Ft. Washakie, WY – A proposed on-line charter school in Fremont county could eventually serve high school students from across Wyoming. Fremont County District 21 Superintendent Karl Berlin says his district currently has no high school. He says the plan calls for serving at-risk students or whose who may have dropped out of his school district. Berlin says his district already has most of the technological infrastructure in place to handle the virtual school. He says there may be some additional costs, but it would be cheaper than constructing a building.
Cheyenne, Wy – By overwhelming margins, the House and Senate have approved the state budget -- which will cover the next two years of state government services. Governor Freudenthal proceded to sign the budget, vetoing two sections. The House and Senate chose to let them stand. The budget bill, combined with other measures, would increase immediate state General Fund spending by an estimated 125-million dollars. Spending for the next biennium would increase by about 280-(M)-million dollars over the current level.
Buffalo Grove, IL – States, like Wyoming, could soon be using a tool that would let them test more animals for chronic wasting disease without increasing the cost. This week, the federal government approved use of a new chronic wasting test created by the Illinois company Prion Developmental Laboratories. PDL's Chief Scientific Officer Bob Peterson it costs about 75 dollars to run most CWD tests now. Theirs would be less the 30 dollars. Peterson admits their test isn't as sensitive as others, but thinks the expense difference makes up for the sensitivity difference.
Cheyenne, WY – Despite some new proposals, negotiators on the state budget bill still have not reached agreement and the holdup is still over funding to local government. After Senators rejected a proposal to put $60 million into local governments, Senators verbally opposed a reduced proposal from the House because it takes too much from the states main bank account, the general fund. Senator John Schiffer asked that $9 Million of the $50 million dollar proposal come from the business ready communities program. But that was rejected by house chairman Phil Nicholas.
Casper, WY – Crime scene testimony opened day two of the Casper murder trial of Dale Wayne Eaton. Eaton is charged with the 1988 kidnapping, rape and murder of 18 year old Lisa Marie Kimmel. The prosecution spent much of the morning submitting photographic and blood evidence collected from the alleged murder scene on Government Bridge, about 25 miles southwest of Casper. Retired Natrona County Sheriff's Department Detective Michael Sanford testified to seeing a large, fresh blood pool on the bridge after Kimmel's body was found downstream on the North Platte River.
Cheyenne, Wy – Squeezing more oil from Wyoming's aging fields is the goal of legislation sent to Governor Freudenthal Thursday. Senate File 61 authorizes two-point-four-million dollars from the General Fund to expand research at the Enhanced Oil Recovery Institute at the University of Wyoming. Freudenthal had asked for the funding in his State of the State Address, saying a "vast resource" remains untapped.
Torrington, WY – It's been more then two months since the first US case of mad cow disease was found. And the owner of the state's largest cattle sale barn says producers are still getting less money for cattle they sell. Lex Madden from Torrington Livestock Markets says beef prices bounced around a lot. Before the BSE case, cattle ready to go to slaughter sold for $94 per 100 pounds. That price plummeted to $74, then climbed up to $80 and $88, before falling back down into the 70s again. Madden says the volatility of the market has been tough on producers.