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POWELL – A bill pending in the U.S. House of Representatives would prevent future grizzly bear hunts and increase Native American influence in bear conservation efforts.
SHERIDAN – The U.S. Supreme Court Monday issued its opinion on Herrera v. Wyoming, affirming that the Crow Tribe’s hunting rights under the 1868 Treaty of Fort Laramie remain valid.
CASPER — For more than five hours Monday, a federal prosecutor peppered a Casper doctor accused of running a pill mill with questions about his practice and history in an often combative cross-examination, which saw the doctor call people who testified against him “a bunch of liars.”
NEWS BRIEFS for Monday, May 20, 2019
RIVERTON — After a heated preliminary hearing consumed most of Wednesday afternoon, four alleged kidnappers were bound over to district court to face felony, conspiratorial, unlawful confinement charges that could land them in prison for no fewer than 20 years – or life.
CASPER — Last month, Rep. Tyler Lindholm, R-Sundance, penned an op-ed in the Star-Tribune that seemed out of the lane that a Majority Whip of the Wyoming House of Representatives would typically occupy.
LARAMIE— The University of Wyoming Board of Trustees voted to restore its program that provides a teaching degree in career-and-technical education, formerly known as vocational education.
GILLETTE — The state is moving to merge the Wyoming Infrastructure and Pipeline authorities into a single Wyoming Energy Authority, and lawmakers want to make sure doing so won’t lose any of the expertise held by the former organizations.
NEWS BRIEFS for Friday, May 17, 2019
JACKSON – A Teton County inmate will soon be transferred to the Wyoming State Penitentiary after admitting to terrorizing several women by stalking them.
CASPER — The Wyoming Democratic Party has asked the Fremont County Attorney’s Office to investigate allegations that voters on the Wind River Reservation encountered difficulties during the 2018 election.
LARAMIE — During a discussion with the University of Wyoming’s Board of Trustees on Thursday, Gov. Mark Gordon said the university should tap its research capabilities, especially those at the School of Energy Resources, for carbon sequestration and become a leader in combating climate change.
CHEYENNE – Four of Wyoming’s coal-fired power plants have been identified as potential targets for early closures to save money. And state lawmakers have worked to put up as many roadblocks as possible to keep Rocky Mountain Power from turning off the lights at those aging plants.
As Wyoming’s greater sage grouse team met to revise the state’s conservation plan today, an expert cautioned of a “dark cloud” that could set population numbers back to 24-year lows.
CODY — From worker morale to preservation of the Park’s natural wonders, new Yellowstone National Park superintendent Cam Sholly spoke with a singular philosophical theme.
CASPER — Wyoming health officials are drafting an ambitious and unique plan to try to address air ambulance costs, though representatives of the life flight companies say the issue is how little they’re often paid, not how much they charge.
CHEYENNE — Wyoming has needed a major upgrade to the computer system that handles driver licensing and motor vehicle information for years. But a multimillion-dollar price tag has made funding a new system a tough sell for lawmakers.
LARAMIE – One of the most significant policy changes the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees was scheduled to make this week was a major change in the university’s tuition policy and financial aid.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, May 15, 2019
Wyoming’s tax revenue collection has fallen farther since the 2008 recession than every state in the union except Alaska, while 41 other states have increased tax revenues, according to a study by The Pew Charitable Trust.
Core-area leasing and mitigation banking rules are atop the list of issues raised by 78 commenters who responded to Gov. Mark Gordon’s call for input on amending the state’s sage grouse conservation plan.
JACKSON — A teenager held at gunpoint last summer by an off-duty police officer who assumed he had committed a crime is suing her for violating his civil rights.
RAWLINS — On Tuesday, the final settlement figure for a U.S. District Court civil case regarding John Randall Veach, an unarmed man who was shot dead by members of the Rawlins Police Department in 2015, was revealed.
CASPER — State lawmakers are scrambling to adjust after a confidential attorney general’s opinion issued last week ruled that municipalities could choose to enroll in the state’s employee health insurance plan.
LARAMIE – The University of Wyoming is planning to create four new jobs as part of its No More Campaign, which aims to provide more resources to prevent and respond to sexual assault on campus.
CHEYENNE — The budgetary woes of the Veterans of Foreign Wars could lead to Wyoming spending $50,000 annually to help subsidize the group’s work for the state’s veterans.
CHEYENNE – State, Laramie County and Cheyenne law enforcement officers participating in a national enforcement campaign will soon begin cracking down on motorists who fail to wear their seat belts.
EVANSTON — Jesse J. Hartley, 19, of Mountain View, has been convicted of murder in the first degree and aggravated child abuse in the death of 2-year-old Brandon Green on May 1, 2018.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, May 14, 2019
GILLETTE — Cloud Peak Energy’s bankruptcy filing Friday afternoon may be the beginning of the end for the Gillette-based coal producer.
CHEYENNE – The key element in successfully changing a culture of harassment and bullying in a school district is buy-in from the adults in the room.
LARAMIE – The University of Wyoming Board of Trustees named three candidates for the position of acting president Friday.
NEWS BRIEFS for Monday, May 13, 2019
CHEYENNE — Experts in Wyoming public records law say Laramie County School District 1 officials have no legal basis for denying public access to McCormick Junior High's report on bullying.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, May 9, 2019
CODY — The long-running, ongoing battle against invasive lake trout in Yellowstone Lake is turning in favor of the native cutthroat trout.
