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Apr 10, 2013 - The Associated Press

UW students deployed with Guard

LARAMIE -- Fourteen University of Wyoming students are among the Wyoming Army National Guard soldiers being deployed to the Middle East.

The 162 members from the 133rd Engineer Company, based in Laramie, will be deployed to Bahrain for Operation Enduring Freedom.

A deployment ceremony for the unit is set to be held Thursday afternoon at the UW Arena-Auditorium in Laramie.

The Wyoming unit received federal mobilization orders for 400 days to conduct base security operations. The unit will receive more than one month of pre-deployment training at Camp Shelby, Miss., followed by nine months in Bahrain, a small island country near the western shores of the Persian Gulf.

Coal mine construction halted

A Nebraska company has suspended construction of a coal mine in southwestern Wyoming, blaming poor demand for coal.

Twelve people will lose their jobs at the Haystack Coal Co. northeast of Evanston but that officials are working to find them jobs at projects being done by its parent company, Omaha, Neb.-based Kiewit Corp.

"The decision is not a reflection on the outstanding work of our employees; it was driven by the challenging coal market conditions that have affected virtually the entire industry," company spokesman Tom Janssen said in a statement. "Regrettably, this decision will affect all current employees."

The mine had been expected to employ 100 people.

Pending restrictions on coal-fired power plants, a mild winter and low natural gas prices have reduced demand for coal. Wyoming, the nation's top coal producer, mined 8 percent less coal last year. About 3 percent of coal workers lost their jobs in 2012, according to federal data.

Preliminary 2013 estimates by the U.S. Department of Energy's information and statistics arm show that coal production has dropped to 11.5 percent from production during the first three months of 2012.

Pole Mountain violations targeted

LARAMIE -- U.S. Forest Service law enforcement officers are patrolling the Pole Mountain unit of the Medicine Bow National Forest to address violations that hurt natural resources.

Officers handed out 22 citations on one day last weekend that carried fines totaling more than $3,000.

Off-road driving remains the primary problem in the area. Other problems include violations of the seasonal restriction on shooting, unattended campfires and violations of seasonal road closures.

The agency reminds motorists to stay on roads and trails that are designated for motorized travel.

Hunting license deadline set

CHEYENNE -- The Wyoming Game and Fish Department says that the deadline for hunters to apply for limited-quota big game licenses on paper applications will be May 15 this year. The deadline to apply for licenses online is May 31.

In previous years, the deadline for both paper and online applications was May 31. In recent years, more than 90 percent of both resident and nonresident hunters have applied online.

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