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Nov 26, 2013 - The Associated Press

Mead calls for fewer rules

CHEYENNE -- Gov. Matt Mead says several Wyoming agencies have reduced their standing rules this year as part of a push to streamline state government, and he says he's continuing to push for further reductions.

Mead says having fewer rules will make government more efficient and transparent to the public and lighten the regulatory burden.

Mead has asked agencies, boards and commissions to reduce rules both in number and length by one-third. He says obsolete or unnecessary rules should be repealed while those that remain should be as good and as condensed as possible.

Mead says he wants the Legislature to consider a bill to set a single policy for how all state agencies handle public records and administrative hearings, rather than having each agency write its own.

Power outage blamed on crows

WORLAND -- Work crews have determined that a crow was responsible for an outage that affected almost 1,800 Rocky Mountain Power customers in northern Wyoming.

The crow damaged a main piece of equipment at a substation Friday afternoon, cutting power to Worland and portions of Manderson and Kirby for a little more than an hour.

Stop signs were temporarily propped up in some areas where traffic lights were affected.

Drivers will see loggers

LARAMIE -- Officials on the Medicine Bow National Forest say motorists on I-80 between Cheyenne and Laramie and along Happy Jack Road will see logging operations over the next year or two as crews work to remove hazardous trees from along the roadways.

Workers with the Wyoming Department of Transportation are removing trees that could fall and damage fences that keep cattle off the roadways. Hazardous trees also need to be removed from the Summit Rest Area.

The agencies don't expect road closures, but say the rest area will likely be closed for several days when work is done in that area. Log trucks will be operating near work areas.

'Lifer' dies in prison

CHEYENNE -- The Wyoming Department of Corrections says a 77-year-old inmate serving life in prison has died after a lengthy illness.

Vern Loren Bell died Saturday at the Wyoming Medium Correctional Institution in Torrington. He was sentenced Nov. 23, 1983, on a charge of involuntary manslaughter.

An autopsy has been ordered.

Firefighters threaten suit

SHERIDAN -- A union representing firefighters says it intends to sue the City of Sheridan over the city council's recent vote denying pay raises.

The council in September voted unanimously against a pay raise for three firefighters that would have totaled $2,400.

The International Association of Fire Fighters Local 276 has notified the City of Sheridan it intends to sue.

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