The 2014 Libertas Legislator Index

Index Key Vote agrees with Libertas' position Vote conflicts with Libertas' position Legislator was absent or did not vote Legislator sponsored the bill(awarded 2% if it's a bill we support,
docked 2% if we opposed)

While hundreds of votes are cast during each year's general session, Libertas chooses for its index the bills and resolutions which directly relate to our mission to defend individual liberty, private property, and free enterprise.

The overall ranking for the legislature for this year is .

Don't know who your Representative or Senator is? Use our lookup tool to find out.

Click here to view a readable list of the bills included in this index, along with their summaries and explanations.

Tip: You can hover over any of the bill numbers in the top row to learn more about it, and see which vote Libertas supports. Click any table cell in the header to re-sort the entire table.

House of Representatives (view the Senate)

Legislator HB105Plant Extract Amendments

This bill allowed children with intractable epilepsy to legally use a "hemp extract" (composed of less than 0.3% THC) by obtaining a hemp extract registration card under supervision of a neurologist.

Libertas Institute supported this bill, as we argue that no government agent should stand between a doctor and his patient. Many individuals have found great benefit in other states from cannabis oil treatment. We believe that Utahns should be afforded the same legal opportunity to have access to this treatment.

This bill passed the House 58-9 and passed the Senate 26-0. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB120Continuing Education on Federalism

This bill required education on federalism issues for a designated person in each state or local government office.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Having seen instances in which attorneys working for the state have failed to articulate the arguments that would counter the federal government's wrongful claim to authority, we support efforts to ensure that these individuals better learn the case law, legal theories, and legal arguments to be used in defense against an encroaching federal government.

This bill passed the House 52-19 and passed the Senate 15-12. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB128Electronic Device Location Amendments

This bill requires law enforcement officers to obtain a warrant if they wish to "obtain the location information, stored data, or transmitted data of an electronic device." Technologies exist that allow Utah police to bulk collect geolocation of people's cell phones, so this bill restricts their use and requires government agents to purge data on people who are not identified in the warrant.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Short of an emergency situation, no law enforcement officer should have access to a person's cell phone data without consent or without a warrant.

This bill passed the House 71-2 and passed the Senate unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB20Emergency Vehicle Operator Duty of Care Revisions

This bill provided immunity for operators of emergency vehicles (such as police cars and ambulances) when pursuing a suspect of any crime. Immunity is granted under the bill even when the operator of the vehicle violates their department's pursuit policy.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Government agents should not be given immunity from lawsuits if and when they act outside of their training and governing policies; victims should still be able in these cases to seek redress in court.

This bill passed the Senate 15-13 and passed the House in concurrence 41-28. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB212DNA Collection Amendments

This bill allowed law enforcement officials to collect DNA evidence of a person merely alleged of committing a crime. While proponents argue that they are only keeping a select portion of one's DNA, which is essentially the "21st century equivalent of a fingerprint," the government is permanently preserving the entire DNA specimen which contains a person's intimate biological information, including their medical profile.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Numerous breaches of information, whether the NSA, Target, or even the state of Utah, suggest that this data might be subject to future leaks, hacks, or wrongful disclosures. The government should not be able to so easily collect information like this from a person merely alleged (but not convicted) of a crime.

This bill passed the House 43-28 and passed the Senate 18-4. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB224Sales and Use Tax Amendments

This bill would have reduced the state sales and use tax rate if the federal government requires collection of an internet sales tax, effectively equalizing the tax burden should additional new taxes be collected.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Its failure means a tax hike in the future if/when the federal government requires the additional tax collection. Because we oppose tax increases, we therefore oppose allowing one to increase by default.

This bill failed in the House 26-47. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB276Disorderly Conduct Amendments

This bill clarified that a person cannot be charged with disorderly conduct for open or conceal carrying a firearm on that basis alone.

Libertas Institute supported this bill because it strengthens the right to keep and bear arms by protecting it against violation by police officers who desire to intimidate or harass law abiding citizens.

