Andrea Chalfin

News Director

Andrea came to KRCC in 2008 by way of Missouri. She’s responsible for KRCC’s overall news presence, and oversees a cadre of freelancers and students.  Her award-winning work has been heard on NPR, The World (PRI), and the BBC. The Ohio native loves music and media, food, and the open road; it’s also not uncommon to see her taking a walk through downtown Colorado Springs.  Follow Andrea on Twitter @AndreaChalfin.

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Local News
5:56 pm
Mon August 5, 2013

CSFD Interim Fire Chief Accepts WA Position

CSFD Interim Fire Chief Tommy Smith

 

Colorado Springs' Interim Fire Chief Tommy Smith will be moving to Redmond, Washington after accepting the chief position there.  Smith stepped in as the interim head of the Colorado Springs Fire Department earlier this year when Chief Rich Brown stepped down.  Smith is expected to begin his new duties in September, after Christopher Riley takes over the fire department.  Riley was appointed as the city's fire chief last week, pending approval from city council.  According to a press release at the time, there were no internal candidates for CSFD Chief.

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Local News
6:01 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Saturday Sandbag Pickup: Waldo Canyon & Black Forest

Sandbags will be available to homeowners facing impacts from potential flash flooding in and near the Waldo Canyon burn scar.  They'll be given away free at the Verizon Wireless building on Garden of the Gods Road from 8 - 2 Saturday. The sand comes from last week's Olympic Downtown Celebration and its sand volleyball pit.

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Local News
3:34 pm
Fri August 2, 2013

Pueblo City-County Health Reports West Nile Presence

Mosquito/clipart

Pueblo City-County Health officials are warning residents of West Nile virus in the area.  Mosquitoes have tested positive, but no human cases have been reported.

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Local News
8:33 am
Fri August 2, 2013

Healthy Conversation: Immunizations

August is National Immunization Awareness Month, so for this month’s Healthy Conversation, we’re talking vaccinations.  KRCC's Andrea Chalfin is joined by Lt. Col. Diane Heinz of Evans Army Community Hospital at Fort Carson, and we begin by talking about what back to school means for vaccines.

Additional Information:

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Local News
3:10 pm
Mon July 29, 2013

Mayor Bach Selects Pueblo Fire Chief as New CSFD Head

Pueblo Fire Chief Christopher P. Riley

Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach has selected Pueblo Fire Chief Christopher Riley to be the new head of the city’s fire department. Riley has served as Pueblo’s Chief since 2006. According to a release from the city, Riley will earn $145,000 per year.  He’s expected to start September 9th, pending approval from City Council mid-August.  Former Fire Chief Rich Brown retired in the spring. The city says 40 people applied for the position, with no applications coming from internal candidates. Interim Chief Tommy Smith will return to his post as Deputy Chief of Support Services.

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Local News
5:01 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Disaster Declarations for Royal Gorge, Black Forest Fires

The federal government has approved a major disaster declaration for the Royal Gorge Fire in Fremont County.  The declaration means federal aid is available to deal with the effects, including unemployment benefits for Royal Gorge Bridge & Park employees and others who are out of work after this summer’s wildfire, who aren’t otherwise eligible for state jobless benefits.  Aid is also available for emergency work and the repair or replacement of damaged facilities. Governor John Hickenlooper’s office says a similar request for the Black Forest Fire is pending.

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Local News
5:03 pm
Wed July 24, 2013

Colorado Springs, El Paso County Release Final Flash Flood Risk Analysis Maps

Overview of Fountain and Camp Creek Final Flash Flood Risk Analysis Map (July 24, 2013)

Colorado Springs and El Paso County officials have released updated flood maps for areas in and near the Waldo Canyon burn scar.  The maps detail expected flood effects after one-hour rainfall amounts of a half-inch up to two inches of rain.  The assessments assumed debris in floodwaters would cause blockages at street crossings.  Maps include Ute Pass, Manitou Springs, and Fountain Creek.  Douglas Creek maps have not yet been updated.  There’s a preparedness meeting tonight at six for residents and businesses along Fountain Creek at Al Kaly Shrine.

