Public Policy Positions
The history of Utah’s economy is one of transformation, industry and purposeful planning. Our forbearers developed a principled ever-changing blueprint for our current economic success.
Today, Utah is known as a great place to live, work, innovate, play and connect to global markets. Disruptive innovations, globalization and local challenges require a new forward-looking framework for Utah’s continued economic prosperity.
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
Ingredients for Success
We believe low taxes, effective regulation, top-notch infrastructure, a talented workforce, competitive energy prices and a well-managed, limited government create the environment for economic success.
We support tax policies that strengthen Utah’s economy and properly balance tax simplicity, efficiency, fairness, revenue sufficiency and transparency.
No General Tax Increase
We oppose increases in income, sales or property taxes that are not supported by the public.
Collection of Remote Sales and Use Taxes
We support a simplified regulatory framework under which remote sellers collect and remit taxes already owed by individual buyers to the State. We believe Congress should enact federal legislation providing fairness and certainty in the marketplace, as well as ease of compliance for remote sellers. Read the Chamber’s principles regarding Collection of Remote Sales and Use Tax in full: HERE
A modern, balanced and transparent regulatory system gives businesses the confidence they need to hire, invest and innovate. We support regulations that create a level playing field for business while protecting public safety and the environment, encouraging capital investment, removing uncertainty, improving transparency, and reducing the burden on business.
We support the regulation of alcohol that satisfies public demand, ensures public safety, discourages underage drinking, and cultivates a welcoming and hospitable climate for tourism and business recruitment efforts.
We support efforts to expand economic opportunity for lower income Utahns through increased education, enhanced training opportunities and an earned income tax credit. We oppose significant increases to the minimum wage as it would adversely affect small business, reduce employment opportunities and raise prices artificially.
Statewide Non-discrimination Legislation
We support the statewide non-discrimination legislation passed in 2015 that protects against employment and housing discrimination, while guaranteeing protections for religious liberty.
First Amendment Rights
We support efforts to ensure individuals, businesses and organizations are not restricted in exercising their First Amendment rights.
We encourage policies and investments that support downtown Salt Lake City’s role as a vibrant and diverse urban center for the Intermountain West. This includes supporting the most efficient processes, ordinances and business regulations that encourage economic development.
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
We support America’s free enterprise system as the best way to grow the economy, stimulate innovation and create jobs.
We champion Utah’s enviable life quality and commitment to the greater good, including support for our major arts organizations.
We support strengthening Utah’s economic capacity to endure significant disasters and local, national and international economic changes.
We support strengthening resources for evidence-based public policy.
We create and sustain model partnerships with other like-minded entities, such as chambers of commerce and business associations across the state and around the world, to drive economic development. This also includes:
- Downtown Alliance
- Economic Development Corporation of Utah (EDCUtah)
- Envision Utah
- Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED)
- Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah
- World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah)
Utah’s Future Growth
We support disciplined planning and investment, including smart growth principles that will enhance our community, economy and quality of life.
Global Business Destination
We support public policy that encourages open markets, fair trade and empowers the participation of Utah businesses to compete in the global marketplace.
A vibrant metropolitan center is an important economic engine. In partnership with the Downtown Alliance, we support investments and policies that reinforce downtown Salt Lake City’s position as a regional urban center for culture, commerce and entertainment for the Intermountain West.
Building Utah’s Image
Perceptions of Utah are an important component of our economic success. We support continued funding of business marketing and global branding efforts, which will build our state’s global brand and keep Utah “top of mind” as a premier business destination. We oppose unproductive “message bills” that detract from our state’s image.
Economic Development Incentives
We support tax incentives for strategic industries as an important tool to keep Utah economically competitive. These incentives should require companies to create new, high-paying jobs or make significant capital investments that help improve our standard of living, diversify the state’s economy, grow the tax base, attract and retain top-level management, and encourage graduates of in-state universities to remain in Utah. We also support clear policy objectives so that rigorous reviews of incentive programs can be effectively performed.
EDUCATION STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
Innovation, Accountability and Investment
We stand with Governor Herbert and the Utah Legislature in supporting a long-term plan for education. We believe the recommendations in the “Prosperity Through Education” plan will elevate our educational outcomes to be globally competitive. The plan is available at prosperity2020.com.
EDUCATION POLICY POSITIONS
We support the full funding of growth for enrollment and the Weighted Pupil Unit (WPU) every year.
We support education policies that recognize the importance of family involvement and encourage parental participation.
STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
We believe that a safe and efficient transportation system, modern energy and broadband infrastructure, and a reliable, clean supply of water are all integral parts of the foundation for economic growth and improved life quality.
We embrace technological advancements and design innovations that enhance the efficiency and safety of our infrastructure, expand their scope, improve user satisfaction, protect Utah’s environment and modernize revenue models
Disciplined Planning and Investment
We believe because Utah has substantial growth and limited resources, long-term planning and disciplined investment are required to meet future infrastructure needs.
We believe users should bear the primary responsibility for funding Utah’s infrastructure.
TRANSPORTATION POLICY POSITIONS
Core Function of Government
The creation and maintenance of transportation infrastructure is a core responsibility of government. Utah’s elected and appointed officials exhibit economic leadership through their continued commitment to transportation infrastructure investment.
Utah’s Collaborative Approach
Utah’s Unified Transportation Plan is a model for the nation and is our guiding vision for transportation planning and investments. The plan comprehensively prioritizes investments needed now and for decades to come. Learn more at utahunifiedplan.org
We support Utah’s primary seat belt law, as employers understand that failing to buckle up harms others on Utah’s roads. This will protect operators and passengers in vehicles, save lives, and reduce risk and financial costs.
Balanced Economic Interests
We view Utah’s spectacular natural environment as a legacy passed to us from preceding generations. It provides recreational opportunities and natural beauty that attracts great companies and employees. Our natural resources are also an essential part of many business processes. We must thoughtfully approach how to appropriately balance these economic interests.
Private Sector Solutions and Corporate Citizenship
We support voluntary private sector initiatives to promote efficiency, sustainability and stewardship to improve and preserve our spectacular natural environment.
We recognize businesses, citizens and government share the same natural environment. As Utah continues to grow, we all must commit to improve our air quality, conserve more water, promote responsible resource development and preserve first-class access to outdoor recreation.
Our air quality, water supply, natural resources and outdoor recreation assets have lasting implications on Utah’s ability to retain and attract new businesses and employees. We view these issues through the lens of economic development and market principles.
Global warming requires global solutions. Any federal regulation of greenhouse gases must be designed to prevent the transfer of economic wealth from Utah to other states or nations, minimize economic hardship on businesses and consumers, and allow for alternative means of compliance.
We support development of nuclear power if economically viable, including the assessment of economic risks and a policy for safely storing or reprocessing locally-produced spent fuel.
Federal Air Quality Standards Compliance
We must address air quality issues while minimizing the cost to businesses and, ultimately, consumers. Utah must meet current federal air quality standards. Without action, we may lose federal highway funding, garner additional regulatory burdens, and impair economic development and corporate recruitment.
National and State Parks
We support efforts to invest, enhance and promote Utah’s national and state parks, which attract millions of visitors annually and contribute to urban and rural economies.
We support efforts to responsibly manage Utah’s public lands and properly balance development, recreation and conservation. These efforts should be inclusive of all stakeholders and include the public.
We recognize that potential value can be realized from better market access and increased operational efficiencies from a regional transmission organization and operation in the West. However, a change of this magnitude must be carefully evaluated to assess the costs, benefits and risks of any transition.