AP News Update

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AP News Update

Latest Wyoming news, sports, business and entertainment

SCHOOLS SUPERINTENDENT

Senate panel advances superintendent bill

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Senate Rules and Procedures Committee has endorsed a bill that could lead to a special legislative session later this year.

The special session would deal with fallout from the state Supreme Court decision in the superintendent of public instruction case.

The court recently ruled 3-2 that a law enacted last year taking away many of the superintendent's duties was unconstitutional.

The bill would study the superintendent's duties and make recommendations to the Legislature, which could then be called into special session.

Representatives of the Independent Cattlemen of Wyoming testified against the bill, saying no more time and money should be spent on the issue.

However, the committee approved the bill on a 5-0 vote Tuesday. It heads back to the full Senate for more debate.

MEDICAID EXPANSION

Wyo. legislative panel to consider Medicaid bill

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Democratic Party is trying to muster support for the last surviving bill in Wyoming's ongoing legislative session that would expand the state's Medicaid system.

The bill sponsored by Sen. Chris Rothfuss, a Laramie Democrat, faces a hearing Wednesday before the Senate Labor Health and Social Services Committee. Three of the five committee members voted against the introduction of Rothfuss' bill in the Senate last week.

State Democratic Party Chairman Pete Gosar told reporters on a conference call Tuesday that Rothfuss' bill offers nearly 18,000 people in the state access to health care.

The Wyoming Legislature last year rejected $50 million in federal funds for Medicaid expansion under the federal Affordable Care Act. Gov. Matt Mead and others have said they don't trust federal government promises to continue funding.

KATIE'S LAW

Committee narrows "Katie's Law" DNA testing bill

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - A Wyoming legislative committee has scaled back a proposal to require people accused of charges of serious crimes to provide DNA samples.

The Senate Travel, Recreation, Wildlife and Cultural Resources Committee on Tuesday amended a bill proposed by Republican Sen. Leslie Nutting, of Cheyenne.

The committee changed the bill so that DNA testing could occur only after a person was charged in court, not immediately after arrest.

Republican Sen. Ogden Driskill, of Devils Tower, said the state needed to guard against creating an incentive for police to arrest people on trumped up charges solely to collect DNA.

Linda Burt of the Wyoming ACLU told the committee that her organization believes the amended bill would still be unconstitutional. She says it would allow the government to search people without probable cause.

GUN CONTROL CHALLENGE

New Jersey newspaper tells Wyoming to butt out

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - New Jersey's biggest newspaper has a message for the least populated state in the nation: Butt Out.

The Star-Ledger newspaper in Newark published an editorial on Tuesday telling Wyoming to mind its own business. The editorial came after Wyoming asked the U.S. Supreme Court for permission to submit a brief supporting a New Jersey man who is challenging that state's concealed weapons law.

Wyoming made the request last week on behalf of itself and 18 other pro-gun states.

John M. Drake is challenging a provision in New Jersey law that says people seeking concealed carry permits must prove that they have a justifiable need.

The Wyoming brief says Wyoming and other states are concerned that if the law stands, it could threaten their less-restrictive concealed carry laws.

RIG DEATH

Rig worker killed in Converse Co. vehicle accident

DOUGLAS, Wyo. (AP) - Authorities say a 26-year-old Gillette man died when he was struck by a welding truck at a Converse County rig site.

The Converse County Sheriff's Office identified the victim as Nathan James Scott.

The sheriff's office says the accident was reported at 9:45 a.m. Saturday at the Cyclone Rig 33.

The office says fellow employees on site attempted CPR, but were unable to revive Scott.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports that the incident is under investigation.

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