Stadium Plan Approved for Utah State Fairpark


In less than a year, the Utah State Fairpark will be home to a new 10,000 seat multi-purpose arena. The state portion of the project was approved today by the legislature to replace the old outdoor Coliseum. The legislation was sponsored in the State Senate by Sen. Luz Escamilla (D-Salt Lake).

Fairpark ArenaFairpark is located on 65 acres on the west side of Salt Lake City at 155 North 1000 West.

“I’m excited for a project twenty years in the making”, says Sen. Escamilla. “Our community is looking forward to the economic development opportunity at the Fairpark as the result of this investment. The arena will elevate the Fairpark to be a crown jewel in our city and our state.”

The $17-million project is a public-private partnership which includes the $10 million in state funding approved today, plus a $3 million contribution from the LDS Church through the Days of ’47 organization.  The remainder of the funding will be provided by Salt Lake City and County and other private partners.

The state of the art multi-purpose arena will become the permanent home for the Days of ’47 Rodeo, and will be used to attract other large events seeking a 10,000 seat outdoor venue.

“I am encouraged that our state leaders agree that building a modern, 10,000 seat multi-purpose facility is a wise investment of state funds,” says Sen. Escamilla.

The state-owned Fairpark is operated and managed by the Fairpark and has been in operation at its current location since the state originallypurchased the property in 1902. Future plans and goals of the Fairpark include significant improvements to its infrastructure and operations.





Believe! – Coming soon to a license plate near you!

Sen. Luz Escamilla’s legislation creating a new specialty plate for Real Salt Lake has passed both houses and will be sent to the Governor for signature!


SB64 gives Utah drivers the option to show their Real Salt Lake spirit while supporting the Real Salt Lake Foundation’s efforts to train soccer referees, encourage youth soccer, and help prevent gang activity.  For more information about Real Salt Lake’s community programs, please visit the RSL Foundation.

Thanks to SB64 co-sponsor Rep. Brad Wilson and Leo the Lion for helping unveil the new plate!

RSL Plate

Members of Minority Caucus React to the Rejection of Medicaid Expansion

Earlier this week, the Utah Access Plus proposal was rejected in the House of Representatives. There will likely be no special session for Medicaid Expansion. Alternatives for covering the gap will be revisited during the 2016 Legislative Session.

Senator Davis, Minority Leader of the Senate Democrat Caucus, said, “The failure to get any Medicaid Expansion in Utah means we continue to step over tens of thousands of Utahns who need it most. It is incalculable how much this failure will cost Utah’s economy. Without expanding Medicaid, Utah is continuing to forgo millions of federal dollars. This is money lost to our economy. This shows on the part of the Legislature that there is no desire to make sure those on the lowest income scale have access to health care.”

Senator Davis continues, “It is a shame that the citizens of our state cannot count on the Legislature to adopt a sensible Medicaid Expansion plan that would provide access to health care for all Utahns. This affects everyone in our state and we cannot keep putting off a solution.”

Senator Escamilla shares her thoughts, “I am disappointed in the lack of action on this critical issue. Once again the most vulnerable residents of our state are suffering from nonsense politics.”

Immediately following the House’ rejection of the Medicaid Expansion proposal, Utah Access Plus, on Tuesday, Senator Dabakis said, “This is a red letter day for stupidity in Utah’s political history…The shameful actions of the Utah GOP House put ideology and politics ahead of common sense.”

Prison Relocation: Senator Luz Escamilla Joins Community Members in Opposition of SLC Site

Today at a press conference at Riverside Park west of Salt Lake City, legislators and members of the District 1 community came together to speak out against relocating the State Prison to Salt Lake City.

Senator Luz Escamilla of District 1 spoke strongly against this relocation stating, “I will continue to speak up on behalf of the constituents of Senate District 1 on why it is not a good investment to place the new state prison in the west side of the capital city. Not only is it the most expensive site, but it is not a wise economic development decision and continues to disproportionally impact one community in the entire state.”

