Building a stable life without much money or job skills is hard by yourself. Doing it with kids is much, much harder. State governments across the country recognize this fact, and have responded with assistance programs for single and low income parents. But they’re almost always just for moms. Since 2008 Wyoming has been bucking that trend with Dads Making a Difference, a Cheyenne program that teaches dads job skills, and parenting skills too. I visited a class during orientation week.
Outsourcing government functions to private companies has long been a popular idea here in Wyoming. Now the state is leading the nation in taking that trend into the digital age. Wyoming will soon transfer much of its public data to the care of private companies, which will host it on the internet. State officials say this so called “cloud” hosting is cheaper and more efficient than state owned data centers. But putting all that public data in corporate hands has some privacy advocates nervous.
Friday is the kickoff for Cheyenne’s Fast Filmmaking Festival. It gives contestants two weeks to film and produce a film highlighting one of the capital city’s historic landmarks. Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer spoke with festival producer Alan O’Hashi.
Construction will begin Wednesday in Cheyenne on a new quiet zone at West Lincolnway and Southwest Drive’s railroad crossing, where train noise will be kept to a minimum. The area around the intersection is home to several hotels and motels. New railroad crossing gates and a barrier wall will block cars from sneaking around the shut gates and across the tracks.
Tuesday was the first day of school for students in Wyoming’s largest school district—Laramie County School District One. But rapid population growth in parts of Cheyenne means some students can’t attend the schools in their neighborhoods.
One of the most riveting images that has emerged out of the protests in Ferguson, Missouri is of civilian police officers using military vehicles for crowd control. For years, the Department of Defense has distributed equipment and vehicles to law enforcement offices all across the country, including some in Wyoming. I rode along with the Cheyenne SWAT team as they trained with their new military vehicle.
Last April Cheyenne’s WYDOT ID Services moved into a new building. Its bigger than the old one, with more staff and faster lines. But it’s also a few miles out of town. There isn’t an easy way to walk there, and, unlike the old building, it’s not connected by bus service. The move probably isn’t a big deal for most Cheyenne residents. But it’s had an outsized effect on some in the city.
WyoLotto released its list of the approved retailers on Tuesday. Starting August 24th, people won’t have to travel across state lines to buy tickets. Convenience stores, gas stations, grocery stores, bars and restaurants across the state will sell Powerball and MegaMillions Tickets, making it the 44th state to do so.
The Cheyenne Regional Medical Center will try to cut seventeen million dollars from its budget over the next two years.
"We are seeing decreased revenues coming from Medicare," says Jason Schenefield, Chief Operating Officer for Cheyenne Regional, as to why the cuts are necessary. "And things such as that which is really having us, along with hospitals around the country, trying to find ways of saving costs with declined revenues."
Schenefield also says decreased inpatient admissions is causing declining revenues.
The Chrysalis house is an addiction treatment center in Pine Bluffs with a unique mission: it provides a home for recovering women and their children.
But the program doesn’t have enough money to stay open much longer.
“We really have been very devoted to the program which is why we took on that financial risk a long time ago,” says Dr. David Birney, Executive Director of Cheyenne’s Peak Wellness Center, which operates the Chrysalis house. “At this point there just aren’t sufficient funds to support it.”
A funnel cloud prompted a brief tornado warning in Cheyenne on Wednesday.The National Weather Service sounded the alarm at about 2 p.m., soon after the funnel dropped down from a small thunderstorm in the high country west of town. Minutes later, the funnel dissipated without touching down - though not before several people snapped photos of the twister and posted the images online. The storm caused nothing worse than some light rain in the capital city. Sheriff's officials say no damage was reported.
My name is David Shelles and I live here in Cheyenne, Wyoming. When I moved from Davenport, Iowa to Laramie, Wyoming in December of 2008, of course I had the privilege of driving Interstate 80 across Iowa and Nebraska.
On the second day of my trip, I crossed the border from Nebraska into Wyoming at Pinebluffs and of course I started messing with the radio and it stopped on 91.9 and I heard Pat Gabriel's voice and that's actually kind of when I knew I was back home.
Wyoming Public Radio presents a rare performance and interview with Jonathan Richman ahead of his show at the historic Hynds Building in Cheyenne Tuesday night, June 24. Grady Kirkpatrick will talk with Mr. Richman about his music spanning from the early 70’s with the band the Modern Lovers through today. Tune in at 11:15am, only on Morning Music.
Dan Kinneman is from Rawlins. His father was one of Wyoming’s longest-serving legislators. In this story, Kinneman—himself a former legislator—describes a childhood visit to Cheyenne during a treacherous winter.
One of the World’s largest steam locomotives is traveling across Wyoming this week. Union Pacific’s Big Boy number 4014 is being moved to Cheyenne for restoration. UP spokesman Mark Davis says 25 so called Big Boys were once used to carry heavy loads over mountains. This one was built in 1941.
“It’s a 132 feet long and weighs about 1.2 million pounds. They were a heavy load locomotive.”
Davis says the locomotive will arrive in Laramie around eight tonight. There will a public ceremony in Cheyenne tomorrow at 1 PM.
Wyoming is a largely rural state with limited diversity. But as the population grows and the state attracts all sorts of newcomers. Wyoming is learning to accommodate the changing population. One of the areas where the state is making headway is interpretation services in its courts. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports.
A Cheyenne businessman is the fifth Republican to announce his candidacy for Secretary of State. Ed Murray owns a real estate and investment company and wants to use his business experience to update the office of Secretary of State. Among his goals are to make the position more business friendly.
A new report by the American Public Transportation Program shows that public transit use across the nation is on the rise, including in Wyoming. Jackson racked up its largest ridership ever this winter. Ridership on Cheyenne buses has increased as well. Joe Dougherty is director of the Cheyenne Transit Program. He says ridership has increased about 10 percent a year since 2006 to a high of almost 300,000 people in 2013. Dougherty says seniors and those with disabilities use the system regularly, and so do others.
The WPM Forum on Coal, a moderated discussion about the challenges coal is currently facing politically, economically and environmentally, how that could impact Wyoming in the future, and ways the state is innovating to keep coal relevant, will air on Open Spaces. WPM guests included Wyoming Treasurer Mark Gordon, Rocky Mountain Power VP Rita Meyer and Clean Energy Action co-founder Leslie Glustrom. The forum was held February 26, at 7pm, in front of a live audience at the Laramie County Library in Cheyenne will rebroadcast on Open Spaces Friday Feb.