Four seats up on East and West Side Planning Panels
Two Snyderville Basin Planning Commissioners’ terms are set to expire at the end of the month, which could potentially usher in some new faces to serve on the planning panel that oversees development projects in the Basin.
Two-term commissioner Bea Peck said she is on the fence about reapplying for her position on the seven-member panel. She has until 5 p.m. Wednesday to decide.
Peck is an attorney who mostly deals with corporate work, estate planning and conservation easements. She is eligible to serve one more term on the Planning Commission.
Peck has had a hand in reviewing significant developments and planning matters over the years, including the Silver Creek Village Center, Canyon Corners Development, a reconfiguration of the Canyons Village at Park City Mountain Resort, a rewrite of the Basin’s General Plan and controversial projects such as Woodward Park City and a hotel at the former Colby School property. She was appointed to the position in 2013.
“I find the work challenging and I feel like I can provide a positive impact,” she said. “I’ve tried to use my skillset and now my experience on the Planning Commission to try and get the best results for our community. It’s been exciting.”
Commissioner Malena Stevens’ term is also set to expire on Feb. 28. Stevens, a first-term commissioner, was appointed to the Planning Commission in 2017, alongside Thomas Cooke, after two previous members unexpectedly resigned. Stevens is filling the unexpired term of Julia Reynolds Collins. It was unclear if she would reapply for another term.
Commissioners serve on a volunteer basis and are responsible for making recommendations to the County Council regarding zoning, amendments to the respective Development Codes and application reviews. They attend two meetings a month and are required to have lived in the community for at least one year.
The newly selected commissioners will be joining Cooke, Canice Harte, Joel Fine, Ryan Dickey and John Kucera on the planning panel. One of the tasks that the commission will soon be undertaking is a rewrite of the Basin Development Code.
East Side vacancies
Later this month, commissioners Tonja Hanson and Rich Sonntag’s terms on the East Side Planning Commission will also be expiring. Hanson, a three-term commissioner who was first appointed in 2010, will not be eligible to reapply. She is currently serving as chair of the planning panel.
Sonntag confirmed that he would reapply for a second term. He was first appointed in 2016.
Sonntag currently serves as the senior vice president of community development for Daybreak Community in South Jordan. He previously served as the managing director for Promontory Development for 17 years. His former position has caused him to recuse himself from several discussions that involve Promontory throughout his term.
Sonntag said he is reapplying for his seat because he “cares what goes on up there.” He said the eastern end of the county is facing a lot of development pressures.
“I think things need to happen and I want to make sure they happen well,” he said. “As it becomes more and more unaffordable to live in the Basin, people will want to live on the East Side. We need to make sure the infrastructure and density are properly provided for in the code so when things get built, they are planned well and will create value instead of just congestion.”
Throughout his tenure, Sonntag contributed to the rewrite of the East Side Development Code. It was a highly contentious, more than three year undertaking.
Applications for the four openings will be accepted until 5 p.m. Wednesday and can be filled out online. The Summit County Council will review the applications and ultimately make the decision about who will serve on the planning panels.
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