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Utah Governor Cox calls special session for flooding

Utah Governor Spencer Cox has called a special session to deal with flooding issues for May 17, 2023.

Governor Spencer Cox is calling the Utah State Legislature into special session to extend the state of emergency for flooding.

In a proclamation issued Friday, the governor said the current state of emergency will expire May 18. Because Utah is still experiencing flooding, landslides and other impacts from the record snowfall, he’s asking lawmakers to extend the state of emergency for at least another 30 days.

Gov. Cox also wants the legislature to dip into rainy day funds to help pay for flood mitigation costs. Lawmakers budgeted $5 million this year for flooding issues. The state has already surpassed that as flooding, mudslides and other impacts from the record snowpack continue.

The governor also asked the legislature to modify House Bill 225 which deals with firearm possession. The bill requires agencies to run background checks when returning a firearm considered evidence to an individual. But a mistake was made and a portion of the bill as currently written is more restrictive than federal rules allow for non-United States citizen gun owners.

The legislature will meet in special session on May 17, when lawmakers are already scheduled to be at the Utah State Capitol for interim hearings.