Steamboat briefs: Bill offering insurance help approved through House

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The House gave initial approval to a bipartisan bill, sponsored by Reps. Diane Mitsch Bush, D-Steamboat Springs and Millie Hamner, D-Dillon, that would provide emergency assistance to rural, middle-income Coloradans who pay more than 15 percent of their incomes for health insurance premiums.

“This is short-term fiscal relief for people who are suffering from pretty extreme inequities between rural and urban Colorado,” said Rep. Mitsch Bush in a news release. “We will continue to work with all on a longer term solution. In the meantime, this relief is critical for people in my district who are having to choose between rent and health care.”

HB17-1235 creates a temporary financial relief program, available from July 1 through Dec. 31, 2018, to provide temporary financial assistance to individuals and families who live in one of the three regions with the highest premiums, with incomes between 400 and 500 percent of the federal poverty level who spend more than 15 percent of their household income on individual health insurance premiums.

The vote sends the bill to the House floor for third reading. Sens. Don Coram, R-Montrose, and Larry Crowder, R-Alamosa, are the sponsors in the Senate with Sen. Kerry Donovan, D-Vail, as a co-sponsor.

Steamboat summer transit schedule begins Monday

Steamboat Springs Transit will start the summer bus schedule on Monday, April 17. This summer’s schedule will be similar to the 2016 summer schedule as well as the Winter Night Line. Service areas will include all locations served in past summers.

Bus schedules can be accessed on the RouteShout app available on iPhones and Androids. In addition, view buses in real-time via the web portal on the transit home page on the city’s website.

Schedule information, bus stop locations and times can be obtained found at steamboatsprings.net/transit or by calling 970-879-3717.

Rachel Carson documentary set to screen for Earth Day

In honor of Earth Day, Bud Werner Memorial Library in Steamboat Springs will present a free screening of “Rachel Carson,” a new documentary film about the mild-mannered scientist whose work launched the modern environmental movement, at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 18 in Library Hall.

The film is an intimate portrait of the woman whose groundbreaking books revolutionized our relationship to the natural world. When Carson’s book “Silent Spring” was published in September 1962, it became an instant bestseller and would go on to spark dramatic changes in the way the government regulated pesticides.

Featuring the voice of Mary-Louise Parker as the influential writer and scientist, “Rachel Carson” draws from Carson’s own writings, letters and recent scholarship, to illuminate both the public and private life of the soft-spoken, shy scientist who launched the modern environmental movement. Visit steamboatlibrary.org/events for more information.

Parents of younger students encouraged to enroll online

The Steamboat Springs School District is encouraging all parents living in the Steamboat School District with students in preschool, kindergarten or first grade that will be new students to the district for the 2017-18 school year to visit steamboatschools.net to enroll their students for next year. District officials are trying to determine class sizes and staffing for these grade levels for the 2017-18 school year and would like all eligible students to use the online process. Contact Soda Creek Elementary School at 970-879-0652 or Strawberry Park Elementary at 970-879-7550 for more information.

Coalition seeks to document greater sandhill crane return

The return migration of the greater sandhill cranes to the Yampa Valley has begun. Cranes are leaving their wintering homes in New Mexico and Arizona and heading north. Yampa Valley residents can expect the first arrivals during the first or second week of March.

The Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, presenter of the annual Yampa Valley Crane Festival, is once again sponsoring a First-Crane-Sighting-of-the-Season contest.

Document sightings of the first greater sandhill crane spotted in the Yampa Valley by either emailing photos to coloradocranes@gmail.com or mailing them to CCCC headquarters, 40625 Routt County Road 69A, Hayden, CO 81639.

Include the date, time, and location of the sighting, as well as name and any other pertinent details. A prize will be awarded to each individual with the photo of the earliest sighting in West, North, and South Routt County areas, plus Steamboat Springs and Craig. A special grand prize will be given for the overall earliest sighting in the entire Yampa Valley. Winners and photos will be announced at the end of March at coloradocranes.org.

CMC Steamboat scheduled to host sustainability conference

Colorado Mountain College Steamboat campus will hold a sustainability conference, featuring Jeff Lyng, senior policy advisor at the Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University on Thursday, April 20.

Lyng will deliver the keynote address, “Getting There from Here: How the Western Energy Economy is Being Recreated,” from 7 to 8:30 p.m., and student research poster symposium will be held from 4 to 5 p.m., featuring research by seniors in the sustainability studies program.

Zach Borngraver, sustainability studies graduate and co-founder of nonprofit biking promotion organization Chain Reaction, will give the opening address from 5 to 6 p.m.

A speaker reception and continued research poster viewing will take place from 6 to 6:45 p.m.  Snacks created by students in the CMC Culinary Management Program will be served. The event is free and open to the public.

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