Axios Denver

Newsletter branding image

Welcome to Wednesday. We got this.

  • Today's weather: Mostly sunny with highs near 78 and a slight chance of late afternoon showers.

πŸ’ Situational awareness: The Colorado Avalanche scored four goals in the second period and surged to a 5-2 win against the Winnipeg Jets last night to even the opening playoff series 1-1.

  • The next game is 8pm Friday in Denver.

πŸŽ‚ Happy birthday to our Axios Denver members Keri Yourick and Michelle Stapleton!

Today's newsletter is 916 words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: SCOTUS case could impact Denver's homelessness approach

A camping tent put up by advocates for people experiencing homelessness during a rally outside the state Capitol in Denver. Photo: Esteban L. Hernandez/Axios

The U.S. Supreme Court's impending decision on a homeless camping ban in an Oregon city may affect how Colorado municipalities enforce their own laws.

Why it matters: The high court's decision could upend Denver's controversial urban camping ban β€” or reinforce its law, if the court sides with the city of Grants Pass.

The big picture: The case stems from a 2018 lawsuit filed by the Oregon Law Center on behalf of the homeless population in the southwest Oregon city, and targets a local law banning people from sleeping in parks or using sleeping materials to set up temporary living spaces.

State of play: If the court sides with the Grants Pass ordinance, it would bolster laws like Denver's, University of Denver Sturm College of Law associate law professor Ian Farrell tells us.

  • Denver's law allows ticketing and even jailing people for camping outdoors.

The other side: If the court sides with unhoused residents, it could force cities to take "less punitive" measures to address homelessness, University of Colorado Law School professor Ann England tells us.

Between the lines: Farrell says it's possible the justices make a ruling with a major caveat, saying camping bans are only enforceable when shelter beds are available.

Zoom in: A similar case targeting a Boulder law banning homeless camping faces a lawsuit from the ACLU of Colorado, which claims it targeted people facing "extreme poverty."

What they're saying: Denver Mayor Mike Johnston's spokesperson, Jordan Fuja, says in a statement that regardless of the outcome, Denver will keep connecting people to "safe and stable housing."

What's next: A ruling is expected this summer.

Share this story

2. Charted: Best time to sell your house

2023 Denver home sale premiums, by listing date
Data: Zillow; Chart: Erin Davis/Axios Visuals

If you're considering selling your home, you May want to do it next month.

By the numbers: Metro Denver homes listed in late May sold for nearly $17,000 more than during other times of the year, according to a new Zillow analysis.

Why it matters: More cash means more buying power in the Mile High City's ultra-tight market.

The big picture: May has long been the best month to list your house in the U.S. But in 2023, sellers made the highest profits in the first two weeks of June, a Zillow study shows.

  • This shift is largely related to mortgage rates, which cooled slightly in June and brought some buyers off the sidelines.

Zoom in: "My No. 1 tip for home sellers is to stage their homes," Alyson Wahl, a Keller Williams realtor, tells us. Preparing a home like it is a product and not a lived-in place will ensure it sells "so much faster and usually for more money."

  • Whether you do some simple decluttering, or spend money hiring a stager, it all can be valuable, she notes.

The other side: Buyers, if you want to avoid peak pricing, consider shopping outside of the spring and summer months.

Tell a homeowner

3. πŸ“ˆ Passover prices

Price of <span style="background:#054f9f; padding:3px 5px;color:white;">matzo</span> and <span style="background:#8db830; padding:3px 5px;color:white;">gefilte fish</span>, 2023
Data: NIQ; Chart: Axios Visuals

Denverites observing Passover, which began this week and runs through April 30 this year, are shelling out more for traditional foods.

The big picture: Unleavened bread called matzo and lumpy gefilte fish are classic staples of the holiday table.

By the numbers: Gefilte fish prices are 17% higher than in 2019 in Denver, per NIQ, which tracks buying behavior.

  • Matzo prices are only slightly up, 0.3%, during the same span.

Between the lines: Unsurprisingly, annual matzo sales peak over Passover.

Go deeper: New Seder plate items: oranges and olive branches

4. Mile Highlights: Bars earn accolades

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

🍎 Denver's school board redrew boundaries of the five neighborhoods board members represent. District 4 shrunk β€” but retained Five Points and Whittier, which have long been represented by a Black member. (Chalkbeat)

🚨 The NBA and Denver police are investigating a video that appears to show a brother of Nuggets star Nikola JokiΔ‡ punching a fan after Denver's victory Monday night. (ESPN)

βš–οΈ A Denver judge ruled Netflix's streaming service is not subject to sales tax, sparing the company millions of dollars in payments. (BusinessDen πŸ”‘)

🚌 RTD is putting overnight officers in place starting May 5 to focus on spots like Union Station in response to safety concerns from employees and riders. (Denverite)

πŸ₯ƒ Three Denver bars β€” Yacht Club, Hey Kiddo and OK Yeah β€”Β were honored among the best in the country at the 18th annual Spirited Awards. (Denver Post πŸ”‘)

Sponsored event listings

Stay booked and busy

πŸ“… Upcoming events around the city.

Alchemy Series: 7 Stages of Transformation at Green Light Reiki Healing and Chakra Balancing on May 1: Each week learn about the different stages through a guided meditation and examine how each stage has revealed itself throughout lives. The guided meditation will be accompanied with a sound immersion, with gongs, singing bowls, chimes, and drums to help you sink into a meditative state. $30.

Hosting an event? Email [email protected].

5. The new "Mile High" mark

Mile High marker on the west steps of the Colorado State Capitol. Photo: Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Colorado is now 2 feet shorter in key places.

NOAA released a new sea level measurement that trims the height of the state's famous 14,000-foot peaks by two feet and adjusts others upward, the Colorado Sun reports.

Yes, but: The state's 14ers on the edge of delisting are safe. Under the new measurements, other mountains shifted spots in the elevation rankings.

  • Pikes Peak is two feet shorter at 14,107 feet, per NOAA.

The intrigue: The "Mile High" marker needs to move up two more steps at the Capitol to accurately designate 5,280 feet above sea level. This is the fourth time it's been moved since 1909.

  • Welcome signs listing elevations will need an adjustment in some towns, too.

What they did: NOAA used more accurate GPS measurements that better take into account how gravity and the curvature of the Earth dictate "actual" sea level, as detailed in the Journal of Geodesy.

  • The previous measurements were deemed correct to within a couple feet, but the new ones are 20 times more accurate to within a couple inches.

Send to a mountain climber

Our picks:

πŸ’» John is reading this Outside story about how to work off-grid from anywhere.

🍽️ Alayna is making this simple spring pasta recipe with all the leeks she has on hand.

πŸ€ Esteban is watching this YouTube video dissecting Nikola JokiΔ‡'s defensive abilities.

Thanks to our editor Hadley Malcolm and copy editor Bill Kole.