working to not only restart the flow, but to rehabilitate neglected neighborhoods on the distant ends of the water way: Denver’s Sun Valley and San Luis Rio Colorado in Mexico. Sharon Udasin, a Ted Scripps fellow at the University of Colorado Center for Environmental Journalism, brings us the story of these two “river sisters.” >> STORY + PHOTOS
Rural Colorado sees more broadband options coming online. But getting up to speed is taking longer than anticipated in some areas.
87% to 92%
That jump, from 87% to 92%, is what the State of Colorado is hoping to accomplish between now and June. But as Tamara Chuang writes, while more options are creeping into the most underserved parts of the state, coverage numbers aren’t the whole story and there are still some physical realities that will make closing that final gap increasingly difficult. >> ANALYSIS
Thousands of teachers applied to Colorado’s new educator loan forgiveness program. But only 100 spots are available.
“Unless I win the lottery, I could see myself paying it until the day I die.”
— Cañon City Schools social worker Shantell Lynch on the student debt from her master’s degree
The Colorado Department of Higher Education is granting loan forgiveness of up to $5,000 each year for five years. Will that draw more people into rural classrooms and help the state overcome its teacher shortage? >> STORY + ANALYSIS
The campaigns come for Colorado
Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg speaks to 9-year-old Zachary Ro, center, of Lone Tree, as Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold looks on at a campaign rally on Feb. 22, 2020, in Aurora. The boy questioned Buttigieg on how to tell people that he is gay. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Colorado isn’t the biggest jewel in the Super Tuesday crown for Democratic presidential hopefuls, but the state’s purple reputation and competitive Senate race means that (almost) all the viable candidates have shown their faces in the Centennial state. Here are a few recent highlights:
- BUTTIGIEG: Jesse Paul talked to the 9-year-old Colorado boy who asked Pete Buttigieg on stage for advice on how to tell the world he is gay. “I don’t think you need a lot of advice from me on bravery,” Buttigieg told Zachary Ro. >> STORY
- WARREN: Elizabeth Warren filled the Fillmore auditorium’s 3,900-person capacity and then some yesterday. >> LIVE TWEET
- SANDERS & BLOOMBERG: Last Sunday, front-runner Bernie Sanders drew nearly 12,000 to the Colorado Convention Center and, like Warren, directly attacked Michael Bloomberg, who has been spending millions on ads and staff in Colorado. >> STORY
- BIDEN: Joe Biden, on the other hand, is the only viable candidate who hasn’t set foot in Colorado ahead of the Super Tuesday vote leading party leaders to wonder if his “no-show” strategy will backfire. >> STORY
- TRUMP: Don’t forget that despite a lack of any significant primary votes for the GOP, President Trump was in Colorado Springs with Sen. Cory Gardner, cementing their political fates ahead of the general election. >> STORY
- VOTER GUIDE: If you’d like to base your votes on policy, not face time, then you’re in luck! There’s still time to explore our interactive guide to the primary candidates on where they stand on issues near and dear to Colorado voters. >> VOTER GUIDE
More from The Sun
- FORT COLLINS POLICE DEFEND INVESTIGATION: The chief of the Fort Collins police department, which was blasted for its botched investigation into the shooting death of a CSU student by prosecutors in the case, went on 9News to defend his officers, saying “there weren’t errors so much as there were reasons why we did or didn’t do things.” >> STORY
- UNCOUNTED 2019 BALLOTS FOUND: Mesa County Clerk and Recorder Tina Peters found 574 filled-out ballots from the 2019 election in a drop box outside an office in Grand Junction. >> STORY
From the Opinion Page
- Columnist Mario Nicolais on Neil Gorsuch’s return to Colorado: “Justice Neil Gorsuch, evangelizing for the separation of powers”
- Columnist and attorney Craig Silverman: “Thanks to Trump and Gardner, Putin scored another goal in Colorado Springs”
- Tennyson Center for Children CEO Ned Breslin: “No Colorado child should be forced to move between 17 homes to heal”
- Pediatrician Anne Shelton: “Teen vaping cannot be Colorado’s new normal. This is a preventable epidemic”
- Salida mayor P.T. Wood: “Under-investment in public lands hurts Coloradans and shortchanges all Americans”
- Revel Bikes and Why Cycles founder Adam Miller: “Protect our outdoor recreation economy by banning speculative oil and gas leasing on public lands”
- Colorado Concern’s Anneliese Steel on a bill to create a new site to find proposed state regulations: “Coloradans deserve better than a clunky, confusing system that keeps too many in the dark”
The Colorado Report
THE BEST JOURNALISM FROM IN AND AROUND THE STATE
- MORE PRIVATE IMMIGRATION DETENTION CENTER LAWSUITS: René Lima-Marín — who has his own winding story in Colorado’s justice system — is behind one of two new federal lawsuits alleging that the staff ignored his need for medical attention after falling and hitting his jaw on a steel toilet seat. // The Denver Post 🔑
- RETURN OF MONTBELLO? Denver Public Schools is considering reopening a traditional high school at Montbello, where for the last decade a collection of small schools has operated on the northeast Denver campus. // Chalkbeat Colorado
- DIA CHANGES COURSE, TAKES BLAME: The CEO of DIA is taking blame for the fiasco around the expensive rebuild of the airport’s Great Hall. // CBS Denver
- LET’S LOOK AT 25-YEAR-OLD NEWS VIDEOS ABOUT DIA: 9News dug up some videos from the launch of Denver International Airport back in 1995, which was long enough ago that the news station built a giant scale model of Peña Boulevard to help Denverites figure it all out. // 9News
- FERAL SWINE ERADICATED FROM COLORADO. HOORAY? I thought that feral swine were more of a Texas problem, but apparently, the swine that were a problem in the state have been totally eliminated after a 15-year, multi-department partnership. // High Plains Journal
- KANYE, OUT WEST: We’ve referenced it before, but Kanye West is focusing a whole lot of money and time on Cody, Wyoming. The New York Times tried to get a handle on what the rapper and fashion mogul’s plans are for this stretch of the northern Rockies. // New York Times
Thanks for spending a little time with us to start up your week! We hope to see you at one of our events this week, whether it’s the book club tonight, Thursday’s News and Brews in Loveland or Friday’s lunch chat with Sen. Michael Bennet.
Have a great day!