A bill authorizing the creation of a state firefighting air tanker fleet is on its way to the governor. But as KUNC’s Nathan Heffel reports, there’s no guarantee the fleet will be in the air anytime soon.

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Amidst a charged atmosphere of students and civic and government leaders at Metropolitan State University in Denver, Governor John Hickenlooper signed the Colorado ASSET bill into law today. KUNC’s Nathan Heffel has more.

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A bill that would allow people who’ve entered the country illegally to receive a Colorado driver’s license passed its first hearing by a state senate committee yesterday. Nathan Heffel has more from the State Capitol.

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Oil and Gas companies operating in Colorado could soon face stricter reporting requirements when it comes spills. A bill lowering the reporting threshold passed its first committee yesterday. Bente [BEN tuh] Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Democrats at the statehouse are working on a slate of bills aimed at revamping the oil and gas industry as the legislature moves into its final few weeks. A bill that would change the mission of the state’s Oil and Gas Commission cleared the full house today, despite strong Republican opposition. Bente Birkeland has [...]

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A bill to compensate Coloradans who are wrongfully imprisoned initially cleared the house yesterday with widespread bipartisan support. As Bente Birkeland reports, the measure was brought forward because of one particular case.

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The peak of the gun debate at the state capitol may be over, but the political ramifications are still unfolding. As part of our Capitol Conversation seres, Bente Birkeland discusses that dynamic, and President Barack Obama’s recent visit to Colorado.

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The state budget cleared the House today after a testy debate the night before. It passed with nine Republican votes, unlike the Senate, where it had no GOP support. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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State lawmakers are planning to introduce a bill to regulate recreational marijuana next week. A task force is wrapping up its work with a slew of recommendations. The group hopes to learn from the state’s experience regulating medical marijuana. But as Bente Birkeland reports, there are still some big issues to iron out.

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President Barack Obama visited Colorado yesterday to continue his push for stricter federal gun laws. During a speech at the Denver Police Academy, he praised what the state has done since last year’s Aurora and Newtown, Connecticut shootings. Bente Birkeland has more.

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A bi-partisan bill to create a legal limit for driving while high initially passed the House today. Supporters say it’s especially important now that Colorado has legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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The state senate held a lengthy debate yesterday on a complicated plan to change how Colorado funds its K through 12 schools. The Democratic proposal initially passed the senate on a party line vote. At stake is one billion additional dollars for schools. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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State lawmakers are in the middle of debating the annual budget. And even though there’s more money than last year, Republicans are not happy with the bill. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland discusses the politics behind the budget and what’s driving the discussion.

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Bills on oil and gas and fracking are expected to dominate the latter part of the state’s legislative session. A measure to change the makeup of the agency that regulates the energy industry drew a large crowd at the capitol today. As Bente Birkeland reports, it cleared its first committee.

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The only requirement for Colorado lawmakers during the annual legislative session is passing a budget. And unlike previous years there won’t be cuts for programs like K through 12 schools, state contractors and public employees. But as Bente Birkeland reports, debate in the senate yesterday was still extensive.

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A bill to repeal Colorado’s death penalty died in a committee hearing over concerns that Governor John Hickenlooper would veto the bill. Last week the Governor told Democratic lawmakers he had serious reservations about the measure. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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State lawmakers are expected to debate the budget this week. It begins in the senate, and as Bente Birkeland reports, this is the first time in years the legislature will be able to significantly restore some cuts.

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A major re-write of how Colorado funds K through 12 schools is now making its way through the state legislature. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, Bente Birkeland analyzes how it would change school funding and its prospects for passage.

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Colorado is now the 8th state in the country to allow civil unions for same sex couples. Governor John Hickenlooper signed the measure into law yesterday in front of an enthusiastic crowd. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Democratic sponsors of a bill to repeal the death penalty say they still plan to move the measure through the state legislature, despite concerns from Governor John Hickenlooper. The Denver Post reported that the Governor is hinting at a veto should it reach his desk. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Governor John Hickenlooper signed a trio of gun control bills yesterday, just hours after news broke that Colorado’s top corrections officer had been gunned down in his home. While the moment was overshadowed by the news of Tom Clements’ death, gun rights groups say they will use the gun legislation as part of a [...]

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Governor John Hickenlooper signed three key gun control bills into law today. The most controversial would ban high capacity magazines to just 15 rounds. Another bill requires universal background checks for all gun purchases. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Governor John Hickenlooper has ordered flags lowered to half-staff in memory of Department of Corrections chief Tom Clements, who was killed last night at his Monument home. A gunman killed him when he opened his front door. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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News

AP
December 18, 2014 | NPR · Nebraska and Oklahoma have filed a lawsuit against Colorado with the U.S. Supreme Court, saying that its law legalizing marijuana isn’t constitutional.
 

NASA
December 18, 2014 | NPR · The Kepler space telescope, which cost some $600 million, was feared to be at the end of its useful life in 2013. But NASA says it just found another exoplanet.
 

AP/Paramount Pictures
December 18, 2014 | NPR · One day after some U.S. theaters vowed to screen Team America: World Police in the place of The Interview, whose release was canceled, word has emerged that Team America has also been pulled.
 

Arts & Life

Film Movement
December 18, 2014 | NPR · The film If You Don’t, I Will has some strong dialogue and performances, but its tale of a marriage in peril sags too often in its recounting of the journey.
 

Courtesy of Serial
December 18, 2014 | NPR · Serial, the hugely popular (and sometimes controversial) podcast spun off from This American Life, wraps up its first season today. NPR’s Audie Cornish speaks with Serial creator Sarah Koenig.
 

Getty Images
December 18, 2014 | NPR · Ahead of The Colbert Report‘s last episode, Fresh Air listens back to interviews with Colbert. “I didn’t realize quite how liberal I was until I was asked to make passionate comedic choices,” he said.
 

Music

Courtesy of the artist
December 18, 2014 | WXPN · We speak with the head of Nacional Records about three essential latin alternative songs.
 

Courtesy of the artist
December 18, 2014 | WXPN · David Dye sits down with Andrew Savage and Austin Brown to discuss their prolific year.
 

December 18, 2014 | NPR · Cuban rhythms and melodies have been part of what’s been called the most American of art forms — jazz — ever since Jelly Roll Morton first heard them in the port of New Orleans and used them in his music. Josephine Baker performed in Cuba and Nat King Cole recorded there. But the revolution made cultural exchange all but impossible and even supposedly open-minded artists and musicians took sides.
 

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