Boulder takes legal action to stop large parties and COVID-19 spike

Coronavirus

BOULDER, Colo. (KDVR) – The City of Boulder is filing civil abatement actions against 12 homes, saying that despite warnings, people there continue to hold large parties and are contributing to a spike of COVID-19 cases.

The homes are all in the University Hill neighborhood, where college-aged people typically live. Boulder officials said people in the homes have been warned multiple times that they’re breaking the city ordinance and state rules to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

“They are the most egregious, where we’ve been out multiple times, where the behavior is just deplorable,” said Boulder’s communication manager Shannon Aulabaugh.

The abatement notices mean the city can take more steps to address the large gatherings. If people still don’t comply, they could end up in court. Landlords could lose their licenses and tenants could be forced to move.

Some of the notices went to fraternity homes, including Kappa Sigma and Phi Kappa Tau. Neither organization responded to requests for comment as of Friday afternoon.

Since the beginning of May, confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 had been trending down in Boulder County. They began spiking in early June. Officials said some cases were related to the recent protests, but a majority were because of the parties.

Since June 11, 179 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Boulder County. That’s nearly 15 percent of the county’s cases since the pandemic began.

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