Governor vetoes bill eliminating bipartisan boards

SALT LAKE CITY — Governor Gary Herbert has vetoed his first bill coming out of the 2017 Utah State Legislature.

The governor vetoed House Bill 11, sponsored by Rep. Norm Thurston, R-Provo, which eliminated the partisan requirement for a number of state-run boards and commissions. Democrats complained the bill kicked them off, eliminating an alternative viewpoint on policy matters.

The bill was watered down by the House to keep partisan requirements on the Air Quality Board, the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Commission, the Public Service Commission and the Water Quality Board. However, the Senate amended the bill and took those out. That version was sent to his office, and Gov. Herbert objected.

In a letter sent to legislative Republican leaders announcing the veto, Governor Herbert said some boards and commissions make decisions that may be viewed as partisan.

“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,” he wrote.

Read the governor’s veto letter here:

Rep. Thurston said Friday night he was disappointed.

“This bill was about getting the best people involved regardless of which primary they choose to vote in. I’m disappointed we didn’t get all the way to 38, 15 and 1 on the details, but there is broad support for the concept,” he said, referring to the number of votes required to pass the House, Senate and, ultimately, the governor.

Democrats said they were glad to see the veto.

“His letter explaining his action demonstrates he recognizes the importance of political balance in state government and the danger of poor public policies coming from one party control,” House Minority Leader Brian King, D-Salt Lake City, said. “I was especially interested to learn that the House amendment to the bill was the product of negotiation between the Governor and the House Republican leadership. The subsequent Senate action in putting back in place the more extreme version of the bill and the final House action in concurring with the Senate amendment were not in accordance with the Governor’s position about what was best for Utahns.”

The environmental group HEAL Utah also agreed with the veto.

“We applaud Governor Herbert for his decisive action today to ensure that the key bodies which make critical decisions that affect our health, environment and pocketbooks represent all Utahns,” said HEAL’s executive director, Matt Pacenza.

Gov. Herbert signed a number of other bills into law on Friday, bringing the total to 415 out of the 535 passed by the Utah State Legislature. He has until March 29 to sign, veto or allow them to pass into law without his signature.

Among the more high profile bills, some big changes to Utah’s juvenile justice system, the creation of a registry for convicted child abusers, and it’s mandatory for motorcyclists 18-21 to wear helmets.

Here’s the full list of bills signed Friday:

HB0027

Interstate Compact on Military Children Amendments

Winder, M.

HB0036S02

Affordable Housing Amendments

Edwards, R.

HB0101S02

Adoptive Studies and Evaluations Amendments

Redd, E.

HB0149S02

Child Abuse Offender Registry

Owens, D.

HB0202S01

Trespass Amendments

Greene, B.

HB0208S01

Jail Release Orders Amendments

Ivory, K.

HB0255S02

Initiative Amendments

McCay, D.

HB0336

Health Reform Amendments

Dunnigan, J.

HB0354

Digital Piracy Amendments

Gardiner, A.

HB0390S01

Suicide Prevention Modifications

Eliason, S.

HB0391S01

Driver License Revisions

Quinn, T.

HB0393S01

Vehicle Towing Amendments

Maloy, A.C.

HB0399

Governmental Immunity Amendments

Snow, V. L.

HB0453S02

Airport Board Revisions

Coleman, K.

HB0461

Jail Contracting Amendments

Noel, M.

HCR006S01

Concurrent Resolution Supporting the Re-empowerment of the States Amendment

Nelson, M.

HCR013S01

Concurrent Resolution for Public Employees’ Benefit and Insurance Program

Dunnigan, J.

SB0070

Asset Forfeiture Transparency Amendments

Stephenson, H.

SB0071S01

Criminal Accounts Receivable Amendments

Thatcher, D.

SB0074S02

Medical Interpreter Amendments

Escamilla, L.

SB0088

Medicaid Housing Coordinator

Iwamoto, J.

SB0099

Consumer Protection Action Amendments

Hemmert, D.

SB0162

Physician Assistant Amendments

Shiozawa, B.

SB0164

Utah First Economic Development Amendments

Mayne, K.

SB0167

Bail Amendments

Adams, S.

SB0239

Interfering with a Peace Officer

Weiler, T.

SB0241S02

Local Government Plan Review Amendments

Bramble, C.

SB0251

Local Government Criminal Penalty Amendments

Thatcher, D.

SCR001

Concurrent Resolution on Increasing Pay for Certain Public Safety Officers and Firefighters

Weiler, T.

HB0046

Pass-through Entity Tax Amendments

Eliason, S.

HB0047S01

Property Tax Assessment Appeal Amendments

Briscoe, J.

HB0139S01

Criminal Intent Amendments

Stratton, K.

HB0239S03

Juvenile Justice Amendments

Snow, V. L.

HB0248S01

Domestic Violence Related Amendments

Christensen, L.

