Marty Durlin

Contributing Reporter

Marty Durlin contributes freelance news features, including coverage of Delta County Commissioner's meetings and local governmental issues.

Marty  is a writer, reporter and playwright currently living in Paonia, Colorado. She contributes to Writers on the Range, a service of High Country News, and is a Delta County native. Her prestigious works include the plays, "Babbit", "Pollyana", and the completely original musical, "Beautiful Radiant Things". Marty was General Manager of KGNU Community Radio in Boulder, Colorado for more than 20 years.

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COMMUNITY
2:11 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

County Health & Human Services Grateful to Cocker Kids Foundation

At a recent Delta County Commissioners meeting, the Cocker Kids Foundation received kudos from Delta County Health and Human Services Director Chuck Lemoine.  Lemoine first talked about how, in a meeting years ago with Joe and Pam Cocker, the County came to be an agent for the Foundation.

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NEWS
1:52 pm
Thu May 30, 2013

Group Asks BLM for Names of Additional Gas Lease Nominators

Credit Jim Brett

Recently, the Paonia-based Citizens for a Healthy Community, along with nearly 30 other organizations, wrote to the Bureau of Land Management, requesting that the agency comply with a recent legal ruling and release the names of all lease parcel nominators to the public. KVNF’s Marty Durlin has more.

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Local News
8:00 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Delta County Commissioners Approve Hen House, Plaintiffs Vow to See Them in Court

Commissioner Bruce Hovde at his umpteenth hearing on Western Slope Layers' facility on Powell Mesa.

Since Delta County Commissioners gave conditional approval to Western Slope Layers’ cage-free chicken farm in August 2011, the hen-laying facility on Powell Mesa has been in and out of district court and the commissioners’ hearing room ten times. At issue: the compatibility of the facility with the surrounding neighborhood; its impact on neighbors’ health and real estate values; the ability of the county to properly monitor the situation; and what regulations actually apply to the facility. A similar hen-laying operation is proposed for Redlands Mesa.

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Local News
5:39 pm
Tue May 28, 2013

Study Ordered to Establish Baseline for Groundwater in Delta County

Credit North Fork Merchant Herald

Delta County Commissioners recently approved a $15,000 study to be performed by Ken Kolm Hydrologic System Analysis that will provide a baseline for the state of groundwater in the North Fork Valley.

Environmental Health Director Ken Nordstrom presented a contract for commissioners to sign, launching the second phase of a groundwater study for the county. The first phase covered the Oak Mesa area and the second will address the North Fork.

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ENVIRONMENT
1:03 pm
Mon May 27, 2013

iSeeChange: Birder Evelyn Horn

Evy Horn with the book she wrote on birding.
Credit Marty Durlin

Nearly 500 species of birds make their way through Colorado or live here year-around – and chances are local birder and author Evelyn Horn knows them. In the second report of a two-part series, KVNF’s Marty Durlin talked to Horn about the general decline of birds in a world where human population and activity is on the rise.

 

 

I asked her what she could say about the state of birds, whether climate change is impacting them, and certainly human activity as Evy has talked about. How would she characterize their condition?

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Loacl News
5:42 pm
Fri May 24, 2013

Paonia Mayor Explains the Condition of the Streets in Town

Third Street from Grand Avenue to the Paonia Public Library is bumpy and dusty. Broken sewer pipes were repaired beneath the road, and the Town is getting bids for patching, repaving or possibly using concrete to repair the street.

Anyone familiar with Paonia knows that the streets are in bad shape, especially along one four-block stretch on Third Street between Grand Avenue and the public library.

It’s not only the streets that are bumpy in Paonia. The last year has been an up-and-down ride for Paonia’s mayor. From the BLM’s decision to offer and then withdraw lease parcels in the North Fork, to the guilty plea entered by the town’s former employee for embezzling some $400,000 from the public coffers, there has been no shortage of drama. But what about the streets?

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iseechange
8:29 am
Mon May 20, 2013

iSeeChange: A Better Year for Birds

Mallards, the first ducks to come to Hart's Basin in the spring.
Marty Durlin

May 11 was Colorado’s Migratory Bird Day, celebrating the nearly 500 species that live in the state or pass through it. Local naturalist, birder and author Evelyn Horn has spent the past twenty years or so focused on birds. In 1989 she and her husband Al moved from Las Vegas to Eckert and settled near Hart’s Basin, or Fruitgrowers Reservoir, which is controlled by the Orchard City Irrigation District (OCID). People had just been banned from the reservoir because of e-coli, and the absence of human activity made it more attractive to birds.

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DMEA Candidates Forum
1:59 pm
Thu May 16, 2013

DMEA Candidates Discuss Future of Electricity in the Area

DMEA candidates at a forum in Montrose on Wednesday, May 15. From left, Erica Lewis Kennedy, Olen Lund, Ed Marston, Kay Heinschel and Tony Prendergast. Not shown: Jim Elder, who was present at the event.
Credit Marty Durlin

An attentive audience at the DMEA building in Montrose Wednesday night got a glimpse into the inner workings of the 75-year-old co-op as six candidates squared off for three seats on the governing board. The Delta Montrose Electrical Association has about 33,000 customers in Delta and Montrose Counties who elect the nine paid board members who serve three-year terms.

 

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NEWS
3:14 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Fly-over Stresses Importance of Alternative Oil & Gas Plan

Lamborn Mountain

The fight to keep negative impacts of gas drilling out of the North Fork Valley got a boost as community members got a glimpse of the area from a higher plane. On Monday The Western Slope Conservation Center and Eco-Flight offered two tours of the North Fork Valley to graphically show the importance of the North Fork Valley Alternative Plan – a proposal created to provide a rallying point for residents concerned about oil and gas extraction on public lands. The Conservation Center’s director Sarah Sauter explains the purpose of the flights.

