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Lee Davidson

Politics/transportation/demographics reporter, Government

801-257-8752, ldavidson@sltrib.com


  • This ad from the American Beverage Institute ran in the Idaho Statesman and attacks Utah’s DUI law. ‘Utah: Come for vacation, leave on probation,’ says anti-DUI law campaign
    A national restaurant association warned in a full-page Idaho Statesman newspaper ad on Tuesday that if Idahoans go to Utah on vacation, they may retu...
    Updated Apr 25 2017 12:20 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Then-UTA President and CEO Mike Allegra speaks to members of the media after a meeting of the Audit Subcommittee of the Legislative Management Committee on Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014. UTA canceled promised bonuses of $474K and $375K for two officials
    A few years ago, the Utah Transit Authority caused a public outcry by giving $30,000 bonuses to some top executives — on top of their other compensati...
    Updated Apr 25 2017 12:53 pm   |     |   Share

  • Ken Bullock ï Former Utah League of Cities and Towns director. Mysterious ‘private’ trust is actually a government body, auditor says
    A mysterious trust — which some former Utah League of Cities and Towns officials asserted was private and not subject to public scrutiny — actually is...
    Updated Apr 25 2017 12:56 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Steve Griffin  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)     Gov. Gary Herbert talks with the media during the his availability in his office at the State Capitol in Salt Lake City Thursday February 9, 2017 Add another possible candidate for Utah governor: Gary Herbert
    The speculative list of possible candidates for governor in 2020 includes another surprise name: incumbent Gov. Gary Herbert, who during last year’s r...
    Updated Apr 20 2017 11:34 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  Tribune file photo)   Rep. Jason Chaffetz has announced he will not seek re-election. ‘I might depart early,’ Chaffetz says
    Washington • Rep. Jason Chaffetz says he may step down early from his House seat, leaving a vacancy that would be filled by a special election that is...
    Updated Apr 22 2017 05:26 pm   |     |   Share

  • photo courtesy Salt Lake City International Airport  This rendering shows a view of what the airport remodel may look like. SLC airport earns high satisfaction marks — except for cleanliness, slow Wi-Fi, aging facilities
    Travelers give Salt Lake City International Airport higher-than-average grades — except for a few things such as messy restrooms, slow Wi-Fi service a...
    Updated Apr 21 2017 01:07 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Chris Detrick  |  Tribune file photo)   Passengers go through security at Salt Lake City International Airport. which has surpassed 23 million passengers in a 12-month period for the first time. Salt Lake City International Airport police say its officers won’t remove passengers for breaking rules
    In the wake of a viral video of Chicago police security officers dragging a passenger off an overbooked United Airlines flight, Salt Lake City Interna...
    Updated Apr 21 2017 01:07 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |   Tribune file photo)   Sharon Anderson makes a sign on the grounds of the Provo Recreation Center in Provo in June as part of the protest movement pushing a referendum to stop a controversial transit project in Provo and Orem. Judge rejects move to stop controversial Provo transit project
    Provo • A 4th District judge on Monday derailed a lawsuit seeking to allow Provo voters to halt a controversial $190 million bus rapid transit (BRT) p...
    Updated Apr 04 2017 01:49 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Al Hartmann  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   A homeless man covers up with his sleeping bag from the pounding rain Monday March 27 to use pedestian crosswalk at 200 South to cross from the Gateway mall back to the homeless shelter at Rio Grande Street. The city and Utah Transit Authority, at the urging of the Gateway owners, plan to close the mid-block pedestrian crossing. City and UTA say fence near homeless shelter is for safety, but docs show problems are worse at other TRAX locations
    Salt Lake City and Utah Transit Authority officials insist their plan to install a 5-foot-tall chain-link fence in the median of 200 South — and close...
    Updated Apr 03 2017 10:39 am   |     |   Share

  • | Courtesy Utah Department of Transportation Small radar units attached to traffic signals help UDOT determine how many cars are stopped by red lights, and their speeds through intersections. The data helps UDOT improve the timing of lights.  UDOT outlines its wish list for spending $1 billion
    The Utah Department of Transportation is proposing to spend $1 billion — which the Legislature just authorized to be borrowed over four years — to jum...
    Updated Apr 01 2017 06:00 am   |     |   Share