HB0252S02

Disposal of Firearms

Daw, B.

HB0379

Classification of Theft Amendments

King, B.

HB0431S03

Government Employees Reimbursement Amendments

Quinn, T.

SB0012S01

Expungement Amendments

Thatcher, D.

SB0081

Local Government Licensing Amendments

Anderegg, J.

SB0087S04

Civil Asset Forfeiture Revisions

Thatcher, D.

SB0092

Workers’ Compensation Fund Revisions

Bramble, C.

SB0140

Annexation of Islands Within Cities

Buxton, G.

SB0153

Child Support Income Calculation Amendments

Hillyard, L.

SB0175S01

Uniform Unclaimed Property Act

Hillyard, L.

SB0193S01

Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission Modifications

Weiler, T.

SB0257

Case Status Updates

Weiler, T.

HB0035

Minimum School Program Amendments

Cutler, B.

HB0043

American Indian and Alaskan Native Education Amendments

Noel, M.

HB0065

Air Conservation Act Amendments

Schultz, M.

HB0128S08

Health Care Debt Collection Amendments

Webb, R. C.

HB0145S01

Foster Children Visitation Amendments

Ivory, K.

HB0201

Condominium and Community Association Amendments

Moss, C.

HB0212S03

Incentive for Effective Teachers in High Poverty Schools

Winder, M.

HB0227

Emergency Medical Service System Amendments

Gardiner, A.

HB0230S02

Elections Revisions

Daw, B.

HB0231

Educator Evaluation Amendments

Moss, J.

HB0236S03

Mobile Home Park Residents’ Rights

Cutler, B. R.

HB0246

System of Care Development

Edwards, R.

HB0249S01

Higher Education Financial Literacy Amendments

Spendlove, R.

HB0253S02

Short-term Rental Amendments

Knotwell, J.

HB0261S01

Local Emergency Response Amendments

Sagers, D.

HB0262

Dental Licensing Amendments

Poulson, M.

HB0268S02

Money Management Act Amendments

Knotwell, J.

HB0273S01

Construction Trades Licensing Penalty Periods Amendments

Ray, P.

HB0278S01

Expenses of Minor Children Amendments

Chavez-Houck, R.

HB0281S01

Construction and Fire Codes Amendments

Ray, P.

HB0287

Cosmetology Licensing Act Amendments

Dunnigan, J.

HB0296

Radioactive and Hazardous Waste Account Amendments

Wilson, B.

HB0308S02

Public Health and Schools

Thurston, N.

HB0344S01

Utah Agriculture Code Amendments

Perry, L.

HB0346S01

Suicide Prevention Programs

Eliason, S.

HB0398S02

Procurement Code Amendments

Froerer, G.

HB0400S02

Pilot Program to Study Coverage Parity for Amino Acid-based Formula

Redd, E.

HB0404S01

Early Warning Pilot Program

Peterson, V.

HB0414

Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind Referral Amendments

Owens, D.

HB0416

Targeted Business Income Tax Credit Revisions

Edwards, R.

HB0426S01

Stem Amendments

Peterson, V.

SB0061S03

Students with Disabilities Accommodations Funding

Davis, G.

SB0063S01

Nonprofit Corporation Amendments – Water Companies

Dayton, M.

SB0064S01

Student Scholarship Amendments

Fillmore, L.

SB0111S03

Unmanned Aircraft Amendments

Harper, W.

SB0117S04

Higher Education Performance Funding

Millner, A.

SB0124S01

Child Care Licensing Amendments

Fillmore, L.

SB0159

Helmet Requirement Amendments

Shiozawa, B.

SB0163S02

Student Information Amendments

Anderegg, J.

SB0186

Education Reporting Amendments

Fillmore, L.

SB0187S01

Construction Trade Amendments

Buxton, D. G.

SB0194S05

Utah Data Research Center Act

Anderegg, J.

SB0204

Public-Private Partnerships

Okerlund, R.

SB0215

Master Offense List

Thatcher, D.

SB0220S01

Student Assessment and School Accountability Amendments

Millner, A.

SB0225

Judgment Interest Rate Amendments

Bramble, C.

SB0226

Permanent Criminal Stalking Injunction Amendments

Weiler, T.

SB0234S01

School Turnaround Amendments

Millner, A.

SB0238S01

Higher Education Governance Revisions

Millner, A.

SB0245

Second Amendment Special License Plates

Stephenson, H.

SB0246S01

Pharmacy Practice Act Amendments

Vickers, E.

SB0247

Modifications to Distribution of Local Sales Tax Revenues

Okerlund, R.

SB0256

Regents’ Scholarship Amendments

Hillyard, L.

SB0079S01

Waste Management Amendments

Adams, J. S.

SB0009

Revenue Bond and Capital Facilities Amendments

Harper, W.

SCR005

Concurrent Resolution Recognizing Snow Removal Crews Throughout Utah

Okerlund, R.