Legislative Weekly Update Reports

The Utah State Legislative Session begins on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 and will run through Friday, March 5, 2021. We hope you continue to check this site for updates and SLCC activities happening throughout the session. Check out links to weekly updates, useful information and resources.

Legislative Update Reports

The government links provided on this web page are not under the direct or indirect control of Salt Lake Community College, and are provided as a convenience to you. By clicking on any such hyperlink, you will be leaving the SLCC website.

The 2021 Legislative Session got underway on Tuesday, January 19. The dynamics of this session are significantly different due to the restrictions on gathering in-person. House Speaker Brad Wilson and Senate President Stuart Adams gave opening remarks acknowledging the extraordinary circumstances brought on by the pandemic. Both leaders called for increased unity as Utah looks to the future. Specifically, Speaker Wilson lauded the transformative impact the Utah College Access Advisors program has on students:

“Too often, our students graduate from high school without a clear understanding of what their talents are or how those talents can be developed into marketable skills. This is costing us dearly. In Utah, only 51% of high school graduates enroll in postsecondary education within three years well below the national average. Let’s look for innovative ways to help students understand why they are learning what they are taught in school and help them see the possibilities that lie before them. College access advisors have the ability to make an outsized impact on our education system by helping students make more informed choices that put them on an efficient path to the knowledge and skills to build prosperous lives.”

In October 2020, the Utah Board of Higher Education approved a contribution from the Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority to expand the Utah College Access Advisors to over 50 high schools for the next three academic years.

Newly inaugurated Governor, Spencer Cox, gave his first State of the State address, emphasizing priorities for social and education equity:

“Over the past year, we have had some critical conversations around race and justice. And if I can be so bold, putting up a sign or joining a rally isn’t enough. The best way we can bring to life the American promise of liberty and justice for all is to make sure that every single child, brown or Black, rural or urban, has the same opportunity as every other child.

You see, in Utah, it shouldn’t matter what side of I-15 you were born on or in my case, on what side of the Payson-Dixon line you happen to live every child in this state deserves a great education from a high-quality, well-compensated teacher. I ask you to join me in this effort.”

State Budget

The state has an $87 million surplus of ongoing funds and a $1 billion one-time surplus. Governor Cox and legislative leaders have acknowledged the potential for a tax cut, targeting senior citizens and retired military.

The Higher Education Appropriation Subcommittee (HEAS) held its introductory meeting on January 21. The Subcommittee has several new members, including a new House Chair, Representative Kelly Miles, serving alongside Senate Chair Keith Grover. Board Vice-Chair Aaron Osmond and Commissioner Dave Woolstenhulme updated the committee on the implementation of Utah’s newly combined system of higher education and governing board. Beginning July 1, 2020, Utah’s two systems of postsecondary education combined as a joint Utah System of Higher Education, overseen by a single governing Board, the Utah Board of Higher Education. This merger brought together the former Utah Board of Regents and the former Utah System of Technical Colleges under a single entity. The Commissioner and his staff reviewed the changes in duties and responsibilities of the Board and institutional boards of trustees. The Commissioner also presented the Board’s draft strategic plan and statewide attainment goals.

The HEAS Committee will meet next week with all 16 USHE institutions scheduled to present:

 

  • Monday, January 25, 8:00 AM: Uintah Basin Technical College; Tooele Technical College; Southwest Technical College; Ogden-Weber Technical College; Salt Lake Community College - School of Applied Technology; Snow College Richfield, CTE
  • Wednesday, January 27, 8:00 AM: Mountainland Technical College; Dixie Technical College; Davis Technical College; Bridgerland Technical College; Utah State
    University
    Eastern, technical education
  • Friday, January 29, 8:00 AM: Salt Lake Community College; Snow College
  • Tuesday, February 2, 8:00 AM: Dixie State University; Southern Utah University; Weber State University; Utah Valley University
  • Thursday, February 4, 8:00 AM: University of Utah; Utah State University

Legislation of Interest

SB 45, Higher Education Classes for Veterans by Rep. Weiler allows veterans to audit classes at institutions of higher education tuition-free if the veterans are Utah residents. The bill received unanimous support from the Senate Education Committee and awaits final consideration by the Senate.

