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Sundance, Wyoming
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January 10, 2013     The Sundance Times
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January 10, 2013
 

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SHS sports resume this week I Page 11 ~i, ~;,: 2:2:T.A :~22-F Volume 129 * Issue No. 2 Thursday, January 10, 2013 www.sundancetimes.com I Donahoe: Congressional Inaction HeigMens Postal Service Financial Crisis - Poslmc~t~ General Pahick recen released folowing statement "lhe 112th Congress ~~. w out hav g passed post Such couk quickly restore the Postal Service to r or abrey and put the nization on a stable, long-term financial footing. This lack of ac- "the Postal Service closely with the Congress over the past two years to advance a framework for a viable ness model that wg aUow us to quk:kly respond to the evolving needs of our customers. As a result of frequent communication with Congresdonal leaders, we have rnocgled important budness of consolidation of i fading, to needed legidative congr has not enacted these ch( ges. As we sought to provide tO efloble legislalive we pu ued cost-reducing and revenue-generating activities. Over the matey We ourrndl .mo ,ed to at many of OUr Post Offices. We ClbO hove worked to substontiCdly increase have defauffed on $11.1 billion In Treasury payments and exhaust- ed our barowing author, y. The Postal Service should not have to do business this way, which has undentined the confidence of our customer base and the County Courthouse reveals new elevator BY SARAH PRIDGEON sarah@sundancetirnes.com Both floors of the Crook Coun- ty Courthouse are fully acces- sible whatever your level of mobility, thanks to the now- operational elevator. The project was completed courtesy of the County Commissioners, a grant from Wyoming Business Coun- cil and the project management of Randy Gill, County Facilities & Maintenance Supervisor. The elevator is intended to re- move a significdnt architectural barrier that restricts access to the courthouse, making the building difficult to navigate for persons of limited mobility. While developing the grant, staff measured the distance travelled by someone conducting busi- ness on the main level of the courthouse to then utilize a service on the basement level, assuming they were unable to use the stairs. The experiment, which was used to support the grant ap- plication, revealed that person would need to exit the front of the building, follow the ramp down, then turn and travel down the sidewalk to the handi- capped entrance (a distance of 427 feet). Once inside, they would need to follow a series of ramps to the Community Room at a distance of 107 feet and an additional 100 feet should they wish to visit the Extension Of- fice or museum. "In addition, if there is a group utilizing the Community Room at the time the person needs to ~:~.~.- ~. ,~!! i:~ Katie Allen photo The ribbon cutting ceremony for the new elevator, L-R: Dave Spencer, Wyoming Business Council NE Regional Director; Commissioner Kelly Dennis; Chairman Jim Hadley; County Facilities and Maintenance Supervisor Randy Gill; Commis- sioner Jeanne Whalen. access the ramps, they have to travel through the room to get through their desired location," stated the grant application. "Imagine walking through a funeral in order to go to a mu- seum." The grant application was submitted to the Wyoming Busi- ness Council Investment Ready Communities Division in Janu- ary 2011 and approved on May 26 to the amount of $244,800, with matching funds from the county of $27,200. J. Scull Construction Services of Rapid City was selected for the project with a bid of $299,000. Existing county funds designat- ed for a 10 percent contingency and other grant funds from the State that were approved to be used on the project brought the total expense to $311,185.53. The project came in above its original estimation because costs had increased since the grit was developed and due to a small number of change orders related to unforeseen ex- penses for items discovered dur- ing construction. The architect's expenses were also intended to be part of the overall cost but, when the elevator itself came in Gill was able to work with the architect and contractors to keep tight control on progress and identify potential issues. "It was very exciting to work on a project of this size and impor- tance for the courthouse," says Gill. =I really appreciated every- one's patience during construe- at $299,000, the county knew tion and hope those who need the budget would be over. the elevator will now be able to Fortunately, with regular utilize the courthouse without monthly progress meetings, any inconvenience." $800 blrK)n rna ng ind Jry we