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Deborah Bathke / National Drought Mitigation Center

Colorado residents have been enjoying unusually warm weather so far this fall, but that means drought conditions throughout the state.

The latest U.S. Drought Monitor shows most of Colorado in some state of dry or drought conditions.  That's compared to about 20% last year at this time.

Mark Wankowski is a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Pueblo. He says we're likely to have snow in the northern mountains this winter, but it will probably stay dry in the southern part of the state.

courtesy Steelworks Center of the West's Steelworks Archives

A new documentary, Forging the West, looks at the 144-year story of Pueblo’s Colorado Fuel and Iron Company and its pivotal role in the development of the west.

Bureau of Land Management / Public Domain

A group of researchers has compiled experts' opinions on top Colorado River priorities that should be addressed by the new president.

Holly Pretsky / 91.5 KRCC

A march in Colorado Springs that began at Colorado College today was one of several across the country in response to Republican Donald Trump's presidential victory over Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Jake Brownell, Holly Pretsky / 91.5 KRCC

Both the El Paso County Democrats and the El Paso County Republicans held watch parties at the Antlers Hotel in downtown Colorado Springs last night. There was surprise on both sides, as Donald Trump gained the electoral advantage over the course of the evening.  

Lloyd Athearn / Colorado Fourteeners Initiative, via Facebook

The peak of another Colorado 14er may soon become public land. The Colorado Fourteeners Initiative (CFI) intends to buy three parcels of land extending over the peak of Mount Shavano near Salida. The move comes after the discovery of mining claims which means the land is currently privately owned.  

A new report released Thursday outlines how Colorado Springs can become a more age-friendly city.

Laura Bittner / Flickr/Creative Commons

Still need to cast that ballot?  For many voters in Colorado, it's a long one.  If you're still weighing state issues, 91.5 KRCC wants to help.  Here you will find information and links on how to vote, as well as information on the nine statewide issues facing Colorado residents this November.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

The Air Force released new details yesterday about a previously reported discharge of contaminated water into the Colorado Springs sewer system at Peterson Air Force Base. Officials are now saying the discharge didn’t happen as they thought.

Holly Pretsky / 91.5 KRCC

A candlelight vigil Tuesday honored the memory of Christy Galella, Andrew Myers, and Jennifer Vasquez, the three victims of last year's Halloween shootings in Colorado Springs. 

As Election Day nears, television ads for Colorado’s senate candidates are blanketing the airwaves. Despite that, the campaigns of incumbent Democrat Sen. Michael Bennet and Republican challenger Darryl Glenn, an El Paso County Commissioner, have been relatively quiet. Both have been criticized for not holding more debates.

Bennet has refused to participate in several debates including one hosted by the Pueblo Chieftain, while Glenn turned down a debate hosted by The Denver Post.

Holly Pretsky / 91.5 KRCC

Colorado residents have until Monday to register to vote online in order to receive their ballots in the mail.

While the presidential race has taken up a lot of attention, local elections in Colorado deserve some time in the spotlight.  In the state legislature, Democrats hold a three-seat majority in the House, and Republicans have a one-seat majority in the Senate.

Maeve Conran / Connecting the Drops

It's been almost a century since the Colorado River Compact was created, divvying up the resources of this mighty waterway between seven states and Mexico. That means almost 40 million people are dependent on the river in some way. Traditionally, the economic value of the river was based on what the water could be used for when extracted—things like agriculture, mining, and industry. Now, more people are pointing to the economic value of keeping water in the river itself.

Bob Wick, BLM California / BLM Flickr / Creative Commons

Visitors of Browns Canyon in Chaffee County are invited to share their opinions of the National Monument in a series of listening sessions.

Andrea Chalfin / 91.5 KRCC

Colorado Springs City Council approved increases in utility rates for residents and could approve another increase for 2017.

Botvin LifeSkills

There's a new drug-use prevention program aimed at middle schoolers in Pueblo. The new program comes from Botvin LifeSkills, a national organization that focuses on substance abuse prevention. The program will be implemented throughout Pueblo County's School District 70 middle schools this fall.

Colorado is receiving a $12 million grant to assist youth and their families with serious mental, emotional, and behavioral issues. 

