The Management Council met today in Cheyenne to determine interim committee topics. Here is the link to all of the suggested topics that Committee Chairs submitted for consideration.
Let's backtrack slightly and explain the process. At the end of the Legislative Session, each Committee convened and listened to testimony about potential interim committee topics. The public was allowed to testify at some of the meetings before each legislator suggested possible interim topics. Those topics were compiled into a list. Committee Chairs then met to determine what the priorities would be and submitted those to the Management Council. Management Council met today to winnow those down. (Here's a link to today's agenda.)
We've been especially interested in what the Management Council would do with the Joint Committee on Labor/Health's priorities - which ones would they select or emphasize? how would they fit with priorities for other committees? will there be any openings to talk about women's economic security and access to healthcare (of course there will be!) - and their three cross-cutting themes:
Increasing the quality and availability of Wyoming’s health care workforce;
Improving Wyoming’s health care system to meet the needs of Wyoming's citizens, including through service availability and quality and lowering costs; and
Reducing the need for public assistance and giving individuals a meaningful pathway towards self-sufficiency.
Priority #1—Wyoming's Aging Population
Priority #2—Mental Health & Substance Abuse
Priority #3—Wyoming’s Workforce in two critical overlapping areas: health care and technology
Priority #4—Responses to Federal Actions, Litigation and Reports from State Agencies
Medicaid Birth Cost Recovery: The Committee intends to review outcomes associated with recent legislation relating to Medicaid birth cost recovery (2018 HB 86).
TANF and SNAP Issues: The Committee intends to study the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) case load and existing work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
We're hearing that they eliminated Priority #3 which has a direct effect on women. We'll update as soon as we have details about the outcome of the meeting and can make documents available to you.
There are two other places in the proposed interim topics that affect women in Wyoming.
From Joint Judiciary
Priority #7—Sexual Abuse of Minors and Human Trafficking
The Committee will receive information from state agencies regarding sentencing guidelines for persons convicted of sexually abusing minors and human trafficking statistics. Discussion: The Committee would like to receive information and presentations on issues related to crimes involving sexual abuse of minors in Wyoming and human trafficking issues in Wyoming
From Joint Appropriations
Priority #4—Salary Distribution, Flexible Labor and Turnover
Study the distribution of appropriations for compensation of executive, judicial and higher education employees supported by general, federal and other funds. The Committee will also review the use of at-will, contract and flexible labor and evaluate the impact of compensation, including benefits, on employee turnover rates and turnover costs.
Some additional insight here (pre-meeting) from Casper Star-Tribune's Nick Reynolds.