A measure to allow civil unions in Colorado is expected to easily pass the state legislature this year, and as Bente Birkeland examines, the tenor of the debate is much different than in previous attempts. As part of our Capitol Conversation series, she talks to fellow statehouse reporters about the new dynamic, and whether [...]

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Illegal immigrant students in Colorado are one step closer to receiving in-state college tuition. The measure passed the senate education committee yesterday. The issue has long been divisive at the legislature. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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A measure to give Colorado gay couples many of the same legal rights as married heterosexual couples cleared its first committee at the state capitol on yesterday. After being at the center of a political storm last year, the bill passed easily on a party line vote. Bente Birkeland has more from the state [...]

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A bill to allow civil unions in Colorado gets its first hearing at the capitol tomorrow. The measure’s passage is certain, but a large crowd is still expected to testify before lawmakers. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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This year’s legislative session got off to a slow start, but that’s about to change. Two of the biggest items for Democrats are scheduled for hearings in the coming days. As part of our capitol conversation series, statehouse Bente Birkeland has this sneak peek at what to expect.

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Colorado’s Speaker of the House says he expects lawmakers to act on several of President Barack Obama’s recommendations to curb gun violence. Governor John Hickenlooper has also called for a broad discussion on guns during the legislative session. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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The Colorado legislature prints millions of pieces of paper each year, costing the state a hefty sum. But that could soon be a thing of the past. This year in an effort to cut down on costs, each of the 100 lawmakers received new iPads. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Vestas wind energy company plans to hire more than 100 workers at its Pueblo plant…Pueblo County emergency officials are running a biennial survey in a continuous effort to improve the readiness of people who live there…The Colorado legislature prints millions of pieces of paper each year, costing the state a hefty sum. But that could soon be a thing of the past. This year in an effort to cut down on costs, each of the 100 lawmakers received new iPads.

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Colorado Democrats are once again trying to pass a bill to give illegal immigrants who graduate from Colorado high schools in-state college tuition. Students currently pay out of state rates. Similar measures have failed in the past, but supporters expect the bill to easily clear the legislature now that Democrats control both chambers. Bente [...]

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State lawmakers have already introduced more than 100 bills on a wide variety of topics since the legislative session began last Wednesday. From the state capitol, Bente Birkeland has more on the first of many gun measures.

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Nearly a third of this year’s state lawmakers are newly elected, and they’ll be expected to debate a host of complex issues from Medicaid to marijuana, gun laws to the death penalty. As part of our capitol conversation series statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland takes a look at the first week of the session, and [...]

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Governor John Hickenlooper called for universal background checks for all gun sales during his third state of the state address today. He also touched on several other issues, including regulating marijuana, hydraulic fracturing, and reforming the state’s mental health system. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Today’s opening ceremonies of the Colorado legislature were marked by the typical pomp and circumstance as in years past. But even before it started, the 2013 session made history as one of the most diverse groups of lawmakers ever to gather under the golden dome. Bente Birkeland has more.

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Members of the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission wrap up a three day hearing in Denver today. At stake are new rules to oversee a new boom in oil and gas drilling, and at the heart of those rules, changing how far a drill rig can be from homes and schools. Bente Birkeland has [...]

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Flanked by Democratic leaders at the statehouse, Governor John Hickenlooper outlined his top job creation priorities for the upcoming legislative session and previewed the first house bill that will be introduced on Wednesday. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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State lawmakers return to the capitol’s gold dome on January 9th. As part of our capitol conversation series, statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland talked to fellow reporters about some of the key issues to watch out for, and the new political dynamic.

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Republicans in Colorado are coming off a difficult election after losing control of the Colorado state house. Bente Birkeland talked to the next House Minority Leader Republican Mark Waller to see how he’ll motivate his caucus during the session and work with Democrats.

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Democratic state lawmaker Mark Ferrandino will make history next legislative session by becoming Colorado’s first openly gay Speaker of the House. Capitol reporter Bente Birkeland sat down with him to discuss his priorities for the session and his new role.

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Tackling the issue of low water supplies and increasing demand will be a top priority for lawmakers during the upcoming legislative session. As part of our series on snow, Statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland takes a look at some of the proposals being floated around and talks to state leaders about preparing for the worst.

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Colorado’s Senate minority leader Bill Cadman will be the only legislative leader returning to the same post when the session convenes January 9th. Statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland talked to him about how he sees the session playing out and what’s on his agenda.

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Democratic state senator John Morse will take over as the next senate president in January. He previously served as the majority leader. Statehouse reporter Bente Birkeland sat down with him to talk about how he sees his new role and his hopes for the legislative session.

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State economists were in an optimistic mood yesterday, saying Colorado’s economy is performing better than the rest of the nation. As a result, lawmakers will also have more money to spend in next year’s budget than originally anticipated. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Gun laws, marijuana reform, and oil and gas regulations will be just a few of the hot button issues that state lawmakers grapple with during the next legislative session. Governor John Hickenlooper and legislative leaders outlined their thoughts in a recent panel at the Colorado Press Association. Bente Birkeland has more from the state [...]

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News

July 31, 2014 | NPR · An isolation unit at Emory University’s hospital will be used to treat a patient infected with Ebola, the virus that has killed more than 700 people in a recent outbreak in West Africa.
 

AFP/Getty Images
July 31, 2014 | NPR · About 58 percent of California is currently in the worst of the four drought levels used by experts, in conditions normally seen only once every 50-100 years.
 

AP
July 31, 2014 | NPR · The truce is set to begin at 8 a.m. local time Friday. Envoys will also travel to Cairo to negotiate a possible longer peace deal.
 

Arts & Life

Well Go USA
July 31, 2014 | NPR · The very prolific James Franco directs a Cormac McCarthy adaptation that struggles to overcome a repulsive main character with whom it’s almost impossible to empathize.
 

IFC Films
July 31, 2014 | NPR · The drama War Story is trying to wrap itself around both a personal story of a traumatized journalist and some larger social issues. Despite a strong central performance, it succeeds only partially.
 

Courtesy of Sundance
July 31, 2014 | NPR · The eight-part drama that begins Thursday stars Maggie Gyllenhaal as a British baroness with an Israeli passport. She’s a fearless actor in a show full of kidnappings, seductions and betrayals.
 

Music

July 31, 2014 | NPR · Harvest Records used to be known for having a strong link to the progressive rock sound of 1970s London. After laying dormant for years, the label is back, and looking for a new identity.
 

Courtesy of Jerry Graham Publicity
July 31, 2014 | NPR · The New York rapper on the music industry — from sitting on the shelf, to refusing deals, posthumous releases to sales expectations — music journalism and taking risks, personal and professional.
 

July 31, 2014 | WPLN · Sometimes the kids you hear on records for kids aren’t really kids. In fact, there’s a crew of adult singers in Nashville that specializes in sounding young — very young.
 

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