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Jan 24, 2014 - The Associated Press

Problem found with coal crusher

GILLETTE -- A Gillette-area coal mine had to temporarily stop work near one of its crushers because of a problem found during an inspection last week.

An inspector found too much coal and coal dust in a crusher facility at Peabody Energy's North Antelope Rochelle mine. Miners were doing so-called "hot work" such as welding and cutting there, which posed a risk of igniting the coal.

The St. Louis-based company reported the problem in a filing on Wednesday with the Security and Exchange Commission.

The crusher wasn't being used at the time and Peabody says the problem was corrected within five hours. Mining wasn't affected.

Money OK'd for ammo firm

CHEYENNE -- The Wyoming Business Council on Thursday unanimously approved $13 million in state grants and loans to help one of the country's largest producers of ammunition magazines for guns relocate to the state.

The council's 11-0 vote sends the proposal involving Magpul Industries Corp. to the State Land and Investment Board, which is scheduled to meet Feb. 6.

Erie, Colo.-based Magpul is seeking to move its production, distribution and shipping operations to Cheyenne because of gun control laws enacted last year in Colorado.

The $13 million in state economic development money will help Magpul start operations in Cheyenne later this summer in a temporary facility and then move into a new, permanent facility a couple of years later.

Magpul's move to Cheyenne is expected to bring about 90 new jobs to Wyoming. The company is planning to move its corporate headquarters and its staff to Texas.

Magpul will invest about $4.4 million in the move to Cheyenne. The local economic development organization in Cheyenne will provide about another $4.1 million in land, money and initial rent relief for the Magpul move, bringing the total state and local investment to about $17.1 million.

Wyoming Business Council staff estimate, however, that the eventual total return to the state will be about $20.6 million.

Poor grade for state traffic laws

An alliance of insurers and safety groups says allowing teens to drive as early as 14 is one of the reasons it ranks Wyoming's traffic laws as among the worst in the country.

Washington, D.C.-based Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety released a report Wednesday which also faults the state for not requiring helmets for adult motorcyclists and allowing open containers in parked vehicles.

In Wyoming, teens can be eligible for a regular learning permit at 15 and get a full license by 16 . Fourteen-year-olds can get a restricted driver's permit if the live more than five miles from school or work or because of another approved.

Col. John Butler of the Wyoming Highway Patrol said he hasn't seen a problem with accidents by 14- and 15-year-old drivers.

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