Legislative Update, 0222 UTBJ, Vol. 35, No. 1. 12

Authorby Doug Foxley, Frank Pignanelli, Stephen Foxley, Steven Styler, and Nancy Sylvester
PositionVol. 35 1 Pg. 12

Legislative Update

No. Vol. 35 No. 1 Pg. 12

Utah Bar Journal

February, 2022

January, 2021

Modifications to Bar Interactions with the Legislature and How You Can Participate

by Doug Foxley, Frank Pignanelli, Stephen Foxley, Steven Styler, and Nancy Sylvester

The 2022 General Legislative Session convenes January 18 and adjourns March 4. Although the pandemic will likely still be a concern, there will be a return to more traditional communications with lawmakers through personal visits. Masks will not be required, but crowding in front of the chambers will be limited. Because virtual participation is now a mainstream activity, many lawmakers and committee witnesses will on occasion participate remotely.

We really appreciate the participation of our lawyer legislators in providing a preview of legislative activity in the December 9, 2021 Fall Forum. These lawmakers explained a likely examination into and possible legislation regarding small claims courts, modifications to criminal penalties, changes to the judiciary, family law amendments, and uniform laws, among others.

Lawmakers will be consumed by the process of distributing surpluses caused by a rebounding economy and a massive infusion of federal funds. While this sounds easy, it requires extreme discipline to ensure that one-time and ongoing commitments are funded appropriately in the event of future downturns. Utah’s high credit rating demonstrates that this is a normal practice for our legislature.

Additionally, this is an election year with new districts having been drawn after the special session in November. These dynamics can influence which issues are considered and those that are postponed for later review.

Adjacent to this article is a list of the lawyer legislators serving in the 2022 session. This is a remarkable group of people who champion the interest of our profession and access to justice for all citizens. Not only are they open to discussions with the Bar, they welcome communications from colleagues regarding legislation. We encourage Utah State Bar practitioners to interact with their local lawmakers, with attention to the conditions provided in this article.

Please remember that the Utah State Bar’s legislative activities are limited by design and follow United States Supreme Court precedent outlined in Keller v. State Bar of California, 496 U.S. 1 (1990). When the Utah Supreme Court adopted rules that directed the Utah State Bar to engage in...

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