Watch: Rep. McCay’s Discussing Education Funding on Fox 13 News

The Utah Legislature significantly increased education funding during the 2017 General Session without raising taxes. Including:

  • About 60% of new revenue this year went to public education, the largest share in recent memory
  • 4% increase in WPU ($115,452,200), putting money where it can allow for greater flexibility and local control
  • 6.7% funding increase over last year
Watch Rep. Dan McCay’s interview with Ben Winslow on Fox 13 News here.

“Rep. Dan McCay, R-Riverton, said lawmakers have already pushed more money toward education. Even though Utah is last in per-pupil spending, Rep. McCay said they are seeing positive results.”

 

ICYMI: U.S. News recently ranked Utah 9th in the nation in overall education.  Read more here.

 

Watch: Speaker’s & Minority Leader’s Interview on Inside Utah Politics

Watch Speaker Greg Hughes and Minority Leader Brian King interview with Glen Mills on ABC 4 Good for Utah here.

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 Utah) – To debate some of the biggest stories of the week, Speaker Greg Hughes (R) District 51, and Rep. Brian King (D) Minority Leader, joined the Inside Utah Politics Panel.

Lead by Chief Political Correspondent Glen Mills, the panel discussed the validity of Utah’s special election to fill Rep. Jason Chaffetz’ soon-to-be-vacated 3rd Congressional District seat, and if there’s room to negotiate on Senate Bill 54.

“The Democrats and the house and the senate have been pretty strongly in favor of SB54 in the sense that we support an alternative method to the primary ballot and we’ve seen attempts at times in the house and the senate to undermine that process a little bit,” said King. “…There are some people that want to figure out a way to put more power in the caucus and convention system that exists right now, and there are other people that will die on the hill of making sure that there’s an alternative method to the primary ballot as SB54 puts in place.”

“I think we need to go back and see why was the county my vote issue even before us? I think people in the Republican party, and I’m not sure the Democrats had as strong of a voice in this, but they wanted to see more primaries and less of these candidates decided in convention. I think if that was the goal, if SB54 was to create an alternative route to the ballot so that we could see primaries, so that a broader swath of people can have a voice, I think that’s worth talking about. What I think the downside is to SB54, that I think all sides agreed, but we’ve never resolved years later is plurality,” added Hughes.

 

 

 

June 2017 Legislative Calendar

Stay in the know about what is happening at the Utah State Legislature.  Here is a list of June’s meetings. Click the committee to see the agenda, meeting materials and listen to live and past audio* of meetings.

Thursday, June 1
8:30 a.m. Retirement and Independent Entities Interim Committee

Tuesday, June 6
9:00 a.m. Veterans’ and Military Affairs Commission

Thursday, June 8
1:00 p.m. Health Reform Task Force

Monday, June 12
3:30 p.m. State Fair Park Committee

Tuesday, June 13
9:00 a.m. Administrative Rules Review Committee

Wednesday, June 14
1:00 p.m. Transportation Governance and Funding Task Force

Tuesday, June 20
8:30 a.m. Business, Economic Development, and Labor Appropriations Subcommittee
8:30 a.m. Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environmental Quality Appropriations Subcommittee
8:30 a.m. Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee
8:30 a.m. Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee
1:15 p.m. Executive Offices and Criminal Justice Appropriations Subcommittee
1:15 p.m. Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee
1:15 p.m. Infrastructure and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee
1:15 p.m. Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee
3:00 p.m. Legislative Audit Subcommittee
4:00 p.m. Senate Education Confirmation Committee
4:00 p.m. Commission for the Stewardship of Public Lands

Wednesday, June 21
8:30 a.m. Business and Labor Interim Committee
8:30 a.m. Education Interim Committee
8:30 a.m. Government Operations Interim Committee
8:30 a.m. Political Subdivisions Interim Committee
8:30 a.m. Public Utilities, Energy, and Technology Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Economic Development and Workforce Services Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Judiciary Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environment Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Revenue and Taxation Interim Committee
1:15 p.m. Transportation Interim Committee
5:00 p.m. Commission on Federalism

 Tuesday, June 27
9:00 a.m. Veterans’ and Military Affairs Commission
2:00 p.m. Utah Tax Review Commission

*Not all meetings are streamed online.

