How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – September 4, 2013

Countdown: There are 63 days to the 2013 municipal elections, 147 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature, 422 days until the 2014 midterm elections and 859 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

  • The “Count My Vote” group seeking to establish an alternative path to the primary ballot announces they are 1/3 of the way to their $1.5 million goal [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  • Not every member of Utah’s Congressional delegation is sold on the plan for missile strikes against Syria [Tribune, Deseret News]. 
  • Utah unveils their new grading program for public schools [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Opponents of the grading system worry it will turn public opinion against schools [Tribune].
  • The new grades engender sharp reaction both pro and con [Deseret News].
  • Emails show Mark Robbins, who fled the state in 2009 to avoid creditors, was involved in the development surrounding a UTA station Draper in 2010. Former Attorney General Mark Shurtleff allegedly offered one of Robbins’ critics $2 million to keep quiet [City Weekly].
  • New Census numbers show the number of college students across the country dipped more than 2% last year, but the number of Latinos entering college jumped 15% [Tribune].
  • A judge is set to hear arguments over whether Clark Aposhian’s ex-wife will get a protective order against the prominent gun lobbyist [Tribune].
  • Dean Armstrong, the former mayor of Helper, is sentenced to home confinement following a guilty plea to a DUI charge [Tribune].
  • Utah joins the NRA in seeking to lift a ban on selling handguns to people under the age of 21 [Deseret News].
  • The BLM gives money for a road project in the Little Sahara recreation area [Tribune].
  • The Utah County Commission is considering a proposal to spend nearly $3 million for a mass transit project in Orem and Provo [Daily Herald].