On September 4th, the Wyoming State Chambers will be hosting their Fall Conference at the Cam-Plex. The event will bring the Wyoming Economic Development Association and Wyoming Main Street programs together for three days of networking and seminars.
Not only is this an opportunity for the Campbell County Chamber to show other Wyoming Chambers around Gillette, it will be a good community building experience. Keynote speaker Patrick McGaughey, and guest speakers like Sam Chapman from the National Association for Business Economists will be presenting to a combination of organizations that work to improve Wyoming every day.
"We're exited to host, as Gillette has not been the site of this conference for many years," says Executive Director, Gail Lofing. "This will be a chance for people from outside of Campbell County to see what we've done to improve our community."
Attendees will be touring the new Area 59 facility at Gillette College and businesses like L&H Industrial. Though the conference is Wednesday through Friday, you can choose to attend just one day, or even specifically just the Economic Development portion of the event.
Click here to register for the event or check out the conference schedule.
Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies (WFBR) is very saddened to hear about the mine layoffs that are affecting Northeast Wyoming. We have had donors, community members, and government officials asking how they can help the miners at this time.
WFBR encourages anyone needing food assistance to reach out to our partner agencies in your area. Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies and several generous funders will work to keep our partner's shelves full while Campbell County works through this.
Through the generosity of donors, WFBR will be hosting two mobile pantries on Monday, July 29 and Monday, August 19 with distribution to the public to start at 1:00 p.m. and end at 6:00 p.m. The mobile pantries will be at the Family Life Church parking lot. There will be enough food available for 700 families. For more information go to WyomingFoodBank.org.
WFBR will also be recruiting for volunteers to help with these distributions. Please keep an eye on our Volunteer Hub at http://wyomingfoodbank.org/volunteers/ .
Again, if you know someone who needs food now, please contact our local partners.
Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies
PO Box 1540
Evansville, WY 82636-1540
With Summer kicking in to high gear, there will be lots of visitors to Gillette and Campbell County, and they're not all going to stop in to the Chamber for a folding map. Google has started an app called "Trips," which allows you to plan your entire vacation through Google search results.
"The best way for Wyoming businesses to take advantage of Google Trips is by claiming their online business listing, and adding important business details that users want to know when searching for things to do on their Wyoming vacation," says Wyoming SBDC's Market Researcher, Nicholas Giraldo.
Whether or not your business can be found on Google Maps or your event can be seen on Facebook (or the new Visitor's Bureau events calendar) is more and more important, as people are using their phones to navigate through unfamiliar places when they travel. According to Google, while foot traffic in retail stores has declined by 57% in the past five years, the value of every visit to a brick-and-mortar location has nearly tripled.
That's because consumers prefer small business to big box stores. Now, no matter when or where you are, you can research a product, narrow down your choices, compare reviews, and make a decision before you set foot in a store. Finding a local retailer on your smart phone when you're deciding what to buy is key to maximizing the potential of your foot traffic.
One free way to boost your marketing potential is to "claim" your listings on review sites on Google, Yelp, and Tripadvisor. All three websites can combine to boost your revenue by 36%. Marketing magazine Street Fight says that in their research, businesses that claim no listings earn 24% less in average annual revenue than their competitors.
We are available to help you set up your Google business listing or Facebook page if you haven't already. Please call us at the Chamber at (307) 682-3673 to schedule an appointment. You can also contact the Wyoming SBDC in Campbell County at (307) 682-5232, they can help you establish your Google My Business page.
And if you already have a Facebook or Instagram page and wants to be featured on "Follow Friday," message us on our page or email Brenda Kirk.
The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 3.7% in March to 3.6% in April.
Wyoming’s unemployment rate was lower than its April 2018 level of 4.0% and the same as the current U.S. unemployment rate of 3.6%.
Most county unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and fell from March to April. Warmer spring weather often brings job gains in construction, professional & business services, and other sectors.
