SHERIDAN (WNE) — The Wyoming Business Council’s Board of Directors voted to request a 10 percent budget increase from the state for the coming biennium to support a more robust economic diversification push during its quarterly meeting Wednesday.

The budget request reflects the WBC’s commitment to a new strategy, which the board adopted in May, that intends to focus on adding value to the state’s current core economic sectors and create programs and services to activate new economic sectors in the state.

The approach requires a shift in the WBC budget, however, WBC Chief Operating Officer Amy Grenfell said.

The WBC’s current budget allocates 60 percent of its total funding to the Business Ready Communities grant program and the remaining 40 percent to internal operations and payroll.

Executing the WBC’s new strategy would require either changing those allocations to create room for more economic diversification programs or requesting a larger overall budget to fund those new programs, Grenfell said.

BRC grants provide funding for publicly-owned infrastructure that promotes economic development.

The 10 percent budget increase the board settled on will still require a slight reduction to the BRC program, and board co-chair Megan Overmann Goetz asked that the board make its budget request contingent on hearing feedback from WBC stakeholders.

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