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Governor Cox highlights his $970 million education budget proposal in State of the State address

Governor Spencer Cox stands at a podium during the State of the State address, with legislators sitting behind him.
Utah State Office of the Governor

After Governor Cox drew some chuckles during the opening of his speech Thursday night he delved right into the pandemic.

“I’m encouraged that Utah currently has the sixth lowest hospitalization rate in the nation and our rate is less than half of the national average," Cox said. "Experts already believe that Summit County is already declining and the rest of the state will soon follow."

He also acknowledged there will continue to be disagreements on all sides of the Utah political spectrum on how best to respond to the ongoing pandemic.

“But may we all find common ground tonight on this one issue. Our children need us to be strong. They need us to point to a hopeful future and they need to be in school in person face to face with their friends and teachers," Cox said.

The governor then turned to education. He is proposing $970 million dollars in education funding this legislative session, with a priority focus on at risk and disadvantage students.

“A child’s zip code should never determine their future or opportunities," Cox said.

Governor Cox spent the rest of his speech showing support of other budget recommendations on major budget priorities including tax cuts, water, affordable housing and infrastructure. Utah Democrats responded to Cox’s speech in a prepared pre-recorded statement released Thursday evening.

House Minority Leader, Representative Brian King said, “Let me first say, there are some of Governor Cox’s proposals that Democrats can agree with. While we might disagree on the best policy approach, our state faces many critical issues that we must come together as a legislature to resolve.”

Sheri's career in radio began at 7 years old in Los Angeles, California with a secret little radio tucked under her bed that she'd fall asleep with, while listening to The Dr. Demento Radio Show. She went on to produce the first science radio show in Utah in 1999 and has been reporting local, national and international stories ever since. After a stint as news director at KZYX on northern California's Lost Coast, she landed back at UPR in 2021.