New Year’s Resolution: Weight Loss

Are you, or someone you know, resolving to lose weight in 2008? The Physical Activity and Nutrition Program has information to perhaps further motivate you. Don’t let the following “government-sounding” titles turn you off. For anyone concerned about their health, these have excellent information on the consequences of being overweight and ways to make a lifestyle change.

Colorado Physical Activity and Nutrition State Plan 2010
Early Childhood Resource Kit
Colorado Older Adult Resource Kit
Walk to School Resource Kit

There are links throughout this agency’s publications and web site that are worth checking out.


Looking Back to Y2K

Next week is New Year's, and what does that have to do with State Publications? Well, hop into your wayback machine to 1999. Remember Y2K? It was such a big deal that Governor Owens created a Y2K task force, and we have their documents, which included information on how different "sectors," such as transportation, telecommunications, and public safety, would deal with a potential crisis. For a little history lesson, or maybe to prepare for the future, you can find the State's Y2K publications in our library, as well as online:

Happy New Year (and party like it's 1999!)


Voting machine certification

Today Colorado Secretary of State Mike Coffman announced the results of his evaluation of voting systems around the state. Voting machines in over 40 counties were decertified, leaving many county clerks concerned about counting ballots for the upcoming presidential elections. The Colorado Secretary of State is required by law to certify "electronic and electromechanical voting systems and approve the purchase, installation, and use of such systems by political subdivisions and establish standards for certification." (Colorado Revised Statutes - CRS 1-5-614) The laws regarding the authorization and use of voting machines and electronic voting systems are located in CRS 1-5-601+. There is a lot of material on the Voting System State Certification Program website, including the recent reports/evaluations of Premier, Sequoia, Hart, and ES&S machines.


Colorado Health Care Resources

For anyone seeking Colorado health care, trying to find out where to get help can be a daunting task. The Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, one of several state agencies with a focus on health care, has put together a handy directory, Who Does What in Colorado’s Health Care, to put you in the right direction. Referrals are to local and federal government, and non-profit agencies as well as state agencies. In addition, more focused directories are available, such as:

· Medicaid Provider Lookup
· Colorado Indigent Care Program (CICP) Provider Directory
· Prenatal Plus Provider Agencies in Colorado by County

Though not really a directory, the Health Care Resource Book 2007 is a guide to major Colorado health care programs. Try a search in our catalog to turn up additional directories.


Colorado Archaeology

Colorado has a wide variety of archaeological sites, and our library offers many resources on our state's archaeology, including that of both ancient sites and more recent ones. For example, the Colorado Department of Transportation publishes their findings from archaeological excavations undertaken prior to construction of roads and highways. My favorite is the report on the Tremont House Hotel, one of Denver's very first hotel buildings in the early 1860s. The building is gone, of course, but excavations on the site found numerous artifacts including dishes, shoes, etc. Other publications in our library discuss archaeology of ancient Native American sites. Some you might not expect -- the Colorado Historical Society has put out a booklet on the archaeological sites surrounding Denver International Airport! Here are some other interesting information on Colorado archaeology that you can find in our library:

  • Colorado Cultural Resource Survey Manual: Guidelines for Identification, History, and Archaeology (Colorado Historical Society: 2005)
  • Report of the State Archaeologist to the Colorado Commission on Indian Affairs (Colorado Historical Society: 1999)
  • Prehistory in Peril: The Best and Worst of Durango Archaeology (University Press of Colorado: 1997)
  • Fort Lewis College Archaeological Investigations in Ridges Basin, Southwest Colorado, 1965-1982 (Fort Lewis College: 1985)
  • Colorado Plains Prehistoric Context for Management of Prehistoric Resources of the Colorado Plains (Colorado Historical Society: 1984)
  • Archaeological Studies of Disaster (University of Colorado at Boulder: 1980)
  • Southwestern Pottery: An Annotated Bibliography and List of Types and Wares (University of Northern Colorado: 1976)
  • Archaeology and Paleontology Publications (online resource from the Colorado Historical Society)

There's more, as well, so be sure to check our online catalog where you can use "archaeology" as a keyword search.


School Report Cards

The newspapers and tv reporters are all talking about the School Accountability Reports, which were released yesterday by the Department of Education. The reports can be accessed from the department's web site at http://reportcard.cde.state.co.us/reportcard/CommandHandler.jsp.
You can learn a lot from the reports, including a school's academic performance, CSAP results, safety and discipline incidents, the student/teacher ratio, and financial information. The reports are searchable by school name, school district, or geography. There is also a "custom" search feature that allows searching by school characteristics: type of school, school size, schools with after school programs, and much more.


Earthquakes in Colorado?

Although Colorado is not in the top 10 earthquake states as reported on page 2 of Prepared: Emergency Management News, Coloradans may have a false sense of security when it comes to earthquakes. Colorado has had more than 500 recorded earthquakes since 1867 with one of M 6.6 in 1882. More occurred but were not recorded due to sparse population and limited instrumental coverage. Even today there have been far fewer research efforts in Colorado than in many other states. Our library has cataloged publications from Colorado Geologic Survey and the Office of Emergency Management on this topic. A sampling –

Colorado Earthquake Hazards, 1999
We Don’t have Earthquakes in Colorado, Do We? 2002
Colorado Earthquake Map Server
Published Faults of the Colorado Front Range, 2003
State of Colorado Five-Year Earthquake and Related Hazards Plan, 1999
Colorado Earthquake Information 1867-1996

These and other titles on the subject can be borrowed from our library.


Colorado Hospital Report Card

The Department of Public Health and Environment and the Colorado Hospital Association have unveiled a new Internet database, the Colorado Hospital Report Card. Created by the Colorado legislature in HB 06-1278, the report card is a resource for comparing hospitals by safety measures, mortality rates, procedure volumes and other measures. Find out which hospital treats the most people for asthma, or view the mortality rates from pneumonia. This is a great new source for Colorado health statistics. The 'report card' can be found at: http://www.cohospitalquality.org/


State Agency Budgets

November 1 is the deadline each year for each state agency to turn in their annual budget request. Our library collects all of these, and they are available for checkout. We also retain past years' budgets as well. These have proven very helpful to researchers. This year, there's something new as well: most of the agency budget requests are now available online.


Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Despite the fact that 32 years ago researchers first recognized fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), the incidence is up to 2 out of every 1000 births. Many women are not getting the word that they should abstain from alcohol before conceiving and during pregnancy to avoid the birth defects that drinking can cause. Physicians, themselves, may not be receiving adequate instruction in the dangers of prenatal alcohol consumption.

Our library just received a directory of resources for anyone concerned with maternal substance abuse. Called The Source, it is published by the Colorado Responds to Children with Special Needs program in the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Their fact sheet, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Alcohol Related Birth Defects, is a good summary of the problem as well.


State Employee Partnership Agreements

There has been a lot in the news lately about Governor Ritter's executive order authorizing partnership agreements with state employees. Some people are wondering if there is a place for unions in state government. The Colorado Attorney General has stated that his office is investigating the effects of this executive order. To see the executive order in it's entirety, download the file from the Governor's webpage (Executive Order D 028 07).


