xt7d251fn14x https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt7d251fn14x/data/mets.xml Wyoming United States Works Progress Administration 1937 Other contributors include: Robert C. Lowe (Robert Chapin) 1907- and David S. Lander under the supervision of A. Ross Eckler; 11 pages, 27 cm; This bulletin is one of a series presenting state constitutional provisions affecting public welfare; Includes bibliographical references; UK holds archival copy for ASERL Collaborative Federal Depository Program libraries; Call number Y 3.W 89/2:36/W 99 books English Washington D.C.: Works Progress Administration Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Analysis of Constitutional Provisions Affecting Public Welfare in the State of Wyoming text Analysis of Constitutional Provisions Affecting Public Welfare in the State of Wyoming 1937 2015 true xt7d251fn14x section xt7d251fn14x    
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This bulletin is one of a series presenting
‘ State constitutional provisions affecting public wel-
fare, prepared to supplement the State by State digests
· of public welfare laws so as to provide in abstract
form the basis for the public welfare services of the
several States.
1 The provisions quoted are those concerned
directly with public welfare administration and such
• others as may substantially affect a public welfare
program, even though only indirectly related. It would
be impossible to consider withi11 the limits of this
study every remotely connected constitutional provi-
sion. The indirectly related provisions included,
therefore, have been restricted to those concerning
° finance, legislation, and the methods of constitutional
· amendment.
An attempt has been made, by a careful selec-
tion of the most recent cases decided by the highest
courts of the States, to indicate wherever possible how
° these provisions have been construed. These cases are
included in footnotes appended to the constitutional
provisions shown.
It is hoped that these abstracts will be
useful to those interested in public welfare questions
· in indicating how State and local public welfare admin-
istration may be affected by constitutional powers and

• Page
Incidence of Responsibility for Welfare Program .................. 1
Financial Powers and Limitations .... . ..... . ...................... 2
Taxation and Assessments .................................... 2
• Exemptions .................................... ° .............. 4
Borrowing and Use of Credit ................................. 4
Ot»h€l" IflCOHl€.............................................».. 7
Appropriations and Expenditures ............................. 8
Provisions Affecting legislation ................................. 8
· Constitutional Amendment or Revision ............................. 11

• I. Incidence of Responsibility for Welfare Program
A. Such charitable, reformatory and penal institutions as the
O claims of humanity and the public good may require, shall be established
and supported by the state in such manner as the legislature may prescribe.
They shall be under the general supervision of a state board of charities
and reform, whose duties and powers shall be prescribed by law.2
B. The property of all charitable * * ’¥* institutions be-
• longing to the territory of Wyoming shall, upon the adoption of this con-
stitution, become the property of the state of Wyoming, and such of said
institutions as are then in actual operation, shall thereafter have the
supervision of the board of charities and reform.5 =¥= * *
C. No appropriation shall be made for charitable, industrial,
• educational or benevolent purposes to any person, corporation or community
not under the absolute control of the state, nor to any denominational
· or sectarian institution or association.4
D. Neither the state nor any county, city, township, town,
school district, or any other political sub—division, shall * * * make
1Const1tut1on (1890), as published 1n the Revised Statutes of Wyoming (1951), by au-
thority of the State of wyoming; with all amendments to May 1, 1957.
"The Legislature ls vested with all legislative powers or the state; it may do
anything within the domain of 1eg1s1at1o¤ which is not repugnant to the state or fed-
• eral Constitutions; and constitutional restrictions upon the Legislature are not to
be enlarged by construction beyond their terms. *• Budge vs. Board of Commissioners or
Lincoln County, 29 Wyo. 55, 208 P. 874, 8*76 (1922).
The State Constitution is not a grant of legislative power, but a limitation upon
the exercise of that power. The Legislature may enact any law not prohibited either
expressly or by clear implication by the State or Federal Constitutions. State ex
rel. Board of Commissioners of Goshen County vs. Snyder, 29 Wyo. 199, 212 P. 771
(1925); State ex rel. Budge vs. Snyder, 31 Wyo. 555, 225 P. 1102 (1924); Sprlggs vs.
g Clark, 45 Wyo. 62, 14 P. (2d) 667 (1952).
2Const1tut1on, Art. VII, Sec. 18.
3Const1tut1on, Art. VII, Sec. 19.
4Const1tut1on, Art. III, Sec. 56.
See par. D, above.
A donation by the State to the counties was held not to violate this section
because counties, whether regarded as corporations or as political subdivisions, are
• under the absolute control of the State. State ex rel. Board of Commissioners or
Goshen County vs. Snyder, 29 Wyo. 199, 212 P. 771 (1925).
O 1

