KKTY NEWS Jan 10 Archive



(Sun 1/31/10) - More modulars for Douglas Primary? Overcrowding in the youngest grades may lead to more modular classrooms at Douglas Primary School. Converse County School District #1 held a pair of forums in January to explore their options. A committee of more than 30 members met to discuss the problems and potential solutions to crowding issues at Douglas Primary School. That committee included parents, teachers, administrators, representatives from the City of Douglas and the School Facilities Commission and others. While many options were discussed, the group defined three top choices... moving 2nd grade to Douglas Intermediate and 5th grade to Douglas Middle School... moving kindergarten into modular classrooms at Priamry, and moving remaining 2nd grade classrooms into modulars. After considering pros and cons, the overwhelming choice of the committee was moving the remaining second grade classrooms into modulars at or near the Primary School. Overcrowding's not a new issue... District #1 was working toward construction of a new classroom addition at Douglas Intermediate a couple of years ago, but the State School Facilities Commission has informed District #1 administration that there won't be funding available for that project for at least the next two years.

(Sun 1/31/10) - Unemployment numbers in Converse County continue to creep up. December numbers were released by the Wyoming Department of Employment last week, and Converse County unemployment rates are now at 6.8 percent... that compares to 6.2 percent in November, and 3.1 percent in December of 2008. Our 6.8 percent is still below the state average of 7.5 percent and the national average of 10 percent.

(Mon 1/25/10) - 9:35p Decision upheld... The Glenrock Town Council has upheld the firing of two police officers who chased and Tasered a 76-year-old man driving a tractor in a town parade. The town council voted tonight to uphold last year's terminations of former Officer Michael Kavenius and former Sgt. Paul Brown. Kavenius shocked Bud Grose five times with a Taser during Glenrock's annual Deer Creek Days Parade last August. Police say Grose was driving an antique tractor in the parade and disobeyed Kavenius' traffic command. Brown pulled a police vehicle in front of Grose's tractor, and the tractor bumped it. Neither former officer was present at the council meeting. Last year a lawyer representing the two said they didn't violate any police policies or procedures.

(Mon 1/25/10) - 9:30p The Douglas City Council has moved a step closer to a water rate increase. At tonight's meeting, the council approved on first reading an ordinance amending water rates and charges. Acting City Administrator Forrest Neuerberg explained that the increase would only be on the actual water used... audio here

That's a 14 percent rise in the cost of water, with the same percentage rise applied to the tiered rates above 30 thousand gallons a month. An average homeowner using 6 thousand gallons a month would see their water bill go up about a dollar and a half. Monthly customer service charges and demand charges would not go up. Council approved the increase on first reading last night. The ordinance has to be approved two more times before it would go into effect.

(Mon 1/25/10) - The Town of Glenrock has scheduled a hearing to consider an appeal from two police officers who were fired after they chased down and Tasered an elderly tractor driver during a parade last summer. The Town Council is scheduled to meet in closed session tonight to consider the appeal from Officer Michael Kavenius and Sgt. Paul Brown. The council will consider the appeal in a closed session, but is scheduled to announce its decision publicly. A state review of the incident says the officers shocked Bud Grose with a Taser after he disregarded a traffic command near the end of the town's Deer Creek Days parade while riding on his tractor.

(Mon 1/25/10) - A busy agenda tonight for the Douglas City Council. At tonight's regularly-scheduled meeting, the council will ask for input from the public regarding attributes or goals for a new police chief. Chief Lori Emmert's retirement is set for February 5th. DPD Sergeant Ron Casalenda was named acting Police Chief last Wednesday. The Council tonight will also consider the potential for holding some of the council's meetings during daytime hours. The City Council's meeting's are currently held on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of the month at 7pm. Council will also continue to grapple with water issues, hearing on the first of three readings an ordinance that would raise water rates for those who use larger amounts of water. Council will also continue a discussion on rates charged for bulk water purchase, and will discuss the Douglas Municipal Pool. The pool & water park has been operated under contract by the Converse County School District #1, but that agreement is ending. Tonight's council work session is set for 6:30pm... the City Council meeting is at 7. Both are open to the public in the council chambers at Douglas City Hall. Council meetings are also broadcast live on Communicom Cable channel 61. The complete agenda and packet for tonight's meeting is available online at cityofdouglaswy.com.

(Mon 1/25/10) - Taking a dip for a good cause... Douglas's first Jackalope Jump for Special Olympics was a big success. Ron Casalenda was one of the organizers of the event... he said he hoped to get 10 jumpers and raise a couple of thousand dollars. Friday afternoon, 30 jumpers, many in costume, took a quick dip in a cool pool on the practice field at Douglas High School. $7,253.84 was the final total raised to benefit the Wyoming Special Olympics program. Lots more great photos here!

