|Join us on August 28th for an inspiring and fun Celebration of Golden and commemoration of the resilience of the community in partnership with the School of Mines, the City of Golden, Act Locally Golden, and Home in Golden. |
The event will be held from 12pm-2pm on Kafadar Commons (Mines Quad) and offers an opportunity to:
Participate in a community art project that will vividly capture our collective pandemic experiences
Reflect on how the pandemic impacted us
Enjoy rousing musical performances, including local band Alibi
Visit booths of Mines and community organizations
Win prizes from Golden businesses
Enjoy special kids activities with Mines students
Enjoy food and drink options (including from Bob’s Burgers, Basic Kneads Pizza, Golden Poultry and Meats, the Eddy Hotel, and others)
Take a ride on the new Mines-Golden Downtown automated shuttle.
Featured speakers include: Mayor Laura Weinberg, Councilor Bill Fisher, School of Mines executive and a student leader, Kim Mangle, Director of Non-Profit Executive Director Roundtable, Hannah Frey, Undergraduate Student Government President Max Silver, Graduate Student Government President
I hope to see you there. Visit GoldenUnited.org for more details!
|Bill Fisher, RN|
Ward 4 City Councilor
Golden Safety, Council updates, School of Mines IGA, District 2 Golden Police Safety Presentation and Q&A, Golden Water Resources, US 6 & Heritage intersection, and more…
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The weather this weekend has me feeling optimistic! Plus, we have more vaccine doses, reduced case trends and opportunities to return to school for more of our children.
City Council has also been able to add back more traditionally Golden-centric issues. It’s great to continue progress from last year and accelerate efforts to enhance and preserve Golden!
I can also share that Golden’s financial condition remains strong and is bouncing back after critical belt-tightening last year combined with our diverse economy. In fact, January 2021 actually saw both increased Sales and Use tax receipts for the City from the year before.
Yet, our economic recovery remains uneven, and Historic Downtown businesses are still facing a road to recovery. To support vitality and a more thriving downtown, City Council recently voted to allow seasonal use of parking lanes by local businesses, based on successful lessons learned this past year.
I want to share a few updates and opportunities to get involved around Golden. NOTE: several items happening or due this week!
Bill Fisher, RN
Ward 4 City Councilor
US 6 & Heritage
Similar to the Linking Lookout project for US 6th and 19th a couple years back, Golden is working with Jefferson County and the state to redesign the US 6th and Heritage Road intersection.The second of several public input sessions was held February 24th.
You may still comment and take the survey here (only through March 10th), as well as watch the Feb 24th meeting presentation and see graphics of the four options presented.
There is funding for the study and design, but no identified funding yet for construction. Hopefully this process creates a shovel-ready option in case Federal funding becomes available.
The Golden Transcript’s Paul Albani-Burgio has a nice article on this process and alternatives.
School of Mines & Golden IGA
After years of input and negotiations, we are expecting to have an IGA come before Council for a vote this Spring.
Mayor Pro Tem Brown joined me and City Manager Slowinski for a public meeting for residents this past December, and the attorneys have made final tweaks to the draft. Along with the IGA there is a second “Operational IGA” Golden and Mines are working on. Click the link below for details.
View Draft IGAs & FAQ
Mines Community Updates: if you want to receive notices about the quarterly Golden community meetings, email firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the list. Quarterly meeting dates and presentations are here: https://www.mines.edu/operations/community-news/
Zoning “In” – Golden’s Zoning Code Update
We should pay attention to the first major overhaul of our zoning code in 50 years. And more than two years in the making, this may affect what you can do with your property and what your neighbors can do next door.
Watch the video presentations, especially the January 28, 2021 Draft presented to the community. You may still provide comment and feedback via Guiding Golden, or email me or City staff.
Tune in March 23rd for a City Council study session discussion about the draft Zoning language with our Planning Commission.
Read the March Golden Informer article with additional Zoning information.
Remember: There will be more opportunities to provide input throughout Spring and Summer, please stay engaged and share your thoughts!
District 2 Golden Police Safety Presentation
Residents of Wards 3 & 4 are encouraged to join us for a Virtual GPD Community Safety Presentation with Q&A on Thursday, March 18th at 6pm online.
I am co-hosting this community event with Mayor Pro Tem Casey Brown and Ward 3 Councilor Jim Dale with special thanks to our Golden Police Department.
– Get updates on what’s been happening in Golden and Wards 3 and 4 over the past year.
– Learn how we can stay safer, and watch a presentation on auto theft trends by the Colorado Metro Auto Theft Task force.
– Tips for crime prevention will also be offered, followed by an opportunity for community members to ask questions.
Pre-register for the District 2 Safety Presentation
I’m proud of the work our Golden Police Department has been doing on our behalf, no more so than this past year. Thank you to the women and men of the GPD, and I appreciate their participation in this event!
