Denver news in 5 minutes: What you need to know today, June 8

View of a Cherry Creek flood in 1864. (Denver Public Library/Western History Collection/	X-29336)

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Hi. Your news roundup today includes a health insurance crisis on the Western Slope, a transit crisis on the Front Range, a scandal at the Denver Police Department and, just for fun, Dr. Bronner’s love of legal drugs. Lots of other stuff, too.

The Great Flood, Denver, Colorado Territory, May 19, 1864. (George D. Wakely/Library of Congress)
The Great Flood, Denver, Colorado Territory, May 19, 1864. (George D. Wakely/Library of Congress)

Hardball Hick on health insurance:

Gov. John Hickenlooper could push hard to prevent the insurance company Anthem from pulling out of the state’s Obamacare exchanges. If Anthem leaves, it would leave numerous Western Slope counties with no insurer on the exchange. In response, Hickenlooper’s team has talked about the idea of barring Anthem from getting the state’s Medicaid money, as John Daley reports. (CPR)

Deception at DPD?

The district attorney’s office recently investigated how Denver’s top police officials handled a request for public records. Chief Robert White and Deputy Chief Matt Murray had failed to provide a letter about the alleged mishandling of an earlier case. The lawyer who handles records for DPD told investigators that it was “bullshit” and “clearly deception.” The DA declined to press charges. This whole Noelle Phillips story is worth the read. (DP)

Gallery out, wedding venue in:

John Fielder’s Colorado, a photo gallery, is leaving Santa Fe Drive. A wedding venue is set to take its place. (Denverite)

Transportation:

State and federal authorities will allow testing on the G Line to Arvada to begin, a sign of progress toward the recently promised 2017 opening date. (Denverite)

However, a dispute and other concerns linger between RTD and its private partner over performance of the A and B lines. DTP, the private partner, says that it has improved performance as much as possible and would like RTD to stop the punishing fines. Yet they still haven’t convinced the feds that the issues are fixed… Sounds like a mess. Cathy Proctor explains. (DBJ)

In other transportation news, Colorado voters probably won’t see a sales or gas tax increase for roads and other transportation on this November’s ballot. Maybe that will encourage legislators to figure their stuff out next session, as Erica reports. (Denverite)

Arvada:

A developer plans to build six stories of apartments and parking near the new G Line station in Olde Town. The city gave them the land for $30, which upset some people. The developer also will get a discount on property taxes for the project, Rob Low reports. (KDVR)

Dr. Bronner’s loves organic weed:

I already knew Dr. Bronner’s used tons of the hemp version of cannabis to make its soap. I did not know how interested they were in legal marijuana. They are a major player in a new Colorado-based effort to certify cannabis as organic(ish) and ethical. (Denverite)

The illustrated story of City O’ City:

Two lovely comic panels on Capitol Hill’s great vegetarian restaurant from Karl Christian Krumpholz. (Westword)

13 floors of parking:

A planned 32-story office tower will include 1,200 parking spaces across 13 levels. David Sachs with the argument here that it’s just way too much parking. (Streetsblog)

Refugee center:

St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Aurora will become a 15,000-square-foot center for immigrants and refugees, as Chris Walker reports. (Westword)

Andrew Kenney

Author: Andrew Kenney

Andrew Kenney writes about public spaces, Denver phenomena and whatever else. He previously worked for six years as a reporter at The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C. His most prized possession is his collection of bizarre voicemail. Leave him one at 303-502-2803, or email akenney@denverite.com.