Optional Sales Tax Information

How Albany County Uses Its 1% Optional Sales Tax Money

Since the Optional One Per Cent Sales Tax was first approved by voters in 1986, the county has used the revenue for capital expenses and Community Partners. The proposition is to renew the tax; it is not a new tax. The City, County, and Town could extend the tax by proclamation, but elected officials heard what voters said in several public meetings in the 1990’s. Citizens told the City and County they wanted to vote on the issue every four years.

Between the fiscal years of July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2018, the optional sales tax revenue for the county totaled almost $1.6 million. The amount collected in Albany County is distributed proportionately by population, so Laramie receives more than Albany County and Albany County receives more than Rock River. As more people move outside the city limits, Albany County’s share increases.

Allocations & Reports

The County Commissioners determine how Albany County’s share is allocated during the county’s budget process. All county revenue for the coming year is estimated. Revenue has not always reached estimates.

You can see reports on sales tax income at the Albany County Open Gov Records website.

County Departments
County departments report how they spent their portion:

  • Public Library: Over the past four years, the Albany County Public Library has used Optional Sales Tax funds to pay for Information Technology services and technology purchases.
  • Sheriff: We utilize 1% monies for maintenance contracts such as our detention center elevator, as well as our general annual maintenance contract for the detention center heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC).

Community Partners

In the same four years, the county has distributed $815,486 to 29 Community Partners including the:

  • Albany County Fair
  • Albany County Public Library and Foundation
  • Albany County Weed Control
  • American Red Cross
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters
  • CLIMB Wyoming
  • Developmental Preschool
  • Downtown Clinic
  • Eppson Center for Seniors
  • Family Promise
  • Freedom Has a Birthday
  • Hospice of Laramie
  • Interfaith Good Samaritan
  • Laramie Foster Closet
  • Laramie Plains Civic Center
  • Laramie Plains Museum
  • Laramie Railroad Depot
  • Laramie Regional Airport
  • Laramie Reproductive Health
  • Laramie Soup Kitchen
  • Laramie Youth Council
  • Laramie Youth Crisis Center
  • Lincoln Community Center
  • Medicine Bow Nordic Association
  • My Front Door
  • Public Art Program
  • SAFE Project

Grants totaled between $1000 and $315,750.

City & County Form

The City and County share an application form and process so organizations may apply to both for funding at the same time. In that case, there is a joint meeting with groups presenting information about their requests. City and County officials meet separately with single grant applicants.

For more information, visit the City of Laramie 5th Penny Frequently Asked Questions page.