 Luz-Prison Relocation Pic Fave

Senator Escamilla Shares Thoughts on Prison Relocation to SLC

Media Statement

Senator Escamilla

For Immediate Release

Contact: Lisa Beaudry, Communications Director
Utah Senate Democrats
801-427-2232 |

Senator Luz Escamilla
Cell: 801-550-6434

Sad Day for Salt Lake City, its Residents and its Leaders

Salt Lake City –Senator Luz Escamilla voices overwhelming frustration with
location announcement by the Prison Relocation Commission and issues the
following statement:
“I am truly disappointed with the news that the Prison Relocation
Commission has selected Salt Lake City as the site for the building of the
new state prison,” exclaims Senator Escamilla. “The residents and leaders
of Salt Lake City have been loud and clear when opposing this possible
west side relocation site.”

“I feel a big mistake is being made to build a state prison in this
limited available space area when we should be developing this area for
economic development purposes. The west side of Salt Lake City has been a
helpful and responsible neighbor and stepped up to house the only State
Parole Violator Center (The Fortitude Treatment Center) and several
halfway houses. Instead of this area being asked to bear the
disproportionate burden of having these types of facilities in their
community, the only fair choice would be that the rest of the state share
this responsibility.”

“I believe this matter is not finished, and I am hopeful members of the
state legislature will consider the importance of a more appropriate
relocation site for the state prison than the west sideof Salt Lake City.
I will be sure to remind them that this vote is a vote on the site and
location, not on prison reform or our state’s criminal justice reform.”


2013 Intern Appreciation Day!

Thank you to our awesome Utah Senate Democrats‘ interns!
• Senator Davis’ Interns: Elizabeth Stubbs & Vic Ardiano
• Senator Mayne’s Intern: Keegan Rank
• Senator Jones’ Intern: Taylor Bouchard
• Senator Robles’ Intern: Mario Organista
• Senator Dabakis’ Intern: Ben Ader

Read personal messages from the senators to their interns on Facebook.

Photo by Flawur Media

Utah Senate Democrats Lunch Winners

We were excited to host our first Utah Senate Democrats Lunch Winners on March 1 at the Capitol. We were thrilled both parties were represented!

More than 100 people entered the contest via social media within three weeks. We had a great conversation with the winners over chicken mole enchiladas and chiles rellenos catered by Rico Foods. We discussed education, health care and our own families, among other topics.

The winners were:
• Carlos Vasques of Fruit Heights, Davis County.
• Sarah Al-Obaydi of Salt Lake City.
• Jahn Curran of Salt Lake City, Rose Park.
• Michael Christensen of West Valley City.
• Julie Dole of West Jordan and Salt Lake County Republican Party Chair.

Utah Democrats: Standing Up for Our Military Personnel

The Utah Senate passed a measure today that will allow active duty personnel to receive property tax exemptions under certain conditions.  SJR8, sponsored by Senator Luz Robles, D–Salt Lake City, will amend the Utah Constitution to allow for a property tax exemption for certain military personnel .

The Senate also passed a companion bill, SB 116, which will define the property tax exemption for military members to include certain members of the armed forces who performed military service in a combat zone in the prior year.

The cost to Utah taxpayers amounts to approximately $1 per homeowner.

Because the proposals require a constitutional amendment, the bill must pass with 2/3 of the legislature in support. Senators voted in favor, on a 24-4 vote.  It now goes to the House for further consideration.  Upon final passage in the House, the question will appear on the November ballot.

Click here to watch the floor debate.

Utah Lawmakers Honor Girl Scouts

From the Salt Lake Tribune…
by Lee Davidson

Both houses of the Legislature unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday honoring the upcoming 100th anniversary of the Girl Scouts on March 12 — and received some free Girl Scout cookies in thanks.

“If those cookies are worth more than $10, you are going to have to report who you gave them to,” quipped Sen. Lyle Hillyard, R-Logan, who was presiding in the Senate. Ethics rules do not allow lawmakers to accept gifts worth more than $10.

Senate President Michael Waddoups, R-Taylorsville, chose not to preside as the Girls Scouts arrived, telling senators, “I learned last year that you don’t always get the treats if you sit up front.”

Sen. Pat Jones, D-Holladay, said being a Girl Scout helped her when she decided to seek office.

“When I ran my first campaign 12 years ago, I had to knock on doors and ask for votes. I knew I could do it because I remembered my Girl Scout years selling cookies.”

She told the Girl Scouts in the chamber, “I hope you are developing skills to run for office some day.

“It’s pretty clear how amazing this organization is” in helping teach girls skills and ethics, said Sen. Luz Robles, D-Salt Lake City, Senate sponsor of the resolution. Her daughter was among the Girl Scouts handing out cookies to legislators.

Original Story appears here.