Letters: With climate change on the forefront, why is Sundance hosting a bonfire?
A boneheaded bonfire
Sundance has decided to have a bonfire during this year’s festival as a way to make the Park City community feel as though they are actually part of the festival. Because the amount of traffic and idling cars isn’t causing enough pollution in our town? In 2015, Summit County Council banned wood-burning appliances from any new construction or remodeling because of the pollution that burning wood creates. The Park Record, at that time, reported that the air quality in the Snyderville Basin was “deteriorating not to alarming levels but bad enough to worry health officials,” and that in the Basin, “burning wood causes more pollution than cars and trucks.” Phil Bondurant, the county’s environmental health director until 2019, stated the “chief culprit” that causes so much pollution “is particulate pollution produced by burning wood,” and that, “It’s the smallest pollutant and causes the most severe health and environmental threats.” In 2018, Jonny Vasic, executive director for Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment, stated, “Wood smoke is one of the most toxic types of pollution the average person ever inhales, and a major source of overall pollution in Utah.” At one time, Robert Redford was an environmental activist, and now the institution that he created is planning events that purposefully increase the amount of pollution in our beautiful town. And Park City Council apparently supports this. In a time where climate change is on the forefront and preserving air quality is more important than ever, why is an event such as this even being considered? This is what Sundance came up with to “give back” to the community? Instead of planning an event that causes more pollution, why doesn’t Sundance create an event that decreases pollution and/or brings awareness to climate change?
White’s lights are a delight
Can you see Bill White’s lights from space? If not, I hope he adds more. I enjoy seeing them. And if you want to see more, drive up Meadows Drive to the corner of Mountain Top.
Continue to speak up
Congratulations fellow Summit County residents. We did it! Across this county and across this state, people from all political views; urban, suburban and rural; old and young; rich, poor and everywhere in between united to send a message about tax reform to our state Legislature and governor. You were heard!
Thank you for taking time out of your busy lives to speak up and sign the petition. Thank you to all of the volunteers who spent so much time and energy to make the petitions available for signing. Thank you to The Market at Park City, Fresh Market, Harmons and Associated Foods stores for generously opening your doors to volunteers so that people looking to sign could find a witness. It was amazing to be part of such a united, positive effort, to meet so many of you and hear your stories.
The governor, House speaker, and Senate president announced that they will repeal the tax reform bill in this first week of the legislative session. They have heard that we didn’t like it, yet they still don’t understand why. I have heard many reasons as I spoke to hundreds of you in the past few weeks. It’s time now for them to hear all of your reasons.
Please contact your representative and senator to explain why you signed for the referendum. Was it because of the increase in the food tax? The cuts to the education budget? The taxes on certain services? The increase in fuel tax? The process of calling a special session in the holiday season when no one was watching? Some combination of the above or something else? Tell them you live in their district — they prioritize messages from their constituents. To find your legislators’ contact information, go to le.utah.gov, click on My Legislators and enter your address.
Also, keep watching the upcoming session. There are rumors swirling about how some of these taxes may be reintroduced after the repeal. Get ahead of that by contacting your legislators now to tell them what you’d like to see them do and why. Stay focused on positive change, thank them for what they are doing well, and let them know you are watching for a demonstration that they have truly heard, understood and will respect the will and voice of the people.
Continue to speak up, you will continue to be heard!
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“[I]t looks like we’ll be stuck with a blighted building … on the gateway road into our otherwise scenic resort town,” writes Beth in a guest editorial. But, she argues, it doesn’t have to be that way.