KDNK local newscast with Steve Cole and KDNK's news team.
August 26, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. Church groups and shareholders want the oil and gas industry to back off on efforts to stop new BLM rules. Eric Galatas reports. 2. CPW has cancelled an emergency fish salvage at Harvey Gap lake. The fishing boon was announced on August 18 but due to the closure of a stretch of County Road 237, south of the reservoir, CPW has reinstated the usual bag, possession, and size limits for fish in the lake. The road, which collapsed Sunday night, is now closed indefinitely and plans for draining the reservoir for inspection have been postponed until next year. 3. Carbondale Town Trustees are interviewing replacements for out-going member AJ Hobbs' seat but not everyone agrees that the new trustee should be appointed. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. The candidates are Beth Broome, Michael Durant, Gwen Garcelon, Heather Henry, Rebecca Moller, and Erica Sparhawk. 5. Firefighters from Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire are planning to ignite two prescribed fires on Bureau of Land Management lands in the coming weeks if conditions are right. The 200-acre Sheep Gulch Prescribed Fire is planned four miles northwest of Gypsum in Eagle County. Smoke may be seen from the Eagle River corridor and Town of Gypsum. In Garfield County, the 160-acre Roan Plateau Prescribed Fire is planned for the East Fork Drainage of Parachute Creek, north of Rifle. Smoke may be seen from the Roan Plateau, Rifle, and the I-70 corridor. 6. Members of the energy industry, policy makers and elected officials are gathering in Denver this week for the annual Rocky Mountain Energy Summit. Bente Birkeland has more. FEATURE: School is back in session across the state, so KDNK News Director Gavin Dahl got up early and called an education reporter to talk about school start times for this week’s News Brief.
August 25, 2016
HEADLINE: Another two statewide ballot measures have qualified for this November's election, according to the Secretary of State’s office. Initiative 98 would allow unaffiliated voters to participate in primary elections without having to declare membership in a political party. Initiative 140 would restore a presidential primary, held before the end of March in presidential election years. These measures would amend state law, not the constitution, so they are initiatives rather than amendments. FEATURE: Carbondale was the scene of two reported sexual assaults this summer. And, some residents are angry that Town Trustees have yet to talk about, or implement, new precautions. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. PLUS: Today is the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service. Scott Braden, Wilderness and Public Lands Advocate at Conservation Colorado, says funding shortages and privatization schemes are the biggest threats national parks face.
August 24, 2016
HEADLINES: The Basalt Town Council appointed finance director Judi Tippets temporary town manager on Tuesday night, following the resignation on Friday of town manager Mike Scanlon. Next on the agenda was public comment and the room was packed. The entire meeting video is online at GrassrootsTV.org. FEATURE: Today is the first day of school for all students in the Roaring Fork School District, grades 1 through 12. With quite the sense of timing, the local board of education meets tonight at 5:30 at the Bridges campus at 400 Sopris Ave. Scott Gilbert, president of Habitat for Humanity Roaring Fork Valley talks about their proposed project at Basalt High School with KDNK's Gavin Dahl. PLUS: The campaign to eliminate an outdated provision of the state constitution that allows for slavery in certain cases is now officially underway. As Bente Birkeland reports, state lawmakers referred the measure to the November ballot. It’s called Amendment T.
August 23, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale trustees meet tonight at 6 and the agenda includes interviews of applicants for the open seat on the board. Town hall’s new video system is due to be installed later this week, which will make it much easier to view meetings live online or on demand. In other town news, plans for the new City Market have been delivered to the Building Department and distributed to other departments for review. The Basalt town council agenda tonight includes an executive session to address town manager Mike Scanlon’s resignation on Friday. The meeting begins at 6pm. Initiative 143 that would triple cigarette taxes in Colorado has qualified for the November ballot, the Secretary of State’s office announced yesterday. With Colorado poised to spend billions on transportation in coming years, a new report finds the state will need to invest at least a billion dollars per year in transit, biking, and pedestrian infrastructure to meet the demands of the state’s shifting demographics and growing population. Eric Galatas reports. FEATURE: KDNK’s Amy Barr featured Mitzi Ledingham, deputy director of Pitkin County Human Services, on her latest Get Connected program. They discussed the Healthy Community Fund. Check out the rest of the conversation, and all of our locally-produced talk shows at KDNK.org/publicaffairs. PLUS: A new report from the national non-profit Hispanic Access Foundation urges the protection of public lands and open spaces to meet the growing needs of the state’s rising Latino population. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
August 22, 2016
HEADLINES: KDNK staff and volunteers joined the Our Town One Table celebration last night, with two of the approximately 100 tables. It was very fun. Basalt Town Manager Mike Scanlon notified the town on Friday that he is resigning. The council meets Tuesday night and will discuss the matter in executive session. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale police activity between August 4th and August 11th. FEATURE: This summer, the Bureau of Land Management released an environmental impact statement that protects most of the Thompson Divide from future oil and gas leasing. But, the decision leaves more than 46 square miles of roadless areas in the southern and western portions of the White River National Forest open to energy extraction. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh recently joined Wilderness Workshop and Trout Unlimited on an Ecoflight over these areas to see what’s at stake. You can learn more about conservation flights at ecoflight.org. PLUS: As schools reopen this week, parents who are worried about whether their kids are victims of bullying don't have to feel helpless. Eric Galatas reports.
August 19, 2016
HEADLINES: Mental and behavioral health advocates are calling it a crisis. In rural Colorado there is just one behavioral health specialist per six thousand residents. This week organizers in three communities walked the distance to their closest services, about 50 miles away, over the course of two days. The routes were Parachute to Grand Junction, Cortez to Durango, and Cañon City to Pueblo. The “In Our Shoes” walkers are raising awareness about the need for better access to mental health support and gathering online petition signatures asking the state legislature to fund suicide prevention in Colorado’s 47 most rural counties. You can learn more about the issue and the petition at healthiercolorado.org. Colorado’s Secretary of State is urging people to make sure their voter registration is up to date early – and allowing people to use smartphones to register. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: ProPublica has discovered a tax loophole that allows ranchers in parts of the Colorado River Basin to get bigger tax write-offs the more water they use. Gavin Dahl speaks to Abrahm Lustgarten, senior reporter for ProPublica, about his article, “Gimme a Break! IRS Tax Loophole Can Reward Excessive Water Use in Drought-stricken West.” PLUS:
NASA says it has pinpointed the cause of the largest cloud of heat-trapping methane in the United States, over southwest Colorado. Eric Galatas reports.
August 18, 2016
HEADLINES: The Spring Creek 2 Fire, which burned across more than 600 acres in Garfield and Mesa County, is now fully contained. Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 6pm with a second reading and vote on the one cent City Acquisition and Improvement Fund Sales and Use Tax ballot question and a couple Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District grants on the agenda. A proposed development along Midland Avenue also on the agenda is on the cover of the Post Independent today. Speaking of the paper, congratulations to award-winning columnist Randy Essex, named publisher of the Post Independent yesterday. He will continue to serve as editor. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is holding meetings around the state about its new Predator Control Study. They propose killing 5 to 10 mountain lion and 10 to 15 black bear annually for the next three years on a portion of the Roan Plateau, north of Rifle. CPW says not enough mule deer fawns are surviving through the winter and wants to see if predation is a factor. Amy Hadden Marsh attended Tuesday’s meeting in Rifle and talked to people in the audience about what they think of the proposal. CPW’s Predator Control Study is proposed for private and BLM lands. An environmental assessment will be available for public comment later this year. FEATURE: Tonight is the last rodeo of the season in Carbondale at the Gus Darien Arena, beginning at 7:30 tonight. Slack starts at 6. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh produced a special final rodeo moment. PLUS: Soon, Harvey Gap Reservoir will become an angler’s paradise. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. More info at cpw.state.co.us.
August 17, 2016
HEADLINES: Wildfire crews reached 90 percent containment yesterday on the Spring Creek 2 Fire, southeast of Parachute. Carbondale police hired two new officers, Josh Sanders and Kelli Litzau. This week they begin field training, which is expected to last from now until Thanksgiving. In terms of policies that support working families, Colorado ranks in the middle of the pack nationally, but a new federal grant might help. Eric Galatas reports. FEATURE: Access to quality healthcare and a doctor can be difficult in rural Colorado, especially along the eastern plains. That’s why the state is embarking on a new training program to recruit and train more family practice physicians. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. PLUS: Congratulations to Collin Szewcyzk, who began a new job at Garfield County yesterday. He has been a guest on the KDNK Weekly News Brief. His reporting in the Aspen Daily News will be missed. And a bipartisan committee of lawmakers met yesterday to begin crafting water policy that could be introduced during next year’s legislation session. But as Bente Birkeland reports, lawmakers think politics may be getting in the way of some significant proposals.
August 16, 2016
HEADLINES: Ryan Becvarik, 29, of Carbondale was found unconscious in the town ditch Sunday. After CPR was attempted on-site, he was taken to Valley View Hospital and pronounced dead. Garfield County Coroner has ruled the death as an accidental drowning. Colorado has seen a sharp increase in West Nile cases this year. The state Department of Health says that 13 cases of human West Nile virus have been reported, including one death. On August 5, a horse in Weld County was diagnosed with the virus. The Willow Creek neighborhood of Battlement Mesa in Garfield County has been chemically treated due to high numbers of the Culex Tarsalis mosquito, which carries the virus. Alcohol and other drugs may have been a factor in a car crash early Saturday morning on Hwy 6 between Canyon Creek and Newcastle that killed 2 GWS residents. Erick Mondragon, 20, the driver had a BAC of .236 and was under the influence of meth, cocaine, and THC. The passenger was Amalia Cabrera, 19, who had also been drinking. FEATURE: Author and traveler Jon Waterman, who took a boat trip down the Colorado river in 2008 from its source to the sea, talks about the health of the Colorado River. He wrote a book about it called “Running Dry” and spoke with KDNK’s Bill Kight this month on For Land's Sake. In this clip, they talk about why Waterman decided to take on the adventure and the fate of the Colorado River. You can hear the entire conversation with Jon Waterman at kdnk.org/public affairs. Scroll down to For Land’s Sake. PLUS: Colorado Parks and Wildlife wants to study the effect of mountain lions and black bear on mule deer in the Piceance Basin. But, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh found out, the agency might be contradicting itself. Colorado Parks and Wildlife will hold a public meeting tonight about the predator study at 6 PM at the Garfield County Fairgrounds.
August 15, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. All evacuation orders have been lifted as of 8 PM Sunday for the Spring Creek 2 Fire, burning southeast of Battlement Mesa. The blaze began Friday afternoon on private property in Garfield County. Over the weekend, the fire expanded to 621 acres and moved south and east onto private and BLM-managed land in Mesa County. According to BLM reports, as of Sunday night, the fire has been 40% contained. The blaze destroyed 4 outbuildings, 3 trailers, and 3 vehicles. 2. You might want to check that impulse to log into Facebook using public Wi-Fi. You could be walking right into a hacker's trap. Eric Galatas reports for the Colorado News Connection. 3. Applications for a seat on the Carbondale Town Board of Trustees are due by August 22nd and can be picked up in person or on the town’s website, Carbondale Gov Dot Org. Applicants are asked to explain in 750 words why they want to serve the town. Trustees decided to appoint a replacement for AJ Hobbs, who steps down this fall, rather than wait for a special election, so the new trustee can get involved in the next budget process. 4. The John M. Fleet Pool will go to modified hours, starting today. The weekend hours will be the same from 10 am to 5 pm. The new schedule is available at www.carbondalerec.com 5. Congratulations to Jeannine Stickel, who will take over as Carbondale Branch Library manager. Stickel was selected for the job late last week. She has been the Youth Services Manager for the Garfield County Library District and the Youth Services Coordinator at the Carbondale Library for over 3 years. Previous manager Mollie Roache is moving to California in the fall. 6. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale police activity from July 29 through August 4th and a big arrest in Eagle County last week. FEATURE: Rain barrels are now legal in Colorado after several years of debate and opposition from those worried about impacts on downstream water users. Now, conservationists are eyeing rain barrels and other water capture tools as a way to stretch the state’s overburdened supply. Maeve Conran reports for Connecting the Drops.
August 12, 2016
HEADLINES: Results of a 2015 Roaring Fork Conservancy study of Cattle Creek are a mixed bag. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Chad Rudow, who has been actively involved in the study. The Roaring Fork Conservancy will continue the Cattle Creek study into 2017. Find more on the homepage at kdnk.org. Colorado is celebrating National Health Center Week. Clinics are helping kids have a fun start to school. Eric Galatas of Colorado News Connection reports. FEATURE: For this week's News Brief, Gavin Dahl speaks to Colorado Independent reporter Corey Hutchins about the statewide board of regents race. Election results this November could shift the power at the top of our higher education system for the first time in three decades.
August 11, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. The Garfield County Sheriff is looking for 51-year old Leonard Hendricks who could be in the Mamm Creek area. Hendricks is wanted on a nationwide outstanding warrant; he is a non-compliant registered sex offender and a “person of interest” in a recent incident in the Mamm Creek area. His vehicle was found abandoned at the end of West Mamm Creek about two weeks ago. If you see this man, please report the time and place to law enforcement by calling 911. 2. A new interactive map makes it easier to see how people living in poverty are getting assistance based on which county they live in. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection reports. 3. Gov. John Hickenlooper Tuesday named 3 appointees to the COGCC. One is Glenwood Springs native and longtime rancher Kent Jolley, a Republican, who will serve in the position of agricultural representative who owns mineral royalties. Ashley Lowe Ager of Durango, a Democrat, was appointed because of her soil conservation and land reclamation experience. And, Winston Perry Pearce of Denver, also a Democrat, was selected for his experience with the oil and gas industry and a petroleum-related college degree. Their terms expire July 1, 2020. 4. Tonight is the penultimate Carbondale Wild West Rodeo of the season. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this rodeo moment. FEATURE: 1. Rain barrels are now legal in Colorado. State lawmakers passed a bill last legislative session to let people capture rain that falls from their rooves. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. 2. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talked to Carbondale Farmer’s Market-goers Wednesday to find out what they think of the new rain barrel law. 3. Colorado’s population is not only growing – it’s aging. Many of the state’s counties are poised to see huge increases in the number of people over the age of 65 in the next 25 years. Bente Birkeland visited one mountain county to see how local and state officials are trying to prepare for a changing Colorado. RIVER REPORT/WEATHER.
August 10, 2016
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Parks & Recreation Commission meets tonight at 7 at Sopris Park. They will be hearing a presentation on a local ranching family’s interest in contributing funds to build a new picnic shelter at Nuche Park, along with parking spaces, and illustrated signage that provides information on the early ranching history of Carbondale. The commission will also be discussing a replacement piece of playground equipment at Sopris Park and park path security lighting through Gianinetti Park. Partners in Energy is a new program focused on energy efficiency and renewables, led by Xcel Energy and the Garfield Clean Energy collaborative. Alice Laird, executive director of CLEER, Clean Energy Economy for the Region, explains. FEATURE: Thirsty Denver residents could get more of Grand County’s water because of a deal signed between Denver Water and the county in 2014. The Moffat Collection System could divert more water from the Fraser River through the Moffat Tunnel to Boulder County. The state approved a key permit in June, followed by a nod from Governor John Hickenlooper. But, in the current issue of High Country News, Sarah Tory writes about how the deal could be headed for a lawsuit. For this week's Sounds of the High Country, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks about the deal and the controversies. Tory begins with what Grand County agreed to. PLUS: Eaden Shantay from True Nature gave KDNK’s Gavin Dahl a tour of their grounds on Tuesday. True Nature plans to construct Carbondale’s first kiva, a structure used by traditional Pueblo and Hopi peoples for spiritual ceremonies, on property adjacent to their existing yoga and meditation facilities. Shantay explained True Nature’s goals for the new structure, which will feature earthen walls, geo-thermal heating, spa services and space for up to thirty yogis to gather. They hope to break ground in September and open by the end of next year.
August 09, 2016
HEADLINES: Yesterday was the final deadline for statewide ballot initiatives to meet signature-gathering requirements. Organizers behind five different initiatives submitted their petition signatures and now the Secretary of State’s office has 30 days to announce whether each of them qualified for the ballot. Amendment 75 would give local governments authority to regulate oil and gas development. Amendment 78 would create mandatory setbacks for oil and gas development near homes, schools and parks. Amendment 98 would allow unaffiliated voters to participate in primary elections without declaring affiliation. Amendment 140 would restore the presidential primary elections in Colorado and make them open. Amendment 143 would triple the taxes on a pack of cigarettes. Meanwhile, other ballot initiatives still awaiting approval are Amendment 96, Amendment 101 and Amendment 145. Amendment 96 would require that any petition for a citizen-initiated constitutional amendment be signed by at least two percent of the registered voters in each state senate district. Amendment 101 would increase the minimum wage to $9.30 per hour with annual increases of $0.90 each January 1st until it reaches $12 per hour effective January 2020, then adjust the minimum wage for cost-of-living increases in future years. And Amendment 145 would make assisted death legal among patients with a terminal illness and only six months or less to live. We already know that Amendement 69, which would create a new state healthcare system called ColoradoCare, will be on the ballot. And two measures referred by the legislature will be up for a vote in November as well. Amendment T removes an exception to the prohibition of slavery in the Colorado constitution that allows individuals to be held in involuntary servitude if convicted of a crime. And Amendment U regards property tax exemptions. Other high-profile measures including full strength beer and wine in grocery stores, codifying the rights of nature and updating the Taxpayer’s Bill or Rights were pulled by their sponsors.
The Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday it will pay another 1.2 million dollars to tribes, states and local governments affected by the Gold King Mine spill one year ago. The EPA’s project manager for the Bonita Peak Mining District also announced Thursday that Silverton meets the criteria for a Superfund cleanup, according to the Durango Herald. Speaking at the 2016 San Juan Mining Conference in Durango one year after the Gold King Mine spilled millions of gallons of toxic-metals-laced runoff into the Animas River, Rebecca Thomas said she believes the only viable step toward improved water quality in the Animas is through a Superfund designation. The federal listing would potentially allow for mining companies to be held financially liable for cleanup, but local residents worry it could take 20 years for a Superfund cleanup to finish. Thomas, based in Denver, said she would quote “take every opportunity” to fast-track the process. Further downriver the Navajo Nation continues to watch with suspicion a river it considers sacred, fearing that its waters could poison crops. In May, Navajo officials finally reopened an irrigation canal that pulls water from the San Juan River, which itself turned orange last year after the Animas pollution flowed into it.
The Basalt Town Council meets tonight at 6 with zoning and conveyance on the agenda. The town will consider resolutions for November ballot items including a bond with authorization to incur debt and an opt-out of state restrictions on local government’s right to provide telecommunications and cable TV services. Basalt looks likely to join several other local jurisdictions, including Carbondale and Parachute in asking voters to give a thumbs up to pursuing improved access to high speed Internet through public private partnerships and investment in infrastructure.
And the Carbondale Trustees meet tonight at 6. The agenda includes a review of the Planning Commission’s work on short term rentals including taxes, occupancy limits, and zoning recommendations. And a vote is expected on amendments to the town’s marijuana regulations.
FEATURE: Governor John Hickenlooper has been front and center this campaign season. He released a new book, had a prime speaking spot at the Democratic Convention and has been campaigning with Hillary Clinton. Reporter Bente Birkeland from the Rocky Mountain Community Radio Network sat down with him to talk about this election cycle and what it means for his party.
PLUS: Tonight in Marble, Gunnison County Commissioners will discuss the proposed Wild and Scenic Designation for the Crystal River with the Marble Town Council. Yesterday we aired part of KDNK’s interview with local residents Dorothea Farris and Bill Jochem, who are leading the effort to designate the Crystal River as Wild & Scenic. They want to ensure no dams or diversions can be built on the river in the future. Now, we hear opposition voices from the last Marble meeting in June, recorded and edited by Amy Hadden Marsh. The meeting with Marble Town Council and Gunnison County Commissioners is tonight at 7 PM in the meeting room behind the Marble Church. The public is welcome to attend. If you live near the Crystal River but can’t attend tonight and want to send a comment to the town of Marble, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.
August 08, 2016
HEADLINES: In his weekly update, Carbondale town manager Jay Harrington reports the parks crew spent time in Sopris rehabilitating the turf after Mountain Fair. They aerated and fertilized as well as repairing two irrigation lines that venders drove tent stakes through. The RFP seeking a contractor to construct a new roof over the grandstand bleachers at Gus Darien Arena will open for bids tomorrow, August 9th. And the summer Evening Farmer’s Market has moved its location from the parking lot behind the rec center to the same downtown location at the 4th Street Plaza used by the daytime farmers market.
Glenwood Springs council voted Thursday to seek a 30-year extension of their 1-cent sales and use tax, known as the acquisitions and improvements fund. A second ballot question will ask for up to $54 million in bonding capacity to pay for improving traffic congestion, developing the confluence area and a “gateway to Glenwood” along the Sixth Street corridor. For 18 years the A&I tax has funded the Glenwood Springs Community Center, City Hall, trails and parks, but its due to expire at the end of 2018.
Garfield County Commissioners meet today to discuss community development. The work session starts at 8am and the regular agenda starts at 1.
Snowmass Village town council members meet for a study session today, starting at 4pm. The Town Council is taking steps to put a question on the ballot there asking voters to consider a new property tax to assist the Aspen School District. The council needs to determine which of at least ten applicants will sit on the Education Grant Committee that would manage collected funds, should the tax measure pass.
Town of Silt trustees meet tonight at 7 o’clock. The meeting features interviews for their opening on the Board. Then they will hear a first reading of a ballot issue up for consideration that would impose an excise tax within the town of 3.5% on the sale or transfer of retail marijuana from a cultivation facility to retail store, manufacturing facility or another grower.
A bi-partisan group of politicos want to make it much harder for citizen groups to change the state constitution. If approved by voters this November, the so-called “Raise the Bar” initiative aims to make it difficult for groups without significant financial backing to use Colorado’s current system of direct democracy. As Bente Birkeland reports, supporters turned in signatures Friday for a proposal that would dramatically change the way citizens now can overcome legislative gridlock, like with Amendment 64 legalizing marijuana and the Taxpayers Bill of Rights.
Election Day is now three months away. Tune in this Friday during the local newscast for a deep dive into the University of Colorado at-large regents race, which could shift the balance of power over higher ed dramatically, with impacts for climate research, conservative curriculum and the rising cost of tuition.
Meanwhile, the campaign to put a “medical aid in dying” measure on the November ballot in Colorado turned in 160,000 voter signatures to the Secretary of State’s Office last week. The “End of Life Options” measure would allow terminally ill Coloradans to obtain a prescription to end their life, if they have less than six months to live. The drugs must be self-administered and approved by two doctors who found the patient “mentally capable.” Tune in tomorrow for a rundown of all the statewide ballot measures that qualify today at the deadline.
FEATURE: Local residents Dorothea Farris, Bill Jochem, and Chuck Ogilby have formed a Citizens Committee to pursue a Federal Wild and Scenic designation for a portion of the Crystal River. Farris and Jochem were guests on KDNK's Valley Voices last month to talk about the details. In this segment, they define Wild and Scenic and what that could mean for the Crystal. If you live near the Crystal River but can’t attend the meeting tomorrow night and want to send a comment to the town of Marble, you can email email@example.com. Amy’s entire interview with Dorothea Farris and Bill Jochem about a Wild & Scenic Crystal River is at kdnk.org/publicaffairs. Scroll down to Valley Voices to check out the archive.
PLUS: On this week’s Eye on Crime, Amy Hadden Marsh updates us on local cases.
August 05, 2016
HEADLINES: Big news for local solar. Garfield County Commissioners this week approved a new community solar array in Silt. The Clean Energy Coalition says it will be a 1 megawatt array with enough energy to power 130 homes. According to Ryan Summerlin of the Post Independent, Xcel customers can buy and own panels in the array, getting credits the same way as if the panel were on top of their own roof. Not only that, but if they move, the credits move with them. After starting out with a project in Carbondale, Clean Energy Coalition now works with 26 utilities across 12 states. Colorado businesses could save millions in utility bills under the E-P-A's Clean Power Plan. Eric Galatas reports. FEATURE: For this week’s news brief, my guest is Brent Gardner-Smith from Aspen Journalism. His article from a recent Sunday edition of Aspen Daily News is called “Don’t Take More Than You Need: Wrangling Wasted Water on the Western Slope.” PLUS: The Mountain Fair Green Team diverted most of the waste generated at this year's Fair from the landfill. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this follow-up. And the deadline to apply for the soon-to-be-available seat on the Carbondale Board of Trustees is coming up August 22nd. Once AJ Hobbs steps down, the other trustees will appoint a replacement instead of holding a special election. The simple application form is available on the town’s website, Carbondale Gov Dot Org. In 750 words or less applicants are asked to explain why they are applying.
August 04, 2016
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs City Council has a packed agenda today with work sessions all day on the city’s compensation plan and benefits, and the next budget, followed this evening by votes on various ordinances and resolutions. While many political pundits say Colorado is becoming a blue rather than a purple battleground state, the Clinton and Trump campaigns aren’t treating it that way. Bente Birkeland reports. FEATURE: Last Friday, the Bureau of Land Management released the final analysis of 65 controversial oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. The BLM is one step closer to a decision, based on a retroactive review of the leases that environmental groups believe were issued illegally years ago. The BLM proposes to cancel 25 leases on the Thompson Divide but Carbondale's Wilderness Workshop says the agency could do more. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. PLUS: Western Slope residents aren't going to be seeing lower health-insurance premiums, at least not in the near future. Eric Galatas reports.
August 03, 2016
HEADLINES: Organizers of the ballot initiative to increase the minimum wage in Colorado submitted nearly 200,000 signatures to the Secretary of State’s office last week. KGNU’s Maeve Conran spoke with Patty Kupfer, campaign manager for Colorado Families for a Fair Wage. As Eric Galatas reports for the Colorado News Connection, today's minimum wage would be a living wage if Congress had kept pace with economic indicators such as worker productivity and average earnings. FEATURE: For our latest installment of Sounds of the High Country, Gavin Dahl speaks to Colorado State University natural resource communication professor Joshua Zaffos, whose latest article “The Path of Lease Resistance” about the BLM taking auctions online-only to avoid climate protests is out in the current issue of High Country News. PLUS: This morning we highlight another voice from the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition’s annual conference last weekend in Longmont. Noraly Hernandez works with Lamar Unidos and here she speaks with KGNU’s Maeve Conran about why drivers licenses are so important to immigrant laborers in rural communities.
August 02, 2016
HEADLINES: Monday the Colorado Division of Insurance released to the Colorado legislature its study on the feasibility of using one geographic area for determing the state’s health insurance rates. The Insurance Commissioner is not recommending changing to a single geographic area. Instead, stakeholders assembled by the Governor’s office will come up with recommendations for controlling health care costs by the end of this year. If you want to read the study from the Division of Insurance go to DORA.Colorado.gov/insurance.
Town of Basalt holds a special meeting tonight at 6 o’clock to address “Prioritization, Funding and Ballot Language for Land Purchase and Park Improvements related to the Basalt River Park.” FEATURE:
At last week’s Carbondale Town Trustee meeting, Mayor Pro Tem Dan Richardson asked the Garfield County Commissioners, who attended as guests, if they would like to join forces to address the need for affordable housing in our valley. GarCo commissioner John Martin responded by outlining many of the factors to be considered. Later GarCo Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said the county doesn’t want to build bricks and mortar housing and expressed frustration about what he called the one percent in Aspen who don’t want affordable housing in their neighborhoods. PLUS: While our valley was celebrating Mountain Fair over the weekend, the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition met in Longmont for their annual conference. KGNU Community Radio’s Maeve Conran spoke to organizers from the Western Slope and shared the audio with KDNK. This clip features Diego Rubalcava-Alvarez of Hispanic Affairs Project.
August 01, 2016
HEADLINES: The BLM on Friday released its final analysis of 65 oil and gas leases issued in the White River National Forest from 1995 - 2012. The BLM's preferred alternative would cancel the 25 developed leases in the Thompson Divide, apply new stipulations to non-producing wells on 13 leases, and make minor or no adjustments to 27 leases in western Garfield County. It may be irritating when "Pokemon Go" players glued to their phones bump into you on the sidewalk, but it's a whole different story when players decide to get behind the wheel. Eric Galatas reports for the Colorado News Connection. FEATURE: An exploding electrical transformer ushered in the 45th Annual Carbondale Mountain Fair Friday. Only this time, it started a wildfire that evacuated the BRB/KOA campground along Highway 133, closed the highway, and worried fire officials. Fire crews from as far away as Montana raced to put it out. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
July 29, 2016
HEADLINES: Saturday night July 30th at 11:30pm, Carbondale residents will walk together from the RFTA bus station down the Rio Grande Trail. More info on Facebook, the event is called "A Midnight Walk Together." More than 100 professors at University of Colorado, Colorado Springs signed onto a letter protesting Donald Trump’s appearance at the college this afternoon. They say their intent is not to challenge his right to speak, but to condemn the content of the rhetoric that Trump has used since announcing his bid for the Presidency. Two abandonded jeeps are still stuck in the Crystal River in a pristine section of the headwaters about a mile and a half north of the town of Crystal. The US Forest Service is not amused. FEATURE: Earlier this week, KDNK news interviewed a community rights activist who described how difficult it is to get initiatives onto the statewide ballot in Colorado without financial backing. Gathering over 98,000 valid signatures is a challenge, even with paid gatheres. For this week’s news brief Gavin Dahl talked with journalist Daniel Glick, co-founder of The Story Group, who has been following the money being spent on TV ads, mailers and billboards to try and persuade residents not to support iniatitives. His new Colorado Independent article is “Who’s Behind Decline to Sign.” PLUS: For this week's Eye on Crime, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at Carbondale and beyond from July 15 through July 27th.
July 28, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Town Trustees approved ballot language for the November election, asking residents to opt out of a state law that restricts local gov'ts from addressing the need for affordable, high-speed internet. Gavin Dahl reports. 2. Independence Pass was closed yesterday due to a hostage situation up Lincoln Creek Road, east of Aspen. Brolin J. McConnell, a 30-year old Colorado Springs man, was arrested for First Degree Kidnapping and Prohibited Use of a Weapon after holding a man against his will. The hostage escaped and no injuries were reported. 3. Just before GW Canyon reopened Wednesday afternoon, two semi-trucks were reported stuck on Cottonwood Pass. CSP got the call but since there wasn't a wreck, no report was filed. It's likely that the truckers worked things out for themselves. 4. If struggling to find affordable child care or taking the bus 45 minutes just to get fresh vegetables makes you feel a little under the weather, there's a reason for that, according to a new health report. Eric Galatas from CNC explains. FEATURE: Compostable waste from last year's Carbondale Mountain Fair did not end up where it was supposed to. This year, Green Team volunteers, Mountain Waste and Recycling, and Pitkin County are working together to make sure it doesn't happen again. Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
July 27, 2016
HEADLINES: Rocky Mountain Health Plans, based in Mesa County with about 400 employees, has announced that the nation’s largest health insurance provider UnitedHealthcare is buying them. Proponents of an effort to gradually raise the minimum wage in Colorado submitted more than double the amount of signatures necessary to the Secretary of State’s office Monday and the constitutional amendment will likely appear on ballots in November. After the Republican Party platform called for giving up federal lands last week, Governor John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, criticized the idea, calling it quote “reckless” and an assault on public lands that have been held in trust for all Americans for over 200 years. Critics of the idea to transfer federal lands to states worry that the next step would be privatization. A helicopter from Rifle was dispatched Monday to help fight the small West Ridge Fire near Keystone. Due to terrain, the area was inaccessible by foot. The helicopter dropped 2300 gallons of water on the area and then returned home to Rifle yesterday. Glenwood Springs has decided to wait until after the Grand Avenue Bridge project is complete before launching the WE-cycle bike-share program in town. While WE-cycle is now operating in Aspen and Basalt, Glenwood seeks outside funding to cover projected costs. The target launch date downvalley is now summer of 2018.
FEATURE: A new Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program is in the works for Garfield County. Right now, victims of sexual assault have to travel to Grand Junction or Summit County for an essential exam, which makes it difficult for them to follow through. And, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh found out, SANE exams are not just for collecting evidence to help bring these cases to justice. PLUS: The Colorado Community Rights Network’s volunteer-based effort to create a statewide ballot amendment giving local communities more control over fracking, toxic waste and factory farms has run out of gas. Gavin Dahl spoke to organizer Cliff Willmeng.
July 26, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale police are seeking the public’s help to identify a suspect in two assaults. On Friday night a woman was walking alone on the bike path near Highway 133 and Village Road. A Hispanic male about five foot five grabbed the victim from behind and physically assaulted her. She was able to get away and was transported to Valley View Hospital with moderate injuries. Carbondale’s town trustee meetings are moving back to Tuesdays starting this evening. Tonight they continue discussing that topic, as well as affordable broadband internet with Garfield County officials joining Carbondale trustees for the regular meeting at 6 o’clock. Basalt meets tonight with an early 5pm start to appoint a temporary Mayor Pro Tem and then discuss the construction of a performing arts center and various ordinances and resolutions. You can attend either meeting in person or tune in online at grassrootstv.org. As the DNC kicks off in Philadelphia, groups are wondering why children are not a bigger part of the national conversation. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection reports. FEATURE: Carbondale and other communities in the KDNK listening area face challenges retaining police officers. KDNK's January Jones spoke with Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling about what factors affect his department. PLUS: KDNK’s Rocky Mountain Community Radio partner station KGNU features local nonprofits each week in a segment called Dot Org. This week Nikki Kayser talks to Roxanne Brickell Reardon about The Colorado Women’s Education Foundation. For forty years they have supported non-traditional women students with scholarships to help them transform their lives.
July 25, 2016
Seniors across Colorado are pushing politicians to safeguard one of the nation's most popular programs. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection talks to the new head of AARP Colorado. Carbondale Town Trustees hope to continue the momentum on affordable housing Tuesday evening with a visit from Garfield County officials. After last week’s nearly three-hour study session with planning and zoning experts, KDNK’s Gavin Dahl sat down with Mayor Pro Tem Dan Richardson to learn more about Carbondale’s approach. Carbondale’s John Bruna, co-founder of the Mindful Life Program and director of the Way of Compassion Foundation, is now a first-time author. His book The Wisdom of a Meaningful Life will be released on August 9th. He sat down with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh on Valley Voices this month to talk about it.
July 22, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. The Colorado Department of Transportation plans to do some rock mitigation work in the Glenwood Canyon next week, which could impact Mountain Fair. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this story. 2. The Rio Grande Trail mountain lion closure between Rock Bottom Ranch and Catherine Store Bridge was lifted Wednesday morning. No lions have been sighted there since July 13th. 3. Glenwood Springs City Council approved a town smoking ban Thursday night...with an exception. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. 4. Colorado is taking part in a national effort to get more Latinos out into the state's open spaces, parks and forests. Eric Galatas reports for Colorado News Connection. FEATURE: On this week’s News Brief, Gavin Dahl speaks to Aspen Daily News reporter Collin Szewczyk about Republicans in Congress holding a hearing on Thompson Divide leases that Pitkin County commissioners say were slanted.
July 21, 2016
As firefighters continue to battle wildfires that have consumed 35-thousand acres so far in Colorado this year, experts in environmental restoration are gathering in Breckenridge to discuss damage mitigation. Stephanie Carson reports for Colorado News Connection. On Wednesday morning, Carbondale community members honored the life of Ro Mead, who passed away last fall, with a new plaque at the Evergreen Cemetery. Brenda Buchanan, Amy Kimberly, Leslie Johnson, Lynn Kirchner and Noreen Steiner shared their memories of her with KDNK’s Gavin Dahl. An artist, teacher, community organizer and friend, Mead is credited with leading the charge to start First Fridays in downtown Carbondale. Leadville has launched a campaign to save the Tabor Opera House. January Jones reports.
July 20, 2016
HEADLINES: Noam Chomsky endorses Amendment 69, the statewide ballot initiative that would create a new system of health coverage in Colorado. Panelists at the Colorado Farm Bureau issues summit in Glenwood Springs advocated against Amendment 69, against new fracking regulations expected to be on the ballot, and in favor of the so-called Raise the Bar initiative, which would make it harder to get initiatives on the ballot. Climate change’s effect on a common Rocky Mountain plant is driven by sex. Colorado News Connection reporter Eric Galatas explains. FEATURE: Tuesday’s Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission hearing in Glenwood Springs attracted industry workers and Battlement Mesa residents, presenting opposite sides when it comes to drilling within the Battlement Mesa development. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. RFTA is growing it’s partnership with WeCycle- a new bike sharing program already deployed in Aspen and Basalt. RFTA CEO Dan Blankenship told KDNK it’s a natural complement to their bus services. Glenwood Springs City Council are expected to vote on a commitment to engage WE-cycle as the city’s bikeshare partner tomorrow night at 6 PM. The plan would allocate a $75,000 local match to secure federal funding and $25,000 for implementation.
July 19, 2016
NEWSCAST: El Paso County Commissioner and Republican U.S. Senate candidate Darryl Glenn spoke in prime time during opening night at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. Bente Birkeland from Rocky Mountain Community Radio Network reports. KDNK’s January Jones traveled to Denver earlier this month to the Western Conservative Summit, to get a feel for what the next generation of evangelicals are thinking about GOP Presidential Nominee, Donald Trump. On a nature hike along Maroon Creek Saturday, Brandon Jones explained why Wilderness Workshop would like to see the City of Aspen abandon its water right instead of developing a new dam that would impact the wilderness area.
July 18, 2016
HEADLINES: Former Rifle resident Robin McMillan is in the headlines again, this time from inside prison. 9th Judicial District Attorney Sherry Caloia told KDNK that her office got a tip on July 8th that McMillan had stashed money to avoid having it garnished for restitution from a 2015 case. McMillan was convicted last year of embezzling over $400,000 from the Garfield County Clerk’s office. Caloia said the tip turned out to be correct. And, investigators combed through prison phone records, which led them to $46,000 held at McMillan’s son’s home in Rifle. He then led them to an additional $10,000, held by McMillan’s husband. KDNK will follow the story.
The Town Council in Basalt will discuss costs and next steps for their new River Park in a work session tonight at 6. Live streaming video will be available on GrassrootsTV.org. Colorado's 37 delegates to the Republican National Convention are in Cleveland, Ohio this week. As Rocky Mountain Community Radio’s Bente Birkeland reports, the state went for Texas Senator Ted Cruz, and many Republicans remain skeptical of Donald Trump. The latest drought outlook for Colorado shows conditions are good. KVNF's Laura Palmisano spoke with climatologist Brian Fuchs from the National Drought Mitigation Center. FEATURE: Pitkin County's Open Space and Trails is one of the nation's most successful programs protecting open space. On last month’s edition of the KDNK public affairs show For Land’s Sake, host Bill Kight spoke to Pitkin County Open Space and Trails program director Dale Will. Here, they talk about the history of some of the county’s purchases and the controversies surrounding a few. PLUS: The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has approved part of Ursa Resources’ plan to drill inside the Battlement Mesa Planned Unit Development. A state hearing was delayed until August with residents ready to go to Denver to present their concerns. Leslie Robinson, chair of the Grand Valley Citizens Alliance, tells KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh now they'll take a different tack.
July 15, 2016
HEADLINES: Bustang has been on the job for one year now in Colorado. Dana Cronin from Rocky Mountain Community Radio station KRCC reports. Final repairs to Rifle’s water delivery infrastructure have been completed, restoring water utilities to normal operations. The City has lifted the water restrictions that have been in place since June 1st. This November, Colorado voters could decide to increase the tax on cigarettes. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. The deadline to fill out Garfield County’s broadband survey is today. The County wants to know how you use the Internet, what you pay, for what level of service, and what you’d like to subscribe to in the future. More info at Garfield-County.com. Families who have relied on coal mining are facing tough new realities in Western states. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection reports. FEATURE: On this week’s News Brief, we catch up on Basalt’s new plan to allow retail marijuana shops in more prominent locations around town. News director Gavin Dahl speaks to Aspen Times reporter Scott Condon. PLUS: The Roundabout in Carbondale has been in place for nearly 2 years. But as KDNK's January Jones found out from Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling, it's still causing confusion, and potentially dangerous situations for some pedestrians and cyclists.
July 14, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Town Trustees met last night with a packed agenda. Trustees voted to appoint a replacement to serve out the final 18 months of AJ Hobbs’ term. The board approved the water and wastewater master plan. They also voted to award a contract to AV Experts for broadcast equipment and services and intend to begin airing meetings on the City of Glenwood Springs’ TV channel by the end of the summer. For over an hour, the Trustees discussed amending marijuana regulations, including rules about odor mitigation, limits on retail shops within neighborhoods, requiring higher than the current standard of 30% carbon offsets and establishing a new license for a cannabis club. Discussions will continue at future meetings, but the trustees voted on lowering the total number of cultivation facilities in Carbondale to 3. The town approved permits for Colorado Medical Supply to produce and sell infused marijuana products along highway 133. And Senor Taco Show was granted a liquor license. Town of Carbondale also approved a land swap with the Nieslanik family that will allow an expansion of the cemetery. As of an evening report from the White River National Forest last night, the Red Table Fire area is at 20 acres. The response team is working toward containment. Located at Anton Cabin Springs Drainage southwest of Sylvan Lake, the blaze is burning in heavy subalpine fir and spruce and smoke is visible from Eagle. Meanwhile, the Cold Springs Fire in Nederland, just west of Boulder, was 80% contained as of yesterday and remaining evacuation orders are expected to be lifted by the end of the day today. At least eight residences were lost as the fire burned nearly 600 acres. Suspects from Alabama who allegedly caused the blaze by failing to extinguish a campfire in windy conditions were arrested last week. Final repairs to Rifle’s raw water delivery infrastructure have been completed, restoring water utilities to normal operations. The City is lifting the water restrictions that have been in place since June 1st. Garfield County’s broadband surveys wrap up tomorrow. The County will be placing an opt out of state restrictions on broadband development by local governments on the November ballot so they want to know how you use the Internet, what you pay, for what level of service and what you might like to subscribe to in the future. All answers are kept confidential. More info at Garfield-County.com. FEATURE: Garfield County is at the epicenter of natural gas development and fracking. A new Colorado State University study looks at air toxins from early phases of well development. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Professor Jeff Collett about his results. PLUS: Wildfires raging across the state mean trouble for trees and property, and they can also be bad for your health. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection talks to Dawn Mullally with the American Lung Association in Colorado, who was KDNK’s former membership director. We wish her all the best at her new gig in Denver.
July 13, 2016
HEADLINES: Struggling Colorado families can now double their money to buy fresh produce, and help local farmers at the same time. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection has the story. For this week's Eye on Crime, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at arrests in Aspen and Carbondale. FEATURE: As Maeve Conran of KGNU reports for our Connecting the Drops series, climate change means spring runoff is coming earlier, and that creates new challenges for farmers. PLUS: RFTA is one of the few transit agencies in the country to offer Bus Rapid Transit in a rural community. CEO Dan Blankenship talks to KDNK's January Jones about ridership numbers.
July 12, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. Ursa Resources holds a community meeting tonight about plans to drill for natural gas 700 feet from Parachute’s Grand Valley High School on a fracking site that could total 53 wells. The meeting begins at 6 PM at the Grand Valley Fire Department in Parachute and is open to the public. 2. Roaring Fork Valley residents will soon face dramatic changes to individual health insurance plans. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl spoke to investment and insurance adviser Mark Devlin to learn more. 3. LGBT Coloradans who had a gut feeling about a "vast right-wing conspiracy" to limit their rights may not be too far off base. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection has more. FEATURE: Bernie Sanders is expected to endorse Hillary Clinton today. Sanders handily won the Democratic caucus in Colorado and KDNK’s Gavin Dahl asked local Bernie organizers about their experience with the campaign. Michael Gibson was field organizer for 22 counties in western Colorado. Alex Damaso was involved in outreach to Hispanic voters around Glenwood Springs.
July 11, 2016
HEADLINES: 1. Tomorrow evening, Ursa Resources holds a community meeting about plans to drill for natural gas 700 feet from Parachute’s Grand Valley High School. The meeting begins at 6 PM at the Grand Valley Fire Department in Parachute and is open to the public. 2. Larger food-stamp benefits would not be wasted on fast food, according to a new study. Eric Galatas from Colorado News Connection reports. 3. It might not be too long before "No Smoking" signs appear on the sidewalks and in outdoor public spaces in Glenwood Springs. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. FEATURE: Carbondale has been named a Creative District by the state of Colorado. KDNK news director Gavin Dahl sat down with Amy Kimberly, executive director for Carbondale Arts, to learn more about the new distinction.
July 08, 2016
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Environmental Board wants to hear from you and they’re touting rewards for some who participate. The Town of Carbondale and the Environmental Board work on a number of environmental programs and initiatives. They are asking for your opinion on climate change. How do you get around town? Do you compost? The survey is accessible on the town’s website. Three oil and gas companies operating in Colorado made the "who's who" list of top methane polluters. Eric Galatas from the Colorado News Connection has more. FEATURE: Ursa Resources’ latest plans for natural gas extraction include a well pad 700 feet from Parachute’s Grand Valley High School, which will test a state rule for the first time. For this week's News Brief, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh and Rifle Citizen Telegram editor Ryan Hoffman take a look at this plan and a development that has delayed a state hearing on drilling in Battlement Mesa. PLUS: The Aspen Community Foundation has a new scholarship fund for local seniors attending in-state colleges. Deputy Director Valerie Carlin gave the details to KDNK’s January Jones.
July 07, 2016
HEADLINES: The nonpartisan conservation and advocacy organization Center for Western Priorities, based in Colorado, is calling on Utah’s conservative think thank the Sutherland Institute to retract its “Divided Access” report. Colorado gasoline prices are still slightly below the national average. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. It doesn’t sound believable at first but identity theft is a job requirement for many of the people who help bring food from farms to supermarket shelves, according to a new University of Colorado report. Eric Galatas of Public News Service has more. FEATURE: Eagle County Commissioner Jill Ryan speaks to KDNK's Gavin Dahl about a new effort by a growing list of Colorado jurisdictions to lead on climate policy. Colorado Communities for Climate Action members include Aspen, Pitkin County, Vail, Eagle County and 7 others so far. Plus, Eagle County is adding to its solar portfolio with 500 megawatt array in Rifle. PLUS: A new whitewater park is coming to the Roaring Fork River near the Elk Run subdivision in Basalt, thanks to Pitkin County. Gavin Dahl checks in with Aspen Journalism’s Brent Gardner Smith about the proposed location.
July 06, 2016
HEADLINES: A Garfield County Courthouse survey in Glenwood Springs tomorrow will measure public opinion about access to - and the fairness of - courts, and available in English and Spanish. Questions include whether people feel safe in the building, whether they can easily understand forms, whether they feel their case has been handled fairly, and more. On Monday July 4, a 30-year old Fruita man died when the ATV he was riding north of Newcastle rolled over on him. The Garfield County Coroner has identified the man as Jeremy Ventrello. Ventrello had a blood-alcohol level of .225 and was not wearing a seatbelt or helmet. If you've missed paying the state for anything from a campus parking ticket to court-ordered child support, it's not going to show up on your credit score...until at least sometime next year. You can read the entire investigation at denverpost.com. Consumers are having a tough time navigating private health insurance plans in Colorado. Eric Galatas from Public News Service has more. FEATURE: Last month, Andy Zanca Youth Empowerment student Kaysha Clark spoke with Janet Gordon, local licensed professional counselor, and Jason Hodges, Aspen Hope Center volunteer, about LGBT issues among youth. In this clip, Janet and Jason talk about what people can do to support them. PLUS: With several elected officials voluntarily leaving office before their terms are up, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh asked some of Carbondale’s First Friday crowd what they think about it.
July 05, 2016
HEADLINES: Monday afternoon, an ATV accident up Main Elk Road, north of New Castle, took the life of a 30-year old Fruita man. The initial investigation indicates that he lost control of the vehicle on a switchback, was ejected, and then the ATV landed on top of him.
With Glenwood Springs looking for an alternate route for traffic the next time rockfall issues close I-70 through Glenwood Canyon, Pitkin County commissioners unanimously turned down any funding for a potential study of Cottonwood Pass called for by Glenwood Springs. After conducting six hearings around the country including in Grand Junction, the Interior Department announced it will change the way coal mined on public lands is valued starting January 1st. As Taxpayers for Common Sense pointed out in their critique on KDNK last week, ever since the 1980s coal companies have been able to sell fuel to affiliates and pay royalties only on that price, then turn around and sell coal at higher prices, often overseas. New rules will determine the royalty rate at the time coal is leased and revenue will be based on the price paid by outside entities. A report from the White House Council of Economic Advisers says closing the loophole will mean recouping as much as $730 million a year owed to taxpayers. FEATURE: Efforts in the state legislature to ban or phase out American Indian mascots have failed, but some schools are working with tribes to find middle ground as Bente Birkeland reports. PLUS: Republican Donald Trump was in Denver Friday, at the Western Conservative Summit. KDNK's January Jones spoke to a few of the protesters gathered outside.
July 04, 2016
FEATURE: KDNK news director Gavin Dahl gets an update on the civil liberties agenda from Denise Maes of ACLU Colorado. PLUS: Gavin Dahl put together this collage of voices from the Carbondale Downtown Farmer’s Market. PLUS: Data continues to show that where a person lives in Colorado plays a big role in dictating how much they pay for health insurance. And in some regions it’s unusually high. State lawmakers are aware of the problem – but are not sure what the solution is. As Bente Birkeland from the Rocky Mountain Community Radio network reports – a new study will provide some answers.
