3.25.2010

Rafting and River Outfitters

The Legislature's recent bill regarding rafting and the rights of outfitters to utilize waterways through private lands has brought significant attention to the sport. You can find information on registered river outfitters using the State of Colorado's rafting business license database. See also the Department of Regulatory Agencies' Office of Outfitters Registration page. You can also read about regulations for river outfitters in DORA's 2009 Sunset Review of River Outfitters. Colorado State Parks also has information for river outfitters on their site.

3.18.2010

State Treasury's "Colorado Tax Tracks"

The State Treasury office has developed a new interactive website called Colorado Tax Tracks. According to the opening page of the site, "This website, brought to you by the Colorado State Treasurer's Office, will show you an approximation of how much you pay in state taxes and where your tax dollars go." This is part of the state's new effort to promote transparency. Using Tax Tracks, you can enter in your personal income and see how the state's tax laws affect you.

3.11.2010

Glenwood Canyon

Glenwood Canyon has been in the news lately due to a massive rockfall that closed I-70. (See Samantha's posting below for information on rockfalls). Glenwood Canyon has been hailed as a remarkable feat of engineering, and is a gorgeous drive, too. Our library has a great deal of information on the building of the highway through the canyon, including the videos Glenwood Canyon: Ancient Treasure, Modern Marvel and Glenwood Canyon: Mastering Engineering and Environment in the Colorado Rockies. We also have numerous technical reports dealing with the construction project, including design concept studies and environmental impact assessments. To find these reports, search our web catalog using the keyword "Glenwood Canyon."

3.10.2010

Rockfall

The recent closure of I-70 due to a huge rockfall in Glenwood Canyon made me curious to see what information I could find on landslides and rockfalls from Colorado state agencies. A great place to start is "Rockfall in Colorado" an issue of RockTalk from the Colorado Geological Survey. It has basic information on rockfalls, why they happen, and how rockfall events can be mitigated or avoided.

If you are more interested in the geological details and rockfall risk assessment, check out "Modification and Statistical Analysis of the Colorado Rockfall Hazard Rating System." This report details a fascinating study conducted by the Colorado Department of Transportation, that analyzes the geological structures around Colorado, and ranks them based on the likelihood of potential rockfall.

Another useful source of information is the Colorado Geological Survey's rockfall website.

We have many other publications on this topic in the State Publications Library collection. Just search our catalog using the keyword "rockfall" or "landslide" for a list of titles.

3.05.2010

Quick Summaries of Legislative Issues

If you are looking for a quick, easy-to-understand explanation of some of the hot political issues facing our state today, the Colorado Legislative Council's Issue Briefs might be the place to start. The Legislative Council, the nonpartisan research division of the Colorado State Legislature, publishes many reports on governmental issues, but the issue briefs are specially meant to be quick, simple reports in just a couple of pages, aimed both at elected officials and the general public. Recent issue briefs have covered issues such as forest health; federal stimulus funding for energy projects and transportation; Colorado Health Care Affordability Act; gun laws; carbon monoxide alarms; Denver Union Station redevelopment; CoverColorado; DNA laws; DUIs; laws regarding electric vehicles; rainwater harvesting; and unemployment insurance. Be sure to check the Legislative Council's Issue Briefs page, organized by subject, for more briefs.

3.03.2010

Earthquakes

Did you know that more than 500 earthquakes have occurred in Colorado since 1867? Although our state has not been prone to big quakes like the ones that recently hit Chile and Haiti, we do have about 90 potentially active faults. An interactive map of Colorado earthquakes is available through the Colorado Geological Survey. The map server contains information on individual seismic events, including date, time, magnitude, location and depth of the event when you mouse over one of the earthquake symbols. The Geological Survey also has general information and publications on earthquakes that can be accessed from their Earthquake website.

Another good source of information is the Colorado Earthquake Information site from the Colorado Division of Emergency Management. There are tips on how to be prepared for an earthquake, and a table of past Colorado earthquakes.

A number of studies and reports are also available from our collection at the State Publications Library. Search for "earthquakes" in our online catalog for a list of titles.