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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

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Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know for Wednesday - March 4, 2015

The House reverses course and schedules a hearing on Healthy Utah. The Senate advances the medical marijuana bill. Lawmakers trying to find a compromise on a gas tax hike.


  • Days to the final day of the 2015 Utah Legislature - 8
  • Days to the 2015 Utah municipal primary elections - 160
  • Days to the 2015 election - 244
  • Days to the 2016 Iowa Caucus (tentative) - 320
  • Days to the opening day of the 2016 Utah Legislature - 327
  • Days to the 2016 Utah presidential primary - 482
  • Days until the 2016 presidential election - 615

Wednesday's top-10 headlines:

  1. The House will hold a committee meeting on Healthy Utah and their competing Medicaid expansion plan Wednesday night [Deseret News, Tribune].
  2. Gov. Gary Herbert says he's not yet sold on a compromise over Healthy Utah [Utah Policy].
  3. The Utah Senate sends the medical marijuana bill for a final vote in their body [Tribune, Deseret News].
  4. A proposed overhaul of Utah's criminal justice system passes the Utah House and heads to the Senate [Tribune, Deseret News].
  5. Legislators are trying to find common ground on raising Utah's gas tax to increase funding for roads [Utah Policy, Deseret News].
  6. The Utah House kills an attempt by Rep. Brian King to set limits on campaign donations [Utah Policy, Tribune, Deseret News].
  7. A Senate panel advances a "constitutional carry" gun bill that's identical to one vetoed by Gov. Herbert in 2013. Herbert says he would veto the bill again if it gets to his desk [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  8. The Senate advances two measures changing state school board elections while the House kills a proposal making those elections non-partisan [Tribune].
  9. A House committee approves legislation exempting some wood-burning stoves from state clean air regulations [Tribune, Deseret News].
  10. A new report confirms Utah is headed toward a big shortfall in transportation funding unless lawmakers do something to fix the problem [Tribune, Deseret News].

On this day in history:

  • 1789 - The U.S Congress met for the first time, in New York City. 
  • 1917 - Jeanette Rankin, a Montana Republican, was sworn in as a member of the House of Representatives. She was the first woman to serve in Congress.
  • 1933 - Frances Perkins became the first woman to serve in the Cabinet when she took over as secretary of labor.
  • 1987 - President Ronald Reagan acknowledged his administration swapped arms to Iran for U.S. hostages.

Today At Utah Policy

Poll: Utahns Split on Primary Seat Belt Law
Should police officers be able to pull over drivers for not wearing a seat belt? Utahns stand divided on the issue....

Legislative Notes Warn a Number of Proposed Bills Could Run Afoul of Federal Law
Welcome to the Legislature, freshman Rep. Norman Thurston. Two of your bills are likely illegal.And Sen. Mark Madsen’s medical marijuana bill has legal problems as well, could run afoul of federal law....

Lawmakers Hoping to Come to Compromise on Gas Tax Hike
Want to know how the Legislature is going to raise your gasoline taxes over the next few years?Who doesn’t?...

Stewart: Why Does Obama Trust Iran?
In a Wall Street Journal op-ed, Rep. Chris Stewart wonders why Pres. Obamaseems to seethe terrorist-sponsoring regime in Tehranas a reliable negotiating partner....

Herbert 'Not There Yet' on Compromise Over Healthy Utah
Rumors that GOP Gov. Gary Herbert has agreed to a Healthy Utah compromise seem to be a bit premature, as Herbert strongly defended his Medicaid expansion plan Tuesday afternoon and said it is far superior to a brand new idea put forward by House Majority Leader Jim...

House Nixes Limits on Campaign Contributions
In a close vote, the Utah House killed a campaign donation limit bill on Tuesday morning, keeping Utah one of only four states that have no limits to donations to a candidate’s campaign....

'Constitutional Carry' Bill Advances
The "constitutional carry" bill is alive and well on Utah's Capitol Hill, which may precipitate a skirmish with the Utah Senate on one side and the Utah House and Gov. Gary Herbert on the other....

