Friday, October 22, 2021


Some states entice people back to the workplace by increasing safety standards and higher minimum wage; Bannon held in Contempt of Congress; and the latest cyber security concerns.


House votes to hold Bannon in contempt of Congress; Trump announces new social media platform TRUTH Social; and the Biden administration says it will continue to expel migrants under Title 42.


An all-Black Oklahoma town joins big cities in seeking reparations; a Kentucky vaccination skeptic does a 180; telehealth proves invaluable during pandemic; and spooky destinations lure tourists at Halloween.

Two Panels to Produce Maps for Utah Redistricting Process


Friday, August 20, 2021   

SALT LAKE CITY -- Now that the Census figures are out, the once-a-decade redistricting process begins in earnest in Utah.

It will be different this time, with a Utah legislative committee and the Utah Independent Redistricting Commission each drawing a set of maps defining political districts across the state.

Census data show Utah's 18% population gain made it the fastest-growing state in the last decade, and its population makeup shifted moderately toward Blacks, Latinos and other ethnic groups.

Gordon Haight, executive director of the Utah Independent Redistricting Commission, said his panel is designed to give the public a voice in the process.

"The Commission has taken the responsibility of making sure that these are the people's maps," Haight stated. "Our biggest activity is going out and talking to the public. We've been meeting with mayors, we've been meeting with the public, we've been going to the farmers' market, every kind of activity we can in order to get public input."

The commission was created in 2018 by ballot proposition to replace the Legislature's role in the process. However, members of the Legislature used a clause in the state Constitution to replace the results with a compromise to allow both groups to draw maps, and to give the Legislature the final say.

Republicans hold a 15-to-5 majority on the legislative committee, while members of the independent panel were chosen by a bipartisan group of state leaders. Haight said while his panel will retain experts to draw their final maps, they'll post software online so citizens or groups can draw and submit their own suggestion for districts.

"We have a mapping tool that allows people to go online and actually draw maps for the entire state," Haight explained. "Sometimes it can be a little intimidating, so we also have a software program that just allows you to draw your communities."

The Legislative Redistricting Committee plans hearings across the state starting in September to take public comments. Haight added the independent commission has also scheduled public meetings to take comments over the next four weeks.

"We believe that we'll have our first set of maps done by the end of next week, so we can start taking them around to our public hearings, starting on [September] the 3rd," Haight outlined.

The redistricting process, which normally takes several months, was compressed down to a few weeks due to COVID pandemic delays. The maps must be completed by December to be used in the 2022 midterm elections.

get more stories like this via email
California has collected more than 600 tons of unwanted prescription drugs since the Take-Back Day program began in 2010. (Dodgerton Skillhause/Morguefile)

Health and Wellness

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Saturday is National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day, when the Drug Enforcement Administration encourages everyone to clean out …

Health and Wellness

BALTIMORE - This month marks the four-year anniversary of the #MeToo movement, and an art project aims to help incarcerated survivors heal by telling …

Social Issues

OGDEN, Utah - Utah is one of only a handful of states that taxes food, but one state legislator says taxing groceries should become a thing of the …

In a new poll, 71% of all registered voters support strengthening rules to reduce oil and gas methane pollution, including 73% of Independents and 50% of Republicans. (Adobe Stock)


CASPER, Wyo. - A strong majority of voters across party lines say they want national rules similar to those passed in Wyoming to reduce methane …

Health and Wellness

ARLINGTON, Va. - Although COVID-19 rates have gone down, the virus continues to hit the Hispanic community especially hard. Now, a new campaign aims …

Child-care advocates say if North Dakota doesn't boost funding for the system, more families might pull out of the workforce because of access issues. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

BISMARCK, N.D. - A portion of American Rescue Plan funding sent to North Dakota has yet to be divvied up. Groups that want to improve the child-care …

Social Issues

PITTSBURGH - As businesses across the country deal with a massive labor shortage, Pennsylvania aims to entice people back to the workplace by …


ALBANY, N.Y. - Environmental groups want Gov. Kathy Hochul to sign a bill that mandates monitoring the state's drinking water for "emerging …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021