Dana Cronin / 91.5 KRCC

Colorado is known for its iconic 14,000-foot peaks, more commonly known as fourteeners. Despite their majestic appearance, these high peaks have a fragile ecosystem and it takes a considerable amount of effort to keep them in good condition.  The season is over now, but for about five months of the year, crews work to create and repair trails.

U.S. Forest Service

Residents of the Eagle Springs Ranch Subdivision and the Greenwood Subdivision from County Road 390 to mile marker 24 in Custer County are now allowed back into their homes. The Custer County Office of Emergency Management says residents must pick up re-entry passes sometime between 3:00-8:00 today  at the Wetmore Volunteer Fire Station located at 200 CR 290 in Wetmore. Proof of residents and identification is required.  Re-entry will begin at 5 PM.

Highway 96 will open to thru traffic from McKenzie Junction to Wetmore at 3 PM.

Toby R. Ault, Justin S. Mankin, Benjamin I. Cook and Jason E. Smerdon / Journal: Science Advances

A recent study shows megadroughts could become more common throughout the Southwest. The study suggests droughts lasting at least 35 years will become longer and dryer as temperatures continue to rise.

Matt Larson is in his mid-thirties and already concerned about what will happen at the end of his life. A year ago, he was diagnosed with brain cancer. It was treated, but there’s a 50 percent chance it could return. If it does, he wonders at what point he would want to die. In November, Colorado voters will decide whether terminally-ill patients can legally end their lives.

Jake Brownell / 91.5 KRCC

Officials at Peterson Air Force Base say 150,000 gallons of water containing perfluorinated compounds, or PFCs, were mistakenly discharged into the Colorado Springs sewer system earlier this month. According to a Colorado Springs Utilities spokesperson, those PFCs have since made their way into Fountain Creek.

Flickr User: Pictures of Money / Creative Commons

Progressives have long fought for a single-payer health care system. The question as to whether Colorado should create one is on this November's ballot.

The supporters of Amendment 69, also known as ColoradoCare, say their system would be better than the current one created through Obamacare. It would be cheaper, they say, and ensure that no person is left without coverage. Opponents say the system is a massive tax hike that is not sustainable.

The one thing both sides agree on is that the current system is not working for everyone.

El Paso County Sheriff's Department

Evacuations are being lifted after a fire broke out near the Rampart Reservoir. The fire has burned about 14 acres, and the El Paso County Sheriff's Office says it's now being worked jointly with the Forest Service.

Fremont County Sheriff's Office

The Junkins Fire burning predominately in Custer County has prompted evacuations in Custer and Pueblo Counties.  A Type I Incident Command Team assumed command of the Junkins Fire Wednesday morning.  260 personnel are fighting the blaze, including hand crews, air tankers and helicopters.  As of Wednesday afternoon, the fire has burned nearly 17,000 acres, and is now at 3% containment.  The incident commander expects to see more containment tomorrow.  The fire started when a power line was knocked down due to strong winds, landing on a barb wire fence.

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado

A new mobile app looks to incentivize users to help out the environment.

The app, called YourCO, will allow users to log do-it-yourself conservation projects, such as picking up trash or turning down the thermostat, and earn badges and rewards along the way.

Colorado’s major party U.S. Senate candidates held their only televised debate of the election on Tuesday night – but it was disrupted by minor party supporters.  About two dozen Green Party supporters stood outside the History Colorado Museum in Denver where the debate was held, pounding on the glass doors for 60 minutes. The noise was clearly a distraction for the audience and for incumbent Michael Bennet, a Democrat, and El Paso County Commissioner Daryl Glenn, his Republican challenger.

Peak Alliance for a Sustainable Future

A recently released sustainability report celebrates environmental and cultural action in the Pikes Peak region.   

The main party candidates in Colorado’s U.S. Senate race square off Tuesday for their only televised debate. The interest in the battle between the incumbent, Democrat Michael Bennet, and his Republican challenger, Darryl Glenn, so far has been low-key. That’s especially the case when compared to two years ago when Mark Udall, a Democrat, was defeated by Republican Cory Gardner in one of the most-watched contests in the country.

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