Monthly Golden Safety Academy for residents
from the Golden Police DepartmentDive in deeper and join one or all of this great series of monthly virtual events.
The next meeting is virtual this week! March 10th, 6pm, and covers Residential Crime Prevention Tips. Learn more and sign up here.
Golden Boards & Commissions
Pro resident tip: our volunteers drive much of the progress in maintaining and improving Golden! Consider whether there is an opportunity for you to join in this effort.
Get involved! You have just a few more days to submit an application to be a volunteer on one of our terrific boards and commissions (due this Friday, March 12th). https://www.cityofgolden.net/government/boards-commissions/Apply
City Council recently met with each Board & Commission chair to collaborate on their 2021 Work Plans. Read more about each plan to learn about the tremendous work underway! (scroll down the agenda for specific work plans).
Golden Water Resources
Finally, a note of caution regarding our water resources
We know Colorado remains in a serious drought condition.
Golden continues to have strong water resources and rights, with multiple reservoirs and decades of forward-thinking planning.
To do our part in addressing challenges of drought and continue to think ahead to ensure continued need water supplies, Golden is asking all users to voluntarily reduce irrigation use this year by 10% (e.g. limit outside watering to 3x/week).Read more about Golden’s Water Division and resources here.
Look through a good article in the March Golden Informer.
For a great visual primer on Golden’s water supplies, review the Water Conservation and Efficiency presentation (from our city water website).
Beginning March 5th, people 60+ are now eligible for vaccination. Inclusion for people 50+ as part of 1B.4 starts approximately March 21st (view full vaccine rollout phases and eligibility)
As many of us are seeking more COVID-19 vaccine resources, I’d like to share some additional links worth investigating.
– State of Colorado: Where to get vaccinated
– JeffCo Public Health: COVID-19 case count and vaccine info (Note: JCPH Arvada vaccine location now accepting 65+)
– State of Colorado Vaccination pre-registration: https://www.comassvax.org
– Vaccine Spotter: https://www.vaccinespotter.org/CO/
– Kaiser Pre-registration website (do not have to be a member)
– JeffCo Public Health Vaccine Clinic information
– Mobility Issues? Check here for Denver regional resources.
– State of CO voice hotline: 1-877-268-2926, staffed 24hrs a day.And please remember to Stay Safe Golden! Wear masks, continue physical distancing, limit unnecessary travel, wash your hands.
Feedback? Email email@example.com and visit www.WilliamFisher.com for regular updates and to communicate your thoughts, ideas and concerns.Copyright (C) 2021 Bill Fisher for Golden Ward 4. All rights reserved.Update Preferences | Unsubscribe
Labor Day Weekend Update: Racial equity, Clear Creek Crowding, Masks & Heart of Golden
|“…I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”–Martin Luther King, Jr. |
I am writing this during a week where we remember MLK’s “I have a dream” speech delivered nearly 60 years ago, and the Golden City Council continues taking up matters of a person’s worth. How far have we come? And where should we go from here?
I would propose a simple and time-honored philosophy: A rising tide lifts all boats.
Lifting up all lives means recognizing specific groups of lives (e.g. Women, LGBTQ, Black people, Latinx) – and does not tear down the lives of others (Men, Police, etc.).
City Council lifted up Black residents and visitors this week. We find this necessary against a national backdrop of violence towards people of color, and a local history of systemic racism that goes well beyond the evil KKK presence to include ongoing racist attacks against Black residents and visitors right here in Golden.
We supported a request for Golden to make a public statement:
Golden Stands with Black Lives.
And Council committed to the long horizon of work to improve racial equity and ensure Black lives don’t just matter, they matter equally.
Over these past months I personally have had to face a realization: Believing I am not racist has been a safe, comfortable, and easy position. But it’s not enough.
Among the scores of comments Council received on the issue of racial equity, especially related to Black Lives, even those people who questioned the worth of a public display of support (such as a banner) voiced a desire for greater equality in Golden.
I am challenging myself to listen, learn, and act towards racial equality and be actively anti-racist. And I challenge each of us to find your own unique way to ensure a rising tide lifts all boats.
This past week’s actions are in conjunction with efforts undertaken throughout the summer: read my blog from June for details, and view Golden Key Dates and timelines including a special Study Session with Golden Police Chief Bill Kilpatrick on July 16th.
Changing the subject, there are additional matters on the minds of Goldenites. And speaking of rising tides, Golden remains committed to stopping another wave of COVID-19 infections: Let’s ensure schools can stay in session so our kids can learn!
To that end we’ve continued to support a mask and face coverings ordinance (along with Jefferson County and the State), which we review monthly and as needed. We’ve also adjusted Clear Creek closures to improve safety.
