CASPER, Wyo. — Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has given the green-light for a program that aims to put Wyoming-raised meats on school lunch trays by signing House Bill 52 into law.
The “Wyoming School Protein Enhancement Project” has been being piloted since 2017 and the passage of the bill will allow the program to move forward.
House Bill 52 will direct the Wyoming Department of Education (WDE) to make up to $25,000 available on an annual basis for a grant program to help school districts cover the cost of processing donated meat. School districts would be responsible for half the cost with the WDE covering the other half of the meat processing costs.
The legislation will allow the WDE funding to help cover processing fees of “Wyoming poultry, lamb, pork, beef and bison used in school meals.”
When the bill was moving through the House of Representatives, Rep. Trey Sherwood (Albany County) offered an amendment to authorize the Wyoming Department of Education to accept monetary donations from the public or grants to support the meat processing fees associated with the project. The House adopted this amendment.
“I believe this amendment gives the program room to grow based on future popularity or demand,” Sherwood said.
The House passed the bill on a unanimous third reading vote of 60-0 on March 3.
The Senate then passed the bill on a third reading vote of 28-0 on March 26:
- Ayes: ANDERSON, BALDWIN, BITEMAN, BONER, BOUCHARD, CASE, COOPER, DOCKSTADER, DRISKILL, ELLIS, FRENCH, FURPHY, GIERAU, HICKS, HUTCHINGS, JAMES, KINSKEY, KOLB, KOST, LANDEN, MCKEOWN, NETHERCOTT, PAPPAS, PERKINS, ROTHFUSS, SALAZAR, SCHULER, SCOTT
- Excused: WASSERBURGER
- Conflict: STEINMETZ
Because the Senate adopted an amendment modifying when school districts would have to apply for funding assistance, the House needed to hold a concurrence vote on whether to agree to the change. The House passed that vote 55-1 on March 29:
- Ayes: ANDREW, BAKER, BANKS, BEAR, BLACKBURN, BURKHART, BURT, CLAUSEN, CONNOLLY, CRAGO, DUNCAN, EKLUND, EYRE, FLITNER, GRAY, GREEAR, HALLINAN, HAROLDSON, HEINER, HENDERSON, JENNINGS, KINNER, BARLOW, KNAPP, LARSEN, L, LAURSEN, D, MACGUIRE, MARTINEZ, NEIMAN, NEWSOME, NICHOLAS, OAKLEY, OBERMUELLER, O’HEARN, OLSEN, OTTMAN, PAXTON, PROVENZA, ROSCOE, SCHWARTZ, SHERWOOD, SIMPSON, SOMMERS, STITH, STYVAR, SWEENEY, WALTERS, WASHUT, WESTERN, WHARFF, WILLIAMS, WILSON, WINTER, YIN, ZWONITZER
- Nays: FORTNER
- Excused: BROWN, CLIFFORD, HARSHMAN, HUNT