This bill passed the House 63-8 and passed the Senate 27-1. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB30Controlled Substances Amendments

Every year the Utah legislature includes new scientific ingredients into its lengthy list of prohibited (controlled) substances in an attempt to ban the latest concoctions being cooked up by illicit drug manufacturers.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill, as it's an archaic and ineffective method at addressing a societal health problem. Banning things like AB-FUBINACA; N-[1-(aminocarbonyl)-2-methylpropyl]-1-[(4-fluorophenyl) methyl]-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide; is a poor attempt at protecting people from harmful substances; there are better ways to address the drug problem.

This bill passed the House 59-12 and passed the Senate 24-2. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB318Rights of Parents and Children Amendments

This bill would have allowed for jury trial as an option in cases where a parent is facing termination of their parental rights.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. A bond between parent and child is sacred and should therefore not be violated unless absolutely necessary after following due process. Parents should have the ability to face a jury of their peers, if they so choose, rather than relying on a juvenile court judge to make the decision.

This bill passed the House 46-27 but was not considered in the Senate. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB356New Convention Facility Development Incentive Provisions

This bill provides up to $75 million in tax credits to incentivize the creation of a proposed hotel/convention center in Salt Lake City.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. No economic projection of increased spending and tax revenue can justify this mismanagement of taxes; government exists to protect our rights, not centrally plan the economy.

This bill passed the House 49-23 and passed the Senate 17-11. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB55Income Tax Credit for Purchase of Transit Pass

This bill would have offered an income tax credit for those who purchase transit passes from the UTA.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. The UTA is already extremely subsidized by taxpayers. For example, individuals who ride UTA buses pay only 15% of the total cost through their fare, whereas those who ride FrontRunner pay only 5%. Offering further taxpayer subsidy is absolutely the wrong direction to go with respect to the UTA.

This bill failed in the House 29-45. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB70Forcible Entry Amendments

This bill introduced caution into the forcible entry (home invasion) warrant process, increasing the legal standard by which they may be authorized and requiring that only reasonable and necessary force be used, among other changes made.

HB70 can save lives (both police officers and citizens) and reduce damage to property. Accordingly, we strongly supported this amendment to Utah's laws.

This bill passed the House 69-6 and passed the Senate unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB77Tax Credit for Home-schooling Parent

This bill would have provided an income tax credit for homeschooling parents.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Unlike many tax credits that try to incentivize behavior and are more reflective of central planning than wise tax policy, the direct relationship of the income tax to public education suggests that it makes sense to reduce the income tax burden upon Utahns whose children do not attend government schools.

This bill failed in the House 32-37. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB96Utah School Readiness Initiative

This bill authorized government funding of preschool for at-risk youth in Utah. Private donations will finance the experimental first year, and if it's a success, taxpayers will be required to pay back the investors and then finance the preschool program on an annual basis.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. We oppose so-called "public" education generally, though especially find it problematic that private preschool companies will be financed through taxes. Further, we are concerned about the state's longstanding trend of taking children out of their homes at an increasingly early change. Education is a parental responsibility and should remain as such.

This bill passed the House 55-17 and passed the Senate 17-10. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB97Limitation on Local Government Regulation of Animals

This bill prevented a municipality from adopting or enforcing a breed-specific ordinance regarding dogs. Many cities previously prohibit ownership of certain types of dog breeds, and this bill invalidated those ordinances.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. To the extent that cities are violating the property rights of Utahns, then the legislature should intervene and protect those rights. This bill is not so much about dog ownership as it is about property rights and the ability of Utahns to freely enjoy the ownership and companionship of a domestic dog of their choosing.

This bill passed the House 41-30 and passed the Senate 26-2. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB148Upstart Program Amendments

This bill extends the UPSTART program, a taxpayer-funded program whereby parents of preschool-age children can obtain free access to a private company's internet-based educational tools.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Many free or paid tools exist for parents to use to educate their children, and taxpayers should therefore not be compelled to pay for the offerings of one private company. Should parents be interested in this company's services, they should be required to pay for them themselves.

