VICTORY!!! Now let’s say thanks! (HB 11)

HB 11: State Boards and Commissions Amendments removed the requirement for 29 state boards and commissions to have appointees from more than one political party, including the DABC, the Air Quality Board, the Water Quality Board, the Public Service Commission and the Commission on Service and Volunteerism from these changes.

Bipartisanship on state boards is a tenant of democracy and true representation, and removal of the bipartisanship requirement creates a system of one-party rule and absolute power on state boards. HB 11 would have effectively silenced minority party voices in the state, including Democrats, Independent and others. (See this article on HB 11 in the Daily Herald.)

Diverse perspectives are good for good public policy. Bipartisanship on state boards and commissions ensures that multiple concepts and perspectives are properly considered (and either adopted or discarded) in order to help determine what is good and what is bad policy. (See this article from Utah Political Capitol on why they gave HB 11 a red flag as a grab for absolute power).

Arguments in favor of the removal of the bipartisanship requirement (but none of the other many requirements for appointees) came up short, yet HB 11 passed the state legislature. Action Utah members strongly opposed the measure, calling it extremist and antithetical to our mantra of building bridges. We wrote letters to the editor and op-eds, we called legislators, we testified at hearings. We helped stall the bill and get it amended in the house. And now we have helped get it vetoed!

Why did Governor Herbert object to HB 11? In his own words, “Whether or not the perception is accurate, I believe that public confidence in these select boards and commissions may be increased through symbolic partisan makeup.”

CALL TO ACTION

  • Thank Governor Gary Herbert for vetoing the egregious bill HB 11 State Boards and Amendments and for valuing democracy by preserving multiple perspectives on our state boards and commissions.

Call Governor Herbert: (801) 538-1000

Write to Governor Herbert: Fill out an online comment form here

The 29 boards that would have been impacted by HB 11 include:

  • Air Quality Board
  • Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission
  • Board of Business and Economic Development
  • Board of Aging and Adult Services
  • Board of Financial Institutions
  • Board of Oil, Gas, and Mining
  • Board of Parks and Recreation
  • Board of Tourism Development
  • Board of Utah Geological Survey
  • Board of Water Resources
  • Committee of Consumer Services
  • Drinking Water Board
  • Energy Producer States’ Agreement Board
  • Health Advisory Council
  • Health Data Committee
  • Labor Commission Appeals Board
  • Livestock Market Committee
  • Merit Commission
  • Passenger Ropeway Safety Committee
  • Public Utilities Public Service Commission
  • Quality Growth Commission
  • State Money Management Council
  • Utah Commission on Service and Volunteerism
  • Utah Department of Workforce Services Appeals Board
  • Utah Housing Corporation
  • Utah State Scenic Byway Committee
  • Waste Management and Radiation Control Board
  • Water Quality Board

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