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Photo of the lead actor in "The Killing of Two Lovers" film standing outside in front of a red truck and a pile of branches on the ground.
Courtesy of "The Killing of Two Lovers" film team

Since Robert Machoian moved to Utah four years ago, he said he’s been thinking a lot about moral conflicts. That is, he’s become increasingly aware of how people navigate wanting to do the right thing and living according to their values, but so often run into challenges as they confront others who don’t share their view of the world.

Illustration of 2020 shaped glasses with a podium and ballot reflected in the lenses.
Renee Bright / KUER

Impeachment. A pivotal presidential election. The 2020 Census. Tax reform. And … The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City. Along with the perennial topics of growth, environment and healthcare, those are a few of the stories — big and small — we’ll be following this year. Here are 10 other stories to watch for 2020.

Photo of construction equipment destructing part of the Salt Lake Temple building that's being renovated.
Intellectual Reserve, Inc.

With January coming to a close, KUER religion reporter Lee Hale spoke with Host Caroline Ballard to recap some of the biggest stories of the month involving The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Mormon Faith.

Photo of the rotunda of the Utah State Capitol building.
Austen Diamond for KUER

Updated 6:13 p.m. MST, 1/28/2020

Six weeks after passing a contentious tax reform bill in a special session, Utah lawmakers repealed it Tuesday under threat of a referendum. Gov. Gary Herbert signed the repeal Tuesday evening. 

Photo of cattle grazing.
Courtesy of Utah Bureau of Land Management

The Trump administration has spent the past month announcing sweeping changes that could benefit ranchers on public lands, including a proposal to overhaul grazing regulations for the first time in 25 years. 

Photo looking down at the House floor where Brad Wilson addresses representatives.
Nicole Nixon

It didn’t take long for House Speaker Brad Wilson to address what he called “the elephant, or to be bipartisan, donkey in the room.” 

Photo of a man lying on a bed wearing brightly patterned clothes.
From "Film About a Father Who"

Park City got a glimpse into the complicated personal life of a local legend Friday. The flamboyant developer and entrepreneur Ira Sachs Sr. is profiled in a documentary that premiered opening night of the Slamdance Film Festival. 

A water tank sits behind a chain-link fence, marked with a logo depicting a Native American man in a headdress.
David Fuchs / KUER

CEDAR CITY — A Utah lawmaker is catching heat over a proposed resolution that discourages abandoning the use of Native American names, images and symbols.

Photo of a woman speaking at the forum.
Rocio Hernandez

Over the last 10 years, more college students nationwide have reported feeling depressed, hopeless and angry, said Dr. David Reetz with the Association for University and College Counseling Center Directors. Reetz was the keynote speaker at Utah’s first Student Safety Forum focused on colleges and universities.

An artistic rendering of the dinosaur.
Todd Marshall

What has sharp teeth, big, recurved claws, and is almost as long as a school bus?

A well pad and access roads seen from above
Kate Groetzinger / KUER

BLUFF – An application to drill for oil and gas on public land near the Navajo Nation in San Juan County has residents worried about their water supply. 

Government building - lighted in the morning.
Elaine Clark / KUER

Updated 4:47 p.m. MST 1/23/2020

Confronted by the possibility of a referendum against a tax reform law approved in a December special session, Republican leaders announced Thursday they will repeal the controversial measure.

Photo of large pile of material to be recycled.
Jon Reed / KUER

Utah has a recycling problem: we're not very good at it.

That was easy to see while walking among the crowded conveyor belts and mountains of trash on a recent tour of the Waste Management Material Recovery Facility (MRF) in West Jordan.

Photo of the Tooele County District Court building.
Google Street View

Not much is known yet about the motives behind the shooting last weekend in Grantsville. The suspect though is 16-year-old Collin Haynie, accused of killing his mother and three of his siblings in their family home. 

The winner of a marathon crosses the finish line and breaks the ribbon.
Courtesy of the City of St. George

St. GEORGE — This city has managed its namesake marathon for the past four decades. But now, for the first time, officials here are asking whether a private contractor may be a better way to go.