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Local News
7:06 am
Wed July 24, 2013

Colorado Springs Opts Out of Recreational Marijuana Sales

Tally shows which council members voted for the ban on recreational marijuana sales, and who didn't.

Colorado Springs City Council voted yesterday to opt-out of recreational marijuana sales after listening to public comments and a plea from Mayor Steve Bach to opt-out. Bach called it a jobs killer, and cited concerns from the military.  Bach also said it’s important to take a regional approach, mentioning other communities who have opted out of recreational marijuana sales like El Paso County, Monument, and Green Mountain Falls.  If council decided not to opt-out, they would have voted on a moratorium.  But Bach pressed for the ban.

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Local News
2:36 pm
Tue July 23, 2013

Trinidad, Raton Papers Cease Production

The publisher of the Raton Range and Trinidad Times-Independent is putting both papers under temporary closures.  With nearly identical messages on the papers’ sites, publisher Paula Murphy apologized to readers and cited the high cost of printing and declining population in the region as reasons for the closures.

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Local News
5:07 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

El Paso County Clerk and Recorder Sets Process for Recall Election

The El Paso County Clerk and Recorder will begin mailing ballots in mid-August to registered voters in Senate District 11 for the upcoming recall election. A petition requesting the recall of Democratic State Senator John Morse was approved by a judge earlier this week. The ballot will pose two issues; one asking if Morse should be recalled. The second allows the voter to choose a successor candidate.  In order for that vote to count, the first issue must not be skipped.  Nearly 69,000 people are registered to vote in this election.  Ballots are due by 7 PM, Sept. 10.

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RMCR News
5:02 pm
Fri July 19, 2013

Partnership Seeks to Protect Watersheds from Fire Risks

The Obama administration launched an initiative Friday aimed at reducing the risk of wildfire to water supplies in the West. As KUNC's Grace Hood reports, Colorado will be one of six states to see pilot projects.

Flows of ash and debris into streams after a wildfire can be damaging to the local water supply. Aiming to mitigate this problem, the US Departments of Agriculture and Interior signed a memorandum of understanding Friday. USDA Chief Tom Vilsack:

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Local News
4:25 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

El Paso County Sheriff's Office Investigates Arson Fires

Credit clipart

The El Paso County Sheriff’s office is looking into two fires in Fox Run Park, which is east of Interstate 25 off Baptist Road. The fires are considered separate incidents, but are both considered arson. Anyone with information about the fires should call the El Paso County Sheriff’s office at 719-390-5555. The department asks residents to report any suspicious activity, and to remain aware while in the area. Fox Run Park is just west of the Black Forest Fire burn scar.  Last month’s fire burned more than 14,000 acres and destroyed nearly 500 homes.

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Local News
3:56 pm
Tue July 16, 2013

Applications for State Wildfire Mitigation Funds Due Tomorrow

Applications are due tomorrow for state money to help with wildfire mitigation projects. As KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin reports, there are other goals for the grant program as well.

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Local News
6:07 am
Wed July 10, 2013

Pipeline Fire on Fisher's Peak

The Pipeline Fire on Fisher’s Peak started yesterday and is burning in steep, rocky terrain. Multiple units responded from in and around the Trinidad region, but officials say it’s been difficult to access the fire. The active fire has shown extreme activity on the entire perimeter of the blaze, though no evacuations have been ordered.

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Local News
9:01 pm
Tue July 9, 2013

El Paso County GOP Selects Herpin to Run in Morse Recall

Nearly 50 officers and precinct leaders with the El Paso County Republican Party voted today to nominate Bernie Herpin in the Senate District 11 recall effort of Democrat John Morse. Herpin received 30 votes, while candidate Jaxine Bubis received 18. Bubis is expected to withdraw from the race after the two signed an agreement that would name one person as the GOP nominee. According to a press release from the El Paso County Republican Party, the county’s Clerk and Recorder oversaw the process at the expense of the party.

