Silas Walker, Deseret News
FILE - A stone lion guards one of the entrances to the Capitol in Salt Lake City on Friday, Jan. 25, 2019.

SALT LAKE CITY — Debate over nuclear waste is expected to return to the Capitol on Thursday as the Senate Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Committee takes its first look at HB22, which cleared the House on Tuesday.

The radioactive waste amendments would change how some waste classifications are determined, and critics say, will open up Utah to accept depleted uranium, which had been blocked before.

Other issues expected to be discussed at the Statehouse during the day include:

• The House Health and Human Services Committee is considering HB153, which amends provisions to law on permissible changes to birth certificates, specifically noting that male or female are "the innate and immutable characteristics established at conception" and should not be changed.

READ MORE: Bill to block Utahns from changing sex on birth certificates dropped

  • An undercurrent of frustrations from some elected officials in southwest Salt Lake County has spurred a Utah lawmaker to sponsor a bill that could lead to a fragmentation of Utah's densest county. HB93 would allow communities to break off and form their own county with a vote in their cities — without requiring a majority vote from the county they'd leave behind.

READ MORE: How west-side frustrations in Salt Lake County have led to a county 'divorce' bill

READ MORE: Lawmaker seeks to add 4 psychiatry residencies at University of Utah medical school

  • The House approved a resolution Thursday recognizing "that the best manner to protect the vulnerable without infringing on the right of the people to bear arms is to enforce the laws already found in Utah code." That nonbinding resolution, sponsored by Rep. Cory Maloy, R-Lehi, passed with a 56-16 vote mostly along party lines. It passed despite Democrats' complaints that the resolution sends the wrong message — that Utah's laws already do enough to protect people from gun violence.

READ MORE: House OKs resolution saying Utah's gun laws are enough

  • The House Education Committee is slated to hear HB250 that sets school fee guidelines for boards to enforce.
  • The House Public Utilities, Energy and Technology Committee will review HJR19, a joint resolution directing a study of blockchain technology that includes legislative recommendations regarding the potential benefits and value of blockchain and possible uses in state government.

Here's what happened on Feb. 13, the 17th day of the 2019 session:

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  • A Democratic state lawmaker proposed HB331, legislation that would prohibit the import, sale, manufacture and possession of devices that modify a semiautomatic weapon to significantly increase the rate at which it fires. The bill would also allow police to confiscate bump stocks and destroy them.
  • Sen. Curt Bramble, R-Provo, proposed SB95, a bill that aims to require certain health benefit plans in Utah to provide coverage for behavioral health treatment for people with autism spectrum disorder, regardless of their age and how many hours of treatment they might need.
  • HB324 was introduced into the House of Representatives on Wednesday and placed in the Rules Committee. The bill would raise the minimum age for obtaining, possessing, using, providing or furnishing tobacco products, paraphernalia, "and under certain circumstances, electronic smoking devices" from 19 to 20 then to 21 years of age over time.