Legislative Report

Cheyenne, WY (KGWN) - The State Legislature kills a number of high- profile bills today.
NewsChannel 5’s Robert Geha reports from the State Capitol.
Both the House and Senate moving quickly through introduction votes.
This is a budget session, so these bills need a two-thirds vote for further consideration.
One bill which didn’t even come close to a majority vote was the bill to decriminalize small amounts of pot.
Under House Bill 49, which failed, if you’re caught with an ounce or less of marijuana, you’d face a civil penalty rather than a criminal one. It was 100 dollar fine for less than an ounce, a 50 dollar fine for less than a half-ounce.
Sponsor Jim Byrd says the bill would have reduced the clogged jails and judicial system partially due to possession of marijuana.
Byrd lost another much talked about bill Tuesday, the one to raise the state minimum wage to nine bucks an hour.
He says he doesn’t believe unemployment and prices will rise and the economy will suffer with a higher minimum wage.
Over in the Senate the measure which would’ve allowed firing squads for executions fell three votes short for introduction.
Sponsor Bruce Burns says he brought the bill because one of the three mandated compounds used for lethal injections is hard to get.
It’s manufactured in Europe and has been banned for delivery to the U.S. for political reasons.
And there is no gas chamber or electric chair in Wyoming.
A bill legalizing same sex marriage and another defining marriage as between and man and a woman are back and waiting for an introduction vote.
Representative Gerry Gay says House Bill 108 gives the courts clear direction in divorce cases where the marriages were performed out of state.
And Representative Cathy Connolly’s gay marriage bill would change Wyoming’s definition of marriage as a contract between a man and a woman to between two natural persons.
Connolly says House Bill 87 would not change the rest of the Wyoming marriage law which forbids marriage between siblings and close relatives.


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