Cowboy State Daily Video News: Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Wednesday's headlines include: Inside the Bill Gates' Poker Game In Kemmerer Jackson Businesses Worried Over Impression Area Closed Casper Legislator Says Kindergarten No Place For Sex Lessons

Wendy Corr

June 12, 20245 min read

Wendy thumbnail 6 12b
(Cowboy State Daily Staff)
Watch on YouTube

It’s time to take a look at what’s happening around Wyoming, for Wednesday, June 12th. I’m Wendy Corr, bringing you headlines from the Cowboy State Daily newsroom - presented by Cheyenne Frontier Days. From sun-up to sun-down - there’s something for everyone! Check it out at C-F-D RODEO DOT COM!!

The Wyoming Office of Tourism and the Town of Jackson are fighting the mistaken impression that the collapse of Highway 22 over Teton Pass means the whole area is closed to tourists. 

Business reporter Renee Jean says millions of dollars in tourism revenue are at stake.

“This pass is really pretty far away from Jackson, it doesn't affect anyone getting in and out of the park. But Jackson's Chamber of Commerce, a guy tells me he's been getting lots of calls from vacationers wanting to know if Jackson Hole is closed, should they change their reservations? So it's really a full court press right now statewide to get the messaging out that, hey, Jackson Hole isn't closed, it's ready and eager for the tourism season this summer.” 

Two years ago, a similar event washed out one of the roads in Yellowstone National Park, which some say cost the Park and surrounding communities millions of dollars in lost revenue.


It turns out, billionaire Bill Gates ain’t no slouch when it comes to playing card games. He knows how to bluff.

That’s the takeaway of a tiny group of card players in Kemmerer, who got to sit at the table Monday for a quiet game of Texas Hold’Em with one of the world’s richest people. They told Cowboy State Daily’s Pat Maio that the billionaire was respectful, genuinely interested in the people, and acted like just a regular guy in that upstairs room at the fossil shop across the street from the very first J.C. Penney store.

“The majority of the people said he was a great guy, down to earth, not arrogant at all. You know, he's got a ton of money, but he didn't behave like that or act like that. He just acted like a regular guy… And he plays a pretty intense game of Texas Hold'em, I was told… which kind of makes sense, because it's kind of a numbers game.”

Gates was in Kemmerer to break ground on the $4 billion dollar nuclear plant that could launch a new era of energy development in southwest Wyoming. 


Natrona County School District 1 has updated its parental rights policies to conform to new mandates passed by the Wyoming Legislature earlier this year, but a local state legislator says they don’t go far enough. 

Cowboy State Daily’s Dale Killingbeck reports that at Monday night’s school board meeting, Representative Jeannette Ward scolded the board because they didn’t address the issue of using preferred pronouns of transgender students without parental approval.

“One of the things that she's concerned about is that the wording in the policy passed by the school district does not conform to the intent of the legislature… she thought it was very curious and shocking that educators or former educators get angry because they can't have conversations about sexual orientation with kindergarteners.”

Under the policy, the district “shall notify” a student’s parent or guardian as practicable if a school district employee has actual notice of a change in the student’s educational, physical, mental or emotional health or well-being. 


After President Biden’s son Hunter was convicted Tuesday of lying on the background check form for a firearms purchase, some Wyoming gun dealers say they’re not surprised.

They told Cowboy State Daily’s Mark Heinz that a lie like that is nearly impossible to get away with.

“When you go to buy a firearm from a licensed dealer, you have to check a series of boxes on a form related to a series of questions, one of which is, are you using or addicted to illegal drugs, which is the one that Hunter Biden allegedly lied on. And then as soon as the form is filled out, the dealer will send it to the FBI - and the turnaround, I mean, I've done this several times myself, the turnaround is usually instant, they'll either get a ‘go ahead and proceed with the sale,’ a ‘delay the sale’ or ‘deny the sale’ message. The dealer will get that from the FBI. So how this slipped through initially with Hunter Biden, we're not sure.” 

Experts say the background check system is largely effective in keeping guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them, but dealers also have leeway to deny sales they’re not comfortable with.


When an abandoned SUV was spotted halfway down a gully in Park County’s rugged Oregon Basin, the speculation started to fly. What could’ve caused the crash? Is everyone OK? Who left it there? Could it have been dumped by fleeing criminals?

The truth, it turns out, is not stranger than fiction in this case. Cowboy State Daily’s Andrew Rossi reports that 59-year-old Suzanne Cole told the responding officers a bizarre tale that they found hard to believe.

“She told them that she had picked up some passengers who tried to take the wheel and they were the ones responsible for crashing the vehicle off the road. The deputies were pretty skeptical of that from the beginning. And they ended up arresting her because she was intoxicated, and that actually violated the conditions of her probation.”

Cole is incarcerated at the Park County Detention Center on two misdemeanor charges of probation violation related to her intoxicated state.

And that’s today’s news. Get your free digital subscription to Wyoming’s only statewide newspaper by hitting the subscribe button on And check out our YouTube channel! I’m Wendy Corr, for Cowboy State Daily.

Share this article



Wendy Corr

Broadcast Media Director