Cheyenne, Wy – Governor Dave Freudenthal's two vetoes this session will stand. The Wyoming Senate voted Wednesday to uphold both vetoes. One struck down a bill that would have given more power to the state Land Board. The House voted to override, but the Senate fell far short of the two-thirds necessary to override the governor. That means the governor still retains authority to hire and fire the state lands director.
Cheyenne, Wy – A committee of representatives from the state House and Senate has adopted the House version of the wildlife trust fund bill, but it's possible there could be more work to do. Senator Bruce Burns says they agreed to the house bill because there was no room to compromise. He says the House version of this bill is weak, but he thinks it is better than no bill.
Laramie, Wy – A federal judge in Montana today ordered the U-S border to remain closed to Canadian cattle imports. The U-S Department of Agriculture planned to open the border to fuller trade beginning Monday. U-S District Judge Richard Cebull, in Billings, granted a temporary court order preventing that. His ruling came after a lawyer for a livestock group said it would be insane to resume imports with so many unanswered questions about mad-cow disease.
Cheyenne, Wy – Vehicle passengers will still be allowed to drink on Wyoming highways following the final defeat of the open container bill. The House voted the bill down after the two chambers were unable to reach a compromise between the Senate and House versions of the bill. The hang-up was over drinking in recreational vehicles. The House wanted to ban alcohol from RVs except for wine .while the Senate wanted to allow drinking in RVs.
Cheyenne, Wy – After making several changes to the bill, including limiting the admissibility of evidence in medical malpractice cases, the state Senate approved the bill setting up a medical review panel. The admissibility issue was the heart of the debate. The Senate had originally supported making all evidence from the review panel admissible in any trial. Senator Charles Scott argued that is the only way to weed out cases. But the Senate change leaves admissibility up to judges.
Cheyenne, Wy – What many are calling one of the most innovative pieces of legislation in years passed the House Tuesday. The bill would put 500 million dollars into a higher education endowment and scholarship program. The most talked about portion of the bill is the 400 million dollar merit scholarship program for students. There is a committee being set up to iron out the rough edges of the bill.
Cheyenne, Wy – The legislature is still trying to sort out the details of the bill that would outlaw open containers of alcohol in vehicles. The bill almost died for the session Tuesday, when the House failed to agree with what a conference committee came up with. Representative Jane Warren says the issue was whether Recreational Vehicles should be exempted from the law. After some discussion the House and Senate have appointed a free committee to try and rewrite some of the language in the bill. Warren says it would be a huge disappointment if the bill is killed.
Laramie, Wy – Wednesday the high school in Ethete is going to open a teen health clinic. It is part of a pilot project in six Wyoming school districts to try and improve the health of students and teachers. The school health coordinator in Ethete, Marcy Tepper says the clinic will be staffed with a doctor and a nurse and should be very beneficial. Other districts in the pilot project are working to get more nutritious food to students and increase physical activity. Some are also working on staff wellness projects.