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Western Skies July 2013
11:31 am
Mon July 8, 2013

Western Skies: July 2013, "Gender and Sexual Identity"

Western Skies: July 2013, “Gender and Sexual Identity”

As the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, last month, in many ways, the gay rights movement seems to be pushing forward faster than many had anticipated. Some are already turning toward other complex issues, like gender. This month’s Western Skies brings a variety of community perspectives on an issue that can confuse even those who study it. Please note, some content may be considered unsuitable for sensitive listeners.

You can listen to the full episode here:

Western Skies is a collaboration between KRCC News and The Big Something.

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Local News
8:33 am
Fri July 5, 2013

Healthy Conversation: Sun Safety

Summertime means fun in the sun, and in Colorado, that fun is often year-round.  So is the need to protect ourselves from harmful effects of sun exposure.  For this month’s Healthy Conversation, KRCC's Andrea Chalfin is joined by Major James Twede, Chief of Dermatology at Fort Carson.  They begin by talking about why the sun can be so damaging.

Additional Information:

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Local News
4:43 pm
Tue July 2, 2013

Flooding out of Williams Canyon Considered “Good Test”

Forecasters say the storm over the Waldo Canyon burn scar yesterday that produced flash flooding through Williams Canyon was quick-moving and dropped six-tenths of an inch of rain in about 15 minutes. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin has more.

Manitou Springs city officials were quick to praise education efforts and first-responder cooperation, but Police Chief Joe Ribeiro acknowledged the city’s warning siren didn’t work correctly.

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Local News
7:35 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Flash Flood Closes Roads, Damages Homes

Highway 24 west of Manitou Springs and other area roads shut down temporarily yesterday as rain hit the Waldo Canyon Burn Scar, sending debris onto the route and flooding Fountain Creek. Authorities say around 20 homes were damaged, 6-8 of them significantly. Meteorologist John Kalina with the National Weather Service in Pueblo says the storm dropped about .6 of an inch of rain in about 15 minutes.

“These cells were moving quickly from the north to the south at around 30 mph or even a little quicker than that, and they did develop rather quickly.”

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Local News
7:33 am
Mon July 1, 2013

Studying Suicide in the Military

Dr. Craig Bryan

In 2012, the U.S. military’s suicide rate surpassed combat deaths. Clinical Psychologist Craig Bryan has made suicide prevention his mission. This January, Dr. Bryan’s research brought him to Colorado Springs’ Fort Carson, where he was conducting his second study on mental health treatments. KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin sat down then to talk about his research–and how the very characteristics that make an effective soldier can also lead to increased suicide risk.

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Local News
4:12 pm
Thu June 27, 2013

Searchers Find Remains of Missing Dylan Redwine

Dylan Redwine, missing since mid-November.

The La Plata County Sheriff’s Office is confirming the remains of Dylan Redwine were found in a recent search conducted in Southwestern Colorado. A five-day search of Middle Mountain Road near Vallecito Lake turned up a number of items, including bones. The Colorado Bureau of Investigation determined those remains as belonging to Redwine. The 13-year old boy disappeared in mid-November while on a court-ordered Thanksgiving holiday visit with his father. The Sheriff’s Office says Redwine was picked up by his father at the Durango-La Plata County airport.

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Revisiting Flash Point: Living with Wildfire
7:33 am
Wed June 26, 2013

The Wildland Urban Interface, Where the Wilderness Meets Civilization

Flash Point: Living with Wildfire
10:30 pm
Mon June 24, 2013

Flash Point: Living with Wildfire

In the wake of last year’s destructive wildfires, Colorado’s residents, scientists, and government officials have been working hard to manage the ongoing threat. We’re not only mitigating our landscapes; we’re adapting our very understanding of what it means to reside within reach of mountain forests. Join KRCC News for “Flash Point,” a special series produced by Andrea Chalfin and Michelle Mercer on how wildfire is changing life in Colorado.

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