Deseret News

 A new political home for the ‘moveable middle’: Welcome to the Giraffe Party “Always willing to stick our necks out,” “Stays above the fray.” It’s time for a different kind of political discussion and it starts at the dinner table

Poll: What Utahns think about new President Joe Biden President Biden will have some work to do if he wants to poll favorably in Utah. 

Could legislation help families and loved ones connect in lockdown? Rep. Cory Maloy is proposing a bill that would protect personal and religious freedoms by prohibiting the health department, long-term care facilities and governmental entities from barring entry.

Utahn among those President Trump pardons on way out the door Lynn W Barney was serving time for possessing a gun after previously being convicted of felony

Utah Senate approves $43 million in tax cuts for retired military, Social Security Part of a larger tax package, this bill takes the first bite at the apple and would reduce the tax burden on almost 67,000 people on fixed incomes.

Widespread voter fraud in 2020 election? A lot of Utahns think so For Utahns who call themselves conservatives, more than two-thirds think there was wide-spread fraud and 60% think Trump was the winner of the November election.

‘Political football’? Biden wants review of Bears Ears, Grand Staircase boundaries Utah leaders want to be involved in the discussions surrounding the monuments

 

Salt Lake Tribune

President Joe Biden starts process to restore Utah’s national monuments - monument review likely would be headed by Biden’s pick for Interior Secretary, Rep. Deb Haaland, D-N.M., an enrolled member of the Laguna Pueblo who refers to herself as a 35th-generation New Mexican.

Lawmakers threaten funding cuts if Salt Lake City schools don’t reopen as promised - SB107 would mean that any school district that does not have a face-to-face option by Feb. 8 will immediately lose funding for each student that transfers elsewhere.

Gov. Spencer Cox was invited to Biden inauguration, but said obligations prevented his attendance - The beginning of the legislative session and today’s State of the State address prevented the Governor from traveling to D.C.

UTA discards proposal for $1 billion TRAX at Point of Mountain; seeks bus rapid transit there instead - Conclusion comes after a year and a half of study

Bonuses for Utah teachers are coming in March, but substitutes will be left out - Their numbers are not reported to the state, so it’s unknown how many there are. Sen. Riebe, a teacher, objects to the exclusion.

  

Other

UDOT urging drivers to be prepared in Cottonwood Canyons, regardless if traction law in effect (FOX 13) - Common sense urged, especially in winter weather.

Salt Lake City Council lifts hiring freeze on SLCPD (FOX 13) - After 7 months, the council voted unanimously to life the freeze

Utah man faces charges after authorities say he impersonated an officer and stole a doughnut (CNN) - No commentary needed

 

COVID Corner

This symptom might mean you had COVID-19 (Deseret News) - Fatigue - exhaustion not relieved by sleep - can be a post-viral symptom.

Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine can defeat the COVID-19 variant found in the UK (Deseret News)- New study showed that all mutations linked to the new variant were stopped by antibodies in the blood of patients who had been given the vaccine.

New COVID-19 variant in California is leading to increased spread, study says (Deseret News)- Another new strain of COVID-19 has been found in California, and it may be leading to more spread

New airport COVID-19 testing lets travelers avoid mandatory quarantines (Deseret News) - Big help for travelers who need to show negative COVID-19 tests, especially to places like Hawaii.

S.Africa virus strain poses 're-infection risk': study (Medical Xpress) - Unlike the UK variant, this new mutation does not seem to be blocked by vaccines - or previous infection.

First task for Biden’s CDC director: Fix everything Trump broke (Ars Technica )- Part of Dr. Rochelle Walensky’s plan is to unmuzzle scientists and get their science out to the public.