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County Watch

Compiled by Patrick Parkinson

The Summit County Commission appears poised to aggressively negotiate with Rocky Mountain Power before selling a land easement in Oakley.

"I didn’t understand the need for the easement to start with," Summit County Engineer Derrick Radke said.

A spokesman for Rocky Mountain Power insists the company is prepared to pay $1,600 to the county to install a utility line on a triangular piece of property the county owns near New Lane Road.

"That’s the offer on the table right now," he told commissioners.

Meanwhile, the county could simply issue Rocky Mountain a permit for the project, Radke said, adding, "I didn’t see the need to have [the easement] at all."

"When we need something we’re dealing with [Rocky Mountain Power] just like any other retail customer," complained Summit County Commissioner Bob Richer insisting the easement should cost more than $1,600.

"We’ll expect $4,000 and hope for the $7,500, anywhere in between is appropriate," Richer told the Rocky Mountain spokesman as he left a meeting recently in Coalville.

Recycling in Timberline

Responding to pressure from Snyderville Basin residents who say they want curbside recycling in their neighborhood, Summit County Public Works has considered whether large trucks can negotiate private, gravelly roads in Timberline.

"They’re talking about possibly putting curbside through the summer months and putting a general collection bin out during the bad weather because the area is so difficult to access in the wintertime," Summit County Public Works Superintendent Mark Offret said.

For several years homeowners in Timberline have requested the county provide curbside recycling.

"We’re slowly expanding into different areas as we can afford it," Offret said. "[Timberline has] private roads so we don’t maintain them."

Death of ‘Chuck-A-Rama Defense Fund’ praised

Legislation that would have diverted a portion of the sales tax collected on prepared foods and beverages from counties to the Utah Department of Agriculture died Wednesday night at the state Senate.

Summit County Commissioner Sally Elliott spoke against a substitute version of Senate Bill 68 mocking the legislation she called the "Chuck-A-Rama Defense Fund."

"We probably do a better job of advertising in our way to fit our needs than anybody else," Elliott says.

Time expired in the Legislature’s general session before senators could vote on the bill sponsored by Sen. Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy.

The Park City Chamber/Bureau also opposed the legislation, which would have begun allowing Utah’s agriculture and food commissioner to oversee how money diverted into the so-called Restaurant Industry Promotion Fund is spent.

Chamber/Bureau Executive Director Bill Malone insisted the bill could make it difficult for restaurants in Park City to attract guests from other states.

Bill that targets metal thieves is watered down

Before voting for the bill Wednesday a police chief attempting to prevent the theft of scrap metal from construction sites expressed discomfort with amendments lawmakers made to his legislation.

"This bill doesn’t go where I wanted it to go," said Republican Sen. Jon Greiner who sponsored Senate Bill 44.

A rash of thefts at construction sites in Summit County had thieves selling valuable metal like copper wire to scrap-metal yards on the Wasatch Front.

requiring the dealers maintain logs of the names of people they purchase metal from authorities hoped to crack down on the thefts. But a portion of the bill that required so-called "regulated metals" be held by dealers for three days after a transaction, was gutted before the Senate supported SB44 unanimously.

Richins resigns from water board

Former Summit County Commissioner Sheldon Richins stepped down from his post on the Eastern Summit County Water Advisory Committee.

"What [Richins] is involved with is putting together funds to save agricultural communities throughout the United States," Summit County Commissioner Ken Woolstnehulme said.

Richins travels several times each month in different states representing the interests of farmers and ranchers.

Applications are being accepted from those in eastern Summit County interested in serving on the Eastern Summit County Water Advisory Committee. For more information contact County Commissioner Administrator Anita Lewis at (435) 336-3220.

"That has certainly been a worthwhile thing," Summit County Commissioner Sally Elliott said about the board.

Francis Town taps county’s former planning chief

The Town of Francis in eastern Summit County has hired Silver Creek resident Alison Weyher to oversee planning in the city.

Weyher, a former Summit County community development director, worked also as chief planner in Salt Lake City under Mayor Rocky Anderson.


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