wyoming construction coalition

Miles Bryan

Last week we told you about how the cost of building a new high school in Rawlins is running millions of dollars more than was expected. Costs are up because construction companies can’t find enough workers in Wyoming. And it isn’t easy to bring them in from out of state.

Jeremy Smith is the Business Manager for Sheridan’s School District One in Ranchester. I met him on a beautiful morning in Northern Wyoming, and he’s excited to show me the new Tongue River Elementary school--or at least the the rolling pasture where the school should be.

Robert Verzo via Flickr

Construction contractors in Wyoming are struggling to find enough workers.

Wyoming Construction Coalition President Josh Carnahan says energy development -- particularly oil -- is fueling a rapid rise in construction jobs around the state.

“It impacts prices because we need to recruit employees to come in and do the work,” Carnahan says. The only way on a short term to attract employees is pay them a little higher and offer them a little better benefits.”