Speaker Lockhart died on this day in 2015; Congrats to Sen.-elect Karen Kwan!: China sees their first population decline in 60 years
View in browser

The Utah Policy newsletter is your one-stop source for political and policy-minded news. We scour the news so you don't have to! Send news tips or feedback to Holly Richardson at editor@utahpolicy.com.


Situational Analysis | January 17, 2023

It's Tuesday and the first day of the 2023 legislative session! 

It's also Rid the World of Fad Diets and Gimmicks Day.

Finally, a big congrats to Sen.-elect Karen Kwan! A special election will be held for her House seat at a yet-to-be-announced date.

Be in the Know

  • As the session begins today, there are 227 public bills and resolutions from the House and 111 from the Senate. That number will grow considerably before the session is over. As a point of interest, Senator Harper has filed the most bill requests on the Senate side with 35, followed by Senator Weiler with 30 and Senator McCay with 28. In the House, Representative Ivory has filed 35 bill requests, followed by Rep. Teuscher with 28 and Rep. Snider with 26. Follow along at le.utah.gov

Rapid Roundup


2022 Legislative Session

45 days to go!


  • How to talk to the Utah State Legislature about... stuff (Fox13)
  • With Roe overturned, Utah lawmakers consider changes to abortion law (KSL)
  • Scott Sandall: Guiding principles for water conservation in Utah. We have to think about everyone when it comes to water. (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • ‘It needs to be stopped’: Local legislators denounce environmental, social and governance policy (St. George News)
  • Utah lawmakers preparing for the start of the 2023 legislative session (KSL TV)
  • Scientists sounded the alarm about Great Salt Lake. Lawmakers say they’re listening. (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • State lawmaker Rep. Corey Maloy acts in wake of investigation that uncovered gaping hole in Utah law (KUTV)
  • Bill aims to decriminalize spread, use of fentanyl testing strips (KUTV)


10:00 am: Senate Chamber, House Chamber

2:15 pm - 2:45 pm: State of the Judiciary

2:45 pm - 5:00 pm: House floor

2:50 pm - 5:00 pm: Senate floor


8:00 am: Business, Economic Development and Labor Appropriations; Infrastructure and General Government Appropriations; Public Education; Social Services Appropriations

11:00 am - 11:50: Senate Floor Time

11:00 am - 12:00 pm: House Floor Time

1:30 pm - 2:00 pm: Senate Floor Time

1:30 - 2:00 pm: House Floor Time

2:00 - 5:00 pm: House committee meetings - Judiciary, Government Operations, Political Subdivisions, Revenue and Taxation

2:00 - 5:00 pm: Senate committee meetings - Business and Labor, Education, Health and Human Services

Utah Headlines


  • Editorial Board: We can’t let Martin Luther King become a caricature. Martin Luther King, Jr. was not a passive or moderate leader. He took positive action that made people uncomfortable, that put him in jail and brought violence against his followers. And he took his strength from religion (Deseret News)
  • Iron County's Judge Margaret Miller retires after 49 years (KSL)
  • 'It's heartbreaking': Employee killed, 2 others injured after minivan crashes into Tooele business (KSL)
  • Utah Jazz and Human Rights Commission bring students together to focus on MLK (KSL TV)
  • Utah civil rights activist calls for involvement on MLK Jr. Day: 'Everbody can serve' (Standard-Examiner)
  • Utah celebrates Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy (KSL Newsradio)
  • NAACP honors Salt Lake’s Liberty Bike Squad with First Responder Award (ABC4)
  • On the heels of MLK Day, Utah events highlight National Day of Racial Healing (St. George News)
  • Utah’s leaders share thoughts on the life of late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King (KSL Newsradio)
  • “We must stand”: Utah community raise their voices for women in Afghanistan (KSL Newsradio)


  • Is Arizona’s school choice program leading the country or leaving its public schools behind? Arizona became the first state to pass universal education savings accounts in 2022. Utah is trying to follow suit (Deseret News)
  • Salt Lake City colleges offering pantries to help students facing food insecurity (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • At Utah Valley University, MLK Day isn’t just a day off — it’s about connection and service (KUER)
  • Lisa Berreau and Chris Wilson: Undergraduate research powers discovery and workforce in Utah and beyond. USU and the U. are in the top tier of the nation’s research universities. (Salt Lake Tribune)


  • All this snow is great for winter-happy Utah - except for all the potholes (KUER)
  • Recent storms help Utah make headway against extreme drought conditions (UPR)


  • Here’s why Marie Osmond won’t leave her children an inheritance (Deseret News)
  • The case for child care at work (Deseret News)


  • Meta-study highlights COVID dangers during pregnancy (The Hill)


  • New study finds Utah is No. 1 in residential construction per capita (Cache Valley Daily)
  • Tribune exclusive: We talk with SLC Mayor Erin Mendenhall about the housing crisis. She expects a big year when a lot of groundbreaking initiatives take hold. (Salt Lake Tribune)

National Headlines


  •  A failed Republican candidate who authorities said was angry over his defeat and made baseless claims the election last November was “rigged” against him was arrested in connection with a series of drive-by shootings targeting the homes of Democratic lawmakers in New Mexico’s largest city. (AP)
  • Andrew Tate's cars and watches, worth $4 million, are confiscated by Romanian police (NPR)
  • FEMA fires group for nonsensical Alaska Native translations (AP)
  • On King’s holiday, daughter calls for bold action over words (AP)
  • Six dead in targeted California home shooting, including 6-month-old baby and her mother (Reuters)
  • 8 people shot at Martin Luther King Jr. Day event in Florida (Washington Post)
  • Arizona city cuts off a neighborhood’s water supply amid drought (Washington Post)