July 01, 2016
FEATURE: On this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s January Jones discusses river deaths with Denver Post reporter Jennifer Brown. PLUS: In time for Remembrance of Fallen Firefighters Week, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh offers fireworks dos and don'ts ahead of the holiday weekend. PLUS: Donald Trump is in Denver this morning at the Western Conservative Summit, a gathering of 4000 conservative evangelicals. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with organizer Jeff Hunt, Director of the Centennial Institute, a think tank based out of Colorado Christian College.
June 30, 2016
HEADLINES: Dr. William Blevins, an ER doctor at Valley View Hospital and Grand River Health in Rifle, died as result of injuries from a fall during a hike up the Grizzly Creek Trail just outside Glenwood Springs Monday. Wednesday the Garfield County Coroner released the identity of the body of a middle-aged man found floating in the Colorado River Saturday, 49-year old Jonathan Rounsaville. FEATURES: KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Carbondale Trustee A. J. Hobbs, who just announced he’s leaving the Board of Trustees at the end of the summer to pursue other career goals. For the first time in the history of the Carbondale Wild West Rodeo, a woman is riding bulls and competing with the big boys. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh was on hand for Tianna Davis’ debut ride last week and has this story. PLUS: Aspen Ideas Fest continues through the weekend, attracting notable politicians from both sides of the aisle. Secretary of State John Kerry was there on Tuesday. Wednesday former Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney spoke. Vice President Joe Biden will close out the events on Saturday. Meanwhile, another notable Republican, Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels attended Ideas Fest and KDNK’s January Jones asked him about his role as President of Purdue University.
June 29, 2016
HEADLINES: Tomorrow from 8 to 10 am at Colorado Mountain College in Glenwood Springs, representatives from local groups CLEER, CORE and Energy SMART will join the director of Colorado’s C-PACE program for a workshop about how local businesses and nonprofits can benefit from financing for clean energy in Garfield, Eagle and Pitkin Counties. Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy financing or C-PACE, is a mechanism that provides 100% up-front financing for energy efficiency, renewable energy and water conservation measures. Eagle County is adding 500 kilowatts of solar power to its portfolio of renewable energy through a new investment in community solar. The county is purchasing 4,445 panels at Clean Energy Collective’s array at the Garfield County Airport in Rifle. Garfield County Commissioners voted unanimously Monday to exercise their right to play what’s called a consultation role in connection with a proposal by Ursa Resources to drill 22 wells from a pad just 750 feet from Grand Valley High School in Parachute. The school doesn’t have any right to consult on the fracking project so commissioners are taking advantage of new rules that afford them more input. Wilderness Workshop’s executive director Sloan Shoemaker issued a statement yesterday about the Bureau of Land Management’s release of the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Roan Plateau.
FEATURE: KDNK’s Gavin Dahl sat down with Pitkin County management analyst Kara Silbernagel to learn more about their plans to invest about $5 million in high speed Internet infrastructure. The project, which is expected to be fully approved by the end of the summer, will bring new service to 2000 residents in rural parts of the county including Castle Creek, Maroon Creek, Redtone and Marble.
PLUS: Election results are in. Here in Garfield County John Martin retained his County Commissioner seat in the Republican primary, and he will face Democrat John Acha in November. In Pitkin County, Democrat Greg Poschman got the most votes for County Commissioner and will face independent Scott Writer in November. In the Republican primary for US Senate, Darryl Glenn defeated 4 other candidates for the right to challenge Michael Bennet in the general election. And in the 3rd Congressional district Republican primary, incumbent Scott Tipton defeated challenger Alex Beinstein. Congressman Tipton next faces Democratic opponent Gail Schwartz in November. She discusses her “all-of-the-above” approach to energy development with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh in this clip.
June 28, 2016
FEATURES: Jill Lancelot from Taxpayers for Common Sense attended a public hearing in Grand Junction last week about the federal coal program, led by the Bureau of Land Management. Gavin Dahl has more. Aspen Ideas Fest is happening this week, bringing together some 350 presenters in 200 sessions with nearly 3,000 attendees discussing broad topics from Brexit to healthcare and gun violence. KDNK's January Jones has this report. PLUS: Carbondale’s Wednesday afternoon Farmers Market is now in its third week. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl spoke with market manager Jewel Campbell and then got the scoop on the new evening market that starts next week from organizer Terri Anzini.
June 27, 2016
HEADLINES: Smoke from wildfires as far away as western New Mexico and Arizona have affected air quality in the Roaring Fork Valley and on the Front Range. On Saturday, two commercial rafts discovered a middle aged man floating in the Colorado River just west of downtown Glenwood Springs. His identity is still unknown. Anyone with information on the possible identity of the man, can contact the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office. The Garfield County Commissioners meet this morning at 8 am. They are expected to approve a small grant of $2,500 towards reinstating a program that provides sexual assault exams. FEATURE: On a new edition of Sounds of the High Country, KDNK News Director Gavin Dahl speaks to Auden Schendler who wrote a piece for their editorial column, "Writers on the Range" this month.
June 24, 2016
HEADLINES: Lightning reportedly started a fire on the south side of Canyon Creek, west of Glenwood Springs last night. Crews went to the scene to assess it. No other details are available yet. Teen use of marijuana has not spiked in Colorado since legalization, according to new data. One in five teens told the 2015 Healthy Kids Colorado survey they had consumed cannabis in the previous month but 62% of middle and high school students say they have never tried it. Pitkin County Commissioners discussed the possibility of leaving the Colorado Counties organization. According to the Aspen Daily News, Commissioner Rachel Richards cautioned that the statewide lobby group has moved in a very conservative direction this year. Support for privatizing or deregulating public lands, by first transfering control from the federal government to states is growing at CCI. Boulder County already dropped out of CCI in February. Pitkin County is made up of 83% federal land. Eagle County Commissioners have indicated they plan to seek voter approval for new sales tax increases on the November ballot. The goal is to fund affordable housing and early childhood development but its still unclear exactly how the money would be spent. Commissioners estimate that an additional 3/10ths of a cent in sales tax could generate upwards of $4.5 million annually. FEATURE: For this week’s KDNK News Brief, Gavin Dahl speaks with Sopris Sun reporter John Colson about the 2016 Congressional race to represent Carbondale and the rest of the 3rd district in Washington DC. Primary ballots must be returned by Tuesday June 28th. PLUS: For this week’s Eye on Crime, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at Carbondale Police activity from June 10 through the 16th, and arrests in Aspen and Eagle County.
June 23, 2016
HEADLINES:Aspen Ideas Fest launches today and runs through July 3rd. Today, the Bureau of Land Management hosts an all-day public meeting to review, identify and evaluate potential reforms to the federal coal program in Grand Junction. Residents in Garfield, Eagle and Pitkin Counties might get a call from the Colorado Department of Transportation today. CDOT is hosting regional telephone town halls. State and local CDOT officials will be on the calls and people can just listen in or add comments about transportation issues. FEATURES: State legislators are making the rounds locally to update voters on what happened in the Colorado General Assembly this year. KDNK’s January Jones has this report. Bob Randall is the recently appointed head of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources. The department oversees everything form state parks and wildlife, to oil and gas drilling, mining and water conservation. Rocky Mountain Community Radio Network statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland sat down with Randall to discuss his priorities in his new role and the challenges ahead.
June 22, 2016
HEADLINES: Town Trustees meet tonight at 6 pm. They’ll be hearing the results of the 2015 audit and approving planning items around the Thompson Park housing subdivision. The Carbondale Farmers Market is open today from 10 to 3 downtown. New sculptures are in for Carbondale’s Art Around Town and it’s time to vote for the “Best in Show.” The Carbondale Public Arts Commission will award an $1,000 honorarium to the winning artist. You can vote for on the town's webpage at carbondalegov.org. Also on the town’s website is a link for a survey from the Environmental Board. They are asking residents to share what you think should be the community’s environmental priorities. FEATURE: Today KDNK news director Gavin Dahl speaks with Katherine Mulready, Vice President of Legislative Policy for the Colorado Hospital Association, about their opposition to ColoradoCare. Ballot initiative Amendment 69 seeks a new system of universal health coverage in Colorado. PLUS: Garfield County will include a ballot question this November seeking approval for broadband planning. The final round of Garfield County’s community input meetings on high speed Internet took place in Carbondale and New Castle last week. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl reports. Garfield County’s broadband needs assessment is still underway. You can participate in the survey at Garfield-County.com.
June 21, 2016
HEADLINES: Colorado Parks and Wildlife confirmed the lion killed Friday evening is the same one that attacked and injured a young child at a home in Lower Woody Creek that day. The child will recover. Officials say both lions killed were not old enough to survive on their own. The City of Aspen hopes to better align the Aspen Area Community Plan with the land use code. Express your opinion at aspencommunityvoice.com. Glenwood Springs Farmers Market begins tonight, running Tuesdays from 4 to 8pm through late September. With Double Up Food Bucks Colorado, if a family spends $20 in SNAP benefits, they will get an additional $20 to buy Colorado-grown fruits and vegetables. The Market also partners with the Garfield County WIC program to allow clients to buy grains, fresh fruits and veggies at the Market. More info at GlenwoodMarket.org. FEATURE: KDNK News Director Gavin Dahl speaks with ColoradoCare YES spokesperson Jeanne Nicholson. Thanks to the Glenwood Springs Library branch for making space available for the interview. Tomorrow KDNK will explore the NO side of the debate with a policy expert from the Colorado Hospital Association. PLUS: Glenwood Springs City Council ran through a full slate of issues on Thursday night. KDNK’s January Jones reports.
June 20, 2016
HEADLINES: Sunday afternoon, a brush fire burned 50 acres and one house near the Rulison exit on I-70. It was the second one in the area in the last week. On June 15th, 30 acres burned, halting westbound traffic on I-70 for serveral hours. Nearly 300 libraries across the state are offering a new program called "Check Out State Parks” that provides a free pass to all of the state's 42 parks. The Pitkin County, Basalt and all branches of the Garfield County libraries are participating. Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s office are investigating a lion attack on a five-year-old-boy that occurred Friday evening at a residence in Lower Woody Creek.Connecting the Drops is a series about Colorado water issues co-hosted by KGNU in Boulder and KDNK. In this excerpt from the 5th episode, Brent Gardner-Smith of Aspen Journalism explored Aspen’s programs for water conservation. Hear the full episode at kdnk.org. And locals can get a tour of Aspen’s stormwater filtration system at Rio Grande Park on Thursday, June 23rd at 5:30 pm. More information at roaringfork.org. There are many hiking and biking guides for Colorado, but the state doesn’t have its own… at least not a comprehensive one. That’s about to change. There’s a new website and in the coming months it will turn into a catalog of just about every trail in Colorado. Bente Birkeland has more.
June 17, 2016
HEADLINES: (1) The 13th Annual ARE Day Summit opens Sunday in Snowmass. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Chip Comins, founder, chairman, and CEO of the American Renewable Energy Institute, about this year's themes and trends. Info and tickets at areday.net. (2) Carbondale is officially a Certified Creative District. And, one of six new districts around the state. Colorado Creative Industries and The Boettcher Foundation made the announcement Thursday. Along with official designation, each district receives $40,000-worth of financial support, technical assistance, and more. Certification is for five years.(3) River flows in the Roaring Fork watershed dropped over the past week but remain near or above-average for this time of year. Water diversions to Twin Lakes decreased Tuesday and Wednesday, sending more water down the Roaring Fork. Near Aspen, the river was flowing at 140% of average. The Frying Pan dropped from 618 cfs to 220 cfs this week because of planned Reudi Reservoir operations. (4) The 119th annual Strawberry Days Festival opens today at Sayre Park in Glenwood Springs. The parade down Grand Avenue begins at 10 Saturday morning, This year's theme is "Back to the Future".The Strawberry Shortcut begins at 10 AM Sunday. More information at glenwoodchamber.com. (5) Eye on Crime takes a look at a cold case in Garfield County, a murder trial in Glenwood Springs, and Carbondale police activity from June 3 - 9. FEATURE:For this week’s News Brief, KDNK's Gavin Dahl speaks with Grand Junction Daily Sentinel reporter Charles Ashby about whether Governor Hickenlooper will call the General Assembly back to Denver for a special session.
June 16, 2016
HEADLINES: (1) A jury deliberated about six hours Wednesday and convicted Arturo Navarrete-Portillo of first-degree murder in the machete slaying of his wife in Carbondale last year. (2) The Pitkin County Coroner identified the 50-year old man who died in a rafing accident Wednesday as James Abromitis from Maryland. Abromitis was apparently rafting with Aspen Whitewater Rafting and fell out of his raft. He was pronounced dead at the scene. (3) A brush fire scorched more than 30 acres and closed the westbound lanes of Interstate 70 between Rifle and Rulison for several hours Wednesday. Both lanes were open by 8 p.m. (4) New GWS City Manager Debra Figueroa attends her first City Council meeting today. The meeting includes work sessions, prioritizing projects for the next round of Garfield Federal Mineral Lease District grants and an update on the planned Eighth Street connection. Tonight’s regular session of GWS Council includes an update on the city’s development code revision and more. (5) A second public hearing on Xcel’s proposed change to the way solar users are charged for energy consumption and credited for production is scheduled for today at the City of Grand Junction Auditorium from 4-6 p.m. (6) Soft-sided campers and tents are prohibited at the Weller Campground near Aspen until further notice. Two incidents last week, involving bears habituated to human food, have forced the White River National Forest to limit Weller to hard-sided campers only. All food, garbage and other animal attractants must be properly secured. (7) The annual Wilderness Workshop hike series is underway. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl speaks to hike leader Brandon Jones about what’s planned for the summer and about the first hike last weekend. FEATURE: (1) The Crystal River is the last free-flowing river in Colorado. And, three Carbondale-area residents want to keep it that way. They’ve launched an effort to convince county and municipal officials and the public to support a Federal Wild and Scenic designation for a portion of the river to protect it from future dams and diversions. But, at meetings in Redstone and Marble Tuesday, opponents feared losing property and water rights. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. (2) It's rodeo night at Carbondale's Gus Darien Arena. Enjoy a rodeo moment from KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh. More info at carbondalerodeo.com
June 15, 2016
HEADLINES: Garfield County has been the state’s largest producer of natural gas for nine years. But according to new data released this week by the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, GarCo has dropped to the number 2 spot. Weld County surpassed GarCo for the first time. However the announcement by the US Geological Survey last week that recoverable natural gas reserves are 40 times larger than previous estimates could mean Garfield County production will increase again. According to USGS, the Mancos Shale Formation below Colorado’s Piceance Basin has 66 trillion cubic feet of gas, making it the second-largest natural gas formation in the country. Oil and gas interests have already flooded more than 6 million dollars of campaign cash into efforts to block new oil and gas regulations at the ballot. Four ballot items are in the signature-gathering phase. Citizen initiatives need more than 98,000 valid signatures, or 5 percent of Coloradans who voted in the last regular election. Fraudulent signature gathering has already brought a national spotlight on one of the five Republicans vying for the US Senate nomination. As primary ballots go out in the mail to all registered Republicans in Colorado, yet another scandal with Jon Keyser’s name on it is making the rounds this week. People attending Denver’s PrideFest this weekend will notice higher security. As Rocky Mountain Community Radio Network’s Bente Birkeland reports, that’s a direct response to the gay nightclub shooting in Orlando. FEATURE: Late spring and early summer are prime time for viruses, like Hanta and West Nile, to rear their ugly heads. In the past month, rabies and plague have been reported here on the West Slope. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. PLUS: Oil and gas played a big role at meetings this week for the Garfield County commissioners. KDNK’s January Jones has this update.
June 14, 2016
HEADLINES: The Twin Lakes Reservoir should reach capacity tomorrow. Diversions to Twin Lakes will be reduced starting today, which means more water will flow through North Star toward Aspen and into the Slaughterhouse section of the Roaring Fork River below town. On Sunday night, the Roaring Fork above Aspen peaked at 750 cubic feet per second. Expect upwards of 1,000 cfs for the next week. On June 12, 2009, the dismembered body of 38-year old Janine Johler was discovered in an apple orchard near Canyon Creek Road. But, the case has yet to be solved. If you have information about this case or know someone who might, please contact Garfield County Sheriff's Office Investigator Alstatt at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (970) 665-0222. Three Carbondale area residents would like to see a portion of the Crystal River Federally designated as Wild and Scenic. And, will make a public presentation this evening at the Church at Redstone (More). Appointments are available at 970.384.2060 to meet with an immigration lawyer at Catholic Charities on June 20th in Glenwood Springs for legal assistance and representation for immigration concerns, and assistance with immigration services, citizenship and naturalization, visa processing, work authorization, family processing and unification and more. Catholic Charities staff is bilingual. Governor John Hickenlooper signed several bills into law Friday, including one to help prevent suicides. BenteBirkeland has more from the state capitol. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl speaks to Aspen Journalism’s Brent Gardner Smith about his latest piece “Keeping Water in the Crystal.” FEATURE: The regional news collaboration Inside Energy looks at tech giants pressuring states to use renewable energy to power data centers.
June 13, 2016
HEADLINES: Amy Hadden Marsh recaps two unsolved thefts from last week, a burglary in El Jebel and a smash and grab in Aspen. Community members are seeking Wild & Scenic designation for the Crystal River Valley, to prevent dam construction among other objectives. A meeting will be held Tuesday in Redstone at 4pm. FEATURE: A leak in the water intake pipe and pump problems have plagued the City of Rifle's water delivery system since June 1st. City manager Matt Sturgeon told KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh that crews have been working overtime to fix the problem and the city water plant is now stable... but not optimal. PLUS: It’s crunch time for Republicans vying to be the nominee to run against Democrat Michael Bennet in Colorado’s U.S. Senate race. The primary race is still wide open, and when the mail ballots are counted on June 28th, each of the five candidates on the ballot has a plausible shot of winning. Rocky Mountain Community Radio's Bente Birkeland has the story.
June 10, 2016
FEATURE: For this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Post Independent reporter Ryan Summerlin about the Navarette-Portillo murder trial in Glenwood Springs. HEADLINES: Congressman Scott Tipton issued a press statement about the new estimates for natural gas in the Piceance Basin. He tied it to his support for the Jordan Cove pipeline project that would move the Garfield County gas to Oregon, then possibly Japan. Carbondale Police handled 475 calls for service between May 26th and June 2nd. A short Eye on Crime reviews the details. The Hanging Lake Trail will be closed for maintenance again Monday and Tuesday, June 13th and 14th. RFTA starts summer bus schedules on Saturday. VelociRFTA- Bus Rapid Transit will increase frequency on weekdays and will run on weekends. Carbondale Circulator will operate on weekends. Hogback service will run 7 days a week. Valley local will run 7 days a week. Woody Creek service has returned for the Summer. Saturday also marks the closing of Maroon Bells Road for most vehicles and the beginning of daytime bus service. High Country News hosts a panel discussion on The Fate of Our Public Lands at the RMI Innovation Center in Basalt tonight at 6:30 pm. The High Country News editorial team will discuss their ongoing investigations into the Sagebrush Rebellion, anti-federal sentiment, and the implications for the future of the West. The discussion will be followed by a short Q&A and a reception with the magazine’s staff and board members. Wilderness Workshop’s free, guided hike series kicks off tomorrow with a 6-mile hike along the Placita Trail near Redstone. Attorney Ric Morgan is coordinator of the virtual pro se clinic program, hosting free legal clinics the second Monday of each month at the Basalt public library. KDNK's Gavin Dahl spoke to him about the program.
June 09, 2016
HEADLINES: A new study released Wednesday shows 40 times more potentially recoverable natural gas and oil in the Piceance Basin than previously thought. Carbondale Town Trustees approved a set of changes to rules for local marjiuana business that lines up with current liquor license regulations. But larger issues, such as a problem with odors and the concentration of marijuana businesses in certain areas, need more discussion. Because of the small size of Carbondale and the state restrictions on locating marijuana businesses away from schools, Carbondale has concentrated many of them around Buggy Circle on the north side of town. This week KDNK trots out the first of our summer weekly series of Rodeo Moments. The Wild West Rodeo takes place in Carbondale every Thursday night this summer. FEATURE: Municipal, county, and state officials met Wednesday in Glenwood Springs to discuss an alternate traffic route over Cottonwood Pass. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. NEWS SPOT: Garfield County's Public Health Department has taken on new programs in the last year. KDNK's January Jones has an update.
June 08, 2016
The Rio Grande Trail has been nominated for the Rail Trail Hall of Fame by the Washington DC-based Rails to Trails Conservancy. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Laura Stark, organizer of this year's nominations, about the details. The new Garfield County admin offices open in Rifle Friday at 9 AM with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. From the Mountain Connect Broadband confab, KDNK's Gavin Dahl talks to Randy Reznick of Colorado Telehealth Network. CDOT will hold telephone town halls across 8 regions, including the West Slope, over the next month. The public can expect robo-calls to connect to real-time meetings with CDOT personnel. Farmer's markets are sprouting up throughout the Roaring Fork Valley. And, Carbondale area farmers plan to open a 2nd Wednesday market in town. Bill Kight, host of KDNK's "For Lands Sake" talked to Merril Johnson, Erin Kuzeo, and Terry Anzini about the new market and the importance of buying locally-grown food. Hear the whole show at kdnk.org/public affairs.
June 07, 2016
HEADLINES: Rifle water restrictions are back in place, prohibiting the use of outdoor water until further notice. Updates at rifleco.org. Sections of the Glenwood Canyon bike trail are closed due to flooding. Details at cotrip.org. Xcel Energy wants the state PUC to approve rate changes. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Lucy Kessler of the Community Office of Resource Efficiency, or CORE, about how those changes could put a damper on solar energy in the state. FEATURE: KDNK's Gavin Dahl reports from the 2016 Mountain Connect Broadband Conference in Keystone. And, late last month, the Glenwood Springs City Council and Roaring Fork School District shook hands over a long-awaited land exchange. The school district gets city shop property and the land underneath the Glenwood Springs Recycling Center. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh found out what will happen to the recycling center.
June 06, 2016
HEADLINES: Hundreds of government officials and industry leaders will head to Keystone today for the annual Mountain Connect conference. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl spoke to Colorado’s foremost public sector telecom attorney Ken Fellman about why the gathering keeps growing. Roaring Fork School District’s Board of Education has appointed Shane Larson as its newest board member. Larson was also recently named interim-vice president of student affairs at Colorado Mountain College. At least 3,000 bicyclists are coming to Carbondale this weekend. Carbondale is the starting line for the annual “Ride The Rockies” Bike Tour. The ride begins Sunday morning, June 12th, at 6:00 from Roaring Fork High School. Water restrictions continue in Rifle. Outdoor water use is prohibited for at least the next 72 hours. Updates at rifleco.org. FEATURES:KGNU's Maeve Conran interviews reporter Alleen Brown from The Intercept about the millions of dollars in Colorado election spending to stop citizen-led initiatives from creating new statewide regulations on fracking. The last fully operational coal mine in Western Colorado announced layoffs last week. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. For the second year in a row, Governor John Hickenlooper has vetoed a bill that would have banned the use of red light cameras. The images are used to ticket people for running a red light. Bente Birkeland has more.
June 03, 2016
HEADLINES: Republican House member Bob Rankin represents Carbondale and Garfield County at the state capitol, where he is a member of the powerful Joint Budget Committee. KDNK's Gavin Dahl spoke to him about a new law that seeks to improve the administration of food stamps and other programs at the county level. And, law-breaking takes a back seat to backcountry survival on this week's Eye on Crime. RIFLE WATER USE UPDATE: Outdoor irrigation is now permitted. Even-number addresses must water on even-numbered dates; odd-numbered addresses on odd-numbered dates. All residents are advised to water outside early in the morning, to avoid long showers, and to wash only small loads of laundry. Updates are at rifleco.org. Snowpack in the RF watershed is between 77 and 95% of average. Continued warm and sunny weather is expected to increase river and stream levels. The National Weather Service reports that levels could peak next week. FEATURE: Colorado recently received an "F" for transparency from the Center for Public Integrity. For this week's News Brief, KDNK's Gavin Dahl asks veteran journalist Jeff Roberts, director of the Colorado Freedom of Information Coalition, about attempted progress on open records.
June 02, 2016
HEADLINES: Yesterday the state’s largest online progressive advocacy organization, ProgressNow Colorado, announced Ian Silverii is taking over as its new executive director. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl reached him by phone to ask why he’s leaving the state capitol for this new role. The Carbondale Wild West Rodeo opens for the season tonight at the Gus Darien Arena. Slack is at 6 PM and the grand entry is at 7:30. FEATURES: Garfield County is seeking input on high speed Internet, with the first of four community meetings tomorrow at the Glenwood Springs library. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl spoke to Garfield County Manager Kevin Batchelder about the process.You can learn more and participate in the survey at Garfield-County.com. If you’ve noticed something different around town, maybe it’s the 14 new Art-Around-Town sculptures that are in place for tonight’s Art Walk, including one behind the library by local artist John Hoffman.The Carbondale Public Arts Commission is in charge of the project, now in its 15th year. Cheryl Bumgarner, co-chair of the commission, talked to KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about public art, the walk, and why the commission looks for strong sculptures.The CPAC Town Sculpture Art Walk begins tonight at 5:30 at Town Hall and ends with a reception at Marble Distillery at 7.
June 01, 2016
HEADLINES: Fire season for the Rocky Mountains is coming late this year. Fire meteorologists with the Rocky Mountain Area Coordination Center say June will have a below average fire potential thanks to late spring precipitation. The fire potential in the mountains will return to average through July and August. Energy companies in Garfield County extracted 550 billion cubic feet of natural gas in 2015, according to a a recent report from the county's oil and gas division. As a result, pipelines criss-cross Garfield County. What risk does that pose for the public? At tomorrow's Energy Advisory Board meeting, Joe Malloy from the Colorado Public Utilities Commission will address pipeline safety. The meeting is open to the public and begins at 5:30pm at the Rifle Library, or view online at RifleNow.org. And the Roaring Fork School District has added gender identity to its nondiscrimination policy. The school board unanimously agreed to add "gender identity" to the list of circumstances covered under the policy at the RFSD school board meeting last week. FEATURE: Today's edition of Sounds of the High Country features a conversation about the cover story "Trial by Fire" about women firefighters, with journalist Krista Langlois and KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh. PLUS: Local nonprofit Valley Life for All hosts their latest Community Partnership panel in support of people with disabilities tomorrow night, 6:30pm, at the Third Street Center. KDNK's Gavin Dahl got the scoop from board chair Sandy Schroeder.
May 31, 2016
HEADLINES: WPX will offer severance packages to 58 Parachute workers, who are not keeping their jobs under new management by private equity-backed Terra Energy Partners. The Rifle Citizen Telegram reports that 149 workers will stay on. Terra Energy acquired more than 4,700 WPX wells. And, Governor John Hickenlooper’s memoir “Opposite of Woe” was released last week. Meanwhile, the governor has until June 10 to veto any bills passed in the final days of the legislative session or let them become law without his signature. There’s some uncertainty over a compromise bill that passed in the final days that would allow the sale of full-strength beer and wine in grocery stores. Bente Birkland has more. FEATURES: Story 1: In 2015, low income Coloradans as a whole were charged $270 million dollars above what is considered sustainable. That’s according to a long term study looking at local power bills and income data. And, it means energy bills forced hard decisions in other areas. Inside Energy’s Dan Boyce says the most desperate time can be the spring when power bills from the winter start piling up. Story 2: Colorado recently became the last state in the union to legally allow backyard rainwater collection. Here, Boulder aquaponics expert Avery Ellis talks to Living Permaculture hosts Stephanie Syson and Jerome Osentowski about the benefits of the new law. This and all Living Permaculture shows are at kdnk.org/publicaffairs.
May 30, 2016
HEADLINES: Expect half-day Colorado River closures next month in Glenwood Springs due to Grand Ave Bridge work. KDNK's January Jones talks to CDOT Project Public Information Mgr Tom Newland about what will happen when the bridge closes down in 2017 for three months. FEATURE: On April 15, 1981, an explosion at the Dutch Creek Coal Mine #1, near Redstone, killed 15 men. Thirty-five years later a small group hiked up to the mine to honor the dead. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh went along and has this story.
May 27, 2016
HEADLINES: On Tuesday, May 24, around 4:25 PM, the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a kayak floating upside down in the Colorado River. The Eagle County Sheriff’s Office and the Gypsum Fire Department followed the kayak as it travelled from Eagle County into the Glenwood Canyon. Two Glenwood Springs firemen swam out to it as it neared the Hanging Lake rest area and pulled it to shore around 5:15 PM. No one was trapped inside the boat. The kayak is a Pelican Premium Odyssey 100 X. If you think the kayak is yours and you can identify it, please contact the Glenwood Springs Fire Department. Basalt controls 61 housing units for sale or rent in the town’s affordable housing program. The new town council has decided to look over how it’s run and consider changes. January Jones reports. FEATURE: For this week’s News Brief, graduating Roaring Fork High School seniors and editors-in-chief of the Rampage, Fiona Laird and Grace Brown talk to KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about their time at the helm of the school's newspaper. Plus, the river report and weekend weather.
May 26, 2016
HEADLINES: Colorado has its first consortium of cities and counties advocating for action on global warming called Colorado Communities for Climate Action. Founding members include City of Aspen, Pitkin County, Boulder, Boulder County, Fort Collins, Golden, Vail, Eagle County and San Miguel County. A proposed change in BLM rules has Garfield County Commissioners worried about losing local decision-making power. In a formal letter issued last week, commissioners state why they object to BLM’s “Planning 2.0” process. BLM says their overhaul is needed for more transparency and public participation. The letter is published on the county website at garfield-county.com. For this week’s Eye on Crime, Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at Carbondale. FEATURE: The Environmental Protection Agency has issued stricter guidelines for two perfluorinated chemicals - P.F.O.A. and P.F.O.S - which have been linked to adverse health effects, including cancer. In Colorado, three water districts were found to have the chemicals in their systems. Frani Halperin of H20 Radio in Denver reports. BONUS: Land use attorney John Sullivan and his firm represented the City of Fort Collins in the recent State Supreme Court case about local fracking regulations. KDNK asked him to comment on the Supreme Court’s rulings, which struck down Longmont’s ban on fracking and the 5-year moratorium enacted by Fort Collins.
May 25, 2016
HEADLINES: A woman died while rafting the Arkansas River over the weekend. KRCC's Dana Cronin reports. Tonight the Carbondale Board of Trustees meet at 6pm. Governor Hickenlooper is still considering a special session to try again to reclassify hospital provider fees. The Grand Junction Sentinel’s editorial board wrote earlier this month that the issue is quote “too important to die without comment.” There is widespread support for the shift in accounting because the move could free up hundreds of millions of dollars in the state budget for education and transportation. According to ColoradoIndependent.com, just one lobby group opposed the move over the course of the 2016 session. Americans for Prosperity, backed by the billionaire Koch Brothers convinced Senate President Bill Cadman and other powerful Republicans to block the idea after it passed with bipartisan support in the House. Attorney general Cynthia Coffman and her predecessor John Suthers, both Republicans, say the conversion would be constitutional. FEATURE: A proposed bill that would have legalized physician-assisted dying in Colorado failed again this year. Dr. Matt Wynia, director of the University of Colorado’s Center for Bioethics and Humanities, told KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh that this kind of law is a reflection of poor end-of-life medical care. He joins Glenwood Springs chaplain Sean Jeung and Ira Bedzow of New York Medical College to talk about physician-assisted end of life options at the Aspen Jewish Community Center, Thursday from 5 to 7 PM. BONUS: The annual State of the River meeting takes place tonight in Rifle from 6 to 8. KDNK’s Gavin Dahl spoke to Dan Ben-Horin from the Middle Colorado Watershed Council.
May 24, 2016
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork School District Board of Education has their regular meeting on Wednesday including student awards, at the main offices in Glenwood Springs. Graduation ceremonies begin this weekend. Bridges students walk on Friday evening, Roaring Fork High and Glenwood Springs High on Saturday. Tuesday May 31st, the district will celebrate renovations starting at Glenwood Springs Elementary with a ceremony in the Courtyard at 2:45 pm. Then on June 1st, there will be a party to launch construction of the new $34 million Eastbank School from 6:30-8PM. The district has already hired a new principal for Eastbank, Adam Volek from Denver, who will start in August. New figures show that obesity rates among Colorado children ages 2 to 4 have dropped in the last three years. KRCC's Holly Pretsky reports. The Basalt Town Council meets tonight and continues work on two topics that helped shape the recent council elections, development of the Pan and Fork Site and affordable housing. They’ll have dedicated work sessions on each before the regular meeting begins at 7 pm.
Hanging Lake Trail will be closed for trail maintenance on May 25 and 26th. CDOT will close Exit 125 and the off-ramp both days. Meanwhile, CDOT says Independence Pass is on schedule to open for the season on Thursday at noon. Cottonwood Pass should open Friday. Kebler Pass will remain closed for the time being, due to road damage.
Aspen Mountain will be open for skiing through Memorial Day. Anyone with information about Sunday’s fire at Fort Frog on Buttermilk Mountain is encouraged to contact the Aspen Fire Department, the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office, or the Forest Service. The children’s center was a total loss, burning right down to its foundation. FEATURE: Town Trustee Katrina Byars continues working on some creative approaches to affordable housing for Carbondale. She talked with KDNK's Marty Rynearson and Amy Hadden Marsh about the local housing shortage and some potential solutions.
May 23, 2016
This morning we feature a segment from Giving Community, one of KDNK’s many public affairs shows. Amy Barr spoke with Julie Olson, Executive Director of Advocate Safehouse, about their work with survivors of sexual and domestic violence. PLUS, a new state study will look into the cost of health care on the Western Slope and possibly change how insurance rates are calculated. KVNF’s Jake Ryan reports. AND Garfield County is seeking public input on internet speed and reliability for area businesses and residents. You can participate in a survey and learn more about their Broadband Needs Assessment study in partnership with Mesa County at Garfield-County.com.
May 20, 2016
HEADLINES: This week's Eye on Crime takes a look at police activity in Carbondale, Aspen, and El Jebel from May 5 through the 18th. FEATURE: On KDNK’s weekly news brief, Gavin Dahl talks with reporter Kelsey Ray about The Invisible Plume, her investigation into coal methane, for The Colorado Independent.
May 19, 2016
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs City Council is expected to take action tonight on a land swap with the Roaring Fork School District that will allow RFSD to move forward with renovations at Glenwood Springs Elementary. Also on the agenda: smart meters and their potential health impacts. Following up on our reporting from earlier this month, Garfield County is now ready for public input on internet speed and reliability for area businesses and residents. Meetings are scheduled in June at libraries across Glenwood Springs, Carbondale, Rifle and New Castle. You can learn more about the Broadband Needs Assessment study and participate in their survey at Garfield-County.com. FEATURE: Dr. Diana Sirko is nearing the end of her time as superintendent of Roaring Fork School District. She stopped by KDNK and Gavin Dahl asked her about her career and future plans, as well as teacher housing, solar power, and the district's next boss, Dr. Rob Stein.
May 18, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Town Trustees hold a special meeting tonight to discuss short-term vacation rentals, extending 2nd street around the Rio Grande Trail, RFTA's new Integrated Transportation Systems Plan, plus boards and commissions. Grand Avenue Bridge project information manager Tom Newland talks about impacts on the river this summer. Colorado's new Lt. Gov Donna Lynne takes over. FEATURE: Hanging Lake has been a tourist destination since 1910 and it's more popular than ever. District Ranger Aaron Mayville spoke with January Jones about upcoming maintenance and the Forest Service's plans to manage the crowds.
May 17, 2016
HEADLINES: A car crash on I-70 near Canyon Creek killed a teenager this weekend. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. The Aspen Board of Education reported last night that nine applicants are interested in the district’s open school board seat. Interviews begin immediately. The Carbondale Council on Arts & Humanities announced the lineup for Mountain Fair. State Senator Morgan Carroll of Aurora, who is taking on U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, and former State Senator Gail Schwartz of Crested Butte, who hopes to unseat U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, have both been added to a short list of candidates the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will focus its resources on. FEATURE: AARP Colorado represents more than 650,000 residents over the age of 50. Communications Director Kelli Fritts talked with KDNK’s Gavin Dahl about their biggest battles of the legislative session, including an attempt by phone and cable companies to deregulate 911 service in Colorado.
May 16, 2016
HEADLINES: The White River National Forest carried out the Hunter Creek Prescribed Fire successfully across 900 acres on Saturday. A seat on the RFSD Board of Education has opened up. The newly planned Evening Farmer’s Market will start up on July 6th in the parking lot behind the Rec Center, Wednesdays from 4 to 8pm. A Kids’ Bike Safety Rodeo today from 4 to 6:30 at the Rec Center will feature an obstacle course and other challenges. And this Saturday the Bonedale Bike Jam competition kicks off at 10:30 in the morning at the North Face Bike Park. More info at carbondalerec.com. FEATURE: Colorado lawmakers wrapped up their legislative session last Wednesday, after introducing nearly 700 bills over four months. As part of Rocky Mountain Community Radio Network’s capitol conversation, Bente Birkeland talks to statehouse reporters Ed Sealover from Denver Business Journal and Grand Junction Sentinel’s Charles Ashby about some highs and lows of the session.
May 13, 2016
HEADLINES: It will soon be legal for Coloradans to collect rain that falls from their roofs. As Bente Birkeland reports Colorado is the final state in the country to sanction rain barrels. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale, Aspen, and Eagle County between April 22 and May 5. Tomorrow is Arbor Day in Carbondale and Aspen. From 9AM to Noon Carbondale encourages you to bring work gloves and meet at the Launch Pad on 4th Street. Three trees will be provided by the Kay Brunner Tree Fund and the Carbondale Tree Board, at the Launch Pad, at the Thompson House and at Miner’s Park. Aspen will provide information and tree giveaways for residents from 10 AM to Noon in Paepcke Park. FEATURE: On this week's News Brief, Gavin Dahl speaks to investigative journalist and Boulder Weekly editor Joel Dyer about his Society of Professional Journalists award-winning feature Behind the Curtain. Dyer provides context for the recent State Supreme Court decision repealing Longmont's fracking ban and the 5-year moratorium in Fort Collins.
May 12, 2016
HEADLINES: Basalt Town Council met this week to discuss how to move forward on downtown planning. Republicans in the State Senate have defeated one of the Governor’s top priorities this legislative session, a bill that would have reclassified a fee worth hundreds of millions of dollars that hospitals pay, to free up more money for the state budget.
The Post Independent reports today that the Carbondale Branch Library will receive a significant legacy gift from local philanthropist Jim Calaway. He told the paper his latest gift will total at least $150,000. The Garfield County Library District hasn’t decided how to spend the money yet as the board wraps up interviews with executive director candidates this week. FEATURE: Carbondale Mayor Stacey Patch-Bernot began her town government service 12 years ago. Now, she's stepping down. In the third and final installment of our series, Bernot talks with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about some of the challenges she faced as Carbondale’s first woman mayor.
May 11, 2016
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District’s Board of Directors meet tonight at 5:30 pm at the fire station. Fire Chief Ron Leach will present the 2017 budget. So far this year, the district has responded to about 350 calls for service. And the Carbondale Board of Trustees meet tonight at 6pm at Town Hall. KDNK’s January Jones contributed an update from the Garfield County Commissioners meeting on Monday. Expect one-lane closures this week on the Grand Avenue Bridge from 9am to 3pm. Meanwhile, lane closures have begun in Glenwood Canyon. Permanent rockfall fences on the slope where the rockslide occurred in February are the reason for up-to-45-minute traffic delays both directions on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays this summer. FEATURE: Carbondale Mayor Stacey Patch-Bernot began her town government service 12 years ago. Now, she's stepping down. She sat down with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh to talk about her time in office, the issues, and challenges. In Part Two of our series, Mayor Bernot talks about the Thompson Divide Coalition.
May 10, 2016
FEATURE: Carbondale Mayor Stacey Patch-Bernot began her town government service 12 years ago. Now, she's resigning. She sat down with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh to talk about her time in office, the issues, and challenges. In Part One of our series, Mayor Bernot begins with why she's resigning. HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs City Council has announced a new City Manager. Debra Figueroa will start in June. Figueroa leaves her position as assistant borough manager for Carlisle, PA. She has also worked for the City of Sarasota, Florida and at the city manager’s office in Salem, Oregon. A bill to create a public lands day in Colorado is now headed to the Governor’s desk. Bente Birkeland has more. Officials have charged a Rifle teenager with careless driving resulting in death, according to the Grand Junction Sentinel. Rifle High School senior Kyle Scholla died last month after accidentally falling off the hood of a car driven by Alexander Brown. 9th Judicial District Attorney Sherry Caloia indicated that prosecutors plan for Brown enter a diversion program. Garfield County Commissioners meet again this morning at 8 for a work session and updates from county department heads. The Basalt Town Council meets tonight at 6 for a discussion about the “Our Town” planning process. Council is expected to move forward on contracts for the construction of the State Highway 82 Pedestrian Underpass. And this week CMC campuses and administrative offices – from Rifle to Steamboat to Aspen, and all points between – will close at 3 p.m. Wednesday, May 11, and reopen at 8 a.m. Friday, May 13 for a professional development event in GWS.
May 09, 2016
HEADLINES: The murder suspect in a fatal stabbing in Leadville last week turned himself in to authorities Saturday night. The suspect , Matthew James Haley, will be transferred to Lake County to face charges of first degree murder. For the first time during 2016, statewide snowpack improved over the previous month as opposed to the declines that have occurred each month since January 1st. Motorcycle fatalities are up in Colorado. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Garfield County staff in Rifle will move into a new administration building this week. The Clerk and Recorder's office in Rifle will temporarily close during the move and will reopen May 16. The Garfield County Commissioners meet this morning to discuss the timeline for the Grand Opening of the new admin building among other agenda items. FEATURE: With only a few days left in the state’s legislative session, lawmakers in both parties are trying to get something across the finish line that will help with the state’s high cost of housing and get more money for roads. As part of our weekly capitol conversation, Bente Birkeland talks about those and other issues.
May 06, 2016
HEADLINES: Thirty-one year old Jordan Gausman was stabbed to death on Monday in Leadville. Leadville Police say the suspect Matthew James Haley is still at large. A warrant has been issued. He’s about 6 feet tall, 30 years old, with brown hair and blue eyes. His photo is on the KDNK Facebook page. If you have seen Haley please contact the Leadville Police Department at 719 486-1365. A trio of measures aimed at making it easier for more Coloradans to rent and buy homes cleared its first committee at the state capitol on Thursday. But as Bente Birkeland reports, time is running out for the bills to pass before the legislature adjourns next week. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says snowpack in the Roaring Fork Watershed is currently 94% of normal. CDOT will start permanent rockfall mitigation in Glenwood Canyon following the February rock slide. CDOT is limiting periodic traffic holds and potential full closures to Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays between 9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Garfield County is looking at options for expanding access to high-speed Internet. KDNK News Director Gavin Dahl reports on the Garfield County Commissioners work session from Tuesday. FEATURE: January Jones talks to new KDNK news director Gavin Dahl about high-speed Internet in Garfield County.
May 05, 2016
HEADLINES: Colorado has seen it first confirmed cases of Hantavirus this year. So far, two people have contracted the disease, and one of them died. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports.Today, firefighters from the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Management Unit plan to ignite 650-acres for the Battlements Prescribed Fire. KDNK hires new News Director Gavin Dahl. FEATURE: Zane Kessler from the Thompson Divide Coalition speaks with KDNK's January Jones about Rep. Tipton's proposed federal legislative lease swap.
May 04, 2016
HEADLINES: Governor John Hickenlooper signed the state’s 27 billion dollar budget on Tuesday. Legislative leaders from both parties and members of the bi-partisan joint budget committee were on hand for the signing ceremony. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. The Colorado Creative Industries Summit begins here in Carbondale today through through Friday. Around 300 people are expected to participate from communities across Colorado. FEATURE: Water rights can be a touchy topic for Colorado families whose livelihoods are tied to its availability. But in the tight-knit community of San Luis in southern Colorado, a group of farmers and ranchers uses old methods of cooperation to help ensure healthy livestock and a good harvest in the arid region. For Connecting the Drops, Katherine-Claire Nynas has more.
May 03, 2016
HEADLINES: Big News yesterday on the fight against fracking in Colorado. The Colordo Supreme Court struck down fracking bans in two colorado cities on Monday. Among those applauding the decision was Governor John Hickenlooper. Bente Birkeland reports from the state capitol. The Garfield County Sheriff’s office was called out to remove explosives, after a new homeowner found them in an out building on County Road 293. The annual Dandelion Day Parade down Main Street is Saturday, May 7th, starting at 10:00 am.The parade will end at Sopris Park where the annual Dandelion Day celebration continues with music, entertainment, environmental displays, vendor booths, and food booths until 4:00 pm. Snowmass has announced the lineup for the "Summer of Free Music Series." This year there will be 12 free concerts. FEATURE: Colorado's Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is largely the final word in the state when conflicts arise between residents and industry. Lauren Swain represents 350 Colorado, a group working to stop climate change. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh questioned her about why their group thinks the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission should be decommissioned.
May 02, 2016
Carbondale hosts a statewide creative summit this Wed through Friday. CCAH's Amy Kimberly spoke with KDNK's January Jones about how locals can get involved. The Elk Creek Mine in Gunnison County was once one of Colorado’s most productive coal mines. Its coal silo stood tall for 50 years, but last Friday it was demolished. While just another step in the mine’s shutdown, its collapse was symbolic. KVNF's Jake Ryan was there and has this report.
April 29, 2016
HEADLINES: Tomorrow is Carbondale’s annual Spring Clean-Up and Waste Diversion Day - 8 AM to 4 PM across from Town Hall. KDNK spoke with Julia Farwell, chair of the town Environmental Board, about what kinds of items will be collected and more. Details at carbondalegov.org. FEATURE: Garfield County Commissioners along with other Colorado lawmakers support a proposed natural gas liquefaction plant in Coos Bay, Oregon and a pipeline that would connect Piceance Basin natural gas to Asian markets. The plant has been in various stages of approval for 12 years and has kicked up controversy from the coast to the Rockies. Blogger Peggy Tibbetts, author of From the Styx, has been following the issue and for this week’s News Brief, she talks to KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh.
April 28, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Mayor Stacey Patch Bernot has resigned. She made the announcement at last night’s Carbondale Trustee meeting. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that newly-elected trustee Dan Richardson was unanimously chosen by trustees as Mayor Pro-Tem and will act as Mayor when Bernot leaves office next month until a replacement is elected. Bernot said she is moving to Redstone. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on Carbondale PD for this week’s Eye on Crime. FEATURE: The Governor's Commission, studying American Indian representations in public schools released a report earlier this month. The group recommends that public schools do not use American Indian mascots. Bente Birkeland talks to Ernest House Junior, Executive Director of the Colorado Commission of Indian Affairs and a member of the Ute Mountain Ute Nation and has this report.
April 27, 2016
HEADLINES: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has an update on the fire that destroyed a home on County Road 117 on Monday. A Fruita man is guilty of several charges of illegal big game hunting on the Uncompaghre Plateau. According to a Colorado Parks and Wildlife press release, 59-year old Melvin Weaver has lost his hunting and fishing privileges and must pay close to $15,000 in fines. Top fire officials say Colorado is expected to have an average or below average wildfire season, reports Bente Birkeland . The Frontier Historical Society will have a new director in May along with a new name. Bill Kight, formerly of the USFS and a KDNK public affairs show host, will helm the non-profit, now called the Glenwood Springs Historical Society. Cindy Hines is stepping down as director after 17 years. FEATURE: Three new Carbondale Town Trustees were sworn into office last week. That means three are stepping down. On Tuesday, KDNK presented a conversation with out-going trustee John Hoffman. Today, Allyn Harvey begins by talking about why he ran for office 4 years ago.
April 26, 2016
HEADLINE: Democracy Now host Amy Goodman spoke to a Carbondale crowd Saturday about the importance of independent media. Here, she talks about the beginnings of Pacifica Radio. FEATURE: Three new Carbondale Town Trustees were sworn into office last week. That means three are stepping down. Over the next week, KDNK will present conversations with John Hoffman, Allyn Harvey, and Pam Zentmyer, reflecting on their time in office. Today, John Hoffman begins by talking about why he ran for office 8 years ago.
April 25, 2016
HEADLINES: A woman was injured Saturday morning during a parachute jump near Heather Lane and CR 119, southeast of Glenwood Springs. The Garco Sheriff reports that two parachutists were preparing to land in a field when one chute folded over, causing the woman to fall the last 15 feet to the ground. No helicopters were available so a ground crew was sent to rescue the woman. She was safely transported to Valley View Hospital around 1 PM. State lawmakers in both parties have unveiled a proposal to bring the presidential primary back to Colorado. Bente Birkland reports. The GWS City Council has narrowed the field for finalists for the City Manager position to three candidates: Debra Figueroa of Carlisle, PA, Joe Hannan of Palmer, AK, and James Nichols of Minden, NV. The public is invited to meet them from 7 - 9 PM Thursday, April 28, at the GWS Community Center. FEATURE: Colorado State University and the state's Department of Agriculture are teaming up this summer to certify hemp seeds. This will help legitimize a cash crop that's been taboo for decades. KOTO's Caitlin Ketel reports.
