The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is not alone in its arguments against the legalization of same-sex marriage in Utah. Other religious groups have signed on to a friend-of-the court brief to the 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals, while another has been filed by Utah state legislators
A dozen protestors were taken away from the Utah Capitol Monday afternoon in handcuffs. The protestors were there to demand that an LGBT anti-discrimination bill be considered. They were arrested when they blocked the entrance of a Senate Committee hearing.
Skiers enjoyed vistas of fresh snow at Patsy Marley, near the Alta Resort, after the four-day storm. Avalanche danger was high in much of the backcountry after nearly 3 feet of snow fell at nearby Alta Resort.
Rain and snow drenched northern Utah this weekend, bringing moisture that will make a big difference in spring and summer.
Randy Julander works for the federal Natural Resources Conservation Service. He monitors Utah’s snowpack. He also watches water levels in Utah’s streams and reservoirs with an eye on what that means for irrigation and drinking water. Last week his office reported that snowpack was just 75 percent of normal statewide. Julander says key reservoirs were less than half full.
Utah is the top destination state in the nation for products coming from Mexico but ranks only 37th among states exporting to Mexico. The Governor’s Office of Economic Development hosted a free Mexico Business Symposium Monday at The Leonardo in downtown Salt Lake City in an attempt at reaching a better balance of trade. Harvey Scott is the director of International Trade and Diplomacy for the Office. He says while Utah already has strong business ties with Mexico, there is room for improvement.
Electric cars, hybrid cars and vehicles powered by natural gas would pay dramatically higher registration fees under a bill in the Utah State Senate. Republican Senator Wayne Harper of West Jordan says vehicles that don’t use gasoline or diesel fuel need to pay their fair share to maintain Utah’s roads.
A four-alarm fire destroyed an apartment building under construction in Salt Lake City yesterday. The building was empty, and firefighters were able to protect neighboring structures as well as the Smith’s supermarket just across 500 South. But Jasen Asay with the Salt Lake City Fire Department says they don’t want to send investigators into the building until it’s safe. He says one of the problems is a crane that was caught in the flames.
The Utah House has passed a bill that could mean higher speed limits on more of Utah’s interstate highways.
Close to 400 miles of Utah’s highways already allow drivers to go 80 mph. Jim Dunnigan, R-Taylorsville, says more areas of interstate freeway should be considered for higher speeds. His bill would allow the Utah Department of Transportation to study divided highways where it might make sense to let drivers go faster. He says the Utah Division of Air Quality told him that faster driving does not lead to more pollution.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is planning to file a friend-of-the-court brief after all in the appeal of the federal court case on same sex marriage in Utah. The case is currently before the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver.
The church has been involved in other cases and in political battles involving same-sex marriage in the past. But a spokesperson said shortly after the U-S Supreme Court issued a stay of Judge Robert Shelby’s decision that it probably would not add a formal argument to the case.
A report done for the Utah legislature shows the social problems associated with alcohol are decreasing. But the legislator behind the report says it would be hard to justify changes in Utah’s liquor laws based just on the report’s findings.
Chocolate: The Exhibition officially opens Saturday at the Natural History Museum of Utah. Sarah George is the executive director of the museum. She says the exhibition gives visitors a good sense of the botany, culture, and history of the cacao that date back to the Olmec people of the Mexican Gulf Coast.
A bill passed the Utah House Thursday that would require cities and towns to use some beer tax revenue on alcohol treatment and prevention programs.
Forty percent of the money generated from beer and alcohol sales goes to municipalities in Utah and only about four percent of that money is spent on programs that combat underage drinking. Cache County Republican Representative Jack Draxler wants to change that.
The Westminster College community will be watching the opening ceremonies in Sochi with extra pride this year. The liberal arts school in Salt Lake City has more students competing in the 2014 Winter Olympics than any other U.S. college or university.
In all, there are 23 skiers and snowboarders in Sochi right now who are working simultaneously towards a degree at Westminster College. Deb Vickery is their academic advisor on campus.
