Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Key Legislative Issues for 2007

It looks like Utah's Legislative Research and General Counsel has outlined several of the key issues that will be dealt with in the 2007 legislative session. The four page outline can be seen HERE. In addition, Utah's municipal governments will be watching the following issues closely.

1. Telecommunications Reform: There has been some discussion regarding a push toward statewide franchising for the telecommunications industry. The Utah League of Cities and Towns has been working closely with some members of the cable and telecommunications industry to maintain local control of franchising and will be watching this issue closely.

2. Additional Funding for Local Roads: The Utah League of Cities has also been working closely with members of the House and Senate to lift the "cap" off of the 1/16th cent state sales tax diversion for local road projects. Currently the fund is capped at roughly $18 Million. With the removal of the cap we would see an additional $5-7 Million come into the fund annually.

3. Land Use Regulation/Property Rights: As growth continues to be a major issue for Utah, the management of that growth is being increasingly scrutinized. Local governments will be watching closely for attempts to unilaterally change the code governing local land management decisions to further address developer interests. Local governments have, however, been working with a majority of the land developers in the state to come up with mutually acceptable solutions for the growth challenges we face.

And these three issues are just the beginning. As local governments, we anticipate a very busy 2007 legislative session and will likely be tracking roughly 60-80 bills. If you know of other issues that deserve attention please feel free to add to the list

-- Enjoy