December 2017

Dear Friends:

This year has flown by and it's almost unbelievable that the 2018 Legislative Session is just weeks away. Although legislators meet and work throughout the year, the intense, annual 45-day session begins January 22, 2018. For a complete summary of topics discussed during our interim meetings, please see Interim Highlights.
This has been a particularly hectic and challenging year with additional meetings, site visits and policy summits. As you might expect, it's a balancing act to sort my schedule which includes 22 committees, and this year's additional meetings, which many times overlapped!
As I continue in leadership for the upcoming session, I again will serve on the Executive Appropriations Committee (EAC) which makes final determinations on all appropriations and determines what gets funded. I am also a member of the Legislative Management Committee which determines scheduling and additional meeting requests, among its assignments. And, I will continue on the Senate Rules Committee, which assigns legislation to committees. This committee determines a bill's future by directing which committee it is assigned to. It can also determine whether a bill gets bottled up or reported out. The Senate Rules Committee has been successful in getting bills out to committees quickly and fairly. It's my feeling that all bills should at least have a public hearing. However, with the increasing number of bills being filed for the session, it can be impossible to adequately vet all the bills proposed and introduced.  


My legislative committees and assignments are listed below. I also chaired two monthly groups to work on solutions surrounding water policy and fall prevention (please see below).
Below is a list of my current legislative assignments:

Standing Committees
Senate Rules Committee
Senate Ethics Committee
Economic Development and Workforce Services
Government Operations
Natural Resources, Agriculture & Environment

