Rockies Today, Oct. 3



Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Montana tribes feel immediate effect of federal shutdown
The Crow Tribe laid off 300 of its workers on Wednesday, about half of its workforce in Montana, as part of the federal government shutdown, affecting services supplied to the elderly and children primarily.
Billings Gazette (AP); Oct. 2

U.S. House panel wants NPS to explain barricades at open-air monuments
The U.S. House Natural Resources Committee has asked the National Park Service to preserve and provide documents related to its decision to erect barricades around open-air national monuments in Washington, D.C., a situation that has never occurred during previous government shutdowns.
Salt Lake Tribune; Oct. 3

Federal workers get OK to continue search for missing hiker in Idaho
Ten workers at the Craters of the Moon National Monument were granted an exemption from the federal government shutdown that allow them to continue help search for a missing hiker at the Idaho monument.
Idaho Statesman; Oct. 2

Judge rules Alberta wrongly silenced environmentalists in oilsands debate
On Tuesday, Court of Queen's Bench Justice Richard Marceau ruled that Alberta's Environment Department's behind-the-scenes work to silence environmental groups, and in particular the Oil Sands Environmental Coalition, in the review process of oilsands project breached the law.
Calgary Herald; Oct. 3

Wyoming halves wolf quota for this hunting season
Wolf-hunting season opened in Wyoming on Oct. 1, and by Wednesday afternoon, four of the 26 wolves allowed to be killed this season had been taken.
Casper Star-Tribune (AP); Oct. 2

Group's lawsuit contends logging plan in Montana NF will harm grizzly bears
The Alliance for the Wild Rockies filed a lawsuit in federal court in Missoula challenging the Pilgrim timber sale in the Kootenai National Forest in Northwest Montana, which would open 50 miles of roads in the Cabinet Ranger District, would threaten the 50 grizzly bears in that area where the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has stated a population goal of 100.
Missoulian; Oct. 3

Colorado, Washington governors seek banking solution for marijuana shops
Banks are blockading service to marijuana businesses, due in part to stringent federal regulations against taking money from criminal operations, a situation Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee asked federal banking officials to rectify by granting an exemption to banks in their states, which have legalized the use of marijuana.
Denver Post; Oct. 3

Health care law won't help poor in states that declined Medicaid expansion
In the 26 states that declined to expand their Medicaid programs, including Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming, many low-income residents won't be eligible to participate in health-care exchanges, as they don't have high enough incomes to qualify for subsidies, and aren't qualified to receive Medicaid under their states' current eligibility requirements.
New York Times; Oct. 3

Utahns seeking health care coverage worried budget debate will derail ACA
Utah groups seeking to get people enrolled in health care exchanges mandated by the Affordable Care Act said the primary concern they were hearing from potential enrollees was that the fight in Washington, D.C., would ruin their best shot at getting affordable health care coverage.
Salt Lake Tribune; Oct. 3

Mountain West News is a project of the Center for the Rocky Mountain West at The University of Montana. It provides a daily snapshot of news and opinion in the Rocky Mountain region of North America, giving the changing mountain West a tool to understand itself and a platform for the exchange of ideas.

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