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KVNF Regional Newscast: April 14, 2022

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Natasha Leger
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(:05) This is KVNF’s Regional Newscast for Thursday, April 14th. I’m Gavin Dahl.

(:30) Montrose County Commissioners are providing a half-million dollars to the town of Naturita for renovation of their wastewater system and replacement of critical water lines. The town has also applied for funding from the USDA, the Office of Just Transition, and Congressionally Directed Spending. Montrose County set aside $1.5 million dollars received through the American Rescue Plan Act, to award to towns with water and sewer infrastructure projects. Construction in Naturita will start in 2024.(:25) Darnell Place-Wise will serve as the new Executive Director of the Delta Health Foundation. She previously served on the Board, and is steeped in the Delta County community. Place-Wise grew up in Delta, left, and moved back for good in 2002. She has worked for Delta County and the Delta Area Chamber of Commerce. CEO Matt Heyn says he is thrilled and calls her, quote, “an exceptional leader.”

(:30) Higher prices at the grocery store are affecting local food banks. Montrose Press reports since January of last year, 390 new families sought food assistance at the Sharing Ministries food bank in Montrose. The food bank buys food and processes donations of dry goods. They also work with local farmers during the harvesting season to distribute thousands of pounds of fresh produce. Reporter Anny Lynn Winfrey will be one of my guests on a food focused edition of The Pen and The Sword, Friday at 6.

(:30) Mesa County District 51 East Middle School held a ribbon cutting for water bottle stations installed due to the efforts of two seventh-graders. Alec Pierce and Beckett Carlton, two STEM students, responded to a Design Challenge with the theme "Water is Life." In their research they affirmed adequate hydration is essential for learning, but school water fountains were faulty and inadequate. They raised $1500 dollars independently for the water bottle stations which are now in use on campus.(:40) Colorado’s Board of Education is debating new social studies standards at a time when teaching about history, race, gender, and sexuality is under attack. Democrats have pushed for more inclusive teaching. But as Chalkbeat reports, inclusion faces resistance in many communities. We don’t have a state-mandated curriculum, so districts have broad discretion to determine what gets taught locally. The State Board of Ed originally expected to approve new standards this spring, but the timeline has been pushed back repeatedly due to the high volume of reactionary public feedback. Three Democrats on the Board won’t vote for new standards if LGBTQ people are excluded.

(:13) Colorado Democrats are advancing a bill to create a new statewide recycling program. As Scott Franz reports for Capitol Coverage, it would be paid for by businesses making or selling recyclable products.

SPOT (:37)

(:22) The Delta County Board of Commissioners denied an agro-voltaic project on Garnet Mesa, despite a Delta County Independent poll showing 84 percent of Delta County residents are in favor of it. Then, they approved a concrete plant in the same area. Kate Redmond spoke to Natasha Leger from Citizens for a Healthy Community about ongoing debates on land use.

FEATURE (4:12)

(:06) That does it for Thursday’s KVNF Regional Newscast. Special thanks to Kate Redmond. I’m Gavin Dahl.

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Gavin Dahl is a writer and producer with a passion for community media. He joined the staff of KVNF in the summer of 2020 and has since won awards and recognition for his reporting from the Colorado Broadcasters Association and Society of Professional Journalists. His writing has been published by The Montrose Press, The Sopris Sun, Boulder Weekly, Raw Story, Radio Survivor, Boise Weekly, and The Austin American-Statesman. He graduated from The Evergreen State College with a BA in media production and community organizing.
Kate Redmond was reared on a ranch in Routt County, Colorado in a large and boisterous family. Kate has enjoyed a career in audio and lighting, with previous stints at The Vilar Performing Arts Center, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet, and Strings Pavilion. Her interests include alpine skiing, yoga, poetry, mosaics, and she's currently writing a memoir about her time in Uruguay. After several years as a KVNF volunteer, she joined the staff in December 2020.
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  • KVNF freelance reporter Lisa Young speaks with Delta Health CEO Matt Heyn. Delta Health recently received Sole Community Hospital Provider status from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. In addition, the hospital will ask Delta County voters to approve a countywide sales tax initiative during a Special District Election coming up on May 3. Plus, Governor Jared Polis says a package of bills advancing at the Capitol will generate hundreds of thousands of new affordable housing units. Scott Franz reports.