GILLETTE — Wyoming has a bright future ahead of it with the strides it has made in technology and education, but nothing may be brighter than its coal industry, which can not only grow stronger but be part of cleaning up the environment.
CHEYENNE — Wyoming is more prepared to address health emergencies than it was in 2013, according to a report released Wednesday, but the state still has work to do.
LARAMIE — Cloaked in a veil of secrecy that the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees shows no signs of lifting, the decision to demote President Laurie Nichols has driven frustration and rumors on campus and around the state.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, May 8, 2019
An influential cattlemen’s group is trying to rescind a U.S. Interior Department big game migration route protection order that brought $3.2 million to Wyoming in the last three months.
RAWLINS — One of the strangest sights for many visitors to the west’s wide-open spaces is the sight of an antelope crawling under a fence. As nearly every animal jumps fences, the sight may be nearly inconceivable for those unfamiliar with the animal.
CASPER — Gov. Mark Gordon is pulling together a citizen’s group to help find a happy medium between energy and conservation interests seeking regulatory certainty around migration corridors in the southwestern quadrant of the state, his office announced Tuesday.
CHEYENNE - Kaycee Cook was reinstated as a substitute teacher and Gay-Straight Alliance co-sponsor at Cheyenne's McCormick Junior High on Tuesday, more than a month after she was dismissed from the school.
DOUGLAS — If you don’t already have a place to live in Douglas, good luck finding one. Few homes hit the market, and prices have risen by 10-20 percent for the few that do.
PINEDALE – One of the anticipated changes to this year’s hunting season regulations will be the trophy-game gray wolf quota set by Wyoming Game and Fish each year.
CASPER — Wyoming’s tourism industry accounted for $3.8 billion in in-state spending last year, according to a report from the Wyoming Office of Tourism released Monday.
LARAMIE — For the first time in five years, the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees could divert from its standard policy of 4 percent tuition increases for both in-state and out-of-state students.
THERMOPOLIS — More information and independent studies are coming in regarding the Moneta Divide Natural Gas and Oil Development Project proposed by Aethon Energy and Burlington Resources Oil and Gas Company.
POWELL — A Wapiti man who shot and killed his wife last year says it was an accident — and he claims his civil rights have been violated since his arrest.
CASPER — Cloud Peak Energy gained another week of reprieve Tuesday, when the coal company reached an agreement with creditors to extend a grace period for their unpaid debt until May 7.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, May 1, 2019
PINEDALE — Clean-air advocates here are calling for corrective action following a winter of high ozone pollution readings, but a state regulator is demuring, saying federal rules are “not explicitly clear” about requiring a fix.
Two bills to protect retired Wyoming coal miners’ healthcare benefits from being lost to bankruptcy have been introduced in the U.S. Congress. Neither has the support of any member of Wyoming’s congressional delegation thus far, and it’s unclear if they’ll get it.
SHERIDAN — In response to a call for comment from the Wyoming state government, a coalition of conservation groups, including those with long histories of advocacy for science-based sage-grouse protections, has recommended that the state of Wyoming strengthen the habitat and disturbance protections in its state sage-grouse plan. The groups submitted a letter outlining specific areas where protections necessary for long-term sage-grouse persistence are inadequate or absent.
CASPER — The Virginia businessman who’d planned to purchase and operate a troubled coal mine in western Wyoming has backed out after a failure to secure bonding ahead of a deadline.
JACKSON — A plan to increase Grand Targhee Resort’s skiable acreage by 50% has Teton County Search and Rescue officials worried about an increase in backcountry accidents.
POWELL — The Wyoming Game and Fish Commission has decided not to try superseding the Endangered Species Act and federal regulations and enact a hunting season on grizzly bears. But commissioners’ frustration is at a boiling point.
CASPER — With its natural resource-dependent economy, the amount of money Wyoming takes in at any given time lives and dies by the success of commodities like oil, gas and coal.
NEWS BRIEFS for Monday, April 29, 2019
GILLETTE — Much of the discussion about a controversial Campbell County Republican Party resolution was derailed Saturday when the party chairwoman agreed it was out of order and an appeal of that ruling failed.
CASPER — Gov. Mark Gordon said he was “deeply concerned” Friday by Rocky Mountain Power’s serious consideration of shuttering some coal-fired power plant units in Wyoming within four years.
LARAMIE — Gov. Mark Gordon made an impromptu announcement Friday on the University of Wyoming campus that he’ll convene a task force to address ways to combat the high rates of murdered and missing American Indian women in Wyoming.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, April 25, 2019
GREEN RIVER — An updated analysis conducted by Rocky Mountain Power suggests it would lower costs for customers if it sped up the retirement of four power-generating units in Southwest Wyoming, including two units at the Jim Bridger Power Plant.
GILLETTE – Stickers and posters from a recently rebranded white nationalist group were found plastered around the Gillette College campus recently and were immediately removed by campus law enforcement.
CASPER — University of Wyoming faculty leaders are proposing a resolution that criticizes the school’s board for its silence on the decision not to renew President Laurie Nichols’ contract and calls on the trustees to provide an explanation.
LARAMIE – Attorneys representing the University of Wyoming filed the school’s first arguments Tuesday in a Wyoming Supreme Court case concerning UW’s ability to restrict the carrying of firearms on campus.
CHEYENNE — The vast majority of counties in Wyoming received passing marks in a study of air quality across the country. Both Laramie County and Natrona County rank among the cleanest in the nation in certain categories.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, April 24, 2019
A protest letter from a consortium of land users hasn’t derailed or even delayed Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s effort to designate two new wildlife migration corridors, the agency’s deputy chief of wildlife said Monday.