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SHORT FEATURES
2:48 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Twin Brothers' History Tells of Local Farming from 1930-1950

A collection of old tubs hanging on the former Beezley ice house.
Marty Durlin

A few weeks ago on the iseechange report, we covered the story of orchardist Will Beezley’s journals from the 1930s, 40s and 50s that are being transcribed on thealmanac.org by local farmer Amber Kleinman. Through reading the journals, Kleinman not only learned about historical farming and weather in the North Fork, but also caught a glimpse of Will Beezley’s life. Now that life has been further illuminated by Beezley’s grand-nephew, Larry Beezley.

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COMMUNITY
5:38 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Event Honors 97 year old Nellie Clark & Sister

Nellie's four daughters -- Mary Lou, Linda, Nancy and Joanna.

On Saturday the Delta Historical Museum hosted a tribute to two sisters for their many contributions to the community.

Nellie Clark and Sula Mathews have lived in Delta since 1932 where they have spent a lifetime of community service -- at the library, the schools, the church, and a variety of other worthy causes. This week Nellie turns 97 -- her younger sister is only 89.

 

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Western Slope Skies
5:23 pm
Fri May 10, 2013

Western Slope Skies 5/10/2013

“Hey, can you see the flag in that thing?!”  It’s a question that makes us wince when observing the moon at astronomy outreaches.  The answer is…Maybe if you were aboard NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter… but, all six of the flags are now faded to white, and the first one blew over when the Apollo 11 lunar module blasted off departing the moon.  

From our backyards, the moon, our closest celestial neighbor, is easily observed by the unaided eye  as it moves through its changing phases.  During the next two weeks, the moon will move from new to nearly full.

 

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NEWS
11:43 am
Thu May 9, 2013

Fire at Stahl Orchards in Paonia Took 5 Hours to Extinguish

Brian Cambria

Paonia Fire Chief Mike Byers and his volunteer crew responded to a fire in a shed belonging to Stahl’s Orchards just outside of Paonia about 4 pm Monday afternoon. Twenty-one fire-fighters and seven trucks were involved in fighting the blaze, which took five hours to extinguish.

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NEWS
4:49 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Local Farmer Jere Lowe on How Marijuana Should be Regulated

Local farmer Jere Lowe
Credit Marty Durlin

Local farmer Jere Lowe thinks he has a better framework for regulating recreational marijuana than anything the Colorado Legislature has come up with. In fact, he wrote his own alternative plan, and emailed it to state legislators and the governor last week.

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Local History
1:30 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Beezley Journal Offers Glimpse of the Past

Will Beezley was an orchardist and farmer who lived up Steven’s Gulch just outside of Paonia. In the 1930s, 40s and 50s, he kept a daily log of his tasks, along with the weather and conditions. The brief entries offer a glimpse of his work on the land and his chase with water. The journals are now in the hands of Paonia resident Amber Kleinman, who has been selecting and posting entries for ISeeChange at thealmanac.org. She was interviewed by KVNF’s Marty Durlin, who asked her first about the process of transcribing the journals.

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McClure Pass Closure
1:19 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Rockslide Closes McClure Pass Early this Week

postindependent.com

Update: Pass is officially "open". CDOT is alternating single-lane traffic around slide, and says to  "Expect long delays,  especially between 7AM and 7 PM during cleanup work." Read their official statement here.

The closure of Highway 133 south of McClure Pass due to a rockslide will likely last throughout the week. Falling boulders including one rock as big as a dump truck forced the closure Sunday morning.

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COMMUNITY
7:30 am
Mon April 29, 2013

Paonia Players: Kids Love to Dance

Liza Eller interviews Ruby

Last weekend young dancers took to the stage of the Paradise Theater in Paonia for a song and dance tribute to Michael Jackson. The show, called "The Songs of Michael Jackson, the King of Pop", was a tribute to Michael Jackson presented by Paonia Players. Featuring local singers and dancers of all ages, the performance was produced by Merrily Talbott, director of Paonia Players, an organization that supports theater, dance and vocal education and performances in the North Fork Valley.

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iSeeChange
9:00 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Journal Sheds Light on North Fork of Yesteryear

Amber Kleinman's house in Apple Valley, Paonia
Amber Kleinman

Paonia resident Amber Kleinman has been reading through the daily journals of William Beezley, an orchardist and farmer who lived up Steven’s Gulch in the first half of the 20th century. Recording selected entries for thealmanac.org and comparing them to current weather and conditions, Kleinman – a small-acreage farmer who keeps a journal herself -- has gained a new perspective.

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iSeeChange
12:01 pm
Tue April 16, 2013

The Chorus of the Leopard Frogs

On thealmanac.org last week, Marilyn Stone noted that she hasn’t heard the chorus of leopard frogs she usually hears by this time of year, and wondered about the effect of a nearby wetlands that dried up last fall. KVNF’s Marty Durlin has some answers from a scientist who studies leopard frogs.

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COMMUNITY
10:03 am
Mon April 15, 2013

Death & Dying in Delta County

The Conklin family grave site in the cemetery on Garnet Mesa in Delta.
Marty Durlin

At 4 pm on Tuesday, April 16, the Blue Sage in Paonia will present a practical session to help people deal with a topic no one wants to talk about. Jean Ceriani is trying to tell us something. As a healthcare provider, she’s seen how the body wears out, gives up, or is wounded beyond repair. But most of us can’t seem to communicate with one another about this most basic fact of our existence – that it will end.

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