Recounting how the Governor’s State of the State address spoke to Fremont Co.
In his 8th and final State of the State address, Governor Matt Mead provided a number of observations and expressed gratitude to all that helped to move Wyoming forward. Some of his reflections were of the accomplishments over the past 8 years and others meant to serve as guidance from the Governor’s Office as the Legislative Session kicks off this year.
Specifically, as it pertains to Fremont County, the Governor had the following acknowledgments:
- The Governor recognized the tribes within Wyoming’s borders: “I recognize the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapahoe tribes today. We are neighbors and we are friends. We care about each other.” He added, “Working with the tribes is important and we must work closely together”
- Mead recognized Judge John St. Clair who sat on the Tribal Court for 30 years. He was recognized for his long service and commitment to the tribal court.
- The Governor acknowledged the efforts of Fremont Co. resident Cy Lee serving as Tribal Liasion and for his efforts on the Executive Council of ENDOW.
The Governor celebrated recent accomplishments of the state government, specifically:
- Creation of a statewide 100-gigabit Unified Network, that provides double the national standard for connectivity to schools. He touted it as “the envy of many states.”
- The actions taken as they relate to Endangered Species, such as delisting of grizzly bear and wolves, and the non-listing of sage grouse.
- He acknowledged the AG’s Office, at his request, in their action for defending state boundaries in the EPA/Riverton case, and for having fought hydraulic fracturing rules.
- The Governor spoke to the successful efforts made in suicide education and prevention, anti-bullying and the reduction of opioid addiction in Wyoming.
As it related to his requests affecting Fremont Co. of the Legislature, the Governor touched on the following topics:
- He highlighted that the Life Resource Center in Lander has been well planned, that it’s important and must move forward to construction now.
- He indicated that budget reductions to the Departments of Health and Family Services have been “too much” and that services have suffered.
- He listed other specific budget requests that he has made, including $105 million for local governments, $200 thousand more for Senior Centers, $2.2 million for increased cybersecurity and monies for capital projects at our Community Colleges.
- The Governor requested that the ENDOW initiative be funded in full
- He requested that Wyoming hire a Trade Representative in Taiwan to encourage Wyoming beef sales to higher-end stores in that nation.
- He instructed the Legislature to consider a merger of the Departments of Family Services and Health.
Mead emphasized that, “the state of our State is strong.”
Mead made a point to provide a sincere message of appreciation to all Wyoming Teachers. He requested that we should look to find savings in education, but that we should do nothing that lessens the value of education. He asked that we look at broadening Wyoming’s tax base. Specifically referenced were lodging and tobacco taxes.
Watch the full address here.
Feature image h/t Wyoming PBS.