Alerts &









Sign Up

Get free alerts
& updates.
Send email to
(no spaces)

Site Index



Home > Alerts & Updates > 2016 Bill Tracking Page > SB 88: Gun Control by Bureaucrats

senate sponsor,
Howard Stephenson
, who boasts a lifetime corruption rating of
-27% (that's MINUS)

house sponsor,
Curtis Oda, who boasts a lifetime corruption rating of
-71% (that's MINUS)

Senate Bill 88: Gun Control by Bureaucrats

by statutator Howard Stephenson, senate district 11 ("Republican"), and Curtis Oda, house district 14 ("Republican").

Summary: SB 88 reauthorizes numerous "administrative rules" created by bureaucrats (i.e. unelected officials) that have the same effect as state statute.  These include gun controls and other subversions of your natural rights.

SB 88 is particularly significant in that it demonstrates the lackadaisical, lazy, and compliant nature of Utah's supposed "gun rights champions".  Rather than rein in the bureaucrats, they prefer to carte blanche approve their corruption.

Position: UT Gun Rights opposes this bill.

Status: This bill passed senate bully Wayne Niederhauser's hand-picked senate revenue and taxation committee (4 yeas, 1 nay, 2 absent/not voting), passed the senate (22 yeas, 4 nays, 3 absent/not voting), passed house bully Greg Hughes' hand-picked operations committee (7 yeas, 2 nays, 1 absent/not voting), passed the house (46 yeas, 24 nays, 5 absent/not voting), and awaits action by Gary "BB Gun Background Checks" Herbert.

See its bill status page.  To contact your statutators, click here.  To contact Gary "BB Gun Background Checks" Herbert, click here.

"REFRESH" this page to see latest version.  Last updated: 3/11/16 at 5:25 PM.

Jump Down to Topics:

1. The Devilish Details

2. "Spotlighting" Gun Owner Entrapment

3. Disarming Foster Parents

4. Statutators Approve These Gun Controls Every Year

5. Why is the Utah Taxpayers Association President Sponsoring Gun Control?

6. Appropriate Action: Contact the Two Bullies Who Dominate Your Statutators

Click picture to enlarge.
The Devilish Details

The Obama regime isn't alone in exercising executive order-type powers.  On the state level, bureaucrats are tirelessly sapping the foundations of your natural rights:

"Approximately one half of Utah's codified law is written by state agencies."
Source: "Administrative Rules Affect You!" at

Did you get the significance of that?  Half of Utah's codified statutes were written by people other than your elected statutators.

SB 88 reauthorizes state agencies to enforce gun control in the form of bureaucratically-generated "administrative rules."  These crafty concoctions circumvent the checks and balances that differentiate a republican form of government from that of an elitist oligarchy.

Here's how it works in a nutshell: When statutators and Executive Monarch Herbert impose a statute, bureaucrats get together and "interpret" how government agencies will apply those statutes in the real world.

"…A properly enacted administrative rule has the binding effect of law. Therefore, a rule affects our lives as much as a statute passed by the legislature, restricting individuals AND the agency that issues it."

Back to Topics

"Spotlighting" Gun Owner Entrapment

For example, under "administrative rule" R657-11-14, the statutory definition of "spotlighting" (i.e. using a spotlight to hunt, which is illegal) is expanded to make people vulnerable who, "…use or cast the rays of any spotlight, headlight, or other artificial light to locate protected wildlife while having in possession a firearm or other weapon or device that could be used to take or injure protected wildlife," or who "…use... a spotlight or other artificial light in a field, woodland, or forest where protected wildlife are generally found…."

In other words, an open carry camper on his way to the outhouse at night while using a flashlight is not only "spotlighting," but must rebut the charge that he is "spotlighting" even if he did not kill, or attempt to kill, any animal.  This "administrative rule" makes that camper increasingly vulnerable to being detained, arrested, charged, and convicted of "spotlighting," and having his/her firearms confiscated.

Back to Topics

Disarming Foster Parents

According to "administrative rule" R501-12, foster parents who do not have a concealed carry "permit," and who do not have their firearm on their person, must essentially live in a disarmed, or criminally-vulnerable, home environment.

Back to Topics

Statutators Approve These Gun Controls Every Year

The only effective check on these "administrative rules" is that the state statutarium (i.e. "legislature") must annually approve or reject them, or a court must strike them down.  HB 37 gave blanket approval to ALL of these "administrative rules" — including the gun controls outlined above.

Back to Topics

With friends like these...
Why is the Utah Taxpayers Association President Sponsoring Gun Control?

In the 2016 Utah Government Corruption Report and elsewhere, UT Gun Rights warned how false friends appear to be on your side, but fundamentally serve the purposes of your opposition. And how important it is to remain apprehensive about those who tell you things you want to hear.