I realize that requiring masks and closing Clear Creek is far from ideal – it won’t magically make COVID-19 disappear. And we all love nature and know its therapeutic and healthy properties on mind and soul, especially now.
Thus, I look forward to working with Council and City Staff to find ways to manage crowding and safety during #COVIDtimes, with very clear direction to implement a new strategy for Summer 2021. Let’s start planning now for a safe, prosperous, and healthy summer season next year for visitors – and for us residents!
If you are interested in joining an Ad Hoc committee to prepare for and manage the Creek Corridor, please shoot me an email with your interest.
The Heart of Golden is one part of this process, and it’s getting started again… cleverly entitled “The Heart of Golden: Still Beating.” See https://www.guidinggolden.com/heart-of-golden-refining for more ways to get involved.
Finally, a quick note on the financial crisis.
The City of Golden is feeling the hit with reduced revenues this spring and summer. Year-to-date sales tax revenues are down about 8%. Despite this, we remain financially sound through a legacy of conservative investment, a diverse business community, thoughtful leadership, and aggressive action at the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis.
Sadly, cities and towns across Colorado and the U.S. are not faring nearly as well. I hope Federal authorities recognize that local communities are the backbone of this country and critical to the success of America – and take action. We are not out of the weeds yet.
We know that a strong municipal foundation supports our residents, and will continue to focus on tight financial controls along with looking for more opportunities to support our community members. I believe all Councilors and City Mgmt stand ready to take strong action to protect our city.
A couple of examples:
The City recently agreed to extend additional support to BGoldN (formerly the Golden Backpack Program), the non-profit organization providing free food options for Goldenites while simultaneously supporting local restaurants.
We are supporting housing and rental relief opportunities, and last week City Council agreed to hire a Homeless Navigator (a partnership with Wheat Ridge and Edgewater) to support those facing homelessness – many for the first time in their lives.
Interested in helping our community locally?
There are many strong feelings, opinions, and beliefs about who we are as a community, and how we navigate what has turned out to be a game-changing year.
I commit to listening and learning, and engaging with you and the Golden community.
Have additional thoughts? Continue sharing them via Feedback and Social Media links below.
Have a safe and relaxing Labor Day Weekend here in Golden!
Check out these JeffCo Public Health Tips for Celebrating and limiting the spread of COVID-19.Learn more about Racial Equity in Golden & Get Involved
Celebrate Safely in small batches 😉
Bill Fisher, RN
Ward 4 Councilor
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and visit www.WilliamFisher.com for regular updates and to communicate your thoughts, ideas and concerns.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
For more information, contact:
Emergency Ordinance Expands Mask Requirements in Golden
Golden, Colo. — July 10, 2020 — Golden City Council unanimously passed an emergency ordinance during their meeting last night, which expands current mask requirements to include indoor and outdoor areas of the city. This goes into effect today. Council made this decision in an effort to protect the community against COVID-19 and keep businesses open.
Ordinance 2140 requires face coverings for anyone working or visiting a building that’s open to the public. The order also requires masks in public areas outside, unless you can maintain six feet of separation from others. This includes streets, sidewalks, parks, trails, etc.
Exemptions to the mask order include:
In Golden, follow the Golden Rule and wear a mask to protect others!
This Ordinance expires on Aug. 14 unless City Council votes to extend it. They will re-visit the mask ordinance monthly and make adjustments as necessary based on current health guidelines and pandemic concerns.
Additionally, Council directed staff to look for ways to re-open Clear Creek for limited recreation. Until safe solutions can be identified and implemented, access to the creek will remain closed.
Link to full ordinance
# # #
What’s the deal with masks? Learn more about masks here…
Legislative and administrative actions to reduce Clear Creek crowding, encourage masks, and improve safety and comfort in Golden.
Golden City Council discusses Clear Creek access and additional mask and face covering requirements at emergency meeting.
View full City Council meeting video (3+ hrs long). The Mayor & City Manager’s Coronavirus Community Update the next day is easier to digest at around 1/2 hour.
We believe the various legislative and administrative requirements around the Creek and face covering requirements will combine with enforcement and education, education, education to result in the improvement in compliance culture around masks and social distancing that will increase safety, reduce risk of super-spreader events, and allow residents and guests more comfort in enjoying the outdoors.Bill Fisher, Ward 4 City Councilor
- Clear Creek access closed. To be reviewed by City Council July 9th. Paths and trails remain open. Farmer’s Market remains open.
- City Manager requires face coverings in public areas when unable to maintain physical distance.
- City Council agrees to consider comprehensive mask/face covering Emergency Ordinance (1st reading July 8th, 2nd reading July 9th).
- City Council requests emergency authority from Governor Polis to manage Clear Creek water use during pandemic. If granted, this would allow for potential on-creek usage regulation and allowances.
