Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Salt Lake Tribune: Utah’s ‘Mr. Liquor’ Leaving Legislature to Head Tax Commission -Updated

Sodden Question: Does the 800 lb Gorilla already have another legislative lackey lined up to fill Valentine's shoes?

Tantalizing story in this morning's Salt Lake Trib, which we'll file under our ongoing topic heading, Utah Liquor Law. Here's the lede, folks:
Sen. John Valentine, a fixture in the Utah Legislature since 1988 and the major force behind Utah’s liquor laws for the past decade, will leave the Senate to head the Utah Tax Commission.
The Utah County tax attorney, who is the second-longest-serving active lawmaker and was president of the Senate for four years, technically still must be confirmed by the Senate, but approval by his colleagues is almost certain.
We'll link the full story, for those who'd like to read up:
Does Mr. Valentine's legislative departure signal an opportunity for "normalization" of Utah liquor policy? Mr. Valentine himself hints that changes may be potentially on the table:
"I’m sure there will be a lot of people celebrating that Mr. Liquor is leaving the Legislature," Valentine joked. "I’ll still be interested as a citizen to see what we do, because I think those policy balances are really important. I think the balance between the hospitality we show people who want to drink alcohol versus the social cost, I think we have to keep that balance."
This is of course a development is one which we'll be watching like a hawk.

So what do you think, folks?  Will Valentine's "batty brainchild,"  the notorious Zion's Curtain, be an early casualty of the 2015 Utah Legislature? Or does the 800 lb Gorilla already have another legislative lackey lined up to fill Valentine's shoes?

Update 8/5/14 9:00 a.m.:  Utah Political Hub provides a fairly decent list of those political hopefuls who are already jockeying to fill Sen. John Valentine's soon-to-be-vacated Utah Senate slot:


blackrulon said...

Mr. Valentine was merely representing the wishes from South Temple on opposing any changes in liquor policy

Ray said...

I'd vote for a common sense candidate. Not an ideological, what ever the church/legislature wants person. One who is pro-business and one who actually has a personal understanding of alcohol ( read one who imbibes). An aside-In Idaho it is illegal for a bar to be opened within 300 feet of a church. However, the local political entity can waive that requirement with vetting from the affected church/citizenry. Recently a growler fill station wanted to open within that 300 foot buffer in downtown Nampa. The city council with the concurrence of the affected Church voted to allow that business to open. Don't believe that would ever happen in Utah...

blackrulon said...

Will Valentine install a special tax Zion wall in all tax offices? You would not want minors to see what is happening to your tax dollars.

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