Wyoming –

Topic: Bob Beck speaks with Pat Green, the Division Administrator for State Parks and Historic Sites in the state of Wyoming about a state park funding.

Topic: Weekly Wyoming Reporter's Roundtable.

Cheyenne, WY – Governor Dave Freudenthal doesn't expect any big changes despite Democrats losing four state legislative seats Tuesday. Freudenthal expects to have the same relationship he's always had with the Republican-dominated legislature. He says it's not like the Democrats had been the majority party and now are no longer. Freudenthal says legislative Democrats typically held their own positions on issues that sometimes differed from his.

Cheyenne, WY – Wyoming Department of Transportation Director Sleeter Dover hopes to seek funding in the next legislative session to hire ten additional Highway Patrol Troopers. Noting the Highway Patrol is short about 110 officers, Dover says he'd like to getr up to full strength over the next decade. He says his agency couldn't recruit 110 officers right away and if they did, they wouldn't have the money to train and equip them. Governor Dave Freudenthal agrees with the concept of adding ten additional officers.


Laramie, Wy –
The National Park Service has released its long awaited plan on Snowmobile Use in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. A study of the plan revealed no significant impact. It allows 720 guided snowmobiles a day into Yellowstone and 140 Snowmobiles in Grand Teton. It also requires the use of the best available technology and will be in effect for three years. The Deputy Director of the Wyoming Travel and Tourism Division Alan Dubberly says they are pleased to have a final plan, so they can begin advertising.

Laramie, Wy – The Game and Fish Department has a new proposal that would establish a boundary for grizzly bear habitat in the state. This would go into effect after Wyoming takes over management of grizzlies after federal protections are removed.
But, several conservation groups wrote to the Game and Fish opposing this plan. The Wyoming Outdoor Council's Meredith Taylor says bears should be allowed to move anywhere they can survive.
Taylor says Montana does not have boundaries for grizzly habitat and that is best way to foster the recovery of the species.

Wyoming –

Topic: The National Park Service has released its plan on Snowmobile Use in Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks; Guest: Alan Dubberly, Deputy Director of the Wyoming Travel and Tourism Division.

Topic: Thoughts of local voters about the elections.

Topic: Bob Beck speaks with Kim Ibac about a program to help students learn history.

Cheyenne, WY – Governor Dave Freudenthal is surprised and delighted about the mixed results of four constitutional amendments on Tuesday's ballot. Citizens voted down constitutional amendments A and D and passed B and C, although C is headed for a recount. C would let the legislature set up a medical review panel to week out frivolous malpractice lawsuits. Freudenthal hopes it survives the recount. As for the defeat of D, which would have allowed the capping of non-economic damages, Freudenthal says the public wants a different approach.

Cheyenne, WY – Losing a city council race is a distinct possibility for those who try to make things happen. That's the assessment of Wyoming Association of Municipalities Director George Parks, who watched several incumbents and even some of his board members lose races. Laramie citizens voted out all the incumbents, but Parks says that's just part of the game. He says when councilmen make tough decisions, such as raising water rates, they risk losing re-election bids. Parks says people pay much closer attention to city councils because they impact the most people.

Cheyenne, Wy – Wyoming voters turned out for yesterday's
(Tuesday) general election in numbers not seen in the last 26 years.
The Secretary of State's office counted 245-thousand-646 voters
unofficially statewide. That is 65 percent of the residents who are
eligible to vote in the state.
Since 1978, the next highest turnout of eligible voters was 63
percent in the 1992 general election.
Secretary of State Joe Meyer says yesterday's election turnout
exceeded the number of registered voters in the state because

Laramie, Wy – Unofficial results from the Secretary of
State's office has two of the four constitutional amendments
passing and two failing.
Voters rejected a proposed constitutional amendment that would
have let lawmakers consider limiting jury awards for pain and
suffering in medical malpractice lawsuits, but backed a companion
measure aimed at weeding out frivolous lawsuits.
Unofficial tallies show the caps Amendment "D" failed
outright, with 114,829 votes yes and 118,090 votes against. The

Lararmie, Wy – This afternoon the interim city manager in Laramie announced that unofficially voters supported the smoking ban ordinance. About 12 thousand people cast ballots and the yes side won by 360 votes.
Mayor Fred Homer was defeated in the election, but says the result of the special election is the best news he's heard in days and he's eager that people that have not been able to go into certain establishments because of the smoking will be able to go soon.

Wyoming –

Topic: Renny Mackay reports on the smoking ban that passed in Laramie the same time all incumbent members of the Laramie City Council who were up for re-election, lost.

Topic: Bob Beck speaks with former mayor of Casper and current director of the Wyoming Association of Municipalities, George Parks.

Topic: Bob Beck speaks with Senator Mike Massey about the elections.

Laramie, Wy – At least four incumbent Democratic state
lawmakers have been ousted, further cementing the Republican
stronghold on the Statehouse.
In a southeast Casper district, Senator Keith Goodenough lost to
G-O-P challenger, political newcomer and business owner Kit
Jennings, 51 percent to 49 percent.
Goodenough was turned out after four years in the House and the
last ten in the Senate.
Democratic Representative Saundra Meyer of Evanston lost to Republican Bruce Barnard, an Evanston attorney.

Laramie, Wy – Wyoming voters rejected a proposed constitutional Amendment that would have allowed legislators to cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. Wyoming Trial Lawyers Association President Kent Spence was delighted, saying that voters were not fooled by insurnace companies. Doctor Robert Monger of the Wyoming Medical Society says high insurance rates will continue to be a problem and now they need to try another avenue to solve it. He says they are willing to consider all options, including self insurance.

