The Emery County Commissioners held a public hearing to receive input on the issuance of taxable general obligation bonds. The Castle Valley Special Service District has requested the bonds for capital improvement projects. In 2009 a bond was approved to allow the district $12.5 million general obligation bond money for use by the district during a 10 year period. The district has used $2 million so far and has been able to receive $1.5 million in grant money for district projects.
The CVSSD works with each community to outline projects for that specific community. The district has been able to borrow the money for zero interest.
Alex Buxton from Zions Bank works with the CVSSD on the bonds. He said the bonds will close on March 20. Through the years they have been seeing fewer grants from the CIB and more interest bearing loans, so the CVSSD is fortunate to receive grant money.
Mark Cram from Siemens Industry presented to the commission on performance contracting and why it might be of value to the county. The company does a free evaluation of all county buildings or requested buildings and a report is generated on areas where savings might be realized in heating and air conditioning and other projects. Cram said there are savings opportunities in all buildings. The study identifies specific projects that can be completed and they would confer with the county and prioritize each project. If the county chooses to do any project, local contractors can be used and Siemens Industry is also a contractor. The commissioners decided to table any decisions on having the evaluations done and will study the proposal more thoroughly.
A conditional use permit was issued for Pitchfork Meats. They are located on Highway 155 north of Cleveland.
Justin Hart from the Division of Wildlife Resources spoke about the restoration of the Colorado cutthroat project in Ferron Canyon. There are 45 miles of stream. Ferron Reservoir was treated last fall and will be treated again this spring to kill all non-native fish in the reservoir. The reservoir will be stocked with sterile trout this spring and plans are the fishery will be ready by July 4. Hart asked for the county's support for the project.
Hart said this project will help prevent the Colorado cutthroat trout from being listed on the endangered species list and keeps the fish under state control.
Commissioner James Nelson said this is a big issue and if the US Fish and Wildlife comes into an area, they can overtake an area.
Hart said the fishery will not be Colorado cutthroat alone, but plans are for a diverse fishery. "We will see some improvements in the fishing up there," said Hart.
Bill Bates, southeastern Utah regional supervisor for the DWR said it is their goal to avoid any federal listing for these fish.
Ray Petersen, public lands director said the water users and grazers are not affected by this restoration project, but should the Colorado cutthroat become listed then they would be affected by it, and everything could come to halt.
The DWR also brought a payment in lieu of taxes check to the county for $2,700 for land they manage within the county, but do not pay taxes on. The commission will write a formal letter of support for the DWR for the Colorado cutthroat restoration project in Ferron Canyon.
Connie Nelson and Ron Barney were appointed to the Emery County Care and Rehabilitation Board. Randy Jensen was appointed to the career service board. Norma Funk was appointed to the district council on aging. Commissioner Nelson was approved as the representative to the Emery County Travel Bureau. Al Shakespaere volunteered to serve on the aging board.
The commission set upfront fees for building permits and valuation schedules. The fee will be $150 for residential and $300 for commercial. This upfront fee for plan review will be subtracted from the building permit fee.
The commission approved a $350 donation to the Emery County Community Theatre for assistance in producing their play Mame which will be in March.
The commission approved a service agreement for collection services with NCS Plus, a debt collection agency that presented their proposal at a previous commission meeting.
The weed and mosquito board bylaws were approved.
A presentation was given on listing surplus county property on an online auction service. This creates more exposure for the surplus property and greater revenues collected. It also allows the county to list an item when it becomes available and it doesn't have to be stored and housed until a large enough supply of surplus items become available so an auction can be held. Only government entities can list on this site, but anyone can make purchases. The site generates more money than a local sale. Typically an item is on the auction for 14 days, you can post pictures of the item too. There isn't a cost to the county and the buyers absorb the cost of the site. It is nationwide advertising and the site is publicsurplus.com. The estimated increase in revenues is 16-32 percent more than a regular auction. Anything and everything can be listed. Appointments can also be made for viewing if someone wants to view an item before they bid on it. The buyers pay the online auction and the auction company will direct deposit money into the county's account on a schedule determined by the county and the company. This also keeps auction items in better repair and they don't sit and deteriorate over time waiting for an auction. The county will take the matter into consideration and make a decision at the next commission meeting.
The commissioners reported on their recent activities. Commissioner Laurie Pitchforth said she accompanied the county seniors to the senior day at the legislature where our representatives Christine Watkins and Sen. David Hinkins met with and spoke to the county seniors. They also had lunch with them. She said they made it a very special day for our local seniors. She attended tourism day on the hill. She attended the fair convention where groups and entertainment gather and you can book them for the county fair. The 2012 fair theme is Celebrating the Past, Imagine the future.
Spring sports are on-line now for registration at the county's website, baseball, soccer, swim and softball. A dodgeball tournament is scheduled for March 24 at the recreation building.
Commissioner Nelson said there is a bill at the legislature to help counties with their public land use bills. It will help the bills to get approval at the state level before the bill moves onto Washington. The shooting range land has gained final approval. The NRCS is granting $1.5 million for Green River for work on the diversion dam. Nelson said there is a real need for this project and it will be really beneficial to the county.
Commissioner Jeff Horrocks said Rep. Noel is still making adjustments to the bill regarding state approval for county land use bills. They are making changes to the language and that bill hadn't been submitted yet.
Commissioner Horrocks said he attended a Rocky Mountain Power presentation and they are interested in wind/geothermal and solar energy. They do support nuclear power.
At the fire meeting they discussed the need for a new ladder truck. Funding is needed and the ladder truck can run between $750,000 to $1 million. They are looking at various funding options including homeland security,emergency services money. They are also looking at replacing other trucks that have become outdated. This year the fire district will also upgrade the turn-out gear and this is a $58,000 expenditure. April 2-May 6 will be the burn dates, with burning starting in Green River two weeks earlier. The emergency preparedness fair will be in Carbon County this year at the events center on April 28.
The Emery County Road District #1 will be looking to replace the bridge in Ferron Canyon that is too small for all the run-off that comes down and they are looking for funding for this project and will apply to the CIB as well as look at other funding sources.