Letters: Park City taxpayers are victims of runaway spending at City Hall
June 14, 2018
Gun pieces were misguided
In the column by Michael Baughman (not all gun owners are alike PR June 6), I believe his intent was to show that many gun owners are decent people out to enjoy the shooting sports with its accompanying comradeship and outdoor enjoyment. He also showed a lack of knowledge in basic gun safety stating "…after the hunt we enjoyed a mid-morning target practice shooting at sticks floating on the river…" And "…two six packs of beer came out of the ranch house, along with six .22 rifles…" Alcohol and firearms never mix, no matter how little or what the particular situation is. Also, shooting into water should never be done. Bullets often ricochet off water and go where not intended. Both practices are dangerous. He also stated "…none of these gun-lovers had a single positive thing to say about the NRA…" Members of the NRA, even if they do not agree with some of its philosophy, know more about gun safety than the above "gun lovers".
The other letter by Glenn Wright (local gun registry is a worthy idea PR June 6) not only would not work but would cause more problems than it would solve. Of all the gun owners in Park City, an overwhelming percentage are responsible stable minded individuals and perhaps some or even most would register their guns if city ordinance stated they must. The other "good gun owners" in Park City would not register them and consider doing so an infringement of their personal freedom. The small percentage of gun owners in our town that should not own guns for mental or legal reasons would NOT register them.
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Teacher should not have been disciplined
I read with dismay the Record's article captioned "Teacher Put On Leave For Song Lyrics". If the article is only remotely accurate, it appears the Park City School District has sanctioned a teacher for sharing the lyrics of a song — in a poetry class lesson on bias — that some parents (and students) found offensive. The teacher was sanctioned despite her intent to present a contrasting literary work and after she allowed any offended students not to participate. Your article indicated that it is District policy to remove a teacher while it (the District) reviews the situation.
This is shocking. Based on a parent(s) complaint, the District punishes the teacher by removal from the classroom followed by its review of the situation. This is reminiscent of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" where the Queen shouted "Sentence first — verdict afterwards". Of course, I must assume a parent has not already complained about Alice In Wonderland forcing its removal from the library shelves.
My point is I am offended by what appears to be a lack of Due Process in the District; punishment/sanction precedes review. Perhaps more importantly, I am concerned about censorship. Does the District limit teacher and student discussions on subjects such as homosexuality, religion, racism, bigotry and the like? Are parental monitors on the Board of Education's agenda?
I realize Park City is a relatively small town, but the level of sophistication demonstrated by the District in this instance — sadly, not the first — is disappointing. I always thought a quality education — public or private — should teach our children to read, write and think creatively. The review of literature — even controversial literature — should be encouraged and applauded … even in Utah.
Cleaning up after dogs includes putting bags in trash
We have a (well deserved) nickname) of "Bark City" with dogs a frequent sight in town, but we clearly have a continuing problem with irresponsible dog owners. I'm sure I'm not alone in spotting dog mess left behind all over the place.
While exercising recently on the Rail Trail I passed neatly bagged dog waste by the side of the trail (about 25 yards east of the 2 mile marker). I assumed the dog owner was on an outbound walk and would pick up and dispose of it responsibly on their way back … three days later it was still there! This is certainly not first time I'm seen such bags left behind. I can sort of understand the owners (misguided though they are) whose view is that "poo" is natural in the environment so leaving it "isn't really a problem". But what possesses someone to go to the length of making it worse by adding plastic to the problem! If parents were to allow their children to defecate all over the place (or in a parallel to this example leave used disposable nappies by the trail) we'd all be up in arms about it.
How do we get the dog owners who chose to bring their dogs into our environment to clean up? So that the unwary walking, jogging, cycling, in-line skating, snowshoeing or skiing enthusiast doesn't find themselves picking dog dirt our of their equipment! And what about all the health hazards for those downstream?
Age restrictions on e-bikes must be enforced
First, I want to say I think the bike share is awesome! What a great idea! But unsupervised children are now renting these. The trail from Newpark around to the white barn on Hwy 224 was invaded by young boys racing through families and older people on the electric assist bikes. Not cool!! The sign at the bike station says no one under 18 can rent these bikes. How can this be enforced?
