Op-Ed: Utah incentive program keeps evolving, which goes with the territory

Written by: Peter Reichard

Having followed economic development incentives nationally since the turn of the millennium, I’ve seen some eyebrow-raising deals go down. There were “big fish” relocation bidding wars that caused countless hours of wasted civic energy at the state and local levels. There were deals set to last far into the future, saddling future generations with an investment for which there was a murky long-term return at best. There were big tax breaks for projects that failed … Continued

Utah Thrives: Mental Health & Suicide Prevention

Written by: Dan Bammes

A recent Utah Foundation breakfast event on access to mental health services and suicide prevention brought up a little good news: Utah’s suicide rate isn’t rising as fast as it has in the past two decades. And professionals who treat those at risk for suicide say their interventions can work very well if they reach people in time. But there are still many challenges, including providing access to psychiatric care in Utah’s rural areas. In … Continued

The leaves are falling. What about taxes?

Written by: Peter Reichard

Autumn is not the season we usually associate with discussions of state tax policy. But with comprehensive tax reform failing to blossom last spring at the close of the general session, state legislators are working to bring reform to fruition before winter sets in. The push for reform comes at a time of prosperity for Utah – but also a time when structural challenges are becoming increasingly apparent. As Utah Foundation revealed in its 2018 … Continued

Utah Thrives: Mine Reclamation

Written by: Dan Bammes

Mining was a driving force in America’s frontier legacy. A century and a half ago, prospectors and miners began pouring into the Mountain states from Montana to Arizona, in search of wealth or at least a living. As a result, the landscape is peppered with old mines they left behind. And while they’re a fascinating part of the history of the West, abandoned mines can pose a present-day challenge. In this edition of Utah Thrives, … Continued

Utah Thrives: Community Growth

Written by: Dan Bammes

Utah Foundation hosted a panel discussion on the challenges posed by Utah’s rapid population growth, issues explored in the research report Building a Better Beehive: Land Use Decision Making, Fiscal Sustainability and Quality of Life in Utah. The panelists included: Andrew Gruber, Wasatch Front Regional Council Robert Grow, Envision Utah Beth Holbrook, Utah Transit Authority Bryson Garbett, Garbett Homes Cameron Diehl, Utah League of Cities and Towns In this edition of Utah Thrives, we’ll hear … Continued

Utah Thrives: Robert Putnam

Written by: Dan Bammes

Harvard political science professor Robert Putnam talks with Dan Bammes and Utah Foundation President Peter Reichard about the idea of social capital — the central idea of his groundbreaking book Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. He also talks about his more recent book, Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis, that looks at the growing gap between wealthy American families and others who’ve found education and social mobility much harder to … Continued

Utah’s Quality of Life – Video

Written by: Shawn Teigen

Utah Foundation occasionally surveys Utahns in an effort to understand how they feel about both their community and their personal quality of life. This video describes why Utah’s community quality of life is declining, and shows how quality of life is affected by demographic factors. This is all described in further detail in our report Utah Foundation Quality of Life Survey: Measuring Utahns’ Perceptions of their Communities, Personal Lives.  

Utah Thrives: Teacher Pay

Written by: Dan Bammes

Why should a young person in Utah make the career decision to become a teacher? Why do potential teachers often choose another line of work? And how do Utah’s pay scales for teachers compare to other Mountain states and the nation? In this edition of Utah Thrives, we’ll talk about the new Utah Foundation report Apples to Apples: How Teacher Pay in Utah Stacks up to the Competition. We’ll hear from Utah Foundation President Peter … Continued

Utah’s thriving economy complicates teacher pay challenge

Written by: Peter Reichard

It’s usually a simple equation. If you want high-performing schools, you need high-performing teachers. The question – particularly for a fast-growing state like Utah – is how to attract and retain them. In its new report, Apples to Apples? How Teacher Pay in Utah Stacks Up to the Competition, Utah Foundation reveals that average teacher pay in our state is well below the national average and at the bottom of the eight Mountain States. But … Continued