Bente Birkeland

State Capitol Reporter

Bente Birkeland has been reporting on state legislative issues for KUNC and Rocky Mountain Community Radio since 2006. Originally, from Minnesota, Bente likes to hike and ski in her spare time. She keeps track of state politics throughout the year but is especially busy during the annual legislative session from January through early May.

 

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10:56am

Tue February 4, 2014
Politics

Colorado Democrats Strike Down Background Check Repeal

Jim Hill KUNC

The gun debate that riveted the state capitol in 2013, once again took center stage Monday. Fewer people came to the capitol to testify on a key gun bill than the last round, but emotions were still strong.

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1:59pm

Fri January 31, 2014
Gun Control

Gun Control To Once Again Be Debated By Colo. Lawmakers

Protesters at the capitol in 2013 during the gun control debates.
Credit Bente Birkeland

After dominating last year’s legislative session state lawmakers are once again beginning to debate the issue of guns. Republicans are taking the lead this time around, trying to repeal many Democratic bills including stepped up background checks.

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11:02am

Thu January 30, 2014
Politics

Later Bar Hours On Tap At The Colorado Capitol

Barkeep and patrons enjoy an evening at a Denver establishment. A new bill at the statehouse is proposing extending closing times past 2 a.m.
Thomas Hawk Flickr - Creative Commons

Could closing time change for your local watering hole? That's a statehouse proposal under consideration, allowing Colorado communities to decide whether to extend bar hours. Some feel a change to the law could do more harm than good.

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10:41am

Wed January 29, 2014
Politics

Colorado Lawmakers Move Forward With Mug Shots Bill

Mug shot sites, like the Smoking Gun, have long been a staple online. While some trade in celebrity mug shots, others publish publically available local mug shots.
thesmokinggun.com screencap

A bipartisan committee at the statehouse has moved forward a bill to make it easier to remove people’s mug shots from commercial websites if they were never convicted of the crime for which they were arrested.

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12:38pm

Mon January 27, 2014
Wildfires

Aggressive Proposals Aside, Colorado Legislature Still Looks To Address Wildfires

The Black Forest Fire as seen on June 12, 2013 from nearby homes. The wildfire became the most destructive in the state's history, surpassing 2012's Waldo Canyon Fire.
State Farm Flickr - Creative Commons

Helping prevent and fight wildfires is one of the top priorities for Colorado lawmakers in both parties this session, but so far they’re only proposing minor policy changes.

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