serve. We will be discussing with our Board of Governors a range of accelerated cost cutting and revenue measures to provide us some lWxmc bmatNng room. "We encourage the new I 13th Congress to make postal reform an urgent pdodly, and to work steadily toward the quk:;k pas- sage of reforrn legislation. We wgl continue to--with leaders of of Congress to help make thh BY SARAH PRIDGEON sarah@sundancetimes.com Rare Element Resources has initiated a land exchange that, if approved by the Board of Land Commissioners, will allow the company to acquire 640 surface and mineral acres of State Trust Land near Warren Peak, adjacent to the planned Bull Hill Rare Earth Mine. In exchange, the State of :: Wyoming will acquire 400 acres of additional land in the Little Grand Canyon area, says Lisa Reinhart, Office of State Lands and Investments. The two parcels differ considerably in acreage as the Moskee land, 1 ,currently owned by the Moskee Land Corporation, is of higher 1111 510 value. C~ of a few snow showers. "RER approached us a year ago High, in the raid teens and Iow~ 2 to-2Fi with the potential exchange," Reinhart explains. : The exchange will aid RER in i its development of the Bull Hill Rare Earth Mine, allowing waste 1112 rock and low grade material to Cloudy. Highs in the upper s ngle be stored after extraction from digits and lows in the low si~ the Forest Service land upon digit~. which the mine will sit. The : waste rock storage piles will be reclaimed at the end of the Sun 1516 mine's life by replacing the top 1!!3 soft and re-vegetating the area Mix of sun and clouds, to a natural appearance. The benefit to the state, says Reinhart, is triplefold. =We will Mon 1918 be acquiring land with a higher 1114 appraised value if the exchange T More sun than clouds. ::is approved by the Board of j Land Commissioners," she says, , referring to the appraised values obtained in 2012. sources "-7 ~ As the State Trust Land was valued at $960,000 and the Moskee Land at $1 million, the value of the Common School Permanent Land Fund will be increased by at least $40,000 if the exchange occurs. The difference in value is attribut- able, according to the detailed analysis of the exchange, to the transitional nature of the market in the Black Hills, which changes quicldy across short distances and is particularly pronounced when moving east into 'core' areas (versus adja- cent 'transitional' zones with fewer amenities.) The Moskee land is also be- lieved to be an area of higher appreciation although, as ap- preciation rates are influenced by market conditions, the econ- omy, interest rates, inventory levels and amenities, this is speculative and would only be realized on a future sale. =Secondly, Reinhart con- tinues, =As RER holds 497 unpatented mining claims and therefore can mine on the ad- jacent Forest Service land, if the Bull Hill Mine is developed, the State Trust Land at Warren Peak will lose value. Finally, the State will also acquire ad- ditional mineral rights on the Moskee parcel. According to the detailed anal- ysis, the state will reserve a non-participating royalty inter- est; essentially, it will collect the same amount in royalty from the Warren Peak land should the exchange occur. It will also gain additional mineral inter- est and potential for additional revenue from the Moskee Land minerals. In addition, the state will gain potential opportunities for timber production on land with similar forest stands to its cur- rent holding. "While the State section is currently being harvested, the Moskee parcel is not," explains the detailed analysis. =Op- portunities for forest manage- ment practices including forest product sales would exist in the short and long term. Timber See Swap l Page 4 Curt Moberg photo Kelly Dennis, left, was recently sworn in for a second term on the Crook County Board of Commissioners by Judge Fred Dollison. Burn sparks fire BY SARAH PRIDGEON sarah@sundancetirnes.com Sparks from a slash burn on the Cole Ranch on Gov- ernment Valley Road ignited a fire on Sunday afternoon that spread through several trees, two of which had to be cut down to prevent the flames from spreading. Sundance Fire Department and Fire Warden Gari Gill responded to the fire, which was caused by sparks from the slash burn hitting the branches of a nearby tree and then spreading to its neighbor- ing, larger trees. The Fire Warden would like to remind residents to perform all slash and garbage burning away from trees and struc- tures and call the Fire Warden or SherifYs offices to let them know in advance. Although fire is not usually a concern at this time of year and burn restrictions are not currently in place, the dry summer has made the area more suscep- tible. SUNDANCE, WYOMING CONTINUING THE CROOK COUNTY NEWS ;INCE 1884