Senate Committee Stalls Election Bill Due to Lawsuit Over Count My Vote
A Senate committee held a bill making a number of changes to Utah's election laws in order to bring them in line with last year's compromise with Count My Vote....

Are Utah Lawmakers Trying to Pull a Fast One with HB 313?
When it comes to smart politicians finding ways around the law, I have to say Utah is full of them....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: Hughes' closed legislating is odd public morality

Op-ed: A good, productive workplace supports breastfeeding

More adults may be required to take driver's ed in Utah

Lawmakers push back against proposed ban on burning in Utah; critics say they're rolling back clean-air protections

New study verifies big shortfall in Utah transportation funding

Healthy Utah to be heard Wednesday along with new Medicaid proposal

Utah's Hatch earns prime seat for Netanyahu speech to Congress

Downtown's notorious blue parking kiosks get big overhaul

Rolly: I'm Salt Lake City's new parking adviser - let's hope the new kiosks work better

Compromise may bring 5-cent gas tax increase, with more coming later

House eases restrictions on police aerial drones

Criminal-justice reform gains Utah House approval

Cable license delayed to assure equity of terms

Bill advances to decrease penalty for carrying weapons on transit

House, Senate take opposite stands on school board elections

Medical marijuana bill advances to final vote in Senate

Utah guv says he would veto concealed-gun bill

House endorses 36% pay hike for governor

Utah House again defeats donation limits

Judge: Jeremy Johnson's September trial date 'set in stone'

Deseret News

Op-ed: Common Core tests erode parental rights

Op-ed: Priorities in politics need to change

Op-ed: Breastfeeding bill good for children and working women

Richard Davis: Let the voters decide the party primaries - don't pass HB313

Jay Evensen: Though complicated, Corradini was an effective leader

Editorial: Deedee Corradini - a past leader whose efforts in the present carried well into the future

Lawmakers pass 'Start By Believing Day' resolution for rape victims

House passes bill allowing police to use drones without a warrant

Senate passes bill changing police forcible entry laws

House defeats attempt to limit campaign contributions

Pipeline critics fear legislative 'tax increase' for project

Anti-discrimination, religious rights bill now expected Wednesday

Utah House passes bill to revamp criminal justice system

State lawmakers trying to hammer out deal raising Utah's gas tax

S.L. County fears criminal justice reforms could become unfunded mandate without Medicaid fix

Bill would create task force to evaluate student testing

Wood-burning bill advances in legislative committee

3 State School Board bills advance, 1 fails as partisan debate continues

Bill clarifying parental rights in education gets preliminary Senate approval

Report outlines Utah transportation investment needs

House approves pay raises for governor, other elected executives

Utah Senate narrowly endorses medical marijuana bill

House will hear Healthy Utah alongside own plan for Medicaid expansion


Editorial: Black Diamond brings back job (Standard-Examiner)

Bill would change governance of state veterans homes (Standard-Examiner)

Report identifies $54.7 billion worth of priority transportation needs (Standard-Examiner)

Weber County lawmaker's wood-burning bill clears committee Tuesday (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

Republicans see gold in Hillary Clinton emails (Politico)

John Boehner ends stalemate (Politico)

Cruz unveils ObamaCare alternative (The Hill)

Pelosi 'near tears' at Bibi 'insult' (The Hill)

Netanyahu: Iran deal will start countdown to 'nuclear nightmare' (The Hill)

Hillary Clinton Email: What the White House Said in 2011 That May Not Look Good for Her (ABC News)

House approves DHS funding bill, ending immigration standoff (FOX News)

David Petraeus plea could pave way for comeback (CNN)

The Rahm Slayer (Daily Beast)

Russ Feingold, Noted Wisconsin Liberal, May Try to Reclaim His Senate Seat (Wall Street Journal)

Detroit native Ben Carson to run for president in 2016 (Associated Press)


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"Government's first duty is to protect the people, not run their lives." Ronald Reagan Brainy Quote

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National Embarassment
"John Boehner said . . . . that President Obama's veto of the Keystone XL pipeline was a 'national embarrassment.' And then, out of habit, Joe Biden said, 'Here!'" Seth MeyersPolitical Humor

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