2 Wyoming
I. Incidence of Responsibility for Welfare Program—Continued
donations to or in aid of any individual, association or corporation,
except for necessary support of the poor,5 * "‘ *
II. Financial Powers and Limitations
A. Taxation and Assessments
(1) state ,
(a) No tax shall be imposed without the consent of
the people or their authorized representatives. All taxation shall be
equal and unif‘orm.°
(b) All lands and improvements thereon shall be listed
for assessment, valued for taxation and assessed separately.7 •
) (c) All coal lands in the state from which coal is
not being mined shall be listed for assessment, valued for taxation and
assessed according to value.8
(d) All mines and mining claims from which gold, silver ·
and other precious metals, soda, saline, coal, mineral oil or other val- V
uable deposit, is or may be produced shall be taxed in addition to the ·
surface improvements, and in lieu of taxes on the lands, on the gross
product thereof, * * * provided that the product of all mines shall
be taxed in proportion to the value thereof.9
(e) For state revenue, there shall be levied annually
a tax not to exceed four mills on the dollar of the assessed valuation
of the property in the state except for support of state educational and
charitable institutions, the payment of the state debt and interest there-
_________________,_ O
5Const1tut1on, Art. XVI, Sec. 6.
For the complete section see p. 5. Dar. (d).
6Const1tut1on, Art. I, Sec. 25.
See p. 5. Dar. (f), and footnote 11.
An act exempting the property of war veterans to the value of $2,000 was held
valid under this section. The Supreme Court stated that in view of the exemption ·
provlslons of Art. XV of the Constitution (p.4, B,par. (1)). the uniformity require-
ment of thls section was not intended to prevent lawful exemptions. State ex rel.
Board of Comm1ss1oners of Goshen County vs. Snyder, 29 Wyo. 199, 212 P. '7'71 (1925);
Harkin vs. Board of Commissioners of Nlobrara County, 50Wyo. 455, 222 P. 55 (1924).
7Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 1.
8Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 2.
9Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. :5. A
A tax on the gross products of all mining claims levied in accordance with this
section was held to be a property tax, rather than a license, privilege, or occupation
tax. Miller vs. Buck Creek 011 Company, 58 Wyo. 505, 269 P. 45 (1926).
1OConst1tut1on. Art. XV. Sec. 4. O
See p. 4, footnote 15.

Wyoming 3 _
II. Financial Powers and Limitations-Continued
* .
A. Taxation and Assessments-—Continued
~ (1) state-continued
(f) All property,except as in this constitution oth-
• erwise provided,shal1 be uniformly assessed for taxation, and the legis-
lature shall prescribe such regulations as shall secure a just valuation
for taxation of all property, real and personal.11
‘ (g) No tax shall be levied, except in pursuance of
law, and. every law imposing a tax shall state distinctly the object of
the same, to which only it shall be applied.12
(2) Counties
I For county revenue, there shall be levied annually a
tax not to exceed twelve mills on the dollar for all purposes including
general school tax, exclusive of state revenue,except for the payment of
its public debtand the interest thereon. An additional taxci`two dollars
for each person between the agesof`twenty-one years and fifty years, in-
‘ clusive, shall be annually levied for county school purposes.13
Q (3) Other Local Units
(a) The legislature shall restrictthe powers of such
corporationsto levy taxes and assessments, * * * so asto prevent the
· abuse of such power,zuuino tax or assessment shallbe levied or collected
* * * by municipal corporations except in pursuance of law for public
purposes specified by law.14
11Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 11.
Since thls section is followed by Sec. 12 enumeratlng certaln property as
I exemptlt ls clear that the equality and uniformity required does not interfere w1th
_ lawful exemptions but rather that property made subject to taxation should be assessed
equally and uniformly. State ex rel. Board of Commissioners of Goshen County, vs.
Snyder, 29 wyo.199, 212 P. 771 (1923);Hark1n vs. Board of Commissioners of Nlobrara
County, 30 Wyo. 455, 222 P. 55 (1924).
Special assessments levied by an irrigation dlstrlct on the bas1s of benefits
were held not subject to the uniformity requirement of this section. Sullivan vs.
O Blaksley, Z5 Wyo. 73, 246 P. 918 (1926).
12Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 13.
An ordinance levylng an occupatlonaltax for ”general revenue purposes¤was held
not to violate this section. The court stated that since the purposes of government
are so 1nf1n1te 1n variety, the specification of the object of a tax must, for the
most part, be very general. Clty of Sheridan vs. Litman, B2 Wyo. 14, 228 P. 628
15Const1tut1on, Art. xv, `see. s.
I See p. 4, footnote 15. ,
A general school tax,lev1ed and collected by the county and distributed to the
school d1str1cts, was held not to be a tax for *county revenue" wlthln the meaning
of this section and so did not need to be lncluded ln computing the limit of county
O taxation. McCague Investment Company vs. Mallln, 25 Wyo. 373, 170 P. '76I5A(1918).
14Const1tut1on, Art. XIII, Sec. 5.

