WPR News
9:12 am
Wed January 21, 2009

Feds plan renewables office for Wyo.

Rawlins, Wyo. – The Bureau of Land Management has authorized the establishment of four special offices to expedite and accelerate the development of renewable energy resources on
public land. One of those offices is to be located in Wyoming.

The other offices are planned for Arizona, Nevada and California.

Outgoing Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne said in a statement last week that the primary job of the four new renewables offices is "to expedite development of wind, solar, biomass and geothermal resources on public lands."

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WPR News
8:38 am
Wed January 21, 2009

Houses OKs bill making prescription fraud a felony

Cheyenne, Wyo. – The Wyoming House of Representatives has given preliminary approval to a bill that would make forgery of a drug prescription a felony.

House Speaker Colin Simpson is sponsoring the bill. The Cody Republican says he's heard from police that 10 people died from abuse of prescription drugs in three months last year.

Simpson says passing it would allow law enforcement agencies to charge people who forge prescriptions at an appropriate level.

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WPR News
7:51 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Senate picks up gun rights bill

Cheyenne, WY – The Wyoming Senate is debating a bill that would make it clear that someone who pleads guilty of misdemeanor domestic violence will lose their gun rights.

This comes after federal courts rejected a Wyoming law that tried to get around federal law. The state law would have allowed someone convicted of domestic violence to have their first conviction expunged, so they could regain their gun rights. Lander Senator Cale Case says this is a rare instance where a misdemeanor will cost you a constitutional right.

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WPR News
7:28 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Wyoming leaders reflect on Obama's first day

Laramie, Wyo. – A prominent voice for equality in Wyoming says history will remember President Barack Obama for unifying the country in troubled times, rather than as America's first black chief executive.

Harriett Elizabeth Byrd's 12-year career in the Wyoming Legislature began in 1980. For much of her time at the capitol, she fought for state recognition of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.

Byrd is 82, and worked for the Obama campaign in Wyoming. She says she has been looking forward to the inauguration since he was elected in November.

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WPR News
7:16 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Committee: increase penalty for sex offenders

Cheyenne, Wyo. – A House bill calls for setting a minimum sentence of 15 years in prison for a conviction of first-degree sexual assault against a minor.

The House Judiciary Committee voted to approve a bill that would increase the current penalty which can range from zero to 50 years in prison. The new bill would make it 15 to 50 years.

Republican Rep. Bryan Pedersen, of Cheyenne, presented the bill. He says it would fill a void in the state's statutes against sex offenders.

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WPR News
7:15 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Charter school bill moves forward

Cheyenne, Wyo. – Right now it is difficult to get a charter school started in Wyoming. The biggest hurdle is to get a local school board to agree with the concept. But the legislature is considering some bills that might make the process go more smoothly.

Cheyenne Representative Amy Edmonds is pleased that the House passed a bill that forces a school district and charter school proponents to work together on getting the school agreed upon before a legal timeline is imposed.

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4:32 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Layoffs ripple through regional newspapers

Wyoming – Newspapers have suffered through a terrible month. The Casper-Star Tribune slashed 15 jobs this week. Peter O'Dowd reports.

4:30 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Wyoming: Help wanted

Wyoming – Wyoming is still the envy of many states when it comes to employment. But this state is not immune to the economic downturn. Joan Evans, the Director of the Department of Workforce Services, joins host Elsa Partan.

4:29 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Rookie lawmakers arrive in Cheyenne

Wyoming – The Capitol can be a hectic place for first-time lawmakers. Bob Beck has the story.

4:27 am
Tue January 20, 2009

Study finds potential danger with lead bullets

Wyoming – Sadie Babits of the Environment report tells us that hunters have been using lead bullets for decades to kill game with little, if any, side effects. But new research finds that hunters may need to use more caution when choosing their bullets.

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