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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

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Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Morning Must Reads for Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 25th day of the year. There are 340 days remaining in 2017.

Utahns want more vote-by-mail opportunities. Speaker Greg Hughes' name has been dragged into the John Swallow legal mess. Utah Republicans want President Trump to act against the Bears Ears monument.

The clock:

  • 34 days until President Trump addresses a joint session of Congress (2/28/2017)
  • 43 days until the final day of the 2017 Utah Legislature (3/9/2017)
  • 286 days until the 2017 municipal elections (11/7/2017)
  • 650 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1378 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Ten talking points for Wednesday:

  1. Ballot access. 71% of Utahns say the state should expand the opportunity to vote-by-mail [Utah Policy].

  2. Legal bombshell. House Speaker Greg Hughes is extremely unhappy his name was unexpectedly dragged into the public corruption trial of former Attorney General John Swallow [Utah Policy, Deseret News, Tribune].

  3. Monumental battle. Utah Republican lawmakers plan to pass a resolution to roll back or even eliminate the new Bears Ears National Monument [Utah Policy, Tribune].

  4. No illegal voters. President Donald Trump continues to push the false claim that millions of illegal votes were cast for Hillary Clinton in 2016. There's almost zero chance that any of those alleged illegal votes could have come from Utah [Utah Policy]. Wednesday morning, Donald Trump called for a "major investigation" into voter fraud [CNN].

  5. Public safety. The Utah Capitol tightens up their security just a bit [Utah Policy]. The Utah House has also banned protestors from the visitor gallery [City Weekly].

  6. Liquor laws. Lawmakers are possibly moving toward killing the so-called "Zion Curtain" [Deseret News, Tribune]. At the same time, the DABC wants a $1 million budget boost to increase pay for employees [Tribune].

  7. School money. Sen. Ann Millner says public high schools should not lose state funding if their students graduate early [Tribune].

  8. Build the wall. President Donald Trump will announce his plan to begin construction on a border wall with Mexico on Wednesday [Wall Street Journal]. Trump will also order a temporary ban on most refugees from Syria and six other Middle East countries [Politico]. Here's what Trump will need to do in order build his wall [USA Today].

  9. SCOTUS pick coming. President Trump's short list for the vacancy on the Supreme Court is reportedly down to two names: Denver-based U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Neil Gorsuch and U.S. District Court Judge Thomas Hardiman of Pennsylvania [CBS News].

  10. Lending laws. A new study says Salt Lake County's efforts to crack down on payday lenders had very little effect [Tribune].

On this day in history:

  • 1890 - Nellie Bly, a young New York reporter, completed a trip around the world that lasted 72 days, 6 hours and 11 minutes.
  • 1915 - Transcontinental phone service was inaugurated by Alexander Graham Bell in a hookup between New York and San Francisco.
  • 1961 - President John F. Kennedy held the first presidential news conference carried live on radio and TV.

Today At Utah Policy

Utahns Want Vote-by-Mail Expanded

Nearly three-fourths of Utahns want the vote-by-mail ballot program expanded, a new UtahPolicy poll shows....

Lawmakers Will Ask Trump to Reduce or Roll Back Bears Ears

The GOP-controlled Utah Legislature will send an official resolution to the state’s Congressional delegation, who, in turn, will ask President Donald Trump to rescind the Bears Ears Monument designation by former President Barack Obama....

Will President Trump Reduce or Eliminate Bears Ears?

Utah Republicans have asked President Trump to reduce or eliminate completely the new Bears Ears National Monument? Do you think he'll take action? Vote now in our weekly survey....

Hughes Goes Nuclear Over Allegations He was Involved in Swallow Scandal

House Speaker Greg Hughes vehemently denied allegations leveled by convicted businessman Marc Sessions Jenson that he was somehow involved in the political scandal that forced former Attorney General John Swallow from office....

Capitol Tightens Up Security...Slightly

If you are a frequent visitor to the Utah Capitol House Gallery, which overlooks the House Chambers, be ready for some new rules....

Were Illegal Votes Cast for Clinton in Utah?

President Donald Trump keeps repeating the false claim that millions of illegal immigrants voted for his opponent, Hillary Clinton, in the 2016 election....

