Letters to the Editor,Aug. 16-18, 2017
Submissions from Park Record readers
Swaner sets the record straight on novel
In response to the article: “Park City author takes on big development and corruption in ‘Heatwave’ – Satirical murder-mystery out now”
Let me start by saying I haven’t yet read “Heatwave” by Zacharia Matheson, but I am excited to read a story based around my little nonprofit in Park City! In the story, a woman is murdered trying to save Swaner Preserve from development. Like any good piece of fiction, this story has some foundation in reality. Maybe I am a fanatic for the environment and Swaner’s incredible supporters, but the reality I see is that one or two of our volunteers, members, board members, and Sandhill Society supporters might be willing to put their life on the line to save Swaner Preserve. In Utah, the second most arid state in the country, only 1% of our land mass is comprised of wetlands and over 80% of wildlife depend on them, proving that this little gem is worth saving.
Mr. Matheson wrote this story because he heard a rumor that the Preserve was facing real-life threats of development. Our staff have also heard these rumors, and (don’t worry!) they are false. The Preserve permanently protects nearly 1,200 acres of critical wetlands, streams, wildlife habitat, and nearly ten miles of public trails. This land is protected through many conservation easements, which are voluntary legal agreements that permanently limit use and require conservation work on the land. Several acres of the Swaner Preserve are open for development along Highland Drive, and one day we hope to create an education building to house our rapidly expanding youth education programming, which are currently overflowing from the EcoCenter. Until then, you’ll see only conservation work on Swaner Preserve.
However, if you were alarmed about the future of this land, let me encourage you to get involved. We are constantly battling everything from thistle to climate change and water quality issues due to our growing population. It costs Swaner almost $140,000 a year to maintain a healthy ecosystem. Which is why we are accepting donations for a Conservation Endowment that will eventually cover the cost of our annual conservation work, allowing us to focus on funding our many other programs. Though no one will be murdered to save the Preserve, this land is here forever, and its health is ours to maintain. You can help steward it forever by donating at the following link: goo.gl/6TihuA.
Mr. Matheson, thanks for including us in your murder mystery!
Peregrine Bosler, Development Director
Swaner Preserve and EcoCenter
P.S. While our work is focused on preserving a healthy environment, and inspiring future generations of environmental stewards, Swaner staff members also strongly support affordable housing efforts.
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New transit routes are causing delays
We use the bus from Kimball Junction to most destinations in the Park City area because we live in Kimball Junction and the buses are wonderful. Or they used to be.
The new transit patterns have added 15 minutes to every trip in. If we walk to the transit center, it takes 15 minutes to get to the transit center. Most riders I’ve seen, cross the highway and do not make use of the pedestrian underpass. Of course, you have to cross back and forth across the roads to be on a sidewalk to get to and from the underpass and it’s on the far side of all the shopping and restaurants.
If we take the Pink bus, it meanders through neighborhoods and adds 15 mins to our trip. At the times we ride the bus, there have been no riders getting on/off in that area.
The Kimball Junction vans are hard to see on the road because of all the parking in the area. The drivers are looking at the traffic and not for people to flag them down. So if you are not in the right place at the exact right moment, you miss it. They are on a 15 minute cycle so that doesn’t speed up the trip into Park City either.
I think the White Electric buses should be on a “every 15” minute schedule and come through the bus stops in Kimball Junction (or at least one of the bus stops) so we can get in quickly and safely.
We will continue to use the buses but a few adjustments would be most appreciated.
Donna Di Fiore
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Rocky Mountain Power takes wrong tack on solar
I am dismayed to learn of Rocky Mountain Power’s attempt to increase the net metering rate for owners of roof top solar panels. These proposed changes will serve to discourage solar panel installations at a time when everyone should be concerned about conserving energy, global warming and climate change. The changes to the net metering rate would also be devastating to solar energy industries which provide many jobs to the local community.
The Public Service Commission and local government should be encouraging roof top solar and requiring RMP to decrease the net metering fee. Roof top solar installations use the sun’s energy which is already blocked from reaching the ground due to the footprint of the building on which it is installed and is much preferred to solar fields erected by the utility providers which kill the oxygen producing vegetation they cover.
Please consider your responsibility to your constituents, the community and to Mother Earth. Do not allow the proposed increase in the net metering rate and work to roll back the current fees.
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Recycle Utah’s 100 Mile Meal a success
Recycle Utah would like to thank everyone who attended and supported our 2nd Annual 100 Mile Meal, held on Aug. 12, in Oakley. Nearly 160 people helped to raise over $25,000 in support of Recycle Utah’s recycling services, as well as our environmental education and advocacy programs.
We would especially like to thank Gallery MAR for sponsoring the event, Vail Resorts EpicPromise and the Park City Mountain culinary team for preparing the meal, and all of the local farmers and producers who donated ingredients. We would also like to thank Le Bus, Diamond Rental, and Park City Hospital for helping make the event possible with their contributions, as well as our board members and volunteers for their continual support.
We are so grateful for the overwhelming support of the Park City and Summit County community.