Coal declines could seriously impact education funding

Oct 28, 2013

The recent Consensus Revenue Estimating Group, or CREG, report indicated some positive things for Wyoming's revenue picture, but within the report there are also concerns. 

Campbell County Representative Sue Wallis says one serious concern stands out.

"There's a very strong potential of a time...not very far out...when we've got a real problem with our education funding."

CREG Co-Chairman Don Richards pointed out that the Wyoming education system...especially funding for school construction...relies heavily on income from coal sales and leases.  Richards noted that the state did not receive any money from the last two lease sales and coal sales are declining.   

Wallis says if the dampening coal market is not reversed, Wyoming will be in a bind to find money to pay for schools.  The issue was raised during a meeting of the Joint Appropriations Committee in Casper.