Inland Port Compromise Announced, Special Session Scheduled for Wednesday

Jul 16, 2018, 1:54 PM

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Governor Gary Herbert has called for a special session for lawmakers to make changes on a variety of items, including the controversial Inland Port Authority bill.

Gov. Gary Herbert talks about compromises to inland port bill on July 16, 2018.

An inland port could provide a huge boost to our state’s economy, but state and local leaders and nearby residents have been embroiled in a battle over how it would be run in Salt Lake City’s northwest quadrant.

Monday, Governor Herbert, state lawmakers and Salt Lake City Council members said they’ve taken a huge step forward negotiating many changes to be looked at in this special session.

City Council members say these changes would mitigate many of their biggest concerns, including environmental impacts and setting aside a portion of the property tax differential for affordable housing.

“Without the city stepping up to participate, it was clear that the state was ready to roll ahead with the fourth substitute which is incredibly detrimental, not only to salt lake city, but to municipalities around the state,” said SLC City Council Chair Erin Mendenhall.

“This is a new opportunity for us to have better relations between our capitol city, Salt Lake City, and who they represent and the State of Utah,” said Governor Herbert.

Noticeably absent at Monday’s press conference, Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski.

Both the SLC City Council and the governor say she has declined their invitations to sit at the table and negotiate with them.

We reached out to her for comment but have not heard back.

After the press conference, citizens concerned about air quality and environmental issues say while these officials are touting progress, they are frustrated by the lack of transparency and the lack of public input.

They say this special session Wednesday doesn’t give them much time to organize.

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Inland Port Compromise Announced, Special Session Scheduled for Wednesday