Memorial Day

This Memorial Day, we are once again reminded of the great sacrifices made throughout the history of our nation that have allowed us to live as we do—in freedom and prosperity. The blessing of freedom is granted through the sacrifices of those who have served with honor and devotion. We are forever grateful to our service members and their families, and express to them our deepest gratitude

Legislative Leaders Issue Statement on Separation of Powers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 19, 2017

Legislative leaders issue statement on separation of powers 

SALT LAKE CITY – Today, Utah legislative leaders expressed concern with executive branch overreach.  Speaker of the House Greg Hughes, House Minority Leader Brian King, Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, and Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis issued the following statement: 

“We express our concern with Governor Herbert’s decision to call an election without allowing the legislature to exercise its clear constitutional responsibility. Establishing election procedures in law is clearly a role given to the legislature by the U.S. Constitution.  Separation of powers is one of the most fundamental principles of our government and a vigilant guard against abuse of power. Nowhere is the executive branch given the authority to establish election procedures.”

# # #

Infographics

The infographics below compare timelines, the process of filling other vacant offices in Utah, and review how other states fill vacancies.

 

Joint Op-Ed: Separation of Powers

Utah House Representatives Speaker Greg Hughes, Utah Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, House Minority Leader Brian King and Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis joint op-ed in Utah Policy.

When a vacancy occurs in the U.S House of Representatives an election of the people must occur. The U.S. Constitution states that the times, places and manner of elections will be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof (Article 1, Section 4). Further, U.S. Code Title 2, Section 8(a) says, “ … the time for holding elections … to fill a vacancy…may be prescribed by the laws of the several States… ”

It is clearly the role of the Legislature to establish election procedures and “prescribe them by law.” Nowhere is the executive branch given the authority to establish these procedures; the governor’s legal role is to issue a formal writ declaring that an election will take place.

The separation of powers is one of the most fundamental principles of our government, and protects all of us from abuses inherent in concentrations of power.

It is without question the duty of the Legislature to put in place the parameters of an election. It is equally without question the governor’s job to call a special session to allow us to fulfill this responsibility. For the executive branch to fail to do so, and to then purport to establish “The Times, Places and Manner” outside of the legislative process is an inappropriate breach of his constitutionally defined power.

Utah is one of only three states that do not yet have statutory provisions for a U.S. House of Representatives special election to fill a vacancy. We now face a congressional vacancy and have no process established by law to provide a replacement. But we could, in just a few days, if the governor called us into special session.

The timeline matters. These are historic days in Washington. Major issues hang in the balance. Congress is grappling with issues of great consequence—tax reform, health care and public lands, among others. Every day in Congress in which Utahns are not represented disenfranchises the citizens of the Third District. For as long as the vacancy persists, twenty-five percent of Utahns are left without a voice.

The governor has a clear responsibility to call the Legislature into special session. The state constitution, ratified by the legislature and the people, says that only he can do that. We wouldn’t assert a non-constitutional authority to call ourselves into session, just as he should not assert a non-constitutional authority to commandeer the time, place, and manner of an election process. Again, elections are constitutionally and statutorily placed in the hands of the Legislature.

We need to hold an election of the people and it must be done expeditiously. Governor Herbert’s decision to call an election without allowing the Legislature to perform its legal and constitutional duty is disappointing and exposes the vacancy election process to unnecessary legal and political risks.

 

Statements

  • Read Utah House of Representatives Chief of Staff Greg Hartley’s statement on the Utah’s 3rd Congressional District Vacancy here.

 

  • Read House Minority Leader Brian King’s statement declaring his support for a special session to detail the laws guiding special elections in Utah here.

Joint Op-Ed: Separation of Powers Issue

Utah House Representatives Speaker Greg Hughes, Utah Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, House Minority Leader Brian King and Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis joint op-ed in Utah Policy on May 19, 2018.

When a vacancy occurs in the U.S House of Representatives an election of the people must occur. The U.S. Constitution states that the times, places and manner of elections will be prescribed in each state by the legislature thereof (Article 1, Section 4). Further, U.S. Code Title 2, Section 8(a) says, “ … the time for holding elections … to fill a vacancy … may be prescribed by the laws of the several States … ”

It is clearly the role of the Legislature to establish election procedures and “prescribe them by law.” Nowhere is the executive branch given the authority to establish these procedures; the governor’s legal role is to issue a formal writ declaring that an election will take place.

The separation of powers is one of the most fundamental principles of our government, and protects all of us from abuses inherent in concentrations of power.

