|Millsite Golf Course in Ferron Canyon.|
The golf course was discussed at the recent Ferron City council meeting. Mayor Gil Bowden informed the council of several items in the contract with the golf course manager that are of concern. He said that he has reviewed the contract and informed the golf course manager that some changes would be forthcoming. He also stated that he has done extensive investigation with five other courses in the state and made some comparisons. Mayor Bowden stated the problems in the past have been of concern to both sides and no one is at fault, that the fault lies with the contract itself.
Mayor Bowden also noted that some of the discrepancy in the finances of the golf course are due to the fact that many, up to 30 percent, of the credit card charges were not processed through the personal banking institutions of the people using the charge cards. This problem occurs more than banking institutions would like to admit, but it does happen and businesses should be on alert.
Mayor Bowden explained that he has spoken with Jamie Luce and she will set up an accounting system for the golf course. This will eliminate the problems that have arisen in the past with the auditing process. An advisory council will also be set up to oversee the promotion and operation of the golf course.
A public hearing was also held during the meeting. The hearing was to gather comments from residents concerning the Community Development Block Grants that are awarded to cities. These grants are for improvements to be made in rural cities that will benefit the entire community.
Ferron's city council was asking for comments from its residents about what they felt was the most pressing public issue that could benefit from the grants. Mayor Bowden explained the process of applying for grants. "The CDBGs purpose is to consider projects for the 2005 season. City wide surveys are sent out to determine Ferron's eligibility for the public works grant money. Ferron qualified for a two year program. The number of low and moderate income families in Ferron determines eligibility, although the amount of money that Ferron might get is not proportionate to that number," he said. Mayor Bowden then asked public comment concerning the needs of the city.
A concerned citizen asked if the council had any suggestions for projects. Councilperson Jo Sansevero read a list, including, lighting at Mayor's Park, electrical work at Mayor's Park, electrical work at the lower park, landscaping at the fire station, tables and benches for Mayor's Park and upgrades to the lower park. "These are items we have discussed as a council in the past that are needs of the city," said Sansevero.
A consensus from the citizens was to make the improvements to Mayor's Park because the entire town would benefit from those projects. It was determined that the playground is in this park and the children of Ferron would be safer if the improvements are made. The upgrades to be made should the grant be awarded to Ferron City is lighting improvements in and around Mayor's Park and pavilion; upgrade and repair of the electrical wiring in and around Mayor's Park; two additional picnic tables with benches to be installed on cement pads, not under the pavilion; and two benches to be installed in the park.
Jason Bullock of Sunrise Engineering explained to the council how his building inspection company works. He stated that all building inspections are guaranteed within 24 hours of the request and plan reviews are completed in three-five days. He also stated that his firm has been working with several other cities in Emery County and references can be obtained from those cities.
Bullock said that his fees are collected from the price of the building permit. Each city charges for those are per their own codes and that city retains 30 percent of the price and Sunrise Engineering is paid 70 percent. Most of the cities in the state are at the 1997 codes, although many in Emery County are not.
Mayor Bowden requested Bullock to send comparison statements from comparable size and population cities as Ferron. Bullock will send the comparison.
The council then approved the proposal by Mike Reese to install new water pipe and water meters in Ferron Creek Village. Ferron City will be responsible to read and bill for the water used.
A bid from Don Conover for tires for the city's backhoe and tractor was accepted. Also, Royce Stilson Construction was awarded the bid to construct a concrete salt storage bin at the lower park. The concrete bin will also be used during the summer months for other things when there is not a need to store road salt.
Councilperson Sansevero requested input for the decision on the date for the Christmas lighting celebration in Mayor's Park. The council decided on Dec. 6 at 6 p.m. City employees will put up the lights on the power poles and the streets. Jamie Nielson stated that the fire department auxiliary would put up the decorations in the park.
Councilperson Melinda MECCAriello said she had met with Rob Clayton of the Utah Department of Transportation concerning the coal trucks traveling and parking on Ferron's State Street. MECCAriello stated that when the trucks are parked along State Street, the signs and flashing lights marking the school zone are not visible by vehicles traveling the road. Clayton said that UDOT would install an overhead flashing light similar to the one on Huntington's Main Street if Ferron meets several criteria.
Mecccariello stated that 150 feet from the intersection must be marked no parking with the curbs painted red. Discussion ensued concerning whether to limit the no parking zone during school hours or have strictly a no parking zone. UDOT will provide the paint and will also provide and install the no parking signs. The council approved to comply with the criteria set out by UDOT and designate that portion of State Street as a no parking zone. UDOT will install the overhead flashing lights when the other criteria are met.
Fire Chief Randy Nielson gave an extremely detailed presentation concerning the grant money that the fire department has received. One grant has come from the natural resources department of forest and state lands. The grant was for $7,904 and was a 50/50 grant. This means that the Ferron Fire Department had to match the funding.
Nielson presented an accounting of the volunteer hours the fire department has logged. The hours were more than enough to match the in-kind grant.
Nielson also explained the accounting work that will be needed to provide records involved with an additional grant to purchase the fitness equipment that will be in the fire station.
The grant for this equipment requires specific follow-up information and strict adherence to fitness programs.
Mayor Bowden and Councilman Gordon Bennett commended Nielson for the detailed report.
The next Ferron City Council meeting will be held Nov. 18 at 7 p.m.