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US HOUSE BID-PAAD

Casper resident running for Wyoming's US House seat

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - A Casper resident says he's running a grassroots campaign for Wyoming's lone U.S. House seat.

Paul Paad told the Star-Tribune in a phone interview Wednesday that he plans to focus on what he sees as burdensome government regulations on small businesses.

He says the people don't have a voice in the U.S. House anymore because it's "been inundated with attorneys and career politicians."

Paad says he's a former local business owner and is now the director of safety and personnel at a local trucking company. He's also the legislative representative for a group of motorcycle enthusiasts.

The first GOP debate for the House seat is schedule for Saturday in Washakie County. Paad says he plans to attend and buy a ticket if he isn't able to be in the debate.

METH AROUND KIDS

3 arrested for having meth around children in Gillette

GILLETTE, Wyo. (AP) - Three adults in Gillette have been arrested and accused of keeping methamphetamine in a home where eight children live.

The Gillette News Record reports that the adults were charged Tuesday with eight counts of drug endangered child, which involves allowing a child to be in a room, home or vehicle where meth is possessed, stored or ingested.

Investigators found more than an ounce of meth in the home where children between the ages of 3 and 13 live. The children were at school when the search warrant was executed and were later turned over to the Departed of Family Services.

The names of the suspects were not released pending further investigation.

BANKERS SURVEY

Midwest, Plains bankers had dire view of rural economy

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - A survey shows some bankers had a dire view of the rural economy in their 10 Western and Plains states.

A report released Thursday says January's Rural Mainstreet Index plunged to 34.8 from 41.5 in December. It's the lowest overall index figure since August 2009. Survey officials say any score below 50 on any of the survey's indexes suggests that factor will decline.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss oversees the monthly survey of rural bankers and says it's the fifth straight month for a decline. He again blames lower prices for agriculture and energy commodities and downturns in manufacturing.

The farmland and ranchland price index dropped to 23.9 in January from December's 28.8

Bankers from Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming were surveyed.

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