SALT LAKE CITY – The House Government Operations Standing Committee passed a bill that would allow 17-year-olds in Utah to register to vote, and participate in primary elections.
H.B. 281 Voter Eligibility Amendments won seven votes to three in the committee. The bill would only let 17-year-olds vote in primary elections if they will be 18 on or before the date of the next general election.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Joel Briscoe (D-District 25) said, “There are young people in our state who desperately want to be involved in our democracy. This bill signals to Utah teens we want them to participate now and for a long time to come.”
Supporters of the bill hope it will help to encourage voter participation in Utah. Rep. Briscoe tried to pass similar legislation, H.B.70, in 2016.
After passing the Government Operations Standing Committee, the bill will go to the Utah House for consideration.