Rockies Today, Jan. 28



Top news links, courtesy of Mountain West News.

Idaho legislators: Governor's $2M plan will target 500 wolves
State Rep. Marc Gibbs of Grace and Sen. Bert Brackett of Rogerson told members of the Idaho House Resources and Conservation Committee on Monday that Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter's $2-million proposal will help the state reach its goal of having 150 wolves, roughly 500 fewer than it has now.
Idaho Statesman (AP); Jan. 28

Idaho Fish and Game pulls wolf hunter out of Frank Church wilderness
The Idaho Fish and Game Director Virgil Moore declined to explain why the state decided to pull the professional hunter and trapper it hired to remove wolves from the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness after nine wolves were killed.
Idaho Statesman (AP); Jan. 28

Whole Foods' business-loan program helps local vendors
While the businesses that apply for loans from Whole Foods Market do not have to be vendors of the natural and organic foods grocer, the company does prefer that applicants have such a relationship.
Idaho Statesman (Orange County Register); Jan. 28

W. Montana city's council OKs $50M offer to buy water utility
Missoula Mayor John Engen said he believes that the Carlyle Group will reject the western Montana city's $50 million offer to buy Mountain West Water, the water utility for the city, as company officials have valued the utility at $120 million, and after Carlyle rejects Missoula's offer, the city could then proceed with condemnation to acquire the utility.
Missoulian; Jan. 28

Consultant: NorthWestern needs to prove Montana dam deal a good one
The consultant hired by the Montana Public Service Commission to evaluate NorthWestern Energy's proposal to buy 11 hydroelectric dams said the application does not adequately prove that the deal will be a good one for ratepayers, and on Monday, the PSC will decide if the application is adequate, and if so, the board will move on to the next step of approving the utility's purchase of the dams.
Missoulian (Lee State Bureau); Jan. 28

Group seeks public input on plan for Utah's central Wasatch Mountains
Mountain Accord was formed to work on a plan for Utah's central Wasatch Mountains, including transportation to, from and between all seven ski areas in Park City and the Cottonwood Canyons, as well as identifying areas that can be developed and those that should be preserved in their natural state, and next week the group will host two meetings to gather public input on the plan.
Salt Lake Tribune; Jan. 28

Tiny homes lead building boom in Colorado city
When Christopher Smith and Merete Mueller envisioned building their 120-square-foot home in Colorado's Boulder County in 2011, and documenting their work in "Tiny: A Story About Living Small," there were about 100 such small living spaces in the United States, but now there are thousands, and the city of Boulder has the highest number of tiny homes for sale.
Boulder Daily Camera; Jan. 28

'Microhousing' reinvents last century's rooming houses
In Seattle, San Francisco, Portland and Vancouver, B.C., where demand for housing is high, "microhousing" is meeting those demands with aPodments, living units between 150 and 250 square feet with a bathroom, kitchenette and basic furnishings that share common areas, full-sized kitchens and laundry rooms, sort up an updated rooming house concept popular in the first half of the 20th century.
High Country News; Jan. 28

Current Farm Bill contains industrial hemp amendment
The three federal lawmakers who sponsored an amendment to the Farm Bill that would allow colleges, universities and state agriculture departments to grow hemp for research purposes: Colorado U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, Oregon U.S. Rep. Blumenauer and Kentucky U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie, all represent states where industrial production of hemp is allowed.
Portland Oregonian; Jan. 27

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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