Photo of the U.S. Capitol building as viewed from the Senate side.
iStock

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney is among a small group of Republican senators that could hold the key to how the Senate impeachment trial plays out.

Photo of people in snow gear digging
Nate Hegyi / Mountain West News Bureau

On a frigid Tuesday evening, Brent Yatkeman is scrambling to save an avalanche victim buried in the snow somewhere on a ski hill near Park City, Utah. 

Photo of air pollution
Brian Albers / KUER

Earlier this month, Utah researchers unveiled their plan to help the state fight climate change. They called it the Utah Roadmap and laid out seven key “mileposts” the state should pass to improve air quality and address the impacts of climate change.

Rep. Craig Hall on the floor of the Utah House of Representatives.
Cory Dinter for KUER

Information from popular at-home DNA test kits are increasingly being used by police to identify suspects as part of an emerging trend in criminal investigations.

Photo of Utah valley.
Sonja Hutson / KUER

Speaking before the Silicon Slopes Tech Summit in 2018, Gov. Gary Herbert hailed the Utah tech industry’s contribution to the state.

Photo of a family hugging with balloons and flowers.
Rocio Hernandez / KUER

Imelda Vasquez’s heart first broke 38 years ago.

That’s when her younger brother, Raul, left their native Michoacan in central Mexico to find a better paying job in the United States. He left behind his children who Vasquez, now 62, raised as her own.

Women in bright dresses with pieces of metal sewn on dance in front of a courthouse
Sonja Hutson / KUER

PROVO — Growing up as a young Navajo girl here, Erin Tapahe would get upset that every time she left the house, her parents fell into the same routine.

Police tape at a crime scene
Tony Webster / Flickr

This is a developing story

Police in Tooele County have arrested a boy suspected of killing four members of a family in their Grantsvillle home Friday. 

Photo of the Colorado Springs skyline.
Jasen Miller / Flickr

Note: KRCC is a member of the Mountain West News Bureau. In order to avoid a potential conflict of interest, this story was overseen by an outside editor.

Colorado Public Radio has signed a new agreement with Colorado College to help operate one of the state’s largest public radio stations, KRCC, an NPR member station based in Colorado Springs. 

An illustration showing images of condoms in a pink background.
iStock

On Wednesday, a new HIV prevention campaign was quickly shut down by Gov. Gary Herbert. The problem? Condoms with suggestive state-themed phrases — like “Greatest Sex on Earth” and “Explore Utah’s Caves.” The Utah Department of Health apologized and said it is re-evaluating. KUER’s Caroline Ballard spoke with Christy Porucznik, an associate professor at the University of Utah’s School of Medicine, who has also worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Utah Department of Health. 

Photo of a sign that reads "open house" on a front lawn.
Brian Albers / KUER

2020 marks the ninth year of Utah’s economic expansion. And with it comes a lot of benefits, like near record-low unemployment and more economic opportunity, according to James Wood, a senior fellow at the University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. 

Photo of dogs pulling a sled in the snow.
Brian Albers / KUER

The excited barks and whines of more than a dozen sled dogs get louder as Fernando Ramirez and his team of mushers prepare their sleds on a snowy afternoon in the Utah mountains.

Photo of Erin Mendenhall making the announcement outside.
Nicole Nixon / KUER

On the 11th day of her term as Salt Lake City Mayor, Erin Mendenhall fulfilled a campaign promise by announcing that a city-owned building in Sugar House will house 145 emergency beds for homeless residents.

Headshot of Rob Bishop in front of an American flag.
Wikimedia Commons

Former Utah Republican Party Chair Thomas Wright announced Thursday that Utah Congressman Rob Bishop is joining his ticket as a candidate for lieutenant governor. 

A city of white buildings is shown in the distance, sitting between red rock canyons and desert.
Kelsie Moore / KUER

The St. George Metropolitan Area has ranked among the fastest-growing areas in the country for decades. But now, there are signs of a slowdown.

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