County readies for opening of Buckhorn information center
Mike McCandless presented to the commission proposals received from four companies for information for the Buckhorn Informational Center kiosks. The proposals were accepted by the commission for review and a decision will be made in the next commission meeting regarding which company to use.
There is some money left in the budget from the Buckhorn project. McCandless and the Emery County Travel Bureau requested the leftover money be used to add a lecture area with a fire pit, benches and a flag pole on a concrete pad. The area can be used for scouts, OHV groups, families and anyone. The cost estimates were between $16,000-$23,000. Commissioner Nelson said the expansion can be taken care of with a change order to the original project without incurring any additional expenses. The commission agreed to move forward with the project providing no additional funds are used.
The commission approved the request to advertise for restroom cleaning services for the Buckhorn restroom. Currently Deputy Mike Jorgensen has been keeping the restroom clean as he patrols the desert. McCandless thanked Jorgensen for this service to the county.
The commission determined to start advertising for bids which will be due by April 3 and opened on April 10 in commission meeting.
Security cameras are in place at the new information center and the road department was also commended for the work they have done at the site. A grand opening is planned for the Buckhorn Information center sometime before Easter if all goes as planned. There will be a host at the facility on busy weekends and holidays. The county would welcome volunteers that would like to host at the location at other times as well. The building has been designed to be an unattended source of information because it has a large amount of information available to visitors. When a host is present they can sit at the roll down window and answer questions and hand out materials to visitors. The Emery County Commission opened bids for the remodeling and replacement of flooring in the 24 units owned by the Emery County Housing Authority. Bids came in from Arrowhead Construction for $133,358; Riverstone Construction-$160,500; Construction Solutions-$156,750; Metro Builders-$155,462; Stilson Construction-$148,144. This construction project is being funded through a community development block grant. Commissioner Jeff Horrocks said he would take the bids and compare them and if everything checks out the bid will be awarded to the lowest bidder.
Ross Hinkins, Tracy Behling, and Lee McElprang were re-appointed to the Emery Water Conservancy District board. Others applying for the positions included Diane Bott, Clyde Magnuson and Kent Petersen.
The commission approved the service agreement between Emery County and Honeywell Building Solutions for the Aquatic Center. Commissioner James Nelson said they have been the service provider since the pool opened. They also provide consulting service over the phone to avoid service calls.
Rod Player was appointed to the Trails committee.
The commission approved the agreement with Rocky Mountain Power for the re-location of power poles on the Miller Creek road. Road improvements will take place there this year.
The project lists for the CIB were approved. Projects must be on the lists to be considered for funding by the Community Impact Board. The commission approved the letter of understanding with Siemens Industry to begin assessments of the libraries in Emery County. They will determine places where improvements might be made for cost savings in heating and utility costs and other areas of consideration. The service doesn't cost the county anything for the evaluations.
A representative from Jones and DeMille Engineering requested an amendment to the agreement they had with the county for the engineering work at the Buckhorn Information site. The BLM made a lot of changes which resulted in extra work and changes for Jones and DeMille. The agreement was for $14,600 to cover engineering costs. The construction period was extended by BLM and there were delays in the project. Currently Jones and DeMille has $21,400 into the project for their costs alone without any profit on the project.
Commissioner Horrocks said the county will make it right with Jones and Demille, but he wishes they had come forward sooner so the added expenses could be sent to the BLM. Commissioner Nelson made a motion to approve the cost list from Jones and DeMille as long as it doesn't exceed the budget.
Bret Mills, from the sheriff's office communication department discussed the financial agreement with Larcan USA for communication equipment to be purchased and reimbursed by a grant under the Low Power TV and translator upgrade program. The county will need to send in all of the receipts and create a paper trail so the money can be reimbursed. The county will hold onto the equipment until it's been reimbursed which can take anywhere up to a year.
Sheriff Greg Funk complimented Mills on his work. Mills has secured $8 million in grants for the county for electronic equipment since 2004.
Under citizen concerns Randall Stilson thanked the county for the fine search and rescue program operating in the county. They had to come out and find him and responded in a timely manner.
In the commissioners reports Commissioner JR Nelson thanked the volunteer firemen for all the time they put in. The fire district is considering the options available for the purchase of a ladder or a bucket truck. They are talking to the power plants to see what would work best for them. Commissioner Nelson said he is working with the Sevier County Commission on the cattle underpass being considered for the Quitchupah road. The cattlemen still need to be able to trail their cattle to the range in an effective manner. He said he also attended a rock art field trip and is always amazed at the quality rock art in Emery County. He said he's not satisfied with the passing of HB 176 which deals with the way the lands bills will be handled by the state in the future. Ray Petersen, public lands director will need to write a report explaining why the county is doing what it is doing in regards to the Emery County Public Lands Use bill.
Commissioner Horrocks said yes, it has been frustrating but the county will continue trying to get the lands use bill out of the state legislature and onto Washington DC.
Commissioner Laurie Pitchforth reported the community theatre was presenting Mame. Festive Friday is being conducted by the Extension Service. The road department helped with the demolition of the old forest service house on Castle Dale Main Street. The property has been purchased by Castle Dale City and will expand the fairgrounds. Possibly a volleyball court and horse shoe pits will be constructed there along with picnic tables.
Commissioner Horrocks said he spent a week in St. George attending the water users conference. He thanked the local water districts for all the work and training they do for the county.
In the local building authority meeting the commission will start advertising for bids for the remodel of the Huntington Senior Citizen building. The site showing will be on April 2 and bid opening on April 10 at commission meeting. There are three different plans for the remodel.
Commissioner Pitchforth will meet with Conae Black from Green River City to discuss partnering with Green River on the construction of a new fire station and public safety complex for Green River. Recently the CIB has been more favorable to county/city partnerships with projects. If the building goes forth it will share a common wall and all utilities will be billed separately to the two entities.