Wyoming Education Association

Spring 2019

Issue link: https://digital.copcomm.com/i/1095286

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be implemented in one year, there are many, such as a fuel tax, a lodging tax, and the big box store tax, that are paid mainly by out of state people, and would be the fi rst steps toward less dependence on the mineral industry and more faith in the people of Wyoming to build an economically stable and diverse economy in this state. Did you use the WEA Cyber Lobbying tools? This year the WEA lobbying team rolled out a new tool – The WEACyber Lobbyist page (wealegislativeinfo.com). The site provided talking points on key bills, links to contact your legislators directly, our new bill tracker, and access to our legislative updates. We hope you found the tool useful! 4 Spring 2019 | wyoea.edu equitable and adequate education. Thankfully, each year these kinds of bills run, the legislature shows the commitment to the oath taken – to protect and uphold the Wyoming Constitution – and the bills do not make it off the fl oor. Where's the Revenue? We began the 2019 legislative session with seven revenue bills drafted. When the session wrapped up, only one bill made it to Governor Gordon's desk – HB 0069: Collection of sales taxes by marketplace facilitators, which will collect about $7 million a year from business that should, but do not, collect sales taxes. Also included in the slate of revenue generating bills were those raising property taxes that would go directly to schools ($100 million a year), a lodging tax bill that would spill over approximately $1 million a year to schools, freeing up $20 million a year from the general fund, a school trust land access fee that would generate almost $1 million a year, an income tax bill (personal and corporate) that would generate $200 million a year, an indexed fuel tax that would generate $2 million a year, a tobacco tax equaling $22 million a year to the general fund, a wind tax that would generate $8–$17 million a year, and a corporate income tax on big box stores (that is already paid by them to their home states) which would have generated $45 million a year. Even a revenue neutral broad-based sales tax bill, which would have spread the sales tax burden over many diff erent entities, failed in the legislature. This totals over $400 million dollars a year - just what is needed to meet the school funding defi cit, with a bit left over to fund school construction. It's clear that we have a solution to the school funding structural problem. While all of these taxes could not "This is one of the great stories of the session, and it's what this session should be summed up with: You had men and women working, you had local input, you had both houses engaged. [They] got into the weeds, had robust discussions, and you get a great piece of legislation. That's what this session, the 65th Legislature, was about: working together and getting good stuff done." - Governor Mark Gordon on signing House Bill 297 Powell Education Association President Necole Hanks consults with WEA President Kathy Vetter while participating in citizen lobbying activities during the session. Governor Mark Gordon signed HB0022 into law. You can see many champions of public education including WEA President, Kathy Vetter (in purple), celebrating as this bill is signed.

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