Great Colorado Smokeout

Today is the "Great American Smokeout", a day when smokers are encouraged to take the first step and quit smoking. The State Tobacco Education and Prevention Partnership (STEPP) sponsors the Colorado Quitline a free program designed to help smokers quit, and stay smoke-free. They have a team of "support coaches" and online educational information. In addition to the online information, there is a toll-free telephone service where you can speak with a coach in person: 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669)


Colorado's Japanese-Americans

This week, author Bill Hosokawa died at age 92. Hosokawa was a former Denver Post editor, but also wrote extensively about the Japanese in Colorado. His book Colorado's Japanese Americans 1886 to the Present was published by University Press of Colorado in 2005 and is available from our library. Hosokawa, who during WWII was interred at Wyoming's Heart Mountain relocation camp, has also written a number of articles for Colorado Heritage Magazine, also available from our library, chronicling the struggles of Japanese-Americans living in Colorado.



Radon is an invisible, radioactive gas created from natural deposits of uranium and radium in the soil. It can be drawn into buildings, and if there are heavy concentrations, radon can cause cancer in humans with prolonged exposure.

We have many resources at the State Publications Library discussing radon including tips on testing your home, and how to treat it. A search in our library catalog for the term "radon" will bring up a list of titles. Publications of interest include:
  • "Radon the Invisible Killer", a video for Colorado residents from the Department of Public Health and Environment is available online, and can also be checked out from our library. The video is available along with general information on radon on the department website

  • "Radon in the Home", a fact sheet from the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension Service.

  • "Dealing with Radon in Real Estate Transactions", HE17/32.2/R77/2004


Help With Winter Energy Costs

The state has several programs to help individuals who may need help paying their winter energy bills. If you or someone you know is needing help, contact the following:

LEAP – a federally funded program administered by the Department of Human Services – helps with heating costs.

Energy Outreach Colorado - receives state funding to help low-income energy consumers.

Governor’s Energy Office Free Energy Services – provides free energy efficiency upgrades to qualifying households.

For more information and background on the state's efforts go to:

State Funded Energy Efficiency Services For Colorado’s Low-Income Households First Annual Report, Oct. 1, 2007

Executive Order D 026 07 Directing the Colorado Commission on Low-Income Energy Assistance to Coordinate the State’s Low-Income Energy Services

Governor’s Energy Office web site


Colorado Baseball

The Colorado Rockies just finished competing in the World Series. Even though they didn't win, it marks a new chapter in the history of sports in Colorado. You can find out more about Colorado's sporting past in the book Colorado: A Sports History by James Whiteside, and particularly Colorado's baseball past in They Came to Play: A Photographic History of Colorado Baseball by Duane Smith and Mark Foster. Both of these are published by University Press of Colorado and both available from our library.

Maybe now after such a significant baseball event, they'll need to publish a new edition of They Came to Play!


Halloween Parties and Driving

Starting this evening (October 26) public safety agencies across Colorado will be increasing their patrols in an effort to catch those who drink and drive.

The Colorado Department of Transportation and the Colorado State Patrol give the following tips for a safe Halloween:
  • Designate your sober driver before going out and give that person your keys;
  • If you are impaired, call a taxi, use mass transit or call a sober friend or family member
    to help get you home safely;
  • Always buckle up – it’s still your best defense against an impaired driver;
  • If you know someone is about to drive while impaired, take their keys and help them
    make other arrangements to get where they are going safely;
  • Motorists can report drunk and aggressive drivers by calling STAR-CSP (*277), a free
    cell phone call.

For more information, and statistics on DUI arrests during the Halloween holiday, see the news release on the Department of Transportation website, and check out the Traffic Safety Media Room



Reported in last week’s news is the fact that diabetes is on the rise, and the number of patients without insurance coverage for it or with inadequate insurance is steadily increasing as well. The insulin pump, the best treatment, is unavailable to many. Our library has a great book for people living with this condition, Understanding Diabetes: a handbook for people who are living with diabetes. Published in 2006 and updated every few years, its 300+ pages are packed with information on all aspects of management. It is available for loan. In addition, the State of Colorado’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Program website has information for researchers as well as patients. Many of the publications throughout this site can be borrowed from our library.


October Snow

This weekend's weather forecast says there is a good chance of snow in the metro area on Sunday. If you're going to be on the road in town, or plan to head into the high country it might be a good time to review the Colorado Winter Driving Handbook. This short 2 page guide has checklists to prepare your vehicle for winter conditions, and tips on driving in the ice and snow. Make sure to check road conditions and travel alerts on the Colorado Department of Transportation website before heading out the door.


Information Technology and Cyber Security

Recently the newspapers have carried stories of the State's proposals to consolidate all of their information technology divisions into a single agency. There are many documents online regarding the state's information technology infrastructure. See the Office of Information Technology's website for information, including a Strategic Plan, guidelines, and more.

The State has also set up a cyber security website. This website was designed so consumers could learn more about safety on the internet. Topics covered include fraud, spyware, and keeping your kids safe online.


Insurance Information for Consumers

If you have wondered where you can get information about specific insurers, both automobile and homeowner, the Colorado Division of Insurance has Information for Consumers, a website with publications/databases, that can help. Click on Library and many titles turn up, with the following on specific home and auto insurers. Other types of insurance are covered on this site as well.

Homeowners Insurance Premiums Report
Automobile Insurance Premiums Report
Colorado Insurance Industry Statistical Report
Annual Report on Complaints Against Insurers
Insurance Complaint Ratio Information

A search in our library catalog turns up additional information on insurance.


Occupational Licensee/Applicant Database

The Colorado Dept. of Regulatory agencies offers a helpful resource for any Colorado citizen who is in a profession requiring a license, or interested in obtaining one. It's called Licensee/Applicant Services and allows users to select from a drop-down list of professions requiring licenses in Colorado. Once you select an occupation, you are directed to a page with information for obtaining or renewing your license, laws and regulations applicable to that license/profession, fees, forms, and affadavits, and links to the Registrations Online Services Licensee Database, where you obtain a list of all licensed professionals for each applicable occupation. This is very helpful for consumers, also, when selecting a company to do business with.



Reported in today’s news is that asbestos removal is a financial burden to small towns in Colorado. It’s expensive, and funding from the state is limited. Many property owners ignore the health risks and raze or renovate illegally. If you are concerned about your own property, the Department of Public Health and Environment Asbestos Program web site has information on the rules and regulations, contractors, disposal sites, laboratories that identify asbestos in products, and contact information. The following two documents are good places to start, and a search in our online catalog will turn up additional information as well.

Building Renovation and Demolition: What You Need to Know

Asbestos Waste Disposal, April 2007


Economic Forecast

This week two reports have been released with economic forecasts for the state of Colorado. Wednesday, the Governor's Office of State Planning and Budgeting issued the "Colorado Economic Perspective," and the Legislative Council released "Focus Colorado: Economic and Revenue Forecast, 2007-2012" on Thursday.The general gist is that the Colorado economy is going strong, but that there may be a slow-down in years to come, due to 'economic uncertainty at the national level.' The reports have figures for unemployment rates, inflation, retail sales, income tax revenue, etc.


