Wyoming Liberty Group
by Sven R Larson
Your agenda for the meeting in Thermopolis on August 2-3 is full of proposals to raise taxes and fees on the Wyoming economy. While I don't think anyone expects them all to pass even through your committee, the rich roster of ideas is in itself a source of great concern.
Boyd Wiggam discusses how the Legislature's Corporations Committee is addressing several local government regulatory trends that can stand in the way of new, private business development in Wyoming with Gary Freeman on KGAB.
On Thursday April 28 the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its advance estimate of GDP growth for the first quarter of 2016:
Real gross domestic product -- the value of the goods and services produced by the nation’s economy less the value of the goods and services used up in production, adjusted for price changes -- increased at an annual rate of 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2016, according to the "advance" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. In the fourth quarter, real GDP increased 1.4 percent.
During Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal’s visit to Wyoming in November 2015, he discussed his strategy to put Louisiana’s fiscal house in order. His basic philosophy of government is that we can grow the American economy or we can grow the government economy, we can’t do both. If we want to grow the American economy we must shrink the government economy. This economic growth strategy worked in Louisiana and it will work in the Wyoming too, if given the chance.
Over the last couple of weeks I have pushed strongly on the need for major reforms to the Wyoming economy. Specifically, our state lawmakers and our governor must focus on two problems, which basically are communicating vessels and soluble only when addressed together:
- The looming deficit in the state budget, which is really a structural deficit unmasked by deflating minerals prices; and
- Our big government sector, with high levels of welfare-state spending and large ranks of state and - especially - local government employees.
The latest employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics confirms that Wyoming is part of the national recovery. It was not until this past summer that there were clear and indisputable signs of a recovery in our state, but it looks like the national economic rebound has brought Wyoming onboard for the long haul.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics has released its preliminary employment numbers for October 2014. It is good news for all Americans except those in Alaska: compared to October 2013 only the Frontier State has lost jobs. All other states added jobs.