Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics & Public Service

Project Prologue

Growth Summit

The Governor’s “Growth Summit”

December 1995

Quality growth planning in Utah began with the Growth Summit in 1995, a conference sponsored by Governor Mike Leavitt in partnership with state and local leaders intended to result in solutions to the growth challenges facing the state. The governor focused the summit on transportation, water and open space issues that he felt needed to be addressed to preserve Utah’s quality of life. In addition to state and local leaders, journalists and citizens were engaged in the policy dialogue at a town meeting discussion that was hosted on the Internet and by radio and TV stations. Governor Leavitt also hosted a lunch-hour Internet chat about growth issues. The Growth Summit resulted in many proposals and a legacy of quality growth planning in Utah that includes:

  • In 1996, Governor Leavitt created the Utah Critical Lands Committee. This Committee supported numerous open space projects and developed educational materials describing the tools and techniques for open space conservation.
  • In 1997, the state partnered with Envision Utah, a public/private community partnership dedicated to studying the effects of long term growth, creating a publicly supported vision for the future, and advocating the necessary strategies necessary to achieve this vision. Envision completed an in depth values study, baseline analysis, over 100 public workshops, scenario development and analysis, a million dollar public awareness campaign, and developed a quality growth strategy.
  • The Utah Quality Growth Commission was created by the Utah Quality Growth Act of 1999 to address the challenges and opportunities growth brings to Utah. This Commission created a set of Quality Growth Efficiency Tools (QGET) to guide communities as they assessed growth impacts and planned for the future. The Quality Growth Commission administers the LeRay McAllister Critical Land Conservation Fund providing grants and loans to preserve or restore critical open or agricultural land in Utah.

Additional Information

Utah Leaders open Debate on States Growing Problems – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/PD/ms122b1996bf00663.pdf

Media to Cover Growth Summit – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/NW/ms122NW19951117b.pdf

Public and Predatory Journalism – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/NW/ms122NW19951217.pdf

Legislature Opens a ’45-Day Odyssey’ Utah Looking Forward to its Second Century – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/NW/ms122NW19960116.b.pdf

Quality Growth Efficiency Tools – http://www.governor.utah.gov/dea/qget/1.htm

Legislators Zero in on Affordable Housing – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/PP/water06.pdf

Talk of the State Growth Summit Starts:  Salt Lake Tribune – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/PP/water06.pdf

Creating a Land Legacy: Salt Lake Tribune – http://archive.li.suu.edu/docs/ms122/PP/water02.pdf

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Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service