  • (Al Hartmann  |  Tribune file photo)   A UTA ski bus comes down Big Cottonwood Canyon after dropping off skiers at the resorts in February. UTA is floating a plan to do away with direct ski bus service from downtown Salt Lake City, requiring skiers using mass transit to transfer from TRAX to buses. The transit agency says the change would allow it to run more frequent bus service up the canyons to ski resorts. UTA schedule change day coming April 9
    On April 9 — one of three days a year when the Utah Transit Authority alters its schedules — ski bus service ends for the season, and all TRAX and Fro...
    Updated Apr 04 2017 01:49 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Steve Griffin  |   Tribune file photo)     Legislators find their seats in the House of Representatives as the 42nd day of the 62nd Legislature continues into the evening at the State Capitol in Salt Lake City Monday March 6, 2017. Utahns give Herbert high marks; only Republicans and ‘very active’ Mormons approve of Legislature
    Gov. Gary Herbert is now enjoying sky-high approval ratings — but the only groups of Utahns who applaud the Legislature’s performance highly are Repub...
    Updated Mar 30 2017 02:39 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Utah Gov. Gary Herbert is shown in his Salt Lake City office March 9, 2017. Gov. Herbert says health care reform is ‘absolutely a necessity’
    After meeting Monday with President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and numerous members of Congress, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert said he feels tha...
    Updated Mar 28 2017 04:49 pm   |     |   Share

  • Gov. Gary Herbert Guv vetoes bill that could have cut Democrats out of state boards
    Gov. Gary Herbert vetoed his first bill of the 2017 Legislature on Friday — a controversial one that would have removed the requirement to appoint at ...
    Updated Mar 27 2017 11:20 am   |     |   Share

  • (Scott Sommerdorf   |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Utah Gov. Gary Herbert answers questions during his daily press conference, Thursday, February 12, 2015. He was asked if he has, or would officiate a same-sex wedding, and he answered that he would probably politely decline. Herbert signs nation’s first 0.05 DUI bill; Utahns split on issue
    After heavy lobbying by all sides, Gov. Gary Herbert on Thursday signed a controversial bill to make Utah’s laws on drunken driving the toughest in th...
    Updated Mar 25 2017 05:54 pm   |     |   Share

  • San Juan County, home of new Bears Ears monument, No. 1 for U.S. population growth
    The Bears Ears National Monument wasn’t the only thing new to San Juan County last year. Enough new residents settled there to make it America’s faste...
    Updated Mar 23 2017 11:09 am   |     |   Share

  • (Trent Nelson  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Riders on TRAX in Salt Lake City, Wednesday March 22, 2017. UTA ridership down, so bonuses are, too
    Low gasoline prices last year may have made Utah drivers happy, but they led to decreased ridership on Utah Transit Authority buses and trains. And fe...
    Updated Mar 23 2017 11:10 am   |     |   Share

  • Utah has 5th lowest jobless rate for vets
    Utah has the fifth lowest unemployment rate nationally for veterans living in the state. Their unemployment rate in 2016 was 2.3 percent — down dramat...
    Updated Mar 22 2017 04:23 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Scott Sommerdorf   |   Tribune file photo)   Utah Gov. Gary Herbert is weighing the fate of HB155, which would lower Utah’s legal drunken driving limit from 0.08 percent Blood Alcohol Content to 0.05 percent BAC. Pressure pours in on possible veto of drunken driving bill
    Gov. Gary Herbert is drinking in plenty of advice from all sides on whether to sign or veto a bill that would make Utah’s drunken driving laws the tou...
    Updated Mar 25 2017 05:54 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Scott Sommerdorf   |   Tribune file photo)   Utah Gov. Gary Herbert signed an executive order to more closely vet state rules and regulations with an eye to reducing burdens on businesses and residents. Gov. Herbert signs more education, public lands, election bills
    Gov. Gary Herbert announced Monday that he has signed another 80 bills passed by this year’s Legislature — including some on federal lands, education ...
    Updated Mar 21 2017 03:17 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Francisco Kjolseth | Tribune file photo)   As the final minutes wind down on the 2017 Legislative session things get silly as seen between Reps. Craig Hall, R-West Valley City, Marc Roberts, R-Santaquin, and Daniel McCay, R-Riverton, from left, on Thursday, March 9, 2017. Capitol Hill Surprise: GOP supermajority leads to more collaboration with Democrats
    A paradox has emerged at the Utah Legislature: Because Republicans rule by a supermajority, they fear Democrats less — so they tend to collaborate wit...
    Updated Mar 20 2017 08:40 am   |     |   Share