Below are my prepared remarks for the June 30th meeting
I want to acknowledge a concern being voiced by some: Why did we lock down and sacrifice our mental, physical, and economic health to now see the virus again start to rampage through our communities?
The answer – “Safe at home” gave us something we desperately needed: Time.
It truly made us safer and DID save thousands of lives, and allowed us to stock up for a battle that’s poorly understood, get better at the fight and learn new tricks, and prepare ourselves and our families for the 21st Century version of trench warfare.
In Colorado, for example, we have learned that if one of our residents went to the hospital in March with COVID, as opposed to right now, she or he was 50% more likely to die in the hospital then vs now. That’s real. That’s progress.
At every turn during the first few months of the pandemic, officials were behind the curve by weeks or months. In some ways (PPE, testing, and contact tracing), we still are.
In other ways, we are finally catching up here in Colorado – and it is again time to look ahead and make smart, tough choices. We must lead with urgency.
Out of the woods?
- The World Health Organization Director General warns we are not out of the woods. All countries are facing a delicate balance, between protecting their people, while minimizing the social and economic damage.
- “It’s not a choice between lives and livelihoods. Countries can do both.”
- The United States’ top infectious disease expert Dr. Fauci agrees, stating: “Right now, the next couple of weeks are going to be critical in our ability to address those surges…”, noting that if we don’t turn things around, “I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 (Illnesses) a day.”
- CDC Deputy Director Dr. Schuchat says, “This is just the beginning of America’s New Coronavirus Surge.”
We are seeing it… Similar to Denver, Adams, Arapahoe… Jefferson County has had the highest number of weekly positive tests since late May.
Many communities across the US also recognize this risk. For example, cities and counties from LA to Miami are closing beaches or starting to require masks to stop repeat problems and reduce transmission, and leadership across the political spectrum is urging masks.
Finally – The Governor of Colorado just announced a return to closures of bars, etc.
So, do we go “backwards” as people are saying into a complete lock down? Or during the past several months have we learned there may be ways to avoid sacrificing our economic and social health while staying safe enough to have a functioning society?
Every person and every community has a role to play. Golden is no different – we are a popular destination and place to live and certainly have a role to play keeping our community and guests safe and on track.
If we found a drug that reduced your chance of getting COVID-19 disease by 5x, everyone would be clamoring to take it. Well, we do. It’s called the “6 Foot Social Distancing Mask” drug. And right now, it’s the only thing we think works while we figure out testing and tracing and develop a vaccine.
It’s time to use it, and in the same way vaccinations help us and our neighbors, it’s a public health issue where it’s time to stand up, and be neighborly, and ensure we can have the opportunity to keep our economic engine humming and keep safe everyone we care about: our families, our elders, people with immune or other disease issues at greater risk, and our community.
Managing crowds on the Creek will be challenging – and require changes. Unfortunately we have to consider the maximum damage from large crowds initially – and then carve out spaces for reduced risk activities. One person emailed that a person sitting on a park bench reading a book isn’t a danger. Probably not. But that image is not consistent with what we are discussing, and honestly if it was me I would sit somewhere else for now.
I’m in for making changes, and I’m in for the long haul to keep adjusting this program to maximize effectiveness and keep a close eye on fairness and equity. I don’t care how many meetings we have to have to do this, I care that we save lives and do the right thing including leadership with urgency.
Let’s keep our economy afloat. Let’s acknowledge real and present concerns of our fellow Golden residents for COVID and general Creek “busyness,” and let’s do so in a way that references the reality of persistent racial injustice, misogyny and financial discrimination so we can be as equitable as this terrible virus allows.
Even as we invite guests, we must also acknowledge the rights of our residents to have a say in access and use of the Creek through our town – crowding is what, in part, we were already focused on with the Heart of Golden Project!
In an abundance of caution, reviewing Creek access is the right move to keep from creating a super-spreader situation while we get the opportunity to creatively make exceptions and open. Unfortunately as a solution it’s more of a hammer than a scalpel… that must be refined with the appropriate openings, exceptions, etc.
Black Lives Matter
Many of us have been rocked by the overwhelming reality of systemic racism and inequality demonstrated so clearly and obviously the last several weeks. The death of George Floyd and others have focused our country on these longstanding issues.
Mayor Weinberg & Golden City Councilors have provided a strong initial response and appear committed to listening, learning and -most importantly- action.
WilliamFisher.com has details and links to responses by the Mayor, City Councilors and Police Department, and ways to get involved.
Key points (see blog for details)
o June 4: City Council responds to George Floyd & many black citizens’ deaths during Regular Meeting
o June 7: Mayor & Council attend Golden United Vigil & March in Golden. Almost all attendees wearing masks!
o June 11: Mayor & City Council unanimously approve Resolution 2736 declaring Racism A Public Health Crisis. Proclamation read for Pride Month (GLBTQ).
o JULY 16: Committed to action – Golden City Council Study Session with Police Department on next steps… stay tuned!
