Jan 9, 2014 The Associated Press

Hagel to visit Warren AFB

F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE -- Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is making a rare visit to an Air Force nuclear missile base, hoping to boost morale among the men and women who operate, maintain and safeguard the nation's Minuteman 3 nuclear missiles.

Officials have said those service members are increasingly tired of working in what can seem like oblivion. They win no battles, earn no combat pay and only rarely are given public credit of any kind.

That changed Thursday, if only for a day and for a small number of them.

Hagel said Wednesday he realized the ICBM workforce has morale issues, and his visit Thursday was intended to show that their efforts were appreciated.

F.E. Warren Air Force Base, which is headquarters for the organization in charge of all 450 intercontinental ballistic missiles, has about 3,100 enlisted airmen and officers and saw 12 courts-martial in 2013, compared with nine the year before, 12 in 2011 and eight in 2010, according to Air Force statistics provided to The Associated Press last week in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

In each of the past four years, the courts-martial rate at F.E. Warren was higher than in the Air Force as a whole.

Hill makes governor announcement

NEWCASTLE -- Embattled Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction Cindy Hill has officially kicked off her campaign for governor.

Hill will run as a Republican, meaning she may be challenging incumbent GOP Gov. Matt Mead, who hasn't announced any election plans yet.

Hill had said last year that she was going to run for governor.

She kicked off her campaign in Newcastle on Wednesday evening, hours after testifying before a legislative committee investigating whether she should be impeached from the job she currently holds.

She characterized herself as pro-Constitution, anti-government secrecy, and against the Common Core set of education standards.

Clouds could block Northern Lights

A strong solar flare is pushing a geomagnetic storm toward Earth that could bring shimmering lights to Wyoming.

The aurora borealis could be visible around midnight Thursday into Friday but cloudy skies could block out the view in parts of the state.

The former director of the Campbell County School District Planetarium director Nello Williams said the odds of seeing the lights there are similar to sinking a 13-foot jump shot.

He says people need to get away from city lights to have a chance of seeing the aurora borealis.

Board to discuss UW presidency

LARAMIE -- University of Wyoming trustees plan to discuss the future of interim president Dick McGinity next week as they consider how to conduct a search for the school's next president.

The board of trustees is scheduled to meet Jan. 16. Board president David Bostrom said he supports dropping McGinity's "interim" title, in part to fight the perception that the university is unstable because of several leadership changes last year. He also said McGinity has performed admirably since being named interim president following Bob Sternberg's resignation.

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