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A Little Herb Gets Caught In A Big Fight Over the Endangered Species Act

MILFORD, Utah — The San Francisco Mountains in southwestern Utah were once home to one of the richest silver mines in the world. When it comes to mining today, they stand mostly quiet — for now — with only a handful of rock mines operating in the area.

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Welcome back to another session of the Utah Legislature … and another season of 45 Days!

Cory Dinter for KUER

A House committee voted Wednesday to hold a bill that would hold firearm owners liable if they lend out a weapon that is used in a crime.

Austen Diamond / KUER

Republican state lawmakers advanced a controversial bill on Wednesday to ban abortions after 18 weeks, despite concerns over potential — and costly — litigation.

The Office of Government Ethics just released guidelines for federal employees during government shutdowns, about three weeks after the government reopened.

 


Photo of Kunz.
Rocio Hernandez / KUER

Along with the state’s expanding population, Utah’s student enrollment continues to grow. But K-12 education funding is not keeping up with that growth or inflation, according to a report from a children’s advocacy organization.

Gage Skidmore / Flickr Creative Commons

The conservative sportsmens’ group Hunter Nation is offering people the chance to go elk hunting in Utah with President Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr.

Photo of lab.
iStock.com / Davizro

The Utah State Board of Education has released a draft of new science education standards for elementary and high school students. KUER’s Rocio Hernandez spoke with Ricky Scott, the board’s science specialist, who explained that for some of these standards, it will be their first update in 17 years.

Photo of a stairway at Arches National Park
Judy Fahys / KUER

Congress is dusting off last year’s plan to chip away at the rising maintenance and repair to-do list for the nation’s federal public lands.

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An assault against a Salt Lake City man over the weekend for being gay is drawing attention to what’s at stake for hate crime legislation in Utah.

Photo of a snow-covered lake.
Gary Henrie / U.S. Bureau of Reclamation

Utah’s water picture looks bright so far this year — a big snowpack is just one reason why — and forecasters say the stormy trend is likely to continue.

Andrea Hunziker of Lehi
Julia Ritchey / KUER

The Utah House Judiciary Committee was already stretching into its third hour of a hearing on Friday evening when Andrea Hunziker came up to testify in support of H.B. 253, a bill that could broaden the use of electronic monitoring on defendants charged with domestic violence.

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RadioWest

The Real Causes Of Depression

Johann Hari traveled around the world to find out why people are so depressed these days. He found evidence for nine causes of depression and anxiety, and he says he has some ideas for fixing them.

Podcast: 45 Days

Photo of bees at capitol.
Renee Bright / KUER

A year after a high school shooting in Parkland, Fla., Utah lawmakers from both parties are pushing a slate of school safety and gun reform measures this session. But the Republican supermajority hasn’t been too eager to debate many of these proposals, including a controversial “red flag” law. This week, we discuss the status of gun bills this year and talk to a local March for Our Lives activist about what’s changed — and what hasn’t — since the Parkland massacre. To inject some levity, we also investigate the not-so-secret circus past of one Republican lawmaker.

Click here for more from "45 Days"

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NPR News

In the days after Superstorm Sandy soaked the East Coast, New York City Department of Transportation workers cataloged the damage to the agency's fleet of vehicles. That information was handed over to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which would give the city enough money to replace the damaged vehicles with new ones.

Only one problem: Many of those vehicles were damaged before Sandy hit. Some hadn't been operational in years, and had been marked for salvage long before the storm.

Updated at 8:56 p.m. ET

Empire actor Jussie Smollett is being charged with disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a false police report about being attacked on the street, Chicago police said Wednesday.

Talks between U.S. and Chinese trade negotiators continue this week in Washington, after discussions last week in Beijing did not yield a deal. Higher level meetings are slated to begin Thursday and continue through the end of the week.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer will meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He to continue the negotations.

On Tuesday, President Trump called the talks "very complex."

"I think the talks are going very well," he told reporters.

Three parliamentarians from Britain's ruling Conservative Party are breaking from the ranks to join the Independent Group, a centrist coalition started on Monday by defectors from the opposition Labour party.

The three lawmakers, who are all women, announced their split from the Conservatives in a letter addressed to Prime Minister Theresa May. They said the party had moved too far to the right, especially in its handling of Brexit.

Teenager Nicholas Sandmann's family is suing The Washington Post, saying it targeted the Covington Catholic High School student and defamed him for political purposes when it reported on a January encounter on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial between Sandmann and Native American activist Nathan Phillips.

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