Natural Gas Prices Likely Legislative Driver
Many decisions made over the next month by the Wyoming Legislature will reflect a slump in natural gas prices.
Petroleum Association of Wyoming President Bruce Hinchey says 15 years ago there was a call for more gas and prices rose as high as $8 to $9 per cfs. More exploration and drilling followed, but he says a glut in the market and a slow economy have sent them crashing.
"Prices are gonna probably be about at this level at least for the near term. It's probably one if not two years out before they see much of an increase in demand and an increase in price."
Last week natural gas prices dropped again to 2.75. Economists expect the state will have $164 million less to spend over the next few years because of the decline.
Governor Mead and lawmakers have called for more cuts to proposed budgets, but so far the Governor still wants promised dollars to go to towns and counties. The Wyoming Legislature's budget session starts next week.