Last year a couple of Wyoming judges ruled that state law does not have specific penalties for marijuana-laced edibles. Because of that, a legislative committee raced to try and address the issue. Wyoming law enforcement officials say that ever since Colorado legalized marijuana they are seeing more of it than ever before. But lawmakers got hung up on how much edible marijuana constitutes a felony and the bill died. As Wyoming Public Radio’s Bob Beck reports…the issue is far from settled.
The number of schools in the state that randomly drug-test students is on the rise. Right now, Sheridan County One is among the Wyoming school districts trying to put a policy in place. Administrators see testing as a way to keep students away from dangerous substances, but as Wyoming Public Radio’s Aaron Schrank reports, the drug-testing trend is not without controversy.
Spend a weekend in Jackson Hole and odds are good your restaurant server is from Ukraine or Moldova, while the housekeeper at your hotel could hail from Peru, or Argentina. Many are students in Jackson on what’s called a J-1 visa. The program is supposed to allow to experience American culture, and earn a little money while they do it. But Jackson has struggled to fill its seasonal jobs, with local labor or through guest worker visas. So over the last decade businesses there have increasingly come to rely on J-1 visas to fill vital employment needs. Wyoming Public Radio’s Miles Bryan reports.
Family members and law enforcement in Gillette fear that the bullying of a gay man in Gillette may have led to a suicide. The issue has once again drawn concern about a variety of issues…including the treatment of LGBT people in the state and whether a hate crime is needed. Jason Marsden is the Executive Director of the Matthew Shepard Foundation and we caught up with him this week as he spoke in Gillette.
In an effort to strengthen Bighorn Sheep herds in the Seminoe-Ferris Mountains near Rawlins, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department has relocated 24 sheep from Devils Canyon. Transplants from Oregon in 2009 and 2010 and from Devils Canyon near Lovell in 2010 helped establish the Seminoe-Ferris Herd, but blizzards and years of wildfires reduced the herd. Game and Fish Wildlife Biologist Gregg Hiatt joins me to explain that the previous transplant has been a success…but they want to build on that.
Let's face it: mountain lions are scary…the lone hunter stalking its prey, its scream in the night. But a research project shows that much of our fear is based on mythology and not science. Wyoming Public Radio’s Melodie Edwards took a trek with the Puma Project's lead scientist to find out how they've been recording the intimate lives of mountain lions.
Recently the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service announced that it was moving forward with a delisting of the Grizzly Bear. As part of that delisting Wyoming is to come up with a management plan that could include the hunting of Grizzly Bears. The Game and Fish Commission will soon be holding hearings across the state to discuss that issue. Game and Fish Director Scott Talbott joins us to discuss that option. He says getting federal officials to once again delist the Grizzly is good news.
This May, the University of Wyoming will award an honorary doctoral degree to Tom Bell. Bell is 92 years old, a writer, World War II Veteran, and renowned conservationist. In 1967 he founded the Wyoming Outdoor Council and in 1970 started High Country News. I asked him how conservation has changed since he first came to Wyoming.
A diversity of ideas is good—even essential—for democracy. But during this political season, essayist Erin Pryor Ackerman sees a danger when viewpoints get polarized and rhetoric becomes vitriolic.