KBUT’s Community Matters airs live every other Monday. The show is hosted by KBUT News Director Christopher Biddle, and veteran Gunnison County journalist Chris Rourke.

On this week’s show…

The City of Gunnison wants to improve its outreach to spanish-speaking residents. We spoke with Ricardo Esqueda, who was hired last spring as a Translator and Community Liaison; and Erica Boucher, Gunnison City Clerk and Recorder about those efforts.

Eric McPhail is the Director of the Gunnison County Colorado State University Extension Office. The last time he was on Community Matters, drought threatened the livelihood of ranchers in the Gunnison Valley. Now, following a healthy monsoon season, we check back in with Eric for an update.

The Delta variant of COVID19 is driving a surge in new cases in Gunnison County. Public Health Director Joni Reynolds says she strongly endorses recommendations from the CDC that everyone, regardless of vaccination status should wear masks in public.

Listen to the full episode 

Pt. 1: Gunnison County Public Health Director Joni Reynolds

Cases of COVID19 spiked in the last week in July, and according to our guest, continued into August. We discuss the possibility of future public health orders and the County’s ability to adequately react.

Pt. 2: Gunnison County CSU Extension Office Director Eric McPhail

Following a lackluster winter and a dry spring, the summer monsoons finally delivered for Gunnison County ranchers this year. McPhail says hay production should fall within ten percent of average. Ranchers are out collecting hay right now with the first window of dry weather in weeks.

Pt. 3: Ricardo Esqueda – Gunnison City Community Liaison and  Translator; and  Erica Boucher – Gunnison City Clerk and Recorder

Gunnison City Clerk Erica Boucher says the 2020 September snow storm that cut off hundreds of Gunnison City residents, was a wake up call. Which is why this past spring, the city hired Ricardo Esqueda as a Translator and Community Liaison. Ricardo shares his experience of working with Gunnison’s Latinx community, and we discuss plans for similar initiatives in the future.

Learn more about Community Matters on KBUT

Every two weeks, we sit down with community leaders, and ask our listeners to send in their questions.

We want you to join the conversation. Email [email protected] or click here.

Community Matters airs every other Monday at 6pm. 

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