April 22, 2016
HEADLINES: The Democratic House overwhelmingly passed a bill Thursday, requiring public schools to allow students with medical marijuana prescriptions to take the medication at school. Bente Birkeland reports. It's Earth Day and Garfield County residents can bring old paint, oil, insecticides, pesticides and other haz waste to the Garfield County Landfill Saturday, April 23, from 9 AM to 3 PM. Do not mix products and keep them in original, labeled containers when possible. The landfill will not accept some kinds of haz waste to call before you go and to make an appointment. 625.2516 or find out more at garfield-county.com. This week's Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale. FEATURE: This week's News Brief features Ryan Hoffman, editor of the Rifle Citizen Telegram, for an update on local air quality studies.
April 21, 2016
HEADLINE: This year's 5 Point Film Festival begins today with events and films all weekend long in Carbondale. Earlier this month, KDNK's Luke Nestler spoke with filmmaker Hilary Oliver and 5 Point Film Fest executive director Sarah Wood about Hilary's debut film "Being Here" and some of the finer points of spending time outside. Film Fest schedule and tix are at 5pointsfilm.org. FEATURE: The 160-acre proposed River Edge development between Glenwood Springs and Carbondale - formerly known as Sanders Ranch, Bair Chase, and Cattle Creek Crossing - was dealt a blow Monday by Garfield County Commissioners. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
April 20, 2016
HEADLINES:The Garfield County Sheriff warns of a jury duty phone scam. The caller claims to be with the Garfield County Sheriff's Office. He'll say you've missed jury duty and there's a warrant out for your arrest. Then, he'll say he wants money to make the warrant go away. He'll instruct you to take a cashier's check to the Sheriff's Office in Glenwood Springs and then call him on his personal cell phone as you're approaching the building. That way he can easily and quickly assist you. If you get this call, hang up and then contact local law enforcement. And, watch out for IRS scams about quick refunds or faster ways to pay your tax bill. Distracted driving is on the rise in Colorado. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. FEATURE: Three new Carbondale Town Trustees take office this week. Today, in the last of a three-part series of conversations with the trustees-elect, January Jones speaks with Dan Richardson. Trustees-elect will be sworn in tonight at 6:10 PM at Carbondale Town Hall.
April 19, 2016
HEADLINE: A proposed bill from Congressman Scott Tipton would swap gas leases in the Thompson Divide for leases in Delta County. Groups that previously championed a similar lease swap are condemning the new plan. KVNF’s Jake Ryan spoke with Alex Johnson of the Western Slope Conservation Center to find out why.FEATURE: Three new Carbondale Town Trustees take office this week. And, KDNK will feature interviews with each of them. Today, January Jones speaks with Marty Silverstein.
April 18, 2016
HEADLINES: Garfield County Commissioners will consider an amendment today to the approved River Edge PUD, across Highway 82 from the entrance to Cattle Creek. The current owner is Texas-based Carbondale Investments LLC. The proposal includes 366 homes, over 50 of which would be affordable units, and 30,000 square feet of public or commercial space. Commissioners will also consider a request from the company’s subsidiary to rezone 43 acres next door to the PUD from residential/suburban to commercial use. The Town of Carbondale and the Garfield County Planning Commission recommend that Commissioners deny the rezoning request. It will be legal for Colorado hunters to be pretty in fluorescent pink next hunting season, after Governor John Hickenlooper signed a bill into law late Tuesday. Bente Birkeland has more. Grand Avenue Bridge update. FEATURE Three new Carbondale Town Trustees take office on Wednesday, April 20. And, KDNK will feature interviews with each of them. Today, January Jones speaks with Ben Bohmfalk.
April 15, 2016
HEADLINE: Garfield County Crime Stoppers issued a notice this week about a homeless man named Emmanuel Johnson, who went missing late last August. Rumors have added a twist to his disappearance. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. If you have any information about Johnson’s disappearance, contact Detective Michael Yorty with the Glenwood Springs PD at 970.384.6500. FEATURE: On April 15th, 1981, Mid-Continent’s Dutch Creek Mine #1 blew up, killing 15 miners. Pat Noel was then-editor of the Valley Journal, Carbondale’s weekly newspaper. He and his small staff covered the events that day. For a special News Brief, Noel talks with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about what happened on April 15th - 35 years ago.
April 14, 2016
HEADLINES: Garfield County Crime Stoppers issued a notice yesterday about a homeless man named Emmanuel Johnson, who went missing late last August. There are rumors that Johnson may have been murdered and buried near the homeless camps above Doc Holliday’s Grave in Glenwood Springs. If you have any information about this situation, contact Detective Michael Yorty with the Glenwood Springs PD 384.6500. All lanes are open through Glenwood Canyon with no restrictions, following about 2 months of repair work. The emergency project came with a price tag of $5M. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Thirty-five years ago Friday, April 15th, Mid-Continent’s Dutch Creek Mine Number One blew up, killing 15 miners and shaking up the Carbondale community. Former Redstone resident and Mid-Continent employee, Rob Mulford, plans to lead a memorial hike up to the mine Friday. He spoke with KDNK’s Luke Nestler last week about why he wants to honor Carbondale’s miners. FEATURE: Former Leadville Chief of Police is going to trial in May for allegedly stealing money and guns from the town. KDNK's January Jones spoke with 5th Judicial District Attorney Bruce Brown for details on the case.
April 13, 2016
NEWSCAST: Colorado schools may soon be forced to allow students to use medical marijuana in a non-smokeable form while on school grounds. Bente Birkeland has more. KDNK's Public Affairs Show "Giving Community" profiles local non-profits. On April's show, Marian McDonough from Catholic Charities explained to host Amy Barr how they work with the immigrant community. Find this show and others at kdnk.org/publicaffairs.
April 12, 2016
HEADLINES: In Basalt, The town council meets tonight for a short agenda and there's a public meeting April 14th, 4:30- 7:00 p.m. to review town floodplain maps to set the Flood Insurance Rate Map. Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District responded to 80 calls for service from March 6th to April 9th, 2016. A measure that would pave the way for students to take medical marijuana on public school grounds passed the House Agriculture Livestock and Natural Resources committee on Monday/this week on a bipartisan vote of 10 to 3. Bente Birkeland has more. The Colorado State Patrol is stepping up DUI enforcement for the next month. The increased DUI enforcement started April 9 and continues through May 15. FEATURE: The Carbondale Board of Trustees meets tomorrow night, Wednesdays now, and will discuss possible changes to laws about marijuana businesses. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report to catch you up on what’s happened so far.
April 11, 2016
HEADLINES:Garfield County Commissioners meet today, tomorrow and will hold a special meeting on Wednesday at 2pm about a proposed oil and gas lease swap in the White River National Forest. A new "discussion draft" of legislation was released by Congressman Scott Tipton’s office on March 24th. Colorado's black bears have begun emerging from hibernation across the state, which means people need to mind their garbage. The Grand Avenue Bridge will have lane closures from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm today. Later this week, the Exit 116 eastbound on-ramp will be CLOSED completely from Wednesday, April 13th at 7:00 AM to Thursday, April 14th at 5:00 PM. If you are heading on I-70 East from Glenwood, you’ll need to access it from Exit 114 in West Glenwood. RFTA spring route changes go into effect today. FEATURE: Colorado is debating whether to form an office of fantasy sports, to regulate and create rules around pay for play fantasy sports leagues. Bente Birkeland talks to statehouse reporters about the possible new law that has backers in both parties.
April 08, 2016
HEADLINES: Democrat Gail Schwartz has announced she’ll run against Republican Scott Tipton for US Congress for Colorado’s 3rd District. The RFTA full Spring Season schedules are effective Monday, April 11, 2016. VelociRFTA-BRT will have reduced frequency and discontinue on the weekends, Carbondale Circulator will discontinue on the weekends, other changes at rfta.com. Highlands closing party this weekend is getting additional bus service on Sunday April 10th. The Republican controlled state senate passed the budget on yesterday with only five no votes. As Bente Birkeland reports, lawmakers made several changes including adding money to try and recruit more teachers to rural schools, and reducing funds that Republicans believe help implement the federal clean power plan in Colorado. FEATURE: On this week’s News Brief, Ryan Hoffman, Editor of the Rifle Citizen Telegram catches listeners up on what's happening in Parachute politics.
April 07, 2016
HEADLINES: KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at Carbondale PD for this week’s Eye on Crime.A bill to expand a state program that offers driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants has cleared a the House Committee and now will go to the Colorado Senate.
And Today, activists with I Drive Colorado- a group supporting the bill- staged a one day hunger strike that will end with a vigil tonight in 5 colorado towns, including Glenwood Springs. Activists will be gathering at the Garfield County Courthouse tonight at 7 pm. Bente Birkeland has more on the immigrant drivers licesnes hearing last week.
April 06, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale voted down 2 tax increases and voted Allyn Harvey off the Town Board of Trustees. Ben Bohmfalk, Dan Richardson and Marty D. Silverstein will join the board later this month. In Basalt, a close race for mayor has Jacque Whitsitt winning re-election by just 33 votes. Two current council members lost their seats and three newcomers will join the board- Auden Schendler, Katie Schwoerer and Jennifer Riffle. KDNK's January Jones takes a closer look at Carbondale's election. The Colorado Department of Local Affairs has divied up almost $38M dollars as part of the Tier I and Tier II Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance Program. Money from the program goes to towns and counties that experience social or economic impacts of the extractive industries. Carbondale was granted just over $118,000 for Nettle Creek treatment plant improvements. RFTA receives $1M for compressed natural gas bus engines, and Rifle receives almost $1.2M to replace a water storage tank. GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE: Expect lane closures on the Grand Avenue bridge from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm today and Friday. FEATURE: Involvement in local government seems to be alive and well after yesterday’s elections in 5 towns within the KDNK listening area. KDNK’s January Jones filed this update Tuesday night. Find election details at kdnk.org or on our facebook page. (Ski report/weather)
April 05, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Police have no new leads in last week's retail robbery. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Firefighters from Carbondale and Glenwood Springs responded to a brush fire Monday afternoon near Westbank. A vehicle apparently hit a power pole and a transformer exploded, causing a 2-acre blaze between County Road 167 and the H Lazy F Mobile Home Park. The fire was contained shortly after 4:30 PM. The “Osprey Cam” near Emma along the Roaring Fork River has gone live. Now, you can watch the birds do all things osprey, from building the nest to raising their young. Find the birds at pitkincounty.com/osprey. A 54-year-old Aspen woman pleaded guilty Monday to felony drunk driving. But, reports the Aspen Times, Deputy DA Andrea Bryan agreed to recommend probation instead of prison when Kari Aaeng is sentenced this summer. Aaeng’s attorney said she is going to inpatient treatment in Minnesota this week. Aaeng is scheduled for an August sentencing.Read the whole story at aspentimes.com. FEATURE: KDNK's January Jones has a last minute ballot guide for today's Carbondale election.
April 04, 2016
HEADLINES: According to the Aspen Times, Hansi Brenninger, 48, died after hitting a tree while skiing an advanced trail at Utah's Park City Mountain Resort Saturday. Brenninger was a full-time ski instructor at Aspen Mountain. The Town of Carbondale begins a controlled burn at the Nature/Dog Park today. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Tomorrow is Election Day in Carbondale. Drop off ballots at Town Hall from 8AM - 5PM today and from 8AM - 7 PM Tuesday, April 5. Tomorrow is also the deadline for CPW's 2016 Limited Big Game licenses. More information at cpw.state.co.us. FEATURE: The Democratic-controlled House passed the state budget Friday with five Republicans on board. The bill now heads to the Republican-controlled Senate. As part of our weekly capitol conversation, Bente Birkland talks to statehouse reporters about the debate and what to expect going forward.
April 01, 2016
HEADLINES: SkiCo says heavy spring snowfall and deep base-depths will extend the season at Aspen Highlands for two weekends- April 23-24 and April 30-May 1. This week’s Eye on Crime with Carbondale PD.Castle Creek Bridge in Aspen will see temporary construction beginning on April 4th and continuing through July for a "living lab" study of traffic impacts from a wider side path. And it’s 1st Friday in Carbondale. This month’s theme is "Spring into Wellness." FEATURE: This week's News Brief features John Stroud from the Glenwood Springs Post Independent.
March 31, 2016
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork School District will make two public presentations tonight. The first is at 5:30 at the district offices on Grand Ave in Glenwood Springs about designs for the new Eastbank Elementary School. A second meeteing from 7 - 8 PM at GWS Elementary features the school's renovation plans. More project info is at the district's website. More Carbondale Town Trustee candidate remarks from Allyn Harvey and Patricia Warman. Election Day is Tuesday, April 5. Town Clerk Cathy Derby recommends dropping ballots off at Town Hall during business hours or until 7 PM on Election Day. Colorado is on the verge of allowing residents to collect rain water from their rooves. Bente Birkland reports. The USFS, ACES, Pitkin County, the City of Aspen, Aspen Fire, and Wilderness Workshop present a public open house today at 4 at the Aspen Fire Department about the Hunter Creek Prescribed Fire, planned for this spring. An information sheet is at cityofaspen.com. FEATURE: Montana writer Hal Herring calls himself a "nature-obsessed, gun-soaked malcontent" in his cover story for the current issue of High Country News. He traveled to Oregon's Malheur National Wildlife Refuge last winter, looking for kindred spirits. But, that's not exactly what he found. For this week's Sounds of the High Country, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Herring about what happened. Find links to Herring's story and the complete Valley Voices interview on our home page at kdnk.org.
March 30, 2016
HEADLINES: The Colorado DMV begins a two-week statewide rollout of the new drivers licenses next week. According to the Post Independent, Colorado residents can continue to use their current valid licenses, instruction permits and id cards through the expiration dates. The new design features a more colorful background with a photo of Mt. Sneffels. The State Capitol is pictured on the other side. The card has laser engraving of the driver’s information and a photo in grayscale to enhance security. More information is at colorado dot gov slash d.m.v slash newlook. State representatives debate the budget this week. The numbers are tight, but as Bente Birkeland reports, the Speaker of the House is pleased that lawmakers won’t have to cut key programs such as public schools and colleges or Medicaid reimbursements to physicians. The Colorado Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing offers free telecommunications equipment and accessories to qualified Coloradans through its Telecommunications Equipment Distribution Program. For more information, qualifications, or to receive an application, go to ccdhh.com. A 19-mile reach of the Blue River from just north of Silverthorne to Green Mountain Reservoir is no longer Gold Medal water. Colorado Parks and Wildlife biologists removed the gold medal designation earlier this month due to unnatural stream flows, sparse aquatic invertebrate populations, low nutrient content in the water, and degraded habitat. FEATURE: The CO Secretary of State has launched an investigation to find out why some Coloradans were recently unable to register to vote or update voter information on the state website. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this update. If you have problems with the website, call the Colorado Secretary of State’s elections office at 303-894-2200. And, this week, KDNK airs remarks from 8 town trustee candidates from a March 15 forum. Today features closing statements from candidate Doc Phillip and Ben Bohmfalk.
March 29, 2016
HEADLINES: The GWS Library hosts a prom dress giveaway today from 4 - 7 PM and Saturday, April 2, beginning at 1 PM. The Parachute Library will also have prom dresses to give away Monday, April 11, at 2 PM. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more about the dresses and why they're free. Supporters of proposed Initiative 57, which would allow eligible Colorado residents who apply for a drivers license to be automatically registered to vote, are allowed to collect signatures for the initiative to try to get it on the 2016 general election ballot. FEATURE: More election coverage with KDNK's January Jones and Carbondale Town Clerk Cathy Derby plus candidate views from Marty Silverstein and Wayne Horak.
March 28, 2016
HEADLINES: Around 4 PM Saturday, the Pitkin County Sheriff received a report of a missing snowmobiler who had traveled up Independence Pass. A Pitkin County Sheriff’s deputy and four members of Mountain Rescue Aspen were dispatched and found the man around 8:22 PM. He had apparently become stranded due to mechanical problems with his snowmobile. Carbondale Town Trustee election ballots are due Tuesday, April 5. As of Friday morning, the Carbondale town clerk said that 497 ballots had been returned out of 3,300 mailed. Eight candidates are running for 3 seats and this week, KDNK features 2 candidates each morning with clips from their closing statements at a forum on March 15th. Today's candidates are Michael Durant and Dan Richardson. FEATURE: Health insurance premiums vary widely in Colorado, depending on where you live. Mountain regions have some of the highest premiums in the country. A measure to consider changing how those rates are calculated got its first hearing at the statehouse Thursday. More from Bente Birkeland. GLENWOOD SPRINGS BRIDGE/I-70 UPDATE: On Tuesday, one lane in each direction will be closed on the Grand Avenue Bridge. Closures at I-70 Exit 116 at Glenwood continue this week. The eastbound on-ramp remains closed through Thursday, March 31. Only one lane of the eastbound off-ramp remains open through Thursday and will re-open to two lanes on Friday, April 1. Only one lane of the westbound off-ramp will be open through Friday.
March 25, 2016
HEADLINES: Today, on the Grand Avenue Bridge Project-- one lane is closed in each direction from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Same thing will happen again on Tuesday, March 29th. The Carbondale Public Arts Commission (CPAC) HAS announceD the selected artists for the 2016 Art aRound Town (ART) public exhibition. This week’s Eye on Crime with Carbondale PD reports. At the beginning of the legislative session Governor Hickenlooper said bringing affordable, high speed broadband to all parts of the state was a top priority. But as Bente Birkeland reports, he’s not happy with the progress now that lawmakers are more than halfway through the session. FEATURE: Carbondale voters decide on April 5th if they will accept a climate excise tax on utility bills. At last week's Carbondale Board of Trustees candidate forum, the question to each candidate was simple: Why should Carbondale vote against or in favor of this tax?
March 24, 2016
HEADLINES: Paving that was expected to close both the on and off ramp for EB I-70 at Exit 166 in Glenwood Springs was canceled yesterday due to weather. The closure now happens today from noon to 4 pm. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says Snowpack in the Roaring Fork Watershed is currently 86% of normal, a slight decrease over the last week. The Garfield County Deputy County Manager position has been filled by Fred Jarman. Colorado’s next Lieutenant Governor is poised to be Donna Lynne, an executive at the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan. Governor John Hickenlooper made the nomination announcement today. As Bente Birkeland reports, Hickenlooper says his pick would be very capable of filling his shoes, if he doesn’t end up finishing his second term as Governor. FEATURE: Work in Glenwood Canyon along I-70 continues as the CDOT recovers from road from damage done by rockslides in February. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with CDOT spokesperson Tracy Truelove for an update yesterday afternoon.
March 23, 2016
HEADLINES: Last night the Basalt Town Council approved a construction bid to build a pedestrian underpass on Highway 82 for $6.2 millon. A measure that seeks to crackdown on drivers ‘rolling coal’ goes before the House Transportation Committee this morning. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. A bill to allow hunting in pink is now headed to the Governor’s desk. He’s expected to sign it, which would make Colorado the second state in the country to allow hunters to wear pink. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: During the Carbondale Town Trustee Candidate forum, hosted by the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce, the Sopris Sun and KDNK on March 15th, the eight people running for the 3 at large seats were asked what they thought about affordable housing issues in Carbondale. Here are their unedited responses. Hear the entire candidate forum at kdnk.org. Ballots in the Carbondale election are due April 5th.
March 22, 2016
HEADLINES: The Grand Avenue Bridge Project in Glenwood Springs is progressing with waves of closures centered on exit 116. Tom Newland is the public information manager for CDOT, he called into KDNK this morning and explained the traffic flow and closures around 116 this week. A new state program aims to help rural economies, not with grants, but with expertise. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. The Garfield County Council on Aging is accepting nominations for two awards. Nominations are due by April 1 for the banquet on April 30, forms at garfield-county.com. FEATURE: Several police reform measures are making their way through the statehouse, and lawmakers are also looking at how best to address the problem of teenager’s sexting. Bente Birkeland discusses those bills as part of our weekly capitol conversation.
March 21, 2016
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners are meeting this morning at 8 am. The Upper Colorado River Interagency Unit is planning multiple prescribed fires. Exact dates are dependent on weather. Fires will include 800-acres around Avalanche Creek, 1,100-acres of Hunter Creek and 1,800-acres for the West Divide Prescribed Fire 13 miles south of New Castle. If you are concerned about how the smoke might affect you or someone you know, contact Lathan Johnson at 970-244-3000. A measure that would make it easier to sue oil and gas operators when energy development is linked to earthquakes initially cleared the House Thursday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network through the Colorado Climate Center needs "rain gauge volunteers" to help track weather and precipitation patterns in the state, particularly on the West Slope. And, anyone can do it. State climatologist Nolan Doeskin says volunteers must purchase their own backyard rain gauge but the Climate Center will help with the cost if necessary. More information is at cocorahs.org
March 18, 2016
HEADLINES: This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale police activity from February 26 through March 4. FEATURE: A federation of environmental groups called Environment America says putting solar panels on big box stores can double the nation’s solar output. But, solar experts say state policies could influence economic arguments for solar. Free Speech Radio News reporter Hannah Leigh Myers has more from Denver. GLENWOOD CANYON UPDATE: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is open in both directions 24/7 from MM 116 to MM 133, using the EB lanes. WB lanes remain closed. This is a NO PASSING zone and the 10 ft width restriction is enforced. Future closures and delays of 30 minutes or more through the canyon are still possible. Hanging Lake, Grizzly Creek, and Shoshone rest areas remain closed. Cottonwood Pass and Independence Pass remain closed and unavailable as alternate routes. And, CDOT does not recommend using Frying Pan Road or Hagerman Pass. Find updates at cotrip.org or by calling 511. GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE: Beginning tonight at 6 until Saturday, March 26, both the eastbound on-ramp and off-ramp at I-70 Exit 116 in Glenwood Springs will be in a one-lane configuration. But, from Monday, March 21 to Friday, March 26th, the eastbound on-ramp will be closed.The alternate pedestrian pathway is also closed from the 7th Street public parking lot to the old sewage treatment plant through March 21. The Glenwood Trail crossing at Two Rivers Park and I-70 Exit 116 remains closed for utility work. But, businesses in the area remain open and accessible to pedestrians. HWY 133 UPDATE:
Crews have returned to SH 133 near Paonia Reservoir for rockfall mitigation work between MM 24 and 25 point 5. Traffic control is typically in place from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Expect up to 20-minute delays and single-lane alternating traffic.
March 17, 2016
HEADLINES: A recently released study says rainy weather is becoming less frequent in the southwest. KRCC’s Dana Cronin has more. FEATURE: Garfield County residents who receive food stamps are now required to get job training. And, there’s a program to help. It’s called Employment First. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Garfield County Human Services staff Trisha Murray and Mary Baydarian about how the program is affecting people in the county. Find out more about Colorado Employment First at garfield-county.com/human services.
March 16, 2016
HEADLINES: It’s tax season and the US Attorney for Colorado says to watch out for IRS scams. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Find out more about different kinds of tax scams and what to do about them at irs dot gov. FEATURE: Local filmmaker James Brundige joined KDNK's Luke Nestler on Express Yourself last week to discuss his new film "Wildways: Corridors of Life". In this clip, they talk about connectivity conservation and why it's important for wildlife. Brundige's film "Wildways: Corridors of Life" premieres in Aspen, Friday March 18 at 7:30 at the Wheeler. Details and tickets at aspenshowtix.com. The event is a benefit for Wilderness Workshop.
March 15, 2016
Eight candidates are running for three Carbondale Town Trustee seats this year. KDNK, the Sopris Sun. and the Carbondale Chamber host a candidates forum tonight at the Third Street Center. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh asked Chamber director Andrea Stewart about what the audience can expect. FEATURE: The EPA does not regulate many of the potentially harmful chemicals found in our drinking water. But, now a different federal agency is hunting for some of them in groundwater near military bases. Some state governors are demanding immediate action but researchers insist that EPA regulations wouldn't be strong enough. H2O Radio reports on the latest developments.
March 14, 2016
HEADLINES: An environmental group has a new interactive extreme weather map that charts natural disasters across the nation and in Colorado. KRCC's Tucker Hampson reports. The extreme weather map is at environmentcolorado.org. Colorado’s four-month long legislative session has reached the halfway mark. Bente Birkeland talks to statehouse reporters about some of the surprises so far, and what lies ahead. GLENWOOD CANYON/1-70 UPDATES: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is open to traffic 24/7. Both bridge decks are open but single lane traffic remains in place. This is a NO PASSING zone and a 10 ft width restriction is enforced. Expect delays of 30 minutes or more and future closures since rock work and repairs are ongoing. Hanging Lake, Grizzly Creek, and Shoshone rest areas remain closed. Cottonwood Pass and Independence Pass are closed and unavailable as alternate routes. And, CDOT does not recommend using Frying Pan Road or Hagerman Pass. Find updates at cotrip dot org or by calling 511. The I-70 Exit 116 Glenwood Springs eastbound on-ramp remains closed until Wednesday, March 16 at 6:00 a.m. Eastbound traffic for Glenwood Springs to Aspen should exit at West Glenwood exit 114.
March 11, 2016
HEADLINES: It’s time to get your garden on. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks with Kim Doyle Wille about seed distribution events sprouting up this weekend in the Roaring Fork Valley. Seed distribution workshops are this Saturday, March 12, at the Glenwood Springs and Pitkin County Libraries. And, at the Carbondale Library Friday, March 18th. FEATURE: About 40 people turned out for Monday's Climate Action Excise Tax forum, sponsored by the Carbondale Chamber. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. Find the ballot question text and more about the proposed Climate Action Excise Tax at carbondalegov.org. Click on “Tabor Ballot Issue Notice”.GLENWOOD CANYON UPDATE: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is open to traffic 24/7. Both bridge decks are open but single lane traffic remains in place. This is a NO PASSING zone and a 10 ft width restriction is enforced. Expect delays of 30 minutes or more and future closures since rock work and repairs are ongoing. Hanging Lake, Grizzly Creek, and Shoshone rest areas remain closed. Cottonwood Pass and Independence Pass are closed and unavailable as alternate routes. CDOT does not recommend using Frying Pan Road or Hagerman Pass. Find updates at cotrip.org or by calling 511. GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE: The Colorado River remains closed at the Grand Avenue Bridge through Sunday, March 13. The Glenwood Trail crossing at Two Rivers Park and I-70 Exit 116 remains closed for utility work. A 6-foot fence is in place as a construction barrier. But, businesses in the area are open, and accessible to pedestrians. Eastbound I-70 traffic at Exit 116 in Glenwood Springs has been reduced to one lane and a 40 MPH speed limit. 7th Street in Glenwood Springs from Colorado Ave to Cooper Ave is closed.
March 10, 2016
HEADLINES: Governors from western states are working on a plan to potentially make changes to the Endangered Species Act. Bente Birkeland has moRE. FEATURE: "For Land's Sake" is KDNK's newest public affairs show, hosted by author, activist, and Forest Service historian, Bill Kight. This week's inaugural show featured guest Scott Fitzwilliams, supervisor of the White River National Forest (WRNF). In this clip, Kight talks to him about problems with the Forest's annual budget. The WRNF's annual report is online at fs.usda.gov/whiteriver. Listen to the entire first edition of "For Land's Sake” at kdnk.org. Click on Public Affairs and scroll down. The show airs the second Tuesday of every month.
GLENWOOD CANYON UPDATE I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is open in both directions 24/7 from MM 116 to MM 133, using the EB lanes. WB lanes remain closed. Because of one lane, "head to head" traffic flow, this is a NO PASSING zone, and the 10 ft width restriction is enforced. Expect future closures since rock work and repairs are ongoing. Delays of 30 minutes or more through the canyon are still possible. Hanging Lake, Grizzly Creek, and Shoshone rest areas remain closed. Cottonwood Pass in Eagle County and Independence Pass above Aspen remain closed and unavailable as alternate routes. And, CDOT does not recommend using Frying Pan Road or Hagerman Pass. Find updates at cotrip dot org or by calling 511. GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE Night work continues for the deconstruction of the pedestrian bridge tonight from 8:00 p.m. – 6:00 a.m. Travelers leaving I-70 at Glenwood Springs Exit 116 will detour onto 6th Street during these hours. The Colorado River remains closed at the Grand Avenue Bridge through Sunday, March 13. The Glenwood Trail crossing at Two Rivers Park and I-70 Exit 116 remains closed for utility work. Crews are moving or upgrading below-ground utilities.. A 6-foot fence is in place as a construction barrier. But, businesses in the area remain open and accessible to pedestrians.
March 09, 2016
HEADLINES: A bill to study how to lower the high cost of health insurance in some parts of Colorado has been introduced at the state capitol. As Bente Birkeland reports, it would examine whether to include the entire state as one geographical region for setting health insurance rates. FEATURE: February in Colorado was seven degrees warmer than January this year, with an average temperature of 32.6 degrees Fahrenheit compared to an average of 25.6 degrees in January. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information, the average temperature across the nation from December through February was almost 5 degrees higher than the 20th century average. But, what does that mean for March? Nolan Doesken is the state climatologist at Colorado State University. Here, he talks with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about why he's as unsettled as the spring weather. Find more about this winter’s weather and other climate news at noaa dot gov.
GLENWOOD CANYON UPDATE: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is open in both directions from MM 116 to MM 133, using the EB lanes. WB lanes remain closed. Because of one lane, "head to head" traffic flow, this is a NO PASSING zone, and the 10 ft width restriction is enforced. Expect future closures since rock work and repairs are ongoing. Delays of 30 minutes to one hour through the canyon are still possible. Find updates at cotrip dot org or by calling 511.
GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE: Night work continues for the deconstruction of the pedestrian bridge tonight and Thursday - March 9, and 10 - from 8:00 p.m. – 6:00 a.m. And, tonight, beginning at 8, travelers leaving I-70 at the Glenwood Springs Exit 116 will detour onto 6th Street until 6:00 a.m.
March 08, 2016
HEADLINES: Restaurants can now participate in Pitkin County’s SCRAPS composting program. KDNK’s January Jones has more. GLENWOOD CANYON UPDATE: I-70 through the Glenwood Canyon will be closed from 9 AM to 4 PM from the Glenwood Springs exit to Dotsero today. Crews are working to complete the rockfall mitigation fencing with helicopter support as well as continued road repairs. Safety closures of the Hanging Lake, Grizzly Creek and Shoshone rest areas remain in effect. Bair Ranch and No Name rest areas are open. The Glenwood Canyon Bike Path remains closed. Find updates at cotrip.org or by calling 511. GRAND AVE BRIDGE UPDATE: Night work is planned for the deconstruction of the pedestrian bridge tonight, Wednesday, and Thursday - March 8, 9, and 10 - from 8:00 p.m. – 6:00 a.m. A 500-ton crane will assist with the lift and transport of the bridge. Utility work began yesterday on the east and west wing streets. FEATURE: Smoking claims about 5,000 lives in Colorado every year, killing more people than HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol, motor vehicle accidents, suicide, and murder combined. But, state data shows nearly 16 percent of Colorado adults smoke. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano looks at how one West Slope county - and the state - are trying to help people quit.
March 07, 2016
HEADLINES: I-70 through the Glenwood Canyon will be closed from 9 AM to 4 PM from the Glenwood Springs exit to Dotsero on Tuesday, March 8. A bill to incentivize more people to teach in rural schools cleared the Senate Education Committee Thursday. Bente Birkeland has more from Denver. FEATURE: Carbondale voters will decide on a Climate Action Excise Tax next month. And, tonight’s the chance to hear more about the tax at a forum, hosted by the Carbondale Chamber. Andrea Stewart, Executive Director of the Carbondale Chamber, spoke with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about some of the details. The forum begins at 6 PM in the Calaway Room at the Third Street Center. The deadline for submitting questions is noon today. Email questions to email@example.com.
March 04, 2016
HEADLINES: ROAD CLOSURE UPDATE From 10 this morning until Monday morning at 6:00, the I-70 eastbound on- and off-ramps at Glenwood Springs will be closed. Workers are installing a storm drain associated with the Grand Avenue Bridge Project. Motorists traveling east on I-70 To Glenwood over the weekend will need to exit the interstate at West Glenwood. Motorists traveling downvalley on Hwy 82 can get on I-70 westbound at Glenwood Exit 116 or via US 6 to the West Glenwood roundabout. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale. Snowpack in the Roaring Fork Valley is at 92% of normal, says the Roaring Fork Conservancy. Snow at lower elevations continued to melt this week, leading to higher water levels in creeks, streams, and rivers. The National Weather Service says this spring could show slightly cooler than normal temperatures and more precipitation. FEATURE: Colorado is, overall, one of the healthiest states in the country. But things are starting to change as the population grows and changes. One of the unintended side effects is an increasing disparity between the healthiest and least healthy counties. Bente Birkeland has more…
March 03, 2016
HEADLINES: A bill to change the mission of the COGCC failed in the Senate Agriculture Committee Wednesday. As Bente Birkeland reports, two Democrats joined Republicans to defeat it. FEATURE: Carbondale Town Trustees approved an application Wednesday night for a new City Market store on Highway 133 and West Main plus a special use permit for an adjacent filling station. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Find the City Market plans and maps at carbondalegov.org or at our website, kdnk.org.
March 02, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale Town Trustees hold a special meeting tonight at 6, in part to continue the public hearing about an application for a new City Market grocery store. Last week, trustees gave the application a first look. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. Find the applicant’s plans and maps at carbondalegov.org. FEATURE: Voters in eleven states went to the polls or caucused on Super Tuesday. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders won Colorado’s Democratic caucuses. He also grabbed victories in Oklahoma, Minnesota, and in his home state. In Garfield County, 61.5 % of 27 precincts voted for Sanders. Clinton took 36.8% of precincts. Democrats and Republicans from Precincts 1 through 4 caucused in Carbondale. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh caught some of the action.
March 01, 2016
HEADLINES: It’s Tuesday, March 1st and that means it’s caucus day in Colorado. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Democratic caucus locations are at garcodems.org. Republican info is at caucus.cologop.org. Colorado is on the road to becoming the final state in the country to legalize rain barrels. Bente Birkeland reports democrats reached an agreement Monday along with several Republicans who had previously opposed the measure. FEATURE: For almost three decades, the Garfield County Humanitarian Service Awards have honored outstanding community members. Anyone can nominate, well, anyone. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Amy Barr, who’s on the Garfield County Humanitarian Service Awards Committee, about the award and the nomination process.
February 29, 2016
HEADLINES: Carbondale town staff said Friday that local farm vendors want to start an evening market and they want to know if Carbondale residents support the idea. An evening market would go from from 4 to 8 pm on either Thursday or Sunday in the downtown plaza or at Sopris Park. A community interest survey will be conducted during the upcoming March 4th downtown First Friday event. If results show community support for the market, organizers will bring a proposal before Town Trustees. On Thursday,Colorado lawmakers will finish hearing testimony in the Senate Education Committee on a bill that aims to encourage more teachers to work in rural schools. Bente Birkeland reports. Snowmass voters will decide in May about a bond issue that would raise funds to pay for federally-mandated sewer plant upgrades. The proposed new mill levy must generate $1.68M annually to pay for the bond. The estimated monthly tax is $1.89 per $100,000 of a home's actual value or about $22.69 per year. For a home with an actual value of $500,000, the annual estimated tax is $113.43. FEATURE: The recent I-70 closures may have hindered motorists traveling through Glenwood Canyon but the daytime reduction of traffic along the interstate actually helped the Grand Avenue Bridge project. KDNK's January Jones spoke with CDOT spokesperson, Tom Newland, Friday to find out more about the project's progress. For more information and to sign up for weekly email updates about the Grand Avenue Bridge project, go to grandavenuebridge.com. To report problems, call or text Tom Newland at 618.9922.
February 26, 2016
This week’s News Brief features Scott Condon of the Aspen Times about tax hikes for Basalt and El Jebel homeowners.
February 25, 2016
Republicans and Democrats will caucus across Colorado Tuesday. But, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh found out, caucusing can be complicated.
February 24, 2016
The Center for Snow and Avalanche Studies, headquartered in Silverton, Colorado, has a new director. Jeff Derry spoke with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about his experiences before Silverton, the role of CSAS, and the impact of last week’s dust storm on this year’s snowpack.
February 23, 2016
HEADLINES: Monday was the first day of pilot car operations moving traffic through Glenwood Canyon from 4 pm to 9 am. Traffic delays of an hour or longer. Eastbound is to begin at Exit 116 Glenwood Springs and westbound is to begin at Exit 129 Bair Ranch rest area. The Canyon will close daily 9 am - 4 pm for continuing work. FEATURE: Colorado lawmakers are divided over whether a hospital provider fee should be reclassified in the state budget so it doesn’t count towards the state’s revenue limit under the Tax Payer’s Bill of Rights. Bente Birkeland talks to reporters about the politics of it all as part of our weekly capitol conversation series.
February 22, 2016
HEADLINES: I 70 in Glenwood last night from 6 pm and will be open until 9 am this morning before closing until 4 pm for work. Sunday, crews brought down around 30 to 50 cubic yards of rock, with three boulders in the two to five ton range. To date, about 400 tons of rock have been mitigated from the canyon site. Last week during a site visit, KDNK's January Jones spoke with Steve Olson, CDOT Program Engineer for Northwest Colorado, about challenges working in the canyon. The Roaring Fork Food Alliance hosted a commmunity meeting about improving the Carbondale Farmers Market. They discussed expanding the hours of the market into the evening, hosting a second weekend market, how to get more local area farmers into the market and needing to replace the current market manager. The Town of Carbondale does not officially run the market. Farmers growing speciality crops in Colorado have an opportunity to apply for grant money through the Colorado Department of Agriculture. Proposals are due by April 15th. More information at www.colorado.gov/ag. FEATURE: The stand-off at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon is over. Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy and his sons are in jail. But, High Country News reporter Tay Wiles says the so-called patriot groups that supported the Bundys and others out West are insurgents. For this week’s Sounds of the High Country, Wiles spoke with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh. Read Tay Wiles’ story “Showdown at Sugar Pine” in the current edition of High Country News or at hcn.org.
February 19, 2016
HEADLINES: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is closed in both directions thru this weekend from mile marker 116 to 140 in Gypsum for a rock slide. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Aspen arrests between February 4 and February 11. FEATURE: For this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Brent Gardner-Smith of Aspen Journalism about a Basalt water right case that could set a precedent for the state’s marijuana industry.
February 18, 2016
HEADLINES: Amy Ford with the Colorado of Transportation says that I-70 thru Glenwood Canyon may not be ready to reopen later today. Carbondale is almost finished updating it’s land use and zoning code. It’s been about 20 years since it was overhauled. The Town contracted with consultatns Clarion Associates for the code re-write. There’s a public meeting tonight at 7:00 pm at Carbondale Town Hall to explain it. Glenwood Springs City Council meets today for work session on the land swap with the Roaring Fork School District this morning, then they will be doing a site visit to Two Rivers Park. At 5 pm they have another work session scheduled for planning on 6th street before the public meeting begins at 7 pm. and a quick update on the carbondale armed standoff on Tuesday. 18 year-old Andres Carillo-Delara’s bond was set at $25,000. The Post Independent is reporting that the teen may have been under the influence of drugs and has a previous record of run-in’s with law enforcement. Carillo-Delara only had a bb gun but that fact was unknown during the 5 hour standoff with law enforcement. Read the whole story in today’s Post Independent. FEATURE: Earlier this month, local community members and decision makers convened for a housing forum to talk about keeping living in the mid-valley affordable. Today, we hear Moderator Clark Anderson ask the panelists where the opportunities lay now to create affordable housing. Garfield County Housing Authority Executive Director Katherine Gazunis gave an example of a project in Eagle County that could work in Garfield County.
February 17, 2016
Headlines: ACES at Rock Bottom Ranch is now “Certified Wildlife Friendly”. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Jason Smith, site director for the ranch, about what the award means. FEATURE: Yesterday, there was an armed standoff in Carbondale. Police initially got a call around 8:30 am to respond to a man with a gun at 312 Weant Blvd in Carbondale. Transportation officials say I-70 will remain closed in Glenwood Canyon through Thursday. KVNF's Jake Ryan reports. After it reopens, construction will cause delays through the canyon with just one way traffic moving at a time in the eastbound lane with a pilot car.
February 16, 2016
HEADLINES: I-70 through Glenwood Canyon is closed in both directions from mile marker 116 to 140 in Gypsum for a rock slide. It's the second slide to happen on Monday. No estimated time of reopening. The Carbondale Recreation Department will be submitting a mini-grant application to Garfield County LiveWell, requesting $5,000 to build a paved trail connecting 3rd Street to the Highway 133 Crystal Valley Trail. WPX Energy has made plans to pull out of the Piceance Basin. But what will happen to the 200 employees in Parachute? KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. FEATURE: Earlier this month, local community members and decision makers convened for a housing forum to talk about keeping living in the mid-valley affordable. This week during membership drive, we’re featuring audio from that discussion. The panel included representatives from Habitat for Humanity, the Garfield County Housing Authority, United States Rural Development, a development consultant and the town managers of Glenwood Springs and Carbondale. Today, we hear from moderator Clark Anderson who summaries the housing challenges in this area.
February 15, 2016
HEADLINES: Municipal and county administration offices throughout the broadcast area are closed today for the holiday. Garfield County Commissioners meet tomorrow, beginning at 8 AM. Topics for discussion in the afternoon include a request for ownership change for the solid waste transfer and recycling facility east of Carbondale. A bill requiring rabies vaccinations for dogs and cats in Colorado heads to the full House floor for debate. Bente Birkeland has more. Average retail gasoline prices in Colorado fell 7.5 cents/gallon last week The average price in the state is $1.56/gallon, according to gasbuddy, about 14 cents lower than the national average. Garfield County prices average $1.87. In Glenwood Springs, the lowest price is $1.73. Pitkin County still has the highest average price at $2.44. The Glenwood Springs City Council appointed members of several boards and commissions last week, including Ingrid Wussow, Sumner Schacter, and Tim Maloy to the city's P&Z Commission. First Lady Michelle Obama was in Aspen over the weekend. According to the Aspen Daily News, Mrs. Obama skied Tiehack on Saturday and Snowmass on Sunday. FEATURE: Colorado's pine beetle epidemic appears to be slowing but the state's forests are still not out of the woods when it comes to insect infestations. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
February 12, 2016
HEADLINES: Colorado Mountain College Trustees approved a slight increase in some tuition rates for the 2016-2017 academic year. The increases come after years of nearly flat rates for associate level tuition. The Aspen Pitkin Airport is holding meetings to hear thoughts on the potential environmental concerns of a new airport terminal and a widened/reconfigured runway from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the Limelight Hotel in Aspen on February 16 or at Snowmass Village Town Hall on February 18. Lawmakers are debating whether Colorado should fund full-day kindergarten. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE:Just one year ago, a tragedy unfolded in Carbondale. Maria Carminda Portillo-Amaya was found dead. Her alleged killer was her husband Arturo Navarrete-Portillo. He had allegedly confessed while recieving medical treatment after being in a car accident in Carbondale, immediately after the perported time of his wife’s death. For this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Post Independent Reporter Ryan Summerlin about recent developments in the case.
February 11, 2016
HEADLINES: The Bureau of Land Management is close to a decision on 65 disputed oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. In a meeting with local governments Wednesday, agency representatives said they are leaning towards a recommendation that would cancel in full 25 leases in the Thompson Divide but let other leases already in production continue. This week’s rundown of Carbondale police activity includes dog bites and bad driving. The Roaring Fork Food Alliance hosts a community forum about the Carbondale Farmers Market on Wednesday, February 18 from 6:30 to 8 pm in the Third Street Center Gym. The Garfield County Fair and Rodeo won several national awards for 2015 from the international Western Fairs Association. It’s a three day weekend for the kids, bankers and many government offices- Monday is President's Day. FEATURE: The Carbondale Trustees met last night. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
February 10, 2016
HEADLINES: Last night the Basalt Town Council approved a working list of tasks to move forward with planning and development of the Pan and Fork site. The Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6 pm. They have two marijuana business license hearings including one for a new medical marijuana dispensary called Black Dog. They’ll also have a discussion about playground accessibility for the town’s parks and discuss the town participating in a LED street light program offered by XCEL energy. A new computer virus is making its way into computers worldwide. It's the Teslakrypt virus, AKA the Wordpress virus. If you have a Mac, you're safe but if you are surfing on a PC you could be at risk. KDNK Geek Speak co-host Louie Girardot explained how the virus works on this week's show. Girardot advises backing up your computer data and unplugging your back up drives. You can listen to more details about the virus on Monday’s Geek Speak, posted at kdnk.org. The Garfield County Sheriff’s office is warning of a resurgance in phone scams in the area. They say three are being reported right now- one is a pay or be arrested scam posing as law enforcement, the second is scamming as the IRS and the third scam says your credit card payment is late. All three ask for payment over the phone. FEATURE: If you want to drive from Denver to the Roaring Fork Valley in an all-electric vehicle - or "E.V." - you can leave your "range anxiety" behind. Colorado has 649 public, electric vehicle charging stations statewide that can pretty much take you from Denver to Grand Junction and up and down the Front Range without worrying about running out of fuel between stations. But, as EVs catch on and cost less, what about pollution from the sources of the electricity that fuels the cars? KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Tyler Svitak of the American Lung Association in Glenwood Springs last week about whether coal-fired power plants and other power sources defeat the purpose of EVs.
February 09, 2016
HEADLINES: The annual Ride the Rockies Bicycle tour will be launching from Carbondale. The race this year is from June 12-17 but if you want to join the tour you have to decide now- the registration period is open until February 28th. The Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs is set to reopen next week after being closed for over two months. KRCC's Tucker Hampson reports. The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District went on 21 emergency calls from January 31st to February 6th. The Districts board meets Wednesday evening at 5:30 at headquarters in Carbondale. On tomorrow’s agenda is the May election and a discussion regarding domestic partnership health coverage. Two board seats are up for election in May. Applications available from CRFPD at (970) 963-2491. The Fat Tuesday party in Snowmass gets going at 3pm with a bead toss, parade and then evening fireworks. FEATURE: On this mornings feature, we catch up on what’s going on in Basalt. KDNK’s January Jones has this update.
February 08, 2016
HEADLINES: This week’s news on the Grand Avenue Bridge is periodic lane closures in each direction from 9 am to 3 pm for the rest of the month. Contractors will also be doing demolition work at night this week from 9 pm to 6 am on the south side of the bridge on 7th Street. 7th Street will be closed completely between Colorado and Cooper. Clean Energy Economy for the Region or CLEER hosted a transportation forum last Friday in Glenwood Springs. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh was there and has this report. Tomorrow, Snowmass kicks off Fat Tuesday with the “Mother of All Ascensions Race” - an uphill climb from the Base Village Plaza at the bottom of Fanny Hill to Gwyn’s High Alpine. Then the party gets going at 3pm with a bead toss, parade and then evening fireworks- gosnowmass.com. FEATURE: State lawmakers are debating whether terminally ill patients with less than six months to live should be allowed to take medication to end their own lives. It’s just one of several controversial bills being debated under the gold dome. Bente Birkeland talks to state house reporters about it as part of our weekly capitol conversation.
February 05, 2016
HEADLINES: It's Ski Spree weekend, with a treasure hunt at Sunlight Resort on Saturday, along with competitions on Sunday and the chili cook-off and fireworks in town in Glenwood Springs on Saturday night. This week’s Eye on Crime looks at Carbondale. Monday there is a public meeting from 5:30 to 7 pm about the upcoming whitewater park on the Roaring Fork River at Basalt Town Hall. The Roaring Fork Conservancy Snowpack in the roaring fork watershed is currently 114% of normal. FEATURE: CLEER or Clean Energy Economy for the Region hosts today’s Mobility, Fuels, and Funding Forum in Glenwood Springs. KDNK spoke with Heather MacGregor, CLEER communications director, about the forum’s speakers and panels, and possible take-aways.
February 04, 2016
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs City Council meets for work sessions and the regular meeting tonight at 7. They will have a work session on snow removal and one about water and sewer impact fees. Council is also expected to approve a contract for Clarion consultants to overhaul the city code. A bill that would have given terminally ill patients the option to take medication to end their lives failed in a Senate committee on Wednesday on a party line vote. Bente Birkeland has more. The Environment Foundation, Aspen Skiing Company’s employee-run nonprofit charity, is accepting grant applications. FEATURE: Today's local news feature takes a look at the work of the Garfield County Coroner Robert Glassmire. He took office in January, 2015 and was elected for a four year term. He worked for the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office for 12 years with six of those as an investigator. But you don’t have to be a medical doctor to be the coroner; that expertise is hired out to a forensic pathologist. An issue that Glassmire said will be a challenge for the Western Slope in the next few years. Here in this update to the Garfield County Commissioners, Glassmire talks about the work his office did in 2015. SKI REPORT.
February 03, 2016
HEADLINES: In Glenwood Springs, bridge construction this week will restrict access to River Street as the contractor begins staging in the Glenwood Hot Springs parking lot. The House passed a bill Tuesday to increase public awareness of winter tire laws along I-70. And, as Bente Birkeland reports, a similar bill passed last year - but failed in the Senate. Colorado Parks and Wildlife has new restrictions on antler shed hunting. In Eagle, Pitkin, Garfield, and Routt counties, antler shed hunting is prohibited through March 14. The Aspen Historical Society screens Films from the '40s for its Time Travel Tuesday winter film series tonight at 5:30 at the Isis Theatre. FEATURE: A housing forum convenes today at the 3rd Street Center to talk through challenges and solutions facing people in the mid-valley. KDNK's January Jones spoke with CCAH’s Amy Kimberly and Randy Essex of the Post Independent to learn why they got involved in organizing the housing discussion. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT.
