The Wyoming House and Senate have agreed to changes in the state budget bill. The bill gives public employees a roughly 2.4 percent pay hike, provides money for improvements at community colleges and the University of Wyoming, and $175 million for local governments. Senator Eli Bebout called it a responsible budget.
A bill that would use federal money to help poor people buy insurance was soundly defeated in the Wyoming Senate.
The so-called Arkansas Plan would use federal Medicaid expansion money to help those who need insurance to buy it through the state. Instead of people being on Medicaid, they would have actual insurance.
The Senate Labor, Health, and Social Services Committee recommended passing the bill last month, but Senator Charles Scott who chairs the committee voted against the bill because he says it's a long way from being workable for Wyoming.
A push by the conservative arm of the Republican party mostly fizzled in last night’s primary election. Most incumbents won their elections and will advance to the general election.
Senator Charles Scott of Casper survived the race with perhaps the highest profile in defeating veteran Representative Bob Brechtel. Scott says his ability to hash out differences with constituents during the campaign helped, along with the fact that voters were familiar with him. He says the contest told him that there is no need to change his approach.
The Wyoming Senate has given initial approval to a bill that would provide grant money to small businesses to have OSHA determine whether they have a safe workplace.
Wyoming has consistently ranked as one of the most dangerous states in the country for workers, and Republican Eli Bebout of Riverton sees this as a way to use a positive approach to improve workplace safety.
A state run health care pilot project continues to struggle to get participants, and Governor Matt Mead recently wonders about its future.
The Healthy Frontiers project helps low income people who don’t qualify for government assistance programs to get health careand gets people access to a doctor which is paid for by a health care savings account. Governor Mead says a number of people have signed up for the program, only to drop out.