CHEYENNE, Wyoming — Wyoming Superintendent of Public Instruction Cindy Hill made a brief appearance at the state Department of Education on Monday and tried to reclaim her old office space, a move rebuffed by the agency director appointed by Gov. Matt Mead to assume most of her powers and duties.
Hill had announced last week that she intended to resume working as head of the department.
At the start of business Monday, a cluster of supporters, some waving signs, greeted Hill outside the Hathaway Building just south of the state Capitol, on Capitol Avenue. Hill and members of her staff went to the second floor of the building and met with Richard Crandall.
Last year, Mead appointed Crandall to run the department after the Legislature passed, and the governor signed, a bill that stripped Hill of most of her powers.
Since then, Hill has been using office space in the second floor of the Wyoming State Archives building. Crandall didn't accommodate Hill's attempt to move back to her previous offices.
"He denied my request for working space, for equipment, for information and for other resources necessary to carry out the duties entrusted to me by the people of Wyoming," Hill said later Monday in a conference call with reporters.
Crandall informed Hill's staff that Wyoming Attorney General Peter Michael has concluded the law remains in effect until a district court judge rules otherwise.
The Wyoming Supreme Court ruled in January that the law stripping Hill of most of her powers was unconstitutional. The state high court denied a request for a rehearing of the matter and remanded the case to Laramie County District Court Judge Thomas Campbell.
Hill didn't take questions on the call, during which she again said the governor was trying to delay the return of her previous duties.
Renny MacKay, spokesman for Mead, said Monday that the governor is guided by the attorney general's position on the matter.