Consider the originating sponsor of SB 88, senate statutator Howard Stephenson, who also dons the hat of president of the Utah Taxpayers Association (UTA).  Here are two of the stated objectives of UTA:

"Scrutinize tax programs, state and local budgets, and the proliferation of questionable government expenditures."

"Seek out the orderly elimination of government programs or agencies that no longer serve a useful purpose by cooperating with public officials through use of facts."
Source: UTA Purpose and Objectives page at http://www.utahtaxpayers.org/?page_id=2117

And according to the "Evaluation Criteria" utilized by UTA, the following question is supposed to be considered:

"Does the legislation result in unnecessary governmental growth?"
Source: UTA Criteria page at http://www.utahtaxpayers.org/?page_id=2124

SB 88 proliferates numerous questionable government acts and expenditures, and empowers programs and agencies that have usurped the statutory role and responsibility of the house and senate.  State agencies have been so prolific, in fact, again, "Approximately one half of Utah's codified law is written by state agencies."
Source: "Administrative Rules Affect You!" at www.rules.utah.gov/abtrules.htm

So why would the president of such an organization sponsor a bill like SB 88?  Note that statutator Stephenson is no stranger to gun control, scoring an abysmal –17% (that's MINUS) on the 2016 Utah Government Corruption Report.

Perhaps Senate Monarch Wayne Niederhauser realizes that someone like Stephenson can be trusted to run his dirty errands, and is less apt to be scrutinized by the people because of his position as UTA president?

Back to Topics

Click picture to enlarge.
Appropriate Action: Contact the Two Bullies Who Dominate Your Statutators

As the 2016 Utah Government Corruption Report amply demonstrates, two playground bullies abuse and dominate the house and senate and work together to destroy your rights: house speaker Greg Hughes and senate president Wayne Niederhauser.

Contrary to what you learned in civics class, these two men bully the entire statutarium (i.e. "legislature") and run roughshod over your elected officials.  They set the agenda and your statutators obediently follow it.

How can two people exercise such control? As one example, the house speaker and senate president alone appoint and remove EVERY member of EVERY committee. Hughes and Niederhauser are empowered to do this without any review or confirmation process.
Sources: "The general duties of the Speaker are to:... appoint the members of committees…" (House Rules 1-3-102. Duties of the speaker) and "The general duties of the president are to:… appoint the members of committees…" (SR1-3-102. Duties of the president)

Consider the vast implications of this incredible power. No bill may be voted on in the house or senate without going through a committee. As a result, bills live or die almost entirely upon the calculated orders of these two bullies.

Previous House Bully Becky Lockhart candidly admitted her power to the press:

"I empower [house] committee chairs..." [bold added]
Source: "Bill banning enforcement of federal gun laws 'stuck in limbo'," by Lisa Riley Roche, Deseret News, Feb. 22, 2013.

Lockhart's successor, Greg Hughes, likewise empowers the chairs of each house committee because he appoints and fires them at his will alone, as does Niederhauser for every senate committee.

Hughes' and Niederhauser's powers are so extreme, no specific provision exists in the house or senate rules to fire these bullies before their two-year terms are over.  Akin to an elected despotism, these bullies lord over each body, trade political favors, and sell your rights; all while pretending that decisions are made by the will of the majority.

The political buck stops with Hughes and Niederhauser for failing to advance positive gun owner bills, and for every gun control bill enacted. Until more statutators are motivated to oppose their power, your rights will continue to be undermined.

Because your house and senate statutators merely serve their will and agenda, contacting them is often just a courtesy call.  These two bullies hold the power over Utah's statutarium ("legislature"):

For House Bully Greg Hughes' contact information (and the rest of the house statutators), click here.  For Senate Bully Wayne Niederhauser's contact information (and the rest of the senate statutators), click here.

Back to Topics

Click here to go back to The 2015 Bill Tracking Page: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.


Sign up for E-mail Alerts & Updates

To sign up for free alerts and updates, email info@utgunrights.com.

Also "Like" the UT Gun Rights Facebook page and share it with your friends at https://www.facebook.com/UtGunRights.

Copying Permission: Permission to reprint articles and material in whole or in part is hereby granted provided that UT Gun Rights is cited.  Feel free to share this information with others.

Disclaimer: The information on this site is for educational purposes only.  If there are errors, email info@utgunrights.com.

Comments or questions?  Email info@utgunrights.com.

Copyright © 2016 UT Gun Rights

Home | About | Alerts & Updates | Free Ammo | Events Calendar | Contact Officials | Other Resources

E-mail: info@utgunrights.com  |  Website: www.utgunrights.com