Stephen H. Urquhart

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Stephen H. Urquhart
Urquart.JPG
Member of the Utah State Senate from the 29th District
Assumed office
2009
Preceded by John Hickman
Member of the Utah House of Representatives from the 75th District
In office
2001–2009
Succeeded by Don L. Ipson
Personal details
Born (1965-06-20) June 20, 1965 (age 51)
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Sara
Residence St. George
Occupation Attorney

Stephen Harold Urquhart (born June 20, 1965)[1] is an American politician from Utah. A Republican, he has been a member of the Utah State Senate, representing the State's 29th Senate district in Washington County since 2009. Prior to that, he served in the Utah House of Representatives from 2001 to 2009.[2]

Early years[edit]

Stephen Harold Urquhart was born June 20, 1965.[3] Urquhart received his Juris Doctorate from Brigham Young University and his bachelor's degree in Biology from Williams College.[3] He is a lawyer by profession.[3] Urquhart is married to his wife Sara,[4] has 4 children, and has self-declared that he can beat anyone at Foosball.[5] He now lives in St. George Utah.[3]

Political career[edit]

Urquhart is an American politician from Utah.[3] A Republican, he has been a member of the Utah State Senate, representing the State's 29th Senate district in Washington County since 2009.[4] Prior to that, he served in the Utah House of Representatives from 2001 to 2009.[3] He has also served as a board member for the Dixie Regional Medical Center, St. George Art Around the Corner, and St. George Community Center.[3]

In 2016, Senator Urquhart sat on the following committees (and subcommittees) in the Senate:[6]

  • Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee (Chair)
  • Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee
  • Senate Education Committee
  • Senate Rules Committee
  • Senate Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and Criminal Justice Committee

Election[edit]

Senator Urquhart will be retiring from the senate at the end of 2016 and will not seek reelection.[7]

Legislation[edit]

2016 sponsored bills[edit]

Bill Number Bill Title Bill Status
S.B. 1 Higher Education Base Budget Governor Signed 2/16/2016
S.B. 39 Medicaid Coverage for Adult Dental Services Governor Signed 3/25/2016
S.B. 107 Hate Crimes Amendments Senate/Filed for bills not passed 3/10/2016
S.B. 131 Utah College of Applied Technology Governance Amendments Governor Signed 3/23/2016
S.B. 146 Workers' Compensation Amendments Governor Signed 3/17/2016
S.B. 188 Higher Education Capital Facilities Senate/Filed for bills not passed 3/10/2016
S.B. 189 Death Penalty Amendments Senate/Filed for bills not passed 3/10/2016
S.B. 209 Fifth District Court Judge Senate/Filed for bills not passed 3/10/2016
S.B. 215 Motor Vehicle Amendments Governor Signed 3/28/2016
S.B. 232 Rescue Medication in Schools Enrolled 3/16/2016
SJR 13 Joint Resolution Amending Rules of Evidence Senate/Filed for bills not passed 3/10/2016

He also was the Floor Sponsor for the following bills:

  • H.B. 45 Stem Program Amendments
  • H.B. 58 Hemp Extract Amendments
  • H.B. 75 Epilepsy Training in Public Schools
  • H.B. 156 Personalized License Plates Amendments
  • H.B. 216 Utah Educational Savings Plan Amendments
  • H.B. 234 Adoptive and Foster Parents Amendments
  • H.B. 463 Personal Representative Amendments

Notable legislation[edit]

Anti-Discrimination[edit]

Senator Urquhart sponsored S.B. 100, Anti-discrimination Amendments during the 2014 legislative session.[8] Although this bill was kept in the Rules Committee, it was the topic of many conversations.[9] 13 gay rights protesters seeking a hearing for the anti-discrimination bill were handcuffed and taken into custody by Utah Highway Patrol troopers Monday for blocking access to a legislative committee hearing while they were demanding for S.B.100 to be heard.[9] Before the troopers took action shortly after 2 p.m., the protesters were told they were committing a potential felony and a class B misdemeanor by interfering with the hearing scheduled in the Senate Building on the Capitol grounds.[9] Currently, Utah law prohibits workplace and housing discrimination based on race, color, religion, gender, pregnancy/childbirth, age, national origin, or disability. Senator Urquarts bill would add protections for sexual orientation/gender identity.[9] People of any race, religion, sexual orientation, etc. still can be fired/evicted; but not because of their race, religion, sexual orientation, etc.[10] In other words, if a person is otherwise qualified, housing and employment decisions should not be based on that person’s sexual orientation/gender identity. This addition to the law is straightforward and simple.[10] In Senator Urquharts own words, “without hurting anyone, it [SB100] will protect individuals. It will promote economic development. It is supported by a significant majority of Utahns.” [10]

Concurrent Enrollment[edit]

Senator Urquhart also drafted SB 284, which focuses on Concurrent Enrollment for High School students.[3] This made students pay not more than $30/credit hour—for credits that they concur in, which would still be at least an 80% subsidy.[11] Amendment 3 exempts from that fee certain general education courses and youngsters who are eligible for free-and-reduced-lunch-eligibility program.[11] Under SB 284, poor youngsters would be exempted from paying the fees, and no one would pay for fees for certain general education courses.[11]

Death Penalty[edit]

Senator Urquhart introduced S.B. 189 Death Penalty Amendments during the 2016 Legislative Session. The bill would have eliminated the death penalty as an option in Utah. Urquhart made the argument that sentencing someone to the death penalty is an arduous process that drags the victim's family through judicial mud. He also cited different cases where the murderer was elevated to rockstar status with everyone knowing their name, but not the victim's name.[12] This bill passed out of the Senate, but was not considered in the House and therefore did not pass.

Hate Crimes[edit]

Senator Urquhart introduced S.B. 107 Hate Crimes Amendments during the 2016 Legislative Session. Before it was presented on the Senate floor, the LDS Church spoke in opposition to any bills of this nature that might offset the balance of the Anti-Discrimination and Religious Liberties compromise from the prior session.[13] This bill sought to expand protected categories for hate crimes, as well as bump up the punishment by one degree in the case that someone is found guilty of committing a hate crime. According to Urquhart, a hate crime is not simply a crime against an individual, but rather an entire community. This bill did not pass out of the Senate.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Stephen H Urquhart 19650620". Public Background Checks. 
  2. ^ "Home - Utah State Senate". UtahSenate.org. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h "Stephen H. Urquhart". Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah State Senate. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Stephen Urquhart's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Steve Urquhart Twitter". Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  6. ^ "District 29 Senator - Utah State Senate". senate.utah.gov. Retrieved 2016-04-01. 
  7. ^ Tribune, Paul Rolly The Salt Lake. "Rolly: Retiring Sen. Steve Urquhart will leave a lasting impression on Utah". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 2016-04-01. 
  8. ^ "2014 Sponsored Legislation". Salt Lake City, Utah: Utah State Senate. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  9. ^ a b c d Lisa Riley Roche and Dennis Romboy. "Protesters demand LGBT anti-discrimination bill be heard". Salt Lake City, Utah: Deseret News. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  10. ^ a b c "CONCURRENT ENROLLMENT: FACTS AND FICTION". Salt Lake City, Utah: Steve Urquhart. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  11. ^ a b c "SteveU". Salt Lake City, Utah: Steve Urquhart. Retrieved April 7, 2014. 
  12. ^ Romboy, Dennis. "Senate votes to end death penalty in Utah". DeseretNews.com. Retrieved 2016-03-31. 
  13. ^ Romboy, Dennis. "State senator defends hate crimes bill, but others say balance needed". DeseretNews.com. Retrieved 2016-03-31.