(Wed 1/20/10) - Well over 150 people filled the conference room and the hallway at the Converse County Courthouse last night as the County Planning and Zoning Committee held a public hearing on industrial development in the mountains of southern Converse County. A variety of opinions were heard from those who would use regulations and zoning to determine what kind of growth goes on in different parts of the county, as well as those who spoke in favor of the rights of property owners to do what they wish with their land. After the hearing, Diemer True with the Northern Laramie Range Alliance said that they asked again last night for a 90 day moratorium on all industrial development in the mountains south and west of I-25... audio here

True said that his group will continue to work towards regulations for development in the mountains... audio here

Planning and Zoning Committee chair Bobbie Larsen said they want to digest what they heard at last night's hearing before they move ahead... audio here

When the Converse County Comission voted down the second moratorium request earlier this month, Commissioner Jim Willox noted that regardless of the outcome of that vote, the Commission was committed to dealing with the issues behind the request.

(Tue 1/19/10) - What do you think? While the Converse County Commission has already said no a second time to a moratorium on heavy industrial development in southern Converse County, the County Planning and Zoning Committee will still take public input. At last month's P&Z meeting, the committee voted to forward the moratorium to the County Commissioners. Committee CHair Bobbie Larsen says thay also voted at the same time to hold a public hearing... audio here

At their regular meeting earlier this month, the County Commissioners voted unanimously against a moratorium. Larsen says there's currently no moratorium proposal on the table, the Planning and Zoning will still hold the public hearing tonight... audio here

Larsen says tonight's hearing should continue the conversation about how we want to proceed... audio here

Tonight's County Planning & Zoning Committee meeting and the public hearing are set for 7pm tonight in the community room in the basement of the Converse County Courthouse in Douglas. The meeting and the hearing are open to the public.

(Mon 1/18/10) - A new contract... Union utility workers at three Wyoming power plants have voted to accept a three-year contract offer from Rocky Mountain Power Co. and avert a possible strike. Rocky Mountain Power spokesman Jeff Hymas says the nearly 600 members of Utility Workers Union of America Local 127 approved the contract Friday night. Contract negotiations began in August. The union had rejected two previous offers. Salt Lake City-based Rocky Mountain Power wouldn't release details of the contract. The union represents employees at the Dave Johnston Plant near Glenrock here in Converse County, the Jim Bridger Plant east of Rock Springs, and the Wyodak Plant near Gillette, as well as some transmission and distribution employees. Rocky Mountain Power serves about 132,000 utility customers in Wyoming and employs about 1,400 workers in the state.

(Thu 1/14/10) - Lusk residents OK in Haiti... A medical team with people from South Dakota, North Dakota and Wyoming that has been in Haiti since Jan. 7 is safe after a devastating earthquake there. The team of 12 people is with the Dakotas Conference of the United Methodist Church. Spokesman Jason Currie-Olson in South Dakota says team members were able to call after the quake using either a cell phone or satellite phone to say they were OK - but that has been the extent of communication. The team members are from Hot Springs and Mitchell in South Dakota, Bismarck in North Dakota and Lusk in Wyoming.

(Tue 1/12/10) - The City of Douglas has new legal council. The City Council last night named Peggy Trent of Laramie to serve as Douglas City Attorney. Trent is a partner in the law firm of Trent and Wilkerson, has served as a government attorney for 18 years, and has worked for the Wyoming State Attorney General's office representing the Department of Family Services, the Department of Corrections and Governor Dave Freudenthal's office. Trent also served as Laramie's City Attorney for four years, and currently represents the towns of Hanna and Saratoga in current litigation. Trent's husband is a professor at the University of Wyoming, and Trent also teaches at UW. In last night's pre-meeting work session, council members interviewed Trent, who said she felt that working for Douglas from Laramie wouldn't be an issue... audio here

The Council also interviewed two other candidates, John Henley of Casper and HR Johnston of Douglas. After an hour long council meeting, the council adjourned to a two-hour long executive session, then returned to vote unanimously to offer the job to Trent. She'll replace local lawyer Scott Peasley, who resigned effective January 1st. Peasley had served as Douglas city attorney since August of 2009.

