NEWS BRIEFS for Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2019

News from around the Cowboy State from Wyoming News Exchange members

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Can Wyoming law delay coal plant closures?

A new Wyoming law aimed at extending the life of coal-fired power plants is coming to its first test, even as the Wyoming Public Service Commission wrestles with the fine points of how the conceptual legislation will be practically applied.

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Media distrust in Wyoming: A Q&A with Rod Hicks

Media trust in America has sunk to alarming lows. From an acme of some 70% of Americans who reported having a great deal or fair amount of trust in the media in 1976, that number had plummeted to 32% by 2016.

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Utility regulator copied, sent coal lobby letter

The Wyoming Public Service Commission — in concert with five equivalent bodies from other states — last month asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to accelerate an inquiry that could subsidize coal plants in the name of electrical grid reliabili

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Jackson officials inspired, troubled by climate conference

JACKSON — A conference on climate change earlier this month gave Jackson Hole officials new ideas about how to curb the region’s impact on the environment, just weeks after updated data revealed a rise in carbon emissions in Teton County.

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Gordon predicts more budget cuts

CASPER — With a month until his administration releases its first budget, Gov. Mark Gordon said all ideas to trim spending are on the table in 2020, explaining that Wyoming appears to be entering “a new period” in its history as the outlook for fossil fuels as the state’s primary economic driver grows increasingly grim.

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Nichols asks judge to show her UW files

LARAMIE — In a public records dispute between the University of Wyoming and Wyoming news organizations, an attorney for former UW President Laurie Nichols has asked Albany County district court Judge Tori Kricken to show Nichols the records related to her ouster that are currently being considered for public release.

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F.E. Warren AFB hosts former "Top Chef" contestants in friendly competition

CHEYENNE — It’s hard to keep up morale on military bases, especially among those working in the kitchen. But when there’s an event that allows servicemen and women to face off in teams named The Startled Koalas, Kitchen Regulators and Chop It Like It’s Hot, fun is unavoidable.

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Wyoming News in Brief – Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2019

Stories from around the Cowboy State from Wyoming News Exchange members

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Report says Grand Teton one of most threatened parks

JACKSON — A new report from an environmental advocacy group lists Grand Teton National Park as among the dozen parks most threatened by the hurried pace of energy leasing and drilling taking place under the Trump administration.

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Acting UW president promotes university, community colleges

POWELL — The University of Wyoming’s interim president says the state doesn’t just need more Cowboys — it also needs more Northwest College Trappers and other college students.

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Draft bill would add layers to wildlife corridor management

PINEDALE – The Wyoming legislative committee looking at the process of designating and managing wildlife migration corridors requested a draft bill in August that is posted and will be studied at its upcoming Oct. 23 meeting in Casper.

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Legislators look at ways to ease sting of coal bankruptcies

CASPER — A string of bankruptcies have ravaged Wyoming coal country this year, as operators erase outstanding tax, labor and reclamation debts during court proceedings, leaving counties and taxpayers facing unexpected budget shortfalls.

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Native students demonstrate for Indigenous People’s Day

LARAMIE — Keepers of the Fire, a UW student organization, held a demonstration on campus Monday in support of native peoples and the movement to abolish Columbus Day — and to celebrate instead Indigenous People’s Day.

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NEWS BRIEFS for Friday, Oct. 11, 2019

News from across Wyoming from Wyoming News Exchange member publications

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Baby born at 9:19 on 9/19/19

GILLETTE — On Jan. 9 this year, Jackie Franco was married to Christopher Franco. That’s 1/9/19. Ten days later, on Jan. 19 — 1/19/19 — she found out she was pregnant. Fast forward exactly nine months and Vedda Rose Franco was born at 9:19 a.m. Sept. 19, 2019, weighing 6 pounds, 1 ounce. She was 19.19 inches long.

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Report: Wyoming kids some of thinnest in country

JACKSON — High fives to our healthy Wyoming kids.

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Trump highlights Wyoming man’s battle with EPA

CASPER — A Wyoming man who became a poster child for what some saw as environmental overreach visited the White House for the signing of two executive orders by President Donald Trump intended to “improve the transparency and fairness of government agencies,” the White House said.

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Wyoming Supreme Court affirms murder sentence

CHEYENNE — The Wyoming Supreme Court has ruled that a Laramie County District Court judge got Phillip Sam’s sentence right the second time around.

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Welder builds 16,000-pound vehicle

DOUGLAS — He’s not a doomsday prepper, nor does he believe a zombie apocalypse is happening anytime in the near future, his Mad Max infatuation not withstanding. That being said, it’s easy to think otherwise when gazing upon Travis Blankenbaker’s 16,000-pound wasteland war rig, appropriately named Atomic Annie, as it sits in his Glenrock driveway.

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Quebec 01 missile alert facility dedicated as state historic site

CHUGWATER — Quebec 01, the only Peacekeeper Missile Alert Facility in the world and a crucial factor in ending the Cold War, sits just 30 miles north of Cheyenne.

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Judge nears decision on Nichols UW records lawsuit

Judge Tori Kricken heard arguments Tuesday over whether records related to the demotion of former University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols should be released to the public, and indicated she could soon issue a decision in the case.

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Biologist works to separate wolf fact from fiction

CODY — Wolves seen as bogeymen of the ecological landscape, has been the animal’s fate for a century or more, but much of what people say about them is based on myth, not fact.

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Committee advances bill on gambling regulation

SHERIDAN — The Wyoming Legislature’s Joint Committee on Travel, Recreation and Cultural Resources voted to move forward with a bill that would dedicate more state resources toward gambling regulation.

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Blackjewel reopening possibly delayed by permit snag

CASPER — A protracted fight to return two Powder River Basin coal mines to full operation after its owner Blackjewel filed for bankruptcy hit another snag in court Wednesday.

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Final Capitol renovations nearing completion

CHEYENNE — After the grand reopening of the state Capitol in July, the final pieces of the renovation project are projected to be completed before the 2020 legislative session in February.

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New state fair manager born to reign over celebration

On a warm summer day, a husband and wife team were working their smoothie booth at the Santa Cruz County fair in California. She was pregnant but wasn’t worried as her due date wasn’t for another six weeks or so.

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Coal mines still idle as purchase talks continue

Coal giant Contura Energy has yet to complete the purchase of two Wyoming mines from bankrupt operator Blackjewel, according to a quarterly report released Wednesday.

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