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PM News Brief: Elk Poaching, Affordable Housing Fund & Full-Time Firefighters

Photo of an elk
Neal Herbert
National Park Service
Six adult bull elk — five of them trophy size — were shot and left to waste near Park City between December and January.";s:

Monday evening, Mar. 2, 2020


Abortion Ban Passes Utah Senate

The Utah Senate passed a bill Monday that would ban elective abortions if Roe v. Wade is overturned. The bill exempts abortions in cases of rape, incest, if the mother’s life is at risk or the fetus has a lethal defect. People who perform abortions made illegal under the bill would be charged with a second degree felony. It still needs approval from the House of Representatives, which it’s expected to get. Read the full story. — Sonja Hutson

Challenging ADA Compliance Violations

People with complaints about Americans with Disabilities Act violations could soon have another way to handle them besides legal action. Under current law, the only way to report an ADA violation is through a federal lawsuit. But a bill that passed the Utah House Monday would give people the *option* to personally reach out to a business about problems with ADA access. — Jessica Lowell

Super Tuesday Eve In Utah

Bernie Sanders focused on President Donald Trump and his own progressive message on Monday even as his moderate Democratic rivals began to line up behind former Vice President Joe Biden. Sanders rallied at the Utah State Fairpark hours after rival Amy Klobuchar made what turned out to be her last speech as a presidential candidate at another Salt Lake City venue. Shortly after she left the city, campaign staffers said she is dropping out and plans to endorse Biden. Sanders won Utah's 2016 Democratic primary in a landslide, and is considered the front runner on Super Tuesday. — Associated Press


First Cannabis Pharmacy Open

Utah’s first medical cannabis pharmacy is now officially open for business. Dragonfly Wellness in Salt Lake City became the first of 14 approved pharmacies to start selling medical cannabis when it opened Monday. Two more pharmacies are expected to open by early April, with most others up and running by July. Read the full story. — Jon Reed

Affordable Housing Fund Established

A new fund created by community organizations and businesses aims to preserve affordable housing in Utah. The Utah Preservation Fund will be managed by the Utah Nonprofit Housing Corporation, and its first goal is to preserve 100 of Utah’s most affordable housing units with a $20 million initiative. The fund is a partnership of the Clark and Christine Ivory Foundation, Intermountain Healthcare, Utah Nonprofit Housing Corporation and Zions Bank. — Caroline Ballard

Elk Poaching Incident

The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is looking for information on the poaching of six adult bull elk near Park City. Between December and January, six animals were shot and left to waste — five of them trophy size. Each of those trophy animals has a restitution value of $8,000. — Caroline Ballard


Full-Time Wildfire Fighters

The U.S. Forest Service says it might be time to rethink how it employs firefighters. In a hearing of the House Interior and Environment Appropriations Subcommittee, agency Chief Vicki Christiansen said the agency is considering shifting from a seasonal workforce to a full-time fire fighting operation. Christiansen said there are no longer fire seasons. Instead, she said we have fire years. — Maggie Mullen, Mountain West News Bureau

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