Open Spaces

Open Spaces
3:36 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Two Republicans Distance Selves From Anti-Tax-Hike Pledge

Two of Wyoming’s three Republicans in Congress have signed a pledge to never raise taxes. The Taxpayer Protection Pledge is vilified by critics who say its sponsor, Grover Norquist, now controls the Republican Party when it comes to tax policy. Correspondent Matt Laslo reports that those two Wyoming lawmakers are now moving away from the Pledge.  

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Open Spaces
3:33 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Republican Candidates Debate Conservative Values

During Tuesday’s Republican primary election a large number of so called conservative candidates in the state are hoping to make a dent in legislative races.  These are candidates who believe that some office holders have forgotten their Republican values.  Organizations known as WyWatch, Conservative Republicans of Wyoming or Crow and the Tea Party are supporting these candidates who they hope will make changes in how government is run and get more conservative legislation such as anti-abortion measures passed.  A race in Casper appears to be the headliner of this battle between conservat

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Open Spaces
3:30 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Many Women Say Family Responsibilities Keep Them From Public Office

Wyoming’s primary elections are Tuesday, and there are more than three times as many male candidates on the ballot for the state legislature as females. That’s because many women find that serving in office, while also holding down a job and raising a family, is just too difficult. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

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Open Spaces
3:26 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Cheyenne Independent Runs for US House of Representatives

One candidate for the US House of Representatives wants your help to get on the ballot.  Cheyenne Resident Charlie Hardy got into the race after he found it difficult to communicate with our current congressional delegation.  He’s also concerned that the country remains at war.  Hardy wants to run as an independent.  He’s long written and spoken about issues surrounding foreign affairs and has served as a Catholic Priest and missionary.  Hardy tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck that while he opposes the country’s continued war effort, he is not anti-military.

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Open Spaces
3:24 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Drought Stunted Hay Crop Takes Heavy Toll On Ranchers

The drought this season has taken its toll on farmers growing hay. The U-S Department of Agriculture is predicting that Wyoming’s hay crop this year will be the worst since the Dust Bowl days of the 1930s. Platte County Extension Agent Dallas Mount joins us now to talk about that. He tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden the situation is ALREADY very bad.

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Open Spaces
3:21 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Ag Industry Encourages Producers to Add Value To Businesses

Kelsey Hostetler dyes yarn by hand at Mountain Meadow Wool Mill in Buffalo
Rebecca Martinez

Wyoming agriculture producers raise and lots of cows and sheep… but they’re mostly sold out of state, where they’re processed and sold as beef and lamb, making big money for outside businesses. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez reports that state agriculture agencies are now encouraging ag producers of all kinds to add-value to the products they already have to keep their businesses competitive, and circulate the money in Wyoming.

REBECCA MARTINEZ: Bessie Zeller and her late husband Clarence took over his father’s Lovell beekeeping operation in the mid-1940s.

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Open Spaces
3:12 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Wildfires Are Impacting Wyoming Wildlife

We’re joined now by Tom Ryder with the Game and Fish Department. He’s here to talk about the how wildlife are affected by the wildfires that have burned this season. He tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden that, when fires break out, some animals tend to suffer, while others actually benefit in the long run.

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Open Spaces
3:08 pm
Fri August 17, 2012

Medicare and Medicaid Forecast

We are joined now by Mike Fierberg who works for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services for the US Department of Health.  He tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck what seniors can expect from Medicare this year, but we start by asking him how competitive the insurance marketplace will be now that the U-S Supreme Court has approved most of the Affordable Care Act.

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Open Spaces
5:27 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Coal production slows, prices drop

The Jim Bridger coal fired power plant has already had to retrofit its stacks with cleaning technology and plans to do more work in the next couple of years.
Irina Zhorov

Coal production and coal prices are down and stakeholders are offering up lots of reasons as the cause, from weather to new policies and competing fuels. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that it’s a combination of all these factors. 

Irina Zhorov: There is no doubt coal is struggling right now. Karim Rahemtulla is the Senior Correspondent for investment blog Wall St. Daily.

Rahemtulla: The predominant trend that’s in the market right now is a slowdown in consumption, directly related to coal, not necessarily other energy sources.

