Playing Doctor, Knockout Punch, Downtown Saving | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Playing Doctor, Knockout Punch, Downtown Saving 

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Playing Doctor

After three failed attempts to ban the herb—or, depending on perspective, the psychoactive drug—salvia divonorum, Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield, has decided to leave drug regulations to the professionals. This year, Ray is proposing a Controlled Substances Advisory Board, with members appointed from state licensing agencies, the medical community and law enforcement. Changes to drug policies would come from this board, and for his part, Ray claims that he would support the recommendations. Most notably, after reporter Jesse Fruhwirth’s article about a marijuana activist trying to find legislative support (“Cannabis Canvas,” Dec. 24, CityWeekly.net), Ray told Fruhwirth that he may even support approving medical marijuana for testing if the advisory board recommended it. That’s a risky position for a conservative politician, but if true, Ray may receive some “baked” goods to salve his political wounds.

Knockout Punch

For decades, the Fullmer Brothers have taught boxing for free, especially to at-risk teenagers from low-income families who also learn, by extension, life skills like discipline and nutrition. For the past six years, the Fullmer gym has been housed in a former West Jordan fire station provided by the city, rentfree. But now, the city is in need of a new public works building, and wants the Fullmers to move, most likely before summer. If the gym closed, it would leave the aspiring boxers fighting suburban malaise and the perils of youth with one hand tied behind their backs.

Downtown Saving

“Out with the old” seems to be a common mantra for downtown revitalization, especially in the LDS Church’s Downtown Rising project, where even the First Security Building barely survived the wrecking ball. But in late December, two great buildings were saved. The Utah Theater, 148 S. Main Street, was purchased by the Salt Lake City Redevelopment Agency for $5.5 million. The purchase is a major step toward making the theater, built in 1918, into an independent film center. And the owner of the 120-year-old Brownstone Building, 22 E. 100 South, which is the home to Ahh Sushi and Martine, signed a preservation easement that will protect the historic building. These buildings tell stories that the LDS Church’s amusement park/shopping mall cannot, no matter how many fake rivers and soaring skyways they build.

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Josh Loftin

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