Work to beautify Park City is still visible
Back to 1990 when Brad Olch was sworn in as Mayor, the Parks and Recreation Board had just begun a beautification project at Park City Cemetery. Jo Scott as Chair of that group had led us to the "Greening of Park City" with donated plants to beautify that rather bleak spot. Brad declared that all the fees he collected as the "Marrying Mayor" would be donated to the project. Did you notice this Spring how tall those gorgeous lilacs have become? We didn't have much money in those days to spend for frivolous things like lilac bushes so his many contributions made a big difference. Park City was not always as chic and beautiful as it is now. It took a lot of work to bring us into the limelight.
Rubin can win with Wasatch Back support
Many of us have received primary ballots in the past several days. As a Republican, the ballot I received here in Park City contained two races; the US Senate race between Romney and Kennedy and the three-way race for the Utah State Senate 26th District. While both races are important, I would like to focus on what is at stake in the latter race.
The 26th District is a bizarre creature that has resulted from very deliberate gerrymandering. It encompasses a segment of the Wasatch Back and the entirety of Uintah, Duchesne and Daggett Counties representing the Uintah Basin. Due to the exclusion of parts of Wasatch and Summit Counties, the Senator representing the 26th District has ALWAYS come from the Uintah Basin.
The nature of the three-way race may change that fate, if Wasatch Back voters focus on exactly what is at stake. Jack Rubin is a Park City resident and eminently qualified to represent not only the Wasatch Back, but the entire 26th District. He has made balanced representation and the empowerment of town and county governmental bodies the basis of his campaign. He can win this race if Park City, Summit County and the Wasatch Back support and vote for him.
Should one of the other candidates prevail, and they are both from the Uintah Basin, it is unlikely that our area will have another shot at being the home of a State Senator for a decade or more. For a host of reasons related to the special nature of the Wasatch Back, it is critical that we not let this opportunity slip through our fingers.
Please return your ballot and please vote for Jack Rubin.
Taxpayers are victims of runaway spending at City Hall
Fellow citizens before you vote yes or no on the bond for Treasure please take the time to study the site WWW Utah Transparency. The site gives the reader the amounts every employee's compensation is costing us … the tax payer. Like many people that I have discussed these number with I believe these numbers clearly display a continuing pattern of excessive and lavish spending and compensation by council & PCMC. The numbers are the facts. Compare them to other communities … compare them over 3, 5, and 10 year periods. I believe it clearly shows runaway spending — A SHAKE DOWN OF A WEALTHY COMMUNITY. This is sad! I hate to think of my tax money being used this way.
I refuse to let council & PCMC scare me into believing either I vote YES or I end up with Mike Sweeney's debacle. It is like they are playing a game of Russian Roulette!
My suggestion on the Treasure proposals are as follows: #1 if council & PCMC want to keep up the ongoing excessive spending, sell the acreage and allow a similar project as the Colony. We could better live with a project of this design and the impacts are far less on the community. These properties will bring in capital from the sale and provide ongoing tax revenues which will sustain the spending presently being practiced. OR #2 we will lend you the $50-55 million bond money. But council and PCMC will get their spending under control and repay the bond back to us by making principle payments of at least $5 million per year. Thus retiring the bond quickly and restoring the funds to be used for more socially beneficial purposes … LIKE EDUCATION PERHAPS.
As a long time Old Town citizen and multiple property owner — as presently presented … my vote is NO.
Kneeling for flag is a sign of humility
There are times when my aging body reminds me how the years are flying by. Last night I had to lean on the bed as one knee reached the floor and then the other as I gingerly knelt to say my prayers. Then it was a struggle to get to my feet again. There are times when I skip the kneeling part. Have you ever crawled in bed and said your prayers? I don't know about you but that puts me right to sleep. I really think that God will listen to me more when I am fully awake and demonstrating reverence and humility through kneeling. So, when I have something real important to discuss or ask Him I always kneel.
There has been a lot of discussion lately about the act of kneeling. The dictionary describes kneeling as an act of reverence and submission. Webster says, "The act itself communicates a message of humility." In everything I have read or been taught, I have never heard of kneeling being used to signify defiance or disrespect.
It confuses and saddens me when I see the hate and animosity directed to the NFL players who choose to kneel when honoring the flag and our nation. These strong men are showing humility and reverence to the flag. They are also kneeling to the fans in the stands and the fans viewing at home. They must have something real important to discuss or ask of us as fellow citizens of this land of liberty. Maybe we should try to hear what that is.
I have decided that when someone kneels before me and our flag I am going to try to listen for the true message and feel the humility and honor being demonstrated. Will you join me?
Salt Lake City
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