Washakie County’s unemployment rate fell from 5.0% to 3.6%, Crook County’s rate fell from 4.2% to 3.1%, and Park County’s rate fell from 4.9% to 3.9%. Teton County’s unemployment rate rose from 2.4% in March to 3.8% in April as the ski season ended.
From April 2018 to April 2019, unemployment rates fell in nearly every county, suggesting a general tightening in the state’s labor market. The largest unemployment rate decreases were seen in Lincoln (down from 4.3% to 3.1%), Fremont (down from 5.1% to 3.9%), Hot Springs (down from 4.0% to 2.9%), Natrona (down from 4.5% to 3.5%), and Converse (down from 3.6% to 2.6%) counties.
The highest unemployment rates in Wyoming were found in Big Horn County at 4.5% and Fremont, Park, and Uinta counties, all at 3.9%. The lowest unemployment rates were reported in Niobrara County at 2.2% and Albany and Converse counties, both at 2.6%.
Total nonfarm employment in Wyoming (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) increased from 279,400 in April 2018 to 283,500 in April 2019, a gain of 4,100 jobs (1.5%).
Research & Planning has scheduled the May employment news release for June 25, 2019.
“In my time on the Board of Directors, I hope to keep the Chamber moving in the right direction, promoting local businesses, as well as helping attract new ones. I like to explain to local businesses the benefits of being on the Chamber. The promotion a business receives from mixers, banquet, monthly newsletter and monthly luncheons is very beneficial.
“What I've learned about the Chamber that I didn't know before I started volunteering here, is I now know more about the Convention Center & Visitor's Bureau, as well as Economic Development, and what they both bring to Gillette. ”
“Who wants to work in construction?,” asked Jason Kaufman with S & S Builders, LLC.
None of the students raised their hands.
“Who would like to be a welder?”
Hands started going up. More hands raised when Kaufman talked about mechanics, and working in the mines.
“Those are all jobs in construction,” he said. “We work at the mines all the time.”
Volunteers from the Campbell County Chamber of Commerce’s NEWCA Board of Directors talked to students from Campbell County High School CTE classes on Wednesday, about working in the skilled trades. The day was interactive, with students leading the discussion, and learning from those working in different skilled trades in Campbell County.
One student asked Knecht Home Center of Gillette's Liz Mussell: “How much exactly do you make?”
The federal Economic Development Administration has approved Energy Capital Economic Development's application for a grant to provide part of the funding for the Advanced Carbon Products Innovation Center (ACPIC).
The money will be used to help purchase the land, install infrastructure and build a facility at the Fort Union Industrial Park. This facility will provide a space for organizations to take their existing lab research and commercialize it for new and profitable products made from coal.
ACPIC will provide a space where lab research can be taken from the lab and be proven to be commercially viable. Once the process and products are proven, the next step is a commercial industrial manufacturing plant to make the product. This will provide two important parts of Campbell County's future economic growth.
The Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce and CyberWyoming partnered to win a Microsoft TechSpark Grant and provide local cyber risk advice to area businesses. That grant was awarded on March 7.
The idea for the collaboration formed in October when Patrick Wolfinbarger and Laura Baker, Co-Founders of CyberWyoming, and Dennis Ellis, Microsoft TechSpark Manager, met with Stephanie Meisner-Maggard of the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce to discuss an idea to build Wyoming’s cybersecurity awareness level.
“The Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce is always looking for ways to provide businesses with resources. With the modernization of FE Warren being around the corner, it is vital for businesses to focus their attention on cybersecurity. CyberWyoming’s Made Safe program is a great solution that we have decided to integrate into our Business Accreditation Program,” said Meisner.
The scope of the project is to increase small business cybersecurity advocacy, education, awareness, and adoption of best practices in the Cheyenne community by training a cybersecurity business counselor (CBC) who will assist businesses and reside in the Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce. According to the Cybersecurity Small Businesses by Paulsen in 2016, nearly half of cybercrimes are targeted at small to medium sized businesses. Yet the 2016 CSID/Experian’s Small Business Security Report states that 51% of small businesses are not allocating any budget to cyber risk mitigations, so it is clear that there is a gap between need and adoption of cybersecurity best practices.
