Topics in this week's Roundup include a COVID update, LPEA's Round-Up grants, and new license plates. Sponsored by Service Master Restore, Closets Plus, Happy Pappy's Pizza and Wings, and the law firm of Downs McDonough Cowan and Foley, LLC
Design work on a new pedestrian underpass at Camino Del Rio begins, COVID cases spike dramatically with the Omnicom variant in town, and new license plates are now required upon selling your car. You're watching the "Local News Roundup," brought to you by ServiceMaster Restore and Closets Plus. I'm Wendy Graham Settle. Pedestrians crossing Camino Del Rio may be heading underground, under the road, that is. The design phase for a new pedestrian underpass at Camino and 12th Street begins this month with a design charrette from 1:00 to 5:30 PM on Tuesday, January 11th involving city advisory boards. The city council approved funding in the 2022 budget for the design project, which is expected to cost about $340,000. A feasibility study completed in 2020 estimated construction costs between 3 to $3.4 million. You can learn more about the project or watch the design charrette online through the City of Durango's website at durangogov.org. Go to the Transportation Department web page. The Omnicom variant of the COVID virus has invaded La Plata County in a big way. Since the variant first was identified on December 18th, La Plata County has seen a spike of 713 cases in a little over two weeks. San Juan Basin Public Health reports that 80 to 100% of COVID hospitalizations are among the unvaccinated population. Those who have been vaccinated may still become infected with COVID, but evidence suggests that vaccines and boosters are the most effective measure to prevent severe illness and hospitalizations. Vaccines are available for anyone five years old and older. Anyone 16 and older should obtain a booster shot six months after finishing the two-dose series of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, and two months past receiving the Johnson & Johnson one-dose vaccine. According to the health department's COVID Data Dashboard, 74% of the county's adult population ages 18 and older are fully vaccinated, and 69% of the eligible population ages five and older are fully vaccinated. For more information about infection rates, testing locations, vaccines, or monoclonal antibody treatments visit sjbpublichealth.org. The La Plata Electric Roundup Foundation provided 38 grants totalling more than $118,000 in 2021. Roundup Foundation grants are made possible in part by the generosity of La Plata Electric Association members who round up their electrical bill each month to the next highest dollar. Unclaimed capital credits totally more than $60,000 are added to the Roundup Foundations grant funds. Grants range in size from 500 to $5,000 and are awarded to 501c3 nonprofit organizations in LPEA's service area covering La Plata and Archuleta Counties. You can sign up to round up your electrical bill at lpea.coop/round-foundation. Long time La Plata County residents who saved their old VV plates as testament to their longevity will have to give them up if they transfer title or interest in their vehicles. The new Colorado License Plate Expiration on Change of Ownership Act went into effect on January 1st. License plates for passenger cars and trucks, motor homes, and motorcycles will expire upon transfer of the owner's title or interest in the vehicle and you will be required to purchase a new license plate. The re-issue program ensures that registered vehicles in Colorado have serviceable plates that are reflective and visible in low-light environments so that first responders can more easily identify plates. Replacement cost will be an additional $4.73 upon registration. If you want to keep your current numbers and letters, a one-time replacement fee will cost between 68 and $118, depending upon the plate. And if you really want to keep your vintage look, you can purchase the historical license plate with the green mountains and white sky for $118. Learn more at dmv.colorado.gov/newpl8, the number, t. For you Christmas procrastinators out there, you still have time to recycle your natural Christmas trees. The City of Durango will accept real trees free of decoration through Monday, January 31st at Santa Rita Park next to the playground. Recycling is free. Trees left at curbside will not be collected by the Waste Management Department. The trees will be ground into mulch. To learn more, visit durangogov.org. This edition of the "Local News Roundup" has been brought to you by Happy Pappy's Pizza n Wings and the law firm of Downs, McDonough, Cowan & Foley.