This bill passed the House 52-21 and passed the Senate 26-1. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB167Regulation of Drones

This bill restricted the ability of law enforcement officials in Utah to use drones for investigations and prosecutions.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. While we are excited by the economic development potential that drones present, we firmly believe that police officials should be limited in their ability to surveil citizens.

This bill passed the Senate unanimously and passed the House 67-5. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB185Law Enforcement Transparency

This bill collects annual information from law enforcement agencies regarding SWAT deployments as well as forcible entries (e.g. home raids). 16 separate points of data will be collected regarding each incident, and the data will be summarized and published openly for policy makers and the public to review.

Libertas Institute supports this bill. Government transparency is important on issues affecting life, liberty, and property—and because law enforcement officers can and do use lethal force, it's imperative to have transparent access to data so that legislators and the public at large can be assured that this authority is being properly used.

This bill passed the Senate 22-2 and passed the House unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB253Distracted Driver Amendments

This bill prohibited the use of cell phones while driving except for talking, using a voice-activated feature such as the iPhone's Siri, or using it for GPS.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. The government should rely on more general reckless driving prohibitions, or simply increase penalties after an accident if the driver was distracted by a cell phone, rather than micro-managing the specific activities that may be done while driving. To be consistent, this policy would be expanded to prohibit other things like eating, applying makeup, or adjusting the radio while driving—all things we would likewise oppose.

This bill passed the Senate 17-8 and passed the House 41-28. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB256Asset Forfeiture Amendments

This bill reverted substantive changes made to forfeiture law last year. These changes were packed in a bill that was voted on unanimously by the legislature who was told that it was a simple re-codification bill, when it actually was not.

Libertas Institute supports this bill. Our policy analysis brought to light these key changes, which the bill corrected to restore due process and property rights protections.

This bill passed both the Senate and House unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB39Home School Amendments

This bill deregulated homeschooling law in Utah, removing an annual requirement for an affidavit signed by parents and repealing requirements regarding the subject and hours taught to each homeschooled child.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. We supports efforts that recognize and protect parental stewardship in determining how best to educate one's child.