The Wyoming Business Council’s State Energy Office will have competitive federal grant funds available for Wyoming local governments, public schools and small businesses seeking to improve their buildings while reducing utility costs.
The money will be split between four programs.
Local Government Energy Improvement
Comprehensive Retrofit Grant
Available to towns, cities and counties for improvements and retrofits like installing insulation; adding weather sealing; purchase of Energy Star or solar powered appliances; upgrades of showers and faucets; or replacement of boilers, hot water heaters, HVAC systems, windows and doors.
Retrofit Grant (LIGHTING ONLY)
Available to towns, cities and counties to upgrade current lighting systems to energy-efficient systems, which may include occupancy controls and auto dimming according to natural light.
Public School Energy Improvement
Retrofit Grant (LIGHTING ONLY)
Available to K-12 public schools to upgrade current lighting systems to energy-efficient systems, which may include occupancy controls and auto dimming according to natural light.
Applicants must sign up for the Wyoming Energy Conservation Improvement Program by May 31, 2019, to receive a free energy assessment. The assessment must be completed before submitting the grant application. Grant applications are due July 31, 2019.
Small Business Energy Audit/Retrofit Grant
Small businesses, nonprofits and local governments are all encouraged to apply to the Small Business Energy Audit/Retrofit Grant Program.
Energy efficiency improvements are often overlooked as cost-saving and building-improvement opportunities.
The program funds up to 75 percent of the cost of an energy audit and some energy efficiency improvements. Grants are not to exceed $5,000 to entities pursuing an energy audit and retrofits that were identified in the audit.
Residences and housing units are ineligible.
For additional information and to download an application, please visit http://wyomingbusiness.org/energy or email Sherry Hughes at email@example.com
The Research & Planning section of the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services reported today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 4.1% in December to 4.0% in January. Wyoming’s unemployment rate was the same as the U.S. unemployment rate of 4.0%.
From December to January, most county unemployment rates followed their normal seasonal pattern and increased. Jobless rates usually increase in January because of seasonal job losses in construction, retail trade, government, transportation & utilities, and other sectors.
From January 2018 to January 2019, unemployment rates decreased in 14 counties, increased slightly in eight counties, and remained unchanged in Lincoln County. The largest decreases occurred in energy producing counties. Campbell County’s rate fell from 4.9% to 4.0%.
Total nonfarm employment in Wyoming (not seasonally adjusted and measured by place of work) increased from 276,100 in January 2018 to 281,300 in January 2019, a gain of 5,200 jobs (or 1.9%).
- Report courtesy the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services.
Most of today's businesses were not around 50 years ago and most businesses that will be around 50 years from now don't exist today. That's one of the messages Jack Mason gave to the Energy Capital Economic Development FUEL Business Incubator members and guests at a breakfast meeting March 1 at the Energy Capital Economic Development Enterprise Center.
Jack became the chief operating officer of the University of Wyoming's Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship last fall. The institute seeks to foster innovation and entrepreneurship across the state. Jack was in Gillette last week to visit with local businesses, tour Campbell County and Gillette, and be introduced to the community.
He described the institute's role and resources to the FUEL members and explained how those resources could benefit them. He also emphasized how fast business ideas change and how flexible and innovative business people need to be in order to achieve success.
"We were so happy to have Jack come speak to our FUEL members and guests," Judith Semple, Volunteer Director of the FUEL Business Incubator, said. "As entrepreneurs, they need to know there is support for what they do as well as know about the resources that are readily available for their businesses."
Jack was accompanied by Dr. David Sprott, Dean of the University of Wyoming College of Business. This was their first visit to Gillette. In addition to speaking at the ECED FUEL Business Incubator, Jack presented to the Gillette Energy Rotary Club and the Kiwanis club. The tour of the community included a visit to the Campbell County Rec. Center, The Cam-Plex, Gillette College's Technical Education Center and Area 59, tours of Dry Fork and Atlas Carbon, and much more.