City Finances & COVID-19
Golden Pandemic Financial Crisis Review
The short answer: Revenues are down, but not as much as we predicted. Sales Tax revenues are down about 5.5%, we anticipated 7-8%. Restaurants, retail and lodging has suffered. Groceries, Home Depot, and online sales are up (Amazon, Wayfair, etc.).
As a former City Councilor I faced the 2008-2009 Great Recession with Golden, and we actually improved financial reserves during that time. We worked closely with Golden’s Finance Director Jeff Hansen and his team.
Fortunately, Jeff remains at the helm for Golden. I trust his thoughtful guidance and deep thinking about how to protect and maintain Golden, weather the current storm, and maybe even come out ahead.
City Manager Jason Slowinski has taken a conservative line on spending since March – City Council has approved the following efforts:
- Hold non-critical expenditures (travel, training, upgrades, fireworks, etc.)
- Freeze on employee travel
- Soft hiring freeze (e.g Park Rangers hired for COVID-19 safety)
- The City has identified over $2.6 Million in cuts/holds through the end of the year, which should more than match expected losses. There is a 2nd level of deeper cuts identified if necessary.
- Asphalt/street/sidewalk replacement for this year will be limited, with the ability to make further cuts.
- It’s also (already) time to start planning the 2021-2022 bi-annual budget, and City Council will be reviewing priorities to share with Staff.
- Golden is receiving $1.6 Million from Jefferson County for COVID-19 related expenses. The City Manager and Council discussed plans to ensure it is spent appropriately to benefit our community!
- Listen and watch the June 11th City Council Financial report and discussion.
The City is hoping to partially open the Splash water park. Golden Community Center opening details are still pending. Summer camps for kids are opening.
Want the latest on what’s open or closed in the City? (e.g. parks & rec, Fossil Trace golf course, City buildings and Court, Clear Creak, tubing, etc.). Visit the new Status of City Services webpage.
Jefferson County received a variance from Safer-At-Home orders affecting gatherings, graduations, gyms and other G words, review all variance updates.
Mayor Weinberg & City Manager Slowinski continue video updates: Latest update June 10th with Special Guest Councilor Jim Dale.
The BGoldN program continues serving those in need of food assistance as well as our community businesses.
(NOTE Updated Link) Volunteer Golden website now online.
NEW! Questions, concerns or thoughts on the City’s COVID-19 response and temporary road and parking closures Downtown? Email Recovery@cityofgolden.net
Back in March it was not clear face coverings mattered.
More and More evidence supports the value of Masks and
Face Coverings to reduce COVID-19 transmission!
Education on use of masks is a team effort. Residents, Businesses and the City all have roles to keep us safe and open.
The City of Golden just received a shipment of 5,000 masks! 2,500 have already been distributed to help businesses provide education and masks for visitors.
Along with staying safer at home and social distancing, masks and even homemade face coverings are proving valuable in reducing transmission of the COVID-19 virus.
The more we keep this under control, the more we can open our businesses and get back to life enjoying Golden – and it keeps more people alive. Period.
I’ve been clear that Golden is not some desperate City needing to sell off our heritage. This certainly includes the Astor House!
At the June 11th City Council meeting, City Council reviewed Staff recommendations on a thoughtful process to accept offers from long-standing Golden non-profit and other organizations interested in partnering with the City. We authorized Staff and a subcommittee of Councilors to work with community members to make progress and ensure the Astor House doesn’t end up sitting abandoned and decaying.
Our Community Goals include the City retaining ownership and partnering for the greatest public benefit and access (read the memo for details). This dovetails well with the citizen-led recommendations of the Astor House Alliance (Aha!). Read the AHA surveys and suggestions here.
I’ve encouraged Staff to take a deeper dive this Fall into what we as a community want for Events. They’ve agreed. (To be led by Deputy City Manager Carly Lorentz).
Staff report we will have Movies in the Parking Lot (drive-in) in August and September!
Golden Farmer’s Market had a good start last week with new guidelines and safety measures.
Most event holders through summer have chosen to cancel – notably Buffalo Bill Days and Golden Fine Arts Festival
July 4th – The Lions are going virtual all day on the 4th, check out their Facebook Page for details.
Thanks for everyone who has provided comments on Black Lives Matter, the Astor House, events, the budget, wearing masks and more – keep them coming, and don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.
Bill Fisher, RN
Ward 4 Councilor
Thank you for supporting and trusting my candidacy during this Special Election. I am honored by the many folks who believe in my vision, values, and plan for Golden. During my tenure I will work to earn the trust of all residents
Zoning Code Audit and Rewrite. As I committed to during the campaign, we are conducting a robust review and rewrite of Golden’s building codes to ensure we maintain our small-town historic character and natural environment.