This bill passed the Senate 22-5 and passed the House 52-17. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
2014 Rating
Anderegg, J. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesxYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesxYes100%
Anderson, Jerry (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes62%
Anderson, Johnny (R)YesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesYesNoNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYes76%
Arent, P. (D)YesNoYesYesYesxYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo50%
Barlow, S. (R)NoYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes52%
Barrus, R. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoYesYesYesNoYesYes62%
Bird, J. (R)YesNoYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesx65%
Briscoe, J. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesYesNoYesNo48%
Brown, M. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesxNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes60%
Chavez-Houck, R. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoxNo45%
Christensen, L. (R)NoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoNoYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYesx67%
Christofferson, K. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesNoNoYesYesYesYesYesYes76%
Cosgrove, T. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesYesNoYesNo48%
Cox, J. (R)NoNoYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYesYes52%
Cunningham, R. (R)YesYesYesYesYesNoYesNoNoNoYesNoNoNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes52%
Dee, B. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes60%
Draxler, J. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoYesYesNoxYes50%
Duckworth, S. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo48%
Dunnigan, J. (R)NoNoYesNoNoYesYesNoNoNoYesYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesx50%
Edwards, R. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesxYesYesNoYesYes45%
Eliason, S. (R)NoYesYesNoNoYesNoYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYes55%
Fisher, Janice (D)YesNoYesNoYesNoNoNoYesxNoYesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoYesNo45%
Froerer, G. (R)YesYesNoYesNoYesNoNoNoYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesNoxx60%
Gibson, F. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesxYesNoNoYesYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes70%
Greene, B. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesxYesYes95%
Greenwood, R. (R)YesYesNoNoNoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNo43%
Grover, K. (R)YesYesYesYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesNoNoYesYesYesYesYes81%
Hall, C. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesxNoYesYes75%
Handy, S. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes57%
Hemingway, L. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesx50%
Hughes, G. (R)NoYesYesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesYes55%
Hutchings, E. (R)NoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoYesYesNoNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes52%
Ipson, D. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes57%
Ivory, K. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesxYes97%
Kennedy, M. (R)YesYesYesYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesxNoYesYes75%
King, Brian S. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYesNo45%
Knotwell, J. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesxYesYes100%
Last, B. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesxNoNoNoYesYesxYesYes58%
Layton, D. (R)YesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoNoYesYesYesxYesYes85%
Lifferth, D. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes69%
Lockhart, R. (R)YesYesYesNoxYesYesxxNoYesYesxYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYes82%
Mathis, J. (R)YesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYes86%
McCay, D. (R)YesYesYesYesxYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesxYesYes100%
McIff, K. (R)YesYesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesxYesYesNoYesNo45%
McKell, M. (R)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoYesYesYesxNoNoYesYesYesNoYesYes65%
Menlove, R. (R)YesNoYesNoNoNoYesNoxxYesYesNoYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYes47%
Moss, C. (D)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo43%
Nelson, M. (R)YesYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoNoYesYesNoNoNoNoYesYesYesYesNo43%
Nielson, J. (R)YesYesYesNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes78%
Noel, M. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYes71%
Oda, C. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes88%
Perry, L. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoYesYes57%
Peterson, J. (R)YesYesYesYesNoYesYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYesYes62%
Peterson, V. (R)YesYesYesYesNoxYesNoYesYesYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes75%
Pitcher, D. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoNoYesxNoYesNoxYesNoYesYes53%
Poulson, M. (D)YesNoYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesYesNoYesNo41%
Powell, K. (R)NoYesYesNoNoNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes43%
Ray, P. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesYesYesx43%
Redd, E. (R)YesYesYesNoYesYesYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesYes67%
Roberts, M. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes100%
Romero, A. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoNoNoNoYesxNoYesNoYesYesNoxNo42%
Sagers, D. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesxYesNoYesNoNoNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes50%
Sanpei, D. (R)YesYesYesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes71%
Seelig, J. (D)YesNoYesNoxNoNoNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo35%
Snow, V. L. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes52%
Spendlove, R. (R)YesYesYesxNoNoYesNoYesNoNoYesNoNoNoNoYesxYesxYes50%
Stanard, J. (R)YesYesYesNoYesYesYesxYesxYesYesYesYesNoNoxYesNoYesYes78%
Stratton, K. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYes76%
Tanner, E. (R)YesYesYesYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes57%
Webb, R. C. (R)YesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYesNoNoNoxYesNoYesYes60%
Westwood, J. (R)NoYesYesNoNoNoYesNoNoNoYesYesNoNoNoNoYesYesNoYesNo38%
Wheatley, M. (D)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo48%
Wilcox, R. (R)YesYesNoxYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesxYesYes91%
Wiley, L. (D)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoNoNoYesNoNoYesYesYesYesNoYesNo48%
Wilson, B. (R)YesYesYesNoNoYesYesNoNoYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesYesYesYes60%

Senate

Legislator HB105Plant Extract Amendments

This bill allowed children with intractable epilepsy to legally use a "hemp extract" (composed of less than 0.3% THC) by obtaining a hemp extract registration card under supervision of a neurologist.

Libertas Institute supported this bill, as we argue that no government agent should stand between a doctor and his patient. Many individuals have found great benefit in other states from cannabis oil treatment. We believe that Utahns should be afforded the same legal opportunity to have access to this treatment.