Architecture Images

The University of Colorado at Denver's School of Architecture and Planning sponsors a really neat website they call the Electronic Library of Colorado Architecture, Landscape and Planning. The site features full-color images of Colorado's significant architecture. You can search by site name, architect/builder, city, county, architectural style, building type, date, and more. There's also a way to just browse through the collection. Many of the sites also have detailed close-ups of architectural features. This is a great website for discovering more about Colorado's wide variety of architectural design.


Homeland Security

Yesterday, the governor announced this year's funding awards for homeland security programs across Colorado. A breakdown of the monetary distribution is available in the governor's "Press Release on Homeland Security Grants."

The Homeland Security pages from the Colorado Division of Emergency Management are a great resource. Make sure to scroll down the page, and glance through the "Information links" on the right side of the page. There are links to information on Colorado Counter Terrorism efforts, emergency preparedness, and where to get help when you need it.


Reducing Your Impact on the Environment

Since all of your actions impact our environment, you may be interested in ways that you can lessen your effect. Don’t know where to start? In addition to the information found on the Governor’s Energy Office web site, featured in a previous posting, a good place for information is the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s lengthy Environment Topic Index A to Z. Sample links found there are listed below.

Household hazardous waste collection events and facilities
Solid waste landfills list
Batteries compliance bulletin
Computer disposal
Fluorescent lamps compliance bulletin
Fire information
Household hazardous waste management options
Thermometer spill cleanup


Consumer Resources

Colorado government agencies offer a variety of consumer information on their websites. State government sites dedicated to helping consumers include:

These are just a few of the many consumer-oriented webpages and guides offered by state government, so be sure to search our online catalog or the state homepage for more.


State Fair

This is the last weekend of the State Fair and Rodeo. The state fairgrounds are located in Pueblo, Colorado, so head that way if you want to do something fun this weekend. There are livestock shows, a farmer's market, pig racing, music, not to mention a carnival, and rodeo ---on Sunday is the Celebracion de losCharros, and exhibition of original Mexican rodeo events. Check out the State Fair website, for a schedule of events and directions to the fairgrounds.



This is the season for hummingbirds to visit metro Denver. You can attract hummingbirds by placing a feeder in your yard. Hardware and garden stores sell special red-colored feeders specifically for hummingbirds. The Colorado Division of Wildlife publication, Summer's Hummers, gives a recipe for what to feed hummingbirds:

"The decision to feed hummingbirds carries along the responsibility to offer them fresh, healthy food and a safe, clean feeding station. Forget the commercial nectars or red dyes. Plain old sugar dissolved in water at a ratio of one part sugar to four parts water is best. This approximates the sweetness of flower nectar. Use only white table sugar. Honey and artificial sweeteners have been shown to be harmful to hummingbirds. Because of the high sugar level, hummingbird nectar may sour and mold may grow in the feeder in warm weather. When preparing your sugar-water, boil the water for a few minutes, stir in the sugar and let it cool, then fill the feeder and refrigerate any excess solution. Keep your feeder clean by rinsing it out between fillings. If you see spots of mold, scrub with a brush. If the mold persists use a 5% dilute bleach solution, then rinse thoroughly. Replace old nectar with fresh sugar water every week in spring and fall, every two to three days as it warms up, and daily if the temperature rises above 85 degrees."

This publication also offers facts on Colorado hummingbirds, including their coloring, flight, and their enormous appetites - they eat up to five times their body weight each day!

If you don't have a feeder, the Division of Wildlife's website lists places you can go to view hummingbirds.

Lead-Based Paint and Poisoning

With the recent recall of toys containing lead-based paint, you may be wondering where you can get more information about lead, its effect on children and adults, sources, clean-up, and more. The following online resources contain helpful information:

Lead Services Directory, July 2007 – lists such resources as home test kits, blood lead analysis labs, certified contractors, and a dozen other categories

Lead-Based Paint Abatement and Waste Management, 2002 – excellent overview on exposure, effect on children, abatement, disposal, soil contamination, and more

Childhood Lead Poisoning in Colorado, 2005 – data, screening guidelines

Denver Childhood Blood Lead Survey, January 1996

Lead-Based Paint Hazards and Regulation Requirements, Division of Housing

Lead Poisoning Prevention web site, CDPHE– lists sources of lead

Lead-Based Paint Compliance web site, CDPHE -- approved encapsulant products, statutes, and regulations

A search in our online catalog turns up additional titles available for loan.


New resource guide for Colorado research topics

Bells are ringing and students are filling the hallways. The new school year is fast upon us. To help prepare for homework and research assignments this year, the State Publications Library has released an updated edition of "School Research Topics: Notable Internet Resources from State Government." A great resource to find quick links to information on the environment, driving, Colorado history, wildlife, weather and much more.



The Colorado Division of Wildlife has issued an alert that there may be an increase in human-bear conflicts. Bears foraging in preparation for surviving the winter have been entering populated areas in search of food. Natural food supplies, like nuts, berries, and flowering plants have been scarce this year due to a combination of hard freezes late in the year, and dry summer conditions. The most important action you can take is preventing bears from eating human food. According to the DOW, bears that eat human food and become conditioned to it are the same bears that become dangerous and aggressive toward people. For tips on keeping food out of reach, guidelines on bear encounters, and general information on bears check out the Living with Wildlife in Bear Country website.


New Drivers

Now that summer is nearing its end, many teenagers have completed their driver's education courses. The Colorado Department of Transportation has a great website for new drivers and their parents called "The Driver's Seat." Information is available for teens and parents on all sorts of driving topics including the Graduated Drivers Licensing program, driving tips, and driving safety.

In 2006 the General Assembly passed several new measures applicable to young drivers. An issue brief, "New Driving Laws for Minor Drivers", from the Legislative Council provides a nice overview. Other materials on driving and driver's safety are available from the State Publications Library. Use the keyword "driving" in our library catalog for a list of titles.


Navigating State Government

One helpful aspect of our Colorado documents collection is that it pulls together the work of various agencies on a common topic. For instance, the Department of Public Health and Environment’s State Water Agencies website describes 7 state agencies involved with issues relating to water. It’s not often that such a handy list is provided online. That’s where a search in our catalog can help. As an example, searching our online catalog using the word “drought” brings up the work of at least 10 agencies. This is a great tool in navigating state government.



The bridge collapse in Minneapolis last week makes us question the safety of our local bridges. There are several reports on the Colorado Department of Transportation website that examine bridge construction and evaluate the state of bridges in Colorado. In addition, the CDOT Design and Construction Support page has manuals for bridge design, bridge ratings, and the "Bridge Field Log of Structures" which includes a list of all the bridges in Colorado with location, span information, and other data. The U.S. Department of Transportation has also released a report: "2006 Status of the Nation's Highways, Bridges, and Transit: Conditions and Performance" which may be of interest.

