Sean Wharton says his people skills will get the job done
Sean Wharton says he has the unique ability to mesh with people and get to know them, while earning their trust.
This skill set, he said, would make him an asset to the Summit County Council and will help foster its relationship with the community.
Wharton, the Democratic Party challenger seeking a four-year term against incumbent David Ure, said if elected, he will strive to keep people engaged with their local government.
"I think that is the key and one of the things that I’d really like to drive home," Wharton said via telephone during the county debate forum hosted by KPCW and The Park Record on Monday, Oct. 20. "If you know anything about me, I have a lifetime of experience in Park City and, in particularly, team building with different groups of individuals."
Wharton was on vacation in Mexico with his family during the debate.
Wharton touted his residency in Summit County for the past 18 years as both a business owner and operator. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Welcome Home Addiction and Recovery Lifestyles Academy and has served two terms on the Board of Directors for Recycle Utah.
During the forum, Wharton criticized the council’s failure to implement changes to the Eastern Summit County development and zoning codes throughout his tenure as a member of the Eastern Summit County Planning Commission.
If he had been on the council, Wharton said, he would have paid more attention to the East Side of the county and been more aggressive in correcting the Development Code and General Plan as they apply to property owners.
"I grew up and spent my whole life in Snyderville Basin and I saw it evolve," Wharton said. "And I wasn’t really happy with that."
Throughout the past 20 years, Wharton said he’s witnessed firsthand "the problems coming down the pipe" for both sides of the county, especially now that he is in Kamas.
"It’s only been in the last 18 months that the commission has really been aggressive with a plan that should have been brought forth four to six years ago," he said.
The Eastern Summit County Planning Commission recently scheduled a public hearing to discuss the changes the commission is proposing to the county’s development and zoning codes, which were adopted in 1996.
Regarding the Uinta Express Pipeline, a major point of discussion for both residents and candidates, Wharton said his concerns surround the environmental impacts the 135 mile-long, heating pipeline would incur. In the past, The Park Record has reported that the pipeline has raised concerns about reducing tanker truck traffic and protecting the watershed from an oil spill.
"I don’t really feel there is a whole lot we can do to stop them," Wharton said. "We’ll flesh out the details to see if we can make the best situation but it’s something that is coming and I don’t feel like there is ultimately too much we can do to control it."
With his knowledge as a business owner on both the East and the West sides of the county, Wharton said he knows there is a difference between the two. But, he said, the East Side’s needs are not being met. Wharton said he can make a difference in the process, he just needs the opportunity to prove himself.
"I am a hard worker and I tend to have a good, level head and reasonable judgment," he said. "I will carefully contemplate all of the decisions that come before me and I will make the best decision possible."
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