February 02, 2016
HEADLINES: Schools are closed again today. A housing forum will convene at the Third Street Center on Wednesday to talk through challenges and solutions facing people in the mid-valley. Sponsored by The Carbondale Creative District, Glenwood Springs Post Independent, Community Builders and The Third Street Center- There will be presentations, panel discussions and audience comments. The director of the Garfield County Housing Authority and the town managers for Carbondale and Glenwood Springs are on the panel. CCAH’s Amy Kimberly is taking a lead role in organizing the event and told KDNK how it came about.
Snow removal is the subject of a special work session for the Glenwood Springs City Council on Thursday. The Colorado Department of Transportation on Sunday announced a new snow plow monitoring system, which provides near real-time location information for CDOT’s snow plow fleet at cotrip.org. FEATURE: The Carbondale and Rural Fire District is staying busy with emergencies during this winter storm. Yesterday afternoon, KDNK's January Jones checked in with Deputy Chief Rob Goodwin to hear how they’ve been handling the weather and about the 2015 volunteer awards for the district.
February 01, 2016
HEADLINES: RE-2 Schools in Garfield County, RE-2 Roaring Fork School Distict and the Aspen School District are closed today. Many daycare centers and preschools follow school closures, so check with your provider this morning. Colorado Mountain College locations in Aspen, Spring Valley, the Glenwood Center and the Lappala Center in Carbondale are closed. The Rifle campus is still open but on a delayed schedule opening at noon. Dr. Diana Sirko is leaving her position as superintendent of the Roaring Fork School District in June of 2016. Garfield County Commissioners meet this morning at 8 am in Glenwood Springs for the morning session. They’ll approve their own 2016 list of policies directives that cover all areas from human services to economic development. Tomorrow they’ll meet again and hear an update from CDOT about the Grand Avenue Bridge and in the afternoon on Tuesday, they are scheduled to have a joint meeting in New Castle with the town board. Colorado’s aspen trees are resilient... but susceptible to defoliation and discoloration, brought on by blight and insects. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more about the results of an aerial survey of the state’s forests. FEATURE: Roughly three weeks into Colorado’s annual legislative session a lot of bills are starting to get their first hearings. Bente Birkeland talks to statehouse reporters about the upcoming week and how politics impacts the bills being heard in committees. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT.
January 29, 2016
HEADLINES: Yesterday, Roaring Fork High School cut the ribbon on its new solar array. Carbondale Mayor Stacey Bernot was at the event and says the project fits in with Carbondale’s clean energy goals. Grand Aveune Bridge construction is slowly expanding. Work may continue into weekends because of weather delays. Next week, the contractor will demo the catwalk from the existing pedestrian bridge to the traffic bridge overnight from 9:00 p.m. – 6:00 a.m. with 7th St. fully closed during that time. The construction has changed bus routes in Glenwood Springs with RFTA downvalley buses detouring on 9th and eliminating the stop at 9th and Grand Avenue. The stop will still be serviced by Ride Glenwood. It’s property tax time in Garfield County. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Gas prices are still dropping - even Carbondale prices have finally dropped just below $2/gal. FEATURE: Teens at the Roaring Fork High School Energy Club were behind the schools' new solar array that was unveiled yesterday. KDNK was there and has this audio, featuring students Fiona Laird, Emily Mata and Tavia Teitler. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT.
January 28, 2016
HEADLINES: X-Games is in Aspen Snowmass for the 15th year today through Sunday at Buttermilk. All sporting events are free and open to the public but the concerts and other hospitality are ticketed. Live feeds of the events are going to be available all weekend at xgames.espn.go.com. Roaring Fork School administrators have announced they have chosen architects for the two major projects funded by the 122 million dollar bond they received in the fall -remodeling for Glenwood Springs Elementary School and building a new elementary school between Carbondale and Glenwood springs. This week’s Eye on Crime with Carbondale PD reports.
A housing forum will convene at the Third Street Center on Wednesday, February 3 at 6:30 to talk about what is affordable housing in the mid-valley. Sponsored by The Carbondale Creative District, Glenwood Springs Post Independent, Community Builders and The Third Street Centere there will be presentations, panel discussions and audience comments. The organizers are trying to kick up ideas that could lay the groundwork for future developments, including a possible application to the state to be a pilot community for a rural housing initiative that incorporates live/work space for people working in creative industry. FEATURE: With the legalization of marijuana in various states and forms, conservation groups and others are asking how much legal grow operations affect water consumption. In Colorado, water managers and researchers are working together to answer that question. As part of Connecting the Drops, our statewide series on water issues, Maeve Conran reports.
January 27, 2016
HEADLINES: Monday was the filing deadline to run for a seat with the Carbondale Town Trustees. Carbondale Town Clerk Cathy Derby said that there are eight candidates for 3 seats: Ben Bohmfalk; Michael Durant; Allyn Harvey; Wayne Horak; Doc Philip; Dan Richardson; Marty Silverstien and Patricia Warman. Trustees meet tonight at 6. Colorado is one a handful of states that prohibit the sale of full strength beer and wine in grocery stores. A coalition of residents and supermarkets is trying to change that. KRCC’s Holly Pretsky reports. Thursday there is a ribbon cutting at Roaring Fork High School at 11:15 am for a new solar array. FEATURE: The Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6 pm. This year, meetings are on Wednesday nights. Earlier this month, they approved an ordinance that puts a Climate Excise Tax on this spring's ballot. More information on Carbondale's 2020 Energy Plan and energy efficiency programs is at carbondalegov.org. Click on Town Departments, Public Works, then Energy Efficiency. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
January 26, 2016
Basalt Town Council meets at tonight at 5 to discuss the Whitewater Park and River Recreation Plan. At 6, Pitkin County Commissioners join the discussion. The public meeting starts at 7. Multiple ordinances are also up for first and second readings, including a citizen-initiated ballot question that would have the town purchase part of the Pan and Fork site and preserve it as a park. The Basalt Town Council has an election coming up for mayor and four council seats. Current Basalt Mayor Jacque Whitsitt is running again, opposed by Rick Stevens. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission approved three new rules yesterday that increase the role of local governments in siting large oil and gas facilities near communities. U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell proposed new rules restricting venting methane on public lands. CDOT postponed previously-announced lane closures on the Grand Avenue bridge in GWS until later this week. But, beginning tomorrow, the I-70 eastbound lane at Exit 116 will be reduced to one lane of traffic and reduced speed limits for the next year. A proposal aimed at improving enforcement of snow tire tread for vehicles driving I- 70 gets its first hearing at the capitol on Wednesday. Bente Birkeland reports. FEATURE: Congressman Scott Tipton swung through the Roaring Fork Valley on a tour of western Colorado last Thursday. One of his stops was Carbondale. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
January 25, 2016
HEADLINES: More Grand Avenue Bridge news as construction crews worked over the weekend and will continue to until March 1st. Today until Thursday, the bridge will be reduced to one lane each way. Colorado has seen its first avalanche fatality of the season. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Carbondale residents are required to remove snow and ice from sidewalks within 24 hours after the snowfall. Businesses are required to remove snow and ice from their sidewalks 4 hours after the snowfall- first offense is a $100 fine. Firefighters from the Upper Colorado Unit will burn slash piles north of El Jebel in the coming weeks, if conditions allow near Catherine Store Road and Panorama Drive. FEATURE: On a new edition of Sounds of the High Country, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks to reporter Ben Goldfarb about the controversial predator management agency, Wildlife Services.
January 22, 2016
HEADLINES: The average price of gas in Colorado is $1.76 according to Gasbuddy.com. In the KDNK listening area, gas prices in Rifle were as low as $1.68 yesterday. In Glenwood Springs, average prices are at $2.09 per gallon. Carbondale is at $2.17 for a gallon of regular gas. Upvalley prices jump, El Jebel was at about $2.45 a gallon and Aspen prices are ranging from $2.85 near the airport to $3.19 in town. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale. And, The Pitkin county Sheriff’s office has interviewed snowboarder Seth Beckton who claims he was pushed off a chairlift by a skier. No charges have yet been filed . Basalt has announced its 2016 recipients for the town’s discretionary funds. Nearly $30,000 goes to 46 local nonprofits and community organizations. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features the editors-in-chief of the Rampage, Roaring Fork High School’s student newspaper.
January 21, 2016
HEADLINES: Battlement Mesa residents could have a reprieve from natural gas drilling inside the PUD until 2017. But, as KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh found out, the reason isn't clear. Western Slope counties dominate the list of the healthiest areas in Colorado. The rankings, based on 35 factors ranging from obesity to premature deaths to lifestyle choices, show Pitkin County as the healthiest in the state in terms of health outcomes. A new solar array at Roaring Fork High School will power 100 % of the school's electric usage. There is a ribbon cutting ceremony on January 28th. FEATURES: The Carbondale Planning and Zoning Commission meets tonight for the official public hearing on a development application for a new City Market store. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Commission Chair Gavin Brooke about that and the new UDC.
January 20, 2016
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District Board of Directors and the Carbondale Town Trustees both have seats that will be up for election this spring. There are two fire district seats up and candidates can contact the district at (970) 963-2491 for more information. For the Carbondale town Trustees, petitions to run must be submitted by January 25th. For more information contact the Town Clerk 510-1206. The Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission said "no" last week to the reintroduction of any kind of wolf into Colorado. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Glenwood Springs is looking for volunteers to serve on many boards and commissions by January 27. A new program to help with energy costs is launching in Garfiled County through CLEER. To qualify, homeowners and renters must meet income guidelines- for Garfield County that range starts with a household of 1 earning up to $41,100. The Colorado General Assembly is back in session. KDNK’s Janaury Jones spoke with statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland about some of the partisan politics that will play out in Denver. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT.
January 19, 2016
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners meeting this morning at 8 am. They willl start the day off with the Western Counties Alliance then hear substantial budget adjustments, planning applications, funding requests and updates from county departments. Three missing snowmobile riders were found Monday afternoon without injury after going missing on Sunday in the Flat Tops area. Garfield County Search and Rescue is an all volunteer but professionally trained search and rescue crew. They are looking for new members and applications are due by March 1st. More information at garfieldSAR at gmail dot com. Paul Andersen, founder of Huts for Vets, is leading a series of 5 community discussions about challenges veterans face in life after war. Andersen told KDNK’s January Jones that it’s not a veterans issue- it’s a community issue. . The first discussion is Thursday, January 21st at the Basalt Library at 5:30 pm. More information at basaltlibrary dot org. Sunday kicked off Aspen Gay Ski Week with various events held every day, from ski lessons to parties. The week is the main fundraiser for the Roaring Fork Gay and Lesbian Community Fund- also known as Apsen OUT. Last year, the fund granted $35,000 to local and national organizations. FEATURE: Carbondale voters will consider a property tax increase this spring for capital construction. As KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports, there may be no other way to pay for town infrastructure needs.
January 18, 2016
HEADLINES: Another incident occurred at the Third Street Center overnight last Thursday, with a break-in and vandalism. Carbondale Police Department are looking for any tips from the public that could help solve the case at 970-963-2662. In Glenwood Springs, more Grand Avenue Bridge construction updates- 7th Street will be temporarily closed in both directions from Colorado to Cooper Avenue- beginning today and through January 29th during construction hours from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Arch Coal announced it was filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week. The company operates the West Elk Mine outside of Paonia and is the second largest coal company in the U.S. KVNF’s Laura Laura Palmisano spoke with economist Roger Coupal from the University of Wyoming about how it could impact Paonia. Relatedly, just last Friday, the Obama administration unveiled a moratorium on new coal leases on federal lands. The change won't affect existing leases, which generated nearly $1.3 billion for the government last year. Federal lands account for roughly 40 percent of all U.S. coal production. FEATURE: Today many schools and government offices are closed for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. The Colorado Holiday Commission organizes events statewide today and year round. They'll hold a march and parade today in Denver and thousands of people are expected to turn out in the streets for it. KDNK’s January Jones has this story, featuring an interview with the Colorado Commission Chair Vern L. Howard. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT
January 15, 2016
HEADLINES: Yesterday the Colorado Department of Transportation hosted a open house to share drawings, models and information about the Grand Avenue Bridge Project. A mid-day and evening meeting, collectively drew a few hundred people. Mountain Rescue Aspen was called out yesterday afternoon to find a group of four skiers who were stuck out of bounds at the bottom of Walsh’s run, all were uninjured. Rocky Mountain Region of the US Forest Service is in need of seasonal fire fighting personnel this summer. They've extended a previous deadline,and now applications are being accepted through Tuesday, January 19, 2016. More info on applying at USAJOBS. The 65th Annual Winterskol is happening now, with events running through Sunday. Monday is Martin Luther King Jr Day. Many schools and government offices will be closed. FEATURE: Governor John Hickenlooper delivered his 6th state of the state address on Thursday before a joint session of the legislature. As Bente Birkeland reports – he highlighted the need for people from all political stripes to get together to fix the state’s budget and other big problems. SKI AND WEATHER REPORT.
January 14, 2016
HEADLINES: The Grand Avenue Bridge preliminary construction is underway and tonight, the Colorado Department of Transportation is holding an open house. CDOT will be at the Glenwood Springs Community Center today for two sessions- one from 11 am to 1 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm. Gas prices are holding steady and low. In the KDNK listening area, gas prices in Rifle were as low as $1.79 yesterday and El Jebel’s highest price is $2.45 a gallon. The annual Colorado College Conservation in the West poll was released in early January. The poll surveyed registered voters in seven western states. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this summarized Colorado's feedback. Bonfire Coffee is offering free coffee on Fridays for the rest of the month at their new Willits location. The Roaring Fork School District has a four day weekend coming up. Kids are out on Friday for a teacher work day and off Monday for MLK, Jr. day. FEATURE: Carbondale Town Trustees have started off the year dealing with two certainties of life- death and taxes. The Trustees, who now are meeting on Wednesday nights, upped the rates for the town cemetery and proposed two new taxes. They want a carbon tax from utility bills and a new property tax for infrastructure improvements. We'll have more details on the proposals and discussion around it next week. This morning, Amy Hadden Marsh has this summary. And in state legislative news, Colorado’s annual session began Wednesday. Lawmakers have begun to unveil their priorities for the next four months. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
January 13, 2016
HEADLINES: A packed house and a four hour meeting last night for the Basalt Town Council. The Willits developer had asked for funds in the form of a new sales tax to finish building out commercial space. The Council voted 5 to 2 against it. Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight.they'll formally propose a carbon tax on local gas and electric bills. And they’ll discuss another possible new tax- a property tax to fund capital construction projects. They'll also talk about the town’s lighting ordinance. The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District Board of Directors meets tonight as well at 5:30 pm. Both the fire district and the Carbondale Town Trustees have seats that will be up for election this spring. A new advocacy group wants to reform state oil and natural gas policy. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. FEATURE: In state news, Mike King has been the Executive Director of Colorado’s Department of Natural Resources for about 10 years. This month he is leaving to work for Denver Water as the Director of Planning- a role that will make him an important name for those concerned about west slope water issues. Bente Birkeland talked with King about the future of the oil and gas and fracking debate, and his time heading the Department of Natural Resources.
January 12, 2016
HEADLINES: This week’s Eye on Crime focuses on Aspen. The Basalt Town Council is dealing with another issue with Willits tonight at the council meeting. A proposal to share area sales tax revenue with the Willits developer is up for second reading and approval. The developer says the money is needed to finish the development- claiming a gap of 10 to 12 million dollars. More info is at basalt.net. The meeting begins at 6 at Town Council Chambers at 101 Midland Avenue and is streamed live at grassrootstv.org. The Carbondale Town Trustees meet Wednesday night. The Natural Resources Conservation Service says Colorado snowpack is off to a great 2016 start. At 118% of normal, it is the most snow the state has had for this time of year since 2011. December precipitation was 129% of normal. With snowpack, precipitation, and reservoir storage at current levels, the outlook for water availability this spring is good so far. Mountain Rescue Aspen responded last night to the Sugar Bowls area outside of Buttermilk. A 60-year old skier called in for help around 5 pm Monday, reporting extreme fatigue and that she was unable to move. Mountain Rescue Aspen hydrated and fed her and she was able to hike out. Mountain Rescue Aspen and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office remind backcountry travelers that darkness descends quickly in the winter and temperatures drop rapidly when daylight ends. FEATURE: The Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Sierra Club wants wolves restored to Colorado. But, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh found out, wolf advocates face an uphill battle.
January 11, 2016
HEADLINES: Garfield County Commissioners meet this morning, they'll hear a request to support a statewide conference in Carbondale this spring for Colorado Creative Industries. They'll hear a request to fund seasonal rangers at Hanging Lake for 2016. In the afternoon, the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority will present their recently completed Regional Bicycle, Pedestrian & Transit Access Plan. It covers an 84-mile corridor extending from Aspen to Parachute, through 3 counties. Tonight at Carbondale Middle School it’s “Internet Safety Night. ” The presentation from Lee Damuth of the 9th District Attorney’s office is intended to help parents cope with the new challenges presented by parenting in a cyber age. He'll speak on online privacy, sexting, online sexual solicitation, and cyberbullying. More information at 970-384-5700. The BLM will give brief presentations of its draft environmental impact review of the Roan Plateau between 4 pm and 7 pm on Tuesday at the BLM office in Silt, on Wednesday at the Grand Valley Recreation Center in Battlement Mesa and on Thursday at the Rifle Branch Library. FEATURE: Last Friday, local governments submitted comments to the BLM about canceling oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. The BLM has offered multiple options in dealing with a total of 65 leases. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Carbondale Town Trustee Katrina Byers about why Carbondale’s input matters and why Byers didn't agree with the town’s final stance.
January 08, 2016
HEADLINES: The Grand Avenue Bridge preliminary construction began this week. Initial work is happening along the Colorado River on both the North and South Bank. If you want to know how exactly how the bridge will affect your travel, there is a open house next week. CDOT will be at the Glenwood Springs Community Center on January 14th for two sessions from 11 am to 1 pm and 5 pm to 7 pm. Yesterday the Forest Service posted more than 600 temporary positions in the Rocky Mountain Region at www.fs.usda.gov. The Carbondale Community Food Co-op is hiring a new general manager. Applications open until January 15th. Today is Skier and Snowboarder Appreciation day at Sunlight Mountain Resort. They are offering $20 lift tickets and all proceeds from those go to the United Way. FEATURES: In Part 2 of KDNK’s 2015 environmental news wrap-up, Amy Hadden Marsh looks back at some of the highlights from public lands stories.
January 07, 2016
HEADLINES: Democratic Speaker of the House Dickey Lee Hullinghorst still wants to see stricter oil and gas rules and says her party may introduce legislation during the upcoming session. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. The Community Office for Resource Efficiency is offering more rebates and services for home energy efficiency upgrades. CORE is also part of proposing a carbon fee that would be added to natural gas and electric bills in Carbondale. A first consideration is at next week’s Carbondale Town Trustee meeting on Wednesday January 13th at Carbondale Town Hall. A reminder from the Pitkin County Road and Bridge department for drivers to give snowplows ample space on roadways. FEATURE: Last year was a big year for environmental news at KDNK. Stories featured both the victory and heartbreak of natural gas drilling decisions, local climate change impacts, wildlife issues and more. Today and tomorrow, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look back at some of the highlights.
January 06, 2016
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Town Trustees will begin meeting on Wednesday evenings for 2016. Tonight is the first work session of the year. They will be finalizing their comments about contested oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. Tonight kicks off Naturalist Nights and the first topic is on wolf reintroduction in Colorado. A timely subject because next week, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission (CPW) is voting on a proposed anti-wolf resolution that would block the reintroduction of Mexican gray wolves to Colorado. A Western Slope lawmaker wants to see the federal government quickly resolve damage claims from the Gold King Mine spill. KVNF Laura Palmisano has more. FEATURE: The Garfield County Commissioners weighed in on Monday supporting the development of disputed oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. KDNK's January Jones has more from the meeting.
January 05, 2016
HEADLINES: In an unusual split vote, the Garfield County Commissioners have made a choice in a public debate over canceling oil and gas leases in the White River National Forest. Commissioners decided to give their support to an option that would let the leases move forward- the same option that oil and gas industry groups want. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this week’s Eye on Crime for Carbondale. In Carbondale development news, the draft of the Unified Development Code is now available for public review and the new City Market store hearing before the Planning and Zoning Committee is scheduled for Thursday, January 21st. Gas prices are holding steady and low. In the KDNK listening area, gas prices in Rifle were as low as $1.80, in Glenwood Springs, average prices are at $1.99 per gallon, El Jebel was at about $2.50 a gallon yesterday and Aspen prices are still the highest in the state at $3.39. FEATURE: Colorado lawmakers are returning to the state capitol on January 13th for the four month annual legislative session. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland talked to statehouse reporters about the national political scene and how it will impact the session.
January 04, 2016
HEADLINES: This week, work on the Grand Avenue Bridge project begins west of Colorado Avenue and 7th Street in Glenwood Springs. CDOT says they'll be heavy truck traffic hauling materials for a new staging area- about 75 trucks a day will move through from 7 am to 5 pm weekdays. They'll be periodic closures on 7th for the trucks and construction phases. They'll also be a one-lane closure from Colorado to Cooper Avenue for the next few months, as utilities go in. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says snowpack in the Roaring Fork Watershed is currently at 107% of normal this weekend. The Roaring Fork and the Crystal Rivers are both running around their averages for this time a year but the Frying Pan River is below average. The Aspen Police had a busy holiday season including four DUI arrests and two Domestic Disturbances. The Garfield County Commissioners are holding a public hearing to review their stance on the 65 disputed leases in the White River National Forest. The Commissioners have written a letter to the BLM supporting option 2- which would not cancel the leases but instead just re-examine only 8 of them. The Carbondale Town Trustees will hold a special meeting on Wednesday night at 6 to finalize the town’s comments on the leases. FEATURE: A new year means a new news year and the First Friday skate party seemed like a good place for KDNK Amy Hadden Marsh to find out what locals think will be the big issues facing Carbondale and beyond in 2016. SKI AND ROAD REPORT.
January 01, 2016
HEADLINES: The Pitkin County coroner confirmed the identity Thursday of a 42-year old man who died in an ice climbing fall Wednesday as Ryan Jennings of Carbondale. Jennings was a real estate agent and father of 2, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. A report in Rock and Ice Magazine stated that Jennings’ intended climb in the Redstone Slab area was about 400 feet of rolling ice and snow, capped with a freestanding vertical pillar, 40 to 50 feet high. Jennings was apparently attempting the first ascent of the second pillar with the column collapsed. Read more at postindependent.com. A livestock disease continues to affect animals on the Western Slope. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Construction work begins Monday, January 4th on a causeway, the south pier caisson, and utilities as part of the new Glenwood Springs Bridge. Construction activity will occur west of the intersection of Colorado Avenue and 7th Street next week. Anticipate 8 trucks per hour or about 75 trucks per day during construction hours of 7 to 5, Monday through Friday. The Glenwood Springs Electric Department is offering rebates to customers for the purchase of new ENERGY STAR qualified appliances. Applications are available at gwsco.gov/345/ appliance-rebate or simply click on the electric department tab at the City of Glenwood Springs website. FEATURE:Colorado legislators are heading into the 2016 session and will debate a host of topics from energy and water, to the budget and schools. Statehouse Reporter Bente Birkeland sits down with the House Minority Leader.
December 31, 2015
HEADLINES: An ice climber in Redstone died Wednesday when an ice pillar broke loose beneath him. A friend reported that a male in his 40’s was missing after leaving at 4:30 AM to go ice climbing around Redstone. He called authorities Wednesday afternoon after trying to find the missing climber. Mountain Rescue Aspen, Carbondale Fire and Rescue, and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office were dispatched but were unable to recover the climber's body. Recovery efforts resume this morning. The identity of the climber is not yet known. He was apparently alone at the time of the incident. The New Belgium Brewery in Ft. Collins, CO has won awards for sustainability, bicycle-friendliness, best workplace, and best brewery tours, not to mention plenty of awards for beer. But, Jenn Vervier, Director of Strategy and Sustainability for the company, says the brewery wouldn't exist without clean water. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. The Colorado Oil and Gas Association, or COGA, is promoting a new study from the University of Colorado that looks at the economic and fiscal impacts of the industry on the state. Overall, the industry recorded $15.8B in production value, with over 38,000 jobs showing average annual wages over $105,000. Weld and Garfield counties accounted for 80% of drilling permits in 2014. FEATURE: Democrats have a one-seat minority in the Colorado state senate. And, Lucia Guzman of Denver is the new minority leader for the upcoming legislative session. Statehouse Reporter Bente Birkeland sat down with Guzman as part of our series of interviews with legislative leaders.
December 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale's Marble Distilling Company's awards list is growing. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report about a recent award that has nothing to do with alcohol. This Sunday over 50,000 people around the world will participate in local bird counting, including in the Roaring Fork Valley. The 116th Audubon Christmas Bird Count begins at ACES at Hallam Lake on January 3rd, from 7:30AM to 3PM. From ACES, birders will cover a 15-mile diameter “count circle,” centered roughly over Cozy Point Ranch. Everyone is welcome. This annual census has helped assess the health of bird populations and guided conservation action since 1900. In anticipation of New Year’s Eve, the Colorado State Patrol begins increased patrols today through Monday, January 4th. Enforcement can include sobriety checkpoints, saturation patrols, and additional law enforcement on duty. FEATURE: Road salts keep drivers safe in snowy and icy conditions. Chemicals like Sodium Chloride or Magnesium Chloride work by lowering the temperature at which water can freeze. But come Spring, as snow melts, chlorides are making their way into streams and groundwater around the country. Jamie Sudler and Frani Halperin of H20 Radio in Denver have this report. Find more stories at h20radio.org.
December 29, 2015
HEADLINES: The US Forest Service has issued a safety warning for avalanche season. New snow is falling on weak, existing snowpack, creating dangerous conditions. High avalanche danger and warnings are in effect for the western slope of Colorado. In Aspen, avalanche conditions remain considerable near and above tree line. Forecasts and safety classes are offered through the Colorado Avalanche Information Center, on the web at avalanche do state dot co do us. Property owners in Glenwood Springs could see some fire insurance rates decrease next year. The Glenwood Springs Fire Dept has received an improved Public Protection Class rating. Ratings are determined from a combination of factors including fire department training, the water supply system and communications. The new, improved classification only applies to businesses and homes within 5 miles of a fire station. The rating becomes effective on March 1st, 2016. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale. Aspen residents can get a food sales tax refund as long as they’ve lived there for a year and are registered voters. Residents and their dependents can qualify for up to $50 each. Information and applications are available from the Aspen City Finance Department on the first floor of City Hall or online at aspenpitkin.com. The refund deadline is April 15th, 2016. FEATURE: Earlier this month, state Senator Kerry Donovan hosted a town hall meeting in Paonia. Donovan represents Senate District 5, including Gunnison, Lake, and Pitkin counties. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano talked to the senator about her first year at the Capitol and what she’s planning for the upcoming session, which begins January 13.
December 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Sunlight Mountain Resort wants to set a Guinness Book world record for the largest multi-venue ski lesson and the largest multi-venue snowboard lesson. More than 150 ski areas across the US will join Sunlight to try and break the records on January 8th. More information at sunlightmtn.com. Jerome Osentowski runs the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute and hosts Living Permaculture on KDNK. Tonight at 5, he’ll be signing his new book, “The Forest Garden Greenhouse: How to Design and Manage an Indoor Permaculture Oasis” at Explore in Aspen. In this clip, Stephanie Syson asks him why he started a forest greenhouse. The Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service will be advertising for more than 600 temporary positions throughout the region’s national forests and grasslands, starting January 7. Job opportunities are available online at www.fs.usda.gov The Rocky Mountain Region is comprised of 17 national forests and seven national grasslands in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. FEATURE: Colorado’s legislative session begins January 13. For our series leading up to the session, Bente Birkeland sat down with legislative leaders to discuss their goals and some of the big issues they'll confront next year. Today she talks to the President of the Senate.
December 25, 2015
HEADLINES: Happy Holidays! In state news, Colorado Speaker of the House Dickey Lee Hullinghorst is entering her second year as the leader of the chamber but she is term limited at the end of the session. As part of a series previewing the legislative session, Bente Birkeland interviewed Hullinghorst about priorities.
December 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Yesterday at 11 am, one of the lifts on Buttermilk went offline, stranding 80 passengers. It took 3 hours, until 2:15 pm to get the last passengers off. Pitkin County Open Space and Trails has finished a 3 month project to upgrade Stein Bridge on the Roaring Fork River. Eagle County law enforcement is changing to an electronic citation system. Tuesday, Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams announced that they have chosen a voting machine system to endorse as the state standard. They will work with Dominion Voting Systems. In other Colorado news, eleven anti-fracking proposed ballot initiatives were filed this week. It’s the first step in the months long process to try and get a measure on the November 2016 ballot. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: Yesterday, KDNK’s Public Affairs show “Living Permaculture” explored a native north american tree that many have forgotten about- the pawpaw. Living Permaculture Host Stephanie Syson interviews author and pawpaw obsessive, Andrew Moore. That was an excerpt from this month’s living permaculture. you can listen to the whole interview and learn the backstory of the pawpaw at kdnk.org/publicaffairs. SKI AND ROAD REPORT.
December 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen Campus of Colorado Mountain College is closed today, Dec. 23, 2015, due to inclement weather. All CMC campuses are closed through Jan. 3 for the winter holidays. In law enforcement news, the Garfield County Sheriff’s office is adding a signing bonus of $10,000 as part of an employment package for experienced employees. The post independent is reporting more details about the pot show robbery in Carbondale earlier this month. Suspect Arturo Nuno-Cervantes now faces a new charge for the carjacking. An cross-section of local elected officials have sent a joint letter of support for the BLM’s new process examining disputed leases in the White River National Forest. FEATURE: Tis the season for the roaring fork valley to become everyone’s dream winter vacation. But many living here find it hard to afford housing, especially in Pitkin County. Garfield County stretches from Carbondale to the Utah boarder, and the housing situation is less extreme but the so called affordability line is steadily being pushed west. Katherine Gazunis runs the Garfield County Housing Authority. She spoke with Amy Barr, host of KDNK’s show about the non-profit community about the current housing landscape in the county.
December 22, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County has chosen Kevin Batchelder as the new County Manager. Batchelder has served as the Acting County Manager since July 1, 2015, and previously served as the Deputy County Manager since April of 2014. Local Roaring Fork Valley residents have created a new reality show about building off the grid on the DYI Network. The show premeirs on Tuesday night and they’ll be a viewing party at Carbondale Beer Works. In this clip, KDNK’s Steve Skinner finds out what is the oculus, with Steve NO_VEE and Aaron Humphries. The Sopris Sun is reporting that the Carbondale and Rural Fire District is planning on hiring 3 new firefighter/paramedics in January, July and October. Salaries will be about $55,500, which is less than other departments in the area. FEATURE: Last week, the Garfield County Commissioners approved natural gas well drilling in the residential neighborhood of Battlement Mesa. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Leslie Robinson from the Grand Valley Citizen’s Alliance and Dave Devanney from Battlement Mesa Concerned Citzens who have been fighting to stop the drilling. They both say they are disappointed with the commissioners vote but they aren’t that surprised. They are preparing to take their opposition to the next level of state approval. Coming up is an excert from an entended interview that will air in full on Tuesday, December 29th at 4:30 pm.
December 21, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale’s downtown and rodeo ice rinks are now open. The average price of gas in Colorado is $1.87. In the KDNK listening area, gas prices in Rifle were as low as $1.83 yesterday. In Glenwood Springs, $2.03 per gallon was the lowest price. Carbondale prices are in the $2.15 to $2.20 range. Prices haven’t been this low since 2009 except if you fill up in Aspen-- where the price per gallon of gas was around $3.35. Rachel Eagleton and Lily Webber of the Andy Zanca Youth Empowerment Program interviewed Dr. Chuck Maker of Alpine Animal Hospital last week for special edition of KDNK’s Ask the Vet show. In this segment, Rachel asks Dr. Maker about pets in surgery. FEATURE: The upper reach of Cattle Creek as it flow out of the White River National Forest has been designated "outstanding" by the state. But, the lower part of the creek, as it flows under Highway 82, is considered "impaired." The Roaring Fork Conservancy spent last summer and fall collecting samples from Cattle Creek as part of their study to pinpoint the problem. In Part 2 of KDNK's series on the study, Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. SKI AND ROAD REPORT.
December 18, 2015
HEADLINES: After three days of public testimony and questions, Garfield County Commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to approve applications from Ursa Resources to drill within the Battlement Mesa PUD. The Roaring Fork School District is being recognized for efforts to get more students taking what are known as AP exams. If you want to cut down your own Christmas tree this year, the white river national forest offices still have permits. FEATURE: On the weekly News Brief, January Jones speaks with John Stroud of the Post Independent about the Glenwood Springs City Council.
December 17, 2015
HEADLINES: Public safety officials briefed budget committee lawmakers (today/Tuesday) on whether Colorado has enough troopers to keep drivers safe. Bente Birkeland has more. The Garfield County Commissioners have continued the public hearing on drilling inside the Battlement Mesa PUD for a 3rd Day. The hearing is in Glenwood Springs in the commissioners meeting room. The continued hearing begins at 9 am this morning. Voters planning on participating in the selection of the presidential candidates that will face off in the November general election must declare their party affiliation in the coming weeks. Monday, January 4th is the last day to affiliate with the Republican or Democratic Party in order to vote in the March 1st Party precinct caucuses. The Post Independent is reporting that electronic communications among Glenwood Springs City Council members leading up to the recent dismissal of Jeff Hecksel as city manager show a fair amount of conversation around the issue outside of public meetings, but nothing illegal on its face. FEATURE: The final public meeting for the Bureau of Land Management's draft environmental review of 65 pre-existing natural gas leases on the White River National Forest was held in Carbondale last night. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
December 16, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners have continued the public hearing on drilling inside the Battlement Mesa PUD. Yesterday they met in Battlement Mesa and today the hearings will move back to Glenwood Springs to the commissioners meeting room. The continued hearing begins at 9 am this morning. The Garfield County Sheriff warns residents that mail theft continues to be a problem in Garfield County. Xcel Energy customers in Colorado will see decreases in energy prices for the first quarter of 2016 when compared with current rates. Amy Hadden Marsh has a look at Carbondale Police Activity. The Colorado Supreme Court will decide whether cities in Colorado can legally ban hydraulic fracturing. They heard the Longmont Case earlier this month but won’t reach a decision until the spring. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: Carbondale is proposing a carbon fee on electricity and gas bills to create a $300,000 fund for clean energy projects. Erica Sparhawk from CLEER and Carbondale Town Trustee Pam Zentmyer came into the KDNK studio last week after the first community meeting to explain how the program would work.
December 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Commissioners are having a remote public hearing from Battlement Mesa at 9 am in the Grand Valley Recreation Center gym. A plan by URSA resources to drill for natural gas inside the Battlement Mesa PUD is up for final approval. Carbondale Town Trustees meet for a work session tonight, they will meet with members of the planning commission to review the new Unified Development Code that has been in the works over the last two years. The final public draft will be available for review next month. They’ll also discuss ballot language for putting a carbon or energy tax on local gas and electric bills. Carbondale residents need to remove snow within 24 hours and businesses must clear 4 hours after snowfall. It’s prohibited to deposit snow, into a public street, sidewalk or public property from private property. Garfield County School District 16 in Parachute is closed today due to the weather. Colorado Mountain College in Rifle will open late this morning at 10 am. Garfield Re-2 School District, which spans from Rifle to New Castle, remains open, as does the Roaring Fork School District and Aspen. FEATURE: Over 100 people were at the Glenwood Springs Community Center last night to read, hear and give feedback about the BLM’s draft environmental review of 65 existing gas leases, that wilderness advocates say were issues illegally. The leases were permitted from 1995 and 2002 without an environmental impact statement. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. SKI AND ROAD REPORT
December 14, 2015
HEADLINES: Funding and location are the biggest stumbling blocks for a new detox facility in Garfield County. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more from last week's community meeting in Glenwood Springs. FEATURE: This is the week of public meetings for the BLM’s draft analysis of 65 leases on the White River National Forest, including 25 on the Thompson Divide. Zane Kessler, director of the Thompson Divide Coalition, spoke to KDNK’s Steve Skinner and January Jones on the air Friday about what’s at stake. The BLM hosts the first meeting this afternoon at the Glenwood Springs Community Center. Tuesday, the meeting is at the Debeque Elementary School and Wednesday, it’s Carbondale’s turn at Roaring Fork High School. All meetings begin at 4 PM with public comment beginning around 5:15.
December 11, 2015
HEADLINES: This weekend it a milestone in I70 history with the opening of the Mountain Express Toll Lane. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale. Sopris Elementary School will launchs a new wellness program today with $6,000 in grant funding. Tonight is Basalt’s second tree lighting of the season at Triangle Park in Willits Town Center. Glenwood Springs City Hall will be closed from noon to 1:30 p.m. today for the annual employee holiday party. FEATURE: For this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Rifle Citizen Telegram editor Ryan Hoffman about his article on the state’s brand new Oil and Gas Health Information and Response Program- which he says could be redundant here in Garfield County.
December 10, 2015
HEADLINES: KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin reports that the accused gunman in last month's shootings at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs is facing more than 150 separate charges, including multiple counts of first-degree murder.C-2020 is a coaltion of the Carbondale Board of Trustees, Carbondale Environmental Board, CLEER and CORE. They are seeking community input at a meeting tonight on a proposed carbon fee that would be added to natural gas and electric bills in Carbondale, for a five-year period. The Garfield County Commissioners are holding a public hearing in Battlement Mesa on December 15th at 9 am in the Grand Valley Recreation Center gym about URSA resources drilling for natural gas inside the Battlement Mesa PUD. FEATURE: Dave Foreman was a co-founder of Earth First!, friend to author Ed Abbey, and has written several books, including The Conservation Divide, which was published last year. Foreman is in Aspen today for an event hosted by Wilderness Workshop. He stopped by KDNK this week to talk to Amy Hadden Marsh. Here they discuss conservation and respecting the land.
December 09, 2015
HEADLINES: Sweet Leaf Marijuana Dispensary on Village Road in Carbondale was held up at gunpoint Monday morning. The two primary suspects appeared in court Tuesday. Aurturo-Nuno Cervantes and Erick Jose Colon, both of Glenwood Springs, had their bonds raised from $100,000 to $200,000. They are suspected of stealing marijuana, marijuana concentrate and $1,000 in cash before fleeing the scene Monday in a red Ford Mustang before switching vehicles. Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling says police are in the process of obtaining search warrants for the two impounded vehicles. Two other young men have been implicated in the aftermath of the robbery; one is a minor. Another comment period for a White River National Forest document has begun. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Aspen/Sopris District Ranger Karen Schroyer about proposed changes to Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness regulations. Current regulations expire December 31, 2015. Public comment on the new regulations is open until January 1. FEATURE: Community leaders, law enforcement, and health providers are discussing a plan for a detox center in Garfield County to help people with drug and alcohol problems. There is a public meeting Thursday morning from 9 - 11 at the Garfield County Commissioners meeting room in Glenwood Springs to move forward. Dr. Al Saliman, Chief Medical Officer at Valley View Hospital, spoke to KDNK’s January Jones about the community effort behind the project.
December 08, 2015
HEADLINES: A Carbondale marijuana shop was held up at gunpoint Monday. Four male suspects have been arrested after questioning and transported to Garfield County jail. Basalt Town Council meeting is tonight at 6 pm and they like most municipalities in the area, will be approving the final town budget for 2016. Also on the agenda is a the first review of a proposal from the developers at Willits for expansion of 91,000 square feet of commercial and residential space. Before the meeting, council members will convene at 5 pm in Willits for a ribbon cutting at the new Element Hotel by Westin. The Carbondale Fire District Board is set to finalize their budget tomorrow night and have a discussion of an employment contract for Fire Chief Leach. FEATURE: Tonight, the Carbondale Trustees are set to approve the 2016 budget for next year. Carbondale Mayor Stacy Bernot spoke to KDNK’s January Jones about how much money it takes to run the town.
December 07, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners meet at 8 am this morning, amoung the items: a request to donate two fully equipped Sheriff vehicles to Silt; consideration of new appointments to the Garfield County Planning Commission; discussion about Garfield County supporting a new detox facility. Pitkin County is presenting plans for a new Public Safety and Administration building during an open house on December 9th. A recent report finds many Coloradans continue to struggle to make ends meet. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano has more. FEATURE: The US Forest Service released its final decision Thursday on future oil and gas drilling on the White River National Forest. The plan identifies Forest Service lands available for oil and gas leasing, and protects resources on the surface. And, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports objections to the decision came from conservationists and industry representatives alike. SKI REPORT.
December 04, 2015
The US Forest Service released its final decision Thursday on future oil and gas drilling on the White River National Forest. The plan identifies Forest Service lands available for oil and gas leasing, and protects resources on the surface. About 194,000 acres will be open to oil and gas leasing and more than 1.2 million acres will be closed, including parts of the Thompson Divide. Seven objection letters from conservationists, industry trade groups, and others were submitted to the Forest Service before the final decision was made. Tune in Monday for more on this story. The Post Independent reports that the Glenwood Spring City Council meeting was tense last night over a decision to quickly replace the current city manager Jeff Hecksel. Council member Stephen Bershenyi alleged there have been secret meetings about the issue, and fellow council member Leo McKinney said it was a “pre-baked” decision. The vote was 4 to 1 to replace Hecksel with former Garfield County Manager Andrew Gorgey. Bershenyi left the meeting in protest before the vote and Councilmember Matt Steckler abstained. Hecksel has been city manager for 11 years. His last day is today; Gorgey starts work Monday. Read the whole story in today’s Post Independent. The process of writing the annual 2016 state budget has already begun. As Bente Birkeland reports, state lawmakers are getting briefed on the budget's needs. Last Friday, a gunman killed three people and wounded others who were in and around a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs. After a standoff inside the clinic, Robert Dear of Hartsel, Colorado surrendered to police. For this week’s News Brief, January Jones speaks with KRCC News Director Andrea Chalfin about how the community is dealing with the aftermath.
December 03, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork River in Basalt is getting a whitewater wave park. The public is invited to learn more about the project Monday, December 7th at 5:30 p.m. at the Basalt Public Library. State wildlife officials plan to launch their annual big game survey in early December. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 7 pm. They have a full agenda that includes the 2016 budget but they will also be making decisions about the city’s manager. FEATURE: Last month, the Bureau of Land Management released a Draft Environmental Impact Statement on 65 previously issued oil and gas leases on the White River National Forest, including 25 leases in the Thompson Divide. Now it’s time for the public to weigh in. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh sat down with Zane Kessler of the Thompson Divide Coalition and Will Roush of Wilderness Workshop to discuss details. Roush begins with a history of the 65 leases. he BLM will hold public meetings about the D.E.I.S. on December 14 in Glenwood Springs, December 15 in DeBeque and December 16 at Roaring Fork High School. Meetings begin at 4 PM. The BLM will take public comment at 5:30. More info at savethompsondivide.org or wildernessworkshop.org.
December 02, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork Transit Authority is nearing completion of improvements at the Carbondale Park and Ride and the new Ruby Park Transit Center in Aspen. The Garfield County Energy Advisory Board meeting is on Thursday evening at 6 pm, at the Rifle Library and will hear about a new complaint line and website for people who have concerns related to oil and gas activities at www.colorado.gov/oghealth or 303.389.1687. Colorado’s top health official is again asking the state to fund a program that aims to prevent teen pregnancies. He testified before the state's joint budget committee Tuesday. As Bente Birkeland reports, the program has been funded privately and efforts to shift it to public funding failed last session. This Saturday and Sunday Roaring Fork Re-Coat will be handing out over 500 used coats at the Third Street Center in Carbondale from 10 am and 2 pm. FEATURE: This morning’s feature comes from the iseechange project- an online almanac project where people are documenting the changes they see in the natural world. KDNK is a partner station as is KVNF over in Paonia, who produced today’s local news feature. KVNF’s Jake Ryan reports that many people move to Colorado’s Western Slope to get away from city life and enjoy the sights, smells, and sounds of nature. But, when those sounds disappear, it can be concerning.
December 01, 2015
HEADLINES: The alleged gunman in friday’s shooting at a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood appeared in court Monday. KRCC’s Jake Brownell attended the hearing at the El Paso County Criminal Justice Center. The gunman faces charges of murder in the first degree and possibly others. Construction has begun at the Aspen/Pitkin County Airport to upgrade the secure boarding area. The current cafe and gift shop areas will become part of the secure boarding area and those areas will no longer be accessible to un-ticketed passengers. It should be finished by mid January of 2016. Medicare open enrollment ends Monday, December 7. During this time, seniors can add, drop, or change Medicare D Prescription drug coverage. Trained counselors High Country RSVP will be available today in Carbondale from 10AM to 4 PM to help at the Senior Matters office in the Third Street Center. And today in Glenwood Springs there is free HIV testing, in honor of World AIDS Day. Testing goes from noon to 7 PM today and appointments can be made by calling 1-800-230-PLAN.
November 30, 2015
HEADLINES: KRCC's Andrea Chalfin reports that authorities have identified two civilian victims of Friday's shooting at a Planned Parenthood Clinic in Colorado Springs as 29-year-old Ke'Arre Marcell Stewart, a veteran of the Iraq War, and 35-year-old Jennifer Markovsky, a mother of two. Both were killed Friday when a gunman holed up in the Planned Parenthood clinic for hours before surrendering to law enforcement. UCCS Police Officer Garrett Swasey was also killed during the incident. Authorities are not releasing any information in regards to a timeline, motive, or weapon used, and have sealed warrants related to the case. The alleged gunman, 57-year-old Robert Lewis Dear, made a court appearance today. Amy Hadden Marsh has this report on Carbondale Police activity. The Colorado Department of Transportation has released a preliminary work schedule for the Grand Avenue Bridge improvements in Glenwood Springs. The five phases of construction begin in January 2016 and end in May 2018. Find details at www.sh82grandavenuebridge.com. FEATURE: The state may have to change its moniker “Colorful Colorado” to “Crowded Colorado” with the number of people expected to move here by 2040. All that growth will take a toll on the infrastructure as well as water and other natural resources. As part of a series called “Changing Colorado” – Bente Birkeland looks at the current population trends and which areas will be affected the most.
November 27, 2015
HEADLINES: In an effort to shift Black Friday to green, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Great Outdoors Colorado and the state Outdoor Recreation Office want you to go outside. And, to prove it, access to all 42 state parks is free todaY; GOCO will pick up the tab. A new grocery store in Carbondale is getting closer to reality. The Carbondale Marketplace land use application was officially submitted to the town this week. The proposal is to subdivide the 23-acre Crystal River Marketplace LLC property at the northwest corner of Highway 133 and Main Street into five lots. The proposed City Market, other retail stores, and the fueling station would be built on three of the lots, making up about 8 acres. The application will have a public hearing before the Planning Commission in January, 2016. A notebook at the front desk at Town Hall includes the complete application for the public to view. The application is also posted on the Town’s website. Glenwood Springs has decided to appoint former Garfield County Manager Andrew Gorgey to serve 6 months as interim City Manager during a nationwide search for a permanent replacement for current City Manager Jeff Hecksel, who steps down December 4. A national crowd-sourced, mapping project that began in Colorado is offering enthusiasts an incentive to contribute to the National Map during International Map Year. KRCC's Madeliene Schmidt has more. FEATURE: For this week’s News Brief, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Scott Condon of the Aspen Times about proposed development from Basalt to Glenwood Springs.
November 26, 2015
HEADLINES: Happy Thanksgiving. The Eagles Club in Glenwood Springs celebrates its 23rd annual free turkey dinner, from 11 am to 5 pm. The Eagles will also take orders and drop off to-go plates at the homes of those in Glenwood who are unable to travel. The Woody Creek Community Center hosts a potluck meal from 4 to 7 pm with turkey to-go bags available from noon to 7 pm. Hickory House in Aspen is providing its annual free Thanksgiving feast from noon to around 4 PM.
Carbondale is moving forward with an overhaul of development regulations. A presentation about the changes to town code is now available at carbondaleudc.com. The consultants working on the code update will submit a new draft for review at the beginning of January. Final adoption is scheduled for the beginning of March. Some Colorado counties are conflicted about pay raises for elected officials. All Garfield County administrative and elected officials offices and libraries will be closed today and Friday. Libraries will reopen Saturday at 10 AM. The Garfield County Landfill near Rifle will reopen Saturday. The Rifle Garfield County Airport will be open through the weekend for general aviation only, weather permitting.
FEATURE: Americans will consume about 46 million turkeys today for Thanksgiving. But, two recent studies by Oxfam and the Southern Poverty Law Center show that people who work in poultry processing plants don't always have a lot to celebrate. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. The 2015 Oxfam "Lives on the Line" report is available oxfamamerica.org.
