Ferron City council discusses Peach Days
|Councilman Gordon Bennett will resign from the Ferron City council after the next meeting. Increased job responsibilities at the UHP is one of the reasons for the resignation.|
Peach Days activities will take place this week in Ferron. The Ferron City council has been busy putting the finishing touches on the celebration. At their recent city council meeting they finalized plans for the pigs for the greased pig race. They will be getting the pigs from Dennis Worwood. The Baptist church members will be helping with the kids games and a sawdust money hunt will also take place. The breakfast will be held in the church park on Saturday morning and Councilperson Melinda MECCAriello reminded the council of the need for a large dumpster for garbage to accommodate the breakfast crowd. The ATV jamboree attendees will also be attending the Friday night dinner. This includes 85 additional people who are registered for the jamboree. Rod Moore will entertain at the dinner on Friday night. The council also suggested that next year they have a concert in the park series. A new sound system will be arriving soon which should help with those types of musical activities.
Randy Nielson, from the fire department reported they had received a grant from homeland security for the purchase of a chain saw. The saw will include a gauge which stops before trusses are cut in dealing with a fire. He also said the new truck will be here sometime in September. This new truck will replace the gallon mini. They will install the foam in the new truck. The fireworks will be here and ready for Friday night at Millsite Reservoir at dusk.
Mayor Gil Bowden said he has been in contact with the fire department requesting their help with the Peach Days celebration. Nielson also said they have been working on the landscaping around the new fire station. The council discussed programs available which will help furnish trees for the new fire station and the council will look into obtaining these trees.
The council discussed the fee waiver request for the use of the arena. The 4-H requested a waiver in light of the work they perform to improve the arena. This year they have installed a fence. Councilman Gordon Bennett said this is a fair exchange but the council needs documentation on file of what services the 4-H performs each year.
The council has become aware that some Ferron residents have been watering in the daytime hours. Ferron has an ordinance which states no watering on Wednesday and Sunday.
It was mentioned that people on the bench have no water pressure at times and maybe next year they will have to split up the watering days on a north/south split.
Another option discussed was the connecting of a new eight inch line to the system from the new irrigation system.
The council reminds residents to conserve water and obey the watering ordinance which states no watering on Wednesday and Sunday.
No watering during the hours of 10 a.m.- 6 p.m.
The council heard a proposal to begin the process of the annexation of some property into the city limits. The council agreed to advertise, and send letters to those involved and begin the process of annexation.
The council agreed to begin the process for an increase in the franchise tax which will result in an increased revenue of approximately $17,000 each year. A public hearing will need to be held on the increase of the franchise tax.
The Mayor discussed the places where the city has double coverage of liability insurance. The city covers an item like the water tanks which are already covered by insurance from the special service district. Overall duplications in costs was estimated between $2,200 and $2,700 per year. The council will look into avoiding these costs.
Ferron City is in need of temporary office help to fill in as needed. Michelle Christensen and Valarie Winn were hired to help fill this need. They will also help fill in at crossing guard as needed.
The council approved Mayor Bowden as the voting representative to the Utah League of Cities and Towns business session.
The council looked at city property values. Residential property in Ferron is valued more highly than commercial property. The mayor has done some research concerning lots in the city and the prices they have sold for in the last few years. It was agreed that the city use .67 cents per square foot as the reference point and to give a break for improvements which could bring it down to .59 cents per square foot.
Ferron City has been discussing the charging of impact fees in lieu of water shares for new city water connections. This has been discussed because water shares are difficult to find and purchase. The council discussed the matter but could come to no conclusion and they will check into the matter further. The city has no guarantee that the 300 shares they lease from the irrigation company will always be there, so it's hard to add additional dwellings to the line without a guarantee of a water share. Mayor Bowden mentioned that a state survey is being conducted and will soon come to Emery and Carbon counties. The survey is making sure water users are not using more than their allotments.
Bennett commented that with the pressurized irrigation system, the area is using 20 percent less water than before and watered until Nov. 1 last year. Also 5,000 more acres can be watered with the new sprinkling system than before.
Mayor Bowden said they will discuss what the options are with a water attorney. There are people waiting to build who have no water shares. Councilperson Jo Sansevero said we are advocating growth, but yet people cannot build because they don't have water shares and the situation needs to be evaluated to allow growth without jeopardizing the city and its water.
Mayor Bowden said that in conversations he was told that Millsite was never designed to spill and it was underdesigned. The state engineer reminds everyone that any water belongs to the state. The Mayor said it boils down to hitting the smaller cities to trim water usage to cater to the bigger cities taking the water. The Mayor has a meeting scheduled to become better educated on the water matters for the city.
Ferron City just finished being audited and received all good marks. No letters and no black marks were issued. The auditors will present the audit to the council at a later date. They said they were very impressed with the fiscal state of Ferron and complemented those involved.
MECCAriello said the bids for sidewalk and curb and gutter will be opened on Sept. 7 at 10 a.m.
Councilman Bennett announced that he only has one more meeting and he will be resigning from the council. He listed job, family and church obligations as increasing in demand and he will not be able to fulfill the remainder of his term. This vacated position will be filled by the council who will advertise the vacancy as soon as it becomes effective.
Sansevero said they are being encouraged to work on the Ferron master plan. In the meeting she went to Huntington, Cleveland and Elmo are being listed as industrial, and Castle Dale as government, retail and sports and Ferron as recreation with the mountains and desert. "Should our master plan reflect promoting recreation. Should we improve the park facilities, encourage family reunions, motel and restaurant accommodations?" asked Sansevero.
It was agreed that a plan is needed and that Ferron does have good potential for developments around recreation. Sanseveros has a copy of the Moab master plan and they can look at it for ideas. Bennett also mentioned that agriculture should be part of the plan as well because Ferron farmers are working on their hay and selling it to a man who compresses it for sale overseas. There are several farmers involved with selling the hay to the man in Enterprise.
The next Ferron City council meeting will be held on Sept. 22 at 7 p.m.