We also have a very interesting book in our collection available for loan: "Spanning Generations: The Historic Bridges of Colorado" (TRA1.2/B76/2004) from the Department of Transportation that contains a pictorial history of Colorado bridges, including a chapter on bridge types. If you feel like a drive in the high country, we have a pamphlet for "Driving Tours of Historic Bridges in Fremont County and near Interstate 70 west of Denver." (TRA1.2/B76/2004/2)


Planning the West Corridor of I-70

News sources are reporting that talks and meetings have begun regarding the future of I-70's western corridor, regarding whether rail lines or highway widening (or both) are the answer to the heavy congestion along the interstate, particularly in Summit and Clear Creek counties. The CDOT-sponsored website, http://www.i70mtncorridor.com/, has a wealth of information on the planning. Also, in our library collection, we have the Urban Maglev Technology Development Program Final Report, which was recently published by CDOT; and various planning documents for I-70's earlier planning stages, dating back to 1971. We also have the Colorado Rail Study and other regional transportation documents. Search our library catalog for more I-70 and CDOT publications and reports.


Update on West Nile Virus

According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment’s press releases of July 2 and July 13, this may be a banner year for West Nile virus, due to the cool, wet weather in early spring followed by hot summer temperatures. The department has a hotline (1-877-462-2911) to answer questions about the virus and to advise anyone finding a dead bird. We all need reminders to take preventive measures, so check out the following sites for topics such as animal infections, mosquito repellant effectiveness by product, symptoms, avoidance tips, statistics, and more:

Fight the Bite Colorado
West Nile Virus, Disease Control and Environmental Epidemiology Division


Colorado Day

Today is the 131st anniversary of our state. President Ulysses S. Grant signed the proclamation admitting Colorado into the United States on August 1, 1876. To celebrate, the Colorado History Museum will have free admission today, and there will be a celebration at the Capitol from 10am - 6pm. While many people celebrate Colorado Day on August 1st, the official holiday according to Colorado statutes is actually the first Monday in August (CRS 24-11-111). In years past Colorado Day was a holiday for state employees, and in 1967 the state legislature changed Colorado Day to the first Monday in August, creating a three day holiday. In 1986 the state began observing Martin Luther King day as an official state holiday in lieu of Colorado Day. Colorado State Parks will celebrate Colorado Day by waiving admission fees at all 41 parks on Monday, Aug. 6.


CSAP - Colorado Student Assessment Program

The Colorado Student Assessment Program (CSAP) is designed to provide a picture of how students in the state of Colorado are progressing toward meeting academic standards, and how schools are doing to ensure learning success of students. At 10:30 today the new CSAP results for 2007 will be released. Visit the Unit of Student Assessment's CSAP summary page to get the latest data from the statewide summaries, along with school and district summary results for reading, writing, math, and science.


Plant Grafting and Other Garden Tips

Working with our collection today I ran across a document that caught my eye - Plant Grafting. According to the "quick facts" on the first page, "Grafting is a means of joining tissue from two plants by holding cut surfaces in position until a union of living cells is formed. Grafting is regularly used to asexually propagate fruit trees and to repair trunk injuries." Well, we've all seen saplings with tape around them, but did you know (I didn't until reading this!) that "Grafting is also used to create novelty items such as tomato plants that produce potatoes...and fruit trees bearing more than one variety per tree." Pretty amazing. Anyway, you can find out more about plant grafting by checking out this document from our library. It is part of a series of gardening fact sheets produced by the CSU Cooperative Extension. Fact sheets are available for checkout from our library; many are also available online, so check our online catalog for links.

Crime in Colorado

Did you know that more 13 to 14 year olds were arrested in 2003 than scored "Advanced" on the reading CSAP? or that 58.4 months is the average time offenders spend in Colorado prisons for sexual assault? You can find these statistics and more in a recently released report from the Division of Criminal Justice: "Crime and Justice in Colorado, 2006." The report has statistics and analysis on crimes committed, the corrections system, parole, demographics of those involved in criminal cases, juveniles, sex offenders, drug use, offenders with mental illness, and recidivism to name a few. The report can be accessed from the Department of Public Safety website, and a print version is available at the Colorado State Publications Library.



Sunny days and high temperatures combined with ground pollution from autmobiles and other sources can lead to high ozone levels in the metro area. High ozone levels can cause health problems for seniors, young children, and people with asthma.
The Regional Air Quality Council has a site with basic facts on ozone, tips on limiting ozone-producing emissions, and you can also sign up for ozone action email alerts.
For information on the state's efforts to reduce ozone air pollution, visit the Department of Public Health and Environment's Ozone page. Current air quality readings for Colorado can be found at http://apcd.state.co.us/psi/today.phtml, from the Air Pollution Control Division.


Rockfall and Landslides

If you drive up into the mountains or through the canyons, you may notice signs that say "Watch for falling rocks." We have recently received a CD with a lot of interesting reports on the geology, geologic hazards and history along the I-70 corridor (which you might not guess from the title): "Field Trips" from the 1st North American Landslide Conference, June 2007. There are pictures and diagrams showing weak areas in the slopes and sections with landslide potential. The reports include geologic maps, and discuss the formations in the area. Also included is a paper on Colorado Wine Country, how the geology, soils and climate affect the wines in the region. The CD is a special publication from the Colorado Geological Survey. It was distributed to our state depository libraries, and is also available to check out from the Colorado State Publications Library.


Colorado Statistics

Need to find statistics for Colorado? Our new updated "Quick Guide to Government Statistics" will help you find demographics, health statistics, crime and offender data, traffic volumes, labor/industry information, education statistics and more.



The tamarisk plant (saltcedar) is one of the greatest threats to riparian habitats and streams. Originally from Eurasia, it was introduced in the 1800’s to the southwestern area of our country. For years I’ve seen it along the western rivers. Now I see it in the metro area along roadside marshes, drainage ditches, foothills streams, and in my city parks!

In 2003 Governor Owens issued Executive Order D 002 03 to coordinate efforts to eradicate this plant on public land. In response to the Executive Order the Department of Natural Resources published a report, 10-Year Strategic Plan on the Comprehensive Removal of Tamarisk and the Coordinated Restoration of Colorado’s Native Riparian Ecosystems, in 2004.

You may wonder what this plant looks like. It isn’t just a little weed, easy to overlook. Thick stands, up to 15 feet high, obstruct views of lakes and rivers and make access to them difficult. It crowds out native shrubs and trees that wildlife depend on and is of no use to native species. Difficult to eradicate, the most critical problem is that it consumes enormous amounts of water. One acre of tamarisk uses 1.3 million gallons of water per year. For pictures and details, check out the above reports and the following state publications:

Streamlines, v.20, no. 3, pp. 4-5
Weed Profile, Saltcedar (Tamarisk) Colorado State Parks

Wind Power

There has been an increasing interest in wind power as an alternative to energy from fossil fuel. Colorado is ranked 11th in the nation for its wind energy potential. The Governor's Energy Office has a great page on wind energy. There are wind speed maps, information on possible applications of wind power, guides to using wind energy, and much more. Interesting readings on opportunites for using wind power in Colorado are available from Colorado Wind & Distributed Energy Conference presentations. For ideas on changing the way you use energy in your home, check out the "Energy Action Guide".

