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The Review & Preview: What southern Coloradans need to know about COVID-19 this week

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Posted at 5:45 AM, May 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-18 07:55:55-04

With so much information being announced daily about the COVID-19 pandemic, here is a review and preview of what is going on in southern Colorado as it pertains to the virus:

The Review

Campgrounds at most state parks and wildlife areas to reopen May 12

Gov. Jared Polis announced last week that most campgrounds at state parks and State Wildlife Areas would reopen on May 12. Per the Governor's guidance, Colorado Parks and Wildlife began working immediately with counties that were open and willing to receive visitors.

Most campgrounds were open by May 15, but others remain closed based on local needs.

Polis says state will consider whether and how to reopen restaurants, ski areas, camps on May 25

The next big date for decision-making will come on May 25, Gov. Polis said on Monday of last week.

At that time, officials will decide whether to allow ski resorts to open back up for spring skiing, when and how restaurants might be able to open back up, and if summer residential and day camps can open in June and under what conditions.

Counties await decision after applying for variances

Many counties in Colorado believe they are ready to reopen and should not have to wait on the rest of the state to start.

Three different southern Colorado counties, El Paso, Teller, and Fremont, have applied for variances from the safer-at-home order.

A variance request was approved by the state health department for El Paso County to have in-person high school graduation ceremonies.

Catholic Diocese Colorado Springs return for "limited mass"

This weekend, Catholic churches in Colorado Springs welcomed parishioners into churches for the first time in weeks.

Church leaders blocked off certain pews to encourage social distancing, hand sanitizer stations were set up throughout the church, and parishioners were asked to wear masks during the service. The services were also limited to a reservation system.

Colorado faces $3.3 billion hit to 2020-21 budget due to COVID-19, analysts forecast

Colorado lawmakers are looking at a budget shortfall of about $3.3 billion for the 2020-21 fiscal year including carryover from this year due to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, according to a Legislative Council Staff economic forecast released last week.

Colorado lawmakers will have to cut about a quarter of the budget for next year compared to this year’s budget, which will also see cuts – a reduction of about $2.42 billion from the March General Fund forecast.

The Review & Preview: The Review & Preview: What southern Coloradans need to know about COVID-19 this week

The Preview

Space Command to call Peterson AFB home

This week we're going to be digging deeper into the big announcement that Peterson Air Force Base will be the provisional headquarters of U.S. Space Command for at least six years. We'll be looking at what this means for the community and how some hope this will lead to the Springs becoming the permanent home of Space Force.

The Rebound is coming: We're all in this together

Monday night, Elizabeth Watts will take you to Legends Rock Bar in southeast Colorado Springs. It's a karaoke bar and music hall that makes most of their money on alcohol sales. Like many businesses, they're really struggling right now. Despite the struggles they're trying to find unique ways to stay afloat and keep the music going.

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