Wyoming digest

Sep 17, 2013 The Associated Press

Beer tax bill fails committee vote

BUFFALO (AP) -- A proposal to increase Wyoming's tax on beer has failed to gain support from an interim legislative committee.

However, one lawmaker says he'll work on bringing the proposal to next year's legislative session.

Wyoming's 2 cent a gallon tax on beer is the lowest in the nation.

Republican Sen. Ray Peterson, of Cowley, has proposed raising the tax by 2 cents to help pay for substance abuse treatment programs.

The Legislature's Joint Revenue Interim Committee discussed his bill on Friday in Buffalo but the proposal did not receive enough votes to win its endorsement.

The panel also rejected two alternative bills, including one that would have eliminated the state tax.

Man pleads not guilty in bar shooting

CASPER (AP) -- A 21-year-old man charged with murder and other crimes in connection with the shooting death of a man outside a bar in Evansville has pleaded not guilty.

Samuel Renner pleaded not guilty Friday to charges stemming from the July 24 death of 41-year-old Todd Callies outside Taylor's Sports Bar.

Prosecutors say Renner got in a fight outside the bar and returned with a gun later that night. Callies was shot as he tried to tackle Renner, who authorities say was threatening patrons.

Renner faces a charge of first-degree murder, one count of attempted murder, two counts of possession of a deadly weapon and seven counts of aggravated assault.

Small earthquake in Yellowstone

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK (AP) -- A small earthquake jolted Yellowstone National Park near Old Faithful geyser on Sunday.

The U.S. Geological Survey says the 3.6 magnitude temblor occurred just before 10 a.m. with the epicenter located about 6 miles north of Old Faithful, one of the park's main attractions.

Yellowstone National Park officials didn't return a call from The Associated Press on Sunday.

A live video feed provided by the National Park Service showed Old Faithful erupting later in the day in front of several hundred onlookers.

Emergency call preceded plane crash

MOOSE (AP) -- The National Transportation Safety Board said the pilot of an experimental plane that crashed Wednesday in Grand Teton National Park told air traffic controllers there was a problem with the plane and that the pilot was returning to the airport when the plane crashed.

NTSB investigator Zoe Keliher said the problems with the experimental plane have not been determined. Keliher's team is reassembling the aircraft to review mechanical evidence.

The victims were identified as Russell Kamtz and Carol Kamtz, of Loveland, Colo. The person piloting the plane has not been identified.

The NTSB said Russell Kamtz was a certified pilot; however, Carol was not certified to fly.

According to eyewitnesses, one of the aircraft's wings dipped as it was turning to the west. They said the plane then dove toward the ground and crashed nose-first.

The two were aboard an RV7 aircraft, a two-seat, single engine, low-wing, experimental airplane. The NTSB said the aircraft is generally homebuilt from a kit. Keliher said investigators have not yet determined whether the Kamtzes had assembled the plane they were flying.

The Jackson Hole Airport is the busiest in Wyoming and notorious for being somewhat tricky on takeoff and landing because of the mountains nearby.

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