News

Studio Sessions: Elk Tongue

12 hours ago
BHP Imaging, copyright 2016

Named after a body part of the North American mammal, Wyoming’s Elk Tongue performs psychedelic desert rock. All four band members are from various musical backgrounds, which they blend together to create sounds reminiscent of the past with an eye (and an ear) to the future.

Wyoming Public Radio Wins Murrow Awards

13 hours ago
Wyoming Public Media

For the third straight year, Wyoming Public Radio News has been awarded three Edward R. Murrow awards for reporting excellence. WPR won in Region 3 after facing off against public and commercial radio stations from Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona. The awards were announced by the Radio Television Digital News Association or RTDNA.

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead has declared April 24th through the 30th a week to understand the impacts of marijuana and its illegal use in the state.

Monday, the Wyoming Association of Sheriffs and Chiefs of Police held a Marijuana Education Summit in Casper, which featured speakers in law enforcement, healthcare, and other fields.

Rhea Parsons, the project coordinator for marijuana education and awareness at the association, said bordering Colorado where marijuana is legal has changed what types of cannabis make it into Wyoming.

Contemporary Flute Player And Composer Robert Dick

Apr 24, 2017
Malcolm Pollock

American flute player and composer Robert Dick live on 4/24/17 during Wyoming Public Radio's Wyoming Sounds.

Wikimedia Commons

Each year, Wyoming is given Federal Housing and Urban Development funds to pay for various services and infrastructure improvements across the state. The Wyoming Business Council is surveying the public to help decide how to spend $3 million over the next five years.

Federal Housing and Urban Development dollars can be used towards building affordable housing, fixing streets and sewers, as well as public services like childcare, transportation, and mental health. 

The Wyoming Department of Education is rapidly approaching the deadline to submit the state’s plan to carry out the federal Every Student Succeeds Act, which takes full effect for the 2017-2018 school year.  

Signed into law in 2015, the Every Student Succeeds Act shifted power from the federal government to the states to decide how best to evaluate and improve school performance.

Wikimedia Commons

At a presentation at the University of Wyoming’s Energy Innovation Center, an energy economist argued that the coal industry will likely never recover to previous levels. That’s despite a small rebound in the first quarter of this year because of a cold winter.

Pitchengine Communities

With most of the mountains in western Wyoming still covered in deep snow, communities downstream are bracing for the spring runoff. National Weather Service meteorologist Trevor LaVoie said it’s flooded along the Big and Little Wind Rivers every spring for the last six years. He said people living on the Wind River Reservation and in other communities along those rivers should begin preparing for flooding now.

National Sexual Violence Resource Center

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, and this year organizations across the country are focusing on the theme of “Engaging New Voices.” This is work the Wyoming Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault does year round. The coalition links organizations in every Wyoming county.

For example, the Community Safety Network, has for the last 35 years offered services to survivors of domestic violence and sexual violence. They operate a confidential helpline and a shelter, and they work with survivors to create safety plans.

The Modern West #22: Climate Change In A Fossil-Fuel State

Apr 20, 2017
Ken Koschnitzki

Wyoming’s economy revolves around energy production. But climate change raises questions about what role fossil fuels will play in the state’s future.

Mary Gerty

A set of historic barns outside Jackson and the 27 acres surrounding them have been sold to the Teton Raptor Center. Previously, the Hardeman Barns belonged to the Jackson Hole Land Trust. Laurie Andrews, the trust’s president, said normally her organization doesn’t buy property outright but, back in the 1980s, when a developer wanted to build 70 single family homes there, the community realized the property’s value.

Wikimedia Commons

A Take Back the Night candlelight vigil honoring the victims of sexual assault and domestic violence will take place 7:30 p.m. Wednesday in Prexy’s Pasture on the University of Wyoming campus. Wyoming Public Radio's Caroline Ballard sat down with Sydney Stein – a senior in the Visual Culture of Gendered Activism class that organized the event – to talk about why they put this together.

Jordan Cooper via Flickr

Teton County residents will vote in May whether to approve $70 million in revenue collected from a Special Purpose Excise Tax, or SPET. The tax would fund local infrastructure projects, including three housing developments meant to accommodate Jackson’s far-flung workforce. Two of the projects would provide housing for seasonal town and county employees.

National Digital Library of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service

With the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service debating whether to remove the Yellowstone grizzly bear from the endangered species list this summer, the National Museum of Wildlife Art is hosting a screening of two films on the species.

The Center for Biological Diversity’s Andrea Santarsiere worked on one of the films, “Trophy,” about how trophy hunting has hurt grizzly populations in British Columbia. Wyoming, Montana and Idaho are considering the option of allowing trophy hunting of grizzlies if the species is delisted.

Courtesy Wyoming Department of Health

  

Wyoming’s cases of sexually transmitted diseases have been increasing in recent years and a recent update shows that, despite efforts of health care providers, it’s still a concern. Courtney Smith is the Communicable Disease Program Manager for the Wyoming Department of Health. She tells Bob Beck that they have one key area of concern. 

