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Green River in need of new fire station/public safety building

By PATSY STODDARD
Editor

Green River representatives attended the December commission meeting to discuss the possibility of partnering with the county for the construction of an emergency services building in Green River. Green River is in need of a new ambulance garage, fire station, training facility and sheriff's office/justice court facility. Conae Black, city recorder, Karen Smith, emergency services director and Gary Riches, city council member and fire department member as well as a highway patrolman, and Jonathon Johansen from Johansen and Tuttle Engineering came to the meeting to discuss the building.

Black said it would be beneficial to pool resources to build a facility that would be a benefit to both the city and the county. Black presented some drawings to the commission of possible building configurations. She said Green River has been the site for three large FEMA trainings in regards to the proposed nuclear power plant. She sees the need for a training room in the new building which can be used for meetings and large trainings. Green River has a site in mind which the city already owns along Main Street, the site of a former gas station. There is a large amount of land there. There is some contaminated soil on the site which could be overlaid with asphalt for a parking area and the building could be placed toward the rear of the property.

Black said there has been one soil evaluation completed at the site already. Johansen said there is 10,000-12,000 yards of petroleum contaminated soil which would have to be dealt with by removal or other measures.

The county has the replacement of the justice court building in Green River on its 2012 CIB project list. Black said they estimate the project to be $2 million and the county would be asked to contribute 25 percent.

Commissioner Jeff Horrocks wondered who would own the building. Black said that's one of the things which would need to be negotiated. Black said their building is also on the CIB request list, but they don't have an application ready yet. Black reported they have also talked to the Utah Highway Patrol and they would be interested in leasing a portion of the new building also. Black said they want to apply in February to the CIB for grant/loan for the building. Johansen said preliminary estimates on the cost of the building would be between $110-$170 a square foot.

Commissioner Horrocks said they would discuss the request with their legal counsel and get back to them.

The commission approved the meeting schedule for 2012 and the holiday schedule for 2012.

The commission approved a modification for the agreement between the Emery County Sheriff's Office and the United States Forest Service for law enforcement services on forest service land. Sheriff Greg Funk said with the agreement this year, they will be allowed to carry over funds and the amount for services has increased, although Sheriff Funk said they would like more funds for these services.

Commissioner Laurie Pitchforth said the vacancy on the Emery County Care and Rehab board was applied for by Carol Ware of Orangeville. The commission approved her appointment to fill the term left by Tom Humphrey when he passed away. Her term will expire in 2015.

Under the citizen concerns category, Brenda Tuttle, clerk/auditor presented two ambulance accounts that needed attention. The commission agreed the first account which had been turned over to collections will be settled for $1,000 for a man from Korea. The second account will be settled for 20 percent of the bill, due to a hardship claim.

The items will be ratified at the next commission meeting.

Tina Carter from the Emery County Travel Bureau said they are working on a grant from the scenic byways program to help with a trail from Huntington Lake into town. This will be a non-motorized trail for biking, walking, etc. Carter said they will put in the request now, but it won't be approved until next year. She asked for a letter of support for the project from the commission. The path would be from Huntington Lake to near the Huntington ball complex.

Doug Taylor, requested reimbursement for gravel he purchased to repair the berm in his yard which saves him from being flooded. A county road grader damaged the berm unintentionally while blading snow.

Commissioner Horrocks said they will meet with their legal counsel and work something out to resolve the matter. He will want a document that says the matter has been resolved.

In commission reports Commissioner Pitchforth reported the county will hold a senior citizen's Christmas party on Thursday. She said she spent some time at the food bank and usually they supply 30 Thanksgiving baskets and this year they had 150 people show up for Thanksgiving baskets and they ran out of turkeys. She requested the citizens of Emery County help donate to the food bank. "We encourage everyone to donate to help families through this holiday season," said Commissioner Pitchforth.

Commissioner Horrocks said this is a valid concern and with unemployment and hard economic times, there are those in our county who need extra help.

Commissioner James Nelson reported he attended a water summit in Provo. He also attended the Emery Water Conservancy District meeting. He said they use historical data and he's impressed with the way they handle the water in the county. He attended the Castle Country partners and heard information about state roads. There was also a tourist presentation on how Moab markets Moab. He said they have advertised heavily in Oregon and put out package deals and passes for activities in Moab and it was amazing to see how many of the Oregon people have taken advantage of the deals.

Commissioner Horrocks reported the people in Emery County are fighting to preserve a cabin on the Ferron side of the mountain. Cabins on this side of the mountain seem to be destroyed/burned and those on the other side of the mountain are being restored and rented to snowmobilers, skiers, etc. He said the county will check into this practice to see what can be done to preserve these historical cabins.

The next commission meeting will be on Dec. 20 at 4 p.m.

Doug Taylor donated $100 to the commission to use for the purchase of turkeys for the food bank.




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