Wyoming News Update

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WYOMING WEATHER-STRANDED SNOWMOBILERS

JACKSON _ A search and rescue team reached three snowmobilers stranded in the backcountry of northwest Wyoming on Tuesday despite being hampered by a relentless snowstorm engulfing the region and steep terrain that can be accessed only on skis. The snowmobilers from Denver got stranded Monday on Togwotee (TOH-guh-tee) Pass northeast of Jackson, according to authorities. They were found unhurt after spending the night outdoors.

SEXUAL ASSAULT-PARENTAL RIGHTS

CHEYENNE _ Wyoming lawmakers disagreed Tuesday over whether unintended consequences might result from a bill that would make it easier to terminate parental rights when sexual assault results in childbirth. The Wyoming House voted 35-24 not to agree with changes made by the Senate, sending the bill to a committee where lawmakers from both chambers will try work out their differences.

POWER PLANTS-AIR QUALITY

BILLINGS, Mont. _ U.S. environmental regulators on Tuesday announced they are leaving intact an air quality standard for power plant pollution that can worsen asthma in children, despite calls by health advocates for a tougher rule. The move keeps in place a threshold for sulfur dioxide pollution established in 2010 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under President Barack Obama. Sulfur dioxide comes from burning coal to produce electricity and from other industrial sources.

CONGRESS-PUBLIC LANDS

WASHINGTON — A wide-ranging bill that revives a popular conservation program, adds 1.3 million acres of new wilderness, expands several national parks and creates five new national monuments has won congressional approval. The measure is the largest public lands bill approved by Congress in more than a decade. The House passed the bill Tuesday, 363-62, sending it to the White House for the president's signature.

COLORADO RIVER-DROUGHT PLAN

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — A California irrigation district with the highest-priority rights to water from a major Western river is using its power to demand federal funds to restore the state's largest lake, hoping to capitalize on one of its best opportunities yet to tackle a long-standing environmental and human health hazard. The Imperial Irrigation District wants $200 million for the Salton Sea, a massive, briny lake in the desert southeast of Los Angeles created when the Colorado River breached a dike in 1905 and flooded a dry lake bed. The money would help create habitat for migratory birds and suppress dust in communities with high rates of asthma and respiratory illnesses.

AP APPOINTMENT-WEST NEWS DIRECTOR

NEW YORK — Peter Prengaman, an award-winning multiformat global news manager, has been appointed to lead The Associated Press' West Region. As West News Director based in Phoenix, Prengaman will oversee a team of text, photo and video journalists responsible for general news, politics and enterprise in 13 western states. The appointment was announced Tuesday

EPA-ENFORCEMENT

WASHINGTON — The Environmental Protection Agency's enforcement chief on Tuesday defended the Trump administration's work, despite a report by her own agency showing that civil and criminal crackdowns on polluters have dropped sharply in the past two years. Assistant administrator Susan Bodine, who heads the office of enforcement, said the idea that EPA is soft on enforcement is "absolutely not true," adding that the agency is giving states a greater role in regulation and enforcement and stressing education and voluntary compliance by companies.

MULTI-STATE CRIMES _ Two men suspected in crimes across several Western states, including a deadly carjacking in Colorado, have been charged in an alleged bank robbery in Park City, Utah. (With AP Photos)

YELLOWSTONE BISON _ Five bull bison from Yellowstone National park have been transferred to an American Indian reservation in northwest Montana under an effort to bolster herds of the animals outside the park.

FEMALE DOG HANDLER LAWSUIT _ A jury has ruled that while gender did play a part in a Wyoming Highway Patrol female trooper's demotion in 2016, the Highway Patrol would have made the same decision regardless of gender.