The 2024 General Session of the 65th Legislature takes place from Jan. 16 to March 1
SALT LAKE CITY – Gov. Spencer Cox signed six bills yesterday, bringing the total number of signed pieces of legislation to seven for the 2024 General Legislative Session.
HB257 Sex-based Designations for Privacy, Anti-bullying, and Women’s Opportunities
HB257 requires all individuals to use restrooms and locker rooms that correspond with their legal sex designation in government-owned and controlled facilities, thereby restricting transgender individuals from using the bathrooms and locker rooms of the gender that they identify with before amending their birth certificates, and obtaining bottom surgery. Breaking this law could result in criminal charges.
“We want public facilities that are safe and accommodating for everyone and this bill increases privacy protections for all,” Cox said on HB257.
HB261 Equal Opportunity Initiatives
HB261 bars Utah universities and governments from having offices dedicated to promoting diversity, and from requiring employees to submit statements of commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. Cox said in a press conference late last year that such a bill was very likely to pass during this legislative session.
“We’ve been concerned about some DEI programs and policies, particularly with hiring practices, and this bill offers a balanced solution,” Cox said on HB261. “I’m grateful to the Legislature for not following the lead of other states that simply eliminated DEI funding with no alternative path for students who may be struggling. Instead, this funding will be repurposed to help all Utah students succeed regardless of their background.”
“We firmly believe that Utah is stronger because of our diversity and we remain committed to keeping our state a place where everyone can thrive,” Cox said. “Over the past three years, our administration has worked very intentionally with many community stakeholders to expand opportunities for all Utahns and we will continue to do so.”
SB1, SB4, SB6 and SB7 supplement or reduce appropriations otherwise provided for the support and operation of state government for the 2024 and 2025 fiscal years for higher education, business, economic development and labor, infrastructure and general government, and veterans affairs and legislature.
Cox signed the first bill of the session, SB89, Social Media Modifications, on Jan. 19. This bill makes an amendment to the newly imposed Utah Social Media Regulation Act, and pushes the date for provisions of the Utah Social Media Regulation Act to social media companies from March 1 to Oct. 1.
“While pushing back the effective date gives us more time to incorporate more feedback into the law, we are as committed as ever to protecting our children from the harms of social media,” Cox said on SB89.
- Gov. Spencer Cox