Posted inLocal Government

What’s at stake in Steve Rosenblum’s First Amendment lawsuit? The implications go beyond Boulder politics

Last week, the lawsuit by Steve Rosenblum, a city council candidate in last year’s election who alleges community organizers conspired to spread defamatory statements about him, landed in the Colorado Court of Appeals.

The case started as a means for Rosenblum to “vindicate” his name and reputation, according to his September 2021 complaint.

But in the months since he lost his election, it has taken on a broader significance as it could have major implications for free speech protections under to 2019 Colorado law.

The law sought to discourage SLAPP suits, or strategic lawsuits against public participation. The law made it easier to get judges to dismiss frivolous lawsuits intended to intimidate critics by dragging them into court.

Rosenblum’s lawsuit, which defendants have dubbed a SLAPP suit, it among the first cases involving the anti-SLAPP law to go before the Colroado Court of Appeals. It could set an appellate court precedent, particularly as it relates to the rights of people who speak out against candidates for elected office.

Posted inMarshall Fire

Former FEMA director, criticized for his response to Hurricane Katrina, sues Boulder County for its handling of Marshall Fire

Boulder County officials said government-funded debris removal at properties destroyed by the Marshall Fire will not begin until it resolves a legal dispute with the former FEMA director Michael Brown. The Bush administration official resigned amid criticism over his handling of Hurricane Katrina and is alleging the county violated open meeting laws when it awarded a bid to a private company to begin the clean-up work. Why Brown is suing over transparency concerns is unclear. He has said he won’t speak to journalists.

Posted inArts & Community

‘It could have been me’: A Ukrainian-American in Boulder County watches war unfold from over 5,000 miles away

Valeria Schweiger has lived in the United States for 25 years, but she still dreams about her hometown of Mykolaiv, Ukraine.  “I walk the streets. I go to stores. I still sometimes go to school,” she says. “And even though my dreams are in English — weird, right? — I still hear the Russian language, […]

Posted inEconomy

Update: What’s the future of outdoor dining downtown? The city is working on a plan with the Downtown Boulder Partnership.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to better reflect the details of the city’s proposed post-pandemic outdoor pilot program. To serve Covid-weary customers amid indoor dining restrictions in the early days of the pandemic, the City of Boulder expanded outdoor dining for restaurants through Emergency Order 2020-16. Now, with case numbers dropping, restrictions lifting […]

Posted inMarshall Fire

Green housing expert offers advice to Marshall Fire victims on rebuilding with resiliency and long-term cost savings in mind  

After Andrew Michler lost his home during the 1991 Oakland Hills Fire, he took the rebuilding process into his own hands. Today, he works as a certified “passive house” consultant and principal of the design firm Hyperlocal Workshop, helping people build ultra-low energy homes that reduce climate-warming gasses and better withstand an extreme weather disaster.  […]

Posted inTransportation

Boulder’s transportation master plan is designed to make the city safer for cyclists and pedestrians. Here are 9 projects to look for this year.

When it comes to Boulder’s transportation master plan, the goal is simple: making city streets safer for everyone, regardless of how they get around.  The city hopes to achieve this while emphasizing equity, reliability, choice and support for Boulder’s climate commitment.  The plan includes five different policies designed to work together to fix problem areas […]