Two fallen Wyoming coal giants are caught at the center of a a high-stakes feud between global business mavens and regulators, leaving miners and municipalities to scramble for what they’re owed.
JACKSON – Perhaps the most-told ecological success story about the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is bringing back wolves, which sparked a trickle-down effect on the web of life around them researchers are still debating.
SHERIDAN – Ramaco Carbon’s ability to mine its private coal assets cleared a key hurdle Friday.
CASPER – The Trump administration’s elimination of a hallmark of the “war on coal” – an Obama-era moratorium on new coal leasing – was ruled unlawful Friday by a federal judge in Montana because the administration failed to consider the possible fallout from its decision.
LARAMIE – In response to last week’s public outcry over the November death of Robbie Ramirez, Albany County commissioners are expressing a growing desire to publicly discuss a range of policing reforms called for by ACoPP – Albany County for Proper Policing – the advocacy group formed in the wake of Ramirez’s death.
CODY — More hunters from other states are looking to come to Wyoming for elk hunting.
RIVERTON — The Eastern Shoshone Business Council has nominated a liaison to Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon's office: Lee D. Tendore.
CHEYENNE — Several of Wyoming’s top policy minds met on the campus of Laramie County Community College last week to try to define answers to a problem nearly as old as Wyoming itself: how to break free from the state’s ceaseless boom-and-bust cycle.
NEWS BRIEFS for Monday, April 22, 2019
CHEYENNE – Rainbow flags and LGBTQ-related clothing have not been banned at McCormick Junior High or district-wide, Laramie County School District 1 Superintendent Boyd Brown told the Wyoming Tribune Eagleon Friday morning.
FREMONT COUNTY – The Bureau of Land Management published Thursday its analysis of four options for expanding the Moneta Divide oil and gas field – a project that has stirred local debate over its potential for significant economic and environmental impacts.
CASPER — About one-quarter of the Western land offered in auctions to oil and gas companies under the Trump administration so far has been in state-designated priority habitat or migration corridors for big game, according to a review of public lease sales by the Center for American Progress.
GILLETTE — For the last five years, Bill Fortner and Frank Latta have tried to convince Wyoming that “hemp” isn’t a bad four-letter word.
NEWS BRIEFS for Friday. April 19, 2019
CASPER — Wyoming’s two largest hospitals were both rated average by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services earlier this year, with Jackson’s St. John’s receiving the only five-star rating from the federal government’s Hospital Compare website.
LARAMIE — Although some research shows late-night drinking can correlate to an increase in alcohol-related consequences, many on the Laramie City Council were hesitant to approve a measure that would limit a bar's or restaurant’s ability to offer late-night drink specials.
CHEYENNE — Students in the Cheyenne’s McCormick Junior High Gay-Straight Alliance club were told Wednesday afternoon they were no longer allowed to have or wear any LGBTQ paraphernalia on school grounds, including flags, shirts, pins and bracelets.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, April 18, 2019
JACKSON — A federal government watchdog group is challenging the legality of David Vela’s reassignment to the National Park Service’s acting deputy director of operations role in Washington, D.C.
GILLETTE — The state is working to create a five-year plan to determine the future of career and technical education.
CHEYENNE — The Wyoming state economy continued the positive trajectory of 2018 with a good first-quarter 2019 report. Year-over-year increases in sales and use tax collection, severance taxes and a 1.6% increase in job growth were some of the brightest spots in the state’s MACRO Report released Wednesday.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, April 17, 2019
Thermopolis residents have won a 79-day extension to comment on a plan to release thousands of tons of oilfield pollutants monthly into the Boysen Reservoir upstream of the source of their drinking water.
Experts in federal environmental law are raising questions about Wyoming officials’ quest to “assume primacy” over analyzing the potential impacts of projects on federal lands, like drilling for oil and gas.
The inmates had broken the rules of the drug treatment program, that much is clear.
GILLETTE — Duncan Davidson was at Sage Valley Junior High on that day in November when another student brought guns and ammunition to the school, allegedly with the intent to kill.
JACKSON — A dearth of wolves in places like the Gros Ventre River valley this winter was not an anomaly, as wildlife managers are reporting reduced numbers throughout wolf range in the state.
LARAMIE — The public comment period of the Albany County Commission’s Tuesday meeting was eventful as several expressed dismay over an officer-involved shooting from November.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, April 16, 2019
JACKSON – “Things have changed” in the energy industry in recent years, according to Jason Begger, executive director of the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority.
CHEYENNE — Community members are asking for a handful of things from the Laramie County School District 1 Board of Trustees in response to racist and anti-gay flyers found in a Cheyenne junior high last month.
CASPER — A state-appointed group tasked with finding sustainable air service for Wyoming’s far flung communities took a significant step in the process last week, announcing the state had entered into negotiations with a Utah-based airline to provide regular flights to as many as four Wyoming cities.
JACKSON — The first golden eagle marked and followed for research in Yellowstone National Park’s history lasted only about four months before a common human-caused source of death did the bird in.
GILLETTE — Cloud Peak Energy Corp. has gained another 15-day reprieve from a $1.8 million interest payment on a portion of its long-term debt and continuing months of speculation that the company may eventually file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization.
LARAMIE — University of Wyoming administrators are working on a plan to, beginning in the 2020-2021 academic year, increase need-based aid for Wyoming students while reducing discounts provided to out-of-state students.