- Phase 1 was the Audit with Community input. This produced the Diagnostic Report (large file, good read, download here).
- Phase 2 – The Rewrite. Based on the Audit, Council authorized a round of re-writing portions of the Code through the summer, combined with additional points of community input (which may look odd/virtual due to COVID-19). Speaking of Community Input: Check out the City’s new “Golden Building Blocks” initiative for us residents to help visually define Golden’s character for City Planners.
The Diagnostic Report is comprehensive, and clearly outlines the significant concerns expressed by residents across Golden. It does not say whether these concerns can be appropriately managed. The rewrite hopefully will propose effective changes to address our concerns (pop-up’s and scrapes, high-density in the wrong areas, ADUs, parking and traffic flow issues, etc.)
COVID-19 & City Finances
Finances: Council’s June 11th meeting will provide a community update and discussion on the City’s financial outlook. This is not “business as usual.” I want the community to hear and hold that discussion before the City proposes any additional major expenditures.
This is why I voted against approving the non-essential $1 Million sidewalk repair bid, which came in over 10% above last year’s pricing (Note: Council awarded the contract anyway. We will have a chance later to decide whether to initiate any work).
COVID-19: There are SO many updates that I’ll keep it brief.
- What is open or closed in the City? (e.g. parks, recreation, Fossil Trace golf course, City buildings and Court, Clear Creak, tubing, etc.). Visit the new Status of City Services webpage.
- Mayor Weinberg & City Manager Slowinski continue video updates on COVID-19 changes/response
- The BGoldN program continues serving those in need of food assistance as well as our community businesses.
- A new Volunteer Golden website resource is coming online soon!
- Questions, concerns or thoughts on updates or changes in the City? Email COVID19@cityofgolden.net
Street & Parking Changes Support Public Health and Local Businesses
Street lane changes and parking reductions improve social distancing and support local businesses
City Council has acted quickly to continue progress protecting public health and supporting our local businesses. We have authorized the City Manager to make changes in real time to address safety needs. Changes are happening fast: Thank you for your patience and understanding of the need during COVID-19 to be responsive – I appreciate the frustrations this can cause, especially for our West Downtown neighbors and businesses. We have asked the City to communicate through all available channels any updates to road/parking closures.
As restaurants and other businesses re-open, the City will be working with residents to make adjustments based on changing conditions. Council has generally given guidance for Staff to consider Downtown road/parking lane changes and closures, which may look different Monday through Thursday vs Friday/Saturday/Sunday to accommodate safety with increased visitors.
See the detailed City of Golden map of expected closures.
Quick update – Council was briefed on cancelations and updates (watch May 28th meeting video at GCO.TV), and has generally directed staff to avoid events wishing to use Washington Avenue downtown. I have suggested Staff considers not only State & County guidance, but also local Golden needs – for example not pushing more event pressure into our 8th-10th Street and West Downtown historic neighborhoods.
- Staff is looking at options for a “drive-in” version of Movies in the Park in August
- Most event holders through June, July & August have chosen to cancel (e.g. Buffalo Bill Days)
- The Golden Farmer’s Market starts June 6 (with new guidelines and safety measures)
- Not strictly an event… During the May 28th Council Meeting, City Manager Slowinski provided guidance on Clear Creek management for the summer
- I’ve asked and Council and Staff have agreed to take a deeper dive late Summer or Fall into what we as a community want for Events.
- Masks & Face coverings – Lots of community responses on this issue! Council is protecting our businesses by allowing them to require use of face coverings. We’ll have additional discussion at our next Council meeting (June 4th)
Thanks for the great feedback and suggestions we’ve already received! If you have additional thoughts, suggestions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to me directly.
Bill Fisher, RN
Ward 4 Councilor
Ward 4 Feedback
masks. Masks! MASKS!!!!
At the beginning we heard masks didn’t work.
Now we realllllly know better!
- February 2021 Update: CDC provides updated research that shows double masks and tight-fitting masks may prevent up to 96% of COVID-19 transmissions!
- August 2020 Update: Broad and consistent evidence is demonstrating that Wearing Masks and Face Coverings is Working!
Additional studies on mask effectiveness can be found here, here, and here.
- July 2020: Good for Golden ;-). As reported in the July 15th City Coronavirus update, mask wearing has improved in Downtown & along Clear Creek (August note, this decreased somewhat related to people recreating with tubes on the creek).
- Remember that infected Hair Stylist early on? Wore a mask. 140 people did NOT get sick with COVID-19.
- SBD? Silent but Deadly Coronavirus Transmission?
o Studies from our own CSU suggest management for people not showing or having delayed symptoms is critical.
o The US National Academy of Sciences reaffirms critical need to manage silent transmission from non-symptomatic individuals. Masks play a role!
