AP News Update

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AP News Update

Latest Wyoming news, sports, business and entertainment

New UW president getting pushback on changes

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - New University of Wyoming President Bob Sternberg is drawing pushback from some faculty and students, including at least one call for Sternberg to be fired.

Sternberg says he probably did "too much too fast" and is willing to meet and listen to anyone with concerns.

Five administrators and three deans have resigned their positions in the four months since Sternberg took office on July 1.

Law school students sent Sternberg a letter decrying his decision to assemble a task force to review the College of Law.

One professor asked the UW Board of Trustees to starting talking how to end Sternberg's presidency.

Trustees President David Bostrom is backing Sternberg, telling the Laramie Boomerang that it's too early to judge Sternberg's presidency.


Grizzly bear deaths drop in Greater Yellowstone

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - Researchers say grizzly bear deaths have declined more than 50 percent this year in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

Frank van Manen leads the Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team. He says 24 grizzly bears have died so far in 2013 in the area, which includes northwestern Wyoming and portions of eastern Idaho and southern Montana. He says 56 bears died in the area last year.

Van Manen says the rate of female bears with cubs also is high this year.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports the study team will address how grizzly bears respond to changes in food supplies at a Yellowstone Ecosystem Subcommittee meeting Wednesday and Thursday in Bozeman, Mont. The bears' reaction to changes in food availability will help determine if they can come off the endangered species list.


Highway Patrol probes Lingle hit and run fatality

LINGLE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Highway Patrol is asking the public for information about a hit and run accident that killed a Lingle man.

The patrol says 69-year-old Keith Beers was struck and killed Sunday evening while walking in a crosswalk across U.S. 85. The driver of the vehicle failed to stop.

This crash remains under investigation. The patrol is asking anyone with information about the driver or the vehicle to contact the agency.


Coal gasification project headed to Wyo. council

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - An Australian company's plans to experiment with turning coal into gas without removing the coal from the ground are headed before a state review panel.

The Wyoming Environmental Quality Council is scheduled to review a state license for Linc Energy at a hearing Nov. 14.

Linc Energy says its underground coal gasification technique promises cleaner and less expensive energy than importing foreign oil.

The process involves pumping air into a coal seam. Oxidation turns the coal into gas. The gas is pumped out and can be processed into oil and other fuels.

The project in Campbell County heads before the council because a group is contesting the license. The Powder River Basin Resource Council worries the process could contaminate groundwater.

State regulators express confidence the project won't cause pollution problems.


Cheyenne plans closed-door meetings on worker pay

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - Officials in Cheyenne plan to keep the public out of meetings to discuss a new pay structure for the city's employees.

The Wyoming Tribune Eagle opposes the move and plans to file for an injunction to stop the closed-door meetings as early as Tuesday.

City Attorney Dan White declined to comment. The city has agreed not to hold any meetings until the newspaper's request is resolved in court.

The city wants to update its 17-year-old employee salary structure. A recent study found that it would cost the city more than $668,000 a year to bring salaries in line with the new recommended minimum levels.


Nevada man pleads guilty to string of ATM thefts

BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Federal prosecutors in Idaho say a Las Vegas man has pleaded guilty to stealing more than $124,000 from ATM machines in six western states.

Fifty-seven-year-old Clarence Edward Lancaster pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Boise Monday to one count of bank larceny. The plea is tied specifically to Lancaster prying open an ATM on the College of Southern Idaho campus in Twin Falls last year.

The plea also resolves 21 separate ATM thefts committed by Lancaster in Idaho, Wyoming, Washington, Utah, Oregon and Arizona.

Lancaster was apprehended in January for burglary on the campus of Eastern Arizona College. Investigators say Lancaster entered a building to steal from a cash machine but was spotted by a professor.

The FBI linked him to other ATM break-ins by tracking his banking activity.


Wyoming 130 over the Snowy Range closed for winter

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) - The Wyoming Department of Transportation has closed Wyoming 130 over the Snowy Range for the winter season.

On the eastern side of the range, travelers will encounter the closure at the Green Rock Picnic Area, about eight miles above Centennial. On the western side, the closure begins near milepost 48, above Ryan Park.

The roadway closes annually in late autumn when relatively low traffic combined with increasing snow makes plowing operations impractical.


Report: Location, funds hurt UW sports

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) - A consulting firm cites a culture of accepting mediocrity and a lack of money in University of Wyoming football and men's basketball programs.

The report by Collegiate Sports Associates says it found a pervading opinion that 'good enough is good enough' in the success of its football and men's basketball programs.

UW Athletics Director Tom Burman said the report on the whole provides a good roadmap for improving UW athletics.

But he took issue with the report's finding that UW athletics has accepted mediocre results.

UW President Bob Sternberg paid CSA $35,000 to review the football and men's basketball programs and suggest to him and the university's board of trustees ways to turn them into consistent winners.

Sternberg says task force will be formed to implement the report's recommendations.

AP-WF-11-06-13 0901GMT

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