CHEYENNE — The Wyoming Legislature will take another crack at the idea of tolling Interstate 80 as a way to help fund improvements and maintenance along the more than 400 miles of road.
An object of heated public debate when it was approved for construction in 2007, a Lander gas station is once again fueling community consternation — and possibly a calamity for the beloved stretch of river that runs through town.
CASPER — For many years an untouchable titan of coal production, the Powder River Basin continues to face decline, and the number of miners trying to survive by digging more PRB coal may be delaying the relief needed in Wyoming coal country, according to an analysis published Thursday by Moody’s Investor Service, the credit rating agency.
CHEYENNE — An executive order from President Donald Trump that could help pave the way for coal exports garnered praise from Wyoming leadership this week. But critics see it as a way to lessen local control over issues of water quality in favor of industry's bottom line.
JACKSON — An alliance of advocacy groups representing industries from miners to sheepherders have, for now, stymied protections for migration routes that funnel pronghorn and mule deer to summer ranges around Jackson Hole and the Wyoming Range.
RIVERTON — The federal officers involved in the Jan. 10 shooting death of Nicholas Garcia of Riverton "responded within the bounds of their training and followed their duty to protect the public," a coroner's inquest jury has determined.
CASPER — Representatives from the University of Wyoming’s student government proposed resolutions Tuesday night praising departing UW President Laurie Nichols and criticizing the board of trustees who decided not to renew her contract.
CHEYENNE — Wyoming has finalized the proposed rules and regulations for its new hemp industry and has submitted them to the federal government for approval.
POWELL -- Chronic wasting disease is killing deer and threatening other ungulates across Wyoming — and the more scientists look for CWD, the more of it they find.
Correction A Wyoming News Exchange story that appeared in this newspaper about chronic wasting disease incorrectly stated that, during a March meeting in Cody, the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission increased the department’s budget for testing for cases of chronic wasting disease. Although the commission heard testimony on chronic wasting disease and considered the effects of a budget increase, the proposal made by Commission Vice President Pete Dube was to increase the budget for the Animal Management Damage Board to control predators.
JACKSON — Residents and visitors wanting to preserve wilderness experiences are rebuking Grand Teton National Park’s plan to wire-up — casting cell service deeper into the backcountry.
RAWLINS – Landowners fear revegetation of perennial grasses native to the steep hill north of U.S. Interstate 80 near Arlington will be jeopardized if PacifiCorp, a Warren Buffett-backed power company, doesn’t follow certain regulations.
CASPER — The mythic promise of the American economy has always been a linear one: You learn a trade, work hard, and, one day, you’ll be rewarded in retirement.
LARAMIE — After 77 years, Navy Machinist’s Mate First Class George Hanson will be coming home.
CHEYENNE – CenturyLink representatives testified before the Wyoming Public Service Commission on Tuesday after a multi-state outage disrupted some emergency services in Wyoming late last year.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, April 9, 2019
CODY — Conservation organizations have asked Wyoming Game and Fish to require hunters carry bear spray in an attempt to reduce grizzly bear mortality.
CHEYENNE — The legacy of child abuse goes beyond the pain and suffering that leave permanent scars on both physical and mental well-being. It affects every aspect of society and can even lead to additional strains on mental health services and the judicial system.
GILLETTE — Although worried for the future for a financially troubled Cloud Peak Energy Corp., Campbell County officials aren’t concerned the Powder River Basin coal producer will miss paying millions of dollars owed for its 2018 tax bill.
Residents downstream of Boysen Reservoir — where state officials want to OK the discharge of tons of oilfield pollutants — say they weren’t given adequate notice and time to comment on the plan.
RAWLINS – Large, subterranean voids scattered throughout two defunct mining sites in Carbon County discovered by experts with Brierley Associates, a Denver-based geotechnical consulting firm, pose bit of a problem.
GILLETTE — The second round of public comments about the Campbell County School District considering arming educators for safety drew 30 people and 11 speakers Thursday evening.
CASPER — Warning bells are ringing across Wyoming’s Powder River Basin that the largest producing coal region of the country is in big trouble.
CASPER — When July comes around, Wyoming will have its first set of campaign finance reforms in years.
CHEYENNE – Laramie County School District 1 officials have declined to issue statements denouncing white supremacy following public outrage over racist and anti-gay flyers found last week at Cheyenne’s McCormick Junior High.
CHEYENNE – Wyoming hasn’t seen the type of opioid addiction that has plagued other states across the country. But even with lower levels compared to states like West Virginia and Ohio, the Equality State hasn’t escaped the crisis unscathed.
LARAMIE — Albany County School District No. 1 board members plan to revisit the possibility of offering softball at Laramie High School after they complete their budget for the 2019-2020 school year.
KAYCEE — When you receive your first paycheck, you feel like a millionaire.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, April 4, 2019
THERMOPOLIS — The Wyoming Supreme Court issued an opinion on March 27, in favor of Hot Springs District Court’s action regarding Paul D. Mathewson.
POWELL — In recent weeks, more than a dozen women have contacted the Park County Sheriff’s Office to report being abused at a Clark facility for troubled teenage girls. The allegations — from 15 former patients of Trinity Teen Solutions — are all years old, dating as far back as 2007 to as recently as 2015.
LARAMIE — Strong enrollment at the University of Wyoming has been a point of pride for administrators the last two years, but the record freshman class this year hasn’t actually been that beneficial for UW’s tuition revenue.
