Gov. Gordon provides tax relief to eligible Wyoming businesses

Gov. Mark Gordon has signed an Executive Order that will provide significant tax relief to eligible Wyoming businesses. This will come in the form of a tax credit and by offsetting some potential increases to their unemployment insurance taxes in the future.

Executive Order 2021-08 removes all UI benefit claims between March 13 and Dec. 31, 2020, from the businesses whose accounts were charged for those claims. The EO was authorized by the Legislature in 2020, and it ensures that these employers do not continue to experience significant UI tax rate increases due to the system-wide surge in unemployment claims that occurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It will also provide credits to employers who experienced increased unemployment taxes already paid in 2021.

“We recognize that every employer in the state was impacted in some way by the pandemic, and many saw their unemployment insurance rates increase – some substantially – this year,” Gordon said in a news release. “This Executive Order protects Wyoming businesses that have continually risen to the challenges in this new environment.”

To ensure that this tax relief will not impact future tax rates, the governor will utilize $58 million in federal funds to backfill Wyoming’s UI Trust Fund. The governor previously added $64 million to that trust fund, which has already helped keep rates from going up even further.

“It is important that we ensure that this significant tax relief does not necessitate an increase in UI tax rates at a later date,” the governor said.

Wyoming employers will see a decrease in their unemployment tax rates after Oct. 31. They will also receive notification from the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services of the value of credits that can be applied to future unemployment taxes.

UW and LCCC announce 2022 Southeast Wyoming Innovation Launchpad

University of Wyoming’s IMPACT 307 business incubator program, in coordination with Laramie County Community College and other local partners, launched the 2022 Southeast Wyoming Innovation Launchpad (SEWYIL), a regional startup challenge for Albany and Laramie County residents. The application is open until Nov. 15 at midnight.

“The startup challenge model was created to give entrepreneurs the early funding needed to move their ideas forward,” interim IMPACT-Laramie Director Fred Schmechel said in a news release. “The goal of SEWYIL is to support the new business ideas coming out of southeast Wyoming and pave the way for more job creation and industry growth in this region.”

Participants will work alongside one another in preparation for the final Pitch Night event, set to be held in Cheyenne, where finalist teams will pitch their business concepts to a panel of judges. In the previous two years of the competition, 14 total companies have been funded, creating around 25 jobs so far. The funded companies must use the funds for actual startup costs, and the award will vary for each company. Awards for this launchpad have historically been between $1,000 and $20,000.

Designed after similar efforts in Wyoming, SEWYIL connects entrepreneurs with business advisors and offers support in preparing for the final Pitch Night event. Participants will attend exclusive business seminars and network with startup founders and mentors, in addition to receiving practical business advising through IMPACT 307’s incubator program.

The five-question SEWYIL application is available at https://tinyurl.com/sewyolaunchpadapp and is due by Nov. 15. For more information, contact Fred Schmechel at 307-766-6399 or email fschmech@uwyo.edu.

For more information or to apply to the startup challenges, visit the IMPACT 307 website at https://impact307.org/.

Wyoming Lawyer magazine honored with top national awardThe National Association of Bar Executives on Thursday presented the Wyoming State Bar a 2021 Luminary Award for Excellence in Regular Publications for the Wyoming Lawyer magazine, the Bar’s flagship publication.

The winning entry was the February 2021 issue featuring “Where the Rule of Law Stands and How to Reclaim It.” This is the second Luminary Award the magazine has earned. The first was awarded in 2011.

Each year, the NABE Luminary Awards program recognizes excellence in bar association communications and marketing by honoring the outstanding communications projects of the last two years.

The Wyoming Lawyer magazine covers substantive legal issues, professional trends and feature profiles. The magazine is published six times a year by the Wyoming State Bar. Sharon Wilkinson, the Bar’s executive director, also serves as the editor-in-chief of the magazine.

The magazine is available to anyone online by visiting the Wyoming State Bar’s website at https://www.wyomingbar.org/news-publications/wyoming-lawyer-magazine/ and clicking on the magazine cover art to view the current digital edition.

Milestones

Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck has announce that Kristin Lee, a shareholder in its Cheyenne office, has joined the board of directors of Cheyenne Housing Authority. CHA was created in 1971 to address the city’s need for low-income housing, and its mission is to provide decent, safe and sanitary housing to elderly, disabled and economically disadvantaged families unable to obtain housing through conventional means. As part of her three-year term, Lee will help with oversight of the agency and collaborate with its director and staff. Board members bring their knowledge of the community to help the agency be successful in providing low-income housing.

From staff reports

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