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Wed June 29, 2011
Secretary of State defends Wyoming's efforts to address shelf companies
By Bob Beck
Cheyenne, WY – A Reuters news report that Wyoming is home to a number of so-called shelf businesses has created a stir. The report noted that a single house near the state capitol is home to over two thousand companies that exist on paper as a way to hide assets. But Wyoming Secretary of State Max Maxfield says the situation is not as dire as the story indicates.
Maxfield says many of the problem companies existed before the legislature improved Wyoming's law in 2009. He says it allowed the state to close down many of the non-legitimate businesses especially those that tried to act anonymously.
"That legislation has helped us eliminate some seven thousand shell companies so far, so we are very much on top of it."
He says most of the businesses housed at the address mentioned in the article are legit. But Maxfield says he will be asking the legislature to give the Secretary of State's office even more authority to close shelf businesses. But while asking for more enforcement power Maxfield says they don't want to go too far
"We want to make darn sure that we remain business friendly to the Mom and Pop operations and to the legitimate Wyoming corporations."
Maxfield admits that will be a difficult balancing act.