 

Earlier this month, legislators met to take another look at the school funding model and possibly change it. That’s called recalibration. But changing school funding is a tricky business because politics is a big variable in the spending equation. At the April 3rd meeting of the Select Committee for School Finance Recalibration, there was only one thing that everyone could agree on.

While the legislature and the school system continue to work on the state’s $400 million deficit, Wyoming Public Radio’s education reporter, Tennessee Watson, sat down with Brian Farmer from the Wyoming School Boards Association. Farmer says local school boards offer a critical perspective on spending and educational outcomes, because it’s a conversation they are constantly having on the local level.

twitter.com/Uber

Uber has been operating in the state for just over a month now. Their launch followed Governor Matt Mead’s signing of a bill to legally authorize ride-sharing companies in Wyoming. However, while some consumers have been taking advantage of the service, others are less excited.

Branden French was one of the very first drivers to start working for Uber in March. Right now, he’s a university student in Laramie. He said Mead signed the bill on a Friday, and he was on the road that weekend.

Timothy Egan

National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner Timothy Egan’s newest book The Immortal Irishman, tells the story of Irish revolutionary Thomas Francis Meagher and how he changed the course of history in Ireland, Australia, and the United States. Egan will be coming to the University of Wyoming campus in Laramie Tuesday, April 18 to give a talk on his book. He spoke with Wyoming Public Radio’s Caroline Ballard, and said he first discovered Meagher’s story on a visit to Montana.

Stephanie Joyce

Gillette and other towns in Northeast Wyoming may be looking to carbon products - goods like water filters and building materials – to stabilize the coal industry.

The New Growth Alliance, which includes Sheridan, Buffalo, and Gillette, is a group focused on economic development in Northeast Wyoming. It recently held a conference to discuss alternative coal markets, and now the communities are combining efforts to recruit other types of businesses, as well.  

Caravan to March for Science-Laramie

Communities across Wyoming are joining the National March for Science next Saturday to recognize the field’s contributions to the public.

Joan Anzelmo, one of the organizers of the Jackson march, said she hopes to demonstrate that science is universally important to people’s lives.

Twitter

National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize winner Timothy Egan will give a presentation at the University of Wyoming Tuesday on his newest book.

The Immortal Irishman tells the story of 19th century Irish orator and revolutionary Thomas Francis Meagher, whose speeches moved people to action in Ireland, Australia, and the United States. Meagher eventually became territorial governor of Montana before he disappeared.

Egan said he wrote the book partly because he became more interested in his own Irish heritage.

daveynin via Flickr

A new report released Tuesday said while some claims of sexual abuse at Yellowstone National Park were exaggerated or untrue, the park does have a serious problem with quote, a “men’s club” culture.

Stephanie Joyce

The $2 million funding for coal workers comes from a U.S. Department of Labor grant meant to aid dislocated workers. Eligible workers can put the money towards training programs in other fields. 

After a year of turmoil, the Wyoming Democratic Party has elected a new chairman. Former State Representative Joe Barbuto will replace Ana Cupril.  

During the 2016 Presidential election, the party became divided after Hillary Clinton was awarded the state primary despite Bernie Sanders winning the popular vote during last year’s party caucuses. 

Barbuto says the party needs to move forward and many newcomers give him hope.

Craig A. Miller

Governor Matt Mead is hosting the Second Annual Symposium on Suicide Prevention on May 10 in Cheyenne at the Little America Hotel. The event will present a variety of perspectives, from lived experience to prevention to treatment, and it’ll focus on solutions to an issue that touches the lives of far too many in Wyoming.

2017 Spring Membership Drive: Pet Wednesday

Apr 11, 2017
Wyoming Public Media

Check out slideshow above to see the menagerie of pets who listen to Wyoming Public Radio! Thank you to everyone who posted pictures of your pets on our FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for Pet Wednesday.

 

Studio Sessions: Paul Cauthen

Apr 11, 2017
Paul Cauthen

Paul Cauthen is a country artist whose raw virtuosity has Rolling Stone calling him, "A triple-barreled blast of Texas country, soul and holy-roller rockabilly, delivered by a big-voiced crooner." Paul Cauthen was a part of the band from Sons of Fathers and created his first solo album "My Gospel" in Austin, Texas. 

Studio Sessions: Sally & George

Apr 11, 2017
Courtesy of the artist

Shelby "Sally" Means and Joel "George" Timmons first met back in 2012, when Timmons' Americana band, Sol Driven Train, and Means' bluegrass band, Della Mae, were playing the same festival. They eventually developed both a romantic partnership and a musical one, adopting the given names of Means' late grandparents.

Stephanie Joyce

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke says he is embarking on a re-evaluation of the system for approving new coal leases. The question of whether the American public is getting fair market value on those leases led the Obama administration to place a moratorium on new leases. Zinke lifted that moratorium two weeks ago.

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