health insurance

Elise Thatcher

Pitkin, Eagle, and Garfield counties are lagging behind when it comes to helping more people get health insurance. A recent review shows residents in the Roaring Fork Valley are more likely to not have coverage, compared to the statewide average. Aspen Public Radio’s Elise Thatcher sat down with Michele Lueck, President and CEO of the Colorado Health Institute in Denver. Lueck’s organization analyzed the data.

tedeytan/Flickr/Creative Commons

  Health insurance rates for the Roaring Fork Valley area will increase again next year. But for most companies, monthly fees are not going up by as much as they have in the past. That’s according to the Denver nonprofit, Colorado Consumer Health Initiative.


  It’s getting into tax season, and this is the first time residents will have to pay a fine if they didn’t have health insurance in 2014. That’ll be true for 2015 taxes as well, if someone can’t prove they have health insurance this year. For those signing up for health coverage through the statewide online exchange, counties in the Roaring Fork Valley worked together to get as many people signed on as possible. 

Your Morning News - February 12th, 2015

Feb 12, 2015

Lawyer for Aspen Teen Delves into Details

The Aspen high school student who was forced to the ground and arrested by police [last] Friday, is working with a lawyer. Trial Attorney Ryan Kalamaya will represent the teen who police suspect had marijuana.

Kalamaya says he was contacted by the teen’s family after the incident happened at a bus stop near the Aspen school campus. Video footage taken by a student on the scene and then widely shared on the internet shows two officers and a civilian taking down the screaming boy. One officer uses a pressure-point compliance tactic. Police say the boy resisted arrest. Kalamaya says the incident raises issues around marijuana and the use of police power.

“The reason I wanted to take it on was because this issue of the role of law enforcement in our society is obviously a hot topic. It’s a healthy dialogue to talk about the role of police here in the Roaring Fork Valley.”  

The teenager will appear in court on February 17th, where he will face possible charges.

Ryan Kalamaya is a member of Aspen Public Radio’s Citizens Advisory Board.

Your Evening News - February 11th, 2015

Feb 11, 2015

Carbondale Fire Meets Tonight on Future Funding

The future of the Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District is slowly inching closer. The Board of Directors for the sprawling, struggling district is meeting tonight. Board members are finalizing the contracts for two consulting firms. Their main task is to help put together a master plan for Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District, which could run out of money in two years. Gene Schilling is President of the Board.

“We believe that once the master plan’s done, there will probably be some recommendations on the funding that we need to go forward with, to get the Fire District’s level of service back up to what it was before.”

The District covers more than three hundred square miles, and provides ambulance service along a busy stretch of Highway 82. It lost more than half of its budget in late 2013, when a big chunk of mill levy funding ran out. A ballot measure to reinstate that money failed.

Good afternoon and welcome to Mountain Edition.

The Roaring Fork Valley is awash with fall colors this week.

Basalt puts together a commission to decide on a way to revitalize old town.

Health insurance rates are going down next year for some residents in the Glenwood Springs area. And that’s partly because some doctors and hospitals have agreed to get paid less.

U.S. Senate candidates in Colorado battle it out for the women’s vote in the November election.

And we look at the 35th annual Aspen Film Fest, opening this weekend.

Colorado Medical Society

Health insurance in the Roaring Fork Valley will be cheaper next year for some residents. The average premium will cost about seven percent less. For someone paying three hundred dollars a month, that’s about twenty dollars less for each payment. One reason for that is some doctors and hospitals are treating patients for less. And the state’s top association for physicians is worried that may have unintended consequences.

Colorado Division of Insurance

Health insurance in the Glenwood Springs area will go down by nearly ten percent next year. That’s on average, and it’s compared to an overall average increase of about one percent across Colorado. State officials gave final approval for the lower rates this week. This comes after concerns about especially high insurance in the Roaring Fork Valley, and an earlier flawed attempt to let consumers review rates beforehand. 

Good afternoon and welcome to Mountain Edition.

Parents of students in the Roaring Fork School District may notice a few things are different this year.

Law enforcement officers are aiming to cut down on DUI’s… but there are limits on what they can do.

Colorado says it’s posted next year’s health insurance rates so people can find out whether they’ll be charged more… but it’s near impossible actually find those rates.

Water experts and decision makers are trying to figure out how to fairly divvy up Colorado River water if drought becomes a factor in the future.

And, now that recreational marijuana shops are open in Pitkin County, elected leaders are going over concerns, like accidental overdoses.

That’s all coming up on Mountain Edition... right now.

Creative Commons/Flickr/401(K) 2012

Pitkin County staff and elected leaders will meet with the State’s top insurance official this week about pricey health insurance. A Kaiser Health News report says Colorado’s “rating area eleven” that covers Pitkin, Eagle, Garfield and Summit Counties, is the most expensive insurance market in the country. Pitkin County Manager Jon Peacock says they’d like to see solutions.