Appropriations Subcommittees
Executive Appropriations
Executive Offices and Criminal Justice
Public Education
Senate Confirmation Committees
Economic Development and Workforce Services
Health and Human Services
Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice
Natural Resources and Agriculture
Other Legislative Assignments
Commission for the Stewardship of Public
Legislative Management Committee
Legislative Water Development
Federal Funds Commission
Native American Legislative Liaison
Rural Development Legislative Liaison
Utah Constitutional Revision Commission
Aside from the above legislative appointments, I am honored to continue to serve on Primary Children's Hospital Board of Trustees, the Emergency Medical Services Committee (EMSC), and am a proud member of the East Mill Creek Lions Club. I also serve on the newly formed Presidential Anti-racism Task Force at the University of Utah.
In mid-December, Governor Herbert will brief our senate leadership on his proposed budget recommendations. Ultimately, the legislature will determine the final budget. As always, I refer you to our nationally-recognized legislative website to learn about committee meetings, legislators, legislation, audits, budget information, and much more.
Proposed Legislation
I have been busy since the end of last session working on new legislation for the upcoming session. The background and impetus for these bills come from areas of interest and background, which seem to parallel the issues important to our district, and/or come directly from constituents. Below is a summary of some of the legislation I am sponsoring:
Fireworks Restrictions
Since my term on the Salt Lake County Council, and in the senate, I have received many calls regarding fireworks. This past season, calls and emails were in record number, exacerbated by fire hazards in our community. Rep. Jim Dunnigan and I are sponsoring legislation to address the problems. We held numerous meetings with law enforcement, firefighters, retailers, local elected officials and community interests. And, since we are legislating statewide, we worked to balance the concerns with the desire of many Utahns to celebrate our most patriotic holidays with firework displays.
We sought and were provided written concerns from stakeholders. Rep. Dunnigan and I reviewed each of them before finalizing the proposed legislation. Details of the legislation are as follows:
  • 40% reduction in dates fireworks are allowed in July: Fireworks would be allowed July 2-5 and July 22-25, instead of he entire weeks surrounding each of the 4th and 24th. I would have preferred one day prior and the day of, but was encouraged that we all ended up with this 40% reduction;  
  • Stronger penalties for discharging fireworks outside of permitted dates and times from an infraction with of fine of up to $750 to an infraction with a fine of up to $1,000;
  • New penalty for igniting fireworks in restricted areas - From no penalty to an infraction with a fine of up to $1,000 for discharge of fireworks in an area where fireworks have been prohibited due to hazardous environmental conditions;
  • More local control - This legislation provides clarity and new flexibility to local governments and the state forester to prohibit the discharge of fireworks due to historic or current hazardous environmental conditions, including allowing the flexibility to create more easily identifiable boundaries; 
  • Requires local governments and the state forester to create and provide maps identifying areas in which fireworks are prohibited due to hazardous environmental conditions, and requires counties to compile those maps and provide the composite map to fireworks retailers;
  • Requires retailers to display near the point of sale the maps that counties provide to the retailers indicating the areas where fireworks are prohibited due to hazardous environmental conditions; and places into statute and expands upon the state fire marshal's administrative rule requiring retailers to post signs, indicating the permissible discharge dates and times as well as penalties and fines for discharging fireworks outside permissible times or discharging fireworks in an area in which fireworks are prohibited due to hazardous environmental conditions; and
  • Imposes civil liability when a person negligently, recklessly, or intentionally causes a fire through discharge of fireworks, including any damages caused by the fire and any costs of suppressing the fire. 
This bill unanimously passed the Business and Labor Interim Committee. I am deeply appreciative of the effort that went into this legislation from many community leaders, including Mayors Jeff Silvestrini (Millcreek) and Rob Dahle (Holladay). Special thanks to Unified Fire Authority Chief Dan Peterson who was a strong voice for all of the cities within the Unified Fire Authority. Also, thanks to Cameron Diehl of the Utah League of Cities and Towns for speaking in favor of the bill.  
Police Service Animal Amendments
In honor of the two police dogs that were killed in Millcreek, I am sponsoring legislation to increase penalties for intentionally or knowingly killing a police animal and to add language to aid in prosecution of these crimes. This bill will be in honor of veteran police dogs, Dingo and Aldo. I have met with Lieutenant Chad D. Reyes and Sergeant Luis Lovato, handlers who lost Dingo and Aldo, their law enforcement partners and loyal companions.
The cost to train police dogs is great, but their contributions to society are profound. Lt. Reyes summarized in general terms, the careers of Aldo and Dingo which were abruptly cut short:
The bond and trust shared with these two K9 officers is indescribable.
Lt. Reyes shared one of his favorite poems which he feels shows the allegiance between a handler and his dog:
I will lay down my life for you and expect nothing
but love in return.
I will protect my officer with my life and would gladly
take a bullet in his place.
I am sent to find lost children and fugitives on the run.
I find drugs and weapons and even bombs.
I am the first sent in and sometimes the last to leave.
I am the nose and ears of my officer.
I will protect and serve him.
I would die for him and for you.
I only ask for a kind and compassionate word.
UPD K9 Unit: Police K9 Handlers. Lt. Chad Reyes with photo of Dingo and Sgt. Luis Lovato and K9 Crew honored at Milcreek Community Center this summer. 
I am honored to sponsor this important legislation. Thank you to the Unified Police Department, including the UPD K9 unit. And thank you to Sheriff Rosie Rivera for her contributions to this legislation and support for your officers.
Lt. Chad Reyes with photo of Dingo
Sgt. Luis Lovato with photo of Aldo
Pediatric Trauma Network
I am also sponsoring a funding bill to support a pediatric trauma network which is designed to red uce deaths from injury and illness through efforts to provide a regionalized approach to the state's care of injured children.  Through the use of common clinical protocols, telemedicine, and quarterly review, the network aims to insure that the right child is cared for at the right place and at the right time.  It will provide ways to keep kids local when able, as well as determine when it's necessary to transport a patient to Primary Children's Hospital, our state's only pediatric trauma hospital. 
Retail Bag Reduction
With continuing and increasing interest from constituents and businesses, I will again introduce this legislation which seeks a reduction in the use of retail bags. The costs incurred from discarding retail bags are astounding. These discarded bags increase costs and operations at recycling centers and the state's 168 landfill operations. The societal costs also include long-term damage to wildlife, water, air and our pocketbooks. The legislation includes a fee for disposable, retail bag usage. Distribution of the fee will be shared on a proportional basis with the landfills and recyclers in the state.
Rocky Mountain Recycling

