What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today – October 22, 2013

Countdown:  There are 15 days to the 2013 municipal elections, 99 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature, 374 days until the 2014 midterm elections and 808 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

  • State Auditor John Dougall is the only member of Utah’s executive branch who is not using a taxpayer-funded car from the state motor fleet [Tribune].
  • The Utah GOP sets November 7 as the date delegates will select a replacement for Rep. Spencer Cox’s replacement [Tribune].
  • Utah’s Congressional delegation says they will follow through on their promise to donate all or part of their salaries during the government shutdown, but details are scarce [Tribune].
  • 1st Congressional District candidate Donna McAleer slams Rep. Rob Bishop for his role in the government shutdown [Park Record].
  • There’s no guarantee Utah will get back the nearly $2 million the state gave the federal government in order to re-open national parks [Deseret News].
  • Legislators are working to curb the growing use of “boxcar bills” on Utah’s Capitol Hill [Utah Policy].
  • The Tribune throws some shade on Sen. Todd Weiler’s proposal to protect the “religious freedom” of students in Utah’s public schools [Tribune].
  • Former Lt. Governor Greg Bell’s move to the Utah Hospital Assocation raises some eyebrows on the Tribune editorial board [Tribune].
  • Merit Medical is grappling with higher medical device manufacturing taxes under ObamaCare [Deseret News].
  • Utah’s lawyers are defending the state’s ban on same-sex marriage by arguing “traditional marriage” is better for families [Deseret News].
  • A battle over a permit to run a home-based auto repair business in North Ogden heats up over a letter from those opposed asking that there be no public hearing on the issue [Standard-Examiner].
  • Plain City’s Mayor Jay Jenkins is running for a seat on the city council and not another term in his current office [Standard-Examiner].
  • Business owners in Sugarhouse are hopeful the new streetcar lines will boost the economy in that area [KSL].
  • Boring but important: The Salt Lake Tribune sells its interest in a West Valley printing plant to the Deseret News. The Deseret News also gains control of the joint operating company, MediaOne, that the two papers own [Tribune].