Governor Gary Herbert says he hopes Utahns will increase their donations to the Pamela Atkinson Homeless Trust Fund when filing their Utah State Tax return. He spoke at an event promoting the fund Thursday at the YWCA Center for Families. He says a 50 percent increase from 2 dollars to 3 is not too much to ask in a state that leads the nation in charity and volunteerism.
Pamela Atkinson talked about a young family she met Wednesday night at the St. Vincent DePaul Soap Kitchen. She says, despite their struggles, she could clearly see they had already accomplished a lot.
A new study at the University of Utah is trying to determine what’s happening in the brain when someone has strong religious feelings.
Studies of Buddhist monks and Catholic nuns have shown significant changes in the brain during periods of quiet meditation. Now, neurology researcher Jeffrey Anderson has designed a study to watch what happens to former Mormon missionaries as they experience religious emotions.
Officials from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) are in Utah this week on a two-day trip to talk with state lawmakers and advocates. The visit was ostensibly a chance for Utahns to meet the new regional director, but healthcare advocates say they also got a pep talk to sign more people up for insurance, and to continue pushing for a Medicaid expansion in the state.
A bill that requires the state to use high-efficiency, low-polluting vehicles in its own fleet got strong support in the Utah State Senate this morning.
Senate Bill 99 originally required the state to use compressed natural gas vehicles for half its fleet by 2018. But Republican Senator Scott Jenkins changed it to allow vehicles that use low-sulfur Tier 3 gasoline. Jenkins says the people who run the state motor pool say it would accomplish the same goal for a lot less money.
Nine 4th graders from Angie Blomquist's class at Monroe Elementary in Sevier County traveled to the Capitol to testify on behalf of their bill to change the state tree to the quaking aspen. They posed with State Forester Brian Cottam, who also spoke in favor of the bill.
A group of concerned school kids made their way to the Utah State Capitol Tuesday to ask lawmakers to change one of the state’s symbols.
Fourth-grade lobbyists say Utah needs a new state tree. Members of Mrs. Blomquist’s class from Monroe Elementary in Sevier County pressed their case at the Capitol. Nine of the students told senators why the Colorado blue spruce should make way for the quaking aspen.
“The quaking aspen is self-pruning,” said Neomi Avery, “They take care of themselves just like Utah citizens.”
Proposed legislation could give Utah teachers more days to train and prepare at no additional cost to taxpayers –but it would mean fewer days in the classroom with students. Members of the Senate Education Committee voted unanimously on Tuesday to advance the bill.
Senate Bill 103, sponsored by Republican Senator Aaron Osmond would give local school districts the flexibility to swap regular instruction days for teacher professional development days.
This snapshot of the Climate Center's inversion forecast shows a likelihood of a weeklong inversion -- and the smog building -- beginning in about a week. You can see the page online at: http://climate.usurf.usu.edu/inversion.php
House Majority Leader Brad Dee joins Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams, Salt Lake County Emergency Management Coordinator Jeff Graviet, Draper Mayor Troy Walker, Draper City Councilman Jeff Stenquist and Riverton Mayor Bill Applegarth.
Utah House Majority Leader Brad Dee announced today he is crafting legislation that he hopes will get every jurisdiction in Utah on a single 9-1-1 emergency response system. The Ogden Republican was joined by Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams who’s been trying to do the same thing at the county level.
Riverton Mayor Bill Applegarth says it’s time to change the 9-1-1 system in the Salt Lake Valley.
“I don’t feel safe frankly, totally safe with the dispatch system, the way it’s set up now,” Applegarth says.
The Utah Senate chamber doors were plastered with pieces of blue paper today - all expressing support for a bill that would make it illegal to discriminate against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender citizens. But Senate leaders are still determined to bar the bill from being debated on the floor.
Sen. Stephen Urquhart, R - St. George, is asking the public to let their state senator and representative know that they are in favor of his anti-discrimination bill. SB 100 would protect LGBT people from discrimination in housing and in the workplace. This week leadership in both the House and Senate have mentioned that bills relating to LGBT issues might not be heard because of the state’s pending case over its ban on same-sex marriage.