"Gillette warmly welcomed Jack and David," Phil Christopherson, CEO of ECED, said. "Everywhere they went the community members welcomed them."
[Story originally appeared in the Energy Capital Economic Development Newsletter. If you'd like to sign up and receive economic news from across Wyoming, click here.]
A new partnership between CyberWyoming and the Cybersecurity Collaborative brings national content and experts to Wyoming technology professionals.
“The Cybersecurity Collaborative was founded by a group of Industry-Leading CISOs that, with our Community Membership Leadership Council, created these forums so security professionals that wear multiple hats can be immediately updated by Fortune 1000 subject matter experts on cyber challenges they face,” said Stuart Cohen, Chief Executive Officer of the Cybersecurity Collaborative.
CyberWyoming’s aim is to pull communities together and advance the security of Wyoming through information sharing. The Cybersecurity Collaborative brings benefits like a morning security report and community member Q&A calls with leading subject matter experts, working well with CyberWyoming’s vision.
According to a recent report from the Wyoming Economic Analysis Division, sales and use tax collections in fiscal year 2018 were up 15.3%, while lodging tax revenue went up 13.6%.
The report is produced annually and contains sales and use tax collection information categorized by the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) super sector. Total sales and use tax collections reached $910.7 million across the state. The year over year growth rate for the state-imposed 4% tax collections was 17.1 percent, in contrast to a decline of 8.2 percent in the previous year.
“Because of two consecutive declines in fiscal years 2016 and 2017, the amount of total sales and use taxes for fiscal year 2018 was still 15.0 percent lower than that of fiscal year 2015, before the economic downturn in the state,” said Dr. Wenlin Liu, Chief Economist with the Economic Analysis Division.
As supply and demand rebalance, both oil and natural gas prices, particularly oil prices, have rebounded considerably since early 2016. Consequently, activities in mineral exploration gradually picked up, as evidenced by the increase of active drilling rigs in the state from twenty in early 2017 to nearly thirty in 2018.
Information and agricultural services showed declines, but the state’s pivotal industry, mining (including oil & gas extraction), demonstrated the largest increase, at 57.2 percent, during the year.
“Around 20% of collections are from the mining industry, therefore the changes in total sales and use tax collections in Wyoming have been greatly affected by the dramatic swing in mineral activities,” Liu commented.
Campbell County showed a boost of 19.9%, with over 20 million dollars more collected than in 2017. The strong sales tax expansion was mainly driven by increased oil and/or natural gas drilling activities.
The Bureau of Land Management High Plains District Office is releasing the Wright Area Coal Leasing 10th Circuit Court Remand Draft Environmental Assessment for a 30-day public comment period. The BLM values input from stakeholders and the communities we serve, and we will consider input we receive during this comment period as we finalize the EA.
BLM Wyoming is preparing this EA in response to a 2017 District Court order requiring the BLM to revise its original environmental analysis of leasing coal in the North Hilight and South Hilight fields in Campbell County, Wyoming, in the Powder River Basin.
The BLM issued a decision in 2012 approving leasing in both areas, and subsequently leased the South Hilight Field. The North Hilight Field remains unleased. A 10th Circuit District Court decision determined that in its analysis, the BLM did not properly consider the decision’s impacts to carbon dioxide emissions, so the BLM is reviewing and revising its analysis to account for the market effect and carbon impacts of leasing the coal. Through its multiple-use mission, the BLM strives to support economic growth and responsible energy development in balance with other important uses of public lands.
The Draft EA is available for review at the following link: https://go.usa.gov/xntFJ. The BLM is accepting comments on the Draft EA for 30 days, through Sept. 1, 2018. Comments may be submitted by mail to Bureau of Land Management, High Plains District Office, Attn: Sarah Bucklin, 2987 Prospector Drive, Casper, WY 82604; or online at https://go.usa.gov/xntFJ.
All comments, including personal identifying information, may be made publicly available at any time. The BLM will not consider anonymous comments.
Questions may be directed to Sarah Bucklin, Project Coordinator, at 307-261-7541.