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher establishes a specific threshold that determines when student-on-student speech becomes harassment as opposed to protected speech. It may put schools in conflict with existing federal guidance and definitions of harassment. The bill awaits a Standing Committee.

Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee

The Higher Education Appropriation Subcommittee (HEAS) continued its meetings this week. Below is the link to the SLCC presentation:

Salt Lake Community College
The audio/video from the Jan. 29 meeting is available here.

The Subcommittee also received presentations about the State’s Learn and Work initiative administered by the Commissioner’s Office in coordination with the Governor's Office of Economic Development and funded by the federal government’s relief funds appropriated last Spring. The initiative enabled USHE institutions to expand in-demand, short-term educational programs for furloughed, laid-off, or dislocated workers, as well as underserved or other populations affected by COVID-19.

Success in Education, an initiative of the Robert H and Katharine B Garff Foundation, also presented on Keys to Success, a public-private partnership that supports mobile application used in conjunction with College Access Advisors. The app helps students earn redeem points for prizes by researching pertinent information on scholarships, internships, and college.

Legislation of Interest:

SB 45, Higher Education Classes for Veterans by Rep. Weiler allows veterans to audit classes at institutions of higher education tuition-free if the veterans are Utah residents. The bill received unanimous support from the Senate Education Committee and awaits final consideration by the Senate.

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher establishes a specific threshold that determines when student-on-student speech becomes harassment as opposed to protected speech. It may put schools in conflict with existing federal guidance and definitions of harassment. The bill awaits a Standing Committee.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens replaces the Regents' Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship, extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and forecloses new applications for the New Century scholarship after this academic year. This legislation is in conjunction with the Board’s action in December 2020 to rename and simplify the state’s achievement-based scholarships. This bill awaits a Senate Committee hearing. The Utah Board of Higher Education support this legislation.

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong prohibits USHE institutions from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition to enroll. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in- person. This bill awaits committee assignment in the House.

 

Infrastructure and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee

The Infrastructure and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee (IGG) continued its meetings received presentations from USHE institutions. Below is the link to President Huftalin’s Herriman Campus presentation:

Salt Lake Community College

The Subcommittee meets one more time this session on Feb 9 to prioritize which items to recommend for funding. The subcommittee will advance the list of items to the Executive Appropriations Committee for further review.

Legislation of Interest

HB 45, Higher Education Classes for Veterans by Rep. Weiler — allows veterans to audit classes at institutions of higher education tuition-free if the veterans are Utah residents. The bill received unanimous support from the House Education Committee and awaits consideration by the House for final passage.

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher — establishes a specific threshold that determines when student-on-student speech becomes harassment, as opposed to protected speech. Staff has worked with the legislative sponsor on a compromise that reduces the legal liability of the institutions. The bill received unanimous support from the House Judiciary Standing Committee and awaits further consideration by the House.

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong — prohibits USHE institutions from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition to enroll. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in-person. This bill awaits a committee hearing in the House Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University by Rep. Kelly Miles — establishes a process for the Dixie State University Board of Trustees and Utah Board of Higher Education to select and recommend a new name for the institution to the Legislature. After extensive testimony, the bill passed the House Education Committee with a 12-2 vote and awaits further consideration by the full House.

HB 279, Higher Education for Incarcerated Youth by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a virtually-delivered Concurrent Enrollment program and accompanying advisory program at Dixie State University for students in certain custody situations. The bill awaits a committee assignment.

