Life goes on’
A News from Déseret The reader had the right question: “Why would a port in Southern California send cargo destined for the eastern United States via Salt Lake City when the ports in Arizona offer a more direct route?” This, of course, had to do with Utah’s Inland Port of No Return and how it is being promoted as a 21st century “crossroads of the West”. Get into the vexatious supply chain issues that have cargo backed up in real ports and unable to dock. The New York Times made it clear that truck drivers – on whom the movement of supplies depends – are independent contractors not eligible for unemployment insurance, workers’ compensation or organized union help as working conditions are made more stressful by the continuing shortage of truckers. Utah Port Authority Director Jack Hedge insists all is well and the trucks will end up being “greener” than the polluting machines they are now. But for when? And will the trucking industry even exist or, more importantly, will it come to Utah?
The railway world
There’s a lot going on in the Uinta Basin, and it’s not very good. First, the US Forest Service accepted a proposal to build the Uinta Basin Railroad through the Ashley National Forest, allegedly to “bring economic growth to the Basin and alleviate some of the volatility of the Basin. an economy based on the extractive industry ”, a county of Duchesne. Utah Public Radio Commissioner said. This means more hydraulic fracturing, and depending on the implications of a Salt Lake Tribune history, no more methane leaks from natural gas production. Needless to say, environmental groups oppose it. Deeda Seed of the Center for Biological Diversity called the governor in a Tribune editorial, saying Cox believes that “spitting 53 million tonnes of carbon pollution – a conservative estimate – into the atmosphere will enrich our lives and improve our condition.” This will not be the case.
Utah should absolutely eliminate the food tax. Why does it make sense for the state to rake in a few dollars at the expense of low-income people and the elderly? Some lawmakers – all Democrats – and religious leaders have called for the elimination of Utah’s 1.75% sales tax on groceries, according to a KSL report. They talked about the emergency pantry now turning into a pantry to help people survive. And, oh yeah, the state has something like a billion dollar surplus revenue, which the legislature will soon haggle over. COVID and inflation have only made matters worse, and we know how worried Republicans are about inflation. Utah is one of 13 states that have retained a tax on groceries despite overwhelming public opinion. And Fox 13 notes that 1 in 10 households in Utah are food insecure. This represents 102,000 families in what is supposed to be a family friendly state. The excess is good news. The elimination of the food tax would be better news.