Publications on wind power are also available to check out from the State Publications Library. A keyword search using the term "wind power" will bring up a list of titles. Titles which may be of interest:
Wind Energy in Colorado: A Practical Guide for Farmers and Ranchers
Windpower and Wildlife in Colorado (Resource Guide from the Colorado Division of Wildlife)


Humans and Wildlife

Our library just accessioned a brand-new publication from the Division of Wildlife entitled "Living with Wildlife in Red Fox Country." This new brochure is especially timely due to the recent news story of a little girl who was bitten by a fox. CDOW has also published "Living with Wildlife" brochures on geese, bears, coyotes, mountain lions, and moose, all available from our library. Some other sources regarding the interaction between widlife and humans available in our library includes:


State Taxpayer Accountability Report (the STAR Report)

In order to provide greater transparency and accountability in Colorado government finances, the state has published the first State Taxpayer Accountability Report. Three state offices collaborated on this: the Governor’s Office, the State Treasurer’s Office, and the State Controller’s Office. To be published every year, the STAR Report is understandable and written from the perspective of the taxpayer, so that we can all understand where our money is going. If you prefer hardcopy, this title is available for loan from the Colorado State Publications Library.


Fresh fruit and vegetables

In the summer season, there is nothing better than having fresh fruit and vegetables as part of your meal. Ripe tomatoes can turn a boring sandwich into something special. Find a farmer's market near you using a directory compiled by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. Learn how to select the best produce, and check out these Colorado recipe ideas to brighten your table.


Mountain Pine Beetle

On a trip up to the mountains this weekend I noticed just how much damage is being caused as a result of outbreaks of mountain pine beetle. For information on this damaging insect, see the CSU Fact Sheet "Mountain Pine Beetles" and "Colorado's Common Insects and Diseases", also from CSU. Both publications are available online. Check our catalog for other information available from our library, including more on Colorado insects and on tree problems and diseases.



June 24 - 30 is Colorado Lightning Safety and Wildfire Awareness Week. The Colorado Emergency Management Association has created a guide that includes Governor Ritter's proclamation and facts about lightning and wildfires. A list of firebans in state parks, a fire danger map and current information about ongoing wildfires is available on their Fire Restrictions website.

For updates on fires in Colorado, check the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center. In-depth fire data is also available through the Colorado division of the Bureau of Land Management, including fire weather and smoke dispersion forecasts.

Publications in our library on lightning and wildfire safety can be located by using the key words "wildfire" and "lightning" in the library catalog.

Online titles which may be of interest:

"Creating Wildfire Defensible Zones"

"Vegetative Recovery after Forest Fire"

"Soil Erosion Control after Wildfire"


Consumer Protection

This week the Colorado Attorney General, John Suthers, sued American Engine Installers for often charging customers 50% more than estimated. Among its responsibilities the Office of the Attorney General has authority for enforcement of consumer protection laws, protecting consumers against fraud. The Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section web site is a great resource for everyone. It has laws, regulations, status of court cases, senior information, etc. It links to the AG’s Consumer Resource Guide with useful information on topics from A to Z, such as automated dialing, credit cards, gas pricing, Nigerian scams, sweepstakes, telemarketing, and zoning.


Colorado Bike Month

June is Colorado Bike Month. The Colorado Department of Transportation's Bicycle and Pedestrian Program is promoting bicycle safety. There are many useful resources on their webpage:

Information about Bike Month events can be found on the Bike Colorado web site, and Colorado Bike Month posters are available to download for printing at http://www.dot.state.co.us/bikeped/Poster.htm. Materials on biking are also available for lending from the Colorado State Publications Library. Search for "bicycle" in our catalog for a list of titles.


Tuberculosis in Colorado

There is renewed interest in tuberculosis since the recent arrival of the man with extremely drug-resistant TB at Denver’s National Jewish Hospital. Today most people view tuberculosis as a disease of the past, and it is surprising to hear that strong surveillance and treatment programs continue today. Several titles available for loan in the State Publications Library collection are of historical and current interest:

Blazing the Tuberculosis Trail – Shows the history of tuberculosis treatment in Colorado’s early days and how National Jewish Hospital opened as a tuberculosis sanatorium, along with 3 other sanatoria. (Descriptions of the open air treatment are fascinating.)

A Medical Gentleman: James J. Waring M.D. - Biography of this early Colorado doctor who had the disease himself, with his work in the field, along with a picture of the stigma attached to TB. (Laws prohibiting hand shaking and kissing were attempted. Those prohibiting spitting were passed.)

Annual Reports of the State Board of Health, 1876- Case histories, rules for consumptives

Recent Levels of Known Tuberculosis in Colorado, 1957 – data for the 1940’s and 50’s, in addition to the work of Dr. Florence Sabin. (In 1949, about 69% of the metro area population aged 15 and older were x-rayed.)

Tuberculosis Manual – Current guidelines for screening, treatment, prevention, etc.

Tuberculosis in Colorado: A Summary of Cases – data for most years back to 1999.

Tuberculosis Program website at the Department of Public Health and Environment


Health Care Reform

Last month the Blue Ribbon Commission for Health Care Reform selected four health reform proposals to undergo modeling and analysis before they make a recommendation to the General Assembly.

The commission was created by the state legislature in 2006 to make recommendations for comprehensive health care reform. Their charge was to select plans that would increase access to health care coverage and decrease costs for residents.

Features of the proposed programs include subsidies for those under 200 - 400% of the federal poverty level, and mandated health coverage. Details on the proposals are available on the commission's proposal website.


Go Fish!

It's fishing season! Now that the days are getting nicer, it's great to spend time outdoors. If you like fishing, there are many good sources of information from the Colorado Division of Wildlife. You can find valuable information online, and we have fishing guides and maps available to check out from our library.

  • 2007 Colorado Fishing (Fishing Regulations and Property Directory) --A directory of rules and restrictions for individual fishing spots across Colorado. Also available for lending at the CoSPL (NR6.44/2007)

  • Colorado Fishing Map (NR 6.29/F52/1999)

  • Fishing Close to Home (NR6.2/F52/2006/2) --A guide to the lakes and streams along the central front range open to public fishing. Includes an identification guide and pointers on catching and cleaning fish.

  • Fishing Colorado Hot Spots

  • 2007 Fish Distribution schedule (NR6/230.10/2007) - A list of species and stocking numbers for Colorado streams, lakes, ponds, etc.

  • How to Catch Trout (NR6.2/T75/1991) --Tips on trout fishing, where to go, fly tying, etc.

  • Species Identification

For young fisher-folk, check out the " 101 places to take a kid fishing" web site, and "Martin the Martian Learns to Fish" a comic book put out by the Division of Wildlife. (NR6.2/M36/1987)
Follow Martin the Martian as he learns why humans fish; a brief history of fishing; what equipment, bait, and clothing fishers need; how to think like a fish; common fish species in the state; and how to cast, catch, clean, store, and cook a fish.


Colorado Vacations

With yesterday being Memorial Day, which many consider the "official" start of summer, that means tourist season has begun. If you are going to be vacationing here in Colorado, state government has produced many websites and publications to help you.

Colorado.com is the official Colorado tourism site. It has many resources for planning your vacation, whether you are a Colorado resident wishing to learn more about your state, or traveling here from somewhere else.

The Colorado Department of Transportation produces the official state maps. These can be borrowed from our library.

