Daily Fix, May 9

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Weekend Roundup:

*Our very own Representative Holly Richardson talks about being the mother of 24 on a special day like Mother’s Day. ABC4

*The Utah Legislature overturned Governor Herbert’s veto of the their bill to return state offices to 5-day workweeks. Deseret News

*CNN has taken notice of Representative Chaffetz’s campaign to get out of Afghanistan. CNN

*The Wall Street Journal opined on Utah’s immigration reform. Wall Street Journal

*The Salt Lake Tribune ran its opinion on Sunday that in lean times, when families and businesses have to cut back, the government should grow grow grow. SL Tribune The paper takes issue with Senator Hatch’s recent legislation to allow states to cut back on Medicaid benefits, and praises the Utah Legislature for cutting Medicaid costs through better purchases of healthcare services rather than reducing coverage.

Today’s News:

*Here’s another non-announcement announcement – this time from Newt Gingrich. NRO Gingrich Twitter Feed

*The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit will hear oral argument on The Affordable Care Act on Tuesday. The Court will hear arguments on two contradictory district court rulings on the constitutionality of the insurance mandate. New York Times An audio link will be available here at 2:00 p.m. The cases will likely end up in front of the Supreme Court.

*District Court Judge Clark Waddoups is set to hear argument on Tuesday about whether HB497, Utah’s enforcement-only immigration legislation, is constitutional. SL Trib The legislation is set to take effect at midnight. Representative Stephen Sandstrom, who sponsored the bill, is confident that it will be upheld.

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7 Responses to “Daily Fix, May 9”

  1. Sue Connor Says:

    Still waiting and hoping for a reply from Holly about the data justifying the cost of the return to a 5 day work week. It is not accounted for in the 2011 budget.

    “The only issue here was that the Legislature failed to pay for it; there was no funding for this bill,” Herbert said. “But there is a $790,000 price tag for turning on the lights and opening the doors an additional day. Regardless of the override, they are still going to have to pay for the expanded Friday services.” Deseret News 5/7/11

    Likewise the cost of the special session on 5/7/11.

    (Senate Majority Leader Scott) Jenkins acknowledged the extra day of the override session cost taxpayers money, but said for political reasons, the vote had to be taken now. “It’s called momentum. When you’ve got the momentum, you have to go with it,” Jenkins said. “You learn down here when you’ve got the votes, you’ve got to move with it. We had the votes now.” Deseret News 5/7/11

    Since when does “momentum” have anything to do with voter choice or fiscal responsibility? It does not justify a $7-10,000 cost for a quick vote on an issue that citizens did not have sufficient time to provide input due to the fact that they were informed that the issue was put to rest by Senator Waddoups.

    “We worked out good solutions on three of the four bills,” Senate President Michael Waddoups, R-Taylorsville, said. “We’ve got to give him (Herbert) credit for solving problems.” Deseret News 4/29/11

    Voters deserve a better explanation for the rapid change of opinion and the cost of this override during such tough economic times in our state.

  2. JBT Says:

    Holly, did you even read the Trib article that you provided a link to?

    Here is the germane point the editorial was trying to get across.

    “The key, though, is not to cut more of the least of these out of the programs, but to get tough with health care providers, drug companies and others and push them to provide medical services, no matter who pays for them, in more intelligent, less costly, ways.”

    In tough economic times, there are more among those who are the least fortunate who can’t afford the necessities of food, shelter, and health care. The solution is not to provide less help for those who need it the most. The solution is to find ways to make the dollars required go farther and help more people.

  3. Michelle Q. Mumford Says:

    JBT,

    I provided the link – not Holly – and yes I did read the article. That’s why I ended the update noting that the editorial praised the Legislature for reducing costs by making better choices regarding health services as opposed to cutting those services. I thought I was clear in supporting that proposition – I’m sorry if I wasn’t.

    Regards,
    Michelle Mumford

  4. Jacob Says:

    Holly, Can you point us to some more information about the discrepancy between the supposed 800K cost and the supposed net zero affect?

    While I don’t exactly understand the bill’s effects yet, from what I have heard is that departments will get to choose to keep the extended hours of the 4 day work week, so that people can still access the government outside of regular work weeks, but that the departments will also be open on Friday.

    My interpretation of this is that many departments will now be open longer than they were prior to the 4 day work week, and longer than they are currently. If that is the case, even if each employee works for only 40 hours a week, wouldn’t the overhead be more expensive?

    I am not trying to be combative, but the “we didn’t get any money back from the governor when we moved to a 4 day work week, so it won’t cost anything to go back” argument doesn’t make complete sense here, as it sounds like we aren’t just moving back to how it was before.

    Also, can you verify how much the Saturday session will have cost the state, in order to ensure the “momentum” was kept?

  5. JBT Says:

    Sorry, Michelle. Your inaccuracy in reporting the facts made me think you were Holly. You can’t deny that you wrote the Tribune editorial said the government should “grow, grow, grow”. That is nonsense. Hence my question of whether you read the editorial you linked to. Perhaps it would have been better to ask if you understood the editorial.

  6. Michelle Q. Mumford Says:

    Geez JBT. I understand you now.

    “In slow times, when people are short on cash and don’t have enough to spend on the necessities of life, from food to health care, government often has to grow.”

  7. hollyonthehill Says:

    I’ve already addressed the 4-day work week. The fiscal analysts on the original bill said the fiscal impact was zero. As in no cost. They have not changed their stance. And JBT, knock it off.

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