THE UNEXAMINED LIFE WON'T IMPROVE

SUPERGENTRIFICATION OF SUGAR HOUSE

SUGAR HOUSE COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING ON HOMELESS SITES JANUARY 4, 2017​​

THIS IS WHAT PUBLIC PARTICIPATION IS AND

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION CAN CHANGE QUESTIONABLE DECISIONS!

LIBERTY WELLS HOMELESS MEETING DEC 14

TRANSPORTATION/UTA/CYCLING

 ​COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETINGS
COMMUNITY COUNCILS IN SLC
Central City                chair@ccnutah.org                        1st Wed
Greater Avenues       davealderman@hotmail.com    1st Wed
Rose Park                    blakeperez@hotmail.com           1st Wed
Sugar House               amybarry@xmission.com           1st Wed
Yalecrest                     lkpershing@gmail.com                1st Wed

Ball Park                      ballparkcc@gmail.com                 1st Thurs 

Jordan Meadows       jimgoostrey@gmail.com              2nd Wed
Liberty Wells              lw.chair@lwccslc.org                    2nd Wed

East Central               ecchair@live.com                           2nd Thurs Qtrly, exec bd 4th Sat

Capitol Hill                 laura@metalogia.com                    3rd Wed 
Downtown                  christian.harrison@gmail.com   3rd Wed
East Bench                  ebcc.chair@gmail.com                  3rd Wed
Glendale                      sean@thecrosslands.net              3rd Wed
westpointe                 erin@nwlarchitects.com              3rd Wed

Poplar Grove              poplargrovecouncil@gmail.com 4th Wed
Wasatch Hollow        ohmikedodd@comcast.net          4th Wed

Bonneville Hills         ellenred@comcast.net                  4th Thurs Jan, Apr, Jul Oct
East Liberty Pk          jason@jasonstevenson.net         4th Thurs
Fairpark                       brycewgarner@gmail.com          4th Thurs
Foothill/Sunnyside   laurelyoungrn@gmail.com         4th Thurs Jan, Apr, Jul, Oct

Sunnyside East          mattmnelson@gmail.com           qtrly
Trolley                          trolleybusinessdistrict@outlook.com    qtrly

SALT LAKE CITY

COUNCIL E-MAILS:
james.rogers@slcgov.com,
charlie.luke@slcgov.com,
amy.fowler@slcgov.com,
erin.mendenhall@

slcgov.com,
andrew.johnston@

slcgov.com,

chris.wharton@slcgov.com

ana.valdemoros@slcgov.com

SALT LAKE CITY MAYOR'S OFFICE/STAFF E-MAILS:
david.litvack@slcgov.com
patrick.leary@slcgov.com
jackie.biskupski@slcgov.com
SLC council comment line is

801 535 7654 and the

email is council.comments@

slcgov.com.


UTA Board: boardoftrustees@

rideuta.com


SALT LAKE COUNTY

mayor@slco.org, jwilson@slco.org

rsnelgrove@slco.org

jbradley@slco.org

arbradshaw@slco.org

mhjensen@slco.org

anewton@slco.org

Agranato@slco.org

sldebry@slco.org

mburdick@slco.org

INN BETWEEN MEETING WITH ELPCO MAY 2018

This is the way we treat homeless in SLC??

INAUGURATION DAY JAMES ROGERS SELFIE

2015 PROP ONE SERVICE PROPOSALS

SLC COUNCIL PACKET INFO

HOMELESS/CRIME/JAIL

 gechapman2@gmail.com.

USEFUL SLC PHONE #s

CIVIL ENFORCEMENT
(JUNK/LITTER/SIGNS/SNOW REMOVAL/WEEDS/ PROBLEM BLDGS/FENCES/GARAGE SALES)

        801 535 7225 


POLICE 801 799 3000
ADA 801 535 7976
CITY COUNCIL 801 535 7600
DRUG ACTIVITY 801 799 3784
GRAFFITI REMOVAL

         801 972 7885
FORESTRY 801 972 7818
MAYOR'S OFFICE 801 535 7704
NOISE 801 580 6681
PARKS 801 972 7800
PARKING ENFORCEMENT

        801 535 6628
PLANNING/ZONING

         801 535 7700
SIDEWALK REPAIR  

        801 535 6934
SLC SHOPPING CARTS

       801 446 7984
SMITH'S CARTS 801 759 7315
STREET REPAIRS 801 535 2345
UTA 801 743 3882
WATER/SEWER 801 483 6900
WATER/SEWER EMERGENCY

       801 483 6700
CALL2HAUL WASTE

      801 535 6999
ANIMAL SERVICES

     385 468 7387
HEALTH DEPT/PESTS

      385 468 3835

OPERATION  RIO GRANDE COMMAND POST TIP LINE

     385 266 6938

SLC COMMUNITY CONNECTION TEAM WITH SOCIAL WORKER AND POLICE 

​    801 799 3533

Note that I put just the last 6 months of blogs on this page.  Old blogs are in the button above or on a pdf download on the upper left



MAY 21, 2019
UVX BRT LEADS TO ONLY 1000 FEWER CARS ON CAMPUS
STATE CUTS HOMELESS FUNDING EXPECTING PROBLEM SOLVED
COMPLETER STREETS STUDY STARTS
SLCPD IS ASKING TO USE 5 OFFICERS AS PARK RANGERS
UTA AUGUST CHANGE DAY ISSUES

UVX BRT LEADS TO ONLY 1000 FEWER CARS ON CAMPUS
  The $200 million UVX BRT has been touted as super successful.  Over 1000 fewer car permits were applied for at UVU this year and UVX has been given the credit.  Lost in the celebrations and encouragement for more BRTs, is the reality that the ridership is FREE!  Also the two lanes of roadway have been removed from use by personal vehicles.  Each lane should be able to comfortably able to handle 5000 average daily trips or cars.  I am not convinced that UVX should be considered to be successful.  SLC Transportation is suggesting hundreds of millions for BRTs on Foothill to Wasatch Blvd and on 200 South (with the South Davis BRT).

STATE CUTS HOMELESS FUNDING EXPECTING PROBLEM SOLVED
  I put the State Homeless Coordinating Committee funding decisions in the upper righthand (middle column) downloads section.  The Committee felt that they did not have to fund most programs as much as they did in the past.  They believe, with the new shelters coming online, they are solving the problem!  Also they are pushing to add how to consider success of programs.  The general performance measures include: 
Number of clients served, 
Number of adults served, 
Number of project leavers, 
Average length of stay in project, 
Number of exits into a permanent destination, 
Number of returns to homelessness for project participants who exited to a permanent, destination 2 years prior,
Number of returns within 6‐12 months
  The Legislature’s Social Services Interim Committee also has agreed to study the data on how successful substance abuse treatment is.

COMPLETER STREETS STUDY STARTS
  Salt Lake City has started to study “completer streets” going from building to building instead of the previous curb to curb.  In addition, Transportation is considering traffic calming on 500 North (in the Community and Neighborhood budget).  I put the Public Utilities, Public Safety/Compensation, and Community and Neighborhood (CAN) budgets in the downloads area under SLC.

SLCPD IS ASKING TO USE 5 OFFICERS AS PARK RANGERS
  SLCPD Chief Brown, at the May 21 Work Session has asked for using 5 sworn officers as park rangers.  There are 67 parks.  Several councilmembers celebrated the proposal and pointed out that the expansion of trails in SLC should be encouraging the proposal.  But council asked for a real park ranger program that would be less official than a cop and be an official park ranger instead of a police officer.  Councilmembers were concerned about the perception that they could engage in immigration enforcement.  Councilmembers were concerned that an officer would be less likely to be approached by park users since a gun can be a concern!  Officers have already been tasked to close restrooms at parks to ensure that individuals do not try to sleep in the restrooms.  I disagree with the concerns that armed officers would be a concern and I support the Chief’s proposal.  The officers would use cars at first but could shift to bicycles.  There are 2 eastside park officers assigned; 2 westside officers assigned and 2 funded by DWR for the Jordan River Parkway.  The Council had a disagreement and decided to move on since the Council could not find compromise on the concerns about armed and uniformed officers acting as park rangers!  I know many community councils want park rangers!  From Ensign Peak to Fairmont Park, the City’s parks need park rangers.
  Other Public Safety presentations included $4 million for 110 new hybrid pursuit rated sedans to add to the 20 the City already has.  No patrol vehicles have dashcams.  The City is planning to use $512,000 for 400 new bodycams (to add to the 100 in use now) that are activated when a gun is removed from a holster and also that activates bodycams of officers around them.
  In addition, the City noted that the mileage of police vehicles is tracked with gasoline use.  The top 5 users each month are double checked for appropriate use.  SLC police officers who live in the City are not charged for use of the police vehicles but those who live outside of the City (up to 35 miles away) are charged a graduated rate that has not changed in 10 years.  The officers pay 50% of the graduated rate.
  SLC has 503 sworn officers and with the Airport Police, there are 580 sworn officers.  There are 120 civilian officers.  The City plans to hire 27 new officers this next year who will be on patrol within 10 months.  The City has hired about 80 in the last year and it has also lost about 80 officers!  In other words, the police officers are still not compensated appropriately.  SLCO is proposing a 16% salary increase.

UTA AUGUST CHANGE DAY ISSUES
  UTA is proposing major changes for the August 2019 change day.  This big change will affect many people who should be commenting to UTA (even though the comment period has ended).   Community councils should be aware of the major changes.  The big question is will UTA have enough drivers to serve the system.  Again, UTA is supposed to be down 140 drivers in August.
  My UTA August Change Day 2019 comments (UTA proposals are first followed by my comments).  The link with maps is: https://www.rideuta.com/Rider-Info/August-2019-Change-Day
Route 2
In partnership with Salt Lake City’s Funding our Future program, UTA proposes to have route 2 come more often, run earlier and later, and run on Sundays. On weekdays and Saturdays, service would operate every 15 min from 6 am to 7 pm, as well as every 30 min from 5 am to 6 am and 7 pm to midnight. On Sundays, service would run every 30 min from 7 am to 7 pm. The University of Utah previously requested that all bus routes be relocated from the University Hospital loop.  As part of a collaborative process, U of U Health Sciences and UTA have agreed that routes 2, 6, and 11 will continue serving the University Hospital loop. Other routes in the area will access the Hospital from the bus stops adjacent to Medical Center TRAX Station on Mario Capecchi Dr.  In conjunction with UTA’s proposal for route 220, riders would see more frequent service on 200 South between Salt Lake Central Station and University St. Buses would arrive every 7.5 minutes on weekdays between 6 am and 7 pm, and every 15 minutes weekdays between 7 pm and 10 pm. On Saturdays, buses would come every 7–15 minutes between 6 am and 7 pm along this stretch of 200 South. On Sundays, buses would arrive every 15–30 minutes between 7 am and 7 pm.  Of the two routes, route 2 would maintain the best connection to FrontRunner at Salt Lake Central Station.
Route 2X
In response to a request from the University of Utah, route 2X would no longer service the entrance to the University of Utah Hospital. Access to the university hospitals and clinics would be available at bus stops along Mario Capecchi Dr.
Route 2 schedule should be coordinated with 205, not just 220.  Sometimes 205 and 2 are within a few minutes of each other when it would increase ridership by spacing them better. Five minute frequency between 500 East and Central Station is possible.

Route 3
The western end of route 3 would move from Salt Lake Central Station to North Temple Station. This would provide better connections to both southbound and northbound FrontRunner trains. The 3 would continue to service 3rd Avenue, the University of Utah, VA Hospital, Research Park, and This is the Place. Route 3 would be the primary connection from FrontRunner to Research Park with the discontinuation of route 228.

Route 4
The new route 4 would partially replace service currently provided by routes 228 and 516. The eastern terminal would be at 3900 South and Wasatch Blvd. The 4 would then travel north along Wasatch Blvd, Foothill Dr, 400 South, 200 South, and Redwood Road before ending at the TRAX Power Station on North Temple. The objective of this route is to enhance east–west connectivity between the University of Utah, downtown Salt Lake, and the airport. On the eastern end, route 4 is designed to connect with routes 33, 39, and 45.  On weekdays, service would operate every 30 minutes from 6 am to 7 pm, and every 60 minutes from 5 am to 6 am and 7 pm to 9 pm. On weekends, the 4 would run every 60 minutes from 7 am to 7 pm. This would introduce new weekend service on Foothill Dr.
Route 4  Why is new route 4 turning onto 200 South when 200 South already has potentially 5 minute service west of 500 East.  Going straight to Redwood Road via 400 South would make more sense.  And it should operate past 7 PM since it serves downtown and shows/entertainment last past midnight.

Route 6
The western end of route 6 would move from North Temple Station to Salt Lake Central Station. The route would no longer service North Temple. From 2nd Avenue, it would service State Street and 200 South.  The University of Utah previously requested that all bus routes be relocated from the University Hospital loop. As part of a collaborative process, U of U Health Sciences and UTA have agreed that routes 2, 6, and 11 will continue serving the University Hospital loop. Other routes in the area will access the Hospital from the bus stops adjacent to Medical Center TRAX Station on Mario Capecchi Dr.  Route 6 still has too many turns in the Avenues.  The Avenues, an area full of mass transit proponents, would increase ridership  if the buses didn't keep turning (and slowing down to a milk run).  The Avenues should have 2-4 east west and 2-4 north south routes without turns.  
Route 11 has too many turns and should work with the Community Council on a better Avenues system.  Turns slow down bus schedules, increase maintenance and increase accidents and driver fatigue.  
Route 3 is a good example of how to run a bus through the Avenues except not sure about the downtown loop?

Route 9
In partnership with Salt Lake City’s Funding our Future program, UTA proposes to have route 9 come more often, run earlier and later, and run on weekends. On weekdays and Saturdays, service would operate every 15 min from 6 am to 7 pm, as well as every 30 min from 5 am to 6 am and 7 pm to midnight. On Sundays, service would run every 30 min from 7 am to 7 pm.  The 9 would replace the service that route 516 provides within the Glendale and Poplar Grove communities. The route’s western end would be located at the TRAX Power Station on North Temple. On the eastern end, the route would end adjacent to the Health Sciences Campus after servicing the University of Utah campus and hospitals.

Route 11
The University of Utah previously requested that all bus routes be relocated from the University Hospital loop. As part of a collaborative process, U of U Health Sciences and UTA have agreed that routes 2, 6, and 11 will continue serving the University Hospital loop. Other routes in the area will access the Hospital from the bus stops adjacent to Medical Center TRAX Station on Mario Capecchi Dr.

Route 17
Route 17 would shift from Main St to 300 West between 1700 South and 2100 South. On the eastern end of the route, the 17 would be extended to the Union Building at the University of Utah.

Route 21
In partnership with Salt Lake City’s Funding our Future program, UTA proposes to have route 21 come more often, as well as run earlier and later. On weekdays and Saturdays, service would operate every 15 min from 6 am to 7 pm, as well as every 30 min from 5 am to 6 am and 7 pm to midnight. On Sundays, service would run every 30 min from 7 am to 7 pm.
Route 21 should run past 1 AM.  The bars in Sugar House get a lot of college students (over 50% of UofU students are over 21) and they close after midnight.  The area is still active after midnight.

Route 200
Routes 200 and 500 would be consolidated. Route 500 would be discontinued and route 200 would service the State Capitol via Main St, Columbus St, and 500 North. This would provide 15-minute service to Capitol Hill Monday–Saturday and 30-minute service on Sundays. The northern end of route 200 would move from Salt Lake Central Station to North Temple Station. We are seeking public feedback on whether to have route 200 service Courthouse Station on Main Street to make connections with the TRAX Blue, Green, and Red lines.
Route 200 is in the top two most popular bus routes.  UTA SHOULD NOT MAKE IT A MILK RUN by routing it to the Capitol.  The 500 gets an average of one passenger a day while the 200 gets over 3400 passengers a day and is often standing room only!  200 (along with the Redwood Road 217) should be prioritized to increase frequency.  I know that there is an effort to increase frequency using an expensive BRT but the frequency can be increased faster and at less than a 15th of the cost with a bus.  This route deserves less than a ten minute frequency.  It should also have traffic light priority like the UDOT/Redwood Rd/217 system.  The bus stops on State that have been removed due to crime should be restored and if necessary have cameras and UTA cops ensure security.  Stops should be closer to the corners, especially where there are potential transfers.  In other words, changing a route to make it a milk run instead of increasing frequency is questionable.  This route, along with Redwood Road should get the highest priority for increasing service.
To serve the Capitol, consider a North Temple to Capitol (not stopping north of Capitol and not entering circle, just letting off passengers next to the circle.  If the turns and stops are eliminated, the North Temple/Capitol shuttle bus could get 20 minute frequency.  Many catch the bus to the Capitol via the Main Street/North Temple stop.  It is only a block from the TRAX station!  Why put in a bus to take passengers a block instead of walking (through a beautiful garden)?


Route 213
In response to requests from the University of Utah, route 213 would no longer service the entrance to the University of Utah Hospital. Access to the university hospitals and clinics would be available at bus stops along Mario Capecchi Drive.
Route 213 should coordinate with routes 9 and 220.  Those buses often are 1 minute apart!  A better system would have them 5 minutes apart.  This happens often on 200 South, 13th East, 9th South, State Capitol, etc.  And something should be done to make the bus stops at the Stadium TRAX Station more convenient and closer to the corners.  Note that there are ADA constraints due to the new stairs next to the law building.  Moving the stops to the corners with the lights puts the buses much nearer to the TRAX Station.  I often see people RUNNING REALLY FAST from the buses to the TRAX!  That shouldn't happen.  If people have to run to catch a transfer, it is a bad bus stop.


Route 220
Route 220 would shift from 100 South to 200 South between West Temple and 1300 East. In conjunction with UTA’s proposal for route 2, riders would see more frequent service on 200 South between Salt Lake Central Station and University St. Buses would arrive every 7.5 minutes on weekdays between 6 am and 7 pm, and every 15 minutes weekdays between 7 pm and 10 pm. On Saturdays, buses would come every 7–15 minutes between 6 am and 7 pm along this stretch of 200 South. On Sundays, buses would arrive every 15–30 minutes between 7 am and 7 pm.  Of the two routes, route 2 would maintain the best connection to FrontRunner at Salt Lake Central Station.
Route 220 should be considered to not run on 200 South.  Start at the UofU TRAX station.  (See route 213) Trying to do too much with a route actually makes it more complicated and confusing for riders who have to be encouraged, initially, to ride buses.  There is the South Davis BRT (which I am against) scheduled for 200 South.  

Route 223
Route 223 would receive a substantial improvement in frequency. Buses would shift from every 2 hours to every 30 minutes from 6 am to 9am, and 3 pm to 6pm; buses would come every 60 minutes from 9 am to 3 pm, and 6 pm to 9 pm. The northern end of the 223 would also be modified to serve Research Park, university hospitals via Mario Capecchi Drive, and the University of Utah via Central Campus Drive. The route would no longer service 900 South, 1300 East, and South Campus Drive.
Route 223 - Is 223 focusing on 1700 East and 2300 East?  Not clear.


Route 228
UTA would discontinue route 228 and replace segments of this route with routes 4, 33, 39, 45, and 223.
I agree about route 228.

Route 313
In response to a request from the University of Utah, route 313 would no longer service the entrance to the University of Utah Hospital. Access to the university hospitals and clinics would be available at bus stops along Mario Capecchi Dr. 
Route 354
In response to a request from the University of Utah, route 354 would no longer service the entrance to the University of Utah Hospital. Access to the university hospitals and clinics would be available at bus stops along Mario Capecchi Dr.
Route 313 and route 354 which runs via Foothill to Wasatch should have a higher frequency since UofU and WFRC thinks that the road can handle BRTs.  The bus service should increase frequency first before considering spending hundreds of millions on the 200 South to Foothill to Wasatch Blvd BRT.  So 313 and 354 should be combined to prove that people will ride buses on Foothill.  It requires coordination with big parking lots.

Route 470
Route 470 would be extended to Salt Lake Central Station via 400 South, 400 West, and 200 South. The current southbound 470 stop at 420 S State St would no longer be serviced by the route 470. This new routing would add a connection to Courthouse Station at 400 South and Main Street.
Route 470 should stop at corner of State and 400 South (close to the corner).  There is no excuse for missing the stop that could pick up a lot of City and State and Federal employees.

Route 500
UTA would discontinue route 500 and replace it with route 200. Capitol Hill would receive 15-minute service Monday–Saturday and 30-minute service on Sundays.
Route 500 should not be combined with 200 (see above).

Route F556 is not mentioned yet there are plans to push a billion dollar rail (first BRT) on 5600 West.  A regular frequent bus running from the International Center all the way to the Utah County line with priority lights, should be tried first.  UDOT has said that it could be an alternative bus concept.  UTA should stop asking for federal funds for the BRT on 5600 West and focus on service first.  A connection to the Airport would also be nice.  Stops can be further apart when there are few businesses.  5600 West should be number 3 on increasing service after State and Redwood Road.  

Speaking of 217, (not listed for change) there was an effort by some in WVC to have the Redwood Road bus run to the Airport a few years ago and I keep pushing to get Delta to allow Bramble to repeal his ban on fixed guideway funding from Airport Passenger Fees that could help pay for a Redwood Road better bus system (also 5600 West).  I do not think that Redwood Road has the width to lose two lanes of traffic but it could be an enhanced bus if the circles that it keeps running around State offices is removed.  This issue needs to be revisited.  Matt Sibul knows the issue.  I keep needling him about it and the FAA changed the rules a few years ago.  If you want more than 1100 passengers a day riding UTA (TRAX) to the Airport, you need more convenient and faster service.  217 and 556 could help.

Route 519
Route 519 would no longer end at Salt Lake Central Station. It would end at the Bennett Federal Building at 100 South and State Street, traveling via 200 South and better providing service to the central business district of downtown.
Route 520
Route 520 would no longer end at Salt Lake Central Station. It would end at the Bennett Federal Building at 100 South and State Street, traveling via 200 South and better providing service to the central business district of downtown.
Route 519 and 520 may be amenable to rerouting past the Capitol.  It should be studied.  And the Taylorsville State Campus also needs better connections with the Capitol and Downtown (by the end of the year).

Route 551
Additional trips would be added on route 551, including during early weekday mornings and weekends, to meet the needs of sponsoring businesses.
Route 551 needs a lot more frequency.  And maybe lower costs to ride.  

Route 871
The new route 871 would travel between Draper Town Center Station and Lehi Station. The 871 would provide service to Adobe, the Outlets at Traverse Mountain, Xactware, and Mountain Point Medical Center. Service would run every 30 minutes on weekdays and every 60 minutes on weekends.
Route 871 from Draper to Lehi should be more frequent if ridership increases.  This should apply to all bus routes.  It shouldn't wait for a change day if any routes increase ridership quickly.  If done right, like in San Francisco, ridership can increase 60%!  UTA may also consider sponsoring buses with companies like Adobe and the Outlets.  

Route 603, in Ogden, should go back to 25th Street (where the action is) and remove the turns onto 26th Street.  It should also increase frequency to 10 minutes and the stops on 25th Street should be restored (they were removed in some cases between Jefferson and Harrison).  

I look forward to the bus stop proposals.  I also want to point out that UTA's claim that there was a significant increase in route 2 ridership due to the better bus stop amenities is not what the study said.  It could not attribute the increased ridership to the better bus stop amenities.  Riders like service and frequency.  Studies show that with the same frequency, rail and buses have the same satisfaction rate (a study recently from Australia confirmed this).






MAY 9, 2019

PARKING VRS BICYCLES DRIVE COMMUNITY MEETING


PARKING VRS BICYCLES DRIVE COMMUNITY MEETING
  The 9th East and 9th South neighborhood business community held an overflow meeting Wednesday night at Liberty Park that resulted in a lot of anger and polarization of the community. The object was to clear up a misconception that the 9-Line Trail project from 1300 East to 950 East would have a large impact on parking or require a redesign of the 9-Line Trail. Neither was necessary. The project is to start next month after over a year of vigorous community engagement. Many of the 125 attendees at the meeting were there to defend what they felt was a threat to bicycle infrastructure by parking proponents.
  The community has always felt that the 9th and 9th neighborhood had parking problems. The local East Liberty Park Community Organization (ELPCO) sued a developer a few years ago due to their lack of parking for a proposed development. The project eventually was pulled although the community lost the lawsuit. 
  Nearby residents have often complained about the lack of adequate parking that results in restaurant and business patrons parking in residential neighborhoods. The area has been emphasized and encouraged to be walkable. That allows nearby residents to enjoy walking to neighborhood businesses but requires those who drive to the area to park then walk through the many businesses that emphasize window shopping. The wide sidewalks help but there is not enough parking to allow hours of window shopping and going to restaurants after parking.
  The City Transportation Department, unlike many previous major street redesign projects, engaged the community, landowners, businesses and residents in many meetings with significant feedback over the last year. The goal was to ensure that the neighborhood would approve of the project that would be a continuation of the 9-Line Trail project going from Emigration Canyon to I215. The County was providing over $500,000 for the project. The result was an agreement that the 900 South street from 1300 South to 1100 East would be reduced to 2 lanes from 4, there would be a roundabout at 1100 East and 900 South with Gilmer Drive (with a projected loss of 7 parking spaces near the roundabout) and a shared pedestrian/bicycle path raised above the street level 12 feet wide from 1300 East to about 950 East (on the south side).
  Two weeks ago at the East Liberty Park Community Organization, a neighborhood businessman and developer, Phil Winston, argued that the City plans showed a loss of 38 parking spaces in the 9th South business area!  A local online news site, Building Salt Lake, had a story that implied that the bicycle path was threatened due to concerns about parking. The local bicycling community spread the news and was at the meeting to support the plan for the 9-Line Trail. The local neighborhood residents and businesses were at the meeting to object to losing so many parking spots. 
  But the 9-Line Trail was not under threat. The project was going through. The 9-Line Trail is an extensive plan (a 57 MB file download from slcgov.com – Google it) that will encourage biking in Salt Lake County and emphasize the area's recreational assets. 
  The City presentation attempted to be structured but emphasized the previous discussions and future plans for parking in Salt Lake City instead of emphasizing that the City changed their plans (after discussing them over the last week with businesses) to result in a loss of about 20 parking spots around the roundabout, mainly in residential areas around 1100 East. The increase in loss of parking spots due to the roundabout (from 7 to over 20) was because the roundabout had to be bigger for increased safety than previously thought. The bigger roundabout has a significant negative impact on residents and businesses around it, including one who has a driveway essentially in the roundabout. 
  Tom Millar, who has managed the community engagement over the last year (He also was instrumental in getting community agreement on McClelland Street shared concept plan.) went over the history of the project for half an hour while the attendees became more and more frustrated. In answer to some questions about why the City didn’t study parking in the area before the project, Transportation Director Jon Larsen said that a parking study called a transportation demand management plan was coming and tried to describe the way that is going to emphasize proper parking standards. But again the audience became more frustrated. 
  When the Acting Director of Neighborhood Development tried to alleviate concerns about a protected bike path (actually shared and raised to sidewalk level), she defended the controversial 300 South cycle track and said that the City found that business activity/revenue actually increased in the area after the cycle track was put in. The community did not appreciate that comment, although the bicycling community attending did like hearing that.
  The main neighborhood concern was that they have spent decades trying to encourage a vibrant, walkable and inviting area in 9th and 9th and at the same time tried to ensure appropriate parking so that adjacent residential neighborhoods did not have to endure many strange cars parking in their quiet single family home neighborhoods. So the potential loss of so many parking spots was a big concern. 
  Many spoke up in favor of the project and asked that it go forward as quickly as possible. But many others, expressed concern about the City ignoring how important parking is to residents and businesses. 
  The City also emphasized the new expanded service on the 9 UTA bus that will operate earlier and later at night and on Sunday at 15 minute frequency and continue to the westside of SLC via 13th South. The service will start in August and it is expected to only be minimally impacted by the project construction.    There will also be coordination with UTA to provide better bus stops and shelters on the street. Some of the stops will be moved to provide safer stops and the stops will have bigger ADA pads. The 213 bus will move the 1100 East bus stop to the 9th South corner before the roundabout since it will no longer have to negotiate across two lanes of traffic to turn left. 
  The traffic on 900 South, around 5000 ADT, has significant traffic congestion during East High School starting and there was a concern that going from 4 lanes to 2 lanes may make the congestion worse. That issue was not able to be addressed. There was also concern that pedestrians, especially kids, walking on the roundabout raised crosswalks may face increased danger. The City expressed confidence that the 20 MPH speed required to go through the roundabout would increase safety for pedestrians.
  The result of the meeting was a lot of unanswered questions. Although many questions were answered, many nearby residents were not able to have their questions answered when the City shut down the meeting thinking that they had to be out by 8PM (the community council used it the previous month until after 830). Although the City has significantly increased public engagement with potential projects over the last year, this ended up an inadvertent complication. (The City had a big outreach and many community meetings with the recent 2700 South reconstruction and redesign.) The City went back to the drawing board to reduce the potential loss of parking in the neighborhood business area. But they should have gone door to door with notices over the last year to nearby residents and not just to the landowners on 900 South. Nearby residents on 1100 East are going to see the biggest impact but the area will have a safer bicycling and pedestrian path. The project completion will result in a safer 900 South for cars, pedestrians and bicyclists but the project designs will require further real life studies to ensure that it does not cause inadvertent negative consequences.
  Interestingly, on the same night, SLC also reached out to the local community council to start the process of resurfacing 500 East with possible design changes. The project is a year away but the City asked for feedback on possible changes to the street striping. Although 600 East is the City’s bikeway, including passing through Liberty Park, 500 East seems to have more bicycle traffic. Possible bike lanes and other changes are possible. This project design is just starting but it is nice to see that the City is getting better at public outreach and engagement. Last week, the Ballpark Community Council discussed the project for upgrading sidewalks on 300 West, which will be completely reconstructed in 2022. The community asked for the sidewalk project be speeded up for the next year even though it would require some reconstruction (at a cost of $250,000) during the 2022 project. The City is asking the community for feedback which is commendable. 
  The main takeaway from all of this is that community residents and businesses should attend their local community councils. The City goes to all of those community councils and provides a lot of information about projects, developments and public safety. They are important for providing feedback to the City which changes their designs and ordinances based on community feedback at the meetings. Please attend your local community council. The latest downloadable council list is in the upper left.


MAY 8, 2019

MAYOR CANDIDATES LAUGHABLY CLAIM TO BE AGAINST INLAND PORT
THIS WORLD WILL ALWAYS HAVE A BATHROOM PROBLEM
SLC STILL DOESN'T UNDERSTAND IMPORTANCE OF PARKING
HOMELESS TAI CHI ORDERED OUT OF RIO GRANDE STREET
CANYONS SOLUTIONS NO BRAINER. JUST DO IT
LTGOV COX AGAINST WAREHOUSING HOMELESS ARGUES AGAINST SRO
SMALL BUSES DID NOT HELP UTA
UOFU WANTS SCOOTERS AFTER SKATEBOARD PROBLEMS
UTA BONDING FOR GOLD PLATED BUS GARAGE
LANDLORD PROBLEMS WITH VOUCHERS


MAYOR CANDIDATES LAUGHABLY CLAIM TO BE AGAINST INLAND PORT
  Several candidates for mayor of Salt Lake City are trying to hide their pro Inland Port actions.  Despite Councilmember Erin Mendenhall's successful efforts to negotiate the Inland Port implementation and agreement between the State and the City Council, she now says that she does "not support the State’s tax and land use grab from Salt Lake City.....The way that those decisions have been taken from us is wrong."  But the City Council, led by Chair Erin Mendenhall, agreed to the new Inland Port bill!  Saying that she does not support the State's Inland Port land grab is laughable at best and, at worst, is a poor attempt at currying the favor of the majority of Salt Lake City citizens that are against the Inland Port.  
  The City lost almost 25% of their land with the bill.  The City, before the State expropriated the land, had passed a formal plan to develop the property and make it a redevelopment area, with the intention of it functioning potentially like an industrial development area similar to the Inland Port.  But the City Council, led by then Chair Erin Mendenhall, agreed with the Legislature and negotiated a "better?" deal to give up 25% of the City's property for nothing!
  I agree that the State Inland Port bill is unconstitutional and I support the lawsuit by the Mayor against the State.  The City Council has tried to stop the lawsuit, yet Councilmember Erin Mendenhall now says that she is against the Inland Port bill!  
  Former Senator Jim Dabakis is also running for mayor of Salt Lake City.  Although he supports the Mayor's lawsuit, he helped amend the Inland Port bill and got the City Council to accept it during the negotiations for it!  So he supported the amended bill but he is for the lawsuit?!
  I guess the operative phrase is: "how dumb do they think we are?"

THIS WORLD WILL ALWAYS HAVE A BATHROOM PROBLEM
  In a story by Dennis Romboy about the renovation of the Sprague Library (https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900068450/is-this-the-answer-to-the-bathroom-problem.html), the focus of the story was on an "all-gender, multiuser restroom or universal washroom" in the proposed design. Peter Bromberg is an amazing and respected SLC Library Director who has been active in upgrading all of Salt Lake City’s Libraries and the services that they provide. His characterization of the community meeting where the attendees hardly “blinked” is wrong. Several people (I was one, and was speaking for many around me.) expressed concern about the proposed unisex bathroom. Out of respect for Mr. Bromberg, after we gave our objections, we did not continue to argue. We love Peter Bromberg but we strongly disagree with his proposal. After the objections from the community meeting (some did like Mr. Bromberg’s idea), plans were added for another separate restroom.
  Libraries throughout the nation have had problems with some inappropriate use by homeless of services in the libraries, including in restrooms. The problems are attributable to the fact that cities do not provide enough services for the homeless, including public safe and sanitary facilities (the City only installed a couple of porta potties just a couple of years ago) and clothes and body washing facilities (except at the Weigand Center in the Rio Grande area). 
  This lack of adequate and respectful services for the homeless has resulted in the libraries being used by those without any other ways to keep clean. Peter Bromberg solved the Main Library problem of restrooms being inappropriately used, by implementing bathroom monitors next to the restrooms. It solved a lot of problems and made the Main Library bathrooms more sanitary and comfortable for patron use.
  Many other libraries in the system have had issues with inappropriate use (not just by the homeless) and librarians have stepped up to try to decrease the problems. But sometimes, at some libraries, it requires a police officer. Mr. Bromberg’s goal with his proposal is to “promote safety and better access”. The problem with the proposed design is that many people are uncomfortable around so called undesirables/homeless. Whether it is on a bus or in a restroom, it is an uncomfortable and disrespectful fact of life. Many women and men would feel uncomfortable walking into a multiuser restroom and finding a man or woman washing their clothes out in the sink and would be discouraged from using the secure stalls. Most children would be even more uncomfortable. 
  The idea of all-gender, multiuser restrooms is an attempt to solve the issues that include countering the good old boys network that hurt advancement of women in business, making people feel out of place (not just transgender), bullying in restrooms and the obvious smoking in the boys room. Historically, we have almost always had issues with toilets. I don’t think that it is realistic to go back to the ancient communal toilets with over 10 plus toilets on a stone bench side by side. Wasatch Canyon users complain regularly about lack of restrooms; Salt Lake City had to recently modify a restroom for ADA access and park users always complain about the public restrooms not being open (The City finally opened them April 20.).
  One should look realistically at the issue and realize that the only way to design a restroom “in which no one will either feel or be made to feel out of place” is to have one room compact toilet and sink facilities side by side. Instead of one public communal restroom at Sprague, which would still have difficulties monitoring for inappropriate behavior, it would make more sense to have 4 or five separate small rooms with toilets and sinks, including ADA access. That would make it easier to monitor those going in and ensuring that inappropriate use is not being allowed. 

SLC STILL DOESN'T UNDERSTAND IMPORTANCE OF PARKING
  Over the last year, there have been many cases where parking issues in Salt Lake City have created hate and discontent and, in one case, a redesign that turned out better than the first proposal.
  The 9-Line Trail in Salt Lake City, is a visionary project that will eventually connect the Bonneville Shoreline Trail with the Jordan River Trail. It received some money from Salt Lake County that is being used to change the 9th South roadway from 4 lanes to 2 lanes between about 10th East to 13th East. It will add a raised bicycle and pedestrian path for the Trail that is on the South side. It will also place a roundabout on the 11th East and 9th South intersection to increase safety for the 5 way intersection. The community had a big discussion and analysis about the project and decided that it was a good idea that would increase safety for vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists (there are also two raised crosswalks). The community was told and agreed that losing the predicted seven parking spaces would be acceptable.
  Two weeks ago, the City acknowledged that the predictions of parking spaces lost could be much higher. The developer that is remodeling the store on the northeast corner of 9th South and 9th East to become a restaurant and separate store showed that the project could lose as many as 38 parking spaces around the 9th and 9th area! The local community council members, many of whom lived within two blocks from the project were concerned about the loss of parking. The City agreed to discuss the project (starting this month) at a special meeting on May 8 at 530PM at the Youth City building in Liberty Park (about the center of the Park).
  The East Liberty Park Community Organization - ELPCO has been so concerned about the parking limitations in the area that it sued the City a few years ago to stop development of a building that had fewer than one half spaces per residential unit. The developer gave up on the project due to the delay caused by the lawsuit.
  Another recent argument about parking happened in the Sugar House area after community input on McClelland street redesign between 2100 South and Sugarmont (next to the S-Line). The community gave its recommendation after being told that their design would lose only a couple of spaces. The businesses thought otherwise and the parking loss necessitated a redesign that actually turned out for the better as a shared street
  Also, in the Sugar House area, the 2700 South reconstruction (using funds that were originally for 300 West matching of federal grant funds) is slated to remove parking on the north side of 2700 South to provide room for a bike lane going uphill on the south side of 2700 South.  The nearby residents were upset but the City said that they found that less than 15 cars were generally parked on the north side between 1300 East and 2100 East. The redesign and reconstruction happened with just a couple of months of notice. Fortunately, the City was able to have several meetings with residents and changed some of the plans. Instead of 7 raised crosswalks, there will only be 3.  But parking is still scheduled to be removed from the north side. Many nearby residents are still upset about the removal of parking on the north side of 2700 South.
  Reducing travel lanes on 1700 South (between State Street and 300 West) in order to add bicycle lanes and parking for the new apartments going into the neighborhoods resulted in a polarizing fight that had half of the community against the travel lane reduction and half for more on street parking. Parking won this fight but the community remains divided about the plan. 
  Parking in Salt Lake City always has been a controversial issue. The City has limited demolition permits that would result in parking lots. The City policy has been to not "waste" ground floor space with parking lots. The policy, until a few years ago, was to require a half of a parking space onsite per residential unit. But when a restaurant on 2100 East (Brew Ha Ha) tried to allow over 100 seats with just 6 onsite spaces, the backlash resulted in the City changing the rules to require one onsite parking space per unit (except for SROs). One of the developers affected was Vasilios Priskos who was not allowed to demolish empty buildings downtown because the City did not want to allow more surface parking lots. But the result was empty buildings, some for over a decade. Empty buildings encourage and enable criminal behavior. But the City has ignored that and still pushes against demolishing buildings!
  One of the reasons for the big fight in Sugar House about routing the S-Line north on 1100 East was the potential for loss of parking since the street is not wide enough for the planned two TRAX trains. The previous administration paid for a parking study in the Sugar House and Downtown area but it was never officially released. The study by Nelson/Nyggard found that the Downtown and Sugar House areas had plenty of parking. Some on the City Council and others expressed concern that accepting the report would lead to less parking requirements for developers and could push retail and residential building to other nearby cities. If there is no parking in Sugar House, why not go to Millcreek just down the street?
  There are many other projects that impact parking and the City should ensure that there is adequate notice and public engagement about projects that impact parking. In several cases, the City gave the community one month's notice to decide on a road diet that could increase parking (1300 South and 2100 South). Both projects polarized the residents. The City has other projects that will increase bicycling safety but could impact parking that deserve more publicizing and discussion. 
  The City should not be telling a community like 9th and 9th that there will be a lot more parking spaces lost when the project starts next month! Businesses are already considering moving due to the construction and loss of parking. One has left already. 
  Parking is a complicated issue. Donald Shoup has a good argument that we may have too much parking in his The High Cost of Free Parking. But his arguments are countered very well by Randal O'Toole of the Cato Institute who points out that making life with a car more difficult will encourage sprawl because developers will build further away from city centers to be allowed to build for cars.
  Salt Lake City should not rush projects that have such a big impact on communities regarding parking. Well before these projects are designed and given out with a contract, there should be a clear understanding and agreement on what the project will do to the community and specifically to parking.

HOMELESS TAI CHI ORDERED OUT OF RIO GRANDE STREET
  Bernie and Marita Hart's Tai Chi program has been ordered out of Rio Grande homeless area.  The State Police were ordered to kick the homeless Tai Chi program out of the Rio Grande area (they practiced next to the closed area in the street).  They told Bernie Hart that they were ordered to ticket him if he continues.  They suggested that he go to Pioneer Park.  Bernie's program is one of the few successful efforts to provide structure, calm and respect to homeless, and obviously, it is threatening to some political leaders.  It is a non confrontational homeless program.  It has been featured in many newspapers, TV stories and in magazines.  Yet it seems to be scaring leaders.  It is interesting that the State Police are threatening ticketing when the homeless don't care about ticketing.  Some homeless get up to 100 tickets.

CANYONS SOLUTIONS NO BRAINER. JUST DO IT
  The UDOT scoping period for the Little Cottonwood Canyon EIS has been extended indefinitely.  The original EIS was to start the construction of the new lane in Little Cottonwood Canyon that the State planned to construct with the $67 million budgeted to decrease the many backups.  Former State Senate President Neiderhauser, who lives near the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, wanted to force Canyon users to pay a toll to go up the Canyon (SB71) but UDOT is doing the EIS to see if it makes sense over some other potential solutions to the backups that extend into Neiderhauser's area.  The tolls were to go for a parking garage near the mouth, that could be near Terry Diehl's property.
  The solutions should be a no brainer.  The Canyons need bus service now year round before any tolling.  There should be options for those not wanting or able to pay a toll.  The Legislature should provide seed money to start weekend Canyons bus service this year.  Several years ago, UTA did a study suggesting that it would cost a million a year per Canyon but it has obviously gone up.
  Before any tolling is even considered, there must be options like convenient bus service with convenient transfers from TRAX and other buses so they may need to be running outside of the Canyons.  Buses may need more bicycle carrying capacity.  But it will require starting the service to find out if it works or what is needed to make it work.  
  Parking does need to be increased in and out of the Canyons but the goal of year 2000 parking standards is unrealistic.  The State and County should put in more parking up the Canyon at many trailheads along with restrooms (for environmental reasons = EIS) and secured parking outside of Canyon which does not necessarily need to be on Wasatch Blvd if the bus goes by it.  When I say secured, I mean someone or a camera has to monitor it since one breakin and people will not park there again.  Note that all parking lots should have restrooms open year round if you really are concerned about the environment and watershed.  Salt Lake City Public Utilities has refused the request from the Forest Service to connect up 6 restrooms in the Canyon.
  Several years before the Mountain Accord, the Canyon Transportation Study looked at a curb/separation between the shoulder and roadway that could be used for bicycles going up the Canyon.  The bike shoulder does not need to meet the heavy duty requirements for big trucks and buses and they should stay off the shoulder anyway.  That cycle track would be very important.
  Since avalanches close the Canyon roads often in the winter, priority should be given to construct avalanche sheds which may need further Legislative funding.  
  The priorities should be:
1) avalanche sheds
2) bus service
3) parking in and out of the canyon with facilities/restrooms open year round
4) bike lane on the shoulder going up
5) then, after everything else is in place, look at tolling again.

LT GOV COX AGAINST WAREHOUSING HOMELESS ARGUES AGAINST SROS
  Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox said at the event naming the new homeless shelter on Paramount (moved south from original entrance) that the old model “was based on warehousing,” while the new centers will offer a place where people “can come and get the resources they need so homelessness can be brief.  That is the main argument that many of us have been saying is the reason why SROs are a bad idea.  Mixed income, mixed use facilities make more sense.  It is important that residents have an interest in preserving the neighborhood and all low income facilities tend to not have that interest.  See below for the issues with Palmer Court.  
  The homeless shelter construction on Paramount is also destroying businesses.  In some cases, the businesses have lost 25% of their business!  The City has not offered compensation, or low interest loans or signs that might help.  The construction companies are ignoring the adjacent businesses and blocking their access!  The City needs to step up and do right.
  Also, there were 17 deaths at Palmer Court last year.  Palmer Court, a converted motel between Main and State just south of 900 South and operated by the Road Home, is a good argument against all low income housing.  SLCFD has had issues with the large number of medical response calls at Palmer Court which is the second biggest draw after the Rio Grande area.  Putting all low income in one facility results in encouraging and enabling bad behavior.  

SMALL BUSES DID NOT HELP UTA
  The question of why UTA does not use small buses keeps coming up.  The answer is that they tried them but they ended up costing about the same since the major cost was drivers and maintenance.  And the small Optimus buses were very high maintenance.  UTA ended up giving them to the UofU for their shuttles!  UTA maintains them with a contract but when UTA operated them, they found that they were very unreliable and couldn't be depended on for a reliable service.  The cost of operation between a big bus and a small bus is about the same.  And the convenience of having a consistent service and the ability to handle 40+ passengers during some events and rush hours is important.  
  I have tried the small buses and found that they can be crowded at certain times and wanting for more space.  I have also tried the small vans but I found them very inconvenient and poorly constructed.  The new buses are able to accept wheelchairs easily while the vans tend to need a lot more time.  Interestingly, the big express and Park City buses need forever to accept wheelchairs!  UTA really should operate the low floor, kneeling and quick ramp deploying buses exclusively.  They work.  Everything else is too high maintenance.

UOFU WANTS SCOOTERS AFTER SKATEBOARD PROBLEMS
  There have been several stories about how the University of Utah is about to accept rental scooters on campus.  Lost in the stories is the fact that the University has had a love hate relationship with scooters and skateboards.  In 2013, an accident that seriously injured a pedestrian resulted in a fight that almost banned skateboards on campus.  The present rule on campus is that skateboards are limited to 10 MPH while the electric scooters have a 15 MPH limit on a straightaway.  So the University is about to accept scooters if they can be limited to a 10 MPH speed.  The same arguments against scooters in SLC apply, mainly that pedestrians should not be threatened by scooters and rental scooters are being operated by people who are generally unexperienced which increases threats to pedestrians and riders.
  The University "policy enforces a 10-mph speed limit for all motorized and non-motorized vehicles, prohibits skateboarders from riding in parking lots or roadways, requires riders to yield to pedestrians, bans non-motorized vehicles from stairways, grass, benches, etc., among other precautionary measures."  The University's SAFE campaign "safety officers will cite violators with written warnings for their first offense. For the second offense, riders will have their vehicle impounded for a minimum of 48 hours and receive a minimum $100 fine. After the second violation, riders will have their vehicles impounded for a minimum of 30 days and be subject to an escalating schedule of fines."
  The University's commuting manager, Alma Allred, has this to say:  "Your concerns are well founded and that’s why we are investigating how we can best regulate the use of the scooters.  There are ways to limit the speeds of these scooters while within a geographic boundary that we can stipulate.  There will be lots of input with the hope of maintaining a safe environment for pedestrians while at the same time encouraging active transportation options."

UTA BONDING FOR GOLD PLATED BUS GARAGE
  UTA is pulling a fast one with the Utah State Bonding Commission.  In an effort to bond for $31 million to speed up the construction of the $100 million CNG bus garage, UTA told the Bonding Commission that they lowered the cost of the project and that they need it.  A CNG refueling facility for hundreds of buses should not cost more than $30 million.  Part of the large cost, approaching $100 million, is due to the effort to try to save and work with the old brick structure (supposedly historic) is questionable and is a poor use of taxpayer funds since it may cost 2-3 times more to build than a new building.  The old brick building is not easily made earthquake proof.  Placing all of UTA's CNG refueling systems in Salt Lake County in one area is also questionable with the threat of an earthquake.  
  A CNG facility should cost no more than $30 million since it just requires pumps (the cost really could be as little as $10 million), not a $70 + million facility.  I recognize that WFRC and UTA have been trying to push this issue (including at the federal government) for over 5 years and I have been fighting it (including for a couple of years protesting UTA secret applications at the federal government).  The old RTP (about to be updated) has it at $65 million over 5 years ago and UTA, in September, said that after a $17 million investment, it will require an additional $70.5 million.
  If UTA really wanted to be efficient, they shouldn't be running buses out to outlying areas in the morning empty (dead head buses) from the central bus garage (they have two - one south of the County Jail and another downtown) and returning empty in the evening to the central bus garage!  There are plans for new bus garages in the outlying areas which should be significantly reducing the size and cost of the $88 million garage that UTA is asking $30 million bonding for.  Both the southwest and southeast WFRC draft new RTP supposedly includes these garages.  And again, from a safety/emergency plan, all CNG refueling should not be in one place.
  UTA is under pressure to move the present bus garage since SLC wants to develop it into part of the Depot District Research Park.  The old bus garage is on the corner of 600 West and 200 South.  But UTA/taxpayers/riders should not have to pay for SLC's pie in the sky designs that increase the cost.  
  During arguments with the Board and senior management, they  indicated that it was more efficient to have drivers pick up their buses after refueling at the main bus garage (being built) instead of going across the street with a bus to refuel.  The 5 minute drive is inefficient.  But it is more inefficient to drive empty twice a day to and from outlying areas that should have their own bus garages.  Smaller bus garages would be less costly overall, more efficient and safer in an earthquake.
  UTA's statement justifying the bus garage said that "Unless UTA is able to build the Depot District Clean Fuels Tech Center, UTA is limited in its ability to expand service.  Fundamentally, increased service requires more buses, with adequate facilities to store ad maintain them."
  I disagree with that statement.  UTA's priority, before any more projects or bonding, should be to increase service.  There is no lack of space for maintenance or refueling now or in the next two years.  UTA should provide more specific justification for increasing bonding.  

LANDLORD PROBLEMS WITH VOUCHERS
  There have been several stories about trying to get landlords to accept housing vouchers.  Many landlords are leery of accepting them.  If you ask the landlords why, they say that many of the voucher users engage in criminal activity and they have difficulties evicting them.  They point out that, despite multiple arrests, SWAT raids, drug arrests, assaults, abundant police calls and underage partying, it is difficult to remove the tenants using housing vouchers.  Some have fought the efforts to evict by claiming discrimination.  I know of one case of a person who was operating a meth lab and who had a visitor arrested twice in two days with drugs who fought for a year to not be evicted.  The landlord had to pay $6000 to clean the house!  In another case, the police tried to ensure the safety of a young man who had taken drugs but the tenant refused to allow the police in.  That eviction took 6 months.  When some tenants are finally evicted, landlords find lots of needles on the floor and in the couches!



APRIL 24, 2019
UTA NEW DRIVER TURNOVER IS OVER 50%
SLC PROMISED NEW COPS BUT WHERE ARE THEY
SLTRIB PUBLISHES S-LINE AND SRO OPEDS
UTA GETS CONFLICTING RECOMMENDED GOALS SLC VRS SW SLCO

PROBLEM WITH AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN SLC IS SLC GOVERNMENT

UTA ENCOURAGES PROJECTS BY CLAIMING THAT RAIL LEADS TO

    DEVELOPMENT

BODYCAM COSTS DECREASE WITH HELP FROM UTAH INTERACTIVE
SLC RDA IGNORES 9-LINE SAFETY & ENCOURAGES POLLUTION,   

     MILKRUNS AND VACANT BUILDINGS
SLC PARK RESTROOMS OPENED FINALLY
300 W. BALLPARK NEEDS TEMPORARY SIDEWALKS
UTA ORDERS BUS DRIVERS TO STAY AWAY FROM THE CURB
UTA SELLS SEX
TRAX EXTENSION IN LEHI/DRAPER WILL SCREW WESTSIDE 
SLC ADOPTS BUDGET AMENDMENT 5 WITH TRANSIT PROJECTS NOT SERVICE


UTA NEW DRIVER TURNOVER IS OVER 50%
  UTA is promising to increase bus service in August with many new routes for the buses that they have and expanding span of service.  We have been pushing for increasing service this August with the new SB136 taxes, and until now, UTA insisted that they will have to wait to expand service in August of 2020!  UTA is trying to expand service this August but the weak link in the effort is the fact that UTA is about to lose 30 drivers to retirement, over 50% of newly trained bus drivers (trained and given a Class B license) leave within a year.  Many leave because of the realization that with a split shift policy (work the morning and evening rush hours), they are effectively working 12 hours a day with 4 drives to work!  The pay is now starting at 17.75 an hour but the turnover is still high.  Drivers are getting a $1000 bonus for referring new drivers (who also get a $1000 sign on bonus after training).  That is still not enough.  The Union that negotiates the salaries needs to work with UTA to find a compensation that will attract and keep bus drivers.  There is also the issue of retirement.  SB136 requires that UTA study moving retirement to Utah's retirement system and report by September of 2019.  Drivers are concerned about that potential impact on their retirement.
  The number one reason that people like to ride buses is a pleasant bus driver.  We need to attract and keep more bus drivers to encourage mass transit use.

SLC PROMISED NEW COPS BUT WHERE ARE THEY
  Several years ago, the Salt Lake City Council was fighting to add more police under pressure from citizens.  The meeting devolved into a fight between Mayor Becker who did not want to hire more cops.  Chief of Staff David Everett ordered Asst Police Chief Ross to not allow the Council to hire more cops.  Councilman Charlie Luke and Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall tried to get Chief Ross to explain why he couldn't hire more cops.  He said that the SLC Police Academy could not handle more.  Council Executive Assistant Cindy Gust-Jensen (who is probably the most knowledgeable person in City Hall called him on that statement and pointed out that the Academy could handle as many as needed.  So the Council set a goal of hiring more cops (with the help of a grant).
  Several years later, under a new administration, when it became obvious that SLC needed more cops, the City and Council agreed to a tax increase (allowed with Mayor Becker's negotiations to accept the new prison) that would fund expanded transit "service", hire 50 new cops (later reduced to 23 or so), increase affordable housing and help maintain roads.  But the City also hired a labor negotiator who claimed to reduce salary increases!
  SLCPD Chief Brown helped increase the officers on patrol by repurposing officers and detectives that would not normally be on patrol, onto patrols.  In some cases, the officers were rotated onto patrol for a few weeks from their desk jobs.  The walking patrols that the City Council insisted on a few years ago downtown ceased to exist.  And Operation Rio Grande (Operation Leaf Blower is the name given the Operation by the County Police Chiefs) concentrated SLCPD officers in the Gateway area.  That increased the pressure on the City to hire more cops.  The Salt Lake City Council also increased their salary almost 50% in December of 2018 despite arguments that police deserved the salary increase more (going from 24,000 a year to 35,000 a year for a part time job which generally takes up to 20 hours a week if they are dedicated).  Councilwoman Mendenhall explained that she shouldn't be making less than her baby sitter (The City has failed for years in their efforts to establish a day care center for City employees.).
  So we are now at the point where the proposed SLC budget is about to be announced and the City administration (the Mayor) is not talking to the Police Union!  Last year, the Union and City did not talk and the City and Council set the salary increase for all employees, including cops, at 3%!  Chief Brown has touted at community councils that the City has hired 80 new officers in the last year.  But the City has also lost around 80 officers in the last year.  Where are the new cops that the City and Council promised?  
  The City, the Council, the Police Union and the Police administration need to sit down and talk now to provide compensation that will attract and keep good police officers.  If the salary is so low that only questionable candidates apply and some of the best leave, it hurts the effectiveness of police and decreases the relationship between the police and the community.

SLTRIB PUBLISHES S-LINE AND SRO OPEDS
  The Salt Lake Tribune published two opinion pieces in the last week.  Although I am usually limited to one a month, every year or so, I get several published in the month due to important issues.  The S-Line opinion piece counters some of the UTA claims about how important that the Line was to Sugar House development.  The Single Room Occupancy oped resulted in an overflow crowd at the SLC City Council hearing (see below).  
  The links to the opeds are


https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2019/04/12/george-chapman-uta-should/

https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2019/04/20/george-chapman-slc-plan/

UTA GETS CONFLICTING RECOMMENDED GOALS SLC VRS SW SLCO
  UTA has been reaching out to "community leaders" in the Salt Lake City/South Salt Lake City area and in South Jordan (SW part of the County) to find out what they recommend and want in transit expansion.  The effort is led by consultant Jarrett Walker who wrote the book Human Transit and has a blog by that name.  The attendees of the SLC/SSLC group expressed wanting more frequent service instead of coverage.  The attendees of the SW County area meeting wanted more coverage.  Unfortunately, it is not sinking in that coverage should not mean an expensive rail line that sucks out all of the potential for mass transit service expansion by bus.  As I have mentioned several times before, when LA did that, it took away from bus service and it resulted in almost no increase in ridership after spending billions.  When UTA expanded TRAX, it decreased bus service by 30% (some routes were claimed to be covered by TRAX).  
  If the SW County area does not understand what they want, they may end up with just one rail line and almost no bus service.  Salt Lake City attendees did seem to want an increase in frequent service, and span of service.  They were aware of and accepted the financial limitations of the exercise.  

THE PROBLEM WITH AFFORDABLE HOUSING IN SLC IS SLC GOVERNMENT
  The problem with lack of affordable housing in SLC is the SLC government!  Despite the claims that SROs will solve the housing crisis in the City and the County (they said that about ADUs but only 3 have been applied for and there is a $5000+ upfront cost due to impact fees), SROs will get a lot of pushback from the nearby residents and businesses.  The next to last semi SRO was closed (the Rio Grande Hotel is the last SRO in SLC and seems to be well managed) due to a resident killing a neighbor, despite onsite management.  The closest thing that we have to SROs now are the crime magnet motels that are causing problems on State Street and North Temple.  Despite efforts to close them with a civil penalty ordinance, they are still a problem.  And when we do close them, like the Capitol Motel on 1700 South, it does not result in more affordable housing.  
  The City Council, the administration and the RDA Board bought two low income affordable housing building around 250 S. State Street and tore them down to make a nicer, prettier building that was supposed to be affordable housing.  That happened 5 years ago.  The City messed up and so we actually lost the housing and it was not replaced.  The RDA is still attempting to get an affordable housing building in there.
  The City has also tried to redevelop the Pipeline Building that has been empty since the new Police HQ was built.  Still no affordable housing as promised.  Although Dan Lofgren's Cowboy Partners seems to have a plan, the Council has been arguing about how much affordable housing should be in there, as a percentage.  Dan Lofgren is one of the good guys in affordable housing.  He has a great reputation as a developer and is also adept at utilizing the State's tax credit for affordable housing system.  He was the only developer who built affordable housing, mixed income units in Sugar House (Liberty Village on McClelland).  But the City Council is insisting that it knows better and so the housing is still not being built!
  The City had a significant increase in housing starts during the Impact Fee moratorium several years ago.  But the new increased impact fees are affecting developers (and ADUs as mentioned above since they have to pay Impact Fees for single family homes to get a permit).  Last year, the City Council discussed fee waivers for mixed income with 20% affordable housing in apartments.  That could save developers of some large projects almost half a million dollars.  But the fee waiver discussion went nowhere.
  The City has a policy of mixed income but almost all approved new apartment buildings are market rate.  The City has also discussed but not implemented an inclusionary zoning policy that would require all new buildings (over 10 units) to have at least 10% affordable units.  
  The City Council, specifically Councilmembers Kitchen and Mendenhall, was able to convince the rest of the RDA Board (the Council and Mayor) to appropriate $21 million for affordable housing but the spending is slow to result in new affordable housing. 
  The RDA staff pointed out to the Council/RDA Board almost 5 years ago that the State Street area has the best potential for increasing housing in Salt Lake City and could significantly help in increasing affordable housing.  But the City and RDA have been going around in circles for almost 5 years without any result.  Recently, the RDA staff was told that the Board of Education was going to question the large area that encompassed the proposed RDA expansion area of State Street (going from 200 E. to 300 W. from 6th South to 2100 South).  So the potential for housing increasing there has hit a brick wall.  The City does not need to wait for approval of a redevelopment area.  It can easily and obviously quickly encourage affordable, mixed income, mixed use housing that allows for residents and businesses to invest in their area and encourages walkability.  Form based zoning and inclusionary zoning policies should be implemented for State Street.
  The Legislature and the municipal governments' efforts to get a handle on AirBnb also add to the increasing unaffordable housing in Utah.  That requires better data instead of using the honor system to get tax money from AirBnb and other peer to peer rental systems instead of getting the addresses and how often they are used.  In some cases, a home that rents for $1000 a month can use AirBnb to get double that or rent just half of the home for the cost of a mortgage.
  The City is using $2 million from the County transportation funds for prettifying State Street (South Salt Lake City is getting $2 million for the their area).  That money could be and should be better used to encourage mixed use and mixed income buildings along State Street.  The idea that State Street needs Disneylandish style traffic calming with roundabouts, fancy bus lanes and more trees (car lots hate trees) to meet the Life on State dream of Envision Utah before encouraging building affordable housing is wrong.  Governments should not implement visions that detract basic services and higher priority.
  Salt Lake City should stop holding property and vacant buildings for dozens of years (like the Pipeline Building and several properties around Gateway (that decreased in value due to the non use of the buildings - vacant buildings encourage crime and lower property values).  Those properties should be sold and used to encourage mixed income housing development in the City.  The City should not be thinking of using SROs to fulfill the need for affordable housing until they find a solution for and remove the crime magnet motels.  Even when the owners are on site and cameras are installed and they work with police, crime seems to be enabled and encouraged by the low cost of daily and weekly rentals.  SROs are not a solution.
  Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall, running for mayor, implied that she and the Council would vote for the SRO expansion encouragement on May 7, despite the polarizing of the citizens for and against the proposal.

UTA ENCOURAGES PROJECTS BY CLAIMING THAT RAIL LEADS TO DEVELOPMENT
  When UTA claims that the S-Line has led to billions of development in Sugar House, it encourages municipalities to demand their own rail lines.  Utah taxpayers do not have the money to pay for tens of billions of new rail lines.  UTA doesn't even have the money to increase bus service!  So again, to show that the claim that the S-Line is a boon to business development, if a rail line is all it takes to allow for exponential development, look at the 250 West and 2100 South area to State Street.  For over almost 20 years, there was no development in the area, despite a train every 5-10 minutes!  Despite the efforts of several developers.  That area, in South Salt Lake City is slowly getting some new buildings but sitting vacant for decades is not proof that rail leads to development.  The S-Line carries about 1300 riders a day (the oped link above goes into more detail) and it is not cost effective.  The efforts of some to expand it to 39th South via Highland or to the North via 1100 E. and 900 E. is a costly effort without justification, in my opinion.  And if UTA does not want the pressure to build more rail lines, they should stop saying that the S-Line led to billions of development.

BODYCAM COSTS COULD DECREASE WITH HELP FROM UTAH INTERACTIVE
  Again, the cost of bodycams for cops is coming under scrutiny.  The monthly cost is over $100 per month for bodycam storage and access via the supplier servers (like TASER now AXON).  The cost of servers and storage should be going down but the way the system is set up, the bodycams are provided with grants and when the money runs out, the police departments have to pay exorbitant monthly fees to store and access the videos.  Utah Interactive has a new product being tested that should provide much needed relief.  Their system is being built under the auspices of the Utah Department of Safety and it will be over 50% less expensive.  Companies should not continue to be used if they will not pass on the lower costs of services (storage) to their government, taxpayer supported customers.  Law enforcement entities in Utah should ask the Legislature to ensure that all video from law enforcement bodycams can be moved over, without extra cost, to new lower cost storage and access systems.

SLC RDA IGNORES 9-LINE SAFETY & ENCOURAGES POLLUTION, MILKRUNS AND VACANT BUILDINGS
  The RDA Board (the City Council and Mayor) have adopted a new budget amendment that accepts money from the County to help traffic calming on 300 West around West High.  The effort will encourage traffic to downtown SLC to use Beck Street and go through the Capitol Hill neighborhood.  The result wii be increased pollution, especially for those living on Capitol Hill.  I am not sure why that makes sense to anyone.  
  The budget and money from the County will also complete a pedestrian bridge over railroad tracks at 300 North (for West High students - a big concern).  But the City and the County are ignoring the biggest danger of the railroad tracks, which is at 900 South.  Several deaths have occurred in the last year.  But the effort to complete the 9-Line Trail is focusing on everything else but the most important part, the pedestrian bridge at 900 South.  I do not understand why the City and County are spending transportation funds on projects, like parking garages for private developers, that are not as important.  
  The RDA Board is also continuing to push for a TRAX station at 650 S. Main Street to encourage development of the Sears Block.  That would make the TRAX lines going through downtown, milk runs and result in discouraging ridership.  I asked the RDA Board to not build anymore stations on TRAX until the Green Line is allowed to go off on the spur near 1300 South to 400 West and skip the zig zag through downtown and save 10 minutes to the Airport and increase ridership.  There is also an effort and plan to build a station at 1700 South which, in my opinion, makes more sense.
  In another issue, I asked the Board to sell the vacant buildings and property that is underutilized, and in some cases, vacant for decades.  The property could be worth over $100 million but the vacant buildings around the Gateway have actually decreased in value by about $10 million in the last year!  The money could be and should be used for encouraging building mixed use and mixed income buildings along State Street.

SLC PARK RESTROOMS OPENED FINALLY
  Despite SLC Parks being utilized by many sports clubs in our spring, over the last few months, the SLC Park restrooms have been closed.  SLC Public Utilities allows opening the restrooms on April 20th this year.  They did open the restrooms but the City Parks and Public Utilities Departments have, in the past, closed the restrooms on Labor Day and at other questionable times.  I find it disprespectful at best to force kids and young women to try to find a bush to hide them while they relieve themselves.  The Park restrooms should now be open.  The City Council has been discussing, with the Budget Amendment 5 (see below), the fact that the City Public Utilities and Budgets do not really match the real life weather and dry summers in Salt Lake City.  So, sometimes, like two years ago, the City stopped watering the cemetery and medians with trees (until complaints).  The City Council has been told that there is a problem but refuses to change the policy that fixes the water budget before the summer and stops watering when the budget appropriation is reached.  So the City spends a million on prettifying alleyways and most of the plantings have died.  The City spent hundreds of thousands on plantings for Miller Park but they died from no watering.  The restrooms are like plantings in SLC, not important.

300 W. BALLPARK NEEDS TEMPORARY SIDEWALKS
  When the City did not get the $12 million grant for the 300 West traffic calming (in Ballpark), the City shifted the $2 million matched City funds to 1500 S. on the westside and 2700 South on the eastside.  But UTA will shift the 17 bus to 300 West and the 9 bus will continue to run on 300 West but expand service to the westside of the City on 1300 South (both in August).  But there are not many good sidewalks along 300 West.  Encouraging transit/bus use requires sidewalks but the City is balking at constructing sidewalks since the City will have to rip up many of them in a few years when they do reconstruct 300 West (now scheduled for 2022).  That will cost the City several hundred thousand dollars.  But sidewalks should be a priority now.  The City should do a better job planning the projects to minimize the duplicate work.

UTA ORDERS BUS DRIVERS TO STAY AWAY FROM THE CURB
  UTA has problems with bus drivers getting too close to the curb at bus stops and hitting and breaking their mirrors when there are nearby tree or sign interferences.  So UTA has ordered the drivers to stay one to four feet from the curb.  Which discourages ridership since bus riders like the ability to not have to make a big step up.  That is why rail lines seem to be nicer to ride, no step up (in general).  So the new buses (that kneel to almost be even with the curbs) are less useful.  And the bus stop amenities and platforms for buses that were built to specifically meet up with the bus entrance floor are wasted.  I asked UTA to rescind the order.  UTA should also ensure that bus stops do not have interferences that could interfere with the buses getting close enough to the curb to allow easy access for all bus riders.  The easier it is to get on a bus, the easier it is to encourage ridership.

UTA SELLS SEX
  I am old enough to not be afraid of sex but... UTA has sold a full bus wrap for the Blue Boutique, an adult (R rated sex?) store.  It drives through the City with a tag line, the greatest store on earth (sometimes misread as greatest sex on earth).  When UTA thinks that it makes sense to cover up the bus windows with a bus wrap about a sex store (which is the biggest ad complaint that they get) instead of ensuring clear and clean windows (the second greatest reason that people ride buses), that is scary.
  This effectively puts riders in a tube that is hard to see out of and it hides our beautiful city.  Riders at the bus stops have to wait to enter since they can't see in to see if riders are going to exit.  It slows down riders getting on buses.  And it makes it difficult to see the bus stop to get off at in the evening.
  Is UTA so desperate for money, despite the new taxes, that windows have to be covered?  Why wash bus windows if you dirty them up with ads for alcohol and other questionable ads.  UTA should forgo the $4 million in ads and ensure that bus windows are clean.  The new taxes should more than make up for it.

TRAX EXTENSION IN LEHI/DRAPER WILL SCREW WESTSIDE 
  Despite claims that UTA is focusing on service, UTA has agreed to study a TRAX extension from Draper to Lehi that will cost almost $2 billion.  The study is using County transportation money which is questionable since UTA Commissioner Carlton Christensen was in charge of economic development and had influence on where to spend the transportation funds.  He directed the money, before becoming UTA Commissioner, to be used for a parking garage in SLC and a parking facility in Cottonwood Heights.  I need to emphasize that the study cost is coming from the same funds that Commissioner Christensen directed a few months ago.

SLC ADOPTS BUDGET AMENDMENT 5 WITH TRANSIT PROJECTS NOT SERVICE
  The Salt City Council passed Budget Amendment 5 with minor changes that included removing $2 million from the Disneylandification of State Street since the original $4 million was to go to State Street through South Salt Lake City.  The plan is to increase safety for bicyclists and widen the sidewalks.  The Budget Amendment also provides funding for a study on Warm Springs Park which will go towards the process of upgrading the facility and opening it up for more public use.  The study is due to the activism and dreams of the Capitol Hill Community Council.  The Budget Amendment also provides funding for more prettifying of streets including 300 West in the Marmalade District (see RDA note) and moves funding to 1500 South and 2700 South from the 300 West in Ballpark area. 
  The Amendment also spends $400,000 for 2 transit hubs, one on 200 South and about 700 East (as if we really need one there) and another around Redwood Road and North Temple.  Another effort to provide projects instead of service.





APRIL 10, 2019
PLASTIC BAGS ARE NOT BAD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
SLC COUNCIL IGNORES PLASTIC BAGS AND BANS NUCLEAR WEAPONS
SUGAR HOUSE MURAL CELEBRATES THE HISTORY OF SUGAR HOUSE
UTA MAY NEED OVER 140 NEW DRIVERS IN NEXT YEAR
SLC SHOULD STOP CRIME MAGNET MOTELS BEFORE CREATING CRIME MAGNET SROS
SLC POLICE HIRED 80 BUT LOST ALMOST 80 TO GAIN NO NEW COPS
SUGAR HOUSE RENTALS NOW OVER $1.85 A SQUARE FOOT
NEW STORES IN SUGAR HOUSE NORDSTROM, MAYBE TARGET
UDOT/SLC STILL IGNORES UGLIEST OFFRAMP IN UTAH
RANK CHOICE VOTING REALITY IN SLC
CALL SLC IF THEY TICKET YOU FOR NOT ENOUGH WATER USE
SUGAR HOUSE PARK RESTAURANT COMING


PLASTIC BAGS ARE NOT BAD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
  Several recent stories in the New York TImes and on NPR have raised questions about the effect on the environment of plastic grocery bags.  The New York Times story said that: 'it takes significantly more energy to create pulp and manufacture a paper bag than it does to make a single-use plastic bag from oil....You’d have to reuse a paper bag at least three times before its environmental impact equaled that of a high-density polyethylene plastic bag used only once."  The article also pointed out that reusable bags would have to be reused up to 131 times "before it had a smaller global warming impact than a lightweight plastic bag used only once".  The stories also pointed out that studies showed that when plastic bags are banned (in California), the use of alternative disposable and more expensive plastic bags significantly increased.  In other words, people want plastic bags.  Plastic bags are about .3% of the waste in landfills, .8% of litter and 80% are reused according to the EPA.
  In my opinion, the reason why we have these efforts to ban bags and straws comes from a need, a compassion, a passion to do something to make a difference.  When we hear stories about how bad things happen, we want to change the situation and make it better.  But carried too far and the effort can lead to claims that we are having too many kids.  "Diapers create a bigger wastestream in landfills so maybe the answer is not having more kids."
  Plastic bags do not create much of a problem for the landfill.  The landfill workers just wait until the wind blows and they can easily gather them from the fences.  The real solution is to ask, educate and encourage people to dispose of their plastic bags, hopefully reused, in a manner that doesn't have them loose in the garbage.
  Plastic bags make it easier to carry groceries on a bus or when carrying a child.  Paper bags are great for car trunks but very inconvenient for mass transit.  It takes a gallon of water to make a paper bag.  Water is too important to waste on a paper bag.  The next to last thing that we need to worry about is plastic bags.  The last thing we should worry about is plastic straws.  Government should not be so big that they are telling stores that need to be micromanaged by government.
  It makes more sense to kill dead dinosaurs than live trees.
  The links to these interesting stories are:

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/29/climate/plastic-paper-shopping-bags.html

https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2019/04/09/711181385/are-plastic-bag-bans-garbage

SLC COUNCIL IGNORES PLASTIC BAGS AND BANS NUCLEAR WEAPONS
  The Salt Lake City Council, without a public hearing, voted to approve, with the Mayor, a joint resolution supporting the UN Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons.  Some of the language includes:
  "nuclear weapons are an existential threat to all higher life on Earth, including us; ... and all residents of Salt Lake City have the right to live free of the threat of nuclear annihilation; and.... the production of new nuclear weapons will threaten health and the environment by creating dangerous radioactive waste... and calls on present and future United States Administrations to show leadership and work with all nuclear armed countries to negotiate verified elimination of all nuclear weapon arsenals."
  If this actually happens, with the new law that gives the EnergySolution nuclear waste dump a bigger chance to take in nuclear weapons waste (5000 barrels so far), Utah may get a lot of these banned nuclear weapons!  So even if the whole world turns super good and governments stop being threatening (as if), and there are no more dictators in power, we will be able to verify and trust that a ban will be effective!  But how do we get a guarantee that the nuclear weapons waste will not be buried in Utah?  
  There is a chance that we could turn the nuclear weapons into nuclear plant fuel but we have not been able to design and build guaranteed safe nuclear power plants.  Utah also recently passed a resolution supporting molten salt nuclear reactors despite the fact that it creates a lot of bomb making material, the tritium release has not been solved (a dangerous beta emitter that can cause cancer), the piping become brittle in the environment with some of the most corrosive elements possible and we have not been able to plan, design, build and operate a plant to remove the dozens of incredibly dangerous actinides created in such a plant.  Experts at MIT believe that molten salt reactors need a lot of research and would not be safely available, if ever, until after 2050.  
  The Salt Lake City Council should focus on basic services period.

SUGAR HOUSE MURAL CELEBRATES THE HISTORY OF SUGAR HOUSE
  Sugar House has a new mural that is an amazingly accurate rendition of a picture is of the 1940s Sugar House 1100 East and 2100 South intersection.  It was commissioned by Jeremy Higginson of Market Source Real Estate.  It is on the north facing of the building at 2015 S. 1100 E. and in the entrance to the Sugar House Coffee and Best Friends Animal Shelter parking lot.  Jeremy also is an East Liberty Park Community Council leader.  This mural is definitely worth the walk or drive to see.  His contact number is 801 810 6773 or jeremy@marketsourceagent.com.

UTA MAY NEED OVER 140 NEW DRIVERS IN NEXT YEAR
  UTA seems to have hired many more drivers than usual in the last few months.  The reason is that UTA now needs 130 more drivers now and it is expected to need 140 more drivers in August.  UTA drivers are under a lot of pressure in a hot job market.  They are required to drive split shifts which is hard to justify.  Many drivers like the split shifts and the job but UTA is about to lose 30 drivers to retirement this year!  For those of us wanting more bus service, this is the weak link in the effort.  Without drivers, UTA cannot expand services.  A few years ago, the turnover was 20% a year and the job market has become more competitive since.  So far, UTA is making up for the deficiency with overtime, lots and lots of overtime.  When you ride the bus, give the drivers a thank you for appreciation for working in a demanding job, with split shifts, with high turnover.  We need them.

SLC SHOULD STOP CRIME MAGNET MOTELS BEFORE CREATING CRIME MAGNET SROS
  The Salt Lake City Council is planning a public hearing on a proposal to allow Single Room Occupancy (SRO) residences around the City.  SROs are smaller and less expensive (preferred term is affordable) rentals that contain either a private kitchen or private bathroom (not both). They can house one to two tenants depending on size.  The rent can be weekly and eviction is easier than regular rentals.  SROs were added to the City's Housing Plan (Growing SLC) a couple of years ago to "increase housing options, promote affordability, and build more equitable and fair housing."  Up until now, the City has been treating SROs as studios.  They are now allowed in Transit Districts like North Temple and 4th South.  The new proposal requires that a property manager be on-site 24 hours a day with security camera monitoring.
  I am against the new proposed ordinance because Salt Lake City has not solved the problem of the low cost motels on State Street and North Temple that have become crime magnets.  In a recent case, neighbors forced the closing of a low cost motel, the Skyline Inn on 17th South and Foothill Drive due to the criminal activity.  It had developed a reputation by Utah prisoners that it allowed them to rent the rooms after release from prison.  Developers bought the property to stop the criminal activity.  Without more effective policing (requiring more police, which Salt Lake City has not been able to achieve) and adequate County public safety funding (for adequate jail space and DA prosecutions), SROs could turn into the crime magnets that have been the scourge of the neighbors for decades.
  Salt Lake City has a policy of mixed income.  The reason is studies show that buildings with all low income can become like mini "Cabrini Greens".  The effect could result in the same thing that happened to Palmer Court that is a low income facility between State Street and Main Street that is the second biggest medical response draw for Salt Lake City due to drugs and alcohol issues.  David Litvack, the Salt Lake City Deputy Chief of Staff argues that the SROs are market rate so the units could be many different rents.  But the crime magnet motels can also charge what they want and they still end up being crime magnets.  
  In my opinion, SROs have a bad reputation due to historical crime issues.  The last Salt Lake City SRO had to close due to one of the tenants murdering a neighbor.
  Parking is also an issue since SROs require one half of a parking space per unit and each unit could contain 2 residents.  Parking issues have always polarized communities in Salt Lake City.
  Salt Lake City has a housing problem that I contend is due to many vacant properties around the City.  The City owns many properties that it has kept vacant for decades.  Vacant properties encourage crime in neighborhoods and could be used for residential housing development.  In addition, the City's development policies discourage housing.  Several months ago, the City Council discussed reducing impact fees for mixed income residential development with 20% of the units affordable but the effort stalled.  That could have cut hundreds of thousands of dollars from up front impact fees in developments with hundreds of units.  Salt Lake City should be encouraging mixed income housing around the many vacant lots in the City, some owned by the City.  
  Salt Lake City should be encouraging mixed income mixed use housing with affordable units around commercial areas that desperately need more nearby housing to encourage walkable neighborhoods.  SROs should not be considered near single family home neighborhoods that the proposal is suggesting.  The City Council will have the public hearing on April 23rd at 7 PM at City Hall (400 S. State Street.  The Council provides validation for parking under the Library.  You can also email the individual councilmembers (on the left) or email city.council.liaisons@slcgov.com with your comments.  I put the maps of the areas that Salt Lake City is proposing for SROs in the Salt Lake City section of downloads.

SLC POLICE HIRED 80 BUT LOST ALMOST 80 TO GAIN NO NEW COPS
  In several recent community councils, the Salt Lake City Police have celebrated the fact that they hired 80 officers over the last year.  Unfortunately the SLC Police have also lost about the same number.  Although the number on patrol has increased due to rearranging staffing and better management, the City has more vehicles and bicycles than police to staff them.  Salt Lake City cops should have to beg for a respectable salary.  They deserve a higher salary.  Last week, several SLC Police Officers asked the City Council and Mayor's Administration to at least sit down and talk about their salary instead of ignoring their requests.

SUGAR HOUSE RENTALS NOW OVER $1.85 A SQUARE FOOT
  Rentals in Sugar House are over $2 a square foot.  The only affordable residences in the new developments are the Liberty Village by Dan Lofgren's Cowboy Partners who used Utah Housing tax credits to have a few affordable units in the development.  The Westport Capitol development along the S-Line on 300 East is 85% leased except for the 15 units of three bedroom.  That development costs $1.85 a square foot for rentals.  The supergentrification of Sugar House continues.

NEW STORES IN SUGAR HOUSE NORDSTROM, MAYBE TARGET
  Nordstrom opens up a regular store next to their Nordstrom Rack mini store in Sugar House in the former Toys R Us building.  There is also discussion with Target that could result in a Target neighborhood store in the area.  The shopping center will also extend the street north of Key Bank that will go from Highland to 1300 East.  It is called Stringham Avenue.  The Park Avenue University of Utah Medical buildings on the former ShopKo property may be open by next year and then the Westport Capitol development group will start constructing the residential component on the west side of the property.

UDOT/SLC STILL IGNORES UGLIEST OFFRAMP IN UTAH
  UDOT gave a presentation to the Sugar House Community Council this week that listed the projects that the State was planning on working on in the Sugar House area.  This year, there will be maintenance on the bridges of I80 in Sugar House.  They have exhibited significant deterioration and, although they are planned for replacement in a few years, they need to be worked on to stop concrete from potentially falling onto cars.  The bridge replacement work will occur in the next 4 years (2022) and will include a wider bridge to allow bicycle lanes.  That work will also include resurfacing I80 with a surface that will result in less noise.  The present surface of I80 in the Sugar House area is almost 50 years old.  Foothill Drive is scheduled for resurfacing and restriping in 2020.  The UDOT Sugar House Community Council presentation is in the downloads Transportation section.
  One of the issues that was discussed was the poor condition of the 1300 East onramp/offramp of I80 westbound.  That area was originally planted by UDOT but the maintenance by Salt Lake City was negligible and it fell into poor condition.  The estimates to re-establish low maintenance plants and trees along with appropriate rock scape designs was estimated to be around a million dollars.  UDOT has asked the Legislature for funding without success and they have not planned on doing the project without funding.  The area is around 5 acres and an estimate from 5 years ago was $44,000 per acre for a rock with weed barrier treatment to $175,000 per acre for extensive landscaping including irrigation, sod and trees.
  This offramp to 1300 East is the main gateway into Sugar House.  Sugar House is rapidly developing a reputation as an area with character that has amenities like entertainment, shopping, medical, offices and recreation in a walkable area.  Sugar House is developing into the La Jolla of Salt Lake City!  Unfortunately the gentrification of Sugar House is also resulting in residential rental rates of $2 a square foot.
  But all of this development should be reflected in an inviting offramp from I80 that does not look like it was never maintained.  Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County and UDOT should work on a plan to create an appropriate entrance to Sugar House from I80.  The property tax increases are significant and some of them should be used to beautify that offramp.  Sugar House residents should contact their City, County and Legislative elected leaders and government public servants to ask for consideration to make Sugar House look as good as it is.  The 1300 East offramp from I80 westbound area should not look like no one cares.   
  In 2014, UDOT said that they originally installed landscaping that "included rocks, drip irrigation and plantings of trees & shrubs.  Salt Lake City initially agreed to maintain this area but after the I80 project was completed, the City chose not to commit to long term maintenance of this landscaped area as well as the various cross streets running under I80 within the jurisdiction of Salt Lake City.  Thus, the maintenance of these areas fell back to UDOT maintenance.....(The west side of the circle) was planted with a standard dry land grass which is a typical planting designed to control erosion which is typical planting UDOT includes on projects when a local government does not want to fund both the upgrade in landscaping and long term maintenance.  The installed grasses do not require irrigation, provide erosion protection and is low maintenance....(The north slope next to Sugar House Park) was maintained by Sugar House Park some years back as a turf area and irrigation was installed as well as trees and sod.  Sugar House Park has ceased maintaining this area including irrigation, however it appears the trees in the area seem to have established a good root system.....Regarding costs to upgrade landscaping...installing rock with a weed barrier or installing sod, trees and irrigation...  (These costs were taken from recent UDOT competitively bidded projects.)  The rock and weed barrier treatment runs about $44,000/acre & the more extensive landscaping including irrigation, sod and trees runs about $175,000/acre."  The area in the circle is about 5 acres.  The estimate given to upgrade the area this last week was about $1.8 million with xeriscaping.  UDOT said that they have been trying to get the Legislature to fund the effort but they have failed to get the approval.  UDOT's Daniel Page also said that they have tried to get all parties to the table to fix/beautify the eastbound offramp area onto 1300 East.
  Another project for the Sugar House area includes work on the Jordan Salt Lake Canal by the liquor store).  

RANK CHOICE VOTING REALITY IN SLC
  SLC Council Chair Charlie Luke, last week, said that the City was not going to go to rank choice voting, despite the interest and over 10 candidates for Mayor.  Rank Choice voting is claimed, in non-partisan races, to provide a better indicator of voter choice.  But Charlie said that it would be unfair, in the middle of the race, to change the voting system.  The reality is that SLCO is not able to provide rank choice voting.  I mentioned it several times in the last 6 months in the blog.  Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen said:
"our voting system won't accommodate rank choice voting.  It isn't designed to create a ballot for rank choice voting or to tabulate rank choice voting.
The new voting system that was selected by the State (ES&S) has created a software option for rank choice voting, but it hasn't been certified.  Certification of voting systems is a rigorous process and crucial to ensure their accuracy.
Therefore, we will not offer contract services to cities who choose to conduct their elections with rank choice voting"

CALL SLC IF THEY TICKET YOU FOR NOT ENOUGH WATER USE
  This is a duplicate note from last year.  During a SLC Council meeting last month, a speaker complained that a neighbor was ticketed for not having enough greenery on their parking strip.  Anyone who is ticketed for not having enough greenery should call this number.  
  WATER CONSERVATION IN SLC IS LIMITED BY THE CITY'S REQUIREMENTS FOR 30% GREEN IN FRONT YARDS. Salt Lake City requires front yards to have 30% green space and no big rocks or concrete on park strips. But the City is trying to lower its per capita use from about 90 gallons per day and many have taken the challenge and installed decorative rock or mulch along with a couple of drought tolerant plants. The person in SLC that is responsible for water conservation is aware of the potential hypocrisy and is willing to consider any homeowner that is fielding complaints from the City about not enough green space. She is Stephanie Duer and she can be reached at stephanie.duer @slcgov.com or by phone at 8014836760.

