Letters to the Editor, Jan. 28, 2009
Regarding your headline of Jan 21, 2009: "A Wave of Patriotism."
It’s not patriotism if it depends on who is president!
Breaking the silence on departure from KPCW
Saturday’s story about why I resigned from KPCW left the impression that some board members were still trying to work out a new contract with me. That is not correct. Six months ago, at the time I resigned, there were still some members working on a compromise, but to my knowledge, that is no longer the case.
For the last six months I’ve had many, many people ask me why I left the station. So when the County Council appointed me to the selection committee — making me again a public person — I felt an obligation to the Council to break radio silence on the issue.
Also, I personally — after 30 years’ service — needed to publicly bring closure to the KPCW part of my life and thank the hundreds of Park City area residents who served on the board and thousands who were involved on-air and as fund-raising volunteers.
Because of their efforts, previous KPCW staffs were able to make the station one of the most successful in the nation. Benchmark studies by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting found KPCW had more listeners per capita and raised more money per capita than any other public station in the nation.
The station also won honors from the National Broadcasters Association, Utah Broadcasters Association and Utah League of Women Voters. It was also Park City’s Olympic Lifeline and produced "Save our Snow," the largest town meeting in Park City’s history, which was featured on the ABC Nightly News.
My hope is the current board and staff will bask in the glory of KPCW’s past and build on the foundation that Susan, I, staff and past board of trustees created.
Please use shovels, not snow blowers
As today’s (Sunday’s) storm blows through Utah and scrubs our air clean, please consider one basic action you can take to keep our air clean: shovel your snow instead of snow blowing it!
Small two-stroke engines are highly polluting and contribute significantly to our local air pollution. According to the EPA, a snow blower sends almost a pound of carbon monoxide into the air each hour it runs. As a comparison, you would have to drive about 70 miles to match the CO emissions produced in one hour by a snow blower.
The main emission concerns with snow blowers’ small engines are hydrocarbons from unburned fuel and carbon monoxide from partly burned fuel, says Nigel Clark, professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at West Virginia University. In older snow blowers, Clark says, up to one-third of the fuel doesn’t get burned. In essence, two-stroke engines are very inefficient.
To minimize your contribution to our air pollution, consider bringing out your shovel and enjoying not only the peaceful rhythm of shoveling but also the cardiovascular benefits of physical exercise.
Not everyone can shovel due to physical limitations, so if you are willing and able, offer to shovel a neighbor’s walk and not only spare the air but create neighborly goodwill. And kids: Consider going door to door offering to shovel for a few bucks.
For tips on how to shovel and protect yourself from injury visit: http://www.motherearthnews.com/Do-It-Yourself/2003-12-01/Snowy-Solutions
If shoveling is not for you, consider buying an electric snow blower, the greener snow blower choice. According to the EPA, electric blowers are greener because they do not emit pollution from exhaust emissions nor through fuel evaporation. To reduce the cost of a new blower, consider buying one with one or more neighbors.
If you must keep your current two-stroke snow blower, please do your part to limit your emissions by keeping your engine tuned, changing the oil and replacing filters regularly.
To keep our air clean we must all do our part!
Salt Lake City
Founder, Utah Moms for Clean Air
‘Treasure’ development defies reason
(Editor’s note: This is a copy of a letter addressed to Mayor Dana Williams and members of the City Council and Planning Commission. The mayor’s reply is reprinted below.)
As a 20-year resident and property owner in Old Town, I must state my objections and outrage at this proposed "Treasure" development in Creole Gulch. The scale and location of this project defy any reasonable interpretation of the Park City Land Management Code. What happened to the 27-foot height restrictions that builders were supposed to adhere to in Old Town? Are they to be thrown out the window (again) for this clearly illegal conditional use? What an eyesore this will be to every resident of and visitor to our town!
The proposed development is right in the middle of Old Town with only two long narrow roads for access. In the winter these roads often become one-way streets. In the summer they can be filled with dangerous construction trucks morning ’til night. Each of the dozens of single-family homes in this neighborhood will suffer huge quality of life degradation and safety issues if this enormous development is approved. Traffic and resident safety should be the overriding concerns for City Council and the Planning Department!
I realize that the Sweeney family is very prominent in this town. They keep talking about the permits that were granted in the ’80s and revised in the ’90s. But the Park City Land Management Code clearly states that when the Planning Director finds an application to be inactive, he or she may deny the application and close the files on such project. Let’s not allow this coercive argument to grow!
With the greater interest of all Park City residents and mindful of the job we the people elected you to do, I submit that the Park City Planning Commission and City Council reject this application. It is simply and overwhelmingly wrong for this neighborhood. Please don’t become the Judas that sells out our town for a few pieces of silver!
The mayor’s response:
Thank you for taking the time to write us. As I read your letter I found myself in agreement with some of your points. Traffic is one of the main concerns of both the planning commission and the council. Your point about the Sweeney family status is flat out inaccurate, as is finding the application inactive. The family does have an approved vested rights development agreement and when this was approved there were no expiration dates in the code at that time. Your comments about becoming the Judas and only being interested in the financial gain are offensive and wrong. I will speak for myself in saying that I dislike this project, and am willing to spend as much time as it takes to change the old approval. Not one person currently serving on either the commission or council was part of the original decision, and I would ask that you help us figure out what to do rather than blame us.
Office of the Mayor
An ode to the Park City Silly Market
Diversity happens, togetherness, making friends, meeting friends at our market, activities for all. Thinking globally and acting locally. Enjoying music under the open skies. Local artists, farmers, and vendors, supporting those that support others, we are all equal …
The 2009 Park Silly Sunday Market runs June 14 through September 27. Location: Main Street, Park City.
Park City Silly Market
Treasure Hill project: obsolete and invalid
We hereby register our concern, dismay and opposition to the proposed "Treasure Hill" project. The massive scale of this proposed project dwarfs all of Old Town buildings and will destroy the character and quaintness that makes Old Town so charming and appealing to visitors, primary residents and second-home owners.
To retain its historical character the Park City Planning Commission has enforced requirements for new construction and remodeling in Old Town regarding building size, height, color, landscaping etc. Granting approval to a project of this scope which essentially incorporates large, modern, multistoried buildings makes a farce of all those previously enforced requirements.
Traffic on Empire, Lowell and Lower Norfolk Avenues that are narrow streets to begin with will be unsustainable during construction of this project, especially in the winter. In addition, if this project is completed, the most direct route to Main Street is via Crescent Tram and Eighth Street that are both narrow streets unable to accommodate increased traffic flow.
The criteria for this project were developed a quarter of a century ago. Park City, Old Town, the economy and environment have changed significantly in the past 25 years, making the original plans for this project obsolete and invalid in 2009. City planners should be aware of the recent massive mud slides in California, Washington and Oregon. These mud slides destroying many homes resulted from weather changes and overdevelopment on hillsides. Is this what we need or want in Park City?
We urge the editor to publish a front-page article including renderings so residents of Park City will be aware of the environmentally and aesthetically damaging project that is being proposed. This project will negatively affect the quality of life of all Park City residents.
Frederick and Annette Keller
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The Park City Council primary election is slated for Aug. 13, but the ballots in the vote-by-mail contest were scheduled to be sent on Tuesday. The Summit County Clerk’s Office anticipates the ballots will arrive in mailboxes and post-office boxes on Friday or Saturday.