Laramie, Wy – Barbara Cubin has won re-election by the
narrowest margin since she was first elected to Congress.
With 95 percent of precincts reporting, Cubin had 55 percent to
42 percent for Wilson businessman Ted Ladd. Libertarian Lewis Stock
(stuke) claimed three percent.
Cubin won Wyoming's lone House seat by a 12-point margin in
1994. She was re-elected by margins from 1996 through 2002,
including by 38 points in 2000.
Cubin says she's NOT surprised that this year's race was so

Laramie, Wy – Wyoming voters have approved a constitutional
amendment dealing with local government spending for economic
development projects.
With 89 percent of precincts reporting, Amendment B had 66
percent "yes" votes and 34 percent "no" votes.
The measure allows the Legislature to give local governments
more leeway in spending money on job-creation projects.
A separate ballot measure was also ahead but was close.
With 89 percent of precincts reporting, Amendment A had 56
percent yes and 44 percent no.

Wyoming – Wyoming voters decided against changing the constitution and allowing legislators to cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. It was a crushing defeat for doctors who argued that it was a critical tool in their effort to fight skyrocketing medical malpractice rates. Voters have given tentative approval to Amendment C, which would allow lawmakers to set up a pre-screening panel in order to weed out frivolous cases. But the main focus over the last several weeks has been on the pros and cons of capping damages.

Wyoming – NPR Coverage of the Elections

Cheyenne, WY – Wyoming voters are following the national trend of voting absentee. State Elections Director Peggy Nighswonger says state law allows Wyoming voters to request an absentee ballot without giving a reason. She toured northern Wyoming last week and found absentee balloting was up in several counties. Nighswonger says Sheridan county has seen over three thousand absentee ballots cast while Johnson county has recorded over 700 absentee ballots. She says elections officials are reporting the highest absentee numbers they've ever had.

Laramie, Wy – Four years ago voters in Casper defeated an effort to ban smoking in restaurants. Now in Laramie voters will have their say on a plan to prohibit smoking in restaurants and bars. The Chair of the Laramie Clean Air Coalition, Larry Deal, says it was important to also include bars in this effort.
One bar owner, says people should not take the job if they have a problem with second hand smoke, or they should look for work at one of the two bars in Laramie that are already smoke free.

Laramie, WY – Voters will decide Tuesday whether or not to change the way money is distributed to Wyoming school districts. Supporters say it could prevent future lawsuits and make education funding more equitable. But about three school districts would lose money under the proposal. Pinedale School District Business Manager Vern McAdams says his district gets more money than average. McAdams opposes the amendment and would even it he was still in his old job in rural Laramie county.

Wyoming –

Topic: Renny Mackay reports on the two sided debate of the smoking referendum.

Topic: Kenny Shook speaks with several UW students about the 2004 elections.

Topic: The Cato Institute gives Wyoming an "A"; Guest: Jennifer Ziegler with the Cato Institute.

Sheridan, WY – A Sheridan policy committee will hold a November public meeting to release the results of the first part of a study on building a loop road around the city's western edge. The committee is comprised of Sheridan's Mayor, the County Commission Chair and Transportation Department's District Engineer. Mayor Jim Wilson says the study indicates future growth will happen to Sheridan's southern and western side. Wilson says developers on the western side of Sheridan would like to have an answer as to whether a loop road will be built and what route it will take.

Laramie, WY – Wyoming rolled up 559 yards of total offense with better than half of that on the ground as the Cowboys beat up on Air Force Saturday 43 to 26. The Cowboys also got a great performance from Quarterback Corey Bramlet, who bounced back from two sub-par outings. Head Coach Joe Glenn says he challenged the team before the game. He says it was a "do or die" situation and his team played brilliantly. Glenn says they now have to figure out a way to win a game on the road, something the Cowboys have never done in Mountain West Conference play.

Laramie, Wy – A supporter of capping non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases, admits he's little puzzled why Wyoming is battling high insurance rates for its Doctors. Cato Institute Tort Expert Robert Levy says the reason most insurance rates increase is because juries are paying out too much in medical malpractice cases. But he's surprised its an issue in Wyoming. Statistics show that most payouts in Wyoming don't exceed a million dollars. Levy says if that is the case, he'd have a tough time justifying a cap on damages.

Laramie, WY – 145 Wyoming National Guardsmen deploy for an overseas assignment next Wednesday. The 133rd Engineers Company, based in Laramie, will first go to Fort Lewis, Washington for training before heading to either Iraq or Kuwait. In advance of the deployment, Laramie's Ace Hardware store is donating half of its sales Saturday to the 133rd's family support group. Store Owner Joel Schneider says he wanted to do something for the guard members and their families. Schneider says the family support group can spend the money however they see fit.

Wyoming – Wyoming is facing a public health crisis as malpractice insurance rates soar and specialists stop practicing in the state. Wyoming citizens will vote on a constitutional amendment that would could cap non-economic damages in medical malpractice suits. Bob Beck of Wyoming Public Radio has more....

Wyoming –

Topic: Renny Mackay reports on the split over Amendment A.

Topic: Weekly Wyoming Reporter's Roundtable

Gillette, WY – There could be another brucellosis case in Teton county where a single cow was found with the disease earlier this summer. Officials started testing neighboring cattle herds recently and preliminary results indicate two cows may have the disease. The animals were slaughtered to conduct more definitive testing, which should be complete in a couple of weeks. Former State Veterinarian Jim Logan still conducts brucellosis work for the state.