Regional News

Weekdays at 8 a.m. & 5:50 p.m.

KVNF's original reporting covers a variety of issues affecting the Western Slope - everything from environmental and energy issues to breaking news and statewide legislative debates. We also feature content from our Rocky Mountain Community Radio partner stations. 

Our news team is always looking for leads. Let us know what's happening in your area, what issues you care about and what you'd like to hear us cover - email us at news@kvnf.org.

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ECONOMY
12:08 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Business, Community Leaders Discuss North Fork Valley Economy

The Hive Paonia and the Paonia Chamber of Commerce hosted a forum exploring the economy of the North Fork Valley.
Credit Laura Palmisano / KVNF

Business and community leaders in Delta County’s North Fork Valley say Paonia, Crawford, and Hotchkiss need an economic boost. They recently held a forum on the North Fork Valley’s economy and what can be done to improve it.

About 100 people attended the forum in Paonia last week.

They came to hear different perspectives on the local economy, what’s working and what’s not, and how to make things better.

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ECONOMY
6:00 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

Forum Explores The Future Of The North Fork Valley

The Hive Paonia and the Paonia Chamber of Commerce hosted a forum exploring the economy of the North Fork Valley.
Credit Laura Palmisano / KVNF

About 100 people attended a forum on the North Fork Valley's economy and what can be done to improve it. 

Thirteen people ranging from the president of a coal mine to the head of the Paonia Chamber of Commerce spoke at the forum held at the Hive Paonia. 

"We have our farms," says Alexis Halbert, president of the chamber. "We have our hunting resources. We have are restaurants, wineries, [and] people who are creating things out of the natural assets of the valley."

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ENTERTAINMENT
3:29 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

Kent Haruf, Author Of Moving, Colorado-Set Novels, Dies At 71

Originally published on Tue December 2, 2014 4:51 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Of course parents like to tell kids that carrots are good for their eyes. Once they've had some, they might be ready to read. And there might come a time to pick up a novel by the late Kent Haruf.

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

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NEWS
10:02 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Gov. Hickenlooper Apologizes On Colorado's Behalf For Sand Creek Massacre

State of Colorado

Originally published on Thu December 4, 2014 11:42 am

Governor John Hickenlooper has apologized on behalf of the state of Colorado for the Sand Creek Massacre. The Massacre happened the morning of Nov. 29, 1864 as cavalrymen known as the Colorado Volunteers converged on a sleeping group of mostly women, children and elderly Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians. The 150-year-old event is one of the most notable incidents of violence against Native Americans in the history of the west.

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ENVIRONMENT
4:21 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Local Birders Called To Help With Christmas Bird Count

Bird enthusiasts across the world participate in the National Audubon Society's annual Christmas Bird Count.
Credit www.flickr.com/pmillera4

The National Audubon Society and its local chapters need helping counting birds this holiday season. 

The 115th annual Christmas Bird Count starts Dec. 14th.

Bird enthusiasts across the world will get out their binoculars and notepads to count the feathered creatures they see in their communities.

The Black Canyon Audubon Society and the Bureau of Land Management are looking for volunteers to help assess local bird populations.

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HEALTH
3:20 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Still No Fluoride

Credit Flickr user smanography

If you live between Ridgway and Delta, there’s been a change to your drinking water, although you might not notice until your next dentist appointment.

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HEALTH
2:55 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

More Than 20000 Enroll For Health Coverage In Nov.

Credit connectforhealthco.com

Officials with Connect for Health Colorado say more than 22,000 people enrolled for health coverage last month.

Open enrollment for the state’s insurance exchange began on Nov. 15.  

During the first two-week enrollment period 9,719 people signed up for private coverage, 12,533 enrolled for Medicaid, and 172 signed up for the state's Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+), according to state data. 

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EDUCATION
12:26 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Western Slope School Districts, Schools Receive State Awards

Paonia Elementary in Delta County received a Governor’s Distinguished Improvement award from the state.
Credit KVNF / Laura Palmisano

The Colorado Department of Education announced its 2014 district and school performance results.

The state recognized 27 of its 178 districts with the Accredited with Distinction award.

In the KVNF listening area the Ouray, Telluride, Ridgway, and Hinsdale county school districts were given this honor.

Additionally, eight schools in the Mesa County Valley School District received awards.

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ENVIRONMENT
12:11 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

Ski Areas Voice Support For Emissions Caps

Power plant in Ohio
Credit Flickr user booleansplit

Monday was the last day for comment on the proposed Clean Power Plan from the EPA.

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NEWS
11:34 am
Wed December 3, 2014

Looming Politics: Colorado’s 2015 Legislative Session

The Colorado State Capitol Building in Denver offers historical tours.
Credit Flickr.com/chocolatedisco

With the dust from the election finally settling, all eyes are on the next legislative session.  To figure out what exactly is on the horizon, KVNF's Jake Ryan talked with statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland.

Bente believes the biggest issue facing the legislature will be the topic of oil and gas.  The Governor's task force will be giving suggestions, but the impact they will have is unknown.  With a divided legislature, gun control will come up but she doubts any changes to the existing laws will happen. 
 

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FOOD
4:28 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

NOCO Cluster Wants To Boost Local Food's Economic Heft

Getting food from a farmers field to a market or a restaurant can be tough. Behind the scenes parts of the supply chain like distribution and processing are often forgotten.

Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 8:43 am

More cities want to take eating local food from just a hip trend to an economic generator. But as with many grassroots movements, there can be some growing pains along the way. Northern Colorado advocates are trying a new model to spur growth and they’re borrowing ideas from the tech sector.

The cluster model is seen as a way to address those pains by bringing all the regional players together to solve problems affecting each piece of the supply chain that takes a locally-grown carrot from the ground to your plate.

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HEALTH
3:55 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Death With Dignity Movement Sweeping Nation, Colorado Part Of The Wave

A map showing states considering legislation on physician-assisted suicide.
Compassion and Choices

Originally published on Tue December 2, 2014 3:53 pm

This fall, the highly publicized death of Brittany Maynard, a 29-year-old with terminal brain cancer who decided to end her life, brought the "right to die" movement a lot of attention.

Anne Singer, campaigns communications manager at the group Compassion and Choices, which advocates for death with dignity, as it is sometimes called, said the public response has been astonishing.

"Nothing like this has ever happened to our organization before. Our website crashed…the momentum is definitely picking up."

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HEALTH
10:24 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Colorado Groups Awarded Grants To Advance Health Equity

LiveWell Montrose Olathe received a $200,000 grant from Colorado Trust, a health foundation.
Credit Valley Food Partnership

Two Western Slope organizations have been awarded grants to promote fair access to health care. 

LiveWell Montrose Olathe received $200,000 from Colorado Trust, a health foundation, and Tri-County Health Network got $180,000. 

Tera Wick with LiveWell Montrose Olathe explains how her organization will use the funds. 

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NEWS
1:52 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Colorado's Pot Industry Looks To Move Past Stereotypes

Brooke Gehring, CEO of Patients Choice and Live Green Cannabis, stands in one of her company's grow houses in Denver.
Kirk Siegler NPR

Originally published on Tue December 2, 2014 7:04 am

It's been nearly a year since Colorado made recreational marijuana legal, and since then, pot has become a billion-dollar business in the state. And some growers have made it a mission to make it legitimate and mainstream.

"Change the face," says pot entrepreneur Brooke Gehring. "But really, not to be the stereotype of what they think is stoner culture, but to realize they are true business people that are operating these companies."

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ARTS
11:03 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Preserving The Wild

The West Elk Wilderness
Credit John Fielder

It was Thanksgiving recently, and this year is also the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act.  John Fielder is plenty thankful for the Wilderness Act, after all he’s a nature photographer. 

Fielder was recently touring the Western Slope to talk about the Act and his adventures in Colorado.  He stopped by the station and talked with KVNF’s Jake Ryan. 

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COMMUNITY
9:51 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Western Slope Habitat For Humanity Chapters Merge

Habitat for Humanity volunteers build a home in Oakland, Cali.
Credit www.flickr.com/sandialabs

Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit that helps people build affordable housing.  Two chapters of the organization on the Western Slope recently merged. 

Habitat for Humanity of Montrose County and Habitat for Humanity of the Telluride Region are now one entity called Habitat for Humanity of the San Juans

KVNF’s Laura Palmisano speaks to Heather Zeilman, the organization's development director, about the union.

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NEWS
2:48 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Teach For America At 25: With Maturity, New Pressure To Change

TFA at 25 years (from left): Matt Kramer, current co-CEO; Wendy Kopp, founder; Elisa Villanueva Beard, current co-CEO.
Courtesy of TFA

Originally published on Wed December 17, 2014 5:54 pm

This story was reported for the radio by Eric Westervelt and for online by Anya Kamenetz.

"We, the Committee of Public Safety, find Jean Valjean guilty. The sentence is death by guillotine!"

Molly McPherson, a redhead with glasses, is dressed in a blue bathrobe — in costume as Robespierre. Her seventh-graders are re-enacting the French Revolution's Reign of Terror, with a little assist from Les Miserables.

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NEWS
5:47 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

City Of Montrose Pushes 'Shop Local' Movement

Tim Bush co-owns Chow Down, a pet supply store in Montrose. His business accepts Montrose Bucks.
Credit Laura Palmisano / KVNF

Buy local movements are happening across the country from Richmond to San Francisco. Cities and towns know that getting people to shop in their community means more tax revenue for municipal budgets. The City of Montrose in western Colorado is in on the game too. 

It’s a cold morning in downtown Montrose. The lobby at the visitor center is full of people standing in line, trying to get their hands on Montrose Bucks. They’re large checks that can only be spent at businesses within city limits.

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NEWS
10:15 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Is Digital Learning More Cost-Effective? Maybe Not

President Barack Obama instructs guests on signing a digital pledge as he hosts 'ConnectED to the Future', in the East Room of the White House.
Pablo Martinez Monsivais AP

Originally published on Tue November 25, 2014 3:50 pm

Politicians from Jeb Bush to President Obama like to hype the revolutionary power and cost-effectiveness of digital learning, but a new study suggests, in many cases, it is neither more powerful nor cheaper than old-fashioned teaching.

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NEWS
9:49 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Telluride Tries To Address Affordable Housing Shortage

Telluride is facing a shortage of affordable housing.
Credit Flickr.com/curtisperry

The Telluride Town Council recently approved a new affordable housing project, but it’s only a drop in the bucket when it comes to addressing the area’s affordable housing shortage. 

Telluride Mayor Stu Fraser says the town has about 300 affordable housing units. He estimates 65 percent of those are rentals. 

"It’s very difficult to find rentals within the community," Fraser says. "And, we try to make sure that the folks who are working here have the ability to live within the town of Telluride."

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