Public Access | Hits & Misses | Salt Lake City | Salt Lake City Weekly

Public Access 

Also: Trapped Indoors, Prepared for Change

Pin It
Favorite

click to enlarge hit.jpg
Public Access
You know it almost never happens, but you’re about to see a shrinking of bureaucracy. Maybe. Salt Lake City is considering a streamline of its records-access ordinance. In Utah, it is difficult, time-consuming and often expensive to seek public documents, despite an oft-amended Government Records Access & Management Act. This is partly due to the fact that governments are not yet all-electronic and rely on searches of paper documents. But an added layer to GRAMA has been various city laws “clarifying” the process. Salt Lake City is looking at its appeals process, which now involves two appeals boards—one for the mayor and one for City Council. The proposal is to replace those boards with a chief administrative officer who’s designated by the mayor. This leaves intact the ability to appeal to the state board and then to the courts, while simplifying the first steps a citizen takes to access public documents. And the plan is to leave the relatively low fees the same—$10 an hour.

miss_1.jpg
Trapped Indoors
The inversion is gone for now, as has any likelihood that the government will do anything substantive about air pollution. Gov. Gary Herbert continues to ask individuals to take responsibility—like, not driving on red alert days. But that doesn’t really work for the majority of people who need to be at work on time to pay the bills. Examiner.com went so far as to say Herbert was calling for a general strike, since he wanted drivers to stay home. Rio Tinto Kennecott and the Downtown Alliance offered free UTA passes to those pledging to use them on red alert days, but, sadly, the offer reached its limit long before the inversion ended. Herbert, however, continues to ignore physicians who called for a health emergency, saying only a few groups of people were at risk.

click to enlarge hit.jpg
Prepared for Change
In what Sutherland Institute President Paul Mero tweeted would mean “the end of Scouting,” the Boy Scouts of America is considering a change in its policy excluding gays from the pack. The change of heart comes amid declining membership and years of bad publicity over released files chronicling sex-abuse allegations. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed that the Scouts could discriminate on the basis of gender preference and religion, but the gay issue has been most contentious. In Utah, the large majority of Scouting units are sponsored by LDS churches, which have their own issues with gay members. And while the national Scouts say they’re not going to force any group to include gays, at least the Sutherland Institute is predicting an end to life as we know it.

Twitter: @KathyBiele

Pin It
Favorite

More by Katharine Biele

  • Citizen Revolt: Jan. 17

    It's that time of year—Legislature season—so learn from some of the best, and how they overcame obstacles in the political world. Lastly, don't forget the Women's March!
    • Jan 16, 2019
  • The New American

    A fourth Utah city makes a pledge to have 100 percent renewable energy. Sensationalism adds to #fakenews. Plus, how much to Utah Republicans despise the poor?
    • Jan 16, 2019
  • Clear the Filth

    Budget problems persist because of misplaced priorities. More on the LDS church's presence at the Capitol. Plus, we just can't seem to get enough polygamy.
    • Jan 9, 2019
  • More »

Latest in Hits & Misses

  • The New American

    A fourth Utah city makes a pledge to have 100 percent renewable energy. Sensationalism adds to #fakenews. Plus, how much to Utah Republicans despise the poor?
    • Jan 16, 2019
  • Clear the Filth

    Budget problems persist because of misplaced priorities. More on the LDS church's presence at the Capitol. Plus, we just can't seem to get enough polygamy.
    • Jan 9, 2019
  • Cough, Cough, Choke

    Don't forget, air quality will be a perennial story of the year and with the upcoming legislative session, the subject is ramping up again. Plus, keep an eye on what happens to the citizen initiatives.
    • Jan 2, 2019
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • Dear Jon

    A letter to Jon Huntsman Jr., more kids means fewer taxes in Utah and some perspective on the inland port debate.
    • Jul 25, 2018
  • Two Steps Back

    Far be it for us to say what daily newspapers should do.
    • Oct 11, 2017

© 2019 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation