Sheridan, Wy – A recent state survey finds the fewer homes are being built and there are fewer vacancies. Although one place listed as having a robust housing market is Sheridan. New homes are being built but an issue in Sheridan has been the availability of affordable homes. The Sheridan Housing Action Committee or shac has worked hard to get grants to try and get more affordable homes built. Shac's Marie Lowe says despite the solid housing market they still have a lot to do because affordable housing is a constant need.
Cheyenne, Wy – An annual cost of care survey finds that Nursing home care has increased 14 percent since 2004 and other long term care costs continue to rise. The study was done by Genworth financial and an Ombudsman for Wyoming Seniors Inc. has no quarrel with the numbers. Charlie Simeno says costs should continue to rise and people need to be thinking about future savings. But he also suggests another step.
Washington D-C – Add Senator John Barrasso's name to the list of those upset about rising gas prices. Barrasso has become a co-sponsor of a bill that asks the federal government to stop adding gas to the Strategic Petroleum reserve. Analysts say it can add as much as ten percent to the price of gas. Wyoming gas prices are listed among the lowest in the nation but Barrasso says the price increases still hit Wyomingites hard. Mostly because of all the long distance traveling those in Wyoming are forced to drive.
Laramie, WY – The Wyoming Department of Family Services says that with food prices rising, people on food stamps are struggling to eat well.
Department Spokeswoman Juliette Rule says certain restrictions on what you can buy with food stamps mean that people might be eating healthy food, but less of it. She says you can't buy prepared food with food stamps. As food prices go up, she says you can't buy what's often the cheapest food -- so it is harder to make food dollars stretch.
Laramie, WY – Governor Dave Freudenthal says talk of a national recession has him somewhat worried about decreased demand for Wyoming energy.
The governor says the state's energy economy typically buffers Wyoming in times of recession. But he also says if the slowdown is prolonged, the effects will likely limit the state's production and increase its unemployment rate.