CASPER — Wyoming women who gave birth in 2017 reported high rates of depression before, during and after pregnancy, according to a new state report that also reveals the insurance and income-related issues facing mothers here.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, April 3, 2019
CODY – A brachiosaur stretches its long neck to reach a leaf from a high branch as a giant ichthyosaur gently swims by in the water far below.
JACKSON — Nearly four dozen mountain lions can be legally hunted annually in areas surrounding the Wyoming and Salt River ranges — a level of hunting pressure intended to boost a struggling mule deer population.
CASPER — Federal workers at the Bureau of Land Management approved 74 oil and gas drilling permits in Wyoming during the 35-day government shutdown earlier this year, according to a public records request submitted by a western environmental group.
CHEYENNE — Laramie County School District 1 has identified at least one student believed to be responsible for creating the racist and anti-gay flyers found at McCormick Junior High last week.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, April 2, 2019
JACKSON — From his office window overlooking an alleyway parking lot behind Lucky’s Market, Hamish Tear watched a struggling, mangy cow moose suffer an excruciatingly slow death.
EVANSTON — On March 6, Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon signed legislation making hemp possession and production legal within the state, which was welcome news to those who view hemp as an agricultural commodity and a possible economic benefit to Wyoming. However, that enthusiasm may be blunted by the potentially long and twisted road ahead for Wyoming hemp producers and transporters.
SHERIDAN — Recent economic reports from state agencies indicate that increasing housing prices and a shortage of available housing units remain national and statewide trends that are unlikely to halt in the foreseeable future.
CASPER — In September, companies spent a jaw-dropping $1 billion at a lease sale in New Mexico for potential oil and gas development along the state’s eastern border, where the Permian spills over from West Texas.
NEWS BRIEFS for Monday, April 1, 2019
Hit the Snake River this summer for a chance to catch rainbow trout, brown trout and maybe even some facetime with Wyoming’s senior senator — but bring your checkbook.
JACKSON — Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon’s vision for the state’s energy sector weds two ideas often considered incompatible: a healthy environment and the continued use of fossil fuels.
CASPER — If the cost of producing carbon fiber – a lightweight and durable material that can be used in construction, car parts and airplanes — drops below $5 per pound, the profitability for that burgeoning industry could skyrocket.
CHEYENNE — The Joint Corporations, Elections and Political Subdivisions Interim Committee has set as one of its top priorities during the interim potential changes to Wyoming’s net metering rules.
Acting U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt and Gov. Mark Gordon are mulling how Wyoming can take a “primary role” in the environmental review processes that, by law, preceed federal projects and projects on federal land in Wyoming, Gordon said in an interview Wednesday.
GILLETTE — The Integrated Test Center at the Dry Fork Station power plant north of Gillette will host a first-of-its-kind carbon-focused business incubator, Gov. Mark Gordon announced Thursday morning.
CASPER — Nearly two weeks after one of the most powerful winter storms of the decade hit the Northern Rockies and Midwest, Wyoming has largely moved past March’s record-setting snows and settled into the rhythm of spring.
LARAMIE — Public comment periods at the University of Wyoming’s board of trustees meeting typically don’t generate much interest, but it was a different story this week when a group of faculty, staff and students came to the board meeting to lament the decision not to extend President Laurie Nichols’s contract.
CHEYENNE — As the fate of the Affordable Care Act works its way through the federal court system, Wyoming is left to wonder what type of impact a repeal would have on health care in the Equality State.
CASPER — Wyoming ended 2018 with the ninth-highest per capita income in the nation.
GILLETTE — Influenza continues to be an issue in Wyoming as spring begins and the weather starts to warm up.
AFTON — The Wyoming Supreme Court has affirmed the conviction of Wade Farrow for the December 2014 murder of Afton resident Tony Hansen.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, March 29, 2019
CHEYENNE – Bishop Karen Oliveto was first drawn to ministry as a child, eagerly sitting on the damp floor of her church’s musty basement during Sunday school.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, March 27, 2019
DOUGLAS — The multimillion dollar projects continue to roll into Converse County, and the pace isn’t letting up.
CASPER — The Wyoming Attorney General’s office has asked the state’s highest court to review a Natrona County judge’s dismissal of a first-degree murder case tied to Wyoming’s new “stand your ground” law.
GILLETTE — The New York Stock Exchange has suspended trading of Cloud Peak Energy stock effective immediately due “abnormally low” price levels.
LARAMIE — The state Legislature’s Management Council decided an evaluation of the University of Wyoming’s College of Agriculture will be the top priority for the Joint Agriculture, State & Public Lands & Water Resources Committee during the 2019 interim.
CHEYENNE — A major settlement between the State of Oklahoma and the manufacturer of the drug OxyContin could have ramifications for lawsuits against the company filed by the State of Wyoming, the City of Cheyenne and several other cities around the state.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, Mar. 26, 2019
POWELL — Newly released statistics show 2018 was the deadliest year on record for the region’s grizzly bears.
CASPER – Attempt to diagnose the reason for high health prices in Wyoming and you’ll find no shortage of supposed causes.
LARAMIE – Laurie Nichols’ presidency at the University of Wyoming will come to an end June 30 after her contract was not renewed by the Board of Trustees.
The Joint Revenue Committee will once again study tax increases between legislative sessions, despite pointed concerns by its new co-chairman that previous efforts have not gotten sufficient support from state leaders.