(Via the Wyoming Taxpayers Association) The co-chairmen of the Consensus Revenue Estimating Group (CREG) released their quarterly update on Friday, July 27, highlighting the state's revenue collections by major source. The report provides a comparison of revenue collections received from July 1, 2017 through June 2018 to the annual projections made in the January 2018 Wyoming State Government Revenue Forecast.
The report indicates actual General Fund (GF) and Budget Reserve Account (BRA) revenue collections are exceeding the forecasted pace by $56.5 million or 4.4 percent through June 2018 ($315.7 million, or 24.7 percent, ahead when including capital gains and losses).
Sales and use taxes directed to the GF are ahead of the forecast pace by $27.1 million, or 6.1 percent. This is especially important since sales and use tax revenue is both the largest revenue category for the GF and a vital revenue source for cities, towns, and counties. Year-over-year statewide sales and use tax collections are up across the majority of the state, with only four counties (Crook, Goshen, Washakie, and Weston), as well as a handful of municipalities, recording year-over-year declines for FY 2018.
You can read the entire report here.
According to the Wyoming Department of Administration & Information, total taxable sales in Wyoming grew 17.9 percent to $3.9 billion in the first quarter of 2018, based on sales and use tax collections.
"Increases occurred in most economic industries, with the largest boost in mining (including oil & gas extraction),
which accounted for over one-third of the total increase. The mining sector experienced a year-over-year expansion of 45.1 percent due to increased sales of equipment, supplies, and services from new energy exploration and production activity (Wyoming does not impose sales tax on the production of minerals)."
The sales tax figures for this quarter are still 45.3% less than the first quarter of 2014, which was before the overall energy production downturn. Because more than 1/6 of collections come from mining, changes in sales and use tax collections have greatly fluctuated due to changes in mineral activities. Construction was an industry that experienced a decline, however.
"Manufacturing, wholesale trade, and machinery & equipment leasing, and other services sectors, which are closely related to mineral extraction, each increased around 20.0 percent. The public administration sector, which reflects automobile sales, showed an increase of 7.1 percent over the year. The retail trade industry, the largest in terms of sales tax contribution, grew 15.5 percent. Across the state, 21 out of 23 counties experienced increases in taxable sales, led by Converse County (64.2%). Two other counties, Sublette and Platte, demonstrated over 30.0 percent expansions, respectively. Counties with large numbers of mineral activities generally experienced faster growth due to increased drilling. "
You can read the entire report for the first quarter of 2018 by clicking here.
The Wyoming Workers’ Compensation Division is proposing changes that will affect the Division’s rules, regulations and fee schedule. These proposals include modifications to the Wyoming Workers’ Compensation Rules, Regulations and Fee Schedules.The Department proposes to update Chapter 13 (Presumption of Disability for Certain Diseases), due to a new statute change.
This chapter addresses the authority and hearing requirements for firefighters applying for workers’ compensation benefits. In 2017, the Wyoming Legislature passed a new statute that provides specifics regarding firefighters seeking disability or compensation for job-related injuries or diseases.
The Workers Comp rule states that hearings for firefighters applying for workers' compensation benefits will proceed under the Wyoming Administrative Procedure Act. The statute that passed last year was very specific and detailed in the sorts of diseases that firefighters in Wyoming are covered for, and the procedures with which they can seek compensation, therefore the Workforce rules are very brief.
Nonetheless, the Department is seeking the public's input on these changes. The public comment period will end at close of business on August 15, 2018.
Via traditional mail, send comments to:
Wyoming Workers’ Compensation Division
1510 East Pershing Boulevard
Cheyenne, WY 82002
Or via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The proposed rules may be downloaded, free of charge, by clicking here.
Mike Wandler, president of L&H Industrial, has a lot he can say about his family business. The company has grown from a six-man welding shop in Gillette, Wyoming to a global manufacturer of heavy industrial equipment with over 500 employees worldwide. Changing the direction of L&H from servicing just oil fields to manufacturing machinery is what catapulted the company in to international notoriety.