(Mon 1/11/10) - Union utility workers at three Wyoming power plants will begin voting today on a third contract offer from Rocky Mountain Power Company. Members of the Utility Workers Union of America Local 127 overwhelmingly voted to turn down the power company\rquote s contract offers in November and December. The union has been working under a three-year contract approved in 2004. The contract was extended for two years by the union in 2007. Results of the union vote are expected to be made available to the company on Jan. 15. The union represents about 587 employees in Wyoming, including workers at the Dave Johnston plant at Glenrock, the Jim Bridger plant east of Rock Springs, and the Wyodak plant east of Gillette \emdash as well as numerous transmission line workers across the state.

(Mon 1/4/10) - The Bureau of Land Management has announced the latest possible routes for a new power line that would stretch from Glenrock south to near Medicine Bow, then west across Wyoming to western Idaho. The BLM said Monday that the new routes will be included in its draft environmental impact statement for the Gateway West Transmission Line Project. The document is set to be released this summer. Margaret Ohler with Rocky Mountain Power explains what's in this latest proposal... audio here

That 3rd powerline is the 1E route that drew so much attention from landowners and others when it was originally proposed theough a new corridor that would have run directly south from Glenrock and down the Old Ft Fetterman Road through Downey Park across the Laramie Range. The latest proposal would take the 1E line down the already existing corridor that runs southwest of Glenrock across the Laramies into southeast Natrona County, then down through Seminoe Basin along the southwestern foothills of the mountains. Ohler said that today's announcement was just one more step in the process... audio here

This summer, the BLM will publish a draft environmental impact statement on the project, there will be an official comment period for the public, and a final enviromental impact state will follow the comment period. Rocky Mountain Power and Idaho Power are pursuing the $2 billion, 1,150-mile line to carry wind and other power to their customers in Wyoming, Idaho and other western states. They hope to complete the project by 2014. The companies and BLM announced in July that they were delaying the siting process for a few months to try to address concerns of some landowners and local governments. The map and other pertinent information is available online at www.gatewaywestproject.com.


And in Sports...

(Sun 1/31/10) - Bulldogs bite... Douglas basketball teams got bit by the Alliance Bulldogs Saturday afternoon. The LadyCats had no answer for Alliance senior Jordan Hooper, who scored 27 of the Bulldogs' 47 points. Hooper has signed to play for the Nebraska Cornhuskers this fall. The Lady Bulldogs beat Douglas 47-42. Cassie Igo led Douglas with 12 points... Ragan Scott hit for 10. In the late game, Douglas and Alliance were tied at 27 at the half, but Bulldogs senior Mike Peltz had a 14 point second half to lead the Bulldogs to a 14 point win... it was Alliance 62, Douglas 48. Peltz led all scorers with 19 points... Douglas was paced by Hayden Barker with 17. The Bearcats host Torrington this Friday night.

(Fri 1/29/10) - Cats split with the Bison... in Friday night basketball action the girls lose and the boys win against Buffalo. In the early game, the Lady Bison took a 5-point lead into the halftime locker room on a 3 point shot by Austin Dailey, and held on to beat Douglas 47-41. Ragan Scott had 13 points for the LadyCats and Cassie Igo added 12, but it wasn't enough to get Douglas into the win column. In the late game, the Bearcats came out and smashed the Bison 24-17 in the first quarter behind three 3's from Hayden Barker and 4 buckets by Mitch Espeland... the Cats led 44-29 at the half, and went on to beat the 2nd-ranked Bison 70-60. The win moves the Bearcats' record to 11-4, 6-2 in 3A East conference play. The Bison fall to 9-4, 5-2. The Douglas LadyCats loss leaves them 10-5, 5-3... the #1-ranked LadyBison are 9-3, 6-0. The Cats and LadyCats host a non-conference doubleheader with Alliance, Nebraska tomorrow afternoon. Varsity girls play at 4:30... varsity boys at 6... both games live on KKTY-FM and on the internet at kktyonline.com.

(Mon 1/25/10) - Bearcats wrestlers dominated the Buffalo Duals. Over the weekend, the Cats went 5-1 against 3A and 4A opponents. Douglas opened with a 54-24 win over Sheridan Friday night, then beat Worland 49-30. The only loss of the weekend was to Powell, 24-46. Saturday, Douglas beat Cody 66-15, Lander 49-21, and Laramie 76-6. Douglas wrestlers Pierre Etchemendy, Colter McNare and Joe Lake all went undefeated at 6-0 over the weekend. The Bearcats wrestling team is now 21-5 on the season. Douglas duals at Buffalo on Thursday afternoon.

