Governor Gary Herbert

Whittney Evans

Utah Governor Gary Herbert presented his 2016 budget proposal today. He wants to significantly increase education funding and he says the state has the ability to pay for it thanks to a strong economy.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Governor Gary Herbert officially unveiled his plan Thursday to close the coverage gap and help low income Utahns get health insurance under the federal Affordable Care Act.

The Utah Insurance Department has informed an online Human Resources service company, called Zenefits, that the manner in which it offers its products violates state law. The decision has the small business community in an uproar and has even caused Governor Gary Herbert to respond.

  The group working to stop Governor Gary Herbert’s Healthy Utah plan has been fighting similar battles in other states. The Foundation for Government Accountability is hoping to defeat the plan when it goes to the Utah legislature.

KUED

  Utah’s governor says a conservative group working against his alternative to expanding Medicaid isn’t telling the truth.  The issue came up at the governor's monthly news conference this morning.

Dan Bammes

  Utah Governor Gary Herbert is asking Utah’s oil refineries to produce cleaner gasoline.  But it may be years before they’re actually ready to do that. 

KUED

  Utah Governor Gary Herbert says he’s finally worked out a deal with the Obama administration on the details of his Healthy Utah plan, but he still has to get it through the Utah legislature. 

Brian Grimmett

Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes has completed an analysis of Utah’s involvement in what is known as the common core standards.

Governor Gary Herbert requested the report in order to get to the bottom of the debate over the common core.

“I want the truth and I can handle the truth," he says. "As I know the people of Utah can do so also and want and desire the truth.”

Ray Bloxham, SUWA

  Utah Governor Gary Herbert says he has a promise from the Obama administration – there won’t be a new national monument appearing suddenly on the map of Southern Utah.

Governor Herbert was in Washington DC last week and spoke with U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell.  He told reporters at his monthly news conference on KUED that Jewell promised there would be no designation of a Greater Canyonlands National Monument without some advance notice.

Brian Grimmett

Governor Gary Herbert says he is very close to an agreement with the federal government on his proposal to provide health insurance for those under the poverty line.

Coming out of his meeting with US Secretary of Health and Human Services Sylvia Burwell in Washington, Governor Herbert says he’s gotten about 95 percent of what he’s asked for, and he’s optimistic that a final agreement should be reached shortly.

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.

  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.

Brian Grimmett

Governor Gary Herbert says his challenge to create 100,000 jobs in 1,000 days was a huge success.

In his 2012 state of the state address Governor Gary Herbert challenged the private sector to create 100,000 jobs in 1,000 days. The unemployment rate at the time was 5.8%.  Now at the end of the challenge, Herbert says they were actually able to create 112, 200 jobs.

Dan Bammes

  The Utah Symphony’s tour of Utah’s five national parks begins tonight with a chamber concert in Teasdale, just outside Capitol Reef National Park.  The symphony rehearsed with a special guest conductor this afternoon.

Governor Gary Herbert took the podium for the Utah Symphony’s final rehearsal before leaving for what’s called the Mighty Five tour – performances at each of Utah’s national parks.  The governor got some coaching from symphony music director Thierry Fischer, but he says it wasn’t too tough.

Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance

  Five members of Utah’s Congressional delegation are hoping to persuade President Obama not to create a huge new national monument in southern Utah, while other members of Congress are urging him to act.

The U.S. Supreme Court has granted Utah a stay of a lower court’s ruling that would have required the state to recognize same-sex marriages performed during a period when they were legal.

With the Supreme Court’s stay, the more than one thousand same-sex couples who got married in December and January will continue waiting to see if they’ll be able to receive the same benefits as other married couples.

Brian Grimmett

Members of the National Governors Association have selected Governor Gary Herbert to be the group's vice chair for the next year.  The new role could help Herbert push his agenda even further.

Utah Institutional Trust Lands Administration

  Utah’s governor and the state director of the Bureau of Land Management have formalized a land exchange involving 60-thousand acres in southern and eastern Utah.

The land exchange has been in the works since 2009, when then-Senator Bob Bennett and Congressman Jim Matheson worked to pass a bill authorizing the deal.  But it’s taken years to finalize the details. 

Tord Sollie, Flickr

As Governor Herbert declares May Utah Golf Month a new report also shows the industry has a larger than expected impact on the state’s economy.

Jaime Jackson / Wikimedia Commons

  Governor Gary Herbert says the state might be able to do a better job of managing wild horses on Utah’s public rangeland than federal authorities do.  And both wild horse advocates and local officials in southern Utah say the Bureau of Land Management needs to be doing more.

There are differing estimates of the number of mustangs living on public rangeland in southwestern Utah.  Local officials say there might be as many as 2000 in an area that can only sustain only about half that.

Jennilyn Merten

  The standoff between a Nevada rancher and the federal government has put public lands issues in the national spotlight.  But Utah’s governor says it’s not the kind of attention that helps to solve problems. 

Federal officers stopped their roundup of Clive Bundy’s cattle earlier this month to prevent a violent confrontation with Bundy’s armed supporters.

Brian Grimmett

Governor Gary Herbert says Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and top officials at the White House were very receptive to his plan to help cover uninsured Utahns.

After his visit to Washington D.C. earlier in the week Governor Herbert says he’s confident that Secretary Sebelius will approve his Healthy Utah plan.

“As she said to me, I see nothing in your proposal, Governor, that would be a deal breaker.”

Brian Grimmett

Governor Gary Herbert is in Washington D.C. Monday meeting with outgoing Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius about his plan to help low income Utahns get health insurance.

Brian Grimmett

On final day to approve bills passed by the Utah Legislature, Governor Gary Herbert vetoed HB414, which would have given the legislature the final say on challenges to legislative subpoenas.

Brian Grimmett

  Governor Gary Herbert says he doesn’t think Utah’s long delay in coming up with an alternative to expanding Medicaid has hurt the prospect of a successful program.

The legislative session ended without action by lawmakers on any proposal for reaching those who aren’t covered by either Medicaid  or the Affordable Care Act.  Governor Herbert has proposed a program funded by block grants from the federal government to buy private health insurance for those people.  He says the Obama administration has indicated it will be flexible in working out a solution.

Dan Bammes

  Utah’s unemployment rate dropped below four percent in February for the first time since 2008.

Governor Gary Herbert was beaming as he went before the TV cameras this morning to say Utah’s unemployment rate stands at 3.9 percent, compared to a national rate of 6.7 percent.  The statewide rate of job growth is at 2.8 percent.

Dan Bammes

  The Interior Department issues a report every year on the economic benefit of national parks.  This year, that was complicated by the government shutdown that closed the parks for 16 days in October.

The report from the National Park Service estimates parks and gateway communities lost more than 400-million dollars in visitor spending during the 16-day government shutdown.

Brian Grimmett

Governor Gary Herbert announced his long-awaited plan Thursday concerning Medicaid and health coverage for the poorest Utahns. He’s calling it Healthy Utah.

The Supreme Court decided in 2012 to let states choose whether to expand Medicaid as it was intended under the Affordable Care Act. Now, more than a year and a half later, after reviewing proposals from the state house, the senate, and panels of stakeholders, Governor Herbert finally revealed his plan.

Utah Education Network

  Utah’s governor says the legislature should be cautious about interfering with a citizen initiative on how candidates for public office are nominated.  

Utah Clean Cities

  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.

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