The Wilderness Act turns 50 on Wednesday, and the anniversary has some Utahns thinking about the value of wild places
Congress created the formal system for protecting the nation’s wild places. Since then, it’s designated more than 107 million acres as wilderness. In Utah, 1.1 million acres of federal land has earned wilderness protection so far.
Law enforcement officer from local and federal agencies are meeting in Salt Lake this week to share strategies for preventing crime.
The Violent Crimes Conference is a gathering of more than 200 law enforcement professionals including representatives from the FBI, West Valley police and Unified Police departments. There they will share case studies and best practices. Detective Matt Evans is the conference director. He says one crime in particular is increasing along the Wasatch Front.
The Morgan County Council will look at a change in its master land use plan on Tuesday that could impact the future of the sage grouse in Utah.
At issue is whether to change the designation of about 27-hundred acres between East Canyon Reservoir and Highway 65 from “Natural Resources and Recreation” to “Master Planned Community.” The county’s planning commission has already approved the request from a group representing about fifty property owners in the area.
The Utah Labor Commission and the Mexican Consulate are using Labor Day to raise awareness about the work rights of immigrants. Elena Bensor is a Public Information Officer for the Utah Labor Commission, and she says many people don’t know that undocumented immigrants have labor rights.
“It is illegal for the employer not to pay the wages that they are owed,” Bensor says. “Also, employees have the right to medical assistance when they do suffer a work-related accident, regardless of their status.”
The name of U.S. Senator Harry Reid disappeared from a doorway at Southern Utah University last week, thanks in part to objections from community leaders in Cedar City.
Democratic Senator Harry Reid of Nevada attended Southern Utah University as a young man, and he was pleased when SUU decided to name a campus program in his honor. But no funds have been raised for the Harry Reid Center, so the program was merged with the existing Center for Outdoor Engagement.
The Utah Public Service Commission rejected on Friday a request from Rocky Mountain Power to institute a metering fee of more than four dollars a month on customers who generate their own power trough solar panels. Commission officials ruled that the private power provider did not present enough evidence to prove the proposed fee was just and reasonable. Matt Pacenza is a policy director with Heal Utah, one of several groups opposing the fee. He says Rocky Mountain Power officials didn’t present a convincing case for the fee.
AAA is projecting that 34.7 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more this weekend to celebrate the holiday that marks the end of summer.
Around 2.5 million people in the Mountain West are planning to travel, according to AAA spokeswoman Rolayne Fairclough. And about 2.1 million are going to drive.
Leisure travel has steadily increased each holiday through the summer leading up to the busiest Labor Day travel weekend since the beginning of the recession in 2008. Fairclough says that’s a positive sign about their standard of living.
Republican state Senator Todd Weiler is asking the Attorney General’s office to take a closer look at a development deal involving the Utah Transit Authority, after an audit indicated a possible lack of proper oversight.
Utah’s governor believes the state of Utah should appeal a federal court decision that struck down a key part of the state law banning polygamy.
The decision in Brown v. Herbert was first issued last December, but only became final this week. It struck down the part of Utah’s law dealing with cohabitation. Kody Brown, who appears on the TV show Sister Wives, had challenged the law on the basis of religious freedom.
After the taping of his monthly TV news conference, Governor Gary Herbert told reporters the state ought to appeal that decision.
Some conservative lawmakers are still resisting an expansion of Medicaid in Utah, despite testimony from those who can’t afford health coverage and a new analysis showing the economic benefits of the governor’s Healthy Utah proposal.
Charlotte Lawrence tried to contain her emotion as she sat before the state’s health reform task force, with her children on either side. She explained that she is a single parent, working two full time jobs, and she has been diagnosed with cancer. She says she’s done all she can to provide for herself and her family, but it’s not enough.
Utah Governor Gary Herbert thinks the Utah Transit Authority is running better than it has in past years, even after another critical audit came out this week.
