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Front Page » April 21, 2009 » Scene » Emery County Republicans hold organizing convention
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Emery County Republicans hold organizing convention

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Chairman Bill Dellos opened the meeting with Ira Hatch giving an opening prayer and Phil Fauver leading the pledge of allegiance.

Karla Urie sang the National Anthem. Secretary Karen Dellos presented the minutes of the last meeting. Elaine Hatch gave a treasurers report. Bill Dellos gave a chairman's report on the state of the party. Bill said, "I am proud to be a Republican. The Republican Party is doing great and we expect to take back Congress in the next election."

Mark Tanner read the Emery County party platform. The delegates voted on a change to the party platform. The change made a stronger statement about the elected officials and local citizens being the ones to decide issues of wilderness designation, wild and scenic rivers designation, wilderness study areas, closing of roads etc., not Washington bureaucrats.

Commissioner Jeff Horrocks introduced Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert, Utah State Senator David Hinkins, and Rep. Kay McIff after praising each for the several ways they help Emery County.

Lt. Gov. Herbert reported that the State of Utah was financially better off than any other state in the nation because of sound Republican fiscal responsibility.

"We want you to know that we do care about rural Utah. We have Republican leadership throughout the state and what that has given us is the best managed state in America.

"We as a state are not doing nearly as bad as the rest of the country. We are recognized as the state that will most likely recover the quickest and the fastest from this recession of all the states in America. I am proud to be a Republican."

Herbert read a list of myths that are untrue about George W. Bush and his presidency. State Sen. David Hinkins said, "What an honor it is to be representing Emery County as your senator. Especially for all the support I received from Emery County, Carbon County and all of Southeastern Utah. Many of the senators and representatives have connections to Emery County. These connections with Emery County have been helpful, because I could count on them to help in caucus meetings and on the Senate floor.

"I was fortunate, with little experience in politics to be put on some good committees. I was put on the Appropriations Committee, the Commerce and Workforce Services Committee as CoChairman with Mike Morley of Price. Out of an $11 billion budget we were able to cut $1 billion without killing too many programs and services and without taking funds from the rainy day fund. We cut a lot of over head that we could live without. Like at our homes we have given up some of the cable TV options to ease our budget. We did not raise taxes, but did increase the automobile fee $20 to cover some of the shortfall. I also served on the Transportation and Utilities Committee.

"I was successful in getting a resolution passed to allow building a nuclear power plant in Utah. That resolution could possibly bring a $12 billion power plant to Emery County. The taxes on such a plant would be $156 million a year. This could bring in a very large increase in tax revenue to the county.

"Twenty percent of the power in the US is generated by nuclear power with 133 units at 65 locations throughout the country. I appreciate everyone of you for your support and encouragement," said Hinkins.

Rep. Kay McIff said, "It is a great privilege for me to represent Emery County in the State Legislature. The magic of the Republican label is, (referring to Ira Hatch's prayer), 'We pray that people will recognize us as good people worthy of trust.'" McIff complimented Lt. Gov. Herbert for his outreach all over the state, because he does show up here in Emery County often. He also complimented the Emery County Republican Party officers for being well organized.

"We are deserving of the reputation of being the best managed state in the nation. When we were wrestling with this budget and we had a billion dollar short fall, we ended up balancing that budget. At the same time we were wrestling with the budget, the California Legislature was wrestling with a $44 billion shortfall. We balanced our budget while California moved to make their shortfall $50 billion.

"We had some tight ropes to walk. We had to cut the budget but we did not want to cut so much that we became part of the problem instead of part of the solution.

"We have a higher education system that is one of the best in the nation and certainly the most efficient. We get the most bang for the buck in higher education and the public education system of any state in our nation. We ended up cutting higher education 9 percent,Arizona cut higher education 40 percent, Nevada 20 percent, and California cut about 18 percent.

"At a time when we are more competitive than ever in our history it is important that we do not shrink our economic engine which higher education is. So that we are less competitive.

"Right now I think we are the most attractive state in the Western United States, certainly in the intermountain area and in the coastal area. Who here wants to start a business in California, Arizona or Nevada. If I were starting a new business, I want to tell you that Utah would look mighty good to me.

"The good news is also the bad news and I am going to share both. We balanced the budget. We made significant cuts. But of that billion dollars we made do with, we relied on federal dollars to the tune of $561 million. Now that is significant and we reserved our rainy day fund $414 million plus another $100 million in education. We have got that to fall back on. We did not raise the tobacco tax. We are geared to do that. We are prepared to do that, it is easy to do and it would be popular to do. I do not know if that would be sufficient to come to grips with the budget this next year or in 2012.

"We are going to have significant challenges, because we will have a reduced ability to rely on outside money and a greater responsibility to self fund. I would rather meet that challenge with the Republican leadership in the Republican House and Senate which we have and with the people who are there who I know and trust, than any other legislature in the United States. We will meet the challenge and I am confident that our people will be supportive. We will tighten our belts when we have to.

"If we need to be a little more generous in order to keep our public education system solid or higher education system solid, I am satisfied that we will do what we have to do and we will not give up the competitive advantage that we have right now in the Western United States and pretty much across the United States. We are well positioned for the future.

"Bill asked me to mention and explain one piece of legislation. It has to do with the secret ballot in the workforce arena. There is a bill in Washington before Congress referred to as the Card Check Bill will authorize union invasion of a workforce, simply getting enough people to sign up. A majority sign up and then no vote.

"We adopted a joint resolution, the House and the Senate, even if you have a sign up of that nature of 50 percent plus 1, you still have to submit that to a secret vote. The great fear was that in the sign up process there was a lot of pressure, a lot of intimidation.

"The resolution provided not withstanding the sign up process it still must be submitted to people to vote secretly. That has been fundamental to our government from the outset. We treasure it highly. The resolution passed strongly in both the House and Senate.

"We did several things of significance like limiting how campaign contributions could be used. Public education took a hit but it was limited to 5.2 percent. It looked like it was going to be as much as 19 percent. Higher education took a 9 percent hit. That also was programmed at 19 percent. Public employees took a hit in the area of health insurance.

"I regret all of those things but on balance I think the legislature did a remarkably good job and I was proud to be associated with the Governor, the Lt. Governor, the Senators and Legislature of both houses.

"Thanks for inviting me here. I welcome your cards, letters and email. Thanks for giving me the privilege of representing you. I will do my very best," said McIff.

Fauver introduced Ivan Dubois, State Republican Party Executive Director, Jim Bennett representing US Senator Bob Bennett, Jessica Fawson representing Attorney General Mark Shurtliff, who is running for the US Senate seat currently held by Sen. Bob Bennett.

Fauver also introduced the candidates for state party offices. State Party Chairman Stan Lockhart is not seeking a second term.

David Hansen and Tim Bridgewater are both running for the Utah Republican Party Chairman job and Mike Ridgeway is running for State Party Secretary.

Susan Austin conducted the registration of delegates and the election of party officers.

At this convention the local county Republican party officers were elected for a term of two years.

They are Chairman Bill Dellos, Vice Chairman Dixie Thompson, Karen Dellos, Secretary, Elaine Hatch Treasurer and Phil Fauver as County Representative.

After the results of the vote were announced the meeting adjourned.

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April 21, 2009
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