Commissioners crack under budget pressure

With Weston County facing potential cuts of as much as 25 percent, emotions ran high during a discussion of next fiscal year’s budget at the county commissioners’ Apr. 19 meeting.

A discussion of fuel tax revenues degenerated into acrimony, and Commissioner Marty Ertman moved to go into executive session before rescinding her motion.

“The reason I would like to go into executive session is that we seem to all have an interesting dynamic here that isn’t working,” she explained. “We have a dynamic between all of the elected officials. We have a dynamic among ourselves. We are pulling two ends against the middle here. I obviously have a personality that doesn’t get along with the other four.”

Council denies light funding

For the past three years, boys involved with the Babe Ruth League in Newcastle have not been able to play home games due to the condition of the local field, and Justin Tystad has made it his goal to improve the field’s condition. He reported to the Newcastle City Council on April 18 that the field has been completely reworked in recent months and is now at the point where games can be played on it, but he requested funding to be used in conjunction with a grant he has applied for from the Daniel’s Foundation to finish the project by installing new lighting for the field.

Tystad requested $30,000, but his request was denied after the council deadlocked on the issue in a 3-3 vote.

Tystad insisted that the lighting was needed to provide adequate playing opportunity for the local team, and to allow the group to host tournaments that they hope will bring a significant number of people to the community, but those council members who voted against funding for the project asserted that while the lighting may be needed to play evening games, the ability to play in the daytime already exists, and they indicated the belief that it would not be a responsible decision on their part to dedicate such a substantial sum to this type of project at a time when the city is experiencing revenue shortfalls.

Waste board talks merger

Members of the board of the Central Weston County Solid Waste Disposal District (Osage) appeared at the Apr. 20 meeting of the board of the countywide Weston County Solid Waste District where discussion centered on the potential future cooperation and even merger of the two entities.

The Central Weston County Solid Waste Disposal District, which serves the Osage area, is currently in the process of constructing a transfer station for shipment of garbage elsewhere, though Treasurer Cynthia Crabtree said 35 acres are available at their facility which could be still be potentially utilized for landfill purposes.

Worland-based Josh Myers, a representative of the Midwest Assistance Program, a non-profit that provides technical assistance and training to rural communities, was on hand for the meeting and spoke in favor of cooperation between the two landfill districts. He said making Osage a regional center for solid waste disposal could be a viable long-term goal.

Missing North Dakota man arrested here

Details available in the case of a missing Bismarck, N.D., man, who was arrested in Weston County by the Wyoming Highway Patrol, indicate he sought to embark on a two-month-long adventure and had left a note to that effect.

Twenty-two-year-old Payton Glasser was processed into the Weston County Detention Center on Apr. 11, and charged with speeding, eluding, and reckless driving, following a four-mile, high-speed pursuit in which speeds reached up to 105 mph, according to a WHP press release.

The WHP initially attempted to stop Glasser after he was clocked traveling at 84 mph in an area with a speed limit of 70 mph, the same press release indicated.

Cheney states her case for Congress

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Liz Cheney made appearances in Upton and Newcastle last Friday as part of her bid to win Wyoming’s at-large Congressional seat soon to be vacated by U.S. Representative Cynthia Lummis, who will not seek reelection.

Cheney, who has by far the most name recognition of any among the field of candidates vying for the position, gave her stances on a few key issues in speaking with the NLJ.

On federal pressure on the coal industry:

“I think it’s unprecedented what’s happening right now, which is that the Obama Administration has directly targeted a critically important American industry. It’s devastating in terms of what’s happened to us here in Northeast Wyoming, but it’s also an industry that’s fundamental for the nation, fundamental for our economy, fundamental for our national security.

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