Sutherland Newsletter – February 22, 2007

1.Chicago-style Congestion Predicted in Salt Lake by 2030

Transit expert and author, Sam Staley, says that based on current trends, drivers in Salt Lake City will experience Chicago-style congestion and traffic in less than 25 years unless Utah finds a real solution.  And that solution, according to Staley, is not through mass transit, but by improving the road system.  “The urban areas that are most successful are those where the road capacity keeps up with the travel demand,” Staley said at a Sutherland-sponsored transportation briefing for legislators at the State Capitol on Thursday, February 8, 2007.  Following his presentation, Staley signed copies of his latest book, The Road More Traveled: Why the Congestion Crisis Matters More Than You Think, and What We Can Do About It.


Staley is the director of urban growth and land use policy at Reason Foundation.  He has more than twenty-five years of experience working in urban policy and has written more than eighty professional articles and reports.  His commentaries have been nationally-syndicated.


A summary of the points presented and discussed at the briefing may be obtained by sending an email request to, or by calling 801-355-1272.


2.Sutherland-supported Bills Gaining Momentum in Final Week

The 2007 legislative session is entering the final stretch.  With less than a week remaining, the Sutherland Institute is working hard to make sure its legislative priorities successfully make their way through the process.


Just today, February 22, the full House passed HB 343: Foster Placement and Adoption Amendments.  Stan Rasmussen, public affairs manager for Sutherland, said, “This bill makes first-class citizens out of our foster and adopted children by creating a preference in the foster and adoption system for placements with two legally-married parents.” The bill now moves to the Senate.


On Wednesday, February 21, the House passed HB 395: Waivers of Immunity – Exceptions.  It’s now on to the Senate for consideration. This bill provides that the governmental immunity of a person, official, or institution does not apply if the person intentionally, willfully, or knowingly engages in certain misconduct.