- Want more science? Jefferson County Public Health has Mask Guidance with more than a dozen cited studies for review.
- $$$ Yale University reports on a financial model suggesting mask-wearing is worth $3,000 or more per person in reduced mortality risk.
Don’t forget: Good hand hygiene and physical distancing are the best ways to reduce your risk. Using face coverings when unable to distance is a reasonable (yet imperfect) way to go. Here’s what Johns Hopkins Medicine has to say about masks.
Easy. Understood. Expected.
Thursday July 9, Golden passes mandatory mask requirement.
Order extended County-wide July 14th.
Statewide order expanded for mask requirements July 16th.
Like many health professionals, I’m fielding questions about masks. I research Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) guidelines for my Hospice’s 100+ community healthcare personnel and assisted Golden organizations and volunteers stay safer and sort through all the advice.
Masks are demonstrated to be beneficial in supporting our health with improving understanding of transmission through airborne aerosolization (micro droplets), not simply larger droplets and fomite transmission (inanimate objects such as door handles, countertops, utensils, etc.).
June update: A meta study looked at 172 other studies, published in the Lancet in June. The analysis found that face mask use “could result in a large reduction in risk of infection.” It also found reduction in transmission with physical distancing and eye protection.
Masks requirements now in effect for more than 60% of Coloradans.
Re-breathing CO2? DEBUNKED myth.
CO2 rebreathing is not a problem. Surgeons and health care professionals wear tighter-fitting masks 12+hours a day without issue. CO2 goes through the mask, and the mask only holds a tiny quantity of air compared to what we breathe. This BBC article is as good as any in debunking this dangerous myth.
Denver’s response to the 1918 Flu epidemic and mask wearing. A Cautionary Tale and neat photograph by a University of Michigan Medical Historian (who knew that was a thing? 😉
Buckle UP! Let’s save lives (maybe our own) & keep business open.
On Friday April 3rd, Governor Polis urged Coloradoans to adopt a “Strong Mask Culture” when leaving the house. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) now says the same.
Why? How do we make or get one? And how do we wear a mask?
“The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.”CDC recommendations on cloth mask use
Disclaimer: Nobody’s an expert on this right now, including me. I’m sharing thoughts (not medical advice) regarding masks and resources to help you make educated decisions about your own health in this uncertain time.
Why wear a mask? Especially cloth masks or face coverings?
- Even a cloth mask or other non-medical face covering provides some protection against virus germs getting into your nose or mouth and infecting you.
- If you have the COVID-19 virus? (more than 25% of infected people do not have symptoms) There is now significant evidence that wearing masks reduces transmission of the virus to someone else.
- Cloth masks and non-medical face coverings allow our community to direct medical/surgical and N95 masks for use by healthcare professionals.
- Finally, new evidence suggests the financial $$$ benefit of wearing masks could be as much as $5,000+ per person! (read more from Yale).
Tip: The CDC and Surgeon General encourage the public to allow HCP (health care personnel) first access to surgical and N95 masks and other personal protective equipment.
How do I make a mask? How do I wear one?
- The CDC has provided new guidance to make and wear a cloth mask (PDF version here)
- The US Surgeon General posted a Youtube video creating a DIY, no-sewing required cloth mask from household items
- Here’s a visual post on correctly donning a face mask from JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association).
- Jefferson County Open Space offers advice on wearing masks outdoors. (Hint: if you’re sick, don’t go out).
- A regional health care system provides advice on sewing and donating cloth masks. Want to help locally? The Golden Civic Foundation is working with Golden’s Rocky Mountain Quilt Museum to sew and donate masks.
- The NY Times developed a guide with multiple sew and non-sew templates to help you make masks, and points to evidence on the best materials to use for cloth masks.
- Just as important: How NOT TO WEAR a mask!
- PLEASE! Don’t forget to continue washing hands, practicing good hand hygiene and protecting yourself and others with proven and effective ways to slow the spread of disease.
- I encourage everyone to strongly advocate at regional, state and Federal levels to FIX THE SUPPLY ISSUE. It is distressing as a health care worker seeing patients on the front line to see the richest country in the world unable to supply tested and effective PPE to keep us safer.
Tip: Visit COVID-19 Resources for Goldenites for updated information relevant to residents in Golden.Bill Fisher, BSN, RN, CHPN
So much news about the pandemic is coming so fast. So many websites, links, updates, rumors, etc. Masks? No Masks?
I’ve developed a central location for updated and reliable information for Golden residents: the COVID-19 Resources for Goldenites.