  • (Rick Egan  |  Tribune file photo)    Leo Kemel, 60, talks about the homeless situation after Operation Diversion arrested about 90 people in the Rio Grande neighborhood. Thursday, October 6, 2016. Gov. Herbert signs bills on homelessness, panhandling, payday lenders
    Major legislation to address homelessness, payday lenders and panhandling were among 84 bills that Gov. Gary Herbert has signed into law, he announced...
    Updated Mar 17 2017 09:54 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Crews work to stabilize and work around a landslide on State Road 12 near Bryce Canyon National Park. The Utah Transportation Commission approved $3 million in emergency repairs on Friday. The road has had only one lane open in the area. Courtesy Photo)   | Utah Department of Transportation Landslide near Bryce Canyon limiting SR-12 to single lane
    Landslide damage near Bryce Canyon National Park will cost an estimated $3 million to fix, and will keep State Road 12 — one of Utah’s most popular sc...
    Updated Mar 20 2017 05:55 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Al Hartmann  |  Tribune file photo)   Orange barrels aplenty are coming to Utah freeways and roads in coming months. The Legislature authorized $1 billion in borrowing to accelerate highway projects. Utah leaders learn $1B in highway money attracts a lot of friends
    The Utah Transportation Commission found Friday that it has many new friends, now that the Legislature authorized borrowing $1 billion to accelerate h...
    Updated Mar 20 2017 12:08 pm   |     |   Share

  • Salt Lake has fewer jobless than other big cities
    The Salt Lake City metropolitan area still has the country’s lowest unemployment rate among the 51 cities nationally with populations of 1 million or ...
    Updated Mar 17 2017 11:52 am   |     |   Share

  • (Rick Egan  |   Tribune file photo)    With 30 minutes left to vote, there are still long lines outside the West Valley City Hall, Tuesday, November 8, 2016. Utah leaders hailed voter turnout in election. Actually, we were among the worst in the nation
    After last year’s wild elections, Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox — the state’s top election official — proudly reported that more Utahns voted than ever, and th...
    Updated Mar 16 2017 11:47 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Leah Hogsten  |   Tribune file photo)   Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Terry Buck gives a suspected impaired driver a sobriety test October 31, 2014. Protest against lower blood alcohol limit planned for St. Patrick's Day in Salt Lake
    Restaurants and alcohol marketers are uncorking pressure on Gov. Gary Herbert to veto a bill that would make Utah the first state in the country to lo...
    Updated Mar 25 2017 05:55 pm   |     |   Share

  • (Steve Griffin  |  The Salt Lake Tribune)   Construction on the new terminal at the Salt Lake City International Airport in Salt Lake City Wednesday March 15, 2017. $2.9B SLC airport rebuild could be too small just 5 years after it opens
    The massive $2.9 billion project to rebuild Salt Lake City International Airport may handle projected air traffic for as little as five years after co...
    Updated Mar 16 2017 09:44 am   |     |   Share

  • (Leah Hogsten  |  Tribune file photo)   Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Terry Buck investigates the scene of a DUI where a near empty bottle of vodka was found in the vehicle, October 31, 2014. The driver was given a intoxilyzer test to determine her blood alcohol content that showed she was twice the legal limit at .166. Interlocks stopped 2,573 attempts by Utah DUI convicts to drive after drinking last year
    Ignition interlock devices — a small “in-car breathalyzer” — prevented 2,573 convicted drunken drivers in Utah from starting their cars after detectin...
    Updated Mar 15 2017 11:42 am   |     |   Share

  • (Francisco Kjolseth |  Tribune file photo)   Rep. Mike Winder, R-West Valley City, holds a 20-pound rabbit named Kenny Rogers as members of Wheeler Farm participate in Museum Day at the State Capitol in Salt Lake City Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017. Mike Winder accused of manipulating Wikipedia page with multiple accounts in violation of ethics policy
    State Rep. Mike Winder, who got into hot water as West Valley City’s mayor by using a fake name to write positive newspaper stories about the municipa...
    Updated Mar 14 2017 11:21 pm   |     |   Share