Wyoming News Exchange 

March 24, 2023 Wyoming Briefs


March 23, 2023

Barrasso co-sponsors bill to grow the mining workforce

CHEYENNE (WNE) — On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., ranking member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, and ENR Chairman Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., introduced the Mining Schools Act of 2023.

This bipartisan legislation is designed to improve opportunities for university and college mining and geological programs to prepare students to meet America’s future energy needs.

“Unleashing American mining is good for our economy and good for the state of Wyoming. It’s also critical to boosting America’s energy security,” Barrasso said in a news release. “That can’t happen unless we continue to recruit and train the next generation of American workers.”

The Mining Schools Act of 2023 would establish a grant program for mining schools to receive funds in order to recruit students and carry out studies, research projects or demonstration projects related to the production of minerals. It would also establish an advisory board for oversight.

This story was published on March 24, 2023.

Applications for state centennial ranches open

GILLETTE (WNE)— Families celebrating 100 years of owning and operating the same farm or ranch can apply for centennial status with the state’s historic preservation office.

The Wyoming State Historic Preservation Office is now accepting applications for this year’s Centennial Farm and Ranch recipients.

More than 300 families have been recognized through the program that hosts a celebration to honor the families and ranch, according to the press release.

The program began in 2006 and an annual yearbook is published that features the histories and photos of the families. The families play a key role in preserving the state’s heritage and have unique stories tied to family histories.

For more information, people can visit wyoshpo.wyo.gov/ or call Bethany Kelly at 307-777-7530. Applications must be postmarked by July 1.

This story was published on Mar. 24, 2023.


Sundance man charged with aggravated assault and child abuse

SUNDANCE (WNE) — Josh Idler of Sundance faces a series of charges related to reports of violence and abuse, including two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of child abuse.

The allegations come from a series of interviews conducted with a number of alleged victims, which took place on February 27 and concerned incidents that allegedly took place between November, 2019 and February, 2022.

Idler faces two counts of child abuse for allegedly intentionally or recklessly inflicting physical injury on a child under the age of 18 as a person responsible for that child’s welfare, a felony carrying a maximum penalty of ten years of imprisonment, a $10,000 fine or both.

He also faces two counts of aggravated assault and battery, a felony with the same maximum penalty, for allegedly attempting to push a person out of a moving vehicle and kicking a woman he knew was pregnant.

He also faces two misdemeanor charges of battery: intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury to another by use of physical force.

Idler has also been charged with two misdemeanor counts of unlawful contact: touching another person in a rude, insolent or angry manner without intentionally using sufficient physical force to cause bodily injury to another, for allegedly throwing a shovel at one male victim and hitting a second victim’s head against a truck.

Idler has two previous convictions for child abuse in 2021 and two previous convictions for domestic battery in 2021.

This story was published on March 23, 2023.


USDA offers disaster aid to Wyoming agricultural producers

CHEYENNE (WNE) — Agricultural operations in Idaho, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming have been significantly impacted by recent snowstorms. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has technical and financial assistance available to help farmers and livestock producers recover from these adverse weather events.

Impacted producers should contact their local USDA Service Center to report losses and learn more about program options available to assist in their recovery from crop, land, infrastructure, and livestock losses and damages.

“We stand with our producers who have worked tirelessly in these severe conditions to keep livestock fed and to protect crops from Mother Nature’s wrath,” said Robert Bonnie, undersecretary for Farm Production and Conservation, in a news release.

Producers who experience livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality may be eligible for the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP).

The Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP) compensates eligible producers for feed and grazing losses.

FSA also offers a variety of direct and guaranteed farm loans, including operating and emergency farm loans, to producers unable to secure commercial financing.

Additional USDA disaster assistance information can be found on farmers.gov, including USDA resources specifically for producers impacted by winter storms.

This story was published on March 23, 2023.


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