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News

But they’re not immune to problems seen elsewhere in Wyoming

While the state of Wyoming was experiencing a windfall in mineral revenue from 2000 to 2008, the percentage of children living in poverty in the state also declined, according to a report released last month.

However, the 2010 WY Kids Count report illustrates that the welfare of Wyoming’s children in the state worsened in several other areas, such as an increase in the teen birth rate, births to unmarried mothers, low birthweight babies, infant mortality and the teen death rate.

Although the Inspector General’s Office has stated in a report that rounding up wild horses is necessary to control overpopulation, the Bureau of Land Management, the agency responsible for the equines, said the current and costly program is not sustainable.

According to the December 2010 report from the Inspector General, as of October 2010, the bureau was keeping approximately 26,400 horses in longterm holding facilities and 11,400 in short term holding.

2011 Legislature convenes today

Healthcare, highway issues considered

The 2011 Legislature will consider several healthcare issues this year, such as preventing insurance fraud and creating health insurance exchanges. Some consider ways to meet requirements set by the federal healthcare reform law, while other measures would exempt the state and its residents from provisions in the federal law.

House Bill 2 would move back the sunset date the newly-created Wyoming Health Insurance Pool from June 30 this year to June 30, 2015.

Striving to preserve native fish, particularly Yellowstone cutthroat trout, a native fish conservation plan is proposed in Yellowstone.

At a meeting Thursday evening in Cody, Yellowstone Park personnel made their pitch to an audience of 33 that supported the plan for the most part. The plan will, among other things, step up lake trout removal in Yellowstone Lake, but the public wants to see results.

Sisters sentenced in cat hoarding case

A former Powell resident has been barred from owning any cats or other animals in connection with a summer hoarding case where officials seized 157 cats from a rural Powell home.

Last Tuesday, Maurielena “Mimi” Nesbit pleaded guilty to 14 misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty in Park County’s Circuit Court. As part of a plea agreement, another three counts of cruelty were dismissed.

Commuting from Old Faithful

Nurse travels seven hours from Yellowstone to work in Cody

Living in Yellowstone National Park is not an ordinary experience, and traveling to and from work outside the park is anything but ordinary.

For Ginger Townsend, commuting to work in the winter means a seven-hour journey — one hour of that by snowmobile.

Townsend, a nurse in the Emergency Room at West Park Hospital, lives at Old Faithful in Yellowstone. But she loves her job enough that the arduous trip is worth it, she said.

 

A former member of the Powell Volunteer Fire Department has been sentenced to serve three and a half to five years in prison for downloading child pornography on a fire department computer in late 2009.

On Wednesday, 44-year-old Dwayne “Doug” Leichner pleaded no contest to five felony counts of possession of child pornography and received the prison sentence from Park County District Court Judge Steven Cranfill. Leichner must also pay $835 in crime victim compensation and fees as part of his sentence.

Whether they announce soup specials, point toward candy, advertise cell phones, offer flowers, sell sandwiches or call attention to coffee, signs located on downtown city sidewalks are now legal in Powell.

On Monday night, Powell city councilmen approved an ordinance allowing business signs on city-owned sidewalks, as long as signs have permits and meet certain conditions.

Fire lights up New Year’s Eve

Flames already were coming through the roof of a storage building behind the Glad Tidings Assembly of God Church by the time firefighters were called to the scene on New Year’s Eve.

The fire call first came in at 9:36 p.m. as a pole on fire behind the church on Seventh Street between Gilbert and Hamilton streets, but dispatchers at the Cody Law Enforcement Center soon advised responding firefighters that it actually was a pole barn on fire.

As state legislators gather in Cheyenne for the 2011 session this month, Park County commissioners have asked, as outgoing Commission Chairman Jill Shockley Siggins put it, “that they not forget us” in dealing with landfills.

In a recent letter sent to lawmakers locally and across the state, county commissioners asked lawmakers to “continue to keep local communities and counties in your thoughts and legislative actions” as efforts to clean up and regionalize the state’s landfills continue.

 

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