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FILE - In this Feb. 4, 2012 file photo, host Alec Baldwin speaks during the inaugural NFL Honors show in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Marcio Sanchez, File)
News roundup: Alec Baldwin to host MSNBC show, report says

Alec Baldwin to host MSNBC show. Bell cleared in child custody case. Utah fields backup role to Moscow Olympics.

Happy Friday. Alec Baldwin may soon be getting his own TV show on MSNBC. Mediaite is reporting that the 30 Rock actor is landing his own 10 p.m. Friday show, though the network isn't confirming and Baldwin's folks aren't talking. It wouldn't be a stretch for Baldwin, an outspoken liberal who has appeared on the network before. [HuffPost]

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Topping the news: Lt. Gov. Greg Bell has been cleared of any misconduct for his involvement in a neighbor's child custody case. [Trib]

-> In the wake of Russian President Vladimir Putin's new laws discriminating against LGBT citizens, the Trib takes a look at whether SLC is capable of hosting Sochi's Winter Olympics. [Trib]

-> Today is the last day to cast an early vote in municipal primary elections. [Trib]

Tweet of the day: From @timothypmurphy: "As far as team names go, Washington [Redacted] has a nice ring to it."

Happy birthday: to former AG Mark Shurtleff, and on Sunday to twin sisters Neela and Neena Pack.

In other news: At the end of two days of meetings at the state Capitol to discuss alternative-fuel vehicles, an anti-poverty advocate pressed the panel not to burden natural-gas ratepayers with the cost of expanding Utah's natural gas vehicle network. [Trib]

-> A National Review fellow takes on Rep. Jason Chaffetz, arguing the Utah congressman needs to be careful in his criticism of the Benghazi criminal charges if he wants to continue making his voice the one that matters in the investigation. [NRO]

-> Utah's two largest Housing Authorities say the $2.2 million awarded to the state's 11 housing authorities by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for large-scale improvements is too little, too late. [Trib]

-> Paul Rolly discusses the benefits of being an incumbent mayor in an election year and the Utah Democratic Society's "fireside chat" with Nevada Senate Majority Leader Mo Denis coming up on Saturday. [Trib]

-> The four mayoral candidates in Holladay are all putting the stalled Cottonwood Mall development at the top of their priority lists, but they each have different solutions to the problem. [Trib]

-> SL Co. Mayor Ben McAdams has chosen long-time SLC Councilman Carlton Christensen for the newly-created post of regional development director. Christensen will be coordinating the actions of county agencies with those of city governments and other relevant parties, and will take up the role on Aug. 19. [Trib]

-> Pat Bagley gives his take on young GOP Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., Ted Cruz, R-Tex., and Mike Lee, R-Utah. [Trib]

-> The Utah County Health Department is asking the police to team up to help combat air pollution by reporting cars that appear to be creating excessive exhaust fumes. [Fox13]

-> Bob Bernick provides some links to the conflict of interest forms by those investigating AG John Swallow. [UtahPolicy]

-> The Public Lands Policy Coordination Office is holding a public meeting next Wednesday at the Capitol to discuss public lands issues. [DNews]

Nationally: Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's campaign manager Jesse Benton told a conservative activist that he is "holding my nose" and running McConnell's race to ultimately benefit a 2016 White House bid by Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky. Benton is married to a granddaughter of Paul's father, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Tex. [WaPost] [WeeklyStandard] [ABCNews]

-> The White House has announced that sixteen people, including former President Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey and former Washington Post Executive Editor Ben Bradlee, will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom this year. [NYTimes] [ABCNews]

-> In a meeting with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, President Barack Obama said that austerity alone would not help Greece recover from the economic crisis. He urged Samaras to focus on economic growth and job creation. [NYTimes]

-> The NSA is searching through the contents of Americans' emails and text messages in and out of the U.S. looking for any references to foreigners who are under surveillance. [NYTimes]

-> While Obama has announced plans to clamp down on carbon emissions and been pressing U.S. citizens to be greener, the Capitol Power Plant - which fuels the 23-building Capitol campus - is yet to be modernized. [NYTimes]

-> Amidst criticism of the NSA surveillance programs, senior intelligence officials hold up a number of cases as evidence of the programs' worth. [WaPost]

Where are they?

  • Rep. Jason Chaffetz takes a field tour in Grand County and attends the San Juan County Commissioner's open house.
  • SL Co. Mayor Ben McAdams attends a refugee center steering committee meeting.
  • SLC Mayor Ralph Becker attends a Salt Lake Chamber Utah Transportation Coalition executive meeting, meets with Council Chair Kyle LaMalfa and Vice Chair Jill Remington Love and kicks off the Tour of Utah.
  • President Barack Obama signs the student loan interest rate bill into law and holds a press conference at the White House.

Got a tip? A birthday, wedding or anniversary to announce? Email us at cornflakes@sltrib.com. If you haven't already, sign up for our weekday email and get this sent directly to your inbox. [Trib]

-- Thomas Burr and Isobel Markhkam

Twitter.com/thomaswburr and Twitter.com/i_markham



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