Sheridan, WY – Two hotel bars in Sheridan have decided to ban smoking. Holiday Inn General Manager Mark Demple said his hotel bar, Scooters, will go smoke free February first for the safety of employees and customers. Best Western Sheridan Center General Manager Ron Spence says he is making his bar, Main Street Tavern, smoke free January 22nd because smoking was costing him convention business. The Wyoming Legislature is considering a bill to ban smoking in public places, including restaurants and bars.
Cheyenne, WY – A Baptist church in Cheyenne has been vandalized for the second time in just over a month. Unity Missionary Baptist Church was ransacked in early December. Vandals visited again early Tuesday morning. Police say they have suspects this time...but nothing conclusive.
Cheyenne, WY – An effort to make Wyoming exempt from Daylight Saving Time has failed. A Senate committee defeated the bill offered by Senator Stan Cooper of Kemmerer. Cooper says Daylight Saving Time is a burden on people. But the bill failed 3 to 2. Cooper says he is disappointed, but he's glad they had public discussion about it.
Cheyenne, Wy – Two proposed constitutional amendments in the Legislature seek to change Wyoming's petitioning law. Currently sponsors of statewide ballot initiatives need 15 percent of the signatures of registered voters in each of two-thirds of Wyoming's counties. In other states judges have thrown out the geographical requirement. So state Representative Kermit Brown is sponsoring a bill that would change the geographical requirement from two-thirds of the state's 23 counties to two-thirds of the state's 30 senate districts.
Laramie, Wy – State veterans' organizations are banding together to form the Veterans' Coalition. Leaders say the purpose is to help connect veterans with benefits employment and health care. Members will include the veterans commission military and national guard representatives and other federal agencies. Currently wyoming's veterans' commission chair Lee Alley says veterans may have to visit several agencies throughout the state or may not learn about all the benefits available until it's too late.
Cheyenne, Wy – Property taxes are up statewide, and today (Monday) a committee of the legislature considered several ideas to offer some relief to property owners. The committee approved two bills. One gives a tax credit of around 140 dollars to people that own homes valued below the county median price. The committee also supported a bill to give combat veterans some property tax relief.
Cheyenne, Wy – If students want to get the highest amount of money from the new Hathaway Scholarship, they will need to take tougher classes. However, to receive any other amount of money, they simply need to meet current graduation standards. Late last year, education committee members had stressed the need for tougher classes to get Hathaway scholarship money. But last night, the house committee voted to soften those standards. Laramie Representative Kevin White supports the changes.
Cheyenne, Wy – Hundreds of people braved the cold for the annual Martin Luther King Junior-Equality Day march in Cheyenne. Among them was Liz Byrd. She is a former state lawmaker who fought for eight years to create the state holiday. Since then, Byrd she's been impressed with how much children have learned about Doctor King in school. Byrd says she saw the bill killed many times, in many different ways. It finally passed in 1989.