If you are interested in visiting historic sites in Colorado, many are listed on the Colorado Historical Society's webpage. Also, we have available in our library the book Colorado Museums and Historic Sites. This book lists nearly all the museums and places of historical interest to visit throughout the state. And if you are visiting here in Denver, Colorado's Capitol is one of the most popular tourist spots. In our library you can find publications such as "Visitor's Guide to Colorado's Capitol" and "Memorials and Art Around the State Capitol," as well as Derek Everett's book "The Colorado State Capitol." There is also a virtual tour of the state house provided by the Colorado Legislative Council.

The Colorado Department of Natural Resources has many publications of interest to tourists and vacationers, including hiking maps produced by Colorado State Parks, and wildlife viewing guides produced by the Division of Wildife. Check our catalog for the many titles offered by this agency.

Finally, if you're interested in tourism statistics, we have those, too. Examples include the Colorado Visitor's Study, produced annually, as well as some older publications like statistical studies of the Colorado ski industry done by CU-Boulder in the 1980s. Again, check our catalog for these and other Colorado tourism resources.


Severe Spring Weather

The transition from winter to spring often brings a wild variety of weather, which can lead to severe storms. There is a lot of useful information on preparing for, and surviving severe weather conditions from the Colorado Division of Emergency Management. Online resources include:

Additional print resources can be located by searching our library catalog using keywords: "floods", "wildfires", "tornado", or "emergency".


Click It or Ticket - Seatbelt Safety

From May 21 to June 3rd, the Colorado Department of Transportation, State Patrol and local law enforcement agencies will conduct a campaign to increase public awareness about the importance of seat belt use. The Click It or Ticket webpage has posters and brochures for downloading, along with fact sheets and statistics on seat belt usage in Colorado and the correlation of seat belt usage with traffic fatalities. In 2006 61% of the traffic fatalities in Colorado were people who were not wearing their seat belts. Seat belts save lives!


Identity Theft Repair Kit

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers recently published a 20-page booklet on identity theft titled Identity Theft Repair Kit. It is a great guide to have in case you become a victim of this fastest growing crime in America. It covers 10 steps to take if you become a victim, your liability, an explanation of how thieves work, and prevention. If you prefer to read hardcopy, our library can loan it to you. Don't miss this helpful publication.


Water Rights

There has been a lot of discussion in the news lately about water rights, water conservation, and many are wondering if the winter storms have brought enough water for Colorado this year. There are several places to find information on water resources. The State Publications Library has created a new guide to water rights and state water resources on our website. Two publications that may be of interest are:
"Annual Report of the State Engineer"which gives a summary of Colorado water issues for the year. Issues for 1996 - 2005 are available online, and biennial reports from 1885 -1944 are available in the State Publications Library.

"Guide to Colorado Well Permits, Water Rights, and Water Administration" (Colorado Division of Water Resources)

The Colorado Division of Water Resources, Colorado Water Conservation Board, and the CSU Cooperative Extension Service are also good sources for water information.


Free Insects: The Request-a-Bug Program

Weeds and unwanted pests present a challenge to gardeners. The Colorado Department of Agriculture’s “Request-a-Bug” program offers an alternative to pesticides. Colorado residents can obtain free biological pest control agents (insects) by going to the Biological Pest Control Request-a Bug Program website. Fill out a form on this site to have the bugs sent to your home.

Because the biocontrol agents are usually host specific, you must accurately identify the species you are trying to control. The site includes a link to the Colorado Weed Management Association Noxious Weeds site to help with identification. Additional information can be found in the CSU Cooperative Extension’s Gardening Online Fact Sheets and Insects Online Fact Sheets. In addition, a search in our online catalog turns up many publications on weeds, insects, and organic gardening which can be borrowed from our library. One helpful title is Weeds of Colorado: A Comprehensive Guide to Identification, 1998, by Robert Zimdahl, published by Cooperative Extension.



Governor Ritter signed the state budget yesterday, vetoing several budget notes that contained instructions from the legislature on how the money should be spent. The press release about this year's budget, and the governor's letter detailing the vetoed sections are both available online. The text of the "long bill" (SB07-239) as it was sent to the governor is available from the General Assembly's web page: http://www.leg.state.co.us/CLICS/CLICS2007A/csl.nsf/lbcontainer/SB07-239?OpenDocument

Once the budget has been printed, a copy will be available at our library, and an electronic version will posted on the Session Laws web page. Historical budget information is also available at the State Publications Library.


University Press of Colorado

The most-often requested title in our entire collection, by far, is the 2005 edition of Colorado: A History of the Centennial State. This is a book published by the University Press of Colorado. Because University Press is part of CU, the State Publications Library has titles pertaining to Colorado information published by UP of C. Many of our library's most frequently requested titles are University Press books. Other interesting titles include Colorado: A History in Photographs; Cheyenne Dog Soldiers, a Ledgerbook History; Denver Landmarks and Historic Districts; Trials and Triumphs: A Colorado Portrait of the Great Depression; Catalog of the Colorado Flora; Colorado's Japanese Americans; Lynching in Colorado; Rocky Mountain Mammals; Colorado Museums and Historic Sites; The City and the Saloon; Colorado: A Sports History; Vranesh's Colorado Water Law; Long Vistas: Women and Families on Colorado Homesteads; and lots more. We even have a number of biographies of well-known Coloradans. Check our catalog for more UP of C books.

Unclaimed Property

Do you have money in a forgotten bank or retirement account? Did you move before receiving a Colorado state tax rebate? Banks, businesses, and state agencies are required to forward such assets to the Unclaimed Property Office of the Colorado State Treasurer. The State Treasurer has created a database called "The Great Colorado Payback" that you can search to see if there is unclaimed property in your name.


Energy Resources and Conservation

With Earth Day in the news, hopefully people are thinking about clean, renewable energy resources and ways to conserve. For help go to the Governor’s Energy Office web site. Governor’s Energy Office is Governor Ritter’s new name for the Office of Energy Management and Conservation and was recently created by Executive Order D 010 07. On the GEO site there is an extensive list of publications offering solutions in the categories of residential, commercial, renewables, transportation, waste and recycling. Many of the titles are available in hardcopy from our library.

In addition to advancing the state’s efficient, renewable, and clean energy resources, the GEO will add a new full-time climate change advisor. As part of his New Energy Economy, Governor Ritter also recently issued two Executive Orders on the Greening of State Government. These detail the plans for Colorado state government to take a position of leadership by reducing the environmental impact of state government agencies.


Violence Prevention

In addition to the tragic events at Virginia Tech, this week also marked the anniversaries of two other tragedies with the 12th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing on April 19th and the 8th anniversary of the Columbine school shootings on April 20th.

Our library has several documents on the Columbine investigation, including Report of the investigation into the 1997 directed report and related matters concerning the Columbine High School shootings in April 1999; Report of the investigation into missing daily field activity and daily supervisor reports related to Columbine High School shootings; and The report of Governor Bill Owens' Columbine Review Commission. We also have in our collection documents from CU's Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence.

The Oklahoma City bombing was an act of domestic terrorism, and you can read about Colorado's efforts to prepare for terrorism in the State of Colorado Homeland Security Strategy and Colorado homeland security in 2006, both available in our library.


