Good morning to you, Boulder. I hope you’re well.

For today, Jessica Mordacq covers the impact of Prop 125, the ballot measure that passed with about 1% of the vote in November allowing grocery stores to sell wine. As local liquor stores feared, this has caused sales at at least some stores to plummet.

With many liquor stores operating as family-owned affairs, the worry is that the convenience of getting all your beer and wine in the same trip as your bananas will have broader impacts.

“We wouldn’t have all these distilleries, cool breweries and the amount of amazing wine we have if it was all grocery,” said Sarah Jarrach, owner of B Town Wine + Spirits in East Boulder. “I just hope that doesn’t get lost.”

Also, Boulder’s e-bike voucher program is coming soon. And BRL’s John Herrick and I have been making the rounds on local radio as of late. If you want to hear the voices behind the text, check out the links below.

Enjoy your Monday.

— Tim, reporter

BRL Today newsletter sponsor

MahlerFest XXXVI, May 17-21, celebrates humanity’s capacity for resilience and renewal culminating with Mahler’s monumental Symphony No. 2 and Thea Musgrave’s Phoenix Rising. Other highlights include Act I of Wagner’s Die Walküre, Liederabend (Evening of Song), re-creating a 1905 concert of Mahler’s orchestral songs, the U.S. premiere of the Fourth Symphony of Hans Gál, our free symposium, and more!

What to know today

  • 60s and 70s with thunderstorms: This week will look much like the last, though hopefully sans tornadoes. If you enjoy spending time outside, based on the forecast your best bet will be doing so in the morning. For afternoon thunderstorms may pair with lightning.
  • Boulder e-bike voucher program planned for July: This summer, City of Boulder residents will be able to apply for a voucher providing a $300 discount for a standard e-bike or a $500 discount for a cargo e-bike, city officials told the Transportation Advisory Board last week.
    • Residents who earn up to 80% the area median income — about $63,000 for an individual in 2022 — will be eligible for additional discounts: $1,200 for a standard e-bike and $1,400 for a cargo e-bike. The discount can be used for class 1 and class 2 e-bikes, which typically max out at 20 miles per hour. The first application period will include 200 vouchers.
    • The city plans to administer the vouchers through a lottery. It plans to open an application period in July and September before randomly selecting applicants. The vouchers will be able to be used at a Boulder County bike shop for a point-of-sale discount. The shops would then be reimbursed by the city.
    • Separately, earlier this year, Gov. Jared Polis signed into law a bill that provides credits and discounts on electric cars, bikes and heat pumps. The bill was backed by Rep. Junie Joseph and Senate President Steve Fenberg.
    • Starting on April 1, 2024, people who want to buy an electric bike may be eligible for a $450 discount at the time of the purchase. In the first year, bike shops will have to front the discount and get it back when they file their taxes. (Some shops are not thrilled about this, according to Community Cycles, a Boulder-based cycling advocacy organization.)
    • If you’re interested in going electric, CPR has a guide on the various state tax credits and rebates for you.
  • Money to fight homelessness: Boulder County’s collaborative initiative, Homeless Solutions for Boulder County (HSBC), along with nonprofit partners, has been granted $6.5 million to help address homelessness in the region. The funding was obtained through a collaboration with Boulder County Community Services, Boulder County Housing and Human Services, the City of Boulder Housing and Human Services, among others.
    • The grant is part of House Bill 22-1377, which allocated federal dollars from the American Rescue Plan Act to support homelessness response efforts. HSBC and Boulder County organizations received 20% of the state’s $33 million grant funding allocated to homelessness in the initial round of funds. The awarded funds will be used to prioritize various homelessness services and responses based on the needs of each government agency or organization involved.
  • Drive-by shooting leaves two shot on Flagstaff Road: On Saturday, May 13, at approximately 4:30 a.m., two individuals were shot by a passing vehicle while standing outside their parked car on Flagstaff Road in unincorporated Boulder County. The victims, a 17-year-old male and an 18-year-old male, are both from the Thornton area. The 17-year-old victim required surgery for a serious leg injury while the 18-year-old had a minor injury and was released from the hospital. Authorities are investigating the incident and asking anyone who witnessed unusual activity on Flagstaff Road between 3:30 to 4:00 a.m. to contact the Sheriff’s Office tip line at 303-441-3674 or via email at You can also submit tips through Colorado Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477).
  • BRL on the radio: John Herrick and I have found ourselves guests on several radio stations as of late talking about our reporting. You can listen to what we discussed below.
    • John spoke about housing and homelessness on KUNC, while I went on the same program to talk about forest-thinning projects.
    • John also was on CPR’s Colorado Matters last week to discuss housing instability among BVSD students.
    • And last Friday, I was on KGNU’s Morning Magazine talking about my recent story that covered the Community Foundation Boulder County’s response to the Marshall Fire. The segment starts at about the 7-minute mark.

Go Deeper…

Boulder’s independent liquor stores take a hit as grocery stores begin selling wine

By Jessica Mordacq

May 15, 2023

When the ban on grocery stores selling wine ended on March 1 following a successful ballot initiative, wine bottles popped up overnight in most of Boulder’s 15 chain grocery stores. And independent, local liquor stores felt the effect almost instantly. 

“Wine took a 35% hit, right out the gate,” said Matt Modrzejewski, general manager at Superior Liquor Market. 

Continue reading…

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BRL Picks

🎻 Arts in the Park: Boulder’s Arts in the Park is back for its third year, showcasing a blend of arts and cultural performances. The performances will take place at the Glen Huntington Bandshell and will feature artists from the Boulder Ballet, Boulder Symphony and Boulder Opera. Food trucks will be on-site, and beer and wine will be available for purchase at the events, benefiting the PLAY Boulder Foundation. To learn more about the event and purchase tickets, visit

🚀 Boulder Startup Week starts today: The 14th annual Boulder Startup Week, a free weeklong conference for Boulder’s entrepreneurial community, kicks off at 9:00 a.m. today and ends May 19. Check out the live schedule. Topics include stress reduction, clean tech and understanding the VC ecosystem. Kiln at 2101 Pearl Street is hosting most of the events this year. “There will be coffee available most mornings, and a variety of snacks and other beverages throughout the day.”

For ideas on what else to do, check out BRL’s Local Events page.


Tim Drugan is the climate and environment reporter for Boulder Reporting Lab, covering wildfires, water and other related topics. He is also the lead writer of BRL Today, our morning newsletter. Email: