Letters to the Editor
Walkability What it is? Then I read an article in my husband’s medical school’s fall publication regarding the health benefits of walking walking to work, walking to shop, walking to get somewhere and it was termed walkability. I have it and have had it ever since I could walk. The residents of Park City do not have it.
When we decided to become residents of Park City, we walked different neighborhoods with one of the criteria being walkability. We did not need or want a large home, but ended up with just that because of its wonderful walkability we were able to walk to the market, some movies, the bank, many shops and restaurants, the post office, the resort center, and many beautiful neighborhoods. Our house is just a short walk to the post office, really short, and very often in the afternoons I would meet my neighbor who lived a few houses from ours she would always offer me a ride, but never offered to walk with me.
There are a few times during the year where there is a great deal of walkability in Park City. One is the sincere Park City Fourth of July parade and many drive up from Salt Lake and other places, park where permitted and walk to the parade. Another is the Arts Festival in August, and the most walkability in Park City happens each year during the Sundance Film Festival when hundreds walk each day and night to the different venues. I have walked more than once from Webster Drive to the Eccles and back. Several times from the Racquet Club and the Prospector venues, from mid-Main Street to the Village movie venues.
Walkability for the average Park City resident does not take place for a multitude of reasons. Our current way of life is dedicated to driving everyone is too busy to walk women task and multitask, children are programmed into all sorts of activities, computers and televisions require a lot of time, and there are all sorts of activities other than walkability. People for the most part this day and age have neither the time nor motivation to walk.
So where does this leave the $15 million bond issue? How are the $15 million going to be spent to create walkability in Park City and will they? Walkability in Park City is already here. It just needs to be part of our lives.
A great way to spend an evening
On a whim last Friday I went to the Kimball Gallery Stroll. I have never been to a gallery walk and I had a great time. The food was delicious and the live music perfect. The landscape art was very easy to understand and gave the whole setting an enjoyable feel. Six Spoons outdid themselves and the free massages made the event even more popular. I would recommend the art walk to anyone who is in town. It is a great way to spend an evening with friends.
Winter Sports School
The art was good, too
Last Friday, I attended the Gallery Stroll at the Kimball Art Center. First let me start by saying that the whole atmosphere was incredible. From the food, to the art, to the live music, to the free massages that were being given. I would highly suggest going to the next one to anyone who enjoys good food, live music and a little art on the side.
Winter Sports School
Utah’s energy future: clear, unclear, nuclear?
With a Utah Legislative committee considering legislation to foster the development of nuclear power over renewable energy sources, and the Legislative session set to begin soon, now is the time for all Utahns to get involved in the energy debate.
I hope Park City residents will join HEAL Utah for a special panel discussion on "Nuclear Power, Global Warming, and Utah’s Energy Future" featuring experts from Utah and around the country. There will be an opportunity to meet with the panelists at a benefit reception following the panel.
Please get together with your friends and drive down the hill to the HEAL Utah Energy Panel and Fall Party on Friday, Nov. 2, 6 p.m. at The Pickle Company Art Gallery (741 South 400 West, Salt Lake City).
Panel Discussion: Nuclear Power, Global Warming, and Utah’s Energy Future: "Is it possible to fight global warming without choosing the nuclear option?"
Moderated by Holly Mullen, editor of the Salt Lake City Weekly. The panelists will include:
Peter Bradford: former Nuclear Regulatory Commissioner, former New York Public Service Commissioner and former chair of the Maine Public Utilities Commission.
Arjun Makhijani, PhD: president, Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER). Author of the forthcoming book, "Carbon Free and Nuclear Free: A roadmap for U.S. energy policy."
Kent Udell: professor and chair of Mechanical Engineering, University of Utah
Sarah Wright: executive director, Utah Clean Energy
Vanessa Pierce: executive director, HEAL Utah
For more information go to http://www.healutah.org
No vote, no voice
What’s the world’s largest democracy? It’s NOT America! In the 2004 election in India, 380 million people voted more than the entire population of the United States. Most of us all have the right to vote; many people, however, do not take advantage of this most basic democratic right. Voting is the most direct way that we have of influencing the way the country and local councils are run. Our families fought and are fighting today long and hard for the right to vote.
Voting in local elections decides who serves on the council and who controls the council. Elected representatives are responsible for the council budget and for making decisions on the services the council provides. So your vote is your direct link with the service you receive and what kind of community you want to help create. We are citizens first taxpayers second.
If you choose to use your vote, you are expressing your democratic feelings and making your voice heard. No vote, no voice. It is our town, our place where we can make real differences we can do it.
Please vote for the three City Council seats on November 6 and please consider a vote for Liza Simpson. She is a voice that needs to be heard on our council. She is like many of us in town who work many jobs to survive and respect all who are here. Community is important to Liza and I know she will do what she can to maintain that small-town spirit that we all want to maintain.
Please vote and please consider a vote for Liza!
Developers don’t belong on Planning Commission
Real-estate developers have been and will continue to be the most powerful brokers of influence in Park City because of their financial and political clout. Appointing a developer, regardless of who they are, is not appropriate because of relationships with the real estate business in Park City. Disclosures are fine, but do you think that once Dick Cheney CEO of Halliburton, became VP, he no longer has vested business interests in the energy and building sectors of the economy?
The Planning Commission can certainly use the professional assistance and support to make hard decisions and manage what seems to be out-of-control growth. Does lack of infrastructure to handle current growth projections really influence building and density decisions? High-end developers already get what they want. Putting even well-intentioned altruistic real-estate developers and brokers on the Planning Commission just sends the wrong message. Can’t they attend meetings and assist the commission with great ideas without being on the board?
Liza is all about community
Liza Simpson is by far the best candidate to serve on the Park City Council. I have known Liza for over 15 years as an employee and friend. She didn’t just decide to get active in Park City when elections came around; she has been continually active in the community during her entire 20 years here.
Liza will bring a different view to the City Council; she is an employee, a manager on Main Street, a renter in Old Town (on Main Street for 10 years, no less), a volunteer to many organizations and has the requisite two dogs.
I have listened to and read all the responses of the candidates. I find Liza to have a central theme that the others don’t: "It is all about the community and together we can accomplish anything." Park City has grown in the 25 years I have been a resident, but we are still unique among the resort towns and we must protect and encourage community. Over and over again I have seen this town do remarkable things for a small group of people. We continue to do that, by having elected officials with local experience, a broad base of support and commitment. Liza will bring her inexhaustible enthusiasm and great sense of humor to our local governing body.
The job of a City Councilor is not quite as easy as it looks, and the wheels of government churn slowly. It takes time, lots of reading, many meetings, patience, the ability to listen, and commitment. I know a little something about the details of the job and Liza has the best skills of the new contenders to be your successful representative.
Please get out to vote and please join me in voting for Liza Simpson for City Council!
Hugh Daniels Former council member
Thank you Frank Normile and the board of directors of Park City Film Series for a fantastic line-up of films again this season. How lucky we Parkites are to be able to experience the finest movies in the comfort of our own Jim Santy Auditorium, surrounded by our friends and neighbors. There’s no waiting outside in line in the cold to see Sundance winners or outstanding foreign imports such as the wonderful "Paris Je T’Aime" which captured the hearts of so many viewers.
Keep up the good work to bring this much appreciated artistic expression to our community.
Marianne Cedarleaf Park City
A bond too far
Passage of the upcoming walkability bond must not be considered a foregone conclusion even though supporters intimate "major" support of it within the community. This is a perceived support but the reality will be revealed on Nov. 6th. One vocal proponent says there are hundreds who endorse this bond. There are hundreds as well who do not. The greater percentage of the 4,677 registered voters are asking why!
There is another perceived support in that it is generally thought all five city council members personally support this bond as the placement of this $15 million bond on the ballot was presented as a united front. That is not the case. Some voters may like to think this perceived total endorsement of the people they elected to LEAD means this bond is a good thing. It is not. It is an abrogation of their responsibilities as elected officials to throw onto the ballot yet another bond to pay for pedestrian improvements not even identified. That identification would be done by a committee to guide spending $15 million after the fact. $1.9 million has already been budgeted by this council for improvements recommended by Landmark Design Team; that was done when they were doing their job! Let’s spend that first.
The problem, as stated by all, is vehicular traffic. It is horrible at times. This bond is not going to help that anytime soon. Cars on the roads are not going away to leave a pristine walking environment or total security and safety to every living thing. This bond is not going to change traffic pressures currently being endured. This bond should be revisited in the future AFTER specific recommendations as to how funds will be spent have been established. At that time the voter can see what his $16.80 (plus) per $100,000 of assessed valuation will buy. We all could then make an informed decision regarding increased debt incurrence.
Presently the General Obligation Bonds authorized by voters total $44 million. The first $24 million includes two $10 million open-space bonds and a $4 million recreation/ice rink bond. This $24 million is now reflected in your tax bill. The $20 million open space bond authorized in 2005 has not been implemented yet and is not yet reflected in your tax bill. An additional $15 million bond of dubious value (on many levels) is not a prudent was to spend the public funds this year.
The election on Nov. 6 is very important as well due to the opening of three city council seats. This is a valuable and rare opportunity to replace 60% of the city council with fresh vigorous leadership. It needs to be replaced. In my 30 years of voting in this town, it has never been so important. Kacy Quinley and Dennis Wong are not afraid to state concerns over rising debt and decision-making processes presently in question. The third seat should not go to an incumbent.
