Libertas Legislation Tracker

Out of the 800+ bills introduced each year, Libertas Institute highlights those that have a particular interest to our mission.

NOTE: New bills are regularly added, and as the session progresses we will update the status of each bill here on the Tracker. Check back often!

Key: Libertas supports the bill Libertas opposes the bill     Libertas considers these bills its top priority for the session

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 rows in the table below to see a summary of what it is and why we support or oppose it. Click any table cell in the header to re-sort the entire table.

Proposed bills

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Bill Title Sponsor LI's position Status Votes Actions
School Absenteeism and Truancy Amendments

This bill makes some minor changes to school truancy, but also ensures that schools can only impose administrative penalties on truant children who are in grade 7 or above, exempting out younger children. The bill also narrows an existing crime for parents to allow their children to be truant, instead limiting it to cases where the truant child is in grade 1 through 6, ensuring parents are not criminalized for their older truant children.

Libertas supports this bill. We consider this an incremental improvement to the current law, to improve parental rights.

Snow, V. L.SupportPending committee actionEmail your Senator/RepEmail the committee
Abuse, Neglect, and Dependency Proceedings Amendments

This bill limits the cases in which the government can seek to permanently terminate a parent's rights with respect to their children.

Libertas supports this bill. Termination of parental rights is a very serious government action and should follow due process and only be used as an absolute last resort.

Lisonbee, K.SupportPending committee actionEmail your Senator/RepEmail the committee
Distracted Driver Amendments

This bill would criminalize the "manual manipulation," or holding, of a cell phone while operating a vehicle. The offense would be an infraction.

Libertas opposes this bill. Criminally punishing any manipulation of a phone is unnecessarily excessive and a significant over-criminalization of an activity that is not inherently dangerous. People "manipulate" their car dashboard, their makeup, their food, and other things that are not criminalized; merely pressing something on your phone should not be.

Moss, C.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
911 Responsibilities in an Emergency

This bill criminalizes the failure to call 911 during a crime or emergency in which somebody is suffering serious bodily injury.

Libertas opposes this bill. Allowing a prosecutor to later seek punishment for a person who made a bad moral judgment, but who did not necessarily intend to aid in the continued injury of the person, is a bad policy decision that unnecessarily criminalizes Utahns who find themselves in such a circumstance.

King, Brian S.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Universal Background Checks for Firearm Purchasers

This bill requires background checks be conducted on all firearm sales, except when a firearm is transferred between family members or to a law enforcement agency, or other minor exceptions.

Libertas opposes this bill. Currently Utahs may privately sell firearms to one another without the bureaucratic overhead imposed by the federal government. This bill would discourage private sales by imposing this burden, and it also inconsistently targets firearms, but not other dangerous weapons.

King, Brian S.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Dangerous Weapon Custodian Liability

This bill makes a firearm owner liable for damage caused by their firearm if they share it with another person who they should have known was an "unfit individual," who then uses the firearm to cause personal injury or property damage.

Libertas opposes this bill. Culpability for using a weapon to harm somebody should rest with the person who commits the harmful act, and not on the person who loaned the weapon when they had no intention to support the use of the firearm in a criminal act.

Stoddard, A.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Controlled Substance Database Amendments

This bill removes a requirement for police officers to obtain a warrant before accessing a person's prescription drug history.

Libertas opposes this bill. Law enforcement should have the same restrictions on this digital data as they would if they wanted to look into a person's physical medicine cabinet at home: they should have to get a warrant.

Brooks, W.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Rent Control Jurisdiction Amendments

This bill would allow local governments to create "rent control" laws that arbitrarily impose price restrictions on the cost of renting property.

Libertas opposes this bill. Rental prices should be subject only to market forces as a private contractual matter between landlord and renter. The government's intervention into this relationship would be arbitrary and distort the market unnecessarily.

Dailey-Provost, J.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Higher Education Student Speech Rights

This bill makes sure that free speech is protected on taxpayer-funded college campuses by making sure that the institution cannot prohibit speech that is not discriminatory harassment and by giving the student a cause of action to challenge a restriction of his or her speech.

Libertas supports this bill. The free exchange of ideas, including controversial ones, is an important aspect of education, especially when coercively funded by taxpayers.

Coleman, K.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Trail Improvement Amendments

This bill would expand the government's power of eminent domain to take a person's property for the purposes of creating a public trail.

Libertas Institute opposes this bill. The government should not be able to take a person's property against their wishes to give other people the ability to walk or bike along it on a trail that is not essential.

Winder, M.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Raw Milk Products Amendments

This bill expands the current raw milk law to include cream and butter in addition to milk as an option for consumers to buy.

