Choosing a new president for Northwest College will be a challenging task for a variety of reasons.
The NWC Board of Trustees should be commended for starting that process early in an effort to come up with a workable plan for hiring a replacement for Paul Prestwich, who has resigned effective June 2013.
Despite pleas to reconsider from county prevention workers and local lawmakers, the Wyoming Department of Health is moving forward with plans to coordinate prevention efforts statewide through the Johnson County Community Resource Center.
Northwest College was approved for $9.38 million of state funding this year to help build a new classroom building to give the college more space and address other needs. The question now is how to pay the remaining $4.9 million for the planned $14.25 million structure.
Park County voters will be asked in November whether they are willing to pay a 1 cent tax for four years to help pay infrastructure costs for the county and its municipalities. Because all of that 1-penny tax would go to local governments, it would provide nearly as much revenue locally as the 4 percent sales tax now assessed by the state of Wyoming. Seventy percent of the existing 4 percent sales tax goes to the state, with the remaining 30 percent going to county and municipal governments.
Gerald Giraud of Oglala Lakota College in South Dakota will be the next vice president for academic affairs at Northwest College. Currently a vice president for instruction and chief academic officer, Giraud has also served as director of assessment and institutional research at Oglala. He begins his duties at Northwest Aug. 1.
A meeting Tuesday between state officials and the Park County Prevention and Wellness office in Cody did little to alleviate local concerns about the process used to select a statewide fiscal agent for future prevention operations in the Wyoming.
The meeting, called by Wyoming Health Officer Dr. Wendy Braund, gave local prevention workers, partners and supporters a chance to address their concerns to Braund and Marilyn Patton, manager of the Prevention Unit of the Wyoming Health Department.
A decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife to delay future attempts to delist the grizzly by two or three years is the right thing to do. Many scientists believe the grizzly has recovered as a species and no longer needs to be included on the Endangered Species List. But the most recent legal maneuvers by environmental groups have focused on the decline in whitebark pine trees due to disease and pine beetles. The seeds of the whitebark pine traditionally are an important source of food for grizzlies, and some believe the decline of the trees could threaten the grizzly’s continued recovery.