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Senators voted Wednesday against spending $350,000 to create a refresher course on federalism the constitutional relationship between states and the federal government.
The Senate voted 11-17 for HB207, which would add a second phase to a previously created federalism curriculum developed by the state and Utah Valley University. Lawmakers and elected leaders would be encouraged to use the curriculum, and the possibility of making it publicly available for schools and Utahns was discussed.
Senators objected to the cost of the program, and the ambiguity of how that funding would be used and what information the federalism course would include.
"Not everyone who studies the constitution agrees with what federalism means," said Sen. Todd Weiler, R-Woods Cross.
Senate sponsor Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden, said the federal government has a record of overreach into state jurisdictions. He said there may be information on federalism currently available, but those resources have not led elected leaders to preserve the divisions between state and federal powers.
"If there is so much available out there, why aren't we following it," Christensen said. "Why don't we use it?"