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Toasting missionaries
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2010, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

By just 857 residents, Utah fell short of gaining a new congressional seat after the 2000 census. The loss did not sit well with Rep. Rob Bishop, who reasoned that if North Carolina can count its overseas servicemen, then Utah should be able to count the 14,000 Mormon missionaries who similarly have temporarily left the state. "The bottom line should still be fairness and accuracy. If we are currently counting some people abroad and not others, there is just no logic to that whatsoever," Bishop said. Reps. Jason Chaffetz and Jim Matheson agree.

I also couldn't agree more. The state of Utah should set the example and show that these missionaries are an integral part of our Utah population by granting several more liquor licenses. Since licenses are doled out according to population, 14,000 additional people means one or two more beer/wine restaurant licenses, two or three more full liquor restaurant licenses and one or two more full bar licenses.

Bishop says he just wants to "do the right thing" and that not counting the missionaries is "mind boggling." So let's show the missionaries they count, and I'll toast them at my new neighborhood population-controlled watering hole.

Phil Jacobsen

Salt Lake City

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