Northern Wyoming Daily News - Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

By Marcus Huff
Staff Writer 

House and Senate negotiating school transportation funds ahead of budget approval


February 27, 2016

CHEYENNE – State lawmakers were in conference committees late into the afternoon on Friday, negotiating necessary deductions before submitting a final budget to Governor Matt Mead. In particular, the House and Senate have been going back and forth to trim the state school’s transportation budget, and still keep a feasible operating cost.

“It’s been a real issue in conference,” said Rep. Mike Greear (R-Worland), “this is the third round, and we hope to have it done today, or else we will be pushing the budget to deadline. The governor still needs three days to review the final budget.”

At issue, a proposed $45 million in cuts over the next two years. “The House countered with cut of 14 percent,” noted Greear, “which would put the overall cuts to around $38 million, but the Senate is holding fast with $45 million. We’re still negotiating.”

Rep. Greear noted that cuts to transportation for the school system, although supplemented by lower fuel prices, could hurt certain districts. “Sheridan, for example,” remarked Greear, “just had a fire in their bus barn and lost equipment. Cuts like these will make it tougher to get things back on track.”

Greear stated that the House and Senate are closer to an agreement, but each will still have to return and vote on the final measure before submitting a final budgetary plan to the governor.


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