Casper, Wy – It was once a contaminated refinery site, and now golf and businesses will be located there. Friday Casper officials will officially take over the site from B-P Amoco officials and welcome the new Multi use public commons and Golf course that will be located there. Casper Economic Development Director Chris Manegold says it will make it easier to recruit business.
Cheyenne, Wy – Wyoming Teacher Salaries continue to remain below average. According to the National Education Association, teachers earned an average of 46-thousand-752 dollars last year. But in Wyoming,teachers earned an average of 39-thousand-532-dollars, ranking the state 36th -- the same as last year. Wyoming's rate of increase was one-point-seven percent -- below the national rate. An official with the National Conference of State Legislatures says that in many states, lawmakers faced financial pressures and focused on the hardest-to-fill teaching positions.
Casper, WY – As Wyoming's new split-estate law is set to go into effect, the federal government may be ready to fight the state over its implementation. The law is intended to protect landowners, who don't own the mineral rights under their land. Don Likwartz is the Supervisor of the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, which recently received a letter from Bureau of Land Management Director Kathleen Clarke. Likwartz says the tone of that letter was that the split-estate law would not be applicable to lands where the federal government owns the minerals.
Cheyenne, Wy – While an Audit of the State Department of Education alleges some improprieties, the State Superintendent says it was poorly done, and is overreaching. Trent Blankenship called a news conference to say that the audit was another political attack on him and his department. Blankenship says the audit was supposed to look at whether the Education department bypassed the competitive bidding process while leasing a building in Riverton.
Gillette, Wy – State Representative Jeff Wasserburger cannot be considered as a candidate for the state's upcoming vacancy in the State Superintendent of Public Instruction's office. Trent Blankenship is resigning that post August 1st. And Wasserburger, the House Education Chairman, was among those interested. But the Attorney General ruled Wednesday that it would violate the state constitution for a sitting legislator to be appointed to a state office. Wasserburger accepts the decision, but has doubts about whether this is the intent of that constitutional clause.
Washington, DC – The US Department of the Interior released a study Tuesday examining the impacts of wind energy development across 11 western states, including Wyoming. Environmental, economic, and social impacts were all considered. At a press conference releasing the study, Assistant Interior Secretary Rebecca Watson said it will further wind energy permitting and paves the way for 3,200 megawatts of wind energy to be produced by 2025, enough power for one million homes. 11% of that is expected to be produced in Wyoming.
Sheridan, WY – Most of the court files in a brutal Sheridan murder case have been unsealed. District Judge John Brackley ordered that files in the case against Stephen Hyatt shall be open except for psychological reports, motions to suppress evidence and any evidence excluded by the judge. Judge Brackley closed the entire file in this case in May, saying it was to protect the defendant's right to a fair trial. The Sheridan Press, however, successfully argued that closing all the files violated the public's right to follow the case.