Western Governors’ News: Colorado cycling event highlights rural communities, Kansas improving broadband, Washington’s workforce development milestone

The Western Governors' Association offers a regular roundup of news showcasing the work of Western Governors in economic development, natural resources, education, health and safety, and other areas. Here is what the Western Governors have been working on recently:

ALASKA Gov. Bill Walker reallocated funds to pay for a statewide 9-1-1 system to improve safety, since one in four Alaskans lacks conventional access to 9-1-1 as an emergency number.

ARIZONA Gov. Doug Ducey announced plans to increase teacher salaries by 20 percent by the beginning of the 2020 school year.

CALIFORNIA Gov. Jerry Brown issued a proclamation establishing John Muir Day in California to celebrate the national parks pioneer and namesake of numerous wilderness areas.    

COLORADO Gov. John Hickenlooper announced the route for Pedal the Plains, a three-day bicycling event highlighting the agricultural roots and frontier heritage of Colorado’s Eastern Plains.

HAWAII Gov. David Ige unveiled a new pilot program in partnership with law enforcement to improve public safety and reduce homelessness.

IDAHO Gov. Butch Otter highlighted Idaho’s accomplishments in education, workforce development, cyber defense and more during his tenure in an address to the state lawmakers during his final legislative session.

KANSAS Gov. Jeff Colyer established the Statewide Broadband Expansion Planning Task Force, which will map connectivity gaps across the Sunflower State and improve internet access, especially in rural areas.

MONTANA Gov. Steve Bullock announced a $370,000 grant to launch a suicide prevention tool in partnership with Montana State University and to implement an evidence-based school prevention program.

NEBRASKA Gov. Pete Ricketts joined the Face to Face initiative, which encourages policy makers to personally engage with people in the correctional system.

NEVADA Gov. Brian Sandoval applauded the announcement of $33.5 million in federal funding to complete construction of the Northern Nevada State Veterans Home.

NEW MEXICO Gov. Susana Martinez discussed the realities of governing in today’s social and political climate with Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper at the Forum on Leadership at the George W. Bush Presidential Center.

NORTH DAKOTA Gov. Doug Burgum designated 25 areas in North Dakota as Opportunity Zones under a community development incentive program.  

OKLAHOMA Gov. Mary Fallin signed a bill to increase funding for public schools. “Improving the quality and outcomes in education is the single-most important thing we can do to attract and retain jobs, alleviate poverty, and help Oklahomans have fulfilling and productive lives” said Gov. Fallin.

OREGON Gov. Kate Brown met with business owners and apprentices in Bend to highlight workforce development opportunities as a part of the recently launched Future Ready Oregon initiative.

SOUTH DAKOTA Gov. Dennis Daugaard released early results from the recently launched Grants for Grads program, which assists recent graduates in purchasing a first home in South Dakota.

TEXAS Gov. Greg Abbott joined prominent education and healthcare leaders in Houston to announce a new 30-acre research campus at Texas Medical Center, which is expected to create 30,000 new jobs.

UTAH Gov. Gary Herbert met with Mexico's Secretary of Energy to establish a working group made up of leaders across government, industry and education to advance energy cooperation.

WASHINGTON Gov. Jay Inslee marked a workforce development milestone with the graduation of the state’s first registered youth apprentices, and has plans to expand the apprenticeship program.

WYOMING Gov. Matt Mead congratulated the finalists in the Carbon XPRIZE, a competition to develop breakthrough CO2 technologies, which will be tested in Gillette.

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