SUGAR HOUSE PARK RESTAURANT COMING
  The Garden Center of Sugar House Park on 2100 South and around 1600 East is being planned to be converted into a restaurant and event center with an upgrade.  The restaurant will be called The Mint & Rose Cafe and Event Center.  The Sugar House Park Authority is about to complete negotiations and plans with a 25 year lease contract.  The developer's press release said: 
"The Garden Center Building has been part of the Sugar House neighborhood for over 54 years. Many art markets, quinceañeras and weddings have been celebrated within its walls. The building sits on a beautiful parcel of Sugar House Park over looking the expansive green of the gardens. Garden & Park Conservancy Inc. is re-envisaging this public space so that residents can enjoy celebrations and gatherings for another 54 years and more.
The entire Garden Center Building will be renovated to allow a multi-faceted use of the space. Residents will be able to use the space for meetings, dining or evening events, such as a weddings, corporate or non-profit fundraising dinners. 




APRIL 2, 2019
SLC BUDGET AMENDMENT SHOWS WATER PREDICTIONS USELESS
SLC TRANSIT PLANS MOSTLY PROJECTS INSTEAD OF SERVICE INCREASES
DOGS OFFLEASH AND SLCO ANIMAL SERVICES STATS ON EUTHANASIA
SLC SPENDS MONEY ON FACADES
FLOURIDE/COPPER/LEAD ISSUES COULD BE COUNTYWIDE
RANK CHOICE VOTING NOT HAPPENING IN SLC
FLASHLIGHTS HELP DECREASE PEDESTRIAN DEATHS
SLC WORKING TO MAKE 1300 S 1100 E INTERSECTION SAFER
SLC DISCOURAGING POLICE/FIRE STATIONS ON OPEN SPACE 
CONGREGATE CARE FACILITY PLAN KICKED BACK TO MAYOR
NO SIDEWALKS DISCOURAGE MASS TRANSIT USE
PARKS WELL USED BY KIDS BUT RESTROOMS STILL LOCKED
SLCO JAIL MEDICALLY ASSISTED TREATMENT
UTA PRESENTATION TO SLCO BUS STOPS EXPANSION
WHY NO EXTRA BUS SERVICE UP CANYON

MILLCREEK CITY CENTER PLANS IN DOWNLOADS SECTION


SLC BUDGET AMENDMENT SHOWS WATER PREDICTIONS USELESS
  As usual, SLC ignores the issues with watering public open spaces, parks, cemeteries and golf courses in SLC.  The water budget for the City is nothing but a prediction and it encourages conservation which sometimes leads to not watering cemeteries, golf courses and parks.  SLC is finally acknowledging the issue with Budget Amendment 5.  SLC's new budget (released next month) should increase the budget for water.  Budget amendments to cover water overuse are often ignored and our trees suffer and our plants die.  The City also did not realize savings from lighting retrofits.  It is questionable why changing to low watt LEDs should not decrease energy costs.  But SLC has a contract with Rocky Mountain Power that sets the power per pole and that may be the reason why lighting costs are not decreasing for parks.
  "Salt Lake City Parks and Public Lands FY18/19 budget is experiencing a projected deficit due to over expenditures in
electrical and water costs......
Salt Lake City Parks and Public Lands water budget has not grown relative to utility rate increases incurred annually. The
budget was, years ago, set to cover an average year of precipitation and heat. With annual utility rate increases of 3-5%,
without relative budget increases, longer hotter summers, additional park acreage, the installment of more accurate water
meters by Public Utilities and ESCO payments for irrigation upgrades, the budget is no longer adequate to cover the needs
of parks in the City. The summer of 2018 was dry, with warm days and warm nights. Public Lands utilized water
minimally to protect our natural landscapes and still fell outside the prescribed budget.
The water expense for Public Lands is projected to be overspent by $137,815. There are many factors that have contributed
to the projected over-expenditures in power and water.
• Stipulated energy savings, agreed upon by contract, that was never realized
• More accurate water meter installment at parks and cemetery
• Additional park acreage
• Exceptionally dry and warm summer months
• Maintenance issues that invalidated meter readings and forced pre-estimated savings."

SLC TRANSIT PLANS MOSTLY PROJECTS INSTEAD OF SERVICE INCREASES
  Today's SLC Council will have a final public hearing on Budget Amendment 5 which spends millions of taxpayer dollars that is coming from County Transportation Choice Fund on projects instead of service increases.  Some projects like the 9-Line Trail ($4.3 million) may make sense but that project lacks a safe path for pedestrians, wheelchairs and bicyclists over the railroad tracks which still divides east and west Salt Lake City.  The Budget Amendment also includes the million dollars for a study (pushed by Millcreek) to justify the extension of the S-Line to Millcreek.  It has 
two bus transit hubs ($400,000 and $300,000) on 2nd South and 700 East (someone needs to tell the neighborhood) and "near North Temple Boulevard between Redwood Road and 400 West".  
  The westside transit hub project money would have been better spent, in my opinion, on replacing the back and forth circular route of the Redwood Road bus that is going in circles in both directions to serve Utah State Government buildings.  Redwood Road's 217 bus is one of the most popular bus routes with over 3500 passengers a day.  Even though it is 15 minutes in frequency, zig zagging and turning through streets is not an efficient bus route.  I know that UTA is doing it to prove that it is treating the westside/economic area fairly but zig zagging buses are not treating the area fairly.  They make the trip much longer than a straight shot bus.
  There is also money for the Life on State Street Implementation Plan that almost no one knows about with traffic calming (lower speeds if UDOT approves).  This plan needs more public engagement.
  The main takeaway from this part of the budget amendment is SLC is asking for almost $11 million in transportation projects that do not increase mass transit service.  The projects do not make the roads smoother for more comfortable bus rides (poorly maintained streets cause bouncy bouncy buses which are not a comfortable ride).  The money could have funded over 10 new or expanded frequency or late night and weekend service routes.  Despite claims that one time money should not be used for service increases, I can make a pretty good argument that increasing service, if done right, can prime the pump and encourage more transit ridership throughout a more robust mass transit system.  The synergy can increase also increase fare revenue, not just on the increased service routes but throughout the system.  That can provide continuing revenue to fund service increases. 
  The SLC Budget Amendment 5 information from the packet is below:

The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $4,338,218 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project.
This project is funding for the Center Section of the 9-Line Trail. This is the 2.0 mile section along 900 S between 600 W
and Lincoln Street (approx. 940 E), excluding West Temple.
Following the 9-Line Extension Study, the City will improve infrastructure quality, elevate the streetscape for walking,
bicycling, transit, and streamline project delivery which will ensure high-quality connectivity, high comfort facilities, and
appropriate amenities while limiting implementation time and impacts from construction.
This grant does not require a match, but does award points for additional funds dedicated to the project so the City is
providing a match of $1,800,000. $1,500,000 from Street Reconstruction General Obligation Bond and $300,000 from
SLC Sales Tax for Transit Improvements.

The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $942,500 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project.
The Greater Millcreek / Sugar House Circulation Plan will identify transportation infrastructure improvements to increase
connectivity by all modes, expand transportation choices, and support economic development for mixed-use areas that
share jurisdiction borders of Holladay, Millcreek, Salt Lake City/Sugar House, and South Salt Lake.
$942,500 in grants funds combined with $57,500 cash match will be used to secure services of a local/regional
professional transportation planning consultant to produce the Greater Millcreek / Sugar House Circulation Plan.
Salt Lake City would administer the multi-jurisdiction contract for consultant services.
A cash match totaling $57,500 is from the following collaborative partners: A) $40,000 from Salt Lake City sourced from
Funding Our Futures sales tax increase; B) $10,000 from Millcreek; C) $5,000 from Holladay; and D) $2,500 from South
Salt Lake.

The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $400,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project.
The 200 South Transit Corridor / Downtown Hub Study will propose a redesign of 200 South from 600 West to 900 East
to transform the function of 200 South to a premier transit corridor with a downtown mobility hub/transit mall while also
incorporating access for walking, bicycling, shared mobility, private automobiles, and freight.
$360,000 in grants funds combined with $40,000 cash match will be used to secure services of a local/regional
professional transportation planning consultant to produce the 200 South Transit Corridor / Downtown Hub Study.
A cash match totaling $40,000 is committed by Salt Lake City sourced from the Funding Our Futures sales tax increase.
A public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the grant application for this award.

The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $300,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project.
Salt Lake City Westside Multimodal Hub Study will identify a site on or near North Temple Boulevard between Redwood
Road and 400 West best suited to host a new multimodal hub facility that connects different modes of transit, including
TRAX, bus, ride sharing services, bike share, scooters, etc.
A cash match totaling $30,000 is committed by Salt Lake City sourced from the Funding Our Futures sales tax increase.

The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $4,800,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project.
Life on State: Design and Catalytic Site Implementation is a pilot project to test transportation improvement interventions
on State Street that are recommended in the Life on State Implementation Plan 2017.
Transportation improvement interventions would include:
1) $2,9,00,000 for design and construction of mobility and safety improvements in Salt Lake City on State Street between
600 South and 900 South to include wider sidewalks, improved transit stops, slower speed design, parallel parking
pockets, reduced driveways, street furniture, street trees, and mid-block crossings;
2) $2,000,000 for design and construction of mobility and safety improvements in South Salt Lake on State Street
combined between 2100 South and Haven Avenue (approximately 2300 South) to include wider sidewalks, bus pull-outs,
and street trees; and
3) $300,000 for design of high-comfort bike routes on each side of State Street (200 East and Main Street/West Temple)
between 300 South and 3300 South with connections to State Street amenities.
A cash match totaling $400,000 is committed from the following collaborative partners: A) $230,000 from Salt Lake City
Complete Streets Enhancement Fund (8381030 - $105,000 rescope and $8419009 - $125,000) both rescoped to "Life on
State", and B) $170,000 from Utah Department of Transportation for construction of a midblock crossing on State Street
between 700 South and 800 South.

DOGS OFFLEASH AND SLCO ANIMAL SERVICES STATS ON EUTHANASIA
  SLC is in the process of changing the off leash ordinance in Salt Lake City.  The Council and Mayor are discussing the issues and how to codify the changes.  In particular, the proposed ordinance will give SLCO Animal Control authority to ticket individuals for taking dogs in closed areas of Salt Lake City.  I put the specific report in the downloads section along with the latest report from SLCO Animal Services.

SLC SPENDS MONEY ON FACADES
  I question Salt Lake City's priorities when they budget almost $500,000 for prettifying facades.  SLC Housing & Neighborhood Development Economic Development Façade Program runs it.  I put the list in the downloads section.  SLC should use their funds for more basic services like better upkeep of roads.  And if Salt Lake City really cared about facades, they wouldn't keep vacant buildings vacant for decades.  Those vacant building facades are in much worse shape than those on the list.  I also put a map of CDBG eligible areas in the downloads. 

FLOURIDE/COPPER/LEAD ISSUES COULD BE COUNTYWIDE
  Salt Lake City contends that the fluoride problem in Sandy would not occur in Salt Lake City (or Millcreek and other cities served by SLC Public Utilities).  But sometimes the system does not work right.  Even in Salt Lake City, if you notice your water having a bluish tint, it is coming from copper piping that is affected by highly acidic water.  Over concentration of fluoride creates an acidic water that can remove some copper and lead from pipes (like in Flint Michigan and Sandy).  If you notice the blue tint or have questions about your water not being clear, call SLC Public Utilities at 801 483 6900.  I have heard several people claim that they sometimes see their water turn a blue tint for a day or two (in SLC).  They generally notice it in their toilet bowl (when not using the blue sanitizer system).  If you see it, it is recommended that you run your water for several minutes before drinking it.  And call SLC Public Utilities.  

RANK CHOICE VOTING NOT HAPPENING IN SLC
  SLC Council Chair Charlie Luke, last week, said that the City was not going to go to rank choice voting, despite the interest and over 10 candidates for Mayor.  Rank Choice voting is claimed, in non-partisan races, to provide a better indicator of voter choice.  But Charlie said that it would be unfair, in the middle of the race, to change the voting system.  The reality is that SLCO is not able to provide rank choice voting.  I mentioned it several times in the last 6 months in the blog.  Salt Lake County Clerk Sherrie Swensen said:
"our voting system won't accommodate rank choice voting.  It isn't designed to create a ballot for rank choice voting or to tabulate rank choice voting.
The new voting system that was selected by the State (ES&S) has created a software option for rank choice voting, but it hasn't been certified.  Certification of voting systems is a rigorous process and crucial to ensure their accuracy.
Therefore, we will not offer contract services to cities who choose to conduct their elections with rank choice voting"

FLASHLIGHTS HELP DECREASE PEDESTRIAN DEATHS
  Pedestrian deaths are significantly higher this year in Utah.  Please consider carrying a flashlight and having all of your children carry a flashlight to use when crossing the street.  A flashlight significantly increases pedestrian visibility to drivers, especially at night or near dark.

SLC WORKING TO MAKE 1300 S 1100 E INTERSECTION SAFER
  Several complaints have been received by the City regarding the 1300 South 1100 East intersection that is getting more traffic due to the 1300 East road reconstruction project.  Even the Fire Department complained about the lack of visibility.  Kurt Larson from Salt Lake City Transportation acknowledged the problem and said that they are working on making the intersection safer.  
  SLC is monitoring and "will be making slight changes to the signal timing in the area to keep traffic flowing safely.  Also, as part of a recent signal timing update, we are scheduled to make some slight changes to the amber and red clearance timing intervals you were referring.  These changes will be occurring during the spring."

SLC DISCOURAGING POLICE/FIRE STATIONS ON OPEN SPACE 
  Several years ago, there were complaints about taking Salt Lake City open space and using it for buildings like the Fire Station that was put next to the Forest Dale Golf Course.  There were also concerns that there would be a Police Station proposal for part of one of the east side parks.  Salt Lake City is changing their Open Space ordinance.  It comes too late for the Forest Dale country club Fire Station but it is never to late to change to a better ordinance.
"The Planning Commission recommended local police and fire operations not be allowed in
the Open Space Zoning District. Proposed changes reflect that recommendation.
Currently local police and fire operations are incorporated in two land use definitions:
“Governmental Facility” and “Municipal Service Uses.” The proposal removes “local police
and fire operations” from the definition of Governmental Facility and leaves it in the
Municipal Service Uses definition. The proposal allows municipal service uses, including
City utility uses and police and fire stations in agricultural and form based zones."

CONGREGATE CARE FACILITY PLAN KICKED BACK TO MAYOR
  The SLC Congregate Care Facility ordinance was kicked back to the SLC Mayor by the Council after two hours of arguments for and against the ordinance by an overflow crowd of SLC citizens (like the S-Line expansion effort in 2013).  Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall, running for Mayor, made the politically expedient motion to return the ordinance proposal to the Administration and keep the public hearing open.  I doubt if anyone running for SLC Mayor will push for this ordinance.  

NO SIDEWALKS DISCOURAGE MASS TRANSIT USE
  The plan to finally construct sidewalks on 300 West hit a roadblock when the grant application for $12 million from the federal government was turned down.  The City had budgeted $2 million to match that but repurposed those funds for 2700 South (on the eastside) and 1500 South (on the west side).  Salt Lake City is now planning to budget for and construct sidewalks on 300 West by 2021.  It is ironic that bus service is increasing on 300 West but there are no sidewalks.  No sidewalks discourage mass transit use.

PARKS WELL USED BY KIDS BUT RESTROOMS STILL LOCKED
  Spring is here and the parks are full of soccer clubs and other users of Salt Lake City's best open spaces.  But the restrooms are still closed!  The restrooms need to be open now and the City should not wait until summer.

SLCO JAIL MEDICALLY ASSISTED TREATMENT
  Salt Lake County Jail is expanding drug treatment (called medically assisted treatment - MAT) in jail.  I put the proposal and two reports in the downloads section.

UTA PRESENTATION TO SLCO BUS STOPS EXPANSION
  UTA is preparing to expand their system along with bus stop amenities.  I put their presentation to the County Council in the downloads section.

WHY NO EXTRA BUS SERVICE UP CANYONS
  The Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) has been visiting community councils to explain their Commission.  After 5 years and $8 million dollars, there is still no extra year round bus service up the Cottonwood Canyons.  There is not even weekend bus service.  The parking lots are full on ski days and the buses are full.  So the reason for the CWC, which followed from the closed door meetings of the Mountain Accord (I have a screen shot on why the Mountain Accord did not have to follow the Utah Open Public Meetings Act - since thrown out by a judge.) is essentially lost.  The Mountain Accord and the CWC were supposed to be a transportation solution for the Wasatch Canyons.  When former Congressman Jasen Chaffitz tried to push the issue in Congress, he was slapped down by the Republican Chair of a Congressional Committee in his most embarrassing video.  The Chair complained that there was no transportation in the proposed bill.
  The CWC says that the billion dollar tunnel and billion dollar rail system is still on the table!  Instead of spending billions of taxpayer money on fancy projects, the ski resorts have suggested paying for a gondola between the Canyons and Park City (and paying for it themselves).  That makes more sense.  The bus service increases that we have been asking for for over 5 years is being planned by UTA but they gave leadership to CWC (to give them the credit for it and justify their existence).  So for the past 3 years, the UTA proposal has been kept locked up in the CWC!  That is not a good transportation plan.
  The CWC is also recommending turning over 8000 acres to the federal government (HB78 requires them to go to the Legislature to confirm the effort) because they believe that the federal government can better manage the Wasatch Canyons.  That effort also hit a roadblock in the Legislature this session when the effort to give CWC authority to do that was stopped (in the failed Senate resolution).
They also are proposing land swaps that give sweetheart deals (in my opinion) to ski resorts.  The ski resorts want to built gigantic 500 room Montage style resort residences in return for similar acreage (a couple of hundred acres) that is unusable due to the terrain!  At the same time, the CWC and Salt Lake City refuses to consider offers of thousands of acreage offered for conservation easement for less than 100 cabins in the Canyons.  It seems to me that 100 cabins would create less intrusion into the Canyons than a big expansion of the ski resorts.
  One of the reasons that Brighton incorporated was due to the water issues that SLC has control over and the lack of restrooms that SLC refuses to increase (they did build one last year).  6 million visitors a year in the canyon should have many more restrooms but SLC and SLCO refuses to allow more expansion (it seems).  Don't worry about dog poop.  Worry about people poop spoiling the watershed.  At least some people dispose of their dog waste properly.  I don't know anyone willing to bag and appropriately dispose of their own waste.
  In other words, I have lost all trust in the CWC.


MILLCREEK CITY CENTER PLANS IN DOWNLOADS SECTION

  I put the Millcreek City Center Plans in the downloads section under SLC downloads.




MARCH 30, 2019
SPRAGUE LIBRARY CLOSED MONDAY, TEMP OPEN APR 28


SPRAGUE LIBRARY CLOSED MONDAY, TEMP OPEN APR 28
  Sprague Library in Sugar House is closing on Sunday March 31.  It will move to the old Sugar House Fire Station on Sugarmont and open on April 28 (tentatively).  They are still remodeling the interior.  In the meantime, the holds can be picked up at Foothill Library on 2100 East and Foothill until the new temporary library opens.  The Sprague Library reconstruction will take about a year.




MARCH 26, 2019
RDA PROPERTIES DECREASE $10 MILLION DUE TO DECADES OF VACANT BUILDINGS
STATE STREET CRA HITS SLC ED ROADBLOCK
SLC PLANS TRAFFIC CALMING ON 300 WEST TO SHIFT MORE TRAFFIC TO CAPITOL HILL
BLOCK 67 DECISION COMING SOON
GATEWAY MARKET STILL BEING PUSHED
SLC RDA RUSHING 400 WEST DEVELOPMENT DESPITE GREEN LINE REROUTING
SLC RDA PUSHING BRICKYARD REDEVELOPMENT
SLC RDA PUSHING MORE GRAND BOULEVARDS
SLC RDA PUSHING WEST UNIVERSITY EXPANSION AREA
SLC RDA PUSHING S-LINE EXTENSION REINVESTMENT ZONE 
SLC RDA PUSHING EAST DOWNTOWN TRANSIT HUB 
FREE FARE SHOWS KIDS OVERWHELMED FRONTRUNNER
SLC WILL GET $5 MILLION MORE IN JULY FOR MCCLELLAND/TRANSIT/ROADS?
HB313 HIT AND RUN PENALTIES INCREASED
81 NEW POLICE IN LAST YEAR BUT LOSS IS OVER 50
HOW TO REDIRECT 911 CALLS FROM VECC FOR SLC RESIDENTS
MARIJUANA SMOKERS SHOULD NOT BE SPEEDING
GRAVEL PIT DUST WINS OVER CLEAN AIR
ANTI IDLING PASSES AND CAN STOP INLAND PORT TRUCKS
HB78 LIMIT ON FEDERAL LAND PASSES WITH BIG LOOPHOLE



RDA PROPERTIES DECREASE $10 MILLION DUE TO DECADES OF VACANT BUILDINGS
  The SLC RDA meeting on March 26 had a lot of interesting plans in their packet.  It also showed a reduction in the value of property around the Depot District.  The property that SLC RDA owns decreased in value almost $10 million!  Of course, it should have been obvious.  Vacant buildings encourage crime and result in reduced valuation.  SLC RDA has owned these properties and kept them vacant for decades.  In other words, an argument can be made that SLC RDA, with their actions or inactions, has actually caused money to be lost!  Vacant buildings encourage criminal behavior and make it harder to get private developers to develop the area.  SLC RDA should sell the vacant and unused buildings to developers since RDA is actually making the area worse.
  On a separate note, the vacant Overnighter Motel, located at 1500 West North Temple has been determined by the city to be a viable nuisance. Funds are being requested for the demolition of the property structures to make way for future construction by the developer under contract.
  The SLC RDA staff also added support for a 1700 South TRAX station (which is also in the WFRC RTP draft.

STATE STREET CRA HITS SLC ED ROADBLOCK
  The State Street CRA may need to be adjusted.  The Salt Lake City School District has expressed concern with the State Street CRA area map and feels that the CRA should be limited to State Street and not be as big from 200 East to 300 West.  The 9-Line area expansion did not generate concern.  The School District needs to sign off on the area and CRA plan before it can start.  So, after over 4 years, the area will take even longer to get underway.  The SLC RDA was also proposing bonding to create catalytic projects around the State Street CRA.  This is a big change and effect on the area. 
  The communities involved (Ballpark, Liberty Wells, Central 9th and Central City) should be involved and they should have input on changes and what they would be willing to work with.  RDA and SLC should reach out to the community councils for more discussion.

  From the RDA packet:
  "In February 2019, Agency staff met with the Superintendent and representatives of the Salt Lake City School District to discuss the potential participation by the Salt Lake City School Board of Education (School Board) for the project areas. During that meeting, the School District representatives indicated that the School Board would likely support the 9 Line project area as is. However, they indicated that the School Board would likely not support the State Street project area with the current boundaries. The general sentiment is that the project area extends too far west to be considered “State Street” and the School Board would be more likely to support a project area that is more closely aligned with the State Street corridor itself. Staff will be prepared for Board discussion and consideration of potential options for moving forward."

SLC PLANS TRAFFIC CALMING ON 300 WEST TO SHIFT MORE TRAFFIC TO CAPITOL HILL
  SLC keeps trying to prettify streets when they should be focusing on decreasing congestion.  The plans for 300 West are a good example of questionable plans.  SLC is trying to "traffic calm" 300 West from North Temple to 1000 North.  That will encourage more traffic congestion and air pollution on Capitol Hill.  300 West is a better street for high volume traffic.  The last thing that SLC Transportation should be planning on is to increase traffic volume along residential streets (on Capitol Hill).

BLOCK 67 DECISION COMING SOON
  Today, the SLC RDA is planning to discuss and vote on the Block 67 redevelopment area.  It has an impact on the rest of the Downtown RDA tax increment properties and it may not come to fruition.  The value of the underground garage, which will get a $15 million funding from County Transportation funds (to be paid back with a tax increment on Block 67), is questionable but it allows an above ground plaza around the residential and hotel buildings planned.  The Japanese community in SLC is trying to get some consideration for the impact on their adjacent properties.  Zions Bank is valuing the plan at $11.5 million.  The SLC RDA will decide the next steps.
  The Block 67 plaza that is available due to City RDA funding of the underground garage should be Japanese themed and available for two weekends a year for Japanese community festivals.

GATEWAY MARKET STILL BEING PUSHED
  The SLC RDA is planning street improvements around 400 West to 500 West to encourage and/or set the stage for a market in the Gateway area.  But the homeless situation is still fluid and a market next to an area with so many homeless services is questionable.  The Fourth Street Clinic is across the street and across the street from the center of homeless and drug activity that avoids the Road Home. 
  SLC RDA should not focus on the market in Gateway but should consider a market closer to 7th South on State or Main Street.  It could encourage proper development of the Sears block (which should have a market anyway).  It would be more helpful for development than the 650 S. Main St TRAX station (SLC please don't make TRAX a milk run).

SLC RDA RUSHING 400 WEST DEVELOPMENT DESPITE GREEN LINE REROUTING
  SLC RDA is planning to upgrade the area around 400 and 500 West for a market (see above) but also to prepare for the downtown north south streetcar on 400 West.  The 400/500 West decision should wait on the rerouting of the Green Line, decision.  The draft WFRC RTP has the Green Line rerouting (from 7th South).  It can be done quickly with the abandoned rail line spur from 13th South.  That would give SLC the north south rail that is in the SLC Transit Plan and save 10 minutes to the Airport AND help develop the Fleet Block.
  The SLC RDA packet has these plans:

8. 400 South and 400 West (Transportation Reinvestment Zone [TRZ])
• Purpose: Extend 400 South and 400 West light rail lines to support further
investment in Granary District, complete downtown rail network, and
provide improved downtown transit connections.
• Potential TRZ Term: TBD
• Potential Size of the TRZ: TBD

11. Granary District (Expansion & Extension)
• Purpose: Extend the project area term in order to leverage tax increment
as a redevelopment tool for the Fleet Block, and expand the existing
project area boundaries two blocks to the northwest to catalyze adaptive
reuse of existing warehouse properties.
• Final Year of TI Collection: 2023
• Annual TI Collected: $411,279 (2016)

SLC IGNORES RAILROAD TRACKS ON 9-LINE PLAN
  SLC is using the $2 million from the TIGER grant (UTA gets $20 million for bicycle infrastructure in return for local matching of $80 million) for the 9-Line Trail.  But the 9th South pedestrian/bicycle/wheelchair bridge is more important it would and make the 9 line trail real and not a dream.  The 9-Line Trail is a joke if there is no safe way to cross the railroad tracks on 9th South.  The bridge overpass will go a long way to stopping the division between east and west Salt Lake City.  Note that SLC is funding a pedestrian overpass on 300 West (for West High students).

SLC RDA PUSHING BRICKYARD REDEVELOPMENT
  SLC RDA is proposing to create a community reinvestment area (CRA) in the Brickyard area.  It is also working with Millcreek on the coordination with the Millcreek Center Plan.  
  Brickyard private development is not lacking.  Several big apartment complexes have been recently completed in the area and SLC RDA is not known for speeding up the development of their areas.  RDA staff is already overwhelmed with work and defocusing staff for Brickyard is questionable.  SLC appears to be under pressure from Millcreek but Millcreek priorities should not be Salt Lake City's.  The exception is the need to fix Highland Drive.
  The SLC RDA packet language includes:

4 Brickyard
• Purpose: Evaluate opportunity to create a community reinvestment area
and/or transit reinvestment zone in the Brickyard area of SLC to potentially
add housing and to further economic growth.
• Potential Project Area Term: TBD
• Potential Size of the Project Area: TBD

SLC RDA PUSHING MORE GRAND BOULEVARDS
  SLC RDA is also proposing more Grand Boulevards.  In my opinion, the Grand Boulevards vision should focus on finishing North Temple to the Airport before starting new Grand Boulevards.  Note that SLC gets a lot of money from the car lots on proposed Grand Boulevards and you can't have a Grand Boulevard with car lots.

6 Grand Boulevards
• Purpose: Create a community reinvestment area to improve the main
entrance into and exit from the City along 500 South and 600 South,
fostering a grand boulevards entry experience into the City.
• Potential Project Area Term: TBD
• Potential Size of the Project Area: TBD

SLC RDA PUSHING WEST UNIVERSITY EXPANSION AREA
  Another expansion area discussed at today's SLC RDA meeting is the West University reinvestment area. 
  Can we please finish the start of the 9 Line and State Street CRA areas BEFORE considering any other CRAs.  It seems to actually be slowing down development.  The West University Area proposal should wait.
  The packet language includes:

West University reinvestment area
The subject area consists of primarily single-family
residential zoning within the University local historic
district overlay. The Community Business covers a
short one block stretch on 1300 East with a mix of
single- and some multi-family residential uses
throughout. The corner of 500 South contains both
singe-family and high-density uses. The most
substantial opportunity for redevelopment exists at
the parking lot west of the stadium.
The local historic district overlay, which requires a
high level of scrutiny for development, poses a
challenge for redevelopment and without significant
process and initiative, changes in intensity and use
would not be expected.

SLC RDA PUSHING S-LINE EXTENSION REINVESTMENT ZONE 
  The SLC RDA is suggesting an S-Line Extension (Transportation Reinvestment Zone) that appears to be working with Millcreek on a multi-jurisdictional transit service (extending the S-Line south to Millcreek).  
  The S-Line extension for a potential transportation reinvestment zone (TRZ) is again a defocusing of stretched staff.  Note that the extension, whether north or south will cost SLC taxpayers hundreds of millions.  Streets should be fixed first to encourage mass transit use.  It is discouraging to ride buses that, due to the poor street conditions, go bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, bouncy......   
  The packet language includes:
9. S-Line Extension (Transportation Reinvestment Zone)
• Purpose: Create transit connections to and from Sugar House area while
providing multi-jurisdictional transit service and economic development
opportunities.
• Potential TRZ Term: TBD
• Potential Size of the TRZ: TBD

SLC RDA PUSHING EAST DOWNTOWN TRANSIT HUB 
  The SLC RDA is proposing how to pay for an East Downtown Transportation Reinvestment Zone (around 200 South and 700 East) to build the transit hub that the City Council expressed interest in several months ago in their plans to use money from the tax increase for a $400,000 200 South Transit Hub.  That $400,000 could provide a lot of bus service.  SLC and SLC RDA should focus on basics like streets' maintenance before any pretty vision projects.  There is no justification for such a useless project.
  The language of the packet is:

10. East Downtown (Transportation Reinvestment Zone)
• Purpose: Create a transit hub to support higher-frequency bus network,
increase transit opportunities, and support development of a mixed-use
transit hub that could be catalyst for other neighborhood developments.
• Potential TRZ Term: TBD
• Potential Size of the TRZ: TBD


FREE FARE SHOWS KIDS OVERWHELMED FRONTRUNNER
  As mentioned last blog entry, the free fare days tend to encourage families to bring kids on FrontRunner and the effect is to fill parking lots.  That, in turn, discourages potential long term ridership increases.  The pre-eminent study on transit fare elasticities from decades ago, pointed out that reducing fares only results in a -.3 to -.4 increase.  Cutting the fare by -50% results in a 15% increase in ridership.  The study showed that the increase in ridership is limited by ticket machine throughput and parking lots which are usually full.  So the stats from the free fare day show that it discourages long term ridership increases.  They show that 31,235 rode on FrontRunner (on Friday when school gets out early) compared to 19,135 normally.  UTA claimed that 10,497 vehicles were removed from the road each day.  I disagree since the cars that would normally sit in a driveway were used to drive their kids to FrontRunner rides.  
  When you look at the TRAX and bus ridership stats, the fact that FrontRunner was used for rides for children becomes apparent.  The ridership increases on TRAX and buses were increased very little.  UTA said that TRAX weekday ridership was 57,319 average ridership and the free fare went to 66,312 ridership.  Bus ridership went from 75,479 average to 83,818.   

SLC WILL GET $5 MILLION MORE IN JULY FOR MCCLELLAND/TRANSIT/ROADS?
  In July, Salt Lake City and other cities in the transit areas will start getting their share of SB136 funds that they can use for their streets' projects.  That could theoretically include more streets' maintenance upgrades or projects like the shared street on McClelland proposal (near 2100 South).

HB313 HIT AND RUN PENALTIES INCREASED
  HB313 increases penalties for hit and run drivers.  Salt Lake County has experienced an exponential growth in hit and run accidents.  This bill, on the Governor's desk, and expected to be signed, will go a long way to decrease the trend.

81 NEW POLICE IN LAST YEAR BUT LOSS IS OVER 50
  I put the latest SLC compensation study which includes the SLC police.  Around 3 police officers retire or move each month so even though 81 new police have been added in the last year, we really are only up less than 20.  One reason is the salary for officers that are willing to take a bullet for us.  According to the study, "SLC compensation for the Police Officer falls in the lower end of the reported range on scale minimum and midpoint, but then increases to the high end of the range when looking at wage scale maximum (top out).  SLC Police Officer compensation is well aligned to the market at the midpoint and maximum (top out) of the scale – though SLC could consider increasing the minimum of its wage scale and narrowing the overall range spread."
  SLC should increase the salary of police officers.  The City Council increased their salary almost 50% in December and police should get more of a salary increase than other City employees.

HOW TO REDIRECT 911 CALLS FROM VECC FOR SLC RESIDENTS
  For residents near the Salt Lake City boundaries, they can often find that their 911 cell phone calls end up going to Valley Emergency Communications Center VECC!  And despite the new Legislative bill that requires all 911 calls be handed off to 911 and not to a non emergency number (if it went to the wrong 911 center), sometimes VECC dispatch sends the call to the SLC nonemergency number!  The reason is the local cell phone tower is the deciding factor.  But if you experience this issue, call dispatch (799-3000) and complain.  The requirement of cell phone transfers depends on the number of calls going to the VECC versus SLC 911.  If over 50% of the calls from the cell tower is actually supposed to go to SLC 911 dispatch, the City can have all 911 calls go to SLC 911 dispatch first.  SLC 911 dispatch and VECC are supposed to be connected and the VECC calls can be transferred in a few seconds.  
  I still think that there should only be one Salt Lake County Dispatch system like Weber and Morgan County combined 911 system).  Unfortunately, the Legislature seems to be ignoring the problem (which sometimes results in deaths).  The 911 systems do not want to give up their systems so the County residents get less service.

MARIJUANA SMOKERS SHOULD NOT BE SPEEDING
  Several weeks ago, the DA agreed to drop charges of marijuana use by a driver that was pulled over for speeding.  Although the driver claimed that he needed it for medical reasons (in an older blog, I pointed out that the new Utah Medical Marijuana Law is making millionaires of drug dealers), HE WAS SPEEDING WHILE USING MARIJUANA!!!!!
  This driver should have had the book thrown at him.  He also lost his coaching job but he should have gotten much more punishment.  He is the poster child for NOT legalizing marijuana, in any shape or form.

GRAVEL PIT DUST WINS OVER CLEAN AIR
  Rep. Wilde's HB288, critical materials that included the gravel pits as critically important, was signed by Governor Herbert.  It increases protection of gravel pits but it also allows a city to limit expansions.  It will be interesting to see if SLC tries to limit the Beck Street gravel pits. 

ANTI IDLING PASSES AND CAN STOP INLAND PORT TRUCKS
  On a separate bill, Rep. Arent's bill to allow cities to pass anti idling ordinances that require at least one warning was passed and is expected to result in many new anti idling ordinances.  
  Despite the lack of anti idling signs and the confusion of almost 20 different municipal governments in Salt Lake County, if Salt Lake City passes such an ordinance, it could be used to payback the Legislature for the Inland Port theft.  (Note that the new Inland Port bill removed some of the new SLC economic development wins like UPS and Amazon from the area.)  I want to see SLC pass an anti idling bill that focuses on diesel trucks.  And I want to see all of the diesel trucks at the Inland Port and at the many new street projects ticketed for idling.

HB78 LIMIT ON FEDERAL LAND PASSES WITH BIG LOOPHOLE
  HB78, that required the Utah Legislature Interim Natural Resources Committee to be informed and review any attempt to encourage federal management of Utah lands.  The bill affects any property over 5000 acres.  Note that the Central Wasatch effort is around 8000 acres.  This law is really already in effect but this bill emphasizes that no one city or political subdivision can speak for all Utahns and ask to have the federal government manage Utah property.  This bill was watered down but it was generated by the closed door meetings of the Mountain Accord.  Salt Lake City believes that the watered down version is a win for their efforts to transfer management of the Central Wasatch Canyons to the federal government.

NAVAJO CODE TALKER BRAVERY RECOGNIZED WITH HIGHWAYS
  SB101 has been sent to the Governor and is expected to be signed.  As mentioned in previous blogs, this bill recognizes the bravery of the Navajo Code Talkers by naming several Utah highways for their efforts, especially in World War II.
  Again, in World War II, the Navajo Code Talkers used their Navajo language to create an unbreakable code used in the Pacific.  They volunteered for one of the most dangerous jobs in the military, radio operators.  Radio operators were targeted and high value targets.  They also knew, despite trying to keep it secret, that their squad leaders were under orders to shoot them if they could be captured.  That bravery and loyalty to our Country deserves respect.  This is one small way to give them honor and encourage respect for the Navajo.






MARCH 19, 2019
STATE STREET MAY SLOW DOWN FOR TREES AND FURNITURE
MICHAEL CLARA MAKES T-MOBILE BEND OVER AND DO OVER
SAN DIEGO THINKS UTAH SOLVED HOMELESS PROBLEM
UTA SEAT UTILIZATION IS 33% AT RUSH HOUR
BERNIE HART SHOWS THERE IS NO SUCCESSFUL HOMELESS DATA
HEATHER BENNETT SLC EDUCATION HERO DIES
SLC WORKING ON FREE TAXI RIDES TO CONNECT TO UTA
OPEN HOUSE FOR RUSHED HOMELESS HOSPICE/SHELTER AND HEARING MAR26
CWC FAILS TO GET LEGISLATURE TO ACCEPT THEIR LEADERSHIP
THREE SLC ADU APPLICATIONS DESPITE ADU HANDBOOK 
WFRC RTP IGNORES NEED FOR EAST WEST HIGHWAYS IN SLCO
MARCH 28 LAST DAY FOR SPRAGUE LIBRARY FOR A YEAR
300 WEST MONEY GOES TO 2700 SOUTH
HB252 ECIG TAX KILLED
HB324 TOBACCO AGE INCREASED BUT MARIJUANA IGNORED
GOVERNOR ALLOWS VEGETABLES TO GROW IN UTAH RADIOACTIVE WASTE
SLC FINALLY TELLS UTAH LEGISLATURE TO STOP THE INSANITY AND SUES
WARM SPRINGS GETS STUDY MONEY
SLC PARKS WATER USE GOES OVER BUDGET
SLC PHONE FRANCHISE TAXES ALMOST HALF OF 2012
MILLIONS FOR SLC TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS INSTEAD OF SERVICE

Sorry for the delay (due to Legislature wrapping up).  That is why there are so many stories this week.

STATE STREET MAY SLOW DOWN FOR TREES AND FURNITURE
  Today, the Salt Lake County Council is going to approve a transfer to Salt Lake City of funds to redesign and construct State Street with "wider sidewalks, improved transit stops, a slower design speed (pending UDOT approval), reduced driveways, street furnture, street trees and mid-block crossings".  The SLC Council will accept the funds with the Budget Amendment 5 (in downloads) with a public hearing on April 2.  The funds are $2.8 million and the language is:
 "County Transportation Funds to the City to reimburse the City for certain costs that are incurred by the City to design and construct mobility and safety improvements on State Street (US-89) from 600 South to 900 South.  Project to include wider sidewalks, improved transit stops, a slower design speed (pending UDOT approval), parallel parking pockets, reduced driveways, street furniture, street trees, and mid-block crossings.  Additionally, design of high-comfort bike routes on streets to either side of State Street from 900 South to 3300 South with connections to State Street amenities. Active transportation infrastructure to be included in accordance with Salt Lake County Bikeway Design and Active Transportation Implementation Plan and Bicycle Wayfinding Protocol."
  None of the local community councils have been made aware of the new proposals.  If history repeats itself, the councils will be told the month before the project begins.

MICHAEL CLARA MAKES T-MOBILE BEND OVER AND DO OVER
  For over a year, community activist and Poplar Grove defender has been trying to get Salt Lake City to admit that they allowed T-Mobile to build six noncomplying antennas at 922 S. Emery Street in a single family home neighborhood without a required public hearing.  So after months of denying that the City did anything wrong, the City is admitting that it did something wrong and it has set a March 27 Planning Commission hearing to replace the six noncomplying antennas  with three antennas on a utility pole.  The antennas will have a diameter of 39 inches.  But only antenna arrays with a diameter of 30 inches or less may be mounted on utility poles.  Larger antennas must be reviewed as a conditional use.  The City Planning Commission will also consider if the bigger than allowed utility box on private property is also allowed.  Lauren Parisi (lauren.parisi@slcgov.com/801-535-7226 is the planner in charge of the proposal.
  It is not often that one person can make a big company like T-Mobile turn around and bend over but Michael Clara made them do it and do it over. 

SAN DIEGO THINKS UTAH SOLVED HOMELESS PROBLEM
  If you want a job in charge of solving a city's homeless problem, tell the city that you have solved 90% of the homeless problem in your old city.  That appears to be what happened in San Diego.  A former manager in Utah Workforce Services claimed that Utah solved 90% of the chronic homeless problem in Salt Lake City with housing first efforts.  That is the same claim that former Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker made (that forced me to run against him to counter that claim).  So San Diego hired that manager in 2017 and the manager hired his former subordinate to work with him in San Diego.  San Diego thinks that that will solve the problem (despite the hepatitis A emergency).  Surprise, the manager decides to go on a mission for the JCLDS Church last year so San Diego is left with his former second in command (again from Utah's "successful reduction in chronic homeless") now in charge of solving San Diego's homeless problem.  
  I do not know why other cities keep believing that Utah has solved our homeless problem.  It seems to be that some people in charge of solving our homeless problem are claiming to have been successful.  And they may be helping solve their homeless problems by encouraging homeless to come to Utah, where we don't have anymore homeless!

UTA SEAT UTILIZATION IS 33% AT RUSH HOUR
  I put UTA's study of seat utilization in the downloads area.  UTA, during rush hours fills about 32% of their seats.  If parking lots were bigger and passes were more encouraged, it might be more.

BERNIE HART SHOWS THERE IS NO SUCCESSFUL HOMELESS DATA
  Homeless advocate Bernie Hart, supported by his spouse Marita Hart, has been trying to find out if there is data showing that SLC and Utah is solving the homeless issues in the area.  So far, he has not been able to get enough data that shows that anything is successful.  
  That frustration was shared by the Legislature when they ordered the State Homeless Coordinating Council (not the same SHCC as Sugar House Community Council) to "prepare and implement a statewide strategy for minimizing homelessness in the state; describes requirements for evaluating and reporting on progress toward the strategic plan goals".  Rep. King and Sen. Anderegg sponsored HB342 that required data to show that the State efforts to solve the homeless issues are actually working.  
  Bernie and Marita have been able to get data that showed that Salt Lake City Police have been ticketing homeless for camping in the City's open spaces and parks that started ramping up with 50 tickets in August of 2017 at the start of Operation Rio Grande (Where did they think the homeless would go if they were discouraged out of Rio Grande area?).  But after an initial surge of ticketing and rousting, the efforts have died down to less than 20 per month.
  Also Bernie received data from the HOST/SLC Police Community Outreach Team (with a police officer and a social worker) that showed 1972 contacts were made in 2018.  Only 70 citizens called asking for help regarding homeless issues.  The Team transported 100 homeless, including medically frail to the Inn Between.  There were a total of 142 who had medical referrals and 308 who had mental health referrals.  299 had substance abuse issues.  The Team helped homeless obtain benefits in 76 cases and housing in 1015 cases.
  The HOST Team can work but citizens need to call them to ask for help.  Their phone number is 801 799 3533.  They are usually out so when you call, leave a message.

HEATHER BENNETT SLC EDUCATION HERO DIES
  Heather Bennett, who has been on the Salt Lake City Board of Education since 2005, has died.  I knew her and worked with her on many issues.  She was someone who took public service literally.  She helped change the SLC Schools system for using facilities to make it easier to rent space (after the Legislature made all schools civic centers that negated a need for a separate liability policy).  
  When Operation Rio Grande disbursed the homeless and drug users to other areas, some hung out at school bus stops.  When Heather heard about it, she got in her car and went to the bus stops.  She cared about the children.  She worked with the Board, and sometimes fought with the Board, but she was able to stop the school to prison pipeline, working with Salt Lake City.  Last year, 60 students in the Salt Lake City School District had referrals to the criminal justice system.  A few years ago, there were 500 referrals a year of students to criminal justice!  
  She cared and was a hero when it came to students.

SLC WORKING ON FREE TAXI RIDES TO CONNECT TO UTA
  Former Rose Park Community Council Chair Blake Perez is going to community councils in Salt Lake City explaining the City's efforts to try to encourage more mass transit use by trying to provide a way to address the lack of mass transit on the west side of SLC (Look at the UTA map and you would see one north south route between 5600 West and 300 West while the east side has seven!).  Joining the west side, the Avenues, Rose Park/Fairpark and the East Bench all have almost no mass transit access.  Salt Lake City is considering and planning, with an RFP that is closing this week, to provide a short ride to the nearest frequent bus stop.  The justification is the subsidy that is already paid for each rider that can range from $1 for popular routes like State Street, Redwood Road and 200 South to $5 for TRAX and FrontRunner.  If more will ride mass transit with a similar subsidy for an Uber or Lyft or taxicab, then the subsidy for that ride can be justified.  
  This will be an experiment that will study if the result will decrease air pollution and use of cars.  There is a possibility that one service provider will operate electric vehicles.  Until the RFP responses are revealed, we won't know how it will work.  The suggestion/wish is that someone on 1700 South and 1700 East will call for a ride to the nearest bus stop (228 on Foothill or 21 on 2100 East) and get a ride for those 3 or 4 blocks.  44% of Salt Lake residents appear to be within 3 blocks of a bus or TRAX stop.  So most rides would be short.
  Salt Lake City is also going fund more transit amenities in their Budget Amendment 5 (in the downloads area).  The City is planning on spending about a million on: "These funds will be used for design, signal upgrades, electric bus infrastructure, bus stop improvements, ADA
enhancements, and first/last mile infrastructure to enhance walking and biking connections near stops/stations along the Frequent Transit Networks (FTN) corridors. Funding may be used to leverage UTA investments along FTN corridors such as intermodal hubs (planned for 200 South). Priority will be given to phase one routes on the FTN network (900 S., 200 S., 2100 S.).  I put more transportation projects in a story about projects instead of service below.

OPEN HOUSE FOR RUSHED HOMELESS HOSPICE/SHELTER HEARING MAR26
  Salt Lake City is rushing an Open House to answer one of the objections to the new Congregate Care Institutional Zone that is meant to justify the location and operation of the Inn Betwen.  The Open House is at 530PM at the Police Headquarters on March 20.  Katia Pace at kaatia.pace@slcgov.com or 801 535 6354 is the SLC Planner in charge of the Open House.  The Open House ends at 7 PM.  I put the map and text amendment in the downloads.  The City is allowing homeless assisted living facilities in Institutional Zoned areas (could be schools) with conditional use requirements.  But the City is not listing the requirements to meet the conditional uses.  In addition, the City is not showing the coordination, if any, with the new homeless facilities.  It should be expected, as it was explained, that the homeless shelters will be able to take in and house these individuals.  The City will have a public hearing on March 26.  If this is rushed through in secret like the old 4 homeless shelters that the City Council tried to put in residential neighborhoods, there will be a lot of hate and discontent.  It will be interesting if Utah's new hate crime law is used (Homeless and political beliefs are two new protected classes.)

CWC FAILS TO GET LEGISLATURE TO ACCEPT THEIR LEADERSHIP
  SCR10 was an attempt by the Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) to have the Legislature agree that the CWC was the entity in charge of the Central Wasatch mountains and if they recommended turning the canyons over to the federal government for management, it was the will of the citizens of Utah.  The Resolution failed.  An attempt to stop the CWC from turning over the canyons to the federal government, HB78 was watered down to require reporting the attempts to the Legislature (which is already the law).  But the big takeaway is the CWC was slapped down by the Legislature.

THREE SLC ADU APPLICATIONS DESPITE ADU HANDBOOK 
  According to SLC Planning, there have been three ADU permits applied for since the new ADU ordinance was adopted last year.  So it is slow enough that SLC is providing a booklet (in the downloads) to encourage ADUs.

WFRC RTP IGNORES NEED FOR EAST WEST HIGHWAYS IN SLCO
  I was disappointed in the RTP from WFRC.org.  It did not have the most important roads needed in Salt Lake County, east west freeways!  Olympia Hills opponents pointed out that the lack of east west freeways in the south County should stop development until the freeways are there to take on the vehicle increase.  WFRC suggests widening the roads but they should be freeways.

The road projects for widening are:

4700 S widening to 7 lanes should be a freeway
7000 S widening to 5-7 lanes should be a freeway
9000 S widening to 5-7 lanes should be a freeway
10600 S widening to 5-7 lanes should be a freeway
12300 S widening to 5-7 lanes should be a freeway
13400 S widening to 5-7 lanes should be a freeway

WFRC and Utah should recognize that without several major east west freeways in the South Valley, the citizens of the area will not allow/will fight any density or population or development.  Olympia Hills and Cottonwood Mall are two examples that would not be big fights if transportation infrastructure was able to handle the increase in vehicle trips.  That is why the WFRC should put in two or three more east west freeways.  It WILL allow more development/density increase and stop limiting Utah growth.  Also the plan should make significant use of smart real time intelligent traffic signals using Wavetronix/UDOT's system or something similar.  The Purdue study from Cottonwood Heights should be argument enough for significantly more intelligent traffic signals.

Other issues in the draft RTP (comments closed earlier this week) are:

?R-S-133 I-15 Northbound 2100 S to Bangerter Highway??  I don't understand.

R-S-141 300 W 400 S to 2100 S 7 lanes nice but does SLC plan also work.  They are going to use new bond for road diet?

R-S-146 State Street 600 South to I215 6 lanes good but SLC wants bike lanes which requires decreasing the median please

R-S-152 900 E 3300 S to 3900 S should decrease center turn lane to provide wider bike lanes (this comment applies to every super wide center turn lane including Foothill, State Street (except at lights), 200 S., and 700 E. (wasted medians).  Left hand turns on 700 East should only be at lights and bike lanes should be provided.

R-S-161 I am against taking away lanes for HOV/HOT/BRT.  Do not do harm and make more congestion (also applies to 4700 S BRT).
 
The questionable transit projects are:
Ogden BRT is now $95 million but it only saves 5 minutes (which is taken up by walking an extra block to a station) to WSU).

Weber State University Transit Hub $18 million  Service would be a better way to spend money. Eye candy projects are wasteful until service is robust.

Davis SLC Connector BRT $192 million
This is a waste of time when an enhanced bus is a tenth of the cost and just as effective.  Until UTA is able to prove that they can construct and effectively and successfully operate a BRT, they should not build more.  The UVX is not a good example since it is free!  The 35 Max is a better example and it saves only 15 minutes out of a 70 minute ride and those 15 minutes are wasted walking to a nearby(actually farther than most people will walk).  The 3200 passengers a day have not increased since it began and anything less than 3000 passengers a day is a waste of money.  Note that the 3500 S. is congested and bumper to bumper during rush hour and the two lanes taken up by the BRT could handle 10,000 ADT which equates to more than 15000 people a day.  That means cars are more efficient than a bus.

WFRC needs to calculate the average fuel use for a day's worth of 35 Max and compare that to the 10,000 ADT vehicles over 10 miles to see how efficient BRT is compared to a car.

State Street BRT $317 million!
Instead, use an enhanced bus or, for $1 million add another bus and double the frequency.  And don't require a BRT to increase frequency to 7 minutes!  That is what you did with UVX!  And UVX and BRTs should not have to stop at lights!!  BLIP - bus lane at intersections along with intersection traffic light priority is 10 times cheaper and as effective.

200 South BRT $67 million
This along with the 400,000 transit hub is a construction company's profit cash cow.  $1 million will double frequency and be as effective.  For $6 million, an enhanced bus would be as fast as a BRT.  Before any BRT is built (including in Davis or Weber County, adjacent landowners/homeowners need to realize that it will lead to rezonings, higher density (to justify the BRT) and property taxes.  That will stop development.

3300 South BRT $288 million
An enhanced bus should always be tried before a BRT is even thought about.  This should be a universal law.  No to BRT on 33rd but expand service to 10 minutes.

4500 South BRT $127 million
Same comments as other BRTs.  This is being touted as the Mid-Valley Connector but it makes a congested road even worse and increases pollution.

FrontRunner Doubletrack $199 million
   Ogden to Pleasant View $197 million
   Electrify $709-948 million
If the parking lots are not expanded, and the speed is not increased (double tracking may be justified after more parking is provided), ridership will not increase and these projects are a waste of time.  I need to emphasize that if the parking lots are full, doubletracking and electrifying are not an efficient use of money because they won't provide more ridership.

Black Line SLC Airport to UofU $515 million
Does anybody recognize that if you gave every student at the UofU $20,000 to buy an efficient low emission car, that you would take more polluting cars off the road than this wasteful project.  Extend a bus to the Airport and have it go to the UofU via the Highway and it will be much faster and cheaper.

Green Line from 700 South to Gateway $87 million 
This project makes some sense to save 10 minutes to the Airport and provide more development on 400 West.  Alternatives should be considered to shift from 1300 South maybe to 300 West then to 400 West.  Also the Airport TRAX should be extended to 5600 West but there is nothing in this plan for that but there should be.  

Draper TRAX $361 million this year and total is $687 million
Draper TRAX west alignment is $964 to $1.8 million
All of the TRAX extensions in South Valley to Lehi should be stopped until proof that density will support it.  FrontRunner competes with TRAX to Lehi and there should be a cost benefit analysis of ridership and the effect on FrontRunner ridership.  I believe that the total cost is closer to $2 billion to go to Utah County line with all infrastructure.

S Line extension to 400 South via 900 East $147 million
S Line extension to UofU $317 million
S Line extension to Millcreek $128 million  and up to $1.3 million to go to 3900 South
1500 passengers a day do not justify spending more than 10 million to extend the S-Line.  Go two blocks east and be done with it.  Better bus service would be more appreciated.  It was cut in half on Highland a few years ago for good reason.  A rail line through a residential neighborhood is not recommended.  And anyone who says that the reason for Sugar House development is due to the S-Line is not considering the linear park.  I can make a better argument that the parks and Parleys Trail were a bigger reason for the development than the S-Line.  All rail line extensions should have a vigorous public analysis with a financial effect (taking away from service especially important).

Tell the residents of 900 East that they will have a streetcar/TRAX train running up their street a few years after digging up 900 East TWICE to remove rails (they didn't do it right the first time) and they will tar and feather whoever tries.

400 South TRAX from SLCentral to 400 South $75 million-$112 million
NO, NO, NO

I am against the State Street BRT since you need the 6 lanes on State and an enhance bus every 7 minutes would be much cheaper.  By the way, the Redwood Road and State Street corridors have the most ridership and should have priority on expanding service NOW.

The 900 East buses may be able to handle 10 minute service if the roadway wasn't so bouncy, bouncy, bouncy, bouncy.  It is almost like a Disneyland ride!

Big Cottonwood Corridor Special Service Buses $7 million with $1.3 million per year operating cost
I think that the cost is too high.  Weekend bus service should be tried first to gauge interest.

Little Cottonwood bus is $4.3 million and $762,000 operating cost
Same as above. 

North Temple Transit Hub, 200 South Hub, UofU Hub, Central Pointe Station Hub, Murray Central Station Hub, SLCC Transit Hub, Cottonwood Canyons Transit Hub, Fort Union Transit Hub,  $14 million each!!!  
Again eye candy is a waste until a robust bus system is gained.  RESTORE THE 30% BUS SERVICE THAT WAS CUT FOR TRAX CONSTRUCTION FIRST!
These pretty buildings may be super efficient but building them is a big cost including carbon footprint.  Service before construction should be UTA's motto. 

I agree with the park and ride lots that should be expanded everywhere including at the canyons.  But Terry Diehl should not be making out like a bandit with a parking garage.

Regarding buffered bike lanes:  if there are a lot of in/out driveways and requirements for offloading stores (trucks run ramps across the cycle tracks), separated bike lanes should not be constructed.  

Wider bike lanes should be standard and all contracts should require that the resurfacing of roads should be to the curb.  The present standard contracts do not cover surfaces to the curb and so the bicyclists' travel area is not as smooth or even as the main roadway.  That is wrong and discourages bicycling.  Also, as above medians and turning lanes should be discouraged except at lights to minimize dangers to pedestrians and bicyclists. 

I am against the 300 E buffered bike lane.  500 East should be the preferred bicycle route and Liberty Park's 500 East center turn lane should be eliminated.  Put a cycle track on the east and west side of Liberty Park.  700 East could have a buffered bike lane from 900 South to 2000 South without much of a problem.  

The 1300 East to Richmond St 2700 South to 3300 South bike lane could be buffered frorm Highland to Elgin since there are few driveways.

900 South 9-Line Trail is not here and it should be.  There is also a need for a railroad bridge for pedestrians, bicyclists and wheelchairs over the 900 S tracks (SLC is doing the 400 North West High bridge).  Both the bridge and trail should be in this.  900 South could also have an extra wide bike lane.

I am against the Red Line extension to Herriman until road expansion is completed with 3 new east west freeways.  Those would be a better construction priority.

I did not see the high speed airport rail station that was in Wasatch Choice 2050 draft. If you dropped it thank you.  If it is hidden in here, darn you, and stop thinking high speed rail, or go to California.  Better yet, listen to the California Governor on the subject.  I also did not see the 400 West BRT from the Wasatch Choice 2050 Draft thank you.  The Depot District/Central Garage Project also was not in there but I have to be consistent and complain about the project.  You also took out 800 South.

I am against the 2700 S. TRAX station since it does not have the density needed.  The 1700 S. TRAX stop makes more sense in the next 10 years or now.  

Central Pointe really needs more parking than a hub.  

Why not throw out the rocks at Central Station and put in parking. 

There is also an active transportation component, bicycling.  I put the maps in the download section along with the draft RTP.
Bicycle 800 S. 
800 South from Indiana Avenue to Sunnyside seems questionable due to the hill between 1300 and 1100 East.  And the City and County are pushing for an active transportation upgrade on 900 South between 1300 and Lincoln.  This is a duplicate.  I actually would prefer 800 South since 900 S. has 45 degree parking which is dangerous for bicyclists.  And I do not think cycle tracks make sense except where there are no driveways.  Even then, cyclists would prefer wider bike lanes and the ability to get out of the way of obstacles and debris in the road.


MARCH 28 LAST DAY FOR SPRAGUE LIBRARY FOR A YEAR
  March 28 is the last day to collect library holds from the original Sprague Library.  The Library will move to the old Fire Station on Sugarmont just east of McClelland.  We have asked the City for pedestrian improvements to make the area safer for kids walking in the area.  The Library will continue children reading time at the Legacy Village on Wilmington and the new Fire Station on 900 East has a community meeting room that will be available by calling the SLCFD.

S-LINE 15 MINUTE SCHEDULE APRIL 7
  The S-Line will get a 15 minute frequency instead of a 20 minute frequency due to the $6 million double tracking project.  The new frequency will start on April 7.  Despite claims that UTA only does one change day a year, it still happens in April.  Bus 21 will also have some slight changes.

300 WEST MONEY GOES TO 2700 SOUTH
  Why did 2700 South get on the fast track project list to reconstruct the road?  Because the federal government denied giving SLC $12 million to redo 300 West.  So SLC had $2 million burning a hole in its pocket and decided to spend money on on 2700 South!  
  "As part of the FY2019 annual budget, the Council appropriated $2 million of Class C funds (gas tax) as a local match for a
federal BUILD grant to reconstruct 300 West from 600 South to 2100 South. The grant application was not awarded
funding. The street could be reconstructed using funds from the voter-approved Streets Reconstruction Bond. The
Administration requests the Council re-appropriate the funds for the general purpose of street reconstruction. The
internal Roadway Selection Committee identified reconstruction of 2700 South and 1500 South as alternatives if the
BUILD grant was unsuccessful. However, existing appropriations of Class C funds are enough for the 2700 South
reconstruction project to proceed without this additional funding.
The reconstruction of 2700 South is from Highland Drive to Preston Street. The total estimated cost for the 2700 South
reconstruction project is $2.5 million. The 1500 South reconstruction project is from Redwood Road to 2700 West. The
table below shows the Council appropriations and remaining “available to spend” balances for all Class C funds."

HB252 ECIG TAX KILLED
  Despite heroic efforts by Rep. Ray, the 86% tax on e-cigarettes/vaping cartridges and liquids failed.  So all those kids who are melting their lungs on their path to bronchitis can do it cheaply.  Utah taxpayers will go bankrupt paying for their melted lungs.

HB324 TOBACCO AGE INCREASED BUT MARIJUANA IGNORED
  HB324 raised the age of tobacco sales, slowly to 21, except for military personnel.

GOVERNOR ALLOWS VEGETABLES TO GROW IN UTAH RADIOACTIVE WASTE
  The Governor, for a very confusing reason, decided not to veto HB220 that allows one person to decide if EnergySolutions can accept more nuclear waste.  So the bill goes into effect.

SLC FINALLY TELLS UTAH LEGISLATURE TO STOP THE INSANITY AND SUES
  It should have been done months ago.  It seems that former Maor Ted Wilson (father of SLCO Mayor Jennie Wilson) was able to argue successfully in a recent oped in the Salt Lake Tribune that the City should sue.  So Mayor Biskupski is suing the State and Inland Port for taking away control of 25% of the City's property.  Finally.

WARM SPRINGS GETS STUDY MONEY
  Warm Springs Park efforts to provide funding to upgrade the area's historic buildings is getting a boost in the City's Budget Amendment 5:  "The $37,000 request is split between two areas of study. The Administration is requesting $25,000 to update and expand
on previous structural evaluations. The last study was completed in 2006....The second area of study would use $12,000 to evaluate water quality, flow, springs, existing infrastructure and feasibility of reactivating the swimming pools. The study is expected to take four to six weeks. The Warm Spring Alliance, a local nonprofit group, has conducted preliminary evaluations along with community engagement and offered to share information with the City."

SLC PARKS WATER USE GOES OVER BUDGET
  The City has been ignoring the obvious nature of nature when it budgets for water use before summer.  The City's water use again went over budget and the City Council is considering:  Budgeting for Utility Cost Uncertainty – The Council may wish to ask how the FY20 budget will accommodate the unpredictable nature of utility costs, especially since hot, dry summers are expected to become more frequent.

SLC PHONE FRANCHISE TAXES ALMOST HALF OF 2012
  SLC is losing about a million a year in franchise taxes from people moving to cellphones.  But the City gets more money from cable! In 2012, the City got $6 million in franchise taxes and this last year, they got $3 million (a decrease of a million from the year before).  But Utah has increased the taxes on cellphones, including an almost ignored tax increase on prepaid phones and on all phones for 911 service.  So the City will not suffer from lack of taxes.
  
MILLIONS FOR SLC TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS INSTEAD OF SERVICE
  Instead of spending money from the new transit taxes on service improvements, almost 95% of the money is going to projects!  Some of the projects (in the Budget Amendment 5 in the downloads section) are:
"E-1: Salt Lake County, Regional Transportation Choice Fund, 9 Line / Center Section - CIP $5,338,218
The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $4,338,218 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund. This project will fund the Center Section of the 9-Line Trail. This is the 2.0 mile section
along 900 S. between 600 W. and Lincoln Street (approx. 940 E), excluding West Temple. Following the 9-Line Extension
Study, the City will improve infrastructure quality, elevate the streetscape for walking, bicycling, transit, ensure highquality
connectivity, comfort facilities, and appropriate amenities while limiting implementation time and impacts from
construction. This grant does not require a match, but does award points for additional funds dedicated to the project so
the City is providing a match of $1,800,000; $1,500,000 from Street Reconstruction General Obligation Bond and
$300,000 from Salt Lake City Sales Tax for Transit Improvements. A public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the grant
application for this award.
E-2: Salt Lake County, Regional Transportation Choice Fund, Greater Millcreek / Sugar House
Circulation Plan CIP $1,000,000
The Transportation Division applied for and received a grant of $942,500 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund. The Greater Millcreek / Sugar House Circulation Plan will identify transportation
infrastructure improvements to increase connectivity, expand transportation choices, and support economic development
for mixed-use areas that share jurisdiction borders of Holladay, Millcreek, Salt Lake City/Sugar House, and South Salt
Lake. $942,500 in grants funds combined with $57,500 cash match will be used to secure services of a transportation
planning consultant to produce the Greater Millcreek / Sugar House Circulation Plan. Salt Lake City would administer the
multi-jurisdiction contract for consultant services. A cash match totaling $57,500 is from the following collaborative
partners: a) $40,000 from Salt Lake City sourced from Funding Our Futures sales tax increase; b) $10,000 from
Millcreek; c) $5,000 from Holladay; and D) $2,500 from South Salt Lake. A public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the
grant application for this award.
E-3: Salt Lake County, Regional Transportation Choice Fund, 200 So. Transit Corridor / Downtown Hub
Study CIP $440,000
The Transportation Division applied for and received a grant of $400,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project. The 200 South Transit Corridor / Downtown Hub Study will
propose a redesign of 200 South from 600 West to 900 East to transform the function of 200 South to a premier transit
corridor with a downtown mobility hub/transit mall while also incorporating access for walking, bicycling, shared
mobility, private automobiles, and freight. $360,000 in grants funds combined with $40,000 cash match will be used to
secure services of a local/regional professional transportation planning consultant to produce the 200 South Transit
Corridor / Downtown Hub Study. A cash match totaling $40,000 is committed by Salt Lake City sourced from the
Funding Our Futures sales tax increase. A public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the grant application for this award.
E-4: Salt Lake County, Regional Transportation Choice Fund, SLC Westside Multimodal Hub Study CIP
$330,000
The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $300,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project. Salt Lake City Westside Multimodal Hub Study will identify a site
on or near North Temple Boulevard between Redwood Road and 400 West best suited to host a new multimodal hub
facility that connects different modes of transit, including TRAX, bus, ride sharing services, bike share, and scooters. A
cash match totaling $30,000 is committed by Salt Lake City sourced from the Funding Our Futures sales tax increase. A
public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the grant application for this award.
E-5 Salt Lake County, Regional Transportation Choice Fund, Life on State: Design and Catalytic Site
Implementation CIP $4,800,000
The Division of Transportation applied for and received a grant of $4,800,000 from Salt Lake County from the
Transportation Choice Fund for the following project. Life on State: Design and Catalytic Site Implementation is a pilot
project to test transportation improvement interventions on State Street recommended in the Life on State
Implementation Plan 2017. Interventions would include:
1) $2,900,000 for design and construction of mobility and safety improvements in Salt Lake City on State Street between
600 South and 900 South to include wider sidewalks, improved transit stops, slower speed design, parallel parking
pockets, reduced driveways, street furniture, street trees, and mid-block crossings;
2) $2,000,000 for design and construction of mobility and safety improvements in South Salt Lake on State Street
combined between 2100 South and Haven Avenue (approximately 2300 South) to include wider sidewalks, bus pull-outs,
and street trees; and 3) $300,000 for design of high-comfort bike routes on each side of State Street (200 East and Main
Street/West Temple) between 300 South and 3300 South with connections to State Street amenities.
A cash match totaling $400,000 is committed from the following: A) $230,000 from Salt Lake City Complete Streets
Enhancement Fund (8381030 - $105,000 rescope and $8419009 - $125,000) both rescoped to "Life on State" and B)
$170,000 from Utah Department of Transportation for construction of a midblock crossing on State Street between 700
South and 800 South. A public hearing was held on 12/11/18 on the grant application for this award."


MARCH 4, 2019
GOVERNOR VETO HB220 STOP RADIOACTIVE VEGETABLES PUBLISHED
DON'T HATE ME FOR MY OPINION
NAVAJO CODE TALKERS SOME OF THE BRAVEST SOLDIERS OF WWII
ANTI IDLING BILL IS A ZOMBIE BILL THAT WON'T DIE
MOTHER OF ALL TAX BILLS RUSHING THROUGH LEGISLATURE
UTAH BICYCLE YIELD LAW DIES WITH BICYCLE SAFETY
UTA FREE FARE DAY OVERWHELMS REGULAR RIDERS
UVX IS NOT AS NICE AS DESCRIBED
BIG SECRET PHONE TAX INCREASE COMING
CWC TRYING TO PUSH FEDERAL CONTROL OF CANYONS
FINALLY SUPPORTIVE HOUSING NEAR A BIG STORE
WFRC PLAN COMMENTS DUE NOW
BODY CAMS MAY BE DISCARDED DUE TO STORAGE COSTS
FREE CANYON SHUTTLE SATURDAY
BEST QUOTE FROM LEGISLATURE ON MORE LAWS


GOVERNOR SHOULD VETO HB220 AND STOP RADIOACTIVE VEGETABLES PUBLISHED
  The Salt Lake Tribune published my oped on reasons for the Governor to veto HB220.  The bill short circuits the Utah Radiation Control Board staff and gives EnergySolutions a quick potential approval for bringing in more nuclear waste.  I think that I made some good arguments on why EnergySolutions does not know how to handle nuclear waste, and in some cases, does not know what is nuclear waste.  It makes nuclear power look bad.  If Utah really wants to encourage nuclear power, the companies that work in the nuclear industry need to know what they are doing.  And EnergySolutions, at one time did say that they could grow broccoli in the depleted uranium barrels!
The link to my oped, with the broccoli link is:

https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2019/03/03/george-chapman-veto-hb/

DON'T HATE ME FOR MY OPINION
  SB103, a bill that expands hate crimes and makes it easier to prosecute those crimes, is being debated in the Utah State Senate. Sen. Thatcher sponsored the bill to help problem prosecutions like the recent serious attack by a homeless man on several men that were targeted because of the claim that they were part of "the Mexican mafia". The bill adds many new categories of hate towards protected classes like matriculation (home school), homeless, and LGBTQ (already in the law as aggravating factors). One complaint raised is that it may allow students from one school that attack others from another school to be charged with a more serious crime.
  This bill may be opening a Pandora's box of protected classes that may include hair (as in NYC), homeless facilities, political opinions (gay Republicans), police (Utahns Against Police Brutality), husbands versus wives or fathers hating their daughter’s boyfriend (mentioned by Connor Boyack/Libertas), tattoos (Is it a crime to wear racist tattoos?), religious beliefs (against gay marriage or gay priests or polygamy), music (some music could be considered racist) and language.
  Utah already has a hate crime law (76-3-203.4) that allows the sentencing judge or Board of Parole to consider aggravating factors (as pointed out by former Rep. LaVar Christensen). It is concerning, to me, that the actions of a man with obvious mental health issues is the justification of SB103. Even the horror of a mentally unbalanced person shooting up a school or nightclub should not be used to make laws that ban all guns.  
  Hating people that think that all guns should not be banned (and saying that they should be shot) should not be against the law. The reality is that some people hate others for many different reasons, including a difference in philosophy. Tom Lehrer, a once popular satirist, made a point when he said "I know that there are people who do not love their fellow man and I just hate people like that." (National Brotherhood Week) 
  As much as I support our law enforcement officers (who constantly risk death, and sometimes die, in the effort to protect and serve), I do not want to muzzle people who are angry at police actions. Our society can handle a vigorous, and respectful discussion of these actions. It should not be a crime to speak against police actions and express hate towards police officers or elected leaders.
  Our laws already consider premeditation and the penalties can be as great as death. The person that attacked people he thought were "Mexican mafia" would not have been stopped by this hate crime bill. Laws do not stop mentally unbalanced people who commit horrific crimes. Better mental health treatment services can. Ironically, homeless is part of SB103 as a protected class. So it could be a possible prosecution enhancement to speak against a homeless facility and act against it or defend oneself against an aggressive homeless person or try to remove a homeless person from your property.
  Some people say stupid and hateful things. The Salt Lake County DA, Sim Gill, one of the most decent and respected men that I know, has had racist slurs yelled at him. It just proves that some people are American idiots. No law will change that. We shouldn't try to criminalize hateful and stupid speech. Unfortunately, many comments for and against Sen. Thatcher's bill express a lot of hate.  That is ironic, sad and hypocritical. 
  The goal in our Country should be to lower the barrier to working together. We rely on parents and our community leadership, including churches to teach us and lead us to treat everyone with respect. We should not have to make laws that emphasize and recognize that a soul is a soul and categorizing anyone tends to decrease respect and make it harder to work together. We do need more respect. No law, no matter how well intentioned, can force that. Please don't hate me for my opinion.

NAVAJO CODE TALKERS WERE SOME OF THE BRAVEST SOLDIERS OF WWII
  Some of the bravest soldiers in WWII were ordered to not talk about their exploits and bravery until the 1980s.  These soldiers were from the Utah and Arizona Navajo reservations.  They were the Navajo Code Talkers.  They VOLUNTEERED to accept the most dangerous of assignments, a radio operator.  In WWII, radio operators were given a high priority by the enemy to be killed.  In addition, they knew, but weren't supposed to know that if they were going to be captured, their squad leader would kill them.  They accepted those dangers even when they didn't have to.  They volunteered to fight for this Country, our Country out of loyalty and respect. Their courage, their love of and respect that they showed our Country deserves to be remembered, honored and celebrated.  
  Senators Hinkins and Iwamoto are jointly sponsoring the Navajo Code Talkers Day and Highway Designation bill, SB101 has been sent to the Governor for his signature.  The Highways designated as the Navajo Code Talker Highways are 162, 163, and 191 in San Juan County.  August 14th is the Day to remember these, bravest of the brave.  These men are special and they deserve much more attention and respect.

ANTI IDLING BILL IS A ZOMBIE BILL THAT WON'T DIE
  The anti idling bill that keeps hitting roadblocks in Committees was resurrected again and is now in the Senate.  It allows cities to ticket drivers for idling their vehicles for more than a few minutes after one warning.  Very few spoke against this bill.
  The issue should be consistency across the State, unless cities are going to erect many more signs.  Visitors to one of the almost 20 municipal governments in Salt Lake County will not know where and when they can idle.  And the new cars only pollute 1% of the cars from 30 years ago.  It seems extremely unfair to tell all cars to stop idling.  Parents should not have to check the temperature to figure out if they can idle their car to keep their kids from getting too hot or cold.
  There is a bill (sponsored by Sen. Harper) from 2012 that was meant to supercede Salt Lake City's efforts to pass an anti idling law.  Sen. Harper's bill emphasized the educational aspect of the effort and required 3 warnings before a ticket is issued.  The new bill authorizes ticketing after one warning (on public property).  Drive thru and private driveways and property are not affected by this bill.
  This bill could help Salt Lake City enforce anti idling on trucks in the Inland Port area.  This could force refrigerator trucks to stop idling!  To really reduce idling, cities need to stop creating traffic designs that actually encourage backups and idling.  Removing right hand turn lanes in order to place pedestrian bulb outs and reduce pedestrian distance to cross a street can increase backups and pollution if they are not well researched.  
  We often complain about predatory towing (Rep. Maloy's anti predatory towing bill had the sign requirement removed so it is useless) but this bill opens the door to predatory policing.  Without a sign requirement, predatory policing is almost guaranteed.  
  Capitol buses often idle and Capitol Highway Patrol Officers have constantly idled their vehicles when they leave their pets in the vehicle.  There is no consideration for public safety issues.  There is also no limit on tickets.  Although they are supposed to be like parking tickets, the SLC Airport can give a fine of $500 or more!  
  What's next?  Are we going to ban cows??!!

MOTHER OF ALL TAX BILLS RUSHING THROUGH LEGISLATURE
  One of the most complicated bills that the Legislature has developed is sailing through the Legislature.  It increase/implements a sales tax on property transfers, services, even lawnmowing companies.  Services through the internet would be significantly hurt and many Utah fast growth companies would be affected.  The Utah State Tax Commission would have to increase their staff significantly.  I do not think that Commissioner Valentine would try to knock on the door of the neighborhood kid that does lawns but someone may.  Will tips be taxed?  
  We should not tax the kid doing the lawn or lemonade stands or the piano teacher.  We should not be passing laws that encourage kids to not follow laws.  We should not be quadrupling the workload and business of tax attorneys.  Even health insurance would be taxed!!!  It is almost like the Legislature is trying to payback the effort to pass Prop 3 healthcare expansion.
  This has a major effect on businesses and should not be rushed through in the hope that there won't be time to discuss the implications and object.  A full discussion, analysis and debate should precede any important change to business.  This affects the State's healthy business environment.  A vigorous discussion analysis and debate increases the chance for good decisions.
  According to news reports, the tax bill's sponsor joked about "pissing off everybody equally".  Rep. Quinn, you should not be proud of yellow snowing everyone by acting like a turn around and bend over scatalogical geographic.
  This bill is too much government.  I believe that the vast majority of citizens and businesses would prefer a simple 10 cents a gallon gas tax increase instead of this frankenstein tax bill.  A gas tax increase of 10 cents a gallon, with a repurposing of a equivalent amount to education from transportation, makes more sense.  It would bring in $100 million annually.

UTAH BICYCLE YIELD LAW DIES WITH BICYCLE SAFETY
  Rep. Moss' bill to allow bicyclists to not completely stop at lights (when there are no other cars around) has died in Committee.  One cyclist actually asked for it to be defeated!  Rep. Moss' bill to ban talking on the cellphone while driving has died on the House floor.

UTA FREE FARE DAY OVERWHELMS REGULAR RIDERS
  UTA, again, provided a free fare day (actually two days) and it resulted in an overwhelming response from parents and grandparents taking their kids onto the FrontRunner trains.  Standing room only, if you could find a parking spot.  This plan was to encourage long term ridership increases but overcrowded trains and no parking available are not conducive to increasing ridership.  The UTA Board of Trustees has been told many times (including by transit activist Claudia Johnson) that it would make more sense to have the free fare day on a Saturday so as not to discourage regular riders and those considering commuting by train.

UVX IS NOT AS NICE AS DESCRIBED
  UVX has been touted as a super successful BRT bus system in Provo.  At times it is full but that service could have been provide by a bus at a tenth of the cost.  In addition, by driving on the left side of the streets, there are many swerves in and out of traffic which is not a very comfortable ride.  Even worse, there are portions of the BRT lane that actually has big dips for the drainage systems.  So riders can experience the bouncy bouncy bouncy bouncy bus ride.  It is almost as good as a Disneyland ride!  Oh, and the lights do not allow priority to buses which kind of defeats the purpose of a BRT.  

BIG SECRET PHONE TAX INCREASE COMING
  Sen. Harper has a bill about to be passed through the House that increases taxes on phone access points from 9 cents a month to 25 cents a month for 911 services.  I am concerned that we should not be throwing money at this County's 911 services before an audit that confirms the reasonable budgets for coordination of the SLC/Sandy and UPD/VECC systems.  We have been promised effective coordination for over a decade without results.  The prepaid cell phone tax will increase form 3.3% (it was 2.45% a year ago) to 3.7%.  

CWC TRYING TO PUSH FEDERAL CONTROL OF CANYONS
  The CWC is rushing a bill through the Legislature that supports the questionable efforts and plans to turn over a significant part of the Wasatch Canyons to federal government management.  This is a followon to the Mt Accord which has been found to be lacking in following the  Utah Open Meetings Act.  It discourages personal vehicle use, and at one time, supported a National Monument in the Canyons.  I question the collaborative process that they claim to be consensus.  The westside of the County has been left out of input regarding their recreation areas.  Despite concerns from the Chair of the Committee, Sen. Thatcher, it passed through the Committee.
  The language says:
 "BE IT RESOLVED that the Legislature of the state of Utah, the Governor concurring therein, reflecting the will of local communities and many interests, urge the President of the United States, Congress, and Utah's congressional delegation to pass legislation reflecting the work of the Central Wasatch Commission and the years of collaborative effort resulting from the Mountain Accord."

FINALLY SUPPORTIVE HOUSING NEAR A BIG STORE
  First Step is showing the way to real respectful supportive housing that is not in the middle of single family home areas.  It is on 500 East across the street from Smith's and near many restaurants and other amenities, including several bus and TRAX stations.  That is where all supportive housing should be.

WFRC PLAN COMMENTS DUE NOW
  The very very important WFRC RTP draft plan is out for public comment.  There is about 10 days left to comment on the issue!  March 17th i the deadline.  (Also the WFRC has moved to the Gateway, finally.)  
  I am against all of these projects until a robust bus system is restored.  Service increases should return bus service to where it was when it was cut 30%.  We do not have 5 billion to spend on these projects.  They should have a financial priority list.  I somewhat like the 700 South Green Line to 400 West rerouting and the Cottonwood Canyon buses.  I put the WFRC draft plan in the downloads section.
  The questionable projects are:
Ogden BRT is now $95 million
Weber State University Transit Hub $18 million
Davis SLC Connector BRT $192 million
State Street BRT $317 million!
200 South BRT $67 million
3300 South BRT $288 million
4500 South BRT $127 million
FrontRunner Doubletrack $199 million
   Ogden to Pleasant View $197 million
   Electrify $709-948 million
Black Line SLC Airport to UofU $515 million
Green Line from 700 South to Gateway $87 million  (this project makes some sense to save 10 minutes to the Airport)
Draper TRAX $361 million this year and total is $687 million
Draper TRAX west alignment is $964 to $1.8 million
S Line extension to 400 South via 900 East $147 million
S Line extension to UofU $317 million
S Line extension to Millcreek $128 million  and up to $1.3 million to go to 3900 South
400 South TRAX from SLCentral to 400 South $75 million-$112 million
Big Cottonwood Corridor Special Service Buses $7 million with $1.3 million per year operating cost
Little Cottonwood bus is $4.3 million and $762,000 operating cost
North Temple Transit Hub, 200 South Hub, UofU Hub, Central Pointe Station Hub, Murray Central Station Hub, SLCC Transit Hub, Cottonwood Canyons Transit Hub, Fort Union Transit Hub,  $14 million each

BODY CAMS MAY BE DISCARDED DUE TO STORAGE COSTS
  Utah Interactive is in the final stages of developing an inexpensive system to allow body cam storage for a fraction of the cost of present services.  Several small law enforcement agencies in the State are considering dropping body cams since they can cost over $100 per month per person!  The Salt Lake County UPD is one concerned about the cost.  During a presentation several years ago, Utah Interactive felt that they could provide the service for less than $40 per month.

FREE CANYON SHUTTLE SATURDAY
  "Wasatch Backcountry Alliance and Utah Mountain Shuttle are hosting the fourth annual free shuttle day on Saturday March 9th, from 7:00 a.m. -- 5:00 p.m. The shuttle will depart from the Brighton Pointe Shopping Center at 3470 East and Bengal Boulevard every 30 minutes.

https://sites.google.com/site/utahmountianbikeshuttle/

Reservations are required, but free for friends of WBA 
1. Sign up and select time.  On this page (see below)
2. Day of event, park and sign in. Look for our tent between Smiths Fuel and Arctic Circle. 3470 East Bengal Blvd. 
3. Load shuttle at time selected. Starting 7:00 am (Please be ready to load at the time) 
4. Exit shuttle. Make sure you are on the list so we can make sure we don't lose you!
5. Take a few laps. 
6. Return in shuttle. Call or flag down one of the UTAH MOUNTAIN SHUTTLE Sprinter vans"

BEST QUOTE FROM LEGISLATURE ON MORE LAWS
"Let's let the government jump in and fix the world with another law to abide by." That quote is from Rep. Francis Gibson in the 2019 Legislative session that is considering 1000 new laws.



FEBRUARY 21, 2019
INN BETWEEN GETS ZONING HEARING WITHOUT PUBLIC OUTREACH
HATE BY HOMELESS BILL ADDS HOMELESS AS A PROTECTED CLASS
UTAH CLOSER TO BE BEST NUCLEAR WASTE SITE TO GROW VEGETABLES
MILLCREEK READY TO BET TAXPAYER MONEY ON UTOPIA
GEORGIA APARTMENT OWNER THREATENED WITH JAIL TO SELL TO SLC
UTA STILL HAS LACK OF DRIVERS DUE TO MASS RETIREMENT
PREPAID WIRELESS TAX INCREASE 50% SURPRISE
GRAVEL PITS MORE IMPORTANT THAN HEALTH PROTECTIONS
UTAH POLICY TO SUPPORT MOLTEN SALT REACTOR 30 YEARS BEFORE SAFE



INN BETWEEN GETS ZONING HEARING WITHOUT PUBLIC OUTREACH
  The Salt Lake City Council has decided that there was sufficient public outreach on rezoning properties that provide homeless hospice services so they have set a public hearing date of March 26, 2019 to hear public comments at their Council formal meeting.  Unfortunately, all of the public comments and outreach were for the westside Salt Lake City InnBetween facility!  So the community around the present InnBetween near 1300 South and 1216 East has not been given the chance to participate in the normal public outreach and engagement that most major zoning issues get.  There were many public outreach meetings for the InnBetween westside facility.  Ignoring a neighborhood is not good government.  If the SLC Council insists on changing the zoning requirements that involve the InnBetween, they should have a vigorous public outreach involving the neighbors of the InnBetween.
  The proposal, in part: 
"Ordinance: Congregate Care Facilities Zoning Text Amendment
The Council will set the date of Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 7 p.m. to accept
public comment and consider adopting an ordinance amending various
sections of the Salt Lake City Code pertaining to eleemosynary, residential
support, group home, assisted living facility, and congregate care facility uses.
The proposed ordinance would create a land use classification to address
short-term housing for the terminally ill and seriously ill. The proposal
includes reviewing compatibility concerns for how this land use, and others
like it, would impact the adjacent residential neighborhoods, particularly the
Institutional Zoning District. Related provisions of Title 21A Zoning may also
be amended as part of this petition."
  Specifically, the proposed ordinance allows a care facility, if it involves less than 17 residences, in the R1-5000 single family home zone that surrounds the present InnBetween location.  It requires a conditional use process which includes allowing for mitigating negative consequences.  More than 16 residents require the facility to be in higher density areas.  I put the compressed staff report and zoning maps in the downloads area.