When NASA realized it needed to bring its shuttle transport system out of the 1960s, it was Wandler, L&H, and a subcontractor called Vencore that they turned to.
"The task that NASA tasked Vencore and us with is to increase the carrying capacity of that machine by six million pounds," Wandler told Forward Sheridan about the project last year.
The NASA Crawler Transporter is the biggest land vehicle on Earth, capable of hauling 20 million pounds of rocket to the launchpad. L&H's design increases carrying capacity by 30 percent, relying on the strength of the undercarriages they can build almost entirely in-house.
In his upcoming presentation brought to you by the Rockpile Museum and the Campbell County Public Library, Wandler will discuss L&H’s current work in the fields of mining, oil and gas, and railroads, and what the future might hold for these industries in Wyoming. This program is held in conjunction with the traveling Smithsonian exhibit, The Way We Worked, which is currently open at the Rockpile Museum.
"Past, Present, and Future" will take place July 12th at 7 p.m. at the Campbell County Public Library. You can see the full series event list here.
The Q2 MetLife & U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Index (Index) released May 30 recorded an overall score of 68.7, up 2.4 points from the Q1 score of 66.3, driven in part by the strongest local economic outlook on record, a firmer hiring environment, and a stronger backdrop for investing. Two out of every three small business owners are optimistic about their company and the small business environment in the United States, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Metlife.
Electric bills represent the largest utility bill for everyday Americans, accounting for over 7% of monthly housing expenditures. However, not all of us pay the same amount for that power. In fact, there’s a pretty wide disparity.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Energy Institute recently released its annual state-by-state comparison of electricity prices. Using the most recent full year of data available from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, their map gives insight into what electricity costs across the country.
While the energy mix available within a state will play a large role in state electricity prices, energy-limiting policies in some states act to artificially elevate prices, making the price of electricity much more burdensome for consumers and businesses.
"In 2017, we actually have the highest national average retail electricity price of the past four years: 10.54 cents/kWh," said GEI's Heath Knakmuhs.
According to the City's end of year report released January 19, requests for commercial construction permits were up 40% from 2016, though the valuation of those projects was down nearly $20 million from the year before. Construction was completed on Thunder Basin High School's Track and Field stadium, as well as new office buildings, gas stations and convenience stores, and an apartment complex that are all to be completed soon or were completed before the end of the fourth quarter in 2017.
The Thunder Basin High School Track & Field stadium was one of many projects completed in 2017 funded by the 1% Optional Sales Tax. Water and Sewer systems, sidewalks and street pavement, and additions like the Boxelder Extension and Gurley Overpass rehab were all major improvements to the City, funded by Penny Power. (You can view all the 1% projects here.)
Also in the City's development summary, unemployment in Wyoming -- and also Campbell County -- is down significantly from the year before, at 4.3%, though still above the national average of 3.9%. Apartment vacancies also continue to decrease, though the population for Campbell County is down to 47,190 from 48,803 in the previous year.
For a list of apartment complexes that are Chamber members, click here.
September 27, 2017
Dr. Mark Englert
Vice President, Gillette College
Mr. Phil Christopherson, CEO
Energy Capital Economic Development
Dear Dr. Englert and Mr. Christopherson:
The Campbell County Chamber of Commerce commends Gillette College and Energy Capital Economic Development on their partnership on the proposed ¼ cent optional tax to be put before the voters on November 7. Both entities are vital to the growth of our community in preparing workforce and diversification of our economy.
Gillette College has seen increased enrollment year over year and has responded in the best way possible. The infrastructure and course offerings are impressive given the funding limitations the College has recently faced. They have responded to the needs of the businesses in our region by providing training specific to those industries.
Energy Capital Economic Development has worked tirelessly with limited staff and resources to develop programs that will allow the expansion of the use of our coal resources readily available in our community. Diversification is key to our region and they have proven they are champions of this effort with such projects as the Advanced Carbon Products Innovation Center and the business incubator in the Sinclair Building.
The Chamber of Commerce values the partnerships we have developed over the years with Gillette College and Energy Capital Economic Development and we look forward to working together on future projects.