This bill passed the House 58-9 and passed the Senate 26-0. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB112Regulation of Electronic Cigarettes

This bill would have required licensure for selling "electronic cigarettes" and prohibited 18 year old adults and minors from buying or possessing an electronic cigarette or the liquid used within one.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Adults should not be restricted from accessing a product they desire—banning 18-year-olds while permitting 19-year-olds to purchase the products is an arbitrary and problematic line in the sand. Finally, imposing licensure requirements upon businesses as a condition of engaging in commerce violates the free market and should therefore be rejected.

This bill was substituted in the last five minutes of the session, leaving no room for discussion and changing the bill from what the House had previously voted on. As such, we are only ranking the Senate vote on the 10th substitute. The bill passed the Senate 24-4 but was not voted upon in concurrence by the House. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB120Continuing Education on Federalism

This bill required education on federalism issues for a designated person in each state or local government office.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Having seen instances in which attorneys working for the state have failed to articulate the arguments that would counter the federal government's wrongful claim to authority, we support efforts to ensure that these individuals better learn the case law, legal theories, and legal arguments to be used in defense against an encroaching federal government.

This bill passed the House 52-19 and passed the Senate 15-12. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB128Electronic Device Location Amendments

This bill requires law enforcement officers to obtain a warrant if they wish to "obtain the location information, stored data, or transmitted data of an electronic device." Technologies exist that allow Utah police to bulk collect geolocation of people's cell phones, so this bill restricts their use and requires government agents to purge data on people who are not identified in the warrant.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. Short of an emergency situation, no law enforcement officer should have access to a person's cell phone data without consent or without a warrant.

This bill passed the House 71-2 and passed the Senate unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB20Emergency Vehicle Operator Duty of Care Revisions

This bill provided immunity for operators of emergency vehicles (such as police cars and ambulances) when pursuing a suspect of any crime. Immunity is granted under the bill even when the operator of the vehicle violates their department's pursuit policy.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Government agents should not be given immunity from lawsuits if and when they act outside of their training and governing policies; victims should still be able in these cases to seek redress in court.

This bill passed the Senate 15-13 and passed the House in concurrence 41-28. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB212DNA Collection Amendments

This bill allowed law enforcement officials to collect DNA evidence of a person merely alleged of committing a crime. While proponents argue that they are only keeping a select portion of one's DNA, which is essentially the "21st century equivalent of a fingerprint," the government is permanently preserving the entire DNA specimen which contains a person's intimate biological information, including their medical profile.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Numerous breaches of information, whether the NSA, Target, or even the state of Utah, suggest that this data might be subject to future leaks, hacks, or wrongful disclosures. The government should not be able to so easily collect information like this from a person merely alleged (but not convicted) of a crime.

This bill passed the House 43-28 and passed the Senate 18-4. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB276Disorderly Conduct Amendments

This bill clarified that a person cannot be charged with disorderly conduct for open or conceal carrying a firearm on that basis alone.

Libertas Institute supported this bill because it strengthens the right to keep and bear arms by protecting it against violation by police officers who desire to intimidate or harass law abiding citizens.

This bill passed the House 63-8 and passed the Senate 27-1. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB30Controlled Substances Amendments

Every year the Utah legislature includes new scientific ingredients into its lengthy list of prohibited (controlled) substances in an attempt to ban the latest concoctions being cooked up by illicit drug manufacturers.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill, as it's an archaic and ineffective method at addressing a societal health problem. Banning things like AB-FUBINACA; N-[1-(aminocarbonyl)-2-methylpropyl]-1-[(4-fluorophenyl) methyl]-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide; is a poor attempt at protecting people from harmful substances; there are better ways to address the drug problem.

This bill passed the House 59-12 and passed the Senate 24-2. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB356New Convention Facility Development Incentive Provisions

This bill provides up to $75 million in tax credits to incentivize the creation of a proposed hotel/convention center in Salt Lake City.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. No economic projection of increased spending and tax revenue can justify this mismanagement of taxes; government exists to protect our rights, not centrally plan the economy.

