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Monday, March 16, 2015

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Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know for Monday - March 16, 2015

Did lawmakers put a carrot in a bill to entice Salt Lake City to accept the new prison? Utah's schools got a funding boost in 2015, but it's still not back to pre-recession levels. Becker has visited the White House 40 times.


  • Days to the 2015 Utah municipal primary elections - 148
  • Days to the 2015 election - 232
  • Days to the 2016 Iowa Caucus (tentative) - 308
  • Days to the opening day of the 2016 Utah Legislature - 315
  • Days to the 2016 Utah presidential primary - 470
  • Days until the 2016 presidential election - 603

Monday's top-10 headlines:

  1. The nomination of Loretta Lynch as Attorney General is on hold because lawmakers are fighting over a human trafficking bill that contains a controversial anti-abortion measure [New York Times].
  2. There's a provision in a bill setting a deadline for the Prison Relocation Commission to pick a site for the new facility that seems like it's specifically designed to entice Salt Lake City into accepting the new prison [Tribune].
  3. Utah schools got some budget love from the legislature during the 2015 session, but funding has not rebounded to where it was prior to the recession [Tribune, Deseret News].
  4. Bob Bernick runs down the lessons learned from the 2015 session [Utah Policy].
  5. Gov. Gary Herbert still has a sales job to do with many members of the legislature on Medicaid expansion [Deseret News].
  6. Legislators couldn't figure out a compromise on school board elections, meaning the issue could be left up to a judge to decide [Tribune].
  7. Lawmakers were finally able to reach a compromise on raising the gas tax, but they almost didn't get there [Tribune].
  8. Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton are the frontrunners for the 2016 presidential nomination amongst Utahns [Utah Policy].
  9. Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker has visited the White House 40 times so far during the Obama administration [Tribune].
  10. Former Congressman Jim Matheson sits down for a Q&A [Deseret News].

On this day in history:

  • 1802 - Congress authorized the establishment of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
  • 1935 - Adolf Hitler scrapped the Treaty of Versailles.
  • 1968 - About 300 Vietnamese villagers died at the hands of U.S. troops in what came to be known as the My Lai massacre.
  • 2003 - Vice President Dick Cheney predicted on NBC's "Meet the Press" that American troops would be "greeted as liberators" by the Iraqi people.

Today At Utah Policy

Bush, Clinton are Frontrunners for 2016 Nomination Among Utahns
Here's how you can tell it may be too early to start talking about the next election. Utahns say they're mostly undecided who they support for the 2016 presidential nomination....

Bob Bernick's Notebook: Wrapping Up the 2015 Session
So, what did we learn from the 2015 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....

Featured Items

Final Grades for the 2015 Legislature
Now that the 2015 Legislature is in the books, our "Political insiders" and readers didn't give them very high marks on their final report card....

Winning the Political Game: Do You Have a Communications Plan?
Most political failures are failures of communications. Most political wins are triumphs of communications....

Prosper Marketplace Selects Utah for Sales Headquarters
Prosper Marketplace, along with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development announced today that the loan and investing company will build its sales division headquarters in Utah. The project is expected to create more than 500 jobs in the community....

Westminster Announces Dr. Lisa Gentile as New Provost
Westminster has selected Lisa Gentile, Ph.D., as the new provost for the college. Dr. Gentile, Westminster’s former dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, will begin her position on March 30....

Only in Utah: Hollywood and BYUtv
The Utah Film Commission announced an independent film directed by Rob Reiner, veteran Hollywood director of “The Princess Bride,” will begin production in April. The production, “Being Charlie,” was written by Reiner's son, Nick....

Westminster Presents a Lecture: 'Dead Man Walking: the Journey Continues' by Sister Helen Prejean
Westminster College hosts a lecture by Sister Helen Prejean, “Dead Man Walking: the Journey Continues,” as part of the Tanner-McMurrin lecture serie son March 24, 2015, at 7:00 p.m. in the Behnken Field House in the Dolores Doré Eccles Health, Wellness and...