Referendum 1 is poor legislation
The arguments in favor of Referendum 1 are falling one by one. As soon as one argument is proven wrong by independent research, the pro-voucher contingent rolls out a new reason to vote for a private school discount coupon for the poor — or the rich, since all Utah students are eligible as long as they’re not currently enrolled in private school. The latest reason for voting for vouchers is the projection that 150,000 new students will enter Utah needing to be educated.
As Vik Arnold of UEA observed, "All of these students will not be orphans." Most will be accompanied by taxpaying adults. Park City saw unprecedented growth in the early ’90s and needed to build more schools. It wasn’t easy and we did it without giving incentives to students to attend private schools to keep them from crowding our public schools. We have shown that not only can it be done, it can be done well.
According to the Legislative Fiscal Analyst, any savings through the initial implementation of vouchers will be lost in thirteen years when all private school students can receive vouchers. The cost to taxpayers is enough to pay for two high schools.
Please research HB 148. Follow the money. Read what the Friedman Foundation has to say about privatizing public education. Referendum 1 is not about helping the poor; it is not about housing students; it is not a mechanism to keep taxes low; it is not the free market’s invisible hand that will improve public education; it does nothing to improve student achievement. Referendum 1 is poor legislation created through a poor process that has resulted in a law allowing for little oversight of your and my money. No wonder the people have spoken against this law and are demanding HB 148 go before a vote of the taxpaying citizens.
I voted early against Referendum 1 and I respectfully ask that you read the Voters’ Guide, attend the town-hall meeting on Thursday, Nov. 1, at Ecker Hill International Middle School at 7 p.m. to hear from both sides of the issue, then please, vote against Referendum 1.
A vote to connect our neighborhoods
As a long-time citizen of this beautiful city, I would like to voice my support for the Walkability Bond. Park City has been our home for the past 11 years and we have raised our daughter to enjoy the mountains and the incredible variety of outdoor activities that Park City has to offer. We are all so fortunate to live here and enjoy the pristine beauty of the Wasatch hopefully outside of our cars and in nature, be it by foot, bike or on skis. It seems that most of us have moved to Park City to do just that, it only seems natural that we would all want to support Proposition One YES ON WALKABILIITY.
Pressures of development, traffic and congestion will be our biggest issue in the future … so it only makes sense that we build alternative means for getting around by connecting our neighborhoods and making Park City a safer, connected walking- and biking-friendly community for all our citizens.
This is an important election because there are six candidates running for three seats on City Council. These are seats that will be important for making valuable decisions that will impact the quality of life in Park City for the next four years and into the future. I would like to encourage you to get to the polls on November 6th and pay close attention to those council candidates that are in support of the Walkabilty Bond. The three candidates that have stated their support for the Walkability Bond are Joe Kernan, Liza Simpson and Bruce Taylor.
For those of you against the Walkability Bond, please consider the economic benefits for our community. A pedestrian/bicycle-friendly community is more appealing for tourism, a major source of our economy. I am terribly embarrassed to see the Sundancers walking on tiny broken sidewalks when they have pumped so much into our economy with their hotel and restaurant tax dollars. Imagine having all of those people driving around town during Sundance? Further, our property values will only be enhanced by a walkable city and the bond is a more economical way to solve the problem right now.
Please get out and vote on November 6th YES on Proposition One – the Walkability Bond for the good of the community.
Betsy Quintana Bothe Park City
A game to remember
"It’s just a football game." "Winning isn’t everything." "There’s always tomorrow." However, when 0:00 hit the clock last Friday in Logan and the sun set on your tremendous season, I am sure clichéd quotes was last thing you wanted to hear.
If there was ever a game whose outcome would justify two winners, it was the game witnessed up north. You played your butts off and poured every ounce of yourself, physically and emotionally, into a game that you love. The "DRIVE" that took up nearly eight minutes was awesome football. The "D-STAND" you made to thwart Logan’s drive was "sick." Ten years from now, you will remember the Logan game and that Drive and that Stand far more than the thrashings you put on Emery or Morgan or Uintah. Of course that memory would have been sweeter with a victory, but what this game has done for you as young men will be with you forever. Believe it or not it has built character. It has made you stronger. And the goals you strive for in the future are even more attainable due to this encounter of adversity.
Remember it was YOU that put yourselves in a position to even participate in game like that. YOU got there. Most high school athletes never get to that kind of game or yet alone play on a winning team. For you, seniors, 18 wins in two years is outstanding and you leave behind a legacy to build on.
It wasn’t just a football game. It was a life challenge. Take advantage of the experience, you will be stronger forever. To Coach Matich, the coaching staff and the entire Park City Miners football family be proud your fans are.
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