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Cheap or free fares? RTD should take “urgent” action to lure riders back, report says.

Commuters returning to their workplaces as the pandemic eases are clogging Denver-area highways, but they aren’t yet boarding buses and trains in droves. That emerging dynamic has prompted an outside review panel to call for the Regional Transportation District to act boldly: Use some of its federal relief money to slash regular fares temporarily and streamline its monthly passes to make them easier to get. The plea underscores that RTD is in a fight to lure riders back against changing work patterns, its own budget constraints and, most of all, time. While RTD leaders point to gradual ridership growth this year as an encouraging sign, the most recent monthly ridership report from May shows 58% fewer riders boarded its buses, trains and other services during that month than in May 2019. Re...

Marijuana arrests are way down — but Black Coloradans are still twice as likely to get busted for pot, new report says

Seven years after the first recreational pot shops opened for business in Colorado, youth aren’t smoking more weed, older adults are blazing more and marijuana-related arrests are way down — but Black Coloradans are still much more likely to get in trouble for cannabis offenses, according to a state report released Monday. The biennial report — “Impacts on Marijuana Legalization in Colorado,” commissioned by the Colorado Division of Criminal Justice — is the most extensive look since 2018 at marijuana’s impact across public safety, health, driving and youth consumption. Overall, the authors highlight a few notable trends in the way cannabis is being consumed in Colorado: People are moving away from smoking and instead are consuming cannabis through vapes and edibles at higher rates. Read t...