Samuel Western

Featured WyoFile Pete Simpson Forum

Take A Risk: How to create a society that matches its scenery

March 25, 2014

Wyoming is America’s monolith of demographic, educational, political, and economic monoculture — and monoculture’s collapse.

Economy Thumbnail image for A Memo from Minnesota: Cities need to rethink growth

A Memo from Minnesota: Cities need to rethink growth

October 22, 2013

Civil engineer and planning reformer says small, incremental growth is more prosperous than large business parks.

Economy Thumbnail image for Feds can restrict flow of mineral revenue to Wyoming

Feds can restrict flow of mineral revenue to Wyoming

September 25, 2012

Wyoming has long benefited from federal funds from the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Trust Fund, but Congress could be putting a end to the cash flow.

People Thumbnail image for Tom Balding: Custom bridle & bit craftsman was inspired when bucked off a horse

Tom Balding: Custom bridle & bit craftsman was inspired when bucked off a horse

June 26, 2012

Although Tom Balding had always excelled as a welder and a tinkerer, it was a long and sometimes difficult road to his business success.

Energy Thumbnail image for The Mineral Leasing Act of 1920: The law that changed Wyoming’s economic destiny

The Mineral Leasing Act of 1920: The law that changed Wyoming’s economic destiny

May 8, 2012

While energy development is arguably central to Wyoming’s economy, it wasn’t always this way.

Environment Thumbnail image for Wyoming’s AML revenue stream slowing to a trickle

Wyoming’s AML revenue stream slowing to a trickle

April 17, 2012

Wyoming has been successful in mitigating abandoned coal mine problems, but it continues to receive large amounts of funding from the Abandoned Mine Lands Fund. …

Featured Thumbnail image for Remembering longtime Wyoming journalist Dennis Curran

Remembering longtime Wyoming journalist Dennis Curran

April 12, 2012

On Sunday, April 8, longtime Wyoming journalist Dennis Curran passed away. In a WyoFile special feature, Samuel Western takes a moment to memorialize Curran’s career …

Featured Thumbnail image for Home Grown: Land use planning evolves and adapts in unlikely corner of Wyoming

Home Grown: Land use planning evolves and adapts in unlikely corner of Wyoming

March 13, 2012

Outside-of-Wyoming ideas about land use planning can stir consternation, but when it came time for Sheridan County to grapple with a rural growth spurt, hyperbole …

Economy Thumbnail image for Wyoming’s Permanent Mineral Trust Fund can’t entirely protect the budget from volatile commodity prices

Wyoming’s Permanent Mineral Trust Fund can’t entirely protect the budget from volatile commodity prices

February 21, 2012

Wyoming’s Permanent Mineral Trust Fund provides a mostly stable stream of revenue to the state’s general fund. Yet state lawmakers are trimming budget plans right …

Featured Thumbnail image for Hispanic Wyoming:  ‘A Good Place to Live’

Hispanic Wyoming: ‘A Good Place to Live’

May 10, 2011

The Bighorn Basin, along with other beet-growing counties, such as Goshen, and sheep-raising counties such as Carbon, attracted permanent populations of Hispanics through the 20th …

Economy Thumbnail image for Hispanic Wyoming:  The Jobs Machine of Campbell County

Hispanic Wyoming: The Jobs Machine of Campbell County

May 3, 2011

Campbell County’s booming growth has provided opportunity not only for transient, poorly educated laborers, but for people with different skill sets: equipment operators, educators, managers, …

Featured Thumbnail image for Hispanic Wyoming: A Shift From Agriculture

Hispanic Wyoming: A Shift From Agriculture

April 26, 2011

A U.S. Census report released March 3 revealed a 60 percent increase in Wyoming’s Hispanic and Latino population since 2000. The Hispanic population in Wyoming …

Places Thumbnail image for Tales of I-80: A Sudden Storm

Tales of I-80: A Sudden Storm

March 1, 2011

Then I noticed the traffic heading east towards Cheyenne was a lot heavier than the traffic going west. I shrugged it off. But I …

Featured Thumbnail image for New Seeds for Poor Wyo Counties

New Seeds for Poor Wyo Counties

October 11, 2010

Wyoming agriculture is beginning to plant new seeds, and poor counties, known for monoculture, lead the way. A conference in Torrington late this past summer …

Columns/Blogs Thumbnail image for Nostalgia for the Old West – Be Wary of a Sanitized Past

Nostalgia for the Old West – Be Wary of a Sanitized Past

May 15, 2010

LARAMIE—Recently I had the chance to sit on a panel at the University of Wyoming with David Wrobel, the chairman of the history department at …

Environment Thumbnail image for New Johnson County Land Wars

New Johnson County Land Wars

September 23, 2009

118 years after that famous massacre, the county again finds itself in the middle of a fight. It’s a quieter battle this time, waged in …

Economy

“No Easy Answers” for Wyoming Economy

June 15, 2009

Sheridan— In an interview with WyoFile, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President Thomas Hoenig recommend Wyoming wean itself from a commodity diet.
Hoenig was in …

Politics

Is Sweetwater County Getting Shafted? Report Urges Wyoming Tax Reforms

April 20, 2009

Impacts of Energy Development in Wyoming
An extensive report by Headwaters Economics, an independent regional research organization, recommends that Wyoming follow Alaska’s example to revamp its …

Economy

Bankruptcy in Big Sky: Mile High Clubs in Trouble

December 19, 2008

Sheridan — In the past year, the west has watch with grim fascination as some of the Rocky Mountain’s poshest resorts have careened down the …