Utah News

Utah News and UPR Newsline are productions of Utah Public Radio. 

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Utah’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 2.5 percent in October, down from 2.7 percent in September, as the state’s economy added 51,200 jobs in the prior year.

Department of Workforce Services Chief Economist Mark Knold, said Thursday that October’s performance signals a “healthy and positive attitude” among Utah consumers during the month, which Knold called “the springboard” for the upcoming holiday shopping season.

The department said the Utah economy’s saw a year-over-year job growth increase since October 2018 of 3.3 percent.

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Utah’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined to 2.5 percent in October, down from 2.7 percent in September, as the state’s economy added 51,200 jobs in the prior year.

Department of Workforce Services Chief Economist Mark Knold, said Thursday that October’s performance signals a “healthy and positive attitude” among Utah consumers during the month, which Knold called “the springboard” for the upcoming holiday shopping season.

The department said the Utah economy’s saw a year-over-year job growth increase since October 2018 of 3.3 percent.

Sgt. Siuta B / Nellis airforce base

The board that oversees Utah charter schools has asked state lawmakers to give them more authority saying they do not have the power to intervene before a school fails.

The Salt Lake Tribune reported Thursday that the Utah State Charter School Board made the request after one school closed and another filed bankruptcy.

Luke W. Nowakowski / US Air Force

Southern Utah University in Cedar City has been awarded money from the U.S. Department of Education to encourage youth to prepare for college. SUU’s TRIO Educational Talent Search program has been awarded a one-time grant of $40,000 to support their STEM education activities.

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Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. on Thursday announced his 2020 candidacy for the Republican nomination for the office that he held from 2005 to 2009 before leaving to serve as a U.S. ambassador.

Huntsman announced his candidacy in a statement before a scheduled kickoff swing Thursday and Friday to Cedar City and St. George in southern Utah.

Incumbent Republican Gov. Gary Herbert is not running for re-election and Huntsman has said he was considering a run for governor.

Is Human Trafficking On The Rise In Utah?

Nov 14, 2019
Department of Defense

“It’s a silent crime," said Lucy Servellon, CAPSA’s Northern Utah Liaison for Human Trafficking. "Nobody sees it, but it’s there."

Public Domain Pictures

Some officers from the Salt Lake City Police Department have warned city leaders that new hybrid sedans are too small.

The Ford Fusion Responder hybrid sedan was "not designed for police work," and "a danger to anyone that may need a police response," several officers who tested out the car said in a review.

There were concerns with safety in the event of a collision and lack of all-wheel drive in wintry conditions, KUTV-TV reported Monday.

The Latest on a Utah death-row inmate who died in prison (all times local):

3:55 p.m.

Author Jon Krakauer says he's grateful that a Utah death-row inmate who killed his brother's wife and her toddler has died of natural causes and won't be executed by firing squad in what would have been a circus of an event.

Krakauer made the comment Monday, hours after Utah prison officials said 78-year-old Ron Lafferty had died of natural causes.

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The Iron County Sheriff's Office says Cedar City police fatally shot a man who allegedly pointed a gun toward them.

The Sheriff's Office said the shooting occurred Monday after officers responded to a call from a woman who said her husband was threatening her and her adult son.

According to a statement issued by the Sheriff's Office, the officers asked the man to move forward with his hands visible and the officers fired multiple rounds when he approached "while pointing a handgun in their direction."

No identities were released.

A Cedar City man is dead after he pointed a handgun at officers responding to a domestic incident on Monday.

A Utah death-row inmate whose double-murder case was featured in the book "Under the Banner of Heaven" and who was nearing execution by firing squad has died of natural causes, prison officials said Monday.

Ron Lafferty, 78, died at the state prison in the Salt Lake City suburb of Draper, Utah Department of Corrections spokeswoman Kaitlin Felsted said in a statement.

His case became well known from Jon Krakauer's 2003 book about radical offshoots of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Krakauer also wrote "Into Thin Air" and "Into the Wild."

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Two groups in the scientific community have removed job postings at Brigham Young University from their websites because of the school's LGBTQ policies.

