Jan 4, 2013 - By Eric Blom, Staff WriterThe second-term representative's district was redrawn before the 2012 election.
Rita Campbell, R-Shoshoni, will return to the Wyoming House of Representatives for a second term representing a changed district and serving on new committees.
Campbell will represent house district 34 for a second term in the general session starting Jan. 8. Her district expanded west to include Dubois and east around Jeffrey City. It also lost Lysite and part of Shoshoni to HD28.
This term, she will not be on the House Revenue and Special Elections committees as she was before. She retains her seat on the Agriculture Committee, and she picked up a spot on the Transportation, Highways and Military affairs committee.
Campbell has a personal interest in the transportation committee because her family owns a trucking business, she said. She and her husband are also ranchers, making her concerned about agriculture as well.
Hospice care bill
She is cosponsoring a bill that would have Medicaid pay for hospice care. Drew Perkins, R-Natrona, is sponsoring the bill in the Senate, she said.
"Medicaid does not pay room and board at hospices," Campbell said. "But many people desire to go to a hospice facility when their time comes."
A bill raising the tax on gasoline and diesel 10 cents a gallon and another raising vehicle registration fees came from the revenue committee when she was on it, and Campbell thinks the revenue increases are necessary.
The state will use revenue from the fuel tax and registration fees to pay for roads, she said.
"They've never come up with a sustainable funding source for the highways," Campbell said. "We probably need to form a basis (for highway money)."
She added that it costs more to replace roads than maintain them. Highways are the main mode of transportation in Wyoming so raising money for them is important, she said.
"We need to get where we need to go," Campbell said.
Another draft bill she is looking at would raise fees for some county clerk services. Campbell said county clerks around the state, including Fremont County Clerk Julie Freese, have asked for the increases.
Campbell said she spoke with Freese about the bill and thinks the changes are justified.
Changes to federal health care law and creating a state health insurance exchange also concern Campbell, but she is not sure how it will play out.
"Our legislative leaders are working hard on it," she said. "I will have to rely on them. ... I'm not even sure the powers that be know (what will happen)."
The agriculture committee also covers water resources, and a water resource bill is on Campbell's mind.
The bill concerns using water for oil and gas drilling in areas that straddle state lines.
"The state engineer is wanting more direction on how to permit that," Campbell said.
She is also interested in working to protect state land. Some motorized recreation and illegal dumping are damaging those lands, Cambell said.
"Some areas are being destroyed," she said. For example by "ATVs playing in mud holes."
Such activities cost the whole state and can take years to clean up, she said.
"We're going to have to monitor our state lands better."
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