CHEYENNE — Lawmakers have been given their marching orders for this upcoming interim session by the Legislature's Management Council.
GILLETTE — Jenny Carroll fought through nerves and tears Thursday night to tell how she opposes the Campbell County School District moving forward on a policy that would arm teachers and school employees.
CASPER — Wyoming’s largest coal mines are likely to make more cuts to production in 2019, financial reports show.
JACKSON — Dave Hodges was glad he didn’t park in the driveway.
JACKSON — A California-based drone manufacturer is being investigated for promoting its “true follow-me” technology with footage of a Rollerblader kicking it along a West Thumb Geyser Basin boardwalk.
SHERIDAN — A Sheridan College instructor presented research focused on addressing the challenges dwindling resources pose to livestock producers at the Mars Agriculture Center Wednesday.
CASPER — Wyoming’s congressional delegation on Thursday slammed a federal decision blocking oil and gas drilling on 500 square miles of Wyoming land pending a climate change impact analysis.
JACKSON — Elk have returned to their historic winter range in the Gros Ventre River drainage, and one theory for their reappearance is the targeted killing of resident wolves.
POWELL — With the effort still proving too pricey, a Powell game bird farm has again shelved its plans to raise sage grouse.
CASPER — A federal judge on Tuesday rebuked the Bureau of Land Management over oil and gas leases sold in Wyoming during the Obama administration for failing to take a hard look at how leasing the land for potential oil and gas development would affect climate change.
LARAMIE — A uranium company is proposing to re-open the uranium mines in Shirley Basin.
JACKSON — Togwoteee Pass is a sharp dividing line between the healthiest and the unhealthiest counties in Wyoming, according to a new report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.
CASPER — A law firm representing Wyoming Skills, LLC — a group of vendors who own and operate gaming equipment — plans to meet with newly appointed Attorney General Bridget Hill to discuss the legality of electronic skill games.
RAWLINS — Recently inflamed contract disputes between Rocky Mountain Power and Boswell Wind, LLC are likely to cause construction delays for a wind farm projected 15 miles east of Medicine Bow.
LARAMIE — An attorney for Lyle Williams, who was cited in 2018 for carrying a gun on the University of Wyoming’s campus, has filed the opening brief in an appeal of a December ruling by Albany County district court judge Tori Kricken, who upended the conventional reading of 2010’s Wyoming Firearms Freedom Act by determining the law unwittingly restricted gun rights in the state.
Gov. Mark Gordon today allowed a bill stripping county authority over private school zoning to become law without his signature saying in a written statement he found the measure “flawed.”
CASPER — Discord prevailed Friday over an imperiled bird’s future in Wyoming, despite the official end of a one-and-a-half-year battle of words concerning how the Trump administration should balance sage grouse and energy development on public lands.
CHEYENNE – Gov. Mark Gordon on Friday used his veto pen on two bills, one of which would have authorized the Legislature to sue to allow Wyoming’s coal to be exported through Washington state.
JACKSON — A new law will require an annual report of all untested rape kits in Wyoming and forbid agencies from destroying such evidence without a proper order.
CASPER — During the eight years of the Obama administration, Wyoming’s senators spent considerable time criticizing federal overreach. But accusations of overreach by the Trump administration in attempting to leapfrog Congressional authority on funding a southern border wall failed to sway Sens. John Barrasso and Mike Enzi from voting Thursday against the president’s emergency declaration.
JACKSON — Where a phone call today is an iffy proposition, visitors and residents of Grand Teton National Park may soon have all their smartphones’ capabilities at their fingertips.
BUFFALO — Convicted murder Donald C. Davis won an appeal to the Wyoming Supreme Court, which may set him free.
DOUGLAS — Three years ago, you didn’t see too many oversized loads rumbling through the county. Douglas felt weary and empty. Few cranes jutted out on the horizon, and only rarely did you see long stretches of exposed earth, marking new pipelines.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, March 14, 2019
CODY — “A Carnegie Hall in every town.” That was one of the early slogans of the organization that would later be known as the Live Community Concert Association of Cody and Powell.
CHEYENNE — While the federal government paved the way for industrial hemp production in the 2018 Farm Bill, states still need direction on how the nascent industry will be regulated before seeds can go into the ground.
TETON VILLAGE — Snowmobilers have outpaced backcountry skiers as the group most likely to see members killed by an avalanche in Wyoming, according to statistics from the state’s only avalanche center.
CASPER — Another attempt by mineral owners to wrest drilling control in southeastern Wyoming from the large independent Anadarko Petroleum by opposing the company’s drilling permits failed Tuesday to convince commissioners overseeing Wyoming’s oil and gas industry.
JACKSON — Fewer elk and bison are chowing down on alfalfa pellets on the National Elk Refuge compared with past winters, even as wildlife are enduring a whopper of a winter.
LARAMIE — Each new session of the Wyoming Legislature brings a handful of bills that aim to revised access to Hathaway scholarships and, in turn, affect the student body at the University of Wyoming.
CASPER — With low stocks of propane in some parts of the state and cold weather headed to Wyoming, Gov. Mark Gordon has lifted restrictions on the number of hours truckers can be on the road for propane deliveries.
CHEYENNE –- Counties seeking delinquent ad valorem taxes from bankrupt energy companies will automatically move to the front of the line of creditors seeking payment starting in 2021.
SHERIDAN — Grey shirts with pink logos and clear safety glasses were the in-vogue fashion for empowered women Friday at Black Tooth Brewing Company.
