A bill to eventually force the federal government to pay for its own programs in Wyoming won't be approved by state lawmakers this year.

The ''Sovereignty'' bill would have put a constitutional amendment before Wyoming voters to prevent the state from expending money or resources to carry out federal programs the state deemed unconstitutional.

One of the bill's sponsors, Gillette Republican Rep. Scott Clem, had argued that while the legislation wouldn't have been able to prevent the federal government from implementing policies the state doesn't like--especially environmental regulations--it would at least "make the federal government pay for it's own stuff."

But opponents considered the bill largely symbolic and also worried that the federal government could strike back by eliminating some of the $1.9 billion in federal money Wyoming receives annually.

While the bill was introduced in the Wyoming House of Representatives, no further action was taken on the measure.

Tuesday was the deadline for bills to be approved in their house of origin and sent to the other body (state house or senate) for consideration.