State

Colorado state news and state government coverage. 

In a news conference Monday Governor John Hickenlooper, alongside Democratic Congressman Jared Polis and other supporters, announced a deal on local control for oil and gas, heading off a showdown on the November ballot.

Colorado voters will once again decide on an amendment that would give unborn babies the same constitutional and legal rights as a person. The measure is bringing out some familiar faces – it’s also impacting one of the closest U.S. Senate races in the country.

Screenshot from aspeninstitute.org

Colorado residents can vote this fall on whether communities can limit oil and gas drilling. The state supreme court approved four ballot measures Monday, June 30th, that allows such questions. The decision comes as Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper is in Aspen, speaking at the Ideas Festival about existing rules for the industry. He was joined yesterday by the head of the Environmental Defense Fund, Fred Krupp.

Colorado’s economy and job growth are already shaping up to play a central role in the November gubernatorial race. Both candidates are using their own figures to assess how the state is faring as it recovers from the recession.

Fresh off a primary victory where he bested former Congressman Tom Tancredo, Secretary of State Scott Gessler, and former state senate minority leader Mike Kopp, Bob Beauprez discussed some of the key issues in the upcoming governors campaign: from energy and the environment to guns and capital punishment.

The race to be Colorado’s next Governor is officially underway. Former Congressman Bob Beauprez will challenge Governor John Hickenlooper in November after winning a four way GOP primary race. Beauprez captured a four-point lead over his closest challenger, Tom Tancredo.

Colorado’s primary election is Tuesday June 24, and in many ways it marks the beginning of the political season that will culminate in November. Two GOP primary races are being closely watched.

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

Elise Thatcher

 As the campaigning for governor heats up, Governor Hickenlooper is facing lingering anger over new gun regulations he signed in to law.  Last week, on a visit to Aspen, Hickenlooper faced some of his toughest critics over the new laws; county sheriffs. Fifty-six of them have sued the governor to rescind the gun restrictions.  

Governor John Hickenlooper’s office said he’s still in discussions about whether to call lawmakers back to the state capitol for a special session on oil and gas issues. The goal would be to pass a compromise bill and avoid a fight at the ballot box.

Four Republicans are vying to be the lone candidate to run against Democratic Governor John Hickenlooper in the fall. But with the primary election coming up June 24, only two of the candidates participated in a taped debate hosted by CBS 4 and Colorado Public Television.

Debate organizers knew ahead of time that former congressman Tom Tancredo never planned to be a part of the hourlong program. But Secretary of State Scott Gessler didn’t show up – even though his campaign confirmed that he would.

People living in many parts of rural Colorado still don’t have access to high speed Internet. It’s a problem for schools and businesses, and in eastern Colorado it is making it harder for farmers to take full advantage of the latest technology even as state lawmakers passed legislation to try and even the playing field.

 

    

Three people are missing including a county worker and his son after Sunday's massive landslide outside of the town of Collbran. 

More and more companies are starting to use the new Colorado logo and slogan - “it’s our nature” - to promote their products, helping the state's efforts to strengthen its brand and global competitiveness. The branding effort though has been somewhat controversial and it will take some time to determine its success.

Valley Roundup Special - Mental Health

May 23, 2014

Among medical and mental health care providers patients who repeatedly experience crisis episodes are often called "frequent flyers". 

Many of these people have untreated mental health disorders and they seek help in emergency rooms or are locked up in jails.  This untreated mental health problem costs $1,000 a year for every resident of Colorado

Health officials say it is difficult or impossible to treat these expensive frequent flyers without addressing their mental health.  Much of the problem is due to lack of resources

This month Rocky Mountain PBS’s I-News team focused on untreated mental health in Colorado.  Aspen Public Radio, in conjunction with station KUNC and Rocky Mountain PBS I-News takes a look at all of these issues.  The special is hosted by APR’s Roger Adams.

Governor John Hickenlooper signed two measures into law Wednesday, both aimed at tightening rules around marijuana edibles and concentrates. One goal is to make sure young children don’t accidentally ingest the drug.

The Colorado Senate significantly watered down a vaccine education proposal Wednesday. Many parents came to the state capitol to testify that the original bill was a government overreach.

Colorado River Water Conservation District

The public is weighing in how to solve the problem of less water in the future. People offered suggestions for Governor Hickenlooper’s Colorado Water Plan at a town hall meeting in Aspen Thursday. A growing population and climate change are straining the resource in Colorado, and an enormous water gap is projected, between how much water Colorado has and how much it needs. The Water Plan will use information collected by nine basin roundtables organized around various watersheds. Aspen Public Radio’s Marci Krivonen spoke with Jim Pokrandt.

State of Colorado/Department of Revenue

Lawmakers in Denver will vote on a bill Monday that would raise money for the 10th Mountain Division Foundation. The legislation would charge an extra fee for the 10th Mountain Division specialty license plate. After sailing through the House, the bill is getting a re-vote in the Senate. Aspen Public Radio's Marci Krivonen reports.

Even in 2014 many parts of Colorado are still not connected to the Internet and if they are it’s not at high speeds. A package of bills to reform and update Colorado’s telecommunications industry has cleared its first committee at the state capitol.

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