GILLETTE — Most new technologies are met with widespread skepticism, but that couldn’t be further from the truth when it comes to blockchain technology and Wyoming legislators.
CASPER — Wyoming wind is relentless, and anyone who lives in the state knows that the perpetual irritant that makes sagebrush shiver and wind socks live horizontally is also something that can be harnessed for power.
LARAMIE — The University of Wyoming’s “The World Needs More Cowboys” marketing campaign has been winning high praise in different advertisement award circles recently, including the Higher Education Marketing Report and the American Advertising Federation.
CHEYENNE — A bill signed by Gov. Mark Gordon on Friday aims to keep Wyoming's coal-fired power plants online and in business by requiring a utility to try to sell the facility first before decommissioning it.
NEWS BRIEFS for Friday, Mar. 8, 2019
Weeks after Cheyenne high school students sparked furor after describing vulgar statements by their state senator in the halls of the temporary Capitol building, the Senate president said the body’s response will be considered by a subcommittee of leading senators from both parties.
JACKSON — The man who died in an avalanche near Breccia Cliffs on Monday was wearing an airbag and a beacon, investigators said. But Teton County Coroner Dr. Brent Blue said Dale Laedtke, 27, suffocated under the snow before his friends could dig him out.
RIVERTON — Legislators speaking in support of a bill that authorized new academic programs at community colleges in Wyoming said it would be OK if the change results in an increased expense for the state.
In a nation that tops the world in automobile ownership per capita, Wyoming ranks the highest among states, with nearly 300,000 more vehicles than residents, according to 2015 statistics from the Federal Highway Administration. For many in this far-flung and lightly populated state, the only means of connectivity is the two-lane highway leading out of town.
AFTON — Fear and uncertainty might be good words to describe the emotions of many in the state as the future of coal production in Wyoming remains in question.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, March 7, 2019
CASPER — The federal government has penalized nine Wyoming hospitals for high readmission rates, and another one for high levels of hospital-acquired medical conditions, a report from Kaiser Health News shows.
JACKSON — Emergency responders have rescued at least six skiers and snowboarders this winter who became stuck or lost in Granite Canyon, steep and rocky backcountry terrain in Grand Teton National Park, just outside the boundaries of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.
CHEYENNE — Efforts to diversify Wyoming’s economy got a major boost with the stroke of Gov. Mark Gordon’s pen Wednesday.
LARAMIE — Work on the University of Wyoming’s Engineering Education and Research Building should be completed this month, with almost all equipment expected to be moved in by the start of summer session.
CODY — Following on the heels of state legislation authorizing state grizzly bear management, members of Wyoming’s congressional delegation are reintroducing a bill to authorize just that.
GILLETTE — Charlene and Doug Camblin, like many ranchers in Campbell County, aren’t calving yet.
CASPER — A man fired multiple gunshots inside Wyoming Medical Center early Monday before police officers arrested him at a nearby building on the campus of the Casper hospital.
CHEYENNE — The three men responsible for the 2016 attempted robbery of the Medicap Pharmacy in Cheyenne and a carjacking in Wheatland have been sentenced in federal court.
CASPER — Since the last energy bust sent Wyoming’s budget in a downward spiral, lawmakers have increasingly called for a means to diversify the state’s revenue streams in ways that avoid direct hits on residents’ wallets.
GILLETTE — Giving the Wyoming Legislature’s Management Council authority to take independent legal action over Washington state’s efforts to kill a coal export terminal project sends a message more than it threatens a lawsuit.
CASPER (WNE) — Catholic leaders in Wyoming continue to compile a full list of credibly accused clergymen stretching back to 1950, more than five months after the work began and three months after the diocese announced the effort to its parishioners.
GILLETTE — Giving the Wyoming Legislature’s Management Council authority to take independent legal action over Washington state’s efforts to kill a coal export terminal project sends a message more than it threatens a lawsuit.
CASPER — Since the last energy bust sent Wyoming’s budget in a downward spiral, lawmakers have increasingly called for a means to diversify the state’s revenue streams in ways that avoid direct hits on residents’ wallets.
LARAMIE — A film festival that aims to “undefine” what it means to be a woman in the outdoor world is set to screen in Laramie for the first time next week.
CHEYENNE — Wyoming's efforts to expand broadband internet access across the state go beyond making sure people can binge their favorite TV show no matter their ZIP code.
JACKSON — When a co-worker ran over a landscaper’s foot with a lawnmower, it took three days for the 25-year-old to go to the hospital.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019
JACKSON — Eight cow and calf elk bedded at central Jackson’s Mateosky Field for a morning last week and later spent part of their afternoon hooving and nosing for nonexistent grass atop the town’s fast-growing snow heap at the fairgrounds.
CASPER — The man arrested on suspicion of shooting a woman at a central Casper home early Tuesday is her adult son, police said Wednesday.
LARAMIE — Federal prosecutors are relying merely on conjecture in alleging Almanza Mexican Food helped launder money for a Mexican drug cartel, the restaurant’s attorney told the Laramie Boomerang Wednesday.
CHEYENNE — The bill to place work requirements on a portion of Wyoming's Medicaid recipients failed on a final vote Wednesday in the House of Representatives.
NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019
Proponents of a steeper wind tax in Wyoming intend to put the issue on the 2020 ballot after Speaker of the House Steve Harshman (R-Casper) refused to allow debate of bills raising the tax for the second year in a row.
