Wyoming – Renny Mackay speaks with Bridger-Teton National Forest Avalanche Forecaster, Bob Comey about the avalanche conditions in Wyoming
Topic: In the past year, the number of alcohol related accidents and deaths have decreased; Guest: Colonel John Cox, Director of the Wyoming Highway Patrol
Topic: Communities around the state are developing programs for youth; Guest: Laura Feldman, Research Scientist with the Wyoming Statistical Analysis Center and Steve Hamaker, Executive Director for the Greater Wyoming Big Brothers/Big Sisters Organization
Riverton, WY – Legal fees and other costs of school finance litigation have totaled more than $3.5 million over the past five years. That's according to state records. The costs were calculated by state officials on request from the Joint Education Committee. It includes money spent by school districts and the state. Since 1998, the state alone has spent $2.7 million defending the legislature's position in the legal battles. The litigation began in 1992 and the Wyoming Supreme Court still retains jurisdiction over the case.
Laramie, WY – Supporters of an 8-lane pool in Laramie received bad news Tuesday night, but the city's isn't giving up on the idea. A group that raised private money for the pool heard that adding it to the new recreation center would cost $1.8 million. Friends of Community Recreation had raised $1.2 million. Group President Lisa Kinney says they're not giving up and want to work with the city to see if it has any funding sources available. She admits the city's tough financial situation is a concern. The architect will come back with a revised estimate for the pool in two weeks.
Wamsutter, WY – Wolves are being blamed for killing several cattle in southern Wyoming. In response, federal officials have authorized killing up to two wolves thought to be responsible. The cattled were killed by one or two wolves near Wamsutter, along Interstate 80. Wamsutter is in the southern extent of the area wolves are thought to be common in Wyoming.
Jackson, WY – A series of earthquakes woke people up, but caused no damage in northwestern Wyoming this morning. The first quake was the strongest, registering a magnitude of 4.7 shortly before one o'clock in the morning. The epicenter was about 19 miles east-northeast of Jackson. The U-S Geological Survey's John Minsch says that was followed by quakes ranging from 3.7 to 4.1 magnitude. The last one came around 2:30 a.m. A Teton County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman says her office got a lot of calls from people awakened by the tremors, but no damage was reported.
Laramie, Wy – Albany County's superintendent of schools says his district is under "fiscal assault" by a proposed school funding formula legislators are considering. Brian Recht says the Albany County School District is expected to lose 300 thousand dollars due to declining enrollment. He says the regional cost adjustment and small schools adjustment would mean even more lost revenue. Recht says declining enrollment led his school board to make the difficult decision of closing an elementary school at the end of this school year.
Cheyenne, Wy – Governor Dave Freduenthal is looking for support of several economic development proposals in his budget. The biggest is an attempt to enhance the Business Ready Communities bill approved by lawmakers last year. The Governor thinks the legislation will be key to Wyoming's future, but he says local government need to know that the program isn't going to just disappear after a couple of years.
Wyoming – Topic: Term limits could effect legislatures but attorneys are planning on challenging the term limit law; Guests: Harriet Hageman, attorney from Cheyenne and Tim Stubson, attorney from Casper
Topic: School Funding Proposal may effect districts across the state of Wyoming, Guest: Brian Recht, Albany County Superintendent
Renny Mackay speaks with Kate Taylor about the graduated drivers license bill
Gillette, Wy – The Bureau of Land Management today (Wednesday) ordered more environmental analysis on 18 planned coal-bed methane wells southwest of Gillette. The Powder River Basin Resource Council has sought more detailed environmental study of the planned drilling. No timetable is set for the additional study, but B-L-M officials say it should be conducted soon.
Cheyenne, WY – The state's consumer advocate believes "Choice Gas" has done little for consumers. K-N Energy has offered the fixed-rate plan saying it allows consumers to keep a locked-in rate and not be subject to the ups and downs of the market. But Wyoming Consumer Advocate Bryce Freeman says if customers had not locked in a rate and kept was is called the pass-on rate, they would have spent less on their utility bills to date. Freeman expects that will be the case in the near future. He notes gas companies have made money from the "Choice Gas" program.