- Associated Press - Thursday, January 30, 2020

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Utah’s governor gave his 11th and final State of the State address in which he celebrated the state economy.

Gov. Gary Herbert also used the speech Wednesday to thank residents for their hard work and charity and highlight the contributions of refugees who have settled in Utah, The Deseret News reported.

Herbert pointed to state economic achievements including a personal income growth rate of 7%, an all-time unemployment low of 2.3% and the lowest state tax obligation in 27 years.

“The state of our state is, well, it’s just the best,” said Herbert, who will not seek another term.

Utah’s population is expected reach 5.8 million people by 2065, and housing needs, transportation problems and air quality challenges will come with growth, he said, noting the decisions in this legislative session will resonate for years.

Herbert emphasized some of his key budget recommendations, including more money for mass transit and adding electric vehicle infrastructure to encourage the adoption of alternative fuel vehicles.

Refugees embody the pioneering spirit that has defined Utah since 1847, Herbert said.

“Refugees then and now are an important thread that has been woven into the tapestry of our state and our lives,” he said. “Please join with me in recognizing their contributions.”

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