Once again, the Utah State Legislature is in session. Starting today, legislators will meet for 45 days to consider hundreds of pieces of legislation. Needless to say, there is a lot to get done in short amount of time.
Over the next month and a half, some bills, such as those addressing education funding, Medicaid expansion, or hate crimes, will garner a lot of attention and will be subject to lengthy discussions by legislators, Other bills, will fall by the wayside due to the time constraints of the session.
We will be following the legislative session closely to ensure our legislators are promoting good policies for the people of Utah. We are committed to making sure that legislation this session addresses the shared prosperity of all Utahns, the inherent equality in all its residents, the ability for Utahns to actively and easily participate in their government, and the health of our environment and natural resources. At the same time, we are committed to highlighting policies that negatively impact these areas of concerns.
Over the next forty-five days, we expect our legislators to be open and transparent with their decision-making. When they fail to do so, such as the Senate and/or House GOP caucus holding private meetings to kill a bill before it reaches the floor, which they have been known to do, we will publicly hold their feet to the fire.
The legislative session is a whirlwind of epic proportions. The inner workings are steadfast as bill after bill is ushered in, often at break-neck speeds, which makes keeping track of everything cumbersome to say the least.
Alliance for a Better Utah, will be up on the hill for the entirety of the session keeping track of bill progression each day and summarizing the decisions made via a bill tracker housed on our website. In addition to our standard weekly updates, you can sign up for more in-depth daily email updates and immediate calls to action (subscribe here). We will continue with our weekly editions of the Better Utah Broadcast on Facebook Live, including our new Legislative segment titled Better Utah on the Hill. We also recommend reading newspapers (I like the Salt Lake Tribune and Deseret News myself) for updates as well. Let us be your guide and keep you informed.
Your local legislators are accessible more-so now than ever (find out who your legislators are and how to contact them here). I urge you to call their office, email them, or even text them to voice your opinion on issues that impact you and your community. Don’t like how your local Senator is voting on a certain issue? Let them know. Attend rallies and encourage others to do so. You can even reach out to your local legislator’s office and set up an appointment to discuss your concerns in person. Or, even better, put on your political activist hat, hop on the UTA Capitol Connector bus, and come lobby for change in the actual lobby of the Capitol during the legislative session.