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A couple headlines this week could easily slide under your radar and, quite honestly, not have much impact on your life going forward. But both are worth a second glance because they have broader implications of how government actually touches our lives even when we don’t realize it.

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The holidays are a time for family gatherings and joyous celebrations. Yet, it can be challenging for someone new to recovery from addiction. Realistically, it is a challenging time of year for anyone who is choosing sobriety.

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In today’s world of “fluid definitions” and the hijacking of language to strip it of meaning, it’s easy to get confused about certain expressions and their significance.

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While the primary last August seemed to have all the buzz and hype driving voters to the polls, and this general election feels a lot less so, it isn’t.

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The Wyoming County Treasurer’s Association is opposed to Amendment A, and asks you to vote AGAINST the ballot proposition which would allow local governments — cities, counties, schools, special districts, etc. — to invest your money in the stock market.

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The Converse County Commission and county Parks and Recreation Board are actively pursuing a state grant (which is using federal ARPA funds) to build five miles of trails into the county-owned Boxelder Park.

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While we cannot be 100% positive, we are pretty sure that 23 candidates for six seats in the Douglas School District Board election this fall is a record. We have had some pretty crowded fields in the past 30-odd years, but 23 candidates seems a little overwhelming for us, and to many voters…

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Labor Day is a day to celebrate the workers who keep our country running. They’re the ones who keep our businesses open and our economy strong. However, as I’ve visited policymakers, business owners and workers throughout the state, one question invariably pops up: Where have all the workers…

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Granted, we’ve been accused of having a warped sense of humor, but we are always strangely entertained by elections. This year, our sense of fascination has been truly piqued. Although, the Cheney-Hageman slugfest is not funny given how serious the outcome could be for Wyoming and the countr…

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The Jan. 6 hearings in Congress last week and continuing this week have captivated a large swatch of the country, and been largely ignored by another significant faction, for exactly the same reason. They are hard to watch without becoming emotionally charged. Nay, super-charged.

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Each year, with the passing of  the third weekend in June, I fall victim to the insidious belief that I should somehow be honored for having survived nearly 40 years as a father.

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As the kerfuffle at the Wyoming Republican Party convention last week made crystal clear, the internal politics of the Cowboy State’s largest party are anything but congenial and civil. Laramie and Natrona counties, the two largest population centers in this vast state, were left basically w…

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At first look, increasing the elected officials in the county from $100,000 a year to $108,500 a year in a single whack seems too much, and it may be, but the real issue isn’t year one but years two through four of compounding salary increases. Based on the proposal before the county commiss…

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Richard Paquette made a strong statement Saturday as he stuffed more chocolate pieces into another yellow plastic Easter Egg. He commented how amazing it is that the Douglas community comes together every year to make sure the Hoppy Easter Egg Hunt is a raving success, regardless of cost.

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A psychologist friend of mine once told me that anger isn’t an emotion but rather a mask for those feelings that scare us a little more than we can handle. Primarily, those feelings are helplessness and fear – those two demons that haunt our dreams at night. They make us scared to wake up in…

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Your citizen legislature convened in mid-February with a mountain of priorities to deliver in a finite amount of time. This was no ordinary Budget Session. Redistricting, the biennial budget, American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) allocations, local government funding and capital construction proje…

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The phone cut through the quiet at 2 a.m. The deep, gravely voice at the other end was mid-sentence when the phone was picked up. It was Boonie, a Vietnam veteran.

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The Wyoming Legislature finished the 2022 Budget Session last week. The main tasks of the session were somewhat unique between dealing with the first budget surplus since 2015 and redistricting the legislature. As chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, I am also thankful for a very su…

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Police departments, historically anyway, have tended to operate in somewhat of a self-contained vacuum. It’s easier and more comfortable not to engage the community outside the police department walls about what is happening inside those walls. That insular approach to policing, of course, i…

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A few years ago, when the tourism advocates wanted the legislature to institute a statewide lodging tax, we argued that was a bad idea for smaller counties like ours that are not centers of tourism but rather event-driven markets. Think Wyoming State Fair.

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My son called the other night just to tell me that someone had broken Tonya Jorgenson’s Douglas record for scoring the most points in a high school basketball game.

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We always love the idea of trying something new to help our economy grow and create new jobs. Often that involves training and investing in ourselves. So, at face value, the idea of a construction technology program at Eastern Wyoming College/Douglas campus sounds perfect.

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If we needed any more evidence of the great divide among Wyoming Republicans, it manifested itself last week in an effort to try to derail the state GOP central committee’s selection of a state superintendent.

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Here’s the $3.5 million question: What does Wyoming need to do to develop an economy that isn’t so dependent on the minerals industry?

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It’s been a full year (as of tomorrow) since the riot at the Capitol. And in the world of Wyoming Republican far-right politics that dominates the party’s hierarchy these days, not much has changed since that day when GOP Chairman W. Frank Eathorne said he attended the event and witnessed on…

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On Monday, Memorial Hospital of Converse County CEO Matt Dammeyer released the latest, but surely not the last, Covid-19 vaccination policy for their staff. The hospital policies, originally driven by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ rules for anyone accepting federal payments,…

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Emotions are raw and running high around the healthcare vaccination mandates. That is completely understandable. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, commonly known as CMS, has mandated any medical facility which accepts their payments will have nearly all of their employees vaccin…

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Gov. Mark Gordon isn’t wrong about his opposition to federal overreach (see the guest editorial on this page). Government governs best when it governs least. That’s a basic Republican principle and one Wyoming has long not only applauded but fought to maintain in the Cowboy State and with ou…

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Often, when we are talking about community enhancements – government-speak for recreation and beautification projects that seem to somehow get labelled by the public as wasteful spending – we forget what they really mean. Jobs.

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As Wyoming’s economy and her communities continue their recovery from the impacts of the global pandemic, the state is now faced with a new challenge. How do we best utilize the additional stimulus funds the federal government has appropriated to help Wyoming regain its footing?

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The explosion of social media in the last decade and a half has opened the door wide to what had been a relatively obscure and infrequent occurrence – hate mail. Now, anyone in the public eye – especially those involved in anything even slightly controversial – are subjected to volumes of ve…

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While sometimes it seems these community celebrations just kind of happen without much forethought or effort, the reality is quite the opposite. We, as a society, have come to take events like Jackalope Days and Deer Creek Days for granted, but the planning and volunteer hours invested in ma…

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Last week, the Douglas City Council members asked their attorney to draft a new ordinance addressing public documents. What that eventually may look like remains to be seen, but the simple fact that our elected leaders took that important jump to correct a 2015 misstep is heart-warming to th…

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Federal Judge Ronald Bush in Idaho earlier this month stopped work on 449 oil and gas leases in our state encompassing 334,762 acres – including some in Converse County – as he sided with environmental groups against the Bureau of Land Management over sage grouse habitat.