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2020 Utah Legislature - Week 5 Summary!

Extremely busy week! Thanks to everyone for reaching out over the last few weeks, letting me know how you feel about the issues.  Less than two weeks left!

 
Special Events at the Capitol
 
  • Students from the Utah School for the Deaf & Blind

Every year students from the Utah School for the Deaf & Blind come to visit the Capitol. This was actually a few weeks ago (I forgot that I didn’t post earlier). Thanks so much for visiting. These are truly amazing kids.




  • USU President Noelle Cockett

President Noelle Cockett, President of Utah State University. Thanks for visiting us at the Capitol! (and for bringing some Aggie Ice Cream).  🙂



  • Visits from Constituents
Thanks to all those who come to the Capitol! Here are some great constituents. Thanks for coming!




 
  • Other Gatherings at the Capitol!

It is so great to have groups come to the Capitol to express their views! Whatever you think is important, come tell us! Here is a photo of a large group of citizens who came to let us know how they feel.



  • Rep. Hall Requests $33,281,000 For Teacher Retention Bonus
Last week I requested $33,281,000 from the Public Education Appropriations Cmte. for a $1,000 teacher retention bonus for each of Utah's 33,281 educators. With the education fund surplus (along with our challenge of retaining teachers), I can't think of a better use of the surplus. See story here.


 

2020 Legislation

This last week we continued the process of voting on non-budget bills.  Of course, you can always watch the news reports.  But the best way to track any legislation is at the Legislature's website at http://le.utah.gov.  Here are a few of the more interesting bills that were discussed this last week:
  • A bill advanced to ban suspending the driver licenses of people who fail to pay minor traffic fines or show up in court. The bill’s sponsor said the practice hurts low income people who sometimes lose their jobs when they can’t drive to them. [Trib]
  • The Senate gave initial approval to a bill that would allow more Utahns to receive family planning services and birth control under Medicaid. [DNews]
  • On Monday, Utah lawmakers introduced a bill that aims to expand electric vehicle infrastructure through a state partnership with Rocky Mountain Power. [DNews]
  • A bill to reduce the penalties for polygamy among consenting adults passed the Utah House Wednesday and is one step closer to becoming law. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13]
  • The Utah House approved creation of Utahraptor State Park near Arches National Park to help develop and preserve a dinosaur quarry and surrounding area. [Trib] [DNews]
  • A bill to allow Utah parents to legally abandon their newborn children at a hospital up to 30 days after the child’s birth received unanimous votes in the Legislature. [Trib]

Rep. Hall's Legislation

I have several bills this session, here are a few:
  • HB84 - Traffic Code Amendments - PASSED! - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed the House Floor 62-3.  Passed the Senate 26-0. 
As you all know, when a bus stops and its lights are flashing and the stop arm is out, other vehicles are supposed to stop. However, compliance with this law is not as high as it should be. Last year, a study was done and there were over 900 violations in a single day! This bill will increase the minimum fine for violations, and require community service. The Granite School District asked me to sponsor this bill after experiencing way too many close calls. 

See story here




This bill would eliminate the box on the ballot that would allow a voter to vote for all candidates of a single party with one single notation.

Representative Arent (democrat) and I (republican) are sponsoring a bill together. 43 States have already prohibited this practice. Over 70% of those who have responded to my constituent survey express support for eliminating straight-ticket voting. A voter could still vote for all candidates of their favorite political party, but they would need to go through each race on the ballot. 




  • HB86 - Adult Autism Treatment Program. - PASSED! - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. The bill passed the House floor 49-26. Passed the Senate 25-0.  
Within the State of Utah we have multiple treatment options for children with autism. Of course, it's a reality that each of these kids grow up. However, the treatment options for individuals over 21 are extremely scarce. This bill will set up a structure where the State can begin providing better resources. 

This bill is a follow-up from a 2019 bill. Continues to clarify that personal use of government resources and property is NOT allowed.


It is already a felony to threaten a judge or member of the board of pardons in relation to a criminal case. There have been a few instances that make it clear that such penalty should also apply to prosecutors in order to make it clear that such threats and intimidation to prosecutors is absolutely not acceptable.


This bill would cap copays for insulin at $30 per month unless the insurer places the diabetes treatment in its lowest-cost drug tier and waives the deductible. Some families are forced to pay hundreds of dollars a month for insulin. This is a great bill that would greatly increase access.  Here is a story on the bill.





Unlike most states, Utah does not have a minimum age at which young children can be prosecuted and incarcerated. 

This bill would apply to children 11 and under. It would not apply to the most serious crimes (murder, aggravated sexual assault, etc.). And if the child fails the alternative rehabilitation path, prosecution is still an option.  Here is a great story on the bill.





Town Hall Meetings!


We have now had three town hall meetings (Feb. 1, 8, 20).  Thanks to those who attended!. 




Please return your survey!

 
I have mailed a survey to constituents within District 33.  The answers you provide to these survey questions are invaluable.  Please, please, please fill it out and return! (Below is a photo of some of the paper surveys that have been returned!). I am very interested in your perspectives. Your comments and thoughts are greatly appreciated.  You can also take the survey online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RepHall2020 if you prefer that method.  Thank you so much!

 
 
  • Visits to the Capitol!
One of our State's treasures is the State Capitol building.  And visiting during the legislative session is the best time of year to visit.  Lots of action happening every day.  I would love to give your family / school group / church group / etc. a behind-the-scenes tour of the State Capitol.  Give me a call/email and we'll make it happen. Thanks for visiting!


Ways to Contact Representative Hall

I make a concerted effort to reach out to all of my constituents.  For that reason, I use as many different forms of communication as possible.  Most of you have received mail from me.  I also have frequent town hall meetings (more on that above).  You can follow me online at www.votecraighall.com.  For even more frequent updates, you can follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/votecraighall and/or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/hcraighall.  You are also welcome to call my cell phone anytime.  (801) 573-1774.  I will be in many meetings throughout the legislative session, so if I don't answer right away, feel free to leave me a message and I'll try to call back as soon as possible.  I will also be sending out regular updates via email.  Probably the quickest way to get ahold of me is by email.  My legislative email address is chall@le.utah.gov.

Thanks for your support. Contact me anytime.

Read all previous email newsletters here: http://bit.ly/YJCYy1

Representative Craig Hall

Legislative email: chall@le.utah.gov
Personal email: hcraighall@yahoo.com
Website: www.votecraighall.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/votecraighall
Twitter: www.twitter.com/hcraighall
Cell phone: (801) 573-1774Add your expanded detail here.

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