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Julia Ritchey / KUER

The state is facing lawsuits from backers of two citizen-led ballot measures that failed to qualify for the November election, litigation that could prompt lawmakers to make changes to how referendums are conducted.  

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Idaho officially joined Utah today as the third state to try to expand Medicaid by ballot initiative.

Austen Diamond / KUER

The Utah Legislature will meet in a special session Wednesday to address a laundry list of items, including a handful of tax bills — one of which would require payment of sales tax on most online purchases.

Incumbent Rep. Mia Love, R-Saratoga Springs, and Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams, her Democratic challenger, are bringing in record cash as they head into an increasingly competitive election this November.

Austen Diamond / KUER

Parts of the Mountain West region have joined a number of state legislatures introducing tax credits to help low-income Americans. Utah could be the latest.

A photo of firefighters taking a water break at the Dollar Ridge Fire east of Strawberry Reservoir in Utah.
Courtesy/Dollar Ridge Fire Team

Expenses are piling up for fighting the recent wildfires in Utah.

 

Governor Herbert speaks at a podium at press conference.
Nicole Nixon / KUER

Gov. Gary Herbert has called the Utah Legislature into a special session this week to make changes to a controversial inland port planned for Salt Lake City’s northwest quadrant.

Renee Bright / KUER


Kristy Johnson says her father molested and raped her — along with her two sisters — throughout their teen and childhood years.

Students sit at a panel in front a large crowd.
Lee Hale / KUER

Speaking to a noisy, standing-room only crowd in Sandy on Saturday, student activists from Utah and Florida discussed gun control and school safety as part of the national March For Our Lives tour.

The hands of an unidentified inmate rest outside the bars of a holding cell.
istock

An inmate at the Utah County Jail is racking up almost $1 million dollars in medical bills, more than half the jail’s annual medical budget. Utah County Commissioners say they have enough to cover the outstanding bills but  will need a long-term solution if the county is going to continue to care for the inmate.

Scofied reservoir on a cloudy day.
Federal Highway Administration via A. E. Crane

The Utah Division of Water Quality has issued a health advisory at Scofield Reservoir west of Price due to growing algal blooms.

Aerial map showing the stretch of highway near carbonville utah
Utah DEQ

Updated 4:40 p.m. MST 7/13/18

Traffic was detoured Friday on Route 6 for most of the day after a double tanker crashed and spilled thousands of gallons of crude oil onto the roadway and into the Price River in Carbon County.

View of great salt lake from foothills.
iStock / TerryJ

Salt Lake City leaders — minus Mayor Jackie Biskupski — met Thursday afternoon with Gov. Gary Herbert and legislative leaders in continuing negotiations over a planned land-based shipping hub in the northwest corner of the city.

Columns at the Utah State Capitol Building
KUER

Utah lawmakers are pushing to capture new revenue after the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling last month allowing states to collect sales taxes from online retailers.

An armored vehicle with pro-gun marchers alongside.
Julia Ritchey / KUER

From behind the wheel of a black Bearcat armored truck, speaking through a PA system, Bryan Melchior had a message for the people of St. Petersburg, Fla.: "Arm yourself!"

Kelsie Moore / KUER

Updated 5:12 p.m. MST, 7/12/18

 

Activists from a high school in Parkland, Florida have found a new venue to hold an event this Saturday after their original plans fell through. As part of a March For Our Lives national tour, a town hall discussing school safety will take place at the Mountain America Expo Center in Sandy.

Jen Dailey-Provost headshot image.
Facebook / Jen Dailey-Provost

Jen Dailey-Provost faced a tough four-way Democratic primary in the state Legislature’s 24th House District, beating her closest opponent by only 55 votes after results were finalized Tuesday.

Library of Congress, LC-F8- 42545


As President Donald Trump threatens another round of tariffs on Chinese goods, Utah’s business and elected leaders are sounding the alarm over the growing trade war and its effect on parts of the state. The tariffs are even invoking comparisons to an earlier era when a Utah Senator named Reed Smoot became synonymous with the negative consequences of protectionism.

Facebook

Final results from last month’s primary showed leading legislative candidates held on to victory.

Kirk Siegler/NPR

A Utahn who joined a 2016 standoff at a wildlife refuge in southeastern Oregon is relieved by President Trump’s decision to pardon two ranchers whose case sparked anti-government protests.

Senator Mike Lee speaks into a microphone in front of american flag and balloons.
Associated Press

Utah's senators embraced President Trump's choice of Brett Kavanaugh to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Jenny Wilson speaks in studio behind a microphone.
Renee Bright / KUER

Democrat Jenny Wilson faces perhaps the highest hurdle of anyone running for office in Utah this year: she wants to defeat Republican Mitt Romney and flip Utah’s open Senate seat.

Vicky Chavez sits in a rocking chair holding her infant.
Kelsie Moore / KUER

A Honduran mother who sought sanctuary in a Utah church has been denied her most recent appeal for asylum. Vicky Chavez has been living at the First Unitarian Church of Salt Lake City since January with her two small children.

Aerial view of St. George, Utahl.
iStock.com/alpenarts


Brooks Kelly stopped at a display of smart sprinkler-system controllers.

"This 6-station timer — it's got a rebate," said Kelly, who works the plumbing aisle at the St. George Home Depot. "You buy it [and the] Washington County water district gives a $99 credit to your water bill. So, this is free."

File photo / KUER

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Scott Pruitt may have resigned but the controversies continue. A recently disclosed collection of emails between the EPA, an oil and gas lobbyist and at least one elected official in Utah are causing concern.

Sen. Mike Lee and reporters at a capitol press room.
Pool photo

President Trump has reportedly narrowed his list of Supreme Court nominees to three conservative judges, but supporters of Sen. Mike Lee are not yet writing off the Utah Republican as a long-shot candidate.

A screen shot from the EPA's AirNow web page showing elevated levels of pollution in much of Utah.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency/AirNow

Smoke from the Dollar Ridge wildfire in eastern Utah spread throughout northern and central Utah on Friday and raised particulate pollution.

 

Wildfire near the Strawberry Reservoir has so far burned 74 square miles.  A change in weather patterns carried the smoke to places as far away as Brigham City and Tooele. Air-quality monitors measured elevated pollution throughout northern and central areas of the state.

Smoke plumes from wildfires in front of clouds.
With permission, Spring Creek Fire Facebook

So far around 60 wildfires are burning on 700,000 acres of land nationwide. Here’s a look at the 2018 fire season in our region and the forecast for the summer.

Utah Fire Info

This post was updated at 6:45 a.m. 7/10/18

 

Fifty-five large wildfires are burning nationwide, and they've scorched more than 1,766 square miles of forest and range in a dozen states, according to the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise.

 

 

Lee Hale / KUER

Utah’s House members spend less than the average congressperson on staffing and day-to-day operations, according to data obtained by ProPublica.

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