Good morning southern Colorado and here's what you need to know on your
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A very active day for southern Colorado as strong winds blast out of the mountains and into the plains from the morning through the afternoon. A cold front will pass us by in the late day and evening from the north, and that front will likely bring another round of strong winds gusts from the north. We could see areas of blowing dust today along and east of I-25.
Fire danger will be incredibly high today with widespread red flag warnings. Wind gusts along I-25 from Pueblo south to Trinidad could be up to 55 mph and so high wind watches are in effect through the end of the day.
Behind the cold front, we could see a few areas of rain and even a touch of snow up around the Monument Hill area, but not a lot of moisture is expected up north. Temperatures will be cooler today with highs in the 60s and 70s. We'll be dry on Wednesday and stay windy through the end of the week into the weekend.
Don't forget to return your ballots today by 7 p.m. today if you haven't already for the six city council district seats and ballot question in the Colorado Springs Municipal Election.
City Council is made up of nine residents, six of which represent specific areas of the city. The remaining three are at-large members elected in a separate election.
You can find out which district you live in by visiting the following link: Colorado Springs City Council- Find my District.
A new effort from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management will take over the COVID-19 vaccination site at the State Fairgrounds in Pueblo starting on Wednesday, April 14.
According to Governor Polis' office, the intent of the transfer to the Pilot Community Vaccination Site is to address the population of Pueblo and rural southern Colorado at high risk of infection. No reason was given for the change in leadership at the site.
The FEMA takeover is anticipated to increase the number of vaccinations that can be administered in the drive-thru process with a stated goal of 3,000 vaccines per day, up from 1,750 vaccines right now. This includes mobile vaccination units across rural areas. Last week, the Governor's Office officially rolled out buses to serve southeastern and northeastern Colorado.
The state fairground operation will begin under FEMA leadership on Wednesday, April 14 with availability 7 days a week beginning at 7 a.m. Vaccine appointments can be made at http://www.centura.org/vaccine.
House Bill 21-1119 broadens the state's priorities and focus on suicide and suicide attempts and the after-effects of those actions on family, friends, health care providers, and school districts.
According to the bill, suicide is the leading cause of death for school-aged children in the state. Children who know about a friend or classmate's attempt are twice as likely to attempt suicide themselves within a year.
To help save lives, the bill would require the state to rename the "Office of Suicide Prevention" to the "Office of Suicide Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention." It would also rename the "Suicide Prevention Commission" to the "Suicide Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention" which would expand to include training and education for health care providers, first-responders, and educators.
The bill would also expand a grant program to have intervention and postvention services. Public schools and school districts without previous crisis or suicide prevention will be prioritized for the grants.
Pueblo's Department of Motor Vehicle is still feeling the effects of the pandemic a full year after it began, struggling to keep up with the high demand of services.
Although the department is implementing tactics to try and fast-track the long list of people in need of their services, many people in Pueblo are growing frustrated with the wait times.
The department provided News5 with a list of appointments from just one day, proving that they are servicing roughly 250 people a day. Pueblo County Clerk Bo Ortiz also says the DMV staff is working "mandatory overtime".
Like all businesses, the DMV has faced a series of problems as a result of the pandemic. Currently, the department is understaffed and in the process of hiring. Right now only 50% of the DMV's employees can come to work because of the building's COVID-19 mandates, and the county courthouse is the department's only location for servicing all of Pueblo and Pueblo West.
If you're running into problems because of the department's backlog, here's what you need to know:
- The DMV says they are communicating with the Pueblo Police department frequently to try and prevent anyone with expired tags in recent months from getting a ticket. However, if your tags expired a year ago, there won't be any leeway.
- Pueblo County is waiving all late fees for registration, so Graves will not be charged a late fee when he comes to register.
- The DMV recommends that if you are planning on purchasing a car, which many people did after receiving stimulus checks, you should book your appointment the day you purchase your vehicle. T
- The county is in the process of building a drive-through and more kiosk in Pueblo and Pueblo West to service renewals.