Capitol Coverage

Capitol Coverage
6:45 am
Wed January 30, 2013

Governor fears drought's impact

Governor John Hickenlooper says a lack of water in Colorado poses a series challenge for the state’s tourism industry. Hickenlooper answered questions from industry representatives as part of the annual tourism day at the state capitol. Bente Birkeland has more.

Local Newscast
8:25 am
Tue January 29, 2013

KVNF Local Newscast, Tuesday, January 29, 2013


  • Grand Junction BLM hosts open houses, seeks RMP comments
  • BLM withdraws three parcels near Dinosaur National Monument from sale
  • First gun control bill in State Legislature defeated by Dems
  • Sheriffs McKee, Dunlap attend pro-gun rally in Delta
  • KVNF intern reports on attitudes toward school

Capitol Coverage
7:09 am
Tue January 29, 2013

Concealed gun bill fails

The gun control debate sounded off both inside and outside the state capitol yesterday. Gun control advocates rallied at the capitol, and Democratic state senators struck down the first gun bill of the legislative session. The measure would’ve allowed school employees to carry concealed handguns. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
7:29 am
Mon January 28, 2013

Capitol Conversation: reporters discuss civil unions

A measure to allow civil unions in Colorado is expected to easily pass the state legislature this year, and as Bente Birkeland examines, the tenor of the debate is much different than in previous attempts. As part of our capitol conversation series, she talks to fellow statehouse reporters about the new dynamic, and whether gay marriage will be next on the agenda.

Capitol Coverage
7:50 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Civil Unions bill passes first legislative test

A measure to give Colorado gay couples many of the same legal rights as married heterosexual couples cleared its first committee at the state capitol on Wednesday. After being at the center of a political storm last year, the bill passed easily on a party line vote. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
8:23 am
Thu January 24, 2013

In-state tuition bill expected to pass

Supporters of a bill to give illegal immigrant students in-state college tuition expect a full house during the measure’s first committee hearing later today. As Bente Birkeland reports, the bill’s passage is all but certain.

Capitol Coverage
8:38 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Dems introduce in-state tuition bill for immigrants

Colorado Democrats are once again trying to pass a bill to give illegal immigrants who graduate from Colorado high schools in state college tuition. Students currently pay out of state rates. Similar measures have failed in the past, but supporters expect the bill to easily clear the legislature now that Democrats control both chambers. Bente Berkland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
8:28 am
Mon January 14, 2013

Statehouse Reporters Discuss Hickenlooper's State Address

Nearly a third of this year’s state lawmakers are newly elected, and they’ll be expected to debate a host of complex issues from Medicaid to marijuana, gun laws to the death penalty. As part of our capitol conversation series statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland takes a look at the first week of the session, and gets reporter’s thoughts on the Governor’s state of the state address.

Capitol Coverage
8:54 am
Thu January 10, 2013

State Legislators More Diverse Than Ever

Freshman lawmaker Joseph Salazar-D, Thornton.
Credit Bente Birkeland

Wednesday's opening ceremonies of the Colorado legislature were marked by the typical pomp and circumstance as in years past. But even before it started, the 2013 session made history as one of the most diverse groups of lawmakers ever to gather under the golden dome. Bente  Birkeland has more.

Capitol Coverage
10:33 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Economic Development Bill Preview

Flanked by Democratic leaders at the statehouse – Governor John Hickenlooper outlined his top job creation priorities for the upcoming legislation session and previewed the first house bill that will be introduced on Wednesday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Capitol Coverage
8:48 am
Fri December 21, 2012

State's Economy Better Than Expected

State economists were in an optimistic mood yesterday, saying Colorado’s economy is performing better than the rest of the nation. As a result, lawmakers will also have more money to spend in next year’s budget than originally anticipated. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
9:41 am
Tue December 18, 2012

State Legislative Session Preview

Gun laws, marijuana reform, and oil and gas regulations. These will be just a few of the hot button issues that state lawmakers grapple with during the next legislative session. Governor John Hickenlooper and legislative leaders outlined their thoughts in a panel at the Colorado Press Association. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
8:29 am
Tue December 11, 2012

Marijuana Now Legal in Colorado

It’s now legal to smoke marijuana in Colorado. Governor John Hickenlooper certified the election results of amendment 64 on Monday, which allows people over age 21 to grow and smoke small amounts of pot. And as Bente Birkeland reports, the Governor also signed an executive order creating a marijuana task force to help state lawmakers craft new regulations.