November 25, 2015
HEADLINES: It’s a big ski weekend in Aspen. The women’s Audi FIS Ski World Cup takes place Friday to Sunday as part of the Aspen Winternational festival. Races begin Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 10 am and 1 pm. Festivities kick-off on Friday night at 5:30 pm with a World Cup party at the Limelight Hotel. The Aspen Times reports that the Basalt Town Council voted to move forward on plans for the Pan and Fork riverfront site. Last night, the council approved changes to the 2007 master plan that redefines uses of the site and other downtown properties. The master plan now reflects that the town would like to see development on the western half of the privately owned portion of the Pan and Fork site and a park on the eastern half. Read the whole story in today’s Aspen Times. Last spring’s bird flu epidemic devastated Midwest turkey farmers but as Tri-States Public Radio News reporter Abbey Wendell found out, the price of a turkey this Thanksgiving is down from last year. A new study on seat belt use conducted for CDOT reveals that about 85% of Colorado motorists are buckling up, below the national average of 87%. There were 11 observation sites in Garfield County where CDOT logged a seat belt use rate of 88.8%. FEATURE: Last month, business owners, non-profit directors, city officials, and medical professionals gathered at the Glenwood Springs Community Center for a panel discussion about issues related to the area’s homeless population. But, none of the panelists was someone from the transient community. After the discussion, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Max, a man who does not have a traditional home, to find out what he thought of the panel.
November 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale Police found and disposed of a caustic bottle bomb near a pond at River Valley Ranch Monday. The bomb had been improperly mixed and did not explode. Two more bottle bombs were found on the thin ice of the pond. CPD chief Gene Schilling says to contact police if you see a bottle bomb and allow officers to dispose of it. Bottle bombs can explode if swollen or in the process of swelling up. The Basalt Town Council meets tonight and is expected to take a big step towards deciding on what will happen with the Pan and Fork site. Town staff and the P & Z recommend changing the site's land use designation. The meeting begins at 6 PM. Bustang began its weekend expansion Saturday. KRCC's Medeleine Schmidt has more. BLM has Christmas tree permits available for pinon or juniper at $10 each. Permits can be purchased at the Colorado River Valley Field Office in Silt during regular business hours. If you have a 4th grader in your household, you can get a free permit at www.everykidinapark.gov. FEATURE: At a Colorado health insurance forum in Basalt earlier this month, Garfield County Commissioner Tom Jankovski spoke about the challenges of reducing health insurance rates on the West Slope, and his efforts to make changes. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
November 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen PD had an unusually high amount of arrests in the last week or so, mostly for drinking and fighting. The Glenwood Springs Fire Department responded to the 600 block of 8th Street for a fire Sunday. The fire caused moderate damage and is currently under investigation. The US Forest Service has closed Avalanche Creek Road to vehicles until June 21. The camping areas are closed to human occupancy and the entire area is closed to dogs until May 1. Snowshoeing and cross-country skiing are allowed, sans dogs. The White River National Forest’s winter motor vehicle use season begins today and ends May 20. Vehicles with wheels, including mountain bikes, are limited to plowed routes. Routes and areas open to motorized winter travel can be found online in the Winter Motor Vehicle Use Maps or at any USFS office. And, RFTA switches to the winter service schedule Thursday. Woody Creek service resumes, more buses will run from Aspen to Snowmass, and the BRT will resume daily service. The Carbondale Circulator resumes weekend service, beginning November 28. Colorado’s first ever statewide water plan was unveiled Thursday, with nearly 200 recommendations. Bente Birkeland has more. FEATURE: For the latest in the Connecting the Drops series, KVNF's Laura Palmisano takes a look at efforts to help endangered native fish survive in the Colorado River Basin.
November 20, 2015
HEADLINES: The state has given final approval for construction to proceed on the Grand Avenue Bridge in Glenwood Springs. Construction starts in January, 2016. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale Police calls and arrests from October 31st to November 12th. Aspen Mountain and Snowmass open this Saturday, Nov. 21. The Garfield County Commissioners adopted the 2016 budget on Monday. The County will spend $107M in 2016 and has reduced spending by 19%. FEATURE: Many parents of young children in the KDNK listening area struggle with affordable childcare. Earlier this month on KDNK’s public affairs show “Non-Profit Spotlight: Battlement to the Bells”, host Amy Barr spoke with Jonathan Godes, director of the Early Childhood Network.
November 19, 2015
HEADLINES: The Bureau of Land Management released a Draft Environmental Impact Statement or D.E.I.S. Wednesday, analyzing 65 previously-issued, oil and gas leases on the White River National Forest in Garfield, Mesa, Pitkin, and Rio Blanco counties. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District says it is on pace to have one of its busiest years ever. Fire Chief Ron Leach and Chief of Police Gene Schilling will be at the Smithy this morning from 8 to 9 for Coffee with the Chiefs. The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight for a work session at 5 to hear from consultants hired in June to look at development regulations. The council has set aside money in 2016 to rework part of their code. At 6:15, they’ll continue a hearing on a license for a marijuana operation seeking multiple purposes. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones has a new edition of Sounds of the High Country with Journalist Elizabeth Shogren.
November 18, 2015
HEADLINES: A second person has died from an accident that occured on I-70 near Silt last month. 12 year old Amelia Bradley of New Castle, passed on Monday from injuries sustained during the crash that killed her mother, Lori Rink and injured 3 others including Rink’s husband. Aspen Journalism has been doing in-depth reporting on the development of a new Colorado Water Plan. Journalist Brent Gardner-Smith told KDNK his take on the process and what the water plan really means. The Aspen Daily News is reporting that the bond has been set at $75,000 for a Carbondale man facing multiple charges stemming from the exploitation of a child. 24- year old Daniel Rodden can bound out of Garfield County jail if he posts about $11,000. FEATURE: The Bureau of Land Management has released the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement - or S.E.I.S. - for the Roan Plateau Resource Management Plan Amendment. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has the details.The Roan Plateau Draft S.E.I.S. is at www.blm.gov/co. Find the map and click on the Colorado River Valley field office.
November 17, 2015
HEADLINES: Governor John Hickenlooper says Colorado would be open to accepting Syrian refugees. This comes as several Republican governors say they don’t want them in their states. Bente Birkeland has more. The Carbondale Police issued an arrest warrant Friday for a 24 year old male suspected of exploitation of a 13-year old child. Monday, the subject of the arrest warrant- 24 year old Carbondale resident Daniel Rodden turned himself in and was transported to the Garfield County jail. Part of the case involves the suspect and victim exchanging photos and videos by cell phone. The charges against the suspect are Sexual Exploitation of a Child, a class 3 felony; Internet Luring of a Child, a class 4 felony; and Sexual Assault on a Child, a class 4 felony. More on how parents can protect their children during an interview with an investigator with the 9th Judicial District DA's office, coming up in today’s feature. Earlier this month, the Garfield County Commissioners defunded the Planned Parenthood Glenwood Springs Health Center. In response, Carbondale resident Ashley Johnson began a gofundme campaign to replace the $1,500 county grant. Since then, it’s taken on a life of its own and yesterday, Johnson and other supporters presented Planned Parenthood with close to $25,000 dollars in donations raised in the last 13 days. FEATURE: Monday, 24 year old Carbondale resident Daniel Rodden turned himself in to police for an arrest warrant issued on Friday for charges of sexual exploitation of a child. Part of the case involves the suspect and victim exchanging photos and videos by cell phone. KDNK’s January Jones spoke to Lee Damuth, investigator for the 9th Judicial District DA's office, about what parents can do to protect children online.
November 16, 2015
HEADLINES: Earlier this month, the Garfield County Commissioners yanked a grant intended for the Planned Parenthood Glenwood Springs Health Center to support wellness visits. In response, Carbondale resident Ashley Johnson and others began a gofundme campaign to replace the $1,500 county grant. Since then it’s taken a life of it’s own. This morning, she’ll present the funds raised to the health center. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Johnson and has this update. In Carbondale town news, manager Jay Harrington’s weekly report says that bike racks that are being removed from Main Street will be relocated elsewhere in the downtown corridor for winter use. Sopris and Miners Park are each getting an accessible swing for their playgrounds. LED lights are going up in the trees along Main Street for the December 4th First Friday and Light Up Carbondale event. The Carbondale Police Department have obtained an arrest warrent for a 24 year old male, suspected of exploitation of a 13 year old child. The Rocky Mountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service announced last week that it will be advertising more than 600 temporary positions throughout the region’s national forests and grasslands starting January 7, 2016 at www.fs.usda.gov. FEATURE: The American agriculture industry has a problem. Each year, fast-growing, high-tech food and agribusiness companies add more jobs than there are qualified college graduates to fill them. That’s left the industry with an uncertain future. Harvest Public Media’s Luke Runyon has more.
November 13, 2015
HEADLINES: Last night's Colorado Rural Health Insurance Forum drew a large crowd and a litany of concerns for state insurance officials and others. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Garfield County has selected three candidates to interview for the Garfield County Manager position - Kevin Batchelder, Garfield County’s acting manager and deputy county manager, Joseph Kerby, La Plata County Manager, and Tim Boyde, director of administrative services and chief clerk of Centre County, Pennsylvania. County staff and elected officials will interview candidates next week. Basalt Realty is accepting coats and winter clothing for the Salvation Army during business hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 206 Cody Lane, just south of the Basalt Park and Ride. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features a conversation with Aspen Journalism’s Brent Gardner-Smith about the state water plan as it heads to the Governor’s desk.
November 12, 2015
HEADLINES: Skiers will get a taste of the season this weekend when Aspen Mountain and Snowmass open Saturday and Sunday. The ski areas close Monday, then reopen for the season Saturday, Nov. 21 - five days ahead of schedule. A limited elk hunt that began yesterday will close the Airline, Skyline Ridge, Cozyline and Ditchline trails at Skyline Park until Sunday, November 15. A Front Range woman was fined $1,687 by Colorado Parks and Wildlife for hunting in a closed area after she allegedly shot at an elk on the Stein Open Space property near Starwood Wednesday. Read the whole story by Collin Szewczyk at aspendailynews.com. The Federal Emergency Management Agency or FEMA released a revised draft of the Digital Flood Insurance Rate maps and is accepting comments for specific portions of Garfield County. Find the maps at garfield-county.com on the Community Development page. Comments are due by Sunday, November 15. A public meeting is scheduled for December 3 at the Garfield County Administration Building in Glenwood Springs. Colorado Mountain Express 18th Annual Fill the Van Food Drive takes place Saturday, Nov. 14. Look for CME’s Sprinter Vans outside grocery stores in Aspen, Basalt, and Glenwood Springs in the Roaring Fork Valley. And in Eagle, Vail, Breckenridge, Frisco, and Dillon. Donations benefit Lift Up in the Roaring Fork Valley, the Salvation Army, and non-profits in Vail and Summit County. FEATURE: Open enrollment for health insurance under the Affordable Health Care Act began this month but Colorado residents no longer have the option of the Colorado Health Insurance Co-op or Health-OP. Insurance prices and health care costs are high in Eagle, Garfield, and Pitkin counties, so what’s the option? Robin Waters, president of the Basalt Chamber of Commerce, has organized a forum that she says will answer questions and help state insurance officials understand the difference between rural and urban insurance issues. Here she talks to KDNK’s January Jones about what to expect at tonight's forum, from 5:30 to 7 at Basalt Middle School. FEATURE: Conservation groups who want to keep natural gas extraction out of the Thompson Divide are looking to Congress to help broker a compromise with energy companies. Garfield County is in the forefront of bi-partisan efforts. January Jones has more from this week's commissioners meeting.
November 10, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Department responded to a call from Fat Belly Burgers, the french fry fryer caught fire. The fire was quickly extinguished with little damage and no injuries.The Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6:00 pm. They’ll have a renewal hearing for a retail marijuana store license and are expected to come to a settlement on a Comcast Franchise Agreement. The Basalt Town Council meets at 7 pm and will also have a license renewal hearing for a marijuana retail store, as well as going over the 2016 town budget. This week Pitkin County assumed control over odor monitoring at High Valley Farm's marijuana growing facility near Basalt. A universal health care proposal for Colorado will go before voters next fall. Bente Birkeland reports, the Secretary of State’s office approved the measure for the ballot Monday. FEATURE: Garfield County has not had a freestanding detox facility for over a decade. But, as KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports, Garfield County Commissioners and local health and mental health providers would like to see that change.
November 09, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners will meet this morning for their regular meeting. Public comment starts right away at 8:05 and is open to any topic. The Colorado Department of Transportation is making some changes for motorists along I-70 this winter. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. FEATURE: From our Rocky Mountain Community Radio Partners, KGNU Community Radio in Boulder comes this mornings feature. Before the recent Republican candidate debate in Boulder, community organizers held a "My County My Vote" rally. Reporter Hannah Leigh Myers spoke with Dolores Huerta, civil and labor rights activist and co-founder of United Farm Workers.
November 07, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs voted down a new retail marijuana shop. Tree Farm PUD was down by the Roaring Fork Regional Planning Commission, the project now goes to the Eagle County Commissioners. Update on Keystone XL from National Native News. Watch for wildlife now that it's darker earlier and deer and elk are migrating. FEATURE: For the weekly News Brief, KDNK reporter Amy Hadden Marsh speaks with News Director January Jones about the Garfield County Commissioners decision to pull a grant from Planned Parenthood.
November 05, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Commissioners took a political stand on Planned Parenthood by pulling out a small grant from the package of human services grants they approved on Monday.The Sopris Ranger District of the White River National Forest plans to conduct slash pile burning in a 6-acre site near Filoha Meadows in the coming weeks. The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission continues its review of the Tree Farm PUD preliminary plan this afternoon. The meeting begins at 2:30, followed by an executive session at 3:30. Discussion begins at 4. The Glenwood Springs city council meets tonight at 7 pm. They’ll hear from a potential new marijuana grow, dicsuss possible changes to the Grand Avenue Bridge Design and discuss the RFTA Access Control Plan. FEATURE: Last week, the Garfield County Planning Commission voted 6 - 1 to recommend approval of a plan to drill for natural gas in Battlement Mesa. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more about why the commission voted in favor of the plan.
November 04, 2015
In a special KDNK newscast, January Jones has local and statewide election returns, an update on the Planned Parenthood Glenwood Springs Health Center's loss of Garfield County monies, and Amy Hadden Marsh talks to Rocky Mountain Planned Parenthood director and CEO Vicki Cowart.
November 03, 2015
HEADLINES: Voter Service and Polling Centers are open from 7 AM to 7 PM today in Garfield, Pitkin, and Eagle counties. If you want to vote but still aren’t registered or you can’t find your ballot, you can register to vote in person at a Voter Service and Polling Center. In Garfield County, those centers are at the following locations: the clerk and recorder’s offices at the courthouse in Glenwood Springs and in Rifle at 144 E. 3rd Street, Carbondale Town Hall, the Glenwood Springs Community Center, and the New Castle, Silt, and Parachute Branch Libraries. In Pitkin County, voters can drop off ballots at the Pitkin County Clerk and Recorder's Office at 530 East Main Street or the Aspen Jewish Community Center at 435 West Main. In El Jebel, Eagle County residents can vote at the Eagle County Clerk and Recorder’s office at 20 Eagle County Drive. And, at all locations, voters may register to vote, make a change of address or vote on an electronic voting machine as well as dropping off completed ballots. Ballots need to be signed on the outside of the envelope. Ballots that aren’t signed won’t be counted tonight. The Post Independent reports that the Garfield County Commissioners pulled funding for the local Planned Parenthood yesterday. Planned Parenthood was to recieve $1,500. as part of the county’s human services grants. The local clinic serves 2,500 patients. In 2012, the local clinic received $5,000 from Garfield County to support a range of reproductive health services for low-income women. Read the whole story in today’s Post Independent. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has a new complaint line and website for public health concerns related to oil and gas activities. The Oil and Gas Health Information and Response Program was developed as part of state Oil and Gas Task Force recommendations. Website users can file complaints and search for air and water quality information, state regulations, and state health data. The website is at www.colorado.gov/oghealth, The hotline number is 303.389.1687. The Colorado Department of Transportation has closed Trail Ridge Road in Rocky Mountain National Park, Cottonwood Pass near Buena Vista, and Mt. Evans Road for the season. FEATURE: KDNK and the Sopris Sun held a community election forum on October 15th with representatives from the Carbondale and Rural Fire District and the Roaring Fork School District. KDNK News Director January Jones asked Fire Board Member Bob Emerson about the timing of the mill levy increase.
November 02, 2015
HEADLINES: Tomorrow is election day and the last day to drop of your mail-in ballots. This election, while somewhat of an off year has multiple funding questions across counties for schools and fire districts, school board races and there’s a controversial development question in Aspen. And if you still want to vote and you aren’t registered or you can’t find your ballot, there is still time to get that settled. You can register to vote on line or in person at a Voter Service and Polling Center. Last week, after seven hours of testimony, the Garfield County Planning Commission voted 6 - 1 recommend approval for drilling in the Battlement Mesa PUD. SNOTEL sites near Independence Pass reports 8 inches and Schofield Pass is at 4 inches this morning. A bi-partisan committee of state lawmakers studying water issues will back three water resolutions next legislative session. The committee voted on proposals this last week. Bente Birkeland has more. FEATURE: The Colorado Department of Transportation plans to take over the parking lot at the west end of the Glenwood Springs Hot Springs Pool and close off part of North River Street in January to use as a staging area for the Grand Avenue Bridge Project. But, according to the Glenwood Springs City Council, they didn’t find out about it until they were told by hot springs staff. Last week, the council wrote a letter to CDOT with concerns about the bridge construction schedule. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
October 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs Police Chief Terry Wilson told KDNK this week that several recent, violent incidents, such as an armed robbery, a bar fight, and a fight at a high school, are the kind that make him worry about the safety of his officers “all day, every day”. For KDNK’s Eye on Crime, reporter John Colson has more about the incidents. FEATURE: Methamphetamine and heroin use are on the rise in Garfield County. According to a recent series in the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, TRIDENT made 65 narcotics arrests and seized 81 grams of meth in 2010. In 2014, arrests totaled 77 and police seized over 4500 grams of the drug. In 2012, heroin busts were unheard of. But, so far this year, police have seized 61 grams. Post Independent reporter Will Grandbois and Rifle Citizen Telegram editor Ryan Hoffman wrote the series and join KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh for this week’s News Brief. Here, they talk about obstacles facing Garfield County’s efforts to control the problem and help those who are addicted to the drugs. Find the series at postindependent.com.
October 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale city streets will not be getting a major overhaul next year but Town Trustees approved a new marijuana-related business and discussed other items at Tuesday night’s meeting. And, Trustees Frosty Merriott and Allyn Harvey spoke with KDNK DJ Bob Schultz Wednesday morning about Carbondale’s controversial cat ordinance issue. FEATURE: Tonight at 6 at Town Hall, Carbondale gets its first look at the town’s new planning and zoning code. In Part 2 of an in-depth interview, Gavin Brook, chair of the Carbondale Planning and Zoning Commission, explains some of the changes to KDNK’s January Jones.
October 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Today, voters in Garfield County have a chance to test out new voting machines, during a open house in the Garfield County Courthouse. The open house begins at 8:30 am and runs until 4:30 pm. Secretary of State Wayne Williams recommends voters who have not yet returned their ballots for the Nov. 3 election either drop off ballots with county clerks or use a designated county drop-off location. The Aspen Times is reporting is that campaign committee finance reports for Aspen are now posted online. Citizens for Aspen Alive reported it has $21,041 to spend. Governor John Hickenlooper thinks the state’s lawsuit against the federal clean power plan is unconstitutional. And as Bente Birkeland reports, he wants the state supreme court to decide whether the Attorney General can sue to block the power plan. FEATURE: Carbondale is updating their their planning and zoning regulations into a unified development code, or UDC. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Gavin Brook, chair of the Charbondale Planning and Zoning Commission about what the new code means for the town. There’s a public meeting presenting the UDC at town hall on Thursday night at 6 pm.
October 27, 2015
HEADLINES: I 70 Eastbound was closed for five hours Monday morning after a fatal three car accident. The Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6. The agenda includes discussion of two license hearings for marijuana-related businesses, the results of the Cat Ordinance Task Force meetings, the Town's capital projects budget, and the RFTA Access Control Plan. The Colorado Department of Public Health says the teen birth rate in Colorado has been cut in half during the first five years of the Colorado Family Planning Initiative. FEATURES: Colorado takes center stage Wednesday when the GOP Presidential hopefuls hold their third debate at the University of Colorado Boulder. As Bente Birkeland reports, CU students say all the activity is engaging younger voters ahead of the 2016 race. KDNK's January Jones reports that the main topic of discussion at tonight's Basalt Town Council meeting will be adjusting the affordable housing requirements for new developments.
October 26, 2015
HEADLINES: Local patron of the arts and artist mentor, Ro Mead, died Saturday afternoon after a prolonged battle with pancreatic cancer. Carbondale Public Arts Commission (CPAC) is looking for 14 new sculptures that will grace Carbondale during the 2016 Art aRound Town exhibition. Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner joined others to introduce a bill to reauthorize the Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act (FLTFA). The debate on allowing full strength wine and beer to be sold at Colorado grocery stores will be front and center next year. As Bente Birkeland reports, supporters of expanding the liquor laws launched a campaign last week to set the stage for putting the question to voters next year. FEATURE: Election day is coming up in just a week. This morning we hear from Curtis Wackerle, Editor of the Aspen Daily News. He spoke with KDNK’s January Jones about the ballot questions that Aspenites are voting on, including the Base 2 project.
October 23, 2015
HEADLINES: Around 1 AM this morning Highway 82 was closed in both directions 3 miles outside of Glenwood Springs for a rockslide, it reopened at 2:30 am. On Monday, westslope legislators will gather in Glenwood Springs to talk the the state water plan. The Colorado Basin Roundtable has invited Rep Yeulin Willit, Rep Bob Rankin, Rep Diane Mitsch Bush, Rep Dan Thurlow , Rep KC becker and Senator Kerry Donovan to address the water group. Colorado Creative Industries awarded over one point two million dollars in grants to 168 arts organizations across the state this week. Many arts organizations in the KDNK listening area were awarded funds. The Interior Department released a new report Thursday on the Animas River spill that contaminated the Animas River in Colorado. The reports faults the Environmental Protection Agency for causing the spill. Bente Birkeland has more. Starting Oct. 27th, 30 acres of oakbrush on the flanks of the Hunter Creek Valley will be cut by hand in an ongoing forest restoration effort. FEATURE: Local emergency responders are conducting a drill this morning in Glenwood Springs. KDNK News Director January Jones has this update. WEATHER PSA: Avalanche Safety
October 22, 2015
HEADLINES: Last year, Carbondale received status as a state certified Creative District. The Creative District is a designation and grant program from the state that helps communities plan and coordinate their existing arts businesses and attractions. Tonight from 5:30 to 7:30 om there’s an open meeting at the library to update the community on the Creative District’s progress. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Amy Kimberly from the Carbondale Council of Arts and Humanities about the designation significance. A new round of grants from the Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District was announced this week, funding public infrastructure projects throughout the KDNK listening area. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this update. FEATURE: Tomorrow, the Roaring Fork School District is out for fall break and local emergency responders are taking the opportunity to conduct a crisis drill at Glenwood Springs High School at 8 am. KDNK News Director January Jones spoke with Travis Rohe of the Glenwood Springs Fire Department and Assistant Superintendent Shannon Pelland from the Roaring Fork School District about the mass casuality drill. WEATHER WARNING: A winter weather advisory is in effect today and tomorrow above 9,000 feet for most of the western Colorado mountains. Snow will accumulate and could make travel difficult over mountain passes near the Continental Divide in northwest Colorado and over the central and southern mountains
October 21, 2015
HEADLINES: Voters in the KDNK listening area, will see an item on their ballots from Colorado Mountain College. If voters approve Ballot Initiative 4D, Colorado Mountain College could eventually provide broadband infrastructure and increase access to high-speed internet. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with CMC's Debbie Crawford to find out more. Average retail gasoline prices in Colorado fell five and a half cents per gallon last week, averaging $2.28 per gallon but Pitkin County gas prices continue to be the highest in the state at $3.84 per gallon. After 4 months of head to head traffic configuration, both eastbound and westbound lanes of I-70 through Glenwood Canyon now are open. FEATURE: In September, over 400 individuals and conservation groups, including Carbondale’s Wilderness Workshop, signed a letter to President Obama, asking him to stop all future fossil fuel leasing on public lands and offshore. Sloan Shoemaker, director of Wilderness Workshop, recently joined Taylor McKinnon of the Center for Biological Diversity on KDNK’s Valley Voices. Here is an excerpt about the “Keep It In The Ground” movement and why Wilderness Workshop’s stance on mineral extraction is changing. Listen to the whole Valley Voices show at kdnk.org/publicaffairs
October 20, 2015
HEADLINES: Mail ballots were sent to registered voters on last week. Colorado is also testing voting systems in eight counties for the November 3rd election. As Bente Birkeland reports, the Secretary of State wants to create a more uniform voting system and one of these systems may become the new statewide standard. Locally, Garfield County is one of the counties testing a new voting system. Garfield County has used the Hart InterCivic machines and this year they, along with Douglas County, is testing out the new model. Colorado Parks and Wildlife will increase camping fees at 33 parks beginning November 1st. The Post Independent is reporting that asbestos has been confirmed in a Garfield County administrative building at 810 Pitkin Avenue. FEATURE: iSeeChange is a groundbreaking environmental reporting project that combines citizen science, participatory public media, and cutting-edge satellite and sensor monitoring of environmental conditions. The iSeeChange Almanac allows audiences to document environmental shifts happening right in their backyards. Twenty-fifteen (2015) has been a weird year for weather in Colorado. With a winter so warm and dry that trees bloomed in January, hay farmers started having flashbacks to the drought of 2012. But the rains DID come to Colorado, and the wet weather has been good news. But, NOT for everybody. As part of a special iseechange collaboration, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh and KVNF’s Jake Ryan have this report. Got a question or an observation? Go to iseechange.org.
October 19, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs is again struggling with regulating marijuana businesses after retail marijuana store was approved at 818 Grand Avenue by the city licensing officer on October 8th, the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association and the Garfield County Public Library District Board of Trustees sent a letter to the City Council asking them to overule the approval. A 25-year old from Glenwood Springs was recued by Mountain Rescue Aspen on Saturday after taking the wrong trail from the Hell Roaring Trail in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area. Coloradans insured by the Colorado Health Insurance Cooperative – or HealthOP - will not be able to buy or renew existing plans for 2016, says the Colorado Division of Insurance. As of September 15, HealthOP had around 83,000 members. FEATURE: Conservationists and government officials alike are relieved that the Greater sage grouse stayed off the Endangered Species List this year. But, a government scientist claims that Colorado Parks and Wildlife research used by the BLM to determine the bird’s population and habitat in the state is flawed. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
October 16, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is asking for a funding increase on the November ballot. Board member Mike Kennedy explains why they are asking for a mill levy for just 2 years. After nearly five years of planning and construction, Elk Park in Redstone is finally finished and there will be a ribbon-cutting today at 2pm. This weekend, the Colorado State Patrol is stepping up their vigilance for their "Zero Zero" campaign and they are putting every uniformed member of the state patrol on the road. FEATURE: For the News Brief this week, hear about Leadville's struggle to keep their hospital.
October 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Tonight KDNK is inviting the public to join us at a Community Election Forum at 6 pm. Representatives from the Roaring Fork School District and the Carbondale Fire District will be on hand to answer questions and hear public comments. We’ll broadcast the forum live from 6 to 7 pm. The school district is seeking money for building improvements. RFSD Chief Technology Officer Jeff Gatlin explains what upgrades will happen in Carbondale if the bond question passess. Carbondale has been struggling with weed control at the new North Face Bike park. This year the town spent $6,000 manually pulling weeds at the park. The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 6. Council will also take action on the city manager Jeff Hecksel’s proposed separation agreement. Fourteen outstanding Roaring Fork Valley Residents were honored yesterday by Pitkin County Commissioners for their volunteer work. The Pitkin County Cares Volunteer Service Awards is in it’s 15th year. FEATURE: Local tax and spending issues, as well as city council and mayoral races largely dominate the 2015 November election in Colorado. There is only one statewide question on the ballot, which asks voters whether Colorado can keep marijuana tax money it’s already collected to pay for school construction, law enforcement and other programs. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
October 14, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is asking for a funding increase for the next two years. Board member Mike Kennedy explains how much the district needs and how the money will be used. KDNK and the Sopris Sun present a Community Election Forum Thursday at KDNK. Representatives of the fire district and the Roaring Fork School District will answer questions and hear comments. KDNK will broadcast the forum live from 6 - 7 PM. Leaf collection has begun at 4th and Colorado but the Carbondale Environmental Board wants residents to let leaves lie in yards. More information at carbondalegov.org. If you’ve been wondering what’s going on with the Aspen Pitkin County Airport improvements, Thursday’s the day to find out. Airport Director John Kinney comes to Bonfire Coffee from 8:30 to 9:30 AM with plans for the new terminal and runway and more. FEATURE: Tom Goode won Chris Jacobsen's Snowmass Town Council seat in a landslide recall election. KDNK's January Jones talks to Aspen Daily News reporter Madeline Osberger about the race and other Snowmass issues.
October 13, 2015
HEADLINES: Local groups are advocating for a significant, prescribed burn for Hunter Creek next spring. The US Forest Service is in charge of planning and implementing the burn. The Aspen Fire Department will assist with safety concerns. Wilderness Workshop hosts a field trip to the area Wednesday 10/14. For more information about the trip, is at 963.3977. The Roaring Fork School District seeks voter approval for a $122M bond to fix up buildings in Glenwood Springs, Carbondale and Basalt. At a community meeting this month, the District’s Chief Financial Officer Shannon Pelland explained the numbers behind the ask. Learn more about the school district and the Carbondale and Rural Fire District with KDNK and the Sopris Sun’s Community Election Forum Thursday October 15th from 6 pm to 7 pm in the KDNK Broadcast Learning Center. The Basalt Town Council and the Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight, respectively. Basalt discusses decreasing its affordable housing requirements. Carbondale begins review of the budget and will hear the cat ordinance compromise. The Carbondale ditch will be turned off on October 15th. Snowmass residents can drop off their mail-in ballot today at Town Hall for a special town council recall election. Voters will decide if council member Chris Jacobson should be recalled and, if so, who, among three candidates, will take his seat. Leaf collection has begun at 4th and Colorado but, the Carbondale Environmental Board wants people to let leaves lie in yards instead. More information at carbondalegov.org. FEATURE: In an online exclusive for High Country News, reporter Paige Blankenbuehler writes about the problems of the oil and gas industry funding university research. The problem is called "fracademia" and KGNU's Maeve Conran talked to Blankenbuehler about the issue. Blankenbuehler starts off the conversation with a description of a 2010 report on industry money and university oil and gas research. Find Blankenbuehler's article online only at hcn.org.
October 12, 2015
HEADLINES: Last week, Gov. John Hickenlooper signed an executive order to re-evaluate the use of Native American mascots and names in public schools. Bente Birkeland has more. Snowmass voters recently received 2 ballots in the mail. One asks if current council member Chris Jacobsen should be recalled and, if so, provides a list of replacement candidates. That deadline is October 13. The second ballot from Pitkin County has questions from 7 entities, including funding requests from Aspen schools and AVH. The general election deadline is Nov. 3. Garfield County Commissioners meet today at 8 AM. Discussions include the CR 106 right-of-way through CRMS in Carbondale. FEATURE: Basalt resident Julie Kolar has been given a special recognition. KDNK's January Jones has more.
October 09, 2015
HEADLINES: The Snowmass Police Department has issued an arrest warrant for a man who went on a shoplifting spree through the Roaring Fork Valley earlier this week. Amy Hadden Marsh has a look at recent arrests in Glenwood Springs. The installation of a new solar array is beginning at Roaring Fork High School that will make the school a net-zero impact for electricity use. Feature: The Republican field to challenge Democratic U.S. Senator Michael Bennet in 2016 is still very much up in the air. As Bente Birkeland reports, some possible contenders have not ruled out entering the race.
October 08, 2015
HEADLINES: Snowmass voters will get two ballots during the special election this month. One is a recall ballot for current council member Chris Jacobsen. The other is from Pitkin County with questions from 7 different entities, including funding requests from Aspen schools and AVH. The deadline for returning city council ballots is October 13. The general election deadline is November 3. Ballots may be returned by mail or in person. Registered Colorado voters can take a peek at their ballots online at GoVoteColorado.com. Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders holds a rally in Boulder on Saturday. Tickets are free. Bente Birkeland has more. Glenwood Springs resident Chris Guay will be honored as the Colorado Special Olympics Male Athlete of the Year in Denver next week. Read the whole story by Josh Carney at postindependent.com This is Fire Prevention week and the focus is on smoke alarms. The CO Div of Fire Prevention says that smoke alarms should be on every level of the home, including the basement, and inside and outside bedrooms. The BLM will close the South Canyon recreation site west of GWS this week for construction of a boar ramp extension. The site will reopen in time for spring fishing. The Carbondale Food Co-op is looking for new board members. Applications are due October 15. Drop by the store on Main Street to pick one up. FEATURE: Dr. Vince Savage is the director of the Aspen Homeless Shelter and was in the audience at this week's community forum on homelessness in GWS. He spoke with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh.
October 07, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Sheriff warns that new phone scammers, posing as Garfield County deputies, want your money. They call you up on pre-paid burner phones, telling you that your family member has one or more arrest warrants or maybe accumulated fines that need to be paid immediately. Then, they try to get money by asking for your credit or other card number. Once they get it, they hang up and drain your account of all funds. The caller may sound official or provide a badge number or a familiar-sounding name. The sheriff says to call law enforcement if you are contacted by a suspected scammer and try to get all the information you can. A hard frost has yet to hit the Colorado River and Roaring Fork valleys. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with a state climatologist and found out that the growing season in W Colorado is getting longer. Expect periodic, 20-minute delays on I-70 through GW Canyon today for rock mitigation work. FEATURE: Montrose County grows everything from apples to zucchini but not everyone knows what's in season, how they can access the food, or how to prepare it. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports on a program that's trying to change that.
October 06, 2015
HEADLINES: A panel of 8 professionals addressed a standing room-only crowd Monday night at the GWS Community Center about homelessness - the causes, the people, and what to do about it. GWS City Councilwoman Kathryn Trauger organized the event to open a community dialog about what some perceive as a growing problem with transients in the downtown core. Panel comments included concerns about the safety and cleanliness of downtown Glenwood, the difference between those who are simply behaving badly and those who are truly homeless, and whether providing services attracts more transients and homeless people. The panel identified causes of homelessness as mental health and substance abuse issues, poverty, the economy, and high housing prices, and agreed that community involvement is the first step toward a solution. Garfield Pitkin, and Eagle counties are among Western Slope counties with the highest, average gasoline prices in Colorado. Pitkin County has the highest at $3.59 per gallon of regular. The average price in Garfield County is $2.70, according to Gas Buddy, which is about ten cents lower than Eagle and Rio Blanco counties. Colorado's overall average is about ten cents higher than the national average. Bente Birkeland reports that Gov. John Hickenlooper is leading a trade mission to the Middle and Far East to promote Colorado exports, investments, and business. Carbondale PD Chief Gene Schilling says many are misusing the roundabout, including cars, bikes, and pedestrians. Vehicles inside the roundabout have the right of way. Cars waiting to enter must yield until it's safe to enter. Cyclists inside the roundabout must obey the same laws as vehicles and not dart across the crosswalks. Pedestrians should use the flashing lights at the yellow safety crossings and children should get off and walk their bikes across the crosswalk. The PD will soon start a campaign to get both kids and adults to walk their bikes at the crosswalks. FEATURE: The RF School District wants voter approval for a $122M bond to fix up buildings in GWS, Carbondale, and Basalt. The measure includes an affordable rental housing component, which District Supervisor Dr. Diana Sirko explains to KDNK's January Jones.
October 05, 2015
HEADLINES: GWS City Council and Partners4Glenwood invite the public to attend a panel discussion and community meeting tonight at the GWS Community Center from 6 -8 about the effect of the growing homeless and transient population in GWS. The panel includes representatives from Garco Health and Human Services, LiftUP, Feed My Sheep, Valley View Hospital, Mind Springs Health, the GWS Chamber Resort Association, the Glenwood Hot Springs Pool, and Terry Wilson, GWS Police Chief. The Garco Commissioners meet today at 8 AM in GWS. The agenda inclused updates on the CR 106 right-of-way through CRMS in Carbondale, the RFTA Draft Corridor Access Control Plan, and a request for a land use change permit for an animal processing plant north of Eagle Springs Organic in Rifle. The U.S. EPA recently change the threshold at which ground-level ozone is considered harmful to human health. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more about levels in CO. And, Aspen has been challenged by Park City, UT to a "Ski Town Showdown". Whoever installs the most smart thermostats and LED light bulbs during October, wins. The community can participate by installing LED light bulbs and/or smart thermostats at home. Commercial and municipal entities are welcome to participate, too. More information at aspenenergychallenge.com. FEATURE: Neonicotinoid insecticides have devastating impacts on bees and other pollinators. But, a new report exposes the full scope of their threat to our waters, food chains, and ecosystems. In a special report from H20 Radio, a non-profit media organization in Denver, CO, Frani Halperin and Jamie Sudler have more.
October 02, 2015
HEADLINES: Gavan Brouillette, 20, of Glenwood Springs died Wednesday night in a hit-and-run traffic accident on I-70 near Bair Ranch, about 14 miles east of Glenwood Springs, closing eastbound I-70 for nearly five hours. Colorado State Patrol and the Garfield County Coroner report that Brouillette crashed into the guardrail; then, got out of his car and was hit by another vehicle. He died at the scene from his injuries. CSP has not identified the other vehicle, which left the scene of the crash. CSP is asking the public to contact them with any information. Amtrak travel just got a little more expensive for certain travelers. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. The Roaring Fork Conservancy has been tracking repairs needed at Grizzly Reservoir since it was drained this summer due to a break in the gate. Repairs begin today and could be finished by October 12. FEATURE: This week's News Brief features Will Grandbois, Glenwood Springs Post Independent reporter, talking with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about a crime wave in Glenwood Springs and Garfield County. Grandbois' story appears in today's GWS Post Independent or at postindependent.com.
October 01, 2015
HEADLINES: The FFA and the Garfield County Sheriff say the single engine Cessna 182G that crashed south of Glenwood Springs Sunday seemed to have engine problems shortly after take-off from the GWS Airport. The pilot was attempting an emergency landing when the plane flipped onto its back. The passenger was able to leave the plane but responders had to free the pilot from the wreckage. The Carbondale Library hosts its 2nd Annual LIT Crawl, Friday October 2. KDNK's January Jones gets the details from librarian Maura Masters. Colorado Parks and Wildlife awarded $30,000 to the Town of Rifle for a new boat ramp as part of CPW's "Fishing is Fun" program. A total of $200,000 was awarded for 6 projects around Colorado to improve angling opportunities. FEATURE: congress did not reauthorize the Federal Land and Water Conservation Fund this week. KDNK's January Jones talks to Will Roush of Wilderness Workshop about what that means for Colorado.
September 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Just after noon Tuesday, the Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District was paged to Distinguished Boards & Beams at 698 Merrill Avenue for a report of a structure fire.Pitkin County is announcing they now have a Veterans Service Officer (VSO) on staff after sharing an officer with Garfield County since 2000. A climber who fell to his death at Christiana Peak on Monday has been identified as 41 year old Travis Boyle, a resident of Union Kentucky. Glenwood Springs Police are looking for 46 year-old Rogelio “Rocky” Mendez in connection with an alleged sex assault on a child. A landscaper in the Aspen area, Mendez has not been seen since he left work Sept. 25. Anyone with information is encouraged to call 970-384-6500 or visit glenwoodpolice.com/crime-tips. FEATURE: The Bureau of Land Management’s main method of managing the nation’s wild horses and burros has been to round them up off the range, adopt them out, and, since the mid-1980s, place them in long-term holding facilities. The agency uses roundups – or what it prefers to call “gathers” - mainly to cull the herds. But, in mid-September, the BLM began to round up the West Douglas mustangs in northwestern Colorado for a different reason. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh went to the round-up as a media observer and has this story from the range.
September 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Mountain Rescue Aspen has been conducting rescue and recovery operations in the Capital Peak area over the last 24 hours. January Jones has the latest news from the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office. Just after noon today, the Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District was paged to Distinguished Boards & Beams at 698 Merrill Avenue for a report of a structure fire. The Carbondale Planning and Zoning Commission is looking for new members. KDNK’s January Jones has the details. In public meeting news, the Basalt Town council convenes tonight at 6 pm. There is an open house in Aspen to introduce new floodplain maps to home and business owners in Pitkin County. In Carbondale tonight, the Roaring Fork School District is holding it’s second bond election information meeting at Bridges High School. FEATURE: The Bureau of Land Management’s main method of managing the nation’s wild horses and burros has been to round them up off the range, adopt them out, and, since the mid-1980s, place them in long-term holding facilities. The agency uses roundups – or what it prefers to call “gathers” - mainly to cull the herds. But, in mid-September, the BLM began to round up the West Douglas mustangs in northwestern Colorado for a different reason. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh went to the round-up as a media observer and has this story from the range.
September 28, 2015
HEADLINES: A cessna crashed outside of the Glenwood Springs Airport on Sunday, two people were injured but there were no fatilities. The Roaring Fork School District is kicking off a series of community meetings to answer questions about their bond election. The first meeting is tonight at Glenwood Springs Elementary School. Pitkin County and the City of Aspen are holding a public open house on Tuesday to introduce new floodplain maps to home and business owners. FEATURE: The town of Basalt has been in the news primarily dealing with development questions around the Pan and Fork river site. But, many other issues are moving forward too like Kayak Park and affordable housing. KDNK’s January Jones has this preview of Tuesday’s Basalt Town Council Meeting with Town Manager Mike Scanlon.
September 25, 2015
HEADLINES: A male hiker died on Mt. Sopris Thursday. The Pitkin County Sheriff received a call from 2 female hikers around 1 pm, who had come across an adult man who was unconscious just below the false summit of the mountain. The man's identity and cause of death have yet to be released. The Garco Sheriff notes an uptick of mail thefts recently from western Garfield County through GWS and Carbondale and into Pitkin County, targeting rural mailboxes, secure mailbox banks that serve neighborhoods, private mailboxes and mail collection boxes. The Sheriff warns against putting outgoing mail in a personal mailbox. Anyone with info about the mail thefts can contact Garfield County Crimestoppers at 945.0101. LiveWell Garfield County has awarded fall grants of nearly $20,000 to the Town of New Castle, Sopris Elementary School, the Bookcliffs Arts Council and the Roaring Fork and Garfield County School Districts. Bente Birkeland reports about how next year's budget debate will address the TABOR Amendment. FEATURE: A 6-hour Garfield county Planning Commission meeting Wednesday night to consider a special use permit application from Ursa Resources to drill for natural gas inside the Battlement Mesa PUD resulted in a continuation. Over 70 people attended the meeting, mostly urging the Commission to deny the permit. KDNK brings voices from the meeting, including Battlement Mesa residents, industry representatives, and questions from the Planning Commission. To listen to all public comments, go to kdnk.org. Click on the Public Affairs tab and scroll down to KDNK Specials.
September 24, 2015
HEADLINES: A 6-hour Garco Planning Commission meeting last night to consider a special use permit application from Ursa Resources to drill for natural gas within the Battlement Mesa PUD resulted in a continuation. Close to 70 people, mostly Battlement Mesa residents, attended the meeting. The Commission heard presentations from county staff, recommending approval of the permit with conditions. And,from Ursa Resources, defending its work record and best management practices. All but 2 members of the public urged the Commission to deny the permit. The public hearing is closed but the next Planning Commission meeting to discuss the application is scheduled for October 28. Benter Birkeland reports that Gov. Hickenlooper kicked off a ballot campaign Monday that will determine if Colorado keeps almost $60M in marijuana tax money. The Garco Cornoer has identified a man killed in an ATV accident near DeBeque on Sunday at David S. McDonald of Grand Junction. McDonald, 63, had a head-on collision with his son while they were driving ATVs. The Roaring Fork Conservancy presents a free screening of The Great Divide, tonight at 6 the Crystal Theatre. More at roaringfork.org. Garfield Clean Energy and other groups host a free workshop Friday September 25 at CMC in Rifle from 10:30 AM to 1 PM about how government and special districts can save money with solar arrays.
September 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Planning Commission holds a public hearing tonight in Glenwood Springs about Phase One of Ursa Resources’ plan to drill for natural gas in Battlement Mesa.Last night the carbondale town trustees continued their on-going revisions of town marijuana regulations. They also voted for an increase in pay for council members that will take affect for any trustee elected in the spring of 2016. Firefighters from the Upper Colorado River Interagency Fire Unit are planning prescribed fires in Eagle and Garfield counties. Expect intermittent closures on I-70 between Grizzly Creek and Hanging Lake Tunnel on today and Tuesday, Sept. 29, for helicopter operations. CDOT anticipates between 5 and 7 stops. Colorado’s latest revenue forecast released Monday says employment is growing, along with wages and salaries. But despite the good news, the state still faces budget challenges. Bente Birkeland has more. FEATURE: The U.S. Department of Interior decided today/Tuesday that the greater sage grouse does not need protection under the Endangered Species Act. The bird spans eleven western states including Colorado, where it lives in pockets along the western slope, but is mostly concentrated in the northwest part of the state. Governor John Hickenlooper was one of the many people working to avoid a federal listing for the bird. Bente Birkeland sat down the Governor to talk about the sage grouse and some other initiatives in the works.
September 22, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Board of Trustees has been discussing a pay raise and invites residents to come to Town Hall tonight to talk about it. The Trustees now receive $600 a month and the Mayor receives $1,000 a month. They’re considering a 50 percent increase to $900 a month for Trustees and $1,500 a month for the Mayor. The meeting starts at 6 and discussion about the pay raise could begin around 7. The Colorado Supreme Court ruled Monday that the state’s method for cutting funding for public schools is constitutional. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. The BLM roundup of the West Douglas mustang herd just south of Rangely is in its seventh day. More than 133 horses have been rounded up with a helicopter in what some are calling an illegal and unnecessary activity. One hundred and eight mustangs have been shipped to the BLM’s holding facility in Canon City since September 16. One horse died Sunday while being loaded into a trailer for transport. The agency says the entire West Douglas herd must be removed from its home range, which it shares with cattle grazing permits, because the horses are excess and cause range damage. According to BLM documents, the agency has never recognized the West Douglas herd as an officially managed herd. Wild horse advocates say that the horses were first documented in that area over 200 years ago. FEATURE: Roaring Fork School District Board Member Matt Hamilton and KDNK’s January Jones talk about the $122M bond on the November ballot for repairs and upgrades to RFSD schools.
September 21, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen Police sent out an alert on Sunday saying they are looking for two men, who were possibly using fraudulent credit cards in the Aspen area. In other police updates, the Snowmass Village Police Department arrested a suspect in this weekend who they think may be the culprit of multiple bicycle thefts that have been happening over the last few months. The Aspen Daily News is reporting that two tourist from Ohio were found deceased in their vehicle after it was found in the Frying Pan River on Saturday afternoon. Governor John Hickenlooper submitted the state’s plan to increase conservation efforts for the greater sage grouse to the federal government Thursday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: As anyone who's ever taken a foreign language class knows, it’s hard to learn another language. For immigrants to this country, that challenge can affect their whole lives. According to census data, in 2013 there were more than 25 million people in the United States with limited English proficiency. KVNF's Laura Palmisano talked to a group of refugees from Southeast Asia living in rural Colorado about the daily struggle and frustrations they face with the language barrier. This is the second story in an ongoing KVNF series about the Karen [Kah-WREN] refugee community in Delta. The series is part of a reporting project for the Institute for Justice & Journalism’s 2015 fellowship on immigrant families. Visit kvnf-dot-org to find the series online.
September 18, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Board of Trustees has been discussing a raise, and the board is asking that residents come to Town Hall on Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. and provide input. A national park on the Western Slope is being recognition for its dark skies. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. The Aspen Times is reporting that midvalley residents turned out by the score Thursday night to urge a midvalley planning commission to vote to deny the Tree Farm project in El Jebel. The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission didn’t vote, but they listened to public comment for about 90 minutes. FEATURE: This week for the News Brief, January Jones speaks with Lynn Burton of the Sopris Sun about issues in Carbondale.
September 17, 2015
HEADLINES: Yesterday around 4 pm, I-70 near Silt, was closed for an accident. The Colorado State Patrol says there was a one vehicle rollover that resulted in a death. Carbondale PD says a fire at the Third Street Center and a break-in at a bank that occurred early Wednesday could be related. The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission will continue review of the Tree Farm Planned Unit Development (PUD) preliminary plan later today at 4 pm. Glenwood Springs City Council will discuss the results of last week’s special election tonight at its regular meeting at 6 pm tonight. FEATURE: Colorado’s ban on collecting rain from residential rooftops has been a controversial topic at the statehouse, and a proposed bill for next year means it will likely be debated once again. As Bente Birkeland reports, Colorado is one of the only states where it is illegal to have a rain barrel.
September 16, 2015
HEADLINES: A rollover accident Monday night on Highway 133 between Carbondale and Redstone resulted in a DUI arrest. Glenwood Springs police have posted a video on their website with footage of two suspects they are seeking in a stabbing incident on early Sunday morning. The Bureau of Land Management will proceed with a helicopter-driven, wild horse roundup today of the West Douglas herd, about 5 miles south of Rangely. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Garfield Clean Energy is hosting and a Electric Vehicle Ride and Drive event in Rifle on Thursday. It’s mostly tax free weed day in Colorado- the state has suspended 25% in state taxes on recreational marijuana sales just for today to comply with the Colorado Taxpayer Bill of Rights. And in another Colorado first, the Colorado Department of Revenue has just announced that more revenue was generated from taxes on marijuana than taxes from alcohol. FEATURE: At last week’s meeting, Carbondale Town Trustees discussed a possible cat ordinance to deter domestic felines from killing songbirds. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh was there and caught some of the public comments. Trustees have formed a committee to discuss components of a town cat ordinance. It includes two trustees, Police Chief Gene Schilling, a member of the town staff, a representative of the Audubon Society and a member of the Street Cats Coalition.
