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Also: Healthy Herbert, Leaky Pipes

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Read All About It
This is, of course, the time for The Salt Lake Tribune to be self-serving. It's time to tell readers just what they are getting from tenacious reporters who write important stories about people who abuse the public trust. So it made sense for editor Terry Orme to write about the awards they've received for reporting on the Shurtleff-Swallow scandal. Awards are about the only kudos newspapers get anymore, and they are almost invisible to the public. But then comes an insightful and topical Tribune town hall meeting "Anatomy of a Scandal"—in the spirit of transparency, they said. Reporters have long fought for the right to maintain the trust of their sources and protect their processes, but transparency comes in the written word—not in a town hall meeting before the subjects have gone to court.

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Healthy Herbert
Now it's just wait and see for the thousands of Utahns who fall through the health-care cracks and who've been labeled lazy, or worse: criminal. UtahPolicy.com and Dan Jones conducted a survey of Republican voters, asking them if they liked the latest Healthy Utah plan for Medicaid. Jones did have to explain the plan, but an incredible 79 percent of respondents said they approve. The plan, with federal approval, now contains a "work effort" clause, encouraging recipients to find work and get trained. This is much better than a work requirement, as many of the unemployed simply cannot work. But now it's all about convincing legislators to accept a plan they see as an evil federal plot sponsored by a Kenyan president.

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Leaky Pipes
Salt Lake City is offering its citizens a really cool opportunity. Buy HomeServe USA insurance, and your sewer or water line will be protected. The thing is, the pitch came on Salt Lake City letterhead, and apparently was the brainchild of former Councilwoman Jill Remington Love. HomeServe won a $70,000 bid for the exclusive right to sell its product to unsuspecting consumers. Doesn't anyone look into these companies? Matt Gephardt did, and it wasn't pretty. WFPL News in Louisville, Ky., did, too, finding that it "has run afoul of several state attorneys general, including Kentucky, in recent years over allegations of unfair and deceptive advertising." Salt Lake actuary Joan Ogden crunched the numbers. "Statistically, you would pay premiums totalling $9,363 before the statistical likelihood would say you might have a break."

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About The Author

Katharine Biele

Katharine Biele

Bio:
A City Weekly contributor since 1992, Biele is the informed voice behind our Hits & Misses and Citizen Revolt columns. When not writing, you can catch her working to empower voters and defend democracy alongside the League of Women Voters.

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