Situational awareness – August 16, 2018

Good Thursday morning from Salt Lake City.

Count My Vote could be in trouble. Wildfire costs are surging. Trump’s lawyers plan to fight a subpoena from Meuller all the way to the Supreme Court.


  • 54 days until the last day to register to vote by mail (10/9/2018)
  • 61 days until mail-in ballots are sent to voters (10/16/2018)
  • 68 days until in-person early voting begins (10/23/2018)
  • 75 days until the last day to register to vote in person or by mail (10/30/2018)
  • 77 days until in-person early voting ends (11/2/2018)
  • 82 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 165 days until the first day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (1/28/2019)
  • 210 days until the final day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (3/14/2019)
  • 810 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)


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CMV on the ropes?

The backers of the Count My Vote ballot initiative made their case to be included on November’s ballot to the Utah Supreme Court, but the justices appeared to be skeptical of their arguments –

Wildfire cost surging

The cost of fighting wildfires in Utah this year has already cost more than what lawmakers allocated for the effort this year –

Electric public transportation

LaVarr Webb says it’s only a matter of time before electric buses and other public transportation modes is a reality –


Deseret News

Editorial: U.S. military shouldn’t be given a blank check

‘Hot bench’ questions Count My Vote, state lawyers over ballot initiatives

Hundreds on treatment waitlists as leaders aim to expand year 2 of Operation Rio Grande

Crime lab misses goals for processing rape kits, says it will improve with more employees

Police group worried about enforcing recreational marijuana ban if medical use initiative passes

Families weigh in as lawmakers revisit gender-change bill

So far so good, city says of Salt Lake scooter issues

State workers makes less than private sector but have better benefits, Utah lawmakers told

Salt Lake Tribune

Trump’s team offers a new vision for Utah’s former Grand Staircase: Nearly 700,000 acres would be open to mining or drilling

What the new plans mean for mining, grazing, recreation and artifacts in Grand Staircase and Bears Ears

Salt Lake City wants input from residents before putting rules on development at the controversial new trading hub

‘Right now we basically have anarchy’: Utah lawmakers want to clarify the process for legally changing genders — though one suggested getting rid of it

Utah lawmakers may need to change some rules to allow e-scooters on downtown Salt Lake City streets

Count My Vote is asking the Utah Supreme Court to put it on the ballot, saying its opponents had unfair advantage in torpedoing its attempt to gather 132K signatures

Feds may require Utah to redesign, reissue all drivers licenses to make sure they comply with airport security

The planned Orrin Hatch Center is an ‘offensive’ vanity play, according to Utah’s Democratic Senate nominee

CBD could move out of stores and into dispensaries if Utah voters approve marijuana ballot measure, agency says

Utah’s medical marijuana ballot measure would violate Mormons’ religious beliefs, opponents say in new court filing, which initiative supporters call a ‘Hail Mary’


Ogden City looking to create another downtown redevelopment area (Standard-Examiner)

Nordic Valley ski resort developer faces questions, shouts on expansion plans (Standard-Examiner)


  • President Trump revoked the security clearance of former CIA director John Brennan, who has been a leading critic of Trump during his time in the White House –

    Brennan fired back in an op-ed, claiming Trump’s action was an attempt to silence him –

  • President Trump’s lawyers are preparing to fight any subpoena from special counsel Robert Mueller all the way to the Supreme Court –
  • Officials say special counsel Mueller does not need to shut down his investigation into the Russian attack on the 2016 election before this year’s midterm elections –
  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said during a bill signing that America “was never that great,” drawing gasps from those in attendance. Cuomo has since attempted to walk back the statement –
  • Democrats are abandoning an effort to craft a unified national message. Instead, individual candidates for Congress will craft their own messages to win back control of the House –
  • The Democratic opponent of Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, who has been dubbed “Putin’s favorite congressman,” has been the subject of several cyberattacks over the past year –

  • A new national poll finds 51% of Republicans agree with President Trump that the media is “the enemy of the people” –
  • The Boston Globe is leading an effort by 350 newspapers across the country condemning President Trump’s attacks on the media –
  • Democrats widen their lead on the generic Congressional ballot to 11-points with less than three months to go before the 2018 midterm elections –
  • Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke blames the massive wildfires in California on “environmental terrorist groups” who are preventing the federal government from managing forests –

  • About 72,000 Americans died from drug overdoses last year, a number that’s higher than the peak totals of deaths from guns or car crashes –

  • Republicans rip into the rock band Pearl Jam for a poster depicting the White House in flames and a bald eagle pecking at a skeleton they say represents President Donald Trump –

  • The Department of Homeland Security is proposing a grant to teach public school students how to “control severe bleeding” in the event of a mass casualty event –

  • Boring but important: The failed merger between Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Media could cause Sinclair to lose their broadcast licenses. Sinclair has been accused of lying to the FCC and acting in bad faith during the failed merger with Tribune –

  • California Republican gubernatorial candidate John Cox compares long wait times at the California DMV to the Holocaust –

  • Frightening! Nevada’s Lake Mead could fall below a critical level by 2020, which would trigger the first-ever federal shortage declaration on the Colorado River –


  • 1812 – War of 1812: American General William Hull surrenders Fort Detroit without a fight to the British Army.
  • 1841 – President John Tyler vetoes a bill which called for the re-establishment of the Second Bank of the United States. Enraged Whig Party members rioted outside the White House in the most violent demonstration on White House grounds in history.
  • 1858 – President James Buchanan inaugurates the new transatlantic telegraph cable by exchanging greetings with Queen Victoria.
  • 1896 – Gold is discovered in a tributary of the Klondike River in Canada, setting off the Klondike Gold Rush.
  • 1954 – The first issue of Sports Illustrated is published.
  • 1962 – Pete Best is fired as the drummer for The Beatles. He was replaced two days later by Ringo Starr.
  • 1966 – The House Un-American Activities Committee begins investigations of Americans who have aided the Viet Cong during the Vietnam War.
  • 1977 – Elvis Presley died of heart failure at his home in Memphis at age 42.


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