HATE BY HOMELESS BILL ADDS HOMELESS AS A PROTECTED CLASS
  I have known Senator Thatcher for almost 10 years and he has impressed me with his passion.  He fought the Salt Lake County UPD fee and has been a big advocate for law enforcement in the Legislature.  I have to disagree with his effort (supported by Equality Utah) to add a great big new law called a hate crime law.  It has been encouraged and presented as being generated by several recent attacks on people due to their background or beliefs.  The main justification or energizing factor seems to be when a homeless man who obviously had mental health problems attacked several men who he claimed were part of the Mexican mafia.  
  Utah and the Country should not be making laws based on the actions of crazy people.  As much as many people want to ban all guns, just because some crazy person goes on a mass murder spree killing kids should not result in a law banning guns.  They can't be expected to follow laws and they break enough laws in the process of attacking people that they should be taken out of society for a long time.  A recent case of the murder of the University of Utah student showed how little people with mental issues will follow the law.  The murderer was not supposed to have a gun!  And that WAS a hate crime. 
  Unfortunately, the reality is that Salt Lake City has a large population of homeless individuals who have mental health issues.  The Salt Lake County Jail is said to have 80% of their population requiring mental health treatment.  The County cut mental health services 50% about 10 years ago so many of these problem cases wonder the streets, especially downtown and sometimes attack innocent pedestrians.  
  A typical case from a few years ago had a homeless man who had mental issues attacking an employee of Goldman Sachs.  The police could not do anything about the attack due to jail booking restrictions (still in effect).  So a new law to add a penalty enhancement is not going to have much effect.  Homeless sometimes attack pedestrians.  The insulting irony is that homeless was added to the category of targeted classes in Sen. Thatcher's bill.  Making homeless a protected class is an insult.  So any hateful speech that involves homeless could be claimed to be hate speech.  Complaining about homeless hanging out on your lawn should not be classified as hate speech.
   We already have a well written law on the books in 76-3-203.4 that allows a sentencing judge or Board of Parole to consider aggravating factors that meet the definition of hate crimes.  It even was applicable when people threatened Gayl Ruzicka, leader of Utah's Eagle Forum.  As Libertas' Connor Boyack pointed out, the way that the proposed bill is written, a University of Utah student could get an extra penalty for actions against a BYU student and vice versa.  A father would not be able to intimidate his daughter's boyfriend!  A West High student could have extra penalties for attacking an East High student!  This proposal is way out of line with good government.
  The one thing that would decrease these crimes is better mental health treatment.  Unfortunately, it may take a while since Prop 3 has been held up and the new law needs to be set up.  Again, we should not be making laws based on the crazy actions of crazy people.

UTAH CLOSER TO BE BEST NUCLEAR WASTE SITE TO GROW VEGETABLES
  HB220 is about to go to the Governor.  It allows one person to decide if EnergySolutions can accept nuclear waste.  During Senate debate, Senator Hemmert said that depleted uranium is used in everyday life but he ignored the reality that the barrels that EnergySolutions calls depleted uranium (ES finally said that the barrels contained depleted uranium oxide when they tried to quickly get depleted uranium munitions stored at their Clive facility) are actually nuclear weapons waste that have gone through a reactor and picked up more dangerous elements and radiation!  When they tried to accept depleted uranium munitions, they ignored the Oak Ridge Nuclear Lab's recommendation for a drier climate that is more secure than Clive.  ES, in my opinion, does not know nuclear waste.  They make nuclear power look bad.  And despite what the former CEO said, you should not grow vegetables in nuclear weapons waste.
  The most aggravating part of the bill is that it allows one person to make the decision and that could result in questionable decisions that could be labelled as government corruption.  Ironically, Envirocare, the previous name of EnergySolutions, paid a Utah government employee to allow nuclear waste in Utah.  
  The only good news is that Utah will require the DOE to take over ownership of ES' site and be responsible for long term safe storage.  The bad news is DOE does not like ES safety plan and was so upset with allowing the nuclear weapons waste barrels to sit in standing water outside, that they paid to build a storage building for the barrels.

MILLCREEK READY TO BET TAXPAYER MONEY ON UTOPIA
  Despite rapid advancement of 5G and other wireless systems that make it a lot cheaper to access high speed internet, Millcreek is very interested in fiber.  UTOPIA made a presentation recently that promised $60 a month internet if Millcreek accepted responsibility for the cost if under 30% of households used the service.  So taxpayers, even if they don't get the service, could pay.  UTOPIA, in my opinion, is not well managed.  It costs Utah taxpayers and UTOPIA customers $50 million more every year than they should due to a poor decision that their financial analyst recommended against.  They accepted a Key Bank recommendation for an interest rate swap that resulted in a higher interest payment for customers!  They are still paying and Millcreek may end up helping them pay.  
  There is a reason why Google slowed down Google Fiber.  It is more expensive to install than they thought and there are better wireless systems that can reach the same speeds.  5G in particular is around the corner.  The phones are now available although the infrastructure is slow to be available.  It is expected to roll out for much of the Valley within two years.  In the meantime, cellphone companies can provide 4K download speeds for TV and Comcast and CenturyLink provide cheaper internet.  The competition will reduce the interest in Millcreek fiber.  And hopefully, Millcreek will not burden taxpayers with heavy costs that may be useless in 5 years.

GEORGIA APARTMENT OWNER THREATENED WITH JAIL TO SELL TO SLC
  The owner of the Georgia Apartments, the crime magnet affordable housing facility on 2100 South and 200 East, has been charged with a large number of misdemeanors.  It appears, to me, to force the owner to sell to the Salt Lake Housing Authority.  Most residents seem to have found shelter that included the Road Home.  But the loss of the $700 a month apartments is a big loss for affordable housing in SLC.  Hopefully, the SLC Housing Authority will buy the apartments and clean them up and get them habitable as fast as they did with the 1700 S. Capitol Motel.

UTA STILL HAS LACK OF DRIVERS DUE TO MASS RETIREMENT
  UTA is trying to hire as many drivers as possible.  There are a large number of drivers retiring soon and finding adequate and well trained replacements is a problem.  Ask any bus driver.  It is a big issue.  Earlier this week, the 209 missed an important stop when the driver turned early.  12 waiting riders were upset at having to wait another 15 minutes for a ride home.  That is not the way to encourage ridership.

PREPAID WIRELESS TAX INCREASE 50% SURPRISE
  Lost in the thousand bills going through the Legislature is SB154 that increases prepaid wireless taxes 50%.  It is an almost done deal bill that raises the tax from 2.45 to 3.7%.  There are other tax increases coming.  Utah is about to adopt a policy that requires anyone selling through Amazon or other internet sites to pay Utah taxes if they sell 200 items to Utahns!  The limit was $100,000 but the old law did not catch the third party sellers who are generally very small but not too small for Utah to try to tax.  This bill is hurtful towards small business.

GRAVEL PITS MORE IMPORTANT THAN HEALTH PROTECTIONS
  Rep. Wilde is ramping up efforts to declare gravel pits critical materials and make it harder for communities to stop operation of them.  He has added Rep. Coleman's language that was to protect agricultural, industrial and mining facilities which stalled in Committee.  So industrial and mining facilities are more important than nearby residents.  
  From 1992 to 2014, there were 49 cases of silicosis hospitalization (generally hospitalization means endstage).  Because there are no studies on the cause of the silica dust, Utah does not know if coal miners or gravel pits are the cause.  The bill should not go through but there is a significant push to pass it.  
  Gravel pits are allowed to expand and throw out 25 extra tons of dust a year in Utah and the result is super gravel pits that were very small 60 years ago.  The residents of Capitol Hill should not have to endure the dust and potential silicosis in order to help Utah's economic development and building boom.  
  OSHA recently lowered the "the permissible exposure limit (PEL) of crystalline silica to 50 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3) averaged over an eight-hour shift, with an action level of 25 µg/m3.  OSHA sets the standards for gravel pit cement mixing.  The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) controls standards for gravel pits and they have kept the standard at 100 micrograms per cubic meter.
  A study by MSHA from 2004 to 2008 found that 12% of sand and gravel pits exceeded "applicable or reduced respirable dust standard because of the presence of silica".  During a study of dust from a Brigham City gravel pit about 20 years ago, it said that: "since no analysis of the dust for crystalline silica was conducted, the EEP also recommends that an analysis for crystalline silica (total and respirable) in the dust be performed." 

UTAH POLICY TO SUPPORT MOLTEN SALT REACTOR 30 YEARS BEFORE SAFE
  SB24 that sets Utah policy as promoting molten salt reactors is going to the Governor.  Molten salt reactors are presently not tested for safety although there are many research projects.  A Utah company insists that it can safely build and operate a molten salt reactor within ten years.  Experts say that it will take 30 years, if ever, to prove safe design and operation of molten salt reactors.




FEBRUARY 14, 2019
900 S RESTAURANT ROW GROWING OPEN HOUSE
HB220 CHANGED TO REQUIRE FEDS APPROVE NUCLEAR WASTE 
HB78 RESULTS IN BIG COMMITTEE SHOW
500 EAST BURGLARIES/CAR PROWLS INCREASING 
MILLCREEK ROOSEVELT ELEMENTARY MAY BECOME CONDOS
GEORGIA APARTMENTS MAY BE BOUGHT BY SLC HOUSING
POKEMON GO FANS OVERWHELM CAPITOL PARKING
SB54 WATER METERING GOOD GOV NEEDS GOOD DATA
ECIG LEGISLATION STILL ALLOWS TEEN VAPING


900 S RESTAURANT ROW GROWING OPEN HOUSE
The building at 402-416 E 900 South is asking for a zoning map amendment to change the zoning of the buildings, including the Asian Market, from Neighborhood Commercial and Residential/Business District to CB Community Business District.  A building, the Asian Market, requires major repairs to stabilize a rear wall and the effort is complicated by the building being under two different zonings.  
  There will be an open house at the adjacent building at 428 E. 900 S. on Tuesday Feb. 19 from 4-530 PM.  The City will be running the open house and the coordinator is Lauren Parisi at 801 535 7226/lauren.paris@slcgov.com.  This rezone has the potential to signficantly grow the restaurant row that is happening on 900 S. west of 500 East.  The owner of the property has not been able to confirm the Asian Market is interested in continuing its lease past the June 2019 present lease.  But the owner seems to want to make the area upgraded and become closer to the 9th and 9th area, where she used to work.  It is planned to be integrated with the 9 Line Trail on 900 S. and support that Trail.

HB220 CHANGED TO REQUIRE FEDS APPROVE NUCLEAR WASTE 
  HB220 that gives EnergySolutions the ability to short circuit the Radiation Control Board and move more radioactive material into Tooelle, which keeps implying that it is only good for a garbage dump, passed the Senate Committee with only three allowed to speak against it.
  I know Rep. Albrecht, and he is a good Representative.  He is running this bill to help nuclear in Utah.  But I believe that this bill will actually hurt the potential for nuclear power in Utah.  EnergySolutons does not know how to handle nuclear waste and in the process, it makes nuclear power in Utah less realistic.
  Again, EnergySolutions has claimed that you can grow vegetables in the 5000 barrels of so called depleted uranium (DU) which is actually nuclear weapons waste.  That makes nuclear power look bad.
  EnergySolutions has claimed that the material in the barrels, which came from the Savannah River Nuclear Weapons Plant, have not gone through a reactor and been irradiated.  But the manifest clearly shows that it has been irradiated.  This material is not really DU.  It is Waste In Process (WIP) from production of nuclear bomb material that HAS gone through a reactor.  By claiming what I consider a nontruth, EnergySolutions makes nuclear power look bad.
  Sen. Stevenson said that it doesn't make sense to worry about DU munitions when they are being stored at Dugway.  He was reminded that Oak Ridge National Lab thought that storing DU muntions at Clive, Utah is questionable.  They recommended the Nevada Nuclear Test Site which is not as humid and is much more secure.

  Tank armor, aircraft balancing weight and military munitions have DU that has not gone through a reactor and have 40+% less radioactivity than mined uranium.  It is left over after the most radioactive material is pulled out for bombs and irradiation in a reactor.  When EnergySolutions does not seem to know the difference between low radioactivity DU and nuclear weapons waste, it makes nuclear power look bad.
  Also, the federal government was so upset at the lack of appropriate storage management of the 5000 barrels, left in standing water outside, that they paid for a building to store the barrels.  So the federal government thinks, in my opinion, that EnergySolutons does not know how to safely and appropriately store nuclear waste.  That makes nuclear power look bad.
  The good news is Alan Matheson, Governor Herbert's head of DEQ expressed concern about the bill.  
  Most importantly, there is a third substitute that adds language that requires legislative review with the House and Senate Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment Standing Committee Chairs be notified within 5 days of the director allowing the waste.  There is a 90 day wait afterwords to allow review.  
  AND, "The director shall require as a condition to the disposal of quantities of more than one metric ton of concentrated depleted uranium: a) a performance assessment; b) designation of a federal cell by the director; and c) that the U.S. DOE accepts long term management, title to the land on which the federal cell is located, title to the waste in the federal cell, and financial stewardship for the federal cell and waste in the federal cell."  I do not think that the federal government will agree to take over the financial liabilities of EnergySolutions.   

HB78 RESULTS IN BIG COMMITTEE SHOW
  HB78, Rep. Albrecht's bill that emphasizes that all requests for federeal designation should go through the Legislature was barely approved to go to the House floor.  The discussion centered on Emory County trying to get Congress to set a wilderness area up against the Wayne County line which restricts roads from Wayne County to Emory County.  The U.S. Senate just approved the bill.  
  But the bill also questions the Mt. Accord and CWC's efforts to designate the Central Wasatch Canyons as a National Conservation Area without going through the Legislature.
  Several southern Utah and rural representatives on the Committee questioned HB78.  They felt that local communities should be able to decide.  When the Committee Chair started questioning the opponents of the bill, in an effort to support the bill, several Committee members complained about badgering some of the Committee members.  Rep. Duckworth finally called point of order on the Chair!  The Chair, Rep. Stratton, after a long discussion with the support staff and Committee Attorney, called himself out of order.  He then called for final discussion and vote.  The bill barely passed to the House floor.  Rep. Duckworth and Rep. Stratton hugged afterwords.  It was an interesting show.  Calling point of order on a Chair is almost never done.

500 EAST BURGLARIES/CAR PROWLS INCREASING 
  SLCPD is reporting an increase in car prowls and burglaries between 300 East and 600 East and 9th South and 2100 South.  Residents on 500 East also report that most homes fronting Liberty Park have also been broken into.  Please report all prowlers and strangers walking in an area as prowlers and ask for a police officer to call back or get a case number.

MILLCREEK ROOSEVELT ELEMENTARY MAY BECOME CONDOS
  Roosevelt Elementary in Millcreek on 33rd South and 800 East may soon close.  The low local student population will not support the local school.  It has been kept open up until now due to the busing in of refugee family members.  The rumour is that Ivory Homes is negotiating with the Granite School District to buy the property and construct homes or condos on the site.
  

GEORGIA APARTMENTS MAY BE BOUGHT BY SLC HOUSING
  For years, the Georgia apartments at 200 East and north of 2100 South have had a reputation as a crime magnet.  As reported a few months ago, the owner lost her Good Landlord discount and now owes over $13,000 in fees to SLC.  SLC used many fire code deficiencies to finally close the facility.  All residents must be out by Saturday.  It appears that most have found new accommodations.  The Other Side Academy helped move the furnishings of some of the renters.
  The owner of the property, Carol Lunt, who lives near 1100 East and Garfield in what has been described as an ill kept home, is refusing to fix the deficiencies such as no heat, broken windows and lack of fire alarms and operating sprinkler systems.  Joe Post, of the Salt Lake City Housing Authority, acknowledged that they are attempting to reach an agreement with Ms. Lunt to buy the property and convert it in a manner like the Capitol Motel.  This story will take a while to finish.

POKEMON GO FANS OVERWHELM CAPITOL PARKING
  It appears that one of the reasons that parking is so full near the State Capitol is due to Pokeyman Go fans doing their thing on the Capitol grounds and chasing whatever Go fans chase.  They were even in evidence during a snowstorm.

SB54 WATER METERING GOOD GOV NEEDS GOOD DATA
  Sen. Anderegg is sponsoring a bill to require, over 20! years, the use of water meters on secondary residential and business water users to determine the actual usage of water in Utah.  The bill is limited to first and second class counties so most rural counties will not have to be forced to do it.  But over 20 years!?  The reason is the cost which will be about $200 million!  Over 20 years, it will be about $10 million per year.
  Although it may seem surprising, Utah does not know how much water it uses, according to the State Water Engineer.  Good government needs good data to make good informed decisions.  This is a good bill which is having a difficult time but is finally going to the Senate floor.

ECIG LEGISLATION STILL ALLOWS TEEN VAPING
  Rep. Eliason is sponsoring a bill to raise the cigarette and e-cigarette age to 19 then eventually to 21.  Rep. Ray is sponsoring a bill to add .86 of the sales price as a tax on e-cigarette materials.
  But the bills do very little to decrease the damage that Utah taxpayers will have to cover in Medicaid costs for those who are vaping.  Recent studies have confirmed that vaping is probably destroying lung tissue!  And within ten years, Utah will spend hundreds of millions more on Medicaid expenses to treat low income vaping users.  Utah now spends more than a hundred million treating cigarette smokers with Medicaid funds!  
  The Legislature needs to make it illegal to vape or smoke until 21.  Schools should be able to confiscate cigarettes and vaping items at school.  There should be a $5 per vaping cartridge tax and a higher tax on cigarettes to discourage use by teenagers.  And the medical marijuana users should not be allowed to use vaping.  These bills will have an interesting time at the Legislature.




FEBRUARY 11, 2019
SLC FLEET BLOCK FINALLY HAS A PLAN BUT
SLC ACTIVE CANDIDATES LIST
SLC SUGAR HOUSE LIBRARY MAY MOVE TO FIREHOUSE
NUCLEAR REACTOR PROPONENTS PUSH UNSAFE TECHNOLOGY
HB78 REQUIRES LEGISLATURE TO GIVE LAND TO FEDS
SLCO DA AGAINST HIGHER PENALTIES FOR 3X THEFTS
MILLCREEK BACKS DOWN ON TRYING TO ANNEX BRICKYARD

 
SLC FLEET BLOCK FINALLY HAS A PLAN BUT
  Salt Lake City is finalizing the plan for redevelopment of the Fleet Block between 800 and 900 South and 400 and 300 West. Unfortunately, only the neighbors and businesses around the block were involved in the public engagement.  The Ballpark Community Council, a very active community group just south of the property was not involved.  The local 9th community council group just started a few months ago and the proposed design is getting very little attention.  There should be more public engagement before this plan is acted on.  The City plans a request for proposals (RFP) in Q1 2019!
  The plan appears to try to justify a new $100 million taxpayer funded streetcar/TRAX line running west on 9th South from the present TRAX line to 400 West then north.  The idea (I believe misguided.) is to encourage development of the area on 9th South and on 400 West.  I disagree with that assumption because the TRAX lines on 300 West and 2100 South have not spurred major developments.  Some development is starting but it is minimal in my opinion.
  Ironically, the design ignores the proposal to shift the Green Line TRAX to the spur at 1300 South and use it to go to 400 West and save 5 to 10 minutes going to the Airport by avoiding the zig zag and milk run rail line downtown.
  The plan suggests an "innovation district - home to companies that shape new products and technologies".  It divides the block (note the southwest corner is used by business now) into 4 smaller blocks with internal streets being curbless.  The plan suggest building first on the south side adjacent to 900 South.  
  The best news is the City is finally recognizing the value of ground level activity that encourages walkability.  It has ignored that in almost all of the new Sugar House construction.  The plans call for 94,000 square feet of office space, 37,000 square feet of retail (25,000 square feet at ground level), and 12,000 square feet of live work units (30 units on the northwest corner for sale).  There are a total of 315 residential units with 30% affordable.  59,000 square feet are for community use.  There will be 865 parking spaces with 685 on the lot and 180 on the street.
  The Ballpark Community Council should have had more input on this plan.

SLC ACTIVE CANDIDATES LIST
  I put the active candidates list for Salt Lake City, as of February 5th in the downloads section.  This year's campaigns, especially for mayor of Salt Lake City, will be very active.  In answer to those who keep asking:  I am not planning on running for office.  I think that there are enough good candidates in this election season to make a good decision better.

SLC SUGAR HOUSE LIBRARY MAY MOVE TO FIREHOUSE
  The Sprague Library is planning to close for a year for a major renovation.  The Library has been looking for a place to temporarily relocate and it seems to have found the space at the old Fire Station on Sugarmont just west of Highland Drive.  There are still some concerns at the City but the site is recommended since there is very little minimal cost space available in the Sugar House neighborhood.  A reminder:  The new Fire Station on 900 East has a community meeting room available for local groups.  Call the SLC Fire Department if you want to use it.

NUCLEAR REACTOR PROPONENTS PUSH UNSAFE TECHNOLOGY
  The Legislature is scheduled to hear a proposed change to energy policy with SB0024 that adds a line that I find concerning.  It says, on line 42, that the energy policy of Utah is to, among other things, is to "promote the development of.... nuclear power generation technologies certified for use by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission INCLUDING MOLTEN SALT REACTORS PRODUCING MEDICAL ISOTOPES". 
  I am a former nuclear engineer and I find the promoting of molten salt nuclear reactors concerning.  I believe that we are 20 plus years away from coming close to safely design and operate those reactors, if we ever do get to that point. The reactor is a molten salt of lithium, beryllium, zirconium, flourine and thorium (which decays, with neutron bombardment, eventually, to uranium 233.  The major concerns include tritium (a beta emitter) containment has not been completely successful.  Lithium constantly decays to tritium.  Uranium 233 is a perfect bomb making material and it requires much higher security than a regular nuclear plant (which already has high security).  Many dozens of elements are produced in the molten salt and some have deleterious effects on the piping.  In particular, the preferred nuclear piping, Hastelloy (a nickel, molybdenum and chromium alloy) is impacted by selenium, one of the elements produced in the reactor.  Although the alloy is resistant to corrosion, selenium can make it brittle.  Studies to determine long term safe structural stability of Hastelloy or another better alternative will take decades.
  In addition, the best nuclear engineers in the world have not been able to design, build and safely operate a plant to remove the actinides that are produced and that poison the reaction.  Those actinides are much more dangerous than the multiclad nuclear fuel rods.  And we have not been able to safely store them!  Utah should not be producing the most dangerous radioactive compounds known to man or woman.  There is also a theoretical possibility that there could be a critical event that interferes with the standard "freeze plug" that is supposed to melt to stop runaway reactions.  If the molten salt solidifies in any way, it could solidify over the freeze plug and stop its operation.  
  Molten salt reactor technology will require thousands of engineers to research the safe design and operation of these systems.  I believe that only the Idaho National Nuclear Laboratory can provide that research in a safe area.  It is a large secure area that is not available in Utah, unless we want more dangerous material.  The bill also appears to be helping the commercial business of Alpha Tech Research Corporation that is proposing building these reactors.  Similar claims of "safe" reactor technology have been dismissed by nuclear experts before. Transatomic's claims were countered and they dissolved.  Nuclear power is not easy and I see no progress on implementing nuclear power in the next ten years.  
  Although China installed several Westinghouse AP1000 modular nuclear reactors and hooked them to the power grid last July 2 (in a bid to counter our July 4th celebration), the units were tested and wrung out by Oregon State University scientists.  But China's safety in nuclear power is untested and it may result in major accidents that further hurt development of nuclear power.
  SB0024 also adds "greater access to domestic and international markets for Utah's resources, and advanced transmission systems, energy storage and other advanced energy systems and increased refinery capacity".  In other words, it encourages a coal port effort, and development of the inland port.  The increased refinery capacity may also be concerning to those in the airshed.
  Senator Hinkins is asking for money in a separate request to set up a research facility in San Juan County that could turn into a full scale reactor.  But that will take at least 20 years if ever.  I am not against that $10 plus million request but I think that it would be more useful for teachers.  I respect Senator Hinkins and if he and San Juan County (which is also trying to force a wilderness on a large area abutting Wayne County) think that they can handle a research facility, more power to them.  But if Bill Gates can't make a billion dollars create a facility in the U.S. (he tried China until he was shut down due to concerns about technology transfer - and remember these types of reactors can make bomb material), I don't think Utah should put a lot of money in the effort.  
  Again, I am against a policy of Utah promoting a molten salt reactor in Utah.

HB78 REQUIRES LEGISLATURE TO GIVE LAND TO FEDS
  Rep. Albrecht sponsored a bill to emphasize that the Legislature has the final authority on asking Congress to take over management of Utah land.  His HB 78 says that the Legislature may review and support or deny the request by other governments, or political subdivisions or interlocals (like the Mt. Accord's Central Wasatch Commission) to turn over management of Utah property to the federal government.  The Mountain Accord required support for either a National Monument, or a National Recreation Area or a National Conservation Area (the CWC is asking for a Congressional sponsor for a National Conservation Area) for the Central Wasatch Canyons.  
  Another driver of the bill is Emory County asked Congress and got sponsors for a wilderness bill (a compromise bill) that put the boundary on the Wayne County line!  The bill was defeated in Congress due to a technical concern by Senator Lee.  But federal government management of wilderness areas includes a buffer that would extend into Wayne County!  Wayne County was furious and that is driving the HB78.  The bill was held over for more public comment by Rep. Stratton, the Chair of the Natural Resources Committee.  That is the typical action of legislators.  They try to hear all public comment, unlike the 2 recent hearings on SB96 that only allowed 5 comments against the bill.

SLCO DA AGAINST HIGHER PENALTIES FOR 3X THEFTS
  In a surprise, the Salt Lake City DA argued against increasing the penalties for stealing over a hundred dollars worth of property more than three times.  Bicycle thieves steal that much every day that they are free.  And they are free everyday.  Rep. Shurtliff's HB 189 "enhances the penalty for a person convicted of theft more than three times".  The West Valley City prosecutor asked for the tools to address the constant criminal activity, mainly driven by drug addiction, to help imprison these criminals.  But several Committee members also pointed out that the Salt Lake County Jail is full and can't take more criminals and the Legislature decreased te penalties four years ago, with the JRI.  So the Committee held the bill for later discussion.
  During discussion with William Carlson of the DA's Office, he indicated that essentially "current law indicates a theft is a felony if the value is over $500, the offender has two previous theft convictions, and at least one of the priors is a class A misdemeanor.  Current law also indicates a theft of any value is a class a misdemeanor if the offender has two priors.  See Utah Code Subsections 76-6-412(1)(b)(ii) and (1)(c)(iii)."  So the DA currently is using the $500 with the priors now when needed.
  
MILLCREEK BACKS DOWN ON TRYING TO ANNEX BRICKYARD
  On Monday evening February 11, the Millcreek City Council directed staff to remove any plan to annex Brickyard and tell the Legislature that HB262 is not needed and should be retracted.  Their hope is that their good faith effort will result in the cities trying to find an amenable and fair resolution to the issue. I put the Millcreek Draft Zoning Map in the downloads section of SLC items.

  



FEBRUARY 5, 2019
JIM DABAKIS IS UTAH'S VERSION OF DONALD TRUMP
ANTI IDLING ENGINE STOPS AT COMMITTEE NOT
LEGISLATURE PUSHES GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION
JORDAN RIVER COULD GET PARK RANGERS
SB96 NEEDS A ROLL OF TOILET PAPER
SEN. FILLMORE HELPS MENTAL HEALTH
COMMUNISM DOWNSIDES NEEDS PUBLICIZING
PUBLIC SERVANTS NEED RULES TO ACT RESPONSIBLY
2700 S PARKING REMOVED ON NORTH SIDE OF STREET
BRICKYARD ANNEXATION EFFORT


JIM DABAKIS IS UTAH'S VERSION OF DONALD TRUMP
  Jim Dabakis is running for mayor of Salt Lake City.  The Salt Lake Tribune recently showed that almost half of voters were undecided on who they would vote for.  But, of those who had decided, Jim Dabakis came out with over 20% of the poll and Mayor Biskupski came out with around 15%.
  I have known Jim Dabakis since he served as my senator in the Legislature.  His only accomplishments in the Legislature was a bill to require carbon monoxide detectors in schools.  It almost did not pass since legislators were worried about the cost to school districts.  The only other accomplishments were resolutions.  Jim had a good way of delivering his opinions but he was not able to convince his fellow legislators to take him seriously.  
  I expect, if Jim follows through on his plan to run for mayor, and wins, that we will have an administration that is as useful as Jim was in the Legislature.  In other words, in my opinion, Jim Dabakis is Utah's version of Donald Trump.



ANTI IDLING ENGINE STOPS AT COMMITTEE, NOT
  Rep. Patrice Arent's effort to put more teeth in the State's anti-idling efforts failed to advance from a House Committee hearing.  The vote was 5 to 5 on Tuesday.  But it is coming back Thursday after an agreement to pass it through.  That happens.
  Present Utah law considers anti-idling laws to be educational.  The only way municipalities can enforce their anti-idling laws is if they give 3 warnings first. Rep. Arent's HB148 removes any warnings and the educational directive and allows immediate ticketing. 
  Mayor Silvistrini of Millcreek suggested allowing one warning.  Almost everyone else supported the bill.  The Restaurant Association agreed to the substitute which removed drive-thru idling. Only one spoke against the bill.
  I am against changing present Utah law which appears to be working.  Government should not be micromanaging families.  Principals' and police requests to stop idling are generally followed.  Utah's efforts to decrease school bus idling have been very successful.  One Committee member disagreed with that.
  In my opinion, it is wrong for government to ticket families who are trying to keep their children comfortable in a car.  It is not easy raising a family and government should not interfere.
  Police should not be judge jury and revenue generator.  Police now do a good job educating drivers on anti-idling benefits.  If the bill had passed, 18 municipalities and governments in Salt Lake County could confuse drivers as they drove from city to city.  An important question from this potential increase in complexity with no uniformity probably resulted in the bill failing to advance.  Committee Chair Rep. Knotwell expressed interest in making this bill more workable but he couldn't support it as written.
  In my opinion, individual cities' traffic decisions have a bigger impact on pollution.  For instance, Salt Lake City's efforts to put lights at half blocks increases pollution.  Although the efforts are due to encouraging walking, there have been no real cost benefit analysis to recognize the impact on pollution.  In addition, in Salt Lake City, a road diet on 1300 East, going from 4 lanes to 2 lanes, resulted in a big pollution increase with congestion backing up for over a mile.  
  What's next banning diesels?   Educational efforts to decrease idling work. This was a bad bill that tried to micromanage families.



LEGISLATURE PUSHES GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION
  Rep. Albrecht's bill, HB220, to allow EnergySolutions to get quick approval to accept more radioactive waste passed the committee to the House.  It "allows the director of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control to authorize alternate requirements for waste classification and characteristics that would allow an entity to accept certain waste at a specific site;".
  About 30 years ago, Envirocare was implicated in a government corruption scheme when the owner provided money and gifts to the person in the Utah government that was over Envirocare.  That resulted in charges and a name change to EnergySolutions.  
  This bill opens the door to allow EnergySolutions to import more waste that puts Utah taxpayers on the hook for the cost to safely store the waste when EnergySolutions shuts down.
  EnergySolutions does not, in my opinion, know how to safely classify, understand and store nuclear waste.  When EnergySolutions agreed to take 5000 barrels of nuclear weapons waste (more properly called WIP waste in process), they called it depleted uranium (DU)!  That  belief resulted in the former CEO, Steve Cramer, saying that he believed that it could be used to safely grow vegetables (on the Red Meat Radio Hour)!  His confusion was probably from a report on DU by the UN that whitewashed the use of depleted uranium munitions in Kosovo in farmland.  Families ended up with significant urabium contamination but the UN felt that farmers were not cognitively affected.  But, from a medical standpoint, uranium is active chemically like lead.  It does affect the body.  In that case, the effect of DU is less due to radiation than due to the chemical effects.
  The 5000 barrels of so called DU held by EnergySolutions (and they want to bring in 10000 barrels more), were recently relabeled as uranium oxide because the wanted to bring in a lot of DU uranium metal munitions for disposal.  EnergySolutions asked for a quick approval but were denied.  I put more information in August and September (ctrl f uranium) and the reports are at the bottom of the downloads area on the right.
  This bill is a very dangerous bill that encourages government corruption and also opens the door to dangerous radioactive waste without thorough review.



JORDAN RIVER COULD GET PARK RANGERS
  Rep. Winder's HB123, co-sponsored by Sen
 Harper, allows spending money in the Jordan River area, "250 yards on each side of the Jordan River from the edge of the river for the entire length of the river" for new ideas for amenities such as an urban ranger or conservation corps, operated by a state institution of higher education or similar service-oriented organizations or programs: or to provide trail river, and parkway maintenance, invasive species removal and revegitation.  This a good bill that will enhance the Jordan River Park.



SB96 NEEDS A ROLL OF TOILET PAPER
  SB96 continued to ignore the public in its run to a quick passage.  The House Committee hearing only allowed about 5 to testify against the bill.  Rep. Dunnigan amended the bill to continue Medicaid coverage after the expansion, even if the federal government does not agree to the waiver request.  That was a surprise since it significantly adds to the cost and it requires the fiscal note to be changed.
  The fiscal note, according to Tax Commissioner John Valentine, one of the most respected men I know, was satisfactory the day before.  But Rep. Schultz took issue with the claim that Utah would lose, eventually billions.  The fiscal note says over $640 million would be lost if Prop 3 is not implemented.  Rep. Schultz claimed that Utah would only lose about $200 million since Utahns already get money, as a tax credit, for help for low income medical insurance.  But that is not reflected in the fiscal note!  That claim appears to be the new talking point from Republicans fighting Prop 3.  He also reiterated the claim that voters were swayed by ads.  That is similar to Sen. Anderegg's claim that the voters who voted for Prop 3 got a bait and switch.  If Prop 3 is a bait and switch, SB96 is a turn around and bend over bait and switch.  
  Rep. King pointed out that 8 states with AAA bond ratings have adopted Medicaid expansion.  Rep. Duckworth pointed out that the money from the federal government would go to the local economy since doctors and hospitals would spend the increased funds locally.  In a surprise, several Republican Representatives voted against SB96. Rep. Hall, Rep. Winder and Rep. Dunnigan joined the Democrats on the Committee voting against the bill.  
  My arguments against SB96 reiterated my previous writings against SB96.  The State will lose hundreds of millions from the federal government.  The fiscal note says that we will lose 640 million.  At the same time, Utah taxpayers will be paying hundreds of millions more with or without the waiver.  When I spoke against SB96, I started by pointing out that Sen. Christensen is a good and decent man who has devoted his life to reducing pain and suffering in children.  He deserves credit for that. Those who have worked with him in the past know that he cares and is important for keeping informed regarding Utah social services.  He does not deserve ANY disrespectful comments.  But, SB96 does not do him justice.  Rep. Dunnigan, the Chair of the Committee hit the roof and said that he would not allow personal attacks on Sen. Christiansen.  I was not trying to disparage Senator Christofferson, despite Rep. Dunnigan's concerns.  
  I also pointed out that, despite a presenter that said Maine's budget was busted by Medicaid expansion, Utah is better managed than Maine.  Utah should not be using Madame Cleo predictions to claim that Utah will lose too much money with Prop 3.  My fellow Republicans should do the fiscally responsible thing and walk the talk and vote against SB96.
  I also was upset enough to add at the end of my testimony, that SB96 does not get us back to ground zero but down the toilet.  SB96 should come with a roll of toilet paper.  I was still being respectful.  I could have said something more upsetting to Rep. Dunnigan.



COMMUNISM DOWNSIDES NEEDS PUBLICIZING
  Rep. Christofferson's bill to designate November 7 as a day to remember victims of communism is important because it reminds kids, who may not be familiar with the results of communism, that we should remember the evil that communism has caused this world.  The greatest genocides, the destruction of economies, and essentially reverting countries back to the stone age are all accomplishments of communism.  Proof that big mother government communism does not work can be found in China.  When a free market was allowed, their economy exploded.  Rep. Christofferson's bill passed through to the House.



PUBLIC SERVANTS NEED RULES TO ACT RESPONSIBLY
  Rep. Hall was requested by Utah's Auditor General to sponsor HB 163 to provide clear rules of conduct for public servants when using public funds for personal items.  The recent audit of Salt Lake County's Unified Fire Authority that showed public funds were used for personal items created a need for such a bill.  Although most public servants know how to ethically handle funds, this bill is a clear set of rules to make it easier for public servants to consistently and ethically handle public funds when used for personal use.  The Committee passed the bill to the House.



1300 EAST RESURFACING IN ASPHALT
  1300 East reconstruction was originally being considered for concrete which lasts much longer than the 10 year maximum lifetime of asphalt roads.  But the concern about noise, which is higher with concrete, and the time to cure the concrete, up to a week, ended up with the City changing to asphalt roadway on 1300 East.  Salt Lake City has set up a new website at https://www.slc.gov/mystreet/ to provide information on street projects.  



2700 S PARKING REMOVED ON NORTH SIDE OF STREET
  The plan for reconstructing 2700 South is moving fast.  The street is one of the most complained about streets in the City.  The plan is removing the parking on the north side and limiting parking to the south side in order to get more space for safer bikelanes.  There will also be raised crosswalks like in Liberty Park to keep traffic speeds reasonable and just one set of bulbouts.  Bulbouts can cause bicyclists to swerve into traffic.  So can parked cars.  One reason for allowing parking on the south side is due to the fact that it is uphill, the bicyclist's speed is lower and the potential for hitting opening car doors is minimized.  The City has been asked to make a wider than the standard 5 foot bike lane to eliminate completely dooring and requiring cyclists to swerve into traffic.  The City is planning an extensive outreach plan, with a door to door and Facebook Live effort.  There will be asphalt roadway and under road infrastructure will be replaced.  The road should not have to be completely shut down.  Again, more information will be posted at 
https://www.slc.gov/mystreet/
  Again, roadway overlay contracts apply to drive lanes, not shoulders.  The City is looking at changing contract requirements since that contract language hurts bicycling.  Full reconstruction contracts are curb to curb and will specify smoothing out the street after reconstruction.  
  The 1700 South road diet project will reconsider removing some of the center turn lanes to gain more space for bike lanes that are needed to be wider since the new parking creates a problem for cyclists.
  And the 300 West road redesign plan is still very preliminary and a design contract is coming.  There will be significant outreach.



BRICKYARD ANNEXATION EFFORT
  HB262 is an effort sponsored by Rep. Potter to allow landowners who are in a peninsula like Brickyard to petition to remove themselves from a municipality and transfer to another city like Millcreek.  It appears Rep. Mccay, who is thinking of running for Congress in District 4 is pushing the bill behind the scenes (Millcreek is in District 4) and he is being supported by Rep. Schultz.  
  It is ironic that Millcreek is trying this to gain the $3 million a year in sales taxes when the most developable property in Millcreek is west of State Street.  Almost ten years ago, Salt Lake County identified that State Street area as perfect for redevelopment and Mayor Corroon asked for and got Envision Utah to include it in their Life on State Study.  Mayor Silvistrini is pushing for a town center in the Brickyard area.  
  According to those in County Government in the 80s, "SLC annexed the Brickyard in the mid-to-late 1970s. Salt Lake County sued over the revenue grab. The city and county settled with some sort of short-term revenue sharing deal. When Mike Stewart and Bart Barker took office in 1981, they were incensed by the settlement. The County pretty much capitulated.  Later the County sought and got legislation prohibiting such cherry-stem annexations."





FEBRUARY 1, 201

SB96 MEDICAID REPEAL FRYING CHRISTENSEN'S BRAIN

SB96 REPEAL OF PROP 3 COSTS UTAH BILLIONS

SSLC DISPATCH DISCOURAGING CRIME REPORTS BEING INVESTIGATED
SENATOR TODD WEILER HAS 3 COMMENDABLE ACTIONS THIS WEEK
SALT LAKE HOMELESS GROUP MEMORIES ON DOWNLOAD
SLC COUNCIL FINAL HEARING ON INCREASING TRANSIT
AFFORDABLE HOUSING BILL PASSES COMMITTEE
SAFER BICYCLE STREETS, ESPECIALLY ON 1700 SOUTH
UTAH YIELD FOR BICYCLISTS PASSES COMMITTEE
NAVAJO CODE TALKERS DESERVE RECOGNITION FOR BRAVERY
CAPITOL ELEVATOR EATS PEOPLE
DRUG DEALERS BECOMING MILLIONAIRES IN UTAH
SOCIAL SERVICES HEARS ABOUT DISORGANIZED HOMELESS SERVICES
YOU CAN'T RIDE ELECTRIC BICYCLES WHILE DRUNK OR DRUGGED


SB96 MEDICAID REPEAL FRYING CHRISTENSEN'S BRAIN
  The Utah Legislative leadership has ordered Senator Christensen to rewrite his SB96 to lower the fiscal note.  The note came in too high and was too big for leadership to get enough to vote for it.  The arguments on the cost to Utah (the fiscal note) are in Thursday's Deseret News and there is a link below in the next story.  Senator Christensen, when I talked to him this morning, indicated that he couldn't think clearly with all of the things he had to consider and he was so frustrated that he might write his own fiscal note and be done with it.  Of course, Senator Anderegg would love to just repeal Prop 3 and not worry about the cost to Utah.  Although I disagree with Sen. Christensen, I know him to be a good and decent man who has devoted his life to relieving the pain and suffering of children.  He is a pediatric dentist.  He deserves credit for that.  He also is co-chair (along with Rep. Ray) of the Social Services Appropriation Subcommittee that is one of the most complicated assignments in the Legislature.  This shows that the Legislature does want to do the right thing and if the fiscal note is hard to swallow, the bill should be voted down.

SB96 REPEAL OF PROP 3 COSTS UTAH BILLIONS
  I had another oped in the Deseret News that pointed out  that if the federal government does not agree to the waiver request for modifying Prop 3 by April 1, Utah taxpayers will be on the hook for hundreds of millions that SB96 is scheduled to spend.  The last approved waiver took over a year to approve.  The last waiver request was not approved even after a year.  In addition, Utah is scheduled to receive almost a billion a year from the federal government due to Prop 3 matching funds.  Without Prop 3, Utah loses billions.


https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900053246/guest-opinion-prop-3-may-inject-billions-into-utahs-economy.html


SLC DISPATCH DISCOURAGING CRIME REPORTS BEING INVESTIGATED
  Salt Lake City Dispatch Manager Lisa Burnette has reached out to individuals who have expressed frustration at operation of SLC Dispatch. specifically, records show very few reports of crime at a property that has had many reports on crime from neighbors and even the Police.  The Police even had a SWAT raid on the property.  
  It appears that Priority Dispatch, the SLC Dispatch script, is discouraging reports.  The website of slcpd.com has a big button to go to a form to report a crime.  That is one way to report crime.  Dispatch, both 911 and 799 3000, will be encouraged to take crime reports and not discourage callers.  Lisa also is considering providing training on the 7 page Priority Dispatch script priorities.

SENATOR TODD WEILER HAS 3 COMMENDABLE ACTIONS THIS WEEK
  sen. Todd Weiler has had an interesting week.  On Tuesday, he introduced SB57 that required Utah to not remove children or claim a child abuse case unless there is more than one case of an "accident".  He mentioned the case of leaving two toddlers in a shallow bath for a minute (to go to the kitchen) and in that minute, one toddler turned on the hot water which scalded the other toddler.  It took a year before the State finally admitted that it was an accident and not a case of child neglect or abuse.  Accidents happen but if there is not more than one case, and that case can be considered an accident, the State should not be claiming child abuse.  This bill would probably protect over 90% of mothers from overeager State staff.
  Later on in the week, during debate on the effort to repeal Prop 3 and replace it with SB96, Sen. Weiler joined all of the Democrats and voted against SB96 on the second reading (It needed to pass the 3rd reading to go to the House.  Sen. Weiler was the only Republican that voted against SB96.  One of the reasons is that there is not a fiscal note.  Friday morning, Sen. Christiansen told me that he was ordered to make changes to lower the fiscal note cost.  So the bill still does not have a fiscal note.  The fiscal note is way too high to go through.  And the bill has to be changed to lower the fiscal note to not be so high that it scares votes away.  If the bill had gone through, in my opinion (explained below in the Deseret News oped) the cost to Utah would be hundreds of millions to cover the federal 70% proposed match until the waiver is granted if ever.  On top of that, with the Prop 3 initiative approved, there is an April 1 baseline assumption of almost a billion from the federal government to provide a 90% match for Medicaid expansion.  April 1, is the baseline and the fiscal note should reflect that.
  Sen. Weiler said that he didn't know if he were brave or just stupid.  I have known Sen. Weiler for many years.  He even ran a bill for us (to reduce metal theft recycling).  He, in my opinion, is a good and decent moderate Republican.  He makes Republicans look good.  
  Sen. Weiler also does a podcast that goes into a short interview with many of the legislators.  If you want to know what their push button issues are, go to:
http://toddcastutah.libsyn.com/website/category/

SALT LAKE HOMELESS GROUP MEMORIES ON DOWNLOAD
  I put the Salt Lake Homeless Advocacy Group minutes in the downloads section as a memoir.  They are disbanding and their information and memory have been left with me as a memoir to the homeless.  

SLC COUNCIL FINAL HEARING ON INCREASING TRANSIT
  Salt Lake City is planning to have a final public hearing on the proposed interlocal agreement with UTA to increase transit service at the 7 PM City Council meeting on February 5.  The City intends to sign the interlocal on February 19th.  This process has taken over 6 months!  And the service increase won't start until August.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING BILL PASSES COMMITTEE
  Senator Anderegg's SB034, with the support of many Democrats passed through the Senate Committee to the Senate.  It provides $20 million to affordable housing programs and encourages municipalities to plan for higher density next to transportation corridors that could have transit services from buses (with long term stable contracts), BRT or rail.  This is a good government bill that tells governments that they should plan for higher density next to transportation corridors.

SAFER BICYCLE STREETS, ESPECIALLY ON 1700 SOUTH
  SLC is planning a road diet on 1700 S. that adds parking and a center turn lane and removes two traffic lanes.  Adding parking increases dangers to bicyclists that did not exist before.
  If parking is added, the center lane should be eliminated except at lights and a wider bike lane be used.  I feel that State Street should be the same way, without removing travel lanes.  
  Decreasing left turns except at lights increases safety for bicyclists and pedestrians.

UTAH YIELD FOR BICYCLISTS PASSES COMMITTEE
  Representative Moss' HB 0161 passed through to the House.  It allows bicyclists to not stop at red lights or stop signs if there is no traffic that could be a danger.
  UDOT and the Utah Department of Public Safety were concerned about the bill.
  Arguments for the bill included that most bicycle accidents on the road are at lights.  When lights turn green, bicyclists have to worry about cars behind them, beside them, cars coming from across the street and cars turning left in front of them.  If a bicyclist finds it safer to cross with little cross traffic, they should have that option.
  In addition, public safety should be focusing on more dangerous threats to public safety.  Testimony was given by bicyclists that were stopped by Police for acting in a sage manner but not stopping completely.
  Utah has had 3 bicycle fatalities in 2018 which is the least in 6 years.  95% cyclists already do not completely stop.  This bill is being called the Utah stop bill.

NAVAJO CODE TALKERS DESERVE RECOGNITION FOR BRAVERY
  Senator Iwamoto and cosponsor Senator Hinkins are sponsoring a bill and a resolution that recognizes the World War Two Navajo Code Talkers.  In World War Two, many Navajo men volunteered for the most dangerous military service, radio operators. The military used the Navajo language to provide an unbreakable code.  The Navajo Code Talkers were so important that their team leader was instructed to kill them of they could be captured.  The Navajo Code Talkers knew this. Radio operators were also priority targeted for killing by the Japanese. So these men, who did not have to volunteer, voluntarily agreed to what was essentially a suicide mission.  
  They served without recognition, honor or medals.  It wasn't until the 1980's that their service was declassified and recognized.
  SB0101 and SCR 002 names several highways in Southern Utah to Navajo Code Talkers designation and provides August 14, 2019 as Navajo Code Talkers day. 
  These men were the bravest of the brave in the most dangerous combat position.  Their courage and bravery deserve recognition, honor and respect. SB 0101 and SCR 002 passed through to the Senate by the Committee with a favorable recommendation.

CAPITOL ELEVATOR EATS PEOPLE
  This is the worst time for it to happen, but the Capitol Building elevator, one of only two public elevators, stalled with people in it, during the General Session this week.  The trapped individuals were quickly rescued but the old elevators are difficult to maintain.  Instead of building a hundred million garage and office building on Capitol Hill, elevators should be upgraded first.  

DRUG DEALERS BECOMING MILLIONAIRES IN UTAH
  The recently approved medical marijuana compromise will take a couple of years to implement.  One key requirement may not be ready until 2021.  Those who want marijuana, for medical or otherwise are turning to drug dealers.  The vaping THC liquid is especially in demand.  Otherwise the marijuana has to be in dosage form.  Until Utah is fully able to supply the drug, drug dealers will be on the path to become millionaires.
  The Utah person in charge of this effort is:
Kayla Strong, M.A., Center for Medical Cannabis, Utah Department of Health at medicalcannabis@utah.gov.  She goes into detail about medical marijuana below:
".... there are no licensed dispensaries in Utah yet. We have until March of 2020 to get everything up and running, and we have not yet issued our Request for Proposal (RFP) for the seven medical cannabis pharmacies that will be licensed by the Utah Department of Health. ....t is currently legal for some patients with qualifying conditions and physician recommendations to possess cannabis in medicinal dosage form.....
It is not legal to purchase medical cannabis from a drug dealer and any cannabis that is possessed must be in medicinal dosage form. These products typically have medicinal packaging, similar to other commercial drugs. Raw bud or flower outside of blister packs is not legal in Utah, so if a patient purchased any from a drug dealer, he or she would be breaking the law.....
I can't speak for law enforcement, but I believe they are contacting physicians who issue recommendation letters if they have cause to believe that they aren't legitimate. The medical provider issuing a recommendation must be licensed in the State of Utah as a physician, physician assistant, or advanced practice registered nurse and must also hold a Utah controlled substance permit."

SOCIAL SERVICES HEARS ABOUT DISORGANIZED HOMELESS SERVICES
  Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee heard about some of the significant problems regarding services for the homeless.  There are too many different parties that are trying to claim funds and they may be duplicating efforts to decrease homelessness in Utah.  The Subcommittee is looking into it since there is a big chance that Medicaid, that many were expecting to help fund services is being cut back, in other words not expanded by repealing Prop 3.  The State will not be able to fund a lot of what they wanted.  
  Even the INN Between is being cut ($100,000) although the Chair, Rep. Ray, is going to work with them to see if there are ways to get them the money. 
  During presentation of the Homeless Services Audit, it was also explained that the State claimed to have solved the chronically homeless (more than 12 months homeless) by fudging the data.  Although the audit said that it was unintentional since the standards for counting chronically homeless changed, this is typical for bureaucrats.  They want to look like they are doing great.  One of the managers of that period went around the Country claiming that he, and Utah, had solved homelessness.  I remember, a year after the figures were called into question, he still was claiming that he solved Utah homelessness.
  The data does not show what programs work and what does not work according to the auditors.  Those who work with the homeless already knew that.  Other findings said that bad data led to one rapid rehousing rate to be considered a failure of over 50% (68%).  And they also determined that the State Homeless Coordinating Committee (SHCC) does not know what they are supposed to do.
  The State should plan on spending hundreds of millions of Utah taxpayer dollars on Medicaid expansion since it does not appear that the federal government will give a waiver by April 1.  Also, when the new shelters open up, they may pull many from the INN Between.  There are many questions and the budget/funding should be flexible to handle the eventual resolution on Medicaid and opening the new shelters.
  Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee should plan for more beds.  If the 3000 are chronically homeless, if they are using the Medicaid waiver, (I think it is less than 1000.) we will need more beds.  
  There is potential to provide beds in jail since there are hundreds of drug dealers according to Operation Rio Grande dashboard who should be in jail, not in shelters dealing drugs.

YOU CAN'T RIDE ELECTRIC BICYCLES WHILE DRUNK OR DRUGGED
  During this week's House Transportation Committee meeting, it came out that Utah lost about $6 million in federal funds one year due to allowing two time DUI individuals to operate electric bicycles.  The Federal government requires DUI penalties to apply to Class 2 motor vehicles which includes electric assisted bicycles that can be operated solely on the electric motor.  That makes them a motor vehicle.  Because Utah did not specifically say that a person convicted of a second or subsequent DUI while operating the Class 2 motor vehicle is subject to federally required DUI penalties, Utah lost the $6 million for one year.  Utah has fixed the law which means that you can't ride an electric bike while drunk or incapacitated!


JANUARY 30, 2019
LEGISLATURE ONLY ALLOWS 6 TO SPEAK FOR PROP 3
LEGISLATURE INTERN LIST AVAILABLE
SUGAR HOUSE 2700 S RESURFACING
WATER BILL HB31 KICKED TO ANOTHER COMMITTEE


LEGISLATURE ONLY ALLOWS 6 TO SPEAK FOR PROP 3
  The effort to repeal Prop 3, the Medicaid expansion initiative that passed in Utah, was given a big boost in the Senate Health and Services Committee that heard Senator Christiansen's bill.  His original bill attempted to stop the tax increase set for April 1 but since tax changes require a 90 day notice, and the Utah Tax Commission already sent out notices, Senator Christiansen had to change his original bill to allow the tax increase to take place.  I put the comparison between the old and new SB96 in the new downloads on the left.  
  The Chair of the Committee, Senator Ronald Winterton was so new to the job that he kept mispronouncing the names of the two Democrats on the Committee, Senators Luz Escamilla and Jani Iwamoto.  He had to be corrected constantly.  He also decided to limit the public comments to 10 total individuals, although many more wanted to speak and the Room (Senate Room 210) and overflow held hundreds.  It seemed that the effort was set to push Senator Christiansen's bill forward with minimal effort and negative comments.  So, essentially, only 6 anti SB96 Sub 1 comments were heard!
  The best comments pointed out that SB96 would be asking for a waiver at the same time as putting 100,000 more on Medicaid.  Utah taxpayers would be on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars until the federal government approved the waiver, if ever.  Utah said that the federal government would pay to keep the parks open in a previous shutdown but that promise did not happen.  Federal government promises are not always fulfilled.  Puerto Rico and other disaster areas constantly ask where the promised emergency funds are.  And Representative Dunnigan, the cosponsor, had a mental health expansion that requested a waiver that the federal government was promising to approve but didn't.  That waiver request was rescinded when Prop 3 was passed!
  On the other hand, if Prop 3 is allowed to go into effect, the approval is already approved and Utah would get a financial influx of funds of almost a BILLION DOLLARS EVERY YEAR!  Economic development would be significantly helped.  Stopping Prop 3 is almost like closing half of Hill Air Force Base which spends 1.38 billion on salaries and over half a billion on contracts, construction and supplies!
  If SB96 substitutes for Prop 3, there will be a work requirement which is useless for potential mental health patients and the Operation Rio Grande stats prove it.  Out of 3000 chronically homeless (there are not really 3000 chronically homeless in Utah so the State kind of fudged on the definition which is homeless more than 12 months), only 152 are working through the Operation Rio Grande plan.  
  In addition, the Legislature is using questionable predictions, like voodoo economics, that are just guesses.  Instead of waiting a year for real facts and figures, the Legislature is claiming that Prop 3 will cause the sky to fall.  The Legislature should not engage in voodoo economics.  It should wait until Prop 3 is implemented for 6 months before it tries to fine tune it to ensure that the costs are not what experts predict.
  SB96 does add a supportive housing component which Senator Christiansen said will be approved by April 1.  Supportive housing, rent, by law cannot be covered by Medicaid.  So that part of the bill may require Congressional action.  The operative phrase is don't get your hopes up.



LEGISLATURE INTERN LIST AVAILABLE
  I put the Legislative Intern list in the new downloads section on the upper left.  If you need to get information about a Legislator's bill, it is often faster to go to their interns.



SUGAR HOUSE 2700 S RESURFACING
  Sugar House's 2700 South is one of the worst roads in the area, although it is only number 81st worst in the City.  In 2019, the City is proposing to resurface the road from 1300 East to 1930 East with new bike lanes, sidewalk repairs, access ramps and a new pavement surface.  The project is scheduled for April to November 2019.  This is a bicycling road that was actually designed by a bicyclist.  The original plan, years ago, was to put in a center turn lane.  But the bicyclist persuaded the City to not put in the center turn lane to provide more space on the side of the road for bicyclists.  The City has asked to present the project to the Sugar House Community Council in the next month.



WATER BILL HB31 KICKED TO ANOTHER COMMITTEE
  The first water bill, HB31 from Representative Coleman, was moved today from the Government Operations Committee to the Natural Resources Committee.  It will provide more transparency for Salt Lake City and other municipal water utilities' customers on how their water rates are calculated and how their fees are utilized.






JANUARY 27, 2019
KEEPING PROP 3 IS A PUBLIC SAFETY NO BRAINER PUBLISHED
DEALERS ARE STILL ABLE TO EASILY SUPPLY DRUGS
1700 SOUTH LANE CHANGE INCREASES BICYCLING DANGER
2100 EAST CONTINUES TO INCREASE POLLUTION WITH MILE LONG BACKUP
POLITICIANS PLANNING BILLIONS IN SOUTH COUNTY UTA PROJECTS
ANALIA VALDEMOROS NEW 4TH DISTRICT CITY COUNCILWOMAN
900 S RECONSTRUCTION INTERFERES WITH 9 BUS SERVICE EXPANSION
SLC DISPATCH STILL REFUSING REPORTS OF CRIME 
NEW NON EMERGENCY COUNTY SHERIFF NUMBER 801 840 4000
LIST OF INTERESTING LEGISLATURE BILLS
HOW TO WORK THE LEGISLATURE ON UPPER RIGHT DOWNLOADS
AGAIN, LAST 4 YEARS OF BLOG ON UPPER LEFT BUTTON


KEEPING PROP 3 IS A PUBLIC SAFETY NO BRAINER PUBLISHED
  The Salt Lake Tribune published Keeping Prop 3 is a public safety no brainer at: 
https://www.strib.com/opion/commentary/2019/01/27/george-chapman-keeping/

The stats from Operation Rio Grande with 3000 on Medicaid and 152 working show how well work requirements work.  To really make a dent in the drug dealing and addiction issues in Utah requires full Prop 3 implementation.  Senators Anderegg and Christiansen are proposing bills to stop Prop 3 implementation.

DEALERS ARE STILL ABLE TO EASILY SUPPLY DRUGS   
  Another important statistic from Operation Rio Grande is over 300 drug dealers were arrested but only a small fraction are actually incarcerated.  The important questions that should be asked is:  How can shelters be successful if dealers are not removed from access?  How can drug treatment be successful if dealers continue to offer drugs to those graduating from treatment.   

1700 SOUTH LANE CHANGE INCREASES BICYCLING DANGER
  The future road diet on 1700 South is continuing to be questionable since new statistics show that 1700 South and State Street have a high number of bicycle crashes.  The left hand turns, I believe are risking safe bicycling.  The road diet on 1700 South will remove two lanes of traffic, allow on street parking and add a center turn lane and bicycle lanes.  The bicycle lanes are minimal.  The on street parking will add a significant hazard to bicycling.  An old statistic on bicycle accidents showed almost 40% are caused by parked cars' doors opening onto an oncoming bicyclist.  So the attempt to increase the safety of bicyclists with a road diet will actually decrease safety.
  It is similar to the road diet on 900 West that actually increased car accidents.  SLC Transportation is not succeeding at decreasing accidents.

2100 EAST CONTINUES TO INCREASE POLLUTION WITH MILE LONG BACKUP
  2100 East continues to increase pollution levels for nearby residents with a mile long backup everyday during evening rush hour.  Drivers are trying to avoid the inadequate Foothill Drive traffic control and use 2100 East to try to avoid the backup.  But the cross traffic is minimal and it is adding to the backup.  The City and State (which controls Foothill) need to work on the pollution and congestion issue.  The City and WFRC should not be pushing removing lanes of traffic on foothill for a BRT.  That WILL increase pollution.

POLITICIANS PLANNING BILLIONS IN SOUTH COUNTY UTA PROJECTS
  UTA is admitting to a plan to study the proposed Lehi/Draper TRAX that Utah County mayors have been pushing for years.  We successfully fought the effort to build it by 2025 in the Mountainland Association of Governments plan.  It resulted in the project being returned to the 2040 plus timeframe.  But Orem and Lehi mayors have been pushing to make it happen sooner with the excuse to put mass transit in the prison site development.  So they plan to put significant pressure on making it happen within 10 years.  
  UTA will probably continue the study which will cost $800,000.  The cost of TRAX extending from Draper to Lehi and possibly to Provo will be as high as $3 billion.  Zion Bank's study showed that the most money can come from a big tax increase, if UTA is not pushed into using the SB136 tax increase (a big possibility and reason for SB136).  The biggest beneficiaries are some senior political leaders in the State.  
  The best and most fair plan would be to have an assessment area that pays for the cost of any mass transit with increased taxes on the property owners.

ANALIA VALDEMOROS NEW 4TH DISTRICT CITY COUNCILWOMAN
  Analia Valdemoros is the new Salt Lake City District 4 Councilwoman.  The SLC Council agreed to appoint her for the remainder of this year to represent District 4.  She has a background as a planner for SLC RDA and is a small businesswoman.  She also managed NeighborWorks.  She knows the City well enough to hit the ground running.  She actually has more knowledge of the City than almost all previous Council candidates over the last few years.
  The other top candidates were Breanne Miller, Ryan Parker and Michael Iverson.  During the initial vote, Analia Valdemoros was chosen as one of four best by all of the six Councilmembers.  The other top four got one or two fewer votes.  So the Council decided that, to save time, it made sense to not wait another week and vote Analia into office.

900 S RECONSTRUCTION INTERFERES WITH 9 BUS SERVICE EXPANSION
  The 900 South project to restructure and realign 900 South between 1300 East and 950 East is going to proceed and hopefully be completed in the next 12 months.  There will be a roundabout on 1100 East to reduce wait time at the 5 way stop.  The coffee shop is still an issue but the project will proceed.  
  The project timeline will also interfere with the new 9 bus service expansion that is scheduled to start in August.  Plannners said that it will only be an issue for a month or two.  But it will interfere with the bus service.  
  The project will also interfere with an alternative route to avoid the 1300 East project which already funnels traffic onto 1100 East.  Kensington is getting constant bus and vehicle traffic from 1300 East.  The 900 South project will make it worse.
  The roundabout and other new plantings create a complication because SLC has not been able to find enough funds to consistently maintain new plantings.  In 2017, Salt Lake City stopped watering tree medians, the cemetery and parks.  Most of the new plantings in Miller Park and on the McClelland Trail have died due to the water restrictions.  But, SLC will try again.  Project planners are optimistic.

SLC DISPATCH STILL REFUSING REPORTS OF CRIME
  SLC Dispatch is still refusing to accept reports of crimes from citizens.  During a recent review of complaints by residents who were complaining about constant criminal activities near Browning Avenue and 200 East, it was determined that most complaints were not registered so the property that was a criminal magnet was not listed as a problem.  This report is similar to the complaints last year from the same community.  SLC still has a Dispatch problem.

NEW NON EMERGENCY COUNTY SHERIFF NUMBER 801 840 4000
  Salt Lake County's Valley Emergency Communications Center (VECC) continues to consolidate emergency communications from the County.  The bill that significantly increased cell phone taxes a few years ago (by Senator Harper) is funneling more money into VECC than other emergency communications centers.  SLC and Sandy have another one and the Sheriff's Office has another.  But the Sheriff's communications systems is integrating with and on site of VECC now.  There is a new non emergency UPD and Sheriff's Office number.  It is 801 840 4000.  The SLC/Sandy non emergency number is 801 799 3000.  All emergency calls are now required to go to 911.  Unfortunately, the 911 cell phone calls depend on the closest cell tower to decide how to route the calls between SLC/Sandy and other County areas.  If one is near the borders, the 911 calls may go to the wrong center!  Salt Lake County needs a better 911 system that is Countywide and not divided into various areas.

LIST OF INTERESTING LEGISLATURE BILLS
  There are many interesting bills being proposed in this Legislative session.  Some of the more interesting bills include:

Rep. Moss is again trying to ban all cell phone use with HB13.  It passed Interim Committee but not unanimously and therefore needs to be reheard.

Rep. Ray is proposing, again, a bill to increase taxes on electronic cigarettes and other nicotine products and possibly increase ages.  The medical marijuana vaping may also be part of the bill.  He is also in the process of civil commitment amendments and eminent domain amendments.

Senator Bramble, the sponsor of most GRAMA bills, is in the process of updating GRAMA.  Other legislators that are working on government records bills include  Sen. Harper and Sen. Henderson.

Rep. Hutchings, the sponsor of JRI, is proposing a public school mental health amendment and a respectful modification of misdemeanor jail time to decrease potential unreasonable deportation.  Sen. Fillmore is also sponsoring a mental health amendment SB38 along with SB39 that covers assisted outpatient treatment for mental illness.  That should significantly help the drug and alcohol abuse issues that are exponentially increasing.

Senator Harper is modifying his SB136 that gives a big funding increase to UTA with SB 72.  It retracts the name change and "fine tunes" the transit issues.  He is also in process of an ignition interlock bill for DUI that corrects the problems with the present laws.  Rep. Ward is also proposing a bill to stop the required name change that was backed off of after a public backlash.  Sen. Harper is also, again, trying to pass his towing amendments bill that restores balance to those parking in parking lots that have hard to find parking signs.  It is one of the most important bills in this session.  He is also proposing a bill that modifies remote sales tax collection.

Rep. Briscoe is proposing a bill on open carry near schools.  He may lose the fight if he ddoesn't modify it to be educational.  Clark Aposhian, the Second Amendment advocate said that he would support an educational bill but Rep. Briscoe wants a bill with more teeth which could kill it.  Rep. Briscoe is also in the process of developing a bill on salees tax exemption revisions that may reduce the secrecy involving large sales tax exemptions.
    
Rep. Coleman has support for her HB31 which requires more transparency in water supply contracts.  Several cities outside of Salt Lake City have been complaining about Salt Lake City not being more open about supplying water.

Sen. Okerland has a lot of support for his SB17 that reins in Salt Lake City's watershed extraterritorial jurisdiction.  Other governments are concerned about the overreach by SLC Public Utilities that could impact their development plans.  Salt Lake City has listed HB31 and SB17 as a big threat to Salt Lake City watershed.  I do not agree.

Rep. Albrecht, with the support of the Commission on Public Lands, is sponsoring HB78 that requires the State Legislature to agree to proposals from local governments (like Central Wasatch Commission) to turn land over to the federal government.  The Mountain Accord (3.2.1) agreed to pushing for a National Monument, or National Recreation Area or National Conservation Area.  It took a couple of years before it was realized by the Legislature and HB78 is the result.

Rep. Musselman is pushing HB122 that threatens anyone using the Utah Property Rights Ombudsman with legal fees if they fight against recommnedations.  It further hurts private property rights in my opinion.

Rep. Winder is supposedly shopping a proposal to return Brickyard to Millcreek from Salt Lake City tax roles.  The effort is questionable legally but he has to do it since Millcreek is paying him money as Economic Development Director.  This is a direct payment that some may complain to be a bribe.  It could result in a serious legal fight.  

Rep. Hall is sponsoring HB57 that protects electronic information and data privacy and requires warrants to access our cellphone data.

Rep. Arent is again pushing air quality bills including a zero emission vehicles bill.  It will be an uphill battle but it may retract the questionable large increase in registration fees on electric vehicles from last session's SB136.  Large trucks are 500 times more 

Rep. Judkins is proposing HB66 to ask voters and Congress to allow year round daylight savings time like Arizona.  Sen. Harper and Rep. Thurston had similar bills in the last few years which didn't get to first base.  Congress really needs to settle the issue (like internet sales tax) to stop piecemeal state by state policies.

Senator Anderegg, a data specialist, is proposing a homeless shelter oversight program, to get real data.  It is ironic that no one seems to ask the basic questions: how many addicts are sober a year after treatment; how many of the 152 Operation Rio Grande employment successes are still working; and how many of the 300 plus drug dealers arrested are still incarcerated?

Rep. Eliason has HB15, a victim rights amendment that is desperately needed.

Sen. Weiler is sponsoring a military spouse licensing exemption amendments.  He is also supposed to be decreasing the 350 licenses that Utah requires.  But it is slow going.

Rep. Perry and Sen. Mayne are again trying to reset the Utah law enforcement and teacher pension system that makes it difficult to keep educators after 20 years, especially in rural areas.  Education pensions are close to being fully funded (actuarially) but law enforcement pensions are significantly underfunded.  But Utah law enforcement loses a lot of 20 year institutional knowledge that helps fight crime due to our pension system.  Hopefully Rep. Perry and Sen. Mayne will succeed in some flexibility that encourage retainment of law enforcement and educators.

Rep. Snow is proposing a dating violence bill.

HOW TO WORK THE LEGISLATURE ON UPPER RIGHT DOWNLOADS
  Again, as I did last year, I put an educational pamphlet in the upper right hand downloads area that shows how to work the Legislature.  The most important date is the Legislature will not usually develop bills unless they are suggested within two weeks of starting the Legislature.  February 7 is the last day to request bills or appropriations without floor approval.  I also put last year's How to View and Track a Bill by Leila Reynolds, the intern, last year, of Rep. Chavez Hauck. 

AGAIN, LAST 4 YEARS OF BLOG ON UPPER LEFT BUTTON
  Again, I put the last 4 years of the blog on a downloadable PDF or DOCX on the 2015 to 2018 blog page and also on a PDF in the upper left.  I kept the last 6 months of the blog on this blog page




JANUARY 22, 2019

SLC COUNCIL QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS



SLC COUNCIL QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

  The SLC Council received 21 applications for consideration to be appointed to the SLC Council for District 4.  They will have to run for office this year.  But they will have a leg up , if they run, as the incumbent.  These are the questions that the SLC Council gave them, along with my answers.  What do you think are the important issues and answers?


Please share with the Council your view on local government, and its impact on neighborhoods. 

Local government has the greatest impact on neighborhoods with zoning and planning.  The ability to have the right mix of mixed income, mixed use and commercial retail within walking distance can create a vibrant, exciting and charismatic neighborhood.  In addition, protecting the neighborhoods from gentrifying and increasing the cost to rent and to own can protect the character and residents of a neighborhood.  
Basic services such as streets (well maintained and safe), police/public safety that works with communities and neighborhoods, and encouraging and supporting public transit are basic services that local governments should prioritize highly.


What do you think are the top issues facing District 4 and how would you approach each of them? 

Zoning, ensuring safe neighborhoods around the 7th South Homeless Resource Center, appropriate mixed use, mixed income development of the Sears Block, the Fleet Block, 9th South, State Street CRA and utilizing the Opportunity Zone in the District to encourage that appropriate development.  Affordable housing, especially with the State Street CRA (it has the best potential for significantly increased density and mixed use, mixed income) is also important.  Fee waivers may be needed to encourage mixed use, mixed income buildings.  The Granary District has much potential and deserves higher priority for appropriate development.  The Central City area needs protection of the character of the neighborhoods.  Close coordination with the Downtown Alliance and Chamber should encourage appropriate development of downtown vacant buildings.  SLC and the SLC RDA should not save vacant properties for more than a few years.  Vacant buildings encourage crime.  The Depot District also deserves more attention to ensure that the properties owned by the City quickly encourage appropriate mixed use and mixed income development.


What do you think are the top issues facing Salt Lake City and how would you approach each of them? 

Protecting single family home neighborhoods and residents from having to move due to gentrification.  SLC should be permitting thousands more  housing units a year and needs to staff up planning and zoning to ensure that it is done appropriately, efficiently and quickly.  Appropriate law enforcement that does not require the police to handle or take to jail mental health individuals.  The County and State need to step up and ensure that police fight criminals and not people with mental health issues.


We recognize that no legislative body is perfect in their budget and policy decision making. What changes would you like to see for the focus, functioning or decision-making of the Salt Lake City Council? 

Work more closely with the community councils to identify appropriate properties for higher density mixed income and mixed use development.  Communities should drive the direction of development and the City should not increase hate and discontent by unilaterally making decisions.  Housing is the biggest issue in the City now and it would seem that the focus of the Council should be to staff up planning and zoning and give it a goal of thousands of more housing units a year.  Change the demolition ordinance (in process) to encourage appropriate development instead of making landowners pay ahead of time for the permit for the final building before demolition.  Focus on the major potential housing and development areas like State Street, Ballpark, Granary, Depot District, Fleet Block and Sears Block (in District 4 and 5).  Although there are other potential development areas, those areas alone would seem to be a full time job.


Prioritize what you see as the top three infrastructure needs for Salt Lake City over the next five years and explain your choices.

Roads need to be better maintained to show good management of the City and encourage businesses to come here.  A well maintained and safe road will also encourage bicycling and walking, since "Completer Streets" include sidewalks.  Bicyclists are more discouraged from riding on bad roads than the City has admitted.  
Safe neighborhoods that don't need to have the police arrest the same individual a hundred times.  That requires pushing/working with the County and State to solve that issue.  
Appropriate zoning, as explained above, for mixed use, mixed income development while protecting residents and the character of the neighborhood.


With limited budget resources and unlimited wants, what do you believe should be the City’s priorities when it comes to spending?

Higher staffing to ensure that many times more housing units are built in each year in appropriate areas.  RDA has spent 4 years in developing the State Street/9th and 9th (westside) CRA proposal but it still is not approved!  It seems that SLC should be significantly increasing staffing (and salaries to attract professionals) to speed up the process.  Again, these areas have great potential for development but they are not developing.
Roads that are safe and well maintained should also be a priority when it comes to spending.  The budget should increase annual spending for roads (on top of the sales tax increase portion and the bond) to $20 million a year.


What do you believe your role is as a representative of the residents of Salt Lake City?

To represent the communities and work with them to find common ground and appropriate development in their areas.  
To make Salt Lake City a more inviting and livable City that protects and creates great neighborhoods (like the Fairmont Great American Neighborhood Award from a few years ago).  
To be a visible representative of the government of the City to show that the government is accessible.  
To encourage public participation and engagement to ensure policies and projects are appropriate for neighborhoods and they are what the communities want.

What else would you like the Council to know that you have not had a chance to share?




JANUARY 16, 2019
STATE IS WORKING ON INCREASING COUNTY PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING
LT GOVERNOR COX DOES NOT THINK PROP 3 IS FULLY FUNDED BY TAX
ROAD HOME WILL NOT CLOSE IN JULY
MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION IN LAST YEAR ON JANUARY 26 
7 CANYONS WILL COST $850,000 TO RETROFIT
UTA BUS GARAGE WILL COST MILLIONS MORE TO SAVE BUILDING
TAYLORSVILLE BRT DECREASES PERSONAL VEHICLE LEVEL OF SERVICE
HIGHLAND SUGAR HOUSE CROSSWALK BY SUMMER
ELPCO ATTEMPTING ANOTHER INN BETWEEN MEDIATION WITH NEIGHBORHOOD
MILLCREEK PUSHING S-LINE EXPANSION TO BRICKYARD MISDIRECT
RALPH BECKER GETS PAY RAISE TO $120,000
1300 EAST TRAFFIC BACKUP DUE TO REMOVING TRAFFIC FROM FREEWAY
SUGAR HOUSE PLAZA POWER OUTLETS SHORT ON POWER
RANK CHOICE VOTING NOT CERTIFIED FOR SLC VOTE
PROPOSED SLC DEMOLITION ORDINANCE BACKTRACKS ON SUGAR HOLE LAW
FREE FARE FALLACIES
UTA PLANNING ON BILLIONS IN POINT OF MOUNTAIN PROJECTS 


JANUARY 16, 2019
STATE IS WORKING ON INCREASING COUNTY PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING
  During a question and answer session with Lt Governor Cox at the Pioneer Park Coalition, the Lt Governor answered a question about lack of adequate public safety funding at the Salt Lake County Jail and DA.  He said that the State is looking at how to increase jail beds (the SLCO Jail is on booking restrictions) to ensure that the Police are able to effectively fight crime.  This may turn up during this Legislative session.  



LT GOVERNOR COX DOES NOT THINK THAT PROP 3 IS FULLY FUNDED BY TAX
  The Lt Governor said that he does not believe that Medicaid/healthcare expansion is fully funded by the new tax.  He believes that it will go forward but the Legislature will have to change some things to ensure that the cost will not be more than the new tax revenue that was part of Prop 3.
  But the suggestion to fix the issue is to implement a work requirement.  Unfortunately, 80% of incarcerated individuals have mental health issues that often exhibit symptoms of SUD (substance use disorder = drug or alcohol addiction).  Adding a work requirement, and more paperwork for the recipient of treatment to fill out/fulfill will probably result in 90% of people that could benefit from the healthcare expansion walking away from the treatment.
  Ironically, the original legislative Medicaid expansion for 3000 chronically homeless (more than 12 months homeless) was useful for many but most did not end up working.  Even the Operation Rio Grande stats show 137 working (I think that it really is less than 25 since the 137 figure is for entering the work program.).  
  Many were criminals that were drug dealers and addicts (Drug addicts were getting a free drug hit for selling 9 hits.).  So expanding Medicaid with Prop 3 will give the same government healthcare benefits that are enjoyed by criminals.  That is good.  I still think that drug addicts do not commit victimless crimes.  Whether it is leaving a used needle where it could affect children or stealing to get drugs, addicts generally are victimizing citizens and businesses.



ROAD HOME WILL NOT CLOSE IN JULY
  Lt Governor Cox also admitted that the Road Home will not close in July of 2019 as guaranteed by the Legislature.  It will have to wait for a few months for the South Salt Lake Shelter to open.  He blamed South Salt Lake City for slowing the permit process for the shelter in their City.  But the reality is that for the first few months, the State appears to have planned to transport homeless from the Rio Grande area to the homeless shelters to gradually move the homeless out of the area.  Just how gradual the effort will be is a big question. 


 
MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION IN LAST YEAR ON JANUARY 26 
  On January 26, at Corner Canyon High School at 12943 S 700 E in Draper at 10 AM (Saturday), the Salt Lake County Democratic Party will hold a special election to elect the new Salt Lake County Mayor.  It is public and it will determine the future of Salt Lake County.  It will affect taxes, mountain and canyon development, public safety and homeless services in the County.  It is the most important election in the last year.



7 CANYONS WILL COST $850,000 TO RETROFIT
  After a lot of arguments about what is really needed and recommendations to tear down the 7 Canyons Fountain in Liberty Park to remove the sharp "mountains" for safety for children climbing on the sculpture.  The City has decided that the best cost effective plan is to just retrofit the water features to provide a safer water experience that decreases bacteria and other harmful contaminants in the water.  The cost is estimated at $850,000.  The original suggestion of the City was for millions to do a full reconstruction.  The original suggestions are in the downloads section.



UTA BUS GARAGE WILL COST MILLIONS MORE TO SAVE BUILDING
  UTA has decided that the big old brick rail building that is south of the UTA headquarters deserves to be saved.  It will build a building inside the old barely standing, old building despite the significant cost increase.  A new building erected to earthquake resistant standards would be millions cheaper.  But UTA believes that spending millions more in a questionable effort to save a so called important building is a good idea.  Your tax dollars at work.



TAYLORSVILLE BRT DECREASES PERSONAL VEHICLE LEVEL OF SERVICE
  These are my arguments against the proposed UTA Taylorsville BRT:
  I am against UTA attempting any other large transit projects until they can show that they can successfully build, operate and get ridership on expensive projects.  The 35MAX BRT on 3500 S. has had about 3200 passengers a day despite using 2 lanes of traffic for BRT (part of the way in the most congested part of 3500 South) that could carry 5000 ADT a lane of cars with more than one passenger.  The ridership has stayed about the same and only saves 15 minutes of a 70 minute trip.  A successful BRT would generally be handling 5000 plus passengers a day.  The Provo BRT is not able to show success due to the free fare.  The Weber State Ogden BRT proposal will be spending over $60 million to save 5 minutes out of a very efficient and effective 15 minute bus ride to Weber State University.  
  The hope, of course, is to help redevelop 25th Street west of Washington Blvd.  But the single family homeowners along the route may end up fighting at every step of the construction.  The hope of development keeps coming up but I have found no real evidence that it significantly helps in Utah.  Development in many TRAX station areas is very slow.  Portland had the same thing happening.  The successful Farmington station was due to the aggressive efforts of the Farmington Economic Development team (who fought hard for Cabela's).  Most of the station developments are car oriented like Murray and Farmington and Central Pointe.  
  The large developments in Sugar House can be attributed to the linear park (Parleys Trail) and two large parks with significant amenities.  The S-Line did not result in construction of a mixed use and walkable area.  It resulted in a lot of zombie buildings with ground floors off limits to the public.  Sugar House got its character because it was walkable and had a lot of windows for showrooms.  The new developments did away with that and cars proliferated.  The S-Line ridership is about a third of what was predicted.  
  If the community knew that part of the effort of this BRT plan is to close and redevelop Fore Lakes Golf Course, UTA would be tarred and feathered and run out of town on a electric scooter.  That is reason enough to not consider this plan.  From the ESR: "development of this station depends on the transformation of the existing Fore Lakes Golf Course site into a transit-oriented development. While not currently planned, this modification could have significant positive impact on the surrounding neighborhood and community at large, in addition to enhancing longterm BRT ridership"
  But a bigger reason is to recognize and study the LA study last year that showed that, in an effort to get more ridership, LA spent over $15 billion.  It resulted in ridership, after 20 years, going from 147 million a month to 154 million a month!  Almost nothing.  Before projects, a robust bus system should be restored in accordance with the last UTA audit.
  Buses provide a cheaper, more efficient (shared with cars, the preferred choice of transportation) mass transit service.  If the State wants a nicer ride, remove the ugly coverings from the windows so riders can look out and enjoy our beautiful State (studies show that a clean window is the second biggest reason for riding a bus - right after a pleasant bus rider).  The goal should be to encourage those who can only afford an older car that pollutes more, to want to use the bus system.  But if stations are far apart (4 blocks) people won't walk to ride them.  Proof is the effort by cities to put in mid block crosswalks along State Street because they acknowledge that people won't walk half a block to the light!  A bus stop every block is the best way to encourage ridership.
  The BRT would cost about $15 million a mile while an effective enhanced bus would cost a tenth of that cost and have a lane at lights and light priority.
  The area needs a freeway more than a BRT.  According to the report, UDOT is going to add two lanes.  I wouldn't be surprised if they try to add 4 lanes (which is needed at 39,000 ADT).  The Report made the best point:  "Can BRT move enough people to allow state to forego extra lanes?" 
  The center road stations require slowing traffic for pedestrian crossings which increase pollution, especially at the Fore Lakes Station!  The center stations create danger for those who have difficulties crossing high traffic streets, like wheelchairs.  Riders tend to race across traffic lanes to catch a TRAX or bus in the center lane which is less probable if there are 6 lanes of traffic between the ride and the rider.
  If the biggest potential development areas say no, then even trying to justify the project with development potential does not make sense.  SLCC is the only potential and they do not redevelop.  The golf course is a big fight.  The low income housing will also result in a fight and will not be easily replaced (SLC lost housing despite promises to replace the redeveloped low income housing!  Low income housing loss is irreversible.  Eminent domain can be messy and unfair.  UTA has been fighting one fight for 10 years.  Sorenson Research Park estimates very low employee ridership.  I agree.  Highly paid jobs result in more cars and very little ridership.
  The BRT should not have zig zags.  They, like rail should go straight.
  Before spending money on this project, a real cost benefit analysis should take place and compare a higher frequency regular and enhanced bus with the costly BRT and loss of 2 lanes for 1.4 miles.
  Note that there is no further funding from the State but it is/will be in the next RTP.  But it is not prioritized with more important projects and service expansions.  The ESR should have that prioritization and cost benefit analysis and ridership predicted based on historical data which indicates predictions to be three times reality of ridership.
  Station concepts look like they won't work in sunshine and snow and rain - minnie mouse /tiny cover for riders?  It is time that UTA listens to riders that complain about being forced to stand in a 3 foot wide covered area.  The fancy designs look really expensive with a micro shelter!  How about a minimum of 10 foot wide shelter cover?
  In other words, I am against this project until bus service is increased.  Don't do what LA did and the study from last year (2017) showed, almost no increase in ridership.



HIGHLAND SUGAR HOUSE CROSSWALK BY SUMMER
  The planned Sugar House Highland Drive crosswalk between Kimi's Chop Shop and Buffalo Wings should be constructed and completed by summer of 2019.  So no more ignoring the signs against jaywalking and people can breath easier knowing that they can cross safely and without being ticketed.



ELPCO ATTEMPTING ANOTHER INN BETWEEN MEDIATION WITH NEIGHBORHOOD
  East Liberty Park Community Organization has been trying to effect another mediation effort with the INN Between and the neighborhood.  The advisory committee is not very effective since it only gets one or two neighborhood residents attending it.  I live 2 blocks away and I and my family are more concerned about the homeless camping in the alleyway/McClelland Trail behind our homes.  The next door neighbor's gate was broken and homeless were camping in their yard until the police removed their gear.  That is a bigger problem.  But the INN Between should be communicating with residents and neighbors, especially those who are concerned about the facility.  Without communication, the neighborhood will increase the negative attitude against the INN Between and other homeless efforts.  As I said before, the INN Between, the neighbors and the homeless all deserve respect.  And again, it does not bode well for the new homeless shelters.  Although they will have a neighborhood public engagement person (with a grant from last month).  Maybe that is what the INN Between needs.



