Hello House Dist. 40,

The first week of the Wyoming Legislature’s budget session is behind us.  It has been an amazing week with over 500 bills that were drafted with 398 bills filed in the House and 142 in the Senate.  The House defeated 53 bills on introduction and over 20 in the Senate.

Some of the ones that failed were HB 75, Medical Expansion;  HB 64 National Corporate Tax Recapture;  HB 54 to increase State officials salary;  HB 63 was an increase in the fuel tax; HB 108 Ban on sanctuary cities and counties; HB 169 increase in sales tax, and HB 240 to authorize tolling on Interstate 80 just to name a few.  Ban on Sanctuary Cities lost by 4 votes.  I voted for this bill and believe most Wyomingites would be in favor of this also.

On the positive side, our Legislature is poised to provide the most protection ever for our unborn children.  In the House my 48-hour waiting period has passed introduction 43 to16 and has been referred to the Judiciary committee.  Senate File 97, Born alive, passed introduction 22 to 7; and Senate File 131, Human Heartbeat passed 20 to 10.  With the positive votes, the bills have a very good chance to be passed into law.  Time has come to protect these children.

The House has passed an increase in the Lodging Tax which I opposed.   The rational, I have been told, is to move the tourism funding out of the general fund and operate the tourism board on the income from the lodging tax.   It sounds good, but it is an increase in the tax the State collects and allows for more funding out of the general fund.   There is no serious discussion in decreasing the state spending.

There are many more bills to consider. We will start working on the budget next week.

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