This bill passed the House 49-23 and passed the Senate 17-11. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB70Forcible Entry Amendments

This bill introduced caution into the forcible entry (home invasion) warrant process, increasing the legal standard by which they may be authorized and requiring that only reasonable and necessary force be used, among other changes made.

HB70 can save lives (both police officers and citizens) and reduce damage to property. Accordingly, we strongly supported this amendment to Utah's laws.

This bill passed the House 69-6 and passed the Senate unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
HB96Utah School Readiness Initiative

This bill authorized government funding of preschool for at-risk youth in Utah. Private donations will finance the experimental first year, and if it's a success, taxpayers will be required to pay back the investors and then finance the preschool program on an annual basis.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. We oppose so-called "public" education generally, though especially find it problematic that private preschool companies will be financed through taxes. Further, we are concerned about the state's longstanding trend of taking children out of their homes at an increasingly early change. Education is a parental responsibility and should remain as such.

This bill passed the House 55-17 and passed the Senate 17-10. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
HB97Limitation on Local Government Regulation of Animals

This bill prevented a municipality from adopting or enforcing a breed-specific ordinance regarding dogs. Many cities previously prohibit ownership of certain types of dog breeds, and this bill invalidated those ordinances.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. To the extent that cities are violating the property rights of Utahns, then the legislature should intervene and protect those rights. This bill is not so much about dog ownership as it is about property rights and the ability of Utahns to freely enjoy the ownership and companionship of a domestic dog of their choosing.

This bill passed the House 41-30 and passed the Senate 26-2. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB111Education Funding Equalization

Currently, the minimum basic tax—a state property tax—decreases as property values increase, thus keeping the tax revenue neutral. This bill would have frozen the tax rate, preventing it from decreasing in the future with rising values, thus taking tens of millions of dollars from Utahns that otherwise would remain in their pockets.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill, as we oppose all tax increases. The state already takes plenty of money from taxpayers, and adding to that burden is the wrong direction to go.

This bill passed the Senate 16-12 but did not receive a House vote. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB12Age Limit for Tobacco and Related Products

This bill would have prohibited the possession of tobacco, e-cigarettes, or paraphernalia by an individual less than 21 years of age. It also would have banned the sale of such items to those under 21, and prohibited those under 21 from being present at certain establishments where such items are sold or used.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Legal adults—those 18 years of age and older—should not be prohibited by law from purchasing legal products. If 18 year olds can be sent to war, they should be legally able to smoke.

This bill failed in the Senate 12-16. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB148Upstart Program Amendments

This bill extends the UPSTART program, a taxpayer-funded program whereby parents of preschool-age children can obtain free access to a private company's internet-based educational tools.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. Many free or paid tools exist for parents to use to educate their children, and taxpayers should therefore not be compelled to pay for the offerings of one private company. Should parents be interested in this company's services, they should be required to pay for them themselves.

This bill passed the House 52-21 and passed the Senate 26-1. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB167Regulation of Drones

This bill restricted the ability of law enforcement officials in Utah to use drones for investigations and prosecutions.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. While we are excited by the economic development potential that drones present, we firmly believe that police officials should be limited in their ability to surveil citizens.

This bill passed the Senate unanimously and passed the House 67-5. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB185Law Enforcement Transparency

This bill collects annual information from law enforcement agencies regarding SWAT deployments as well as forcible entries (e.g. home raids). 16 separate points of data will be collected regarding each incident, and the data will be summarized and published openly for policy makers and the public to review.

Libertas Institute supports this bill. Government transparency is important on issues affecting life, liberty, and property—and because law enforcement officers can and do use lethal force, it's imperative to have transparent access to data so that legislators and the public at large can be assured that this authority is being properly used.

This bill passed the Senate 22-2 and passed the House unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB253Distracted Driver Amendments

This bill prohibited the use of cell phones while driving except for talking, using a voice-activated feature such as the iPhone's Siri, or using it for GPS.

