Yesterday, Governor Matt Mead delivered his annual State of the State address to a joint session of the 64th Wyoming Legislature. The Governor shared his priorities for the legislative session, including K-12 education funding, his energy and water initiatives, the budget and economic development.
“I’m pleased to report that, though we face challenging times, Wyoming remains strong,” said the Governor. “Our state has prepared well for times of lower revenue and our citizens continue to do great things, contributing to Wyoming’s strength and success.”
On education funding, Governor Mead pointed out the projected shortfall beginning in the 2019-20 biennium in school operations is $1.5 billion over six years. He again asked the Legislature to consider forming a task force or other committee that includes the public, educators, school boards and parents.
“The School Foundation Program can fund K-12 school operations through the biennium but not beyond,” Governor Mead said. “We need to act deliberately and have a broad public discussion. We should consider every idea.”
The Governor had several special guests in attendance from across Wyoming that he recognized:
- Sergio Maldonado and Leslie Shakespeare, tribal liaisons
- Major General Luke Reiner, Adjutant General of the Wyoming Guard
- Larry Barttelbort, Director of the Wyoming Veterans Commission
- Lee Alley, Vice Chairman of the Wyoming Veterans Commission
- Laurie Nichols, University of Wyoming President
- Logan Jensen, University of Wyoming student from Greybull
- Ryan Fuhrman, Wyoming 2017 Teacher of the Year from Sheridan Junior High
The Governor closed his speech by expressing hope that the new Administration in Washington, D.C. will be positive for Wyoming.
“I am heartened about the prospect of fewer federal regulations and pro-growth economic policies,” said Governor Mead. “I am hopeful the new administration will see the benefits of what states like Wyoming have done in responsibly developing our resources.”
Video of the speech are available on the Governor’s website governor.wyo.gov.