HB 318, Higher Education Amendments by Rep. Melissa Ballard — clarifies and makes technical changes as required by SB 111 from the 2020 Legislative Session. It clarifies the roles of institutions and those of the Board of Higher Education; it revises the Board’s priorities and revises the procedures for presidential searches. The bill awaits a standing committee assignment.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens — replaces the Regents' Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship. It also extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and forecloses new applications for the New Century Scholarship after this academic year. This legislation is in conjunction with the Board’s action in December 2020 to rename and simplify the state’s achievement-based scholarships. This bill received unanimous support in the Senate Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the full Senate.

SB 163, Campus Safety Amendments by Sen. Jani Iwamoto — establishes a student-led Safety and Equity Commission appointed by institution student leadership that makes recommendations to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The bill also clarifies reporting requirements of institution annual safety reports, along with additional requirements on how those reports are publicized. This bill awaits a Senate Committee assignment.

Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee

The Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee (HEAS) wrapped up its work on Wednesday, February 10. The Subcommittee ranked the USHE budget priorities along with several other requests for state appropriations and advanced those to the Executive Appropriations Committee for further review on February 12. The Subcommittee’s rankings are available here.

Legislation of Interest

HB 45, Higher Education Classes for Veterans by Rep. Weiler allows veterans to audit classes at institutions of higher education tuition-free if the veterans are Utah residents. The bill passed both the House and the Senate and was recently sent for enrolling.

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher establishes a specific threshold that determines when student-on-student speech becomes harassment, as opposed to protected speech. Staff has worked with the legislative sponsor on a compromise that reduces legal liability to the institutions. The bill passed the House with a vote of 60-11 and awaits further consideration by the Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and Criminal Justice Committee.

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong prohibits USHE institutions from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition to enroll. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in-person. After lengthy testimony amidst concern of its implications, the bill was held in the House Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University by Rep. Kelly Miles  establishes a process for the Dixie State University Board of Trustees and Utah Board of Higher Education to select and recommend a new name for the institution to the Legislature. The bill passed the House with a 51-20 vote and awaits further consideration by the Senate.

HB 279, Higher Education for Incarcerated Youth by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a virtually-delivered Concurrent Enrollment program and accompanying advisory program at Dixie State University for students in certain custody situations. The bill awaits consideration by the House Education Committee.

HB 302, Preserving Sports for Female Students by Rep. Kera Birkeland — requires schools to designate athletic activities by sex and prohibits a student of the male sex from participating in an athletic activity. The bill has been modified from its original draft removing higher education. However, the bill is similar to controversial bills that have been adopted in other states that have led to litigation in Idaho and Connecticut; this recent AP news story provides additional background. After lengthy discussion, the House Education Committee passed the bill on an 8-6 vote. The bill awaits further consideration by the House.

HB 318, Higher Education Amendments by Rep. Melissa Ballard clarifies and makes technical changes as required by SB 111 from the 2020 Legislative Session. It clarifies the roles of institutions and those of the Board of Higher Education; it revises the Board’s priorities and revises the procedures for presidential searches. The bill awaits a standing committee assignment.

HB 327, School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership by Rep. Jefferson Burton  establishes the School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership at Utah Valley University, seeking an ongoing appropriation of $2 million. This bill awaits a House committee assignment.

HB 328, Adult Learners Grant Program by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a scholarship program for students over 26 years old, who demonstrate financial need and are enrolled in an entirely online certificate program in a field with industry need. This bill awaits a House committee assignment.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens — replaces the Regents’ Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship. It also extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and forecloses new applications for the New Century Scholarship after this academic year. This legislation is in conjunction with the Board’s action in December 2020 to rename and simplify the state’s achievement-based scholarships. This bill received unanimous support in the Senate and awaits further consideration by the House.

SB 163, Campus Safety Amendments by Sen. Jani Iwamoto — establishes a student-led Safety and Equity Commission appointed by institution student leadership, that makes recommendations to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The bill also clarifies reporting requirements of institution annual safety reports, along with additional requirements on how those reports are publicized. This bill awaits a Senate committee assignment.

