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Explaining all the amendments on Utah's Election Day ballot

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Posted at 12:08 PM, Oct 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-26 14:08:58-04

SALT LAKE CITY — On top of the individuals Utah voters will be electing to office on Nov. 3, there are a handful of amendments Utahns will need to be aware of before sending in their ballots or heading to the polls.

There will be 7 amendments for voters to choose "FOR" or "AGAINST" on the ballot this year.

Here are brief explanations on all the amendments:

AMENDMENT A

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to change words that apply to a single gender (such as the word “men”) to words that are not limited to a single gender (such as the word “persons”)?

This amendment will remove gender-specific language in Utah's state constitution and replace it with gender-neutral language. A fiscal assessment of the amendment shows it would have no monetary effect or cost to the state.

WATCH: FOX 13s Ben Winslow offers in-depth analysis on Amendment A

AMENDMENT B

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to specify that certain requirements that a person must meet to be eligible for the office of senator or representative in the Utah Legislature apply at the time the person is elected or appointed?

Amendment B aims to clarify language on when qualifications for candidates running for office are met. The amendment would require candidates to be a U.S. citizen, be at least 25-years-old and a qualified voter in the district they're running in by the time they are appointed or elected.

AMENDMENT C

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to make the following changes to the Utah Constitution’s ban on slavery and involuntary servitude: • remove the language that allows slavery and involuntary servitude as punishment for a crime; and • clarify that the ban does not affect the otherwise lawful administration of the criminal justice system?

Currently, Utah's constitution bans slavery, but technically allows slavery or involuntary servitude to be used as punishment for a crime in which someone has been convicted. This amendment would disallow that exception.

AMENDMENT D

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to: • rewrite a provision relating to municipal water rights and sources of water supply; • allow a municipality to define the boundary of the municipality’s water service area and to set the terms of water service for that area; • state that a municipality is not prevented from: • supplying water to water users outside the municipality’s boundary; or • entering into a contract to supply water outside the municipality’s water service area if the water is more than what is needed for the municipality’s water service area; and • modify the basis upon which a municipality is allowed to exchange water rights or sources of water supply?

This amendment has to do with the water rights of municipalities. A vote "FOR" for Amendment D would allow a municipality to define the boundary of its water service area and to set the terms of water service for the area, including service charges.

The amendment would also allow municipalities to supply water to those living outside its boundaries and allow them to supply water outside its water service area if the water is more than what is needed for its water service area.

If the amendment passes, municipalities will still not be allowed to sell or dispose of its water rights or sources of water supply.

AMENDMENT E

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to: • preserve the individual right to hunt and to fish, including the right to use traditional hunting and fishing methods subject to certain regulation; and • establish public hunting and fishing as the preferred way of managing and controlling wildlife?

Hunting and fishing in Utah is wrapped up in this amendment as it would guarantee state residents their constitutional right to hunt and fish.

WATCH: FOX 13s Ben Winslow offers in-depth analysis of Amendment E

AMENDMENT F

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to: • change when annual general sessions of the Utah Legislature begin from the fourth Monday in January to a day in January designated by a law passed by the Utah Legislature; and • exclude state holidays that are not also federal holidays from counting towards the maximum number of days of the Utah Legislature’s annual general sessions?

This amendment would allow the state legislature to change the start date of its meetings from the fourth Monday in January to any day in the month.

AMENDMENT G

Shall the Utah Constitution be amended to expand the uses of money the state receives from income taxes and intangible property taxes to include supporting children and supporting people with a disability?

Amendment G will expand the way Utah spends its income tax revenue by allowing tax funds to be used for supporting children and supporting people with a disability. If the amendment passes, a rainy-day fund would be created to help maintain education funding when income tax dollars decline. Those against the amendment worry that taking money away from education would hurt Utah families.

WATCH: FOX 13s John Franchi offers in-depth analysis of Amendment G