Batting 1,000.

Thanks to a slew of new followers (I suspect it was the prairie dog tweets), I am officially earning just over $1,000 a month from the Beat. It really helps feeling a little more financially secure, and once I wrap this big project at the end of May, I promise to turn those extra dollars into increased coverage. 

You'll get twice the content this week, because we've got not one, but TWO council meetings to look forward to.

Bonus celebration song! 1,000 by N.E.R.D. + Future - Shay :)

Next goal: A living wage. Help me get there.

Boulder will explore lethal means to control prairie dog population on open space farms, ranches
It took four hours of discussion and a 5-3 vote, but council agreed to let staff look into lethal control of prairie dogs on open space lands that are supposed to be for irrigated agriculture. Perhaps it was the estimated $5-7 million price tag to relocate the critters that pushed them over the edge.

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Photo by Fré Sonneveld on Unsplash

Is the muni still on track for a 2020 vote? Councilman thinks not; calls for public hearing
Councilman Bob Yates, in his monthly newsletter, criticized staff for a lack of transparency around efforts to create a city-owned utility, and questioned assertions that the process would be far enough along for a 2020 go/no-go vote. Yates called for a public hearing the issue; two have been held since the November 2017 vote to extend a revenue-generating tax. $20M has been spent on the muni to date; Xcel and Boulder have yet to agree on a purchase price.

Photo by Matt Popovich on Unsplash

Group tasked with exploring police oversight
in Boulder lacks relevant homeless experience

Members of the NAACP were angry and disappointed after council declined to appoint Sammie Lawrence, a black man arrested while filming police interaction with unhoused residents, to a task force that will explore oversight of the department. One member has been unhoused in the past, though not locally, leaving that perspective noticeably absent from the group.

Read more
A rendering of planned apartment buildings at retail space at the Liquor Mart site.

Council asks Liquor Mart developers to break building in two, put affordable housing on-site
A plan for 147 apartments and 11,000 square feet of retail space met a skeptical and split council on Tuesday. Members asked that the building broken up in two to create "permeability," and that a planned rooftop pool and hot tub be moved to pacify concerned neighbors. They also questioned developers plans to contribute cash-in-lieu to the city's affordable housing fund, requesting that affordable units be placed on-site instead.

Read a Twitter thread of the discussion here.

Next city council meeting(s):
Tuesday, May 14 & Thursday, May 16
6 p.m., 1777 Broadway
Streamed live online and Channel 8

Here's what's on tap this week....
At the May 14 study session, council will discuss:
+ Potential ballot measures, including adding paid assistants for council, creation of a library district and funding options for the library, and issuance of multi-year debt for a middle-income down payment assistance program

+ A possible vehicle registration fee and natural gas tax to pay for the city's continued efforts to combat climate change

+ The update of the open space master plan

At the May 16 special meeting, council will discuss options and next steps for the former BCH hospital campus at Alpine and Balsam.

The offending brew

Other (local) news you can use

+ A wonderful explainer of Boulder's housing co-ops, now recruiting, and how they may be the answer to affordability woes and climate goals Boulder Weekly

+ Boulder County commissioners are weighing whether or not to extend the deadline for a phase-out of GMO crops on open space Times-Call

+ Oskar Blues is being sued for its Guns'N'Rose beer by the band BizWest

+ Lafayette raised its affordable housing fee to $1/square foot Daily Camera

+ Do you know Boulder still has buried trolley lines underneath its streets? Read this fascinating history of trolleys and streetcars in the city Boulder Inn

Song of the week

"Hologram" by Tacocat
I just wonder how anyone falls for this anymore...
Don't take this the wrong way, but you're doing this the wrong way...

Just remember if you can, power is a hologram

How am I doing?
I want your feedback on the newsletter. Summaries too long? Did you like my long read? Hate the song? When do you want it to hit your inbox? Send your questions and suggestions to

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