 · •
4 Wyoming
II. Financial Powers and Limitations-—·Continued
A. Taxation and Assessments-—Continued
(3) Other Local Units-—Continued '
(b) No incorporated city or town shall levy a tax to •
exceed eight mills on the dollar in any one year, except for the payment
of` its public debt and the interest thereon.15
B. Exemptions
(1) The property ofthe United States, the state, counties,
cities, towns, school districts, municipal corporations and public libra-
ries, lots with the buildings thereon used exclusively for religious wor-
ship, church parsonages, public cemeteries, shall be exempt from taxation, ·
. . 1
and such other property as the legislature may by general law provide. 6
(2) No distinction shall ever be made by law between resi-
dent aliens and citizens as to the possession, taxation, enjoyment and
descent of property.17
_ U
C. Borrowing and Use of Credit
(1) State ·
(a) The state of Wyoming shall not, in any manner,
create any indebtedness exceeding one per centum on the assessed value of
* D
15Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 6.
A city levied a tax on occupations pursuant to a State statute granting munici-
palities this power. The ordinance was attacked on the ground that the tax was in
excess of the l1m1t allowed by this section. The court held that this section was a
l1m1t on property taxes only and dld not apply to occupation taxes. City of Sheridan I .
vs. Litman, 32 Wyo. 14, 228 P. 628 (1924).
16Const1tut1on, Art. XV, Sec. 12.
The uniformity requirements of Art. I, Sec. 28 (see p. 2, par. (a)) and Art.
15, Sec. 11 (see p. 5, par. (f)) were held not to prevent the exemption of property
rrom taxation. State ex rel. Board of Commissioners of Goshen County vs. Snyder,
29 Wyo. 199,212 P. '7'71 (1925);Hark1n vs. Board of Commissioners of Niobrara County,
50 Wyo. 455, 222 P. 35 (1924). •
It was further held that this section was intended not only to declare the prop-
erty therein specifically enumerated exempt, but to permit further exemptions to be
made by the Legislature, in 1ts discretion, without being limited to the same kind
or class of property as that specifically described 1n the section. The Supreme
Court stated, however, that the discretion of the Legislature in exemptlng property
from taxat1on was not arb1trary, but "there must underlie its exercise some princi-
ple of public policy which will support a presumption that the public interest will
be subserved by the exemptions which are allowed." The statute 1n question, exempt- `
ing property of war veterans up to the amount of $2,000, was held valid. Ibid. ‘
An lrrlgation d1str1ct was held not to be a 'municipal corporation" within the
mean1ng of this section and so was not entitled to tax exemption under the Consti-
tution. State ex rel. Goshen Irrigation District vs. Hunt, 49 Wyo. 497, 5*7 P. (2d)
*795 (1956). ·
17Const1tut1on, Art. I, Sec. 29.

 'J\4M— vi ` T ‘ ¥
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Wyoming 5 {~
QQ-A `i
II. Financial Powers and Limitations——Continued .
& ` .
C. Borrowing and Use of Credit-Continued E
_ (1) state-continued  
_ the taxable property in the state, as shown by the last general assess- ;g
ment for taxation, preceding; except to suppress insurrection or to pro- i
‘ ` vide for the public defense.18 '
‘ 3
(b) No debt in excess of the taxes for the current Q
g year, shall in any manner be created in the state of Wyoming, unless the i
proposition to create such debt shall have been submitted to a vote of g
the people and by them approved; except to suppress insurrection or to {
provide for the public defense.19 " ?
(c) No bond or evidence of indebtedness of the state j
( shall be valid unless the same shall have endorsed thereon a certificate A
signed by the auditor and secretaryborrow money from y
the Federal Government for the purpose of constructing a liberal arts bulldlng was “
held valid. The court held that the money so borrowed would not constitute an 'ln- ~
I debtedness¤ within the meaning of this section because the loan was to be payable
out of the income from the university permanent land fund and was not a general ob-
ligation of the State. Arnold vs. Bond, 47 Wyo. 256, 54 P. (2d) 28 (1934).
19Const1tut1on, Art. XVI, Sec. 2.
2OConst1tut1on, Art. XVI, Sec. 8.
21Const1tut10n, Art. XVI, Sec. 6.
· A statute authorizing a tax by counties for the purpose of aidi ; fair asso-
ciations was held to violate this section as being a donation to an association and
not for the necessary support of the poor. Board of County Commissioners of Carbon ¤
County vs. Union Pacific Railroad. 25 Wyo. 463, 171 P. 668 (1918).
\ The exemption of property of veterans was held not to be a gift or donation to
( ) an 1nd1v1dual wlthln the meaning of this section. State ex rel. Board of Commis-
“= sloners of Goshen County vs. Snyder, 29 Wyo. 199, 212 P. 771 (1923).
l I

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