  • GOP Rep. Banks jumps into race for open Indiana Senate seat (AP)
  • No visitors logs exist for Biden’s Wilmington home, White House says (Washington Post)
  • McCarthy and McConnell, seen as polar opposites, must lead a fractious GOP (Washington Post)
  • Schumer, McCarthy working relationship off to rocky start (The Hill)


  • Goldman Sachs profit plummets, quarterly profit down 66% from a year ago (Wall Street Journal)
  • Business leaders at the World Economic Forum worry about a possible recession, even as some see reason for optimism. (Wall Street Journal)
  • Globalization isn’t dead. But it’s changing. Multinational companies still want cheap and efficient markets, but they also want safety. That’s why they’re rerouting the pathways of global trade and finance. (Wall Street Journal)

Ukraine 🇺🇦

  • Ukrainian civilians vanish and languish in Russian-run jails (AP)
  • Toll in Russian strike on apartment building: 44 dead, including 5 children, 79 injured in one of the war's deadliest attacks on civilians (AP)
  • Tanks for Ukraine in sight as holdout Germany says new minister to decide (Reuters)
  • Top US general visits training site for Ukrainian soldiers (AP)
  • Dozens of Russian draftees died in a Ukrainian strike. Putin’s war machine rolled on. (Wall Street Journal)
  • The dark night of winter. War in Ukraine is sparking an energy crisis across Europe (Deseret News)
  • Former Wagner commander flees to Norway and seeks asylum (KSL Newsradio)


  • Norway archaeologists find ‘world’s oldest runestone’ (AP)
  • China's 2022 economic growth one of the worst on record, post-pandemic policy faces test (Reuters)
  • ‘Almost forgotten:’ The 100,000 children of Africa infected, and dying, of AIDS each year (New York Times)
  • Renewed Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict underlines Russia’s waning influence (New York Times)
  • London police officer fired after convicted of 24 counts of rape (Washington Post)

News Releases

EDCUtah welcomes Scott Cuthbertson as new CEO

The Economic Development Corporation of Utah (EDCUtah) announced the appointment of Scott Cuthbertson as chief executive officer, effective January 26, 2023. Scott Cuthbertson will succeed Theresa A. Foxley, who has served as EDCUtah’s CEO since 2017.

Cuthbertson brings a broad range of leadership experience, having been a director and practice lead with PwC and most recently serving as the chief operating officer and deputy executive director of the Point of the Mountain State Land Authority (“The Point”), one of the largest and most compelling economic development projects in the country. In addition to Cuthbertson’s impressive professional experience, he holds a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University and master’s degrees from both Georgetown University and Oxford University. (Read More)

Senate District 12 special election results

Yesterday, Democratic state delegates in Senate District 12 met to hear from 8 candidates running in the special election to represent SD 12 in the Senate, which comes after Senator Karen Mayne’s resignation.

Electronic delegate voting for this ranked-choice election was open from yesterday evening until 3:00 pm today. Now that the votes have been tabulated, Karen Kwan has won the special election after four rounds of counting. (Read More)

Sen. Luz Escamilla’s statement on Senate District 12 special election results

Following today’s results for Utah Senate District 12’s special election, Utah Senate Minority Leader Sen. Luz Escamilla issued the following statement regarding Senator-elect Karen Kwan’s victory:

“I have known Senator-elect Karen Kwan since she began her career of legislative service in the Utah House of Representatives in 2017. The Senate Democrats eagerly welcome her policy expertise and thorough commitment to representing her constituents. Her effectiveness in the Legislature and eye for strategic partnerships to usher meaningful policy to support all Utahns will be a crucial addition to the Senate Minority Caucus. We are energized and ready to commence the 2023 General Session as a unified front for positive change. Congratulations, Senator-elect Kwan.”


Number of the Day

Number of the Day, Jan 17, 2023


Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-01-17 at 7.32.10 AM



  • Legislative session begins — Jan. 17, le.utah.gov
  • State of the State — Jan. 19
  • Legislative session ends — Mar. 3, le.utah.gov

On This Day In History

  • 1706 - Benjamin Franklin is born.

  • 1820 - Anne Brontë is born.

  • 1893 - Americans led by Sanford Dole overthrow Queen Liliuokalani and establish a new provincial government with - surprise - Dole as president.

  • 1910 - Edith Green is born. She became the 2nd woman from Oregon to be elected to the U.S. House when she won in 1954. She served 10 terms and was instrumental in passing numerous bills, including the Higher Education Facilities Act, the National Defense Education Act and the 1972 Equal Opportunity in Education Act, aka Title IX.

  • 1916 - The PGA is formed.

  • 1922 - Betty White is born! 

  • 1950 - 11 men steal more than $2 million from the Brink’s Armored Car depot in Boston. Only a small part of the money was ever recovered.

  • 1961 - President Dwight D. Eisenhower warns of the increasing power of the military-industrial complex in his farewell address.

  • 1964 - Michelle Obama is born

  • 1977 - Gary Gilmore is executed by firing squad in Utah.

  • 1994 - The Northridge quake rocks Los Angeles.

  • 1997 - Ireland grants a divorce for the first time in the country’s history.

  • 2004 - ‘Napoleon Dynamite’ is shown for the first time at the Sundance Film Festival.

  • 2015 - Rebecca D. Lockhart, first female Speaker of the Utah House, dies.

Wise Words

'Using your real voice might make you uncomfortable. It might make the people around you feel uncomfortable, but until we make it normal for women to be heard, until we are heard for our ideas and not viewed as tokens, that's the price we'll pay. I, for one, have been willing to pay that price." 

—Becky Lockhart

Lighter Side

What do you call cheese that accidentally escapes the International Space Station?

Space Da Brie.


– Advertise With Us –

Subscribers may receive special messages with information about new features, special offers, or public policy messages from clients and advertisers.