Utah Legislature Week 2 Summary!
This second week, the legislature spent much of its time going over the State's budget. Each legislator is on at least one appropriations subcommittee. I am currently the House Chair of the Executive Offices and Criminal Justice Appropriations Subcommittee, This Subcommittee oversees the state budget related to the criminal justice system, general public safety, elected executive offices, emergency management, and other related issues.
For the last week, our committee has carefully scrutinized existing budgets, reviewed previous appropriations and then will determine if the expenditures are achieving the desired outcomes. Of course, we are always looking for any potential savings. This budgeting process will continue throughout the session.
Last week I shared a "Where it all goes" snapshot. Here is a "Where it all comes from" summary:
This week, we also passed a base budget that included a $400 million increase in funding for public education, gave state employees a 3% raise, and set the groundwork for next year’s state budget. Additionally, the House Revenue and Taxation Committee passed HB 85, which would provide our senior population with a social security tax cut. We have several important pieces of legislation to look forward to and many challenges to address in coming weeks.
This Week at the Capitol
- The Capitol and Legislative Session During COVID-19
See here for instructions on how to participate remotely during our committee meetings. https://le.utah.gov/Documents/VirtualMeetingInstructionsV6.pdf
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:
- Utah lawmakers advanced a bill cracking down on no-bid government contracts during an emergency, limiting those agreements to 30 days [Tribune].
- Gov. Spencer Cox says the state's share of the COVID-19 vaccine is being boosted by the Biden administration. Utah will receive 40,000 doses per week instead of the current 33,000 [Tribune].
- A Utah House committee advanced a bill regarding stalking protective orders [Tribune].
- A proposal to close a "loophole" in Utah law that could lead to the early release of juvenile offenders if they commit additional offenses while in custody was approved by a committee on Wednesday [Tribune].
- A bill requiring fathers to pay half of pregnancy costs, even if they're not married to the mother, won approval in a Utah House committee on Wednesday [Tribune].
- Lawmaker again seeks stricter ban on cellphones while driving - [Tribune]
- Utah treatment centers would face limits on use of restraints, drugs, isolation rooms under new bill - SB127 would also dramatically increase reporting and inspection requirements for these controversial centers. [Tribune]
Rep. Hall's LegislationI have several bills this session, here are a few:
- HB67 - Juvenile Sentencing Amendments - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed the House Judiciary Committee 9-0.
Many of you remember when West Valley City Officer Cody Brotherson was killed in the line of duty in 2016. The juveniles were sentenced in the juvenile system to stay in custody until they were 21 years old. However, through some strange circumstances, two of the three juveniles were released from custody early!
Cody is a hero in West Valley, and this bill will prevent this circumstance from ever happening again.
Here's are some photos from the committee hearing:
- HB103 - Retaliation and Obstruction of Justice Amendments. - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. This will be heard in the House Judiciary Committee this week.
- HB173 - Vote Reporting Requirements - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed the House Government Operations Committee 9-0.
It is already required for the County Clerks Office to regularly update the voting results after Election Day. However, it is currently not required for the Clerks Office to disclose how many ballots they have left to count. This bill would require just that - and provide additional transparency to the vote counting process.
Please return your survey!
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for your support. Contact me anytime.
Read all previous email newsletters here: http://bit.ly/YJCYy1
Representative Craig Hall
Legislative email: email@example.com
Personal email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Cell phone: (801) 573-1774