April 26th, 2013

Cost of substance abuse in Wyoming is higher than expected
As it addressed issues concerning substance abuse, one thing the state never had were Wyoming specific numbers on the financial impact of substance abuse.  Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck reports that a recent study has found that the cost of alcohol, tobacco and drug abuse is staggering.

Is Wyoming warming to gaming?
For years, Wyoming has been timid when it comes to gambling. But things might be changing. With a casino on the Wind River reservation, an increase in poker clubs and the recent passage of a lottery bill, many are now wondering how far this issue will go. Wyoming Public Radio’s Sara Hossaini has more.

A conversation with new Democratic Party chair Pete Gosar
Pete Gosar of Laramie is the new chairman of the Wyoming Democratic Party. He says he’s optimistic that the party will be able to gain a better footing in the state in the future.

GOP soul-searching after November losses
National Republican leaders are doing some soul searching after suffering losses in November. Matt Laslo reports from Washington on what Wyoming Republican lawmakers think of the new effort.

New party chair optimistic about revitalizing Democrats
The new chairman of the Wyoming Democratic Party says he hopes that one day the state legislature will be controlled by Democrats.

Sweetwater County looks at sustainable growth
After decades of a boom and bust economy…officials in a town in Southwestern Wyoming believe they may have harnessed the erratic cycle into more sustainable economic growth. Wyoming Public Radio’s Amanda LeClaire has more.

Study says sage grouse have very limited tolerance for development
A study by the U.S. Geological Survey looks at the ecological conditions that sage grouse need in order to survive, and the amount of human disturbance they can tolerate. We’re joined now by Steve Knick, one of the report’s authors. He says the goal was to determine the basic requirements that sage grouse have.

Report says oversight of oil and gas development is insufficient; agencies says it’s not that simple
Oil and gas development in Wyoming has burgeoned in the last decade. The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality…the Bureau of Land Management…the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission…and sometimes other agencies are all responsible for inspecting the sites. Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov reports that some stakeholders say they’re not doing a good enough job monitoring operators. But agencies say it’s not that simple.

State prepares for the fire season
For the last month, state officials have expressed concern about Wyoming’s dry winter and the possibility of another bad fire season.  But with the moisture the state has recently received, the question is whether that concern has been reduced.  Bill Crapser is the state forester and he tells Bob Beck that having more moisture has helped.

Small movie theaters struggle to switch from film to digital
Going to the movies has been a favorite pastime since the dawn of film… but Hollywood studios expect to stop printing movies on actual film before the end of this year. They’re switching over to a digital format, which requires all-new equipment… and the cost of the transition is proving prohibitive for some small Wyoming theaters. Wyoming Public Radio’s Rebecca Martinez filed this report.