Wyoming – On February 22nd, a new law takes effect that will allow people to carry loaded guns into national parks and wildlife refuges. The measure had been inserted into a popular bill on credit cards that Congress passed in May. Recently, the Coalition of National Park Service Retirees put out a press release criticizing the gun law. Bill Wade chairs the Coalition, and he joins Addie Goss now.
Wyoming – Earlier this week, Wyoming Public Radio reported that a University of Wyoming student was allegedly assaulted in one of the dorms. A young woman, who had been studying alone, said she was attacked by an intruder. Police have arrested a suspect, who was not a U-W Student. Because this incident raised questions, we asked students if they generally feel safe on campus.
Wyoming – An annual effort to help people quit using chewing tobacco begins on Sunday. It's called Through with Chew. Here in Wyoming Niki Mueller helps with the campaign. She tells me that the number of people chewing is going down, though in Wyoming tobacco use rates still remain about twice the national average. Muller tells Bob Beck that they did make progress after the big tobacco lawsuit settlement because they started a lot of tobacco prevention programs.
Wyoming – Recent foreclosure numbers show the regional housing market is not recovering as expected. As more of these homeowners relocate to temporary housing, U.S. Census officials are worried that the 2010 survey will become even more difficult and costly to complete. KUNC's Grace Hood has more.
Wyoming – The eastern Wyoming community of Torrington is struggling with some new trials. The percentage of people on some form of public assistance is among the highest in the state and those numbers went up substantially last summer. The question is why? The simple answer has to do with the national economy and Goshen County's lack of economic diversity. But some wonder if there is another reason.
Wyoming – The Wyoming National Guard is nearly through its largest deployment in history... about 800 Wyoming soldiers are in Kuwait and Iraq. One of them is there explicitly to support the mental health of the others. He is the first uniformed "behavioral health officer" the Wyoming Guard has ever deployed... and in total, he's watching over the psychological health of 25-hundred soldiers overseas. My colleague Addie Goss has this profile.
Laramie, Wyo. – An entomologist with the University of Wyoming says there may be an outbreak of grasshoppers this summer. Alexandre Latchininsky says the insects have become much more prevalent over the past few years. He says last summer, parts of eastern Wyoming and the Big Horn Basin had a lot of grasshoppers - about twelve of the insects per square yard. Latchininsky says there should be even more of them this summer.
Cheyenne, Wyo. – The Wyoming House of Representatives continues to work on a bill that would lift the requirement that Wyoming District and Supreme Court Judges retire at the age of 70. Supporters call the current law "age discrimination."
Laramie, WY – A newly installed highway underpass for migrating animals north of Baggs is working well so far. Several thousand mule deer, pronghorn, bobcats and other animals used it in the fall and winter to migrate across Highway 789 to their winter range.