We reached the halfway point of the 2022 Legislative Session this week, and much debate was had in committees. Also, the legislature passed another tax cut with a historic inclusion of the earned income tax credit (EITC) for Utah. Derek Miller, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber, published an op-ed this week on our need for a Utah EITC. This was included in the 4th substitute of SB 59, Tax Amendments, and Governor Cox has pledged to signthe bill into law.
Committees discussed some important bills from the Chamber’s legislative watchlistwith substitutes and amendments taking shape to polish language for potential passage.
The Senate Economic Development and Workforce Services Committee debated SB 175, Daylight Saving Time Modifications. After much discussion about going to work in the dark and the merits of permanent standard time, the Chair moved to table the bill and not advance it to the Senate floor.
The House Business and Labor Committee discussed HB 243, Regulatory Sandbox Program Amendments, and received a favorable recommendation on the second substitute and will be read for a third time. This bill would expand the sandbox to include financial and insurance products.
The House Revenue and Taxation Committee debated Rep. Christofferson’s bill HB 262, Incentives Amendments, with public opposition coming from the Tax Commission, Salt Lake Chamber, Go Utah and other stakeholders. The bill was held, and legislators decided to study incentives and alignment over interim sessions. There was broad agreement not to disarm ourselves since other states offer incentives and that research and development are mobile as with capital.
Senator Fillmore’s bill SB 93, Business Tax Amendments, was heard in the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee, and a first substitute was passed with a favorable recommendation to be read for a second time.
The House Public Utilities, Energy, and Technology Committee heard Rep. Handy’s bill HB 280, Cybersecurity Commission, which will study the state’s vulnerabilities and report best practices in committee yearly. The first substitute received a favorable recommendation and will be presented for a third reading.
The House Natural Resources, Agriculture, and Environment Committee discussed several bills related to our water challenges. The committee moved HB 240, Utah Lake Amendments, 1st. Substitute forward for a final reading. HB 242,Secondary Water Metering Amendments, was advanced likewise for final review before heading to a House vote. The other water bill making progress was HB 282, Water Wise Landscaping Amendments.
Two bills of note tackling digital innovation and working to make the state a leader on this front were SB 182, Digital Asset Amendments, which made it through Rules and will move to the Business and Labor Committee, and HB 335, Blockchain and Digital Innovation Task Force, which was sent to the House Public Utilities, Energy, and Technology Committee for debate.
Also worth mentioning, the Chamber is checking business interests on the 10k cap for state and local tax deductions limit, known as the SALT deduction cap.
Lastly, thank you for everyone’s participation in the Capitol Club, where we discuss critical issues and strategize on priorities.
We will continue to keep you informed weekly and encourage your input. Again, continue to check our legislative watchlist for the big picture view on the scope of our advocacy efforts on your behalf.
During the legislative session, the Salt Lake Chamber Board of Directors designates top priorities of the business community as Priority Votes. The Chamber’s Priority Votes are considered the most critical bills during the legislative session and are used to determine the Chamber’s Business Champion Awards. Below are the most recently declared priority votes.
HB 35, Economic Development Modifications, Sponsored by Rep. Handy and Sen. Winterton
HB 130, Driver License Test Amendments, Sponsored by Rep. Bennion and Sen. Hinkins
HB 193, Full-Day Kindergarten, Sponsored by Rep. Waldrip
HB 242, Secondary Water Metering Amendments, Sponsored by Rep. Peterson and Sen. McKell
SB 140, Housing and Transit Reinvestment Zone Amendments, Sponsored by Sen. Harper and Rep. Handy