Policy News

Love Condemns Obama's Last-minute Funding of Terrorism
Rep. Mia Love joined Chairman Pearce of the Subcommittee on Terrorism and Illicit Finance and other Members of the Financial Services Committee condemned President Obama’s final hour action sending $221 million to the Palestinian Authority....

GOED Announces Recipients of 2017 Tech Commercialization Grant
The Governor’s Office of Economic Development Technology Commercialization and Innovation Program has awarded grants to 20 Utah companies and university teams to help bring their cutting-edge technologies to market....

Major Utah Employer, Geneva Rock, Makes Investment of Over $8 Million in Cleaner Air Technologies
Geneva Rock invests over $8 million in a new Compressed Natural Gas fueling station and fleet of 25 CNG Ready-Mix Concrete Trucks.  ...

New Report Provides Information and Maps to Help Keep Utah 'The Place' to Find Oil
A new study by the Utah Geological Survey, Major Oil Plays in Utah and Vicinity, contains the critical maps, data, and information to help Utah remain a significant petroleum contributor to the nation while reaping major benefits to the State’s economy for years to com...

Hatch Statement on a Possible Supreme Court Nomination Next Week
Senator Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, the senior member and former Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement after President Trump’s announcement that he will name a Supreme Court nominee next week:...

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: Midvale homeless center is a useful model for Salt Lake

Editorial: Releasing police body cam videos should be quick, routine

Utah lawmaker says you could be taxed without representation. Critic says reform could make things worse.

Too many dead bodies, not enough live ones slow Utah autopsy reports

Study: Local ordinances in Salt Lake County had little effect on payday loan industry

Utah liquor agency seeks $1M budget bump to handle rising workload, below-par pay

Utah trade chief says President Trump nix on Pacific trade deal could hurt state

Utah House Republicans push to eliminate Bears Ears Monument, shrink Grand Staircase-Escalante

Utah senator's bill would allow schools to keep funding when students graduate early

With water demand slowing, Bear River development in Utah may be delayed

Tesla-inspired bill to waive property requirement for licensing auto dealership

After 30,000 ballots rejected last year, House passes notification bill

Lawmakers hope to create Utah state parks at Hole-in-the-Rock, Little Sahara

Curtain call for Utah's 'Zion Curtain' may be at hand

Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes' name dragged into the criminal case of former A.G. John Swallow

Deseret News

Jay Evensen: Has Utah outgrown a part-time Legislature?

Derek B. Miller: Utah is the economic blueprint for the United States

Editorial: Men may need education now more than ever

Key witness in Swallow case drops bombshell accusations against Hughes, Reid, Shurtleff

Some 'spoiled' ballots would be counted under proposal

Utah teacher turnover may be higher than previously reported

Trump freeze on EPA grants? Algae study, other research could feel impacts

First-year lawmaker touts Asian-American contributions in Utah

Bag searches outside House gallery part of new security measures at Capitol

3 bills intended to better facilitate special education services head to Senate

New bill would remove liquor shields in restaurants while strengthening other liquor laws


Op-ed: Three technologies that could lead to cleaner air in Utah (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

More Californians dreaming of a country without Trump: poll (Reuters)

Mexico ready to quit NAFTA if US talks fail (AFP)

US back in rally mode, lifting S&P, Nasdaq to records (AFP)

3 Judges Trump May Nominate For The Supreme Court (NPR)

Trump to Move on Border Security, Immigration Enforcement (Associated Press)

Trump clamps down on federal agencies (The Hill)

Medicaid takes center stage as Democrats grill Tom Price (CNN)

Sen. Alexander defends DeVos, says Dems are 'desperately' searching for reasons to reject her (Washington Post)

Trump seeks to revive Dakota Access, Keystone XL oil pipelines (Washington Post)

Donald Trump tells Detroit auto CEOs that environmental regulations are 'out of control' (Washington Post)

Norquist open to border adjustment in 'significant' tax package (The Hill)

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Wise Words

Net Worth
"Your net worth to the world is usually determined by what remains after your bad habits are subtracted from your good ones." Benjamin Franklin

Lighter Side

Cover Band
"President Obama surprised his White House staffers with a private concert by Bruce Springsteen to thank them for their work over the last eight years. Meanwhile, Trump thanked his supporters with a performance by a Bruce Springsteen cover brand's drummer's DJ friend." Seth Meyers

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