Alty News: ISIS Deploys Ancient Tunnel Attack; Wasteful "Use it or Lose it" Water Laws Parch Western States | Buzz Blog
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Alty News: ISIS Deploys Ancient Tunnel Attack; Wasteful "Use it or Lose it" Water Laws Parch Western States


A Texas cop has been suspended after pulling a gun on a bikini-clad teen at a pool party.

Top of the Alty World

"Pulling a Gun on a Pool Party? Texas Cop Suspended After Manhandling Bikini-Clad Black Teen"—Democracy Now!

The National Journal takes a look at how presidential candidates spend $1 billion and how a handful of advertising companies are making the most money off of White House hopefuls.—National Journal 

ISIS is deploying ancient tunneling attacks to bomb targets.—DefenseOne

The Texas pool party incident isn't just another example of excessive force by police but another chapter in the United States long history of segregation at pools.—Slate

Top of Alty Utah

SLC Mayoral hopeful Jackie Biskupski talks prison relocation, sexual harassment in city offices and her run for office.—Utah Policy

Salt Lake City Council candidate Nate Salazar has been preparing for his run for office his whole life.—Salt Lake City Weekly 

A Salt Lake City councilman wants to fund social workers to replace the work of the Salt Lake City Police Department's homeless outreach team.—Salt Lake City Weekly

Phase two of the Salt Lake City streetcar is moving forward.—SL City News


Utah Politico Hub has some concerns with an idea pushed by a citizen group calling for political term limits.

The vast majority of government employees are good people, well-intentioned and work hard to do what is right for Utah, but if I have to choose between unelected officials with power or elected officials with power, I choose the elected ones. Then, at least, I have some recourse if I don’t agree with their decisions.

And even more undesirable is the increased influence of lobbyists. Lobbyists know process. They know how to secure an appropriation. They know how to pass a bill. They know how to get the new elected official reelected. So the influence and power of lobbyists grows with the advent of term limits. Newly elected officials almost have no other option than to turn to lobbyists for help in learning the process.—Utah Politico Hub

The Long View

ProPublica looks at how wasteful "use it or lose" water laws are exacerbating drought conditions in the west.

A vestige of 139-year-old water law pushes ranchers to use as much water as they possibly can, even during a drought. “Use it or lose it” clauses, as they are known, are common in state laws throughout the Colorado River basin and give the farmers, ranchers and governments holding water rights a powerful incentive to use more water than they need. Under the provisions of these measures, people who use less water than they are legally entitled to risk seeing their allotment slashed.

There are few starker examples of how man’s missteps and policies are contributing to the water shortage currently afflicting the western United States. In a series of reports, ProPublica is examining how decisions on water management and growth have exacerbated more than a decade of drought, bringing the West to the point of crisis. The Colorado River is the most important source of water for nearly 40 million people across California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado, and supports some 15 percent of the nation’s food crops. But the river is in trouble, and water laws are one significant cause.—ProPublica