Arbor Day

Arbor Day is coming up. According to the National Arbor Day Foundation, National Arbor Day is the last Friday in April, but many states observe it on different dates according to their best tree-planting times. Colorado’s date is the third Friday in April.

Celebrations in Colorado take place the entire week especially in the Denver area. If you would like to celebrate by planting a tree, our library has many resources to help select an appropriate tree. A search of “trees” in our online catalog turns up 125 items covering such varieties as evergreen, deciduous, mountain trees, natives; topics such as how to plant trees; xeriscaping; pests, diseases, and more. Most of these resources are from the Colorado State University Cooperative Extension.


Left Lane Law

On my daily commute I am often frustrated by drivers committed to driving in the left lane, the passing lane, while going under the speed limit. It creates a bottleneck of people who are trying to pass, who then get impatient and end up weaving through traffic to pass on the right. The Left Lane Law took effect in July of 2004 to prevent the aggressive driving that results from slow drivers in the passing lane. CRS 42-4-1013 reads:
“A person shall not drive a motor vehicle in the passing lane of a highway if the speed limit is sixty-five miles per hour or more unless such person is passing other motor vehicles that are in a nonpassing lane or turning left, or unless the volume of traffic does not permit the motor vehicle to safely merge into a nonpassing lane.”
Brochures with information about traffic safety are available on the Colorado Department of Transportation website: http://www.dot.state.co.us/Publications/onlinebrochures.htm


Credit Report Security Freeze Act

Since the passage in 2005 of the Credit Report Security Freeze Act, consumers are allowed to place a security freeze on their credit report. A security freeze prohibits a credit reporting agency from releasing a consumer’s credit report without prior authorization from the consumer. This is a step consumers can take to prevent being a victim of identity theft.

The Colorado Legislative Council recently published an Issue Brief called Identity Theft on the topic of placing a security freeze on credit reports. It provides a brief summary of the act and how to go about setting up a freeze, providing you with contact information and charges. Check it out.


Renewable Energy

Governor Bill Ritter signed two renewable energy bills into law last week. House Bill 1281 requires large utility companies to provide 20 percent of their electricity from renewable resources. Rural and municipal providers must achieve a renewable energy goal of 10 percent before 2020. Senate Bill 100 requires electric utilities to identify high-potential wind-energy locations and develop construction plans to improve transmission capacity. More information on the Governor's "New Energy Economy" agenda is available in "The Colorado Promise."

The Governor's Office of Energy Management and Conservation provides a wealth of information on current renewable energy programs, and their publications section has fact sheets on sun, wind and biofuel energy. Another good source is ColoradoENERGY.org , a portal of energy facts and information put together by a coalition of Colorado energy organizations.


Mortgage Brokers

During the present legislative session several bills have been introduced concerning the regulation of mortgage brokers in Colorado. These bills include HB07-1322, Mortgage Fraud Prevention Act; SB07-203, Mortgage Broker Licensing; and SB07-216, Mortgage Loan Fraud Acts Practices. Beginning January 1, 2007, mortgage brokers are now required to be registered with the state Division of Real Estate in order to do business in Colorado, as required by HB06-1161. For more information on mortgage broker registration, including a searchable database of all licensed brokers in the state of Colorado, disciplinary records, and information on registering as a mortgage broker, see the Dept. of Regulatory Agencies' Division of Real Estate homepage. The State Publications Library also several publications dealing with the mortgage industry, including the annual Real Estate Manual and sunrise/sunset reviews of the mortgage industry in Colorado.


How does your garden grow?

March 21st is the first official day of spring. The daffodils are coming up and ready to bloom. I'm starting to think about gardening. The Colorado State University Cooperative Extension Service is a great source for gardening information. Their Horticulture Online website is packed with gardening tips: fact sheets on gardening topics, a database of Colorado plants, lists of plants suited to Colorado's climate, and data on managing insect problems to name a few.

Recent titles from our collection include:

Attracting Butterflies to the Garden
Rock Garden Plants
Native Herbaceous perennials for Colorado landscapes
Homeowners' Guide: Alternative pest management for the lawn and garden.

To find other publications on this topic, search our library catalog using the keyword "garden".


Where the Columbines Grow: Colorado's First State Song

On March 12, 2007, John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High” was adopted as Colorado’s second state song by the passage of Senate Joint Resolution 07-023. Most people know and relate to this song but have never heard the original state song which was approved by Governor George Carlson in 1915 and called “Where the Columbines Grow,” by A. J. Fynn. Inspiration for Mr. Fynn’s song came as he passed through a columbine-filled meadow on his way to Southwestern Colorado in 1896. Interestingly, the word Colorado does not appear in the song, and its lack of popularity has prompted several attempts to replace it.

Now everyone can listen to "Where the Columbines Grow" by going to the site called Colorado State Song. If you would like the sheet music, our library can fax or mail it to you.


Colorado Economic Outlook

Wonder how our state is doing? Our library has just received the 2007 Colorado Business Economic Outlook from the Leeds School of Business at the University of Colorado, Boulder. This report gives an interesting analysis of Colorado's economy, past and present. Topics include: population, employment, Colorado industries, educational and health services, government and international trade. Economic indicators are provided from 1997 through 2005 with 2006 estimates, and forecasts for 2007. The report is online and is also available from the State Publications Library.

For additional business and economic information, check out our subject resources guide.


Homelessness in Colorado

Statistics on the homeless population are often hard to find. The good news is that a new report has been released by the Colorado Interagency Council on Homelessness. The Colorado Statewide Homeless Count has the results of a statewide survey conducted August 28, 2006. The report includes data on the reasons for homelessness, number of unsheltered homeless, race and ethnicity statistics, and homeless families.

The State Publications Library has several studies on homelessness in the Denver metro area which can be accessed online, or borrowed through interlibrary loan:

Other studies can be found by a keyword search for "homeless" in our library catalog.


Child Abuse

Our library just received Child Abuse and Neglect: An Introductory Manual for Professionals and Paraprofessionals, 2006, a great resource from the Department of Public Health and Environment. Its purpose is to educate everyone about the width and depth of the issue of child abuse and neglect. It contains information concerning prevention, definitions (including signs), legal matters, as well as the reporting of child abuse and neglect in Colorado.

A search in our online catalog on child abuse turns up several dozen titles. More recent ones include:

Child Abuse: Information for School Employees, Colorado Department of Education, 2006

Child Abuse and Prevention, Colorado Department of Education, 2004

Preventing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect: Guidance for School Personnel, Colorado Department of Education, 2002

Child Abuse and Neglect Cases in the Colorado Courts 1996-2000: a Reassessment, Colorado Judicial Branch, 2002

In addition, these titles, as well as related ones, can be borrowed in hardcopy from our library.


Tax Time

Tax season has arrived. April 17th is only six weeks away, and it's time to buckle down, get out those forms and do your taxes. Colorado State tax forms are available from the Department of Revenue. If you need assistance, they have a tax information page for individuals, and you can browse a list of frequently asked tax questions on the customer support site. Tax assistance is also available at the Call Center for Colorado Taxes: (303) 238-SERV, Monday through Friday from 8am to 4:30pm.

For help with federal forms call the IRS hotline: 1-800-829-1040, and check with your local libray for tax information resources.