September 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Violent incidents in downtown Glenwood Springs don’t happen very often but Sunday morning was an exception when a stabbing occured in Glenwood Springs. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports that the suspect is still at-large. On Wednesday, state taxes on retail marijuana will be suspended for the day. Pitkin County has recently updated the management plan for North Star Preserve and one of the first projects is bank stabilzation and it’s happening under a volunteer group effort with RFOV on Saturday, September 19th. FEATURE: It’s almost harvest time and this year researchers at Colorado State University will be bringing in a pretty novel crop - industrial hemp. Hemp is a member of the cannabis family, but it’s lacking in psychoactive properties. Instead, it’s grown more for fiber and oil. But as KUNC and Harvest Public Media’s Luke Runyon reports, very little research has been done on the plant.
September 14, 2015
HEADLINES: Two people were stabbed just after midnight Saturday. The condition of the victims is currently unknown but the Glenwood Springs Police Department is looking for help identifying the suspect. The Rifle Citizen Telegram is reporting that the Parachute Board of Trustees will consider on Thursday the first two applications for recreational marijuana retail stores within town limits since they lifted the ban on stores in June. A bi-partisan committee of Colorado lawmakers is wrapping up statewide hearings this week on Colorado’s water plan. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.The Garfield County Commissioners are having a remote meeting this morning in Carbondale at 9 am at Town Hall. FEATURE: Natural gas drilling in the Thompson Divide came one step closer to reality September 1st when SG Interests, the U.S. Forest Service, and the BLM visited the site of a proposed exploratory well. They were met by close to 30 activists and concerned citizens who had camped out near the site the night before. KDNK’s Jock Jacober and Amy Hadden Marsh were there and gathered these voices.
September 11, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen Daily News reports that a 51-year old Grand Junction man committed suicide in Paepcke Park Wednesday night or Thursday morning. Investigators found the man's car, the gun, and notes. Read the whole story at aspendailynews.com. The State Board of Education approved new graduation requirements for high school seniors who will matriculate in 2021. Bente Birkeland reports. Colorado Parks and Wildlife and Colorado State University recently released a study, funded by the energy industry, about the effects of energy development on mule deer in the Piceance Basin. The report shows the almost constant pace of development over the past decade has fragmented portions of the basin’s habitat, changing mule deer movement and migration patterns. According to the study, CPW and CSU have developed successful programs to minimize wildlife impacts during energy exploration, including drilling multiple wells from one pad, creating wildlife seclusion areas, and buffer zones. In memory of the firefighters who died 14 years ago today at the World Trade Center, the ladder truck and 9/11 flag will be up all day at the Carbondale fire station. The public is invited to a half-hour memorial service at noon at the Aspen Fire Station and a ceremony to honor all law enforcement and first responders in front of the Garfield County Jail in Glenwood Springs. The RFTA shuttle to the Maroon Bells continues through Sunday, Oct. 4. The road will then be open 24/7 to vehicles with a $10 use fee or national recreation pass. More information at 925.8484. Swimming season ends at Rifle Gap and Harvey Gap State Parks on Monday, Sept. 14 FEATURE: For this week's News Brief, January Jones talks to Aspen Daily News reporter Madeline Osberger about her coverage of Snowmass Village.
September 10, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale town officials began the first discussions of the 2016 budget at the town council meeting on Tuesday, read the whole story in this week's Sopris Sun. The BLM has just announced it’s opened a new public wood cutting area in the Sheep Gulch Wood Cutting Area near Gypsum. Hanging Lake Trail and Parking lot will be closed to the public this coming Saturday, September 12th for trail repairs. Another Republican says he’s planning to challenge Democratic Senator Michael Bennet next year. Bente Birkeland has more on the growing field. True Nature's Eaden Shantay explains Kkirtan music that will be heard at Sacred Fest on Saturday. FEATURE: Last week, longtime Roaring Fork Valley ranchers John Nieslanik his son Marty, and Bill Fayles were part of a crowd that greeted the U.S. Forest Service, the BLM, and representatives of SG Interests up on the Thompson Divide. SG has staked out a well pad in the middle of a meadow that is a grazing permit area heavily used by local cattlemen. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talked to the ranchers about their concerns.
September 09, 2015
HEADLINES: The Rifle City Council Election Results are in…Annick Pruett, Joe P. Elliott, and Ed Green have been elected to 4-yr terms while Theresa L. Hamilton and Dana Wood have been elected to 2-yr terms. Rifle voters also narrowly gave the city approval to borrow up to five million dollars for streets by a difference of just 13 votes. Carbondale Town Trustees tabled a cat ordinance at last night’s meeting until a new committee can determine if they the rules should prohibit cats from free roaming, amoung other things. A US Geological Service report corroborates Garfield County's claims that BLM sage grouse science is flawed. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. FEATURE: Will Glenwood Springs join the ranks of smoke-free cities? City Council has begun discussions about a smoking ban. Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with council member Stephen Bershenyi about what started it all.
September 08, 2015
HEADLINES: This morning the Garfield County Board of Commissioners began their meeting at 8 am. A full day of action items, that includes approval of a formal protest letter to the BLM regarding the agency’s environmental impact statement on the greater sage grouse habitat in Northern Colorado. The Commissioners contend that the modeling and information used in the BLM process is flawed. The Basalt Town Council meets tonight at 6 pm. Roaring Fork School District (RFSD) Superintendent Diana Sirko will discuss the upcoming Bond Issue that will be on the November ballot for district residents. The council is expected to give a symbolic vote in favor of bond. The Carbondale Town Trustees convene tonight at 6 pm as well. Lots on the agenda, including a discussion of the controversial cat ordinance. Today is the last day to return ballots to the cities of Rifle and Glenwood Springs, who both had mail-in elections that end today. Seven candidates are vying for five city council seats in Rifle. Ballots are accepted until 7 p.m. today and can be dropped off in person at City Hall on Railroad Avenue. In Glenwood Springs, a special election was held to consider if the city should enter talks with the Roaring Fork School district about a land swap. Beginning tomorrow, the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority will be changing their routes until winter. FEATURE: Local ballots are filling up with development and funding questions. The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is one of the public agencies asking voters for a funding increase. January Jones has more from Chief Ron Leach. The Fire District Board will hold it's monthly board meeting this Wednesday, September 9th at 5:30 PM. The agenda is available at carbondalefire.org
September 07, 2015
HEADLINES: In late July, Eric Sanford of Houston-based energy company SG Interests, sent a letter to the Glenwood Springs City Council, repeating a request to initiate a conversation about using Grand Avenue and city streets as access routes for a proposed natural gas well in the Thompson Divide Area. On Thursday, September 4th, city council responded. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. Gypsum robbery and homicide suspect Jesus Manuel Miranda Jr. was located on late Friday night by Garfield County Deputies. Pitkin County Open Space and Trails will be closing Stein Bridge and its trail connections in the Roaring Fork Gorge this next week for repairs. Remember it’s labor day, local government offices and many business are closed today. FEATURE: Colorado has largely been spared from this summer’s political wrangling ahead of the 2016 presidential race. But as Republicans nationally are working to narrow the presidential field, the GOP in Colorado wants to widen its field of candidates to run against incumbent Democratic Senator Michael Bennet. Bente Birkeland has more
September 04, 2015
HEADLINES: A typo on the ballot for next week’s special election in Glenwood Springs has been corrected, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. Ballots mailed to over 4,000 registered city voters the week of August 17th include a single question asking voters to decide if the city should enter talks with the Roaring Fork School district about a land swap. If voters approve the deal, the city could then consider trading land at 914 School Street as well as where the recycling center now sits for acreage north of Glenwood elementary School, including Vogelarr Park. Glenwood springs voters have until 7 PM next Tuesday to return their ballots. Read the whole story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. A new state audit released Tuesday shows that Colorado mismanaged tax money, which was meant to help people addicted to gambling. Bente Birkeland has more. The public has until Thursday, September 17th to file comments on the state water plan. The final plan is expected to be submitted to Governor John Hickenlooper in December. More information at coloradowaterplan.com. The Carbondale Library is calling for performers, poets, writers, and musicians for the 2nd Annual Literature in Town Crawl. The L.I.T. Crawl will feature different performers at the new CPAC sculpture installations and other locations around town on Friday, October 2. The library has more information at 963.2889. Pitkin, Garfield, and Eagle county offices , including Eagle county’s satellite offices in El Jebel and Avon, will close Monday for Labor Day. FEATURE: The weekly News Brief features Rifle Citizen Telegram editor Ryan Hoffman, talking about citizen meetings in Battlement Mesa to discuss Ursa Resources plans to drill for natural gas within the Battlement Mesa PUD.
September 03, 2015
HEADLINES: Authorities are looking for help identifying the person who broke into Iron Mountain Hot Springs early Monday and got away with a small safe. Glenwood Springs Police Chief Terry Wilson described the crime as a “smash and grab” and said the department is following up on several leads. The burglar appeared to have arrived and left the scene on foot, but a stolen vehicle was later recovered nearby, and a similar theft was reported at Catherine Store. Anyone with information can submit a tip at glenwoodpolice.com/crime-tips or call Garfield County CrimeStoppers at 945-0101. Agenda items for tonight’s Glenwood Springs City Council meeting include a discussion of a no smoking ordinance for the downtown core and a notice of staking access from SG Interests. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. The 2015 Colorado Health Access Survey results released September 1st show that only 6.7% of Coloradans are without health insurance, down from 14.3% last year. Most are covered by employer-based insurance and one in three Coloradans is now covered by some kind of public insurance. The West Slope has higher uninsured rates than the eastern plains or the Front Range. The 2015 Colorado Health Access Survey is online at coloradohealthinstitute.org And, Amelia Shelley is leaving her position as director of the Garfield County Public Library District. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that Shelley is taking a job in Vancouver, Washington to be closer to family. Read the whole story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. FEATURES: SG Interests is one step closer to sinking an exploratory natural gas well on the Thompson Divide. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports about a peaceful demonstration at the proposed well site earlier this week. Leaky infrastructure could make natural gas as bad or worse for the climate than the coal and oil it’s replacing. Nelson Harvey spoke with High Country News Senior Editor Jonathan Thompson for KDNK's Sounds of the High Country.
September 01, 2015
HEADLINES: A Grand County judge fined Robert Johnson, 55, of Granby, over $11,000 and sentenced him to 50 hours of community service in late August for illegally hunting and killing a bull elk on private property last fall. Johnson was found guilty of one count of hunting without permission, one count of third degree criminal trespass and one count of illegal possession of wildlife, with an additional penalty for killing the elk. The others received fines. All three could lose hunting and fishing privileges in Colorado and 43 other states. The 2015 Colorado deer and elk hunting season opened over the weekend. Basalt is working on a plan to reduce its affordable-housing requirements for new development, reports the Aspen Times, despite a recent study showing that the town needs 200 more units to meet the coming demand. Read the whole story by Scott Condon at aspentimes.com. A new scientific review of research on the health effects of unconventional oil and gas operations that combine directional drilling and hydraulic fracturing was published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives Friday. The review team included Dr. Susan Nagel, associate professor of obstetrics, gynecology and women's health at the University of Missouri's School of Medecine. In an interview last year, Nagle told KDNK about the results of a previous 2013 endocrine study. Summer isn’t officially over until the local swimming pool closes and for Carbondale, that means September 7th or Labor Day this year. Until then, the John M. Fleet pool will be open from 10 to 5 every day with a modified schedule. Four thousand six hundred and eighty people (4,680) have taken a dip since the pool opened this year on May 24. Find the pool schedule at carbondalerec.com. FEATURE:For most of August, U.S. crude oil prices remained below $50 dollars a barrel, less than half of what it was this time last year. Motorists throughout the South and the Midwest, and all along the Atlantic coast have been pumping gas at two dollars or less a gallon. But, not so the Roaring Fork Valley. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh found out why.
August 31, 2015
HEADLINES: Gary Ketzenbarger, associate professor of speech and theatre at CMC, has been selected to present his one-man show, A Resume for Immortality, at the United Solo Theatre Festival, the world’s largest festival of solo performances, in New York City on September 27. Aspen Elks Lodge #224 is looking for a disabled veteran from Colorado’s West Slope to match with a trained service dog. More info at 948.5600. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that Battlement Mesa residents have two opportunities this week to express concerns about Ursa Resources plans to drill for natural gas in their neighborhoods. The first meeting is tonight at 6, hosted by Battlement Concerned Citizens. The second is Wednesday night at 6, hosted by Ursa. Phase One of the plan includes two pads, 53 wells, and approximately 2.5 miles of pipeline. This week’s meetings are at the Grand Valley Fire Station, 124 Stone Quarry Rd, in Battlement Mesa. A public hearing is set for September 23rd with the Garfield County Commissioners. White River National Forest officials and industry representatives will conduct a site visit to SG Interests' proposed natural gas well in the Thompson Divide September 1st. Environmental groups Wilderness Workshop and the Thompson Divide Coalition are organizing a camp-out tonight at the site and will greet the Forest Service and SG representatives Tuesday morning. This week's Eye on Crime takes a look at the Carbondale PD. FEATURE: The oil and gas industry was recently in Denver for the annual Rocky Mountain Energy Summit. One discussion centered on how to improve relations between industry and the public. Bente Birkeland reports from Denver.
August 27, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork School District’s Board of Education approved a resolution last night seeking voter approval for $122 million in bonds to cover critical school infrastructure. Mountain Summit Film Festival, an offshoot of Telluride's Mountain Film Festival, marks its 7th year in Aspen this weekend. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more about what's in store. Colorado Parks and Wildlife is working on a Strategic Plan and are having a public open house tonight from 6 to 8 pm at the Glenwood Springs Community Center. FEATURE: Veteran’s are taking a lead role in protecting wilderness areas through an organization called the Vet’s Voice Foundation. KDNK’s January Jones has this interview with Garett Reppenhagen.
August 26, 2015
HEADLINES: The developers who hope to put a new City Market grocery store on the west side of Highway 133 have scheduled an informal open house to present the project to the public at the Third Street Center from 5 to 7 pm tonight. Senator Michael Bennett told the Colorado Water Congress last week that it would take an all-of-the-above strategy to meet Colorado’s future water needs. The Roaring Fork School District is just one of the many public agencies who are discussing what they want to put forward on the November ballot. The RFSD Board of Education meets tonight to decide if they should ask for a bond so they can leverage grants and pay for capital improvements needed district wide. A program to provide long acting reversible contraceptives to low-income women has been funded for another year. Several foundations in the state have stepped up to provide money after it ran out earlier this summer. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. Around Carbondale, work continues on SH 133 south of town with a 2.5 mile lane closure alternating east and westbound lanes. Expect delays. Up in Aspen, CDOT is starting night time work over 15 miles of State Highway 82. Beginning on Wednesday and Thursday night, weather permitting, crews will be installing new HOV lane stencils. FEATURE: On today’s feature, KDNK’s Public Affairs show Living Permaculture explains graywater. Colorado laws are changing and host Stephanie Syson interviewed Avery Ellis. Ellis is a certified graywater installer. He was in town teaching at the Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute in July. RIVER REPORT
August 25, 2015
HEADLINES: Broadband was on the minds of Colorado’s top state officials at a community forum in Montrose last week and is an issue across the western slope. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Today is the first day of school for middle and high school students at RFSD. RFSD Elementary students will start on Thursday, August 27th. FEATURE: Students are heading back to school, but the road to graduation for this year’s incoming crop of seniors actually varies from school to school. That’s because unlike other states, Colorado does not have a set requirement for what it takes to get a high school diploma. Bente Birkeland reports, educational officials are addressing the issue. RIVER REPORT
August 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Tularemia has been confirmed in a second Mesa County woman last week who was likely exposed through a bite from a deer fly or tick while on public lands in the Ruby-Horsethief section of the Colorado River. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Basalt. In Carbondale, SH 133 at Weant Blvd and Lewie’s Lane will be striped today and work will continue on SH 133 south of town with a 2.5 mile lane closure. FEATURE: Colorado’s South Platte River basin is a powerhouse for crops and cattle. Massive reservoirs quench the region’s thirst, with farm fields generally first in line. Wildlife? It’s often last. But a small win-win is giving waterfowl a little more room at thewatering hole. It’s a program that creates warm winter ponds for migrating ducks — then gives the water back, in time for summer crops. For Connecting the Drops, Shelley Schlender reports.RIVER REPORT
August 21, 2015
HEADLINES: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News takes a look at Glenwood Springs. The Glenwood Springs Farmer’s Market is a great place to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features artist and longtime Glenwood resident Mary Noone. If you have livestock, the Colorado State Veterinarian’s office is warning of a rapid increase in Vesticular Stomatitis. There are currently 91 locations in 11 counties under quarantine after horses, mules and cattle herds have tested positive.Carbondale and Rural Fire District has voted to go forward with asking for a funding increase on the November ballot. On Wednesday night the board voted 4 to 1 to ask for $600,000 in additional funding for 2016 and 2017. If approved, the funding increase would expire in 2018. There is a red flag warning for today, that means conditions are favorable for a fire with high temperatures, low humidity and gusty winds. The Red Flag warning is in effect from noon to 8 pm today. FEATURE: Garfield County property values are up this year. These assessments help the County determine its budget and help set tax rates for school districts, fire districts and other special tax entities. For this week's News Brief, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh and John Stroud of the Glenwood Springs Post Independent talk about the valuation process and what this year's increase means for Garfield County.
August 20, 2015
HEADLINES: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News takes a look at Glenwood Springs. The Glenwood Springs Farmer’s Market is a great place to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features Pat Jones. Glenwood Springs made Outside Magazine for one of the best places to live in America. Glenwood ranked number 5. The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 6. Council will likely approve a new marijuana business ordinance, which includes increased setbacks between pot businesses and new special review criteria. Garfield County offices will be closed today from 11 am to 2 pm for an annual employee appreciation picnic. Emergency, safety and essential functions will remain open. Smoke filling the Roaring Fork Valley is coming from wildfires in Washington and Oregon. The National Weather Service in Grand Junction says a northwesterly air flow is pushing the smoke east, and that the amount of smoke will fluctuate over the next few days. FEATURE: This Fall Judge Richard Gabriel will be sworn in as Colorado’s next State Supreme Court Justice. He currently serves on the Colorado Court of Appeals. He received his undergrad degree at Yale University and went to the University of Pennsylvania School of Law. He talked to statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland about his view of politics in the judicial process, why he became a lawyer, and some of his significant cases.
August 19, 2015
HEADLINES: The Pitkin County Commissioner are telling the Bureau of Land Management that they must cancel the 25 oil and gas leases located in the Thompson Divide that fall within Pitkin County’s boundaries. Stage 3 of the US PRO CHALLANGTE race will finish today at Paepcke Park on Main Street in Aspen. Independence Pass will be closed today from 1 pm to 5:30 pm as the riders come over. Bente Birkeland reports that business groups in Colorado are urging state regulators to finalize oil and gas rules recommended by a task force created by the Governor. FEATURE: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News is taking a look at Glenwood Springs. Amy Hadden Marsh visited the Glenwood Springs Farmer's Market to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features three Glenwood residents, from age from 20 to 60.
August 18, 2015
HEADLINES: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News is taking a look at Glenwood Springs. Amy Hadden Marsh visited the Glenwood Springs Farmer's Market to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features Kim, who has lived downtown for over 2 decades. The Men’s US PRO CHALLENGE is riding through the valley this week and it will affect roads and bus schedules in Aspen. State Highway 133 continues to see roadwork in Carbondale, the intersection where the new Ross Montessori school is getting repaved. Chip seal paving operations are happening on SH 133 between Redstone and Carbondale. FEATURE: The Carbondale and Rural Fire District is considering asking the public for a tax levy, They are meeting Wednesday night at 5:30 to discuss it. KDNK's January Jones spoke with Carbondale and Rural Fire District Board Member Carl Smith about the district and the prospects for a tax levy.
August 17, 2015
HEADLINES: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News is taking a look at Glenwood Springs. Last week Reporter Amy Hadden Marsh visited the Glenwood Springs Farmer's Market to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features Cesar, who moved to Glenwood from North Carolina a year ago. The Aspen Times is reporting that Pitkin County Sheriff’s office is looking for information about 2 men who are suspected of vandalizing the RFTA Brush Creek Bus Stop on August 8th. The Garfield County Commissioners meet today. GarCo Environmental Health has prepared a cost estimate for installing a new air monitoring station in Battlement Mesa at $42,000. The town of Parachute requested one be re-installed there after an existing one was moved to Glenwood Springs. During the afternoon session, they hear a request from URSA resources for a special use permit to build a gas and a water pipeline just north of Battlement Mesa. The pipeline will be about 2 and half miles in length. FEATURE: The greater sage grouse and its habitat are in jeopardy. And, people from all over the West are working hard to keep the bird off the Endangered Species List. In the current edition of the High Country News, reporter Jodi Peterson takes readers on an in-depth journey to find out more about the bird and what she calls the biggest conservation experiment in the history of the Endangered Species Act. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talked to Peterson for this week's Sounds of the High Country. RIVER REPORT
August 14, 2015
HEADLINES: Reporter Amy Hadden Marsh visited the Glenwood Springs Farmer's Market this week to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features Sue Schnitzer. Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District has sent a brush truck and crew to assist at the Bendire Complex Fire near Vale, Oregon. The Aspen Times is reporting that he town of Basalt may be turning the decision about the Pan and Fork redevelopment project to the voters. FEATURE: The Gold King Mine that spilled toxic waste into the Animas River, is only the most recent but very visible manifestation of pollution around Durango. For this week’s news brief, January Jones called up reporter Jonathan Thompson, Senior editor at High Country News and Durango local.
August 13, 2015
HEADLINES: As part of our summer membership drive, KDNK News is taking a closer look at Glenwood Springs. Reporter Amy Hadden Marsh visited the Tuesday night Glenwood Springs Farmer's Market this week to find out what locals think are the big issues facing the town. Today's segment features 61-year old, Glenwood native Michael Hurst. KDNK News will air more voices from Glenwood Springs residents during our summer membership drive through August 21st. A husband accused of murdering his wife in Carbondale on Cooper Avenue last February, has plead not guilty. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent is reporting that Arturo Navarrete-Portillo plead not guilty to first degree murder on Wednesday. FEATURE: The Glenwood Springs City Council is making changes to their process for approving marijuana related business. At last weeks meeting, they looked at three different options intended to more tightly control where businesses can be located, especially in the downtown. I spoke with council member Kathryn Trauger about what they have settled on to reform their rules.
August 12, 2015
HEADLINES: A wildland fire near Cottonwood Pass in Eagle County on Sunday was quickly extinguished by Federal and local firefighters over the weekend. But, officials are still investigating its origins. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. The Carbondale and Rural Fire District Board of Directors meet tonight. On tonight’s agenda is action item to consider a time table for a possible tax levy going on the November 2015 ballot . The Aspen man suspected of robbing a local cannabis shop with a hammer last month, is facing 16 years in prison if convicted of local charges. FEATURE: The Navajo Nation has filed a lawsuit against the federal government over the spill that was caused by EPA activity in the mine. KGNU’s Meave Conran spoke with Johnathon Nez, the Vice-President of the Navajo Nation. RIVER REPORT
August 11, 2015
HEADLINES:Gandhi’s restaurant in Carbondale is facing enforcement action that could result in the loss of their liquor license. Carbondale Chief of Police Gene Schilling says Gandhi’s has served underage individuals and failed to cooperate with police. At tonight’s Carbondale Town Trustees meeting, it’s expected they’ll set a date for the enforcement hearing. The Basalt Town Council also meets at 6 and they will again hear from Lowe Enterprises about the Pan and Fork re-development. Basalt will move forward on purchasing a condo at Gold Rivers Court for $220,000 for the purpose of employee housing. They’ll also discuss giving more teeth to the Basalt Police department to enforce bear-proofing requirements for waste containers. Snowmass is hosting the American Renewable Energy Summit and Academy Award Winning Filmmaker Louie Psihoyos is premiering a new film, "Racing Extinction." FEATURE: Why are local cottonwood trees, particularly in Aspen, already losing their leaves? Because a fungus called Septoria is on the loose. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Aspen City Forester Ben Carlsen about Septoria and how much it's influenced by the weather. RIVER REPORT.
August 10, 2015
HEADLINES: Sunday at noon, the City of Durango and La Plata County proclaimed a State of Local Emergency due to the contamination of the Animas River. An injured climber was rescued from Maroon Bells at 13,800 on Sunday. The Glenwood Springs City Council has decided not to re-new city manager Jeff Hecksel’s employment contract. New to the list of road work, in Glenwood Springs Expect construction delays on Midland Ave beginning today from Hagar Lane south to Park West. FEATURE: The White River National Forest now requires bear-proof food containers for campers in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area - hoping to reduce back country bear problems. But just last week, Crater Lake campground near the Bells was closed due to more bear activity. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Ranger Karen Schroyer of the Aspen-Sopris Ranger District about human/bear conflicts.
August 07, 2015
HEADLINES: William Styler, the retired doctor who murdered Aspen native Nancy Pfister last year, committed suicide in his prison cell early Thursday morning, reports the Aspen Daily News. According to the Colorado Department of Corrections, Styler, age 67, hanged himself in his cell in the Arrowhead Correctional Center in Canon City. Read the whole story by Chad Abraham at aspendailynews.com. La Plata County reports that an EPA and state Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety team accidently released wastewater from the Gold King Mine into Cement Creek in San Juan County on Wednesday. Cement Creek flows into the Animas River, which was contaminated by approximately 1 million gallons of acidic mine water, full of sediment and heavy metals. The La Plata County Sheriff has closed the river to all watercraft and flotation devices from the San Juan County line to the Colorado/New Mexico border until further notice. Durango and other water users have stopped pumping water out of the river until testing is completed. The Federal and state team was investigating contamination at the Gold King Mine when the accident occurred. The Pitkin County Coroner's Office is currently investigating the death of Jon Harris, a 59-year-old resident of Derry, New Hampshire. Mr Harris was hiking in the area of Crater Lake with his son on Wednesday when he collapsed. The cause and manner of death is unknown at this time. Filmmaker Ken Burns recently received the Aspen Institute’s Public Service Award and will speak at Aspen’s Greenwald Pavillion, Saturday August 8th at 5 PM. The talk will be followed by a reception and dinner in the Doerr-Hosier Center at the Aspen Meadows Resort. Expect construction delays on Midland Ave in Glenwood Springs, beginning Monday August 10th, from Hagar Lane south to Park West for roadwork on Midland and the Cardiff Bridge road. The work is supposed to last about two weeks. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks with Aspen Daily News reporter Collin Szewczyk about Congresswoman Diana DeGette's 2015 Colorado Wilderness Act.
August 06, 2015
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 7 to discuss several action items and ordinances, including the location of medical and retail marijuana stores and grow facilities. And, at City Manager Jeff Hecksel's request, Council will also discuss whether or not he will keep his position. Read the story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. At least eight, unlocked vehicles in separate locations near Parachute were entered overnight on August 3rd and property was stolen, including three handguns. If you have information about this case, call the Garfield County Sheriff at 970.945.0453. Three laws sponsored by West Slope legislators go into effect this week. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports. The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission continues its review of the Tree Farm Planned Unit Development (PUD) today at 4 with a public comment period at 6 at the El Jebel Community Center. The project is planned for 71 acres, north of Highway 82 across from Willits Town Center, and includes up to 400 residential units, 135,000 square feet of commercial, office, lodging, or light industrial space, and 42 acres of open space. FEATURE: America Renewable Energy (ARE) Day is all about climate change and finding solutions for a renewable energy future. Founder Chip Comins spoke with January Jones about this year’s 6 days of activities.
August 05, 2015
HEADLINES: A felony DUI law for repeat drunk drivers in Colorado goes into effect today. Colorado is one of the last states in the country to enact one. Rocky Mountain Community Radio Correspondent Bente Birkeland has more from Denver. Colorado Mountain College is looking for people who want to serve on their board of trustees. Pitkin County Open Space and Trails Department is warning people to watch out for bikes on Independence Pass today. The Colorado Rocky Mountain Bike Tour will have about 115 riders. The Garfield County Fair and Rodeo began on Monday and runs until Saturday at the fair grounds in Rifle. FEATURE: Houston-based energy company SG Interests filed a Notice of Staking last week with the Bureau of Land Management for a natural gas well within the Thompson Divide area on the White River National Forest. But, as KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh found out, there might not be a way to get there. RIVER REPORT
August 04, 2015
HEADLINES: Progress was made last week to protect part of the southern border of the Thompson Divide from natural gas drilling with Gunnison Energy. But SG Interests continues to push ahead on existing leases. And, on Monday, Garfield County Commissioners are standing firm that they'll be no drilling access via Four Mile Road. Tonight is “National Night Out” - a yearly effort to improve community and police relations in a block party setting. In Basalt, education, activities and a free dinner provided by the Lions Club will happen at Lions park with police, fire and emergency responders in attendance from 5 to 7 pm. In Battlement Mesa, The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office is hosting a large gathering at the Battlement Mesa Shopping Plaza from 4 to 7:30 pm. The Aspen Times is reporting that 325 signatures were submitted to recall councilman Chris Jacobson. he Pitkin County Sheriff’s Department reported only 2 rescue missions in the last few days. On Saturday afternoon, a 54 year old woman needed medical assistance at Sunnyside Trail and Monday a 15 year-old female hiker was evacuated at Conundrum Creek. FEATURE: I SeeChange is a nationwide citizen journalism project that answers questions about the natural world. KVNF's Jake Ryan has this report about the challenges of the fruit harvest this year. Bente Birkeland reports that Colorado’s top health official says the state will need to be more determined in reducing carbon emissions by the year 2030 to meet the standards under the federal Clean Power Plan unveiled Monday. RIVER REPORT.
August 03, 2015
HEADLINES: Energy company SG Interests filed a Notice of Staking last week with the Bureau of Land Management for a well and well pad in the Thompson Divide area. This kind of notice is the first step in submitting an application for a permit to drill. Garfield County Commissioners will discuss the use of 4 Mile Road as an access road for the well this morning at 9 at its regular meeting in Glenwood Springs. Leadville/Lake County Fire Rescue has been awarded a one-hundred and eighty thousand ($180,000) dollar grant from the US Department of Homeland Security. The firefighting grant will be used to replace 23 outdated, self-contained breathing apparatus equipment. Beginning this morning, CDOT will be paving up on Independence Pass from 7:30 am to 4:oo pm, until Thursday. SH 133 between Redstone and Carbondale will continue having doing intermittent lane closures this week. FEATURE: Dan Haley is the new president and CEO of the Colorado Oil and Gas Association, the state’s largest oil and gas industry trade group. He took the helm earlier this summer and sat down with statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland to talk about his new role and his hopes for the organization and the industry. RIVER REPORT
July 31, 2015
HEADLINES: A man who allegedly stole eleven-thousand dollars worth of marijuana from an Aspen dispensary has been arrested after a high-speed chase in Missouri. KDNK’s science public affairs show, Radio Physics, is a partnership with the Aspen Center for Physics. This month, Astrophysicist Arjun Dey explained the origins of galaxies to host Patty Fox. A Rifle City Council member was found deceased in his home early on Thursday morning. FEATURE: Thompson Divide Coalition and other partners have announced a new agreement with Gunnison Energy, focused on the southern boundary of the Thompson Divide. Coalition Director Zane Kessler, spoke with KDNK’s January Jones about the news. RIVER REPORT.
July 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Hayden May of Georgia was arrested in St. Louis, MO Wednesday in connection with Tuesday’s robbery of an Aspen marijuana dispensary. After 5 years as superintendent of the Garfield Re-2 School District, Susan Birdsey is stepping down. The Rifle Citizen Telegram reports that Birdsey will receive a $220,000 severance package. Read the whole story by Ryan Hoffman at postindependent.com. The National Wildlife Federation reports that a new, independent, bipartisan survey of sportsmen nationally and in Colorado shows broad support for applying the same rules and standards of the Clean Water Act to smaller streams and wetlands. A San Francisco based startup is expanding in Colorado. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. The Aspen Times reports that Kevin Rutter has been arrested for allegedly breaking into the Aspen Brewing Company last week and making off with $400 in cash, including $100 from a cancer research fund donation jar. The Carbondale Town ditch will be off today between 2nd Street and Weant Blvd and along Sopris Avenue west of Weant from noon until 7:30 PM, due to utility work in Thompson Park. And, expect single lane restrictions along Highway 133 between Redstone and Carbondale due to road work. FEATURE: Carbondale Town Trustees Tuesday granted 2 event liquor licenses, approved an expansion at White House Pizza and an extension of a license for a marijuana testing lab, and appointed a noxious weed task force. Here, Trustee Allyn Harvey talks with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about pay raises for trustees and the mayor, domestic cat regulations, and other highlights.
July 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Aspen Police responded to a robbery yesterday at a retail marijuana store on E. Durant Avenue. Employees reported that a man entered the store wielding a hammer before stealing around $11,000 worth of product. A warrant for the suspect’s arrest is pending. Police do not believe the man is a threat to the public. The West Nile virus struck a Boulder County horse over the weekend and a Mesa County man earlier this month. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more about the disease. Almont Associates present their segment of the 2015 Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District’s Master Plan today at noon to the district’s board of directors and at 6:30 pm to the Steering Committee. Both meetings are at the Fire Administration Building and are open to the public. A copy of the working draft of the plan is at Carbondalefire.org. FEATURE: The COGCC has begun the rulemaking process for two recommendations that came out of last year’s state task force meetings. Local citizen groups Western Colorado Congress and Grand Valley Citizens Alliance have their first-ever meeting with the COGCC tonight in Rifle. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Leslie Robinson, GVCA director, about what the group expects from the meeting.
July 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Pitkin County Deputy Coroner Audra Keith says the deaths of a father and son in Maroon Bells earlier this month was caused by carbon monoxide poisoning. Mountain Fair brought thousands of people to town over the weekend. Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling said that it was mostly calm, until a fight broke out on Sunday night at 6:00 pm resulting in an arrest. Later today, both Carbondale and Basalt town boards meet. The Town Council of Basalt will first have a work session at 4:30 pm that is expected to shed new light on the town’s direction for dealing with the former Pan and Fork mobile home site downtown. FEATURE: For 40 years, the Buddy Program been matching kids with adult mentors in the Roaring Fork Valley. Lindsey Lafaro is their program director. In July she was a guest on “Non-Profit Spotlight: Battlement to the Bells”-- KDNK’s newest public affairs show. In this clip, host Amy Barr talks with Lafaro about how they find the right mentors for their kids.
July 27, 2015
HEADLINES: It was a busy weekend for mountain rescue crews- Pitkin County Sheriff says there were an unusual total of six rescue missions conducted on Saturday July 25th. A 74-year-old man was air-lifted off of Mount Sopris from an elevation of 12,900 feet.The Pitkin County Sheriff and Mountain Rescue Aspen found lost or injured hikers at Betty Bear Hut, Capital Cree, the top of West Maroon Pass and found an overdue horseman in East Creek. This year’s Mountain Fair opened with a blessing from the monks of Gaden Shartse Monastery in India. Coming up on Tuesday, they will begin a sand mandala at the 3rd Street Center in Carbondale. In this clip from Valley Voices last week, John Bruna runs down the week of Buddhist events. The Colorado Department of Agriculture is notifying livestock and horse owners that they have confirmed a case of West Nile in a Boulder County horse. CDOT will be paving 82 headed into Aspen. The paving area is from Seventh Street to Garmisch Street in the right, inbound lane. Two lane traffic restrictions continue on I-70 east through Glenwood Canyon. FEATURE: For the latest edition of Sounds of the High Country, KDNK’s collaboration with High Country News, Nelson Harvey spoke with reporter Sarah Tory about a battle over Bandit Mountain bike trails near Sedona, Arizona, and how the sport is beginning to come of age.You can read Sarah Tory’s story on Sedona’s Bandit Mountain bike trails at HCN.org. RIVER REPORT
July 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Mountain Fair begins today at 4:00 pm and KDNK will have live coverage all weekend. Portions of a few streets in Carbondale will close this weekend but Main Street is NOT one of them. RFTA will be running its usual bus schedule during the Fair, including the Carbondale Circulator, with a stop on Main Street just north of Sopris Park.The Colorado River Day event is at Colorado Mountain College’s Blake Street building in room 301 at 11 am today. The US Forest Service, working with Garfield County Sheriff officers, busted a underage drinking party off of Four Mile Road in Glenwood Springs last Friday night. FEATURE: And in the KDNK daily feature, this morning we gear up for a weekend of live Mountain Fair coverage. Here’s an audio postcard from last year’s Mountain Fair broadcast, beginning with the annual blessing.
July 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that police are looking for a suspect in a stabbing incident at the Playa Azul restaurant in El Jebel Sunday night. The suspect has been identified as 30 year old El Jebel resident Jose Oscar A. Romero Zelaya. He may also go by Jose Romero, Jose Zelaya, Oscar Romero and other aliases. He is described as an Hispanic male, between 5’ 5” and 5’ 7”, weighing 170 to 190 pounds with black hair and brown eyes. Anyone with information about the suspect or this crime should call the Eagle County Sheriff at 970-328-8500. Read the whole story at postindependent.com. A committee of state lawmakers studying water issues is wrapping up a tour in Durango, Montrose and Craig this week. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. Seven candidates are running for four, at-large City Council seats in Rifle this fall. The election is Tuesday, September 8. A 45-year-old Rifle man was cited for DUI and careless driving Wednesday morning after his pickup truck struck a traffic light at 14th and Grand in Glenwood Springs. The light pole, along with the attached electrical box, was sheared off. No one besides the driver of the truck was injured. Read more at postindependent.com. Best-selling author Dr. Temple Grandin, comes to Carbondale on Tuesday, July 28. She will give two presentations, beginning at 5 PM at the Third Street Center, on humane livestock management and improving the lives of people with autism. Dr. Grandin will also visit two non-profits in the area. For more information, contact Alta Otto at 927.3143. FEATURE: I SeeChange is a nationwide citizen journalism project that answers questions about the natural world. A recent post on the website mentioned strange sounds coming from a listener's pine tree. KVNF's Jake Ryan reports.
July 22, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale Town Trustees met with Garfield County Commissioners Tuesday night for a 2-hour work session. No decisions were made but topics discussed included the Thompson Divide, county zoning for marijuana grow operations, the entrance to the Gus Darien Arena during the Carbondale Wild West Rodeo, the status of the MRI transfer station on County Road 100, the county right-of-way through CRMS, and more. Commissioner Mike Samson said the board wants to preserve the public right-of-way through CRMS and have people use it without being hassled. But, he added, they do not want to spend a lot of money on it. Mayor Stacey Bernot said she would like to see proper signs and that trustees would consider helping maintain the right-of-way. Vice President Joe Biden toured a manufacturing center at the Community College of Denver on Tuesday. Bente Birkeland reports. KDNK's January Jones takes a look at Carbondale police activity for the first half of July. FEATURE: Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell met with western Colorado officials in Glenwood Springs Friday evening to talk about coal mines and sage grouse. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report.
July 21, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale Parks & Recreation Commission is recommending that the Carbondale Board of Trustees pursue an increase to the recreation sales tax. Relatedly, the Carbondale Board of Trustees meet tonight for a work session with the Garfield County Commissioners. The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office is looking for people who want to help victims of crime as Victim Specialist Volunteers. Parachute Town Trustees voted 4-2 last week to approve retail recreational marijuana shops, cultivation centers, and pot-related businesses within town limits. FEATURE: Earlier this month, the US Forest Service approved a portion of Deep Creek, on the southeast corner of the Flat Tops, as suitable for Wild & Scenic status. This means the next step is Congressional designation. But, the process started three decades ago, when members of the local Sierra Club and other environmentalists, including Beverly Compton, noticed that Deep Creek needed some kind of protection. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh recently spoke with Compton about what makes Deep Creek worth protecting. RIVER REPORT.
July 20, 2015
HEADLINES: Federal, county, and municipal fire crews worked through the weekend to contain a wildfire above Highway 82 hear Red Canyon, just southeast of Glenwood Springs. A body recovered near the Weller Lake Trailhead, which is downstream from the Devil’s Punchbowl on Independence Pass has been determined to be missing local William Graham. KDNK’s Public Affairs Show, Ask the Vet dealt with the topic of allergies in animals this month. Mary Fox and Dr. Chad Roeber explain how they can present differently in pets than in people. FEATURE: A last-minute change to an indoor venue due to stormy weather couldn't keep folks away from a dedication ceremony Saturday for Colorado's newest National Monument. KRCC's Andrea Chalfin reports. RIVER REPORT
July 17, 2015
HEADLINES: The Pitkin County Coroner has identified the Maroon Bells campers found dead in their tent Wednesday morning as 41-year-old Jeffrey Beard and his son, 14 year- old Cameron Beard from Colorado Springs. They were found unresponsive by two other Beard children. The cause of death is still under investigation. There is speculation it could have been caused by lightning or carbon monoxide poisoning. Also in Pitkin County, the Sheriff’s Office is stating that a body was recovered from the Roaring Fork River on Thursday afternoon. Deputies found the body in a section of the river near the Weller Trailhead parking lot. The identify and cause of death is not known at this time. US Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell is in Colorado today. First, at the Paepcke Auditorium in Aspen at 5:30 pm. Afterwards, she heads to Glenwood Springs for a private meeting with northwest Colorado officials to discuss the federal court ruling facing the Colowyo Coal Mine near Craig that could shut it down. On Saturday, she’ll be in Buena Vista to celebrate the designation of Browns Canyon as a National Monument. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features Glenwood Springs Post Independent editor Randy Essex.
July 16, 2015
HEADLINES: The Pitkin County Sheriff's office says a lightning strike may have killed an adult male and a juvenile male, whose bodies were found on Wednesday July 15 in a tent south of Maroon Pass. Pitkin County Dispatch got a call around 10 AM, reporting the bodies. Rescue workers found two other juveniles walking towards the Maroon Bells parking lot and transported them to Aspen Valley Hospital (AVH). The bodies found in the tent were also taken to AVH. The identities of the deceased have not been released. And, it has just become more expensive to get a driver’s license in Colorado. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that GWS City Council will consider plans for a second marijuana cultivation facility and retail sales shop on Thursday. The city’s Planning and Zoning Commission recommends approval for the almost 17,000 square-foot facility on Devereux Road, about half a mile west of the Green Dragon/Green Essentials building. Read the whole story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. If your summer plans include camping in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness Area, make sure you take hard-sided, bear-resistant containers for food, garbage, and other items that could attract bruins. The Aspen-Sopris Ranger District has issued a special order that requires them. All containers must be certified by the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee and can be purchased at many local outdoor stores or online. FEATURES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire District is writing a new master plan to prioritize services and set a financial path for the next few years. KDNK’s January Jones has more. And, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has a Carbondale Town Trustees update from Mayor Stacey Bernot.
July 15, 2015
HEADLINES: SCAM ALERTS! The Garfield County Sheriff’s Department warns of another phone scam in the area. This time, the caller claims to be from the IRS and will tell you that you owe back taxes.The caller further explains that your bill must be paid right away to avoid additional penalties or other consequences. Victims are then told to purchase Green Dot pre-paid debit cards and call in the number on the cards to pay the debt immediately. Tularemia or Rabbit Fever is on the rise in Colorado. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. And, the Mystery Shopper phone scam encourages you to be a part of a test market and a “mystery shopper.” You then receive what appears to be a legitimate cashier’s check in the mail. You are instructed to deposit the check into your account, keep a portion for yourself and then, purchase money grams and mail them to a list of recipients. By the time you realize the cashier’s check is phony, you’ve already spent your own money on money grams and sent them out. FEATURE: As part of Connecting the Drops, KGNU’s Maeve Conran takes a look at how Colorado communities are re-thinking how they charge for services like water and how that could encourage smarter growth.
July 14, 2015
HEADLINES: The Honorable Gail H. Nichols, Ninth Judicial District Judge, retires on October 31. And, the Ninth Judicial District Nominating Commission is looking for her replacement. The committee meets in Glenwood Springs on Aug. 31 to interview and select nominees for appointment by the governor to this position. Application forms are available locally from Lynn Reed, 109 8th St., Glenwood Springs. And, on the court’s home page at www.courts.state.co.us/Careers/Judge. The original application must be filed no later than 4 p.m. Aug. 12. Democratic State Representative Millie Hamner was the vice chairperson of the state Joint Budget Committee during the last legislative session and will chair the committee next year. Here, she talks to KVNF's Laura Palmisano about two unintended consequences of Colorado’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights. The Aspen Times reports that 25 mountain bikers, hikers and runners poached a popular trail outside of Snowmass Village between April and the end of June this year. The trail closes during spring to help wildlife. Four motion-detecting cameras recorded the poachers, including five dogs, who entered the Tom Blake Trail on Burnt Mountain. Two people have been cited so far. The number of poachers is up from two in 2014. Twenty-one poachers were caught by cameras in 2013 and 29 in 2012. Read the whole story by Scott Condon at aspentimes.com. Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6 at City Hall. Agenda items include continued public hearings on special use permit to manufacture retail marijuana infused products by S.P. Products at 500 Buggy Circle. FEATURE: The Colorado Department of Transportation launched Bustang-- an express bus service that runs round-trip from Glenwood Springs to Denver once a day. KDNK’s January Jones has more.
July 13, 2015
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that Shannon Kunkel, 34, of Mesa County has gone missing with her one and a half year old son, Luke Kunkel Jr. Kunkel’s parents found a note from her at 5:30 AM Saturday, stating that she was going into town. Kunkel was last seen on G and Three-Eighths Road in Palisade and was reportedly driving a dark blue, 1992 Toyota Camry. Anyone with information should contact Mesa County non-emergency dispatch at 970.242.6707. Photos of Kunkel and her son are at postindependent.com. The Bustang officially launches this morning and will transportcommuters and travelers to and from Glenwood Springs, Denver, Colorado Springs, and Fort Collins. The bus departs Glenwood for Denver’s Union Station weekdays at 7:05 a.m. from the South Glenwood stop at 27th Street and Grand Ave, and 7:15 a.m. at the West Glenwood stop. The bus also stops in Eagle, Vail and Frisco. One-way tickets to Denver cost $28. For more information, visit ridebustang.com. Bente Birkeland reports that an unused state tax credit for low- to moderate-income workers goes into effect for the next tax year. The Basalt Library hosts a free legal clinic today from 2 to 5 PM. Walk-ins are welcome, and everyone will be helped on a first-come, first-served basis. These free clinics are offered the second Monday of every month. After the high profile Krabloonik sled dog animal abuse case, the town of Snowmass Village has created a best practices advisory committee for the continued well-being of the animals. The committee is looking for volunteers who have experience with sled dogs and are residents of Snowmass. Applications for the committee are available on the Snowmass town website at tosv.com. The Silt Town Trustees meet tonight at 7 at municipal council chambers and will take a look at residential trash collection fees among other issues. FEATURE: Fifteen-year old climate activist Xiuhtezcatl (SHU-TEZ- CO-TIN-NOT-TU) Martinez, from Boulder, is Youth Director of Earth Guardians and spoke last week to the UN General Assembly in NYC.
July 10, 2015
HEADLINES: Beginning on Monday the Colorado Department of Transportation launches Bustang-- an express bus service that will have a round-trip route running from Glenwood Springs to Denver once a day. They’ll be a ribbon-cutting at the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority’s 27th Street Station in Glenwood Springs to celebrate the launch. KDNK’s Eye On Crime summarizes Basalt Police activity for June. The Garfield County Sheriff’s Office hosts a dog vaccine clinic Saturday at Veteran’s Park in Silt between 8:00 AM and noon. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features Scott Condon from the Aspen Times, talking about the proposed Tree Farm development in El Jebel. RIVER REPORT
July 09, 2015
HEADLINES: Colorado Mountain College is third on the U.S. Department of Education's list for most affordable colleges in the nation for earning a bachelor’s degree. KVNF reports that a Mesa County man, who was hospitalized after contracting West Nile virus, is now recovering at home. He’s the first person to be diagnosed with it in Colorado so far this year, according to the state. Beginning Friday, the use of all types of fires are outlawed along the Colorado River in McInnis Canyons National Conservation Area near Grand Junction. This restriction affect campers floating the Colorado River between the Loma boat ramp and the Utah border. Cook stoves equipped with an on-off switch remain legal. Camping in the area covered by the fire restriction is by permit only. This restriction does not apply to other public lands in northwestern Colorado. The Aspen Times reports that Snowmass Village Town Councilman Chris Jacobson was charged with felony criminal mischief Wednesday. Jacobson was arrested for drunk driving nearly two weeks ago. After he was transported to the Pitkin County Jail, he allegedly tore off sections of a rubberized wall in the jail’s isolation cell and damaged lights in the cell, causing between $14,000 and $15,000 in damage. Snowmass Village Town Charter states that if a member of the council is convicted of a felony charge, the person will be automatically kicked out of office. FEATURES: A memorial fund for Sarah Ogden is in the works. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Bente Birkeland reports that Colorado continues to be a top vacation destination according to the latest figures from the state’s tourism office. The newest report shows a record-breaking year for the tourism industry with more people visiting. The tourism office also claims legalized marijuana is helping tourism.