SB 193, Higher Education Performance Funding by Sen. Ann Millner modifies the current statute on performance funding by requiring the Board of Higher Education to establish five-year statewide goals in conjunction with 5-year goals the institutions set. State funding appropriations will be allocated to the institutions based on their performance in relation to these goals. The bill awaits a committee assignment.

Update: State Budget Revenues Announced

Legislative leadership announced revised budget revenues on Friday, February 19, setting the stage for building the state’s budget in the remaining two weeks of the legislative session. The Legislature will be working to allocate $205 million in ongoing funds and an unprecedented $1.3 billion in one-time funds.

Read More

Legislation of Interest

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher — establishes a specific threshold that determines when student-on-student speech becomes harassment, as opposed to protected speech. Staff has worked with the legislative sponsor on a compromise that reduces legal liability to the institutions. The bill received the unanimous support of the Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and Criminal Justice Committee and awaits consideration of the full Senate.

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong — prohibits USHE institutions from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition to enroll. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in- person. The bill was amended to allow exceptions for students training in clinical health settings; the bill passed the House and awaits further consideration by the Senate.

HB 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University by Rep. Kelly Miles

establishes a process for the Dixie State University Board of Trustees and Utah Board of Higher Education to select and recommend a new name for the institution to the Legislature. The bill passed the House with a 51-20 vote and awaits committee assignment in the Senate.

HB 279, Higher Education for Incarcerated Youth by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a virtually-delivered Concurrent Enrollment program and accompanying advisory program at Dixie State University for students in certain custody situations. The bill passed the House and awaits committee assignment in the Senate.

HB 302, Preserving Sports for Female Students by Rep. Kera Birkeland — requires schools to designate athletic activities by sex and prohibits a student of the male sex from participating in an athletic activity. The bill has been modified from its original draft removing higher education. However, the bill is similar to controversial bills that have been adopted in other states that have led to litigation in Idaho and Connecticut; this recent AP news story provides additional background. After a lengthy discussion, the bill passed the House and awaits consideration by the Senate Health and Human Services Committee. Governor Cox has said he won’t sign the bill as it’s currently written.

HB 318 (1st Sub), Higher Education Amendments by Rep. Melissa Ballard — clarifies and makes technical changes as required by SB 111 from the 2020 Legislative Session. It clarifies the roles of institutions and those of the Board of Higher Education; it revises the Board’s priorities and revises the procedures for presidential searches. The bill passed the House and awaits further consideration by the Senate.

HB 327, School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership by Rep. Jefferson Burton — establishes the School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership at Utah Valley University, seeking an ongoing appropriation of $2 million. This bill passed the House Education Committee and awaits further consideration by the House.

HB 328, Adult Learners Grant Program by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a scholarship program for students over 26 years old, who demonstrate financial need and are enrolled in an entirely online certificate program in a field with industry need. This bill received unanimous support in the House and awaits further consideration in the Senate.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens — replaces the Regents' Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship. It also extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and forecloses new applications for the New Century Scholarship after this academic year. This legislation is in conjunction with the Board’s action in December 2020 to rename and simplify the state’s achievement-based scholarships. This bill received unanimous support in the Senate and awaits further consideration by the House.

SB 163, Campus Safety Amendments by Sen. Jani Iwamoto — establishes a student-led Safety and Equity Commission appointed by institution student leadership, that makes recommendations to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The bill also clarifies reporting requirements of institution annual safety reports, along with additional requirements on how those reports are publicized. This bill awaits a hearing in the Senate Education Committee.

