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Utah Legislature Week 5 Summary!

The 2021 General Session of the Utah State Legislature began on Monday, January 19. We are now finished with Week 5 (out of 7). Thank you so much for all of your support. Time is flying by. It is truly an honor to represent the great residents of District 33.  Just a few highlights from the week:
 
This Week at the Capitol & Other Information
 
  • Officer Cody Brotherson - Bill to Ensure Accountability PASSES!
 
The Officer Cody Brotherson bill has gone through final passage!
So happy to team up with Sen. Karen Mayne to get this passed. Thanks also to Officer Brotherson's mother (Jenny) for testifying in support of the bill multiple times. Looking forward to Governor Cox signing this bill into law!
We love you Cody!




 
  • Honoring Utah's Fallen Soldiers


Each year, the Legislature honors Utah’s fallen soldiers and their families. This week, Rep. Wilcox presented a citation honoring the soldiers for their courage, bravery, and selflessness and led the House in a moment of silence. We are beyond grateful for the men and women who sacrifice their lives protecting our freedoms. 



 
  • Vaccine Distribution

Utahns who are 65 and older are eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine. Those with certain medical conditions will still be eligible for a vaccine appointment beginning March 1. Visit https://coronavirus.utah.gov/vaccine-distribution for more information.




  • The Capitol and Legislative Session During COVID-19
This year's legislative session has been unprecedented. During the first week, due to security and COVID concerns, the physical Capitol building was closed to anyone outside of legislators and staff. This last week, the Capitol was opened up to limited numbers. It was great seeing more folks in person. One silver lining of COVID is that we have increased the capabilities for citizens to participate remotely in the legislative process.  

See here for instructions on how to participate remotely during our committee meetings. https://le.utah.gov/Documents/VirtualMeetingInstructionsV7.pdf 
2021 Legislation

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 Legislature poised to adopt new rules for emergency state purchases after COVID-19 controversies - Tribune
  • Incarcerated youths in Utah could earn a college degree in custody under a new bill - Tribune
  • How will Utah lawmakers help women and families recover from the COVID-19 economic downturn? - Tribune
  • Uninsured Utahns can now sign up through the Affordable Care Act insurance market - KUTV
  • Utah students could miss school for a mental health day under a bill that passed through the Senate - Tribune
  • Noncitizens could serve as police officers in Utah under a bill that’s nearly on its way to the governor - Tribune
  • Lawmakers again asked to stop surprise fees in rental agreements - Tribune
  • Two bills born from last summer's protests get approval by senate committee - FOX 13
  • Utah House committee approves bill that would make changes to the state’s “confusing” homeless system governance - Tribune

Rep. Hall's Legislation

I have several bills this session, here are a few:
 
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.


 
It is already a felony to threaten a judge or member of the board of pardons in relation to a criminal case. There have been a few instances that make it clear that such penalty should also apply to prosecutors in order to make it clear that such threats and intimidation to prosecutors is absolutely not acceptable.
  
  • HB147 - Revenge Porn Amendments - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed 68-3 in the House. Still needs one more vote in the Senate.
I sponsored the original revenge porn bill several years ago with democratic Rep. Marie Poulson. It was great to work with her in a bipartisan manner. This issue came to light during the Lauren McCluskey investigation when an investigating officer showed intimate images of Ms. McCluskey to fellow officers, outside the scope of his employment. The revenge porn wasn't able to be used to prosecute the officer because it requires the victim to suffer "actual emotional distress." And since Ms. McCluskey was already deceased, the revenge porn law was unable to be used to prosecute the officer. This bill would eliminate the "actual emotional distress" element if the victim is deceased, or otherwise incapacitated before the distribution of the intimate image.

See story here.


  
  • HB173 - Vote Reporting Requirements - I am the chief sponsor of this bill. Passed the 70-0 on the House. Set for hearing in Senate Committee this week.
It is already required for the County Clerks Office to regularly update the voting results after Election Day. However, it is currently notrequired 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.
 
This bill helps keeps opioids out of the hands of those who should not have them. Provide pharmacists employed by managed care organizations access to the controlled substance database when they suspect opioid fraud or abuse.
 
Two years ago, I passed a landmark bill regarding the legal standard required for electronic information to be obtained by law enforcement. This bill fine tunes that 2019 bill. Thanks to all those who have supported this effort!
 
"Knock and announce" and "no-knock" warrants are some of the most dangerous situations our amazing law enforcement officers can find themselves in. This bill would limit these no-knock and knock and announce warrants. See a detailed story regarding the specifics of the bill here from the Deseret News.
 
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! (Below is a photo of some of the paper surveys in the past that have been returned!). I am very interested in your perspectives. Your comments and thoughts are greatly appreciated.  You can also take the survey online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RepHall2021 if you prefer that method.  Thank you so much!
 
 
 
Utah Legislative Tools
Here are some helpful tools to familiarize you with some of the happenings at the Capitol. 
Need more?  Read this book.


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/votecraighalland/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 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

Paid for by the Committee to Elect Craig Hall
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