utah tax reform


Of Utah’s 29 counties, only three of them failed to collect enough signatures on the referendum for the tax reform bill lawmakers approved in a special session last month. 


The Utah Legislature passed a bill fully repealing the new tax law Tuesday, a little more than a month after it was first approved. 

State leaders announced the legislature would repeal the new tax law just a few days before the 2020 general session began. The likely success of the tax reform referendum pushed them to the repeal, to be able to budget for the session.

Just before the Utah Legislature voted to repeal the new tax law Tuesday, a referendum that would have put it to voters in November tallied more than enough signatures to get on the ballot.


After preliminary counts showed the Utah tax reform referendum would be put to voters on the November ballot, the governor and state legislative leaders announced Thursday morning the tax bill will be fully repealed. 

State leaders announced in a press release Thursday that Senate Bill 2001, the tax bill the legislature passed in a December special session, will be fully repealed and ready for the governor’s signature by the end of next week.

Utah House of Representatives

The new tax law that state lawmakers recently passed might be put on hold, with a citizen referendum likely to succeed. One Summit County legislator looks ahead to how that might play out in the 2020 general session.

Although state lawmakers likely hoped to put it behind them, District 53 Rep. Logan Wilde says legislators won’t escape a conversation about tax reform, given the likely success of a referendum to put the legislature’s tax reform efforts to voters.

A citizen-led referendum to overturn Utah’s new tax law may have met the requirements to be on the November ballot.

After a 40-day sprint to the finish line, opponents to the state’s recently passed tax law seem to have collected enough signatures to put a referendum to Utah voters in November. The law cuts the income tax rate and increases sales tax on food, gas and places taxes on some services.


On December 12th members of the Utah Legislature passed a Tax Reform bill in a special session, which was then signed by Utah Governor Gary Herbert. Soon after a grassroots effort to overturn the bill sprung up across the state.


A group of Utahns is trying to put a citizen referendum on the November ballot, to overturn the tax bill the state legislature recently passed in a December special session. 

Park City resident Tom Horton has been politically active in Utah since the 1970s, canvassing and fundraising for issues and candidates. Now, he’s gathering signatures for a referendum to undo the Utah legislature’s tax overhaul.

The Utah Legislature recently passed a sweeping overhaul of the state tax system during a special session earlier in December. Utah Gov. Gary Herbert signed the bill into law shortly after. Two Summit County legislators give their take on the bill.

Utah State

Governor Gary Herbert signed a controversial tax reform bill Thursday that changes the state’s tax code and cuts overall taxes by about $160 million. Utah sales taxes will go up, and the state income tax rate, which, by state constitution, funds education, will go down.

About $4.5 billion in income tax revenues annually are constitutionally allocated to public and higher education in Utah.

Utah State Capitol
KPCW Radio

Some 50 members of the public gave comment at the state legislature’s Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force hearing Monday evening. 

The state legislature’s Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force met for the final time Monday, and a special session of the full-legislature could be held as soon as this week to approve this sweeping tax reform bill. 

The 199-page draft bill to shore up the state’s general fund includes a $160 million tax cut.


The state legislature’s Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force met for five hours Tuesday to debate tax reform policy recommendations and take public comment. 

The co-chairs of the state legislature’s Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force have recommended removing the constitutional requirement to spend income tax revenue only on public education funding as one way to address the state’s tax revenue imbalance. 

House Minority Leader Brian King, a Democrat who represents part of Summit County, says there are many other options to address tax reform beside giving up the constitutional earmark on income tax for education.

Voices For Utah Children

The Utah Legislature’s Tax Restructuring and Equalization Task Force will meet Tuesday at the Capitol. The organization Voices for Utah Children along with other low-income advocacy groups sent a letter requesting they examine how tax policy changes might affect Utah’s poor.

Matthew Weinstein with Voices for Utah Children works with the state legislators on the organization’s priorities. They’ve been around since 1985.