Clerks in the House of Representatives count votes by the light of Rep. Tom Walters’ smartphone. Electricity was intermittent in Wyoming’s temporary capitol building Tuesday, due to a neighborhood-wide blackout.(Andrew Graham / WyoFile)

Power outages plagued Wyoming’s temporary capitol building, the Jonah Business Center, on the second day of the 2018 legislative session. Throughout the afternoon and into the early evening, lawmakers labored through the occasional dark spell as the north-Cheyenne neighborhood where the building is located suffered a blackout. A generator powered the lights back on now and then. Throughout the building, lawmakers, reporters and lobbyists took the opportunity to crack wise about both transparency and budget cuts.

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Voting continued as much as was possible. On the House floor, Rep. Tom Walters (R-Casper) held up his smartphone for a light as two House clerks tallied up 60 votes on a bill to create a fraud- and government-efficiency division within the Attorney General’s office.

Speaker of the House Steve Harshman decided to retake the vote when the lights came back on, as the first count showed the bill had not garnered the two-thirds vote needed for introduction. The bill did not die in darkness, however. It failed under the lights too.

Andrew Graham is reporting for WyoFile from Laramie. He covers state government, energy and the economy. Reach him at 443-848-8756 or at, follow him @AndrewGraham88

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