MILLCREEK PUSHING S-LINE EXPANSION TO BRICKYARD WITH MISDIRECT
  Millcreek's suggestion that Brickyard be returned to Millcreek and provide a significant increase in tax revenue seems to be a misdirect.  Millcreek really wants the S-Line to go south on Highland to 33rd South!  And the Legislature will be discussing all of these items and it will be a good way to "compromise" on a rail line to Millcreek.  Note that last month's grant to expand the Sugar House Circulation and Amenities Plan from several years ago to Millcreek and to South Salt Lake City sets the stage for the expansion of the S-Line.  This will be a suspenseful soap opera.



RALPH BECKER GETS PAY RAISE TO $120,000
  The Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) has given former Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker a raise to $120,000 a year.  That is just a little below the salary of the Salt Lake City Mayor!  And the CWC is not having much luck convincing the Legislature that it is making sense.  It is interesting that the Mountain Accord claimed such agreement between all parties (without complying with Utah's open meetings act) that recommended a tunnel and train and discouraging personal vehicle travel and a national monument for the Canyons.  But now, the CWC that is set up to implement the Mountain Accord, is being questioned by the Legislature.  The CWC is preparing a bill for Congress to make the Wasatch Canyons a National Recreation Area and trade a couple of hundred undevelopable acres for a ski resort to build a 500 unit Montage style complex.  
  The CWC is also claiming that landowners are trying to steal the Canyons for development and ruining the watershed.  The reality is that the landowners want to build less than a hundred cabins and provide conservation easements on thousands of acres.  It will be another interesting and suspenseful soap opera at the Legislature.  But Ralph Becker will be well compensated.



1300 EAST TRAFFIC BACKUP DUE TO REMOVING TRAFFIC FROM FREEWAY
  Several people have complained to the Sugar House Community Council about traffic backing up on 1300 South just south of the I80 intersection.  The backup can often go to 27th South.  UDOT recently completed a study with consultants and Salt Lake City that eliminated or significantly reduced the backup of vehicles that were trying to exit onto 1300 East from I80 eastbound.  So the lights were timed to increase the time to allow those exiting vehicles higher priority.  That resulted a big backup to 2700 South.



SUGAR HOUSE PLAZA POWER OUTLETS SHORT ON POWER
  With the millions spent on the Sugar House Plaza at 2100 South and Highland, one would think that the power outlets on the Plaza would provide sufficient power for special events.  Unfortunately, there is not sufficient power for special events.  The solution may cost hundreds of thousands more.  
RANK CHOICE VOTING NOT CERTIFIED FOR SLC VOTE
  I was asked to confirm that SLCO is not going to provide rank choice voting after a blog entry in November.  This is what County Clerk Sherry Swenson said:
  "My answer to the Council wasn’t that my office isn’t certified for rank choice voting, but that our voting system won’t accommodate rank choice voting.   It isn’t designed to create a ballot for rank choice voting or to tabulate rank choice voting.
  The new voting system that was selected by the State (ES&S) has created a software option for rank choice voting, but it hasn’t been certified.  Certification of voting systems is a rigorous process and crucial to ensure their accuracy.  
https://www.eac.gov/assets/1/28/Cert.Manual.4.1.15.FINAL.pdf
http://www.ncsl.org/research/elections-and-campaigns/voting-system-standards-testing-and-certification.aspx
  Therefore, we will not offer contract services to cities who choose to conduct their elections with rank choice voting."
  Former Downtown Community Council Chair Christian Harrison had a well reasoned opinion piece in the Salt Lake Tribune earlier this month that suggested rank choice voting for Salt Lake City's upcoming elections this year.  So, unfortunately, Salt Lake City will not be able to use Salt Lake County for the election, if rank choice voting is used. 
PROPOSED SLC DEMOLITION ORDINANCE BACKTRACKS ON SUGAR HOLE LAW
  The Other Side Academy asked to demolish an old literally falling down home next to the main facility last year.  Unfortunately, Salt Lake City had an ordinance that did not allow that.  The ordinance was implemented to stop projects that demolish a building but leave an empty lot like the Sugar Hole on 21st South and Highland.  That building was built after the City gave the developer, Craig Mecham, almost $7 million for a public parking lot on one of the levels.  Mecham had the last laugh by requiring a minimum parking charge of $10.  
  The City also owns a lot of vacant properties that increase crime in their neighborhoods.  Landlords also want to start demolition but the City requires money up front to pay for permits for the replacement building.  That actually discourages demolition of vacant buildings.
  The good news is that Salt Lake City is rethinking their demolition ordinance.  The proposed language includes:  
  "The requirements  for  either  a permitted  replacement  use or  a  landscape  plan  and bond have  been removed
It no longer  cites  the  following  purposes: 
   o avoid demolition of  buildings  in a  manner  that  disrupts  the  character  of established neighborhoods 
   o avoid  demolition  until a  complete  building  permit is  submitted 
   o avoid the  creation of  vacant  sites  with minimal  or  no landscaping"



FREE FARE FALLACIES
Several Legislators have suggested that UTA provide free fare on red air days.  Studies show (including one in San Francisco a few years ago) that that does not help.  People want to minimize their outdoor time during bad air days and actually drive more.  In addition, and most importantly, studies also show that free fare transit attracts so called undesirable riders (mostly homeless in SLC).  Bad air days are generally during the hottest and coldest days of the year and UTA transit provides a welcome respite from heat and cold for people that do not have shelter.  The result is, according to studies, the effort results in fewer long term ridership increases since way too many people do not want to be exposed to homeless on the seat next to them



UTA PLANNING ON BILLIONS IN POINT OF MOUNTAIN PROJECTS 
  Unfortunately, much of the increased revenue for UTA is going to be spent on projects in South County at Point of the Mountain.  Citizens and taxpayers want better service before more projects.  The UTA Board of Trustees and Advisory Board heard the Plan for the Point of the Mountain proposed TRAX from Draper to Lehi.  UTA should follow the recommendations of the last audit and restore a robust bus system before more expensive projects.  The study last year on LA transit spending showed that spending $15 billion on transit projects got almost no increase in ridership and actually encouraged more car use.  LA went from 147 million a month to 154 million a month after 20 years and $15 billion. 
  Much of the effort is due to the perception/belief that rail will encourage development.  But I can argue that the reason for the hyper, super-gentrification of Sugar House was encouraged by the linear park and other parks in the area, not by the S-Line.  Another argument against rail helping development is the 2100 South area by Central Pointe.  That has been undeveloped/underdeveloped for 20 years, despite great transit.






December 31, 2018
BRENT TAYLOR COULD HAVE BEEN, SHOULD HAVE BEEN, WOULD HAVE BEEN GOVERNOR
ALL RACCOONS DIE
THE INN BETWEEN AND RESPECT OPED PUBLISHED
TAYLORSVILLE BRT IS A $70 PLUS MILLION WASTE OF MONEY
RED LINE TRAX STOPS AT 4TH SOUTH IN MAY
CIP GOING YEAR ROUND BUT NEVER MIND
UTA CAN'T HIRE AND KEEP BUS DRIVERS
BEST CLASS ON LEGISLATURE BY LIBERTAS
SILICOSIS IN UTAH 



BRENT TAYLOR COULD HAVE BEEN, SHOULD HAVE BEEN, WOULD HAVE BEEN GOVERNOR
  I agree that Brent Taylor should be Utahn of the year.
  Many of us in Utah were in shock and sad at the news that North Ogden Mayor Brent Taylor was killed in Afghanistan while serving as a Utah National Guardsman Major. Brent Taylor was a father of seven and devoted husband who was on his fourth tour of duty in a combat zone. Those who knew him and worked with him felt that he was capable of being governor of Utah. Many also felt that he was going to be governor of Utah. He was that special.  You had to work with him to see his leadership ability and concern for the taxpayers.
  To understand how much we lost, you would have had to watch him fight the good fight, against all odds, to make sure that government was for the people. When he was appointed by Weber County to represent the County on the UTA Board of Trustees, he had to fight to join the Board. Brent Taylor wanted government, and UTA in particular, to be more responsive to the public. He wanted to have more public engagement. One of the first proposals that Brent Taylor brought to the Board was to broadcast the meetings on the internet.  The Board Chair immediately agreed and implemented that policy.  He questioned UTA staff recommendations to ensure adequate cost benefit analysis, something that the last UTA Legislative Audit recommended.   
  He also also pointed out inappropriate and questionable actions by the Board members. Despite embarrassing questions, the Board slowly changed its actions to reflect more analysis of projects. Their questions increased during and after Brent Taylor's time on the Board.  Before Brent Taylor's time on the Board, there were few questions about staff recommendations. In other words, the Board was following a genuine leader, someone who people wanted to follow.
  His words were inspiring and deserve to be remembered. He said, when he announced that he was going to go on another deployment to a combat zone, “There are three great loyalties that have guided my life and everything in it: God, family and Country… I have given my life to serve all three of these loyalties whenever and however I can. And right now there is a need for my experience and skills to serve in our Nation’s long-lasting war in Afghanistan.” 
  Brent Taylor’s death made national and worldwide news and emphasized his belief that fighting for freedom is important and his belief that giving his life to service is what he believed in. Brent Taylor made Utahns and those who protect and serve look good. Brent Taylor reminds us that those who serve in uniform are risking their lives to defend the freedom that is this Country's greatest accomplishment.
    It was obvious that he was going to be a great leader in Utah. He seemed to want to do the right thing and make government better, even when it seemed that everyone was against his recommendations. Utah did not just lose a loving father and husband. Utah also lost a hero and someone that should have been and would have been governor. Brent Taylor should be remembered for the love he had for his Country, his State, his wife and his children.
  Brent Taylor was willing to die for the freedoms that we have and that he hoped everyone had. He said it best when he said "the secret to happiness is freedom". His last words to his family seemed to be and should be acknowledged and celebrated as his most important words: "God bless America" (it is worth fighting for). 
  There are others who offered to fight for America and returned after facing deadly fighting.  They may have medals but they don't receive the recognition that they deserve.  I encourage all veterans to consider becoming more involved in politics.  Utah can benefit from more veterans in elected positions.  The same respect that Brent Taylor earned is also yours, if you will please step up and run for office.  This State and America needs you.



ALL RACCOONS DIE
  At one time, we were told that SLC and several other cities in Salt Lake County includin the County, paid to have raccoons in the area caught and released in the wild away from populations.  But recently, it has become clear that the raccoons are killed in a "humane manner".  That usually means in a carbon monoxide chamber since many animal control officers are leery of trying to inject a wild raccoon.  I do not think that a carbon monoxide chamber is humane.  It can take 30 seconds or more for the animal to lose consciousness and even then, some recommend placing the body in the freezer to "kill it".  That is why all but two animal control departments in the State have stopped using chambers.  Several legislators have tried to pass a law banning CO chambers without success.  
  Raccoons are destructive to Utah wildlife and can spread rabies and mange.  The service that SLC and some of the municipalities in the County uses can provide a free trap but prefers that residents buy them for about $40.  They emphasized that they will give a free trap if they feel that the person cannot afford a trap.  They recommend that sweet bait like vanilla be used for raccoons since cats will avoid it (hopefully).  They will also catch skunks.
  They also said that they sometimes have problems with coyotes in the Avenues and Capitol Hill areas.  That is another problem that has to be addressed by the Council.  If you have a problem with raccoons and want them dead, call 385 419 3405.



THE INN BETWEEN AND RESPECT OPED PUBLISHED
  The Salt Lake Tribune published an oped that summarizes the issues between the INN Between (TIB) homeless hospice and respite care facility and some of the neighbors.  It is at:
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/12/30/commentary-inn-between

  The INN Between has been on a crusade to justify their new facility at 1216 East and 1300 South (the facility also fronts on Sherman Avenue.  The INN Between provides a necessary and compassionate service for the homeless of Utah.  Hospitals “dump” some of their homeless patients downtown in a diaper and hospital gown and TIB provides them with needed respite care.  
  The most important point is that everyone, including homeless want a comfortable and safe place to live, free from crime and conflict and to be respected.  The INN Between should not negatively impact neighbors. If TIB cannot work with neighbors to address problems and develop reasonable rules, it is a sign that the future homeless resource centers in other neighborhoods will also fail in their efforts.
  The oped is a summary of the issue.  The most important part that didn't get published is:
  Although 2 blocks away, my family is not really negatively impacted.  We are adjacent to the McClelland Trail Canal and homeless sometimes camp out in the neighborhood alleyways next to us.  Last week, some homeless busted a back gate next door and started camping in the back yard next door - the police removed the camp.
  Those issues are more important.  But the neighborhood on Sherman is impacted and upset and have not spoken up en masse due to concerns about being labelled as uncompassionate and unChristian.  They are intimidated.  I had an old SLTRIB oped about homeless shelters that urged them to be closer to commercial facilities like stores and fast food restaurants.  In my opinion, it is disrespectful to expect dying to spend the last few months of their lives in a room.  They deserve to be able to walk to the store for cigarettes or coffee or a burger or a soda.  This was the best option though for those dying.  I have watched this issue explode from the beginning.
  I watched how upset the Poplar Grove Community Council was, concerned about the INN Between. (I was at one of the first meetings about using the old Guadalupe School.)  I watched the discussion in the City Council. (The SLTRIB had some interesting comments from then City Councilman Kyle LaMalfa on the subject.)  I asked the community leaders about the recent issues and they said that they were solved with the community advisory board. (Even though several community members said that there were constant complaints about the problems with smoking and the homeless wandering the neighborhood.)  That is why I asked the INN Between at last summer's ELPCO meeting if they would invite the neighborhood to participate in a community advisory board to identify and address concerns from the neighborhood.  I did not expect it to devolve into a knockdown dragdown fight to the death (literally) with threats of lawsuits and police intimidation.  
  I asked the Legislature's Social Services Appropriations Interim Committee (meeting at the INN Between) in October to help get the parties to talk and try to work things out with a mediation.  Representative Ray and Senator Escamilla agreed to try to mediate the issues.  Sofia tried to address the meeting at the INN Between but the police were called and she was ordered to leave the premises.  Those police called their supervisor who allowed Sofia to address the Committee while being escorted by the police.
  The next attempt to mediate was a semi secret meeting at the Capitol on a school night that was announced on Facebook by the INN Between.  I was concerned that it might be one sided since the invitation should have been sent out to everyone involved.  I told Sophia about the meeting and I heard it from others that I work with in the community that fight for the homeless.  The meeting ended up as a discussion about how important the INN Between is and almost ignored addressing the issues that the neighborhood legitimately feels are a threat.  Patients out after 10PM, getting drug deliveries, four registered sex offenders without evaluating the potential for threats (ensuring that no one in the neighborhood is threatened) and evaluating problem cases that refuse to follow rules or threaten neighbors.  My efforts to try to get a mediation have failed and the neighborhood has started making arrangements to use the questionable zoning application to stop operations of the INN Between.  I think that they have a 25% chance of succeeding.
  Last Friday, again, the INN Between had a gathering of their friends and decried the attempts to close the facility.  There should be enough common ground to provide rules that comfort the neighbors and promote safety for the patients.  Without reasonable and respectful rules, the facility could have real problems.
  If TIB does not work with the neighborhood and develops trust with reasonable rules, the neighbors could force a lawsuit that could close the INN Between.  We should try for more communication now.
  Ironically, Salt Lake City recently got a grant to help public engagement for the omeless Resource Centers.  Shelter the Homeless and VOA will provide outreach for 1/2 mile from the Resource Centers.  The City will have a Funding Our Future Dashboard about the grant (and others).  Based on the results of Palmer Court (the second biggest draw for medical response in Salt Lake City), the City, and County will need more to have a real chance at a respectful public engagement.



TAYLORSVILLE BRT IS A $70 PLUS MILLION WASTE OF MONEY
  I am against UTA attempting any other large transit projects until they can show that they can successfully build, operate and get ridership on expensive projects.  The 35MAX BRT on 3500 S. has had about 3200 passengers a day despite using 2 lanes of traffic for BRT (part of the way in the most congested part of 3500 South) that could carry 5000 ADT a lane of cars with more than one passenger.  The ridership has stayed about the same and only saves 15 minutes of a 70 minute trip.  A successful BRT would generally be handling 5000 plus passengers a day.  The Provo BRT is not able to show success due to the free fare.  The Weber State Ogden BRT proposal will be spending over $60 million to save 5 minutes out of a very efficient and effective 15 minute bus ride to Weber State University.  
  The hope, of course, is to help redevelop 25th Street west of Washington Blvd.  But the single family homeowners along the route may end up fighting at every step of the construction.  The hope of development keeps coming up but I have found no real evidence that it significantly helps in Utah.  Development in many TRAX station areas is very slow.  Portland had the same thing happening.  The successful Farmington station was due to the aggressive efforts of the Farmington Economic Development team (who fought hard for Cabela's).  Most of the station developments are car oriented like Murray and Farmington and Central Pointe.  
  The large developments in Sugar House can be attributed to the linear park (Parleys Trail) and two large parks with significant amenities.  The S-Line did not result in construction of a mixed use and walkable area.  It resulted in a lot of zombie buildings with ground floors off limits to the public.  Sugar House got its character because it was walkable and had a lot of windows for showrooms.  The new developments did away with that and cars proliferated.  The S-Line ridership is about a third of what was predicted.  
  If the community knew that part of the effort of this BRT plan is to close and redevelop Fore Lakes Golf Course, UTA would be tarred and feathered and run out of town on a electric scooter.  That is reason enough to not consider this plan.  From the ESR: "development of this station depends on the transformation of the existing Fore Lakes Golf Course site into a transit-oriented development. While not currently planned, this modification could have significant positive impact on the surrounding neighborhood and community at large, in addition to enhancing longterm BRT ridership"
  But a bigger reason is to recognize and study the LA study last year that showed that, in an effort to get more ridership, LA spent over $15 billion.  It resulted in ridership, after 20 years, going from 147 million a month to 154 million a month!  Almost nothing.  Before projects, a robust bus system should be restored in accordance with the last UTA audit.
  Buses provide a cheaper, more efficient (shared with cars, the preferred choice of transportation) mass transit service.  If the State wants a nicer ride, remove the ugly coverings from the windows so riders can look out and enjoy our beautiful State (studies show that a clean window is the second biggest reason for riding a bus - right after a pleasant bus rider).  The goal should be to encourage those who can only afford an older car that pollutes more, to want to use the bus system.  But if stations are far apart (4 blocks) people won't walk to ride them.  Proof is the effort by cities to put in mid block crosswalks along State Street because they acknowledge that people won't walk half a block to the light!  A bus stop every block is the best way to encourage ridership.
  The BRT would cost about $15 million a mile while an effective enhanced bus would cost a tenth of that cost and have a lane at lights and light priority.
  The area needs a freeway more than a BRT.  According to the report, UDOT is going to add two lanes.  I wouldn't be surprised if they try to add 4 lanes (which is needed at 39,000 ADT).  The Report made the best point:  "Can BRT move enough people to allow state to forego extra lanes?" 
  The center road stations require slowing traffic for pedestrian crossings which increase pollution, especially at the Fore Lakes Station!  The center stations create danger for those who have difficulties crossing high traffic streets, like wheelchairs.  Riders tend to race across traffic lanes to catch a TRAX or bus in the center lane which is less probable if there are 6 lanes of traffic between the ride and the rider.
  If the biggest potential development areas say no, then even trying to justify the project with development potential does not make sense.  SLCC is the only potential and they do not redevelop.  The golf course is a big fight.  The low income housing will also result in a fight and will not be easily replaced (SLC lost housing despite promises to replace the redeveloped low income housing!  Low income housing loss is irreversible.  Eminent domain can be messy and unfair.  UTA has been fighting one fight for 10 years.  Sorenson Research Park estimates very low employee ridership.  I agree.  Highly paid jobs result in more cars and very little ridership.
  The BRT should not have zig zags.  They, like rail should go straight.
  Before spending money on this project, a real cost benefit analysis should take place and compare a higher frequency regular and enhanced bus with the costly BRT and loss of 2 lanes for 1.4 miles.
  Note that there is no further funding from the State but it is/will be in the next RTP.  But it is not prioritized with more important projects and service expansions.  The ESR should have that prioritization and cost benefit analysis and ridership predicted based on historical data which indicates predictions to be three times reality of ridership.
  Station concepts look like they won't work in sunshine and snow and rain - minnie mouse /tiny cover for riders?  It is time that UTA listens to riders that complain about being forced to stand in a 3 foot wide covered area.  The fancy designs look really expensive with a micro shelter!  How about a minimum of 10 foot wide shelter cover?
  In other words, I am against this project until bus service is increased.  Don't do what LA did and the study from last year (2017) showed, almost no increase in ridership.



RED LINE TRAX STOPS AT 4TH SOUTH IN MAY
  The Red Line TRAX will have to stop at 400 South in May, after UofU classes end for the semester, in order to upgrade the 400 South and Main Street curve rail system with a safety stop to deter contact between trains.  UTA expects to have a bus bridge to take passengers from the Courthouse to the Library.



CIP GOING YEAR ROUND BUT NEVER MIND
  During the last SLC Council discussion on CIP projects that started in May and finished in October, the Council asked that CIP applications be accepted year round to reduce the backup.  But the system still is set up to only have one set of CIP Advisory Board meetings a year.  So, until the City sets up more CIP Advisory Board meetings, the citizens of SLC will still have just one chance a year to ask for funds for their pet projects (generally endorsed by the local community council).
  It is a little complicated so this is the email that explains it all:
  "I’m following up on your Capital Improvement Program (CIP) questions as discussed after the Council’s formal meeting last night. The Administration is accepting applications year-round. The deadline for an application to be included in the Fiscal Year 2020 batch was September 28. Applications received after then will be included in the Fiscal Year 2021 batch.
  The Community Development and Capital Improvement Program resident advisory board will review the Fiscal Year 2020 batch of applications over several meetings during January – March. Their funding recommendations go to the Mayor who provides a separate set of funding recommendations in the Mayor’s Recommended Budget. The Council receives the advisory board’s and Mayor’s CIP funding recommendations for consideration and ultimately decide which projects receive funding.
  You can learn more about CIP such as the application, process, and timeline at this website: https://www.slc.gov/hand/capital-improvement-program/
  The old process accepted CIP applications for approximately one month typically in the fall. This created a rush of applications and associated spike in workload for departments and HAND staff to review, analyze, adjust and coordinate with the applicant. Opening up the application period to be year round alleviates that rush of applications and crunch of associated workload. This allows more time for thoroughly reviewing applications and is intended to improve the quality and process of the CIP program.
  The Council prefers reviewing all CIP applications together each fiscal year. CIP funding is very competitive. Reviewing all applications in a batch provides a fuller context of the City’s various competing capital improvement needs so elected officials and the resident advisory board are able to make more informed recommendations."



UTA CAN'T HIRE AND KEEP BUS DRIVERS
  UTA was able to hire a total of three bus drivers over a recent two months!  The ability of UTA to recruit, train and retain experienced drivers is decreasing.  This is the weak link in the plan to significantly increase bus service in Salt Lake County (many seem to want to go to Utah County).  A complication in keeping experienced drivers was the federal law that makes use of a cell phone while driving a bus or any mass transit or train illegal.  But bus drivers were being fired for talking on their cell phones before the bus started their route run and while they were outside of the bus.  Maybe UTA should consider a little flexibility.  UTA is constantly begging for drivers to take overtime.  



BEST CLASS ON LEGISLATURE BY LIBERTAS
  Connor Boyack is probably, in my opinion, the most effective Utah citizen working with the Legislature.  He was instrumental in getting Proposition Two passed and working with the Legislative leaders on the compromise.  Every year he conducts a class on how to work with the Legislature.  I consider the class important and useful for anyone interested in politics.  There is a chance to see how it is done, how to be effective and you could even talk to elected leaders.  It is on Saturday, January 26 from 9 AM to 1 PM.  It is called the 2019 Pre-Legislative Bootcamp and it is at the Utah State Capitol.  Although it is free, you must RSVP to get a free ticket.  The link is:



https://libertasutah.us5.list-manage.com/track/click?u=2243d8fae3f290c0d90e2c101&id=bb5cfa0a9e&e=30a4f7d5f4


eventbrite.com has the ticket at:
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/2019-pre-legislative-bootcamp-become-an-effective-citizen-advocate-tickets-53839712028?utm_source=Libertas+Institute+Newsletter&utm_campaign=9fc8daa956-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_12_21_02_50&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_a6fc0d365a-9fc8daa956-85709725&mc_cid=9fc8daa956&mc_eid=30a4f7d5f4


If you have problems, email info@libertasutah.org
"Be sure to RSVP and invite your friends who would be interested in learning the nuts and bolts of how the legislative process works and how you can make a difference. "



SILICOSIS IN UTAH 
  Utah will study the effect of a gravel pit at Point of the Mountain in Draper in the next year.  We tried to get the State to include the residents and employers around the State Capitol and in the Avenues and around Beck Street (large gravel pits).  But the Salt Lake County Health Department has to ask for it.  I have heard anecdotal stories of residents that have a lot of dust in their high rise apartments and cases of silicosis.  According to the State, "Between 1992 and 2014 (our latest year of available data) there were 49 cases of hospitalizations due to silicosis statewide."  This should be a bigger study that includes checkups for residents in certain areas and buildings that have a case of silicosis (a condition in the lungs that decrease oxygen for the body due to dust in the air).





DECEMBER 14, 2018
CHRISTMAS COMES EARLY TO SLC COUNCIL WITH 50% PAY RAISE
INN BETWEEN SECRET MEETING WITH LEGISLATORS
THE INN BETWEEN VRS NEIGHBORS FIGHT ESCALATES
ENERGYSOLUTIONS TO BURY SAN ONOFRE NUCLEAR PLANT IN UTAH
SLCO SURPRISES SLC WITH CHRISTMAS OFFER TO FUND ANYTHING AND DOES
UTA MAY SHOOT BUSES (REALLY, I AM NOT KIDDING)


CHRISTMAS COMES EARLY TO SLC COUNCIL WITH 50% PAY RAISE
  Only one person spoke against the SLC Council pay raise that was passed unanimously last night.  Despite concerns that they are giving themselves a pay raise, cops are not getting a raise and that they had 3 tax increases this year and lots of secret meetings, Merry Christmas.  Obviously, I was against this.  Unfortunately no one seems to care enough to comment on it.  They also pointed out that they should have a salary 25% of the City's Mayor and closer to the County Council's #40,000 a year.  But the County Council's budget is 5 times more than the City's budget.  I don't think that politicians are more important than cops.


INN BETWEEN SECRET MEETING WITH LEGISLATORS
  Several of us have asked the Legislature to attempt to mediate the fight between the INN Between and the neighborhood.  Representative Ray and Senator Escamilla agreed to help mediate the concerns.  Unfortunately, the only thing that developed since that October agreement/meeting is the INN Between put out a notice on Facebook for their followers to attend a meeting at the Capitol this Thursday, December 13th at 6 PM to discuss the issue.  That kind of defeats the purpose when the two parties are not really being encouraged to talk.  This results in one side having their presentation and one sided opinion creating even more animosity.  
  The neighborhood is upset that a homeless shelter is suddenly being put in their residential neighborhood and they can't do anything about it.  There are four registered sex offenders residing at the INN Between and there are no rules (that appear to be followed) and the neighborhood is concerned about homeless walking the neighborhood at late night when they are supposed to be in the facility.  Several of the residents refuse to abide by the attempt to stop their leaving the facility at all hours of the night.  The announcement on Facebook is below:
The INN Between 
Legislative Community Meeting
https://www.facebook.com/events/1835156139914871/
Thursday, December 13, 2018
6 PM – 8 PM
Utah Capitol, Room 210
Now that The INN Between has been open for six months, Senator Escamilla and Representative Ray are hosting a Community Meeting to gather neighborhood feedback. Please join us to share your experience of having The INN Between as a neighbor.
The event will be held in Room 210 of the Senate Building (the East building with the cafeteria). There is free parking in the visitor parking or on the street. You can enter the building through the east facing doors, then proceed to the second floor


THE INN BETWEEN VRS NEIGHBORS FIGHT ESCALATES
The INN Between put out an invitation to their Facebook friends to attend a meeting with Senator Escamilla and Representative Paul Ray December 14 at the State Capitol.  Some of the neighbors that had been fighting against the INN Between (TIB) found out and tried to voice their concerns during the meeting.  The meeting had been requested as a way to get the two sides talking but it ended up as a dog and pony show that extolled the benefits of TIB.  But that should not have been the issue.  The issue is that neighbors, some of whom actually work with hospice and homeless, are upset that drug dealing and questionable behavior by some of the patients are being allowed to be tolerated instead of being stopped.  In addition, some of the residents are not really dying.
  TIB serves a valuable function for a society.  Homeless should not be dying in the street.  TIB allows them to die with some dignity.  Hospitals are also dumping patients at the Rio Grande homeless area at the Weigand Center with just a dressing gown and a diaper!  TIB also is used to provide respite care for those people who hospitals dump.  These, generally, are homeless who can barely walk, if they can walk.  It was also assumed that TIB would also provide housing for those undergoing continuing treatment for cancer and other diseases.  
  Unfortunately, the neighbors demand for answers has resulted in intimidating the director of TIB who sent two police officers (acting outside of official capacity) to tell Sophia Anderson, the leader of neighbors concerned about the impact on the neighborhood, that she and the rest of the neighborhood would not be allowed on the property of TIB!  So the advisory board that was supposed to encourage comment and discussion and communication between TIB and the neighbors was essentially flushed down the toilet.  TIB also sent a cease and desist letter to the neighbors about their online social media campaign against TIB in their neighborhood!  Yes TIB really did tell them to stop their lies on social media. 
  I have to, out of fairness, acknowledge that the mayor of Salt Lake City once sent a letter my friends, neighbors and acquaintances up to a mile away claiming that a flyer that I was passing out was full of untruths.  I thought that was hilariously dumb because I changed the flyer to exactly what he wanted before I passed it out (out of ill placed respect).  I gave a copy of the proposed flyer to all of the Councilmembers and they did not suggest any changes.  So I admit that I get a little touchy when people try to stop opposition to anything that impacts the community.
  When questionable people follow neighborhood girls, TIB needs to be encouraging reporting that in order to reevaluate the person for safety.  When patients call up and have their drugs delivered to the curb across the street, the patients need to be reevaluated.  TIB should not ignore or allow such neighborhood crime.  TIB should not have a negative impact on the community.
  Allen Johnson, the former planning director of Salt Lake City, pointed out that TIB and Salt Lake City did not seem to be following the law when it allowed TIB to move into the former nursing center in June.  That could justify an ugly lawsuit, and, due to the failure to find common ground and work things out, that lawsuit could happen at any time.
  Representative Ray said that he thought that it would be illegal to withhold funding for TIB (I asked in order to get some rules that would force rules and enforcement and consequences for breaking the rules at TIB.).  He also got upset and called out some neighbors for acting in an unchristian manner when they said that TIB did not belong in their residential neighborhood.  So the discussion devolved back into TIB is a godsend and you can't say anything bad about it.  Several walked out at a perceived lack of respect and refusal to hear concerns that impacted the neighborhood.
  East Liberty Park Community Council Chair Jason Stevenson offered to help mediate and find a resolution to the issues.  Co-Chair Darryl High offered that the community is a great and welcoming and compassionate community.
  Senator Escamilla recognized that part of the problem was caused by the failure of the Road Home at its location.  I disagreed.  The Road Home did not fail due to its location.  I do not even think of the Road Home as a failure.  The failure was the inadequate public safety and mental health fundin that resulted in the significant increase in drug use and criminal activity around the Road Home.  
  Also Representative Ray was concerned about the homeless congregating in the parks.  But after the SLC police started rousting the homeless that went to the parks after being encouraged to move from the Rio Grande area, (the police went through the parks in the City around 2 AM to try to move the homeless out) nearby residents complained that the result was homeless camping in the many alleyways in residential areas.  So the police stopped rousting homeless camping in the parks.


ENERGYSOLUTIONS TO BURY SAN ONOFRE NUCLEAR PLANT IN UTAH
  Almost no one knows about this but EnergySolutions has been given a contract to bury the San Onofre nuclear plant in Utah's Clive facility!  The plant will have most highly radioactive materials removed but.... Utah will finally get a nuclear plant!


SLCO SURPRISES SLC WITH CHRISTMAS OFFER TO FUND ANYTHING AND DOES
  The Salt Lake County, when SB136 allowed the County to increase sales taxes for transportation, decided to use the funding for debt paydown.  In July, UTA will start getting 40% of the taxes and the rest will be divided by the cities and the County.  Until then, the County has control of the money.  But the County semi secretly changed their mind and in a rush to put together grant proposals, the SLC Transportation Department put together a list that the County Council approved before the SLC Council had their public hearing!  The City Council was warned that essentially, the Mayor's administration had submitted the grant proposals and the County Council would probably approve them before the formal public hearing.  The County appeared to approve some of the projects before the City Council approved them.  Two that did not appear to be funded were the Jordan River recreation area and the 2100 South bus stop improvements.
  I put the County Transportation Funding packet in the downloads section and the last two pages show the passed/agreed upon projects.  They include a $400,000 indoor bus garage on 200 South (homeless will love it) and other 200 South improvements.  Bigger and better bike lanes from 400 West to 900 East are planned.  The language in the grant says:
Study to determine new design to have street function as a transit corridor and
transit hub incorporating walking, bicycling, shared mobility, private automobiles,
and freight.

  The 9-Line Trail gets around $4 million to help finish the Trail but the most important part, a pedestrian/bicycle bridge over the 900 South train tracks is not planned!  There is a million for a Millcreek/Sugar House Circulation Study, a continuation of the Sugar House Circulation and Amenities Study from 5 years ago, that shows a potential streetcar extension going south to Brickyard.  Millcreek is trying to get the Legislature to approve it (with their Economics Development Director and Representative Mike Winder pushing for it at the Legislature).  The language says:
Creation of circulation plan and the completion of an Transit Alternatives Analysis
for the S-Line extension or other SH-Millcreek Transit.
  The Parleys Trail gets almost $4 million for: 
Construction of a 10' foot wide concrete paved pedestrian/bicycle trail, installation
of a ramp and bridge over 900 Wet and a bridge over the Jordan River.

  The City also had their Life on State implementation partially funded that will lower the speed limit and place many more mid block crossings (if UDOT approves) on State Street.  It will also put in trees in the median instead of widening a bicycle lane without removing a traffic lane.  The City wants to use it to provide catalytic development of the Sears property.  Although not sales tax funded, the City is getting $4 million for the study.  Bus service is not increased.  Think of what $4 million would have given us!  The language in the grant is:
Design and construction of mobility and safety improvements at two (2) locations
on State Street (600 S to 900 S and 2100 S to Haven Avenue). Projects include
wider sidewalks, improved transit stops, a slower speed design, parallel parking
pockets, reduced driveways, street furniture, street trees, and mid-block crossings.
Additionally, design of high-comfort bike routes on each side of State Street from
900 South to 3300 South with connections to State Street amenities.

  The Bonneville Shoreline Trail will be upgraded, hopefully with restrooms like those planned for Immigration Canyon (where e-coli counts are high).  400 bicyclists use the Bonneville Shoreline Trail between the Capitol and the UofU everyday.  The language says:
Survey to determine BST alignment, conceptual design, and construction including
trailheads and a determine public access points and connectivity to regional
amenities and adjoining jurisdictions. Focus of funding will be to purchase public
easements and/or private land purchase in order to construct the BST.

  I wish that some projects like lowering speed limits on State Street and $400,000 for an indoor bus station on 200 S. for the homeless had more public input.  People want service increases first before projects and State Street and Redwood Road bus frequency improvements.
I urge SLCO and UTA and SLC to work with mass transit riders to actually provide better service soon, and not wait until August 2020.  The SLC argument that they wanted to spend their sales tax dollars on only their City's property hurts air quality.  Since SLCO is now allowing use of funds for transit now, instead of debt paydown, service should have been the priority, not projects.  Service increases from SLCO transportation funds were.... zero!


UTA MAY SHOOT BUSES (REALLY, I AM NOT KIDDING)
A year ago, I asked the State of Utah manager of the VW settlement money if UTA could use some of the funds for electric buses.  I was told no because UTA would have to permanently take the bus out of service.  UTA has decided to shoot the buses to get electric bus funding from the VW settlement!  UTA found out that they could be eligible for the funding if they shoot the engine block of the diesel buses (with a gun powerful enough to go through an engine block)!  UTA should consider raffling the chance to shoot a bus if the State agrees to give them money from the VW settlement.  I know many people would love to shoot UTA.  I mean a UTA bus.
  On another matter, Steve Meyer, the last most knowledgeable person left at UTA has agreed to consult part time with UTA to ensure an appropriate change in leadership.  He said last week no chance that he would stay but he would answer the phone.  But, after an offer he couldn't refuse, he agreed to stay on, the phone (while he vacations in Arizona) for the next three months and several days a month at UTA.  He will get a little over $100 an hour for up to 29 hours a week.  I think that if Steve left, the loss of institutional knowledge would seriously degrade UTA service.  It will take years to develop the knowledge needed to successfully and efficiently manage UTA.
  I put the list of grants that UTA is asking for funding in the Excel spreadsheet in the downloads section.




DECEMBER 10, 2018

TOMORROW SLC COUNCIL BIG SALARY INCREASE FOR CHRISTMAS?


SLC COUNCIL CONSIDERING A BIG SALARY INCREASE FOR CHRISTMAS AT TUESDAY DECEMBER 11 7PM

  The Salt Lake City Council is considering increasing their salary 50%. The effort is a continuation of the effort earlier this year by Council Chair Erin Mendenhall to increase her salary to $35,000. Her justification was that the low salary limits the pool of potential candidates for the Council and the time commitment has increased. But the earlier discussion was shut down due to concerns about the several tax increases this year making a salary increase for the Council look bad. A Councilmember's salary is now at $25,525 while the Mayor's salary is $139,514. Of course, increasing the Councilmember's salary would also suggest increasing the Mayor's salary.
  Studies by the Council staff said that there "was no consensus from the data about what salary is reasonable/appropriate for Salt Lake City elected officials." Without a higher salary, the potential candidates for Council could be limited to persons of financial means. The time commitments have increased, not just from all of the meetings that are often not public (the Council can legally hold meetings if less than four Councilmembers attend so called small group meetings) but also due to the increase in community organizations in Salt Lake City that expect elected representatives to attend. Although not required, many Councilmembers do attend the one to three community councils meetings a month in their district. In addition, recent efforts by the Council to negotiate unilaterally and in secret with the Legislature on the Inland Port also took extra time.
  The discussion is now being driven by the idea that "All local elected officials should be compensated reasonably in a manner that is fair to both the taxpayers and those serving in office." But if the Council really wanted to be fair, they should be giving the Salt Lake City Police Officers a bigger increase than the minimal increase, similar to regular City employees, that the SLCPD has been given over the last ten years. Law enforcement officers go to work everyday and face the possibility of not living through a confrontation with criminals. They deserve a pay increase more than the Councilmembers.
  Originally, the Council was supposed to be part time and require about 10 hours a week. But many say that the commitment is really 20 hours a week. Some Councilmembers have to make up the hours that they take off from work during the two or three meetings a month. The Council staff has also pointed out that the SLC International Airport project should justify a higher salary. On the other hand, the City's regular budget is about 20% of the County's budget and the County Councilmembers only get $40,356 annually. Utah legislators are paid less than $20,000 a year.
  Previous Council discussions have suggested higher salaries for members serving in leadership roles and considered vehicle allowances. The proposals have not discussed waiting until after the next election before increasing the salary.
  Councilmember James Rogers, during previous discussions, was concerned about a higher salary creating professional politicians instead of the present system of encouraging citizen legislators. Councilmember Charlie Luke suggested not increasing salaries until roads are in better shape. Councilmember Amy Fowler said that she didn't know that the position had a salary when she agreed to run for the office. That is the kind of public servant I want. I want someone who is so dedicated to the citizens, the taxpayers and those who work in the City, that they are willing to work as a public service. It is not a good time to increase salaries for the Salt Lake City Council, especially with two sales tax increases, a doubling of water and sewer fees, a secret Inland Port deal and an $87 million bond increase.
The SLC Council will have a public hearing on December 11 at 7PM at their formal meeting at SLC City Hall (400 South and State Street) and could decide on increasing their salary that night.



DECEMBER 6, 2018
SLC SCREWS BICYCLISTS WITH ROAD WORK STANDARDS
NEEDLE DISPOSAL BOX TO BE INSTALLED AT RECOVERY CENTER
PARTIES AND AIRBNB GETTING OUT OF HAND NEAR UNIVERSITIES

SLC SCREWS BICYCLISTS WITH ROAD WORK STANDARDS

  Recently, Salt Lake City has been giving contractors work to resurface and smooth out SLC streets.  But the contractor for several streets, including 21st East did not sufficiently smooth out the street after laying down the new surface.  The City pointed out that the contract called for meeting the American Public Works Association standards so the contractor, at great expense, was forced to go back and smooth out the streets that were being called the waves.  But the contractor refused to do the side of the road on the shoulder after pointing out that APWA standards DO NOT COVER SHOULDERS!  So bicyclists in so called bicycle friendly Salt Lake City will have to endure the jarring shoulders that essentially discourage bicycling.  Hopefully, SLC will get their act together and realize the significant negative impact ignoring shoulders where bicyclists ride when the City spends $87 million to repair and maintain streets.   

NEEDLE DISPOSAL BOX TO BE INSTALLED AT RECOVERY CENTER
  The sharps boxes have had significant problems since they were installed a year ago.  They are to encourage safe disposal of needles.  But they were originally installed by Salt Lake City out of compliance with the County Health Department (the City and County Health teamed up on the installations).  The City made the boxes such that people could reach in and get needles!  After that was fixed, there were still issues with nearby residents complaining about the big red sharps boxes were labeling their area as a drug area.  Even the Fourth Street Clinic did not want to host the sharps container.
  Recently, Fairmont Park got a sharps box.  But because there is not clear and simple instructions on the box, people were jamming up the drawer with big containers of needles!  And, as was pointed out in a community council meeting, why not just call them needle disposal boxes?  Obviously, the County has realized their mistake and is working on providing a simple label.  But due to the problems with the Fairmont Park sharps box, it will be moved.  Right now, the One Voice Recovery Center near 1400 South and 1100 East has volunteered to host the box.  They have told the City that their neighbors have no problem.  
  But consider the implications of a drug injection needle disposal box next to a drug recovery center.  Doesn't the box essentially say that the drug recovery center does not work?  It also is in a single-family home neighborhood and near day care facilities and an elementary school!  Salt Lake City has the responsibility for siting the box.  Someone needs to tell SLC that they need to rethink their thinking on this.  
  The sharps box near Rio Grande was broken for a while, in the area that most needs it.  The drawer was jammed shut and the City assumed that someone hit it with a car or something heavy.  All of the drawers are now locked and smaller holes /inserts are installed to eliminate jamming with big containers.  
  But the County Health Department is now considering putting small needle disposal boxes in parks' restrooms where they think that most drug injecting is done.  But then parents, and most regular people will avoid the restrooms since they will assume that they are drug injection restrooms!  What parent will let their kid go into a restroom with needle disposal boxes??
  Maybe the thinking should be drug addicts are not usually committing non violent crimes.  Stealing to get drug money involves violence and using needles without safely disposing them is also a form of violence. 

PARTIES AND AIRBNB GETTING OUT OF HAND NEAR UNIVERSITIES
  SLC zoning is trying to move constant complaints about violating zoning to small claims court where a court order can be more effective.  But the proliferation of AirBnb rentals is causing a backlog of complaints.  If there is a problem, complain.  The Legislature effectively made AirBnb legal if more than 30 days.  But AirBnb is on the honor system in paying taxes and they do not provide a list of renters so that the municipalities can check for compliance with Utah and municipal laws.  The Legislature needs to require AirBnb to provide cities with a list of renters.
  Part of the reason that zoning is under pressure to enforce zoning ordinances is the large number of illegal rentals near universities.  Parking and noise from parties is a constant complaint from neighbors.  The SLCPD has a special recommendation to fight wild parties.  The SLCPD are now suggesting that when you file a complaint or call dispatch about a
noisy and wild party that has underage drinking or if it is out of control, you should tell dispatch that you are reporting a "problem house" and to have the officer call back. When you talk to the officer, ask them to report the incident as a problem house and ask them to file a wild party/problem house report. The fine for a problem house
that is having a wild party is $300. Landlords will clamp down faster when they know that there is a continuing problem.
  In addition, the Good Landlord Program is being used to remove the significant cost saving of City licensing of rentals ($20 a unit) if the landlord complies with the Good Landlord Program.  If they have a property that receives a lot of complaints, they can remove the discount and that can mean ten thousand dollars of extra cost.  The Georgia Apartments on 200 East and 2100 South is one property that had their Good Landlord discount pulled.






DECEMBER 5, 2018
SLC COUNCIL MAY INCREASE SALARY 50% DECEMBER 11 MERRY CHRISTMAS
SLCO DA WILL GET 3 MORE INVESTIGATORS AND 3 MORE ATTORNEYS
UTA GETTING SB136 FUNDS IN JULY BUT WON'T INCREASE SERVICE 
SLCO 911 NOW INTEGRATED WITH SHERIFF'S DISPATCH
CANNABIS ACT "COMPROMISE" LIMITS ACCESS TO UNDER 21
PARKS IN SLC
EASTSIDE PRECINCT QUESTIONS AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING MAP



SLC COUNCIL MAY INCREASE SALARY 50% DECEMBER 11 MERRY CHRISTMAS
  Salt Lake City Council Chair Erin Mendenhall's attempt to increase her salary 50% continues.  During the November 27 discussion, the Council agreed to a public hearing on December 11 (at the 7PM formal Council meeting) and they could decide then about the issue.  I urge everyone to comment, however you would like, to the SLC Council's email addresses to the left of this column.   Or:

james.rogers@slcgov.com,derek.kitchen@slcgov.com,charlie.luke@slcgov.com,amy.fowler@slcgov.com,erin.mendenhall@slcgov.com,andrew.johnston@slcgov.com,chris.wharton@slcgov.com


  The effort is to increase the salary to $35,000.  The SLC Mayor makes $139,514 and the SLCounty Council makes $40,356 with a County budget over 5 times the SLC budget.  The Council Chair claims that she has to attend 6 community councils (including another one that just developed) and that her leadership of the Council should justify her being paid more.  The Inland Port negotiations, in secret without public comments, also should justify increasing Council salaries.  The Council also has a lot of secret meetings that the public is not allowed to see, including small group meetings that supposedly involve less than 4 Councilmembers.
  But Salt Lake City also is not giving what I think is adequate salaries to public safety personnel.  For many years, the City has only given their police the same salary increase as the rest of the City's employees.  That is one reason why SLC is having such a hard time increasing the number of police personnel.  I believe that before the Council increases their salary, they should give police officers a 10% pay raise.  And, as Councilmember Charlie Luke said, before increasing Council salaries, the streets need to be in better shape.  Ironically, the last streets tax increase from 6 years ago, that was going to give streets $8.4 million a year more for maintenance, was rescinded the next year for a salary increase.  That salary increase included the Council and Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall voted for it and benefited from it.
  The Council is supposed to be a part time job.  If the Councilmembers want it to be a full time job with a full time salary, the citizens and voters of SLC should decide that.  Utah legislators are paid less than $20,000 a year to ensure a part time citizen legislature.  The Council should remember that.  They should also remember that they increased sales taxes twice this year, doubled water and sewer fees, increased SLC's bonding by $87 million and had way too many secret meetings.  Now is not a good time to increase salaries for the Salt Lake City Council, even though it is Christmas.

I put the SLC Council packet on the compensation report in the upper right downloads section.  The text of it is below:
COUNCIL STAFF MEMO
DATE: November 27, 2018
RE: Salt Lake City Council Compensation
Policy Considerations
The City conducted salary surveys of elected officials in other municipalities most recently in 2015.
The results showed significant variation in annual salary between cities. There was no consensus from
the data about what salary is reasonable/appropriate for Salt Lake City elected officials. In addition to
the inconclusive survey data, some challenges arise when comparing salaries for elected officials such
as differences across forms of government, separation of duties/powers, demographic and economic
variations, actual hours worked, and other factors. It is particularly difficult to identify comparable
situations due to the population of the City vs its role as the Capital City and its role as a regional hub.
BALANCING POINTS
Value Statements – Many, sometimes conflicting, values exist when discussing compensation for
municipal elected officials. Some examples include:
1. Local elected office is a public service and should be compensated minimally.
vs.
Absent reasonable compensation, the pool of potential candidates could be
inadvertently limited to persons of financial means.
2. The office of Mayor should be compensated at a rate similar to the top full-time City employees
and City Council Members should be considered more like volunteers with a stipend.
vs.
All local elected officials should be compensated reasonably in a manner that is fair to both the
taxpayers and those serving in office.
3. Discussing elected official salaries can be a controversial topic, therefore it is easier to evaluate
them very infrequently.
vs.
It is best for the public to be aware of the compensation level and have the opportunity to
comment on those salaries each year, or at some regular interval.
Participating in Grassroots Democracy – Community organizations expect elected
representatives to attend constituent meetings, requiring a significant investment of time. Each City
Council district currently has 3-8 community councils with regularly scheduled, typically monthly,
public meetings. District 7 is the exception with only the Sugar House Community Council which
covers a population significantly larger than other community councils. There are currently 27
community organizations registered with the city. When the form of government was first established,
and the salary ratios were set, the entire City had only eight community councils.
Schedule and Time Demands – The Council was originally intended to be truly part-time. The
salary was originally set to be 25 percent of the Mayor’s salary, with the expectation that Council
Members would meet roughly 10 hours per week during the evenings. The evening meetings have
been replaced with all-day meetings that extend in to the evening, thus requiring time away from fulltime
employment.
As additional time during the traditional workday is required to fulfill Council responsibilities, it is
possible that the pool of candidates could be inadvertently limited – teachers, and anyone who has
specific responsibilities tied to specific hours incur greater expense than they originally did when the
ratio of salaries between the Council and Mayor was initially set.
Unique Challenges – Elected officials in Utah’s capitol city face unique challenges, with some
growing in significance such as the Northwest Quadrant Inland Port Authority, serving the central
business district, an international airport, provision of water outside of City boundaries, and regional
coordination on issues of air quality, transportation, transit, homelessness and growth.
In the face of the switch from evening to daytime and evening meetings, additional community
organizations to coordinate with, more complexity in collaborating with other entities, and increasing
Council Member responsibility in representing the City with Regional and State entities, Council
Members are dedicating more time than they did in the early years of this form of government.
The public expectations of Council Members evolved since 1979 but the compensation has not been
updated. A significant salary adjustment was recommended since that time, but the Council in office
at the time elected to adopt an increase in the Mayor’s salary but wait to further evaluate the Council
salary. The Council did not schedule the City Council compensation question for further discussion in
the years that followed.
Salaries – In 2017-18, an individual Council Member’s salary ($25,525) is 18.3% of the Mayor’s
salary ($139,514). Conversely, the Mayor’s salary is equivalent to the salary of five-and-a-half Council
Members.
Council Staff conducted an analysis of Mayor and Council salaries since the City form of government
was changed. While both Council and Mayor salaries have increased over that time period, the
Mayor’s salary has increased at a rate 97% faster than the Council’s. Given that the Mayor’s salary is
full-time and therefore started out higher than the Council’s part-time salary, any across the board
cost of living adjustments would require a periodic reset to maintain the 1:4 ratio.
NOTE: THE CHART HERE IS IN THE UPPER DOWNLOADS COMPENSATION PDF
If the Council salary were to be increased to match the rate of increase of the Mayor and maintain the
1:4 ratio, the Council’s salary would be $9,450 higher than it is currently, for a total of $35,741
annually. This increase would not address the additional time that Council Members spend in their
official capacity.
As a double check on this approach to reviewing the salary, the Council staff checked with Salt Lake
County on the level of compensation for County Council Members. Their current compensation is
$40,356 annually, which is $14,065 more than Salt Lake City Council Member compensation.
POLICY CONSIDERATIONS / QUESTIONS
1. A key tenet of the City’s form of government is for people elected to City Council positions to
bring a ‘citizen perspective’ to the office. As a matter of public policy, the balance the elected
officials typically seek is a compensation level that is fair to both the taxpayers and the general
public. Some possible analysis factors to evaluate Council Member compensation within the
unique context of Salt Lake City could include:
a. What is the ratio between the Council salary and the Mayor’s salary, and how has this
changed over the years?
b. Is the salary sufficient to cover expenses associated with the increased time demands of
the position, including the cost of time off from full time employment, child care
expenses, out of pocket expenses, etc.
c. Does the practical time demand of the job combined with compensation affect who can
afford to serve in the office of Council Member?
2. The Council may wish to discuss what barriers currently exist to residents serving on
the City Council and how compensation changes would affect those barriers.
3. Ratio of Mayoral to Council Member Salary – Does the Council want to explore adjusting the
Council Member to mayoral annual salary ratio (currently 5.5 Council Member salaries to 1
mayoral salary)? The Council could discuss similarities and differences between elected
official’s hours worked, areas of responsibility and other factors to determine if a different ratio
makes sense.
4. Does the Council want to consider pay differentials for members serving in leadership roles?
Council Members serving in leadership positions spend significantly more time conducting
official government business. (Leadership positions include: City Council Chair and Vice
Chair, and Redevelopment Agency Board of Directors Chair and Vice Chair.)
5. Does the Council want to consider adding vehicle allowances and/or increased allowable
vacation maximums to Council Members compensation? This supplemental pay and benefit
variance are currently available to the Mayor and Department Directors but not available to
Council Members.
6. Options could include:
a. Do not adjust the salary
b. Adjust the salary to be the equivalent to the Salt Lake County Council
c. Adjust the salary to reflect the ratio between the Council Member and Mayoral salaries
as originally established, but not recognize the increased demands of the Council
position and the shift to daytime meetings
d. Adjust the salary to reflect the ratio between the Council Member and Mayoral salaries
as originally established, AND recognize the increased demands of the Council position
and the shift to daytime meetings
e. Adjust the salary to reflect the benefits that the Mayor and Department Directors
receive in the form of vacation pay and auto allowance, and reconsider the requirement
that City Council Members return pay to the City based on missing more than 3
meetings in a calendar year.
If the Council is interested in pursuing this change it would require an ordinance to amend the Elected
Officials component of the Compensation Plan. The Council Office budget could accommodate this
adjustment for Council Members without a budget increase in this fiscal year. Staff can also conduct
analysis based on other factors if the Council is interested in evaluating this change.

SLCO DA WILL GET 3 MORE INVESTIGATORS AND 3 MORE ATTORNEYS
  The final budget for Salt Lake County will add 3 more investigators and 3 more attorneys to the DA staff (above what the Mayor originally recommended).  The increase was obviously needed after the death of South Salt Lake Officer Rampell by a criminal who should have been in jail and prosecuted for an automobile homicide earlier this year.  The lack of enough investigators slowed down prosecution and more investigators and more adequate public safety funding would have saved, in my opinion, a cop's life.

UTA GETTING SB136 FUNDS IN JULY BUT WON'T INCREASE SERVICE 
  UTA's Interlocal agreement with Salt Lake City is in the upper downloads section and it will have a public hearing on December 11 at the 7PM formal Council meeting.  I still think that the westside is getting screwed.  The 900 South line is to be extended to the westside and 13th South but the westside and eastside really need better north south service.  The Redwood Road and State Street bus routes have over 3000 riders a day and are often overcrowded.  But SLC does not want to provide bus service increases to the riders that start or end their trips outside of Salt Lake City.  It is almost like Salt Lake City is cutting off an appendage to spite themselves.  
  Ironically, and sadly, the County's portion of SB136 funding reverts to UTA starting in July of 2019.  That 40% of SB136 funding should provide plenty of money to work with SLC to increase service on Redwood Road and State Street.  Again, the lowest paid workers in Salt Lake City that work downtown, do not have the money to park downtown and often have to park far away and walk to work.  Even TV employees are in the same situation.  This is wrong.  
  The City also is trying to upgrade bus stop amenities but that will unfortunately make the situation worse.  Projects are not what transit riders want.  They want service!  And many bus stops are not convenient for transfers.  They are often hundreds of feet away from the corner.  So spending a lot of money on creating a nice bus stop far away from a transfer route, actually discourages ridership, permanently.  Many people won't walk half a block, according to Salt Lake City.  That is the reason for their efforts to install crosswalks at half block intervals.
  The County and the City and UTA should work together to provide service increases within a few months of getting SB136 funding.  UTA now says that they will not increase service until August of 2020!  But they are getting the money in July of 2019.  If the start date of SLC's transit improvements is August 2019 (I thing that it should be sooner since UTA will get the money in January.), the SB136 funds should be used to work with the City to expand service Countywide.  The County Advisory Board, composed of several mayors, will decide on the projects.  From the August blog:
  The SLCO mayors and elected government officials (COG) appointed three members of the UTA Advisory Board that need to be in place by November 1.  The COG wanted to ensure that there was a geographic diversity on the Board so they appointed Draper Mayor Walker, Herriman Mayor Watts and Midvale Mayor Hale to the Advisory Board.  Magna Township Mayor Peay will be one of the alternates.  They will have indefinite terms that appear to start at 1.5 years but the COG will revisit the issue in January of 2020.
  Many of the mayors in the COG also expressed interest in being on the County Transportation Advisory Board.  Salt Lake County Mayor McAdams will be appointing six members and the COG will appoint seven.  Mayor McAdams is still deciding on his appointees and they could include some of the mayors who wanted to be on the Advisory Board.  The County Transportation Advisory Board will decide how to spend the millions that will eventually come from the SB136 tax increase.  The first revenue will pay down the debt from transportation projects so there should not be a rush to need a decision on new projects.


SLCO 911 NOW INTEGRATED WITH SHERIFF'S DISPATCH
  Salt Lake County Valley Emergency Communication Center (VECC) is now integrated with the Salt Lake County Sheriff's dispatchers.  The Sheriff's dispatchers now sit in the Center.  Previous Sheriffs had an issue with the VECC deciding on how to handle law enforcement and emergency calls.  But the significant tax increase from the 2017 legislative session gave most of the money to VECC and it was obvious that the Sheriff's dispatch system was going to be hurting.  The Legislature ignored the effort to force a combination of all the County's 911 systems into one system like Morgan and Weber County completed several years ago.  So Salt Lake County now has two systems, VECC and SLC/Sandy.  This causes issues with law enforcement in the Valley.  Due to the way cell phone 911 systems are working, if a caller is in Salt Lake City but near the boundary of the City, the call will probably be routed to VECC instead of Salt Lake City.  
  The County needs one 911 system.  Now, the Sheriff's 911 calls go to VECC and Sheriff's dispatchers are sitting next to VECC dispatchers.  The Sheriff's dispatchers still get the 801 743 7000 calls that are now for non emergency calls.  Previously, the 743 7000 number was also used for emergencies.  Now, 911 should be called for all County emergencies.  I believe that Salt Lake City dispatch will eventually be forced to combine with VECC since VECC is getting the majority of the tax increase revenue.  

CANNABIS ACT "COMPROMISE" LIMITS ACCESS TO UNDER 21
  Lost in the Cannabis Act "compromise" fine print is an effort to discourage use by those under 21.  Due to exponential increase in vaping by teenagers, there is a concern that the THC vaping oil that is going to be legal, could be misused by teenagers and further increase teenage vaping.  The hope is that the implementation of a board to agree to use of THC by a person under 21 will limit access to underage marijuana use.  Don't get your hopes up.  I expect that the Legislature will add more requirements, including increasing the age limit for vaping to 21.  Other fine tuning of the Act will also take place and it will forestall implementation of medical marijuana for a couple of years.  The card holders, when they get them, will get their marijuana from out of state.  I wonder how the State will stop mail orders?

PARKS IN SLC
  A question came up last month about how many parks does Salt Lake City have compared to other cities.  "SLC exceeds the national target ratio of 6.5 acres per 1000 people of parks, natural lands and golf courses (which the previous administration wanted to close).  In 2012, the City's ratio was 10.3 acres per 1,000 people (from Plan SLC)."
  Although the City has more parks per person than Seattle, Salt Lake has about half the park acreage per person than Portland.  Minneapolis/St. Paul (that had a recent NYTIMES article celebrating their parks) has about 50% more acreage than Salt Lake City.
  But Salt Lake City also has the mountains and trails just outside of the City limits.  I think that when that is all considered, Salt Lake City has much more acreage available for recreation within a couple of miles from the City than most other cities.

EASTSIDE PRECINCT QUESTIONS AND AFFORDABLE HOUSING MAP
  I put an interesting discussion about the Salt Lake City Eastside Precinct, supposedly being considered for 21st and 21st on the upper right downloads.  The concern is about the space required.  I also put the affordable housing map information in the upper right downloads section.


NOVEMBER 30, 2018
DISTRICT ATTORNEY FUNDING ALLOWED COP KILLER TO KILL AGAIN
SLC DISTRICT 4 CITY COUNCIL POSITION IS GOING OPEN IN JANUARY
DOWNTOWN ASSESSMENT HAS ONLY TWO MINOR OBJECTIONS
UTA GPS PROBLEMS NEED REPORTING
UTAH MAY BAN CELL PHONE USE WHILE DRIVING
SLC TRYING TO MOVE GENERAL AVIATION TO TOOELE & WEST JORDAN
UTA AND SALT LAKE CITY TO EXPAND SERVICE EXCEPT ON WESTSIDE



DISTRICT ATTORNEY'S LACK OF FUNDING ALLOWED COP KILLER TO KILL AGAIN
  Lost in the tragic death of a police officer last week, is the reality that Felix Anthony Calata, who hit and killed Officer Romrell, had been investigated for automobile homicide for driving in an accident earlier this year that killed a woman.  Although Calata was shot and killed during the confrontation, the fact that he was free and engaging in criminal activity was frustrating.  The DA and police and investigators were going back and forth gathering more information to charge Calata.  It was obvious that the lack of investigators was hampering the investigation.  Ironically, the DA's request for 3 investigators is still up in the air at the County Council which will have a public hearing on the budget next Tuesday December 4. 

SLC DISTRICT 4 CITY COUNCIL POSITION IS GOING TO BE OPEN IN JANUARY
  Councilman Derek Kitchen has decided to resign from the City Council in January to take his new position as State Senator for Utah District 2.  He could have stayed in the position but felt that it was a good tradeoff.  Hopefully, he will use his RDA Chair background to have the Legislature work with Representative Briscoe to get an affordable housing bond (the Governor refused to allow more than a few million for a bond) in Utah that significantly increases affordable housing funding and also energizes the SLC RDA expansion area of State Street which also includes one of the opportunity zones.  The synergy of those three should speed up housing construction around State Street.  Unfortunately, SLC takes a while and a good example is the reason Derek chose to run in the first place.  The Fleet Block between 800 and 900 South and between 300 and 400 West, a 10 acre vacant lot (the City ownes 8 acres) that has been unused for over a decade.  It is still vacant and the plans to utilize and develop the property are still going around in circles.  The City wants to spend $100 million of local taxpayer money to build a streetcar along 400 West first!  But a better idea would be to route the Green Line to 400 West using the rail line property from 1300 South and avoid the time consuming zigzag through downtown that discourages ridership.
  So, in January, the City Council will choose a replacement.  The best candidate so far is Michael Iverson who is chair of the Central City Neighborhood Council.  He has increased participation and he also managed Erin Mendenhall's successful re-election campaign last year.

DOWNTOWN ASSESSMENT HAS ONLY TWO MINOR OBJECTIONS
  The SLC Council is about to approve the Downtown Assessment District again and only two minor (less than 1% of the landowners) objected.  One objection was due to the homeless issues downtown.  Another came in last minute but again, less than 1% objected so it looks like it will be approved.  The language from the proposal says:  "Resolution: Central Business Improvement Area 2019 Designation The Council will consider adopting a resolution to designate an Assessment Area for the purpose of levying assessments against properties within the Assessment Area to continue to promote business activity and economic development in the central business area of downtown Salt Lake City by assessing benefited properties within the Assessment Area for the costs of such economic promotion activities for a period of three years and to fix a time and place for protests against the Assessment Area and its assessments, and related matters."

UTA GPS PROBLEMS NEED REPORTING
  UTA has noticed problems with their GPS Automatic Vehicle Locator program.  They discovered an unbalanced load between servers and it was "causing some minor delays in Automatic Vehicle Locator information.  That issue has been resolved."  Also there has been some delay in GPS information a couple of buses but those issues seem to have been resolved.
  If you notice that the GPS location of a bus or train is not up to date, please email the information to dgoeres@rideuta.com.

UTAH MAY BAN CELL PHONE USE WHILE DRIVING
  Due to the frustration of many who feel distracted driving is mainly due to cellphone use, the Legislature will again try to ban cellphone use.  Representative Moss was almost able to push through her bill banning cellphone use while driving unanimously, which would have allowed it to pass through the next session with minimal hearings.  Fortunately Representatives Ward and Daw voted against it and that meant that the Utah House will have to have a hearing on it.  Representative Perry, a Utah Highway Patrol Officer, the Chair of the Interim Committee, complained about not being able to stop the use of cellphones since they are usually only caught when there is a traffic violation.  Even then, it is difficult to confirm use of the cellphone while violating traffic laws.  He and Representative Moss both felt that banning cellphone use while driving would significantly increase driving safety.
  BUT, as was pointed out during the hearing, trying to ban mothers from answering a call from their kids or spouse is almost impossible.  It would be harder to enforce than the 55 mph speed limit.  In addition, the in car digital displays, up to 11 inches, are an even greater distraction.  So why would Utah, and other states, allow those in dash displays that encourage drivers to take their eyes off the road when they decrease safety?!  Studies show that talking during driving can also be distracting.  
  In my opinion, focusing on the real problem of texting and driving would be better.  Banning cellphone use will be ignored and that will justify texting and driving.  Utah's present law increases penalties for violations of traffic laws while using a cellphone.  It was sponsored due to an accident caused by a teen driver texting and driving that killed a husband and critically and permanently injured his wife.  Utah should focus on texting and driving and not create another 55 mph speed limit that will be ignored.  I agree with Representative Daw that this proposed bill is not changing the situation due to the increased distractions in the vehicle.  Representative Moss is sponsoring a bill to allow Idaho stops.  That is when a bicyclist does not have to stop at a stop sign when there are no other moving vehicles around.  I support that bill.  It died due to lack of time at the last Legislative session.

SLC TRYING TO MOVE GENERAL AVIATION TO TOOELE AND WEST JORDAN
  Salt Lake City, which is responsible for the International Airport in Salt Lake City, is also responsible for West Jordan's airport and Tooele's airport.  West Jordan has issues with Salt Lake City's control of their airport but it may become a more interesting fight due to Salt Lake City's efforts to transfer all of the 238 plus general aviation aircraft that operate out of Salt Lake City International Airport to West Jordan and Tooele.  Salt Lake City is especially trying to focus on Tooele but their airport does not have water or sewer service.  Efforts are underway to fix that issue.  Tooele is the fourth fastest growing county in the U.S. and Salt Lake City believes that there is enough space around their airport to expand significantly.  Moving all general aviation aircraft to Tooele and West Jordan (which is limited due to nearby homes) will help decrease the scheduling conflicts with major airlines caused by much slower general aviation aircraft.  In some cases, the delays can be over 30 minutes.

UTA AND SALT LAKE CITY TO EXPAND SERVICE EXCEPT ON WESTSIDE
  Salt Lake City is having public hearings on their proposal to contract with UTA to provide increased span of service on 200 South, 900 South and 2100 South bus routes.  But the westside of SLC is not getting the increase, except for a future expansion of the 900 South route to 13th South and then west.  The main reason that SLC is asking UTA to expand these routes using the increased sales taxes (passed by the Council this last year) is because these are routes that are in Salt Lake City.  The best potential routes for increased span of service and frequency are Redwood Road and State Street.  Those routes get about 3500 passengers a day while 2100 South and 200 South get about 2000 passengers a day!  I support the 2100 South expansion since it goes past the Sugar House entertainment district (note that the Sugar House Business District Design Standards are going to be discussed at the December 12th Planning Commission work session).  Unfortunately, SLC does not want to benefit transit riders outside of SLC and in the process actually increases pollution!  SLC should be working with SLCounty to use SB136 funds for increasing service on State Street and Redwood Road.  
  During discussion of the plan at the Tuesday City Council meeting, several Councilmembers agreed that the westside needs more service and it will get it in phase 2 of the expansion plan.  I do not think that that is enough.  
  The plan also suggests increasing amenities like better bus stops.  But some of the bus stops are in the middle of the block, far away from transfers to nearby streets.  For those who say that walking half a block should not be a problem, I point out that SLC keeps putting in crosswalks at half block intervals (two on State Street this year) to make it easier to walk (since walking half a block to a light is too hard).  The result is increasing idling of cars waiting for pedestrians and an increase in pollution.  If bus stops are upgraded and they are away from cross street transit transfers, transit ridership is discouraged.  All money should go to service increases and not bus stop amenities.
  Also, UTA is going to get the money from the sales tax increase by February (it started being collected October 1).  But the service increases do not start until August of 2019!  Service increases for span of service (increasing hours of operation) can and should start no later than February.
  The Salt Lake City Council is discussing the issue now and will have a final public hearing on the contract with UTA on December 11 at their 7 PM Council meeting.  On December 12, at UTA's Board meeting, there will be a vote on the UTA budget and another discussion about the SLC contract.
  Again, I am against using any UTA funds to reduce debt principal (payments will double in ten years).  All funds should be prioritized to service increases first.  All funds generated by one time sales should also go to service increases since, if it is done right, it will generate increased revenue, not just from the new service but from the synergy of a more robust bus system.  Priming the pump should be a priority.  
  I also asked that UTA release grant applications to the federal government.  All grant applications require broad public support but if the applications are secret, there is no broad public support.  Another comment by Claudia Johnson, who is a regular UTA Board of Trustees meeting attendee, suggested Saturday free ride day since parents usually have kids in school during the weekday.  FrontRunner is also packed during rush hour on weekdays.  A free UTA day on Friday like last year actually will discourage ridership.  Also UTA was asked to coordinate with SLC to ensure that sidewalks and bus stops between downtown's Social Hall Avenue and 200 South on State Street are kept open during the two big construction projects.



NOVEMBER 27, 2018

DEMOCRATIC LEADER MARY BISHOP DIES
DESIGN REVIEW OF SUGAR HOUSE SUPPORTS ZOMBIE BUILDINGS
NEW SLC TRANSIT EXPANSION SHAFTS WESTSIDE
MARIJUANA EXPANSION DESERVES MORE ANALYSIS


DEMOCRATIC LEADER MARY BISHOP DIES
  Mary Bishop, the former Chair of the Salt Lake County Democratic Party died this month, the day before election day.  She had a long history of fighting for a fair redistricting plan for Utah and also Medicaid/healthcare expansion.  Her spirit was obviously present in the wins for Prop 3/Medicaid expansion and Prop 4 redistricting plan.  I knew her from her political work while I was supporting Republican candidates in Salt Lake County.  She was an impressive and fair leader.  I always felt that she was one of the best.  I wrote an oped in 2014 that was inspired by her.  In it, I mentioned, that although I supported Republican candidates, I also knew and respected their Democratic opponents.  I said that I felt that whichever won in the races, I felt comfortable with the result since I knew both sides of the ballot.  Mary was one of those that I would have felt comfortable if she won, even though I was supporting her opponent, and my friend, Gary Ott.  Even though she told us she had been diagnosed with cancer just before the election, I felt that it shouldn't enter into the vote.  Ironically, Gary also had medical issues that I also felt shouldn't have entered into the vote.  Some people may have issues with that.  But I felt, at the time, that both were capable of doing a good job as County Recorder.  
  She lost her husband three years ago, in a surprise diagnosis that came during their celebration of her cancer remission.  I would see her in her classic British sports car/convertible and tell her that both she and her car looked good.  She always looked good.  I am sorry to hear that she died.  She was one of the good ones.

DESIGN REVIEW OF SUGAR HOUSE SUPPORTS ZOMBIE BUILDINGS
  During a preliminary discussion on the design standards for the Sugar House business district, the plan did not support having public retail on the ground floor.  Despite Sugar House's development and history as a walkable area due to the many ground floor retail properties, Salt Lake City has consistently ignored encouraging walkability and allowed zombie buildings to proliferate.  They are dead on the ground floor.  There are many apartments but almost no retail.  If State Street redevelopment proceeds like that, it will destroy the Street and the chance for a walkable neighborhood development, much like Sugar House development destroyed walkability.  
  The City did take the concerns about lack of requiring ground floor retail and said that they will consider them.  It will be interesting to see what happenns.

NEW SLC TRANSIT EXPANSION SHAFTS WESTSIDE
  The new agreement between Salt Lake City and UTA to use part of the sales tax increase to increase span of service on eastside routes.  "The Council prioritized 200 South, 900 South, and 2100 South for the first phase of transit improvements, with later improvements planned for 600 North and 1000 North."  So the westside is essentially getting screwed again.  The goal, according to the agreement is (from the packet):
• Increasing coverage for under-served areas, particularly the West side but not excluding other underserved areas of the City;
• Increasing ridership, particularly in the City’s downtown core;
• Building out infrastructure on Transit Master Plan routes;
• The budget and timeline are based on 1000 North, 600 North, 200 South, 900 South, 2100 South. 400 South will be the last route implemented.
  But again, the most used routes that serve the underserved areas of the City are Redwood Road and State Street.  Those routes should have a higher priority than other routes.  The City is even prioritizing potential rail since it is part of the Transit Plan!  400 South and 200 South routes are already well served and increasing frequency on those routes seem to be duplicative.  In addition, the routes are not going to expand until August of 2019 despite UTA being paid starting in January of 2019.

MARIJUANA EXPANSION DESERVES MORE ANALYSIS
  During the discussion and public hearing on the so called compromise Medical Cannabis Act, several new and very important points were brought up.  Due to the language that pharmacists have to dispense the marijuana, and the federal prohibition on that, the federal government can stop implementation of the Act.  In addition, the Act may allow the Native Americans in the State to provide their own marijuana pharmacy system dispensing marijuana!  The State would have to reach an agreement with Native American reservations if the State wants to limit or control the situation.  In other words, if it is legal in Utah, it can be legally available on reservations.  Also, the Act is silent on Section 8 HUD requirements so there could be issues on that also.  And the only limitation on jobs, is the requirement for drug tests.
  I am against implementation of Prop 2 and the compromise Act.  Among the many reasons, are that public safety was not involved in the so called compromise.  Utah has spent decades ensuring better public safety with respect to alcohol use and driving.  Utah is about to implement a .05 DUI at the end of the year to discourage impaired driving.  But the compromise Act does nothing to discourage marijuana impaired driving.  There are no scientific standards to educate users on when to not drive, or carry guns.  Pharmacists are always asking "are there any questions about using this drug?".  But pharmacists do not have the answers that should be provided like when can one safely drive or carry a gun (with a concealed carry permit) after taking a marijuana pill.  Utah, several years ago, increased the penalties for using a cell phone while committing traffic violations.  But Utah has not even started on increasing penalties for using medical marijuana, or other pills, while driving and Utah should have those increased penalties provided to users.  Public safety is a legitimate function of government but it is not part of the so called compromise.
  Vaping is another concern.  Utah, and other states, have problems with an explosion of teenage vaping.  Increasing marijuana access and providing vaping systems with this Act will only exponentially increase teenage vaping.  We don't have to worry about the candy flavors in vaping systems encouraging teenage vaping!  Before implementation of any marijuana expansion system, the age for legal vaping should be increased to 21.
  Potential lawsuits against pharmacists and insurance increases for managers, pharmacists and drivers in the system are also a concern.  Even all Utah drivers may see increased insurance rates.  And will insurance companies get access to the list of patients and what will be the result in that?  
   What if one parent wants to use it or have their kids use it but they don't?  How will courts be involved it the issue?  Back in the 1970s, many said that cocaine was not addictive.  We do not know the effect on medical marijuana users and there should be a way to track and study the effect.
  The unintended consequences of a secret compromise to expand marijuana availability will be many.  But the reality of the fine print indicates that it will significantly delay medical marijuana expansion past 2021.  Despite that, medical marijuana expansion should be delayed to allow further study and mitigation of the potential public safety issues.

  The passage of the Prop 2 marijuana initiative was close.  The result is a polarization of the citizens of Utah.  It may have led to a surprising turnout of over 80% but it is going to have significant repercussions.  Some think that the Proposition is sacred law and it should be implemented as written.  But that is the same argument as California's Prop 8, the anti gay marriage initiative.  We are not just a democracy, but a democratic republic.  It can help decrease the potential for mob rule.  I am not talking about Trump.  I am talking about stopping large influential organizations from overwhelming the citizens or influencing citizens to do wrong.  It could be as simple as dumping tea into a harbor or as serious as exterminating a religious sect in Pakistan or a culture in Myanmar.  
  A large majority of citizens think that drinking should be allowed at 18.  Many think that gambling should also be allowed and texting and driving.  Many also think that prostitution should be legal.  Many think that we should give up fighting the war on drugs because it is a failure.  But we have failed to stop teenage drinking but that doesn't mean that we should stop fighting the fight.  There are significant negative implications with these so called rights of free "men".  
  Expanding marijuana access should have more careful thought than mob rule.  Utah should not have encourage a new slogan "Life Elevated Get High".




NOVEMBER 26, 2018
SLC COUNCIL DISCUSSES CHRISTMAS PRESENT SALARY INCREASE
UTA AND WFRC NEEDS COMMENTS ON THEIR LACK OF MASS TRANSIT SERVICE INCREASES

SLC COUNCIL DISCUSSES CHRISTMAS PRESENT SALARY INCREASE
  On Tuesday, November 27, the Salt Lake City Council will discuss, again, increasing their salary.  A few months ago, when Council Chair Erin Mendenhall pushed it, she was told that it wasn't a good time by other Councilmembers.  Now the Council is going to discuss it again during Council work session.  The tentative time that it will be discussed is at 5:15 PM.  The Council packet online does not have any information.  
  After a sales tax increase this year, a doubling of the water and sewer fees, after another sales tax increase (SB136), after an $87 million bond increase, the Council is going to discuss giving themselves a 50% salary increase!  The 50% increase was what was discussed earlier this year and suggested by Council Chair Erin Mendenhall who complained that her babysitter 
is paid more.
  But the Council meets a couple of times a month for around 8 hours.  Dedicated Councilmembers do spend 20 hours a week working for the citizens and taxpayers.  They also work for community councils after hours.  There are also a lot of so called small group meetings that the Councilmembers meet at to discuss more issues outside of the public.  These secret meetings are not public but they should be.  I do not agree that the Councilmembers should get a salary increase for making more work for themselves.  There are also the arguments that the Council should not become professional politicians.  These are supposed to be part time jobs.  That ensures that only dedicated public servants actually try to run for the positions.
  The Council also gave a minimal salary increase to public safety personnel earlier this year.  Cops handle the most dangerous criminals who don't hesitate to kill cops and others.  The recent death of a cop by a committed criminal is evidence that cops deserve a higher salary before Councilmembers.  Fire Department personnel have to work two jobs to be able to afford to live in Salt Lake City.  Councilmembers should pay public safety more well before even thinking of a salary increase.
  Ironically, and sadly, the Council used the last tax increase for streets, passed five years ago, that provided $8.4 million (almost doubling streets maintenance) for a salary increase the year after the tax increase.  Streets lost the $8.4 million a year, until the recently passed streets $87 million bond.
  Considering a 50% salary increase after agreeing to the inland port without citizen input is an insult to the public.  Considering a salary increase when meetings are kept secret is wrong.  Before considering a salary increase for the Councilmembers, all meetings should be public and there should not be anymore secret meetings.  Public meetings should be public.

  On another important issue, the Council will take public comment on their plan for transit improvements using the sales tax money that is being provided to UTA in January.  The tax was collected starting in October.  But the service increases are not being put into place until August of 2019!  The proposal with UTA is to increase span of service (hours of service late night generally).  But the routes are only 200 South, 900 South and 21st South. There is no increase on the most used routes going north and south, Redwood Road and State Street.  Those are the routes used by low wage workers that are not able to park downtown.  Those routes should have had the highest priority.  Salt Lake City should insist on an increase in span of service for those routes starting in January when UTA is getting the money.  
  Again, the public should comment tomorrow night or email their Councilmembers with their comments.  Also, UTA is taking public comment Wednesday November 28 during their 130 PM meeting.  Those comments should also be given to UTA.  UTA is selling property but not using the money for service increases.

UTA AND WFRC NEEDS COMMENTS ON THEIR LACK OF MASS TRANSIT SERVICE INCREASES
  I urge everyone interested in mass transit to comment on the UTA budget and WFRC Draft 2050 Plan.  The UTA budget is online and comments can be made by Googling Rideuta.com and Board of Trustees.  There should be a link to comment on the budget. 
  As I said above, UTA is taking public comment Wednesday November 28 during their 130 PM meeting.  UTA is discussing selling property but not using the money for service increases.  I believe that that money should go to service.  I am tired of the money that UTA gets going to other things than service.   My comments are below:

Summary:
The budget hearing and UTA meetings should not compete with Legislature's Interim Days.

The early debt service retirement reserve ($15 million increase) should go to bus service/span of service increase first and all other one time funds can go, if UTA wants, to early debt retirement reserve.

UTA should increase service and span of service on several north south heavily used routes, now, like State Street and Redwood Road.

I question the use of funds for the South Davis BRT, parking for developers, TODs and the bus garage.

UTA should plan on increasing bus service NOW since taxpayers are paying the money NOW.  At the latest, bus service from SB136 should start in December 2019.

The specifics are:
1.  I am concerned about the significant contribution to early debt retirement reserve (from $6 million to $23 million) since that money should be used for restoring a robust bus system that the last UTA audit recommended.  It also may encourage more borrowing in the future by UTA for big expensive projects.  That $17 million could/would/should be used to expand span of service and eliminate the zig zag bus routes that discourage ridership.  Theoretically, it could be used for a 25% bus service increase.

2. Not sure why the operations support detail is pulled out of the bus/rail separate line items and 48 million sounds high.  I have the same concern about the general and administration detail not being included in individual line items.  And if they are part of the line items, how were they divvied up.

3.  What are the current and future grants anticipated

4.  The Main St./400 South Half Grand Union Interlocking Replacement project should fix the TRAX that blocks the crosswalk at a red light!  There should be no reason for TRAX to block a crosswalk.

5.  I do not support the effort to electrify FrontRunner.  If UTA proceeds with the plan, it should not be spending $3.9 million on locomotive engine rebuilds.

6.  The $2.5 million for outstanding right of way acquisitions for the UVX/BRT needs clarification.  Is the property under eminent domain?  (I remember the presentation on the splitting of the assessment value but did it get accepted by the landowners?

7.  UTA should be asking Delta and SLCIA and the Legislature for a $23 million contribution from Airport Passenger Fees for the Airport TRAX station.  It will require that Senator Bramble's old bill be changed.

8.  The TIGER Grant of $20 million should have specified that local match is $80 million.  I am not convinced that that is a good reason to actually do the projects.  Being paid to burden taxpayers 80/20 is not good government.  What UTA projects are part of the $15 million 2019 cost?

9.  I would like UTA planning to record the ridership on the S-Line to see the actual increase and if it matches the predicted increase (UTA started with a 10% increase in the 1400 passengers a day then changed it to 20%.)  Taxpayers and UTA planners should get the real effect results.

10.  The Sandy $3.4 million property sale should have gone to bus service increase or early debt service retirement.  There should be an evaluation on the effect of eliminating 900 parking spaces with this project.  It would seem to deter ridership increases in a high growth area.

11.  Priority should be given to use Davis/Weber County Prop One funds for service increases and not shelter improvements.  The BRT that Ogden government wants and is pushing is a $62 million waste of money for a route effectively and efficiently served by the 603 bus.  The BRT will not stop as often; it goes through a lot of residential neighborhoods that will fight redevelopment; and it will only save 5 minutes on a 20 minute trip!

12.  The South Davis BRT project pulls money from a good east west expansion bus route system for a project that duplicates the Red Line and FrontRunner!  It is cheaper to implement more east west lines that funnel into FrontRunner and the other bus lines that go to downtown SLC and the UofU.  This project is especially wasteful if UTA constructs the Black Line.  It also forces Salt Lake County taxpayers, if the BRT is pushed to the UofU or even downtown, to pay valuable funds that should be used for transit service increases in the County.

13.  This may be a good time to reevaluate the Atlanta FarePay service.

14.  Bus signage improvements should be real time bus/train arriving at the stop.  UTA does not have to pay the patent troll that has been collecting money for the bogus patent.

15.  The Capital Expenses chart should include the $4+ million for the questionable, in my opinion, garage.  (It is listed in the line item but it should be noted on the chart as the biggest item capital outlay.

16.  What are the TIGER Program of Projects that will cost $3.6 million local and 1 million UTA funding. 

17.  UTA funds should not be used for TOD or parking for development or station area planning.  UTA should focus on service and not expose itself to potentially questionable deals that profit developers.

18.  Several north south UTA routes should be immediately increased in frequency and span of service.  State Street and Redwood Road (maybe without the going in circles routes) and 220 should provide service to downtown employees that can't afford to park downtown but start work at 4AM or leave after midnight.  (There are a lot.)

19.  If UTA is getting SB136 funds in October, UTA should not wait until 2020 to increase service.  It should increase service by December 2019!

20.  Spending $70 million, for a bus garage, "for 5,000 additional daily riders by the year 2050" seems to be a poor investment.  Why not increase frequency service/span of service.  A high frequency core network would be more effective.  I am not sure that the cost of stabilizing the roof will make the building earthquake resistant.  An independent structural engineer should analyze the structure thoroughly.  I believe that the cost for a new building would be less expensive (although I am against it).

