Moose, WY – Removing a few problem wolves from a pack can dampen a wolf pack's taste for livestock, at least in the short term. That's according to research presented at a public meeting in Grand Teton National Park this past week. Liz Bradley has studied wolf-livestock conflicts and found that wolves generally kill livestock in areas of elk populations. She also says wolf packs that kill cattle have a high probability of killing again, around 68%. But she found that repeat attacks usually didn't occur again for eight months.
Glenwood Springs, CO – Tuesday marks the ten-year anniversary of one of the deadliest wildfires in Colorado history. The Storm King fire surrounded, trapped and killed 14 firefighters in the mountains near Glenwood Springs on July Sixth, 1994. One firefighter who was there says some of his colleagues had misgivings about the assignment. But he says no one wanted to look weak by suggesting they should step back from the flames. Getting around that attitude is now stressed in firefighter training.
Laramie, Wy – Recently Governor Dave Freudenthal floated the idea of a temporary subsidy for doctors to help them pay for rising medical malpractice costs. The Governor sees it as a short term attempt to keep doctors from leaving the state. But some lawmakers and citizens dislike the idea, thinking that doctors are being favored over others who also face rising health insurance costs. Freudenthal understands their concern, but he'd still like to go ahead with the idea, because without doctors, health care could be lost.
Cheyenne, WY – State Schools Superintendent Trent Blankenship is pleased with the progress Wyoming students are making following the latest round of Wy-Cass testing. Blankenship says overall, scores were up among Wyoming's fourth, eighth and 11th graders. But he says there's still room for improvement, especially in 8th grade math. Blankenship says 8th graders improved to 40 percent proficient, but it's still not what education officials would like to see.
Laramie, WY – One of the three Democratic candidates seeking Wyoming's lone Congressional seat says the federal government should trust local communities when it comes to education. John Henley of Casper says if elected he would like to repeal or severely modify the No Child Left Behind Act. He believes the act can be used to have federal officials tell individual schools how to run their schools. The Casper lawyer says if elected, his focus would be on lowering the cost of health care.
Laramie, Wy – A funeral was held Thursday on Mount McKinley for a Wyoming man who died on the mountain 35 years ago. The body of Gary Cole, of Cody, was buried in a quiet ceremony attended by mountaineering rangers and National Park Service volunteers. Rangers dug a grave 12 feet into the snow near the outer edge of a glacial basin at 14-thousand-200-feet below the West Buttress route. The body was lowered into the grave and covered. Cole was 32 when he died of acute mountain sickness in June 1969.
Cheyenne, Wy – Lawmakers will get to debate a bill that would allow courts to set up structured payments in medical malpractice cases. It means that victims would get periodic payments if they win a judgment, rather then a lump sum. A legislative super committee approved the bill after a lengthy discussion over whether the legislation would hurt victims if they had to wait to collect a judgment. Insurance companies support the legislation and medical providers say it is a tool that could help reduce rising medical malpractice costs.
Laramie, Wy – The state's bucking horse and rider logo is safe for now. A charity from Texas was challenging Wyoming's ownership of the logo, but Thursday the group and the state announced they have reached a compromise. Secretary of State Joe Meyer says defending the trademark was expensive, costing the state over $100,000. Meyer says he does not think it is likely that any other group will ever challenge the state's ownership of the logo. Especially because they often let charities use the image.
Cheyenne, WY – The federal government is reminding states they need to spend or earmark education money by September 30th or lose it. In Wyoming, officials are sawying they anticipate spending all of the state's share. Department of Education Finance Director Fred Hansen says in the past, there have been a few times when they didn't spend all the funds the federal government earmarked for Wyoming. But he says most school districts are familiar with federal programs and certainly have planned to apply for the federal money.