It is without question the duty of the Legislature to put in place the parameters of an election. It is equally without question the governor’s job to call a special session to allow us to fulfill this responsibility. For the executive branch to fail to do so, and to then purport to establish “The Times, Places and Manner” outside of the legislative process is an inappropriate breach of his constitutionally defined power.

Utah is one of only three states that do not yet have statutory provisions for a U.S. House of Representatives special election to fill a vacancy. We now face a congressional vacancy and have no process established by law to provide a replacement. But we could, in just a few days, if the governor called us into special session.

The timeline matters. These are historic days in Washington. Major issues hang in the balance. Congress is grappling with issues of great consequence—tax reform, health care and public lands, among others. Every day in Congress in which Utahns are not represented disenfranchises the citizens of the Third District. For as long as the vacancy persists, twenty-five percent of Utahns are left without a voice.

The governor has a clear responsibility to call the Legislature into special session. The state constitution, ratified by the legislature and the people, says that only he can do that. We wouldn’t assert a non-constitutional authority to call ourselves into session, just as he should not assert a non-constitutional authority to commandeer the time, place, and manner of an election process. Again, elections are constitutionally and statutorily placed in the hands of the Legislature.

We need to hold an election of the people and it must be done expeditiously. Governor Herbert’s decision to call an election without allowing the Legislature to perform its legal and constitutional duty is disappointing and exposes the vacancy election process to unnecessary legal and political risks.

Statement: Utah House of Representatives Chief of Staff Statement on Utah’s 3rd Congressional District Vacancy

For Immediate Release
May 18, 2017 

 

Utah House of Representatives Cheif of Staff Statement on Utah’s 3rd Congressional District Vacancy

SALT LAKE CITY – Today, Utah House of Representatives Chief of Staff Greg Hartley issued the following statement on the resignation of Congressman Jason Chaffetz:

“Article 1 Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution and U.S. Code Title 2 clearly state that the Legislature is responsible for prescribing the process for elections. This is a separation of powers issue. The House and Senate Majority caucuses are unanimous in their support for a special session.

“House Minority Leader Brian King has made it clear, as have the Chairs of the Republican and Democrat parties – the Legislature is responsible for defining how elections are run. Speaker Hughes remains committed to defending the legislative process and calls on Governor Herbert to convene a special session of the Legislature to vote a clearly defined process into law.”

###

 

 

Media Statement: Democratic Leader Supports Special Session on Elections Guidelines

Media Statement
For Immediate Release: May 17, 2017

Contact:
Elizabeth Converse, Communications Director
Utah House of Representatives – Minority Caucus
801-835-7087 | econverse@le.utah.gov

Democratic Leader Supports Special Session on Elections Guidelines

Salt Lake City – House Democratic Leader Brian King released a statement today declaring his support for a special session to detail the laws guiding special elections in Utah.

He said, “We are talking about the fundamentals of our government – checks and balances. Defining how elections are run is a legislative power. We may have a lot in common with how the Governor would like a special election to run, but it is not his prerogative. The legislature is responsible for those decisions.

There is a need to provide clarity in our current law. There is an imminent special election. Why should Utah lose a seat at the table when critical decisions are being made about our lands and our water? There is urgency here and the legislature should address it. I support a special session.”

###

 

Clean Air Bills – 2017

Today, House and Senate members joined Gov. Herbert at Ensign Elementary School to discuss recent air quality improvement efforts and ceremonially sign nine pieces of legislation that passed the 2017 session.

At the event, it was announced that  Utah will receive $7.5 million from Volkswagen to replace approximately 100 diesel school buses.

  • HCR 5, Concurrent Resolution on Clean Fuel School Buses
  • HCR 8, Concurrent Resolution Regarding the Volkswagen Settlement
  • HCR 18, Concurrent Resolution Encouraging Utahns to Consider Smog Rating When Purchasing a Vehicle
  • HB 96, Petroleum Vapor Recovery Amendments
  • HB 183, Emissions Settlement Amendments
  • HB 392, Air Quality Policy Advisory Board
  • HB 405, Hydrogen Fuel Production Incentives
  • SB 24, Heavy Duty Tax Credit Amendments
  •  SB 154, Solar Access Amendments

Dog Rescue Operation

During the tour of Bears Ears, representatives were able to witness a search and rescue operation for a sweet dog named Badger that had been stuck at the bottom of a cliff for days.