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7:20 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Mead Says Legislative Committee Should Focus On Education

A Wyoming legislative committee will decide if it wants to reconsider the powers and duties of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction this Friday. 

State Superintendent Cindy Hill returned to lead the Department of Education this week, after the Wyoming Supreme Court ruled that a law stripping her ability to oversee the department was unconstitutional. 

Governor Matt Mead says he doesn’t know what the legislative committee will try to do.

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News
7:14 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

DEQ Says Jurisdictional Issues Will Limit Their Rulemaking Authority Near Pinedale

The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality is drafting rules to curb emissions near Pinedale, but the agency says there are some limitations to what they’ll be able to do.

The Pinedale area violates federal air quality standards because of pollution from natural gas development. DEQ has already imposed stricter rules on new energy equipment, and now they plan to limit emissions from older, grandfathered facilities, as well. But spokesman Keith Guille says they aren't able to regulate everything.

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News
4:59 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

Rail Congestion Curbs Coal Shipments

Arch Coal executives expressed frustration with the nation’s two biggest railroads during a conference call with investors Tuesday. Coal shipments out of the Powder River Basin have been delayed in recent months because of congestion on the BNSF and Union Pacific main lines. Arch Coal CEO John Eaves said it’s hurting the company’s earnings.

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News
9:35 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Jackson Shuts Off Water Near Landslide

Credit Rebecca Huntington

Jackson is shutting off water today to homes and businesses on the north side of West Broadway as part of its ongoing response to the creeping hillside collapse on East Gros Ventre Butte.

The plan is to install new valves and hydrants that will give the town the option of capping off a 12-inch water main, along the slide area, if that becomes necessary. Although the hillside is shifting slowly, it's creating forces that could burst both the water main and a nearby sewer line.

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News
7:37 pm
Mon April 21, 2014

Wind River Tribes Plan Ahead For Settlement Checks

WILLOW BELDEN: In 2012, the tribes who share the Wind River Indian Reservation, the Eastern Shoshone and the Northern Arapaho Tribes, came to a settlement with the federal government for a mineral royalties mismanagement case dating back to the 1970’s. The federal government has finally released the money from the settlement, and tribal members on Wind River are anxiously awaiting their checks. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov joins us to talk about the settlement and what it means to the Wind River Community.

To start, could you tell us what this settlement is all about.

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News
9:27 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Jackson Officials Drill At Landslide's Crest

Crews in Jackson place attempt to slow down the landslide at the intersection with West Broadway.
Credit Rebecca Huntington

Workers are building a temporary path for a drill rig to access a slow-moving landslide threatening homes and businesses in a Wyoming resort town.

Jackson officials say the heavy rig will drill bore holes up to 200 feet deep along the upper crest as they look for ways to counter the slow collapse first noticed April 4.

The samples should tell them about the composition of the formation, the depth of the slide, the water levels and the location of the slide's scarp.

Jackson Fire Chief Willy Watsabaugh gave a tour of the area over the weekend.

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Arts
9:22 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Novelist Ann Patchett To Visit UW

Ann Patchett
Credit Heidi Ross

Bestselling novelist Ann Patchett will speak at the University of Wyoming Tuesday, April 22. The free talk includes a Q & A, followed by a book signing.  In addition to the talk, she will meet privately with UW students, including MFA candidates in the creative writing program.

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Topic of the Week
9:00 am
Mon April 21, 2014

What are your thoughts on the proposed Rare Earth Mine near Sundance?

What are your thoughts on the proposed Rare Earth Mine near Sundance?

WPM/NPR Community Discussion Rules

News
6:00 am
Mon April 21, 2014

Longest Mule Deer Migration Route Documented In Wyoming

Photos like this one, documenting the Red Desert to Hoback migration, will be on display at UW through April 26.
Credit Joe Riis

Scientists in Wyoming have recently discovered the longest mule deer migration route that’s ever been recorded. The animals travel 150 miles, from the Red Desert to the Hoback Basin. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden spoke with Hall Sawyer and Joe Riis, who have been documenting the migration. Sawyer is a research biologist at Western Ecosystems Technology,  and Riis is a wildlife photographer. Sawyer says he discovered the migration route kind of by accident.

