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Friday, March 13, 2015

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Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know for Friday - March 13, 2015

Lawmakers can't come to an agreement on Medicaid expansion. Legislators approve a gas tax hike. Public schools end the 2015 session as big winners.


  • Days to the 2015 Utah municipal primary elections - 151
  • Days to the 2015 election - 235
  • Days to the 2016 Iowa Caucus (tentative) - 311
  • Days to the opening day of the 2016 Utah Legislature - 318
  • Days to the 2016 Utah presidential primary - 473
  • Days until the 2016 presidential election - 606

Friday's top-10 headlines:

  1. Lawmakers are unable to come to an agreement on Medicaid expansion. Gov. Gary Herbert announces they will continue working on the issue and sets a July 31 deadline to come up with a plan [Utah PolicyTribuneDeseret News].
  2. Gov. Herbert recaps the 2015 session with us and discusses what legislation he's eyeing for a veto [Utah Policy].
  3. Lawmakers get a hike in the gas tax through the legislature just under the wire [Tribune].
  4. Public schools end the session with more than $500 million in new money [Deseret News].
  5. Here are some of the minor budget items lawmakers spent taxpayer money on this year [Utah Policy].
  6. A bill requiring the full legislature to sign off on relocating the state prison wins final approval and heads to the governor [Deseret News].
  7. Legislators are unable to find common ground on school board elections, leaving how candidates are nominated in limbo [Tribune].
  8. Lawmakers approve a pay raise for the governor and other executive offices [Deseret NewsTribune].
  9. Gov. Herbert signs the non-discrimination bill during a packed ceremony at the Capitol [TribuneDeseret News].
  10. Minority report. Rep. Brian King wraps up the 2015 from the perspective of Utah's minority party [Utah Policy].

On this day in history:

  • 1781 - The planet Uranus was discovered by British astronomer William Herschel.
  • 1884 - Standard Time was adopted throughout the United States.
  • 1868 - The Republican-controlled U.S. Senate began impeachment proceedings against President Andrew Johnson, a Democrat, following a political feud after the Civil War. Johnson was acquitted by one vote.
  • 1881 - Czar Alexander II was killed in a St. Petersburg street by a bomb thrown by a member of the revolutionary "People's Will" group.

Today At Utah Policy

Bernick and Schott...and Herbert on Politics - Episode #229
Governor Gary Herbert joins Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott to wrap up the 2015 Utah Legislature....

Senate Quashes Christensen's Religious Liberties Bill
It’s always unfortunate when bills that are supposed to bring people together end up pushing them apart – like HB322, a religious freedoms measure....

What Are Lawmakers Spending Your Money On This Year?
Who doesn’t like Christmas or birthday gifts?...

Governor Sets July 31 Deadline for Deal on Medicaid Expansion
Remember Healthy Utah 2.0? Here comes Medicaid expansion debate 2.0. Or is it 3.0? ...

Utah House Minority Leader Brian King's 2015 'Exit Interview' (Video)
Utah House Minority Leader Brian King discusses the 2015 session and why we can't get an agreement on Medicaid expansion....

The Battle Over 'Religious Freedoms' May Be Far From Over on Utah's Capitol Hill
State Rep. LaVar Christensen has been working on enhancing religious freedoms through law in the Utah Legislature for years....

Poll: Utahns Split on Primary Seat Belt Law; Favor Restrictions on Cell Phone Use Behind the Wheel
Utah lawmakers passed a bill allowing police officers to pull over motorists for not wearing a seat belt. A new poll shows the public sharply divided on the issue....

Anatomy of the Medicaid Expansion Impasse
So is it down to this: Gary Herbert vs. Greg Hughes?...

Featured Items

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Outdoor Notes-- Tribune: Recreation: Hoof up to Rock Creek Canyon to scope Uinta mountain goats-- Tribune: Utah lawmakers want $500K to study how public land transfer may benefit schools--Tribune: Wildlife managers want Utah Lake pike dead and dissected, ask for anglers' hel...

