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Week 4 Summary

2015 Utah Legislative Session

Week 4 Summary

The 2015 General Session of the Utah State Legislature began on Monday, January 26.  Thank you so much for all of your support.  It is truly an honor to represent the great residents of District 33.  Just a few highlights from Week 4:

Special Events at the Capitol
  • Visit from Robert Frost Elementary
I love having school groups visit the Capitol.  Thanks to teachers and staff at Roberts Frost Elementary for making this visit happen!

  • Visit from Teachers and Parents
This last week a large group of teachers and parents of students stopped by the Capitol to let their voices be heard.  I was lucky enough to be invited to speak to the teachers and have lunch with the PTA.  Thanks for visiting the Capitol!
  • Visit from WWII Veterans
The Legislature took a few moments Wednesday to recognize the Utah Honor Flight, a program that raises money to send veterans to Washington to see the World War II and Korean War memorials for the first time. Thank you so much to these heroes!



2015 Legislation

This last week we continued the process of voting on non-budget bills.  Of course, you can always watch the new 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 in the Senate that would toughen the regulations surrounding law enforcement officers' ability to perform "no-knock" warrants. [Trib] [DNews]
  • A bill was filed that would tear down the "Zion Curtain" in Utah's restaurants that serve alcohol. See report here.
  • Parents and educators asked lawmakers Tuesday for support of a resolution that would look at reducing the number of tests students are required to take. [DNews]
  • The House passed a bill that would ban people under 19 from entering smoke shops unless they were accompanied by a parent or guardian. [Trib] [DNews]
  • Lawmakers introduced a plan to reform the state's criminal justice system that would include smaller penalties for drug offenses, rewards while on probation, and putting the mentally ill and drug addicted into treatment programs rather than jail cells. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13] [ABC4] [KUER]
  • The Senate passed a bill that would require candidates for the state school board and the four largest school districts to be chosen through partisan elections. [Trib]
  • The House passed a bill that would give terminally ill patients the "Right To Try" experimental medication that hasn't been approved by regulators yet. [Trib] [DNews]

Rep. Hall's Legislation

I have several bills this session, here are a few: This bill requires local school boards to have their school board meetings within their geographical districts.  

I became aware over this last summer that a school board had an official meeting at Snowbird Ski Resort, miles away from their constituents.  I believe school board meetings should be within the geographical boundaries of the district so constituents can easily participate. Two news reports - Here and here.
    • HB20 - Jury Duty Amendments - PASSED! - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed 70-0 in the House and 28-0 in the Senate.
    This is a follow-up from a bill that I passed in 2013.  The goal of this bill is to make make sure that courts spread out jury service to as many people as possible.  This will help prevent the situation where some get called for jury service every six months, while others go decades without getting called for jury duty.  Passed 70-0 in the House and passed 28-0 in the Senate. Waiting for the Governor to sign. HB154 exempts a nursing mother from jury duty.  There are some judges that already dismiss nursing mothers from jury duty.  But there are others that do not.  This bill would make it mandatory.  Here's a great story regarding the bill. As it stands now, each political candidate is required to file a financial disclosure statement on August 31. The next report is not due until a week before election day.  The problem is that many voters receive their vote-by-mail ballot in early October.  This bill changes the filing date from August 31 to September 30.  That way, when vote-by-mail voters are voting, they have the most recent information from candidates, at the time when they are actually voting.  This is a good bill which increases transparency by political candidates.

    Passed 66-4 in the House and is on its way to the Senate. HB93 protects communities from unfair school district splits. It basically prohibits cities from cherry-picking its best tax base and creating its own school district, leaving their less affluent neighbors high and dry.  This bill will protect all families, students and taxpayers within District 33. 

    Here is a good news report regarding this bill: "In short, Hall is trying to take away the profit motive for splitting up a district and trying to avoid the creation of rich districts at the expense of poorer areas. . . . The plan will no doubt generate controversy, insomuch as any discussion of school district splits generate such discussions. But Hall should receive credit for approaching the issue from a different perspective that cuts to the core of education and education funding in the state."

    Town Hall Meetings!



    We had our second Town Hall meeting on Wednesday, February 18.  Thanks to those who attended and asked great questions.  I have one more Town Hall meeting scheduled during the legislative session.  This last Town Hall meeting will be at West Valley Library (2800 West 3650 South).
    • Saturday, February 28, 2014, 12:30 - 1:30 p.m.  
    Hope to see you there!

    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! I am very interested in your perspectives. Your comments and thoughts are greatly appreciated.  

    If you didn't receive a copy of the survey, or have lost yours, you can take the survey online at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/RepresentativeHall

    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.



    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 below).  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 atwww.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) 573-1774

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