At the recent Ferron City Council meeting, Mayor Gil Bowden and the council considered the issue of revoking the business license of a business owner. Mike Hurdsman of C&S Wrecking and Salvage was asked to explain and justify recent actions on his part.
Hurdsman stated that following the purchase of a piece of State Street property, he began removing an old house and preparing the ground for a state impound lot. He had several problems with adjoining property owners along with machinery breakdowns. "The state impound lot inspector came to inspect my lot on June 5 and it is up to the specifications laid out by the state," said Hurdsman.
Council person Jo Sansevero questioned Hurdsman about the installation of the sign on the property. "You did not get a building permit to do that work," she said. Hurdsman responded that he was not aware that he needed a building permit to install a sign.
In regards to the state impound lot, some of the cars are outside of the fence. Hurdsman stated that while the yard is under construction, some of the cars will be outside the lot. He also stated that many of these cars have been titled to him due to circumstances surrounding the impound or repair situation. Some of these cars have been towed and the owners cannot pay the fee, so they sign them over to him. The same situation arises when someone has repairs done on a vehicle and cannot pay the charges.
"These cars are not junk, they are valuable. I'm storing them until something else can be done with them. They are not abandoned vehicles, my intentions are to repair those that are repairable, and salvage parts from those that are not. Then I can get rid of the non-usable parts. I am not operating a junk yard as some of you think. I am running a state impound lot. I am licensed by the state and have passed my inspections," said Hurdsman.
Councilman Randy Fox said, "This issue has been discussed and discussed. We cannot agree on the definition of a junk yard. We do not want a junk yard on our main street. It is beginning to look like we will have to go before a judge with this matter to get it settled."
Councilman Rod Toomer advised, "We need to be careful with this matter. Some of the charges in the letter sent to Mr. Hurdsman are just not right. We need to separate the issues here and not consider them all together."
Hurdsman added, "My personal property rights are important too. I don't care what the people on the other side of my fences do, why should what I do matter to them? I maintain that these cars are not junk. They are repairable and valuable."
"This town does not want a wrecking yard," stated Mayor Bowden. "It is our opinion that impound means temporary. We are aware that this process has had setbacks, but it is our job to enforce the ordinances of Ferron City. We want to resolve this definition problem and more research needs to be done into the property lines."
Council person Sansevero moved to revoke the business license of C&S Wrecking and Salvage. Following a roll call vote, two council persons voted in favor, and two voted against. This action left Mayor Bowden to be the tie breaking vote. "I am going to do some investigation and consultation with the city's attorney," said Mayor Bowden. This issue was tabled until the next Ferron City Council meeting.
In youth council business, Pauline Jensen introduced the new co-mayor of the youth council, Megan Brown. Jensen said that with the amount of projects facing the youth council, Brown will help alleviate some of the pressure. The youth group is in charge of the lamb fry for the Castle Valley Pageant. "This is a huge job, and the money raised will help pay for our summit in September. The youth group is planning to help with Peach Days and the Christmas party. They are also looking at doing something for Halloween," said Jensen.
Brock Johansen and Jared Anderson of Emery Telcom informed the council of the benefits of keeping Emery Telcom as their internet supplier. "Ferron is the first government entity to cancel their service with us. This is a concern and I want you to be fully informed about the decision," said Johansen.
Anderson handed the council an information sheet comparing Emery Telcom's service with the wireless service now available in Ferron. The points on the fact sheet were that DSL from Emery Telcom is a dedicated line, it is a guaranteed connection, and is very secure. With the wireless services, the more people who sign on, the slower the service due to the amount of users sharing a band. Also, with DSL, at peak usage times, there is no congestion for the users. "We are concerned that you will be paying more for lesser services," added Anderson.
Anderson also pointed out how much Emery Telcom does for the communities. "We sponsor ball kids and many things in the schools. We are focused on the community and want to make sure you understand the differences between wireless and cable connection. Thank you," concluded Anderson.
Mayor Bowden announced that he is going to meet with the Ferron Canal Company and come to an agreement concerning who will reclaim the ditches. "We need to determine which are flood control ditches and which are actually abandoned," he stated.
As a final item of business, Mayor Bowden said of Brenda Bingham, "I want to thank Brenda for her 17 years of service to this city. She is leaving us and moving to Boise, Idaho. She has done a good job and she will be missed, not only by Ferron City, but by her state level positions."
Bingham then swore in Adele Justice and Tammy Auberger into the positions of city recorder and city treasurer.
The next Ferron City Council meeting will be July 13 at 7 p.m. in city hall.