21. UTA should provide all applications for projects and plans that require federal funding.  For the last few years UTA has stopped providing grant requests due to the concern that some projects did not have broad public support.  That is one of the requirements of federal funding.  UTA, and SLC, were afraid that the proposed projects would cause citizens and taxpayers to fight the applications at the federal government.  We actually did in two previous years!  We were able to stop the efforts and applications to extend the Sugar House S-Line up 1100 East.  It is typical backroom politics when the public is not brought into discuss the projects.  These projects are built on the backs of taxpayers.  They deserve a voice.

22. UTA should allow/encourage the public to comment on the recent Wasatch Front Regional Council Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP which is just for 5 years while the WFRC 2050 plan is for 3 decades).  The TIP did not include the desperately needed east west freeways in south Salt Lake County.  The TIP includes:

The UTA bus garage with $56 million local funds and a total of $75 million total cost.

The local funds for clean fuel buses and related equipment in the next 5 years totals $165 million, spending 18 to 27 million each year.

The extension of the FrontRunner to the Business Depot Ogden with a station is $32 million with half local funding.

The BRT to WSU will cost about $65 million and half will be from local funds.

A Sandy S. Jordan circulator will cost $30 million with half locally funded.

The TRAX extension from Draper to the County line will cost $460 million with $92 million funded locally.  Note that the actual cost with infrastructure and stations will be closer to a billion dollars.

There is a plan to extend the 3500 South BRT to Wasatch Blvd which will cost $12 million and $2.4 million is local funds.

Taylorsville/Murray transit improvements (BRT) will cost $52 million with 26 million locally funded (by 2020).

New TODs will cost $12 million with an "estimated" local cost of $2.4 million (which is what keeps draining money from service increases).

Intelligent transportation systems are budgeted at $30 million with $6 million local (synchronizing and intelligent traffic lights to decrease congestion).

The South Davis BRT will cost $80 million with $32 million locally funded.  This is the BRT that will go up 200 South to the UofU.

The UofU will get a $4 million intermodal hub.

There will be a Layton Station parking structure that will cost $4 million (since UTA gave too much property away for development (much like several other projects/TODs).

Salt Lake County signal control software will cost $5.5 million.

Layton and Davis County will add 2 ski bus routes and servicee at a cost of $1 million.

Little Cottonwood Canyon park and ride restroom $822,000.

There is a $50,000 budget to design a North Temple separated family friendly bikeway through downtown SLC.
  The above and the below are my comments on the WFRC Draft 2050 Plan:

WFRC 2050 PLAN SHOWS LOTS OF SLC STREETCARS AND TAX INCREASES
The Wasatch Front Regional Council 2050 Plan (maps for highway, transit and active/bicycle transportation in upper right downloads section) is recommending that the S-Line TRAX/so called streetcar be extended up 1100 East to 1700 South then to 900 East and north on 900 East to 400 South!  This is another unrealistic proposal but it is in the plan, and could be in the RTP and Utah Transportation Plan by next year (needed to get federal funding).  SLC City Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall has indicated several times that she wants to "put a head on the snake" of the S-Line and send it up 1100 East. 

There are also 2 downtown streetcars and an extension of the 400 South TRAX to the Central Station (SLC is asking for a grant to obtain property to move the plan along).  Each project will cost taxpayers (who have had 5 Salt Lake City tax increases this year and 3 more potential ones on the ballot) about $100 million in local funding.  These projects will destroy any chance of affordable housing in Salt Lake City.  No one will be able to afford to live in the City!  

There is also a Foothill Drive to Wasatch Blvd BRT (about $600 million) and an extension of the 3500 South 35M BRT to Wasatch Blvd, even though the ridership has stayed at about 3200 passengers a day since it began operation.  

State Street is planned to get a BRT but it needs more frequent and less expensive bus service more than a State Street BRT which stops every 4 blocks.  SLC and UDOT are putting in crosswalks on State Street between 600 and 900 South since they don't think that pedestrians can walk half a block to a light.  So why do they think that pedestrians will gladly walk 2 blocks to a BRT stop instead of half a block to a regular bus stop.  

Another planned BRT is on 700 East but UTA had to decrease service on 700 East due to poor ridership.  Planning with wishful thinking is not good government.

The billion dollar plus (as if we had the money) Draper Lehi TRAX extension is also in the plan.  All these planned transit projects ignore the LA study from last year that found that, after spending $15 billion on transit projects, ridership stayed the same!  It went from 147 million a month 20 years ago to 154 million a month last year.  Bus service was cut back (like the 30% bus service cutback that SLCO residents experienced over the last 15 years) in LA which encouraged people to buy more cars.  They bought more cars.  Just like Utahns, who double car sales in the last 10 years!  Transit service should be increased first and milk run buses should be eliminated.  And the $1.50 bus fare with FAREPAY cards should be publicized.  That is the way to encourage mass transit ridership.  By the way, both LA and UTA get about 3% transit ridership.

One last issue is the lack of east west freeways in the southern end of Salt Lake County.  Instead of a Taylorsville BRT, the money should be spent on freeways around 60th South and around 10000 South that connects the east bench with the westside of the County.  One of the reasons for the backlash against the Olympus Hill project and other high numbered residential developments in the County is the lack of adequate roads to handle the traffic increase.  Neighbors adjacent to the congested roads receive a significant amount of pollution due to the traffic backup and idling cars and they should be interested in selling out to allow the road to become a freeway.  We need several new east west freeways in Salt Lake County.

The WFRC has now moved their move to Gateway to sometime in the spring of 2019.  Hopefully, more people will start attending the meetings and comment on their plans.

  Both the UTA Budget and WFRC Draft 2050 Plan have deadlines for public comments on November 30.




NOVEMBER 19, 2019
CATHOLIC COMMUNITY SERVICES IS NOT MOVING FROM DOWNTOWN
UTA BUDGET HAS TOO MANY QUESTIONS
SMOKING AT THE AIRPORT IS BEING KICKED ACROSS THE STREET
CONVENTION HOTEL IS GOING TO COMPETE WITH AIRBNB
CENTRAL WASATCH COMMISSION DISCUSSES RAISING CANYON FEES
FAIRMONT PARK IS GETTING MORE SIDEWALKS AND LIGHTING
SLC GOOD NEIGHBOR PAMPHLET SHOULD BE IN EVERY HOUSE
SLCO IS NOT READY TO IMPLEMENT RANK CHOICE VOTING

CATHOLIC COMMUNITY SERVICES IS NOT MOVING FROM DOWNTOWN
  Catholic Community Services (CCS) has received the contract to manage the Ballpark (Homeless) Resource Center for men and women on Paramont Avenue (300 West and around 1500 South).  It does not mean that they will be moving from downtown and Rio Grande Avenue.  In fact, the St Vincent de Paul facility is planning a $1.5 million remodel to help create a culinary training kitchen to train homeless and some of the refugees that CCS resettles.  It will also continue to serve meals to those that are in the area and the many whose food stamps run out.  The Weigand Homeless Resource Center will continue to serve those who choose to live on the street.  The good news for Ballpark is CCS has been very successful in creating a stable and secure facility at the Weigand Center.  That success bodes well for their success at managing the Ballpark Homeless Shelter.

UTA BUDGET HAS TOO MANY QUESTIONS
  Taxpayers, citizens and mass transit proponents have until November 30 to submit comments to UTA about their proposed budget.  Although the next Board of Trustees meeting (with the two Commissioners) will have public comment in December, it will probably be decided before that.
  These are my concerns:
1.  I am concerned about the significant contribution to early debt retirement reserve (from $6 million to $23 million) since that money should be used for restoring a robust bus system that the last UTA audit recommended.  It also may encourage more borrowing in the future by UTA for big expensive projects.  That $17 million could/would/should be used to expand span of service and eliminate the zig zag bus routes that discourage ridership.  Theoretically, it could be used for a 25% bus service increase.

2. Not sure why the operations support detail is pulled out of the bus/rail separate line items and 48 million sounds high.  I have the same concern 
about the general and administration detail not being included in individual line items.  And if they are part of the line items, how were they divvied up.

3.  What are the current and future grants anticipated

4.  The Main St./400 South Half Grand Union Interlocking Replacement project should fix the TRAX that blocks the crosswalk at a red light!  There should be no reason for TRAX to block a crosswalk.

5.  I do not support the effort to electrify FrontRunner.  If UTA proceeds with the plan, it should not be spending $3.9 million on locomotive engine rebuilds.

6.  The $2.5 million for outstanding right of way acquisitions for the UVX/BRT needs clarification.  Is the property under eminent domain?  (I remember the presentation on the splitting of the assessment value but did it get accepted by the landowners?

7.  UTA should be asking Delta and SLCIA and the Legislature for a $23 million contribution from Airport Passenger Fees for the Airport TRAX station.  It will require that Senator Bramble's old bill be changed.

8.  The TIGER Grant of $20 million should have specified that local match is $80 million.  I am not convinced that that is a good reason to actually do the projects.  Being paid to burden taxpayers 80/20 is not good government.  What UTA projects are part of the $15 million 2019 cost?

9.  I would like UTA planning to record the ridership on the S-Line to see the actual increase and if it matches the predicted increase (UTA started with a 10% increase in the 1400 passengers a day then changed it to 20%.)  Taxpayers and UTA planners should get the real effect results.

10.  The Sandy $3.4 million property sale should have gone to bus service increase or early debt service retirement.  There should be an evaluation on the effect of eliminating 900 parking spaces with this project.  It would seem to deter ridership increases in a high growth area.

11.  Priority should be given to use Davis/Weber County Prop One funds for service increases and not shelter improvements.  The BRT that Ogden government wants and is pushing is a $62 million waste of money for a route effectively and efficiently served by the 603 bus.  The BRT will not stop as often; it goes through a lot of residential neighborhoods that will fight redevelopment; and it will only save 5 minutes on a 20 minute trip!

12.  The South Davis BRT project pulls money from a good east west expansion bus route system for a project that duplicates the Red Line and FrontRunner!  It is cheaper to implement more east west lines that funnel into FrontRunner and the other bus lines that go to downtown SLC and the UofU.  This project is especially wasteful if UTA constructs the Black Line.  It also forces Salt Lake County taxpayers, if the BRT is pushed to the UofU or even downtown, to pay valuable funds that should be used for transit service increases in the County.

13.  This may be a good time to re-evaluate the Atlanta FarePay service.

14.  Bus signage improvements should be real time bus/train arriving at the stop.  UTA does not have to pay the patent troll that has been collecting money for the bogus patent.

15.  The Capital Expenses chart should include the $4+ million for the questionable, in my opinion, garage.  (It is listed in the line item but it should be noted on the chart as the biggest item capital outlay.

16.  What are the TIGER Program of Projects that will cost $3.6 million local and 1 million UTA funding. 

17.  UTA funds should not be used for TOD or parking for development or station area planning.  UTA should focus on service and not expose itself to potentially questionable deals that profit developers.

18.  Several north south UTA routes should be immediately increased in frequency and span of service.  State Street and Redwood Road (maybe without the going in circles routes) and 220 should provide service to downtown employees that can't afford to park downtown but start work at 4AM or leave after midnight.  (There are a lot.)

19.  If UTA is getting SB136 funds in October, UTA should not wait until 2020 to increase service.  It should increase service by December 2019!

20.  Spending $70 million, for a bus garage, "for 5,000 additional daily riders by the year 2050" seems to be a poor investment.  Why not increase frequency service/span of service.  A high frequency core network would be more effective.  I am not sure that the cost of stabilizing the roof will make the building earthquake resistant.  An independent structural engineer should analyze the structure thoroughly.  I believe that the cost for a new building would be less expensive (although I am against it).

SMOKING AT THE AIRPORT IS BEING KICKED ACROSS THE STREET
  By the end of the year, the smoking areas just outside the terminal, supposedly more than 25 feet away from the entrances, will be moved across the street to an area that should be less intrusive on airport users.  The smoking outside the terminal significantly increased when the indoor smoking rooms were removed.  Unfortunately, the Airport is still having problems with construction workers and others walking while smoking next to the terminal.  
  On another issue, the Seattle Visitor Pass Program that allows visitors to go through security without a ticket to visit with transferring 
passengers is not planned, at present.  The large families and our hub airport create issues that may decrease security.

CONVENTION HOTEL IS GOING TO COMPETE WITH AIRBNB
  The Salt Lake County Council and Salt Lake City Council have approved turning over the southeast corner of the Salt Palace to a private developer for a convention hotel.  But the plan was developed well after the biggest convention in town, and the only one that needed the hotel rooms, left for Colorado.  Dave Robinson had helped fulfil that convention's housing by running something like airBnb.  Of course, now, airBnb is taking away business from hotels.  Although the hotel has a post performance tax credit of $75 million, to get that, the Legislature agreed to pay all local hotels if their facilities are impacted and they have less than 65% occupancy!  So taxpayers are going to pay a lot without knowing how much!

CENTRAL WASATCH COMMISSION DISCUSSES RAISING CANYON FEES
  The Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) has always had the ability to set fees for the Wasatch Canyons.  That was one of the recommendations of the Mountain Accord in order to reduce use.  That was why many of us fought the creation of the CWC.  I put the recent PDF of the CWC on the upper downloads section that goes into detail about their plans to increase fees.  I think that it will result in a lawsuit.  At least UDOT does an environmental impact report before implementing tolls (authorized by SB71) in Little Cottonwood Canyon.  But the CWC fee increase will only be stopped by the County Council who has to approve the fee.  It will be close.

FAIRMONT PARK IS GETTING MORE SIDEWALKS AND LIGHTING
  Salt Lake City is planning to spend almost a million dollars putting more light and a sidewalk in Fairmont Park.  The sidewalk is to run just south of the homes on Simpson Avenue from the 900 East sidewalk, east to the main sidewalk through the Park.  The lighting throughout the Park will be increased, supposedly without increasing the light pollution in the area.  Unfortunately, the area of the Park that needs the most attention, the old tennis courts west of the Boys and Girls Club is not getting any change.

SLC GOOD NEIGHBOR PAMPHLET SHOULD BE IN EVERY HOUSE
  I put the Salt Lake City Good Neighbor Pamphlet on the upper left.  It should be in every home in Salt Lake City.  Or in every phone and computer in Salt Lake City.  It has almost every phone number that one needs to access services in the City.  It even has information on how to handle raccoons!

SLCO IS NOT READY TO IMPLEMENT RANK CHOICE VOTING
  During the last County Council meeting, County Clerk Sherry Swenson indicated that the County, although authorized, is not able to implement rank choice voting in the next few years.  They do not have the equipment to provide such a system.  Some other counties do and they can decide by the end of the year if they will implement the system.  One of the local United Utah candidates, Cabot Nelson running for House 25 against Democrat Joel Briscoe, supported rank choice voting.
 





NOVEMBER 15, 2018
PUBLIC SAFETY IN SALT LAKE COUNTY IS LOSING


PUBLIC SAFETY IN SALT LAKE COUNTY IS LOSING
  The Justice Reinvestment Act of Utah was passed on the assumption that drug addicts do not commit victimless crimes.  For those who believe that, here is a reality check.  Drug addicts do not commit victimless crimes.  They create victims with their criminal actions.  During the discussion at Wednesday's Judiciary Interim Committee, the legislators heard the good news that the JRI is meeting its objectives!  Prison beds went from almost 7400 beds five years ago to 6519 recently.  I put the CCJJ Justice Reinvestment effect on the jail in the downloads area in the upper right of the page.  
  One objective is to support local corrections systems.  Local jails, including the Salt Lake County Jail have been overwhelmed by arrestees that should be in prison.  Cops, if they are even allowed to book a criminal caught in the act, can sit in their car 15 minutes later doing their report and watch the arrestee walk out!  Over 10 have been arrested over 100 times according to the Jail Dashboard.
  The SLCO DA has tried to convict and send people to prison but Adult Probation and Parole have recommended probation!  In one case where a convicted shooter who emptied a clip of bullets into a car full of people, the Judge castigated APP and sentenced him to jail!  One of HB348 objectives is to focus prison beds on serious and violent offenders.  But if a drug user, every day he is on the street, steals, hundreds of times, maybe he should go to prison because local public safety is not able to handle those committed criminals.  Car thieves, who have been arrested many times in stolen cars are released due to the overwhelmed system.  Drug users do not usually commit victimless crimes.  That should be considered violent, especially when it happens everyday.
  JRI has had the unintended effect, with a well intentioned bill, to frustrate prosecutors, police, and crime victims who stop reporting further crime.  I urged the Committee to discuss how to mitigate the significant negative consequences of JRI on local corrections systems and crime victims.  

  I also put the Sheriff and DA presentations in the upper right downloads area.  The Sheriff only received a $200,000 allocation for scheduling software and her budget is still less than 30% of what she recommended.  A Sheriff's deputy spoke about the budget complaining that she gets under $22 after 11 years!  In addition, the County Building deputies have been removed from the budget but that issue may be revisited.  The Sheriff was specifically asked if she is satisfied with the budget.  She said that she is!  But Oxbow Jail still has 160 beds open and only 2165 beds are available, including outside the County jail beds.  Last year, there were 1986 before Operation Rio Grande.  In other words, the revolving door jail and booking restrictions are still in effect.
  The DA presentation shows that they are underpaid for the extremely high workload and the DA expects almost 20,000 cases to be filed this year by his office.  He argued for at least three new investigators but the County Council said that they would discuss it next week.  
  As proof of how bad it is, at every community council there are people who say that they are not reporting crime because it doesn't seem to do any good.  Please report all crime and get a case number.  That is the only way for government to recognize that public safety is underfunded at the County.  Only two showed up to demand more public safety funding!




November 5, 2018
VOTE FOR A BETTER GOVERNMENT
SLCO PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING STILL NOT ADEQUATE
SECRET SLC POLICE STATION SOAP OPERA
HOW MANY TIMES DOES IT TAKE TO STOP ADDICTION
FIRE STATION NOISE IMPACTS NEIGHBORHOOD SURPRISE
BRENT TAYLOR WOULD HAVE BEEN GOVERNOR
MILLCREEK STUDIES HUNDRED MILLION DOLLAR PROJECT
WAR ON BILLBOARDS IS MISDIRECTION
CRIME MAGNET APARTMENT LOSES STATE FUNDING
SLC COMMUNITY INTELLIGENCE OFFICERS ROTATED
SCOOTER INJURIES EXPONENTIALLY INCREASE
RACCOON ABATEMENT IN SLC IS FREE, DO NOT PAY
FAIRMONT PARK SHARPS BOX
ENERGYSOLUTIONS PRESENTATION DOWNLOAD
PLEASE USE FLASHLIGHTS WHILE WALKING AT NIGHT



VOTE FOR A BETTER GOVERNMENT
  One of the advantages of our democratic republic is the competition that results from regular elections.  Although much of the electioneering is disrespectful and misdirection and even lies, there are some gems in the campaign ads.  The best ad that I have seen is from Mitt Romney who encourages voting period.  I agree.  There is no better time to make your voice heard.  Please vote.  If you haven't turned in your ballot by Monday/today, you must go to one of the voting centers.  Some of the facilities are expecting large lines due to the effort to encourage mail in voting.  Although the vote shows more participation, even more will show up on election day.  Get there early and thank you for ensuring a vibrant County, State and Country.

SLCO PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING STILL NOT ADEQUATE
  The Salt Lake Tribune published this oped on the situation on public safety issues that I listed over the last few months.
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/11/02/commentary-salt-lake/
  In summary, ACLU finally, after being silent for the last year, pointed out that the many arrests and tickets have resulted in making it more difficult for the homeless to try to leave their situation.  The SLCO Sheriff candidates both agreed that the SLCO Jail is underfunded and the County needs more jail beds.  The SLCO Jail Dashboard showed many are arrested and jailed hundreds of times!  Without enough jailers, the only way to open up the 380 free beds at Oxbow was to close one pod at the main jail to allow one pod to open at Oxbow (leaving one other pod at Oxbow still closed).  There is an 18% turnover in jail staff and 20% are involved in assaults by jailed criminals! 
  Many officers watch the person that they just booked walk out of the jail while the officer is doing their paperwork. This results in frustration on the part of the officers which can lead to significant turnover, lack of officer retention and recruitment challenges.  Law enforcement has been complaining for years about the revolving door Salt Lake County Jail which is now, again, implementing jail booking restrictions.  The DA said "Not only have cases increased, but violent crime and sexual assault cases in particular have increased". 
  SLCO Mayor McAdams keeps saying every year that public safety is his top priority of the budget.  His recommendations are much less than recommended by the DA and Sheriff.  The budget needs to have increased funding to not just open up all jail beds in the County, but continue to pay for the 300 out of County jailed inmates which will provide the 600 jail beds that the DA recommended for Operation Rio Grande.  Without adequate public safety funding, Salt Lake County will continue to operate a booking restricted or revolving door jail.  Without sufficient jail beds, there is no threat of long term incarceration if the individual does not stay in addiction treatment.  We are way beyond "we can't arrest our way out of this". The revolving door jail and booking restrictions have to stop.  Criminal behavior should result in jail. 
  If you care about this issue, please email the County Council and tell them what you think.  Let me make it easy.  These are their emails:
mayor@slco.org,jwilson@slco.org,rsnelgrove@slco.org,jbradley@slco.org,arbradshaw@slco.org,mhjensen@slco.org,anewton@slco.org,Agranato@slco.org,sldebry@slco.org,mburdick@slco.org

SECRET SLC POLICE STATION SOAP OPERA
  One of the most interesting semi closed meetings of the City Council took place last week in a quickly arranged meeting with one day notice that was to discuss and approve keeping $221,000 in impact fees that were to be used for an eastside SLC Police precinct.  I am not sure of the legality of the City being able to keep unspent impact fees that the State requires to be refunded to those who paid them within 6 years.  And the deadline of October 31 was known months in advance.  So the rushed meeting was questionable.  
  The Council came out of the closed meeting talking about the "DI" property.  They spent several minutes talking about the acreage of the property.  They finally were given the acreage as 1.8 acres.  The DI property that they were talking about could be the DI and Fire Station property or the 2100 South DI property.  They also spent time talking about the impact of the police precinct on adjacent homes in the neighborhood.  Chief Brown pointed out that the Pioneer Precinct in Poplar Grove has a large grass area used for community events and has had no complaints from the adjacent single family homes.  They also asked about the 1100 East earthquake fault (used as the route of the Jordan and Salt Lake Canal and the McClelland Trail) that is nearby.  Chief Brown said that any building would be earthquake proof and it should not be a concern.  They anticipated the extra cost.  
  The Council also asked about a substation instead of a full precinct.  Chief Brown said that the last substation in 2010 cost $10 million.  The Council also spent time hearing about the time it takes officers to respond from the Poplar Grove precinct versus the downtown police building.  It was about 17 minutes.  The Chief also said that it can take 40 minutes to respond from the far eastside to the far westside of Salt Lake City.
  Finally, at around 45 minutes of the work session October 31 video, after the quick formal meeting in the same room, the Council reconvened as the work session and Mike Reberg said "so we go ahead with ....... the 21st and 21st property?"  And Council Chair Erin Mendenhall's eyes bulged out of her head and said that we are done.  I am not sure why the discussion on the DI took place when Mike was implying, at the end that the 21st and 21st property was being considered but the video is there and take it all with a grain of salt.  I have seen misdirection at the highest level of City government so this was not a surprise.

HOW MANY TIMES DOES IT TAKE TO STOP ADDICTION
  During the last couple of years, addiction treatment for those with substance use disorder (SUD) has been much more available.  The statistics available show successful treatment after 30 days for about 20% (almost half in some reports).  If anyone thinks that opioid or alcohol addiction can be successfully treated in 30 days or even in 60 days, they are ignoring the federal government and many studies.  The federal government says that the best addiction treatment is only 5% effective.  Operation Diversion said that there was less than 20% successful treatment after 6 months.  The reality is that many, as many as 50%, leave the treatment program after 30 days.  Some of those are being recorded as successful!  Many also leave because of the requirement to stop smoking tobacco, which some say is more addictive than other drugs.  The reality is even the best that we can hope for is 5%.  BUT WHEN DRUG DEALERS ARE READILY AVAILABLE AND NOT IN JAIL AND OFFER FREE SAMPLES TO THOSE OUT OF TREATMENT, THIS IS A POOR SOLUTION.  We cannot treat our way out of this issue.  Drugs should not be readily available.  There are many homeless walking the streets that have been in and out of treatment many times.  In one case, a homeless person has said that he has tried to stop his alcohol addiction through treatment 17 times.  Opioid addiction is even worse.

FIRE STATION NOISE IMPACTS NEIGHBORHOOD SURPRISE
  During the SLC City Council meeting on the eastside precinct, it was revealed that the new fire stations had a lot of complaints from neighbors due to their loud intercoms.  It should have been expected since that was one of the reasons for the fight against the fire station on Forest Dale Golf Course.  The intercom noise has been decreased but discussions are continuing.  The Fire Department has a policy to not start their sirens on the vehicles responding to emergencies until further away from the station but the mechanical, testing and intercom noise is making neighbors angry.

BRENT TAYLOR WOULD HAVE BEEN GOVERNOR
  I and many others in Utah are in shock and sad at the news that came to us Saturday. Mayor Brent Taylor, father of seven, mayor on North Ogden, Utah National Guard Major on a one year deployment to Afghanistan, has been killed in action.  I firmly believed that he was capable of and going to be governor of Utah, even as soon as 2020.  He was that special.  You had to work with him to see his leadership ability and concern for the taxpayers.
  To understand how much we lost, you would have had to watch him fight the good fight, against all odds, to make sure that government was for the people. I first came to know Brent Taylor when he was appointed by Weber County to represent the County on the UTA Board of Trustees.  He and I had several long talks about the issues and intricacies that were involved in the complicated management of UTA. Although the new Board, led by Robert McKinley had made a concerted effort to develop a Board that responded to the public concerns and that did not rubber stamp UTA staff recommendations, there were still questionable actions.  Brent Taylor wanted government, and UTA in particular, to be more responsive to the public.  He wanted to have more public engagement.  I was often the only member of the public attending and commenting on the proposals at UTA Board of Trustees meetings.  Although the Board and the CEO Jerry Benson always treated me with respect, I felt that the Board needed more public input.  
  One of the first proposals that Brent Taylor brought to the Board was to broadcast the meetings on the internet.  The Board Chair immediately agreed and implemented that policy.  He questioned the staff recommendations to ensure adequate cost benefit analysis, something that the last UTA Legislative Audit recommended.  One of his last concerns, before resigning to accept posting in Afghanistan, was how to tell if the Provo BRT $200 million project was cost effective.  With a free fare, there was no way to show data that indicated that it was worth it.  
  He also also pointed out inappropriate and questionable actions by the Board members.  Despite embarrassing questions, I believe that the Board slowly changed its actions to reflect more analysis of projects.  Their questions increased during and after Brent Taylor's time on the Board.  Before Brent Taylor's time on the Board, there were few questions about staff recommendations.  In other words, I saw the Board following a genuine leader, someone who people wanted to follow.
  During the short time that I knew him, and watched him, it was obvious that he was going to be a great leader in Utah.  I even thought that he would eventually become governor, a great governor.  He seemed to want to do the right thing and make government better, even when it seemed that everyone was against his recommendations.  I truly believe that Utah did not just lose a loving father and husband; Utah also lost a hero and someone that should have been and would have been governor.
  Brent Taylor was willing to die for the freedoms that we have and that he hoped everyone had.  He said it best when he said "the secret to happiness is freedom".  His last words seemed to be and should be acknowledged and celebrated as his most important words: "God bless America" (it is worth fighting for).

MILLCREEK STUDIES HUNDRED MILLION DOLLAR PROJECT
  I put several reports on the efforts and proposals for Millcreek City to redevelop the area surrounding Brickyard around 33rd South and 1300 East/Highland.  The reports are extensive but informative.  Since they impact the Salt Lake City Sugar House area, I recommend reading about the future plans.  The McClelland Trail extension to Brickyard is suggested and other roadway improvements.  I hope that the Sugar House Community Council and SLC and Millcreek work together to create a vibrant "downtown Millcreek".

WAR ON BILLBOARDS IS MISDIRECTION
  Ralph Becker, the former mayor of Salt Lake City is continuing his war on billboards.  He has created a new group, with his wife, to fight the proliferation of billboards, especially in Salt Lake City.  In several stories about the issue, it was reported that Reagan Advertising, the largest billboard company in Utah, provided billboard advertising for all the mayoral candidates running against Becker.  I was one of those candidates.  Although I asked for billboards that listed the issues, Reagan put my picture on the billboards.  I am not so vain to think that anyone would vote for me based on my face but it was Reagan's money and property.  The billboards encouraged interest in the mayoral race, and I felt that it was better than ignoring the race.  
  I also have to report that Reagan has given me contributions for my past campaign.  But my philosophy on billboards has not changed.  Billboards can energize and activate an area.  Times Square is full of billboards.  I have urged electronic billboards downtown to advertise the many almost ignored and unknown restaurants, stores and facilities that make the Salt Lake City downtown an entertainment center.  Everyone knows about the big shows that come to town but not the smaller venues entertainment.  In my mind, if you are going to allow buildings that are hundreds of feet tall, billboards should not be an issue.  They break up the canyons of concrete and steel.
  I find it hypocritical to fight billboards but encourage block long car lots (that Mayor Becker supported) that discourage walkable neighborhoods.  There was an effort several years ago in the Legislature to try to remove the billboards on 6th South, the freeway entrance into downtown SLC.  The Downtown Alliance wanted to create a "grand boulevard" like Paris' Champs Elysees.  They wanted tens of millions from taxpayers to buy out the billboards and bury the power lines.  I objected to the use of taxpayer money for that plan when landowners should first offer up 28 feet of their property for wide sidewalks (like on the Champs Elysees).  I also felt that coming into town on a street that had a lot of poorly designed and used buildings was more of a problem than billboards.  The billboards on 6th South, and in many other areas of the City provide an inexpensive but effective advertising of SLC local amenities and facilities.  They help local businesses.  You do not see many billboards that refer to national issues (although there are many that refer to God).  Billboards are the least of our problems.  The billboards on 6th South help  downtown local businesses.
  On the other side, I would like to see the electronic billboard intensity decreased in the later evening.  After midnight, most billboards can still be effective at a tenth of the brightness.  I think that there is room for compromise.  They are important for local businesses; they can be used for art and public service messages; and they activate an area.  

CRIME MAGNET APARTMENT LOSES STATE FUNDING
  Although it is supposed to be a secret, due to privacy issues, the crime magnet Georgia Apartments lost their State funding which was $300 per month due to continuing crime issues (and other nuisance issues).  This should be a wake up call to apartment owners that get State or local funding to increase their revenue.  The Liberty Wells area is continuing to hear complaints about the local apartments and motels that seem to breed and encourage criminal behavior.  They may just allow the crimes to continue and feel powerless but recent developments are putting the pressure on these problem properties.  Salt Lake City has started a CAT team that brings together the Health Department, law enforcement, zoning and nuisance abatement and community liaisons to discuss, identify and propose solutions to some of these properties.  We should be hearing more about these efforts in the next few months.

SLC COMMUNITY INTELLIGENCE OFFICERS ROTATED
  The Salt Lake Community Intelligence Officers have rotated their assignments.  The good news is they are moved to another City District area's community councils.  So Detective Pederson that served and became knowledgeable about District 5, is now working over District 4.  Detective David King from District 4 is now working on District 5.  This is better than a few years ago when, every 18 months, the community councils lost their police liaisons, the Community Intelligence Officers.  This shifting to adjacent areas allows for the police to become more knowledgeable and share insights gained from fighting crime and the same criminals in other areas.  

SCOOTER INJURIES EXPONENTIALLY INCREASE
  Salt Lake City is insisting that scooters are the future of transportation.  Despite the fact that electric scooter injuries are skyrocketing (one fire station had 20 scooter related injuries in the last month including some pedestrians injured) the City is planning on asking the Legislature to change the law to allow scooters on more roads.  Unfortunately, the City is ignoring the decrease in safety for pedestrians.  So much for creating a walkable City.

RACCOON ABATEMENT IN SLC IS FREE, DO NOT PAY
  A recent City Council email was sent out that referred to a wild animal removal service to help with raccoon problems.  That is a paid service and although the information in the referral link is valuable, it is a paid service.  But Salt Lake City pays for a contract with the Salt Lake City Animal Control to provide free traps, and help in removing the caught animal.  Raccoons and skunks are supposed to be included.  There were several times when there were problems and confusion when the new administration took over, and even recently there have been questionable recommendations on how to get rid of raccoons.  CALL 385 419 3405 to talk to the animal control people that are paid to take care of the problem.  If you have a problem, email me at gechapman2@gmail.com.  This keeps cropping up.  It should be a no brainer.  SLC pays for the free service for citizens.  Do not pay for raccoon or skunk removal!

FAIRMONT PARK SHARPS BOX
  The County Health Department installed a Sharps Box (there is a picture on the right towards the end of the pictures), a big red box to encourage safe disposal of needles used by drug addicts.  Although most homeless in the Fairmont Park area were abusing alcohol (the State Liquor Store is next to the Park) and the spice that is sold around the Skate Park, Operation Rio Grande/Leaf Blower has pushed some needle users into the Park and that is why the Box was installed.  
  But there are some diabetic users who are trying to put bigger containers into the box.  The bigger containers with used needles will not fit or go all the way down and are blocking the box openings and when needle users deposit their needles, they don't go all of the way down and allow for innocent children to be exposed to needles.  The boxes can attract unsupervised children!  The County is considering moving the box to stop the problem.  The Community Council has been notified of the problem.  This was an unforeseen consequence of a well intentioned effort to decrease improperly discarded needles. 

ENERGYSOLUTIONS PRESENTATION DOWNLOAD
  I put the extensive and interesting Utah DEQ scientific report and response to EnergySolutions effort to store depleted uranium metal from munitions at Clive, Utah.  The best picture is towards the end, a corroded uranium bullet that shows the complications that result from improper storage of depleted uranium.

PLEASE USE FLASHLIGHTS WHILE WALKING AT NIGHT
  I will continue to make these recommendations.  Two schoolchildren were hit last week while in a crosswalk.  With many children and pedestrians walking in the dark, I strongly recommend using a flashlight when crossing the street.  They are small and cost a dollar but provide invaluable increase in safety.  Please consider buying flashlights for all of you kids if they walk alone.




NOVEMBER 1, 2018

Prop 2 encourages drug use and abuse


Prop 2 encourages drug use and abuse
  Proposition 2, on the ballot this year, is an effort to legalize medical marijuana use with minimal restrictions. It will allow medical marijuana cardholders to buy pot from dealers with minimal legal risk since it will be almost impossible for the State to supply all of the marijuana that people want to use. Law enforcement will have their hands tied when trying to investigate drug dealing and impaired driving.  Proposition 2 will allow the personal growing of cannabis plants by patients. The police will be hard pressed to ensure legal growth of marijuana and use.
  The pressure to allow significantly increased use of a drug is shown by a recent arrest in Summit County. A driver was arrested with almost 10,000 THC vaping cartridges. Since vaping is legal, marijuana use is almost impossible to stop if the THC is in vaping liquid. Utah should not be encouraging drug use.
  Utah is leading the nation in efforts to stop the loss of innocent lives by impaired driving. We are about to implement a .05 DUI limit. DUI is so bad that this last week 6 innocent Utahns were killed by one impaired driver! Marijuana use by drivers has led to deaths. Unfortunately, passing Proposition 2 will surely increase use of marijuana while driving. We do not give medical cards for alcohol and we should not give medical marijuana cards that will be used to justify driving during or after use. Utah should not legalize use of drug until it studies the impact on driver reaction and sets standards. What will be the penalty if there is THC is in the blood of a driver causing a deadly accident? Legalizing this drug in any way should not happen until we have a complete set of laws to ensure the safety of Utahns on the road.
  Studies show that cannabis misuse can impact teen memory recall, reasoning, impair cognition and lead to substance abuse (admittedly like alcohol). Utah goes to great lengths to discourage teen use of alcohol.  We do not have the laws and system to decrease the availability and use of marijuana by teenagers if medical marijuana is expanded. A medical marijuana card will force a police officer to look elsewhere even when there is a complaint about medical marijuana use is done in front of children or driving. Even if it is smoked illegally, how will the police be able to enforce the law without a complete law and punishment system. In a medicine cabinet, it will be found and could be abused by a young child.
  Many have expressed concern about the potential of medical cannabis use in rental housing without allowing landlords to ensure safe use that is not encouraging visitors to try the drug. Again, Utah does not have a complete set of laws to ensure that innocent adjacent neighbors are not negatively impacted. The proposition could allow growing marijuana (up to 6 plants), even in an apartment!
  Even the Legislative compromise proposal, which limits some of the forms of the drug, does not really ensure safe use while driving or ensure that children do not have increased access to the drug.
  This State will handcuff law enforcement and apartment owners if Proposition 2 passes and allows almost unrestricted marijuana use. When any patient can claim a need, and get a medical marijuana card, it increases drugs in our society, increases exposure to children and teens and makes our roads more unsafe, at any speed.  The threat to innocent law abiding drivers will increase.
  If someone has a medical marijuana card, it is a get out of jail free card, whether they are driving a car, a big truck, in an apartment with kids, or next to an apartment with kids, or working at a company in Utah.  Marijuana users will not be limited in their use. Proposition 2 should not be passed and the Utah Legislature should not encourage drug use.




OCTOBER 29, 2018
IT'S BACK!  JAIL BOOKING RESTRICTIONS
SLCO BUDGET PUBLIC SAFETY CONCERNS AND PUBLIC HEARINGS
ENERGYSOLUTIONS TOLD NO BY EVERYONE REGARDING DU
ACLU REPORT AND FORUM LINK
300 WEST STREET IMPROVEMENTS INCLUDE MID-BLOCK CROSSINGS
SLC TREE REPLACEMENT POLICY
UTA STARTS SOUTH DAVIS/SLC 2ND S BRT WITHOUT PUBLIC COMMENT
BLACK LIMOS TAKE OVER SLC AIRPORT
FLEETWOOD MAC IS DEAD BUT STILL LIVES ON


IT'S BACK!  JAIL BOOKING RESTRICTIONS
  Don't tell anyone.  It's a secret.  Jail booking restrictions are back at the Salt Lake County Jail.  Law enforcement officers have to call the jail to see if they will accept criminals that they arrest for booking at the County Jail!  This is worse than the revolving door jail.  Public safety should be a higher priority.  Instead of acknowledging that public safety funding at the County is a problem, and admitting that the only reason that they could open one pod at Oxbow (instead of the two pods that the Mayor promised to open) is to close a pod at the Main Jail, the County Sheriff is now forced to implement a booking restriction policy.  This leaves criminals on the street and victimizing the general public.  That is not putting public safety at a high priority.  

SLCO BUDGET PUBLIC SAFETY CONCERNS AND PUBLIC HEARINGS
  The Mayor's proposed budget for Salt Lake County was released last week and it shows how bad public safety funding is in the County.  Summarizing the issues:  Only 22.5% of employees in the DA's office are properly compensated.  This leads to high turnover that some say is 30%.  The DA says it is 10%.  I think that it is 30%.  There are other reasons for the high turnover.  Heavy workload, increased caseloads ("Not only have cases increased, but violent crime and sexual assault cases in particular have increased") that are near to 20,000 cases in this year, and lack of enough prosecutors and investigators.  The jail is in even worse shape.  There is an 18% turnover and 20% are involved in assaults by jailed criminals!  The DA is asking for 5 more prosecutor positions (which will go unfilled if compensation is not adequate) and 3 more investigator positions.
  Due to the complexity and significant issues involved, I am putting the information from the budget for the DA and Jail below:
 
PROSECUTORS
West Jordan – 2 (Special Victims, General Felonies)
Since adding the additional jurisdictions of Murray and Cottonwood Heights to the West Jordan court
caseload, our number of cases has increased significantly. Not only have cases increased, but violent
crime and sexual assault cases in particular have increased. These heavier, more complex cases
require more work than other crime. This jurisdictional change has not decreased overall caseloads,
prohibiting us from transferring 2 attorneys from downtown to West Jordan.
Adult Screening – 2
Almost each month sets a new record for cases screened. We are on track to screen nearly 20,000
cases this year. Nearly one-third of those cases are in-custody cases. These cases require immediate
personnel resources to screen jail cases, which means non-jail cases have to wait to prevent failure to
file released. Two additional prosecutors in screening would allow us to more quickly screen and file jail
cases and reduce the risk of someone being released due to a failure to file within the allotted time. It
would also allow us to address the large amount of non-jail cases sooner more quickly.
1 Attorney – SVU
SV cases are considered specialty cases that are handled in our downtown and West Jordan offices.
SV cases downtown are handled by the SV team. SV cases in West Jordan are assigned to designated
SV attorneys, who also handle other types of cases. We manage the allocation of SV attorneys in WJ
by the demands of case numbers. For instance, unlike the downtown SV team that gets all the SV
cases that are filed downtown where a fixed number of attorneys are assigned based upon the team’s
over all SV case numbers, WJ SV attorneys are assigned on an ongoing basis influenced by overall
case numbers with the number of SV case particularly considered. The downtown SV team recently
needed another SV attorney based upon unacceptably high caseloads each attorney was handling. We
addressed by moving attorney from WJ that was handling SV cases. That left WJ down an SV
attorney. The request for an SV attorney is to bring WJ back to the number of SV attorney they need to
continue to handle SV cases.

INVESTIGATORS
We currently have two investigators assigned to handle the felony investigative caseload for West
Jordan. The special victim caseload, as well as other criminal investigative work (gang, fraud, theft,
violent crime) is distributed evenly between them. We need one additional investigator who can handle
special victims cases in their entirety, including child victim cases, Children’s Justice Center (CJC)
cases, SVU screenings and follow up investigation work for sexual assault and domestic violence
cases. Currently, if one investigator is engaged in a CJC matter, the rest of his workload is either
somewhat absorbed by the other investigator (as best he can) or delayed until the investigator can get
back to regular work as these cases require constant attention. The existing two investigators would
continue to perform work on gang cases, fraud and theft cases, violent crime, etc.
1 Legal Investigator – Computer Crimes
With the explosion of computer crimes and the ability to use computers forensically to solve crime, we
have dedicated a great deal of investigator resources to technological solutions for fighting crime. In
recent years, as we have gone through the recruitment process, we have focused on candidates who
have developed this highly specialized skill set in their law enforcement careers. However, we only
have one dedicated investigator for this area of investigation. All our remaining investigators are
assigned to specific teams to provide badly needed investigative support for prosecution. Hiring
another legal investigator would allow us to shift those with more extensive technological expertise into
this area and supplement the investigative support work needed on our prosecution teams.
1 Legal Investigator – Juvenile, Misdemeanor, Restitution Enforcement, Major Crash, Arson
Currently, we do not have the investigator resources to devote to these areas of prosecution. In the
past, as the need arises, we have attempted to assign these matters on an ad hoc basis to any of our
investigators who may have capacity. Unfortunately, we have found them to have less and less
capacity to take these assignments. An additional Legal Investigator would allow us to adequately
staff these types of cases.

SLCO JAIL
SWORN COMPENSATION: Increasing wages for sworn correctional line Deputies is the main priority
to address hiring and retention issues. This request includes a structural grade increase for Deputy II
and a merit increase for all sworn staff. The structural grade increase will eliminate the existing career
ladder moving all Deputy II positions to a Grade 15 maintaining their current step. The merit increase will
provide a 2.75% step increase for sworn members with a 1% longevity for those at the top of the range.
SWORN COMPENSATION: This request includes a compression adjustment for Deputy I positions as
well as an annual merit increase. The merit increase will provide a 2.75% step increase for sworn
members of the Public Safety Bureau, with a 1% longevity for those at the top of the range. 
OXBOW ANNUALIZATION_PRIOR APPROVED 2018 BUDGET: This request will annualize the 2018
funds allocated for the opening of two modules at the Oxbow Jail
TEMPORARY PART TIME PSYCHIATRIST: As the inmate population of the jail increases, the
demand for psychiatric services has also increased. The psychiatric needs of the Salt Lake County Jail
inmates are currently budgeted for one full-time and one half-time Psychiatrist allocations. Due to the
difficulty in filling these merit positions, part-time temporary staffing has been utilized to fill the half-time
position. This request will increase the amount budgeted for part-time Psychiatrists due to the increased
cost of temporary staffing to ensure annual coverage.

Salt Lake County Jail provides safe living quarters for prisoners work environment for employees. Goals include:
1) Reduce the number of assaults against staff by prisoners from 20% incidents as of the start of the year 2019 to 10% incidents
by end of the year 2019.
4) Reduce employee attrition rates from 18% separations as of the start of January 2019 to 10% separations by end of the year
2019.

ENERGYSOLUTIONS TOLD NO BY EVERYONE REGARDING DU
  In an amazing presentation by the staff of Utah DEQ and their contractor, they showed that the idea of allowing depleted uranium munitions/metal into Clive should not be allowed without going through a performance assessment.  It was one of the most thorough explanations that I have heard about the significant differences between DU metal and DU oxides (which are in the barrels of nuclear weapons waste presently stored at Clive by EnergySolutions.  The Director of the Radiation Control Board has final jurisdiction on the license to take in the DU metal (the Board has no jurisdiction).  He denied the license.  On the separate question of whether to grant EnergySolutions the exemption to allow the company to bid on accepting and storing DU metal from munitions at ES, the Board unanimously denied the exemption.  Everyone but EnergySolutions spoke against it in the public hearing. 
  Again, it was noted that EnergySolutions had 2 fires (in 2002 and in 2007) with handling DU.  A backhoe started a fire by scraping DU metal and paper on fire.  It was promptly put out.  The performance assessment for the barrels of so called DU is expected in March of 2019.  The agreement between EnergySolutions and Utah a decade ago said that a performance assessment is needed for more than a ton of DU imported.  The company noted that 40% of the DU metal is already stored at the Tooele Army Depot. 
  The main reason for denying the license and exemption is that EnergySolutions has not demonstrated that an exemption from Utah regulations will not result in undue hazard to public health, safety or environment.  Other requirements that are not satisfied include the NUREG 1573 recommendation that it needs understanding of events likely to affect long term performance and computation of doses to members of the general population.  The NUREG is not compulsory but if it is not followed, there is a need for the reasons to be explained.
  Other reasons, and my reasons against storing more DU metal include:
*  Depleted uranium metal is pyrophoric and should not be stored in a humid environment Utah has three to five times the rainfall than Nevada.
*  Uranium oxides are safer than metal due to the potential oxidation or hydriding of DU metal in presence of water/rain.
*  Security at the Nevada Test Site is significantly better than Clive, a few miles from the major east west freeway of the United States
*  I agree with the assessment of Oak Ridge National Laboratory that all forms of depleted uranium should be stored in a secure and dry environment such as the Nevada Test Site.  
*  "Disposal of DU at Envirocare appears to be questionable" according to the best analysis of storing all DU forms by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
  My main reason against importing and storing more DU:  YOU DON'T WANT UTAH TO END UP AS A FOOTNOTE IN A REPORT ON NUCLEAR ACCIDENTS.

ACLU REPORT AND FORUM LINK
  For those interested in the ACLU forum that took place to discuss the ACLU report that showed/proved that Operation Rio Grande is hurting homelessness solutions, here is the link.  The audio is poor so be forewarned.
https://www.acluutah.org/resources/articles-position-papers/item/1497-calculating-the-real-cost-of-operation-rio-grande

300 WEST STREET IMPROVEMENTS WILL INCLUDE MID-BLOCK CROSSINGS
  The SLC Council approved the CIP budget and project list two weeks ago.  One of the items is the 300 west street improvements which will cost $3 million in CIP funding.  The City hopes to get the rest of the $12 million in a grant from the federal government.  The specifics from the CIP item are:
"The Council approved $2 million in Class C Funds (gas tax) as part of the FY19 Budget adoption on June 12. This is in addition to $1 million in FY18 CIP Class C funds the Roadway Selection Committee identified for the project. This provides a $3 million local match to fund reconstruction of 300 West from 600 South to 2100 South. The total project cost is $15 million. The Administration submitted a $12 million application for a Federal BUILD grant (replaced the TIGER grant program).  In addition to a full street reconstruction, Engineering stated the “project will improve facilities for pedestrians and bicyclists per the Complete Streets Ordinance. The project includes constructing sidewalk where it’s missing, widening sidewalks, bus stop enhancements, installing mid-block crossings, and bike lanes. The planned improvements are necessary to accommodate the
anticipated increase in pedestrian traffic along the 300 W corridor.
USDOT is expected to announce BUILD grant recipients in December."

SLC TREE REPLACEMENT POLICY
  The below is an email that the City Forest Area Service Coordinator, Cory Davis sent to me about how many trees removed from a demolition project will be replaced.  The project is on 1710 S. West Temple.  In summary, the trees removed will be replaced or compensated for by the contractor/developer.  The fine print in the SLC ordinance is that only specimen trees (able to thrive in our "arid" environment) are covered.  Hopefully, the City will change the ordinance to require that all trees be replaced.  The full email from Cory is below and I recommend reading it to get the fine print points of SLC's tree ordinance:

"The project at 1710 S West Temple St. is called The Edith and will be comprised of several townhomes. This location previously contained two residential dwellings that were set back from the street at a similar distance as the nearby homes on this street. The new dwelling’s setback from the street has been minimized greatly, placing the townhomes much closer to the sidewalk than the previous homes were. The preexisting trees in the park strip adjacent to these parcels were mature ash trees with a large, spreading canopy. Unfortunately, preservation of these two trees was not a reality at this site for a few reasons. The first reason is the setback issue of the new building. Over 1/3 of the tree canopy (in the least) would have to have been pruned in order to make way for the new building footprint. This would have required pruning several large branches or leads on only one side of the tree. These large wounds, the resulting off balance canopies and just the sheer amount of material removed would not be considered sound pruning practices according to industry best practices. Another reason that tree removal was necessary is root zone disturbance. Excavation of the root zones of these trees was extensive. The excavation was required for footing & foundation and new utilities installation. Our number one priority and guiding principle of our department is public safety. Several large, stabilizing roots were cut in order to install the new foundation of these buildings. If the trees had remained during this process, they would have potentially been destabilized resulting in an unsafe condition. Additionally, the removal of many of the fine, fibrous surface roots, which are responsible for water and nutrient uptake, would have had a detrimental effect on the tree as well.

The negative effects of construction related root damage often don’t manifest for at least 2 years, and sometimes as long as 5 years after damage occurs. As is sometimes the case in tree damage during construction, our department doesn’t know about the damage until the tree is nearly dead. That is to say, a building could be built and damage to trees could occur without our knowledge. Since trees are large organisms that are often slow to react to construction related root damage, the developers are then well on their way to the next project and the City (SLC Urban Forestry) is left to deal with the declining or nearly dead or dead tree. In most cases of this nature, tree removal is the only course of action. It is for this reason that we mandate tree protection during construction. This is often as simple as fencing around the root zone defining a “no go” area for any type of construction activity. It is important to note that tree protection during construction, while always our goal, is not always a reality and can’t be applied to every situation. The Edith project being an example of that.

Another case where park strip trees may need to be removed rather than preserved and protected is in an instance where a new driveway to access the property is required. In these cases, as in the case of The Edith, we require tree replacement on a 1 diameter inch for 1 diameter inch scale. For example, if a 10” diameter park strip tree is removed, the developer must plant 5 trees that are 2” in diameter to replace this tree. If the frontage space only allows room for one tree, we have a dollar value mitigation replacement. Using the 10” dia. tree example, if one 2” tree is planted as a replacement, the developer then owes 8”. We use a formula created by Mike Kuhns of USU to determine a monetary replacement value. This figure is $172/diameter inch. So again in the 10” tree example case, the developer owes 8” so 8 x $172 equals $1376.00. I hope this helps in explaining how we approach park strip tree removal mitigation.

SLC Urban Forestry’s involvement with private property trees during construction is very limited. The code only allows us to place a value on “specimen trees” during development projects that are multi family or commercial in scope. Given the arid nature of our landscape, very few trees fit this description and the code only allows for minimal “specimen tree” designation. In the event that a specimen tree must be removed, it must be replaced on a 2 diameter inch for every 1 diameter inch removed basis. For example, if a 20” dbh (diameter at breast height” specimen tree were removed from private property, the developer must then replant 40 inches. Again, if there is insufficient space for the required replacement trees, the mitigation cost must be paid.

With regards to the size of replacement trees, we require 2” caliper trees (as the minimum size) to be planted in park strips. Very generally speaking, 2”-3” trees establish and begin vigorously growing faster than trees of a larger caliper. Additionally, 2”-3” caliper trees are the most widely available size trees at nurseries and are the most cost effective, not just in terms of purchase price, but in ease of installation as well."

UTA STARTS SOUTH DAVIS/SLC 2ND SOUTH BRT WITHOUT PUBLIC COMMENT
  UTA's Board of Trustees, in their final meeting, started the process to design and do an environmental assessment of the South Davis BRT that will cost over $70 million.  Half of it will be paid by SLCO.  The plan is to have it go up 200 South to the University of Utah.  I am against it since $70 million would be, could be and should be better used for providing more bus routes, more frequent bus service and better span of service.
  On another matter, as usual, UTA will hold a public hearing on the budget for 2019 on the same day and time as the once a month Legislature Interim day, which will have an interesting special session on marijuana.  Tough choice, marijuana or mass transit.  

BLACK LIMOS TAKE OVER SLC AIRPORT
  In an interesting upgrade from the typical yellow cab taxi service that has serviced the airport for decades, has almost been replaced by black SUVs/black limousines!  The reason is that the $25 in town and $35 outside SLC fares has encouraged private owners to invest in "high class" large black SUVs.  This was unexpected and maybe a good thing.  UBER and LYFT still operate at the airport and are in the regular drop off/pickup area for cars (past the taxi/shuttle/bus/black SUV lane).  Those wanting to ride in style can have an attendant just outside of the baggage pickup and exit from the airport terminal wave one of the SUVs to the curb for you.  A few years ago, only  those going to Park City and VIPs had the black SUVs.  Now we all have them.  Unintended consequences of a poorly intentioned and planned bill from the SLC Council.

FLEETWOOD MAC IS DEAD BUT STILL LIVES ON
  Recently, Fleetwood Mac was so disappointed that Lindsey Buckingham did not want to tour with the reunited Fleetwood Mac, that they decided to tour without him.  Lindsey Buckingham turned around and sued Fleetwood Mac.  It is all a sad commentary on one of the best and most creative teams in rock music history.
  I thought that the original Fleetwood Mac was great with Peter Green compositions and great blues music but they surpassed that incredible accomplishment with the reconstituted Fleetwood Mac with John McVie, Christine McVie, Mick Fleetwood and Lindsey Buckingham who insisted on bringing on his love Stevie Nicks.  The resulting Fleetwood Mac and Rumours albums were two of the most incredible creative accomplishments in music.  They still create excitement and emotion.  They became the anthem of a generation and a presidential campaign.  
  I did not think that Fleetwood Mac or its individual musicians could ever reach such a high bar.  And I bought a lot of their later LPs and CDs in hopes that they could have the same creative energies of that past Rumours and Fleetwood Mac.  
  I just heard the Lindsey  Buckingham and Christine McVie CD.  It comes close to the magic that I felt listening to the 1976-77 albums.  Red Sun, especially, sounds close to the music of 1977's Rumours.  Mick Fleetwood and John McVie also  collaborated on it.  You should give it a chance and believe that magic is still possible after 40 years.  The Salt Lake City Public Library has it in their catalog if you have any doubts of how good it is.  The catalog also has The Chain 25 Years which compiles the many different genres of Fleetwood Mac music.  "Sometimes I wonder, if you ever think of me." (from Red Sun)




OCTOBER 22, 2018
2100 SOUTH TO GET 4 CROSSWALKS IN TWO BLOCKS
INNBETWEEN CALLS POLICE ON NEIGHBORS
SLC COUNCIL CIP VOTE IGNORES PUBLIC HEARING
SLC COUNCIL VOTES TO NOT PROTECT SINGLE FAMILY NEIGHBORHOODS
ACLU FINALLY ACKNOWLEDGES OP LEAF BLOWER ANTI HOMELESS
BEST NON MOVIE JURASSIC PARK IS IN SLC
UTA BUS SERVICE INCREASES SCHEDULED FOR AUGUST OF 2020
DARK AGES WATER LAW SHOULD BE UPDATED

2100 SOUTH TO GET 4 CROSSWALKS IN TWO BLOCKS
  SLC is planning on installing 3 crosswalks between 900 East and 1100 East on 2100 South.  They are at Lincoln (950 East), 1000 East and McClelland (1050 East) to join the 900 East and 1200 East crosswalks.  The crosswalks will have crossing lights like the 1200 East pedestrian lights that stop traffic while crossing.  This road carries almost 20,000 Average Daily Trips a day in vehicles and it appears that the plans will significantly increase pollution although it should make it safer for pedestrians if they don't breathe.  These are dangerous crosswalks now (without lights) and pedestrians are often ignored when in the crosswalks.


INNBETWEEN CALLS POLICE ON NEIGHBORS
  The InnBetween fight with the local neighborhood is getting serious.  There are now four registered sex offenders in the facility at 1216 East and 1300 South including one convicted of child kidnapping.  Note that most of the patients/residents are really not a threat to the neighborhood.  But some are threatening and are a threat to the neighbors.  During the Legislature's Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee meeting, legislators allowed neighbors to provide public comment on the effect of the InnBetween on the neighborhood.  One of the neighbors had the SLC Police called on them to remove them from the facility before commenting.  But the SLC Police determined that it was in the best interest of everyone to escort the banned neighbors into the Subcommittee meeting room and allow them to comment.  Four commented about the neighborhood concerns regarding the InnBetween.  I asked for help from the Legislature to have the InnBetween and the neighborhood and mental health professionals and law enforcement to talk and work together for a solution to alleviate concerns regarding the impact on the neighborhood.  It could be removing some troublemakers that do not follow rules or are of too big a concern to be safely in the neighborhood with children walking to school.  Whatever the solution, Representative Paul Ray and Representative Rebecca Chavez Hauck will attempt to mediate the disagreement.   


SLC COUNCIL CIP VOTE IGNORES PUBLIC HEARING
  During the last public hearing on the SLC CIP project list, there were about 20 individuals asking for consideration for and against some of the projects on the list.  Unfortunately, the City Council had already decided the issues (with two exceptions that were decided after printing up the CIP list for the meeting).  Even though some people asked for the 1100 East pavement work around the Hollywood Avenue/Post Office area, the Council decided the week before to stall it until after the 1300 East mother of all road reconstruction projects is finished (since 1100 East is an alternate).  No one really told the crowd that their public comments meant nothing.  There were also comments for and against the 1700 S. road diet.  So when the vote came, Council Chair Erin Mendenhall told the crowd to go out of the meeting and the staff would tell them what the Council voted on!  (The road diet was approved and the Seven Canyons Fountain will have a redesign.)  The list was in the packet but speakers were not told that the Council would ignore all public comments.  That is not a good way to encourage public engagement.  Encouraging public comment when the vote is already taken (in a "straw poll" the week before) is not respectful.


SLC COUNCIL VOTES TO NOT PROTECT SINGLE FAMILY NEIGHBORHOODS
  The City Council also encouraged public comment on the ADU question before the City Council last week but they voted the week before on the issue!  Only Councilman Charlie Luke voted against the ordinance.  If it destroys the character and stability of single family home neighborhoods in Salt Lake City, residents will just move to the suburbs for the single family neighborhoods that they desire and increase pollution in the valley by driving into the City for work.  Although the Council indicated that it is a start and that it can be changed depending on the results, it is a threat to zoning in SLC since the City does not have the ability to ensure that ADU conversions to not negatively impact the residents.


ACLU FINALLY ACKNOWLEDGES OPERATION LEAF BLOWER ANTI HOMELESS
  The ACLU of Utah finally reached the conclusion that Operation Leaf Blower is not effective at helping the homeless.  It actually increases the hassles that homeless have to endure and further criminalizes them.  This has been the complaint of many for years.  In 2015, Dave Robinson, a candidate for SLC mayor, told of many homeless that had so many tickets that they gave up  trying to get out of their situation.  But over the years, Utah ACLU ignored the impacts on the homeless, until this report.  ACLU ignored the constant quality of life enforcement, the shopping cart confiscations, the loss of property confiscated and stored at impossible to reach locations, arrests that left homeless sleeping on the jail ramp after release during the winter cold at 2 AM, the requirement of an ID to get basic homeless services and lack of effective sanitary facilities that led to a hepatitis A epidemic.  It will be interesting to see if the report (in the upper right downloads section) is actually acted on by ACLU.


BEST NON MOVIE JURASSIC PARK IS IN SLC
  The best Jurassic park in Utah is now on 900 East around 1500 South.  You can't miss it.  With a T Rex, a couple of rapters and a line around the block, it is a popular and free attraction.  Ammon Smith is effectively competing with films and with Ogden's dinosaur park. 


UTA BUS SERVICE INCREASES SCHEDULED FOR AUGUST OF 2020
  UTA has indicated that the new Prop One tax increase that was forced on SLCO citizens and taxpayers will not result in service increases until August 2020.  UTA indicated that they needed to buy new buses.  That is the excuse that they are using to spend $50 million of local taxpayer money along with $20 million of federal funding for their $70+ million clean fuels facility that is across the street from the present bus garage.  UTA did not want to have their drivers have to drive the buses to the refueling facility from across the street so they are building a new $70+ million garage.  So instead of spending $50 million on restoring a robust bus system first, as recommended by the last audit, UTA is spending millions to help construction companies get a large profit.  UTA also is trying to defend their plan to electrify and double track FrontRunner at a cost of hundreds of millions.  All of that money could be, should be and would be better spent on providing a decent and respectful bus system (in my opinion).  I am sure that the Transportation Coalition is enjoying the thought of getting contracts worth billions from UTA.  The Salt Lake City increase in service on several streets is still scheduled to start in August of 2019.


DARK AGES WATER LAW SHOULD BE UPDATED
  The Legislature heard several reports from interested parties that were trying for compromises on Utah water laws that give extraterritorial jurisdiction to cities of the first class like Salt Lake City.  Over the last few years, there have been many complaints by landowners and canyon users about the questionable tactics and rules for canyon recreation by Salt Lake City.  The City is allowed to control use up to 15 miles from a water source and 300 feet on either side which the City interprets as ridge line to ridge line in the Central Wasatch Canyons.  Theoretically, SLC could stop swimming in reservoirs like they say they can stop putting feet in streams.  But the Utah Constitution protects the right of recreation and use of the navigable waterways so banning people is unrealistic, although the City tries.  The House Natural Resources Interim Committee members were doubtful about any large extraterritorial jurisdiction and seemed to suggest that a big change is necessary.
  The compromise group added a few new animals to acceptable use of the canyons but did not add dogs, despite their use when working with sheep which are acceptable.  If SLC really is worried about fecal matter and e coli, they should build more restrooms for the six million people that use the canyons (literally) every year and stop worrying about dogs.  I, and the Legislators that heard the reports were concerned that the City may try to limit or ban people.  Interestingly, some in the City and County are considering that.  There have been reports that the Central Wasatch Commission is considering fees to discourage use of the Canyons!
  I pointed out that the law that originated over a hundred years ago, in the dark ages of disease fighting, during a cholera problem and now we have that problem solved along with successfully controlling e coli contamination of our water system.  Representative Noel was concerned about Salt Lake City's efforts to ban fish in the streams due to fish pee.  That should give you an idea of where the Legislature is headed.




OCTOBER 21, 2018
ENERGYSOLUTIONS SHOULD NOT STORE ANY DEPLETED URANIUM AT CLIVE, UTAH


ENERGYSOLUTIONS SHOULD NOT STORE ANY DEPLETED URANIUM AT CLIVE, UTAH
  This is what I sent the Utah DEQ regarding the ES proposal to store more depleted uranium.  The deadline to comment is October 22.
dwmrcpublic@utah.gov 
public comment on EnergySolutions' request for an exemption
  EnergySolutions should not be asking for an exemption from Utah Aministrative rules R313-25-9 (5) for disposal of solid metal depleted uranium penetrators.  In fact, I would counter the request by referring to the ORNL Assessment of Preferred Depleted Uranium Disposal Forms.pdf ORNL/TM-2000/161 (attached), the best analysis of depleted uranium storage by Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  Storing depleted uranium at Clive is "questionable" according to Oak Ridge's assessment.

  A summary of the important issues are: 
Depleted uranium metal is pyrophoric and should not be stored in humid environments.  The Assessment points out that the Nevada Test Site has low rainfall and evaporation is 14 times rainfall.  It is important to note that Salt Lake City and nearby Clive, Utah have up to 5 times more rainfall and is near a large body of water.

Security at the Nevada Test Site is significantly better than Clive, Utah and will last much longer than the private EnergySolutions facility which could close at any time.

I quote from the Assessment: "In summary, the current WAC suggest that the acceptability of DUF6 conversion material for disposal at Envirocare of Utah is questionable."     (note that DUF6 is safer to store than U3O8 or depleted uranium munitions metal due to further encapsulation required) 

From the ORNL Assessment of Preferred Depleted Uranium Disposal Forms.pdf ORNL/TM-2000/161:
Reacts slowly with moisture to form oxides in the presence of oxygen; condensed moisture promotes generation of H2
Reactions may form pyrophoric surface in absence of O2 
.....
Metal. 
Depleted uranium metal reacts slowly with moisture under ambient conditions to produce
DU oxides and hydrogen. The oxide layer normally spalls, allowing the reaction to continue with
a fresh metal surface. Reaction rates in air are slow, ranging from 2 ×10-5 to 4 ×10-4 mg/cm2.
Much higher rates are observed under saturated anaerobic conditions. No detectable hydrogen is
formed in the presence of oxygen except under circumstances that permit condensation of water
on the metal surface and limit the transport of oxygen from the gas phase to the metal surface.
There are a number of anecdotal reports of bulk uranium ignition that have been attributed to the
formation of uranium hydride layers under saturated anaerobic conditions produced in storage
containers [e.g., see Biwer et al. (2000)]. However, a recent evaluation of DU metal ignition
potential concludes that hydriding is not required to explain such events (Epstein et al. 1996). In
addition, while the conditions that had been thought to result in hydriding could occur in both
disposal and storage environments if a water layer sufficient to inhibit access of oxygen to the
uranium surface (Biwer et al. 2000; Duerksen et al. 2000) is present, such conditions are not
likely to be significant in arid climates and unsaturated soils. Thus, it does not appear that
hydriding or hydrogen generation should be significant problems under disposal conditions
expected at arid sites such as the Nevada Test Site (NTS).
.....
All
have low to very low solubility in water, and all react very slowly with water to yield degradation
products that are typically more stable and have a lower density (and hence greater volume) than
the parent species. None of the reactions occur at a rate which would make the materials
“reactive” as the term is generally interpreted in the context of managing wastes. One potential
exception involves hydrogen production or pyrophoricity of hydride layers on DU metal. This
concern is unlikely to be significant in an arid disposal setting such as the NTS.
.....
3.1 ACCEPTABILITY OF DU WASTE FORMS AT THE NTS
The NTS is a vast area of land north of Las Vegas, Nevada, within the Nellis Air Force Range.
The NTS is a secure site with an area of 3500 km2, which is large enough to include all of the
District of Columbia and all of its adjoining cities and communities (Fig. 1). The average annual
rainfall at the NTS ranges from 10 to 15 cm. However, the annual evaporation is approximately
14 times greater than the amount of rainfall.
.....
Pyrophoric. Wastes accepted for disposal at the NTS must not be pyrophoric as defined in the
NTSWAC. Any material considered to be pyrophoric is required to be treated, prepared, or
packaged to be nonflammable. For uranium metal or DUO2 powder, this requirement could lead
to additional packaging costs or extended reviews of the waste program or waste stream profile.
The need for additional treatment, preparation, or packaging of wastes would be addressed as
part of the waste program and waste stream profile reviews prior to approval or shipment of the
waste.
.....
addendum or supplement to the PA, which could introduce additional requirements for the
disposal of DU at the NTS, may be needed. Based on the contents of the existing PA, larger
amounts of any of the DU product forms should be acceptable with the addition of a thicker cap
to impede radon emanation.
.....
Envirocare. Disposal of DU at Envirocare of Utah, Inc., as LLW is not specifically addressed by
its WAC, but the following WAC, provisions would require further attention:
• The DU activity concentration must be less than 370,000 pCi/g, which is equivalent to
DU with an assay of 0.2% 235U and an activity concentration of 234U less than natural.
This criterion suggests that determining the acceptability of DUF6 conversion materials
as LLW at Envirocare would require additional investigation.
• Disposal of DUF6 conversion material as 11e(2) by-product material is limited by a
waste acceptance criterion of 4000 pCi/g for natural uranium or for any radionuclide in
the 226Ra decay series. This concentration is two orders of magnitude less than the
concentration that would be expected to be present in any DUF6 conversion material.
• Special Nuclear Material (SNM) quantity limits have been imposed by the NRC on
Envirocare of Utah (NRC 1999). Under these limits, Envirocare of Utah can accept
waste containers with uranium enrichments less than 10% and a maximum of 20% MgO
that have a maximum 235U concentration of 1900 pCi/g. With assays of 235U in DU
conversion products ranging from less than 0.2% to natural, the concentrations of 235U in
DU conversion products would range from 4300 to 15,000 pCi/g, clearly exceeding the
SNM limit at Envirocare.
In summary, the current WAC suggest that the acceptability of DUF6 conversion material for
disposal at Envirocare of Utah is questionable. Further investigation is required before a
definitive determination can be made.
.....
The NRC staff’s views concerning the viability of DU disposal as DUF4 appear to have been
based primarily on an analysis of a hypothetical near-surface disposal facility having
characteristics typical of a humid southeastern site (Kozak 1992). In particular, this analysis
considers intruder scenarios and dissolution and transport by groundwater that are not as credible
at the arid NTS, where future intruder access is likely to be precluded by institutional control and
groundwater is found only at significant depths with no recharge from the surface in areas where
LLW disposal occurs.
Regarding disposal of DU in metal form, the NRC staff expressed a preference for uranium
oxides over metal in comments on the PEIS concerning long-term management of DUF6 (DOE
1999a). This preference may be based on the potential oxidation or hydriding of DU metal in the
presence of water, and the resultant potential for radiological and environmental consequences.
The NRC’s concerns about DUF4 and DU metal as disposal forms are certainly appropriate for
humid sites, such as may have been contemplated for the LES facility in Louisiana. However,
such concerns do not appear to be as applicable to a controlled, arid site such as the NTS, where
(1) the average annual potential evaporation is 14 times greater than average annual rainfall and
(2) the presence of water in the near surface is expected to be ephemeral. Current measures to
prevent intruder access are being considered by DOE for long-term stewardship of the NTS. The
only significant performance issue is expected to be radon release, and this can be controlled
using an impermeable cap such as those used at uranium mill tailing sites. 

  Therefore, I recommend that this form of DU, different in properties from the U3O8 that is stored in the barrels and that is undergoing a performance assessment be analyzed in a separate performance assessment.  Humidity, stability of the mortar or other storage encapsulation and cap require additional assessment that is different, should be different from the U3O8 that is in the barrels.  The lifetime of the specific mortar proposed to be used also should be proven.  Many mortars have a lifetime of less than 100 years.  
  Note that the barrels contain material that has gone through a reactor and they contain, according to the manifest:  depleted uranium (U238), Plutonium 238, 239, 240, 241 and 242 (Plutonium 240 increases in radioactivity 5 times in 100 years.), Technetium 99, Neptunium 237 and other actinides introduced when exposed to fission neutrons.  

  I agree with the assessment of Oak Ridge National Laboratory that all forms of depleted uranium should be stored in a secure and dry environment such as the Nevada Test Site.  Storage should not be at Clive, Utah, a few miles from the major east west freeway of the United States. 

  I am a former nuclear engineer and I have worked with depleted uranium penetrators (Phalanx at China Lake).  I believe that storage of any kind of depleted uranium at Clive, Utah will be unsafe and unsecure for the long term compared to the Nevada Test Site.





OCTOBER 15, 2018

STUDY SHOWS INTELLIGENT TRAFFIC SIGNALS SAVES $2.2 MILLION

SLC IMPACT FEES GOING TO ZERO

MILLCREEK PLANNING ON DEVELOPMENT EAST OF BRICKYARD
TUESDAY SLC COUNCIL FINAL HEARINGS ON ADU AND ROAD DIETS
INN BETWEEN HEARING AT 115PM TUESDAY​



STUDY SHOWS INTELLIGENT TRAFFIC SIGNALS SAVES $2.2 MILLION
  UDOT is going over the final draft of the Purdue study of using Wavetronix (the UDOT traffic detection and optimizing system) to control traffic in Cottonwood Heights.  According to the project manager, Mark Taylor, the "project was very successful and resulted in some of the following benefits:

* The travel time was reduced by 3 minutes across the four corridors on average, amounting to user benefits of about $2.2M annually.

* The % of vehicles arriving on green increased by 4% from the before to intermediate phase and 2% from the intermediate to after phase.

* Volume-weighted split failures decreased by 35% from the before to intermediate phase, and decreased an additional 4.5% from the intermediate to the after phase.

* Throughput increased 4% from the before to the intermediate phase.

  Intelligent traffic signals detect traffic in all directions and calculates in real time, based on preconfigured standards, how to reduce idling and increase traffic flow with less stop and go.  The system gives a green signal to the majority of traffic and, as Mark Taylor indicated, pollution and time savings were significant.  The WFRC has a line item on their 2050 Plan (still taking public comments until November on the draft) for intelligent traffic signals but it is just a few million.  Utah should invest much more in these systems that can immediately decrease pollution and the WFRC should significantly increase the recommended funding for intelligent traffic signals.  If Utah is not going to invest in streets, we should invest in intelligent traffic signals.  
  SLC is going to replace some of the traffic signals in Salt Lake City with systems that can detect bicycles and cars.  It is part of their CIP project list but it is a regular replacement of around 10 traffic signals a year.  

SLC IMPACT FEES GOING TO ZERO
  The SLC Council is discussing a proposal to decrease impact fees for affordable housing offset projects to zero.  I put the proposal on it, Impact Fee Waivers for Mixed Income Housing in the downloads area (upper right).  It will be discussed at the October 16 City Council work session.  This will reduce the prepaid impact fee requirements for a 200 unit residential project from around $500,000 to zero if there are a significant number of affordable housing units.  This is a big deal that could have a significant effect on the housing supply in Salt Lake City.

MILLCREEK PLANNING ON INCREASING DEVELOPMENT EAST OF BRICKYARD
  Back in June, I had this blog entry:
  Millcreek also is about to finalize high density, mixed use and mixed income town center zoning in the area from about 1200 East to Highland and from northern City boundaries to 3400 South.  The project should lead to a lot of construction in the area.  Unfortunately, it is near one of the Wasatch Front faultlines and it is also next to the 3300 South/1300 East high pressure natural gas pipeline.  In the next big one, the whole area could be incinerated with a rupture of the pipeline.  It also points out that the 911 system in Salt Lake County needs to be consolidated into one system.  If there is a rupture or accident or problem at 3300 South and 1300 East, three separate emergency numbers and responders need to be notified to respond!
  Last week, Millcreek had an open house that showed their three proposals and the public comments.  I put the public comments in the downloads section and the three proposals are going to be made "public" soon.  Right now, Millcreek does not have the proposals, just the consultant.

TUESDAY SLC COUNCIL FINAL HEARINGS ON ADU AND ROAD DIETS
  At 7PM at SLC City Hall, during the October 16 formal City Council meeting, there will be two important public hearings on a road diet project on 1700 S. and the accessory dwelling unit (ADU) ordinance.
  The 1700 South CIP project is proposed for a road diet (going from 4 travel lanes to two travel lanes) and it has polarized the neighborhood.  50% are for it and 50% are against it.  Michael Clara, from Poplar Grove has been fighting SLC road diets and the 900 West road diet debacle that has led to a significant increase in accidents.  
  Although many road diets are proposed to increase bicycle safety and bike lanes, this is one of the cases where it may not be as beneficial as promised for bicyclists.  Due to the train tracks there (road diet standards say that train tracks and average and peak travel of vehicles are part of the consideration and decision), congestion and air pollution can be expected to increase.  And the community proposal to put in a TRAX station will increase pollution even more.  The proposal also adds parking and that can be a threat to bicyclists from dooring.  Opening a parked car door into a bike lane can lead to bicyclists' deaths.  According to Utah law, vehicles have to give bicyclists a three foot leeway when passing.  If a bicyclist is in the right hand lane, vehicles must move into the left lane to pass.  That would seem to be safer for bicyclists.  
  This proposal is similar to the 1300 East road diet that significantly increased pollution in the area.  But some of the residents like the increased parking that it allowed.  But when it leads to traffic backups of a mile, it results in air pollution that residents and bicyclists have to breathe.  Four lanes were safer on 1300 East for bicyclists.  Also, buses stopped pulling over because they couldn't get back into traffic after stopping.  So vehicles backed up even more!  
  (From Michael Clara's presentation) "In the fall of 2017, the Salt Lake City Transportation Division completed its 900 W. Road Diet project, spanning North Temple to 1700 South (2.5 miles). Glendale and Poplar Grove residents noticed an immediate increase in accidents along the corridor.
The 900 West Road Diet is a DISASTER because the Salt Lake City Transportation Division failed to meet the following standards for successful lane reduction projects:
1. The project satisfies the purpose and needs of all stakeholders. 
2. The project is safe for both the user and the community. 
3. The project is in harmony with the community. 
4. The project exceeds the expectations of both designers and stakeholders. 
5. The project involves efficient and effective use of the resources of all involved. 
6. The project is designed and built with minimal disruption to the community. 
7. The project is seen as having added lasting value to the community [11]"
  In other words, Salt Lake City has increased the hate and discontent in the west side of the City.  

  The ADU ordinance will have a public hearing at the same time (right after the CIP/road diet public hearing).  It increases density allowances in single family home areas, removes parking requirements and is claimed to threaten single family home neighborhoods. 
The main arguments against the ADU ordinance are: 
it is everywhere including in single family home areas;

parking requirements are eliminated within 2 blocks of a bus stop or if there is on street parking;

enforcement funding is missing;

AirBnb can use ADUs for short term rentals;

Owner occupied is impossible to enforce;

The SLC ADU ordinance is a threat to the stability and character of the City's single family home neighborhoods.

  Please consider providing comments to the City Council at the public hearings during the Tuesday formal SLC Council meeting.

INN BETWEEN HEARING AT 115PM TUESDAY
  The INN Between provides hospice, end of life care to the most vulnerable of our citizens.  Without the INN Between, over 50 homeless would die on the streets each year.  It also functions as a respite care facility to house those who have been recovering from a hospital stay and should not be without shelter.  It also provides housing for outpatient medical treatment of cancer and other serious diseases.  In short, it provides real charity care in Salt Lake City.
  But the facility also is caring for some homeless individuals who have never been able to be controlled or follow rules and have lived a life of criminal behavior.  Despite heroic efforts by Kim Correa, the Executive Director, to ensure that patients are not threatening or creating dissension in the facility and neighborhood, it should be no surprise that one or two of the patients will refuse to follow rules and they have created a concern for all neighbors in the single family home neighborhood (on Sherman).  Residents no longer feel that it is safe to allow their children to walk alone to the elementary school 2 blocks away.
  The reality is that it is almost impossible to tell a dying drug addict that they can't continue to use drugs as they die.  They will get drugs and they do get drugs.  It also has the potential to expand drug use in the neighborhood.  That is a source of concern in the neighborhood and it should be a source of concern to all Utahns.
  These problems will be multiplied when the new homeless shelters are opened.  The homeless that threaten neighbors can actually end up hurting the potential to help alleviate the homeless problems in Utah.  Utah and Salt Lake City should consider solutions to this neighborhood's concerns that has devolved into a no more talk, time to threaten lawsuits situation.  
  Whether the solution is more security or an on site police officer or kicking out the troublemakers or drug users or drug dealers, there should be a solution before the other shelters are open.  I urge the Legislature and City and County to study possible solutions, work with the neighborhood, the INN Between, medical professionals.
  At 1:15PM, on October 16, at the INN Between on 1216 E 1300 S, the homeless hospice, respite care and medical housing facility in the single family home neighborhood, there will be a Legislative hearing on various topics that include complaints by neighbors about the perceived threats to their children who are unable to walk to school alone anymore.
  The homeowners in the neighborhood are concerned about the facility which they believe is functioning as a homeless shelter.  The neighborhood and the INN Between are now threatening lawsuits to each other.  The INN Between has ordered all neighborhood residents to not participate in the community advisory committee meetings.  This is not a good situation.



OCTOBER 9, 2018

SLC MAKING MILK RUN OUT OF TRAX
SLC RDA EMPHASIZES WORKING WITH UDOT ON BICYCLES ON STATE ST
COMPLETE STREETS EXPONENTIALLY INCREASES COSTS TO REBUILD ROADS
SLC UTA SERVICE INCREASES IN AUGUST 2019
SLC SALARY CHART FOR 2019
TRAFFIC CALMING ON 300 WEST WILL IMPACT CAPITOL HILL
DAYLIGHTING 3 CREEKS $1.4 MILLION (1.9MIL TOTAL)
SEVEN CANYONS FOUNTAIN PLAN DESTROYS SCULPTURE
9 LINE SECTIONS MISSING
1700 SOUTH ROAD DIET WILL INCREASE POLLUTION


SLC MAKING MILK RUN OUT OF TRAX
  SLC RDA is still planning to spend over $500,000 on a 650 S. Main Street TRAX Station to encourage redevelopment in the area.  The total cost of the station will be close to $3 million since the last station about 10 years ago cost $2 million.  This will make a milk run of TRAX and discourage ridership.  
  Despite the fact that many workers in the downtown area must walk a mile or more after parking cars (if any) far away from 2 hour maximum and/or expensive parking, SLC wants to build projects instead of providing better transit service. 
  Also, the station is proposed to be across the street or a half block away from a proliferation of car lots.  The below is from the RDA packet on the issue:

650 S. Main Street Light tRail Station $ 558,000 None.
Subtotal - West Temple Gateway Fund Projects $ 558,000
In addition, such infrastructure improvements are identified in the West Capitol Hill Redevelopment Plan (1996), where it states development objectives for “urban amenities”, including the following:
• Improve the streetscape environment with features such as landscaped parking strips with street trees, adequate curb and gutter sidewalks, street center island medians, boulevard street and pedestrian scale street lighting, and designed gateway images.
• Provide for improved pedestrian circulation.
In addition, the RDA is required to allocate tax increment funds to the project as a term of the Project Area's extension (Interlocal Agreement for West Capitol Hill Redevelopment Project Area, 2013).
Funding will be utilized for construction of a new light rail station at 650 S. Main Street. Demand for the stop will come from the proposed 650 Main office development and potential redevelopment of the Sears property. The project aligns with the Downtown Master
Plan by improving transit access and addressing transit gaps between the downtown and surrounding neighborhoods. The project will also facilitate economic development around the station by providing a link to downtown and other major destinations. It is anticipated
that these funds would need to be supplemented by surrounding development in order to construct the station pursuant to actual cost estimates.

SLC RDA EMPHASIZES WORKING WITH UDOT ON BICYCLES ON STATE ST 
  SLC Council, sitting as the RDA, has emphasized working with UDOT, which owns and manages State Street, to create bike lanes on State Street (see downloads).  But, to put in bikelanes, parking needs to be removed, according to Jon Larsen, SLC Transportation Manager.  He said that there are many small shops that do not have off street parking and State Street needs parking.  I, and many others, believe that State Street can add bike lanes without removing traffic lanes or parking by removing most of the center medians that are unused.  Left hand turns would only be allowed at traffic lights or at fewer portions of State Street.
  Interestingly, Mr. Larsen said that parking could be removed on Redwood Road.  Ironically, UDOT has removed bikelanes further south in the County.  But the Redwood Road Corridor Study (see downloads) seems to allow it.  The Study also recommended 10 foot wide sidewalks.  All new building should require 10 foot sidewalks!  Pedestrians are more important than bicyclists, in my opinion.  And I am a former high mileage daily bicyclist.


COMPLETE STREETS MAY EXPONENTIALLY INCREASE COSTS TO REBUILD ROADS
  SLC is updating the Complete Streets (see downloads).  But the effort to ensure that all roads should be Complete Streets will exponentially increase the costs, well beyond the $87 million streets bond on the ballot.
  Transportation is worried about writing a memo everytime that a slurry seal is installed.  But Jon Larsen, the Transportation Manager, is worried about the work becoming a conflict when putting in a bike lane requires removing parking.  Although SLC does a Complete Streets review, during new road work, there are many missed opportunities between engineering and streets.  Engineering is doing so much work on so many streets, it is difficult for Transportation to analyze everything.
  Transportation pointed out that some streets are not able to comply with the Complete Streets standards.  1300 East was suggested as a good example where a bike lane would not be safe next to the grand canyon of a gutter system.  But the complete rebuild will allow for a bike lane to be installed.
  Jon Larsen said that parking versus bike lanes is often the issue for slurry seals.  Although Transportation reviews slurry seals through the lens of Complete Streets, the SLC ordinance does not require slurry seals to have a bike lane installed at the same time. 
  SLC has a goal to implement streets with separated bikelanes and fewer traffic lanes and traffic calming. The level of documentation multiplies if there is a controversy.  Councilman Kitchen appeared to push for more pressure to implement bike lanes.  Councilman Johnston asked if a road was getting a road diet would it be documented. Jon Larsen said yes.
  Jon Larsen also presented a new study that will, with a $20,000 match for a $100,000 grant, look at all streets building to building.  The goal is to understand the real Complete Streets issues including sidewalks.  It will look at all City streets and include 10 to 20 different types of streets.  It will take about 9 months.  Previous studies looked at curb to curb issues which ignored sidewalks.
  Councilman Derek Kitchen mentioned the recent UN report that recommended that cities should be designed to be walkable and urban.  Derek complained about the 2100 South failed attempt to implement a road diet and he implied that it led to a recent death.  Councilman Charlie Luke jumped on that comment and complained that Councilman Kitchen keeps bringing up the failure of implementing the 2100 S. bike lane.  He said that he doesn't always agree with the administration but that he supports the administration's decision.  He reminded the Council that there are very few east west streets that allow transfer between east and west sides of the City and pretending that every street is the same and that every street has the same number of cars is unrealistic.  He said that the 2100 South issue was not a political issue and that the street going from 4 lanes to 2 lanes to 4 lanes was not in accordance with Complete Streets.  Councilman Luke also pointed out that the death was of a pedestrian, not a bicyclist.  Council Chair mentioned that the issue is a more complicated and nuanced situation and there will be more 2100 South similar issues.  Wait until we get to the 1700 S. discussion next week!  At the end of the discussion, Derek invited Jon Larsen to ride a bike up 2100 South with him which resulted in the Chair suggesting that the "discussion" be taken upside.
  The Council also was told that there were issues that the Legislature may need to legislate.  These issues include:  "Motorized wheelchair users are most often legally considered to be pedestrians, but questions may arise whether motorized wheelchairs may also be used in bike lanes, especially protected bike lanes. Neither Utah nor Salt Lake City codes currently address this potential use. Some states, including Oregon and Rhode Island, have statutes that permit motorized wheelchairs to use bicycle lanes.
Utah statute is currently silent on the topic of skateboards, roller-skates, and other similar devices being used on roadways, other than to allow local governments to regulate these uses. Additionally, state law protects these users as “vulnerable users” in a recent statute providing that motorists must give at least three-feet of clearance to bicyclists, pedestrians, and others. The City’s current ordinances regarding skateboards, inline skates, and non-motorized scooters provide that these devices may be used in bike lanes while having the responsibilities of pedestrians – thus facing traffic rather than going with the follow of traffic."

