Buchanan strives for proactive approach in campaignWritten by Saige Albert
Ed Buchanan is no stranger to public service. After 10 years in the Wyoming Legislature, Buchanan decided to pursue the position of Secretary of State.
“I never though I’d decide to run for public office again,” says Buchanan, who left the legislature in 2012, “but I developed a love for public service in the legislature.”
Buchanan grew up farming and ranch north of Lingle. He attended the University of Wyoming, where he also was involved in Air Force ROTC.
“Upon graduation, I received a commission as an officer in the U.S. Air Force,” he says. “I worked for four years in space intelligence.”
After completing his military commitment, Buchanan returned to Goshen County, deciding to diversify his experience while keeping agriculture a part of his life.
“I went to law school at UW,” Buchanan says.
Today, he works as an attorney specializing in real estate transactions and business formation in Torrington.
In 2002, he ran for the legislature, serving until 2012.
Improvements in office
“I work everyday in corporate formation, real estate transactions and things directly related to the Secretary of State,” Buchanan comments. “I am very familiar with the way things work.”
While in the legislature he worked on revising the Wyoming Corporations Act to increase the ability of the state to address fraud.
“We tightened our laws in 2007 to put a clamp on fraudulent corporations,” he says, “and I think we went just far enough. When we combine Wyoming’s rules and regulations with no corporate income tax, great people and great geography, we are a really attractive place for business to be.”
Buchanan comments that the state must be careful to not make business too burdensome.
He adds, “There are things that we can do to improve the function of the office and to make the state a better place to live and do business.”
“The other area I have ideas about is the State Loan and Investment Board (SLIB),” Buchanan says.
He has worked tirelessly to support individual constituents and local governments looking to diversity their economy and build infrastructure at the local level.
“The important thing about with the SLIB is that we stay within what the statute says,” he explains. “We are tasked with improving our local communities, with priorities based in health, safety and welfare, and I think we need to get back to that focus.”
Buchanan comments that while he doesn’t want to imply the board has gone away from those charges, he does note that they must be careful to stay within statutory guidelines.
“We don’t want to cross the line and start picking winners and losers when it comes to improving communities and infrastructure,” he says. “Economic development should be a level playing field for all communities.”
As another top priority, Buchanan notes agency rules and regulations create large impacts for citizens.
“As a member of the Management Council, we tried to pass judgment on rules and regulations and review them before then went on to Governor’s Office,” he explains. “I think citizens aren’t as aware as they could be with regard to the rules and regulations. They have the same force and effect as law.”
Buchanan notes that he has worked diligently to reduce rules and unnecessary burdens, particularly when it comes to water and livestock.
Getting more people involved should help to develop fewer regulations, he says.
“The regulations we do have will hopefully be common sense and necessary,” Buchanan says. “I also hope to fully implement a database that makes the rules and regulations easily searchable and more accessible to the public.”
At the same time, Buchanan hopes to streamline uniform commercial code and effective finance statements to improve commerce in the state.
At the top of his priority list, Buchanan says operating in a proactive mindset will help to prepare Wyoming for potential fraud, in both the corporations and elections divisions, by being proactive and implementing new technology where appropriate.
For Buchanan, management of land for maximum value is important.
“I think we can manage lands through multiple use,” he explains. “Ag plays an important part of the state’s economy and heritage.”
Grazing on public lands is important, he says, adding that maintaining a healthy environment and allowing extractive industries are also important to the state's economy.
“We must make sure we stay focused on proper care and oversight to take full advantage of our state lands while having a multiple use policy in place that accommodates everyone,” Buchanan says.
“I have a background and a proven record in the legislature serving agriculture,” he says. “I have solved issues and sponsored legislation to protect landowners. I’m a big supporter of agriculture, and I know the issues.”