Issues surfaced through our grassroots policy development process help raise awareness of actionable items to work on to keep agriculture and Wyoming strong and thriving. Based on the issues developed through this process, WyFB's standing committee chairs and the State Government Affairs Committee members meet at the conclusion of the state annual meeting to highlight priority issues for the coming year. The WyFB Board of Directors reviews their recommendations and set the priority issues each year.
WyFB advocates on behalf of its members on many issues throughout the year, setting priority issues helps focus and identify specific items to guide the organization. Here's a look below at the 2023 priorities at the state level. A link to the national issues on the AFBF website is provided below.
- An annual legislative review of all state spending
- Biennial budgets with no supplemental budget requests or appropriations during the general session.
- Budget cuts in local, county & state departments/entities.
- Inviolate integrity of the PMTF and using the interest generated to provide a renewable tax base.
- Using severance taxes to develop surface & underground water and rehabilitate existing irrigation infrastructure.
- Amending taxing authority statutes to require a majority vote of all registered voters in a district and requiring issues to go before the registered voters every four years.
- Further increases in taxes, fees and charges.
- A statewide mill levy for community colleges.
- Systems that would increase the costs of establishing & operating special taxing districts.
- Income tax and amendments to the income tax provisions in the Wyoming Constitution.
- Recognition of crypto currency as a legal tender and its removal from the Wyoming Money Transmitter Act.
Private Property Rights
- Protection of private property rights.
- No net gains of state lands measured and implemented on a county-by-county basis.
- Requiring analysis of proposed legislation and regulation for impacts on private property.
- Continual gubernatorial and legislative involvement in issues involving natural resource management and States' rights.
- Reduction in risks associated with industrial projects on private property.
- Strengthening criminal trespass laws including legislation to prohibit corner crossing between federal lands.
- Amending Wyoming's eminent domain statutes to provide greater protection for agricultural use owners during condemnation cases.
- Rights-of-way obtained by condemnation should be for right of easement only, not for right of ownership.
- Two-thirds of landowners must be signed to agreements before eminent domain use is possible.
- Local control of schools.
- Vocational education programs in all schools for grades 7-12.
- Requiring consideration of the means of the state for education costs and school capital construction costs.
- Only necessary buildings should be updated or replaced.
- Revision of teacher tenure. Every third year a panel of teachers, parents, and board members should evaluate teachers; so that quality teaches are recognized and rewarded based on performance.
- The use of school vouchers to provide students with the best available education.
- Local school boards should control their school lunch program.
- Equal access for students to all educational opportunities that districts provide.
- Resisting efforts to incorporate Critical Race Theory in Wyoming public schools.
- Election of University of Wyoming Board of Trustees.
- Including historic time of use as a criterion for change of use situations.
- Comprehensive underground water management plans made with local input and county meetings.
- Notification of water right holders and local hearings on possibly damaging applications.
- Continual gubernatorial and legislative involvement on issues of States' rights.
- Funding for emergency irrigation infrastructure repairs.
- Water rights holders should be notified when water rights are regulated.
- Transfer of title from Bureau of Reclamation to local districts once the districts pay the costs off.
- The gift, sale or lease of water outside the state or for instream flow.
- Permitting private instream flow. Changes in temporary use & the concept of salvage water.
- The federal government obtaining water rights.
- Delegation of authority for pursuing instream flow applications from the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission to the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.
- Developing underground water before availability assessments have been conducted.
- Developing hydrogen power from water.
- State management of the wolf and grizzly bear.
- Increasing the predatory animal control program due to wildlife, crop & livestock losses.
- Increasing damage payments for standing & stored forage.
- Managing wildlife based on how much forage is available for wildlife.
- Appointment of Wyoming Game and Fish Commissioners.
- Conducting cost analysis on Migration Corridors.
- Base Landowner Coupon Payments on specie harvested.
- Wyoming Game and Fish Commission being able to set license fees.
- Migration Corridors encroaching on private property rights.
- Efforts to retain our Brucellosis class free status outside the current Designated Surveillance Area (DSA).
- Funding for voluntary Brucellosis testing outside of the DSA.
- Legal recognition of Vet Tech degrees.
- Mandatory animal ID beyond existing requirements.
- Any increase in the beef check-off program.
- A state beef check-off program.
- State agencies performing a consistency review to comply with county land use plans when proposing new rules.
- Special district elections being held in conjunction with general elections.
- Legislative review of federal actions for constitutionality.
- Granting additional rights to any special groups.
- Legalization or decriminalization of marijuana.
- Make America Beautiful Executive Order signed by President Biden.
- Switching parties for the primary election at the polling place.
- Utilization of Environment, Social, Governance (ESG) scores.
Learn more about national issues on the AFBF website.