Ten Things You Need to Know for Monday – February 23, 2015

Utahns oppose a November to March wood burning ban. Herbert opposes legalizing medical marijuana. "Count My Vote" says they're ready to re-launch their effort to eliminate the caucus system of lawmakers alter last year's agreement.


  • Days to the final day of the 2015 Utah Legislature – 17
  • Days to the 2015 Utah municipal primary elections – 169
  • Days to the 2015 election – 253
  • Days to the 2016 Iowa Caucus (tentative) – 329
  • Days to the opening day of the 2016 Utah Legislature – 336
  • Days to the 2016 Utah presidential primary – 491
  • Days until the 2016 presidential election – 624

Monday's top-10 headlines:

  1. A new poll shows Utahns oppose a November to March wood burning ban in order to improve air quality. Residents also want the state to focus on industrial polluters and vehicle emissions to reduce pollution [Utah Policy].
  2. Gov. Gary Herbert says he opposes legalizing medical marijuana because it would likely lead to recreational use [Tribune].
  3. Herbert also says Congress needs to get "off their fanny" to pass immigration reform [Tribune].
  4. House Majority Leader Rep. Jim Dunnigan discusses Medicaid expansion and budgetary issues in the waning days of the 2015 session [Utah Policy].
  5. Organizers of "Count My Vote" say they're ready to re-launch their citizen's initiative to get rid of the caucus system if lawmakers alter the deal agreed to last year [Utah Policy].
  6. Rep. Joel Briscoe says mass transit needs a bigger tax increase, but he also wants to put restrictions on how the Utah Transit Authority could use that money [Tribune].
  7. Lawmakers are proposing additional math requirements for high school students to be considered college ready [Deseret News].
  8. Legislators are grappling with the possibility that a candidate could win a party's nomination with less than 50% of the vote [Utah Policy].
  9. A Senate committee gives the thumbs up to a proposed constitutional amendment making State School Board members appointed by the governor [Tribune].
  10. Sens. Howard Stephenson and Aaron Osmond call for the suspension of the Utah SAGE testing system [Utah Policy, Deseret News].

On this day in history:


  • 1836 – The siege of the Alamo began in San Antonio, Texas.
  • 1870 – Mississippi was readmitted to the Union.
  • 1945 – U.S. Marines on Iwo Jima captured Mount Suribachi and raised the American flag. The moment was captured in a Pulitzer Prize winning photo by Joe Rosenthal.
  • 2011 – The Obama administration said it would no longer defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, a federal law banning recognition of same-sex marriage.