SL Valley Landfill

Other Legislation
I also am working on Educator Postretirement Reemployment Amendments, with a companion bill for law enforcement. We need ways to address the severe shortages in education and law enforcement. These amendments recognize the contributions of experienced teachers and law enforcement officials.
These are just some of the bills I will bring to this upcoming session. They address diverse issues, but are important to our community - most of which are being sponsored because of our community and its interest in them.
Study Groups
Since the last legislative session, I have met monthly with two groups, following legislation I sponsored during the 2017 Legislative Session, SJR 8, Joint Resolution Encouraging Study to Reduce Fall-Related Injuries, and SB 214, Public Water Supplier Amendments
Water Policy
I chair a broad based group made up of leaders from the water community. Membership includes representatives from municipalities, public water suppliers, agriculture, state farm bureau, state engineer's office, Nature Conservancy, water law attorneys, and other interested stakeholders. What started as a conversation of in-stream flows has developed into an intense discussion of water policy, focusing now on water banking, regional water councils, instream flows, and split season approach to water use. We have broken into smaller study groups to review what has worked in other states and whether those strategies would be beneficial in Utah. We are also breaking into groups to study what will work in various regions, including The Bear River, Provo River, Chalk Creek, the Sevier River System and the Colorado drainage. I am so fortunate to be a part of this group and amazed at the time these members have dedicated to preserve and protect our water quality and quantity for the benefit of all of us.  
Fall Prevention
I am also honored to chair and be a part of this group of stakeholders, which includes representatives from hospitals, insurance companies, Utah Department of Health, Utah Medical Association, Utah Pharmacy Association, emergency medical services, area agencies on aging, home health care, AARP, physicians, nurses, physical and occupational therapists, and disability groups. We are working to prevent older adult falls and their devastating consequences. Although a monumental task, the group has prioritized several projects to increase public awareness and improve coordination of care. We are developing a brochure and a website to be housed at the Utah Commission on Aging. The study group is also exploring options for data sharing agreements that would enhance care for seniors at risk for falls with the goal of assisting them to remain as independent and functional as possible. We will highlight fall prevention on February 7th at the Capitol, and will continue our work thereafter. Special thanks to Sally Aerts who was the fall prevention coordinator at the Department of Health, until funding for her position was exhausted. Study group members have dedicated time and energy to this important public health issue because all care deeply about the well-being of our aging population.

I am confident that the combined efforts of these groups will result in important policies for our state. Our work will continue after the conclusion of the 2018 legislative session.   
Opportunities and Appointments
Sometimes as legislators, we have the opportunity to nominate individuals for various positions. Recently, I was able to nominate three talented and involved individuals from District 4, to the State Board of Education's SAGE Review Committee, the K-2 and 9-12 Science Standards, and Math Review Committee. I was pleased that our Senate President forwarded all three nominees for confirmation. They now serve on these committees and represent our community.
If you are interested in serving on state committees, commissions, boards, etc., please visit this website to apply! Please let me know if you are successful or not in being appointed - I would like to keep track of the outcomes of your efforts. Also, please let me know if you have an interest in a specific area, i.e. education. When I have the opportunity to nominate, it has been an immediate request so I want your help to seize this opportunity to nominate someone qualified and enthused to represent our district.
The Leonardo Museum of Creativity and Innovation also asked for a
nomination of a person, product or company as they look forward to honoring District 4's innovation early next year. With suggestions from constituents, I nominated Black Diamond Equipment, designers and manufacturers of high-tech climbing and outdoor equipment.

Utah high school students are encouraged to enter the annual Utah Senate Visual Arts Competition for a chance to win up to a $5,000 Scholarship and have the artwork displayed at the state Capitol. For information, check out this article from the Deseret News, September, 2017. This year's theme is "The People of Utah". The competition is open to all Utah students in grades nine through 12, including those also attending private, parochial, charter or home school. The competition is sponsored by Utah Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, and administered by the Utah Division of Arts & Museums. I have had the honor of being one of the judges the past two years and was asked again this year. It is amazing to see the maturity and talent of our young people. Entries are due by Friday, December 15th. Below is a photo of last year's winning artwork, as well as artwork from Utah students which I recently saw in the Capitol tunnel in Washington, D.C.  
Last year's Senate art contest winning art, "Dead Horse Point" by Cadence Peterson 
Utah artists displayed in U.S. Capitol Tunnel in Washington D.C.

