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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics - September 18, 2013
Countdown: There are 49 days to the 2013 municipal elections, 133 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature, 408 days until the 2014 midterm elections and 845 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

  • Good budget news for Utah. The state finishes the fiscal year with a budget surplus of nearly $250 million [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  • The state's debt load is pegged at nearly $8 billion [Standard-Examiner].
  • A legislative audit suggests the state is spending too much on food for female prison inmates [Deseret News].
  • Another audit says Utah needs to do a better job keeping probation and parole violators from going back to prison [Tribune].
  • Lawmakers consider scenarios for dealing with the possible closure of Hill Air Force Base [Standard-Examiner].
  • Utah's tourism industry raked in $7.4 billion last year, which is up 8-percent from 2011 [Tribune].
  • Dust off those hackneyed Sammy Hagar references. Utah unveils nearly 300 miles of roads with 80 MPH speed limits [Tribune].
  • Oops! The Salt Lake County GOP schedules an event at the same time as Governor Herbert's annual fundraising gala dinner [Tribune].
  • A new report says federal regulations about energy exploration on federal lands is costing states money and jobs [Deseret News].
  • The Daughters of Utah Pioneers are still steaming about a perceived snub from Ogden Mayor Mike Caldwell [Standard-Examiner].
  • Salt Lake County officials want to do a better job with branding so residents understand what services the county provides [Tribune].
  • Environmentalists go to court in an effort to force the state to crack down on pollution in the Uintah Basin [Tribune].

Today At Utah Policy

Don't Get Too Excited About Spending Utah's Budget Surplus
All the numbers are in.And reports that Utah state government is doing well financially are absolutely true....

Free Screening of 'The Fifth Estate' for Utah Policy Readers
Utah Policy would like to invite you to a free screening of the Julian Assange biopic "The Fifth Estate" starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Daniel Bruhl....

Featured Items

Utah's Future: Plan Far Ahead for Transportation Innovation
The Economist magazine recently published an interesting article about innovation in passenger train travel. While improvements in train technology don't make big news, over the long-term these developments may revolutionize rail travel and make it more competitive with high...

Ivory Makes Argument for State Sovereignty In Arizona
Rep. Ken Ivory urges Arizona lawmakers to follow Utah's lead and declare sovereignty over Arizona's public lands....

Lee Proposes Richer Child Tax Credit
In an effort to help American families, Sen. Mike Lee proposes a $2500 child tax credit that would apply to both income and payroll taxes....

Governor Announces 2013 Revenue Surplus
Another sign of Utah's growing economy: More cash on hand....

Percent of Utah Kids Without Insurance Stagnant Since 2000
In Utah, 8.5 percent of Utah children are living without health insurance, the same rate as in 2000, according to Census Bureau Current Population Survey data released today. While the percent of uninsured kids rose and fell from 2000 to 2012 and the percent of uninsured chi...

Hatch Compares Online Piracy to Obamacare
Sen. Orrin Hatch says online piracy is damaging the economy, and compared it to the potential for fraud under Obamacare....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: SLCTA: City needs own transit plan

Utah finishes budget year with $242 million surplus

67% of new Utah prisoners there for probation, parole violation

Council: Using logo will help county's identity crisis

Utah adds 289 miles of roads with 80 mph speed limits

Rolly: County GOP's picnic goes head to head with guv's gala

Groups seek court action on Uinta Basin smog

Deseret News

Editorial: Needless confusion

Report: Federal oil, gas policies cost West billions of dollars, thousands of jobs

Audit: Standards for revoking parole, probation inconsistent across Utah

Governor Herbert announces $242M surplus in education funding

Utah County firm plans state's largest solar project for Millard County

Report this ad Utah sets state record for tourist visits in 2012

D.C. massacre: Gun usage, violent video games cloud shooter's past


Editorial: Corridor remains a priority (Standard-Examiner)

Top of Utah leaders reflect on Lt. Gov. Bell's resignation (Standard-Examiner)

Top of Utah candidates lining up to replace Lt. Gov. Bell (Standard-Examiner)

Hill closure scenarios trouble Utah legislators (Standard-Examiner)

Utah debt load estimated at $7.89 billion (Standard-Examiner)

Speed limits bump to 80 mph on some No. Utah interstates (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

Coal country Democrat vows to 'fight' Obama on energy policy plans (The Hill)

Brazil backs out of state visit over NSA spying (The Hill)

IG report: 52 felons gained routine access to military facilities (The Hill)

Aaron Alexis: a history of angry acts, seeking help, feeling 'slighted' (Christian Science Monitor)

Judge opens mediation talks in Detroit bankruptcy (Associated Press)

Firecrackers Prompt White House Lockdown (ABC News)

New Jersey Can't Legalize Sports Betting, U.S. Court Says (Bloomberg)

Few takers, low bids for Jesse Jackson Jr.'s swag (USA Today)

Judge refuses delay on NYC stop-frisk reforms (Newsday)

Utah lt. governor exits amid financial concerns (USA Today)

Treasury urges Congress to act now on debt ceiling (Reuters)

All victims in Navy Yard rampage ID'd; one is remembered as family man who loved golf (Fox News)

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Wise Words

Best Exercise
"Walking is the best possible exercise. Habituate yourself to walk very far."Thomas Jefferson Quotations Page

Lighter Side

Crisis Averted
"Crisis averted. Now Congress suspends its vote on a military strike, the U.N. secures Assad's chemical stockpile, and the Syrian people can go back to being killed with conventional methods. Everybody wins." Stephen Colbert Political Humor

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