July 08, 2015
HEADLINES: Westbound I-70 through Glenwood Canyon will close between mile markers 117 and 125 today. Eastbound lanes will handle all traffic. There is a 12-foot width restriction on vehicles. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that Matthew Ogden and Phyllis Wyatt, the Parachute couple suspected in the death of their one-month old infant daughter, will soon be returning to Garfield County from Cass County, Minnesota. The couple waived extradition Monday and are expected to return within 2 weeks. Ogden, 29, faces possible felony charges, including first-degree murder of a child by a person in a position of trust. Wyatt, 41, faces felony charges of criminally negligent child abuse causing death. The outdoor industry adds over $13 billion to Colorado’s economy and employs 125,000 workers. But, a warming climate could change all that. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Aspen families can apply for financial aid to help defray childcare costs. The deadline for new applications is August 1, 2015 with assistance to begin September 1, 2015. Applications are available at Pitkin County licensed childcare programs, Kids First, or kidsfirst.aspenpitkin.com. FEATURE: Needle exchange programs are designed to keep illegal drug users from sharing used needles and spreading diseases. Not too long ago, these programs were illegal in Colorado. Now, they are expanding throughout the state. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano has this report.
July 07, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District meets tonight at 5:30. The district is creating a new master plan that is expected to reveal its financial needs and could spur taxpayer funding. A key component of the plan has been public outreach and local consultant and former Fire Board member Mark Chain won the over $50,000 contract for the project. But, public response has been low. Beginning in April, a series of eleven community meetings took place from Marble to Missouri Heights. Three meetings were held in Carbondale but only one member of the public, who was not associated with the process, attended one of the meetings. The District is also working on two community surveys, one of which was mailed to 3,200 people. Only 510 surveys have been returned so far. The final report on the survey will be presented on July 15th. A successful family planning program in Colorado will be scaled back. Bente Birkeland has more. The Sopris Sun reports that Butch’s Lobster Shack, formerly of Basalt, will move to Carbondale. Read the whole story in this week’s Sopris Sun. FEATURE: Arthur Carhart worked for the U.S. Forest Service from 1919 - 1922, and helped create the first protected wildlands in the nation at Trapper’s Lake. On this month’s Shifting Gears, host Will Evans and guest Bill Kight pay homage to Carhart. Here, Kight, in character as Carhart, talks about what may have happened at Trapper’s Lake a century ago. This and archived editions of the show are available at kdnk.org.
July 06, 2015
HEADLINES: Wildlife officials have removed a trap set in late June for a bear that bit a camper on the arm near Reudi Reservoir. The Aspen Daily News reported Friday that there has been no sign of any bears at the Dearhamer Campground since the incident. Officials believe the bear has moved on. The U.S. Forest Service said the camper will not be cited. Today marks 21 years since the South Canyon Fire claimed the lives of 14 federal firefighters from Prineville, Oregon. The blaze overtook them as they ran to safety up the south flank of Storm King Mountain outside Glenwood Springs. A new state law went into effect last week that makes it illegal to use hazardous materials to make hash oil. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. On Wednesday, July 8, I-70 westbound through Glenwood Canyon will close for a construction project. Eastbound lanes will become a 2-lane highway to handle all traffic. CDOT is repairing more than 20 bridges along the interstate. Garfield County has closed the Treasurer and Public Trustee’s office in Rifle. The Clerk and Recorders office at the same location will remain open. FEATURE: Colorado’s population is expected to increase by two and a half million people in the next 25 years, most of them headed for the Front Range. As part of Connecting the Drops, Rocky Mountain Community Radio’s statewide water series, KGNU’s Maeve Conran looks at the impact on Colorado as its landscape changes from crops to houses.
July 03, 2015
HEADLINES: Many public offices are closed today for the 4th of July weekend. US Postal service is delivering mail today but not on Saturday, July 4. Tonight in Carbondale is First Friday and Main Street will be closed from 5 to 9 pm. Rifle will have fireworks on Friday night at Centennial Park at dusk. On Saturday, Carbondale and Aspen both have 4th of July parades. Carbondale's starts at 10:30 AM, followed by a community party at Sopris Park. In Aspen, the parade begins at 11 AM on Main Street. Fireworks over Aspen Mountain are expected to begin at dusk. You can also see fireworks at Appletree Park on Saturday at dusk.
This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at police activity in Carbondale. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that Maria Viviana Alvarado-Gomez of Carbondale will serve six years in prison for poisoning her children last year. She was convicted of Class 3 felony child abuse with a controlled substance. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks with Glenwood Springs Post Independent reporter Jessica Cabe about problems with the rules of the annual Miss Strawberry Days contest.
July 02, 2015
HEADLINES: A homicide suspect fleeing northern Colorado was tracked to Trappers Lake on Tuesday night. Twenty-one year old Cole Pollard is the person of interest in the death of Patricia Richmond, who was killed Monday night in Clark, Colorado, about 20 miles north of Steamboat Springs. Pollard was taken into custody and returned to Routt County. Drew Gorgey has left the Garfield County Manager's position. Amy Hadden Marsh reports. The Snowmass Sun reports that Snowmass Village Town Councilman Chris Jacobson was arrested last Friday on suspicion of DUI. He could face additional charges for damage he allegedly caused to the Pitkin County Jail. Police say he urinated on the floor, damaged lights, punched a wall, and wrenched a restraining chair in which he was being held out of the ground. Jacobson is up for re-election in 2016. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones explores an environmental presentation from this week's Aspen Ideas Fest.
July 01, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Manager Drew Gorgey has announced he's leaving after four years on the job. Story 2 RUNS 0:35The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission will continue their review of the Tree Farm Planned Unit Development (PUD) preliminary plan during their regular meeting on July 2. The state Supreme Court struck down a controversial school voucher program on Monday saying it violated Colorado’s constitution. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. Tonight and Thursday there’s free music in the valley. Many local government offices will be closed on Friday for observation of the 4th of July. FEATURE: The US Supreme Court on Friday declared same-sex marriage as legal across the country. And, over the following three days, KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh talked to men and women in the street about their thoughts on the decision. RIVER REPORT.
June 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Two suspects in a Parachute child homicide case were arrested Monday in Cass County, Minnesota. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. Xcel Energy says customers in Colorado will see a drop in electricty and natural gas bills, due to lower prices and lower use, for the third quarter of 2015. Carbondale is implementing a no-herbicide spray policy in the new North Face Bike Park. To keep it that way, Carbondale Recreation and Community Center Manager Eric Brendlinger says they need volunteers every Thursday night to help pull weeds. Summer road work projects continue. Paving on Highway 82 goes on for the second day. The downvalley side of Highway 82 from Aspen Glen to Cattle Creek will be reduced to one lane today for paving from 9 am to 4 pm. State Highway 133 between Carbondale and Redstone will also have intermittent lane closures for paving, 8 am to 7 pm. Further down 133, 7 miles east of Somerset, CDOT is doing rock scaling. FEATURE: The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission just approved 2 permits to drill in the Thompson Divide, which cannot progress until the Bureau of Land Management completes an environmental review of illegal leases in the area. But, a proposed Congressional lease exchange could make all of that moot. Thompson Divide Coalition director Zane Kessler and Carbondale Town Trustee Katrina Byars joined KDNK’s Valley Voices last week to clarify these developments. In this segment, Kessler explains the lease exchange and why it’s not a done deal. Listen to the entire edition of Valley Voices about what’s facing the Thompson Divide at our website kdnk.org. Click on Public Affairs and search for Valley Voices. RIVER REPORT
June 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Local author Paul Andersen and photographer David Hiser won a Colorado Book Award for High Road to Aspen - the story of Independence Pass from the late 1800s to present day. Andersen told KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh that researching the book was an historian’s dream come true, and it led to a surprising theory. State highway 133 is closed from 11 am to 4 pm today at MM 24, seven miles east of Somerset for rock blasting A second full closure of that section of 133 will happen again for 5 hours on Wednesday. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports two small wildfires in western Garfield County over the weekend - one by the Rifle-Garfield County Regional Airport on Sunday afternoon and another scorched over 2 acres east of White River Avenue behind the Rifle Police Station. The cause is still being investigated but no injuries or damages occurred. FEATURE: Sounds of the High Country is KDNK’s audio partnership with the respected environmental magazine, the High Country News. For this edition, KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Tim Heffernan about his cover story on the rare earth mineral boom that busted before it began.
June 26, 2015
HEADLINES: A campsite with exposed food, resulted in a bear bite at Ruedi Reservoir yesterday. Now the bear will be euthanized. Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) are offering free blood pressure checks on Saturday, June 27 from 10 am until 2 pm at the City Market parking lot. The weekly Streamflow Report from the Roaring Fork Conservancy says this has been a unique runoff year. After releases from Ruedi Reservoir peaked at 772 cfs last week, Fryingpan River flows have dropped to 268 cfs. Get ready to rodeo Mexican style this weekend in Carbondale. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more. FEATURE: It’s time for the weekly news brief. KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Chad Abraham from the Aspen Daily News.
June 25, 2015
HEADLINES: Wednesday afternoon, the Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District responded to a wildfire on Meadow View Lane in Glenwood Springs. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at police activity in Glenwood Springs. The Sopris Sun is reporting that Carbondale’s Environmental Board has recommended that the town expand its ban on plastic shopping bags. The Aspen Ideas Festival kicks off today. FEATURE: Connecting the Drops is a radio series about Colorado water issues with the Colorado Foundation for Water Education and Rocky Mountain Community Radio stations. The 4th statewide call-in show that aired live on Sunday, June 14, 2015. It focusing on individual water conservation. Guest Louis Meyer said for conservation to really work, communities need incentives. RIVER REPORT.
June 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Commissioners unanimously approved a land use application Monday for a 5,000 barrel-per-day injection well just outside of Battlement Mesa and Parachute, according to the Glenwood Springs Post Independent, Heavy weather in May boosted stream flows in the Upper Colorado Basin. But, what about downstream states? KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report on Lake Mead. The Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District & the Basalt & Rural Fire Protection District has started their annual wildfire patrol programs, offering homeowners free assessments if they live in wildfire risk areas. The Afro-Cuban Jazz Project opens the 2015 Glenwood Springs Center for the Arts’ Summer of Music series tonight at Two Rivers Park. The free concert starts at 6:30 with the Jazz Aspen/Snowmass Summer Camp opening the show. FEATURE: Carbondale’s Thunder River Theatre and the Roaring Fork Cultural Council hosted former President Jimmy Carter and First Lady Rosalynn Carter last night. Fielding questions from RFCC founder Jim Calaway and the audience, they covered topics ranging from violence against women, the Islamic State, and Palestine to mental health, migrants in Europe, and more. In this segment, the President talks about racism in the U.S. and what the recent South Carolina murders mean for the nation.
June 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Post Independent is reporting that Carbondale may be getting a new City Market north of the current location. They are proposing a 58,000-square-foot grocery store, a 7,100-square-foot attached retail space, a fueling station and drive-through pharmacy. The Grand Junction kayaker that died on the Frying Pan River has been identified as Jerry Young. Former President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalyn will be in Carbondale tonight. The event is sold out but KDNK will broadcast it live from the Thunder River Theater beginning at 6:00 pm. Last fall, Carter spoke at American Renewable Energy Day in Aspen. In this clip, he speaks about his 2014 book “A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power.” The Colorado Department of Agriculture is promoting their campaign- “Burn it Where You Buy It" - campers are urged to buy their firewood at their destination, preventing the spread of any insects or diseases. FEATURE: A program to provide free, long acting reversible birth control to young, low-income women in Colorado is being extended for another year. This comes despite state lawmakers failing to pass a bill to fund the effort. As Bente Birkeland reports, health officials have been scrambling to find a way to continue the successful initiative.
June 22, 2015
HEADLINES: A Grand Junction kayaker died on the Frying Pan River Sunday afternoon. The Basalt and Rural Fire Protection District’s Swiftwater Rescue Team was dispatched to the Pueblo Bridge in downtown Basalt after multiple reports of a body in the water. Two civilians jumped into the Frying Pan River, securing the victim, and attempted CPR efforts, to no avail. The kayaker has not yet been identified. Early Saturday morning, a 10-unit apartment building on Blake Avenue in Glenwood Springs caught fire. All residents were evacuated and no injuries were reported. There was no central alarm system in the building and the cause of the fire is still under investigation. Carbondale hosts 800 cyclists overnight tonight as part of the 21st Annual Bicycle Tour of Colorado. Carbondale Chamber Director Andrea Stewart talks about events and what to expect. Aspen Postal employee Mauro Pennini, who was allegedly found to have weapons on him at work, has been arrested on Federal charges by the US Attorney’s Office, including possession of a firearm while the subject of a protection order and possession of a firearm at a Federal facility. If convicted, he faces up to 11 years in prison. FEATURE: Natural gas leases in the Thompson Divide are still tied up in a Federal review. And, some are part of a proposed Congressional lease swap. But, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission – or C.O.G.C.C. - recently approved two applications to drill wells near 4 Mile Park - on leases owned by Houston-based energy company SG Interests. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Audio minutes of COGCC’s May 18th hearing are at the COGCC's website.
June 19, 2015
HEADLINES: Owners of one of two proposed new retail marijuana stores that were denied licenses last week by the City of Glenwood Springs intend to appeal the decision. Read the story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. KDNK's Eye on Crime looks at Carbondale police activity. It's Summer Solstice weekend and that means it's time for the 118th Annual Strawberry Days festival in GWS. More at strawberrydays.com. Tune in to KDNK today at 4 for an interview with longtime Strawberry Days parade announcer and television host Jeannine Ford Artaz. FEATURE: This week's News Brief features a conversation with Sopris Sun reporter John Colson about the Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District. River Report.
June 18, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork on and around the Northstar Preserve east of Aspen was pushed to flood stage early Wednesday. Pitkin County says the river was flowing through town Wednesday at 1,680 cfs, up 500 cfs from Tuesday night. The Bureau of Reclamation is also monitoring the Frying Pan River. Releases from Ruedi Reservoir have increased since Wednesday. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act became law in 1918 to stop the trade in bird plumes that slaughtered millions of birds. Now, the Act could become an endangered species. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 6 at City Hall. On the agenda are several land use items, including a request for a major development at Glenwood Meadows. FEATURE: Robert F. Kennedy Jr was in Boulder recently and spoke to H20 Radio’s Frani Halperin and Jamie Sudler about the environment and democracy, and why the two are interdependent.
June 17, 2015
HEADLINES: Xcel Energy says 460 customers were without power for a few hours on Monday due to a damaged fuse on Weant Boulvard in Carbondale. The City of Aspen is seeking its next Grand Marshal for the Fourth of July Parade. The 21st Annual Bicycle Tour of Colorado will be spending an overnight in Carbondale on Monday, June 22nd with as many as 1,000 people expected. City leaders from across the state are gathering in Breckenridge this week for their annual conference. The Governor will speak on Thursday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. Aspen Skiing Company employees have donated over ten thousand dollars to three charities delivering on-the-ground relief in Nepal after recent earthquakes. FEATURE: The 3rd Street Center turns five on Thursday. KDNK’s Diane Johnson spoke with director Colin Laird last week. Here he talks about the center’s unique blend of non-profit tenants.
June 16, 2015
FEATURES: On Monday around 1:30 PM, Xcel energy customers experienced a power outage in the Carbondale area that appeared to affect residents living south of the Rio Grande Trail. Xcel representatives said that 583 customers reported a loss of electricity. The Aspen Daily News is reporting that two Aspen voters are initiating a petition, that could lead to a public vote on Mark Hunt's Base 2 Main Street lodge.The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is asking the public to complete a survey for their master plan. The Colorado Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that companies can fire employees for using medical marijuana, even when they’re off duty. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: Garfield County Commissioners voted 2 to 1 Monday to proceed with a proposal that will keep the “public” in the public right-of-way that bisects the Colorado Rocky Mountain School campus. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has this report. RIVER REPORT
June 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Eastbound I-70 closed for about an hour last night around 8:30 pm at mile marker 77 near Parachute due to a vehicle fire. SH 133 south of Carbondale will have intermittent lane closures in both directions while the contractor roto mills, heats and replaces the asphalt. Work hours will be 8:00 am to 8:00 pm and the closures will be one and a half to two miles in length. Further south on 133 near Paonia Reservoir, east of Somerset - there are closures from 7 am to 5 pm weekdays for rock blasting. They’ll be a full closure of that section of 133 on Friday 6/19. The Carbondale community Teens Giving Back program has begun for the summer and is looking for various projects for volunteer teenage students to complete. Several states have been discussing the transfer of some Federal lands to the states. Colorado is one of them, but current and former Federal officials say it’s a non-starter. Bente Birkeland has more.The Garfield County Commissioners are having a remote meeting beginning at 9 am this morning in at the Parachute branch library. The first item on the agenda is a discussion about a permanent air monitoring station in Battlement Mesa. They’ll move back to Glenwood Springs and reconvene at 1 pm. They are expected to make a decision about the request for a trail in the County Road 106 Right-of-Way through the Colorado Rocky Mountain School campus. FEATURE: Valley Life for All has been an advocate for people with disabilities in the Roaring Fork Valley for over 4 years. They’re celebrating past successes and creating a plan for the future tonight at the Third Street Center. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh sat down with executive director Gary Bender to talk about the state of services in the Roaring Fork Valley.
June 12, 2015
HEADLINES: The flood advisory for the Roaring Fork River is in effect until tonight. At 2 PM Thursday the river stage was 4.2 feet above bank fall. Flood stage is 5.0 feet and the forecast calls for the river to rise to 4.5 feet by midnight Friday. The continued rains contributed to a rock slide on interstate 70 yesterday in Glenwood Canyon. I-70 was closed in both directions from 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. No vehicles were involved in the slide.This morning the Aspen Daily News is reporting that investigators from the U.S. Postal Service interviewed an Aspen post office employee who allegedly had a cache of weapons at the facility. The 2015 RFTA Summer Season starts on Saturday, June 13th, 2015. This means changes to times and some bus routes. Governor John Hickenlooper and former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar kicked off Colorado’s first-ever outdoor summit on Thursday. The goal is to help the state protect open spaces and create more bike trails. Bente Birkeland has more. FEATURE: This morning, KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Bob Ward from Aspen Journalism about education in the valley. RIVER REPORT
June 11, 2015
HEADLINES: Seventeen people have been arrested so far in a Rifle area drug trafficking investigation. Law enforcement seized 10 pounds of methamphetamine, 1.5 ounces of heroin, three firearms and $30,000 in assets, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent and the Two Rivers Drug Enforcement Team. Ten suspects remain at large. Read the whole story by Will Grandbois at postindependent.com. A flash flood watch is in effect for western Garfield County until this evening. In Pitkin County, a large tree is lodged in the “Entrance Exam” rapid near Slaughterhouse Falls in the Roaring Fork River about a quarter-mile below Slaughterhouse Bridge. A multi-jurisdictional team is watching the rivers from Aspen to Carbondale and Pitkin County and discussing water releases from Reudi Dam with the Bureau of Reclamation. Read the whole story by Collin Szewczyk at aspendailynews.com. QinetiQ, a UK-based global defense and security company, will conduct helicopter trials at Rifle Garfield County Airport this summer. A press release issued by Garfield County this week states that a Boeing C-17 Globemaster will transport the Puma helicopter from England to Garfield County. The public is invited to watch the scheduled arrival Wednesday, June 17, between 4:30-5:30 p.m.The City of Aspen hosts the first of a series of open house meetings on the future of affordable housing today from 4 - 6:30 at City Council chambers. FEATURE:
Carbondale Town Trustees met on Tuesday night. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. And, the KDNK Eye on Crime takes a look at recent arrests in Aspen.
June 10, 2015
HEADLINES: A multi-jurisdictional mud and flood incident management team includes officials from Aspen, Basalt, and Carbondale as well as Pitkin and Eagle counties and is planning for emergencies and possible evacuations if area creeks and rivers overflow. Citizens are encouraged to sandbag their properties if flooding could occur, and to sign up for Pitkin Alert at www.pitkinalert.org for email or text alerts. If evacuations are necessary or for other flood-related emergencies, residents will be notified with the reverse 911 system or with door-to-door warnings. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on last week's unveiling of the Art Around Town sculptures. The Carbondale Farmers Market opens today from 10 to 3 at 4th and Main for the summer.The Aspen Times reports that the Twin Lakes Reservoir and Canal Company is voluntarily foregoing diversion from the Roaring Fork River headwaters to save remaining storage space in the Twin Lakes Reservoir, east of Independence Pass. The Roaring Fork is running higher now but diversions will be timed to peak run-off, which is expected later this month. Read the story at aspentimes.com. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling about the May 26 telecom outage.
June 09, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Coroner has identified a man who drowned Saturday after falling out of a raft on the Colorado River as Dennis W. Janes, age 56, from Warsaw, Illinois. Two males and one female were in the raft when Janes fell out near the Grizzly Creek Rest Area.The coroner states that Janes was wearing a personal flotation device and a helmet. A bill signed into law Friday broadens the state's three-year-old Cottage Foods Act. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Basalt and Carbondale both have town council meetings tonight at 6 PM. The Watson Divide Road is closed to traffic through noon tomorrow for dust suppression. Paving segments of the Rio Grande, Brush Creek and Basalt-Old Snowmass trails begins today. Paving and shoulder repairs on the upper Brush Creek Trail, on the edge of Snowmass Village, are scheduled June 9-12 and June 15-16. Detours are in place nto Brush Creek Road. Smuggler Mountain Rd will also be closed to vehicular traffic through June 19 for repairs. FEATURE: The deadline for bills that passed during the state’s legislative session to become law or get vetoed was Friday. Measures are either signed by the Governor or become law without his signature. Bente Birkeland talks to state capitol reporters about some of the measures.
June 08, 2015
HEADLINES: A flood advisory is still in effect for the Roaring Fork River in Pitkin County. The Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office is asking that the public stay out of the river. The warning comes after a search this weekend for Aspen Resident Will Graham, who is believed to have gone missing on Thursday afternoon at the Devil’s Punchbowl access area off 82 east of Aspen on the Roaring Fork River. Garfield County Sheriff’s office reported that a rafter drowned after falling from a raft on the Colorado River near the Grizzly Creek rest area on Saturday afternoon. Eye on Crime takes a look at the Rifle PD. Current Basalt Elementary School Assistant Principal Jennifer Ellsperman will move up to run Basalt Middle School this fall as the principal. In local road news, State Highway 133 south of Carbondale will have intermittent lane closures this week as crews continue to work on guardrail replacement. By Friday, CDOT says to expect one mile of single lane closure on the road during asphalting. FEATURE: It’s been a month since Colorado lawmakers wrapped up this year’s legislative session at the state capitol – but the work is far from over. Many of the bills that failed this year will likely be back next year. And, as Bente Birkeland reports, some long-standing issues are already poised to go before voters in 2016.
June 05, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork Conservancy says river levels are flowing above average this week. The Aspen Times is reporting the Eagle County planning staff have given initial approval “The Tree Farm“ - a proposal for 400 residences and nearly 135,000 sq ft of commercial space.A measure to eliminate immunity for public schools for shootings, deaths, sexual assaults and other serious injuries that happen to students on school grounds is now law. It goes into effect in July. Governor John Hickenlooper signed the bill on Wednesday, Bente Birkeland has more. For those that ride the bus, the 2015 RFTA Summer Season starts on Saturday, June 13th, 2015. This means changes to times and some bus routes. On June 13th, they’ll also reintroduce the Bike Express on Saturday and Sunday. Tonight is First Friday in Carbondale. Main Street will be closed between Weant to Snowmass Drive from 5pm to 9pm to accomodate. FEATURE: The Weekly News Brief features Jane Bachrach and Lynn Burton of the Sopris Sun discussing the Roaring Fork High School Graduation outing of Emily Bruell.
June 04, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Public Health reports that a western Garfield County resident exposed to hantavirus last month is recovering at home. The Roaring Fork School District has made another new hire for the fall. Joel Hathaway from Asheville, North Carolina has accepted the position as principal at Glenwood Springs Middle School. Today at 4:30, KDNK is proud to premier a new public affairs show called “Non-Profit Spotlight: Battlement to the Bells”. In this excerpt from today’s show, Aspen Homeless Shelter Director Vince Savage explains how they serve the community. The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 5 pm with the Garfield County Board of Commissioners. They’ll have their regular meeting at 7pm and be talking about the marijuana shop moratorium again. FEATURE: The Carbondale Public Works Department has been hard at work setting up new public art this week, ahead of tonight’s Art Walk - the official unveiling of Carbondale’s 2015 Art Around Town exhibit. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
June 03, 2015
HEADLINES: Bert Myrin has won the run-off election for a seat on the Aspen City Council against Mick Ireland. The Carbondale and Rural Fire District has completed a series of community meetings for their master plan process, the next step is a survey to community members. The Grand Avenue Bridge reconstruction project in Glenwood Springs over Highway 82 has just received final federal approval. The Carbondale Police Department says late on June 1st, several vehicles were entered and rummaged through in the Hendrick Ranch subdivision in Carbondale. FEATURE: he state collects severance taxes from companies that extract nonrenewable resources in Colorado. Some of this money goes to communities in the form of large grants. Most of these grants go to communities to help build fire stations, upgrade water systems, restore historic sites, and aid with other infrastructure or economic development projects. And as KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports, the program is also providing funds for a shooting range on the Western Slope. KDNK's Eye on Crime looks at Glenwood Springs Police activity. RIVER REPORT
June 02, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs Elementary School has been awarded a nearly 9 million dollar grant to help renovate and build onto the historic school. The New Castle Town Board meets tonight. A key topic is discussion of the Colorado River Fire & Rescue water billing. Pitkin County Government is moving forward with plans to remodel its downtown facilities and are holding a public tour during lunch tomorrow, June 3rd, from 12 noon to 2 p.m. In Basalt, today until Friday, Frying Pan Road will have intermittent road closures for rock removal. Trails are getting a touch-up too in Pitkin County- paving repairs on the upper Brush Creek Trail, on the edge of Snowmass Village, began yesterday and are scheduled until June 5th. Around Carbondale, the roundabout and medians are being planted ahead of the official dedication of the Surls roundabout sculpture on Friday. Today is the last day to vote in the run-off for the final Aspen City Council seat between candidates Bert Myrin and Mick Ireland. The Governor signed a felony DUI bill into law Monday. As Bente Birkeland reports, state lawmakers in both parties had tried for years to pass the measure. FEATURE: Tonight, the Western Slope Veterans Coalition (WSVC) is hosting its inaugural Dining Out for Vets event throughout the Roaring Fork and Eagle valleys with forty restaurants participating. Michael Conniff explained their work and how eating out on Tuesday can help vets in this community, to KDNK’s January Jones. RIVER REPORT
June 01, 2015
HEADLINES: Aspen City Council candidate Bert Myrin leads opponent Mick Ireland in campaign spending for tomorrow's run-off election by nearly a third, reports the Aspen Times. Myrin reports raising a little $2,108. Ireland reports about nine hundred dollars less. Polls are open from 8 to 5 today at City Hall, and from 7 to 7 at City Hall and the Red Brick Building tomorrow. Read the whole story at aspentimes.com. This week’s Eye on Crime takes a look at Carbondale from May 8 through May 21. A contractor for the Town of Carbondale will place soil mix in the roundabout and medians starting this morning. Expect delays as material is hauled in. Snowpack in mountains surrounding the Roaring Fork Valley is at 136% of the median, according to the Colorado Basin River Forecast Center. The current rate of snowmelt is point three inches a day. Colorado Rocky Mountain School officials, local residents, and Garfield County staff will sit down together this afternoon to try to resolve the County Road 106 right-of-way dispute. The meeting is closed to the public. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. KGNU’s Hannah Leigh Myers takes a deeper look at the some of the key water law elements that govern the Colorado River and how they are making it difficult to save the Colorado River Basin.
May 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Former Garfield County bookkeeper Robin McMillan was sentenced Thursday to up to 10 years in prison for stealing money from the Garfield County Clerk and Recorder's office. Read the whole story by Will Grandbois at postindependent.com.The Pitkin County Library moves into the Old Power House this week until January, 2016. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.Crime Stoppers of Garfield County is offering up to $1,000 to help solve a crime that occurred in New Castle on Thursday May 15. Several homes, vehicles, schools, and businesses along Main Street and the north alley from City Market, including Elk Creek Elementary School, were tagged with black spray paint. Graffiti was also found in areas from West Main to 7th Street, north to Castle Valley Blvd. If you have information on this crime, call 945.0101. Tips will remain anonymous. FEATURE: For nearly a century, layers of laws and agreements have created a legal framework for how the Colorado River is controlled and allocated. KGNU’s Hannah Leigh Myers takes a look at the Law of the River.
May 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs City Manager Jeff Hecksel is a finalist for the Delta city manager position, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. Read the story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. Colorado State Rep Bob Rankin speaks with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about some of the issues facing Western Colorado. Hear more today at 4:30 on Valley Voices. The Roaring Fork Valley Regional Planning Commission holds the first public hearing for the Tree Farm Planned Unit Development on Thursday, June 4th. The 71-acre PUD proposal includes up to 400 residential units, about 135,000 square feet of commercial, office, lodging, or light industrial space, 42 acres of open space, and continued use of the property for tree farm and nursery operations. The June 4th review begins with a site visit at 2:30 p.m. at 401 Tree Farm Drive in El Jebel, followed by a public hearing at 4 at the El Jebel Community Center. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Barry Cryer of Technology System Consultants to find out more about fiber optics after Tuesday's telecommunications outage.
May 27, 2015
HEADLINES: KDNK News Director January Jones joins Steve Cole for updates on the telecommunications outage that's impacting most of the upper Roaring Fork Valley. FEATURE: The Glenwood Springs City Council passed a moratorium Tuesday against new applications and licenses for marijuana facilities after hearing from local residents last week. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
May 26, 2015
HEADLINES: The Colorado State Patrol reports that Michael Jensen died in a rollover crash around 1 AM today near Blue River Colorado, just south of Breckenridge. The cause of the crash is still under investigation. The Pitkin County Open Space and Trails Board voted May 7th to recommend putting $2.5M towards the purchase of Deer Creek Ranch in Snowmass. The property would offer new access to the Roaring Fork River and national forest lands above the valley, via Arbaney Gulch. Pitkin County commissioners will consider the issue on Wednesday, May 27th. And, Pitkin County Commissioners have a joint meeting at 3:00 pm today with the Basalt Town Council, which will then meet at 6. KDNK's January Jones reports on the upcoming Mountain to Valley Race. The new Roaring Fork Fishing Guide Alliance wants to reduce boat launch time to 5 minutes at the Carbondale boat launch. Read the whole story at soprissun dot com. FEATURE: Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park has a problem with nitrogen pollution from industry and agriculture. Harvest Public Media’s Luke Runyon and KUNC’s Stephanie Paige Ogburn have more on the unlikely partners working to preserve the park.
May 25, 2015
HEADLINES: Today is Memorial Day. Government offices, including libraries are closed today. The American Legion Post 83 will be conducting its annual Memorial Day Commemoration at 11 a.m. at the Rosebud Cemetery in Glenwood Springs. Up in Aspen, Memorial Day ceremonies will be held today at noon at the Roaring Fork Veterans Memorial, located on the east side of the Pitkin County Courthouse. Garfield County Public Health announced last week that one person in the western part of the county has been diagnosed with Hantavirus but health officials will not release specifics. Aspen City Council meets at 5:00 pm and they'll have the first reading of the town’s charter amendment, required by the recent vote by citizens on "Referendum One." Colorado has a new export grant program to help small and medium-sized businesses in Colorado that are minority or women-owned for up to $15,000. FEATURE: Throughout history, the eagle has symbolized strength and courage. And now the eagle is becoming a symbol of gratitude. Military Veterans on the Western Slope are hand making canes, decorated with the head of an eagle for fellow veterans. For this morning’s feature, KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports.
May 22, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Public Health officials are investigating a recent case of hantavirus exposure in the western part of Garfield County. Hantavirus is carried in the saliva, urine and droppings of certain infected mice. Colorado Mountain College is now offering two more bachelor degrees- the Bachelor of Applied Science in leadership and management and the Bachelor of Arts in interdisciplinary studies for elementary education. This Saturday is a second planting day for Carbondale’s first edible landscape at the Nature Park. A bill reducing the number of standardized tests Colorado schoolchildren take is now law. Many camping areas are now open locally- in the Aspen-Sopris Ranger District, all campgrounds managed by White River Recreation are open for except for Lost Man and Chapman-South loop Campground. FEATURE: The News Brief features Ryan Hoffman, editor for the Rifle Citizen Telegram with an update on walkability upgrades happening in Rifle. RIVER REPORT
May 21, 2015
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs City Council meets tonight at 6 at City Hall to discuss the city’s marijuana ordinances and the sale of city property that is home to the recycling center. That decision could be left up to voters this fall. The Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports that the town has concerns about the number of new retail pot shops and related facilities proposed within city limits. Council expects a high turn-out at tonight’s meeting. KDNK's January Jones reports on a shred-a-thon in Glenwood Springs tonight, benefiting the Advocate Safehouse Project. Garfield and Eagle County offices will be closed Monday, May 25 for Memorial Day. In Aspen, ceremonies will be held at noon at the Roaring Fork Veterans Memorial on the east side of the Pitkin County Courthouse, followed by a community picnic at Connor Park next to City Hall. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on a study of Cattle Creek, which has been listed as one of the Upper Colorado River Basin's 65 impaired streams.
May 20, 2015
HEADLINES: John Walls, who struck and killed Basalt resident Patrick Dunn last August, will not be charged with any crime, reports the Aspen Times. Pitkin County Judge Erin Fernandez-Ely threw out the case after hearing that Walls was court- ordered last month not to drive. Read the whole story by Rick Carroll at aspentimes.com. New snow and changing temperatures brings challenges and dangers to backcountry travelers. KBUT's Chad Reich reports. The Rifle City Council meets tonight at 6 to discuss an inmate transportation agreement with the Town of Parachute, an amendment to the Rifle municipal code regarding drug paraphernalia and other items.The Tree Farm in El Jebel hosts an open house this afternoon from 4 - 7 at the Kodiak Ski Club on Tree Farm Lane to discuss a new residential and commercial development project, which includes 400 residences and more than 127,000 square feet of commercial space. FEATURE: CCAH holds a public drop-in session tonight from 4:30 to 6:30 at the Third Street Center to get feedback on the Creative Arts District strategic plan. KDNK’s January Jones and CCAH's Amy Kimberly talk about the project.
May 19, 2015
HEADLINES: A hunter near Kremmling may have shot a gray wolf late last month. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is conducting DNA tests on the animal, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. Gray wolves in Colorado are protected under the Endangered Species Act. Read the whole story by Drew Munro at postindependent.com. Carbondale hosted the first-ever Bonedale Bike Jam on Saturday at North Face Park. The winners were Atlin Mason, Quinn Carpenter, Iziah Bell, and Sean Shuman. Kevin Gonzalez won first place for Best Trick Jam Session. KDNK’s Eye on Crime looks at Basalt. Scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder say that U.S. residents' exposure to extreme heat could increase by four to six times by mid-century. A study released Monday in Nature Climate Change says that the increase is due to a warming climate and a population that’s growing especially fast in the warmest regions of the country. FEATURE: The County Road 106 right-of-way issue at Colorado Rocky Mountain School has yet to be resolved. But, Garfield County Commissioners said yesterday that a plan has to be in place by mid-June. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
May 18, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork School District has hired Peter Mueller as the new principal for Basalt High School. Matthew Koenigsknecht will be the new principal for Crystal River Elementary School. Aspen High School Principal Kim Martin has resigned after three years. Tonight the Colorado Department of Transportation will close eastbound I-70 through Glenwood Canyon beginning at midnight and continuing until 5:00 AM Tuesday morning. Governor Hickenlooper issued an executive order on Friday to increase conservation efforts for the Greater Sage Grouse. The Governor wants to prevent the bird from being listed under the Federal Endangered Species Act. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: Garfield County Commissioners will hold another public meeting this afternoon about the county right-of-way that runs through the Colorado Rocky Mountain School campus. Many local residents joined commissioners at the school last week for a walk along the route. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with some of them to find out what they think of what has become a contentious issue between the school and local residents. RIVER REPORT.
May 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Beginning today and running through May 21st, Carbondale is taking over Visit Colorado’s Instagram account. The Carbondale Chamber of Commerce is asking that locals participate by taking pictures of their favorite things around town. Photos should be tagged with #VisitCarbondaleCO and posted to Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says the recent precipitation has brought the snowpack levels in the Roaring Fork basin to 76% of average, A measure to study how to avoid closures and ease congestion on I-70 was signed into law Wednesday. KVNF in Paonia is reporting on another bill signed this week dealing with water intensive, invasive plants. FEATURE: About 50 people joined Garfield County Commissioners Thursday to walk the county right-of-way through the CRMS campus.
May 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Beginning today and running through May 21st, Carbondale is taking over Visit Colorado’s Instagram account. The Carbondale Chamber of Commerce is asking that locals participate by taking pictures of their favorite things around town. Photos should be tagged with #VisitCarbondaleCO and posted to Instagram, Facebook or Twitter. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says the recent precipitation has brought the snowpack levels in the Roaring Fork basin to 76% of average, A measure to study how to avoid closures and ease congestion on I-70 was signed into law Wednesday. KVNF in Paonia is reporting on another bill signed this week dealing with water intensive, invasive plants. FEATURE: About 50 people joined Garfield County Commissioners Thursday to walk the county right-of-way through the CRMS campus.
May 14, 2015
HEADLINES: The Post Independent reports that the Carbondale Board of Trustees approved the Thompson Park Master Plan for the 10-acre parcel on the south end of town between Triangle Park and Keator Grove on Highway 133. It includes the historic Thompson House and the future site of Ross Montessori School. More at postindependent.com. At 9 AM today, the Garfield County Commissioners and Colorado Rocky Mountain School lead a community walk-through of the public right of way through school property. At 10 am, RFTA meets at Carbondale Town Hall to discuss the Carbondale Circulator bus route. Governor John Hickenlooper was in Rifle yesterday to help get the new aerial firefighting research center off the ground and to sign two bills. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. Volunteers are needed to help Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers work on the trails at Wulfsohn Open space in Glenwood Springs today at 4 PM. More information at rfov.org. FEATURE: Melissa Lineberger is the new director of the Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting in Rifle. Here she talks with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh about her experience with wildfires and her vision for the program.
May 13, 2015
HEADLINES: Governor John Hickenlooper joins other officials this morning at the Garfield County Airport in Rifle for the grand opening of the Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting. The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District Board Meeting is tonight at 5:30. The district has been holding a series of meetings from Redstone to Missouri Heights for the past month as part of a master planning process.KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on the Roaring Fork Conservancy's study of the state of Cattle Creek. The Aspen Times reports that a marijuana grow operation off Highway 82 near the Roaring Fork Club and Holland Hills in Basalt is upsetting neighbors. Pitkin County Commissioners may not renew the license in September if the stink persists. Read the whole story in today’s Aspen Times. A federal court in Colorado ruled Friday that the U.S. Department of the Interior was wrong to approve the expansion of the Colowyo and Trapper coal mines near Craig. Environmental group WildEarth Guardians sued the federal government for failure to include the public in its decision and to protect the environment. District Judge R. Brooke Jackson ruled that the government violated the National Environmental Policy Act, and ordered the Department of Interior to fix its decision within six months or the Colowyo Mine will be closed. FEATURE: Governor Hickenlooper recently signed a bill to reduce human/bear conflicts. Bente Birkeland reports. Finding enough water to meet the demands of Colorado’s booming Front Range has city planners looking closely at how new developments can conserve water. And, with the second draft of the State Water Plan scheduled for release in July, many water advocates want to talk about land use. For Connecting the Drops, Maeve Conran reports.
May 12, 2015
HEADLINES: The Basalt Town Council and the Carbondale Town Trustees have meetings tonight. The Basalt Basalt Council meets at Willits Town Center at 5 pm to go to the grand opening of Valley View Hospital's Willits Care Center and then return to Town Hall at 6:30 for a work session. Carbondale Town Trustees also meet at 6 at Carbondale Town Hall. Garfield County Commissioners approved open-air pits for remote fracking sites in Garfield County on Monday, against the unanimous recommendation of the county Planning Commission. Energy company WPX wants the flexibility to use either tanks or pits, depending on the situation. Read the whole story in today’s Post Independent. KDNK’s Eye on Crime looks at the Carbondale PD. The White River National Forest will begin reconstruction on the Eagle-Thomasville Road for the Catawampus Salvage Timber Sale as soon as ground and weather conditions allow. The 2015 Carbondale Mountain Fair line-up has been announced. The full schedule is at carbondalearts.com. FEATURE: Solar energy is taking off in the Roaring Fork Valley. KDNK’s January Jones has more about Solar Rollers.
May 12, 2015
HEADLINES: The Basalt Town Council and the Carbondale Town Trustees have meetings tonight. The Basalt Basalt Council meets at Willits Town Center at 5 pm to go to the grand opening of Valley View Hospital's Willits Care Center and then return to Town Hall at 6:30 for a work session. Carbondale Town Trustees also meet at 6 at Carbondale Town Hall. Garfield County Commissioners approved open-air pits for remote fracking sites in Garfield County on Monday, against the unanimous recommendation of the county Planning Commission. Energy company WPX wants the flexibility to use either tanks or pits, depending on the situation. Read the whole story in today’s Post Independent. KDNK’s Eye on Crime looks at the Carbondale PD. The White River National Forest will begin reconstruction on the Eagle-Thomasville Road for the Catawampus Salvage Timber Sale as soon as ground and weather conditions allow. The 2015 Carbondale Mountain Fair line-up has been announced. The full schedule is at carbondalearts.com. FEATURE: Solar energy is taking off in the Roaring Fork Valley. KDNK’s January Jones has more about Solar Rollers.
May 11, 2015
HEADLINES: It’s Bonedale Bike Week with events every day through the weekend and a bike jam at the new bike park on Saturday at 9:30 am. Full schedule and info at bonedalebikeweek.com. Environmental group WildEarth Guardians has sued the U.S. Forest Service over a 20-square mile logging project near Leadville. The group claims it will destroy valuable lynx habitat. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Governor John Hickenlooper visits the new Center of Excellence for Advance Technology Aerial Firefighting at the Garfield County Airport in Rifle for the official opening on Wednesday. The public is welcome to attend. FEATURE: KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports on how West Slope communities rely on mnieral severance taxes.
May 08, 2015
HEADLINES: There will be a run-off for the remaining Aspen City Council seat between former mayor Mick Ireland and activist Bert Myrin. Aspen Ski Company’s Environment Foundation has just announced their spring 2015 grant recipients with over $129,000 going to 16 projects. Eye on Crime looks at Rifle Police activity. May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation. CDOT says in 2014 there were 92 motorcyclists who lost their lives in fatal crashes. FEATURE: On KDNK’s Weekly News Brief Post Independent Reporter John Stroud talks about the recent shake-ups in Glenwood Springs municipal government and in Garfield County.
May 07, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Frank Hutfless was retired last week after less than three years on the job. Current Assistant County Attorney Tari Williams will fill the gap for now. Last weekend saw the Western Colorado Climate Challenge in Paonia. It was a conference focused on the impacts of climate change on the Western Slope, and what could be done to address them. KVNF's Jake Ryan has more. The 17th annual Dandelion Days is this weekend and the schedule has expanded to include events on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. FEATURE: State lawmakers waited until the last minute to decide some of the biggest issues hanging over the capitol this legislative session. They worked overtime this week to get everything wrapped up before a midnight deadline on Wednesday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
May 06, 2015
HEADLINES: Unofficial Aspen city election results show incumbent Mayor Steve Skadron has won by 400 votes. City Council member Adam Frisch will keep his seat. But, there could be a runoff between Bert Myrin and Mick Ireland. The town has become the first in the state to put building exception issues to a public vote. Garfield County recently ordered Colorado Rocky Mountain School to stop work on a new entryway. A public meeting is scheduled for 9 AM Thursday, May 14 at Colorado Rocky Mountain School. Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Glenwood Springs is one of two Colorado cities among 64 cities in the running for Outside Magazine’s Best Town in America. Glenwood is up against Victor, Idaho in the first round and has garnered over 71% of the votes. Details at outsideonline.com. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones and Aspen Public Radio’s Carolyn Sackariason break down the results of the Aspen municipal election.
May 05, 2015
HEADLINES: Voters in Aspen today will decide on mayor, two city council seats, and whether to support a public vote on development exceptions. People can vote in person or drop off ballots at the Red Brick Building or at City Hall from 7 AM to 7 PM. An avalanche on Mount Sopris Sunday morning caught one skier. According to the Aspen Daily news, the skier was on the edge of the slide path and caught up to her waist by the slide. Two other skiers were able to dig her out. No one was injured. Story and photo at aspendailynews.com. Garfield County property owners should receive property tax valuations in the mail this week. Notices were mailed Friday to all land owners. The protest period is open until June 1. Details at the Garfield County Assessor's Office 945.9134 or at garfield-county.com/assessor. KDNK’s Eye on Crime looks at recent police activity in Carbondale and Aspen. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones reports from last week's UDC public meeting in Carbondale.
May 04, 2015
HEADLINES: A dispute between Colorado Rocky Mountain School and its neighbors has led to a stop-work order, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. The problems is a new. landscaped entry to the campus, which neighbors say will block non-motorized use of an historic county right of way through school grounds. Some neighbors recently replaced a grate on the north end of the campus without approval from the Rockford Ditch Company or the county. GarCo Commissioners will discuss the issue at today's meeting in GWS. Read the full story at postindependent.com. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports on how Shakespeare helps get kids talking about violence and bullying. Rockfall mitigation begins today on Highway 133, near Paonia Reservoir. Expect up to 20-minute traffic delays with single-lane alternating traffic from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday until the project is complete. FEATURE: Bente Birkeland reports on how severance taxes are not always a stable source of funding for Colorado communities.
May 01, 2015
5/01/2015: HEADLINES: The presence of E. coli has been confirmed in a small wastewater discharge near the Jess Weaver Trail along CR 129 (No Name Lane) in No Name. Garfield County is investigating the source and will seek mitigation measures. Questions or concerns? Call Garfield County Public Health at 665-6380. KDNK's January Jones reports on how Carbondale's Community Work Day on Saturday is an example of the town's sustainability efforts. CMC has chosen Dr. Heather Exby as the new director of its Roaring Fork Campus. Exby starts on June 1st. Read the whole story in this week’s Sopris Sun. Don’t forget to get in line early tomorrow for the Glenwood Springs Health Fair. Doors open at 7 AM at the Glenwood Springs High School. Those seeking a blood draw must fast 12 hours in advance. FEATURE: For this week's News Brief, KDNK's January Jones talks with Aspen Daily News Managing Editor Curtis Wackerle about the politics of Aspen's city elections. And, a special May Day Labor Report from Workers Independent News on the 1886 nationwide walk-out the spurred the 8-hour workday.
April 30, 2015
4/30/2015: HEADLINES: The public comment period for the first draft of the Colorado Water Plan is Friday, May 1. More information and details about the draft plan are at coloradowaterplan.com. The first Western Colorado Climate Challenge & Solar Fair starts Friday in Paonia. The event features presentations from water and energy experts. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano speaks to event organizer Pete Kolbenschlag. A rockslide has destroyed a popular jeeping road over Schofield Pass between Marble and Crested Butte, reports the Aspen Daily News. Read the story by Collin Soo-Zik at aspendailynews.com. FEATURE: KDNK's January Jones talks with Basalt Mayor Jacque Whitsett and local citizens about development along the Roaring Fork River where the Pan and Fork Trailer Park used to be.
April 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Local non-profit YouthZone held its annual awards ceremony last week, recognizing outstanding young people and volunteers. Saturday's earthquake in Nepal has set locals in motion to help out. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh speaks with Carbondale resident Dawn Dexter about a fundraiser coming up on Sunday, May 3, at Sustainable Settings. Find out more at the Nepali Earthquake Relief page on Facebook. The Basalt Town Council took steps towards a community compromise on the controversial development of a former downtown trailer park site Tuesday night. Read the whole story in today’s Aspen Times. FEATURE: From KDNK's Andy Zanca Youth Empowerment Program, Latinas Arribas produced this piece about what they say is an uncomfortable learning environment at Basalt High School. Listen to the whole show at www.kdnk.org/youthradio.
April 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale town officials meet tonight to officially adopt the Parks and Recreation Master Plan and discuss the Carbondale Circulator Bus. The Basalt Town Council will deal with more issues surrounding development of the former trailer park site. The Rifle Citizen Telegram is reporting that a new senior housing project for 50 units in New Castle is moving forward with construction expected next year. KDNK's Eye on Crime looks at Garfield County Sheriff’s Office activity. The Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers (RFOV) are working in Carbondale on Saturday, May 2nd on the Crystal River Riparian Trail. FEATURE: Aspen municipal elections are coming up on May 5th. Mail- in ballots went out on April 13th and early in-person voting opened on April 20th. Up to voters are city council seats, the mayor’s seat and an important public question about putting development questions up to public vote. Today we start with a look at the Mayors race. Incumbent Mayor Steve Skadron and challenger Torre faced off in a debate this month that aired on Grassroots TV. We present some of that now, in this edited segment. The first question is whether downtown prices are too high due to parking restrictions, no-growth policies and affordable housing demands.Torre responds first, followed by Mayor Skadron.