The Salt Lake Tribune reported Monday that the Washington, D.C.-based American Geophysical Union and the Colorado-based Geological Society of America took down job ads from BYU.

The groups say the jobs require applicants abide by the school's honor code, which includes a ban on "homosexual behavior."

https://www.sltrib.com/

Early members of the Church of Jesus Christ and Latter-day Saints found refuge in the territory of Utah in 1846 after being forced out of the state of Missouri by the governor. Nearly 175 years later, Utah’s governor has asked President Donald Trump to allow more refugees to locate in Utah.

Utah Division of Wildlife Resources


The sound of a Utah juniper tree turning into woodchips is deafening. The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources is currently removing junipers and pinyon pines at 45 sites in the state using a "bullhog." The division said the treatment will allow more grasses, forbs and sagebrush to take over, thus helping wildlife. 

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Authorities investigating two murders at an eastern Utah house say a man apparently killed another before he possibly was stabbed to death by other Halloween partygoers.

Duchesne County Sheriff's officials say it appears 22-year-old Jon Reed Jr. of Roosevelt went to the house and fatally shot Tyrell Sowsonicut of Duchesne for a still unknown reason.

They say the 23-year-old Sowsonicut was found dead inside the house. Reed's body was located outside near an entrance to the home.

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Demonstrators are raising concerns after state and city officials announced plans to close a homeless shelter as winter approaches.

The Road Home shelter has housed homeless people and families for decades but is scheduled to close in about three weeks, Salt Lake City officials said. Before its closure, the remaining 300 of its 400 occupants are scheduled to move into a new resource center in South Salt Lake.

Lesya Feinstein

A two-by-four foot table with a green, metal overlay buzzed in Jason Leiker’s suburban garage. 

Kat Webb / UPR

Research from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, in conjunction with the Utah Department of Health, has shown that 85% of firearm deaths in Utah are due to suicide, and guns are the method in half of the states’ suicides. 

U.S. authorities investigating a tour bus crash that killed four Chinese tourists in Utah say they haven't uncovered any mechanical problems that could have caused the September incident.

The National Transportation Safety Board also said Thursday in a report that the 60-year-old driver was on his first run for a new company, but he knew the area from trips for another agency.

The preliminary report says the bus left the road on Sept. 20 for an unknown reason then rolled as the driver tried to correct its course.

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The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has announced the location of a new Utah temple.

Church officials say Wednesday they acquired land located near 3000 E. 1580 South in St. George.

Church President Russell Nelson announced plans in October 2018 calling for a three-story temple in the city.

Officials say detailed plans and a groundbreaking date have not yet been released.

Officials say the temple would become the second in the city, about 5 miles (8 kilometers) from the 142-year-old St. George Utah Temple recently closed for renovations.

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A Utah university has opened an investigation after a student's YouTube videos calling debate-team teachings "anti-white" gained widespread attention online, sparking threats targeted at the instructor.

Weber State debate director Ryan Wash, who is black, tells the Standard-Examiner he's gotten more than 100 messages containing racial epithets and some death threats.

Cliff Lillywhite

Utah’s egg industry is being recognized by the state’s department of agriculture and food because of the quality of the product and the number of eggs produced.  


Students from Utah State University’s Latinx Creative Society celebrated Day of the Dead on Saturday. It was a parade that honored the dead, but also focused on ways to support those living with mental health challenges.

Some residents living in Garfield County who were hoping to vote in Tuesday’s elections have not received their mail-in-ballots. Chase Thomas with Alliance for a Better Utah said they were told by the county clerk that shipping complications with mail-in-ballots has forced polls to be open Tuesday for what was supposed to be in mail-in-ballots only election.

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A new mental health institute funded by a $150 million donation from the influential Huntsman family will focus on researching the genetic causes of the illnesses and provide more treatment to college students and rural residents, the University of Utah announced Monday.

The Huntsman Mental Health Institute will aim to provide research-based treatment and help fund the University of Utah Health's psychiatry department, according to a news release.

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