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News
4:47 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

Jackson's Slow-Moving Landslide Accelerates

Credit Rebecca Huntington

A slow-moving landslide in Jackson has started accelerating, blocking off the area's only access road and undermining options for stabilization.

Crews stopped work Thursday on an emergency buttress designed to slow down the slide. Officials decided it was no longer safe to work beneath a cut slope that kept releasing gravel slides, and pulled workers off the job. The only access road to the hillside has become impassable.

The Town has hired landslide expert George Machan, who gave an update today.

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News
4:46 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

BLM Considers Limiting Development On Wilderness-Type Areas Near Rawlins

Wyoming's Red Desert.
Credit Joe Kiesecker

The Bureau of Land Management is considering protecting some areas in the Red Desert because of their scenic qualities.

The agency’s Sheila Lehman says they’re considering amending the Rawlins Resource Management Plan, to limit development on parcels of land with important wilderness characteristics.

“There’s the potential to maybe be able to preserve it a little bit more, or by mitigating certain things to keep that quality – that wilderness quality,” Lehman said.

Environmental groups are pleased.

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News
6:43 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Money Heads To The Wind River Indian Reservation

Long-awaited money from a settlement on the Wind River Indian Reservation is finally on its way. The 157 million dollar settlement between the tribes and the federal government is for underpayment of royalties on oil and gas development…and improper management of royalties that were paid.

Northern Arapaho spokesman Mark Howell says some people don’t have bank accounts…and there were concerns they would not be able to cash their checks.

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News
6:26 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Davis Will Leaves Money For Y Cross Teaching

The will of a wealthy Denver philanthropist who has died contains an incentive for the University of Wyoming and Colorado State University to use a ranch for agricultural education rather than sell the property.

Amy Davis died Wednesday. She was 86.
 
Davis' personal representative, Tyson Dines, said Thursday that Davis' will sets aside a considerable amount to support teaching at the Y Cross Ranch. He wouldn't specify the amount.
 
University officials said they were saddened by Davis' death but had no additional comment.

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News
6:22 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Mead Meets With Taiwan Representatives

Governor Matt Mead met with Taiwanese officials Thursday in an effort to enhance Wyoming’s foreign trade.  The meeting was in Cheyenne.

He says Taiwan is very interested in Wyoming Coal and Mead is hoping that they can reach other trade agreements as well.    

"We want the opportunity to reach out to great trading partners and friends who can help us as we help them with these trade relationships.  And so it’s a great way for us to continue to build our economy."

The governor traveled to Taiwan last year.

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News
6:17 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

New Director For Jackson Conservation Group

A Wyoming conservation group is celebrating its 35th anniversary this year with a new director.

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News
4:34 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Settlement Money For Tribal Members Finally In Sight

Long-awaited money from a settlement on the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming is finally on its way.

The federal government is paying the tribes $157 million for underpayment of royalties on oil and gas development and improper management of royalties that were paid. Northern Arapaho spokesman Mark Howell says some people don’t have bank accounts and there were concerns they would not be able to cash their checks.

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News
6:59 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

Sinclair Refinery Is Fined Again

The Sinclair Refinery is being cited with seven safety violations and over 200-thousand dollars in fines for an explosion and fire at its refinery near Rawlins last fall. 

Wyoming’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA says that two of the violations were willful.  The company has been fined numerous times in the past for a variety of fires, explosions, and other issues. 

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Single Shot Live
5:08 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

John Fadial: Ballade From Ysaÿe’s Sonata No. 3

Credit Anna Rader

John Fadial teaches violin at the University of Wyoming. On Thursday, April 17 he’ll perform with pianist Theresa Bogard at 7:30 pm at the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall. Fadial says the recital emphasizes contemporary repertoire for violin and piano written since 1995, including works by Richard Danielpour, Aaron Jay Kernis, and Arvo Pärt.

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Arts
4:55 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

Harry Jackson Estate Hopes To Sell Artist's Complete Life's Work

“The Italian Bar” 1956, Oil on canvas, 7′ x 9′, copyright Harry Jackson Trust, all rights reserved
Credit Harry Jackson Trust

The estate of acclaimed artist Harry Jackson is inviting art dealers and collectors from across the country to evaluate Jackson’s life work. It’s part of an ongoing effort to sell the collection that’s housed in Cody.

