House Democrats Oppose Inland Port Bill

Media Statement

For Immediate Release: March 7, 2018

Contact:     
Ross Chambless, Communications Specialist
Utah House Democratic Caucus
(801) 326-1568 | rosschambless@le.utah.gov

House Democrats Oppose Inland Port Bill

SALT LAKE CITY - Tonight the House of Representatives voted 61 to 11 in favor of SB 234 “Utah Inland Port Authority.” The bill establishes a governing structure over a proposed new Inland Port in the North West Quadrant of Salt Lake City. The new port authority would be given powers to make critical land-use decisions for establishing the inland port and a foreign trade zone.

The area within Salt Lake City’s boundaries near the Great Salt Lake is roughly 38 square miles. The proposed agency being created could override Salt Lake City zoning decisions to reinvest in the area’s development. Salt Lake City officials oppose the bill because the city feels they would be under-represented in the proposed governing structure.  Debate on the House floor was cut short during the late hour session. All but one of the House Democrats voted against the measure.

“My constituents are impacted by this bill more than anyone else in the state,” said Rep. Sandra Hollins, D-Salt Lake City. “I’m going to vote no. I’ve always told my constituents this is their chair.  We need a more complete analysis of the repercussions of this proposal. Many people have serious concerns about the environmental impacts of this bill.”

Minority Leader Rep. Brian King, D-Salt Lake City, said, “It is important that we get this right, because we are creating a platform for decades of development and infrastructure. This is such an important issue, and it has to be part of a larger, ongoing discussion. Most Democrats opposed this version of the bill because we should not rush through such a critical decision without more deliberate process and discussion.”

The bill now goes back to the Senate for additional consideration.

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