Mary Throne Says She’s Running For Wyoming’s Future
Wyoming Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mary Throne says she's running because a serious discussion is needed about state revenues, the tax structure, and the "boom and bust" cycle that tends to plague the state economy.
Throne, who is a Cheyenne attorney and former state legislator, said on KGAB radio Monday morning that she supports a "fair, equitable and competitive" tax structure. She said that while the state doesn't want to create a tax system that discourages businesses from locating in the state, it's also clear that low taxes haven't done much to boost the economy is most of Wyoming.
But Throne said she doesn't support a state income tax for Wyoming.
Currently, taxes on minerals--including oil and natural gas--generate roughly 70 percent of the revenues for state government in Wyoming. She said one problem is the tendency to stop paying attention to tax and revenue issues once the good times return after bust cycles in Wyoming.
On school funding, she said "it's a myth" that Wyoming school systems are top heavy with administrators, adding studies conducted for the state have shown that to be untrue.
She also said it would be a mistake to think Wyoming can deal with its education funding shortfall in coming years simply by cutting administrators. "We're at the point where we are talking about losing good teachers because we are losing our competitive edge," she added. Throne did say some money might be saved by encouraging smaller school districts to consolidate, although she said those savings won't be nearly enough to deal with the state's school funding challenges.