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Open Spaces
5:20 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Former Bush Administration official says EPA is improperly affecting energy market

A Bush administration official has been speaking to members of the media this week about his concerns that the Environmental Protection Agency is overstepping its bounds.   Bud Albright is the former undersecretary for the Department of Energy.  Albright’s main point is that the EPA is unfairly making it difficult for energy companies to operate.  He says they are unfairly impacting the energy market.  He speaks with Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck.

Open Spaces
5:17 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Cleaner technology could give Wyoming coal a bright future

Professor KJ Reddy, right, and others working on the project inspect the flue gas and fly ash reactor before running more tests.
Irina Zhorov

In the midst of a coal slowdown nationwide, not all is dark. Wyoming has been investing millions in research that would make coal a clean, viable resource in the future, despite its dirty reputation. The state has also been making strides towards friendship and collaboration with other big coal stakeholders, like China. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports.

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Open Spaces
5:13 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Enthusiasm for wind energy high outside Wyoming

Next on the show is the a Wind Energy expert and the author of the book Harvest the Wind:  America’s Journey to jobs, energy independence and climate stability.  Phil Warburg tells Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck that while it appears that enthusiasm for Wind Energy has slowed down in Wyoming, that is not the case in the rest of the country.

Open Spaces
5:10 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Tea Party offers up several candidates in Big Horn Basin

In 2008 when Barrack Obama won the presidency and democrats controlled the house and senate the Republican Party was declared dead. However to the right of mainstream republicans a new movement arose, the tea party.  The more conservative arm of the party also found some fans in Wyoming.   David Koch has more.

DAVID KOCH:  Tea party activist Jo Walker moved to Cody in 2009 from Portland Oregon because in her mind, it had become too liberal,

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Open Spaces
5:07 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Hospice offers end-of life dignity, families say

In seems that most people are afraid of a Hospice.  Statistics show that if they are used, people will wait until the final days of someone’s life until they are called upon.   But those who run Wyoming’s 18 Hospices would like to change that.   Hospice care is a less expensive option than a nursing home or hospital that is focused on helping the patient die with dignity while also healing the family.  Most who have been through the process say it actually is a positive experience.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck has more.

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Open Spaces
5:05 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Yellowstone raptor study examines impact of human disturbance on eagles

We’re joined now by Charles Preston. He’s the senior curator at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, and he’s overseeing a research project involving golden eagles in the Bighorn Basin. The first goal of the project is to get baseline numbers on eagles in the area. Then, they’re looking at how human disturbances – like energy development, or just people recreating – are affecting the birds.

Open Spaces
5:02 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Researchers study contraception as a potential coyote management tool

Marjie MacGregor weighs one of the test coyotes
Willow Belden

Talk to almost anyone who raises sheep in Wyoming, and they’ll tell you they’ve had problems with coyotes.  Traditionally, the response has been to kill the coyotes, often by aerial gunning. But researchers at the University of Wyoming are trying to come up with an alternative management tool, which they hope will work better in the long-term and be more  humane. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

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Open Spaces
4:58 pm
Fri August 10, 2012

Dancers’ Workshop showcases Jackson talent nationwide

Artistic Director Babs Case in front of her art studio, where she finds inspiration for her choreography and teaching.
Rebecca Huntington

First started in 1971, Dancers' Workshop has been teaching dance in Jackson for more than four decades. Today, the non-profit dance school reaches nearly 500 students, from toddlers to adults. And the group brings dance into the lives of thousands of more people through its performances, including a series that presents world-renown companies from New York to San Francisco. But the school's audiences and students are not just in Jackson. Rebecca Huntington has more...

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Open Spaces
6:09 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

July 27, 2012

BAER Teams Check Extent of Damage After Wild-land Fires
Irina Zhorov

BAER Teams Check Extent of Damage After Wild-land Fires

The fire season came early to Wyoming this year. Usually, Wyoming doesn’t see its biggest fires until late July but already there have been 10 fires that have burned over 265-thousand acres of land. Wet weather and the efforts of thousands of firefighters have contained the larger blazes …So what happens after a fire? Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports.

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Open Spaces
5:37 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

BAER Teams Check Extent of Damage After Wild-land Fires

Landscape after the Squirrel Creek Fire in Southeast Wyoming was extinguished.
Irina Zhorov

HOST: The fire season came early to Wyoming this year. Usually, Wyoming doesn’t see its biggest fires until late July but already there have been 10 fires that have burned over 265-thousand acres of land. Wet weather and the efforts of thousands of firefighters have contained the larger blazes …So what happens after a fire? Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports.

