Time seems to fly, we’ve already completed week three. The House as a whole, and all the respective committees have been moving bills along smoothly. Our commitment to funding education, keeping Utah’s economy strong, and ensuring proper competitiveness have also been addressed in a number of bills. We continue to strive towards these goals over this Session, and the future.

We are now past the halfway point for the 2012 Session. In these four weeks, we have some significant accomplishments. We have passed bills that still do hold true to our main priorities: fully funding education, ensuring Utah’s competitive business status, and keeping our economy strong. We are continuing our dedication to these and many priorities to keep Utah among the top performing states.

Bills are moving through committees in a timely manner, and are being passionately debated in the House chamber to ensure continued good policy.
Along with moving through policy and ensuring our state’s health, we have also made an attempt to honor people and groups who have influenced our communities in a positive way. Over the past week, we have passed resolutions honoring the Girl Scouts of America, WWII Veterans, the Utah Symphony, and trade relations with Canada.
We were also pleased to hear from Congressman Jason Chaffetz (District 3). He addressed the House about issues facing the nation, including debt reduction, the growth of government, and social services.
This week, our appropriations subcommittees have wrapped up their hearings, and have made prioritizations for their respective budgets. As this is an ongoing process, we will be working on finalizing a state budget over the next few weeks. We have committed to balance the budget without a tax increase.
As always, I encourage and look forward to hearing from you regarding issues you have encountered. Please feel free to contact me at any time.

Highlights for Week 4: February 13 – 17

These are the bills that passed the House this week. (clicking the title of the bill, will take you to the text of the full version)

  • House Bill 105 - Official Voter Register Amendments - This bill amends current statute to ensure voters who are deceased are no longer on the voter registry.
  •  1st Substitute House Bill 206- Curriculum Options for Secondary School Students -  This bill increases flexibility for students to choose whether to attend a traditional high school or a applied technology college.
  • House Bill 233- Political Party Register Amendments - This bill increases the number of general elections a political party can not a have candidate in before being unregistered as a political party.
  • House Bill 213-  School Community Council Member Amendments-  This bill amends the qualifications of a school community council member.
  • House Bill 44- Theft Amendments - This bill allows increased protection for businesses who have been robbed.
  • House Bill 52 - Victim’s Rights- This bill allows the state to collect money from products of criminal activity. Some of this money will be placed to help victims of crimes.
  • 1st Substitute House Bill 74 - Eminent Domain Amendments- This bill allows taking federal property for oil and gas uses.
  •  House Bill 86 - Posting of Trespass-  This bill prohibits those who trespass on private land without permission to engage in wildlife activities.
  •  House Bill 103 - Theft by Deception- This bill expands the definitions of scamming and deceiving others for their property.
  •  2nd Substitute House Bill 231 - Child Welfare Amendments-  This bill makes amendments to child welfare to try and ensure that children are kept with family members, unless there is a risk to those children.
  •  House Joint Resolution 12- Joint Resolution on Property Tax Exemption for Certain Military Personnel- This bill would allow for some members of the military to be exempt from property taxes while they are out of state on duty. This resolution would call for a constitutional amendment.
  •  House Concurrent Resolution 5- Concurrent Resolution Designating February 18, 2012 Congressional Gold Medal Day for Certain Veterans- This resolution honors Veterans of WWII for their service.