SB 193 (1st Sub), Higher Education Performance Funding by Sen. Ann Millner — modifies the current statute on performance funding by requiring the Board of Higher Education to establish five-year statewide goals in conjunction with 5-year goals the institutions set. State funding appropriations will be allocated to the institutions based on their performance in relation to these goals. The bill received the unanimous support of the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

 

Executive Appropriations Committee Recommended Funding Items

The Executive Appropriations Committee adopted proposed new funding items late Friday afternoon (in addition to the base budget increases adopted early in the 2021 legislative session). The proposed items for higher education are closely aligned to the budget priorities adopted by the Utah Board of Higher Education:

  • • Performance Funding: $20,550,000
  • • Growth and Capacity (Technical Colleges): $6,055,000
  • • Growth (Degree Granting Institutions): $5,789,000
  • • Technical Education Tuition Offset (SLCC and Snow College): $1,861,000
  • • College Access Advisors: $2,500,000 (One-time Funding)
  • • Mental Health Services at Technical Schools: $400,000 (One-time Funding)

Two funding items from the 2020 legislative session that were pulled back in special sessions are also included:

  • • Emerging Technology Initiative: $5,101,600
  • • State Scholarship Increases: $2,000,000

The capital development request for SLCC Herriman General Education Building was included in the proposed state budget. Final approval by the full legislature is expected next week. The full list of proposed new funding items is available here.

Legislation of Interest

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong — prohibits USHE institutions from requiring proof of vaccination as a condition to enroll. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in-person. The bill was amended to allow exceptions for students training in clinical health settings. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

HB 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University by Rep. Kelly Miles — establishes a process for the Dixies State University Board of Trustees and Utah Board of Higher Education to select and recommend a new name for the institution to the Legislature. The bill passed the House with a 51-20 vote and awaits committee assignment in the Senate.

HB 279, Higher Education for Incarcerated Youth by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a virtually-delivered Concurrent Enrollment program and accompanying advisory program at Dixie State University for students in certain custody situations. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

HB 302, Preserving Sports for Female Students by Rep. Kera Birkeland — requires schools to designate athletic activities by sex and prohibits a student of the male sex from participating in an athletic activity. The bill has been modified from its original draft removing higher education. However, the bill is similar to other controversial bills that have been adopted in other states that have led to litigation in Idaho and Connecticut; this recent AP news story provides additional background. After a lengthy discussion, the bill was held by the Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 318 (1st Sub), Higher Education Amendments by Rep. Melissa Ballard — clarifies and makes technical changes as required by SB 111 from the 2020 Legislative Session. It clarifies the roles of institutions and those of the Board of Higher Education, and it revises the Board’s priorities. The bill was substituted from its original, removing the proposed modifications to the process for presidential searches. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate. The Utah Board of Higher Education supports this legislation.

HB 327, School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership by Rep. Jefferson Burton — establishes the School for Civics and Economic Thought and Leadership at Utah Valley University, seeking an ongoing appropriation of $2 million. This bill awaits consideration by the Senate Education Committee.

HB 328, Adult Learners Grant Program by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a scholarship program for students over 26 years old who demonstrate financial need and are enrolled in an entirely online certificate program in a field with industry need. The bill passed the Senate Education Committee and awaits consideration by the full Senate.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens — replaces the Regents' Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship. It also extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and forecloses new applications for the New Century Scholarship after this academic year. This legislation is in conjunction with the Board’s action in December 2020 to rename and simplify the state’s achievement-based scholarships. This bill received unanimous support in the Senate and House and has been sent for enrolling and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 163, Campus Safety Amendments by Sen. Jani Iwamoto — establishes a student-led Safety and Equity Commission appointed by institution student leadership that makes recommendations to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The bill also clarifies reporting requirements of institutional annual safety reports, along with additional requirements on how those reports are publicized. This bill awaits a hearing in the Senate Education Committee.

SB 193 (1st Sub), Higher Education Performance Funding by Sen. Ann Millner — modifies the current statute on performance funding by requiring the Board of Higher Education to establish five-year statewide goals in conjunction with 5-year goals the institutions set. State funding appropriations will be allocated to the institutions based on their performance in relation to these goals. The bill received the unanimous support of the Senate and awaits consideration by the House Education Committee. The Utah Board of Higher Education supports this legislation.

 

The Legislature completed a unique 2021 General Session late Friday night, approving one of the largest budget increases ever and adopting 503 pieces of legislation.