Conservationists sent an emergency letter to Gov. Mark Gordon on Friday asking him to intervene in a BLM oil and gas lease sale that targets what one sage grouse expert calls “the highest grouse density areas on Earth.”
JACKSON — A simple motion made in Teton County Circuit Court on Feb. 11 triggered a complex argument over immigration not often heard in state court.
GILLETTE — A coal company that owes more than $8 million in unpaid taxes had approached Campbell County about a monthly payment plan.
CASPER — The mother of a man shot and killed by Casper police last year filed a wrongful death lawsuit in federal court Monday on the anniversary of his death.
LARAMIE — Almanza’s Mexican Food on Grand Avenue is implicated as being part of a years-long money laundering scheme for a Mexican drug cartel.
CHEYENNE — Gov. Mark Gordon used his veto pen Tuesday to reject more than two dozen items out of the state supplemental budget passed by the Legislature this month. The vetoes started a domino effect in the Legislature with the House set to meet today, when it will most likely start the process to override at least some of Gordon's decisions.
NEWS BRIEFS for Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019
CHEYENNE – A bill to override Teton County zoning regulations on behalf of a private school owned by members of the family of prominent GOP donor Foster Friess passed its final vote in the House on Monday.
SHERIDAN — Researchers from the University of Wyoming’s School of Energy Resources argued last week that the future of Wyoming coal may depend on reduced carbon emission.
GILLETTE — To say the past three months have been rocky for Cloud Peak Energy would be a gross understatement.
JACKSON — New federal regulations pre-empting local control over wireless equipment prompted town officials to re-examine their policies on telecommunications infrastructure in an effort to guard Jackson’s character.
CHEYENNE – The Senate killed a bill to implement a statewide lodging tax on a final vote Monday after it was pulled from the consent list.
JACKSON — Activists are once again pushing back on plans to sell oil and gas leases overlapping a celebrated migration path that funnels thousands of mule deer to the Wyoming and Gros Ventre ranges.
SHERIDAN — Town by town and volunteer by volunteer, communities throughout Wyoming are working to make the state a worthwhile stop for athletes competing in Skijoring America-sanctioned events throughout the year.
CHEYENNE — A jury ruled Friday that while gender did play a part in a Wyoming Highway Patrol K9 handler's demotion in 2016, the Highway Patrol would have made the same decision regardless of gender.
CHEYENNE — A bill to create Wyoming’s first corporate income tax – believed dead since last week – might be making a comeback.
PINEDALE – A conservation coalition is threatening to sue Wyoming over its new grizzly-hunt law, signed by the governor on Feb. 15, that outlines the scenario for a grizzly bear-hunting season and relocations of captured bears to California and other states.
CASPER — The Wonder Bar’s recent closure was a hit to the entire downtown community, according to Kathy Edwards, the president of the Downtown Casper Business Association.
CHEYENNE – The Senate voted Thursday to kill the last bill in the Legislature that would have closed the state’s primary elections to voters who switched their party affiliation.
LARAMIE — The final supplemental budget bill approved by the state Legislature this week includes $17.4 million in new funding for the University of Wyoming. The final version has $2 million more than the original drafted budget.
NEWS BRIEFS for Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019
CHEYENNE – The Wyoming House in its first floor discussion gave initial approval to a much debated bill to strip counties’ zoning authority over private schools.
JACKSON — The Wyoming Supreme Court affirmed a decision made in Teton County District Court regarding a May 2017 coroner’s inquest, killing an appeal.
POWELL — Cody Laboratories is expected to sell to a new owner by July.
CHEYENNE — A bill to create Wyoming’s first corporate income tax is dead.
CHEYENNE — The vastly divergent views on how to close off primary elections to party switchers between the Senate and the House have been on full display this week.
DOUGLAS — Picture the skeletal towers of oil derricks rising above the sage brush in 1919. The Big Muddy oil field practically oozed black gold, giving up a whopping 10,000 barrels a day. Roughnecks drove out to fields in Model Ts, ambitious fortune-seekers chaotically staked claims. It was Converse County’s first boom, and Glenrock was a place of national interest and importance.
After the federal government partially shut down in December, Audra Warburton and other Double H Bar employees packed up brochures for the National Elk Refuge sleigh rides they offer, along with a couple of cash registers, and moved into a corner of the Home Ranch Welcome Center to register tours there.
Laramie should significantly increase the penalties leveled to businesses that sell alcohol to minors, University of Wyoming Vice President for Student Affairs Sean Blackburn suggested Monday.
Local and state law enforcement continue the search for a man wanted on felony warrants from Colorado
Updated: 1 week ago
GILLETTE – A day before a Friday deadline to make a $1.8 million interest payment on its debt, and amid widespread speculation Cloud Peak Energy Corp. will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the Gillette-based coal miner has paid more than $600,000 owed Campbell County for its 2018 property taxes.
Updated: 1 week ago
TORRINGTON – “I trust the Lord for my every need.” That’s Joe Shortino’s philosophy for getting what he needs to get by. A lot of people say the same thing, or at least something similar – but Shortino is living it. He’s got no money in his pockets, no traveler’s checks, credit cards nor debit cards on his person.
Updated: 1 month ago
HAWK SPRINGS – The 21st Goose Cook Off started on a sunny Saturday afternoon with 13 cooks competing in four categories. Main Dish and People’s Choice Champion was Jaime Beightol, Appetizer Champion was Ashley Shimic, Soup/Chili Champion was Tim Toedter and Jerky Champion was Gerry Hrasky.
Updated: 2 months ago