Roger Armstrong prepared for term |

Roger Armstrong prepared for term

Caroline Kingsley, The Park Record

Incoming Summit County Councilmember Roger Armstrong is stepping into his county seat in the midst of a number of growth and development issues, along with budget uncertainties and communication shortfalls.

Armstrong said he believes the overriding issue facing the county as he takes office is growth management.

"As the economy continues to recover, I think growth, and the issues that grow out from that, transportation and traffic, are going to be bigger challenges," he said.

The council will also continue to face budget uncertainty as they move surrounding early 2013, Armstrong said.

"I think as we saw in the last month of the year, the outgoing council was wrestling with some of the budget issues," he said. "I think the budgets are going to continue to be a challenge to the county until we get some certainty in terms of the tax increases."

Because of the repeal of the 2012 Municipal Fund and Service Area #6 tax increases, some projects will have to be postponed, Armstrong added.

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"I think we need to at least get more certainty in our budgeting process so that we know what we’ve got and so the citizens can count on money being there or not being there and we can move forward accordingly," he said.

Armstrong noted the deliberations the council has gone through for issues like the tax hikes as he has observed council meetings in recent months.

"They’ve done some good work," Armstrong said. "The deliberations they go through are actually pretty substantial. And I hope more people take advantage of the opportunity to become a part of the deliberations, or at least experience it and attend more council meetings."

Armstrong acknowledged that with everything going on in people’s lives, it’s hard to find the time to focus on what is happening in local politics.

"There are going to be some things they couldn’t care less about, and there will be some things they will want to know about and be able to participate in the process," he said. "So we need to find a way to reach out to them and let them know when something important is coming up and to communicate on a more regular basis.

"If we can improve that communication and get the community more involved in the process so that they can be heard and reflected, I think everyone will be happier."

Armstrong will be taking the oath of office, along with fellow incoming Councilmember Kim Carson and incumbent Claudia McMullin on Monday, Jan. 7 at 3 p.m. at the Summit County Courthouse, located at 60 North Main Street in Coalville.