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....

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. ...

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Rolly: Jon Huntsman works from outside on national issues

Op-ed: Three things Utah governments can do to let in more light

Op-ed: Don't let Mountain Accord opportunity pass without speaking up

Editorial: Time for another Utah peace treaty

Rolly: Republican strategist has Herbert in his sights

Lawmakers provide cash infusion to Farmington Bay nature center, fight endangered species protections

Bill promises to bring 'peace' to fractious Salt Lake County communities

Prison bill has sweetener that seems tailor-made for Salt Lake City

You'll pay more for gas in Utah - here's how legislators made it happen

Obama clearly loves cities - Salt Lake City in particular

Would Google Fiber bridge the digital divide in Salt Lake City?

Consultants raking in millions on Utah's anti-fed campaigns

Deseret News

Frank Pignanelli & LaVarr Webb: Utah's Super Bowl/World Series of legislative sessions

Drew Clark: A Utah compromise reconciling gay rights and religious freedom?

Khosrow Semnani: Congress can get tough on Iran by channeling Reagan's tactics

John Florez: The Deedee Corradini I knew

Editorial: Legislative wrap - anti-discrimination, religious liberty bills overshadow other successes, disappointments

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

Tighter e-cigarette regulations await governor's signature

Gov. Herbert: Emotion overriding logic in Healthy Utah debate

Rep. Bishop, Utah farmers fire back on federal groundwater proposal

Will Utah bury nation's leftover depleted uranium?

Community preservation bill creates governance options for Salt Lake County

Utah to have nation's first white collar crime offender registry

Will the 2015 Legislature lead to better outcomes for students?

Utah anti-bias, religious rights law could be model for other states

Intergenerational poverty education initiative on hold until 2016

Q and A: Jim Matheson talks politics past, present, future

Lawmakers increase gas tax, allow local increases for transportation

Residents raise concerns about Mountain Accord plan


Editorial: Utah's presidential caucus limits participation (Daily Herald)

Jason Chaffetz: Immigration: Don't fix one illegal action with another (Daily Herald)

Todd Weiler: Marijuana legislation was poorly drafted (Standard-Examiner)

Op-ed: We need a learner-centered approach in Utah education (Standard-Examiner)

Editorial: Let the the voters decide on medical marijuana (Standard-Examiner)

Lawmakers pass 528 bills, but leave Medicaid expansion until later (Standard-Examiner)

USU, higher education officials celebrate successes at Legislature (Logan Herald Journal)

Editorial: Mountain Accord must move forward (Park Record)

Medicaid expansion fails as ideology trumps finances (Park Record)

National Headlines

Democrats prepared to buck White House on Iran nuclear deal (Politico)

Hillary Clinton's fear of the trail (Politico)

5 big hurdles for the GOP's budget blueprint (The Hill)

Will Hillary Rodham Clinton run for president? Here's why, and why not. (Christian Science Monitor)

McConnell vows: no vote on attorney general until abortion flap solved (Christian Science Monitor)

Gowdy denies Benghazi panel created to thwart Hillary Clinton's 2016 bid (FOX News)

At Gridiron Club Dinner, Anyone and Everyone Is Fair Game for Obama (New York Times)

Getting Hispanics to the polls in Chicago mayor's race no slam dunk for Chuy (Chicago Sun-Times)

Ferguson activists press ahead, undeterred by latest shooting (Reuters)

New Obamacare window opens for those who owe federal fines for being uninsured (Associated Press)

NASA scientist says one year left of California water supply (AJC)


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Wise Words

Standing Up

"You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life." Winston Churchill Brainy Quote

Lighter Side

Harris Poll
''A new Harris poll found that 57 percent of Republicans believe President Obama is a Muslim -- 57 percent. 45 percent believe he was not born in the United States. 38 percent feel he's, quote, 'doing many of the things that Hitler did.' And 24 percent believe he may be the Antichrist. Oh, like Oprah would date the Antichrist.'' -Jimmy Kimmel Political Humor