SHERIDAN — Sheridan County Commissioners approved a resolution Tuesday designating the Sheridan County administrative director as the county official responsible for managing public records requests.

State lawmakers passed wide-ranging reforms to Wyoming’s public records laws during their legislative session earlier this year; those changes require, in part, that governmental entities designate and official as their “public records person” by the time the new rules take effect July 1.

Current County Administrative Director Renee Obermueller said individual county agencies will continue to respond to requests made for their public records — the Sheridan County sheriff will still make decisions on records requests submitted to the sheriff’s office, for instance — but they will need to report any requests they receive to her. Once an agency responds to a records request, it will also have to report it responded to the request and the time it took to respond to the request.

“We’ll just simply log those,” Obermueller said. “…We’re going to maintain the log in our file system.”

The new law requires public entities respond to public records requests within 30 days, unless they can cite good cause for why it will take longer. Obermueller said implementation of the new requirements hasn’t created problems in Sheridan County, but that she expects to see revisions to the law during the next legislative session as its received pushback from several cites and towns in the state.

 

Other business

• Commissioners appointed applicants to a number of local boards Tuesday. Commissioner Terry Cram said the application process was especially competitive this year, and encouraged applicants who were not selected to continue to apply for future openings on county boards. The commission approved the following appointments:

Andrew Cassiday to an unexpired term, ending Jan. 1, 2021, on the Sheridan County Weed and Pest Board; Seth Schumaker to a four-year term on the Northern Wyoming Mental Health Board of Directors; Mandy Koltiska and James Myers to three-year terms on the Sheridan County Planning and Zoning Board; Joe Wright to a five-year term on the Sheridan County Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees; and Emily Hawkins and Chad Saeler to three-year terms on the Sheridan County Public Library Board.

• Commissioners also approved a month-to-month renewal of its agreement with the University of Wyoming for the continued operation of Sheridan’s Wyoming Technology Business Center.

Obermueller explained that while both local groups and UW would like to see the local WTBC transition to a new model, one that will not require university involvement, the transition to that new model has taken longer than expected. She added that she hopes to see the transition take place by Oct. 1.

• The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration also announced Tuesday that it will give $1.3 million to the Sheridan County Airport for the expansion of its commercial terminal and the installation of apron floor lighting. The appropriation to Sheridan County’s airport is part of the federal Airport Improvement Program, which the FAA announced will distribute a total of $840 million to airports throughout the country; $9.5 million of that funding will go to airports in Wyoming.

Obermueller explained that while both local groups and UW would like to see the local WTBC transition to a new model, one that will not require university involvement, the transition to that new model has taken longer than expected. She added that she hopes to see the transition take place by Oct. 1.

• The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration also announced Tuesday that it will give $1.3 million to the Sheridan County Airport for the expansion of its commercial terminal and the installation of apron floor lighting. The appropriation to Sheridan County’s airport is part of the federal Airport Improvement Program, which the FAA announced will distribute a total of $840 million to airports throughout the country; $9.5 million of that funding will go to airports in Wyoming.