SLC UTA SERVICE INCREASES IN AUGUST 2019
  I put the information on the SLC agreement with UTA on use of the increased sales tax for transit.  Note that there are several east west streets in the expansion of service that SLC wants.  Unfortunately, the increases in service will not be implemented until August of 2019.  And there are no north south routes like State Street and Redwood Road and 1300 East that are getting a span of service increase.  As I said above, there are many workers in the downtown area must walk a mile or more after parking cars (if any) far away from expensive parking.
  In addition, the Council has asked for studying increases in service on other routes including 400 South. The Council asked why electric buses and natural gas buses were not included in the agreement.  The agreement will need to be provided to UTA before their December 2019 budget (before November for public comment). 

SLC SALARY CHART FOR 2019
  I put the discussion information for the Salt Lake City Compensation Report in the downloads secion.  Note that, despite pressure from Council Chair Erin Mendenhall, the salary of the City Councilmembers will stay at $26,291.

TRAFFIC CALMING ON 300 WEST WILL IMPACT CAPITOL HILL
  SLC is planning 300 West streetscape improvements that will "Modify the streetscape character through landscape appearance to soften the appearance and lessen the impact of the roadway as a barrier to the neighborhood...Modify parking lanes along 300 West with curb extensions at intersections to allow for easier pedestrian crossings and to protect parked cars."
  The project will include "infrastructure improvements including street trees and landscaping, improved pedestrian crossings" and traffic calming from North Temple to 1000 North on 300 West.  If it is not done correctly, it will significantly increase the traffic that is inundating Capitol Hill.

DAYLIGHTING 3 CREEKS $1.4 MILLION (1.9MIL TOTAL)
  The effort by SLC to create a Three Confluences Creek (1300 South and 900 West) is underway but the added plan to daylight the rivers will cost an additional $1.4 million.  The total cost of the project is about $2 million.  The cost could go up if the adjacent garage is bought out.

SEVEN CANYONS FOUNTAIN PLAN DESTROYS SCULPTURE
  The contractor, CEM Aquatics, is recommending significant changes to the Seven Canyons Fountain in order to open it up again with the water features that are important to get the full effect.  The biggest changes are tearing out the rocks and stream beds!  The costs breakdown are below.  But all that is needed to restart the Seven Canyons Fountain is to have a sign that makes playing in the water prohibited.  The concern of the County Health Department is that dog feces may be in the water and babies sometimes are exposed to the water.  But babies are exposed to the grass in Liberty Park and it should be common knowledge that dogs do their business everywhere in Liberty Park.  We shouldn't close use of the grass because of it and we shouldn't close the Seven Canyons Fountain because of it.  

 The Council almost also added $120,000 to the Seven Canyons Fountain repair/refurbishment/renovation/restoration.  But Erin Mendenhall agreed to remove the $120,000 from the Seven Canyon's Fountain if  the Council would add money to fix the Fountain when the design is agreed to.


  The specific recommendations from the CEM Aquatics team are:
8. From CEM Aquatics – Rock/Rock-like Feature Safety Violations
The existing rock and rock-like features in and adjacent to the 7 Canyon stream beds are
in violation of the code as it relates to an Interactive Water Feature. The rocks appear to
be too tall, too closely spaced and too jagged to meet the minimum standards for
interactive play in water features. Our assessment is that it would take extensive changes
and reworking of the rock and rock-like & Canyon stream beds in order to make them
code compliant. Essentially they would need to be torn out and redone.
9. From CEM Aquatics – Water Feature Safety Hazards
The existing water feature has water falls, site walls, rocks, etc. that allow for fall
distances in excess of the building code requirements as well as sharp edges, and other
safety hazards. The code states “All parts of the interactive water feature shall be
designed, constructed, maintained, and operated so there are no slip, fall, or other safety
hazards, and shall meet the standards of the construction code adopted by the Utah
Legislature under Section 58-56-4”

The full packet discussion is:
Project #45 – Seven Canyons Fountain Design Solutions – Council Members asked what health
and safety problems were identified at the fountain. See Attachment VIII for a summary of the violations
and current issues. Health and safety issues relate to drowning hazards, disinfection systems, hot
synthetic turf in the summer and rock and water features not being up to current safety code standards.
a. Cost Estimates – In May 2017, the Administration worked with CEM Aquatics to identify two
options to resolve health and safety issues. The cost estimates below may need to be increased to
account for inflation and impacts of tariffs and the ongoing trade war. The Administration is
currently exploring an Option C with another contractor to only address Utah Code violations.
i. Option A ($795,000 to $895,000) – perform the necessary work to get the 7 Canyons
Water Feature code compliant with the state health code. This option leaves the upper
half of the fountain dry and opens the lower half with water.
Page | 3
ii. Option B ($1.85 million to $2 million) – upgrade and enhance the 7 Canyon’s Water
Feature in a new and unique way, while maintaining the history and integrity of the
original feature’s design and intent. This is a full re-build.
iii. Option C - PENDING
5. Project #46 – Fairmont Park Stream Access and Beautification – Council Member Fowler
asked how this project would impact the recent pond renovation. The Administration responded that the project would have a positive impact for bank stabilization, supporting native plant compositions and creating greater stream accessibility for kids and other residents to interact and play in the water (which is not allowed in the adjacent pond). The project is estimated to save $1,000 annually in future maintenance.
Summary of Issues at Seven Canyons Fountain in Liberty Park
From Salt Lake County Health Department:
1. Violation 4.12.1 Access Barriers – Required
As the "wading pool" area of the feature has at least 12 inches of standing water when the
feature is open and operational the feature is required to have an access barrier that is at
least 6 feet in height with a self-closing and self-latching gate to provide complete
perimeter security. Openings through the fence or barrier, shall be rigid enough to
prohibit a sphere greater than 4 inches from passing through it at any location. This is to
help prevent a drowning incident. Also violation of Utah State Pool Rule R392-302-14-
Fencing.
2. Violation 4.16.2 Outlets – Existing Pools
The "wading pool" area of the feature is not currently compliant with federal law--
Virginia Graeme Baker Pool and Spa Safety Act (VGBA)--as it only has a single main
drain with a drain cover that is also not VGBA compliant. Also violation of Utah State
Pool Rule R392-302-18-outlets.
3. Violation 4.28.4(iii) Interactive Water Feature – No Ponding
Water from interactive water feature ponds on the floor in the main pool area
approximately 12 inches deep while the feature is open and operating which is currently
a drowning hazard. Also violation of Utah State Pool Rule R392-302-31(6) (d)Special
Purpose Pools.
4. Violation 4.28.4(vi) Interactive water Feature – ORP Controller Required
Interactive water feature lacks required secondary disinfection system which shall be in
operation whenever the feature is open for use. Also violation of Utah State Pool Rule
R392-302-31(6)(f) Special Purpose Pools.
5. Violation 4.28.4(v) Interactive Water Feature – 3-Foot Wide Deck Required
Interactive water feature lacks a continuous unobstructed deck at least three feet wide all
the way around it. Also violation of Utah State Pool Rule R392-302-31(6)(c)
Additional Issues Identified by the Administration:
6. Salt Lake City Staff & KSL News – Hot Synthetic Turf
Synthetic turf has been placed in the landscaped area above the fountain to control
erosion and to prevent organic matter from entering the fountain area. The turf gets
extremely hot in direct sunlight during the summer months. See related news article
https://www.ksl.com/index.php?sid=45066889&nid=1171&title=artificial-turftemperatures-
too-hot-for-young-athletes-ksl-investigates
7. Salt Lake City Staff & CPTED Principles
Upper landscape area of the fountain is not CPTED compliant. There are many hiding
places that are conducive to crime and drug use. CPTED = Crime Prevention Through
Environmental Design
8. From CEM Aquatics – Rock/Rock-like Feature Safety Violations
The existing rock and rock-like features in and adjacent to the 7 Canyon stream beds are
in violation of the code as it relates to an Interactive Water Feature. The rocks appear to
be too tall, too closely spaced and too jagged to meet the minimum standards for
interactive play in water features. Our assessment is that it would take extensive changes
and reworking of the rock and rock-like & Canyon stream beds in order to make them
code compliant. Essentially they would need to be torn out and redone.
9. From CEM Aquatics – Water Feature Safety Hazards
The existing water feature has water falls, site walls, rocks, etc. that allow for fall
distances in excess of the building code requirements as well as sharp edges, and other
safety hazards. The code states “All parts of the interactive water feature shall be
designed, constructed, maintained, and operated so there are no slip, fall, or other safety
hazards, and shall meet the standards of the construction code adopted by the Utah
Legislature under Section 58-56-4”

9 LINE SECTIONS MISSING
  During discussion of the 9 Line Trail, the City Council was concerned about the lack of completion of the Trail.  Recent blog entries discussed the main issue, the 9th South train tracks that were the scene of the 999 bicycle rider death.  Unfortunately, SLC and SLCO are not prioritizing a safe overpass for bicyclists, pedestrians and wheelchairs.

The full packet information is:
7. Completing the 9-Line Trail – The Council asked how many sections of the 9-Line trail are
unfinished. The Administration provided the following response: “The only truly finished section is
between Redwood Road and 700 West. There are 4-5 unfinished sections, depending on how you slice
them, totaling a minimum of about 5.5 miles and a maximum of about 8.5 miles. These are listed from west to east and include a little about what we know or are doing at this point.” Transportation stated the existing maintenance funding level is sufficient but additional funds will be needed as more sections of the trail are completed. According to the 2018 9-Line Extension Study, the total estimated cost to complete the 9-Line is almost $21 million. However, this does not include potential land purchases that may be necessary. See Attachment XI for the full study and page 91 for cost estimates.
a. Surplus Canal to Redwood Road: 0.90 miles (including two potential new crossings at Indiana
Ave and at Redwood Road)
b. 700 West to Lincoln Street: 2.5 miles (includes the 300 West to West Temple Central 9th
section of the trail headed up by JP and currently looking for maintenance funds [capital funds
are secured])
c. Lincoln Street to 1300 East: 0.5, 0.75, and 0.81 miles, which are all three route options to be
built eventually between 1100 East and 1300 East (one is currently in design and pending a
budget increase request that was submitted about 3 weeks ago, to be decided in November or
December and to be potentially built in spring 2019)
d. 1300 East to Guardsman Way: 0.70, 0.50, and 0.64 miles, which are all three route options to
be built eventually east of 1300 East
e. Foothill Drive to Emigration Canyon: 1.16 miles (includes Arapeen Drive to This is the Place
western entrance section in front of Matheson State Park,

1700 SOUTH ROAD DIET WILL INCREASE POLLUTION
  The 1700 South road diet has polarized the community.   The issue has divided the community, much like the other attempted road diets of 2100 South and Sunnyside and the implemented road diets of 900 West and 1300 East.  SLC activist Michael Clara has been pointing out the inadequate planning for the 900 West that has led to a significant increase in accidents along 900 West.  The community is upset about the road diet but bicyclists think that it is a better road.  The downloads has the new CIP list and it has this comment on the issue from SLC: "Recommended for funding by the Sustainability Dept. Increases opportunities for active transportation, and has high potential to reduce vehicle miles traveled and associated pollutants. Increased connectivity, and bike and pedestrian safety."  Next week, at the October 16 SLC Council 7 PM formal meeting, there will be a public hearing on the issue. 



CIP DISCUSSION DROPS 1100 EAST ROAD PROJECT
  During discussion of the CIP projects, the 1100 East Road Project to repair the road by the Post Office and Hollywood Avenue, the Council dropped the project due to concerns about impacting traffic that use 1100 East as an alternate to avoid the 1300 East road project.  
 




OCTOBER 4, 2018
SPRAGUE LIBRARY REDESIGN HAS UNISEX SHARED BATHROOM!

SPRAGUE LIBRARY REDESIGN HAS UNISEX SHARED BATHROOM!
  In a surprise announcement, SLC Library Director Peter Bromberg has recommended that the Sprague Library bathroom be one bathroom with secure private stalls.  The water sinks would be shared in the open part of the restroom.
  The Director was warned that if a homeless person or a person that appeared to be a threat is in the restroom, no parent and probably no woman would want to use the private stalls.  The audience seemed to be very concerned about the issue.
  The Sprague Library will close by April 30, 2019 and hopefully reopen after 8 to 12 months of construction, by the end of the year.  The Library is still looking for alternative library space since the goal is to keep the Library services available to the neighborhood.  The Library is also looking at the Fire Station on Sugarmont that should be vacant by then.
  The Library still does not have parking for the Librarians so they will still have to use the underground questionable spaces below Bed Bath and Beyond.
  The Library will build a wall around the underground stairwell and raise the steps to the upper level patio so that further floods will not affect the underground level.  The cost will be around $4 million.




OCTOBER 3, 2018
SLC COUNCIL INCREASED DENSITY HEARING ON ADU OCT 16
SLC WATER RATE STUDY COMPARES WATER CHARGES IN UTAH
SLC TRYING TO WORK ON ROADS THAT ARE BEING USED AS DETOURS!
SLC PARKS TRYING TO CLOSE HANDBALL COURTS
SEVEN CANYONS SUMMARY SHOWS CONTRACTOR WANTS INCREASED COSTS AND SCULPTURE DESTRUCTION
900 WEST ROAD DIET SHOWS SLC DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO DO ROAD DIETS
LEGISLATURE TO HAVE HEARING AT INNBETWEEN OCT 16
SLC CIVIL PENALTIES ORDINANCE USELESS ON MOTELS
ALL PEDESTRIANS SHOULD CARRY FLASHLIGHTS AND HELMETS 


SLC COUNCIL INCREASED DENSITY HEARING ON ADU OCT 16
  The SLC Council seems determined to shove ADUs down the single family home neighborhoods, despite their opposition.  The biggest problems is parking requirements are significantly reduced and there is no real enforcement mechanism for what we have now.  It can take a year for a problem house to be forced to change, if ever.  I put the latest ADU file from the City in the downloads area.  It has many of the comments from citizens.  On page 80, there is a summary of the parking issues.  It says:
"Current parking requirement: requires one stall for the ADU. Parking requirements can be
waived if the principal dwelling meets the current parking requirement (two parking stalls per
single-family dwelling) and one of the following is satisfied:
o The property has on street parking in front of it; or
o The property is within ¼ mile of a transit line or bus stop."
  This is a serious change to the character of neighborhoods.  It is being driven by people who feel that we have too many cars and there is a high cost to free parking (lunch seminar by biggest proponent of the high cost of free parking tomorrow morning sponsored by SLCO Transportation).  They feel that it should be acceptable to park a block away!  
  The only good news is that the Council is slowing it down with the requirement (if it stays in through the final vote) of going through the conditional use permit process if it changes zoning density.  Hopefully, the SLC permit process and cost will also deter large scale increases in density in single family home neighborhoods.  
  There is one last chance to fight this monster.  On Oct 16, there will be a final hearing on the SLC ADU new ordinance at the 7PM SLC Council formal meeting in the 400 S. City Building.  Last chance!

SLC WATER RATE STUDY COMPARES WATER CHARGES IN UTAH
  I put the newest version of the SLC Water Rate Study in the downloads area and it compares the cost of water and sewer Countywide.  It deserves reading since SLC residents and businesses will eventually pay 100% more for sewer and water fees from two years ago.  The study also did not change the significantly increased costs for parks, open space and golf course watering.  They are still on 4 tiers and that is why some SLC open space properties have stopped watering!  Last year, the City tried to stop watering the City Cemetary (until complaints poured in).

SLC TRYING TO WORK ON ROADS THAT ARE BEING USED AS DETOURS!
  The number 10 rule of good government is do not do roadwork on streets that are planned to be alternate routes to avoid construction on nearby streets.  SLC does not seem to get this rule.  1300 East is undergoing a major two year reconstruction project (the mother of all street projects) and two of the nearby streets used as alternates are scheduled for CIP projects.  The SLC Council ignored the fact that 1100 East and 1900 East are being used as alternate routes and detours around the 1300 East project.  The 1900 East project impacts those trying to use 2100 East from the University to 2000 East in Millcreek.  Someone in the Administration needs to recognize the increase in pollution that will result from violating this rule of good government.

SLC PARKS TRYING TO CLOSE HANDBALL COURTS
  SLC Parks is going around to local community councils to try to justify a $700,000 project to pave a new path into the Liberty Park maintenance yard.  The project will close the well used handball and tennis ball wall that is north of the pool.  Despite objections by the Liberty Wells Community Council, SLC Parks showed up at another community council meeting trying to justify the project.  SLC Parks should actually listen to the residents of the area.  They plan on going to the Central City Community Council meeting tonight.
  This project is on the CIP list but not recommended.  There will be a hearing on October 16 at the SLC City Council formal meeting at 7 PM.


SEVEN CANYONS SUMMARY SHOWS CONTRACTOR WANTS INCREASED COSTS AND SCULPTURE DESTRUCTION
  I put the Seven Canyons Fountain Summary in the downloads section.  It shows why the interactive water feature was closed and how a contractor, CEM Aquatics, is recommending solutions.  It shows that their recommendation is to destroy the sculpture (in my opinion).  
"8. From CEM Aquatics – Rock/Rock-like Feature Safety Violations
The existing rock and rock-like features in and adjacent to the 7 Canyon stream beds are
in violation of the code as it relates to an Interactive Water Feature. The rocks appear to
be too tall, too closely spaced and too jagged to meet the minimum standards for
interactive play in water features. Our assessment is that it would take extensive changes
and reworking of the rock and rock-like & Canyon stream beds in order to make them
code compliant. Essentially they would need to be torn out and redone.
9. From CEM Aquatics – Water Feature Safety Hazards
The existing water feature has water falls, site walls, rocks, etc. that allow for fall
distances in excess of the building code requirements as well as sharp edges, and other
safety hazards. The code states “All parts of the interactive water feature shall be
designed, constructed, maintained, and operated so there are no slip, fall, or other safety
hazards, and shall meet the standards of the construction code adopted by the Utah
Legislature under Section 58-56-4”
  Someone, anyone, everyone, should tell SLC Parks to stop trying to spend more money in the process of destroying art.  This project is on the CIP list but seems to be just design.  There will be a hearing on October 16 at the SLC City Council formal meeting at 7 PM.

900 WEST ROAD DIET SHOWS SLC DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO DO ROAD DIETS
  I put the 1700 South road diet survey in the downloads section.  It shows that the proposal has polarized the neighborhood.  The number 9 rule of good government is do not polarize neighborhoods with projects. 
  There will be a hearing on this project and the othe CIP projects on October 16 at the City Council formal meeting at 7 PM.  The 900 West road diet that significantly increased traffic accidents shows that SLC DOES NOT KNOW HOW TO DO ROAD DIETS.
  Another CIP project is recommended to give $2 million to the 300 West traffic calming and road diet project that the City is hoping will get $12 million from the federal government.  In other words, the City is planning road projects involving traffic calming/road diets instead of basic road upkeep and filling potholes.  

LEGISLATURE TO HAVE HEARING AT INNBETWEEN OCT 16
  I put the Legislature's Social Services Appropriations Interim Committee hearing scheduled for October 16 at the INNBETWEEN in the downloads section.  If you want to comment, you must sign up a day ahead of time.  The announcement of the public meeting is:
Tuesday, October 16, 2018
1:15 p.m.
The INN Between
1216 East 1300 South
Salt Lake City, UT 84105
Enter through the main door on the east side of the building. Front desk staff will direct you to the downstairs conference room. Parking is available in the east lot or on the street.
  I expect many neighbors will have concerns that the Committee should hear about the INNBETWEEN.

SLC CIVIL PENALTIES ORDINANCE USELESS ON MOTELS
  KSL Investigates showed that the lauded and celebrated SLC Civil Penalties Ordinance does not work on motels.  Although there have been 366 cases investigated, none involved the problem motels.  The Gateway Inn was served with a notice of nuisance and hopefully that will work on crime magnet motels




SEPTEMBER 25, 2018
WILD PARTIES CAN BE FINED $300
SLC ADU ORDINANCE MAY INCREASE HOUSING COSTS
RACE IS ON TO REPLACE DEREK KITCHEN
SLC NEEDS CAMERAS SINCE THEY CAN'T HIRE MORE COPS
MORE PEOPLE USE PARLEYS TRAIL THAN S-LINE
SLC HAS 1900 CITY OWNED PROPERTIES!
PROPOSITION 3 HEALTHCARE EXPANSION NEEDED FOR LAW ABIDING CITIZENS
SEVEN CANYONS DOES NOT NEED ANYMORE SURVEYS
FAIRMONT PARK SOCCER PARKING SHOULD BE OPEN
SUGAR HOUSE FIRE STATION OPEN OCTOBER 10
SLC SCOOTERS DAMAGE PEDESTRIANS, RIDERS AND PLANTS!
DANNON YOGURT GETS $200,000 FROM SLCO AND POLLUTES NEIGHBORHOOD



WILD PARTIES CAN BE FINED $300
  The SLCPD are now suggesting that when you file a complaint or call dispatch about a noisy and wild party that has underage drinking or if it is out of control, you should tell dispatch that you are reporting a "problem house" and to have the officer call back.  When you talk to the officer, ask them to report the incident as a problem house and ask them to file a wild party/problem house report.  The fine for a problem house that is having a wild party is $300.  Landlords will clamp down faster when they know that there is a continuing problem.

SLC ADU ORDINANCE MAY INCREASE HOUSING COSTS
  In the effort to increase housing in Salt Lake City, the Council and Mayor are pushing a new ADU ordinance.  The biggest issues are that parking requirements will be minimal, there is still minimal enforcement of zoning and problem issues now and it now seems that the ordinance could increase housing costs.
  It turns out that with the Legislature making Airbnd and other house sharing apps legal State wide, the increase in auxiliary dwelling units/cottages/mother in law apartments could attract more owners to take advantage of the temporary renters that housing apps are catering to.  The result could be similar to what has happened in many other cities.  Housing costs could significantly increase since Airbnb allows residents to charge and get much more than regular monthly rents.
  The City should limit ADU approvals to 25 a year until they get a handle on how to respectfully and reasonably protect the character and livability of single family home neighborhoods.

RACE IS ON TO REPLACE DEREK KITCHEN
  Several individuals are thinking of and exploring the possibility of replacing Derek Kitchen on the SLC Council when he is elected (assuming he is elected) to the State Senate.  I have reminded them of my old blog post in March that indicated that it will depend on the State Senate if he can keep his position on the City Council.  As RDA Chair, he has a lot of influence in his area and the area around his business.  He has been a good representative of his City's citizens although I don't always agree with him.  He will be much better than his predecessor, Jim Dabakis, who still thinks that he should be considered to be mayor material.  Most any citizen can get more done at the Legislature than Senator Jim Dabakis has in the time he has been in office.  He only has sponsored one bill that has been passed, a carbon monoxide detector in schools bill.
  The March blog post with Justin Lee of the Lieutenant Governor's Office email is below:
AN DEREK KITCHEN BE BOTH A COUNCILMAN AND SENATOR YES, BUT
Several people have asked me whether Derek Kitchen, SLC Councilman for District 4 can be a State Senator at the same time.  It appears that he can but it will probably end up with a decision in the State Senate who can decide whether he can be seated, if he wins Senate 2 election this November.  I asked Justin Lee, the Director of Elections in the Lt Governor's Office the question.  Here is what he said:
I'm not aware of a definitive statement or opinion on that issue, although it comes up from time to time.
20A-9-201(2) says that an individual cannot be a candidate for more than one office in any election year. With the elections being on different years, that doesn't really apply. 
Article VI, Section 6 of the Utah Constitution says "No person holding any public office of profit or trust under authority of the United States, or of this State, shall be a member of the Legislature: Provided that appointments in the State Militia, and the offices of notary public, justice of the peace, United States commissioner, and postmaster of the fourth class, shall not, within the meaning of this section, be considered offices of profit or trust."  I have heard several opinions as to what this means, but no definite interpretation. 
Article VI, Section 7 reads "No member of the Legislature, during the term for which he was elected, shall be appointed or elected to any civil office of profit under this State, which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased, during the term for which he was elected."  This makes it seem fairly that legislator cannot run for local office, but does not definitely state that someone in local office cannot be a Senator. 
The most important section is probably Article VI, Section 10 which states "Each house shall be the judge of the election and qualifications of its members". This indicates it would really be up to the Senate to decide whether or not he could be seated in the Senate if he also wanted to keep his council seat. 
Justin Lee
Director of Elections
Office of the Lieutenant Governor
State of Utah
801.538.1129
justinlee@utah.gov
  Another issue is the Hatch Act (1939 not named for the Utah Senator) that bars state and local government employees from running for public office if any federal funds support the position, even if the position is funded almost entirely with local funds (Jason Miller The Unwise and Unconstitutional Hatch Act).  The Democratic Party of Utah sued to stop Ogden City Police Chief Jon Greiner from serving as State Senator.  Although the U.S. Office of Special Counsel agreed that the Chief took federal funds (for bulletproof vests for his cops), Greiner was still able to serve his four year term in the State Senate.

SLC NEEDS CAMERAS SINCE THEY CAN'T HIRE MORE COPS
  New information, this week, has SLCPD reporting that they have five mobile camera trailers with one brand new one from a grant and four older trailers that were recently overhauled (A few weeks ago, the City only had one operating trailer.).  The SLCPD is asking to "get the grant renewed to build a 6th trailer, and then overhaul the other three to newer standards.  These trailers are constantly tasked out based upon departmental priorities and then needs with in the community.  They cost roughly $53,000 new,  for a lower tier high end set up and have to be custom made, about 4-6 months based upon parts availability."
  Sgt Marshall from the SLCPD said "From my experience and from an operational standpoint, I personally would rather have more mobile trailers, and more covert camera systems than a fixed point camera in a park.  It is rare that the fixed  camera will pick up a felony level crime with enough clarity for good prosecution.  A fixed camera will pick up a bunch of misdemeanor level stuff that very likely will not get prosecuted. There are some arguments for fixed position cameras, but I would make them for street coverage on major downtown intersections and other major intersections within the city.  It comes down to needs and resources, I have need for mobile trailers to move around the city to help with hotspots and problems areas with a high level of visibility.  I have need for more covert systems to gather intel to help with drug, vice, and gang houses to build cases and secure warrants for those issues.  Fixed cameras in parks is more of a feel good solution to a problem.  Pioneer Park and the 500 West area is very heavily covered in cameras and not much of a deterrent at all to the crime, we don’t have the staffing/resources to monitor or react to real time events regardless.  I appreciate any and all support in these endeavors, but feel a fixed position camera in the parks would not be cost effective, nor a significant deterrent at this junction in time."
  My opinion is:
  The Pioneer Park cameras did not work and were recently removed.  But with today's technology, remote cameras can be always on and capturing video or even stop motion pictures of high definition and when a serious crime is reported, the images can be used for prosecution, or making prosecution easier.  
  Sgt Marshall is right.  Misdemeanor cases are not usually going to go to the trouble of using video.  But they can be used by prosecutors as leverage to plead out cases.  Also thefts and other crimes will not be even investigated unless there are images or evidence that can help police with a lead.  
  I want to emphasize this.  Police can use video or stop motion images recordings to start investigating when they would normally stop with a police report.  Police need more than a police report to justify going after so called minor crimes like drug dealing, bicycle theft, package theft, car breakins, or simple assaults.  
  These crimes are not being reported to police now.  This issue is City wide.  Crime victims are confused and disturbed and distressed about police and dispatch responses (dispatch especially) and they stop reporting crime.  Video and or images can help counter this attitude.
  The video does not have to be monitored, just recorded.  When officers want to investigate a report, they will have resources (an image or video) to start their investigation.  Recording a week's worth of one 4k image a second can be had with less than $500.  The infrastructure is coming with 5G anyway and the City can use that infrastructure to incorporate a very inexpensive solution.
  The best deterrent to crime is a visible police officer.  The next best (actually after adequate jail and DA funding) is knowledge that criminal actions will be recorded and can be used to catch and prosecute criminals.
  I urge all community councils to ask for park and crime area cameras to decrease criminal activity.  The community councils have wanted park rangers for years but the City does not have the funding and cameras can fill some of the need.  I also think that the administration should take the lead and show the citizens that they have a way to fight crime that is proactive and does not depend on the failure to hire more cops.
  Since every city in this County has a problem hiring enough cops, we need alternatives that can help fight crime. 

MORE PEOPLE USE PARLEYS TRAIL THAN S-LINE
  Over the summer and great Salt Lake City weather, it should have been noticed that the S-Line Trail, the Parleys Trail that follows the S-Line/Sugar House Streetcar is getting more use than the streetcar/TRAX train itself.  There are still about 1500 passengers a day riding the train.  But many more are using the adjacent Parleys Trail!  Despite the argument that many of the new apartments and residences that have been built in Sugar House over the last ten years have been built due to the many parks, including the Parleys Trail linear park, people still hear that the streetcar helped development.  I disagree and still complain about the $6 million that the County and UTA are spending on the double tracking in South Salt Lake City to increase the streetcar frequency to 15 minutes from 20 minutes.  If all of the costs, including double the cost of the 21st South bus service that goes to the UofU, you can come close to $5 cost per rider on the streetcar.  Most of that is subsidized by taxpayers since most use it as a transfer from other UTA routes.  It is more than that when you factor in the 30-40 year lifetime of rails.  The curves on TRAX are being replaced (7th South curve last year and 4th South curves this year) much earlier due to wear and tear.  
  The figures should be a cautionary tale for anyone thinking that spending billions on rail is a reasonable and financially sound idea.  Last year's LA study found that after spending over $15 billion on rail projects, the ridership stayed almost the same!  Utah should not make the same mistake.  But wait, the Mountain Accord/CWC committee chair has indicated that the billions for the rail and tunnel are still on the table and the County tax from SB136 can be used!!

SLC HAS 1900 CITY OWNED PROPERTIES!
  During a recent SLC Council meeting, it was mentioned that Salt Lake City has 1900 City owned parcels.  The administration is working on providing the Council with a "working list" and it is forthcoming.  The staff also pointed out that they gave the Council a list of 60 City owned properties but that is unofficial and not available to the public so far.  It is also a working list.  The Council had a little argument about what to call the reports so that they are not official.  "The 1900 plus parcels list is not validated."

PROPOSITION 3 HEALTHCARE EXPANSION NEEDED FOR LAW ABIDING CITIZENS
  I had an oped in the Deseret News a few days ago that pointed out that the Legislature has expanded healthcare for criminals and drug addicts but law abiding citizens should also be included in healthcare expansion.  Government should not be in the business of encouraging lawlessness.  The link to the Deseret News opinion piece is:
https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900032992/guest-opinion-some-law-abiding-citizens-cant-afford-health-care-prop-3-can-change-that.html
  Ironically, an argument against Proposition 3 healthcare expansion complained about most Medicaid recipients are unemployed childless adults.  But the Legislature did that when they expanded healthcare to chronically homeless!  Other arguments are that the program is unsustainable and we should not be committing ourselves to the federal government requirements.  Again, ironically, Utah gets a lot of money from the federal government and much of it requires a local taxpayer match.  For instance, UTA got $20 million if Utah taxpayers would put up $80 million to fund active/bicycle infrastructure!  UTA is trying to get $20 million for a bus garage that local taxpayers will fund with $50 million out of our pockets.  Utah gets federal money, and matches much of it for freeways, roads and even for military bases.  The Proposition 3 proposal will get more than ten times what Utah taxpayers put in.  It is the best potential federal funding plan ever!
  I also alluded to the fact that mental health treatment (which Utah is applying for but Proposition 3 will probably beat to implementation) is lacking due to a 50% cutback at the County level.  That affects those in the criminal justice system (could be over 80% of incarcerated) that need mental health treatment but do not get it when they are released.  Again, ironically, kidnapper Barzee would be helped (if at all) by more mental health treatment.
  Proposition 3 is the best thing to happen to Utah in a decade, even better than Mitt Romney.

SEVEN CANYONS DOES NOT NEED ANYMORE SURVEYS
  SLC Parks and Open Space has been suggesting a design review and survey to see what the community wants for the redesign of the Seven Canyons Fountain in Liberty Park.  It was closed due to health and safety concerns since kids and dogs were using the water features and safety could not be guaranteed.  All that the City had to do was rope it off from children and cement over the adjacent grass (which muddied up the filters).  Dogs go on the grass everywhere in parks but we do not close parks because of it.  Dogs should not be an issue in the Fountain.  And it shouldn't need millions to make it operational.  The City Parks has been trying to close the handball courts at Liberty Park and use the courts as a driveway for the maintenance yard and thinks that that should be a higher priority than the fountain.  The community disagrees.  When Kristin Riker suggested a survey to see what the community wanted, Council Chair Mendenhall said that the community does not need any surveys.  It should be clear that they want the Fountain operational again.  It was such a great feature that news stories about Liberty Park still use video of the operating Fountain for background about the Park!  The City Administration should stop futzing around and just spend a couple of hundred thousand to make the Seven Canyons Fountain operational NOW.

FAIRMONT PARK SOCCER PARKING SHOULD BE OPEN
  Yesterday, the final concrete pour was completed for the Fairmont Park Skate Park parking lot that is desperately needed for the Impact Soccer tournaments.  Staker Parsons, the contractor has said that the parking lot should be usable now!  But the City wants to keep most of it closed to store salt.  But snow is not due for another month?  And the soccer tournaments attendees and players and coaches are inundating 900 East and Simpson Avenue resident with cars!  The parking lot should be open now.  If it is not, call the City and complain.  We all want our City to work but sometimes we have to complain to make it happen.

SUGAR HOUSE FIRE STATION OPEN OCTOBER 10
  The Sugar House Fire Station Number 3 is scheduled to finally open October 10.  There will be an open house in the morning.  

SLC SCOOTERS DAMAGE PEDESTRIANS, RIDERS AND PLANTS!
  It is finally sinking in that Salt Lake City's efforts to bring in electric scooters to Salt Lake is a problem.  Hospitals are reporting lots of injuries, mostly minor.  And it appears that the electric scooters are not just a hoot for parents who want to give their children a cheap thrill ride.  Drunks like them too!  Many of the injuries reported are due to drunk driving of a scooter.  This may force the Legislature to ban all alcohol in the State!
  Many others have complained that the City is allowing them to be parked on park strips which are owned by the City.  But many respectful residents have made their park strips into mini parks and the idea of a scooter being thrown onto a garden of plants and in the process maybe breaking sprinklers, is horrifying.  But SLC has authorized it!  This is worse than parking a shopping cart on a park strip, I think.  But it is not as bad as a homeless person sleeping on a park strip.  They seem to be more respectful of gardens on the park strip.
  They are considered the herpes of the transportation world and they should not have been authorized without limiting their speed to 5mph since they are mostly used on sidewalks.  Pedestrians should not have to play dodgeball with scooters.  The only way to protect yourself and especially with kids downtown is to get in a car and drive!  SLC is asking for comments at: 

https://slcgov.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3ylDs8MlrWCAFMN



DANNON YOGURT GETS $200,000 FROM SLCO AND POLLUTES NEIGHBORHOOD
  Dannon Yogurt received a rebate on taxes after protesting about their appraisal earlier this year at the County Council.  The Council agreed and returned $200,000 to Dannon.  It turns out that Dannon is a bad neighbor and is smelling up the neighborhood with their manufacturing.  Someone should call Dannon and remind them that they should have used the $200,000 to install more effective filters in their plant.





SEPTEMBER 18, 2018

SLCO JAIL DASHBOARD SHOWS AVERAGE ARRESTS IS 11!
ENERGYSOLUTIONS MAKES NUCLEAR POWER QUESTIONABLE
SPRAGUE ELEVATOR IT'S ALIVE!
SLC MAY END UP WITH JUST ONE PAPER
ADUS ARE COMING BACK, FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS
BROWNING CRIME LORD FINALLY BUSTED
SLC BOND APPROVAL BY COUNCIL DESPITE ISSUES
CWC DEMANDS ALL ADVISORY MEMBERS AGREE ON PREVIOUS GOALS
CIP LIST HAS POLARIZING ROAD DIET AND 1100 EAST ROAD PROJECT
SMOKERS CAN'T GET ADDICTION TREATMENT
1300 EAST SEGO LILY PROJECT MAY BE AT RISK
PARLEYS TRAIL COMING CLOSER TO FINISHING
EASTSIDE POLICE PRECINCT 18TH SOUTH STATE?
ATTEMPT FOR SLC CHILD CARE STILL FAILING


SLCO JAIL DASHBOARD SHOWS AVERAGE ARRESTS IS 11!
  The Salt Lake County Council is getting a presentation on the new Jail Dashboard today.  I put the screenshots and presentation on the upper right downloads section.  The Dashboard is important.  It shows that the average prior bookings is 11!  Utahns should not have to put up with criminals using a revolving door jail to their benefit.  Salt Lake County is still not providing effective and efficient Jail funding.  
  Other data says that the average number of days in jail for current inmates is 107 days.  But the average length of stay (Prior 30 days) is 21.  The current jail population is 2,194.    60% are unemployed and 82% are classified as white.  91% are male.  363 are felony 1 offenses.  643 are felony 2 offenses.  838 are felony 3 offenses.  289 are misdemeanor A and 62 are misdemeanor B.
  THERE ARE SOME IN JAIL THAT HAVE OVER 100 BOOKINGS!!!  According to the presentation, over 9 have had over 100 bookings and two inmates had over 180 bookings!!
  Salt Lake County needs more public safety funding to fully open up Oxbow Jail and fund appropriate prosecution of criminals to keep them in jail.

ENERGYSOLUTIONS MAKES NUCLEAR POWER QUESTIONABLE
 EnergySolutions is attempting to get super fast approval of their request to accept 6000 tons of depleted uranium (DU) munitions/metal.  The deadline is October 9 for submitting public comment (see official notice below).  During the public hearing last week, HEAL UTAH said that depleted uranium is depleted uranium  ("there is no difference between the metallic and oxide forms of uranium") and that the present process of requiring a performance assessment for EnergySolutions should continue and the DU should not be allowed until the performance assessment is finished and finally approved (probably in the next few years).  The performance assessment started in 2010.
  But depleted uranium is not depleted uranium.  The material that EnergySolutions has been calling depleted uranium in the barrels from Savannah River Nuclear Weapons Plant, HAS BEEN IRRADIATED, and is now being called depleted uranium oxide by EnergySolutions and the new material that they want to store is depleted uranium metal (according to EnergySolutions).  That is, scientifically, two completely different materials, although the majority of the materials are Uranium 238.  The 2011 email from John Hultquist at Utah DEQ is below and goes into detail about the technitium and plutonium and neptunium in the barrels.  DEPLETED URANIUM IS NOT DEPLETED URANIUM!
  Depleted uranium metal from munitions is pyrophoric when in a humid environment and there is oxygen or air.  EnergySolutions has planned on grouting the bullet of DU (30mm) before burying it.  But, depending on the uranium form, uranium 3 oxygen 8 is not pyrophoric but it is usually a fine powder which is a danger if inhaled and requires more encapsulating for safety.  
  But uranium trioxide, the majority of the material in the barrels can be pyrophoric!  One of the reasons that DOE paid for and built a storage facility for the EnergySolutions barrels, according to DEQ staff, is that DOE found some barrels in water!  Salt Lake City gets about 15 inches of rain a year.     BUT, the preeminent study on depleted uranium storage from the 2000 Oak Ridge study said: "Disposal of DU at Envirocare (EnergySolutions' previous name) appears to be questionable."  The study recommended that depleted uranium be sent to Nevada's Nuclear Test Site which gets a third to a fifth of the rain that SLC gets.  They recommended a secure facility.  EnergySolutions is not very secure and a few miles from a major highway.
  The study pointed out that uranium metal from DU munitions, should not be stored if water or humidity is present.  The Nevada Test Site is an area of 3500 square kilometers with 3 inches per year off rain.  They also recommended that storage in the ground have a thicker cap to impede radon emanation.
  "The NRC has expressed concern about the viability  of near-surface disposal of DU in some specific chemical forms and about near-surface disposal of large amounts of DU in any  form. However, these concerns appear to be based on disposal scenarios involving  humid sites, which have  much greater limitations than the arid, controlled-access setting  at the NTS."
  "Depleted uranium  metal reacts slowly  with moisture under ambient conditions to produce DU oxides and hydrogen, such conditions are not likely  to be significant in arid climates and unsaturated soils.  Thus, it does not appear that hydriding  or hydrogen generation should be significant problems under disposal conditions expected at arid sites." (ITEMS IN QUOTES ARE FROM THE DEPLETED URANIUM STUDY FROM 2000)
  Interestingly, EnergySolutions said that there have been fires started while moving the barrels from sparks created from the loaders.  
 
UTAH DEQ NOTICE OF PUBLIC COMMENT 
Request from EnergySolutions for an exemption from R313-25-9(5) of the Utah Administrative Code 
The Waste Management and Radiation Control Board has directed the Director of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control to solicit public comment on a request from EnergySolutions for an exemption from R313-25-9(5) of the Utah Administrative Code. This rule requires a performance assessment as a condition of receipt and disposal of concentrated depleted uranium in excess of one metric ton total accumulation. 
The rule can be found at https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/code/r313/r313-025.htm#T9. 
EnergySolutions, a radioactive waste management company with facilities in Tooele County, Utah, wants to dispose of 2,668 cubic yards (approximately 6,000 metric tons) of solid depleted uranium metal from the disassembly of munitions from the Department of Defense. Under the rules, a performance assessment is required to demonstrate that the applicable performance standards will be met prior to disposal of more than one metric ton (total accumulation) of concentrated depleted uranium. If the exemption is granted as requested, EnergySolutions would not be required to complete a performance assessment. 
The public comment period to receive comments on EnergySolutions’ request will commence on September 6, 2018 and end on October 9, 2018. 
Documents related to this request can be reviewed at the following location: 
Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control 
Multi Agency State Office Building 
195 North 1950 West, 2nd Floor 
Salt Lake City, Utah 
For the public’s convenience, an unofficial copy of EnergySolutions’ request is available on the Internet at https://deq.utah.gov/waste-management-and-radiation-control/waste-management-radiation-control-public-notices. 
Written comments will be accepted if received by 5:00 p.m. on October 9, 2018 and should be submitted to the address below. Comments can also be hand delivered to the Division address above and must be received by 5:00 p.m. on October 9, 2018. 
Scott T. Anderson, Director 
Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control 
Department of Environmental Quality 
P.O. Box 144880 
Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-4880 
Comments can also be sent by electronic mail to: dwmrcpublic@utah.gov. Comments sent in electronic format should be identified by putting the following in the subject line: Public comment on EnergySolutions’ request for an exemption. All documents included in comments should be submitted as ASCII (text) files or in pdf format. All public comments will become of the official administrative record for purposes of judicial review. 
Page 2 of 2 
For further information, call Don Verbica or Helge Gabert of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control at (801) 536-0200. In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, individuals with special needs (including auxiliary communicative aids and services) should contact Kimberly Diamond-Smith, Office of Human Resources at (801) 536-4285, TDD (801) 536-4284 or by email at kdiamondsmith@utah.gov.
The last e-mail from John Hultquist on the Radiation Control Board/DEQ staff is:

On 1/12/11, John Hultquist <jhultquist@utah.gov> wrote:
> Mr. Chapman:
> Per our discussion on Tuesday, January 12, 2011, the depleted uranium
> material in barrels out at the Clive disposal facility are not reprocessed
> nuclear fuel rods. The Savannah depleted uranium trioxide material was
> produced during the manufacturing of nuclear materials (primarily for
> nuclear weapons purposes).  Uranium target materials were irradiated to
> produce plutonium for the nuclear weapons program. These irradiated targets
> went through two processing cycles to remove the vast majority of fission
> isotopes.  However, not all of the fission isotopes and plutonium was
> removed from the depleted uranium. A small fraction of the technetium and
> other radioactive materials remained with the depleted uranium. In addition,
> I have inspected the manifest and they identify Technetium-99, Plutonium
> 238,239,240,241 and 242, and Neptunium 237, and of course Uranium 238. As
> far as the military and DU littered from their ammo all over their west
> Desert target range, I cannot confirm or deny your statement. Please feel
> free to contact me if you have further concerns. Thank you.
> John Hultquist

SPRAGUE ELEVATOR IT'S ALIVE!
  The Sprague Library elevator works!?  The Library's "elevator company made some adjustments, and in a follow up email wrote,
"We had some valve and hoistway magnet issues that we have adjusted and believe are resolved. I apologize for the inconvenience that this has caused to the staff and patrons of the library. Unfortunately it is common that we have a few bugs that need to be worked out on newly modernized elevators"
The elevator passed fire inspection and is safe to use.  The fire department may have suggested an out of order sign be placed on the elevator immediately following the glitch, but they have not indicated that the elevator is unsafe or should not be used."
  Use at own risk.  Again, the Library reconstruction will not occur until next year due to the extensive engineering challenges to keep the Library flood safe.

SLC MAY END UP WITH JUST ONE PAPER
  Lost in the layoffs at the Salt Lake Tribune is a comment that Paul Huntsman made during the layoff meetings that implied that in the 2020 Joint Operating Agreement negotiations, there is a potential that only one newspaper will end up being printed in Salt Lake City!  

ADUS ARE COMING BACK, FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS
  During last week's discussion on Accessory Dwelling Units (that the Council likes calling them cottages) had several issues came up that may be a problem for single family home residents.  The Council is discussing waiving parking requirements if there is on street parking or if the ADU is within 1/4 mile of a transit stop!  They are discussing allowing a driveway to satisfy ADU parking.  This could be a brew ha ha type issue for communities.  Also short term rentals need to be addressed.
  More importantly, there is no added enforcement to ensure that the adjacent residents and businesses are not impacted.  I put the presentation in the downloads section.
  "One of the issues with the conditional process is that a conditional use is required to be approved if impacts can be mitigated. Conditional uses in the city are required to go through an early notification process and be presented to community councils. Often times it is stated that a community does not  support an ADU and that it should be denied. Legally the city cannot deny a conditional use based on lack of support. The only way a conditional use can be denied is if there is a detrimental impact that cannot be reasonably mitigated.  The conditional use process may not appease all concerned stakeholders. The Planning  Commission cannot consider “public clamor” when considering a conditional use. Public clamor can be summarized as emotional or baseless opinion on a matter. Examples of public clamor include statements like “this proposal will lower my property value” or “this proposal will make it impossible to drive up and down my street.” These are opinions that are not typically backed up by any facts.  Conditional uses legally have to be approved if a reasonable, detrimental impact can be mitigated. Mitigated means reduced and does not necessarily mean eliminated or even substantially eliminated. This has been determined through case law in Utah. HB 377 Land Use Amendments is a proposal before the Utah Legislature to codify this by adding the following statement to state code section 10-9a-507(2)(a)(ii):
The requirement described in Subsection (2)(a)(i) to reasonably mitigate anticipated detrimental effects of the proposed conditional use does not require
elimination of the detrimental effects.  For example, if a neighbor raised a concern that a dumpster location for a business is right next to their fence and is concerned about the odor, overflow of garbage, and the dumpster attracting rodents, then the Planning Commission can require the dumpster to be located further from the property line to lessen the detrimental impacts of the use.  The conditional use process is a good way to inform the community about development proposals and identify potential impacts. It also establishes a “record” of decision making that is kept forever and used during an appeal  process. These considerations often outweigh the negatives of the conditional use process.  The conditional use process does provide the city with additional enforcement tools if an owner of an ADU violates any applicable regulation or condition of approval. It does not make it easier for the City to deny a conditional use for an ADU because it is highly likely that any detrimental impact could have conditions imposed that would reduce detrimental impacts."
  In other words, the City is planning on using the conditional use process for R1 single family home area ADU applications in order to help decrease "real" negative impacts on single family home neighborhoods.  It would add 60 to 90 days to the approval process.

BROWNING CRIME LORD FINALLY BUSTED
  After a long term investigation, one of the Browning and 1300 South/State area's most infamous crime supporters on Browning Avenue, was arrested in a SWAT raid for selling spice.  He has also had complaints of assaults and bicycle sales with his chop shop.  Unfortunately, as mentioned above, the jail won't hold him for long.

SLC BOND APPROVAL BY COUNCIL DESPITE ISSUES
  Salt Lake City Council will have their final public hearing on the $87 million bond on the ballot tonight but they will also vote to finalize it on the ballot.  I am fighting against it because it is a way for government to get and spend more money.  About 5 years ago, the City Council repurposed the $8.4 million tax increase from the previous year for street maintenance and used it for salary increases, including the Councilmembers.  I think that was wrong and the City's streets are suffering due to that decision.  The City Council blames former Mayor Becker but that assumes that the Council is powerless.  The recent actions of the City Council in approving the State's takeover of Inland Port/Northwest Quadrant shows that the Council is not powerless. 
  In addition, the Salt Lake City Council asked for and got a tax increase that the County voters voted down but the County Council approved this year that provides funding for roads, in addition to 40% for UTA (starting next July for UTA but the County increased it starting in October).  AND the City Council increased sales taxes for roads, police (not being increased in reality), affordable housing (nothing done with $20 million from 3 years ago), and transit (but UTA will get 40% of the new County taxes!)!!  There will also be, eventually, a doubling of the sewer and water fees and also a property tax increase due to the Legislature removing the property tax valuation limit.  
  In other words, Salt Lake City 

 So Salt Lake City will have increased funds for streets maintenance.  One of the big issues and concerns is the lack of listing of possible projects that the funding increases will fund.  It is possible that, with all of the money becoming available, that the Council will push for pet projects and not use all of the funds for maintenance.  There is no guarantee that all of the funds will be used for basic maintenance and, as governments like to do, there is a tendency to use funds for monuments to elected officials and beautification and traffic calming projects.  Roads should be brought up to basic service levels before trying big projects to make them pretty or decreasing travel lanes. Every time Salt Lake City suggests decreasing travel lanes, no matter how beneficial it could be, the neighboring communities become polarized.  Ironically, 1700 South (see below) appears to be planned for a road diet, on today's agenda but the public hearing will take place next month.

CWC DEMANDS ALL ADVISORY MEMBERS AGREE ON PREVIOUS GOALS
  The Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) is creating a Stakeholder Council that will ensure that those who will be affected by the CWC will have a voice in the process.  But "As a condition of being appointed, Stakeholder Council members agree to support a consensus-based process for issues impacting the CWC's area, share information, and collaborate with other stakeholder council members."
  This is a laughable requirement for an advisory committee and is an effort to muzzle community opposition against the Mountain Accord and the follow on CWC.

CIP LIST HAS POLARIZING ROAD DIET AND 1100 EAST ROAD PROJECT
  The new CIP list (in the downloads section upper right) has several new approved by the Council projects including the 1700 South road diet/lane reconfiguration that is polarizing the Ballpark Community Council.  The Chair of Liberty Wells asked their community about the issue and they supported the lane reconfiguration.  The Chair, Bill Davis, was also chair of Ballpark CC until two months ago.  I put the latest CIP Impact Fees presentation in the downloads section.
  The 1100 East project, if approved will destroy one of the few alternative routes to avoid the 1300 East years long project.  The Sugar House Community Council has asked that the project on 1100 East be limited to pothole repair.
  CIP applications are being taken through September 28 at:
https://www.slc.gov/blog/2018/08/17/salt-lake-citys-capital-improvement-program-is-now-accepting-applications-for-funding-public-infrastructures/
  It is important that applicants understand that the City is changing the CIP system to be year round so that it doesn't end up with a bunch of projects at the end of the year.

SMOKERS CAN'T GET ADDICTION TREATMENT
  One big limitation of addiction treatment is the fact that most drug addiction treatment programs do not allow tobacco use.  But nicotine addiction is even harder to kick and by limiting or trying to stop tobacco use, it seems to be leading to the significant turnover in addiction treatment beds.  We are still waiting, after a year, to see how our treatment program is working.

1300 EAST SEGO LILY PROJECT MAY BE AT RISK
  The new million dollar Sego Lily design and art project that is in Sugar House Park just east of 1300 East, seems to have not included an appropriate drainage system.  So there is a chance that the whole system could be destroyed by increased water pressure from lack of drainage.  This was a bad decision that could cost the City and County hundreds of thousands of dollars.

PARLEYS TRAIL COMING CLOSER TO FINISHING
  The design for the continuation of the Parleys Trail is coming closer to finishing.  The South Salt Lake portion from State Street to 300 West is being designed and is 60% finished.  When finished, it will be implemented but South Salt Lake City needs funding for plantings.  The 900 West portion will require a long bridge over the Jordan River and that will require the Corps of Engineers to analyze and approve the design.  That could take one or two years.  When finished, the Trail is be an important part of one of the biggest, longest trail systems in the U.S. 

EASTSIDE POLICE PRECINCT 18TH SOUTH STATE?
  Today, the City Council was told that the closest that they could get to finding property for the Eastside SLC Police Precinct is property around 18th South and State Street (100 East)!  The attempt by the City to find property around Sugar House would cost around $8 million.  So the City is still looking for property around Sugar House.  Note that the similar efforts to find property for another downtown park has taken 5 years and is still in process.

ATTEMPT FOR SLC CHILD CARE STILL FAILING
  SLC Council was told today that the City's attempts to provide City employees with a child care service have stalled.  The City will continue to work on the effort.  The attempt to use the Library failed due to the need for extensive earthquake security work.





SEPTEMBER 10, 2018
JUVENILE GANG CRIME WAVE
HOUSING STORY IN SLTRIB DOES NOT TELL WHOLE STORY
THREATS TO SOCIETY CONSTANTLY RELEASED FROM SLCO JAIL
CAMERAS SHOULD BE IN ALL PARKS
UTAH HIGHWAY PATROL TARGETING CRIMINAL SHOPPING CARTS
MICHAEL G KAVANAGH SLC GOLDEN AGE RADIO DJ DEAD
ENERGYSOLUTIONS IS CLUELESS ABOUT DEPLETED URANIUM


JUVENILE GANG CRIME WAVE
  The SLCPD has identified a significant threat to SLC residents and businesses in a gang of 16 juveniles that has participated in 6 armed robberies in the last two months.  The gang is located around 1500 S. and West Temple.  It has been seen in Fairmont Park and at Liberty Park.  The gang has had a total of 21 arrests in the last two months!  The Police also had to disrupt a party at their house recently.  

HOUSING STORY IN SLTRIB DOES NOT TELL WHOLE STORY
  Tony Semerad had a great story in the Salt Lake Tribune on a new SLC housing dashboard.  The City put housing statistics and rental and housing costs by area on the dashboard.  The story is at:
https://www.sltrib.com/news/2018/09/09/having-trouble-finding/
  I wish that we were doing better on housing but figures the City gave me, see below, show that we are doing much worse than 2 years ago.  I asked the City Council a few weeks ago to work with the administration to fine tune the impact fees which doubled for housing units and may be hurting housing starts.  Although permit time has been cut in half, housing starts are half of what they were two years ago. 
  The issues are more complicated than just impact fees. Even ADUs won't help.  There will be a limit on ADUs (the previous proposal had a limit of about 25!) and even before only two were applied for.  The cost to build an ADU in accordance with City requirements is $40,000 to $90,000!  Not many people are willing to spend that much money to get a little extra rental money.
  I am holding out hope for State Street, which was one of the reasons that SLC pushed a CRA for the area; it has the best potential for housing.  But it has taken 4 years to get off the ground and it took 20 years for Sugar House housing to be built.  That is not a good sign.  A good form based design should encourage rapid development of State Street.
  The figures that SLC provided in May showed that:
Pending issuance: 11 single-family homes, 0 duplexes, 69 condos and 602 apartments.
FY to May issued permits: 37 single-family homes, 0 duplexes, 38 condos and 353 apartments.
FY 2016-17 built: 63 single family-homes, 14 duplexes, 49 condos and 2322 apartments.
FY 2015-16 built: 47 single-family homes, 0 duplexes, 0 condos and 1183 apartments.

THREATS TO SOCIETY CONSTANTLY RELEASED FROM SLCO JAIL
  Last week saw a typical example of the disfunction of the Salt Lake County public safety system.  An obviously deranged man was arrested several times in a month and quickly released from jail.  After being released from jail (for trying to kidnap a baby!), he tried to kidnap a woman!  
  We have been fighting for years about the inadequate public safety funding at Salt Lake County.  The jail and the DA are still underfunded.  Almost every week, I report on criminals being released by the revolving door jail.  Police often see the criminals they arrest walk out of jail while they do the paperwork!  150 of Operation Leaf Blower (the term SLCO Police Chiefs call the Rio Grande effort) arrestees have been arrested 5+ times!  
  The DA asked for 6 prosecutors and 600 beds.  We had to fight to even get 2.  We only got 300 beds.  One pod at the jail is still not able to open.  And even if it does, Mayor McAdams insists that we can't arrest our way out of it and he does not think that the criminals should be in jail.  He is trying to return the 300 out of County jailed inmates to SLCO Jail!  So SLCO will not get any extra jail beds!  And threats to society will continue to be quickly released!
  Citizens blame the police but it really comes down to not enough jailbeds and the repurposing of the $9.4 million jail bond a few years ago.  The Salt Lake County budget is going to be discussed in the next month and released by the end of October.  This is the time to tell the County Mayor and Council that we need more adequate public safety funding.  The Salt Lake City Police share the frustration of the citizens impacted by crime that is visible everyday.  The psychological impact to police when they can't keep the criminals in jail is significant.  Some may say that we can't arrest our way out of this but we are way beyond "we can't arrest our way out of this".  This should be the highest priority for Salt Lake County.
THE COUNTY REVOLVING DOOR JAIL HAS TO STOP

CAMERAS SHOULD BE IN ALL PARKS
  The Salt Lake City Police have almost given up on trying to remove homeless from City parks.  They have realized that when they push them out of the parks, they go into residential and business areas and crimes of opportunity increase.  Many have suggested that all parks need to have a park ranger.  But the high cost and the proliferation of pocket parks is preventing that solution.  Cameras could provide an alternative.  Pioneer Park has changed many times over the past few decades in attempts to remove the homeless who engage in criminal behavior.  The homeless criminals are still there and sometimes, one can see a pile of bikes in a makeshift bicycle chop shop!  Pioneer Park should install cameras and test their use by the SLCPD to monitor and reduce criminal behavior.  Their use and test could provide guidance to full implementation of cameras in all parks, even pocket parks.
  Fairmont Park should also have a remote camera installed.  Since the Police can't park in the torn up parking lot now, and the City Parks Department discourages driving on sidewalks (that could result in damage to sprinklers), cameras would seem to be required.  

UTAH HIGHWAY PATROL TARGETING CRIMINAL SHOPPING CARTS
  In an effort to practice quality of life enforcement, the Utah Highway Patrol is targeting shopping carts that are used by homeless to cart all of their belongings.  The enforcement has been targeting the explosion of homeless around the Main Library and just west of the Public Safety Building (ironic!).  When the Highway Patrol dumps all of the homeless belongings on the ground, they unintentionally encourage the homeless to stay there since they can't move their belongings easily!  The Highway Patrol uses a private company to collect and pick up the shopping carts to deliver them to their stores.  (I wonder if shoppers know and want to use a shopping cart that the homeless have used!?)  
  This practice has been tried many times in the past few years.  Former Mayor Becker had Police Chief Brown enforce quality of life laws but at least he gave the homeless a garbage bag for their belongings!  One of the interesting problems that could develop in the push to remove homeless is if the homeless refuse to leave their belongings and the police try to arrest them.  The police would then have to collect their belongings and store them for 90 days in police storage.  Taking the belongings to storage (far west side of SLC) and cataloging the items would/could take hours!  I am not sure that police want to do that.
  So if you are wondering what is causing the proliferation of homeless around the Main Library, it is encouraged by the quality of life enforcement effort (inadvertently).


MICHAEL G KAVANAGH SLC GOLDEN AGE RADIO DJ DEAD
  Michael G Kavanagh, one of several DJs during Salt Lake City's golden rock and roll era, has died.  Michael and the other DJs helped many of us endure the tumultuous 60s and 70s.  They were our friends and they provided a lot of comfort to us.  It wasn't just the music.  It was the DJs.  
  Michael cared about us.  He comforted those who lost loved ones or had troubles.  He did that on and off the radio.  His passing is a great loss to those of us who used to think that they were more important than the President of the United States.  Michael also was a fixture at the Sugar House Community Council and important to the facilitation of the Fairmont Skate Park.  He continued to care about kids until the end.
  For more about Michael and the famous DJs, see:
https://www.sltrib.com/news/2015/09/15/whatever-happened-to-knak-and-kcpx/
https://www.deseretnews.com/article/600140235/DJs-of-yesteryear-were-easier-to-reach-by-phone.html
https://www.deseretnews.com/article/647729/Whatever-happened-to----.html
https://cosmicaeroplane.wordpress.com/2016/05/09/slc-am-radio-b-c-before-cosmic-aeroplane/

ENERGYSOLUTIONS IS CLUELESS ABOUT DEPLETED URANIUM
  EnergySolutions effort to bid on a contract to dispose of an unusually large amount of depleted uranium munitions has shined a light on the confusing labeling of the depleted uranium (DU) barrels that ES accepted in Utah (before Governor Huntsman put a stop to it).  ES used to call those barrels DU but now is calling them "DU oxide".  This still is mislabeling in my opinion.  The barrels contain nuclear weapons waste from Savannah River Nuclear Weapons Plant!
  The large amount of DU munitions that ES is trying to store in the Clive, Utah facility is questionable since they have not proven that they know what it is they have.  The former CEO thought that you could grow vegetables in the stuff!  DU munitions may not be as dangerous as the stuff in the barrels but it is like super lead and ES should not be allowed to store it.
  I had an oped in the sltrib at:
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/09/09/commentary/
  In summary, EnergySolutions should not be asking for a quick exemption from Utah Aministrative rules R313-25-9 (5) for disposal of solid metal depleted uranium penetrators.  Several recent news stories implied that the solid metal uranium 30mm penetrators are similar to the depleted uranium oxide in the barrels.  Confusion may be generated by the same names being given to two totally different wastes.
  More specifically, the main issue is that the material that EnergySolutions calls depleted uranium oxide has gone through a reactor and, as ES has said, is much more dangerous than the depleted uranium metal.  But EnergySolutions keeps denying that the depleted uranium oxide has gone through a reactor.   The depleted uranium oxide, in the barrels that came to Utah from the Savannah River Site, according to the manifest, contain depleted uranium (U238), Plutonium 238, 239, 240, 241 and 242 (Plutonium 240 increases in radioactivity 5 times in 100 years.), Technetium 99, Neptunium 237 and other actinides introduced when exposed to fission neutrons.  The depleted uranium used in metal penetrators is Uranium 238 which has had most of the unstable and fissionable uranium removed which reduces radioactivity by 40%, has not gone through a reactor.
  Until EnergySolutions makes it clear that it knows the difference in actinides and other dangerous radioactive materials in the depleted uranium oxide versus depleted uranium metal, ES should not be rushing into asking for a quick exemption to depleted uranium rules.  It should also make it clear in any press releases so that the news media is not confused by the two totally different items.  There is too much of a chance that ES will mix up the two different materials and claim that they are essentially the same.  ES has done this before.
  I am a former nuclear engineer and I have worked with depleted uranium penetrators (Phalanx at China Lake).
  Please consider telling Utah DEQ that ES should not be accepting more DU.  The public comment period ends October 9.  The official notice is:
Request from EnergySolutions for an exemption from R313-25-9(5) of the Utah Administrative Code
The Waste Management and Radiation Control Board has directed the Director of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control to solicit public comment on a request from EnergySolutions for an exemption from R313-25-9(5) of the Utah Administrative Code. This rule requires a performance assessment as a condition of receipt and disposal of concentrated depleted uranium in excess of one metric ton total accumulation.
The rule can be found at

https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/code/r313/r313-025.htm#T9.
EnergySolutions, a radioactive waste management company with facilities in Tooele County, Utah, wants to dispose of 2,668 cubic yards (approximately 6,000 metric tons) of solid depleted uranium metal from the disassembly of munitions from the Department of Defense. Under the rules, a performance assessment is required to demonstrate that the applicable performance standards will be met prior to disposal of more than one metric ton (total accumulation) of concentrated depleted uranium. If the exemption is granted as requested, EnergySolutions would not be required to complete a performance assessment.
The public comment period to receive comments on EnergySolutions’ request will commence on September 6, 2018 and end on October 9, 2018.
For the public’s convenience, an unofficial copy of EnergySolutions’ request is available on the Internet at https://deq.utah.gov/waste-management-and-radiation-control/waste-management-radiation-control-public-notices.
Written comments will be accepted if received by 5:00 p.m. on October 9, 2018 and should be submitted to the address below. Comments can also be hand delivered to the Division address above and must be received by 5:00 p.m. on October 9, 2018.
Scott T. Anderson, Director
Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control
Department of Environmental Quality
P.O. Box 144880
Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-4880
Comments can also be sent by electronic mail to: dwmrcpublic@utah.gov. Comments sent in electronic format should be identified by putting the following in the subject line: Public comment on EnergySolutions’ request for an exemption. All documents included in comments should be submitted as ASCII (text) files or in pdf format. All public comments will become of the official administrative record for purposes of judicial review.
For further information, call Don Verbica or Helge Gabert of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control at (801) 536-0200. In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, individuals with special needs (including auxiliary communicative aids and services) should contact Kimberly Diamond-Smith, Office of Human Resources at (801) 536-4285, TDD (801) 536-4284 or by email at kdiamondsmith@utah.gov.




AUGUST 28, 2018
SLCO JAIL TURNS AWAY ANYONE CLAIMING A MEDICAL ISSUE
OPERATION RIO GRANDE RESULTS 150 HAVE MORE THAN 5 ARRESTS
CRIME IS NOT REPORTED TO KEEP LOWER INSURANCE RATES
UTAH LAKE WATER IS IN SALT LAKE COUNTY STREAMS
SPRAGUE LIBRARY ELEVATOR EATS LIBRARIANS
TIP APPROVED BY WFRC WITH LOTS OF QUESTIONABLE PROJECTS



SLCO JAIL TURNS AWAY ANYONE CLAIMING A MEDICAL ISSUE
  Last week, I mentioned that a counterfeiting ticket criminal was not arrested due to a medical issue that would cause the jail to refuse to book him.  It appears that the issue is more serious than just that one person.  In the past, the Salt Lake County Jail has decreased intake/bookings by having the nurses check the arrested before they are booked.  Any concern on their part will result in the refusal to book the arrested into jail.  In some cases in the past, the jail used the nurses to decrease the bookings!  
  Career criminals know that they can stop their booking by just saying that they have chest pains.  That forces the officer that arrested them to take them to the emergency room at a hospital!  The nurses seem to be very liberal in their diagnoses that end up refusing booking into the jail.  
  In other words, Salt Lake County is trying to not arrest criminals that could cause too much medical cost for the County!  Salt Lake County will be discussing the new budget for the Jail and Sheriff in the next two months.  Please let the County Council and Mayor know that you want more adequate public safety funding.

OPERATION RIO GRANDE RESULTS 150 HAVE MORE THAN 5 ARRESTS
  In the celebration for the one year anniversary of Operation Rio Grande, the stats showing thousands of arrests did not show that less than 30 were sent to prison.  Many more, over 150, had more than 5 arrests.  In other words, Salt Lake County still has a revolving door jail.  With just one pod open at Oxbow and any open beds being populated by the incarcerated returning from other county jails, Salt Lake County criminals are almost getting a free ride.  The "we can't arrest our way out of this" philosophy is still operating in the County.  I think that we are way beyond we can't arrest our way out of this.

CRIME IS NOT REPORTED TO KEEP LOWER INSURANCE RATES
  Crime in the South Track around State Street north of 2100 South (North Track is the SLCPD term for North Temple crime magnet area) is significantly impacting residents and businesses.  It is to the point now that residents and businesses are NOT REPORTING CRIME since it is so bad that it will make insurance rates go skyhigh or be cancelled.  That is why residents are frustrated.  The incidents below are from just one small area around 1300 South and State:
  A teenager was killed this week in the area that made the news.  There was another murder about a block away last month. The rest of the crimes did not make the news.
  The bicycle chop shop in Apartment 9 at 204 Browning Ave. seems to be continuing.  The occupant has many stolen bikes in his apartment and gets into fights with people who come by to check out bikes.  A woman was beaten severely with a metal rod by the occupant of Apartment 9.  The police were called but they decided not to make any arrest.  204 East Browning continues to have fights, assaults, stolen bike operations and drug dealing and many other problems but the victims keep refusing to press charges.  The dealer in Apartment 10 was evicted but several other units have violent people in them.  Home invasions and break ins are a regular occurance in the neighborhood but the residents do not want to call police due to insurance issues or because they may not be documented or they may be involved in illegal activity themselves.  The crime is encouraged to increase.

UTAH LAKE WATER IS IN SALT LAKE COUNTY STREAMS
  Despite assurances from Salt Lake City Public Utilities that there is no algae toxins in Salt Lake County rivers (caused by Salt Lake City moving Utah Lake water through the canals to the County streams), yesterday, the Salt Lake County Health Department tested several areas that were positive for the algae toxins.  The Jordan River and the Wheeler Farm canal that is next to Little Cottonwood Creek both tested positive.  It is strongly recommended that all contact with streams, rivers and waterways in Salt Lake County east of and including the Jordan River be avoided.  Salt Lake City is moving Utah Lake Water through the Jordan and Salt Lake Canals and that water is getting into the City's streams and Liberty Park Lake.

SPRAGUE LIBRARY ELEVATOR EATS LIBRARIANS
  Despite significant costs to repair and upgrade the Sprague Library's elevator (in Sugar House), the elevator seems to be going after librarians.  Yesterday, it broke down again and the SLCFD had to be called (again).  A couple of weeks ago, it broke down again with a librarian in it!  It is now out of order permanently until the major upgrade of the Library scheduled for next year.

TIP APPROVED BY WFRC WITH LOTS OF QUESTIONABLE PROJECTS
  The Wasatch Front Regional Council just approved billions in possible transportation projects for the next five years.  This Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP) is just for 5 years while the WFRC 2050 plan is for 3 decades.  The TIP did not include the desperately needed east west freeways in south Salt Lake County.  The TIP includes:
The UTA bus garage with $56 million local funds and a total of $75 million total cost.
The local funds for clean fuel buses and related equipment in the next 5 years totals $165 million, spending 18 to 27 million each year.
The extension of the FrontRunner to the Business Depot Ogden with a station is $32 million with half local funding.
The BRT to WSU will cost about $65 million and half will be from local funds.
A Sandy S. Jordan circulator will cost $30 million with half locally funded.
The TRAX extension from Draper to the County line will cost $460 million with $92 million funded locally.  Note that the actual cost with infrastructure and stations will be closer to a billion dollars.
There is a plan to extend the 3500 South BRT to Wasatch Blvd which will cost $12 million and $2.4 million is local funds.
Taylorsville/Murray transit improvements (BRT) will cost $52 million with 26 million locally funded (by 2020).
New TODs will cost $12 million with an "estimated" local cost of $2.4 million (which is what keeps draining money from service increases).
Intelligent transportation systems are budgeted at $30 million with $6 million local (synchronizing and intelligent traffic lights to decrease congestion).
The South Davis BRT will cost $80 million with $32 million locally funded.  This is the BRT that will go up 200 South to the UofU.
The UofU will get a $4 million intermodal hub.
There will be a Layton Station parking structure that will cost $4 million (since UTA gave too much property away for development (much like several other projects/TODs).
Salt Lake County signal control software will cost $5.5 million.
Layton and Davis County will add 2 ski bus routes and servicee at a cost of $1 million.
Little Cottonwood Canyon park and ride restroom $822,000.
There is a $50,000 budget to design a North Temple separated family friendly bikeway through downtown SLC.
  Obviously, the Transportation Coalition and construction companies are chomping at the bit.  These projects, many that I think are questionable, will provide a lot of business for them.  Note again that it appears that the WFRC will move their offices from the International Center to the Gateway by the end of the year.  This should result in much more public engagement.



AUGUST 23, 2018
WFRC 2050 PLAN SHOWS LOTS OF SLC STREETCARS AND TAX INCREASES
UTA STARTS BIG ASS BUS GARAGE PROJECT WITH PHASE ONE
UTA AGREES TO INDEPENDENT MONITOR CONTRACT
PROVO OREM BRT MAY HAVE LOST $600,000 PER YEAR IN REVENUE
GOVERNOR INTERVIEWING POTENTIAL UTA COMMISSIONERS 
SLCO APPOINTS UTA ADVISORY BOARD

SLCO APPROVES $400,000 TO VOA DENVER ST/2100 S. 40 BED HOMELESS

INN BETWEEN THREATENS NEIGHBORS WITH LAWSUIT
CRIMINALS DO NOT GO TO JAIL IF THEY ARE SICK
UTAH SUPREME COURT SAYS SEIZING CASH REQUIRES COURT HEARING 
THE HIGH COST OF FREE PARKING SHOUP COMING TO TOWN
SLC AGAIN CLOSES RECREATIONAL AREAS DURING PEAK SEASON


WFRC 2050 PLAN SHOWS LOTS OF SLC STREETCARS AND TAX INCREASES
  The Wasatch Front Regional Council 2050 Plan (maps for highway, transit and active/bicycle transportation in upper right downloads section) is recommending that the S-Line TRAX/so called streetcar be extended up 1100 East to 1700 South then to 900 East and north on 900 East to 400 South!  This is another unrealistic proposal but it is in the plan, and could be in the RTP and Utah Transportation Plan by next year (needed to get federal funding).  SLC City Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall has indicated several times that she wants to "put a head on the snake" of the S-Line and send it up 1100 East. 
  There are also 2 downtown streetcars and an extension of the 400 South TRAX to the Central Station (SLC is asking for a grant to obtain property to move the plan along).  Each project will cost taxpayers (who have had 5 Salt Lake City tax increases this year and 3 more potential ones on the ballot) about $100 million in local funding.  These projects will destroy any chance of affordable housing in Salt Lake City.  No one will be able to afford to live in the City!  
  There is also a Foothill Drive to Wasatch Blvd BRT (about $600 million) and an extension of the 3500 South 35M BRT to Wasatch Blvd, even though the ridership has stayed at about 3200 passengers a day since it began operation.  
  State Street is planned to get a BRT but it needs more frequent and less expensive bus service more than a State Street BRT which stops every 4 blocks.  SLC and UDOT are putting in crosswalks on State Street between 600 and 900 South since they don't think that pedestrians can walk half a block to a light.  So why do they think that pedestrians will gladly walk 2 blocks to a BRT stop instead of half a block to a regular bus stop.  
  Another planned BRT is on 700 East but UTA had to decrease service on 700 East due to poor ridership.  Planning with wishful thinking is not good government.
  The billion dollar plus (as if we had the money) Draper Lehi TRAX extension is also in the plan.  All these planned transit projects ignore the LA study from last year that found that, after spending $15 billion on transit projects, ridership stayed the same!  It went from 147 million a month 20 years ago to 154 million a month last year.  Bus service was cut back (like the 30% bus service cutback that SLCO residents experienced over the last 15 years) in LA which encouraged people to buy more cars.  They bought more cars.  Just like Utahns, who double car sales in the last 10 years!  Transit service should be increased first and milk run buses should be eliminated.  And the $1.50 bus fare with FAREPAY cards should be publicized.  That is the way to encourage mass transit ridership.  By the way, both LA and UTA get about 3% transit ridership.
  One last issue is the lack of east west freeways in the southern end of Salt Lake County.  Instead of a Taylorsville BRT, the money should be spent on freeways around 60th South and around 10000 South that connects the east bench with the westside of the County.  One of the reasons for the backlash against the Olympus Hill project and other high numbered residential developments in the County is the lack of adequate roads to handle the traffic increase.  Neighbors adjacent to the congested roads receive a significant amount of pollution due to the traffic backup and idling cars and they should be interested in selling out to allow the road to become a freeway.  We need several new east west freeways in Salt Lake County.
  Finally, WFRC is now planning on moving to the Gateway in the fall of 2018.  This should give many people a chance to comment on the planned RTP that will be developed from the WFRC 2050 Plan.

UTA STARTS BIG ASS BUS GARAGE PROJECT WITH PHASE ONE
  The UTA Board of Trustees approved a $4 million plus contract to begin phase one of the $70 plus million bus garage that UTA has been insisting that it needs for 5 years.  This contract is to prepare the ground and stabilize it for the future construction.  Most of the funding is to come from local taxpayers.  UTA is going to get a lot of money and construction companies will get most of it.
  The Trustees approved the contract unanimously despite arguments that the last thing that the Board should do before the governance takeover is give out multimillion construction contracts.  Those decisions should be made by the future UTA Commissioners and the Advisory Board (see story of Advisory Board appointees below).  There was also no cost benefit analysis.  UTA insisted that it is inefficient to take a bus from across the street from the present bus garage and drive it to the CNG refueling station next to the new bus garage.  It would waste manhours.  But the problem with a central bus garage is that it continues the wasteful use of buses that drive out to the outskirts of SLC empty every morning and drive into SLC empty every evening.  A more efficient plan would be to have distributed bus garages to stop the need for wasting all of the time and efforts and gas/diesel/CNG on empty/dead head trips.  (note that I have used the dead head buses and find them very convenient but almost no one knows about them and how to catch them)  Ogden, Utah County will have bus garages and there is also one planned by UTA for the southwest of SLCO.
  The plan to build a bus garage to put 200 buses into the building is also concerning when you think about the potential for an earthquake.  Even though the plan and contract will ensure earthquake resistence, it is planned to use the very old and crumbling brick building as the basis for the bus garage.  It would be nice to have an independent review of the plans.  Very little has been discussed on this important topic.  
  There is also the questionable use of $4 million on a project that could/would/should be better spent on increased bus service.  Despite arguments that one time money should not be expected to be used on service increases, there is a more appropriate argument that one time money should be used for service increases.  The $4 million could be used on span of service increases and/or new bus routes and, if it is done right, the increased fare revenue will come from the new service and routes and also the synergy of a more robust system.  In other words, there should be an increase in ridership throughout the system and an increase in fare revenue system wide.  That should come close, again if done right, to making up for the one time funding.  It is called priming the pump.


UTA AGREES TO INDEPENDENT MONITOR CONTRACT
  Due to several significant questionable actions by previous UTA staff and Board of Trustees, the federal government required UTA to agree to an independent monitor to deter any further questionable actions using federal funds.  The UTA Board of Trustees agreed to a contract with a law firm Coblentz Patch Duffy & Bass LLP that starts with $400,000 and could be as much as $900,000 for monitoring that could run through 2021.  The language and explanation from the agenda packet is:
"In April 4, 2017 UTA executed a Non-Prosecution Agreement (“NPA”) with the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Utah (“USAO”). Pursuant to the NPA, USAO conditionally agreed not be bring any criminal actions against UTA related to past conduct identified in USAO’s ongoing investigation. However, USAO identified four issues of concern (the “Core Issues”) with respect to UTA: (a) inadequate controls over federal funds and drawdowns from federal grants; (b) improper handling and disclosure of property acquisition and disposition, including inadequate oversight of transit-oriented development projects; (c) non-compliance with ethical standards, resulting in benefits to UTA and employees and members of UTA’s Board of Trustees; and (d) improper approval of executive bonuses. In October 2016, UTA provided USAO with a summary of institutional controls and organizational reforms (collectively the “Reforms”) that have been adopted by UTA since the commencement of USAO’s investigation. The Reforms are described in Attachment A to the NPA. USAO acknowledged the Reforms in the NPA. As a condition to the USAO’s non-prosecution covenant, UTA has agreed to retain an independent third-party monitor to: (i) verify continued compliance with the Reforms; and (ii) recommend additional reforms necessary to address the Core Issues."

PROVO OREM BRT MAY HAVE LOST $600,000 PER YEAR IN REVENUE
  UVX, the Provo Orem BRT may lose about $600,000 in revenue from fares from the bus routes that are being cancelled and replaced by UVX.  Other data provided at the UTA Board of Trustees meeting included that sales tax receipts went up significantly over the last year (to year) of 9%.  Also, about 120,000 riders a month have their fare payments/tickets confirmed which is about 10% of riders on TRAX.  The percentage evading fares used to be 5% but appears to be about 2.5% now.  

GOVERNOR INTERVIEWING POTENTIAL UTA COMMISSIONERS 
SLCO APPOINTS UTA ADVISORY BOARD TODAY
  Governor Herbert is interviewing the potential UTA Commissioners today in order to appoint them and have them in place by Novermber 1.  The SLCO mayors and elected government officials (COG) appointed three members of the UTA Advisory Board that need to be in place by November 1.  The COG wanted to ensure that there was a geographic diversity on the Board so they appointed Draper Mayor Walker, Herriman Mayor Watts and Midvale Mayor Hale to the Advisory Board.  Magna Township Mayor Peay will be one of the alternates.  They will have indefinite terms that appear to start at 1.5 years but the COG will revisit the issue in January of 2020.
  Many of the mayors in the COG also expressed interest in being on the County Transportation Advisory Board.  Salt Lake County Mayor McAdams will be appointing six members and the COG will appoint seven.  Mayor McAdams is still deciding on his appointees and they could include some of the mayors who wanted to be on the Advisory Board.  The County Transportation Advisory Board will decide how to spend the millions that will eventually come from the SB136 tax increase.  The first revenue will pay down the debt from transportation projects so there should not be a rush to need a decision on new projects.

SALT LAKE COUNTY APPROVES $400,000 FOR VOA DENVER ST/2100 S. 40 BED HOMELESS
  Salt Lake County is contributing $400,000 to the VOA for their addiction treatment and live in 40 bed homeless shelter that is south of and across the street from Home Depot on 2100 South.  Hopefully, they will engage the public and work with the neighbors in a better manner than the Hillside Inn Between (see next story).

INN BETWEEN THREATENS NEIGHBORS WITH LAWSUIT
  The lawyers for the Inn Between have sent a cease and desist letter to the neighbors that are trying to organize and fight expansion over 25 beds for the homeless hospice center between Sherman Avenue and 1300 South and around 1250 East.  The neighbors have been passing around flyers, posting to Nextdoor and Facebook and they have set up a Go fund me page to help pay for their attorney.  The neighbors have hired an attorney.  
  As I mentioned a few days ago, the neighbors are being intimidated by homeless that seem to be targeting them for objecting to a homeless hospice facility that was implemented without much public input.  Homeless are going into backyard parties uninvited, sleeping on porches in the day and intimidating people who they think are trying to stop them from being there.  
  The neighbors are trying to organize and the attempt by the Inn Between to stop the neighborhood organizing is concerning.  We had been assured that the Inn Between would work with neighbors.  This is effectively mafia style intimidation (in my opinion).  Just because everyone posts to Facebook, or Nextdoor or passes out flyers without using the phrase "in my opinion", should not give lawyers the ability to threaten people.  This crosses the line.  I put the cease and desist letter in the upper right hand downloads section.  Alex B. Leeman from Prince Yeates and Geldzahler, a professional corporation - lawyers is representing the INN Between and said in the letter: " The INN Between demands that you immediately cease and desist all publication of flase or misleading information about the INN Between or its Facility, and remove the false and fefamatory statements addressed herin from your online GoFundMe, Facebook, and NextDoor.com pages imediately.....The INN Between appreciates active community involvement and open dialogue..."
  I think that the INN Between is not really wanting open dialogue.  (in my opinion).

CRIMINALS DO NOT GO TO JAIL IF THEY ARE SICK
  Just like Utah County, where the Sheriff resigned due to underfunding the jail, which had a large medical bill for a criminal, Salt Lake County Jail is refusing to jail a person who has been traveling the Country scamming and selling fake tickets worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.  The criminal was "refused jail booking due to medical issues"  So he will go free and try his scam in another city!  This happened about two years ago when some credit card skimmers from a national gang were arrested but were released from jail almost immediately before the FBI could stop them.  Released to victimize hundreds of more victims.  Public safety in Salt Lake County needs more funding.

UTAH SUPREME COURT SAYS SEIZING CASH REQUIRES A COURT HEARING 
  Connor Boyack and the Libertas Institute deserve credit for trying to stop illegal and unethical asset seizures.  They supported a Utah Supreme Court case that asked to reverse the Utah Highway Patrol seizing $500,000 in cash and turning it  over to the federal government to discourage attempts to recover the money by the owner.  The Utah Supreme Court just found that the seizure and transfer was illegal.

THE HIGH COST OF FREE PARKING SHOUP COMING TO TOWN
  On October 4, Donald Shoup who wrote the High Cost of Free Parking is coming to Salt Lake County and the Country Transportation Department is hosting a discussion at the Viridian Event Center (several blocks from a TRAX station/Red Line) from 1130 AM to 130 PM.  For free tickets (until sold out) go to www.slco.or/planning-transportation and the event should be one of the buttons on the page.  