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News
8:02 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Setback Rule Review A Priority For Oil And Gas Commission

Interim Oil and Gas Supervisor Mark Watson
Credit Willow Belden

Interim Oil and Gas Supervisor Mark Watson says he's making it a priority to review Wyoming's setback rules.

Setback rules govern how close oil and gas development can be to things like houses and streams. The current limit is 350 feet.

At an Oil and Gas Commission meeting Tuesday night in Casper, several residents said they'd like to see the distance raised to a mile, because of concerns about potential health impacts of energy production. Watson says they're asking a lot.

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News
2:52 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Jackson Council Approves Funding To Buttress Slipping Hillside

Members of the media inspect a large crack Friday that has formed in the driveway of a home at 1045 Budge Drive in Jackson.
Credit Jackson Hole News and Guide

On Monday, the Jackson Town Council voted to increase emergency spending from $50,000 to $750,000 to deal with the slow-moving landslide beside the town's main thoroughfare. Town officials say the money is needed to manage the slide and to build a buttress to create pressure at the base of the slide to slow it down.

The Council voted four-to-one to approve the funding. Councilman Jim Stanford cast the lone dissenting vote.

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News
2:44 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Internet Services To Expand To Rural Areas

Several remote communities in the state will be able to receive better internet service in the near future.  Visionary Communications has announced a plan to expand its fiber optic line to connect the towns of Chugwater, Guernsey, Pinedale and Torrington to the rest of the state. 

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Topic of the Week
8:15 am
Tue April 15, 2014

What are your views on the proposed Next Generation Science Standards for Wyoming students?

What are your views on the proposed Next Generation Science Standards for Wyoming students?

WPM/NPR Community Discussion Rules

News
7:54 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Conservative Group Predicts Strong Economic Growth For Wyoming

Wyoming is one of the easiest places in the country to make money. That’s according to a report by the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative advocacy nonprofit.

The report ranks states based on things like labor and tax policies. Report author Jonathan Williams says those factors can help predict job creation and other forms of economic growth.

“We find that … states that value competitiveness, lower taxes, and reasonable regulations are the states that are growing today,” Williams said.

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News
5:37 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Linc Energy Charged With Causing Environmental Harm In Australia

A company proposing to open an underground coal gasification demonstration site in Wright has been charged with environmental violations in Australia.  The charges could cost the company over two million dollars per violation.

Underground coal gasification involves igniting coal seams deep underground to produce syngas, which can then be processed into various liquid fuels or other chemicals.     

What exactly the environmental harm is has not yet been revealed.

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News
5:15 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Evacuation Order In Jackson Downgraded To Advisory

An evacuation order is being downgraded to an advisory for some homes and apartments under threat from a slow-moving landslide in Jackson. An evacuation order will remain in effect for five residences within a high-risk zone where geologists are seeing slope movement of about an inch a day.

Even though residents in lower-risk areas are allowed to move back, Acting Police Chief Cole Nethercott says he's not encouraging them to do so.

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News
6:03 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Officials Mull Options For Stabilizing Jackson Hillside

Officials in Jackson are exploring alternatives for access and possible emergency stabilization efforts for an unstable hillside that continues to shift.

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Wyoming Stories
3:00 pm
Sat April 12, 2014

Wyoming Stories: An Unexpected Late Night Visit

Morrison and John Simms

When John Simms moved to Jackson, he started a business giving tours of the Flag Ranch. After getting married, he started Jackson White Water Trips. In this story, John tells his daughter Morrison about an unexpected late night visit to their Jackson home.

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News
7:47 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Board Of Education Takes No Action On Science Standards

The state Board of Education met in Casper today to adopt some state standards, including a controversial set of national Next Generation Science Standards. The legislature prohibited the Board from adopting those standards. Bob Beck joins us to talk about what happened at the meeting.

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News
7:30 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

60 Jackson Residents Remain Under Evacuation Order From Slow-Moving Landslide

About 60 Jackson residents remain under an evacuation order due to a slow-moving landslide on the lower flank of East Gros Ventre Butte that has buckled pavement, cracked retaining walls and undermined water lines.

Some homes in the Budge Drive Hillside area are not at direct risk from the slide. But the slide has compromised the only road to the homes and broken the main waterline. During a tour of the area today, Jackson Fire Chief Willy Watsabaugh said those problems make it unsafe to reoccupy those homes at this time.

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