CASPER, Wyo. – Welcome to the Summer Solstice Edition of Oil City Speaks! There were scorching temperatures throughout the week, but there is plenty to do in the Casper area. There’s more going on this weekend, including more rodeo performances from the College’s National Finals and a host of Solstice festivities.
In this week’s Oil City Speaks! we come back to some of the hot shots, stimulating views and heartwarming comments readers have provided in response to our stories about everything that has happened around Casper and Wyoming.
During Tuesday’s city council meeting, Casper Police Department officer and Fraternal Order of the Police Lodge No.6 chairman Craig Burns told Casper City Council that some police officers are frustrated that the city does not thaw wages and does not allow their step. increases resume after the city froze wages in the summer of 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
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While the job of a police officer can have its challenges at any time, there has certainly been plenty of police scrutiny across the country since the murder of George Floyd. Law enforcement agencies in the United States have reportedly struggled to recruit new officers and have seen waves of retirements and departures since Floyd’s murder, The Associated Press reported .
While polls tend to show that most Americans see the need for some type of police reform, a majority also rejects the so-called “defund the police” movement, and supporters of this movement sometimes say that “Defund” was the wrong choice of words and they believe more in a reexamination of how the police are funded.
In any case, Flaco points out that the police are not in an easy position. Whether it’s a public debate on policing matters or just the nature of certain things officers deal with, it can’t always be easy for them.
People have different opinions on what an appropriate level of pay is. Council member Steve Cathy pointed out on Tuesday that workers in Wyoming’s energy industry who may have been laid off may find it difficult to find work. Council member Shawn Johnson stressed that public service jobs depend on the vagaries of a municipality’s budget situation, but law enforcement positions can offer some job security even when the money is for increases is not available.
Whatever you think of how much the police should pay, it may help to clarify a few points surrounding such a discussion. Some commentators have said the increases should not be provided because the Casper Police Department has spent what they perceive to be too much money on new equipment or vehicles.
But the decision to buy new cars or new equipment is not up to individual agents. These recommendations are made by management within the department and ultimately approved or rejected by the city council. Individuals may or may not agree to such purchases, just as they may or may not agree with particular law enforcement operations conducted by the department.
To give an example in another area, when the Natrona County School District Board of Directors (which is totally separate from Casper City Council) approves a school construction project, it doesn’t mean every teacher thinks that this is the best use of funding. If teachers were to ask for a raise, would you say it shouldn’t be provided because the school district approved a construction project that you feel is unwise?
Maybe you always would and which set of issues is relevant to how taxpayers’ money is spent is obviously up to everyone to decide when expressing their point of view or voting at the polls. What do you think? Do you agree with Flaco that the city should consider increases for police officers? Or do you think now is not the time to think about it?
Some commentators suggest the project is too expensive at a time when revenues are uncertain. Some say the project is not necessary at all since the students could simply cross the street on foot.
When the school board approved the project, one of the reasons was to add a level of security so that students do not have to leave the main building when they go to the sports center for education classes. physical or other activities.
Whatever you think of the project, it may help to keep in mind that the funding for the project comes from the public school capital construction dollars allocated to the district and, as Sheri points out, the elevated walkway project does not. is not a project that has just been approved.
What do you think of the perspective offered by Greg? Are there any programs that you have seen cut or whose funding has been reduced while the state is facing a tighter budget that worries you? What are these? If you are opposed to the catwalk project, what do you think should have been done with such funding instead?
- Let’s stick to conversations about money issues, let’s look at another sobering comment. This comes in response to a story about Natrona County commissioners approving a resolution to hold a special election in November asking voters to support a special goal, a temporary sales and use tax of the ‘six cent “:
If voters approve the proposed 6-cent sales and use tax, it would help fund two specific projects: repairing an approximately 7-mile stretch of pipe bringing potable water to Edgerton and the Midwest, and the Midwest Avenue renovation in downtown Casper from Walnut to Poplar Street.
Jamie’s comment stands out because she acknowledges that the sixth cent tax would indeed be temporary, but this approval could set a precedent for city, town and county leaders to ask voters to approve future sixth cent plans. .
Some readers have suggested that the 6-cent tax would become somehow permanent, which is not possible (or illegal) under current Wyoming law. Jamie provides a more nuanced view that while the tax would indeed be temporary, it could set the tone for future proposals. What do you think?
John refers in his commentary to Bill Gates, who is the founder of TerraPower, one of the companies behind the technology for the new Natrium reactor. The natrium reactor would be a sodium-cooled fast reactor and was presented by the proponents as offering advances over existing nuclear power plant technology.
However, the Union of Concerned Scientists says in a report “Advanced” is not always better than it is far from clear that the Natrium reactor is an obvious improvement over existing water-cooled nuclear reactors.
that of Jean take hot suggests that people might fall for the hype surrounding bold claims about new technology without doing enough research to find out whether those claims are actually true or not. What are your thoughts? Have you read about Natrium technology? Other readers have suggested that the Union of Concerned Scientists may have a bone to choose from nuclear in general, although the organization says it sees its potential benefits and does not express outright opposition to nuclear projects. in general.
What questions are you asking yourself about nuclear energy? Do you support the Natrium project in particular? Do you think Wyoming is the right place for this?
The climbing park will be built at Crossroads Park, near the Adventure Playground, another donation from the Rotary Club to Casper. The Casper area offers great outdoor climbing options in the form of places like Fremont Canyon, which is considered by some in the climbing community to offer world-class (or “trad”) climbing. ). There are also a few rocks on Casper Mountain frequented by rock climbing enthusiasts.
But Casper has limited climbing possibilities in town. The 5150 Rock Gym, which was once a place where new climbers could learn the sport or experienced climbers could practice in the winter, announced in May that it would close on May 30.
Fred points out the good timing of the Rotary Club in bringing the climbing park to Casper, which will at least give climbers a place in town to hang out and have fun. This is comforting!
Casper’s Kavin Hoff, Alcova’s Trace Stevenson and Evansville’s Grady Longwell will travel to Des Moines to represent Cowboy State at the National Junior High Finals Rodeo June 20-26.
While that’s cool in itself, it’s fun to see them selected while the College’s National Finals rodeo is in town. Maybe people will see these kids at future rodeos in the Casper area as they get older. Fran’s supportive commentary is also a classic warms the heart and showcases that kind of mutually uplifting community attitude that we love to showcase in Oil City Speaks!
The Casper region has definitely had a busy start this summer. It is comforting to see people go out and have a good time.
It is comforting to see that people all find a community in the Casper area. Whether it’s Casper Pride, downtown concerts, solstice celebrations, rodeo, or whatever, it seems like the community at large has really offered something for everyone.
- That’s all of The oil city speaks for the moment! Don’t you agree with everything we’ve said? Awesome! Please feel free to get involved in the discussion of what’s going on in our community by commenting on the stories posted on the Oil City Facebook page. Have a nice day!
Why are we putting this Oil City Speaks story together?
Oil City News aims to provide coverage of the people, places and events that shape the community we love. We strive to provide informative stories to our readers and value community dialogue about the Casper Area and Cowboy State.
What makes an online discussion useful? It’s no secret that readers are sometimes wary of the “dreaded” comments section (on stories posted on the Oil City Facebook page). While the comments can seem frustrating at times, they can also allow people to express their views, add more information for readers to consider, or give people a way to celebrate their community together.
That’s why we bring you The oil city speaks, a selection of notable reader comments from our local coverage. We want you to care about your community and we want to take the time to acknowledge the comments that set us apart. We will also offer a fact check on the comments.
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