(Sun 1/24/10) - LadyCats win a pair... Bearcats split... 3A East basketball action Friday night, the LadyCats jumped out to an early lead and beat Thermopolis 64-47. Douglas was led by freshman Molly Kreycik with 14 points... Ragan Scott hits three 3's on her way to 11 points... Lindsay White and Cassie Igo hit 10 each. In the nitecap, the Bearcats defended a 20-point fourth quarter surge by the Bobcats as Douglas beat Thermopolis 69-66. Cohner Marker leads Douglas with 21 points... Dylln Rider pops four 3-pointers on his way to 19 points... Hayden Barker adds 17. Riley Sikes has 20 for Thermop... Colin Herold adds 19. Saturday night Douglas traveled to Rawlins... the LadyCats corral the Lady Outlaws 53-31... Ragan Scott hits four 3's to lead Douglas scoring with 12... Lindsay White has 11. In the late game, a bigger, more physical Rawlins defense locked down the Douglas offense, holding Douglas scoreless til late in the first quarter... Douglas trailed 12-6 after one and never caught back up. Jordan Thayer scores 16 points to lead the Outlaws to a 55-45 win over Douglas. Dylln Rider had 14 points and Hayden Barker 12 in the losing effort. Douglas hosts doubleheaders with Buffalo this Friday night and with Alliance, Nebraska on Saturday. You'll hear both games live on KKTY-FM and kktyonline.com.

(Wed 1/20/10) - Douglas drops a notch, but stays in the top 5. This week's WyoPreps.com Coaches and Media poll is out, and the 3A boys basketball poll sees a bit of a shuffle. Jackson moves up from 2 to 1 and Torrington drops to #2. Buffalo is steady at #3, and Pinedale and Douglas swap places... Pinedale's up to #4 and Douglas drops to #5. Top schools in the other three classes remain the same... Gillette leads 4A, Wyoming Indian leads 2A and Burlington tops 1A. Girls rankings are out tonight.

(Wed 1/20/10) - DHS wrestlers battled at the Thoman Invitational at Green River over the weekend. The Bearcats won their pool on Friday, then placed 4th in the Championship Bracket on Saturday. Pierre Etchemendy made the 'Best of The Best' match, winning all of his matches. Pete, Linda, Samantha, Colter, & Hunter Haman were the cooler sponsors for the weekend. Bearcats matmen dualed at Rawlins last night, and will compete at the Buffalo Duals this Friday and Saturday.

(Mon 1/18/10) - Wins again... In 3A East conference basketball action Saturday night, the Cats and LadyCats took a pair of wins at Newcastle. In the early game, Kassidy Scott hit for 20 points to lead the girls to a 58-35 win. The JV girls game went to Newcastle 56-36. In the late game, Hayden Barker had a 20 point night as Douglas beat Newcastle 60-38. Dylln Rider added 13. Douglas also won the JV game 56-39. This Friday night, the Bearcats host a double header with Thermopolis at the Douglas Rec Center Gym... Saturday, it's a road trip to Rawlins.

A split for the Glenrock Herders this weekend. Saturday night, the Glenrock boys fell to Rawlins 87-57. Glenrock took the girls game, beating Rawlins 55-16.

There's also basketball action this afternoon... the Bearcats freshmen boys will travel to Glendo to play the Eagles... tipoff's at 4pm at the Glendo High School gym.

(Mon 1/18/10) - The coaching staff for the South team in the 37th annual Shrine Bowl of Wyoming all star football game was announced over the weekend. Douglas Bearcats head coach Jay Rhoades was named in November to serve as head coach of the South squad. Assistant coaches named this weekend include Wes Gamble of Douglas High School, Tony Yerkovich of Rock Springs High School, Shawn Rogers from Kemmerer High School, Heath Hays from Saratoga High School and Casey Moates of Guernsey/Sunrise High School. The North team's staff will be named in the next few days. The two staffs will then start the process of selecting the players for the game. The 37th Annual Shrine Bowl game will be held in Casper on June 12th.

Tue 1/12/10) - A pair of wins on the road... non-conference basketball action tonight, and the Cats & LadyCats take a pair at Lusk. Ragan Scott hit a trio of 3's on her way to 16 points to lead Douglas scoring as the LadyCats beat the Lady Tigers 64-43. Lindsay White hit 12, and Calley Hobza connected for 10 points. Hannah Shoults led the Tigers sconig effort with15... Dani Dooper had 11. The girls JV game went to Lusk, 42-27. In the nitecap, Dylln Rider blasted the basket with 24 points to lead all scorers as Douglas beat Lusk 69-42. Hayden Barker collected 16 points, while Gary Bolinger added 13. Michael Coon and Trent Johnson led the Tigers with 10 each. Douglas won the JV game by 7 points. The Cats and LadyCats travel to Newcastle for a doubleheader on Saturday.