Salt Lake City, UT – The Petroleum Association of Wyoming complains a Department of Interior move will restrict the state's oil and gas industry.
The Interior is halting fast-track approvals for drilling across the Rocky Mountains in a legal settlement reached in Salt Lake City.
Conservationist groups challenged the Bush administration's interpretation of a law that allows federal land managers in some cases to issue fast-track drilling permits without a full environmental review.
Cheyenne, WY – The city of Cheyenne has laid off 20 employees in a move that will save an estimated $1.1 million in salaries and benefits this fiscal year and next.
Mayor Rick Kaysen says the affected workers in public works, parks and recreation, the clerk's office, police administration and engineering learned Wednesday of the cuts, effective immediately. They will receive benefits through April.
Boise, ID – Idaho wildlife officials are crediting sportsmen and the state's first public wolf hunting season for stabilizing the predator's rapid population growth and proving hunts can be a successful management tool.
Idaho's wolf season ends at dusk Wednesday.
Since September, Idaho hunters have bagged 185 wolves, short of the 220-wolf quota. Last year, another 138 wolves were killed in livestock protection actions or other causes.
Laramie, WY – The Bridger-Teton National Forest is working on developing a comprehensive management plan for the Snake River Headwaters Wild and Scenic River system. It's part of the Craig Thomas Snake Headwaters Legacy Act, which is intended to keep federal agencies from approving anything detrimental to the river system.
David Cernicek is overseeing the effort and his main message is that most river users and property owners will see no change: "It doesn't change property rights, recreation use, grazing, things like that."
Salt Lake City, UT – Conservationists are praising the Interior Department's move to stop fast-track approvals for drilling across the Rocky Mountains.
The settlement came in response to a 2008 lawsuit filed in Salt Lake City that challenged the Bush administration's interpretation of a law allowing federal land managers to issue drilling permits without a full environmental review. Most of the fast-tracked projects were approved in Wyoming, New Mexico and Utah from 2006 to 2008.
Cheyenne, Wyo. – Laramie County officials are considering building a new juvenile detention center.
The county's Juvenile Services Joint Powers Board voted this week to recommend building the new center and Laramie County commissioners are expected to vote on the plan April 6.
Officials say the 24-bed facility could be built for $7.5 million at the Archer Complex. Commissioners have approval from the governor's office to use $4.5 million in federal stimulus funds for the project and the rest of the cost could be covered with county bonds.