Junk Mail

Colorado HB07-1303, recently introduced in the State Legislature, would, if passed, create an opt-out list for people to not receive junk mail, similar to the no-call list. Proponents say the junk mail opt-out will help the environment and will reduce identity theft. Opponents, however, say that the postal service would not make enough money without junk mail.

Even if the bill does not pass, there are already steps consumers can take to reduce the amount of junk mail they receive. A publication from the Governor's Office of Energy Management and Conservation, Stamp Out Unwanted Mail, outlines the steps consumers can take to remove themselves from various national marketing lists and credit card offers.


Colorado's Forests

New information on the problem of our changing forests has recently been published. The 2006 Report on the Health of Colorado’s Forests looks in depth at lodgepole pine forests and the bark beetle epidemic. These forests need to be managed for clean water, recreation opportunities, wood products, wildlife habitat, and safer communities. The report emphasizes the responsibility we all have to manage the forests appropriately.

The Colorado Department of Agriculture’s Cooperative Agricultural Pest Survey site has information for everyone on ways to help prevent the spread of destructive tree insects through the appropriate use of firewood. Similar information is on CSU Extension’s fact sheet, Firewood and House Log Insects.


Colorado Adoption Resources

CoSPL has many resources for adoptive parents as well as those considering adopting. If you are searching for Colorado adoption information you may find some of these resources helpful. Any that are not available on the web can be borrowed from our library.

-Colorado Dept. of Human Services' adoption resources page - provides links to sites for searching for children to adopt, help for adoptive parents, and assistance with the adoption process.

-Answers to Your Questions About Relinquishment and Adoption

-The Compass: A Family Guide to Post-Adoption Resources in Colorado

-Recruitment and Retention Resources: Adoption, Foster Care

-A Guide to Adoption Benefits in Colorado

-A Place to Call Home, Forever


Liquid De-icers

With so many snow storms this year you may wonder what effect the liquid de-icers have on your automobile. CDOT has published a Liquid De-Icer Fact Sheet to explain why they are used and what you should do about your automobile. Briefly, it says that liquid de-icers are easier on your car’s paint and windshield and are less corrosive than sodium chloride, which has been used for years. You should still wash your car frequently to remove any type of salt, whether it is magnesium chloride or sodium chloride.

Our library has cataloged CDOT’s research reports on de-icers for those who want more background. Some are available online, but all can be borrowed in hardcopy from our library.

Evaluation of Products That Protect Concrete and Steel from Winter Maintenance

A Synthesis to Improve the Design and Construction of CDOT's Bridge Anti-Icing Systems

Corrosion Effects of Magnesium Chloride and Sodium Chloride on Automobiles

Cost of Sanding

Evaluation and Comparison of Three Chemical Deicers for Use in Colorado

Evaluation of Selected Deicers Based on a Review of the Literature

Studies of Environmental Effects of Magnesium Chloride Deicer in Colorado

Effect of Magnesium Chloride on Asphalt Pavements

Preliminary Environmental Evaluation of Caliber M1000 De-icer for Use in Colorado


Foreclosure Hotline

The Colorado Division of Housing has a free service for Colorado homeowners who have questions about their home loans. The Colorado Foreclosure Hotline counsels people who have missed loan payments or are worried they may fall behind on future payments , as well as those in the middle of foreclosures. Housing counselors will outline options available to homeowners, and aid borrowers in communicating with their lenders. 1-877-601-HOPE (1-877-601-4673)


Blizzards and Livestock

Earlier this month ranchers in southeast Colorado faced a tough challenge -- a huge blizzard that stranded cattle and other livestock. Several weeks later, the ranchers are still seeking and receiving aid, and thousands of cattle and other animals were lost. Colorado State University's Cooperative Extension has published a series of fact sheets dealing with livestock issues, and two of the fact sheets are especially pertinent regarding the blizzard situation: Caring for Livestock During Disaster, which specifically addresses snow and ice storms, among other types of disasters; and Caring for Livestock After Disaster, which describes not only what ranchers should do, but also gives tips for the best way to treat and handle animals that have just been through emotionally traumatic experiences.


Snow in Colorado

Colorado has had more than its share of snow this winter. A 1997, but still relevant, title in our collection, The Snow Booklet, by the Colorado Climate Center at CSU, offers interesting reading for the casual reader and for students on such topics as the science of snow, challenges in measuring, climatology of snow in the U.S., historical storms; plus answers such questions as “Why is snow white?” and “How big can snowflakes get?” You can borrow this title from our library.

The Colorado Climate Center has an interesting web site, also useful to students. The Learn About the Climate of Colorado page describes winters on the Colorado plains as “dry winters with occasional wind-blown snow.” Obviously this winter is not the norm. On this site also click on For fun: Q & A for answers to more climate-related questions.


The Colorado Governor's Mansion

Colorado's executive mansion at 8th and Logan streets on Capitol Hill is a beautiful home with a long history. It was built in 1907 and designed by the well-known architectural firm Marean and Norton. Walter Cheesman, one of Denver's wealthiest businessmen who had made a fortune in real estate and utilities, commissioned the home, but died before its completion. So his widow and daughter lived there until the house was purchased by Claude Boettcher, another of Colorado's leading businessmen, and his wife, Edna, in the 1920s. The Boettchers hosted many fine parties in their mansion, and for some elegant events, lighting and accents in the home would be changed to match the color of Edna's dress.

After the Boettchers' deaths in the 1950s, the mansion's future was in question. The neighborhood was changing, and as Capitol Hill's days as an exclusive and wealthy neighborhood had passed, the mansion was no longer practical as a single-family home. Other neighborhood houses were being torn down or converted into apartments and office buildings. So the home was given by the Boettcher Foundation to the State of Colorado for use as a governor's residence, where not only could the governor's family reside, but the home could also serve as space for official functions. Despite initial opposition from the State, the mansion was finally accepted in 1959 and Gov. Stephen McNichols and his family moved in.

Many of the Boettcher's furnishings can still be seen in the mansion, while others have been brought in during succeeding governors' administrations. Under former First Lady Frances Owens, significant restoration was done along with redecoration of some of the rooms. Well-known furnishings in the mansion include a Louis XIV desk; a chandelier that hung in the White House during the Grant administration (when Colorado became a state); rare 18th century tapestries; and china from the USS Colorado.

To commemorate the Boettchers' legacy in the mansion, Governor Bill Owens in 2003 issued an Executive Order officially renaming it the "Governor's Residence at the Boettcher Mansion."

For more on the mansion, its history, and availability for special events, see the mansion's brand-new homepage.


Illegal Immigrants and Employment Verification

Starting January 1st, HB 06S-1017 goes into effect. Employers must affirm within 20 days after hiring a new employee, that they have examined the legal work status of the new employee. In response, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) has developed the "Affirmation of Legal Work Status" form. General information on the bill and it's impacts on employers can be found at: http://www.coworkforce.com/ice/FAQsHB061343HB06S1017.pdf

Many employers are wondering how to verify documents provided by new employees. The CDLE recommends using two free online databases:
1) The "Basic Pilot Program" - a site maintained by the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Bureau; and
2) The "Social Security Number Verification Service" - maintained by the Social Security Administration.

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