Casper, Wy – Wyoming added jobs at the fastest pace of any state in September. The Wyoming Department of Employment reports that Wyoming added 8,700 jobs last month compared to September 2007, an increase of 2.9 percent. U.S. job growth in September was negative 0.4 percent. Meanwhile, Wyoming's unemployment rate was 3.3 percent, about half the national unemployment rate of 6.1 percent. Wyoming's unemployment rate was second-lowest in the nation, behind South Dakota.
Cheyenne, Wy – The state Supreme Court is considering oral arguments in another lawsuit over school finance issues. At issue this time is some $97 million in local taxes that five school districts have refused to turn over to the state after Wyoming voters approved a constitutional amendment in 2006. The amendment removed a constitutional provision that allowed school districts with booming oil and gas development to keep some of their windfall tax money instead of giving it all to the state to redistribute evenly among all districts.
Cheyenne, Wy – Democrat Gary Trauner says a charge by Republican Cynthia Lummis that Trauner favors a national federal registry of gun owners is untruthful. Trauner is running against Lummis and Libertarian David Herbert for the U.S. House seat now held by the retiring Rep. Barbara Cubin. Lummis has been running ads saying Trauner has favored a national federal registry of gun owners. Cubin made the same accusations against Trauner two years ago when she narrowly beat him. The ads are based on an answer Trauner provided in 2006 on a
Laramie, Wy – The federal government's chief veterinarian for wildlife says animal feedgrounds have caused significant damage to the ecosystem. The U-S Fish and Wildlife Service's Tom Roffe says the government is working to restore the natural vegetation that has been damaged on the National Elk Refuge near Jackson. " And you know how we have to do it with the number of animals there? We are going to put fences up. Is that the wise conservation? Is that the way ecosystems should be functioning? "
Laramie, Wy – Health coverage for full time employees continues to drop in Wyoming. The Equality state policy center's Dan Neal says that despite job growth in the state only 42 percent of companies offer health insurance in the state a decrease of eight percent in the last five years. "This is a trend nationally as well as in Wyoming. This is going to force us to address this to make sure that everyone has affordable, quality health care."
Cheyenne, Wy – The Wyoming National Guard has been meeting or exceeding its recruitment and retention goals. Col. Brian Harmsen, deputy chief of staff of personnel for the Wyoming Army National Guard, says it's no longer a question of if but when Guard members will be deployed. But Harmsen says that's one of the reasons why some people are signing up for Guard duty. Harmsen says the Wyoming Army Guard has reached better than 98 percent of its recruitment goal. That's despite being told to hold
Cheyenne, Wy – The number of Wyoming high school students who say they binge drink is down significantly from 30 years ago. Binge drinking is defined as having five or more drinks at a time. A recent survey shows that fewer than half of Wyoming high school students reported binge drinking in the previous month. That's compared to 70 percent of high schoolers in 1978. The Wyoming Alcohol Use Issues Survey also shows that most Wyoming parents will not allow their children to drink more than a few sips of alcohol before they turn 21.
Cheyenne, Wy – The Wyoming Department of Health says 10people were infected with West Nile Virus in the state this summer, down from 184 cases last year. This year's cases included four in Fremont County, three in Goshen County, two in Platte County and one in Laramie County. Most people don't develop any symptoms from the disease, but it can cause fever, headache and swollen lymph nodes. In extreme cases, it can be fatal. The virus is transferred by mosquitoes. The health department says West Nile Virus led to two