Public policy, education focus of Wyoming Cattle Industry Convention & Trade Show
June 4, 2015
Amid flooding, irrigation, getting cattle and sheep out to pasture and the never-ending list of tasks on a farm or ranch, people in agriculture took time to meet in Sheridan last week for the 2015 Wyoming Cattle Industry Convention and Trade Show.
Recurring topics included sage grouse, water, public lands, tresspass laws and the importance of cooperation and education.
Wyoming state senator Dave Kinskey spoke about leading for Wyoming Agriculture, saying, "Think where this country would be if Washington were run like Wyoming." The examples of what's working in Wyoming included the governor's line-item veto power, constitutional requirement of a balanced budget, the law making it a crime to trade votes and the stipulation allowing for only one subject per bill.
Doug Miyamoto, director of the Wyoming Department of Agriculture, reminded attendees of the department's duties, including restaurant inspection, daycare certification, production of the state fair, scale and gas pump certification, in addition to the more conventional feed and fertilizer sampling and policy development and review.
Steve True, director of the Wyoming Livestock Board, Patrick Tyrell, Wyoming state engineer, and Todd Parfitt, director of the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality also outlined their agencies' duties. Parfitt and Tyrell took care to point out that the state agencies should not be confused with the federal EPA or U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
One meeting's main focuses was to evaluate and approve new policies for the organization. Committee meetings covered beef promotion, education and enhancement, water, federal lands, livestock health, wildlife, marketing, private and state lands, brand and ag tax and finance.
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The rest of the conference included discussions of sage grouse, ag education, national and state organizational roles in ag, and generational transfers.
Approximately 300 people attended the conference, according to Vera Lightfoot, the Wyoming Stockgrowers Association office manager. The trade show featured about 30 booths.