Letters, April 10-13: Don’t underestimate the wildfire danger in Park City
Don’t underestimate fire danger
Now that the ski season is about over, it is time for all Summit County residents to seriously consider wildfire mitigation around their homes and neighborhoods. The below-normal snowpack and increasing temperatures due to climate change is a recipe for wildfire disaster.
In my neighborhood, the American Flag HOA obtained professional advice from Wildfire Risk Assessment in order to assess wildfire potential. The assessment helped us identify the risks and remove dead trees and scrub brush on our properties. Park City also offers similar advice through its fire department.
Our subdivision is adjacent to lower Royal Street and lies just above Deer Valley Drive. Those areas, owned by Park City and Deer Valley, contain an inordinate amount of fire fuel, which is not being reduced by either entity.
Several months ago, Park City Council agreed to permit the subdivision of the Huntsman Estate located on the west side of Royal Street. That property is adjacent to American Flag and the lower mine road. The acreage contains a huge amount of dead trees, both standing and lying on the ground. The area is an incendiary depot for wildfire fuel and needs to be cleaned up before building permits are issued.
The tracts of land which I have mentioned all have catastrophic potential. Park City, Deer Valley and the Huntsman development must develop and commit to a wildfire reduction plan. The danger is just too great. History buffs will tell you that Park City suffered many devastating fires fanned by canyon winds. It could happen again if we do not reduce wildfire fuel.
A drain on taxpayers
In response to Dianne Walker’s letter regarding the arts and cultural district not footing the bill for their own project: All too often the city and its politics and elected officials don’t have the wherewithal or the gumption to hold these entities accountable for the cost.
Instead the city continually takes the easy out by placing the burden on the taxpayers, and until the taxpayers start putting their foot down against this nonsense, the city and county will continue raising our taxes. Those behind the project are no different than a politician in office. They preach one thing, but then don’t back it up, change their tune midstream, and then makes excuses as to why the funds accrued in the sale can’t be spent on their own business. It’s a classic case of hiding behind the banner of “nonprofit,” while in fact profiting from the local taxpayers. The only thing the arts and cultural district will be is a drain to taxpayers. I for one can think of far better things to spend my dollars on than this ridiculous endeavor.
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Guest opinion: Our community escaped the Parleys Canyon Fire unscathed. Let’s be prepared for the next disaster.
“We urge (the Summit County Council and county manager) to use your offices to create emergency preparations against forest fires in our community — especially those originating from the freeway,” writes Max Greenhalgh.