Governor Herbert was asked about the legislative audit at his monthly news conference on KUED. It pointed out conflicts with developers controlled by UTA board members receiving money for transit-oriented building projects and again said that the agency’s top managers are getting salary and benefit packages higher than comparable jobs in Utah.
The Sandy City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to amend city ordinances to allow unrestricted carrying of firearms in public places within city limits. Nicole Martin is the spokeswoman for the city. She says the council and city officials are not trying to make a statement about gun control.
Attempted Murder is the charge Unified Police are recommending for the 24-year-old Kearns woman who dumped her infant child in a neighbor’s trash can to hide her pregnancy. But the charge may change as the circumstances surrounding the incident come to light.
Third District Court Judge Ryan Harris has decided to wait a week before making a decision on how much it will cost Park City Mountain Resort to continue to operate on land the business no longer leases.
The general manager of the Utah Transit Authority is defending the high salaries paid to executives as money well spent. That comes after another critical audit of the agency from the legislative auditor general.
The audit released Tuesday says UTA’s top managers are comparing their compensation to the wrong standard – other public transit agencies from around the country. It says the Utah Department of Transportation and the Salt Lake City Airport Authority might be better benchmarks.
A 24-year-old Kearns woman has been charged with attempted murder after she discarded her infant child in a neighbor’s trash can Tuesday morning. In an effort to avoid cases like these, local elected officials, medical professionals and law enforcement officers came forward Tuesday afternoon to remind expectant mothers of their legal options.
Alica Englert told Unified Police officers she was afraid to tell her parents about her pregnancy so she discarded the baby girl hoping she would die.
Utah public health officials are investigating a cluster of illness associated with the consumption of raw or unpasteurized milk. Officials from the Utah Department of Health say 45 cases of Campylobacter infection have been reported in Northern Utah, Idaho, and California. All cases are linked to the consumption of raw milk or cream purchased at Ropelato Dairy in Weber County.
The Republican primary election for a seat on the Millard County Commission could be decided by the Utah Supreme Court. State election officials are asking for a quick ruling in the case.
Election night returns on June 24th showed Jim Dyer defeating incumbent County Commissioner Jim Withers by one vote. But the official canvass a few weeks later gave Withers the victory by five votes. Dyer then sued Withers in 4th District Court to challenge the results of the election. But Mark Thomas, who oversees elections in the lieutenant governor’s office, says that was a mistake.
Salt Lake County sheriff’s office has settled a lawsuit with the American Civil Liberties Union over its immigration detention policies.
The ACLU of Utah filed the lawsuit in 2011, accusing Salt Lake County jail officials of holding 22-year-old Enrique Uroza unlawfully for 46 days after he posted bail. As part of the settlement, the county has agreed to end its procedure of delaying releases when authorities suspect an inmate is in the country illegally.
A new poll sponsored by Utahpolicy.com shows most Utahns do not understand where the Common Core comes from or what it does. Meanwhile, proponents continue to defend the education standards against what they say is false information and unfounded fears about federal intrusion.
The Salt Lake County Health Department has confirmed Utah’s first human case of West Nile Virus this year. Health officials are urging people to protect themselves against the mosquito-borne virus. Dr. Dagmar Vitek is a health director with the Salt Lake County Health Department. She says the department does regular testing for the presence of the virus in mosquitoes.
The Greek Orthodox church has sanctioned a new mission parish in Salt Lake City.
Back in April, about two dozen members of Salt Lake City’s Greek Orthodox parish decided to study options to resolve ongoing issues within the congregations. The parish includes both Holy Trinity Cathedral in downtown Salt Lake and Prophet Elias church in Holladay.
The family of a Mormon missionary who died in Taiwan is waiting to hear from the Taiwanese government before making funeral arrangements.
Elder Connor Thredgold, who was 19, comes from Springville, Utah. He and his companion, 24-year-old Elder Yu Peng Xiong, were found dead in their apartment in New Taipei City on Saturday. Police think carbon monoxide from a faulty water heater is to blame.
Tom McHoes, a family friend, says many people have stepped forward to comfort Elder Thredgold’s parents in Springville, Utah.