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Wyoming seeks advice on protecting Teton bighorn sheep herd
JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming officials plan a series of public meetings to help determine how to protect the last bighorn sheep in the Teton Range. They're seeking recommendations from the public on an issue that could lead to closing off more areas in western Wyoming to backcountry skiing. Research suggests backcountry skiing displaces sheep from some of their best habitat. The Jackson Hole News & Guide reports bighorn sheep used to be abundant in the Tetons but now number only about 100. They're divided into two sub-populations that don't mingle. The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is seeking specific recommendations from the public for how help the sheep.
Oil from federal lands tops 1B barrels as Trump eases rules
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Oil production from federally-managed lands and waters topped a record 1 billion barrels last year. That's up more than 13% from 2018 as the Trump administration eases rules on the industry and technological advances push development into new areas. Critics charge that the gains being made by energy companies come at the expense of the environment, with fewer safeguards to protect the land and wildlife from harm. Oil production royalties collected by the government totaled $7.5 billion in 2019. That's beneath record revenues in 2013, when crude prices topped $90 a barrel.
2003 LARAMIE SHOOTING-SENTENCE
Wyoming man gets up to 18 years for killing co-worker
LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — A judge has sentenced a man to up to 18 years in prison after he fatally shot his former co-worker in a Wyoming parking lot in 2003. The Laramie Boomerang reported Friday that Albany County District Court Judge Tori Kricken sentenced 41-year-old Fidel Serrano to 12-18 years after he pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter last year. Prosecutors say the first-degree murder charge was dropped in exchange for the plea. Authorities say Serrano and Galvan-Morales were co-workers at Rocky Mountain Forest Products in Laramie. Witnesses told police that Serrano shot Galvan-Morales two days after they got into a fight at a dance in Cheyenne.
Wyoming governor pledges to protect, promote fossil fuels
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Wyoming's governor says his state has enough savings to take time and be thoughtful about future spending cuts amid declining revenue from fossil fuels. Yet Republican Gov. Mark Gordon promised in his annual State of the State address Monday not to dither amid what he described as efforts by other states to boost renewable energy sources at the expense of the coal, oil and natural gas industries. Gordon promises to protect and promote those industries. The address by the first-term Republican kicks off a four-week legislative session dedicated primarily to the state budget. Budgeting has been tight amid a decade-long decline in revenue from natural gas extraction and coal mining.
AIR FORCE-DRUG PROBE
Air Force discloses drug investigation at nuke missile base
WASHINGTON (AP) — Air Force officials say airmen responsible for security at a strategic nuclear missile base are under investigation for marijuana use, which is illegal in the military. The officials are declining to disclose the number under investigation or provide other details, but they say the four-star general in charge of Air Force nuclear weapons flew to the base to hold a “no-notice” meeting to address the alleged misconduct by members of the 90th Security Forces Group. That is the same group in which investigators in 2016 cracked a drug ring involving the distribution and use of LSD, cocaine and other illegal drugs.
Feds providing $2.3M for repairs to irrigation system tunnel
GERING, Neb. (AP) — A federal agency intends to provide a $2.3 million loan to help pay for repairs to an irrigation system tunnel that collapsed last July, cutting off water to farmers in western Nebraska and eastern Wyoming. The loan will be in addition to a $3.8 million grant that Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has said the state will provide to the irrigation district. The collapse left more than 150 square miles of cropland without water at the peak of summer. Temporary repairs got the water flowing again by the end of August. Officials say permanent repairs are expected to cost about $16 million.
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