Libertas Institute opposed this bill. The government should rely on more general reckless driving prohibitions, or simply increase penalties after an accident if the driver was distracted by a cell phone, rather than micro-managing the specific activities that may be done while driving. To be consistent, this policy would be expanded to prohibit other things like eating, applying makeup, or adjusting the radio while driving—all things we would likewise oppose.

This bill passed the Senate 17-8 and passed the House 41-28. Libertas supports a "nay" vote.
SB256Asset Forfeiture Amendments

This bill reverted substantive changes made to forfeiture law last year. These changes were packed in a bill that was voted on unanimously by the legislature who was told that it was a simple re-codification bill, when it actually was not.

Libertas Institute supports this bill. Our policy analysis brought to light these key changes, which the bill corrected to restore due process and property rights protections.

This bill passed both the Senate and House unanimously. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
SB39Home School Amendments

This bill deregulated homeschooling law in Utah, removing an annual requirement for an affidavit signed by parents and repealing requirements regarding the subject and hours taught to each homeschooled child.

Libertas Institute supported this bill. We supports efforts that recognize and protect parental stewardship in determining how best to educate one's child.

This bill passed the Senate 22-5 and passed the House 52-17. Libertas supports a "yea" vote.
2014 Rating
Adams, J. S. (R)xNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesYesYesNoxx45%
Bramble, C. (R)YesNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesxYesxNoYesYes61%
Christensen, A. (R)YesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesYesYesYesNoNoYesxNoYesYes58%
Dabakis, J. (D)YesNoNoYesYesxNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesxNoYesNo50%
Davis, G. (D)YesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoYesNo50%
Dayton, M. (R)YesNoYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes90%
Escamilla, L. (D)YesNoNoYesYesxYesNoxYesNoYesYesNoxYesYesxYesx67%
Harper, W. (R)YesNoYesYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesNoNoNoYesYesxYesYes68%
Henderson, D. (R)YesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYes72%
Hillyard, L. (R)YesNoNoYesYesxYesxYesYesYesYesxNoNoYesxxYesYes73%
Hinkins, D. (R)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesNoYesYesNoxYes63%
Jenkins, S. (R)YesNoYesYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesNoNoNoYesNoYesYesYes65%
Jones, P. (D)YesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNo45%
Knudson, P. (R)YesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes55%
Madsen, M. (L)YesYesYesYesYesxYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYes95%
Mayne, K. (D)YesNoNoYesNoxYesNoNoYesNoYesYesYesNoYesYesNoYesNo53%
Niederhauser, W. (R)xNoYesYesxNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes50%
Okerlund, R. (R)YesxxxNoxxNoNoxxxNoNoNoYesYesNoYesYes42%
Osmond, A. (R)YesYesYesYesNoNoYesNoNoxNoNoNoNoYesYesNoYes47%
Reid, S. (R)xNoYesYesYesNoYesNoNoxxYesNoNoYesYesYesYesYes57%
Shiozawa, B. (R)YesNoNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoNoYesYesNoYesNo50%
Stephenson, H. (R)YesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesYes94%
Stevenson, J. (R)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesxNoYesNoYesNoYesNoYesxxxYes56%
Thatcher, D. (R)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoxNoYesYesYesYesYes58%
Urquhart, S. (R)YesYesNoYesYesNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesNoYesYesYesYes58%
Valentine, J. (R)YesNoNoYesNoxYesNoYesYesYesYesNoYesNoYesYesNoxYes61%
Van Tassell, K. (R)YesNoxYesNoNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoYesYes53%
Vickers, E. (R)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesxYesYesYesNoYesYesNoYesYesYesYesYes74%
Weiler, T. (R)YesNoYesYesNoNoYesNoNoYesNoYesNoYesNoYesYesNoYesYes55%

Note: Like any legislative index, this one is based on a limited sampling of an elected official's voting record. It is important to do your own in-depth research when determining whether or not to support a candidate for office and consider other factors, including unreported committee or subcommittee service and constituent interaction.

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