On February 14, the Utah Senate Business and Labor Committee unanimously passed SB 54. Currently, Utah is the only state in which no one can run in a partisan primary unless he or she has substantial support at a pre-primary party caucus. The bill requires parties to let party members cast a caucus vote even if they can’t physically be present at a caucus meeting. It also slightly eases the support needed at a caucus in order for a candidate to advance to a primary, from 35% to 30%.
Finally, the bill says that parties must let all registered voters vote in their primaries. If they don’t, then they must forego using the pre-primary caucus system entirely.
An initiative petition is circulating in Utah to eliminate the caucus system entirely. See this story about the bill. Backers of the initiative say SB 54 does not go far enough to satisfy them, and will continue circulating the petition even if the bill passes.