April 27, 2015
HEADLINES: Tonight the Glenwood Springs Downtown Development Authority is hosting a community open house to share design ideas for a makeover of the area around the Grand Avenue Bridge. The Aspen Times is reporting that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the IRS are opposing bankrupt billionaire Samuel Wyly’s motion to sell his Woody Creek ranch. LIFT-UP food pantry is encouraging gardners to plant a row for the hungry this spring and now, gardeners who do can claim a tax credit. A measure to study whether Colorado should take control of Federal public lands cleared its first committee at the Capitol. Environmental and outdoor recreation groups strongly oppose the bill. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. FEATURE: As the Colorado Senate gets ready to debate Senate Bill 232, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talked to 5 Point Film Fest guests about what they think of transferring Federal public lands to state control.
April 24, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork Conservancy says that the watershed snowpack is currently at 61 percent of average-- up from last Thursday’s measurement of 50 percent. A book with photos from Glenwood’s glory days has just been released and there is a book signing on Saturday. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks with Frontier Historical Museum Director Cindy Hines for details. Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling sent a memo with springtime reminders for residents. FEATURE: KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her story about women’s bull riding. On this week's News Brief, Amy talks about the story before an encore presentation of the winning feature, "Tianna Davis: Girls Just Want to Ride Bulls".
April 23, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale Chamber Director Andrea Stewart runs the Boston Marathon in 3:54:10. Find her photo in this week's Sopris Sun. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on a new Gallup environment poll. Part 2 of the Carbondale UDC is open for public review at carbondaleudc.com and the public can come to a meeting about it at 7 PM Thursday 4/30 at Town Hall. FEATURE: Sounds of the High Country features a conversation with author and High Country News contributing editor Craig Childs and KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh.
April 22, 2015
HEADLINES: It's the 45th annual Earth Day and the Earth Day Children's Parade gets a 10 AM start at Basalt Elementary School and heads down Midland. ACES, CORE, and the City of Aspen host an Earth Day party tonight from 5 - 7 at Hallam Lake. And, on Saturday, Roaring Fork Conservancy hosts the annual Frying Pan River Clean-Up. KDNK's January Jones gets the details from RFC's Christina Medved. WildEarth Guardians will argue in Denver court on Friday against the US DOI's approval of the expansion of the Colowyo and Trapper coal mines in NW Colorado. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks with businessman Ken Burns about recycling e-waste. Bente Birkland reports about bears, and January Jones has an update on the proposed Thompson Divide natural gas lease swap.
April 21, 2015
HEADLINES: The North Face Bike Park in Carbondale is nearing full completion. The Aspen Times is reporting that Lowe Enterprises is putting their plans for a hotel and condos in Basalt on hold. A look at Carbondale Police activity for the last month. The Colorado Department of Transportation is starting up their Bustang-- express bus service on July 13th that will do a run between Glenwood Springs and Denver daily. FEATURE: Over the years Boulder and Denver have become hubs for tech start-ups, and the region is home to widely respected scientific research institutions – often drawing comparisons to Silicon Valley. But a new report from Colorado State University suggests northern Colorado is poised to receive the same recognition – but with an agrarian twist. KUNC and Harvest Public Media’s Luke Runyon has more.
April 20, 2015
HEADLINES: Friday night a fatal crash occurred on I-70 near Rifle. A 15-year old was killed and the 17-year old driver sustained serious injuries. The 44th Carbondale Mountain Fair Poster Design contest is underway. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports a bill for birth control access cleared its second reading in the House on Friday. Rocky Mountain PBS I-News has compiled a list of figures that paint of picture of cannabis in Colorado today. FEATURE: National Crime Victims Rights Awareness Week is April 19 - 25 this year and the 9th Judicial District is hosting a candlelight vigil at Sayre Park on April 22 to commemorate victims of violent crimes. Ninth Judicial District Victim Witness Assistants Stephanie Sarabia and Jessica Gonzalez, and Ninth Judicial District Chief Investigator Lisa Miller joined Amy Hadden Marsh on Valley Voices on April 9th to talk about the victims of violent crimes and their rights. Listen to the entire show at kdnk.org. Click on the Public Affairs button.
April 17, 2015
HEADLINES: The Spring Clean up in Glenwood Springs continue next week, residents should have items to the curb by 7 am. The Roaring Fork Conservancy is reporting that the Roaring Fork Watershed snow pack is currently at 50 percent of average. CDOT has road improvements on SR 133 between Carbondale and Redstone scheduled and they are holding a public meeting about the project on Thursday April 23rd at Carbondale Town Hall. FEATURE: For this week's News Brief, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh speaks with Ryan Hoffman, new editor of the Rifle Citizen Telegram about his visions for the paper and local issues.
April 16, 2015
HEADLINES: The White River National Forest has approved plans for the White BAnks alabaster, gypsum, and marble quarry at Avalanche Creek. The mine is also known as the Mystic Eagle mine and will begin minimal work in May, reports the Sopris Sun. Residents of Swiss Village, which is near the mine, are worried about noise, dust, and other potential problems. Pitkin County shares the residents’ concerns and is also worried about impacts on wildlife. The approval means the mine can operate for 4 years to allow mine operators to prove their claims. Read the whole story by John Colson in this week’s Sopris Sun. The Carbondale Town Trustees approved several housekeeping items Tuesday night, including a trustee library liaIson and construction of a shelter at the 3rd Street Center's community bread oven. But Carbondale Mayor Stacey Patch-Bernot (ber-KNOTT) says most of the meeting's discussion focused on town ordinances for retail marijuana businesses. Newly-elected Glenwood Springs City Council members Kathryn Trauger and Steve Davis along with incumbents Todd Leahy and Mike Gamba will be sworn in tonight at the City Council meeting. Their first action item will be a review of a proposed retail marijuana grow operation on Devereux Road. FEATURE: KDNK’s January Jones speaks with Leadville Mayor Jamie Stuever, who is a business owner and former alligator hunter.
April 15, 2015
HEADLINES: Republican Congressman Scott Tipton plans to introduce the Water Rights Protection Act this week, accusing the USFS of hijacking water rights and federalizing water resources. KDNK’s January Jones has an update on grants that have just been awarded to local public organizations from the Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District. The Colorado Department of Transportation is getting in on the 4/20 marijuana celebrations by rolling out its “Drive High, Get a DUI” campaign. The state will launch several public awareness events this week, including a presence at the Cannabis Cup in Denver on April 18 and 19. FEATURE: Houston-based SG Interests plans to drill for natural gas across 20,000 acres of mostly private land between McClure Pass and Paonia. Members of the Crystal River Caucus met in Redstone last week to talk about possible impacts of the project on the Crystal River Valley. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
April 14, 2015
HEADLINES: Pitkin County judge not ready to dismiss criminal charges against 89-year old John Walls, who killed a Basalt man last August while driving on the wrong side of Highway 82. Read the story at aspentimes.com. In two other long-running legal cases, the Aspen High School student, whose take-down arrest video last year went viral, was sentenced to a year of supervised probation. And, Dan MacEachen, previous owner of Krabloonik, was sentenced to 30 monhts of unsupervised probation, 120 hours of community service, and a $5,000 fine for his misdeameanor animal neglect conviction. Read these stories at aspendailynews.com. The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning and a wind advisory from Aspen to Rifle, beginning at 11 AM today. Those with dust sensitivities or respiratory illnesses should stay inside. Be bear aware. Check out the Living With Wildlife page at the Colorado Parks and Wildlife webstie for tips on how to keep bears out of your backyard. And, a van traveling eastbound on I-70 Monday crossed the median, two oncoming lanes of traffic, plowed through a fence, crossed the frontage road and a sidewalk before coming to a halt outside of a car dealership, reports the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. No one was seriously injured. FEATURE: Water in Reudi Reservoir may be sent downstream to help fill Lake Powell and rescue endangered fish. Local officials meet tonight to talk about it. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. The meeting is at 7 PM at the 3rd Street Center in Carbondale. The public is invited. And, Bente Birkland takes a look at some of the hot button topics up for legislative debate.
April 13, 2015
HEADLINES: A strip mall in Carbondale caught fire on Sunday. Carbondale firefighters were able to douse the fire. No occupants were injured. The cause of the blaze is under investigation. Bente Birkland reports that a bill to redirect $20M in severance taxes passed the state House last week. Four top criminal cases in Aspen, involving the owner of Krabloonik, the Aspen High School student whose take-down arrest went viral, and two motorists responsible for the death of two people, are coming to an end. Read the whole story at aspentimes.com. Basalt Town Council takes public comment on a proposed redevelopment of a former trailer park site Tuesday at 5:30 PM at the Basalt Regional Library. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh talks to locals about the state water plan.
April 10, 2015
HEADLINES: The Crystal River Caucus met last night in Redstone about proposed natural gas drilling between Paonia and McClure Pass. Tomorrow, Valley View will host a free and low-cost health screenings at Roaring Fork High School in Carbondale. January Jones has this update. Flows in the Fryingpan River and water levels at Ruedi Reservoir could be impacted if a proposed lease is approved by the Colorado Water Conservation Board. FEATURE: This week’s news brief looks at Snowmass Village development and the Glenwood Springs Police Department.
April 09, 2015
HEADLINES: LiveWell Garfield County’s spring mini-grant cycle will support a range of projects from nutritional programs, bike racks and trails. Snowpack across the state is at 65% of normal and is almost 20% lower than this time last year. Tonight there’s a meeting in Redstone at the Church begining at 7 pm to get feedback for the master plan process for the Carbondale and Rural Fire District. FEATURE: The Glenwood Springs City Council election wrapped up with a 34% voter participation rate - sixteen-hundred votes were mailed in. The winner in the 3-way race for the at-large seat is Kathryn Trauger with just over one thousand votes. KDNK's January Jones spoke with Trauger about what’s needs to get done at the council this year. Steve Davis was the winner in Tuesday’s Glenwood Springs City Council race in Ward 1. He spoke with KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh yesterday about his vision for the city.
April 08, 2015
HEADLINES: The Glenwood Springs City Council at-large seat winner is Kathryn Trauger. Steve Davis won the Ward 1 seat with 247 votes, Carbondale's Spring Cleanup and Waste Diversion Day is coming up on Saturday. There's a candidate forum tonight for the Aspen elections at 4:30 pm. FEATURE: Carbondale government relies on many volunteer led commissions to make progress on town goals. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Darryl Fuller from Carbondale’s Bike, Pedestrian and Trails Commission about how they improve connectivity for residents.
April 07, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Coroner has identified the person who died Friday April 3 as result of a one-car accident on I-70 between Glenwood Springs and West Glenwood Springs as 72-year old John Hutchings of Pioche,NV. KDNK's January Jones reports on a proposed lease swap that could impact natural gas drilling on the Thompson Divide. And, New Castle and Basalt Town Councils meet tonight at their respective locations. FEATURE: Senate Bill 255 passed the Colorado State Senate last week and is on its way to the House. The bill would take $20M off the top of the state Oil and Gas Severance Tax Fund and transfer it to the State General Fund to fulfill the TABOR refund requirement. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with State Representative Bob Rankin, whose district includes Garfield County, to find out why he opposes the bill and what he plans to do to protect severance taxes in the future.
April 06, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Commissioners will decide this morning whether or not to support an oil/gas lease swap that would protect the Thompson Divide from energy development. Local fire officials want private residents to start wildfire mitigation on their properties. Pitkin County begins its own mitigation this week in Snowmass Village, Red Mountain, and Brush Creek Village. More mitigation is expected next month. Glenwood Springs residents have until Tuesday, April 7, at 7 PM to return ballots for the City Council election. Ballots can be dropped off at the Glenwood Springs City Clerk's office in City Hall at 101 8th St. You can also register and vote on Tuesday. More info at the GWS clerk's office 384.6403. FEATURE: Both NASA and NOAA agree that 2014 was the warmest year on record. And, so far, 2015 has set heat records in CA, AZ, UT, and CO. Some in the Roaring Fork Valley have enjoyed the warm temps for the past couple of months but others aren't so sure. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
April 03, 2015
HEADLINES: The second module of the code is now posted at the town’s planning website at carbondaleudc.com. The Roaring Fork Conservancy says snow pack for the Roaring Fork Watershed is currently at 69% of normal. A former bookkeeper in the Garfield County Clerk’s office will face 4 to 9 years in prison with fines up to $600,000 for theft and embezzlement. The head of of the U-S Department of Veterans Affairs was in Snowmass Village Thursday. FEATURE: This week on the News Brief, Glenwood Springs Post Independent reporter Will Grandbois has been covering the February homicide of a Carbondale woman. The newspaper was instrumental in bringing details of the crime to light this week. SKI AND ROAD REPORT.
April 02, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Combined Courts have unsealed the arrest affadavit regarding a homicide in Carbondale on February 16th. Sunlight Mountain closed on Wednesday for the season due to a power failure. Tax Day is nearing and taxpayers can see if they qualify for free filing at www.freefile.irs.gov. E- Waste items are being accepted for recycling at Glenwood Springs Subaru all through the month of April. FEATURE: Ballots were mailed to Glenwood Springs voters in mid-March for next week’s municipal election. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has some procedural details from Glenwood Springs City Clerk Catherine Mythen. Then, a look at the candidates for Glenwood City Council Ward 1.
April 01, 2015
HEADLINES: Look for detours in Aspen today due to road construction. North Mill between Bleeker and Main will be closed until April 10. And, CDOT is replacing traffic signals at Main and Mill. KDNK's January Jones reports on where Aspen will put city offices. The Roaring Fork Regional Planning Commission wants members. Applications due by April 4. Call 328.8746 for more info. FEATURE: Oil and gas severance funds could be used to balance the Colorado state budget. Bente Birkeland reports. And, local ecologist Delia Malone talks to KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about wolf and livestock conflicts.
March 31, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale's Nature Park, aka the Dog Park, was closed Monday and will be closed again today due to spring weed burning. Carbondale Town Trustees meet tonight at 6 at City Hall. On the agenda is the Parks and Recreation Master Plan and the Water Conservation Plan. The Aspen City Council holds a work session tonight from 4 to 8 about the affordable housing requirements and fee system. The Colorado State Patrol’s CLICK IT OR TICKET seat belt enforcement program starts today statewide through Sunday, April 5th. State representative Bob Rankin’s snow tire bill passed the Senate Transportation Committee Thursday. FEATURE: A little over 3 months ago, Coloradans got a first look at the state’s water plan. The draft sent to Governor John Hickenlooper came after more than 800 public meetings across the state. But, despite an extensive education and outreach campaign, how involved is the public in planning Colorado’s water future? As part of Connecting the Drops, our statewide series on water issues, KGNU's Maeve Conran reports.
March 30, 2015
HEADLINES: The USDA warns that a new type of Avian Flu has been found in multiple kinds of birds in 8 states. No known case in CO but report sick birds or unusual bird deaths to the Colorado Avian Health Call Line at 970.297.4008. From Bente Birkeland in Denver, Colorado lawmakers will study close to 200 tax breaks designed to create jobs and help the economy. The Aspen Daily News reports that the number of inmates with mental health issues in the Pitkin County Jail tops the national average. Officials say the jail has no facilities to handle acute psychiatric episodes and sometimes sends inmates to Grand Junction or Pueblo. Read the whole story at aspendailynews.com. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports on a new Federal plan to combat antibiotic-resistant diseases.
March 27, 2015
HEADLINES: The Roaring Fork Conservancy is reporting low snow pack levels for the watershed. A look at the Aspen Police Department’s recent activity. Colorado Parks and Wildlife will open Harvey Gap and Rifle Gap State Parks for boating on April 1. Bente Birkeland reports that public school teachers rallied at the state capitol Wednesday saying they are tired of standardized tests taking away from classroom time. FEATURE: After losing a lease at 918 Grand Avenue in Glenwood Springs two years ago, the Salvation Army’s Roaring Fork Valley office has been camped out in cramped quarters in the basement of the Masonic Temple. But, Thursday, the "Sally" opened a brand new - and permanent - home on 14th Street in Glenwood Springs. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
March 26, 2015
HEADLINES: Last week, the Bureau of Land Management released long-awaited fracking rules. High schoolers could win a $3,000 college scholarship in the 3rd Congressional Art Competition. The Crystal River Caucus is meeting to talk about drilling plans in Bull Mountain is meeting on April 9th in Redstone. FEATURE: n the March 16th edition of High Country News, Jonathon Thompson writes about Farmington, New Mexico- an extreme example of a town that has locked fortunes with the oil and gas boom and bust cycles, for the last hundred years. KDNK’s January Jones spoke with Thompson in this edition of Sounds of the High Country. You can read Jonathon Thompson’s High Country News article at HCN dot org, and find past Sounds of the High Country episodes at KDNK dot org.
March 25, 2015
HEADLINES: Pitkin County property owners will recieve their valuations in the mail on May 1st. The Garfield County Library’s countywide Shop Locally, Support Libraries campaign encourages people to bring sales receipts from local shopping trips to the library for a chance to win prizes. The Aspen Times is reporting that Basalt Mayor Jacque Whitsitt came out Tuesday night against a proposal to put a hotel and condominiums on property near downtown. FEATURE: his past weekend was the 15th annual Eckert Crane Days event. People from across Colorado came to Delta County to witness the spring migration of the sandhill crane. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports.
March 24, 2015
HEADLINES: Colorado’s childhood poverty rate has decreased for the first time in five years Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol. Locally, the Kids Count data makes some interesting comparisons. KDNK’s January Jones has this report.The 26th Annual Garfield County Humanitarian Awards will be held on April 7th in Rifle. More information at the county’s website at www.garfield-county,com. FEATURE: Earlier this month, Valley Voices host Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Eloisa Duarte, director of the Valley Settlement Project’s Parent Mentor Program, and Alejandra Magana, principle of VSP's Lifelong Learning Program. In this segment, Eloisa describes the Parent Mentor Program and Alejandra talks about how it changed her life.
March 23, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs City Council will consider extending business hours for recreational pot sales in the city until 10 PM, says the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. Right now, business hours for recreational and medical marijuana sales are from 8 AM to 7 PM daily. The matter has been referred to the city's Planning and Zoning Commission for review. Read the whole story by John Stroud at postindependent.com. Basalt Middle School is blazing educational trails. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh tells why. Joanne Borell, mother of a Basalt woman who died after being hit by a bus near Buttermilk in 2012, has dropped a lawsuit against RFTA. Read the whole story by Chad Abraham at aspendailynews.com. FEATURE: Colorado’s latest revenue forecast was good news for lawmakers, showing a healthy economy and more money for the state budget. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland talks to reporters about what it means for the state budget and other bills pending at the statehouse.
March 20, 2015
The Silt Town Board will meet Monday night to consider a retail marijuana cultivation license for Aurum Peak. Earlier this year, Aurum Peak’s application was rejected on the heels of a heated debate with a Silt citizen group opposing a different marijuana growing facility.The meeting begins at 7:00 pm. The Rifle-Garfield County Airport is the new center for aerial firefighting in Colorado. KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports. Garfield County has set up an online auction site to sell surplus items, including vehicles. They have six vehicles up for sale through March 23rd. The vehicles in this sale include two vans, two trucks and a two SUV’s. The portal is available at the Garfield County website at www.garfield-county.com/procurement. CPW licenses, permits, and registrations for 2015-2016 are now available. Anglers must purchase a 2015 fishing license in order to fish, beginning April 1. Mountain lion hunters can hunt through April but must buy a new license for the season starting April 1. Turkey season starts April 13. FEATURE: The weekly News Brief features Glenwood Springs Post Independent reporter John Stroud talking with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about the municipal election. Eye on Crime looks at Basalt PD.
March 19, 2015
HEADLINES: The Rifle-Garfield County Airport will be the new center for aerial firefighting in Colorado. Nathan Woodliff-Stanley, director of the ACLU of Colorado, visits Carbondale on Friday March 20th. Basalt Middle School was recently chosen as a “Colorado Trailblazer School to Watch” for the second consecutive time. FEATURE: KDNK’s newest public affairs show is the AAG REPORT. In today’s feature, host Jock Jacober speaks with meat packing plant owner Gary Basinger about getting local meat to market. That was a feature from the AG REPORT, KDNK’s newest public affairs show about local food culture in the Roaring Fork Valley. The AG REPORT airs the second Tuesday of the month. Five archived episodes can be found at kdnk.org.
March 18, 2015
HEADLINES: Pitkin County has found elevated radon levels in the Pitkin County Courthouse. Garfield County Public Health recently received a state wellness grant. The Aspen Daily News is reporting that Dwayne Romero is out as the president of Related Colorado as of April 1. FEATURE: Colorado lawmakers are considering a new law that clarifies traction requirements for passenger vehicles on I-70 during the winter. KDNK’s January Jones has more.
March 17, 2015
HEADLINES: The White River National Forest plans to conduct a prescribed burn ten miles south of Carbondale, in the Avalanche Creek area. Aspen is holding a meeting on Wednesday morning to get input from the business community about it’s Construction Mitigation Plan. The Aspen Times is reporting that the Aspen City Council made it’s choice for the redevelopment of the city-owned Old Power House building last night. New Castle Town Council meeting is tonight at 7:00 pm, they'll consider the Jolly Park Trail Spur extension. Bente Birkeland has more on a Colorado Senate bill that has initially advanced a repeal of Colorado’s high capacity magazine ban. FEATURE: The Carbondale Public Arts Commission’s Art Around Town Program is in its 13th year with a $28,000 budget, most of which comes from town coffers. But, is the town’s outlay for the project worth it? KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
March 16, 2015
HEADLINES: Alpine Bank in Aspen reported counterfeit $100 bills last week. Police encourage use of special marking pens. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports on a Federal bill to legalize industrial hemp farming. No sentence handed down for Christine Tinner, who pled guilty to careless driving causing death and careless driving causing injury in the death of Meleyna Kistner last year. According to the Aspen Times, Tinner suffered a nervous breakdown Friday and was hospitalized. FEATURE: Colorado lawmakers are just past the midpoint of the current legislative session. Bente Birkeland talks to reporters about what's ahead.
March 13, 2015
HEADLINES: White River National Forest employees return to recently remodeled headquarters in historic building in Glenwood Springs this month. The renovation cost close to $2M in Federal funds. The annual San Luis Valley Crane Festival starts today and goes through the weekend. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports. Governor John Hickenlooper says the state health insurance exchange has faced problems. Bente Birkeland reports. Snowpack is 88% of normal in Roaring Fork watershed. Crystal River watershed hovering near 2012 drought levels. U.S. Drought Monitor says western Colorado is under moderate drought conditions. FEATURE: The weekly News Brief features Sopris Sun reporter John Colson on how the RFTA AC Plan impacts Carbondale. Eye on Crime looks at New Castle stats.
March 12, 2015
HEADLINES: 46- year -old James Damon was shot on Monday after allegedly taking a sheriff deputy and CPW officer hostage during a suspicious vehicle check near Dinosaur, Colorado. The Carbondale Town Trustees approved two development proposals on Tuesday night for Thompson Park/Ross Montessori School and a new 4-plex at 2nd and Sopris Ave. The Aspen Daily News is reporting that the Snowmass Village Planning Commission voted unanimously to recommend Related Colorado’s base area project move to the next phase. FEATURE: Over 50 Battlement Mesa residents attended another meeting hosted by Ursa Resources Tuesday night at the Grand Valley Firehouse. Ursa is currently drilling for natural gas just outside the Battlement Mesa PUD boundaries and some residents are upset. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh reports.
March 11, 2015
HEADLINES: About fifty Battlement Mesa residents attended a meeting hosted by Ursa Resources Tuesday night at the Grand Valley Fire Station. The Aspen Police Department reported no arrests from February 19th to the 26th by the first week of March, things picked up with multiple arrests. spen City Hall had a standing-room-only crowd of nearly one-hundred people last night to comment on which business they want to see at the Old Power House. The Roaring Fork School District will meet tonight to complete contract negotiations for the district’s executive team. SR133 construction between Carbondale and Redstone started Monday and more construction work happening this week on 133 in Carbondale. FEATURE: The Town of Carbondale is looking for public input on their newly drafted water conservation plan. Carbondale Utilities Director Mark O’Meara spoke with KDNK’s January Jones about water demands from population that’s expected to keep growing. Public comments on the plan will be accepted until March 17th.
March 10, 2015
HEADLINES: Maria Alvarado-Gomez of Carbondale entered a plea deal on Monday, avoiding charges of the attempted murder of her daughters after she fed them rat poison. Aspen, Basalt and Carbondale are all having council meetings tonight in their respective towns. Battlement Mesa residents are meeting with Ursa Resources. FEATURE: Aspen Strong is a new organization aimed at increasing awareness and dialog about mental health. Executive Director Christina King spoke with KDNK’s January Jones about their monthly panel discussion, happening tonight at the Carbondale Library at 6:30 PM. SKI AND ROAD REPORT.
March 09, 2015
HEADLINES: Aspen Skiing Company has joined over 350 organizations calling for the U.S. Supreme Court to affirm same-sex marriage.KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh reports from last week's Northwest Colorado Oil and Gas Forum about COGCC's response to the Governor's Oil and Gas Task Force recommendations. And, Congressman Scott Tipton visits Glenwood Springs today.FEATURE: State lawmakers are half way through the annual legislative session. Bente Birkeland discusses some of the bills legislators will tackle in the latter half of the session.
March 06, 2015
HEADLINES: Thursday morning a skier was trapped in an avalanche on Pitkin Creek in Eagle County was recovered alive but with a broken leg. Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario sent out a statement to the press yesterday voicing his continued supported for a federal challenge to recreational marijuana. Beginning Monday, more road construction on SR 133 between Carbondale and Redstone. It’s time for the clocks to change on Sunday March 8th- spring forward. FEATURE: On the Weekly News Brief, Brent Gardner Smith of Aspen Journalism explains a water rights case that will be heard at the Colorado Supreme Court, that pits front range interests against the west slope and a look at Glenwood Spring Police activity in 2014. SKI AND ROAD REPORT
March 05, 2015
HEADLINES: Arturo Navarrete-Portillo, the suspect in the carbondale homicide that took place on February 16th has been released from the hospital in Grand Junction and taken to the Garfield County Jail.The Garfield County Energy Advisory Board meets tonight and is currently requesting letters of interest to fill a citizen seat on the board representing the Una Bridge/Wallace Creek/Spring Creek areas. Bente Birkeland reports about a controversial amendment to a public safety bill. The Aspen Times is reporting that the Roaring Fork Transit Authority bus drivers have voted to unionize. FEATURE: About 50 people attended a joint meeting with Garfield County Commissioners and officials from Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, and New Castle Wednesday night at the Glenwood Springs Community Center to talk about the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority's draft Access Control Plan. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has more. SKI AND ROAD REPORT
March 04, 2015
HEADLINES: I-70 was closed twice last night in Glenwood Canyon for multiple spin-offs and slide-offs. The Aspen Police Department is warning of credit card fraud throughout the valley and in other Colorado Ski towns. Aspen City Council is reviewing development proposal for the old Power House building. The Garfield County Commissioners are holding a special meeting tonight with the Glenwood Springs City Council and the Carbondale Town Trustees regarding the RFTA Access Control Plan. FEATURE: After six months of statewide meetings, Governor Hickenlooper's Oil and Gas Task Force came up with 56 draft recommendations. Only nine recommendations made it to the governor's desk. Jim Ramey is the Director of Citizens for a Healthy Community. He says the task force failed to achieve its mission. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with Ramey about his disappointment and what he thinks would have worked better.
March 03, 2015
HEADLINES: An Aspen High School student, whose take-down arrest for possession of marijuana was the highlight of a video gone viral in early February, pled guilty to underage possession of marijuana and resisting arrest on Monday. Colorado's biggest pot sales came from edibles, according to the state Marijuana Enforcement Division's first annual report. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has an update of arrests in Carbondale between 2/19 and 2/26/2015. And, the Telluride Ski Patrol voted 47 - 1 in favor of unionizing last week. FEATURE: Capitol Conversation with Bente Birkeland focuses on the next steps for oil and gas legislation this session.
March 02, 2015
HEADLINES: Pitkin County and the Colorado Avalanche Information Center warn of a considerable avalanche risk. The Roaring Fork School District has completed contract negotiations for the district's executive team. And, on Sunday, March 1 at 3:06 AM, the Garfield County Coroner's office responded to a death investigation at mile marker 98 on I-70 at Silt. FEATURE: A recent survey of voters in six western states showed 68% believe that Federal lands belong to all Americans. But, lawmakers in some of those states are working hard to transfer public lands to state ownership. For this edition of Sounds of the High Country, KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh spoke with High Country News editorial intern Kindra McQuillan about the Land Transfer Movement and a Utah bill that could set a legal precedent across the West.
February 27, 2015
HEADLINES: A bi-partisan bill aimed at reducing traffic problems on I-70 during winter won voice-vote approval Thursday in the Colorado legislature. Bente Birkeland reports on forest health. Elevated levels of radon gas were discovered in the lower level of the Pitkin County library. Mitigation is underway. And, the Third Street Center in Carbondale hosts a Youth Poetry Slam at 6:30 tonight. FEATURE: Today's News Brief features highlights from this week's interviews with local journalists. Non-Profit Interview: The Aspen Hope Center.
February 26, 2015
HEADLINES: Tonight, the Downtown Development Authority will hold a public meeting in Glenwood Springs to priorize designs for downtown improvements. The Pitkin County Landfill’s SCRAPS food composting program is looking to expand. A development firm will unveil a proposal to build a hotel and 52 condominiums near downtown Basalt. Colorado Parks and Wildlife will open Highline Lake State Park to boating on March 1st. FEATURE: The Town of Silt cancelled a controlled burn Wednesday of a wetlands area within city limits. The burn was cancelled due to unsafe weather conditions but officials hope to reschedule it later this spring. Local activist Peggy Tibbits says the burn is dangerous and the town has avoided public input. KDNK’s Amy Hadden Marsh has more.
February 25, 2015
An arrest warrant has been issued for Arturo Navarrete Portillo of Carbondale for his alleged role in the death of his wife on February 16th at 30 Cooper Place. Pitkin County officials have identified the victim of an avalanche on Monday as John Martin Gancsos. The governor's oil and gas task force wrapped up 5 months of meetings on Tuesday, February 24th with nine recommendations for the governor. Task force member and former Colorado Speaker of the House Russell George comments. FEATURE: The Garfield County Public Health office runs many programs that go unnoticed but are a safety net for people who need services.GCPH director Yvonne Long detailed the work in a year-end report to the Garfield County Commissioners.
February 24, 2015
HEADLINES: The Pitkin County Sheriff reports that an avalanche on Aspen Mountain in the Castle Creek Valley Monday took the life of one skier. No arrests have been made in the death of Maria Carminda Portillo-Amaya, whose body was found in an apartment on Cooper Place in Carbondale last week. Bente Birkeland reports that the Colorado Senate initially passed a bill that would require cities and counties to compensate mineral owners who aren't able to develop oil and gas because of local regulations. FEATURE: Andy Zanca Youth Empowerment Project student Adele Craft talks to Stacy Craft of the Roaring Valley Home Schooling Network.
February 23, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District Board of Directors is looking for up to 7 citizens to serve on a steering committee for the Master Plan Study, which runs through mid-summer.The Roaring Fork Conservancy hosts a field day Saturday 2/28 to teach people about snowpack. FEATURE: The Governor's Oil and Gas Task Force wraps up its work this week. Bente Birkeland takes a look at how state lawmakers are preparing for the report, and examines some of the other big issues coming up at the state legislature as part of our weekly Capitol Conversation.
February 20, 2015
HEADLINES: Garfield County Coroner identifies Monday's homicide victim as local resident Maria Carminda Portillo-Amaya.Habitat for Humanity Roaring Fork plans to open a new Restore in Basalt this spring. Snowpack is down to 79% of normal in the Roaring Fork watershed, says the Roaring Fork Conservancy. Snowpack in the Crystal River watershed is shrinking, with levels at 32% below normal.FEATURE: KDNK's January Jones presents a special News Brief, featuring highlights from this week's interviews with local journalists.
February 19, 2015
HEADLINES: Lift-Up Food Pantry has just received a grant of $7,500 from the Aspen Community Foundation. The Aspen Times is reporting today the number of traumatic injuries suffered by skiers and snowboarders on the Aspen slopes is up only modestly from last year. In State legislative news KVNF’s Laura Palmisano reports a bill aimed at helping volunteer fire departments heads to the Governor’s desk. Bente Birkeland says a bill that would give Colorado school children access to more fresh food from local farms cleared its first committee Wednesday. FEATURE: Carbondale Town Trustee Frosty Merriot summarizes the Tuesday night work session. NON PROFIT INTERVIEW: Amy Kimberly of Carbondale Council on Arts (www.carbondalearts.org).
February 18, 2015
HEADLINES: The Garfield County Coroner is declaring a homicide after a Carbondale woman was found dead on Monday afternoon in an apartment on Cooper Place. Carbondale non-profit Youth Entity’s culinary program is putting kids in the kitchen for a fundraiser this weekend. The White House announced this morning that President Obama will designate Colorado’s Browns Canyon in Chayfee County as a national monument. Ski and Road Report. FEATURE: KDNK has been airing a series of stories about teen drug use and the impact it’s had on schools. Today we hear a little different kind of story, directly from youth here in the roaring fork valley. KDNK invited six students in for a candid discussion about drug use. They asked each other questions, including what they are hearing from parents. This story is part of a statewide collaboration with Rocky Mountain Community Radio and Rocky Mountain PBS I-News. NON PROFIT INTERVIEW: Jim Calaway for CARE (Colorado Animal Rescue, www.coloradoanimalrescue.org)
February 17, 2015
HEADLINES: CO Dept of Revenue reports that Garfield County received almost $437,000 from recreational pot taxes in 2014. Pitkin County got about $349,000. Medical marijuana revenue in December was low for the year with $8200 for Garfield County and $2300 for Pitkin. KDNK's January Jones reports on a workshop in Glenwood Springs Saturday that will help landowners maximize the use of their land. And, slick roads contributed to 2 accidents in Snowmass Canyon Monday, which snarled rush-hour traffic and sent two people to AVH with non-life-threatening injuries. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation is seeking individuals who were driving on I-70 last Tuesday between Parachute and Glenwood Springs, specifically between mile markers 81 and 109, who may have witnessed the law enforcement chase and subsequent shooting. Anyone with info is asked to call the CBI at 970.248.7455. FEATURE: Recently-released data show that in the last school year, drug incidents in Colorado middle and high schools reached a ten-year high. Certain districts stand out, including the Mesa County Valley School District. Officials there say they're addressing the problem with more education and special programs. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports in the second of two stories about drug use in Mesa County schools.
February 16, 2015
HEADLINES: A 16-year old Aspen High School student, whose videotaped arrest went viral last week, has been charged with misdemeanor resisting arrest and obstructing a peace officer and a petty offense of underage possession of marijuana. Rifle Housing Authority director Natalie Bowman talks with KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh about senior and low-income housing needs in Garfield County. The spring grant cycle for the Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District is now open. FEATURE: KDNK's collaboration with Rocky Mountain Community Radio and Rocky Mountain PBS I-News continues with a report from KVNF's Laura Palmisano about marijuana use in Mesa County schools.
February 13, 2015
HEADLINES: This weekend is the deadline to enroll in health insurance through Connect for Health Colorado and there are free walk-in enrollment clinics this Saturday and Sunday throughout the KDNK listening area. Colorado College has released the results of its 5th annual Conservation in the West survey.Club Rotario has donated a school bus to Two Rivers Community School in Glenwood Springs. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features Aspen Times reporter Rick Carroll, and a look at crime in Parachute.
February 12, 2015
HEADLINES: The Carbondale and Rural Fire District expects to nearly max out their budget for the upcoming Master Plan and split the work between more than one consulting group. Eagle County Commissioners joined Basalt Town Council at a meeting Tuesday. Brian P. Fritze, 45, of Parachute, is the man who was shot and killed Tuesday afternoon by law officers. FEATURE: Coloradoans pride themselves on the quality of their drinking water, most of which originates high up in the Rocky Mountains. But many communities on the Eastern plains have water that not only tastes bad, it is out of compliance with federal drinking water standards. As part of our year long series on water issues in the state, Maeve Conran reports for Connecting the Drops.
February 11, 2015
HEADLINES: A man was shot and killed by law enforcement yesterday afternoon, following a high-speed vehicle chase on I-70 from the Parachute area to Canyon Creek, just west of Glenwood Springs. A Garfield County Sheriff press release says that the suspect's car came to a stop at the Canyon Creek exit where the driver left the vehicle while holding a gun to his head. Shots were fired after the suspect ignored orders from law enforcement. The man was pronounced dead at Valley View hospital. No officers were killed or injured. The name of the deceased has not yet been released. KDNK's January Jones reports on a case of pot edibles at Coal Ridge High School. FEATURE: KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh takes a look at what Roaring Fork High School is doing to reduce drug incidents at the school.
February 10, 2015
HEADLINES: The spruce beetle is outpacing the mountain pine beetle in Colorado forests says a recent report by the U.S. Forest Service and the Colorado Forest Service. Blow-downs, drought, and warmer temperatures are to blame as well as a plethora of old-growth spruce. And, the BLM has released a scoping report, which is the first step in a new environmental analysis of 65 illegal oil and gas leases on the White River National Forest. The agency originally leased the minerals in the 1990s without the proper environmental review. See the KDNK home page for a link to the report.
And, an alleged mugging and robbery on Mardi Gras Friday in Carbondale could be unsubstantiated. Carbondale Police Chief Gene Schilling says the woman who made the report was intoxicated and some of the items she reported stolen were recovered nearby. FEATURE: As part of our collaborative series on marijuana and Colorado schools with Rocky Mountain Community Radio and Rocky Mountain PBS I-News, Bente Birkeland reports on how some schools are talking to students about the benefits and consequences of pot.
February 09, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale PD find suspected meth lab at 410 Garfield and make an arrest. Aspen PD contact with underage marijuana user who resisted arrest is video'd. PD claims officer's response to person resisting arrest was appropriate. KVNF's Laura Palmisano reports on a new bill that would give grants to schools for alternative energy. And, the Glenwood Springs Post Independent reports pay raises for GWS City Council members. FEATURE: In the first of a collaborative series with Rocky Mountain Community Radio stations and Rocky Mountain PBS I-News on marijuana and Colorado schools, Bente Birkland talks to Colorado State Representative Pauly Lawrence about a bill that would require schools to track marijuana incidents separately from other drug incidents.
February 06, 2015
HEADLINES: News state-commissioned study shows climate change will likely impact Colorado ag, recreation, and water. KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh has a report about the new Garfield County Public Library District policy that bans open-carry firearms on library property and at library events. FEATURE: This week's News Brief features Aspen Journalism's Bob Ward talking with January Jones about education in the Roaring Fork Valley. Eye on Crime looks at the Rifle PD.
February 05, 2015
HEADLINES: John Colson writes in today’s Sopris Sun that the Carbondale Fire District Board has issued a partial gag order. A new partnership has saved St. Vincent General in Leadville. Big game hunting rules in Colorado were just approved to change in November 2015. FEATURE: Reported drug incidents at Roaring Fork High School during the 2013/2014 school year were down from the year before, according to the Colorado Department of Education. In today’s feature, we have a look at those numbers and get an inside perspective on marijuana and teens from principal Drew Adams. KDNK will present more stories over the next few weeks looking a drug incidents in schools, through a collaborative project with Rocky Mountain Community Radio Stations and Rocky Mountain I-PBS.Ski and Road Report.
February 04, 2015
HEADLINES: Basalt resident Christine L. Tinner pleaded guilty to misdemeanors for killing a young woman and injuring her boyfriend in a car accident last year. Phone scams are spreading through the Roaring Fork Valley. Redstone Winter Fest is happening this weekend. FEATURE: Glenwood Springs City Manager Jeff Hexsel talks about the upcoming council meeting on Thursday.
February 03, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen Police Department is warning area residents against a phone scam. The idea of transferring federal lands to state control has reached Garfield County but the commissioners are not ready to commit. Lance Armstrong comes clean on parked car hit and run in Aspen. FEATURE: Democratic lawmakers in Colorado recently introduced a measure to allow terminally ill patients to take medication to end their lives. Bente Birkeland discusses the proposal as part of our capitol conversation series.
February 02, 2015
HEADLINES: Developer Snowmass Acquisition Co will introduce a Base Village plan today at a joint meeting of Snowmass Town Council and the Snowmass Planning Commission. A statewide school survey shows that the amount of students at Roaring Fork High School who have ever used alcohol or marijuana is greater than the state average. FEATURE: Avid gardners know it's the time of year to start thinking about seeds for spring. Listen to this excerpt from KDNK's Living Permaculture with Bill McDorman and Bell Star of the Rocky Mountain Seed Alliance about seed saving.
January 30, 2015
HEADLINES: Contracts for the two top administrators with The Roaring Fork school district are still in dispute. The U.S. Department of Labor has released national earnings reports that show gender wage gap. Two more weeks to sign up for health insurance. FEATURE: This week’s News Brief features Amy Hadden Marsh and Chad Abraham, reporter for the Aspen Daily News speaking about a case of a repeat DUI offender in Aspen. KDNK’s Eye on Crime looks at new Colorado State Patrol data on marijuana related DUI's.
January 29, 2015
HEADLINES: Property tax notices are in the mail for Garfield County. Carbondale town officials need a funding source to meet energy conservation goals. Bente Birkeland reports from the state capitol about powdered alcohol. FEATURE: The Garfield County Public Library District is drafting a new firearms policy that could prohibit open-carry guns inside library buildings. District director Amelia Shelley and Board president Nella Barker were guests on last week's Valley Voices. Here, Amelia Shelley discusses the policy with Valley Voices host Amy Hadden Marsh.
January 28, 2015
HEADLINES: Glenwood Springs chosen as the nation's number one small town for Southern Methodist University's Arts Vibrancy Index. Club 20 and Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado object to Gov. Hickenlooper's plan to set aside $47M in mineral severance tax collections. Longtime local rancher Carter Jackson died on Saturday January 24. FEATURE: Much ado about town noise levels at this week's Carbondale Town Trustee meeting. January Jones reports.
January 27, 2015
HEADLINES: Pressler trial in Glenwood Springs declared mistrial. Rocky Mountain National Park turns 100 this year. Carbondale Fire Chief Ron Leach tells January Jones about Thursday's Coffee with the Chiefs, an informal venue for the public to talk with town fire and police chiefs at the Village Smithy. FEATURE: Denver Post and Durango Herald reporters talk to Bente Birklund about partisan politics at the state capitol.
January 26, 2015
HEADLINES: Energy company SG Interests has plans for up to 146 natural gas wells in the Bull Mountain area north of Paonia on Highway 133. The plan is currently under BLM environmental review and open for public comment until March 2, 2015. Aspen Daily News says marijuana contacts at this year's X Games were five times what they were in 2014. Bente Birklund reports on statehouse quandary about drivers licenses for unauthorized immigrants. Carbondale Fire and PD host "Coffee with the Chiefs" Thursday 1/29 from 8 - 9 AM at Village Smithy. FEATURE: Excerpt featuring James Eklund, director of the Colorado Water Conservation Board, about residential conservation measures such as grey water use from 1/25/2015 Connecting the Drops call-in show,hosted by KDNK/KGNU.
January 23, 2015
HEADLINES: Drone operator arrested and charged with reckless endangerment in Pitkin County for flying drone in flightpath of Pitkin County Airport. Silt water treatment plant goes 100% solar. Garfield County Energy Advisory Board makes improvements. FEATURE: The Weekly News Brief features a Carbondale 2014 review with Sopris Sun editor Lynn Burton and KDNK's Eye on Crime looks at Aspen PD.
January 22, 2015
HEADLINES: Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District will meet on January 28th to pick a consultant for the district’s 2015 master plan. Garfield County is opening up a new online auction site today to sell surplus items.In state news, Colorado’s Democratic Speaker of the House says Republican efforts to compensate mineral owners whose communities have banned fracking take the wrong approach. FEATURE: Ranchers have grazed livestock on national forests in the West for over a century. Jock Jacober, host of KDNK's Ag Report, talked to Bill Kight of the White River National Forest last week about this often contentious issue. Here, they talk about the history and economic significance of grazing on the national forests.
January 21, 2015
Games Apsen at Buttermilk 1/22 to 1/25. Conservation groups came to an agreement with the U.S. Forest Service bout a natural gas project in the Gunnison National Forest. Thursday at 6:30 the Glenwood Springs branch of the Garfield County library will hold an informational program with immigration attorney Jennifer Smith about new immigration programs.FEATURE: A new edition of Sounds of the High County with Ben Goldfarb who says that adding an economic value to environmental protection could change the way businesses evaluate their impacts. SKI REPORT.
January 20, 2015
HEADLINES: RFTA releases bus operation efficiency data says Aspen Times. GWS Chamber Resort Association gets ready for Economic Forecast Forum on Thursday, January 22. Municipal water plans are underway. FEATURE: Garfield County Sheriff Lou Valerio on challenges of enforcing state marijuana law.
January 19, 2015
HEADLINES: GWS City Council may be in for a pay raise of $500/month for council members and $700/month for the mayor plus benefits says the Glenwood Springs Post Independent. Bente Birklund has an update on the state Oil and Gas Task Force. The BLM officially canceled 17 out of 19 leases on the Roan Plateau last week. Carbondale town news. FEATURE: In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr Day, KDNK's January Jones talks with Vern L. Howard, chair of the Colorado MLK Commission.
January 16, 2015
HEADLINES: Colorado Parks and Wildlife presents the state of local bear-proof trash containers to Pitkin County and,according to the Aspen Daily News, urges a unified, valley-wide approach to keeping bears away from dumpsters and other receptacles. January Jones presents highlights from Gov. Hickenlooper's State of the State address. FEATURE: This week's News Brief with Dr. Carrie Hauser, president and CEO of Colorado Mountain College, about President Obama's tuition-free community college initiative plus KDNK's Eye on Crime takes a look at Glenwood Springs.
January 15, 2015
HEADLINES: The Sopris Sun reports that the Garfield County libraries are creating a policy for firearms, which could mean patrons will be able to carry concealed and open-carry firearms in all of the libraries. Amy Hadden Marsh reports on the Carbondale Trustees weekly meeting. 700 oil and gas-related spills in 2014 dumped more than a million gallons of toxins in Colorado, mostly in Weld County and the Piceance Basin. Rifle ice fishing tourney cancelled due to warm weather and lack of ice. KDNK and Thunder River Theatre Company win Carbondale Chamber Non-Profits of 2014. FEATURE: January Jones and Laurel Henderson capture the perspectives of young, local immigrants.
January 14, 2015
HEADLINES: Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers have announced their volunteers of the year. Naturalist Night this week features the Western Yellow-billed cuckoo. At least 21 people have been hospitalized this winter with flu in Garfield County. FEATURE: Director of Sustainable Settings Brooke LeVan is an artist as well as a farmer. He was this month's guest on KDNK's Shifting Gears. In this excerpt from the show, he talks with host Will Evans about the art of farming.
January 13, 2015
HEADLINES: The Aspen Times is reporting that a new plan, drafted by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, recommends curbing the number of black bear-human conflicts in by increasing the number of black bears harvested through seasonal hunts, while strictly enforcing trash ordinances.The Carbondale draft of the 10-Year Parks, Recreation & Trails Master Plan is ready for public review. Carbondale has placed a request into the CDOT Region 3 office to have school speed zone signs and flashing beacons along the 133 corridor near the schools re-installed. State lawmakers are expected to introduce a measure this week to allow physician assisted death in Colorado. FEATURE: Hemp is grown throughout the world for its oil and fiber, which show up in everything from beauty products to rope. Its chemical compounds might also hold the key to medical treatments for Parkinson’s and epilepsy. But scientists say they need more research to unlock hemp’s benefits. As KUNC and Harvest Public Media’s Luke Runyon reports, conflicting laws make it tough to get started. Harvest Public Media reports on farm and food issues and is a collaboration of KUNC and other public media stations in the Midwest.
January 12, 2015
HEADLINES: The Basalt Police Department is looking to the public for help identifying a man who robbed Jimbo’s Wine and Liquor on Friday; The Glenwood Springs Post Independent is reporting that plans for a controversial new FedEx facility that was approved by the Garfield County commissioners last year, are now on hold; Bente Birkeland reports that Colorado will put more money into programs that offer assistance to those who have been unemployed for more than six months.
FEATURE: State Representative Lori Saine from Colorado's 63rd District introduced a felony DUI bill into the state legislature last week. A similar bill failed last spring. Saine told KDNK's Amy Hadden Marsh that this year’s bill includes prevention measures like extending the mandatory time frame for interlock devices, which keep cars from starting if the driver has been drinking.
January 09, 2015
For this week’s news brief, January Jones talks about hot issues for Glenwood Springs in 2015 with Randy Essex and Amy Hadden Marsh has her eye on crime with news from the Carbondale Police Department.
January 08, 2015
In today’s feature, KDNK’s January Jones wraps up a conversation with Carbondale Planning Director Janet Buck about the Unified Development Code. Buck discusses module 2, which opens up changes to development rules in existing zoning districts.
January 07, 2015
President Obama’s executive order on immigration reform makes significant changes to enforcement actions. In an interview with KDNK’s January Jones, immigration attorney Jennifer Smith explains the revised deportation priorities.
January 06, 2015
The Colorado House will have a new speaker when the legislature returns on January 7th. Bente Birkeland discuss the upcoming session with Boulder County Democrat Dickey Lee Hullinghorst.