Inside Denver - June 13th, 2019

Inside Denver (Jun 13th, 2019)

$6.5B in pot sales so far / 30,000 fewer undocumented immigrants / 1 in 3 Denverites want out

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 Enjoy Thursday — the last rain-free day until next week. Don't worry too much: Highs will stay in the high 70s and low 80s, and rain will be confined to afternoon showers.

1. Colorado’s marijuana industry has generated $6.5 billion in sales since 2014. The state has collected more than $1 billion in tax revenue, and this week officials released two charts to show where all the money has gone. The biggest chunk (31.7%) funded human services, followed by public health and the environment (20.7%) and education (16.4%). More than 40,000 people work in the industry, at 3,000-plus licensed businesses. — COLORADO SUN

2. Colorado has the fifth-highest rate of alcohol-related deaths in the country, according to a report from The Commonwealth Fund. Nationwide, 10 in 10,000 Americans died an alcohol-related death in 2017. In Colorado, 17 of 10,000 people died from causes related to alcohol. Alcohol deaths rose 57% between 2005 and 2017; 20 percentage points higher than the national increase during that time. — COLORADO PUBLIC RADIO

3. By the numbers: 30,000

There are 30,000 fewer undocumented immigrants in Colorado today than the 2007 peak, according to a new study from Pew Research Center. Nationally, the number of undocumented immigrants has declined by 1.7 million in that time. The southern border “is no longer the principal way” people are getting into the country, said Pew demographer Jeff Passel. Visa overstays are the most common means for people to become undocumented residents of the United States. An improving Mexican economy and tighter immigration control are also contributing to the decline. — CPR

4. The board of directors for Regional Transportation District approved an extra $4 million in funding for rising legal costs. The funds will go toward outside counsel for two ongoing battles with contractors that have cost $8.5 million so far. RTD and Denver Transit Partners, which built and operates the A, B and G trains, are suing each other over delays. Regional Rail Partners, who built the N line, is also considering filing a suit against RTD. The company settled with RTD for $30 million in 2018. — CPR

5. Aspen has become the first city in Colorado to ban the sale of flavored nicotine products. The move is an effort to curb vaping among teenagers. — DENVER POST

6. Nearly 1 in 3 Denver residents wants to move out of the city, according to a report from Apartment List. The biggest reason? The high — and rising — cost of housing. — WESTWORD

7. A Denver library card will now net you a free bike repair kit. It’s a joint effort from the library system and the Denver Department of Public Health to encourage more people to cycle. — DENVERITE

8. You can now climb the Royal Gorge in Canon City via the new Via Ferrata, aka, a protected climbing route. The route opened recently to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the park, and is accessible enough for the most novice of climbers. — 303 MAGAZINE

9. A rancher in Carbondale wants to bring a new type of buffalo to Colorado: Water buffalo. A herd of 18 have already moved in. — HIGH COUNTRY NEWS

10. From free HIV testing to the Denver Dyke March, here are 17 ways to celebrate Pride in Denver this weekend. Happy Pride, ya’ll! — THE KNOW

Inside Denver is created by Shay Castle, a freelance journalist who has resided in/reported on the Denver metro for six years. Her work runs the gamut from investigations on state and local government to features on the World Championship of Massage (seriously). She enjoys beer, biking and maintaining a plucky Twitter account, @shayshinecastle.

Editing team: Kim Lyons (Pittsburgh-based journalist and managing editor at Inside), David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology), and Bobby Cherry (senior editor at Inside, who’s always on social media).

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