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New rail access boosts Cheyenne industrial park

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Developers say new railroad connections are making a Cheyenne industrial park an attractive place for companies to set up shop. Within a few weeks, the Swan Ranch industrial park officially will be connected to the Burlington Northern Santa Fe and the Union Pacific railroads. Economic development officials say Swan Ranch has attracted more than a dozen businesses in the past four years. Now, the Casper Star-Tribune reports (http://bit.ly/1sXig9K) the new rail access will open up another three square miles of land to possible development. The industrial park is near the intersection of Interstates 25 and 80 but Scott Sutherland with Casper-based Granite Peak Development says rail access can help make the cost of shipping long distances insignificant. Many businesses moving to Swan Ranch are tied to the booming oil industry. … Read entire article »

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BLM planning prescribed burns in southwest Wyoming

ROCK SPRINGS, Wyo. (AP) — The U.S. Bureau of Land Management plans to conduct more than 7,000 acres of prescribed burns to improve wildlife habitat in southwest Wyoming. The burns will take place this fall and early winter and target mountain mahogany, bitterbrush and sagebrush habitat at Iron Mountain and Middle Canyon. Burns at Smith Mountain and Upper Separation Creek will encourage the growth of aspen trees. Chris Otto with the BLM tells the Casper Star-Tribune (http://bit.ly/1B9XubZ ) many of the areas to be burned haven’t seen natural disturbance from fire in a long time. The BLM says people should avoid areas where prescribed burns are taking place. … Read entire article »

Search on for fisherman missing at Flaming Gorge

MANILA, Utah (AP) — Crews from Utah and Wyoming are searching for a 69-year-old fisherman who fell out of a motorboat during a windy day at Flaming Gorge Reservoir. Daggett County officials say they were informed about 4 p.m. Monday that the small boat had capsized on the choppy waters. A 62-year-old woman was able to get out of the water, but the man she was with is still missing. The two had been traveling from Antelope Flats area toward the Lucerne Marina at the time of the accident. Divers from Uintah County and the Utah Department of Public Safety were expected to help in the search Tuesday, as well as Utah park rangers and crews from Wyoming’s … Read entire article »

Wind River Casino has their biggest winner ever

(RIVERTON, Wyo.)  The Wind River Casino announced today that they had their biggest winner ever this weekend. Jackie Dorothy of the Wind River Casino in Riverton said a Dubois resident playing a machine on Sunday at 2:55pm hit the jackpot. Dorothy declined to name the winner, however she said the Dubois resident won $477,489. … Read entire article »

‘Quiet zone’ being created near Cheyenne hotels

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Visitors to Cheyenne should soon be able to get a better night’s sleep thanks to a “quiet zone” being created at Wyoming’s busiest railroad crossing. Work is beginning Tuesday to make it more difficult for vehicles to sneak around the closed crossing gates at West Lincolnway and Southwest Drive. That should reduce need for freight trains to blow their horns at drivers multiple times, making for quieter nights at the strip of hotels and motels along West Lincolnway. The Wyoming Tribune-Eagle reports that a barrier wall will be built down the center of the Union Pacific crossing. The crossing will be closed for about three weeks during the construction. It will cost $183,300, which … Read entire article »

Native American politics heat up in Wyoming

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — American Indians in Wyoming increasingly are asserting themselves, fighting for more say on environmental issues and fielding more candidates in state and local elections. Gary Collins, tribal liaison between the Northern Arapaho Tribe and the state, said he counts seven Native American candidates in legislative and local elections around the Wind River Indian Reservation this year, up from three in 2012. Democratic State Rep. Patrick Goggles of Ethete announced this year he’s not seeking re-election to the Legislature after 10 years of representing a district centered on the reservation. Goggles is a Northern Arapaho and the only Indian in the Legislature. He says it’s critical the tribes continue to have a political presence … Read entire article »

Wyoming maintains low unemployment through 1Q 2014

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming’s unemployment rate was well below the national average over the first three months of this year. The state Economic Analysis Division says unemployment in Wyoming in the first quarter was 4.2 percent. That’s compared to 6.7 percent nationwide. State economist Wenlin Lieu says people should be optimistic about the labor market in Wyoming. He says the economy in and around Cheyenne, particularly, is strong with plenty of construction work under way and strong retail sales. Andrea Hixon with the state Department of Workforce Services tells the Wyoming Tribune Eagle that job availability in the Cheyenne area is shifting from an employer’s market to a job-seeker’s market. … Read entire article »

Group halts plan to sue over Sheridan fluoridation

SHERIDAN, Wyo. (AP) — Opponents of fluoridation say they’re no longer planning to sue the city of Sheridan but aren’t backing away from trying to block the addition of fluoride to the city’s water supply. Erin Adams is a member of the group Clean Water Sheridan. She says the group plans to continue gathering petition signatures asking the Sheridan City Council not to add fluoride to the water. Sheridan was among the first U.S. cities to fluoridate its water in the early 1950s. The city abandoned the practice after a 1953 referendum opposing fluoridation. City officials tell The Sheridan Press (http://bit.ly/Y8PeuZ ) the 1953 vote was advisory only and can’t prevent fluoridation after a hiatus of more than … Read entire article »

UW linebacker earns Mountain West honor

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming senior linebacker Mark Nzeocha (en-ZAH’-chuh) has been named the Mountain West Conference defensive player of the week. Nzeocha led the Cowboys over Montana with 12 tackles, including eight solo tackles, one sack for six yards, one tackle for a loss and three pass breakups. The senior was part of a Wyoming defense that gave up only 253 yards of total offense to Montana, including allowing only 42 rushing yards. Nzeocha’s sack came on a critical series in the third quarter, with the Cowboys trailing 6-3 and Montana on the Wyoming 36-yard line. On fourth down and eight yards to go, Nzeocha sacked Montana quarterback Jordan Johnson for a six-yard loss. Wyoming’s offense scored on … Read entire article »

Oil drilling pace keeps picking in Wyoming

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — The pace of oil drilling continues to pick up in Wyoming. Fifty-six rigs are actively drilling for oil and gas in the state right now, up from 46 rigs this time last year. Of those currently active rigs, 36 are drilling for oil, up from 28 oil rigs this time last year. Much of the new drilling is in Laramie County. The Casper Star-Tribune reports Laramie County is averaging five rigs, up from two this time last year. The biggest share of oil drilling continues to be in east-central Wyoming. Campbell County is averaging 12 rigs, up from 11 a year ago. The count of 13 active rigs in Converse County is unchanged from … Read entire article »