PM News Bulletin: Rich Bullough Retires, Endgame Pandemic Criteria & Salt Lake City Budget

Tuesday evening, May 4, 2021

Northern Utah

Reimagining Salt Lake City’s public lands as equitable resources

Salt Lake City is undertaking a general planning process to determine what the future of its public lands will look like over the next two decades. It’s called “Reimagine Nature” and includes how residents use and access parks, trails, forests and even golf courses. The city is also trying to make natural spaces more equitable for residents, so staff have carried out targeted outreach activities with under-represented communities. They found that people of color and residents of western town want to feel more connected to parks in their communities. Read the full story. Emily Means

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall to present her budget proposal

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall will present her budget proposal to city council on Thursday evening. The mayor’s proposal will likely focus on a few main areas: affordable housing, homelessness, and the City Commission on Racial Equity and Policing funding recommendations. The commission was formed after last year’s protests against police brutality gripped the city. Some of their suggestions include further training of police officers on issues of fairness and implicit bias and the requirement to recertify officers for crisis intervention training. Last year, city council adopted an operating budget of $ 326 million. It was slightly less than the previous year, mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. – Ross Terrell

Rich Bullough retires as Summit County health director

Summit County’s health director has announced his retirement. Rich Bullough has headed the county health department for 11 years. Bullough said he was “lucky” to be part of the county’s COVID response. And he “wasn’t about to move on to the next phase of his life” until the pandemic was under control. He spent 30 years in public health according to a county press release. He will be leaving his post in August. – Ross Terrell

Public comment sought to develop land around Draper State Prison

The Point of the Mountain State Land Authority is seeking public input on how to develop the current location of Utah State Prison in Draper. A new state prison is under construction and is expected to be completed next year. There are 600 acres of state-owned land at the Draper site. The authority has set some priorities on what to do with the region. Some of them include job creation and residential development. People have until Friday, May 28 to complete an online survey at – Caroline ballard

Salt Lake City metro hotel market begins to recover

With COVID-19 vaccinations increasing and federal economic aid continuing, hotels in the Salt Lake metro area are showing signs of recovery. This is according to a study by the real estate company CBRE Hotels. He said the hotel occupancy rate in Salt Lake could average 52% by the end of the year. That’s up from 2020, but still well below pre-pandemic levels of over 70% occupancy. CBRE does not expect the Salt Lake hospitality industry to fully recover until 2023. – Caroline ballard


Utah meets criteria set out in state’s endgame pandemic bill

Public health orders in Utah related to the COVID-19 pandemic are now complete. State health officials announced Tuesday that Utah has met the criteria set out in the Legislative Assembly’s “Pandemic Endgame” bill. The state needed to respond to some use of intensive care unit beds, distribute over 1.63 million first vaccines, and maintain a relatively low two-week case rate – similar to what the state has seen during the summer lull in the middle of August. The mask requirement in schools will also end on June 15 or at the end of the school year – whichever comes first. Health officials reported 259 more cases on Tuesday. Thirteen other people have died from the virus, but officials said 10 of the deaths occurred before April 1. – Ross Terrell

Region / Nation

President Joe Biden unveils his first budget proposal

President Biden’s first budget proposal was released in April and is separate from the US Jobs Plan. While a more detailed budget will come later this spring, this version includes funding increases for some housing and urban development programs in the United States. This includes $ 900 million for Native American housing, as well as $ 180 million for affordable housing for seniors and people with disabilities. The budget must be approved by Congress. According to the US census, about 9% of Utah’s population lives in a rural area. – Maggie Mullen, Mountain West News Office

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