Western Slope

fiber optic cable
Laura Palmisano / KVNF

Region 10 received $5.2 million grant from the state to develop better broadband access on the Western Slope. 


  Newscast

  • Colorado makes 3rd DUI a felony
  • Western Slope property values mostly up
  • Birds migrations unhampered by warm temps
  • Oil taxes support communities across the state, but funding is uncertain
solar panel, solar workers, Solar Energy International
Solar Energy International

The latest Colorado jobs report shows some communities across the state still struggle with high unemployment. 

State economists say for the past four months, Colorado’s unemployment rate has stayed at 4.2 percent. That figure is still below the national unemployment rate of 5.5 percent.

Alexandra Hall is chief economist for the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. 

"The labor force in Colorado is continuing to grow and the number of people employed are continuing to grow," Hall says.  

Unemployment, Colorado Department of Labor and Employment
Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining & Safety

On Friday the state released its employment outlook for November.

Colorado's unemployment rate continues to drop. In October it was 4.3 percent and has moved down to 4.1 percent. The last time it was this low was in January of 2008. 

KVNF's Laura Palmisano spoke to Joe Winter, a senior economist with the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, about the report and what the economy might look like in 2015. 

Connect for Health Colorado
connectforhealthco.com

Open enrollment for Connect for Health Colorado, the state’s health insurance marketplace, started Saturday. The enrollment period ends Feb. 15.

“It’s important for Coloradans to know that if they want their coverage to begin on Jan. 1, 2015, they need to enroll, select a plan and conclude the process by Dec. 15,” says Linda Gann with Connect For Health on the Western Slope. 

The state exchange, which is separate from the federal marketplace, allows people and small businesses to purchase health insurance and apply for federal subsidies. 

fiber optic cable
Laura Palmisano / KVNF

A lack of access to high-speed internet is an issue for rural communities on the Western Slope.

Region 10, an organization of governments that serves the area, is trying to address this problem.

The organization recently got a $100,000 grant from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs to make a proposal on how to improve broadband access in six counties: Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale, Montrose, Ouray, and San Miguel.

There’s good news out of Montrose, or really, out of Washington DC. 

The federal government just awarded a quarter of a million dollars to Region 10, a Montrose based economic development organization. The grant was awarded by the Economic Development Administration, or the EDA.  KVNF's Jake Ryan spoke with Jay Stooksberry, the Regional Development Coordinator for Region 10.

Jake Ryan, Laura Palmisano, Patricia Naft
Skip Naft

On this week's Local Motion we are showcasing our news team.

Patricia Naft, the voice of KVNF's morning regional newscast, hosts the program that features six original stories by our news director Laura Palmisano and news producer Jake Ryan.

Unemployment, Colorado Department of Labor and Employment
Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining & Safety

The state's unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent in June. It's below the national average of 6.1 percent. 

The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment said the last time the state's unemployment rate was 5.5 percent or lower was October 2008 when the rate was 5.3 percent. 

Nonfarm payroll jobs increased by over 3,000 from May to June to 2,446,800 jobs, according to the department. Colorado has seen 32 consecutive months of payroll job gains. 

Jake Ryan, Laura Palmisano, Patricia Naft
Skip Naft

On this week's Local Motion we are trying something new: showcasing our news team.

Patricia Naft, the voice of KVNF's morning regional newscast, hosts the program that features six original stories by our news director Laura Palmisano and news producer Jake Ryan.   

There’s often a divide between Colorado’s rural lawmakers and those representing larger communities along the urban Front Range. That dynamic was apparent during the 2014 legislative session with Republicans routinely blaming Democrats for waging what they said is a "war on rural Colorado."

iSeeChange: Colorado Fruit Growers Harness Wind, Water, and Fire to Save Harvest

Aug 14, 2013
Kirsten Howard/Allie Goldstein

iSeeChange had the great pleasure of meeting two climate adaptation storytellers this summer, Kirsten Howard and Allie Goldstein. 1 car, 2 girls, and 3 months to travel across America and tell stories about the Great American Adaptation to climate change. After reading iSeeChange posts about frosts on the Almanac, they set out to talk to fruit farmers in the North Fork Valley. Here's what they found.

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Paonia & Hotchkiss, CO