Community Meetings and Activities
Attending city and community council meetings, local schools, and community events are also important to me. If unable to attend, I do try to keep in contact with them to address issues in their particular area, i.e. safety on state roadways, etc. Your local representatives are hard at work representing you, as well. Please see what's happening in your area of District 4!

Salt Lake City Community Councils
Bonneville Hills Neighborhood Council
Foothill/Sunnyside Neighborhood Assoc.
Laurel H. Young, Chair: 801-582-4165
-4th Thursday of January, April, July, and October - 7:00 pm
-Anderson-Foothill Library (1135 South 2100 East)
Sugar House Community Council
Wasatch Hollow Community Council
Yalecrest Community Council

Millcreek Community Councils

Mount Olympus Community Council
City Councils 
Millcreek City Council
Town Hall Meetings
During the session I, along with other area legislators, usually hold two town hall meetings in Salt Lake City, and Holladay City (for Millcreek, Holladay and Murray). I will keep you posted regarding the dates and times for these town hall meetings, as well as other ideas, I'm brainstorming for meetings post-session.
Some highlights this year included being asked to speak in Washington, DC, at the Mayflower Hotel for the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum's Voices 2017 Conference. Based in Oakland, California, with offices in DC, the mission of APIAHF is to advance national policy priorities on health equity.
Moderator, Del. Mark Keam (VA), myself and co-panelist Rep. Sam Park (GA, far right), and Floyd Mori ( Pres. and CEO of Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS)
Utah delegation at Voices 2017 conference - Julius Ulugia, Fahina Tavake-Pasi, Me, Lauren Pongan, Jake fitisemanu (newly elected to West Valley City Council)  
During that trip, I was able to attend the National World War II Memorial with the Utah Honor Flight, and met every honor flight attendee - that included a big hug to my fellow East Mill Creek Lion and WWII Veteran, Bob Gallagher. I will never forget the time with our veterans and how it made me feel even closer to my own father.

Senator Karen Mayne and I were the panelists for the inaugural Women's Leadership Committee at the Workers' Compensation Fund. I learned about their participation in the Elevate Her Challenge, their unique Hidden Gems Initiative, leadership training and overall mission to support women.

I am also speaking at the Department of Environmental Quality on the retail bag legislation. The audience will include businesses and stakeholders.
I was honored (and shocked!)
to receive the 2017 Japanese Minister of Foreign Affairs Commendation which was personally presented by Consul-General Hiroto Hirakoba. Receiving a toast by Judge (fmr.) Raymond Uno and the reading of Governor Herbert's letter from Dean Hirabayashi, a member of Utah's Multicultural Commission was very special. I would not have received this award without my parents, family, mentors, colleagues, friends, and many of you.
Although I have always been committed to responding to every email and call, it can be challenging due to the high volume and because of our meeting and floor schedules, as well as the time spent reading and preparing legislation. It would assist me if you could provide the following information with your email, call or text:
  • Your full name, home address and telephone number
  • The bill number and title
  • Whether or not you need a response
  • If you are waiting to receive a response from me, your email may be accidentally lost or in junk mail etc. Please try again. 
These steps will assist me in replying to you as quickly as possible. I will do all I can to respond in a timely fashion even with the pressures of a general legislative session. I will read and consider every single email.
I appreciate your support. As we exit 2017, I want to take a moment to remember those close to us that we have lost. Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones.
As always, I appreciate your input. Your voice is critical. If you would like to volunteer, PLEASE contact me, I can be reached at (legislative matters), (personal matters), by mail to 4760 S. Highland Drive, #427, Salt Lake City, Utah 84117, or by phone at (801)580-8414. Check out my website here, or you can interact with me on my Facebook!  
This newsletter is for legislative and related matters only . Many of you are receiving my newsletters because you have donated, volunteered etc., on my prior campaigns. If you are not on a prior list for campaign purposes and would like to be updated on campaign efforts, please email me at to be included.
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This Senate seat includes the following house districts: District 36 (Rep. Patrice Arent), District 37 (Rep. Carol Spackman Moss), District 40 (Rep. Lynn Hemingway), District 46 (Rep. Marie Poulson) and District 28 (Rep. Brian King). To see who your Representative is click here!
Jani Iwamoto
Senate District 4

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