Council race is Weinstein’s first foray into politics
October 17, 2008
Samak Democrat Steve Weinstein says he’ll work for $1.50 per year if elected to seat E on the new Summit County Council. Weinstein is vying against Kamas Republican Dave Ure for the two-year position.
"In the true sprit of community service, I want to do this as a volunteer," Weinstein said in a telephone interview Friday.
Weinstein, who has spent about $350 on his campaign, is accepting no political contributions.
"There are candidates who are spending tens of thousands of dollars and people have full-time campaign managers who they are paying," Weinstein said. "I made the decision to self-finance This is not what it’s about for me, so I haven’t taken a dime from anybody."
Dissatisfaction with the slow processing of an application of his for a work force housing project in the Snyderville Basin compelled him to run for office, Weinstein said, adding that his plan to create homes for seasonal employees wasn’t approved.
"There was a lack of definitive action by the county to deal with the project, which was to provide seasonal work force housing for both Deer Valley and Park City resorts," Weinstein said. "This need is dire and you hear these candidates talking about tourism being the engine that drives the train."
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Weinstein is a general contractor in Summit County.
"General contractors, by virtue of what they do, are continually challenged to think outside the box," he said. "This is what I do all day, every day. My job is making decisions and solving problems."
Weinstein hopes to help diversify the economy by offering incentives to companies willing to locate in Summit County.
"An example of this idea would be the acceptance of a big box retailer such as Costco," Weinstein told the Park City Board of Realtors in a prepared statement Thursday. "I believe a Costco would be an asset to Summit County if it is properly designed and located."
Meanwhile, traffic snarls roads in western Summit County, he said.
"The really bigger problem is not the traffic, it’s changing people’s behavior," Weinstein said.
More park-and-ride lots in the Basin could encourage people to carpool or ride buses into Park City, he said.
"Maybe we should require all resort employees to go there instead of parking at the resort. We’ve got to create options and alternatives, and then hopefully enact some rules and force people to do certain things that are going to benefit the community overall," Weinstein said. "But it’s hard to get people to buy into that. I didn’t see a lessening of traffic because gas was $4.50 a gallon."
The form of government in Summit County will change in January from the three-member County Commission to a five-person County Council, which will oversee legislative matters.
Hiring a manager to run the executive branch is critical, Weinstein said.
Weinstein, meanwhile, said eastsiders deserve fewer restrictions on development.
"It’s not unreasonable for people with land holdings on the East Side to want to cash in," Weinstein said. "The toothpaste is out of the tube, the bell has been rung and it’s here The level of development is what’s at question."
Weinstein said he owns two houses and two building lots in Summit County.
"This is not about direct personal gain, this now transcends that," he insisted. "I had three options: I could just do nothing, I could moan and complain, or I could get involved and try to make a difference."