Day 1 on the Hill!
The 2018 State Legislative Session begins today, and Action Utah is ready to offer you insights and advocacy opportunities for 45 days until March 8th. We welcome community members to join us on the Hill any time, to participate in the session via the legislative website (le.utah.gov) from work or home, and to take action whenever you can on the issues that matter to you.
We are tracking dozens of bills in Public Health, Families & Communities, Environmental Stewardship and Government, and will continue adding these bills to our Bill Tracker as they are made public. Please bookmark this page and check back for updates throughout the session to use it as a resource for your advocacy.
Highlighted bill: Zero Emission Vehicle Program
True story: one day a Sandy resident and her husband went shopping for an electric vehicle, only to discover that there are very few models available for sale in Utah at all, and those sold here are much more expensive than in other states. She did some research and learned about the Zero Emission Vehicle Program (ZEV), a 30-year old program currently in 9 other states that requires automakers to send a certain number of hybrid and electric vehicles to states, leading to greater availability and discounted rates for consumers. The asked her legislator, Rep. Eliason (R-Sandy), to run a bill and asked Action Utah to help her get it done.
Fast forward 9 months, and the Zero Emission Vehicle Program bill is in process for the 2018 session! We are delighted to support this bill and all its benefits:
- For consumers: more availability and choices of cleaner, more cost-efficient vehicles at lower prices
- For dealers: greater clean vehicle inventory for individual consumers and corporate and agency fleets
- For Rocky Mountain Power: more customers for their EV charging stations and new off-peak customers practicing night time charging at home
- For air pollution: cleaner air from 99% less NOx, 90% less VOCs and 51-53% fewer overall lifecycle emissions per ZEV
Thank you, Rep. Eliason for running this great bill!
2018 State Legislative Session BEGINS – Monday, January 22 (opening ceremonies in the House and Senate at 10:00am).
Action Utah on KRCL’s RadioActive Mon, January 22. Tune in to 90.9 FM from 6:00-7:00p.Action Utah Executive Director, Andrea Himoff, will join host Lara Jones to discuss the bills, advocacy and the 2018 state legislative session.
AU’s Annual Legislative Preview – Wed, January 24th, 7:00-8:30p, Marmalade Branch Library in Salt Lake. An evening with legislators learning about some of the great bills coming up during the State Legislative Session starting January 22 that need community support. Action Utah will also cover community lobbying tips and skills to help you make an impact on policy decisions at the state level. Featuring: Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck, Rep. Becky Edwards, Rep. Brian King, Rep. Steve Handy, and Rep. Tim Quinn.
Weekly Lobby Day #1 – Tues, January 30th, 12:30p in the Seagull Room of the Senate (East) Building, Capitol Hill. Gather with other Action Utah members and leaders to learn about the State Legislature, the Legislative Session and advocacy at the Capitol. No experience necessary!
1. Check out resources and advocacy opportunities around Utah’s youth suicide problem. Find out what the state is doing, what good bills are coming up and what you can do to impact this issue.
2. Support education in these 3 ways. Want to influence policy decisions around education? Follow these three steps.
3. Attend a public forum on land use and Bears Ears with Rep. John Curtis TOMORROW in Orem – On Tuesday, January 23rd, 7:00p, Utah Valley Earth Forum (UVEF) is hosting “Bears Ears and Public Land Use in Utah,” a sit-down dialogue and public forum to discuss public land use in Utah and the repeal of Bears Ears National Monument. The event will take place at the Orem City Library. The controversy over Bears Ears has only heightened since Rep. Curtis introduced his bill HR 4532. The first step in overcoming the polarization around Bears Ears is coming together and listening to each other. Over the weekend Rep. Curtis wrote about his desire to bring people together to solve this complex problem. Hear Rep. Curtis and an invited tribal leader come together to discuss the future of Bears Ears. Tickets are free, but available first-come-first-serve, one ticket per email address only. Reserve yours today by clicking here.
4. Brush up on the importance of civility in politics. The start of the legislative session is a good time to remember how critical civil discourse is to meaningful advocacy and building relationships with elected officials that are lasting and influential.
1. Read up on government shutdown. This morning Congress voted to reopen the government and fund the government until Feb 8 while they continue to negotiate on immigration and spending matters. Part of the deal included reauthorization of CHIP after 114 days without a budget. Why was there are government shutdown? How often do shutdowns occur? Who does a shutdown impact and how? Find out by reading this helpful Politifact article.
2. Weigh in on DACA. Congress has long been debating action on DACA and using it as a bargaining chip for other negotiations. With both sides agreeing that action is needed to create fair immigration policy for DACA recipients, and the fate of hundreds of thousands of Dreamers hanging in the balance, a bipartisan agreement is long overdue.
- Ask your MoCs to push for immediate bipartisan solutions for DACA.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (202) 224-5251 (DC) // (801) 524-4380 (SLC) // (801) 375-7881 (Provo) // (435) 634-1795 (St. George) // (801) 625-5672 (Ogden) // (435) 586-8435 (Cedar City)
Sen. Mike Lee 202-224-5444 (DC) // 801-524-5933 (SLC) // 435-628-5514 (St. George) // 801-392-9633 (Ogden)
2. Support the bipartisan Secure Elections Act. Ask our senators to support a great bipartisan bill to address state cybersecurity problems.
Every day at Capitol Hill we witness advocacy gone well and advocacy gone bad. Please remember that legislators are just people like you and me. They appreciate well-informed and friendly constituents, but don’t love getting yelled at or sent nasty communications. In fact, angry letters can inspire a legislator to do exactly the thing you don’t want them to do — like support a bad bill or kill a good one. Our best advice to you to help your advocacy efforts succeed during the session is to be kind. And let your kindness pay off.
Andrea & Katie
Co-Founders, Action Utah