Utah's Gender Wage Gap Not Expected to Close Until 2102
According to a new report released today by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Utah ranks 39th in the United States, earning a D on women’s employment and earnings. ...

Legislative Wrap Up
With one day left in 2015 Utah legislative session, both the Utah Transportation Coalition and Prosperity 2020 campaign are in their final push for achieving a landmark investment in Utah’s future. Now is the last chance to encourage friends, colleagues and consti...

Utah Needs to Reform its Broken Transportation Funding Formula
Utah has faced unprecedented growth over the past few decades, and its transportation needs have increased alongside that of growth. But the method for maintaining and expanding transportation infrastructure relies on an antiquated formula that ignores inflation and fuel eff...

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: Herbert wisely hits reset button on Healthy Utah debate

Legislature puts $1.5 million in public funds behind Aggie sports

Bill passes to allow some officials to opt out of performing gay marriages

Bill dies that would have allowed 1-touch cellphone use while driving

Movin' on up: Senate passes bill to give pay raise to governor, other top state elected officials

Students soon may need to pass civics test to graduate

Criminal justice reforms approved, drug possession to be a misdemeanor

Legislators ease restrictions on drone use by police

Dog, gone: Official state golden retriever bill defeated on last day of session

Lawmakers approve $8M program to turn around failing schools

Citing better snow, lawmakers go on record saying Utah wants Winter Olympics again

Regulations on e-cigarette sales getting tighter as lawmakers hope to discourage sales to minors

Legislature passes bill to increase death benefits for fallen officers

If guv gives OK, Salt Lake County townships would unite for services while preserving boundaries

Bill passes to ensure county elections are partisan

Legislature passes statewide regulation for Uber, Lyft

Elections: Last year's 'Count My Vote' deal survives many attacks

Compromise increase in gas tax OK'd at eleventh hour

Legislature OKs renaming I-15 stretch for Becky Lockhart

'Milestone': Herbert signs LGBT nondiscrimination, religious freedom protections bill

Legislature approves 5 cent a gallon gasoline tax hike, local sales-tax vote

Clock runs out on school board election compromise

Legislature tackles major issues - with one big exception

'Powdered alcohol' faces immediate Utah ban day after feds approve sale

Deseret News

A. Scott Anderson: Utah senators should support Landon for Fed Board

Op-ed: State representatives need to actually represent

Editorial: Utah's presidential caucus is a bad idea, limiting participating in the most public of elections

Legislature passes pay raise for governor, state elected executives

No deal this session on Healthy Utah

Merger of environmental boards stokes concerns, opposition from Utah Radiation Control Board

Bill slackens state public records restrictions

Legislative session wraps up with $510M in new money for schools

Legislature shuts down bill to name golden retriever state animal

Count My Vote compromise survives series of challenges

Lawmakers pass 'right to try' legislation, not medical cannabis, death with dignity bills

Lawmakers say 'no' to seasonal wood-burning ban

Full Legislature must vote on new prison site

Legislature approves expansion of death benefits to families of fallen officers

LDS Church explains religious liberty, LGBT rights stance in Mormon Newsroom Q&A

Gov. Gary Herbert signs 'remarkable' anti-bias, religious rights bill


No Medicaid deal: Mid-year session will decide coverage gap plan (Standard-Examiner)

Bill to create turnaround programs for low-performing schools passes (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

White House frets return of 'Clinton way' (Politico)

Loretta Lynch nomination a cliffhanger (Politico)

Iran letter blowback startles GOP (Politico)

Dems push ATF to revive bullet ban (The Hill)

Fallout continues for Schock (The Hill)

Momentum building in Congress for $174 billion Medicare fix (The Hill)

Ferguson Shooting: Authorities Investigate 'Ambush' of Officers (Wall Street Journal)

Why super PACs have moved from sideshow to center stage for presidential hopefuls (Washington Post)

Administration Asks Court to Lift Order Halting Immigration Programs (New York Times)

In Runoff, Mayor Changes His Tone-- For Now (NBC News)

O'Malley often used Gmail account in conducting Maryland business (Washington Post)


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