COVID-19 Topics Include:
- Current disease Case Counts for Colorado and JeffCo
- Primary Symptoms of the disease per the CDC
- How & Where to get tested
- Need Help? What to do if you have been exposed
- Need Food Assistance? (Local Golden and regional resources)
- Get Educated (Preparing your home, traveler info, etc.)
- Stay Updated! (Important links to Local Golden, JeffCo and State resources for reliable news and information)
- Ways to Help & Stay Healthy (mental and financial health links)
- Official Social Media links (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter)
Let me know if you have additional resources we can add for the community!
Yours in Health ~Bill
William Fisher, BSN, RN, CHPN Resident, City of Golden Ward 4
UPDATE 3/13/20 6pm: City of Golden announces closure of Golden Community Center and other facilities. www.GuidingGolden.com now online with City’s COVID-19 response and updated closures.
UPDATE: 3/13/20 4pm: Since sending my letter to City Council, the City has agreed to create a section on GuidingGolden.com with COVID-19 information and the city’s response (not yet up as I write this). Mayor Weinberg has also sent out a thoughtful email this afternoon which I encourage everyone to read.
Note: The following letter was sent Friday March 13th to the City Council and Manager only after directly engaging Councilors, the City Manager, the Manager of the GCC and staff at the GCC over the past week via email and in person.
Mayor, City Councilors and City Manager Slowinski,
I am writing to encourage you to consider additional communication, education, outreach, and action. And I encourage you to take action now.
For those who may feel this is “still developing” and that we need to wait to learn more… The virus was reported in Seattle nearly a month ago. Colorado cases have more than quadrupled this week alone. Colorado has reached #5 in the country for total reported cases.
Employers and Schools are taking action and making changes daily that affect us all. The following quote reinforces my experience as a community health RN regarding the urgency of need to act:
“A fire on your stove you could put out with a fire extinguisher, but if your kitchen is ablaze, that fire extinguisher probably won’t work,” said Dr. Carter Mecher, a senior medical adviser for public health at the Department of Veterans Affairs and a former director of medical preparedness policy at the White House during the Obama and Bush administrations.
“Communities that pull the fire extinguisher early are much more effective.”(cited from https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/13/us/coronavirus-deaths-estimate.html)
I know you are already asking about what we can do to help as a City. The limited information released so far after my previous emails does not feel adequate. Here are a few thoughts I have heard from residents and from my own background and experience.
- The City of Golden website has no information regarding City-specific responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. It simply re-posts County updates. Let’s share information on what city leaders are thinking and doing related to the pandemic.
- What is City Council doing about this, and why is City Council going two weeks between meeting while this unfolds? And if the City Council cannot meet in person, how can Council make decisions if urgently needed?
- The Golden Community Center website also has no mention of COVID-19. There was an email sent earlier this week. There is no information regarding thoughts on possible changes to programming at the GCC, which touches hundreds of Golden Residents daily. This becomes especially important as our children switching into Spring Break and remote learning mode.
- The GCC has added small signs scattered around the facility about staying healthy. As of this morning, there are no warning signs at the two primary entrances directing people with symptoms to remain outside of the GCC. There was (again) no Weight Room Attendant today to help monitor, organize, and maintain hygiene in the facility. At one point there was only one empty spray bottle of equipment cleaning solution on the cubby countertop. Suggesting in an email that cleaning is increasing feels almost disingenuous in the face of these reports.
Education & Outreach
- The community would benefit from a hosted (virtual or otherwise) discussion regarding COVID-19 and what the City is and can do about it, as well as what residents can and should be doing – and what we should not be worried about.
- Speaking of what we should be worried about:
- will our water supply remain clean, safe and uninterrupted?
- What if we have a snow storm, will we have capacity to plow the streets?
- How are Fire and Life Safety services preparing?
- What about trash and recycling, could this be affected?
- How can the GCC turn programming into sharing information to everyone we touch base with
- Let’s get creative – and let’s get going! Time truly = health risk.
- How can the City support residents facing changes or loss of jobs and/or changes in education requiring children to be at home for what will be an undetermined amount of time?
- JeffCo is releasing 80,000+ students into the community for an extended period of time, what impacts should we be considering? College students are also returning home.
- How can we ensure appropriate staffing at GCC to support residents and remain as hygienic as possible?
- Can we finally get the pedestrian path over 8th street to the north neighborhoods re-opened? Now more than ever, residents need ways to get outdoors and stay active and healthy.
- Gather and share resources for people who may be struggling with food or physical or mental health issues. How can we support them as a community?
- Financial – the concurrent financial crisis demands we review and begin considering thoughtful, measured changes and updates to our two-year budget cycle and planning.
I look forward to a more visible communication, education, outreach and action from City Council and our municipal government. I am ready to help, as are many residents, and we look forward to opportunities to stay engaged.
Bill Fisher, BSN, RN, CHPN Resident, City of Golden Ward 4