Irina Zhorov: When the firefighters leave, the BAER team gets to work…

Larry Sandoval: It’s B-A-E-R, and it stand for Burned Area Emergency Response…

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Open Spaces
5:31 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Health Care Experts: What The Affordable Care Act Could Mean for Wyoming

Host Intro: Healthcare experts gathered in Jackson this week to spell out what the Supreme Court ruling about the Affordable Care Act could mean for patients in Wyoming. Rebecca Huntington has more...

REBECCA HUNTINGTON: About a hundred people attended the talk, which was held in a classroom at St. John's Medical Center.

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Open Spaces
5:21 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Albany County Takes Public Comment On Future Of Casper Aquifer

Tim Sullivan, Albany County Commissioner
Albany County, Wyoming

HOST INTRO: The Casper Aquifer provides fresh groundwater to Laramie and a portion of Albany County. The water is in great condition, and the city and county have traditionally worked in tandem to keep it that way, but their paths diverged a few years ago. Now, Albany County’s most recent Casper Aquifer Protection Plan resolution is open for public comment, and the public has had a lot to say about it. Rebecca Martinez reports.

(water faucet ambi)

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Open Spaces
5:12 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

U.S. Geological Survey: Coalbed Natural Gas Production Has Minimal Impacts On Waterways

USGS

The U-S Geological Survey released a study examining how coalbed natural gas production affects water quality in nearby streams and rivers. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden spoke with Melanie Clark, the author of the report.

Open Spaces
5:03 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Investigation Of Contaminated Pavillion Water Presses On

HOST: In December, the Environmental Protection Agency released a draft report tentatively linking water contamination in the town of Pavillion to hydraulic fracturing activities in the area. The release of the draft report caused a spectacle, and state, federal and tribal agencies have now caught in a bureaucratic holding pattern, while residents affected by contaminated water wait in a form of investigative limbo. Wyoming Public Radio’s Tristan Ahtone attended a recent Pavillion Work Group meeting to get updates on the investigation.

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Open Spaces
4:50 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Former Israeli Olympian And “Munich Massacre” Survivor To Speak In Jackson

Dan Alon was a fencer on the Israeli team in the 1972 Olympics. That year, terrorists broke into the Olympic Village and attacked the Israeli team members, killing 11 of them. Alon was one of the few who escaped. He’ll be speaking in Jackson on August 9, and he talks with Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden now.

Open Spaces
4:37 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

New Food Safety Rules Could Crack Down On Raw Milk Cow Shares

Raw milk in jar ready to be picked up by cow share owners.
Irina Zhorov

The Wyoming Department of Agriculture recently proposed new food safety rules. One of the most contentious adjustments has to do with raw milk – that’s milk that is not pasteurized. It’s already illegal to sell raw milk in the state, but if passed, the new rules would make it illegal to obtain it unless you own your own dairy cow. This has some milk drinkers very upset. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports.

Irina Zhorov: Frank Wallis hosts a herd of twelve milk cows on his ranch in Recluse, Wyoming.

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Open Spaces
4:19 pm
Fri July 27, 2012

Broadway-Bound Musical “Allegiance” Takes A Journey Through Heart Mountain Internment Camp

georgetakei.com

The Heart Mountain Relocation Center near Powell was one of several in the country that interned Japanese-Americans during World War II. The camp now sets the scene for a new musical called “Allegiance,” starring George Takei of Star Trek fame. The story follows the Kimura Family in the weeks after they are forced to leave their farm in Salinas, California and move to the internment camp in Wyoming. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez spoke with producer Lorenzo Thione and composer Jay Kuo, who co-wrote the play , which will open in San Diego in September.

Open Spaces
3:58 pm
Fri July 20, 2012

Drought Forces Wyoming Ranchers to Sell-Off Cattle in Record Numbers

Listen to the story

Thanks to light snowpack and a dry spring, Wyoming is in the midst of a severe drought. Such dry conditions mean that much of the grass that covers Wyoming’s open spaces isn’t growing. Wyoming Public Radio’s Madison Williams reports that’s bad news for the state’s cattle ranchers, who depend on the grass to feed their livestock.

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