SLC AGAIN CLOSES RECREATIONAL AREAS DURING PEAK SEASON
  From SLC:
City Creek Canyon will be closed Monday through Wednesday as crews repave the road and repair potholes.
The road above the Department of Public Utilities’ water treatment plant will close all day on Monday as crews fill potholes that have created hazards for bicyclists and motor vehicles. The work will begin by 6 a.m. and continue until dark.
Comment on this story
The entrance road to the canyon at Bonneville Drive and the main parking lot will be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday from 6 a.m. until dark. Crews will mill away crumbling asphalt and then repave and restripe parking spaces.
The canyon will reopen Thursday and resume the regular “odd-even” schedule through Labor Day. Bicycles — but not motor vehicles — are allowed on odd calendar days. Motor vehicles — but no bikes — are permitted on even days. Walkers and runners are allowed every day.
Between Labor Day and Memorial Day, there are no calendar-day use restrictions in the canyon.




AUGUST 21, 2018
BRING BACK CRUISING ON STATE STREET
SLC APPROVES DRAFT CDA FOR STATE ST/9 LINE AFTER 4 YEARS
SLC GRANT APPLICATIONS FOR 300 WEST AND BLACK LINE
ZOMBIE BUILDING ON 2100 SOUTH 1000 EAST STOPS TRAFFIC
DOWNTOWN MEDICAL RESPONSES SAME BUT SAFER
UTAH LAKE WATER MAY BE IN SLCO STREAMS
USA SUICIDE HOTLINE STARTED WITH UTAH SEN. THATCHER
UTA TRYING TO GIVE BIG D $4 MILLION PLUS BEFORE CHANGEOVER
HILLSIDE HOMELESS SHELTER COMPLAINTS
SLCO ABOUT TO APPOINT TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE
CWC SECRET MEETINGS WERE NOT AS SECRET AS HOPED


BRING BACK CRUISING ON STATE STREET
  Lost in all of the efforts to redevelop and revitalize State Street, is the potential for energizing the Street by bringing back/allowing/legalizing cruising on State Street.  It is now against the law and SLCPD is tasked with enforcing and checking if cars go past the same point on State Street more than once.  Maybe SLC should focus its law enforcement on going after real criminals instead of cruising and scooters and bicycles on sidewalks.  I still think that electric scooters should be limited to 5MPH on sidewalks and bicycles and scooters and skateboards and hoverboards should be allowed on sidewalks downtown.  They are now illegal.

SLC APPROVES DRAFT CDA FOR STATE ST/9 LINE AFTER 4 YEARS
  The RDA Board (the SLC Council and Mayor) approved the 9 line/State Street CDA expansion plan which is expected to take 4-5 months if other taxing entities agree with it.  

  It took 4 years from conception to now and Kyle Lamalfa asked, and the Board agreed, to negotiate with the taxing entities to see if the tax increment can be from backdated to September 2014.  That would allow more money now but other entities could lose $4 million or more from past revenue.

  Also several residents around the  State Street area were concerned about eminent domain and tax increases.  Council staff have their contacts.  They complained that they only got one notice and didn't know about the Community Council meetings.  They were part of about 50 residents concerned, many attending the meeting.  They complained that they were never told about the plan before the one letter they just received.  But they live next to the SLCC campus on 1700 South and Liberty Wells has had a meeting there recently.  Both Ballpark and Liberty Wells has discussed the Plan extensively.

  My specific comments on the Plan are:

Housing in State St area should not be "likely to increase" but should be the goal.

Pedestrian oriented blocks and/or walkways should not interfere or create traffic obstructions on the "auto-oriented corridor".

Standards to Guide Project Area Development should have a form based mixed use zoning with significantly higher density at traffic nodes like on 500, 600, 900, 1300, 1700 and 2100 South.

Automobile dealerships should be discouraged, especially when trying to implement a walkable area.  Consider working with dealerships to create a dealership area.  They seem to like the areas near the on and off ramps which are not really walkable.

I am against the future BRT on State since a more frequent regular bus is 10 times cheaper and can be implemented now.  Note that it is not safe enough to have the regular bus stops on State Street due to high crime complaints/stealing bicycles at bus stops.

Encourage MIXED USE residential and commercial development.  Not the too close to skinny sidewalks apartments only projects (zombie buildings that have no energy/action/engagement on the ground floor) that destroy Sugar House walkability.  

NEIGHBORHOOD REVITALIZATION should not include maintaining an inventory of vacant, blighted and underutilized property.  SLC has too much RDA owned property that is vacant for decades and that encourages crime.

I do not know of any historic buildings on State Street that deserve preservation.

Caution on trees when awnings will work better.  Trees interfere with wide sidewalks that encourage walkable and shareable sidewalks.

Main Street should have extremely high density at high traffic nodes.

Housing should be mixed use, mixed income and also have some ownership units.

There should not be any more State Street crossings that interfere with traffic flow.  I am against the Life on State traffic calming suggestions (Disneyland style design is not appropriate in Utah.).  

I am against any more TRAX stops on streets that could have a road diet (1700 South).  The increase in pollution on those streets caused by vehicle backup from TRAX stops is significant.  I am still against the 650 S. TRAX stop.

I would like more information on Block 16/Sears which will provide the first tax increment revenue.

Bus stops should be moved to corners to decrease need to jaywalk.

The 300 West proposed traffic calming project (about $15 million) is going for a grant application at tonight's City Council meeting (August 21) and it should not be made until the Community Councils agree with the project's specific designs.  See next story.



SLC GRANT APPLICATIONS FOR 300 WEST AND BLACK LINE
  The SLC Council is having a public hearing for a grant application for a 300 West project.  
The packet says:
Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Transportation
Discretionary Grant (300 West: Building a Complete, Safe, and Smart Street)
Purpose/Goal of the Grant: The grant monies will fund pavement upgrades, intersection and
traffic calming improvements, detached sidewalks, bicycle lanes, transit stop amenities, and fiber optic infrastructure to develop the 2.1 mile portion of 300 West between 600 South and 2100 South.
Grant Amount: $12 million dollars
Requested by: The Department of Community & Neighborhood, Division of Engineering
Match Requirement: $3 million (non-federal match) – Source: $1 million from Class C FY 2017-
18 funds and $2 million from Class C FY 2018-19 funds, which have already been appropriated by
the Council.
Funding Agency: U.S. Department of Transportation in collaboration with the Utah Department
of Transportation
  SLC should not have a grant application without going through the Community Councils first.  At the last Ballpark CC meeting, they were told that it is still being discussed.  Approving the grant application, and getting the $12 million grant will not allow the community to stop it if they don't like it.  The SLC Council has said before that if and after they get the grant, they will have a public hearing on the proposal.  But, trying to turn down $12 million, is impossible.

  The TRAX right of way on 400 South between 500 and 600 West is a support for a $100 million project that SLC cannot afford until our basic infrastructure, our streets, are brought up to at least acceptable.  
The packet says:
Purpose/Goal of the Grant: The grant monies will fund the purchase of 0.174 acres of private
property to secure right of way for future development of new light rail along 400 South between
500 West and 600 West.
Grant Amount: $333,049 (land value)
Requested by: Salt Lake City Department of Community & Neighborhood, Division of
Transportation
Match Requirement: In-kind match of $333,049 The land purchase will secure the right of way
for future development of the new light rail along 400 South between 500 West and 600 West. The
City’s in-match commitment is the land value of 0.174 acres owned by Redevelopment Agency of
Salt Lake City that abut the 0.174 privately owned acres proposed for purchase.
Funding Agency: Salt Lake County, in collaboration with Utah Transit Authority.



ZOMBIE BUILDING ON 2100 SOUTH 1000 EAST STOPS TRAFFIC
  The zombie building (no ground floor engagement) on 2100 South and 1000 East has removed a traffic lane on 2100 South in order to finish the building.  It was designed so close to the sidewalk and road that that the only way to finish it is by stopping a lane of traffic!  SLC permits should not have allowed this.  Complaints to the City have been ignored.  
  The good news is that workers on site believe/hope/pray that, with sub contractor good efforts, the project, road and sidewalk will be finished in 3 weeks.  I know that I am not supposed to talk to workers but they seem to know the issues related to projects.  The Fire Station on 900 East on the Forest Dale Golf Course parking lot was supposed to be finished in July.  Workers said that they thought it would be finished in the fall.  It is now scheduled to be finished by September 1 but......

DOWNTOWN MEDICAL RESPONSES SAME BUT SAFER
  According to the SLCFD which provides medical response to medical emergencies in Salt Lake City, the average monthly responses have remained about the same after Operation Rio Grande but the response units no longer require police protection.  The Fire Department personnel feel much safer in the Rio Grande area.  The Rio Grande area still has about 300 requests for medical assistance per month and Palmer Court has about 30 responses per month.  Those numbers are about the same from two years ago.

UTAH LAKE WATER MAY BE IN SLCO STREAMS
  Several canal water users have been complaining that it looks like Utah Lake water is being channeled into SLCO streams.  Caution is recommended and the water in streams, canals, and even in the gutters could be contaminated with toxins that have killed pets.

USA SUICIDE HOTLINE STARTED WITH UTAH SEN. THATCHER
  Lost in the news is that the President has signed a bill (sponsored by Sen. Hatch and Congressman Stewart) that requires the FCC to set up a system for mental health and suicide issues much like the three digit 911 system nationwide.  This bill was originally sponsored by Senator Dan Thatcher and  Rep. Eliason in Utah.  Senator Thatcher deserves credit for a national three digit phone number.  This is a big deal.

UTA TRYING TO GIVE BIG D $4 MILLION PLUS BEFORE CHANGEOVER
  Tomorrow, at the UTA Board of Trustees meeting, there is a rush to sign a contract with Big D construction for a big $70 bus garage.  The initial, phase one contract is for $4 million but it will eventually be $7 million for phase one.  The complete project will cost $70 million and most of that cost will come from SLCO taxpayers and the SB136 funds. This contract deserves more public attention.

HILLSIDE HOMELESS SHELTER COMPLAINTS
  The residents of Sherman Avenue next to the Hillside Medical Homeless Hospice/Inn Between have retained an attorney to fight the Inn Between from expanding over the 25 resident limit that is now imposed.  The potential residents could be up to 70 if the State approves.  The community is already upset about the increase in homeless sleeping on their front porches when they get home from work, homeless people walking/stumbling through the neighborhood while high, walking into backyards during family barbeques, neighborhood drug deals, physical threats from The Inn Between residents (police report filed), needles discarded throughout the neighborhood, homeless bathing in church pond and discarded shopping carts around the neighborhood.  The neighborhood children are intimidated by "scary looking" strangers walking through the neighborhood.
  There are still questions about how The Inn Between will be licensed, whether drug testing is going to be required, whether The Inn Between will be responsible for ensuring that all registered sex offenders have their data updated, and how will there be effective outreach and working with the neighbors when the residents of The Inn Between are already intimidating neighbors.

SLCO ABOUT TO APPOINT TRANSPORTATION ADVISORY COMMITTEE
  On Thursday, at noon, the Council of Governments COG, is going to appoint 3 members of the UTA advisory board and several members of the County Transportation Advisory Board.  Unfortunately, almost no one knows about this meeting at S1-195 in the County Government Building.

CWC SECRET MEETINGS WERE NOT AS SECRET AS HOPED
  During lunchtime at the State Capitol, several Inland Port subcommittee members grouped together and visited with the lunchtime crowd.  But when we checked the public meeting notice website utah.gov/pmn/index.html, we couldn't find the notice.  It turned out, according to the Inland Port administrative assistant, Mr. Shepard, that the Committee did not feel that they had a quorum on the subcommittee so that they didn't have to have a public meeting.  Note to secret meeting attendees, don't let dozens in a cafeteria know that you are going to have a secret meeting.  Katie McKellar at the Deseret News broke the secret/not so secret meeting to the rest of Utah.  





AUGUST 14, 2018
INVASION OF SCOOTERS AND BICYCLE REGISTRATION AT LEGISLATURE
WATER CONSERVATION IN SLC DEPENDS ON REQUIREMENTS FOR 30% GREEN IN FRONT
PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING IN SALT LAKE COUNTY IS LACKING
HOMELESS AT LIBRARY GET SHOPPING CARTS CONFISCATED
SPRAGUE LIBRARY FLOOD POTENTIAL INCREASES AND WILL CLOSE IN MARCH
FAIRMONT PARK SKATE PARK PARKING CLOSED AND SOCCER TEAMS IMPACTED
ROAD WORK ON 2100 SOUTH FROM 300 W TO STATE ST 
1300 EAST MEETING CONFLICTS WITH EAST BENCH COMMUNITY COUNCIL
300 EAST GETTING NATURAL GAS PIPELINE INSTALLED
ALTA LODGE OWNERS WORKING HARD WITH POLICE
SLC IS INCREASING TAXES AGAIN
RACCOONS IN SLC ARE REMOVED BY SLCO ANIMAL CONTROL


INVASION OF SCOOTERS AND BICYCLE REGISTRATION AT LEGISLATURE
  Tomorrow morning, August 15, at 830 AM at the State Capitol (Senate Building 210), there will be a meeting of the Transportation Interim Committee which will have a presentation and discussion of the new SLC scooter law and also a presentation on bicycle registration.  
  The scooter law that has resulted in a large number of scooters on sidewalks downtown is concerning to many who walk and work downtown.  The scooters are limited, by governors, to 15MPH but hitting a pedestrian at that speed can result in serious injury.  I had an oped in the Deseret News that summarizes the issue at:
  https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900028008/guest-opinion-utah-and-salt-lake-city-need-to-rethink-scooters.html
  In addition, in short:
 
 15 MPH scooters and pedestrians are a dangerous mix 

Despite Utah law that requires motorized vehicles to operate on roads, not sidewalks, many scooters are operated on sidewalks. 

Downtown workers and visitors have been complaining about being threatened with and being hit by scooters that can go up to 15 MPH. 

Part of the reason is the street traffic downtown is not very safe to bicyclists, or scooters. 

Salt Lake City bans bicycle operation on downtown sidewalks but many Green Bikes are on the sidewalks, ridden by tourists. 

Most people riding bicycles are well experienced on safe operation and control of a bicycle. 

Most people operating an electric scooter are not very experienced and that can significantly increase the danger for the rider and pedestrians. 

If a scooter rider hits a pedestrian at 15 MPH, there will be injuries. 

If the rider gets back on the scooter and rides off, there is no way to identify the scooter since there is no license number easily visible.

The number of families living downtown with kids are increasing, but we shouldn't require kids to ride in the streets whether on bicycles or scooters.

Parents seem to be renting the scooter for their kids to have a fun ride so many of the riders are visibly younger than 18.

Electric scooters should be limited to 5 MPH and bicyclists should be able to ride on sidewalks including downtown and in parks as long as they do it safely. 

Pedestrians should not have to wear helmets to be safe walking on sidewalks


  I encourage respectful comments to the Transportation Interim Committee and/or to jon.larsen@slcgov.com with your comments.  The Committee will take public comments after the presentation.
  There will also be a presentation on the new SLC Bicycle Registration Program and why Utah needs a simpler and statewide system to discourage bicycle thefts.  I put the presentation in the upper right downloads section.
  The other interesting presentations include Evidence Based Interventions To Address Homelessness (the hearing was held today) and I put the presentation in the upper right downloads section.  Essentially it says that the homeless need housing.  There will be a discussion on water and the CWC/Central Wasatch Commission tomorrow morning at Natural Resource Interim Committee at 830AM in House 30.
  
WATER CONSERVATION IN SLC DEPENDS ON REQUIREMENTS FOR 30% GREEN IN FRONT
  Salt Lake City requires front yards to have 30% green space and no big rocks or concrete on park strips.  But the City is trying to lower its per capita use from about 90 gallons per day and many have taken the challenge and installed decorative rock or mulch along with a couple of drought tolerant plants.  The person in SLC that is responsible for water conservation is aware of the potential hypocrisy and is willing to consider any homeowner that is fielding complaints from the City about not enough green space.  She is Stephanie Duer and she can be reached at stephanie.duer @slcgov.com or by phone at 8014836760.
  
PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING IN SALT LAKE COUNTY IS LACKING
  Over the last few years, there have been many complaints in Salt Lake City about lack of visible cops. The Salt Lake City Mayor and Council have attempted to solve the problem by trying to hire 50 new police officers. But the issues relating to public safety run deeper than just the number of officers. The issues include drugs and drug trafficking, homelessness that breeds crime, a revolving door jail, difficulties prosecuting criminals, public chastising of police officers, recruiting competition with other law enforcement entities, and retirement limits.
  The issue of drugs, not just drug addiction and drug trafficking, is a major problem in our society. Many of those on drugs are unable to work and are attracted to crime to get money for their addictions. Substance use disorder (drug addiction) is a major cost for Utahns. It may take many tries at addiction treatment for the person to stop using drugs. The statistics of Operation Diversion tend to show that the success rate may be similar to the U.S. Government's standard for opioid addiction treatment success, around 5%. As long as there are drugs in our society that make it almost impossible to hold a regular job, there will be crime and crime victims. Drug addicts victimize through crime.
  The homeless issue, for years, has resulted in drugs being almost encouraged in the homeless area of downtown. That made the situation almost catastrophic for residents and businesses. Operation Rio Grande was supposed to fix the problem and in the area around the Road Home, it has decreased criminal activity significantly. But the effort is called Operation Leaf Blower by the Salt Lake County police chiefs because the criminal activity has been disbursed throughout the valley. 
  The jail was recommended to have 600 beds and they got 300. The Salt Lake County DA recommended 6 prosecutors for the Operation and he got two after a big public fight. The result is a continuation of the revolving door jail that releases arrested criminals almost immediately. Salt Lake City Police Chief Brown, in an effort to put a good face on a poor situation, calls policing with a revolving door jail, philosophy of disruption. In other words, making it inconvenient for a few hours for criminal behavior is the best that police can do. The State is also causing problems with attempts to discourage criminals from being sent to prison. In a recent case, Adult Probation and Parole (APP)recommended time served for a criminal convicted of shooting up a car with passengers! The DA attempted to have him sentenced to prison. The judge admonished APP but sentenced the convicted person to jail.
  Although the treatment phase provided hundreds of treatment beds, the success is still up in the air. The third phase of the Operation, putting the homeless to work, has resulted in only 65 working according to last week's report to the Legislature. The lack of storage is a big problem when homeless are trying to work. Salt Lake City's storage for homeless is full and has not been expanded.
  Another issue is loud complaints from citizens angry at police for perceived injustices. During recent Salt Lake City Council hearings, there were many complaints against police and arguments against hiring more police. Lost in the argument is the fact that more cops lead to less violence. Two police tend to discourage fighting with police. A recent attack on a cop at Fairmont Park was evidence of that fact. The SLCPD recently doubled up police in patrol cars, by pulling from other SLCPD areas for that reason (also to put more patrols on the street).
  The inability to hire more police is evidenced by the difficulty to hire enough personnel to open up Oxbow Jail's 380 open beds, Herriman's complaints that Unified Police can only staff 12 out of 18 officers that they paid for and Millcreek's trying to increase police to 58 from 47 officers. Salt Lake City reduced their planned increase of officers to 27 from 50 but when SLC loses 2 to 3 20 years officers to retirement a month, and the next class will probably only have 12 in the Academy, hiring even 5 more will be difficult. (SLC expects to have 31 graduate by October.) Adding to the difficulty in hiring police is the competition between municipalities and governments to hire police.
  And finally, despite years of efforts, Utah encourages law enforcement retirement after 20 years to help the Utah law enforcement unfunded pension actuarial liability of $544 million. Officers are lost to Arizona and non governmental jobs for at least a year due to our pension law. Those new jobs tend to turn into permanent jobs and Utah loses many police in the process.
  Utah needs to discuss these issues and find statewide solutions instead of each city fighting other cities for police officers. Public safety should be a much higher priority for government.

HOMELESS AT LIBRARY GET SHOPPING CARTS CONFISCATED
  In another attempt at quality of life enforcement, shopping carts of homeless are being confiscated and the belongings of the homeless are being dumped on the sidewalk.  The Salt Lake Tribune's Robert Gehrke wrote about a homeless woman who had her property dumped by someone confiscating her shopping cart (I would not want to use a shopping cart that looked like it had been used by homeless - and I have seen several in stores that look pretty gross.).  Salt Lake City still does not have storage space available for homeless storage and until they do, they really can't work.  Despite what the State says, Operation Rio Grande is not really a success.  My guess is about 50 homeless got jobs.  Despite thousands of arrests, only a handful were given jail terms of more than a month.  And as I pointed out above, the Salt Lake County police chiefs call Operation Rio Grande Operation Leaf Blower because it pushed drug dealing into their areas when it didn't exist before.  Robert Edgel had a great oped on the subject at:
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/08/11/commentary-leaf-blower/
  
SPRAGUE LIBRARY FLOOD POTENTIAL INCREASES AND WILL CLOSE IN MARCH
  With the new draw under 1300 East and Sego Lily flood control art system (you should see it; it looks beautiful), the Sprague Library flood potential increased.  The Sego Lily flood control design was designed to channel overflow water from the Sugar House Park into Hidden Hollow which was the source of the last flood that caused millions of dollars of damage to the Library.  The Library is checking with engineers to see how to mitigate the significant increase in flood danger.  In addition, the Library will not close this fall and the closing is now scheduled for March.  
 
FAIRMONT PARK SKATE PARK PARKING CLOSED AND SOCCER TEAMS IMPACTED
  The Fairmont Park Skate Park parking lot is closed and will be until spring.  Impact Soccer and the Boys and Girls Club use the field regularly.  The Boys and Girls Club has told patrons to use the parking lots next to their buildings and Impact Soccer is warning its teams of the issue.  The City plans to store salt and sand for winter streets and will close the parking lot each October.  Although the City has said that this should increase public safety, many of the problems at the skate park are due to local, walking distance individuals who are causing most problems.  In addition, the hundreds of cars, that some games generate, will now have to park on the street and in front of houses on 900 East.  The City decided to close and repair the parking lot during peak soccer season instead of waiting until after game play ended.  Not a good respectful decision.
  
ROAD WORK ON 2100 SOUTH FROM 300 W TO STATE ST 
  Salt Lake City is resurfacing 2100 South (along with State and County funding) and will be restricting lanes from 7 PM to 7 AM.  By doing this at the same time as the 1300 East Project, the I15 alternative to decrease 1300 East traffic is discouraged.  
  
1300 EAST MEETING CONFLICTS WITH EAST BENCH COMMUNITY COUNCIL
  The East Bench Community Council will have their regular meeting on August 15 and have an important discussion on the future of Lamplighter Square and Skyline Inn, two of the most important issues in the community.  But, Salt Lake City, again, messed up their outreach on the 1300 East project by scheduling the main outreach meeting at the same time at Westminster!!  
  
300 EAST GETTING NATURAL GAS PIPELINE INSTALLED
  Along with all of the other projects increasing congestion in Salt Lake City, there is a project by Dominion Energy to install a new natural gas pipeline under 300 East.  
  
ALTA LODGE OWNERS WORKING HARD WITH POLICE
  The Salt Lake City Police are giving credit to the new owners of the Alta Lodge on State Street next to the County Government Complex.  They are kicking out the potential criminal behavior individuals and working with the police to decrease criminal activity.  This is a big deal for the crime fighting in the area.
  
SLC IS INCREASING TAXES AGAIN
  I am guessing that almost no one will show up to object, but Salt Lake City Council will hold a Truth In Taxation hearing tonight that WILL increase property taxes.  This has become the year of the tax increases.

RACCOONS IN SLC ARE REMOVED BY SLCO ANIMAL CONTROL
  It took several months a couple of years ago, but we finally got confirmation that the City signed a contract with the County (with Mike Reberg setting up the system before he went to Salt Lake City) to catch and remove raccoons from Salt Lake City (and other cities in the County that signed up for the service).  The cost to Salt Lake City was about $40,000, I think and after a few hiccups, the County Animal Control agreed to have the USDA certified removal expert (removed the raccoons to other wild areas) also provide cages that could catch the critters.  Salt Lake City used to provide cages with a $25 deposit but they stopped the service when the County contract was signed.  The County Animal Services is at 385 468 7387.  And I have heard from several people that they still are not clear about their obligation, so if you have any problems with County Animal Control balking at providing a cage and removing caught raccoons, tell Salt Lake City's Mike Reberg at mike.reberg@slcgov.com.



AUGUST 7, 2018

WEIGAND CENTER CLOSES AND HOMELESS TURN INTO ZOMBIES
POLICE ORDERED ZERO TOLERANCE FOR HOMELESS
900 SOUTH OVERPASS MAY HAVE BECOME MORE REALISTIC
OXBOW JAIL OPENS PARTWAY BUT BEDS FILLED BY OTHER COUNTY'S INMATES
CENTRAL WASATCH COMMISSION ORDERED TO GET CONSENSUS
UDOT PROPOSES THREE PARLEYS INTERCHANGE PLANS
200 EAST ROAD DIET STUDY
2700 SOUTH REMOVED FROM RESURFACING LIST 
2100 EAST RESURFACING WORK RESULTS IN THE WAVE
TWO BIG BICYCLING PROJECTS PLANNED
SPRAGUE REDESIGN OPEN HOUSE AUGUST 9
HIVE PASS PLANS ON GIVING FREE GREEN BIKE PASSES 
SCOOTERS TO BE DISCUSSED AT THE LEGISLATURE
UTA OLD PROP ONE PROPOSAL ON DOWNLOADS



WEIGAND CENTER CLOSES AND HOMELESS TURN INTO ZOMBIES
  The Weigand Center has to close for one or two days each year to wax the floors and provide other preventive maintenance.  Its importance to providing services to the homeless in the area was emphasized by the resulting crowd of homeless that normally congregate in the Weigand Center courtyard spilling into the streets yelling and screaming.  There are many inadequately treated mental health issues in this population and without the stability and services that the Weigand Center provides, the homeless sometimes scare people (even more) with their uncontrollable actions.  So the street in front of the Weigand Center turned into a mass of yelling screaming group of really scary homeless.  And the SLCPD didn't seem to be around.  Maybe they were too scared to be there.  Or they wisely did not want to make the situation worse by confronting the crowd (probably the best solution).  
  Again, this proves how important that Catholic Community Services are to the homeless and to the adequate support that they need.  When the Road Home closes in a year, I expect to see the same problems develop.  Turning homeless into the street is never a good idea.
  
POLICE ORDERED ZERO TOLERANCE FOR HOMELESS
  A pastor at a downtown church was upset with the homeless harassing their churchgoers and it appears that the result is that the SLC Police have been ordered to put pressure on the homeless near the Library neighborhood.  It is a mini quality of life enforcement to discourage the homeless from harassing those in the neighborhood.  Police should not be used for quality of life enforcement of homeless without other options like storage, safe beds and other facilities.
  
900 SOUTH OVERPASS MAY HAVE BECOME MORE REALISTIC
Several weeks ago, a bicyclist was killed on the 900 South railroad tracks while riding in a group of bicyclists (the 999 Thursday bicycle ride that I have written about before).
   I know the area well and it is a deathtrap for bicyclists.  It is difficult for bicyclists to quickly clear the tracks after stopping.  Note  that the 999 group should not have been crossing train tracks by policy.  This is also a concern to those in wheelchairs or using walkers or slow walkers.  
  SLC should not be spending money on Sunnyside  ($2.7 million and 1100 E. ($500,000) to make an enjoyable 9 Line Trail when such a danger exists. 
  At the same time, Salt Lake City and County are planning on giving a $15 million loan to a developer for a downtown parking garage.  That money should be used for a 900 South overpass. 
  If Salt Lake City wants a safe 9 Line Trail and development of the area, including the Fleet Block, it needs to provide a safe pedestrian, bicycle and wheelchair path across the train tracks.  Councilman Andrew Johnston said that he would ask the Council to send a letter asking to prioritize the 900 South overpass project.  
  Note that (according to UTA) at the rail crossing on 900 South, I-15 passes over the rail crossing diagonally covering the west side on the crossing on the north and covering the entire rail crossing on the south side of 900 South. The trail is on the south side of 900 South. 
  There is no vertical space available to construct an overpass on the south side of 900 South and obtain the required 23’-6” vertical clearance over the train tracks.  An overpass would have to cross the tracks on the north side of 900 South and then loop or ramp down in the haunted house property and the trail would have to cross 900 South at grade to get back to the south side of the street.  

OXBOW JAIL OPENS PARTWAY BUT BEDS FILLED BY OTHER COUNTY'S INMATES
  The lack of enough jailers restricted the full opening of Oxbow Jail.  But the plan to fill any open beds with some of the incarcerated in other counties due to Operation Rio Grande (Operation Leaf Blower to police) is in full swing.  
  The logistics of driving prisoners back and forth to Vernal is challenging and the County Mayor wants to stop spending money on it.  At the same time, Mayor McAdams refuses to increase the jail budget.  So the County Jail will continue to have a revolving door.  The County Council will start looking at the budget in the next month.  Time to push for adequate public safety funding.
  One of the first persons arrested in August 2017 for selling drugs during Operation Rio Grande was Cory Lee Bertelsen who was almost immediately released after being arrested.  He was arrested again this last week after a short chase.  He keeps running from police and has a long and dangerous charge sheet.  He should not be released to threaten society so fast. 
  
CENTRAL WASATCH COMMISSION ORDERED TO GET CONSENSUS
  The Central Wasatch Commission (CWC) is attempting to implement the Mountain Accord that is presently being sued for not following the Utah Open Meetings Act.  A large part of the plan was to give the ski resorts a lot of land for a major expansion of their resorts with minimal trade of land that is essentially hard to traverse.  Recent meetings of the CWC have had a lot of pushback.  The hope that the CWC plan would be sponsored by Congresswoman Mia Love was dashed when she pointed out that she wasn't going to do anything until there was real consensus!  So the controversial land trades are going to hold up the Mountain Accord process while the CWC and Executive Director Ralph Becker spend millions on staffing and offices.
  
UDOT PROPOSES THREE PARLEYS INTERCHANGE PLANS
  I put the presentation on the proposals in the upper right downloads page.  I expect the Sugar House Community Council will discuss these plans in the next month.

200 EAST ROAD DIET STUDY
  Salt Lake City Transportation is studying the feasibility of doing a road diet and reducing the number of travel lanes on 200 East.  It is part of a study to restripe 200 East.

2700 SOUTH REMOVED FROM RESURFACING LIST 
  It appears that an effort by SLC Public Utilities to put in a water pipe under 2700 South derailed efforts to provide minor resurfacing on 2700 South.  It is now number 82 on the list of important street projects.
  But after stalling the project, the City decided that it couldn't use 2700 South and must use another street.  But until they find a suitable route for the water system replacement, they will have to stall 2700 South resurfacing.  
 
2100 EAST RESURFACING WORK RESULTS IN THE WAVE
  There have been many complaints about the wave that is the result of work on repaving the road of 2100 East from 1700 South to 2100 South.  But the work was not complete when the complaints mushroomed.  The City still had to replace the manhole covers and after that, it will check the profile and ensure that the roadway is smooth and not waves.

TWO BIG BICYCLING PROJECTS PLANNED
  The first is a Beck Street Separated Bicycle Facility. The $50,000, 2018 FY TAP-funded project will design a more comfortable and separated facility on the Beck Street frontage road near the Staker-Parson quarry, from Chicago Street (1820 North) to the existing two-way path on the west side of the frontage road several hundred feet south of the Salt Lake/Davis County line. The project, when constructed, will add physical separation, reduce potential turning and other conflicts, presumably reduce maintenance needs, and provide a safer commuter and recreational connection between North Salt Lake and Salt Lake City.
  But the maintenance of the cycle track is a problem and is not being planned.  Due to the many trucks carrying gravel in the area, daily sweeping of the track will be needed for safe bicycling.  Or the bike path could be redesigned to become a more adequate bikeway that is separated from traffic and does not collect dirt and dust and rocks from trucks in the area.  
  The other project is the 600 East Neighborhood Byway. Refinements are currently under design, with changes to the crossings at 800 South, 1700 South, and possibly 2700 South in the works. The Transportation Division is doing some assessment of the area south of 2100 South to determine if the new TOUCAN has increased traffic on 600 East or cut-through traffic on neighborhood streets. A traffic diverter had originally been planned for the area as volumes on 600 East are higher than neighborhood byway guidelines. This project is anticipated to go out to bid over the winter for 2018 construction.

SPRAGUE REDESIGN OPEN HOUSE AUGUST 9
  On August 9, all day from 10 AM to 4 PM, at the Sugar House Sprague Library, there will be architects that have been tasked with refurbishing the Sprague Library which will close this winter for a year.  They will answer questions and they will have two presentations from 5 to 630 and from 7 to 830 PM.  
  I bet that they are not taking into account the new flood diversion system at the DRAW east of 1300 East that is designed to channel flood waters to Hidden Hollow and increase the flood threat to the Library.  Basement property will be at risk.
  
HIVE PASS PLANS ON GIVING FREE GREEN BIKE PASSES 
  The HIVE pass is planning a new marketing plan and one of the new proposals is to give free Green Bike passes to those who buy a HIVE pass.  It will be interesting to see who takes advantage of this new and original concept.
  
SCOOTERS TO BE DISCUSSED AT THE LEGISLATURE
  On August 15, the Transportation Interim Committee will discuss scooters that are proliferating in Salt Lake City, especially downtown.  I know several are upset about the issue and I expect their attendance at the 830 AM meeting at the Capitol, State Senate Building (east building) Room 210.
  Kids are on them (despite the requirement for a drivers license); they are operated negligently due to inexperience and when they hit someone, they can't be identified.  Lots of reasons to rethink these issues
  
UTA OLD PROP ONE PROPOSAL ON DOWNLOADS
  I put the old 2015 short UTA proposal and map to increase service if Prop One passes.  Since it has effectively been passed by the Legislature, ignoring voters, the service increases are not being discussed.  It appears that projects are the plans and service will continue to suffer.  

  




JULY 30, 2018

JULY 31 HEARING ON BLOCK 67 HEIGHT ALLOWS COMMENT ON

             $15 MILLION PARKING LOT FUNDING

900 SOUTH BICYCLE OVERPASS
SLC BOND COULD HURT HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
CARLETON CHRISTENSEN COULD BE NEXT UTA COMMISSIONER

JULY 31 HEARING ON BLOCK 67 HEIGHT ALLOWS COMMENT ON $15 MILLION PARKING LOT FUNDING
  Block 67 is west of the Salt Palace on the US Post Office Property.  The Ritichie Group, a developer with a good reputation and a lot of Brickyard Property and buildings, is proposing a $400 million mixed use hotel, office, retail, housing complex.
  In return for not putting parking on the surface, and creating a midblock pedestrian plaza, they agreed to build an underground parking garage in return for $15 million from County Transportation Funds.  The City RDA approved the interlocal with the County that loans $15 million (eventually $43 million compensation) to the Ritchie Group and paid back by the RDA tax increment increase over 25 years.  It would eventually have one level of public parking.
  The Utah Transportation Commission approved the use of Transportation Funds for parking lots last month.  I spoke against the proposal at the City RDA meeting on July 10 since the Transportation Funds that are being used, should be used for a regionally significant transportation project.  Some other requirements are that the funds should be for a project that has broad public support and increases safety. 
  The Legislature passed a bill last session that allowed Transportation Funds to be used for parking lots, mainly to expand transit parking lots that are already full and also to help provide canyon mouth parking lots in preparation for canyon bus service (I am pushing for weekend canyon bus service paid for by the Legislature that may be discussed by the the Interim in the next few months.).
  The Council, as RDA Board, passed the interlocal agreement with the stipulation that it did not commit the City to final agreement.  The staff warned that it did commit the City and I contend that it shouldn't be agreed to until there is a vigorous public hearing.  The City was planning on waiting until later for a public hearing.
  But, the City also wants to increase the height limits of buildings on Block 67 to what is allowed in central Downtown SLC.  That provides a public hearing and a chance to argue that the height limit should be removed if, and only if, the $15 million for the parking lot is pulled back and used for more appropriate use.  That is the only way to push the City to use the Transportation Funds for a real, appropriate project like a bicycle, pedestrian and wheelchair overpass on 900 South.
  An overpass is complicated but has been proposed several times with costs that range from $7 to 15 million depending on the design.  An overpass is possible on one side of the street under the freeway but 24 ft above the rails.  It would also be a more appropriate funding priority that the minor million dollar projects to beautify the 9 Line Trail east of the freeway, in my opinion.
  The death of the 999 cyclist, the $15 million "misuse" of Transportation Funds and other interested parties may help push this proposal to reality.  The July 31 hearing could result in the Council removing the $15 million and/or telling the staff to prepare plans and designs to build an overpass within a year on 900 South.  (The Fleet Block development would also be significantly helped.)
  I will be asking the City Council on Tuesday July 31, at 7PM, to allow the Ritchie Group to build whatever height building they want if they forego the $15 million from Transportation Funds and ask that the City plan on building a pedestrian, bicycle and ADA 14 ft wide overpass on the 900 South rail tracks.

900 SOUTH BICYCLE OVERPASS
  According to UTA: "At the rail crossing on 900 South, I-15 passes over the rail crossing diagonally covering the west side on the crossing on the north and covering the entire rail crossing on the south side of 900 South. The trail is on the south side of 900 South.  There is no vertical space available to construct an overpass on the south side of 900 South and obtain the required 23’-6” vertical clearance over the train tracks.  An overpass would have to cross the tracks on the north side of 900 South and then loop or ramp down in the haunted house property and the trail would have to cross 900 South at grade to get back to the south side of the street."
  It is time to push this project to reality. 

SLC BOND COULD HURT HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
  I will also be pushing for not putting the bond on the ballot since I believe that it will hurt chances of healthcare expansion, which I think should have the highest priority.  I know that some of the bicyclists that I am encouraging to attend and comment on these issues are for the bond but I want a vigorous public hearing Tuesday.  My main reason against putting a bond on the ballot is that it will discourage voting for the healthcare expansion which I think is more important.  The bond will go on the ballot as a $46 tax increase.  SLC will also get $33 million per year from the sales tax increase and another $5 plus per year from SB136 plus another $5 million plus from the transit portion of SB136.  SLC should not need the bond as much as healthcare expansion.
  I had an oped in the Salt Lake Tribune on the issue at:
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/07/28/george-chapman-salt-lake/


CARLETON CHRISTENSEN COULD BE NEXT UTA COMMISSIONER
  In a surprise move, Carleton Christensen is being nominated as a third applicant for the UTA Commissioner job.  The County already submitted two names but they had issues and controversies that may have resulted in the Governor asking for more choices.  Ironically, Carleton Christensen pushed for the use of $15 million in Transportation Funds for the parking lot of Block 67.




JULY 25 B, 2018

1300 EAST PROJECT STARTS TONIGHT AT 2100 SOUTH


1300 EAST PROJECT STARTS TONIGHT AT 2100 SOUTH

  Starting tonight, the 1300 East project will begin work on replacing water and sewer lines and resurfacing the roadway and replacing the curb and gutter.  This major project will take several years and I urge anyone using the roads in the area to be aware of the effects.  For instance, tonight, the bus stop at 2100 South and 1300 East will be temporarily stopped.  It will return in the morning.  The work now appears to be done in the evening after rush hour which is helpful.  801 483 6898 is the phone number to get real time updates on the project.  UTA is working with the contractor and will reroute buses if necessary.  UTA’s Facebook, Twitter and other website notes, including customer service will be listing detours and service interruptions.  Please keep the phone number for reference during the extensive project that will go to 900 South.  I put the docx file with specifics on the upper right downloads section.

 


JULY 25, 2018
SLC LOSING $2 MILLION DUE TO LEGISLATIVE BILLS
OXBOW JAIL STILL NOT FULLY OPEN, LAW ENFORCEMENT SUFFERS
WFRC 2050 PROPOSAL WITH LOTS OF MONUMENTS TO POLITICIANS
SPRAGUE LIBRARY ELEVATOR NOW OPEN FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS
MOUNT OLIVET CEMETERY DRIES UP MILLER PARK


SLC LOSING $2 MILLION DUE TO LEGISLATIVE BILLS
  HB336 reduced maximum fines from $150 to $45 now.  Salt Lake City anticipates that the City will lose $2 million or more in parking ticket revenue, partly due to this bill.  The loss of several parking enforcement officers, due to illegal favoritism, also is contributing to the loss.  SLC ticket revenue is also reduced from traffic citations due to the elimination of ticket quotas.  $2 million is a big hit on the City’s revenues.

OXBOW JAIL STILL NOT FULLY OPEN, LAW ENFORCEMENT SUFFERS
  Despite all of the efforts to hire more personnel for the Oxbow Jail, the Sheriff fell short.  It is not her fault since the County Mayor is still not adequately funding public safety.  Not only are the jailers not being paid enough to stay, UPD officers are also being lost to individual cities.  With Herriman and Riverton set to jump into the competition for more officers, the UPD and Jail will continue to suffer and Salt Lake County will continue to have a revolving door jail.  The Sheriff was able to open one pod of the unused Oxbow Jail but one pod is still closed (about 180 beds).  Mayor McAdams is running for Congress and this issue may become central to Congresswoman Mia Love’s campaign.  He still is using the $9.4 million from the old jail bond for other projects that include Pay for Success which will not prove itself for several more years, if at all.

WFRC 2050 PROPOSAL WITH LOTS OF MONUMENTS TO POLITICIANS
  I put the three Wasatch Front Regional Council 2050 maps (reduced from their 30MB original files) on the upper right downloads section.  Note that the 900 South bicycle trail (the 9 Line) is still not upgraded, even in 2050 (see the AT active transportation = bicycle map).  The transit map shows lots of rail in the Draper area and several in the Salt Lake City downtown area.  Expensive BRTs are scheduled for Taylorsville and 200 South, despite the fact that I and many others do not believe that UTA knows how to do BRTs.  With the billions in projects, elected politicians should have plenty of opportunity to get their very own monument.  But the reality is probably going to end up like L.A. that spent $15 billion on projects and got fewer riders due to more people using cars.  So we will probably call these projects follies.  Note that the 2050 Transit map has the S-Line going south on Highland!

SPRAGUE LIBRARY ELEVATOR NOW OPEN FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS
  The famous missing in action Sprague Library (Sugar House) elevator is now working and can take passengers down to one room that was and is the children’s room.  The rest of the downstairs will wait for a complete overhaul starting at the end of the year.  That will necessitate closing Sprague.

MOUNT OLIVET CEMETERY DRIES UP MILLER PARK
  Mount Olivet Cemetery is taking water from Red Butte Creek and drying up the Miller Park Bird Refuge (which needs water and birds).  The City is trying to reach an agreement with Mount Olivet to provide some water to the Park during the irrigation season.  Complicating matters is the fact that Rowland Hall also uses the water for watering their artificial turf, which turned out to be using more water than they thought.  There is also the issue of improper installation of the original irrigation system that was supposed to water the new plants during the redesign of Miller Park.  Due to the installation being next to the path, the system was often broken.  
  The City also allows the cheatgrass and cereal rye to dry out in Miller Park during the summer but that creates a fire hazard and the City does not cut it down.  That could create the beginnings of  a conflagration.  The City is encouraging adjacent landowners to clear their property but the Park shrubs, grasses and trees go right up to their properties.  
  The City provided this information during a discussion on the issues:
“Mount Olivet Cemetery has a water right and is diverting water from Red Butte Creek. Because of low runoff, they dry up the stream every few days on their turn schedule. They are aware of community concern, especially in Miller Park. We are trying to work out an agreement with them for the future that would keep water in the stream during the irrigation season is important to point out that the irrigation system was intended to support the 2014 restoration project plantings through establishment. It was not intended or designed to keep Miller Park wet through the summer or to suppress fire danger. Native grasses, shrubs and trees intentionally planted in Miller Park during the 2014 restoration project are intended to dry out in the summer time, as they would in a natural environment. Annual and weedy grasses like cheatgrass and cereal rye are also present in Miller and our other natural areas; these grasses are biologically-programmed to complete their life cycles quickly in the winter and spring, and die off in the summer after seed-set. Excessive watering can actually encourage these grasses to become unnaturally high and unintentionally increase fire danger.
That said, we have had more than our share of challenges with Miller Park’s irrigation system due to ongoing issues with tampering and vandalism. Our crews have been up there all week working on it, and it should now be working as intended…… any neighbors notice issues with the current irrigation system, please do not hesitate to contact our offices at 801-972-7800.”




JULY 23, 2018
999 BICYCLE FATALITY POINTS TO QUESTIONABLE 9 LINE PLAN
INLAND PORT HAD TO WAIT FOR STORAGE PRESENTATION
JIM DABAKIS LOOKS GOOD FOR NEXT SLC MAYOR!?
DEVELOPER MAY GET $15 MILLION FOR PARKING LOT JULY 31 HEARING
SLC BOND MAY BE PUT ON BALLOT & HURT HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
IMPACT FEES NEED TO BE REEXAMINED
UTAH LEGISLATURE PASSES BIG INTERNET TAX BILL
TANKER ON HIGHWAY ONE OF OVER 200 TRUCK CRASHES PER YEAR
JASON MATHIS, BEST THING ABOUT DOWNTOWN LEAVING
SLC BICYCLE REGISTRATION PROGRAM OFFICIAL



999 BICYCLE FATALITY POINTS TO QUESTIONABLE 9 LINE PLAN
  I have written several stories about the 999 Bicycle SLC event that starts at 900 East and 900 South on the Southwest corner every Thursday.  It is a social event that celebrates cycling in SLC and attracts hundreds.  I put pictures in a zip file in the upper right downloads section.  The news of a longtime participant in the bicycle ride dying from being run over by a train should not be a one day news issue.    
  Salt Lake City and County are putting millions into a 9 Line trail that encourages bicycling and goes from This is the Place Monument to the Jordan River Trail.  But bicyclist crossing rail tracks is extremely dangerous.  The 999 Group urges cyclists on it's Facebook page: "stay away from trains and active railroad crossings."  All rail tracks can be extremely dangerous for bicyclists.  In Portland, several years ago, they found that over 60% of cyclists had fallen on rail tracks (their streetcars share the road with cyclists).  
  It is time for SLC and the County to reevaluate the east west bicycle trail on 900 South and consider using available funds for a bicycle overpass like on the Parleys Trail over I215.  The money is available in my mind through Utah Transportation Funds and federal government TIGER Grant funds.  Salt Lake County and City are planning to spend $500,000 on the 9 Line Trail between 1300 East and 950 East.  That money would be better spent on designing an overpass for bicyclists or for a real time display of approaching train traffic and when it is expected to clear.  
  TIGER Grant funding is available and should be considered for this project.  It took two years to find enough projects when this one was right in front of our noses.  This is not the first fatality at the crossing.  There was one in April of 2017.  
  In addition, SLC and County are considering giving a developer $15 million for a parking garage downtown (see story below) and that money could be, should be and would be better used for a safer bicycle crossing on 900 South at the railroad tracks.  Salt Lake City is also planning on spending $2.7 million on Sunnyside (part of the 9 Line Trail) and it makes more sense to spend it at the crossing.
  SLC is pushing redevelopment of the area which includes the Fleet Block and the 900 South TRAX Station.  It should include a safer bicycle crossing on 900 South.  Again, it is cheap to provide a real time display of train traffic and it would also benefit vehicles on the road.  Getting from the west side to the east side on 900 South when there are trains is very frustrating.  Knowledge of when the trains will pass and provide crossing for vehicles and bicyclists would be a big help.

INLAND PORT HAD TO WAIT FOR STORAGE PRESENTATION
  I was disappointed, to say the least, in the hearing at the Legislature on the new, SLC Council negotiated, Inland Port Bill.  The hearing was sure to attract an overflow crowd and the Legislature even had an overflow room setup.  But the Committee hearing the Bill deferred to a peer to peer storage presentation and wasted almost an hour before hearing public comment on the Inland Port Bill.  This was not the Legislature's finest hour.    
  It almost looked like they were trying to rush things through.  I watched the Committee Chair, Senator Bramble, keep moving the time to end the public hearing but it only gave the public, who were overwhelmingly against the rushed Bill, one minute each to comment.  
  Even the Board of Education President Heather Bennett was kept to one minute, even though her organization could lose $500 million in education funding.  That was extremely disrespectful.
  I agree with Senator Davis.  There should not be 8 voices representing SLC in this negotiation.  Although the Bill was a done deal before the public hearing in a "secret consensus", done deals and "secret consensus" are not good government.  It reminds me of the "secret consensus" on the homeless resource centers in SLC. 

JIM DABAKIS LOOKS GOOD FOR NEXT SLC MAYOR!?
  In the effort to get a "better" Inland Port Bill, Senator Dabakis and Speaker Greg Hughes offered to work with Salt Lake City to get a better Bill.  But when the Mayor saw the handwriting on the wall, she declined and the SLC Council gladly took over.  This was a chance to not only insult the Mayor of SLC, but also to put the SLC Council and Chair Erin Mendenhall forward as a better leader in SLC.  The Council has been complaining about the Mayor for years.  But much of the animosity comes from the Council pushing for Ralph Becker to be reelected.
  It became so bad during the first year, that, at an RDA meeting, RDA Chair Lisa Adams told the Mayor to be quiet!  I have heard many complaints over the years about the Mayor but I have to agree, again, with Senator Davis, there should have been only one voice in the negotiations.  And in this case, and many others, everyone is at fault.  I want my City to work better but when everyone is pointing fingers, there is no time to work at all.
  In the effort to put the Council in the driver's seat for the negotiations, Jim Dabakis came out the big hero to the Council.  Several Councilmembers are encouraged and excited at the prospect of Jim becoming Mayor of SLC.  But I have tried to work with Jim since he became my senator, without success.  I work with many other Republican and Democratic Legislators and get bills sponsored by them but I can't seem to work with Jim Dabakis.  
  He has only sponsored one successful bill (requiring CO detectors in schools) and I watched the Committee hearing the bill, a good bill, question the cost to school districts and almost not pass it.  Jim, in my opinion, is more interested in playing the white knight and being recognized and honored for that than getting things done.  All of the other Democrats on the Hill are much more successful in getting things done in the Legislature.  
  I had a My view in the Deseret News that explained in more detail that, despite Jim's belief, Utah legislators are generally respectful public servants (December 3, 2016 - you can Google it).  I have found that Legislators will listen to good ideas, even though you are not their constituent, and they generally respect the citizens of Utah.  That does not mean that they are right in their votes or bills or beliefs.  It means that almost anyone who respectfully approaches a Legislator will be heard.  I disagreed with Senator Bramble on his internet tax bill but he allowed me to make an argument against it outside of the public hearing.  His actions and respect are typical of Legislators.  
  Jim is the sole exception in my experience.  If Jim Dabakis becomes Mayor of SLC, as many Councilmembers would like, SLC will cease to listen to the public, the citizens and the taxpayers.  Only those who agree with Jim will have a voice.

DEVELOPER MAY GET $15 MILLION FOR PARKING LOT JULY 31 HEARING
  On July 31, the SLC Council will have a surprise public hearing on whether to give $15 to the Ritchie Group in order to encourage them to build an underground parking lot.  The Council was convinced earlier this month that a public hearing should take place as soon as possible instead of waiting until October when it would essentially be a done deal.  The Council listened to citizens concerned about using valuable Transportation Funds being used for a parking lot at the same time that SLC discourages parking lots.  
   I need to digress for a minute and explain that one of unintended (or intended) consequences of SB136 is that the Utah Transportation Commission is deciding how to use new funds from SB136 for projects.  But the Utah Transportation Commission meets around the State and generally does not meet in Salt Lake City.  So it will be more difficult to make a public hearing and give testimony on questionable projects.
  Former Utah Speaker of the House Greg Curtis of GTC Consulting talked about the parking structure fund.  "HB3 directed $500,000 of general funds be used to initiate a study for locating a parking structure in Salt Lake County.  UDOT will evaluate locations for a parking structure that will assist in increasing transit ridership, carpooling and van pooling in Big and Little Cottonwood Canyon areas.  
  Two of the three Commissioners approved of using the funds to locate a parking structure area (during the last Legislative Session, Senate President Wayne Niederhauser suggested 9400 South and Wasatch Boulevard (near Terry Diehl's property).
  Interestingly, the Bill says that "no one entity can borrow more than 25% of parking fund"  and projects should "improve safety, reduce congestion etc."  And most importantly, projects should have high public support.  But if no one knows about the projects due to the meetings taking place in other counties, the projects should not be considered to have high public support.
  The effort by SLC and County to loan $15 million of Utah Transportation Funds to the Ritchie Group when the 9 Line project would be more effective at improving safety.  Parking garages do not improve safety.

SLC BOND MAY BE PUT ON BALLOT AND HURT HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
  We have been fighting for healthcare expansion in Utah for years.  I have consistently pointed out that one of the important reasons is public safety.  After two years, the Legislature came around and agreed but it only applied to homeless and criminals involved in drugs (for treatment).  The inadvertent effect has been that criminal behavior earns better medical care than law abiding citizens.
  The Utah ballot will have a healthcare expansion for all citizens, law abiding and not, that make less than a poverty salary.  It is a good ballot proposition.  But it requires a sales tax increase to pay for it.  If passed, it could go into effect faster than the Legislature's last attempt at expanding mental health care.  
  But there are other ballot propositions that could hinder voting for the proposition.  There is a question on whether to justify the Legislature's raising the gas tax by 10 cents a gallon and shifting the resulting increase from transportation and give it to education.  Utah County appears to be placing a public safety bond on the ballot for a new law enforcement building (after not having enough money to pay for law enforcement officers!).  And most importantly, Salt Lake City wants to put an $87 million streets bond on the ballot.  
  All of these ballot questions to increase taxes will, like Aesop's dog, decrease the chance of any of them passing.  Healthcare expansion should have priority and the rest of the counties and cities should back off of putting more bonds on the ballot.
  I am also against the $87 million SLC bond for streets since I believe that it will be used for road diets and cycle tracks.  Cycle track maintenance is almost 10 times more expensive than streets maintenance (cleaning, keeping free from debris and snow and water).  And finally, SLC will already get money from the Prop One zombie tax for roads and transit.

IMPACT FEES NEED TO BE REEXAMINED
  Salt Lake City looks like it can't spend enough on matching Impact Fees so that it will have to return $5 million to developers.  SLC and the Council needs to have a discussion on better solutions to this issue.  In addition, since the Impact Fees for housing doubled, housing starts have decreased 50%. 

UTAH LEGISLATURE PASSES BIG INTERNET TAX BILL
  The Utah Legislature passed a big internet tax bill (continuing this Legislature's biggest Utah tax increases in the last 20 years).  The Legislature claims that the tax on internet sales and SERVICES will be used to decrease taxes on manufacturing equipment.  
  But the effect of the Bill is to put millions of small business internet sales and service companies at risk of audits by other states.  It also ignores the overseas sales that will not pay taxes and, since the postal regulations require not interfering with the mail, it will create, in my opinion, a great big sucking sound from small businesses that are trying to work from the U.S.
  The other big effect is, due to the requirement that internet services be taxed, taxing Netflix and other internet service providers.  Due to the late providing of the bill, not available until after 9PM the night before, almost no one spoke against it.  Big companies will have no problem meeting the tax requirements of 10,000 taxing jurisdictions in the U.S.  The U.S., at least in Utah, will start paying taxes for subscription services like everyone in Britain paying for TV service.  This is happening despite the fact that we already pay franchise taxes on cable service.  This is a double taxation and no one knew about it.  This means that internet streaming and other services, including subscriptions like sports news, newspapers, etc. could be charged, and those paying for the services could be noted.
  Although most legitimate news organizations may not be a concern for privacy advocates, what about extreme philosophy services or pornography.  I find it hard to believe that the porn industry will allow it's clients to be listed.  Being able to audit, and discourage an XXX rated service may be good for society but privacy deserves more respect.
  This bill could also hurt the development of streaming niche sports that are providing a better service for some sports, better than ESPN.
  According to the U.S. Supreme Court: "Among the top 100 Internet retailers that rate (of internet sales tax collected) is between 87 and 96 percent."  Although Utah is one of 20 States that have adopted the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement, the privacy issue is still a question.  "This system standardizes taxes to reduce administrative and compliance costs: It requires a single, state level tax administration, uniform definitions of products and services, simplified tax rate structures, and other uniform rules. It also provides sellers access to sales tax administration software paid for by the State. Sellers who choose to use such software are immune from audit liability.
  This was a rushed and not carefully submitted bill.  Senator Bramble will be at a Congressional Hearing tomorrow to try to convince Congress to get involved and answer some of the questions.

TANKER ON HIGHWAY ONE OF OVER 200 TRUCK CRASHES PER YEAR
  Another crude oil tanker crash near Price dumped around 700 gallons of crude, thick oil into a river.  This and many other truck crashes along Hwy 6, I80, and I40 should be a walkup call on considering a pipeline for transporting oil from the Uintah Basin to Salt Lake City area refineries.  Each of the roads mentioned have about 90 big rig truck crashes per year and part of the problem in the Uintah Basin with air pollution is the requirement to heat the oil, put it on hundreds of tankers and drive the oil to Salt Lake City.  The oil is so viscous that it needs to be heated or a naptha like compound has to be added to make it able to transport by pipeline (or tanker).  This is a good reason to build a pipeline to Salt Lake City (with double walls when crossing water) since the Uintah Basin oil is needed to make Utah's gasoline.  

JASON MATHIS, BEST THING ABOUT DOWNTOWN LEAVING
  I'm not just sad but upset that Salt Lake City is losing Jason Mathis.  He was the leader in boosting Downtown SLC through the Downtown Alliance.  Lane Beatty may have been the ultimate leader but Jason was the man on the ground pushing for a better Salt Lake City.  I am upset that Salt Lake is losing such a great booster.

SLC BICYCLE REGISTRATION PROGRAM OFFICIAL
the SLC Council had already voted to approve the new free Bicycle Registration Plan several months ago.  This last week, the Mayor officially implemented it.  But without the rest of the law enforcement entities in Salt Lake County (and the rest of Utah) working off of the same registration plan, anyone questioned by a SLCPD officer about a bicycle that they have in their possession can say that they are from another city.  The Registration Plan is toothless, useless and a waste until the Legislature passes a statewide law.  The Transportation Interim Committee is possibly going to discuss this issue in a few months.  But, in the meantime, to help the SLCPD officers try to discourage bicycle theft, the Mayor should ask the Legislature to implement it statewide.





JULY 16, 2018
MESSAGE FROM SLCPD CHIEF BROWN
A WEEK IN THE LIFE OF THE EASTSIDE BIKE SQUAD
INLAND PORT SECRET CONSENSUS
INTERNET SALES TAX 
BRITISH FIELD DAY SUCCESS WITH 148 CARS
FIRST ENCAMPMENT CELEBRATION
TRANSIT FUNDS FOR DEVELOPER SWEETHEART DEAL JULY 31 HEARING
JULY 31 HEARING ON BOND FOR STREETS AND ROAD DIETS
SCOOTERS, BICYCLES, WHEELCHAIRS AND PEDESTRIANS ON SIDEWALKS
1700 SOUTH LANE REDUCTION POLARIZES BALLPARK
SALES TAX ON STREAMING SERVICES COULD HURT PRIVACY
SUGAR HOUSE HIGHLAND DR FLASHING LIGHT CROSSWALK BY KIMI'S
FAIRMONT PARK POND TOO HOT FOR FISH SO CATCH 'EM FAST


MESSAGE FROM SLCPD CHIEF BROWN
  Chief Brown has put out a message/letter that explains the problems that he and his Department have been having over the last few years.  
  Summarizing, it explains that his Department is undergoing an analysis of its operations to ensure efficient and appropriate staffing levels in all areas.  The goal is to have patrol officers in every beat which is not happening now.  He acknowledges that citizens want more officers, especially in each beat.  The SLCPD currently is down 13 funded officers.  "In the last 3 years, the Department has increased authorized sworn strength by 42 officers (a 10% increase).  In addition, 13 new civilian positions were funded to improve operational efficiencies.
  Mayor Biskupski has committed to fund 23 more officers next year and the Department is allowed to hire 20 more unfunded positions to cover expected turnover in personnel.  The Department has moved to year round recruiting with two more academies this year and they have implemented a recruiting bonus system.
 
A WEEK IN THE LIFE OF THE EASTSIDE BIKE SQUAD
  The SLCPD Bike Squad has 4 downtown squads and one eastside squad.  The downtown squad focuses on Rio Grande, Depot, Main Street, and Library Square.  The eastside bike squad focuses on Liberty Park, Sugar House, Fairmont Park and the South Track (State Street).  The eastside squad usually has Wednesday through Friday off.  During their patrols, each officer in the squad is given an assignment for increased attention.  For instance the assignments in mid June were for the Alta Motel (1899 S. State), the Georgia Apartments (200 E and 2013-2015 S), the 7-11 on 1100 E and 1700 S, the Main Street Motel (1530 S Main Street), Liberty Park (600 East), the Wasatch Inn (1416 S. State), and the Shop and Save (old Wayne's Corner on 1302 S State).
  Zion's Motel and Alta Motel are both under new ownership and the new owners seem to be working well with the SLCPD.  There is new management of the Shop and Save (one of the biggest crime magnets in the area).  
  On June 16, at 1302 S State (Shop and Save) there was an arrest of an individual who had a warrant and also had possession of a dangerous weapon.  At 1530 S. Main St., the squad arrested a man for burglary of a vehicle and unlawful use of a stolen credit card.  Another similar arrest was made that day at 1416 S. State (theft by deception).  Another arrest was for possession (of meth) and theft and another arrest was for a parole fugitive and possession with intent to distribute.
  On June 17, they participated in the Pride Parade and kept an eye on the Liberty Park Drum Circle.
  That was a typical week in the life of a bike squad member.  The rest of the time is bicycling through neighborhoods and providing a visible deterrent to crime with a visible cop.

INLAND PORT SECRET CONSENSUS
  I find it very confusing and uncomfortable for a part time City Council to manage and control the secret Salt Lake City negotiations regarding the Inland Port of Salt Lake County.  The Mayor of Salt Lake City should not have her responsibility interfered with.  In addition, this Salt Lake City Council seems to insist on secrecy.  It did the Miller Sport Arena tax rebate in secret.  It chose the Homeless Resource Centers sites in secret.  It doesn't seem to decide issues in public when it hears public testimony then waits a week before publicly voting on the issues.  The Council can meet in small groups in secret and that has been regularly happening with regards to the budget, and now with the Inland Port negotiations.  When did the City Council get the ability to ignore Utah's Open Public Meetings Act?  And the Legislature and Governor seemed to be encouraging it.  It is hypocritical to complain about deciding Healthy Utah in secret (complaints by the SLC Council) then turning around and deciding the Inland Port issues in secret.  Not only does the SLC Council want to take over management of Salt Lake City, they want to do it in secret.  This is not a good sign for respectful representation of the voters in Salt Lake City.  
  A SECRET CONSENSUS IS MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE!  You can have one or the other, not both.
  The secret consensus agreement is (not sure if the agreement allows Greg Hughes to serve on the Board but it looks like it):
         LAND USE. APPEALS & MUNICIPAL SERVICES
           •  More clearly define objectives of an inland port         
           •  More specificity on the critical uses for jurisdictional land         
            • Enhance the standards for administrative land use reviews
            • Clarify the Authority is an appeals board of last resort
                o Appeals to be first considered by the municipality
                o 180 days for municipal approval or denial
                o 60 days for municipal appeal
                o Authority shall only approve Appeals based on defined critical uses
                o Appeal authority shall issue a written decision within 30 days unless all parties agree to a later date
                o “Respects the due process rights of the parties to an appeal”
                o Public hearing on appeal including public notice and notice to the appeal authority
                  from which the appeal is taken. Materials shall be provided prior to the hearing
                  and available to the public
            • Establish more clear appeals panel procedures and standards
            • Align with LUDMA defined terms rather than new definitions
            • More clarity on the strategies, policies and objectives of the Inland Port Authority
            • Increase transparency, including public notices and processes specific to appeals
            • Ensure municipalities that they will provide services and be allocated tax increment
            • 2% cap on property tax differential to be used for authority operating expenses
            • Language to encourage board to work with neighboring communities to develop plans to
              mitigate potential impacts
            • Allow the board to appoint non-voting members and advisory councils including
              individuals from taxing entities, community organizations & associations
            • Remove already developed areas from boundary
            • Respect existing land use and other agreements and arrangements between property
              owners and applicable government authorities
            • Instruct municipalities with land within the boundary to adopt an ordinance allowing an
              inland port as permitted or conditional use subject to standards determined by the
              municipality and consistent with the strategies, policies and objectives         
         ENVIRONMENTAL
            • Ensure environmental sustainability policies and best practices
                o Meet or exceed applicable state and federal standards
                o Monitoring and emissions reporting
                o Strategies that utilize the best available technology systems to mitigate impact
            • Non-voting members and advisory councils including environmental organizations
            • Remove wetlands from jurisdictional land
            • Respect and maintain sensitivity to the unique natural environment
            • Improve air quality and minimize resource use
            • Establish that applicable appeals require information from an appellant:
                 o Whether the proposed development will meet or exceed applicable state and
                  federal regulations
                 o The extent to which the development will include best available technology or
                  systems that mitigate environmental impact
                 o The potential impact on air, ground water, or other aspects of the environment,
                  and how the land use applicant proposes to mitigate those impacts
           • Port authority annual report to include:
                 o Sustainability plan that reports on regulated emissions and summarizes efforts by
                  the authority to achieve compliance with applicable regulations         
         BOUNDARY ADJUSTMENTS         
            • Reduce the overall size of authority jurisdictional land
            • Remove wetlands
            • Remove already developed areas in south east
            • Remove north east corner — farmland
            • Remove the airport including all land they currently own         
         GOVERNANCE
           • Allow the authority to appoint non-voting members and advisory councils including
           individuals from:
                 o Taxing entities
                 o Community organizations
                 o Environmental organizations
                 o Associations, and
                 o Business organizations
         • Set SLC council member whose districts includes the Salt Lake Airport in statute
           • Board limitation
                 o Clarifies conflict language for employees or board members to mean one of a
                  PRIVATE firm, PRIVATE company, or other PRIVATE entity that could receive
                  a personal financial benefit
                o Exempts statutorily required board members from conflict issues beyond their
                  control, but still requires transparency and public disclosure of circumstances that
                  would have otherwise precluded them from serving
         MORE CLEARLY DESCRIBED DEFINITIONS AND OBJECTIVES
            • Inland port
            • Critical land use descriptions for development and appeals
            • Parameters for appeals
            • Strategies, policies and objectives aligned with critical land use descriptions
         AFFORDABLE HOUSING
            • The authority shall designate 10% of the property tax differential generated to be used for
              affordable housing

INTERNET SALES TAX 
  Internet sales taxes, if not appropriately implemented, will create a nightmare.
It seems that, with probably millions of internet sales companies in this Country alone, trying to ensure that all provide all 50 states and possibly each separate taxing entity with proof of their sales is incredibly complicated and unattainable.
I would hope that Congress and/or the National Conference of State Legislatures or national accounting firms develop a standard reporting system that each company's accountant can submit to a clearinghouse and be available to states.  
  Otherwise, trying to identify companies that sell more than $100,000 to Utah would be almost impossible without requiring proof from each company.  Auditing millions of companies by each of the 50 states is also a burden, especially for small companies.
The proof would also have be a standard since companies like Airbnb are on the honor system and do not provide proof of their clients.
  During today's Transportation Governance meeting, it was mentioned that implementing a local option sales tax on gasoline would be almost too complicated.  That is similar to what internet sales taxes are becoming.  UDOT's Carlos Braceras and Senator Ipson both mentioned the nightmare of California's implementation of local option sales.
  Senator Bramble will sponsor a bill to implement internet sales taxes for all companies that sell more than 200 items to Utahns or $100,000 in sales to Utahns in a year.  Senator Bramble is also going to testifying in front of Congress on July 24th regarding the lack of action by Congress regarding internet sales tax.  Congress does need to take action but based on the last 20 years, expect nothing.
  My point is that I hope that Utah, and other states, carefully implement internet sales taxes and do not rush in and create a system that costs the Utah Tax Commission more to implement than the new revenue that it could collect.  This issue does not have to be decided this week.  I hope that there will not be a rush to claim internet sales taxes without a slow and deliberate discussion (since we can't collect it until January and the deadline is October 1 to request it).

BRITISH FIELD DAY SUCCESS WITH 148 CARS
  British Field Day, the Liberty Park celebration and exhibit of British vehicles, mainly sports cars was super successful this year.  Last month's event had 148 British cars including several Land Rovers, a panel van and an exploded version of a car to show everyone the complexity of cars.  Of interest to other event organizers, the City charged $310 for a "cost recovery fee" and $28 for the garbage containers.  Over 40 rides were given to kids in a British sports car running through a race course.  Liberty Wells Community Council put on the event which was started by Bill Davis, a community leader.  I am looking forward to next year.

FIRST ENCAMPMENT CELEBRATION
  The First Encampment Celebration is a celebration of the first pioneers coming into this Valley.  The pioneers first camped near 500 E and 1700 S.  There is a park there and, on Saturday, July 21 from 8 AM to 1030 AM, the Liberty Wells Community Council will serve a typical Utah pioneer breakfast.  The cost is $4 for adults and $1 for children.  Parking is at the LDS Church on 500 East and 1623 South.  At 9 AM, there will be a square dancing show and there will be a chance to learn how to square dance with instructors.
  The breakfast is also done in conjunction with a hike from 2903 Kennedy Drive above Hogle Zoo starting at 7 AM and the hike goes to the park on 500 East and 1700 South.  It is about 5 miles and registration for the hike is free.  
  This is a chance to experience what the pioneers did when they came into the Salt Lake Valley.

TRANSIT FUNDS FOR DEVELOPER SWEETHEART DEAL JULY 31 HEARING
  The Salt Lake City Council has decided to speed up the public hearing on giving $15 million in Transportation Funds (that are supposed to be used for regionally significant transportation projects) on July 31 at the evening formal meeting at 7 PM.  As I mentioned last week, the City is offering a developer $15 to build an underground parking garage.  The Transportation Commission also approved using funds for this project.  It is essentially a loan since the City and Transportation Fund will be reimbursed/paid back by the increased tax increment of the project over 25 years.  But the developer is still getting $15 million up front without risk.  In addition, the decision was essentially made without public comment (except by me at the general comments section) and a specific public hearing should be held before giving a developer millions.  Despite the decision, already made, the Council will have the hearing on July 31 to rubber stamp their decision.  But there are many other issues regarding this sweetheart deal.
  Salt Lake City RDA has agreed to sign an interlocal agreement with Salt Lake County to provide $15 million from Transportation Funds to be used for a project on Block 67 to incentive developers to provide public parking in a parking garage. The design of the block development would be enhanced by a midblock walkway if most parking is put underground. The Ritchie Group, a Salt Lake City developer that has built mostly around Brickyard, has a good reputation and the proposed design of the block has excited many in the downtown community.  The project is on the block just west of the Salt Palace (between 200 and 300 West and between 100 and 200 South).  It is planned to have 350,000 sq ft of offices, 70,000 sq ft of retail, 638 housing units and 580 rooms in a hotel.
  Salt Lake County, according to the SLC RDA, "would provide $15 million from the Utah State Transportation Fund to the developers, via the City and the RDA, for construction of what new State law refers to as “public transit project and regionally significant transportation facility” (2018 SB 128 added parking lots to the definition)." Although the money would be repaid by tax increments over 25 years, the City may be left with too little of the increased taxes to fulfill the need for increased municipal services for the several large buildings on the block.
  Interestingly, the 2016 Downtown parking study determined that there was sufficient parking downtown. The City also has been discouraging surface parking lots for years to ensure efficient use of the limited property downtown. One way to discourage surface parking lots is to require an approved plan for a new building before an old building can be demolished. This has stopped many downtown landowners who wanted to demolish older and unrepairable buildings and put in a temporary parking lot until they can get funds for development. 
  The main reason for the demolition ordinance was the demolition of the property on the 2100 South and Highland corner that ended up as the "Sugar Hole" until it was finally developed after almost 10 years. This has resulted in properties that remain vacant for decades, like Vasilios Priskos' old Zephyr Club property on 300 South and West Temple. It is also why SLC RDA has many properties that have remained vacant for years which reduces property values in the area.  Vacant buildings increase criminal activity in the area. SLC RDA property lost $5 million in value in the last year.
  Ironically, Salt Lake City convinced the property owner of the "Sugar Hole" to finally build his building by giving him almost $7 million for a level of public parking (much like the proposal for Block 67). But he implemented a $10 minimum for public parking and that resulted in nearby parking lots starting limiting parking to 2 hours. That destroyed the walkability of Sugar House and increased pollution. Before the 2 hour limit, many would park in the lots and spend many hours using the Sprague Library, eating at nearby restaurants and walking in the area while shopping. Now, after using the Library, one has to drive to another lot to eat, then drive to another lot to shop. The increase in pollution and loss in walkability is added to the inconvenience of librarians and neighborhood workers who have to park far away and in unsafe and unpopular parking lots. 
  The City RDA Board, Tuesday, approved the draft plan and draft interlocal agreement with the language added that it does not commit Salt Lake City or the RDA or Board to future approvals or actions. But the City is committed to "reasonable efforts" and as the staff has cautioned "recently the term “reasonable efforts” has been interpreted by some as an official signal of commitment, and any divergence or questioning of that
commitment at later dates is seen as an act of bad faith." So Salt Lake City's plan to have a public hearing in August or September on the final plan may be too late to change their mind on providing $15 million to the developer.
  One of the sources of the funds will be the SB136 resurrected Prop One funds that most expected to be used for public transit projects, road projects and regionally significant transportation projects. But SB128 now allows parking lots to get the money. Cottonwood Heights also has a proposed parking lot project using these funds. Salt Lake City will have difficult time convincing its taxpayers that it needs more money for streets (with the proposed streets bond) when the Transportation Funds from SB136 that could be used for streets, instead are being used for a private developer's parking lot.
  Salt Lake City needs to have a more thorough discussion about parking and using Transportation Funds for parking lots before giving $15 million to a developer for parking. Salt Lake City should not be discouraging developers from demolishing buildings and providing a parking lot while paying a developer to develop more parking. Hopefully, any new contract will stop the loopholes used by developers to gouge taxpayers and businesses. And, most importantly, Utah and Salt Lake County should have a discussion on why we are spending limited Transportation Funds on parking lots instead of on street repair and transit. $15 million could be and should be used to increase transit span of service past midnight from downtown Salt Lake City before using the funds for parking lots.
  During discussion at last week's RDA Board meeting, City Councilman Charlie Luke tried to delay the interlocal agreement approval for a month.  But under opposition from the rest of the Council, he withdrew his motion.  Although Council Chair Erin Mendenhall (Derek Kitchen is RDA Board Chair) asked "where is the public benefit in parking lots?" and was uncomfortable saying use it for more parking, she joined the rest of the Board in unanimously agreeing to the interlocal agreement and plan (Councilman Chris Wharton was not present).  The $450 million project is too big of a deal to say no to.  I like parking lots but I don't like government paying for them.
5
JULY 31 HEARING ON BOND FOR STREETS AND ROAD DIETS
  At the same time, the City Council will have its last public hearing on whether or not to put an $87 million bond for SLC streets on the ballot.  But, based on what I have heard so far, the Council would like to use those funds for more than street maintenance and repair.  They would like to use those funds for road diets, reducing travel lanes, installing separated bikeways and prettifying streets instead of basic maintenance and repair.  There is no guarantee that all of the funds will be used for basic maintenance and, as governments like to do, there is a tendency to use funds for monuments to elected officials and projects.  Roads should be brought up to basic service levels before trying big projects to make them pretty or decreasing travel lanes.
  And finally, like Aesops dog, trying for the third City Council tax increase (Sales tax, Prop One zombie tax) in a year will also hurt the chances of a vote for healthcare expansion and increased education funding.  Those two issues are also on the ballot with tax increases (the education funding is tied to a question on raising gas taxes 10 cents a gallon).  
  Again, the City Council will take public testimony on the issue on July 31 at 7PM.

SCOOTERS, BICYCLES, WHEELCHAIRS AND PEDESTRIANS ON SIDEWALKS
  Another issue from last week continues to cause ramifications for many other issues.  Salt Lake City is considering how to change ordinances to allow several companies that want to provide rental electric scooters in Salt Lake City.  Lost is the concern about electric scooters in Salt Lake City is the effect on the no bicycling on downtown sidewalks ordinance.  
  As I said last week, tourists use the Green Bikes a lot downtown on the sidewalks.  Even regular users ride on the sidewalks.  Riding on downtown streets, with all the parked cars pulling out, doors opening, unsafe automobile and truck drivers and even buses encourages bicyclists to ride on sidewalks.
  But electric scooters are being pushed, by SLC, to be used on downtown streets!  Electric scooters and bicyclists should be able to ride on downtown sidewalks as long as they do it safely.  It is against the law, now, to ride on the sidewalk negligently.  This is the time for a discussion on rescinding the law against riding bicycles and scooters on downtown sidewalks.  
  It is also the time to discuss increasing sidewalk widths to accomodate safely, wheelchairs, bicycles, scooters and pedestrians.  Wider sidewalks should be part of the City's Complete Street's ordinance but they aren't.  When roadways are reconfigured to accomodate bicycles, they are not increasing amenities like sidewalk widths, for pedestrians.  The road work is just benefiting cars and bicycles.  But Complete Streets is for pedestrians, bicycles and cars.  Salt Lake City needs to have a sidewalk ordinance that increases sidewalk widths.

1700 SOUTH LANE REDUCTION POLARIZES BALLPARK
  During last week's Ballpark Community Council meeting, there was a big argument about whether to proceed with the plan to reduce travel lanes on 1700 South between State Street and 300 West.  The concern of many is that it will back up traffic on 1700 South due to the TRAX crossing.  In addition, the community backlash against travel lane reductions, road diets, and lane reconfigurations in other neighborhoods was brought up.  Sunnyside Avenue, 2100 South, 1300 East and 900 West proposals were all met with anger in the neighborhoods.  900 West and 1300 East had road diets.  The communities are still upset about the implementation of the road diets.  But more than anything, most seem to result in polarizing the neighborhoods.  The major arguments against lane reductions are that it will back up traffic like on 1300 East (which also destroyed safe bicycling on 1300 East - using the right hand lane), the constant flow of traffic will make it difficult to get out of driveways, there should be a good public outreach that provides a 75% plus approval of the project and the money could be better used for more important projects.
  At the Ballpark Community Council about 57 had signed petitions for it and the same number had signed petitions against it.  When the question was asked at the meeting, how many were for it, about 60% raised their hands.  So again, SLC has succeeded in polarizing the neighborhoods.  I still think that Salt Lake City does not know how to do road diets (I was quoted saying that in 2014.).

SALES TAX ON STREAMING SERVICES COULD HURT PRIVACY
  During the Transportation Governance Committee hearing at the Legislature today, there were several presentations on increasing revenue for road and transit projects.  Tax Commissioner Valentine pointed out that the Oregon pilot project report said that technology may not be available to do a real road usage charge for miles driven by a vehicle until 2025.  They had problems with trust and verification and drivers trying to skip the validation.  Commissioner Valentine said that "It is probably premature to implement a mandatory road usage charge."  He said that it could be done, depending on the technology with a port that all new cars have and that is accessible by insurance companies or with license plate readers.  Congestion pricing has some potential.  
  UDOT is setting up a demonstration project.  The Committee also discussed advertising on buses and trains.  But there is a chance that the Legislature may stop UTA from advertising on its system, which gives UTA $2.5 million a year in revenue.  The impetus may be the new hard liquor ads that are now able to use UTA trains and buses for advertising.  The Committee also looked at toll roads briefly.  But it is too early to discuss that potential and the discussion stopped quickly.
  Internet taxes were also discussed (see above) and the Utah Foundation report recommending taxing internet services like Netflix also was presented and discussed.  The Committee did not take public testimony and the new internet sales tax bill to be presented Wednesday may contain a few lines about taxing services.  But subscriptions like newspapers have usually been exempt from taxes and those are some of the services offered online.  We also already pay franchise fees for internet access (through the cable company).  Privacy is also at risk if services are taxed.  How do you convince the general population that any service that requires a subscription has to be reported and taxed, especially if it is for adults (even though kids seem to have access to it)?
  Finally, it seems that there is pressure to do what Britain did when it set up TV stations; it made everyone pay a monthly fee to the government for TV.  There are horror stories of the government going to great lengths to ensure that everyone paid their TV tax.  I don't want Utah to become like Britain and go after people for watching TV, on the internet.

SUGAR HOUSE HIGHLAND DRIVE TO GET FLASHING LIGHT CROSSWALK BY KIMI'S
  The Salt Lake City Transportation Department has confirmed that a flashing light crosswalk is going to be constructed this year from south of Kimi's on Highland Drive to the Buffalo Wings restaurant to the west.  As anyone who goes through Sugar House knows, that is where many people cross the street.  It is time for a crosswalk with the increase of pedestrians in the area, going to the restaurants and bars and shopping.  Walking should be encouraged and that is one way.  Removing the two hour parking limit also would help.

FAIRMONT PARK POND TOO HOT FOR FISH SO CATCH 'EM FAST
  SLC and DWR have worked together to refurbish the Fairmont Park Pond and put hundreds of fish in the pond.  Unfortunately, the fish do not do well after the trip to the Pond because the Pond is too hot.  The DWR is aware of the problem and is trying to find a solution before too many dead fish ruin the Pond's reputation.





JULY 9, 2018
FORM BASED ZONING PLANNING PRESENTATION PLUS TOURS
MILLIONS IN IMPACT FEES WILL BE RETURNED TO DEVELOPERS
DRAPER MAYOR TROY WALKER COULD BE FIRST NEW UTA COMMISSIONER
WINGPOINTE STORY EXPANDED
RITCHIE GROUP GETS PARKING MONEY WHILE PRISKOS PROPERTY BLOCKED
PIONEER PARK PUSHES PIONEER PARK AMENITIES
RESTROOMS IN CANYONS CLOSED DURING HIGH SEASON
SCOOTERS IN SLC COULD CHANGE ANTI BIKING LAW
WFRC PUSHES BILLION DOLLAR TRAIN TO LEHI
ROCKY ANDERSON IS BETTER THAN SALT LAKE TRIBUNE
MCCLELLAND STREET BARRIER TO ADA USE
BOND VOTE IN SLC COULD STOP HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
TWO OF BEST MOVIES IN NORWEGIAN


FORM BASED ZONING PLANNING PRESENTATION PLUS 
  SLC Planning has prepared a great presentation on Form Based Zoning that was first used in the Central Ninth area then implemented in the Sugar Hosue area around the S-Line.  Form Based Zoning, if done right, can encourage walkable neighborhoods, encourage redevelopment of underutilized areas and encourage developers to build in areas that need more attention.  I put the presentation in the upper right downloads section along with a notice from the City on walkable tours.  The first on is today starting at 7PM at the Blue Copper Coffee 179 W and 900 S.  The others are part of the Summer Planning Series events:
July 30 Neighborhood Compatibility: Building the “good city”
August 27 Walkability: Balancing scale and people
September 24 Past Forward: Historic Preservation in SLC

MILLIONS IN IMPACT FEES WILL BE RETURNED TO DEVELOPERS
  I put a summary of SLC Impact Fees presentation on the upper right downloads section (it was previously part of the CIP list).  It appears that almost $5 million in impact fees will be returned to developers this year if the City is not able to provide projects and matching funds for projects.  So far, the City is not able to provide projects.  There is also the issue of the number of housing units that are being planned for construction this year.  It appears that it will be half of the previous year's housing construction starts.  Impact fees could have been part of the reason.  SLC needs a better system to plan on using impact fees.  The Council has asked the Administration for suggestions on how to track and use more of the impact fees.

DRAPER MAYOR TROY WALKER COULD BE FIRST NEW UTA COMMISSIONER
  On Tuesday, the Salt Lake County Council will probably agree to forward Draper Mayor Troy Walker and Mountain Accord Executive Director Laynee Jones to the Governor to be appointed as the first UTA Commissioner.  Davis County is expected to provide Davis County Commissioner Brett Milburn to the Governor.  Mayor Walker may be interested in projects around the State Prison, especially the billion dollar TRAX extension to Lehi but at least he would be able to hit the ground running at UTA.  I have worked and fought with him for years while he was on the UTA Board of Directors.  But he is a professional and he seemed to provide a good and reasoned opinion and vote on the Board of Trustees.  Laynee Jones is most famous for pushing the Mountain Accord train and tunnel in the Wasatch Canyons, recommending making the Wasatch Canyons a National Monument and closing the supposedly open meetings to the public.  Mayor Walker would be a great appointment to help run UTA.

WINGPOINTE GOLF COURSE STORY EXPANDED
  The Salt Lake Tribune's Robert Gehrke did a story last week on the potential for saving the Wingpointe Golf Course. I have been following, fighting and writing for years about the attempt by the City Council to close Wingpointe and turn it into a deicing maintenance facility.  This is the rest of the story.
  Former Mayor Becker told Hatch's Chief of Staff that SLC wanted to close Wingpointe and did not want the Senator to help keep it open.  Then several Councilmembers tried to close several golf courses, including Wingpointe and Glendale and get a parks bond to convert the Glendale course to a park  (for $50+ million).  The Zap tax reconfiguration on the ballot stopped the parks bond.  But the effort/plan/pressure is still there.
  Last month, on June 12, the Council voted to rezone Wingpointe from open space and give it to the Airport.  It still needs to be removed from open space list and that will be a separate hearing.  At the June 5 Council hearing, only a couple of us argued against paving over paradise, the only green around the Airport.  Erin was so upset that she argued that they were not doing that during the public hearing.  I listened to the discussion at the work session and I believe that she is trying to close Wingpointe permanently along with other golf courses.  Amy Fowler and Chris Wharton seem to be providing the biggest effort against closing more golf courses along with Mayor Biskupski.  I support their efforts to protect open space and golf courses.

