House Speaker to Leave Wyoming Legislature at Year’s End
Kermit Brown (R-Albany), Speaker of the House of Representatives, announced he will leave the Wyoming Legislature after his term expires at the end of this year.
Brown joined the Legislature in 2005. He served as House Majority Floor Leader from 2013-2014 and assumed the role of Speaker in 2015.
Brown says he still has things to accomplish before leaving the Legislature – chiefly, the Capitol Square Project and a permanent solution to structural problems at the state prison in Rawlins.
Brown says the new state budget turned out well, and he thinks some have discounted what the Legislature accomplished during the budget session that concluded in early March.
“I really didn’t like the editorial in the Boomerang the other day because I think it really shortchanged what we accomplished,” says Brown.
“We spent some money out of the savings account but not a lot, we reduced recurring expenditures so they fall more in line with recurring revenues, and we held the line on spending one-time money on one-time projects,” says Brown.
“The trap that is always laid is -- ‘let’s spend some one-time money on these recurring obligations’ -- and when you do that, the deficit builds up and builds up,” says Brown.
“If our revenues are going to go down, we are going to have to scale down state spending,” says Brown. “We can’t sustain state spending that overruns our sustainable revenues with one-time money.”
Brown thinks House Majority Leader Rep. Rosie Berger (R-Sheridan) will be the next Speaker of the House.
Brown continues to maintain his law practice and pursue business interests. He is a founding member and director of Wyoming State Bank, which recently announced a merger with Valley Bank and Trust Co. and Western States Bank.
Brown says he has no concrete plans to return to public service.
“There might be something in the future, we’ll just have to see. But I have no idea what it might be,” says Brown.
“They asked me yesterday -- ‘how’s it going to feel when the Legislature convenes next year?’” says Brown. “And I said ‘I don’t know, I’ll be skiing.’”