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Gov. Spencer Cox says it’s time to get to work to support Utah families

Cox State of the State
Laura Seitz, Deseret News
Deseret News
Gov. Spencer Cox delivers his State of the State address in the Utah House chamber at the Capitol in Salt Lake City on Thursday, Jan. 20, 2022.

In his second State of the State address, Gov. Spencer Cox said for Utah to accomplish its goals, it has to get to work.

“Real work. Hard work,” Cox said. “And I don’t want to waste a single moment.”

The governor put a lot of emphasis on supporting families and children. One way is a $970 million investment in education funding and support for legislation that removes school fees for students.

“A child’s zip code should never determine their future or their opportunities,” Cox said.

He also touched on issues related to growth, like water conservation, affordable housing and infrastructure needs.

“Our goal should never be to grow for growth’s sake,” he said. “We must prioritize a quality of life that all Utahns can enjoy.”

While the Legislature has turned some of its attention to election integrity by approving an audit of the state’s elections systems, Cox pushed back against people who are promoting ideas that undermine confidence in elections.

“Unfortunately, some in our country have found that unsubstantiated claims and flat-out lies are an effective way to destabilize our constitutional republic and make it harder for their opponents to participate and vote,” he said. “Voting security must never be about making it harder for legal voters to vote.”

In their response to Cox’s speech, Democratic leaders called on the state to make big investments in affordable housing, education and infrastructure.

But they did side with Cox in condemning those who push election conspiracies.

“Utahns want their elections to be fair, secure and accessible, not needlessly and falsely maligned,” said Sen. Karen Mayne, D-West Valley. “We urge the governor and our legislative colleagues to take a stand against the extremist voices of a fringe minority and work with us.”

Emily Means is a government and politics reporter at KUER.
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