RITCHIE GROUP GETS PARKING MONEY WHILE PRISKOS PROPERTY BLOCKED
  "Through SB 128 (2018) Transportation Revisions, the State Legislature provided for construction of parking facilities in a county of the first class that facilitate significant economic development and recreation and tourism within the state.  SB128 was sponsored by Senator Buxton and Representative Christofferson.  It allows County Transportation funds to go to parking facilities and also to transit projects.  Salt Lake County and Salt Lake City appear to be working on giving $15 million from the County to the City RDA to be given to the Ritchie Group for an underground parking structure for Block 67!   The City would have to implement a new RDA area and the Ritchie Group would have to "offer a share of paid parking spaces to the public."  
  Tuesday, both the Salt Lake County Council and the SLC Council will start the process to give the Ritchie Group $15 million.  "The RDA would repay the County for these funds with tax increment from the proposed project."
  Salt Lake City Council gave almost $7 million to Craig Mecham to help start the Vue project on 2100 South and Highland.  The money was supposed to be used to provide for a public parking level.  Meacham used the contract language to take advantage of Salt Lake City taxpayers and he implemented a $10 minimum public parking charge!  That obviously would result in a laughable public parking level.  The Kem Gardner Group bought the Vue but it still charges a $10 minimum.
  What it did do is destroy the walkability of Sugar House.  When Meacham implemented the $10 parking minimum, the rest of the nearby parking lots implemented a two hour maximum parking limit.  That was despite the Sprague Library needing more parking for longer areas.  The Boyer Company refused to be flexible about library patrons and even refused to allow deliveries next to the Library.  The Library deliveries have to find regular parking spots.  Librarians have to park far away and in unsafe areas!  It also stopped Sugar House patrons from parking and walking the area for hours.  It increased pollution and destroyed walkability.  
  The irony continues when you realize that Salt Lake City has been actively discouraging parking lots, especially downtown.  The Draft Downtown and Sugar House Parking Study by Nelson/Nygaard found that there was plenty of parking but it has not resulted in anything more than the draft (Nelson/Nygaard always finds that there is plenty of parking and has come close to creating riots in various cities that they do their studies).  There is an argument in the City Administration about whether to allow more parking while also stopping demolition of buildings to turn the property into parking lots, temporarily, while the planning for the replacement project continues.  That is why there are so many vacant buildings downtown (and around the City).  The ordinance in Salt Lake City requires an approved plan before the City allows demolition of a building and a parking lot is not acceptable.  Ironically, the demolition ordinance was passed into law to stop more Sugar Holes like Meacham's (who left a big empty hole  for years after he demolished his building).
  The result is that downtown landowners like Vasilios Priskos, who owned the old Zephyr Club property on 300 South and West Temple, are not able to demolish old and vacant and drug using vagrant buildings and pave them over as a parking lot until the property is redeveloped.  In SLC, property will not stay vacant for long (unless the City owns it - RDA has almost a hundred million in property that, in some cases, has been vacant for decades).  So, a month after honoring Vasilios Priskos with a walkway named in his honor, Salt Lake City is insulting him by giving $15 million to the Ritchie Group (which has a good reputation amongst developers) for parking!
  SLC needs to have a more thorough discussion about parking before giving $15 million to a developer for parking and hopefully, any new contract will stop the loopholes used by developers to gouge taxpayers and businesses.

PIONEER PARK PUSHES PIONEER PARK AMENITIES
  Pioneer Park Coalition is pushing fundraising to create a more inviting and usable Pioneer Park.  Salt Lake City's RDA is assisting by providing matching funds to build a playing field and other amenities.  Unfortunately, the needs of the homeless are not being met and until the City actually solves the problem (I still think that the County is most responsible for the homeless issue regarding drugs and crime.), prettifying Pioneer Park is a waste of time.  When drug users jam their used needles into the ground in the Park, the whole Park becomes unsafe, no matter how many people use it.  Drug users should not be on the street.

RESTROOMS IN CANYONS CLOSED DURING HIGH SEASON
  Salt Lake City Public Utilities is publicizing the upgrading of restrooms in the Wasatch Canyons (using $700,000 that I mentioned before).  The work is being done during the peak hiking season when there are the most users of the Canyons.  I think that one has to question why do the work during the peak season?  Providing temporary potties is not really good management.  The U.S. Forest Service is working with Salt Lake City to manage (or mismanage) this project.

SCOOTERS IN SLC COULD CHANGE ANTI BIKING LAW
  Lost is the concern about electric scooters in Salt Lake City is the effect on the no bicycling on downtown sidewalks ordinance.  Tourists use the Green Bikes a lot downtown on the sidewalks.  Even regular users ride on the sidewalks.  Riding on downtown streets, with all the parked cars pulling out, doors opening, unsafe automobile and truck drivers and even buses encourages bicyclists to ride on sidewalks.
  But electric scooters are being pushed, by SLC, to be used on downtown streets!  Electric scooters and bicyclists should be able to ride on downtown sidewalks as long as they do it safely.  It is against the law, now, to ride on the sidewalk negligently.  This is the time for a discussion on rescinding the law against riding bicycles and scooters on downtown sidewalks.  
  Another interesting discussion regarding scooters will take place at Tuesday's SLC Council work session.  They will discuss whether to "require business license applicants to provide photo identification and evidence that they possess professional certifications necessary to operate specific categories of businesses."  I know that the City wants to stop scooters on sidewalks but trying to stop them by requiring certifications is laughable!

WFRC PUSHES BILLION DOLLAR TRAIN TO LEHI
  The Wasatch Front Regional Council has provided a list of recommended projects for federal funding assist.  They include the billion dollar train from Draper to Lehi, electrifying FrontRunner and BRTs to Taylorsville, up and down 5600 South and other areas.  These billions of projects all appear to be wasteful wish lists when the highest priority should be more bus service.  

ROCKY ANDERSON IS BETTER THAN SALT LAKE TRIBUNE
  Last week, the Salt Lake Tribune did a story, "a hit piece", on former Mayor Rocky Anderson.  I know Rocky as an acquaintance but I also know many people who worked with him and under him and they have always regarded Rocky with respect.  Although a hard taskmaster, he engenders excellence and people who work under him, want to keep working for him.  I am incredulous that a well regarded reporter ignored warning signs that the story bordered on fake news!  Rocky Anderson deserved more respect and this story did not deserve to be published without a more vigorous examination of the evidence.  
  I am also surprised that the Tribune has ignored "rumors" of other politicians that have a much worse reputation.  We rely on newspapers to provide news that ensures appropriate and ethical actions by government.  But when a questionable story is published, the public stops trusting the news and one of our Nation's most important reasons for success is threatened.  The Tribune, or another news organization should follow up for the real story.

MCCLELLAND STREET BARRIER TO ADA USE
  Today, the Sugar House Community Council and Salt Lake City is hosting a discussion on the future of McClelland Street between Elm and 2100 South (about one block).  Soren Simonsen is recommending a shared street concept.  It is at Legacy Village on Wilmington (between 1300 E. and Highland) from 6 to 9 PM.  Unfortunately, the million dollars appropriated by the City to construct the McClelland Trail to Fairmont Park was all spent on alleyways so only about $100,000 is available for this project.

BOND VOTE IN SLC COULD STOP HEALTHCARE EXPANSION
  Salt Lake City Council is pushing hard for putting a bond proposal for streets on the November ballot.  The Council is hosting get togethers with the Council Chair and taking public testimony on July 10th and July 31st.  The Council is tentatively scheduled to make a decision by August 14.  But it is one of many potential tax increases this year.  Property taxes are going up, sometimes as much as 10%; the Prop One zombie tax is being implemented in October (which gives cities road and transit money); the November ballot already has a sales tax increase for healthcare expansion and a ten cent a gallon gas tax increase for education (to provide cover for the Legislature to shift funds from transportation back to education - that they pulled from about 10 years ago); and the proposals by the Legislature to increase taxes on services like Netflix and Amazon streaming!
  So now, Salt Lake City is proposing to threaten healthcare expansion and education funding increases to get more money than they already will get from the resurrected Prop One tax!  It sounds like an Aesop's Fable dog story.

TWO OF THE BEST MOVIES IN NORWEGIAN
  I received a couple of thanks for the last nod to foreign movies so I would like to suggest some more.  This time, I am recommending two Norwegian movies, Headhunters and Jackpot.  Headhunters is about a hitman and corporate recruiter.  It has action and suspense.  It deserves 90 minutes of watching.
  Jackpot is another Norwegian surprise (with some Swedish) that is as good a mystery as possible.  It will also be worth watching.  The irony and humorous plot grabs you almost immediately.






JULY 2, 2018

999 BIKE RIDE OVERWHELMS SLC


999 BIKE RIDE OVERWHELMS SLC

  The 999 bicycle riding gathering that is every Thursday night at 9:30 PM at 900 South and 900 East (southwest corner) is attracting hundreds and almost a thousand bicycle riders!  This is the time of year when it gets unreal.  I put some of the pictures from last week's ride in a zip file in the upper right.  For more information go to:

 https://www.facebook.com/notes/999-ride-slc/999-frequently-asked-questions/1938385479537785/




JUNE 28, 2018
REALITY CHECK ON OPERATION LEAF BLOWER
BURN PLANT SUGGESTED FOR SLCO, REALLY?
MILLCREEK MUNICIPAL FIBER, TOWN CENTER, SLC LAND TRADE
SINGLE ROOM OCCUPANCY PUSHED IN SLC
UTA LOSING MORE VALUABLE PERSONNEL
UTA NOT PUBLICIZING 40% FARE DECREASE
OGDEN'S WANTS QUESTIONABLE $79 MILLION PROJECT
SLCO GOP ELECTS SCOTT MILLER CHAIR


REALITY CHECK ON OPERATION LEAF BLOWER
   On Monday, the National Network of Criminal Justice Coordinating Councils, a criminal justice reform think tank, held a meeting in Salt Lake City to celebrate the success of Operation Rio Grande.  Lieutenant Governor Cox, the Utah Highway Patrol and SLCO Mayor Ben McAdams all joined in the presentations to show the Country that Salt Lake County and Utah has solved the homeless problem in Utah!  Ironically, it happened on the 5 year anniversary of the announcement that Utah and Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker had solved the homeless problem in Utah.  
  The Deseret News quoted Mayor McAdams giving credit to the Operation for putting 2,442 of Utah's very poorest on Medicaid.  Speaker Hughes gave credit to the Operation for using a sitin, an "occupy" in the Health and Human Services Department to remove the 16 bed limit on Medicaid drug treatment (put into place decades ago to protect single family home neighborhoods from large Medicaid drug treatment facilities).  280 drug dealers were arrested (and it appears that all except for 10 have been released) and a lot of drugs were confiscated.  
  If the kudos that were given to Mayor McAdams are pulled aside, the reality would have revealed that the reason for the Operation would have been revealed.  When Mayor McAdams repurposed $9.4 million a year that was going to the jail bond for his pet projects, including Pay for Success (which is still collecting information) and a salary increase for County employees, resulted in a jail that was not able to accept arrested criminals.  Former Sheriff Winder had to implement a jail booking restriction policy due to the lack of adequate public safety funding at the County Jail.  When that happened, the area around Rio Grande exploded into lawlessness.  SLC Police were not able to arrest and book and keep in jail drug dealers and other criminals.  
  The reason that the Salt Lake County police chiefs call the effort Operation Leaf Blower is because the jail is still underfunded and keeps drug dealers booked for just a few hours.  The U.S. Attorney was so upset that he books drug dealers arrested in Salt Lake County in other counties.  The rest of the municipalities are seeing a significant increase in drugs and homeless criminal behavior and complaints from the citizens.  They do not see Operation Rio Grande as the success that has been presented to the rest of the Country.
  Last week, the Legislature's Social Services Appropriations Subcommittee heard a real report on Operation Rio Grande during a deep dive presentation (in the downloads section).  There have been problems with the IDs (up to 50% are lost and need to be replaced).  Only 65 of the homeless are working (Lt. Governor Cox said 80 are working this week?!).  Crime in the area has gone down significantly but the rest of the County seems to be experiencing an increase that some attribute to drug addicts that are avoiding the downtown SLC Rio Grande area.  The drug addiction treatment for individuals with Substance Use Disorder (SUD) statistics show thousands of Utahns need treatment but success in treatment is difficult (statistics in the download section under addiction service rates).
  A reality check on Operation Rio Grande/Leaf Blower would show that the effort is more of a publicity stunt to increase the visibility and popularity of Ben McAdams and Greg Hughes so that they will eventually be able to run for Governor against each other.

BURN PLANT SUGGESTED FOR SLCO, REALLY?
  The problems with recycling (see last week's RECYCLING IS DEAD) have resulted in Millcreek suggesting some solutions that include a burn plant for garbage!  In the 1980s, I helped lead a fight against a proposed garbage burn plant in San Diego County.  I ended up on the San Diego County Solid Waste Management Board.  Burning nonhomogenous waste/garbage invariably will lead to more air pollution and, even with the best pollution controls (water curtains), the ash will still be hazardous with heavy metals that are very toxic.  The burn plant in Layton (which I tried to help close in the 1990s during my monthly visits to Utah) actually burned metal car parts, batteries and even depleted uranium bullets (not the "depleted uranium" barrels in the west desert filled with nuclear weapons waste.  The plant closed recently but the ash pile still remains and is not being properly secured.  
  The idea of burning garbage is wrong since it results in significant increases in pollution in an airshed that cannot take anymore burning of anything.  Recycling needs to be reevaluated but when most of our recycled garbage is actually sent to the dump, maybe recycling is not being effectively managed.

MILLCREEK MUNICIPAL FIBER, TOWN CENTER, SLC LAND TRADE
  Millcreek is considering an expensive municipal fiber system that will cost residents $2000 to $4000 over 20 years.  The goal is to have the new City support borrowing money and constructing a municipal broadband system to provide over 100 mbps internet connections for City residents.  But 4G cellular is 3 to 12 mbps with some cities getting 35 mbps.  Netflix recommends 25 mbps download for 4K and Amazon recommends 15 mbps download for 4K movies.  So cellular is providing competition already for high speed internet.  Slower download speeds can be compensated for with buffering.  
  Most importantly, 5G cellular is coming and I put the SLC report on 5G in the downloads section.  That will provide a cheaper and more cost effective installation and operation of 100 mbps download internet availability.  
  One of the reasons that Google Fiber slowed down their rollout was because of the new technology that is more cost effective than digging up sidewalks for fiber.  Google bought a company that does just that.  Even with the new microtrenching (not used in Utah yet), water and sewer lines can be cut.  SLC is experiencing a big problem with the issue of fiber construction companies breaking water and sewer pipes and refusing to fix them.  Also, UTOPIA, which showed up to support the effort, is still costing Utah taxpayers $50 million a year in a questionable interest rate swap.  The poorly managed UTOPIA buildout is the best reason not to have any municipality in Utah build municipal broadband.  It is still a way for government to get and spend more money.  Interestingly, I made that same comment years ago during a Legislative hearing on UTOPIA.
  Millcreek will have other public hearings if they decide to consider this project.
  Millcreek also is about to finalize high density, mixed use and mixed income town center zoning in the area from about 1200 East to Highland and from northern City boundaries to 3400 South.  The project should lead to a lot of construction in the area.  Unfortunately, it is near one of the Wasatch Front faultlines and it is also next to the 3300 South/1300 East high pressure natural gas pipeline.  In the next big one, the whole area could be incinerated with a rupture of the pipeline.  It also points out that the 911 system in Salt Lake County needs to be consolidated into one system.  If there is a rupture or accident or problem at 3300 South and 1300 East, three separate emergency numbers and responders need to be notified to respond!
  Another item mentioned at the Millcreek City Council meeting was that they have 47 UPD police patrolling Millcreek and they want 58.  They, the UPD, along with the other 12 law enforcement entities in the County have problems hiring and retaining enough police officers.
  And finally, Millcreek and Salt Lake City are discussing a land trade to consolidate the jigsaw boundaries between Millcreek and Salt Lake City on 1220 East/Richmond Street just north of 3300 South.  There are 4 homes just south of Elgin on Richmond that are in Millcreek and Salt Lake City takes care of the road in front of those homes.  But their sidewalks are below the road!  For over a decade, residents have complained about the safety issues and accidents in the area.  A land trade would help provide a better solution and responsibility for the area to get a safety increase (by giving the property to SLC in return for other property to provide fair compensation).

SINGLE ROOM OCCUPANCY PUSHED IN SLC
  I put the SLC proposal for Single Room Occupancy homes in the downloads section.  Of note, the parking remains at 1/2 per unit.  In addition, the rooms can contain a kitchen or bathroom but not both.  One of them has to be in the community area of the home.  This could be a concern to single family home neighbors.  The proposal was tabled for more information at this week's Planning Commission meeting.

UTA LOSING MORE VALUABLE PERSONNEL
  One of the most valuable personnel in UTA is leaving.  Rebecca Cruz, who I have been dealing with for almost 10 years, has a new degree and an offer that she couldn't refuse from Weber State University.  Rebecca was the UTA Board of Trustees secretary.  But, in reality, she was the organizer, trainer, administrative assistant and mentor to the Board of Trustees.  She knew everything and every Trustee needed her advice regularly.  Although UTA had a bad reputation, Rebecca was always trying to respond to my  requests.  She made UTA look good.  UTA's loss of Rebecca Cruz is right up there with the loss of Jerry Benson in the effect on UTA.

UTA NOT PUBLICIZING 40% FARE DECREASE
  UTA approved continuation of the 40% fare decrease on buses (to $1.50) and 20% fare decrease for trains (to $2) when using the FarePay card system.  Unfortunately, as mentioned in the discussion, there is almost no knowledge in the general public and given to bus riders about this significant fare benefit.  So the Board of Trustees asked that the fare be marketed and publicized.  Many believe, as do I, that reducing fares on buses will lead to a significant increase in mass transit ridership.  Pass it along, $1.50 bus fare when using the FarePay card ($3 one time fee at many locations like 7/11, Walgreens, etc)!!

OGDEN'S WANTS QUESTIONABLE $79 MILLION PROJECT
  Ogden City convinced the UTA Board of Trustees to start the environmental study to start the $79 million downtown Ogden to Weber State BRT project.  The BRT will run up 25 South to Harrison Boulevard then turn south and, south of 32nd South, have a dedicated lane to continue to Weber State University and to the McKay Dee Hospital.  It will take 15 minutes from downtown FrontRunner to Weber State University and have bus stops every 4 blocks (totaling 10-12 stops).  But the 603 bus already provides a 17 minute trip from FrontRunner to Weber State University and it stops every block!  The idea that more people will ride mass transit when bus stops are 4 blocks in between is not realistic (I am being generous!).  There are now 40 stops.  The route is popular and cost effective and spending $79 million on a project that may actually decrease ridership is government insanity.  Ogden expects the route to lead to significant redevelopment even though much of the route is next to single family homes.  Those homeowners will fight to keep their area as a single family neighborhood.  Washington Boulevard should have gotten the route.  I still do not think that UTA knows how to do BRT.  

SLCO GOP ELECTS SCOTT MILLER CHAIR
  The Salt Lake County Republican Party has elected Scott Miller Chair of the the County Party.  Scott kept the Party together and organized during the Suzanne Mulet period.  His organizational skills were important and are needed even more.  His election will help lead the Party to a more organized and effective voice in Utah politics that was missing in the last two County Party Chairs.



JUNE 23, 2018
TRANSIT PROBLEMS IN UTAH
UTAH LOSES MUCH LESS THAN $70 MILLION IN INTERNET TAXES
RECYCLING IS DEAD, LONG LIVE RECYCLING
PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT CAN BURN
HEPATITIS A COST UTAH MILLIONS
ONLY 65 HOMELESS WORKING!
INN BETWEEN COULD SERVE UP TO 400
NUCLEAR POWER IS DEAD, LONG LIVE NUCLEAR POWER
THE BEAUTY INSIDE IS MORE THAN A GREAT DATE MOVIE
DWR STOCKING FISH IN FAIRMONT POND



TRANSIT PROBLEMS IN UTAH
  During discussion at the Transportation Interim Legislative Committee, there were several presentations by Wasatch Front Regional Council, UTA and UDOT on the future of transportation in Utah.  UTA specifically said that they expected to only be able to increase service.  But they also indicated an effort to continue to build the $65 million bus garage and build several expensive BRT systems (at $15 million per mile TRAX on wheels).  They also expressed concerns about getting more transit ridership.
  The large number of cheap cars make it difficult to encourage ridership.  The Legislature may consider making it more expensive to keep older cars by increasing their registration fees.  It would also help air quality since the newer cars significantly reduce air pollution from their tailpipes (over 90% reduction with Tier 3 gasoline).
  Lost in the discussion is the lack of progress on homeless issues which results in our transit system providing shelter for homeless, especially in inclement weather.  Also, when someone buys a $50,000 vehicle, they will want to drive their vehicle.  The nicest train cannot compete with that.
  UTA also went through their finances over the last decade.  Interestingly, almost ignored over the last decade, UTA was on the edge of bankruptcy!  Up until a few years ago, UTA had to borrow money with a daily buy of variable interest rate.  That meant that, if the daily interest rate went up, they would not be able to meet their financial obligations.  Former GM Allegra was able to roll those bonds into longer term low interest rate bonds that were more stable and removed the potential danger of interest rates going up.  The recession actually protected UTA since the daily interest rate was unusually low.  I put their presentations on the upper right downloads section.  
  Another interesting UTA fact was the revenue from advertising.  UTA gets about $2.5 million a year for advertising on their buses and trains.  The Legislature is considering hearings on the new advertising of hard liquor on buses and trains.  If UTA accepts any advertising, they have to accept liquor advertising.  But UTA is getting 40% of the new Prop One lives! tax.  That should be enough to stop advertising on UTA vehicles.  Also, the number two reason that buses are used is clean windows (without advertising).  The number one reason is a pleasant bus driver.

UTAH LOSES MUCH LESS THAN $70 MILLION IN INTERNET TAXES
  The U.S. Supreme Court decision to allow state sales taxes on internet transactions was celebrated but in Utah, it won't result in more revenue.  And if the Legislature passes the bills that previously were filed due to the question of legality, only the small businesses that sell more than $100,000 to Utahns will have to pay the taxes.  Although the cost to small businesses to prove to 50+ taxing jurisdictions that they do not sell more than $100,000 to each state, will prove difficult.  The potential audits that states could demand will hurt.  Until Congress solves the issue, internet small businesses will have a major hurdle.  Big internet businesses have been given a big gift by the Supreme Court.  Despite Utah's assertion that Utah loses over $200 million a year on internet taxes, it is much less than $70 million due to the fact that most big internet businesses pay the tax anyway.  I don't know how Utah is going to force tens of thousands of small businesses to prove their business sales with Utahns don't go over $100,000.

RECYCLING IS DEAD, LONG LIVE RECYCLING
  The Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District has recognized that recycling is under significant pressure since China has severely cut back on accepting recycled materials from the U.S.  Much of the recycled materials are starting to go to landfills.  There is a discussion in several cities and in Salt Lake County about how to continue recycling under the new paradigm.  Even paper is more difficult to recycle since it is difficult to separate newspapers from other paper and that creates complications for recyclers.  Any liquid in plastic containers destroys the recycle ability.  Pizza boxes have too much oil to recycle.
  SLC is renegotiating their recycling contracts under this new war against recycling.  Utahns may have to pay more to recycling companies.  And the recycled materials may still end up in the landfill!

PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT CAN BURN
  SLC has a plan to build a shade structure in Imperial Park (28th South and 1530 East) over the playground equipment.  The project will use support poles to hold up a shade sail fabric over two playground elements.  The poles should last 30 years and the shade fabric should last 10 years.  Annual maintenance and operations cost should be about $1000.  This is an important project that will protect children from burns.  All playground equipment should be shaded like this.  The local community raised funds to help pay for the $75,000 project.  The City CIP funds will provide enough funding to complete the project.

HEPATITIS A COST UTAH MILLIONS
  A presentation to a legislative committee this week went into detail about the cost of hepatitis A to Utah.  While Kentucky has had 629 cases, Michigan 837 cases with 27 deaths, California has had 704 cases and 461 hospitalizations and 21 deaths.  Utah has had 251 cases along with 135 hospitalizations (costing Utah millions) and 2 deaths.
  44% of Utah hepatitis A cases were homeless and drug users.  69% were drug users.  52% were homeless.  It could have been much worse in Utah.  Credit should go to the Salt Lake County Department of Health under Gary Edwards and the Utah Department of Health for their efforts to successfully fight Utah's hepatitis A epidemic.
  Despite the horrible sanitation facilities in the homeless areas, the SLCO Health Department was able to stem the epidemic by providing over 10,000 vaccinations and sending letters to and working with the jail, prison, restaurants, downtown citizens and agencies that deal with homeless providers.  They passed out flyers and worked with the homeless.  They gave incentives for vaccination.  They distributed special hand wipes to the homeless providers (and jail).  I put the hepatitis A presentation in the downloads section.

ONLY 65 HOMELESS WORKING!
  Operation Rio Grande (Operation Leaf Blower according to SLCO police chiefs) third phase was supposed to be the culmination of a successful plan to help the homeless.  But.... only 65 homeless are participating in the third phase that helps those homeless who want to work.  I put the deep dive homeless presentation in the downloads section.  Also note that the "Coordinated Services Card system has been less efficient than anticipated, due to the high rate of card reissuance and related costs. The program will terminate in June 2019".

INN BETWEEN COULD SERVE UP TO 400
  The Legislature has provided funding to the INN Between that could result in the program serving up to 400 in the next year.

NUCLEAR POWER IS DEAD, LONG LIVE NUCLEAR POWER
  During the Public Utilities Interim Legislative Committee, there was a presentation on the fantastic potential of the Thorium fluid nuclear reactor.  Legislators were so enthusiastic that they asked what kind of funding that they could give to help the project in Utah!
  BUT... as a former nuclear engineer, the reality is that a successful Thorium fluid reactor is 10 to 30 years away from successful and safe operation.  Although the U.S. National Science Foundation and China are working on building a research test reactor, there are problems that have not been solved and that may take 10 plus years to solve, if ever.
  We have not solved the Tritium issue.  Tritium is released and is almost impossible to restrict.  It is radioactive and extremely dangerous.  The long term structural stability of the tubing materials has not been proven.  The alloy that is used becomes brittle due to exposure to Tellurium (dozens of elements are created in the radioactive fluid).  There has never been a successful plant that could reprocess and remove the significant and dangerous actinides that are created.  And finally, if the radioactive fluid is not kept as a liquid, there is a potential to have a catastrophic critical event.  These problems should not be on any campus or in any populated area.  There is no place in Utah that should have to worry about these issues.

THE BEAUTY INSIDE IS MORE THAN A GREAT DATE MOVIE
  I was recently asked what movie that I most enjoyed.  The Beauty Inside, a Korean take on a recent U.S. effort to point out the real beauty is inside.  This is one of my top 5 foreign movies.  This is more than a great date movie.  Any couple thinking about a permanent relationship should watch this movie.  I know several women who watched it and cried by the end of it.  Super happy tear jerker.  It is on Netflix and at the SLC Public Library.

DWR STOCKING FISH IN FAIRMONT POND
"The Department of Wildlife Resources will be stocking Fairmont Pond with 50 rainbow trout. The DWR Community Fishing Program allows for keeping up to two (2) of the fish caught per individual per day. Public fishing will begin at Fairmont Pond’s grand reopening on Wednesday, June 27 at 4 p.m. For more information in regards to the Community Fishing Program contact:
The Department of Wildlife Resources
Wildlife Recreation Specialist Chantè Lundskog  
801-491-5665."

JUNE 12, 2018
GOLF SURVIVES ANOTHER YEAR BUT WINGPOINTE REZONED
HOMELESS SERVICES PERFORMANCE TO BE TRACKED
PUBLIC SAFETY SALES TAXES CAN GO TO FIRE DEPARTMENT
WHITE ASPHALT BEING CONSIDERED TO REDUCE HEAT ISLAND
SLC RDA BOARD RENAMES WALKWAY FOR VASILIOS PRISKOS
ALTA MOTOR LODGE CRIME MAGNET HAS NEW BETTER OWNER
STATE STREET CAPITOL MOTEL NEEDS ENVIRONMENTAL EVALUATION
THIOKOL BECAME ATK AND IS NOW NORTHRUP GRUMMAN
COUNTY DOG PARKS DISCUSSION AT COUNTY COUNCIL
SLC COUNCIL VOTES FOR EVEN MORE TAXES!
SLC COUNCIL KEEPS PUSHING FOR INCREASING SALARY
BOY SCOUT UTAH PROPERTY STAYS FOR UTAH YOUTH BENEFITS
INN BETWEEN COMMUNITY BOARD MEETS SECOND TUESDAY OF MONTH
RDA BUDGET DOES NOT FUND HOMELESS APPROPRIATELY
SLCOGOP TO ELECT NEW CHAIR AND COUNTY COUNCIL D4 CANDIDATE JUNE 21


GOLF SURVIVES ANOTHER YEAR BUT WINGPOINTE REZONED
  The SLC Council has approved a general fund subsidy for SLC's Golf Enterprise Fund and voted for this legislative intent:
"General Fund Subsidy for Golf. It is the intent of the Council that the General Fund subsidize the Golf Fund for one year only, allowing the Council and Administration to vet all options for improving efficiency and profitability of annual operations. The Council intends to make discussion of golf and open space maintenance a priority for the FY 2019 budget year. Further, it is the Council’s intent that the $1 per round Golf CIP fee be used to pay for capital improvements (or debt service related to capital improvements), and not be used to offset operational deficits."

  Unfortunately, Councilwoman  Erin Mendenhall moved to rezone Wingpointe open space to Airport zone which is the first step to closing Wingpointe and turning it into pavement.  Erin does not like golf courses.


HOMELESS SERVICES PERFORMANCE TO BE TRACKED
  Many have complained about the efficiency and effectiveness of homeless services and the City Council has asked the Administration to show whether the funding is appropriate and where it works and doesn't work.  The language approved is:
"It is the intent of the Council that the Administration propose a clear set of metrics to document and assess the City’s contribution to homeless services, particularly if those contributions are expected to be multi-year or ongoing in nature, or go beyond the City’s typical roles, such as funding for case management and beds in addiction treatment facilities."

PUBLIC SAFETY SALES TAXES CAN GO TO FIRE DEPARTMENT
  The City Council has agreed that new sales tax funds for public safety can also go to the SLC Fire Department.  In addition, the Council has asked for an additional medical response unit in Fire Department.  It is sorely needed due to the large requirement from the drug issues in the homeless community.  Ten medical responses a day downtown are typical with most involving homeless drug use.  But mental health issues also are cause for responses.

WHITE ASPHALT BEING CONSIDERED TO REDUCE HEAT ISLAND
  During today's City Council meeting, in a surprise announcement, streets mentioned that they are considering white asphalt paving.  LA is starting to use the white asphalt on streets and SLC is evaluating their durability.  The goal is to reduce the City's heat island effect.  The City would start with parking lots. SLC is not super close to installing any white asphalt but if it turns out to be durable in LA, the City may pave a parking lot next summer.  Charlie Luke and Chris Wharton want to be on the paving truck that lays down white asphalt.  Council Chair Erin Mendenhall said put them on a paving truck.

SLC RDA BOARD RENAMES WALKWAY FOR VASILIOS PRISKOS
  The RDA Board has voted to rename the walkway just south of the Eccles Theater for Vasilios Priskos.  The RDA intent was "To preserve the memory of visionary Salt Lake City real estate developer Vasilios Priskos."  It will be officially the Vasilios Priskos Walkway.  Vasilios Priskos was responsible for much of the development on Main Street.  He also owned Internet Properties and was a big booster of downtown retail and entertainment.

ALTA MOTOR LODGE CRIME MAGNET HAS NEW BETTER OWNER
  The crime magnet Alta Motor Lodge at 1899 S. State Street has a new owner.  The SLCPD is ecstatic that the new owner is working closely with the SLC Police to stop the criminal behavior and to remove the criminal element.  The neighborhood should see a significant decrease in crime and drug dealing and prostitution in the neighborhood.

STATE STREET CAPITOL MOTEL NEEDS ENVIRONMENTAL EVALUATION
  Salt Lake City, through the SLC Housing Authority, has taken over ownership of the Capitol Motel at 1700 S. State.  The Housing Authority has removed many of the criminal element problems and is effectively managing the Motel to decrease its criminal magnet reputation.  The Authority is looking at potential redevelopment that would encompass all of the Motel property.  Some neighborhood residents have expressed concern about contamination of the Capitol Motel property.  Specifically, years ago, school buses had their oil changed in the garage on the property and nearby residents do not believe that that oil was properly disposed.  In addition, there is an underground stream through the property.  Nearby residents have not had their concerns addressed and have been at several community councils and City Council meetings complaining about the issues.  Many of the concerns that are real for the neighbors involve the size and height of any new building.  Adjacent neighbors would be negatively impacted by a large building next to the property line.

THIOKOL BECAME ATK AND IS NOW NORTHRUP GRUMMAN
  My father worked at Thiokol in Northern Utah for over 20 years before retiring in the 1980s.  As a kid, I was fascinated with stories about rockets and the X51 rocket plane.  Thiokol was the technology giant that put Utah on the map.  The main reason was our dry climate (which also attracts server farms) which helps curing of solid rocket motors (moisture and humidity is problematic for solid rocket motors).  Thiokol developed the Space Shuttle solid rocket boosters (My father warned that they could explode catastrophically years before it happened during launch.), air bags (I had one of the first cars with air bags in 1971.) and low weight exotic materials.  The air bag invention is used everyday by billions of world residents.  The company morphed into other explosives and ammos and became ATK.  This month, it was sold to Northrup Grumman.  It is sad for me to see a Utah company, a company that put Utah on the technology map, is no longer a Utah name.  Although it still has operations in Utah, the world will no longer look at a Utah name that shows the world that Utah is involved in technology.  I loved the Thiokol name.  

COUNTY DOG PARKS DISCUSSION AT COUNTY COUNCIL
  The County Council is discussing the off leash dog parks in the County.  I put the report in the downloads section in the upper right.  There is plenty of pressure for more off leash parks but no new plans yet.  Stay tuned.

SLC COUNCIL VOTES FOR EVEN MORE TAXES!
  The SLC Council has decided that SLC citizens don't get taxed enough!  Despite the recent .5 cent sales tax increase for public safety, streets, housing and transit, the City Council voted for the County Council to increase the sales tax to Prop One levels.  Ignored in the discussion was the fact that the County voters voted Prop One down.  The Council noted that SLC voters voted for Prop One and that was one reason for the increase vote.  The County Council will keep the increase in tax revenue (to pay down transportation debt) until July 2019.  Then the cities will get a small portion of the increase.  UTA will get 40% of the tax increase.  I still believe that most of the revenue will be used to build new projects focusing on south County areas around the Prison property (where many legislative leaders have property that they want to develop).  It was fascinating, despite the significant tax increase, that only a few, literally a handful, showed up at the Legislature to argue against the sales tax increase in SB136.  Note that this Friday, the sub committee of the group that recommended SB136 will meet at the Legislature at 1 PM.  You can find the meeting notice and agenda on the le.utah.gov website and calendar.
  Despite several lines of reasoning, all City Councilmembers agreed to increase taxes again.  The vote should allow the County Council to approve the tax increase officially, which will start being collected in October.  Council Chair Erin Mendenhall mentioned that she was voting for the tax increase because our streets need more funding.  It is ironic that she mentioned that point since the streets really need $40 million a year to provide regular basic recommended maintenance and repair but the City only funds it with less than $10 million a year.  The City Council approved an $8.4 million tax increase about 6 years ago but the next year, the City Council agreed with Mayor Becker to repurposed the tax increase for salary increases of 3% for all employees (and Councilmembers).  
  Lost in all of the discussion is the fact that there will be three tax increases on the ballot in November.  There will be a SLC bond of about $87 million.  There will be a ten cent a gallon gas tax increase survey that will influence/protect/allow the Legislature to increase gas taxes 10 cents a gallon and move a equal funding amount to education (The Legislature, several years ago, required 30% of all new funding to be used for transportation and education lost a lot of funding.)  Finally, there will be healthcare expansion vote that will use increased sales taxes to fund expanding healthcare.  This year is becoming the year of taxes.

SLC COUNCIL KEEPS PUSHING FOR INCREASING SALARY
  During SLC Council's June 12 work session, the Council voted to keep pushing for increasing compensation.  Council Chair Erin Mendenhall has been pushing hard for a 50% salary increase.  The vote keeps open the proposal to evaluate the elected officials compensation by asking the Citizens Compensation Advisory Committee to look at overall compensation, gather data on council members serving in leadership  roles (chair and vice chair) and make recommendations.  I know that most Utah municipalities have less compensation than SLC Councilmembers.  But the effort to increase the chair's compensation would affect Erin Mendenhall and that is not appropriate unless it is implemented after the Council members are not in office.  They should not be increasing their own salaries.  The vote keeps this open and the language is:
Evaluate elected officials compensation – The Council requests the Citizens Compensation
Advisory Committee (CCAC) review compensation for elected officials in comparable cities
throughout the West. In addition to looking at overall compensation, the review should gather
data on compensation levels for council members serving in leadership roles such as chair and
vice chair. Based on that analysis, the CCAC should make recommendations in the FY 2018
annual report for adjustments, if any, to elected officials compensation. If additional funding is
needed to conduct the review, a funding request should come before the Council with sufficient
time for the CCAC to incorporate the evaluation findings and recommendations into their FY
2018 annual report.

BOY SCOUT UTAH PROPERTY STAYS FOR UTAH YOUTH BENEFITS
  Many of the Utah Boy Scout troops will remove themselves from the Boy Scouts of America at the end of the year.  The property that is used by Boy Scouts today will continue to be utilized and be available to Utah scouts whatever their affiliation.  This email explains the change and minimal impact on property used by any Utah group.
"Our camps belong to the Great Salt Lake Council, or in the case of Steiner leased from the USFS, and that will not change unless the council ceases to exist someday.  We have no intention of going out of business. 
Even if we did and the camps went to the National Council, per the BSA’s bylaws they would be retained for the benefit of the youth of the territory covered by the Great Salt Lake Council.
We are not going anywhere though. We have many, many members of the LDS church who understand the benefits of Scouting, tens of thousands of current Scouts who are not members of the LDS church, and hundreds of other chartered organizations who will continue in Scouting beyond 2019. We will be smaller, but we will be fine.
We still have a very positive relationship with the LDS church so we fully intend to make our camps available for whatever the LDS church comes up and outside youth groups. As we have for decades with our young womens’ camps.
Mark Griffin | Scout Executive
BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA
Great Salt Lake Council
525 Foothill Blvd  |   Salt Lake City, Utah 84113
mark.griffin@scouting.org
www.saltlakescouts.org
Scouting builds character through unparalleled, life-enhancing experiences you can’t get anywhere else!"

INN BETWEEN COMMUNITY BOARD MEETS SECOND TUESDAY OF MONTH
  Unfortunately, the INN Between has decided that their community advisory board will meet on the second Tuesday of the month, on the same day that the SLC and SLCO Councils meet.  This is a surprise since it almost seems like it is going to decrease community involvement.  They are meeting tonight.

SLC BUDGET DOES NOT APPROPRIATELY FUND PUBLIC SAFETY
  The Council should have added money in the budget for 10 more cop cams since it looks doubtful that we can hire another 27 cops, even 10 cops will be tough to hire.  The next class will probably have 12 in the Academy. And the Sugar House Fairmont Park Skate Park needs one there permanently to decrease the drug dealing and troublemaking that is a consistent problem.  But the final budget does not cover cop cams.

RDA BUDGET DOES NOT FUND HOMELESS APPROPRIATELY
  The homeless could use the blue warehouse for storage and/or camping until SLC Housing uses it, and/or use Station Center 4 or 6.  But the RDA budget does not provide for that.  The property may sit unused/vacant for another 10 years.
  The market is still there and with all of the homeless around the Fourth Street Clinic, the Rescue Mission and the Homeless Services, it does not make sense.
  Sugarmont Plaza was going to be affordable housing but it is not listed in the property list as such.
  If SLC puts a TRAX station at 650West Main Street, TRAX becomes a milk run and discourages ridership.  Development of the area is discouraged by all of the car lots around the area.  It makes more sense to spend the half million on homeless storage.  But the RDA budget was approved.

SLCOGOP TO ELECT NEW CHAIR AND COUNTY COUNCIL D4 CANDIDATE JUNE 21
  The SLCGOP, the Salt Lake County Republican Party, will meet on June 21 to replace the former chair who resigned, Jake Parkinson.  Jennifer Jensen has been Acting Chair and she has been doing a great job.  In addition, due to the death of County Councilman District 4 Sam Granato, who was elected to serve until 2020, the Republican Party will be able to nominate a candidate for the ballot in November.  That candidate will run against, in all likelihood, Ann Granato, who is serving as Council member now.




JUNE 7, 2018
SUGAR HOUSE PLANS BIG PARTY SATURDAY JUNE 9
WITHOUT MORE COPS, COP CAMS FIGHT CRIME MAGNETS
COMPLAINTS ABOUT WATER AND SEWER INCREASES MOUNT
SLC RDA PLANS TO MAKE TRAX A MILK RUN
GOLF DECISION KICKED DOWN THE ROAD ONE LAST TIME AGAIN
SLC PROJECTS/PARKS NEED MAINTENANCE AND WATERING
NEW DOWNTOWN PARK PROJECT IS STILL ON THE TABLE
COMPLAINTS AGAINST POLICE ARE MISDIRECTED
CIP PROJECTS DO NOT HAVE COMMUNITY INPUT
NEED FOR MORE DOG PARKS
NOTES ON SLC VEHICLES
SLC TRANSIT SALES TAX INCREASE MAY NOT SEE MUCH FOR 4 YEARS
WHY AMAZON DID NOT CHOOSE UTAH
SUGAR HOUSE CONTINUES SUPERGENTRIFICATION
SLC LIBRARY ADDS A CREATIVE LAB FOR POSTERS, MUSIC AND 3D PRINTING
MISCELLANEOUS SUGAR HOUSE NOTES

SUGAR HOUSE PLANS BIG PARTY SATURDAY JUNE 9
  On Saturday, June 9, from 3 PM to 8 PM, the biggest party imaginable will have 47 bands providing entertainment for the Heart and Soul Music Stroll.  Visit heartsoul.org for more information.  It will take place in the 1530 East and 2700 South area.  There will be food trucks and even valet bicycle parking.  47 bands have to be heard.  They can't be imagined.
  Before the 3 PM Music Stroll, the Sprague Library will be celebrating their 90th anniversary from noon to 2 PM (this Saturday June 9) with cake, kids activities and other celebrating activities. 

WITHOUT MORE COPS, COP CAMS FIGHT CRIME MAGNETS
  The SLC budget is about to be passed (on June 12) and almost no one is commenting on the issues.  One of the important issues is the SLCPD salary.  The police need more personnel.  They just bought 50 new cop cars and they have plenty of bicycles.  But they don't personnel to man them (with men and women officers).  The SLC Council considered (and dropped) Erin's 50% salary increase.  So why can't SLC recognize that without better pay, SLC will not have the increased number of police that they have set as a goal.
  The alternative is cop cams.  They are portable, trailer mounted cameras that can be placed in high crime areas and feed video of the area back to the SLCPD.  Community councils have been begging for them.  They decrease crime and discourage criminal activity in the adjacent area.  But SLC only has one operable cop cam trailer.  It needs 10 to provide each Council District a trailer, with spares.
  Another use of the cop cam trailers is it will fight human trafficking/prostitution.  It can provide video of pimps so that not just johns and prostitutes can be arrested, but also those who are the real threat, the pimps who actually do the human trafficking.
  SLC's budget needs to budget for cop cams.
  
COMPLAINTS ABOUT WATER AND SEWER INCREASES MOUNT
  The last few budget public hearings have had a few citizens complaining about the water and sewer fee increases.  Unfortunately, Salt Lake City (which also supplies water to Millcreek, Holladay and Cottonwood Heights) has not clearly explained why the rates were approved last year and are set to double within four more years.  The City decided to build new facilities (reconstructing a plant) to meet new guidelines and requirements.  To build those big projects will require a doubling of water and sewer fees. I don't agree with the process or increase but the decision was made last year.  Ironically, the citizens of SLC are using less and less water.  The water use for SLC has actually gone down!
  The Salt Lake Tribune had a great story on the issues.  I recommend reading it.  Google SLC sewer rates may double and sltrib.com.  
http://archive.sltrib.com/article.php?id=5217220&itype=CMSID
SLC should better explain to its residents why the increase is coming instead of just sending a card saying that it is being proposed.
  
SLC RDA PLANS TO MAKE TRAX A MILK RUN
  SLC RDA/City Council is proposing to start a TRAX station at 650 South Main Street with RDA funds and hope that the rest of the money will come from grants.  This extra station will essentially make TRAX a milk run.  The longer it takes to get to downtown and Temple Square, the less likely people will take mass transit.  If it takes longer to go from 700 South to Temple Square than to drive from 6500 South on the freeway to downtown, people will drive more.
  The Green Line would probably be most negatively impacted.  The Airport gets just over 1000 riders a day on TRAX due to the zig zag through downtown.  Adding another stop will discourage using TRAX to the Airport.  
  When the Green Line went to the Airport, UTA stopped their Airport bus.  Although few used it, it went from downtown, on the freeway, to the Airport, in 15 minutes.  That is half the time that it takes the Green Line to get to the Airport.  Buses work.  Ironically, the Redwood Road and 5600 West buses are not being considered for service increases (with the SLC sales tax increase) and they could easily and cheaply be expanded to the Airport.  SLC's plan will not increase mass transit ridership.

GOLF DECISION KICKED DOWN THE ROAD ONE LAST TIME AGAIN
  Amy Fowler is becoming the Salt Lake Champion of golf.  She argued for and convinced the Council to provide funding for the golf fund for another year.  
  Charlie Luke agreed to the one year general fund subsidy but wants the Council to work on this issue and provide an alternative well before the next budget cycle.  He did not think that golf issues will be able to be solved in the next two weeks before the budget is approved.  Charlie said that "we are all getting on our soapboxes but... we aren't getting anywhere with this".
  Erin Mendenhall has been trying to close golf courses and complained that the administration is not motivated to solve this issue.  She agreed with former Mayor Becker that SLC needs to close some golf courses.  During the public hearing on June 5, after I pointed out that Wingpointe is valuable green space and should not be rezoned, she argued that the rezone will not automatically result in paving it over.  I disagree since I have seen the plans to put a deicing maintenance facility on Wingpointe golf course if the Airport can take over the course.  I pointed out that the problem with golf is that SLC does not treat golf, open space, parks and the cemetery as amenities and overcharges for water and labels those properties as a burden.
  Most of the Council agreed to the funding because they do not want anymore 2 hour discussions on this issue without a better plan.  

SLC PROJECTS/PARKS NEED MAINTENANCE AND WATERING
  During the golf discussion, Amy pointed out that we build parks and projects but the City does not provide maintenance funding.  James Rogers agreed that the City cannnot even maintain the 300 West streetscape.  Last year, the City had to start watering the cemetery after complaints from VIPs.  Maintenance should include watering.  But SLC requires a three tier fee system for watering to encourage using less water.  The parks, golf courses, open space, urban forest and cemetery are amenities and the City should stop treating these amenities as poor stepchildren and stop forcing them to stop watering them.  Our urban forest provides a natural way to decrease pollution and to cool the buildings in the City.  Charlie Luke said that we need a policy discussion on maintenance.  "Everything we build we will have to pay for... just because we get the grants, if we don't have the money to maintain them, maybe we shouldn't do the project."  Charlie Luke is right.  The City needs to have a discussion on maintaining the projects that we build.  In addition, green space in SLC should be planned and protected with proper maintenance and watering.

NEW DOWNTOWN PARK PROJECT IS STILL ON THE TABLE
  During the June 5 work session, the City Council reiterated the intent to build a downtown park.  There are a couple of potential sites but the cost of property acquisition is continuing to grow.  When $900,000 was appropriated in 2014, no one thought that the cost would increase as much as it has.  The City would need to come up with $1.6 million to buy a 2 acre site.  But, until SLC solves the homeless issues, another park in the downtown area will just create more problems for the adjacent neighborhood.

COMPLAINTS AGAINST POLICE ARE MISDIRECTED
  Over the last few months, at every SLC City Council formal meeting, there have been a large turnout of demonstrators complaining about police brutality and murder.  Signs that say BLACK LIVES MATTER and other similar thoughts are constantly in the City Council chambers during the formal meeting.  The complaints are directed at the governance of the Mayor and City Council.  They include complaints that the Council ignores police complaints and refuses to acknowledge that there is a problem.  They also question why Salt Lake City needs 50 new police officers.  And they often complain that the Council members do not understand the reality on the streets regarding police/community interactions.
  But those demonstrators ignore the reality in Salt Lake City.  All of the Council members, and I have watched and listened to them for years, are concerned about police issues.  They have increased training to ensure professional conduct.  I remember former Police Chief Burbank pointing out, several years ago, that he was in 13 situations where he would have been justified in shooting individuals but his training helped him defuse the situation without shooting.  The Council was impressed and continues to ask if more training is needed.  The last time Chief Brown was in front of the Council, they insisted that he ensured that every patrol officer had an operable body cam.
  In addition, Councilwoman Amy Fowler deals with individuals everyday who have been arrested by police.  She is a public defender.  She knows the reality better than any or even all of the demonstrators.  Although she is new, having been in office for six months, she is making a big difference on the Council.  She does care and her questions are appropriate and cover the concerns of the demonstrators.  
  Regarding 50 new cops, the best deterrent to crime is more visible police officers.  Every community council that I go to complains about not enough visible police.  The demonstrators may feel that there are too many police but most citizens want more visible police.  Unfortunately, as I mentioned in a recent blog entry, SLC may never be able to get to even 20 new police officers.  There is too much competition for police and the benefits are not very competitive with non governmental work.  
  The demonstrators are way off and seem to be clueless about the reality in SLC.  Salt Lake City's Council and Mayor are working hard to ensure that unprofessional police actions are identified publicly.  From rapid releasing of bodycam footage (faster than any other municipality in Utah) to ordering the Chief of Police to apologize to a Young African Killer gang member who was selling spice and was shot while refusing to stop attacking someone.  I disagreed with that order because I had heard many complaints about the YAK gang selling spice in the Rio Grande area and I watched the body cam footage.  I felt that the shooting was justified.  The reason DA Sim Gill (who is very evenhanded in his investigations of police shootings) is charging the YAK gang member who was shot with drug dealing, is he was drug dealing!  

CIP PROJECTS DO NOT HAVE COMMUNITY INPUT
  The CIP list of projects is available and in the downloads area (upper right hand column).  Unfortunately, many of the projects have not been sent to community councils for feedback.  Each project has a line item that lists Community Support.  Many of the CIP items have NA on the that line.  That is wrong.  Some examples of questionable projects include the 1100 East driveway into the Post Office replacement that will cost $226,000.  That money would be better spent on the McClelland Street project that is only able to get $100,000 to spend on what could be a walkable street that could be a centerpiece for Sugar House.
  There is also an item to provide a new maintenance yard at Liberty Park that would cost $735,000.  That money would be more appropriately spent on the Seven Canyons Fountain system near the maintenance yard.  The City Council will have a more robust discussion about the CIP project list later on in the summer.
  Another project is the 1700 South project to remove 2 lanes of traffic on 1700 South between 300 West and State Street.  But the neighboring commercial businesses are not enthused about the project and are objecting.  Notice on the 1700 South project description below that the Community Support is NA.
  This is the CIP line item project description:
1700 SOUTH STATE STREET TO 300 W LANE RECONFIGURATION   M19-48-TRN
1700 S\State Street to 300 W Lane Reconfiguration Request: $ 105,000
TRN - C CDCIP Board Recommendation: $ 105,000
New Request Mayor Recommendation: $ 105,000
External Funding: NA
Partner Organization: NA
RDA Project Area: No
Project Elements Funded Separately: This project can't be broken down into smaller funding requests. Full funding is needed to complete a slurry seal and restriping and marking of the street.
Cost Savings Combining Multiple Projects: NA
Project Timeline: Construction date: Spring/Summer 2019
Master Plan Implementation: Transportation Master Plan and Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan
Included in the Capital Facilities Plan: No
This project would entail a lane reconfiguration of 1700 S between State Street and 300 W. To accomplish this, the street would be slurry sealed and then restriped. The currently existing lane configuration of a five lane section (two travel lanes in each direction and a center turn lane) and bike lanes will be changed to a three lane section (one travel lane in each direction and a center turn lane), bike lanes, and parking.
Impact Fee Eligibility: 0%
Budget Details: NA
Renewable Energy \ Sustainability Goals: Changing from a five lane with bike lanes street section to a three lane section with bike lanes and parking will provide additional safety to pedestrians which will encourage more people to walk to destination along this section of 1700 S. The more people walk rather than driving will help improve air quality and personal health, while reducing the City's carbon footprint.
SUSTAINABLILITY DEPARTMENT SUPPORTS THIS PROEJCT, feedback: Recommended for funding by the Sustainability Dept. Increases opportunities for active transportation, and has high potential to reduce vehicle miles traveled and associated pollutants. Increased connectivity, and bike and pedestrian safety.
Future Maintenance: Regular, on-going maintenance of the striping, markings, and signing would continue.
Community Support: NA
Legal Requirements: The striping and marking of the street must be done to city standards
Public Health & Safety: Changing from a five lane with bike lanes street section to a three lane section with bike lanes and parking will provide additional safety to pedestrians walking along and crossing this section of 1700 S.
Life Expectancy: With regular striping, marking, and signing maintenance, this project will be in place until removed or changed.

NEED FOR MORE DOG PARKS
  Council member Chris Wharton emphasized that Salt Lake City and especially the Avenues needs more dog park space.  He pointed out in a recent City Council work session that Lindsey Gardens' dog park area is too crowded and due the number of dogs, they often go over the invisible line dividing the dog park from the rest of the park.  A fence may be needed to control and alleviate problems in the park.  A better solution is to add another park, maybe closer to the foothills.  Chris Wharton may be the hero that dogs are looking for.

NOTES ON SLC VEHICLES
  During a recent budget hearing on SLC's fleet, it was noted that the City's fleet maintenance budget has tripled.  Even though the City recently bought 50 new police patrol cars at a cost of $36,000 each, they are still being outfitted.  Unfortunately, the City only buys $20,000 insurance for the $36,000 vehicle and when the vehicle is damaged beyond repair, the City loses $16,000.  Fire Department vehicles are not usually damaged which is fortunate since they typically cost $1.2 million.
  The City recently bought some Chevy Volt for the compliance unit (tickets).  They have a 10 year battery warranty and replace the vehicles that used to idle much of their work day.  The 335 miles (400+ in ads) range allows the City to use it without recharging for 8 hours a day.
 
SLC SALES TAX INCREASE FOR TRANSIT MAY NOT SEE MUCH FOR 4 YEARS
  During discussion on using money from the recently approved SLC sales tax increase for transit service increases, it was pointed out that phase one of the service increases may take 4 to 5 years to get going.  The money won't start coming in until 2019 and even then, the City has to negotiate and agree with UTA to provide the service increases.  The list of priority projects include 200 S (increasing frequency from 15 minutes), 1300 South, 900 South, 2100 South, 600 North and 1000 North.  Unfortunately, there is no proposal to increase service or span of service on State Street and Redwood Road.  And the zig zag west side routes are still being allowed (to meet Title VI requirements - I still contend that zig zag milk runs do not show respect for economically disadvantaged areas).  Another proposal to increase bus service on 400 South was not recommended because it would require a new bus facility which would increase cost.  Interestingly, Representative Schultz pushed for funding for the new $65+ million bus garage and, with new SB136 tax increases, the garage is a sure thing. 

WHY AMAZON DID NOT CHOOSE UTAH
  Utah submitted a proposal to Amazon to locate its second headquarters here and it was rejected.  The reasons given were that the workforce in Utah presented a challenge due to the lack of tech workers.  Amazon also wanted a more urban environment.

ANN GRANATO NEW COUNTY COUNCIL WOMAN REPRESENTING DISTRICT 4
  Unfortunately, almost no news organizations reported it, but recently deceased Sam Granato's better, and smarter half, has been elected by the Salt Lake County Democratic delegates to succeed her husband on the County Council.  The County Council swore her into office the next day, June 5.  I know all of the County Council members and I believe that she is the smartest out of all of them, despite being a Democrat.  Nobody's perfect.

SUGAR HOUSE CONTINUES SUPERGENTRIFICATION
  The old parking lot on the southwest corner of Elm and McClelland, across the street from the Sugarmont Apartment complex being built, and just north of the England car detailing business, is proposed to become a 6 story apartment and office complex.  There will be about 60 apartments and about 79 parking spaces in the projects.  The ground floor is designed to have offices but the project developers say that they will provide for future retail if there is sufficient economic viability of retail in the area.  Mixed use encourages walkability and the Sugar House Community Council is redesigning McClelland to encourage walkability.  The project should be encouraging ground floor restaurants and retail.  The project is called the Fairmont.

SLC LIBRARY ADDS A CREATIVE LAB FOR POSTERS, MUSIC AND 3D PRINTING
  The Salt Lake City Main Library has built a creative lab area that has rooms to quietly make music, make large posters and even has a 3D printer.  The Friends of the Library helped bring the project to reality.

MISCELLANEOUS SUGAR HOUSE NOTES
  The redesigned Fairmont Park pond will be finished by June 27.  The 2100 South and 1000 East project has removed the covered sidewalk which is resulting in many pedestrians walking in the street next to the project.  The construction company has said that the new sidewalk should be ready by July 4th but construction companies cannot be counted on to meet deadlines.  Someone could get killed.  The new 900 East Sugar House fire station is projected to be finished by September 1.  It was originally scheduled to be finished in July.  Wilmington, just west of 1300 East is scheduled to be finished by June 15 and traffic will return to two way on the street.  
  Sprague Library's elevator continues to cause problems and stops the effort to open up the downstairs area.  The elevator had to have a motor replaced and the Library is waiting for an inspection.  The Library still has not found a replacement facility to take over when the Sprague Library closes for a year in the fall.
  The Community Council has asked for a cop cam trailer to decrease the drug dealing (usually spice) around the Fairmont Park skate park.  The Police Department is also having the nightime lights turned off earlier to decrease potential criminal activity.  There was an attack on a police officer last week that resulted in a threatening crowd.  
  Unfortunately, Sugar House Park fireworks are not going to happen this year.  One of the recent organizers pulled out because he wanted to charge but the Park's Board did not want to charge people to use the Park.  And all fireworks are banned in Sugar House Park, even snakes.  In fact, Salt Lake City is banning fireworks east of 900 East this year (supposedly).



MAY 31, 2018
POLICE MAY NEVER ADD MORE COPS

SLC POLICE MAY NEVER ADD MORE COPS
  During Tuesday's SLC Council meeting and discussion with SLCPD Chief Brown, it became clear that SLCPD may never be able to add enough cops to get to about 200 on patrol.  There are 138 staffed in patrol now and the Chief would like to have almost 200 on patrol.  During recent interviews set up with law enforcement officers from other jurisdictions, about 12 set up interviews but only 3 showed up.  The other law enforcement departments in the Valley are all competing for the same personnel.  31 officers are in training now and, of those, 10 of them have law enforcement backgrounds and are transferring laterally from other departments.  They will be ready for patrol in August.  The other 21 applicants in the Academy will be out of training in October.   But SLCPD is losing 2 to 3 20 year experienced officers to retirement each month so SLCPD may never be able to add  more cops.
  In order to get the patrols up to where the Chief wants them, the Department will transfer, temporarily, everybody that can patrol, except for the undercover narcotics officers, to patrol.  They will double up with another regular patrol officer to provide a two man patrol.  Since most calls require two officers to respond anyway, personnel staffing won't be affected much. 
  Regarding the bike squad, the Chief said that the squad will go where it is needed.  Most were transferred to help Operation Rio Grande and they are now moving to patrol State Street.  Several Councilmembers expressed concern about the visibility of the bike patrol around the City, especially around the Jordan River Trail and the westside.  The Chief emphasized that if there is a need, "we will provide resources to where they are needed."  But they need more officers first.  They have plenty of bikes but they need personnel to man them.  "We need people over equipment."
  The City has provided a cellphone to each officer to help with crime scene photographs so that the officers do not have to wait for the Crime Lab techs.  The TASER and body cam officer safety program has plenty of in warranty TASERS (5 year warranty) but the body cams do not have many surplus to replace defective equipment.  The Chief said that they will ensure that every officer on patrol will have an operable body cam.  
  The biggest cost coming up will be the accreditation of the crime lab but the Department will cover it over a few years. 
  The 911 system, which is separate from the Police Department, has 5 vacant positions.  They are having a problem hiring more personnel since UTA pays $27,300 to starting operators and even Panda Express in Heber starts at $13 per hour.  SLC 911 provides $15.81 per hour.  Dispatchers have to be POST certified and there are 6 in the Training Academy. The acting, soon to be permanent, manager, Lisa Burnette, said that she would like to get her personnel into the community so that the communities learn the issues that dispatchers have and how to work with them.  There are about 8 complaints a year but I have seen many more at each community council.  The manager also said that she has only 5 out of 65 speaking Spanish and she wants 20 Spanish speakers.  She has 3 who speak Tongan.  Dispatchers are still seeing a lot of overtime.



MAY 30, 2018

SLC COUNCIL QUESTIONS ERIN'S SALARY INCREASE AT WORST TIME


SLC COUNCIL QUESTIONS ERIN'S SALARY INCREASE AT WORST TIME
  During discussion at almost 9 PM on Tuesday's SLC City Council work session, Erin Mendenhall, the City Council Chair (Chris Wharton was chairing this meeting) asked for a $10,000 salary increase for City Council members.  Several Councilmembers thought that the conversation needed to take place but that this discussion, at this time, the worst possible time, was not a good time to discuss a salary increase for the Council.
  Derek Kitchen said that "this is an important conversation... this is not a sustainable job" but maybe a gradual increase may be more appropriate.  
  Andrew Johnston agreed that this is a bad time but the salary "is a problem for a lot of people who are trying to make ends meet and serve this community....this is a problem for me".  He said that this is not going to be fulltime but doing this at an appropriate time and place would be appropriate.  Maybe looking at other benefits may be more acceptable.
  James Rogers agreed that this is not a sustainable position (serving on the Council).  "I do it as a service."  He said that a salary increase would eliminate people who have a full time job and eliminate those who want to do service.  It would create full time politicians.  We would end up with an Orrin Hatch.  He pointed out that "we get reimbursement for home internet and for cell phones."  "What is $10,000 going to do that we don't have now....I don't have data that shows that we are underpaid."  Councilman Rogers said that the Council position "takes away from my job" but a salary increase would eliminate people who have full time jobs who want service.  He pointed out that the Council is already looking at a childcare facility for employees.
  After pushback from Erin Mendenhall who questioned whether James was implying that Erin is not doing her job, she said that he is pointing out issues in the extreme.  She said that her $35,000 proposal is not a full time professional salary but it can pay for child care, make the position more democratic and "for me a 10000 raise will put me on par with my babysitter".  She complained that "we have potential councilmembers in my district who would be great on the Council but their families can't handle it."
  Charlie Luke said that "there is never a good time to have this discussion ...but this is the worst time to have this discussion.... with a sales tax increase and a bond on the November ballot."  "We are compensated better than the Legislature...  What will the Legislature say if we do this.. ..There is always someone ready to run."  "It would only be appropriate to have this discussion as soon as all of our roads are fixed, as soon as public perception of public safety but we are not even close."  "What are we not going to do that we could be doing if we do this?"
  Chris Wharton said that the City could look at child care reimbursement or an additional stipend.
  Amy Fowler said that "after 8 hours and after 9PM, this is not the time to talk about it.  If we continue, we will be here until midnight.... When I ran, I did not know that it was a paid job."  This is not a good time, not on the eve of approving budgets.  "Put this as a priority but I can't support it now but I want to have the conversation."
  Erin finished the conversation by complaining that we will "never be at 100% on streets" and we should be encouraging diversity financially and socially.  Erin said that "I appreciate everybody talking about it."   And then there was silence.  After some awkward silence, Chris moved on to the next agenda item.



MAY 25, 2018
SLC COUNCIL DISCUSSES THEIR 50% SALARY INCREASE
NEW INN BETWEEN FOR HOMELESS HOSPICE DRAWS ANGRY CROWD
REP. SCHULTZ CLAIMS LEGAL THREAT AFFECTED UTA MEETING 
ANN GRANATO IN RACE TO REPLACE SAM AT SLCO COUNCIL
5600 W. PLAN GOES FROM OLD BINGHAM LRT TO SLCIA TO DOWNTOWN

SLC COUNCIL DISCUSSES THEIR 50% SALARY INCREASE
  The SLC Council has added a discussion to increase the Councilmembers salary 50%, to the SLC budget discussions.  Council Chair Erin Mendenhall confirmed the discussion to increase their salary from about $24,000 to $35,000 during Thursday night's ELPCO community council meeting.  Erin said that she does not have enough votes, at that time, to pass a salary increase but that the Council will discuss it at the next SLC Council work session on May 29.  Erin said that it is important to attract the best possible candidates for the office and that the time commitment to effectively work on the Council is much greater than the present salary would imply.  She also pointed out that she pays her babysitter more than she gets. 
  The nominal salary is one way to ensure that elected officials don't look at elective office as a career.  It encourages those willing to serve for the benefit of taxpayers and Utahns to run for office.  The relatively low salary discourages professional politicians.  Utah has had great success in ensuring that professional politicians are discouraged.  Utah has a part time Legislature and most municipal elected offices are part time.  Even some mayors are part time.  
  But the most concerning aspect of this proposal is almost nobody in Salt Lake City knows about this discussion to give a 50% salary increase to SLC Councilmembers.  It also is hypocritical to consider a 50% council salary increase and balk at providing SLC Police with more than a 3% salary increase.  Police go to work everyday and face the most dangerous individuals in society.  They are willing to take a bullet for us.  They deserve more than the same 3% salary increase that the rest of the City employees are going to get in this budget.
  The salary increase proposal is under unresolved issues and I put the document on the upper right downloads section (along with many of the items mentioned in the blog).  The Council will have two more public hearings on the budget on June 5 and June 12.  The Council expects to vote on the budget and this issue on June 12.
  The item says:

"g. Council Member Compensation – Over recent years, Council Members have struggled with
balancing an interest in discussing different ways to address Council Member compensation with
budget constraints and public sensitivity. The interest based on (1) the higher level of expectations
and demand for time placed on elected officials now than when the salary levels of Council Members
were first initiated (1/5 of the Mayor’s salary) and (2) a desire to consistently maintain a pay rate for
the City Council Members that makes it possible for people from all income levels to
serve. Expenses are naturally created when serving as a part time elected official (time away from
regular job or business, babysitting costs, etc.) If the pay for the position doesn’t at least cover the
expenses associated with the job, only individuals who are able to ‘subsidize’ their City Council
service through other personal resources or the support of a partner are able to fill the positions, and
the field of candidates is narrowed to the point that it could exclude low income people or single
parents.

i. Shifting to a Policy Approach – The Council may wish to discuss shifting to a policy
approach to determine appropriated (sic) compensation for elected officials. The City conducted
salary surveys of elected officials in other municipalities most recently in 2015. The results
showed significant variation in annual salary between cities. There was no consensus from
the data about what salary is reasonable / appropriate for Salt Lake City elected officials.

ii. In addition to the inconclusive survey data, some challenges arise when comparing salaries
for elected officials such as differences across forms of government, separation of
duties/powers, demographic and economic variations, actual hours worked, and other
factors. 

iii. The Council is always torn about whether and how to adequately address the question of
compensation. One option some communities have used is to make any changes effective
after the next election cycle."


NEW INN BETWEEN FOR HOMELESS HOSPICE DRAWS ANGRY CROWD
  Thursday night, May 24, the East Liberty Park Community Council hosted a forum and question and answer meeting regarding the proposal/plan to move the INN Between to 1250 East and 1300 South(Sherman Avenue).  The overflow crowd of almost 100 were mostly upset about the potential increase in homeless in their neighborhood of single family homes.  There was also a large segment of the group that appreciated the work that the INN Between was involved in, ensuring that homeless were able to die in a safe and indoor facility instead of searching for a cubby or underneath a car when they feel that the end is near.  That was a real comment from a dying homeless man a couple of years ago.  Over 50 homeless a year die each year and most die outside in the open.  They sometimes freeze to death in public spaces but most of the time, if they are outside, they die alone.  The INN Between provides basic charity and Christian care to the dying. 
  Hospitals also dump patients at the Weigand Center many times a week.  These respite care patients are also taken in by the INN Between.  They may need recovery from surgery or cancer treatments.  They are vetted and validated by hospitals before they are accepted by INN Between.  It is expected that about 30% of the patients may be respite care or recovering from medical care.  Sometimes, the homeless die within a few days of entering the facility.  It is difficult to argue with the charity that the INN Between is providing.
  But the valid community concerns included registered sexual offenders could be patients and two schools are nearby.  Also, visitors may increase the number of homeless walking the neighborhood.  And tobacco, marijuana and spice smoking may be sensed in the adjacent neighborhood.
  Most of the attendees were furious when Councilwoman Erin Mendenhall said that there is nothing that can be done to stop the INN Between from locating in the neighborhood.  I disagree; but my concern, is that the homeless hospice patients are effectively in a prison since there are no nearby stores to provide treats or other items that are not available in the facility.
  I also asked and received assurances that a community advisory board would be set up to ensure that complaints are quickly addressed and that will allow communicating the background of registered sex offenders that are put in the facility.  The previous INN Between location does have a successful community advisory board that seems to be working well, according to the neighbors and community leaders.

REP. SCHULTZ CLAIMS LEGAL THREAT AFFECTED UTA MEETING 
  UTA was under the gun by Representative Schultz and Senator Harper to revisit the constructive termination of Jerry Benson last month before his position was done away with.  I had the oped in the Salt Lake Tribune last week that expressed my belief that Jerry deserved the minimal severance of 9 months.  When he negotiated the contract to be general manager, he received assurances by UTA Board of Trustees Chair David Burton that he would have complete authority to hire and fire staff and be given more authority than previous general managers.  Jerry did not want the job since it came with such political pressure.  Jerry was an operations expert and did not want to fight the political battles.  During the discussion that ran over 2 hours, Jerry's lawyer mentioned that if the UTA Board did anything else but affirmed Jerry's termination and severance, there could be a legal case.  I had mentioned that a few minutes earlier in my comments to the Board.  Representative Schultz claimed that the legal threat was the determining factor in the 6 to 5 vote to affirm Jerry's severance.
  I disagree.  The issue that resulted in reaffirming the severance was May 8 was the effective implementation date of SB136 that changed Jerry's job title and authority.  The new commissioners that would essentially replace Jerry would be installed BY November 1.  But the language of the bill would allow the commissioners to be put into place on May 9 and the Board had to make a decision on the issue before then.  Most of the Board that voted to affirm felt that the May 8 date was the date everything changed.  Despite Representative Schultz's claim and interpretation that it did not mean May 8 was when the new governance was to be in place, the wording specifically says May 8 is when the governance change becomes effective.  And several Trustees mentioned that laws should not be left to interpretation by interested parties but should rely on the words.  SB136 was not a great bill and should be fine tuned.  But to imply, as Representative Schultz did, that his interpretation should be gospel, was an insult.  Interestingly, the discussion almost revisited the outrageous severance of Jerry's predecessors.  But that was stopped when it was pointed out that that kind of discussion should be done in closed session.
  Jerry is enjoying his retirement and expects to stay in Utah.  He joked that he had no plans but to spend more time with his lawyer.

ANN GRANATO IN RACE TO REPLACE SAM AT SLCO COUNCIL
  In the next few weeks, Ann Granato, the wife of Sam Granato, may be elected to replace her husband on the Salt Lake County Council representing Millcreek and adjacent areas of the County.  Others are running for the position but Ann appears to have a lead with the obvious name and good will of the Democratic Party.  The Democratic delegates from Sam's district will vote to pick Sam's replacement.  Ann would be a great replacement for Sam Granato and would carry on his respected work representing his district.

5600 W. PLAN GOES FROM OLD BINGHAM LRT TO SLCIA TO DOWNTOWN
  Utah seems to be moving forward on an express bus from the Old Bingham TRAX station traveling north on 5600 West to the International Center and then to the SLC International Airport then to Downtown SLC.  The plan replaces the previous expensive BRT project.




MAY 22, 2018
SALT LAKE TRIBUNE LOSING NEWS REPORTERS
ROAD HOME AUDIT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN A SURPRISE
AIRPORT REZONE OF WINGPOINTE COMMENT ON JUNE 5
SLC DEMOLITION ORDINANCE ENCOURAGES DRUGS AND SQUATTERS
SLC HOUSING DECREASES TIME TO BUILD WHILE NOT ENOUGH HOUSING
SLC TRANSPORTATION ADDING STATE STREET PEDESTRIAN CROSSING
UTA REPEAT MEETING MAY 23 UNDER LEGISLATIVE PRESSURE
SLC COMMUNITY COUNCILS NEED INPUT ON TRANSIT TAX
HERRIMAN POLICE FORCE WILL HURT CRIME FIGHTING
OPERATION RIO GRANDE DOUBLED JUSTICE COURT ARRAIGNMENTS
LEGISLATURE ALLOWS CITIZENS TO ADD TO INTERIM STUDY
UTA COULD HAVE BEEN CALLED TRANS UTAH
ELPCO HOMELESS HOSPICE 6 PM THURSDAY MEETING
WATER METERS DECREASE WATER USE 
UTAH LOSES AROUND $100 MILLION ON INTERNET TAXES 
SLC MAY HAVE TO PAY RECYCLERS TO TAKE RECYCLING
SLC DISCUSSES PROS AND CONS OF INCREASING TAXES
SLC COUNCIL FIGHT FOR INLAND PORT BOARD


SALT LAKE TRIBUNE LOSING NEWS REPORTERS
  I have been working with reporters at the newspapers and TV stations for almost ten years.  These are reporters who care about making my City, my County and my State a better place with a better government.  I have watched the issues regarding the joint operating agreement and the Salt Lake Tribune which are best labeled as a no win situation.  The situation came to a head at the Salt Lake Tribune last week when 30% of some of the most experienced reporters in Salt Lake City were laid off from the Tribune.  
 Our freedom of the press, along with the required freedom of speech is important for the success of our Country.  Countries without freedom of the press can’t improve their societies and systems without a truthful analysis of their government and businesses and systems.  When people say that China will overtake us, they ignore the value of free speech and free press.  The unexamined life won’t improve and without questioning government and society, that government and society won’t improve.  Freedom of press and access to information should be a higher priority in our society.
  I also need to expand on one reporter in particular, Chris Smart.  I first came to know Chris Smart while I worked in California.  I would come back every month to visit my family and I noticed the City Weekly stories about the Salt Lake City Mayor.  Chris Smart was editor of the City Weekly at the time.  I asked for my family to collect and save the City Weekly issues.  The City Weekly was uncovering a fraud perpetrated by the SLC Mayor that she led before she became Mayor.  Interestingly, about a decade later, ENRON went bankrupt using similar illegal actions.  But only the City Weekly was aggressively reporting on the issue.  Chris Smart and the City Weekly should have won a pulitzer for their reporting.  City Weekly is not as aggressive in their reporting as before and now with the loss of Chris and several other reporters from the Tribune over the last few years, Utah has lost most of their aggressive reporting.
  A couple of years ago, I was asked to share information on questionable deals by legislators.  The reporters on the case showed me a box of documents.  They showed questionable and illegal actions.  My comments included that the issues were coming up because the legislators felt that their actions were helping economic development for the State and were not just benefiting themselves.  But those reporters left and the box is not being reported.
  In other cases, TV reporters told me that their corporate attorneys shut down reporting that they wanted to report regarding several senior elected officials.  So the TV station reporters are muzzled and the newspapers are losing aggressive reporters.  That does not bode well for Utah's good government.
  Another example, is the Gary Ott situation.  Katie McKellor, a great reporter, finally broke the issue of Gary Ott.  I was a friend of Gary Ott's and everybody in the County Government buildings knew of his issues.  It wasn't a secret.  He had several hours of lucidity a day and he trusted his staff to manage the office.  But it took a good reporter to report the issue and start a discussion on the situation.  I did not like the result.  But the discussion did need to happen.
  I will continue to try to fill the need of local reporting of news.  I will continue to attend many of the community council meetings and listen to or attend many of the other government meetings.  I hope that my blog will continue to provide important news and information that is not available on other news outlets.  If you would like your local news reported on this blog, you are invited to tell me/email me at gechapman2@gmail.com.  Your community council meetings provide a lot of news that I would like reported.  But with some community councils meeting at the same time, I can't be at all of the community councils.  There are five community councils meeting on the first Wednesday of the month.  There are three meetings of community councils meeting on the third Wednesday of the month.  And, usually, no reporters, are attending.  Email me if you would like me to report your news.

ROAD HOME AUDIT SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN A SURPRISE
  The Road Home and homeless services preliminary audit came out and reported what we already knew.  The Road Home has a problem keeping out drugs and crime.  When homeless say that they do not want to stay in the Road Home because of drugs and crime, they are being honest and frank.  Last year, I reported that drug dog inspections of the Midvale family shelter resulted in many drugs being discovered, next to children.  I also pointed out that the SLC Police were finding it difficult to do drug sweeps with dogs in the downtown Road Home.  Last month, I reported that the Road Home staff would not help overdoses in the Road Home.  And there were a lot of overdoses.  The Road Home Director, Matt Minkovitch has a difficult and impossible job trying to keep out drugs.  The addicts are not locked up and they are a large part of the homeless population despite their continuing to victimize citizens and homeless.  I blame the lack of keeping addicts in jail or treatment and that is a County issue.  I still believe that the biggest issue is due to lack of inadequate public safety funding in Salt Lake County.  The issue will not change until there is a separate facility with much more oversight that will allow anyone, including pets, alcoholics, drunks, and spice zombies to be inside or in an area that had medical care available and basic safety enforcement.  The Road Home cannot close but should be much safer for those who are homeless.  Drugs should not be in any of the shelters.

AIRPORT REZONE OF WINGPOINTE COMMENT ON JUNE 5
  SLC Council intends to have a public hearing on rezoning Wingpointe Golf Course and permanently closing it and turning it over to the SLC Airport for other development.  The Council wants to close the Course.  Amy and Charley seem to want to keep it open but Erin and others want golf courses closed.  If you care about golf, and green space, please go to the City Council 7 PM public hearing on golf on June 5.  SLC golf maintains 6 courses with $9 million.

SLC DEMOLITION ORDINANCE ENCOURAGES DRUGS AND SQUATTERS
  Last year, I reported that Peter Corroon, the former SLCO Mayor was unable to demolish an empty house and it ended up being used by drug addicts and eventually burned out.  The SLC demolition ordinance discourages demolishing a house or building unless an approved plan to replace it is agreed to by the City.  That leads to many vacant buildings, downtown and throughout the City that are magnets for criminal activities, especially drug use.  Ballpark Community is also full of buildings that are vacant and instead of encouraging demolition, since they are uninhabitable, they encourage criminals to use the buildings.  A few months ago, 1700 South had a big fire in a vacant building and it is a continuing issue.  The SLC Council refuses to consider reviewing the demolition ordinance.  One reason is the concern about allowing more parking lots when a building is demolished. Many on the SLC Council thinks that there are too many parking spots in the City and they encourage using cars.

SLC HOUSING DECREASES TIME TO BUILD WHILE NOT ENOUGH HOUSING
  Last week, I congratulated SLC Housing for cutting in half the average time to get a building project approved.  But lowering fees does not appear to be increasing housing permits.  SLC Housing has just released the statistics on housing being built in SLC.  Keep in mind that in 2015, SLC needed 7500 affordable housing units.  I believe that it is closer to 25,000 needed now.  And one reason that I encourage State Street redevelopment, is because it has the best potential for significant housing units.  The latest housing stats for SLC are (WE NEED MORE HOUSING): 
                                        in process or pending issuance         FY to date issued     FY16-17    FY15-16
single family homes       11                                                                      37                            63              47                 
duplexes/twin homes      0                                                                        0                            14                0
condominiums and townhomes 69                                                      38                           49                0
apartment units            602                                                                   353                        2322         1183

SLC TRANSPORTATION ADDING STATE STREET PEDESTRIAN CROSSING
  SLC transportation appears to have an agreement with UDOT to allow installing a midblock crossing between 6th and 7th South on State Street.  Ironically, there is a block long car lot between 5th and 6th South which seems wasteful.  The City is trying to encourage more walking in the State Street 6th to 9th South area.  The reason for the midblock crossing near 7th South is due to the nearby homeless resource center.  

UTA REPEAT MEETING MAY 23 UNDER LEGISLATIVE PRESSURE
  UTA is going to have a repeat meeting on May 23 at 1:30 PM regarding the Jerry Benson termination and the appointment of Steve Meyer as interim General Manager.  My oped in the SLTRIB laid out the issue and I have a problem with Representative Shultz and Senator Harper spending 20 minutes complaining about everyone else, especially UTA, misdirecting attention from Jerry Benson to the name change.  My oped is at (feel free to comment):
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2018/05/17/george-chapman-uta-name-change-does-not-deserve-mud-slinging/
My oped is:
UTA name change does not deserve mud slinging
  This week, Representative Schultz and Senator Harper, the sponsors of the SB136 bill that increased transit taxes, changed UTA governance and changed the UTA name, held a press conference. They said that they were going to stop the UTA name change. They used statements that indicated their frustration with the backlash from the public about the name change. They said that they felt that the $50 million cost to change the UTA name was "incorrect" and that it was a diversion from the recent termination of UTA General Manager Jerry Benson with 9 months severance pay. 
  They felt that UTA was stonewalling the name change. But UTA, after SB136, was not able to spend more than $200,000 without special approval, above the budget, until the new commissioners are appointed to manage UTA. Representative Schultz and Senator Harper were putting a lot of pressure on UTA staff to quickly change the name despite many, including the Governor, who felt the name change was "silly".
  Representative Schultz said that he felt that the UTA actions regarding Jerry Benson were "criminal". He cited a letter from the State Attorney General that said that the termination should have been noticed at least a day ahead of time instead of just notifying about a closed meeting on personnel. Ironically, a few days later, the Sandy Police Chief was terminated without notice or public hearing and the Attorney General did not express concern about that.
  When Jerry Benson took the General Manager's job, with reluctance, he agreed to decrease his compensation, if terminated, from 18 months to 9 months. Jerry's reluctance was due to the constant political pressure for more projects. Jerry was an operations expert and UTA benefited from his time as General Manager. I fought SB136 and felt, among other issues, that it would result in many managers with institutional knowledge leaving UTA. I was not surprised at the public notice the day before the closed session that said there would be a closed session regarding personnel matters and I assumed that UTA would be losing someone important. 
  Watching UTA and attending Trustee meetings over the years, I felt that the Legislature had more influence and control of UTA than UTA staff. The Legislature supported TODs and the Swiss trip. Legislators wanted more projects, and SB136 will provide many new transit projects. Legislative leaders, including Speaker Hughes, were often on the Board of Trustees and provided significant direction to UTA staff.
  The disturbing claims that UTA actions were "criminal" and that they broke the law are a surprise coming from Representative Schultz and Senator Harper. I know these Legislators and have worked with them (and fought some of their efforts) for many years. I consider them both to be committed public servants. Senator Harper sponsored one of the best bills last session that would have decreased onerous towing traps in parking lots (it ran out of time in the session). He has always been respectful to me during our arguments. I watched Representative Schultz spend 30 minutes, listening to workers interested in one of his bills and trying to find an acceptable path forward. 
  Representative Schultz and Senator Harper should not be claiming misdirection about the UTA name change and should not be using terms like criminal or breaking the law. UTA did not try to misdirect anyone on the issue. I watched and listened to UTA continually try to follow their orders to act. I do not believe that termination of a valuable employee requires a public notice. Former SLC Mayor Becker terminated SLCPD Chief Burbank without notice. It should be obvious that the law wasn't broken. 
  I believe that it makes more sense for everyone, including these two legislators, to focus on appropriately implementing SB136 than on blaming UTA or claiming breaking the law.  We need to work together and not blame those we have to work with. The UTA name change issue does not deserve mud slinging.

SLC COMMUNITY COUNCILS NEED INPUT ON TRANSIT TAX
  Unfortunately, SLC Council is prioritizing transit service projects without going to SLC community councils.  Community councils should be part of the conversation but, so far, they have not been asked to participate.  Of particular concern, is the fact that the west side of SLC has a lot of zig zag/milk runs that are due to trying to meet the Title VI requirements that transit services not discriminate based on social issues and income of census tracts.  But those zig zags, in my opinion, make it harder to have a good encouraging transit ridership.  It encourages car use.  In addition, every turn increases the accidents for buses.  It is not a good system.  Interestingly, Norwalk is looking at using a new Ford system called TransLoc to allow smaller on call minivan conversions to provide transit service.  It will be a lower cost system than would be needed with big buses that would mostly be empty.  The link to the story is:
https://www.thehour.com/business/article/Norwalk-to-pilot-Uber-for-buses-concept-12931813.php
 
HERRIMAN POLICE FORCE WILL HURT CRIME FIGHTING
 I have been fighting, writing and arguing on law enforcement issues for over 10 years in Salt Lake County.  I have a lot of public safety opeds in the newspapers and I write this blog.
  In the last month, I have written about the salaries of UPD versus other departments including SLCPD.  I even put the comparison of UPD versus SLCPD salaries and benefits on my blog's downloads.  I think that I know the issues very well and I would encourage you to ensure that you are aware of all of the pros and cons regarding UPD versus a separate police force before you make a final decision.
  SLC has set a goal to hire 50 new officers but the City loses three 20 year officers to retirement a month.  The issue has been discussed at length during several City Council meetings.  The City is down 60+ officers from where they wanted to be.  They are increasing retirement benefits 6% this year and a 3% pay raise is scheduled.  But it is not enough to hire and staff 50 new officers (to bring the staffing level of patrol officers to almost 200).  The City is pursuing a vigorous recruitment of experienced officers from other jurisdictions.  They only need half of the training ti