Gustus: We’re making it easier to track bills during Utah’s legislature

The Tribune’s new bill tracker, built in partnership with Utah AI company Seer, simplifies language in more than 500 bills (and counting).

(Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribune) Gov. Spencer Cox delivers his 2024 State of the State address at the Utah Capitol in Salt Lake City in January 2024.

Have you ever tried to understand the particulars of proposed legislation during Utah’s 45-day session?

A bill’s language is layered with less-than-conventional wording. And we understand why: those who are drafting must be precise, as the changes they are proposing impact our daily lives.

And that’s exactly why we should all be paying close attention. What happens at Utah’s capitol from January through March each year has lasting impacts on us — from tax cuts to how much our teachers are paid to where new roads will be built.

We’re just a week into the session, and already more than 500 bills have been introduced.

Today we’re sharing a brand-new bill tracker that simplifies the language in proposed legislation. We have partnered with Utah-based company Seer to offer you this tool. Seer uses artificial intelligence to decode what each bill would do if enacted into law. The company has ingested thousands of pages of legislation into a large language model, and its solution is tuned to understand Utah’s legislative language. It produces summaries that clearly define key provisions in a bill and are explicit about what changes it would make.

Visit sltrib.com/utah-bill-tracker to search through hundreds of bills, by issue or bill number. Click on the bill name to read a summary of the legislation, in plain English.

Follow bills proposed by the Utah Legislature at sltrib.com/utah-bill-tracker

In the next week or so, we’ll add functionality that will help you see where a bill is in the legislative process — from sitting in a committee to being signed by the governor. At the bottom of sltrib.com/utah-bill-tracker, you will also find contact information for every lawmaker, so you can reach out in support or opposition to their proposed legislation.

We’re making this tool available to everyone, regardless of whether they have a subscription to The Tribune.

It’s hard to keep up with what’s happening up at the state capitol. We know you’ve got families to care for and work responsibilities. The Tribune is making it as easy as possible for anyone to be part of the process.

As a taxpayer it’s your money that lawmakers are working with. And it’s you that they should be accountable to.