Libertas supports this bill. It is a reasonable extension of the current law, and informed consumers should be able to buy raw milk products.

Coleman, K.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Safe Storage of Firearms Amendments

This bill would create a criminal penalty for gun owners who do not securely store their firearms in the home so minors may not access them.

Libertas opposes this bill. There are many cases when minors have successfully used firearms in self defense to repel home invaders. Responsible education is key, but it is improper to criminally punish parents whose responsible children understand how and when to use a family firearm in defense.

Weight, E.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Employment Selection Procedures Act Amendments

This bill would prohibit a company from seeking any information regarding a job applicant's past compensation history.

Libertas opposes this bill. Employers take many factors into their consideration of whether to hire an applicant. Past compensation is one such factor that an at-will employer should have the ability to determine; criminalizing their access to the information is unnecessary.

Wheatley, M.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Driver License Suspension Amendments

This bill prohibits driver license suspensions for failure to pay court debt, and failure to appear in many non-driving related offenses.

Libertas supports this bill. If a person fails to pay the fine or appear in court, a warrant should be sufficient in getting them to do so. Taking away their ability to legally drive imposes needless harm on the individual that often is far harsher than the penalty for the underlying crime itself.

Maloy, A.C.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Tinted Vehicle Windows Amendments

This bill lowers the allowed vehicle tint for the front two vehicle windows from 43% to 25% light transmittance, letting Utahns drive with slightly stronger window tint.

Libertas supports this bill. Utahns should not be criminalized for wanting to reduce the light or heat entering their vehicle.

Lyman, P.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Vehicle Emissions Reduction Program

This bill creates a "Cash for Clunkers" program in Utah, giving out taxpayer-funded checks of up to $5,500 to purchase a new vehicle.

Libertas opposes this bill. While cleaner air is an important goal, paying people with taxpayer money to get newer cars is an improper use of government spending.

Stenquist, J.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Driver License Record Amendments

This bill prevents the Driver License Division from sharing a person's information with the University of Utah for research unless the person consents.

Libertas supports this bill. Individuals have the right to determine who their personal information is shared with and used by.

Lisonbee, K.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Eminent Domain Limitations

This bill would prevent eminent domain for generational family farms in Salt Lake County if the eminent domain taking is for a public park.

Libertas supports this bill. Property deserves protection from government takings that are not necessary.

Pulsipher, S.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Local Government Nuisance Ordinance Reform

This bill stops the criminalization of ordinance violations on residential property that do not cause a nuisance to neighbors.

Libertas supports this bill. The proposal will help balance the safety of the community while prioritizing individual property rights.

Moss, J.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Bail and Pretrial Release Amendments

The bill reinforces Utahn's presumption of innocence by reforming pretrial release practices.

Libertas supports this bill. The purpose of bail is to ensure a person charged with a crime will show up for their court date. But cash bail has not always been an effective or fair way of accomplishing this. This bill takes the state in a better direction.

Pitcher, S.SupportIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
Safety Inspections on Secondhand Vehicles

We previously helped persuade legislators to repeal the mandatory vehicle safety inspection. This bill restores inspections for used motor vehicles sold by a dealer.

Libertas opposes this bill. There is no evidence that these mandatory inspections will lead to fewer vehicle safety fatalities. The Legislature was right to use data to repeal the program and would be wrong to incrementally chip away at those reforms.

Riebe, K.OpposePending committee actionEmail your Senator/RepEmail the committee
Affordable Housing Amendments

This bill allocates 30 million taxpayer dollars, and 10 million dollars every year in the future, to be spent on subsidizing "affordable housing" for individuals who qualify.

Libertas opposes this bill. Redistribution of wealth is not a proper role of government, and while we are sympathetic to the financial burden caused by rising housing costs, it is improper for taxpayers to foot the bill to subsidize a preferred lifestyle by those who would receive such funds.

Anderegg, J.OpposePending committee actionEmail your Senator/RepEmail the committee
Motion Picture Incentives Amendments

This bill increases the cash rebates and tax incentives that can be given to film companies.

Libertas opposes this bill. Local companies should not be increasingly disadvantaged against outside competitors who simply engage in some basic video editing or other similar work.

Thatcher, D.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor
License Plate Position Amendments

This bill makes the failure to have a front license plate a primary offense, allowing law enforcement to pull you over and give you a ticket.

Libertas opposes this bill. We favor legislation that repeals the requirement to have a front license plate, as one is sufficient for identification by law enforcement. Further, the widespread non-compliance with the current law gives far too broad of discretion to the government to begin enforcing this as a primary offense to pull people over and potentially cause other altercations.

Sandall, S.OpposeIntroducedEmail your Senator/RepEmail the bill sponsor

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