The Chamber recognizes the need for sustainable funding for both the College and Economic Development in our community. The vitality of these entities is critical to the success of Gillette and Campbell County. It is the hope of the Chamber of Commerce that voters will take the time to educate themselves on the issue and make an informed vote on November 7.
Chairman of the Board of Directors
What is the ¼ Penny?
The ¼ cent economic development tax would apply to taxable goods purchased within Campbell County. This tax does not apply to food, gasoline, home purchases, prescriptions, or rental payments.
Who pays for it?
Anyone who buys taxable goods in Campbell County contributes to the total collected. Guests to our county, tourists, and part-time residents will cover an estimated 20% of the tax burden.
Is it permanent?
The citizens of Campbell County would vote on the ¼ penny every four years, providing an additional measure of accountability.
How are the funds to be used?
Funds generated by this effort will support both Gillette College and Energy Capital Economic Development, in an effort to create economic stability and growth in Campbell County.
How much will the tax cost me?
A ¼ cent tax costs the consumer one penny for every four dollar purchase of taxable goods. A family of three, with an average income of $45,000, will pay an estimated $27 per year, or slightly more than 50 cents per week.
Here are a few examples of how the ¼ cent would impact purchases:
What are the current sales tax rates?
For Campbell County, 5% for a $1.00 purchase. Goshen County is the only county in the State currently utilizing the economic development sales tax, bringing their rate to 5.25%. Below please find the current sales tax rate in adjacent counties:
Crook County 6%
Converse County 5%
Johnson County 5%
Sheridan County 6%
Weston County 6%
What is the voting procedure?
The vote will take place on Tuesday, November 7, 2017. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Please check with Elections Office for polling locations. The polling locations are the same as 2016. You must be a Campbell County Resident to vote in the election.
How do I absentee or "early" vote?
Absentee ballots are available from September 22 to November 6. You may request an absentee ballot by phone, in writing, or in-person from the Elections Office. Absentee ballots must be mailed before November 7, as they will not be accepted after 7 p.m. on election day. On November 7, you will not be able to absentee vote instead you need to vote at your designated polling place.
On August 8 & 9, the Joint Revenue Committee met in Thermopolis to discuss the revenue shortfall in Wyoming's budget. A deadline of November 10 looms ahead of next year's legislative session, to report on possible revenue generating options to offset the hundreds of millions in deficit.
Campbell County Commissioner Rusty Bell, who also sits on the Chamber's Business Advocacy Committee, provided comment to the Joint Revenue Committee about the optional statewide sales tax.
A proposed extra 1% sales and use tax would reportedly generate $140 million annually. Commissioner Bell stated to the committee that any sales tax imposed at the state level would make it harder for optional 1% sales and use taxes on the local level to be passed.
Other ideas being discussed by the committee are broadening the state sales tax to include items not currently taxed, like groceries. A grocery tax at the full sales tax rate currently exists only in South Dakota, Mississippi, and Alabama. According to projections, taxing groceries, newspaper sales, farm implement sales, religious and charitable sales, manufacturing machinery sales, repairs to railroad rolling stock, and data centers would generate $234 million in additional revenue.
You can download a full report here:
As the conversation in Washington pivots from healthcare to tax reform, so, too, does the chatter around the country during this August recess period. While lawmakers are back home this month, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce hopes too that representatives will be thinking about their promises to the national Chamber association.
President & CEO of the U.S. Chamber, Tom Donohue, issued an open letter to Congress on July 20. In part, it stated:
"In the last election, the Chamber endorsed 240 candidates. In the upcoming cycle, in addition to looking for candidates who support free enterprise, we will be focusing on individuals with a demonstrated willingness to govern, which means reaching consensus so that legislation can be passed and enacted into law. We are a quarter of the way through this Congress, but we are not yet where we need to be on key issues like health care, tax reform, and rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure. Promises were made; promises must be kept."
A consensus statement was issued by Congress, agreeing that tax codes need to be amended to drive economic growth. The U.S. Chamber's message to Congress included the following: