Here’s an end-of-year summary, especially for folks who may be newly joining:
We’re working on a clean-air-and-climate ballot measure effort for Utah for Nov 2024. We need (1) a good policy idea, (2) a plan to hit our signature targets to qualify for the ballot, and (3) a plan to win at the ballot.
- Our policy idea is built on the work we began in 2018 with Rep. Joel Briscoe and others. Summaries and details are here, and further improvements are possible, but the current summary is to put $100m a year into local clean air efforts in Utah, $50m a year into rural economic development, eliminate the state sales tax on groceries, and pay for it all with a modest carbon tax on the fossil fuels that contribute to local air pollution and global climate change: “Tax pollution instead of potatoes, and put the money that’s left over into Cleaning the Darn Air.” We are very optimistic about having a bill introduced in the legislature in January 2022, but we know that a bill is unlikely to pass, hence the ballot measure planning.
- We are planning an all-volunteer signature-gathering effort and are in the process of fleshing out this very draft campaign plan. (Comments welcome!) A summary of what we need to do to get on the ballot is here, and a summary of what we learned from the 30,000 signatures we gathered during our effort to get on the 2020 ballot is here.
- The plan to win at the ballot is to (1) minimize opposition spending by designing a policy that works for households and businesses in Utah and then (2) convince households and businesses in Utah that this policy works for them, both on its own merits and by getting endorsements from trusted community leaders. (As evidence that this might be possible, although we don’t have any of them on board right now, consider the climate leadership of folks like Senator Mitt Romney or Congressman John Curtis, or the fact that then-Governor Herbert said in 2019, when asked about our ballot measure effort then, that he was “not opposed to looking at a carbon tax.” Again, please note that none of these named individuals has endorsed our effort at the moment.)