The Legislature adopted the state’s FY 22 budget which includes an additional $98 million increased funding in the higher education budget. Legislative leaders substantially supported the major priorities advanced by the Board of Higher Education:

The Legislature also funded five institution building/land projects: 

  • Salt Lake Community College: Herriman Campus Education Building
  • Bridgerland Applied Technology College: Health Science and Technology Building
  • Southern Utah University: Academic Classroom Building
  • University of Utah: Applied Science Building
  • Utah State University: Heravi Global Teaching & Learning Center
  • Dixie State University: SITLA Land Acquisition 

Passed Legislation of Interest 

HB 159, Higher Education Student Speech Rights by Rep. Jordan Teuscher — Outlines conditions when student -on-student speech can be determined to be discriminatory harassment. It prohibits an institution of higher education from sanctioning or discipling certain of speech that do not constitute discriminatory harassment. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 233, Education Immunization Modifications by Rep. Mark Strong — USHE institutions must allow students the option to opt out of vaccinated for personal, as well as health and religious reason. The bill was amended to allow exceptions for students training in clinical health settings. It also prohibits institutions from requiring a vaccine-exempt student to participate remotely rather than in-person. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 278, Name Change Process for Dixie State University by Rep. Kelly Miles — establishes a process for the Dixies State University Board of Trustees and Utah Board of Higher Education to select and recommend a new name for the institution to the Legislature. The legislation also creates a heritage committee. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 279, Higher Education for Incarcerated Youth by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a virtually- delivered Concurrent Enrollment program and accompanying advisory program at Dixie State University for students in certain custody situations. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 308, COVID – 19 Vaccine Amendments by Rep. Robert Spendlove — prohibits a governmental entity from requiring that an individual receive a vaccine for COVID-19, while providing an exemption for public health and for employees required to have vaccinations. The legislation also creates a heritage committee. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 318, Higher Education Amendments by Rep. Melissa Ballard — clarifies and makes technical changes as required by SB 111 from the 2020 Legislative Session. It clarifies the roles of institutions and those of the Board of Higher Education, and it revises the Board’s priorities. The bill was substituted from its original, removing the proposed modifications to the process for presidential searches. The legislation also creates a heritage committee. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

HB 328, Adult Learners Grant Program by Rep. Lowry Snow — establishes a scholarship program for students over 26 years old who demonstrate financial need and are enrolled in an entirely online certificate program in a field with industry need. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 45, Higher Education Classes for Veterans by Rep. Weiler — allows veterans to audit classes at institutions of higher education tuition-free if the veterans are Utah residents. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 136, Higher Education Scholarship Amendments by Rep. Derrin Owens — replaces the Regents' Scholarship Program with the Opportunity Scholarship. It also extends opportunities for scholarships within technical education and ends new applications for the New Century Scholarship after August 15, 2021. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 141, Task Force on Food Security by Sen. Luz Escamilla — creates a task force on food security that includes a member from higher education. The task force is asked to create a plan to address food insecurity in the state. The legislation also creates a heritage committee. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 163, Campus Safety Amendments by Sen. Jani Iwamoto — establishes a student-led Safety and Equity Commission appointed by institution student leadership that makes recommendations to the Utah Board of Higher Education. The bill also clarifies reporting requirements of institutional annual safety reports, along with additional requirements on how those reports are publicized. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 193, Higher Education Performance Funding by Sen. Ann Millner — modifies the current statute on performance funding by requiring the Board of Higher Education to establish five-year statewide goals in conjunction with 5-year goals the institutions set. State funding appropriations will be allocated to the institutions based on their performance in relation to these goals. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SB 244, Student Religious Liberties Accommodations Amendments by Sen. Michael Kennedy — requires higher education institutions to reasonably accommodate student absences from exams or other requirements if they create an undue hardship based on religious beliefs. USHE will be required to annually publish information on the accommodation. This bill passed and awaits the signature of the Governor.

SLCC Legislative Presentations