POLITICS + GOVERNMENT

$1.7 trillion spending bill allocates money to Utah issues

Dec 28, 2022, 4:03 PM | Updated: Jan 5, 2023, 2:44 pm
the US capitol is pictured, the spending bill was just passed by the House...
FILE - The Capitol is seen in Washington, early Friday, April 1, 2022. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

SALT LAKE CITY — The $1.7 trillion spending bill that the House passed last week has quite a few benefits for Utah. The bill has been approved by the Senate and is on its way to the president’s desk.

Sen. Mike Lee voted against it despite sponsoring several elements within the bill and even proposed his own short-term spending bill as an alternative.

Meanwhile, Sen. Mitt Romney supported the $1.7 trillion bill and highlighted the money allocated to issues important to Utah.

Funding the outdoors

From increasing Utah’s water supply, to protecting fish native to the Colorado and San Juan Rivers, the spending bill allocates a chunk of money to natural causes in Utah.

The bill supports the Bonneville Shoreline Trail Advancement Act endorsed by Utah representatives, creating more opportunities for recreation along the Wasatch Front.

It also includes $67 million to remove contaminated material from uranium mills to improve groundwater.

And, over $7.7 billion are allocated to wildland fire management. That’s an overall $20 million increase from the wildfire management budget last year.

Military programs

The bill also includes over $800 billion towards the defense department, including Utah-based military programs.

It allocates $8.5 billion for 61 new F-35 aircraft and an additional $2.1 billion toward the development of the F-35 joint strike fighter.

The bill also directs money toward the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent, or Sentinel, missile program. The program is set to replace the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile system that has been in place since the 1970s.

Some of the maintenance, training, storage and testing of the jets and missiles will take place at Hill Air Force Base and the Dugway Proving Ground.

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$1.7 trillion spending bill allocates money to Utah issues