The Constitutional Defense Council

The Constitutional Defense Council (CDC) was created to assist the Governor and the Legislature with constitutional issues affecting State’s rights. The CDC keeps track of the federal legislation, regulations, mandates, and court rulings that could impact powers and rights reserved to the State by the United States Constitution.

What Does the CDC Do?

The CDC’s key duties include:

  • Advising the governor, the state planning coordinator, and the public lands policy coordinator on coordination of state and local rights under R.S. 2477 and approving a plan for the protection, litigation, and confirmation of those rights.
  • Formulating legal strategies to further the State’s public lands policy.
  • Generally advising on public land issues.
  • Assisting with disagreements between the State of Utah and other states over the use and ownership of water.
  • Directing the Utah Attorney General to initiate and prosecute any action that the council determines will further its statutory purposes.

CDC Meetings

CDC must meet monthly or more frequently unless the majority of the members agree not to meet. View past meeting minutes and agendas by visiting the Public Notice Website.

Current CDC Members

Chair: the Governor or the Lieutenant Governor
Vice-Chair: Senate president (or designee)
Vice-Chair: House speaker (or designee)

  • Senate minority leader (or designee)
  • House minority leader (or designee)
  • member of the House (appointed by House Speaker)
  • the attorney general (or designee)
  • director of the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration
  • four county commissioners, county council members, or county executives

Non-Voting Members:

  • executive director of the Department of Natural Resources
  • commissioner of the Department of Agriculture and Food
  • director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development
  • two county commissioners, county council members, or county executives