Capitol Coverage
8:38 am
Thu December 6, 2012

Ski Resorts Won't Allow Marijuana Use

Governor John Hickenlooper still has roughly a month to certify the results of the November election. And when he does, it’ll be legal for Coloradans over 21 to smoke recreational marijuana. For the moment, most businesses are taking a wait and see approach. The state’s ski resorts are one industry that doesn't expect its policies to change any time soon. Bente  Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
10:01 am
Wed December 5, 2012

New State Senate President Previews Session

Democratic senator John Morse will take over as the next senate president in January. He previously served as the majority leader. Statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland sat down with him to talk about how he sees his new role and his hopes for the legislative session.

Capitol Coverage
11:15 am
Tue December 4, 2012

Historic Number of LGBT Lawmakers Elected

During the November 6th election, Americans elected more gay and lesbian lawmakers than ever before. And in states like Wisconsin, Oregon and Colorado, gay and lesbian officials will hold some of the highest positions of power. Bente Birkeland takes a closer look at what’s driving the change.

Capitol Coverage
9:35 am
Fri November 30, 2012

New Lawmakers Receive Orientation

Newly-elected state lawmakers are spending the week at the capitol learning the basics of working under the gold dome. Freshman lawmakers are studying everything from the art of negotiating to the location of emergency exits. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Local Newscast
9:27 am
Wed November 28, 2012

KVNF Local Newscast: Wednesday, November 28, 2012

News Headlines:

  • Child Fatality At Powderhorn Resort
  • Search Continues For Missing Child At Vallecito
  • Armed Robbery In Delta
  • New State Lawmakers Learning The Layout
  • Ignacio Guide Takes Plea Deal In Major Poaching Case
  • Montrose Sheriff Gets Hummer
  • Powderhorn Road To Be Improved
  • Seasonal Road Closures

Capitol Coverage
8:52 am
Wed November 14, 2012

Capitol Conversation: A Look Ahead to the 2013 Legislative Session

Democrats will control both state legislative chambers when the state’s legislative session convenes in January. Lawmakers will be dealing with several controversial issues, including crafting regulations for recreational marijuana. Bente Birkeland talks to fellow statehouse reporters about what to expect and how the dynamics are likely to change.

Local Newscast
8:45 am
Wed November 14, 2012

KVNF Local Newscast: Wednesday, November 14, 2012


  • Capitol Conversation, a Look Ahead to the Coming Legislative Session
  • Oil and Gas Supporters Rally At State Capitol
  • Outdoor Rec Industry Seeks Expansion of Canyonlands
  • Naturita Library Garners Another Award For Excellence
  • Great American Smokeout Tomorrow
  • Fly Flags At Half-Mast For Fallen Lawman
  • Winter Road Closures Announced
  • Colorado Springs TV Station Stinks

Capitol Coverage
10:55 am
Tue November 6, 2012

Republicans Have Early Voting Edge

Credit Flicr user: Vectorportal / Flicr Creative Commons

Today is Election Day. As of yesterday, Republicans in Colorado held a 2-point lead in early voting. The trend marks a contrast from the presidential election of four years ago when Democrats had the early voting edge. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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1:14 pm
Mon November 5, 2012

Presidential Ground Game Heats Up

Credit Flicr user: Vectorportal / Flicr Creative Commons

Both presidential campaigns are working overtime in the home stretch to try to mobilize their bases and get voters to the polls. In Colorado, where the race is seen as a tossup, the ground game will be especially important. Bente Birkeland talked with grassroots volunteers from both campaigns out on the front lines.

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Capitol Coverage
9:21 am
Tue October 30, 2012

Early 'In-Person' Voting Ends Friday

October 30, 2012. With the election now only one week away, nearly a quarter of Colorado voters have already cast their ballots. Early in person voting ends on Friday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

Capitol Coverage
9:41 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Immigration not key issue for Latino voters

A new survey shows that politicians in both parties may be missing the mark when it comes to courting the state’s crucial Hispanic voting bloc – which grew by 41 percent over the last decade. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.