gechapman2@gmail.com.

THE UNEXAMINED LIFE WON'T IMPROVE

PICTURE OF THE YEAR - WHY UTA IS NOT INCREASING RIDERSHIP


​​​​​​​​​​​I put the last few years of blog in a download button (Newsblog) on the right.  Below is the last 3 months of blog.  If you need a download/document that you don't see on this page, email me.​


JANUARY 2021​

 LEGISLATURE SUPPORTS EFFORT TO BURY NUCLEAR REACTORS IN UTAH
  With no public comment, (I would have objected but I was tied up in another meeting.) SJR7 passed the Senate committee. It supports EnergySolutions constructing and operation of a Class VI landfill that may have residual levels of radioactivity and the landfill may be considered a radioactive waste facility. EnergySolutions already has a Class V waste facility next to this plot of land. What is concerning is that the Class VI landfill is supposed to be for burying non-hazardous waste. Radioactive waste is not non-hazardous. This was a conditional approval that is required from a previous session's resolution, SJR11 in 2018, along with requiring the approval of the governor and the Director of the Division of Waste Management and Radiation Control. The Legislature is obviously pushing that Utah become known as the home of decommissioned nuclear power plants. Maybe we should create a new license plate with a radioactive symbol.

LEGISLATURE PUSHES INCREASING MENTAL CRISIS UNITS TO 14
  SB70 passed its first test at the Senate Committee. It
"Requires the Division of Substance Abuse and Mental Health to create and monitor additional mobile crisis outreach teams (to 14 from 4); and requires local mental health authorities to provide matching funds". This will cost $4.2 million for the State. The counties that usually provide mental health services' funding to Utahns will have to match the State contribution. It is sorely needed since the 4 MCOT (Mobile Crisis Outreach Team) units are often unavailable to work with police. They cost around $450 to respond to a mental health crisis versus around $1500 for a 23 hour hospital evaluation. In addition, a police officer that has to arrest someone with a mental health crisis has to wait at the county jail while the jail nurse evaluates the person and may recommend taking the arrestee to the hospital. That can take up to half of the officer's shift! This is one of the most important bills at the Legislature and is sponsored by Sen. Reibe. Similar bills that create a good foundation to create professional standards for mental health treatment include two by Sen. Thatcher, SB53 that "creates a new license for behavioral emergency services technicians" and SB47 that "Creates the Mental Health Crisis Intervention Council to establish protocols and standards for the training and functioning of local mental health crisis intervention". 

UTAHNS MAY SOON BE ABLE TO DRY HAIR WITHOUT A LICENSE
  SB87 passed the Senate Committee. It "creates an exemption from licensure under the cosmetology act for an individual who only dries, styles, arranges, dresses, curls, hot irons, shampoos or conditions hair".

LEGISLATURE PLANS TO USE MEDICAID FUNDS TO PAY FOR RESPITE CARE FOR THE INN BETWEEN
  HB34 passed its first legislative committee hearing. It would ask the federal government to approve a waiver for using Medicaid funds for respite care, specifically for the InnBetween homeless hospice that recently was allowed to increase their bed use from 50. The TIB expects to have over 33% of its residents on respite care. Interestingly, at the recent City Council meeting, one commenter mentioned a homeless person walking in the Ballpark area with a hospital drip for cancer treatment. That is what TIB is supposed provide - housing for those getting regular respite care. Hospitals in this State still dump patients at the Weigand Center via taxi. Hospitals should be paying for this now. News organizations should be reporting on the fact that hospitals ARE dumping patients.  

LEGISLATURE MAY STOP SLC FROM REQUIRING ONLY ELECTRIC UTILITY BUILDINGS
  During a lengthy presentation and discussion on HB17, Utility Permitting Amendments sponsored by Rep. Handy (who generally sponsors most of the air quality bills at each legislative session), there was a pushback from representatives of municipalities. The bill would stop cities from requiring only one type of power, like electricity, in a questionable effort to be environmental. Many cities across the U.S. have tried to stop use of natural gas. That is what is generating this bill. Several of the public commenters and a couple of legislators argued against the bill saying that it is not now a problem and it is a bill looking for a problem.
  But at a recent SLC Council meeting with the Sustainability Director, the idea was brought up that Salt Lake City should require all new buildings to not use natural gas. Rep. Romero, who works for the City, denied that (I heard it since I was listening because I had been having a regular discussion with the Sustainability Director about diesels idling for hours.).
  The arguments for the bill include that it stops municipalities from creating monopolies. It protects the pocketbook of citizens since heating via electricity is at least two times more expensive than heating with natural gas. Electric heat pumps, depending on the installation may be a bit better, but natural gas is much cheaper for heating. Utah has invested a lot in creating a natural gas production infrastructure, that, if not used, will result in a lot of non producing wells leaking natural gas. So it is not environmental to stop use of natural gas. Rep. Handy was also instrumental at creating the legal structure to encourage converting pig farm waste into natural gas.
  Finally, this State has had several serious losses of electricity including, several decades ago, a loss of electricity for almost a week around Christmas and our home lost electricity for almost a week due to last year's windstorm. Only those with natural gas fireplaces were able to heat their home with relatively low emission natural gas. All those that didn't convert their fireplaces to natural gas burned wood, dirty, super polluting wood. Not very environmental. This is a good government bill that passed the House Public Utilities Committee.

SLCPD WILL PROVIDE FREE RECOMMENDATIONS TO REDUCE CRIME
D5,6,7 SLCPD liaison Detective Nathan Meinzer, nathan.meinzer@slcgov.com, will provide neighborhood watch recommendations to residents and businesses. He recently worked with residents at a gated condominium that has had a significant number of car breakins. Among his suggestions are: appropriate lighting, landscaping under 2 feet, tree canopy over 6 feet, cameras and how to make a home look lived in to deter potential crime.


  

BALLPARK COMMUNITY CONVINCES SLC TO OFFICIALLY LIFT POLICE HIRING FREEZE
  In a SLC City Council meeting that continued the onslaught of demands that Salt Lake City defund the police, there was a new wrinkle in the meeting. Ballpark Community Council members gave horrifying testimony of non-responsive 911. The result was the Salt Lake City Council adopted Budget Amendment 6 which had an item that effectively lifted, officially, the police hiring freeze.
  Ballpark members reported calling cops when criminals were trying to break in and being told by 911 dispatch that there were no cops available to respond. Cars were broken into three times in a week. A knife attack was thwarted by a citizen with a bat when police didn't show up. Residents were giving up and arming themselves instead of relying on non-existent cops. Drug dealing was in the open. Businesses and their customers were continually threatened. And residents said that it was getting worse.
  Many commenters at the SLC Council meeting repeated demands that funds should not go to police when the City needs more funding for mental health (a County and State responsibility), homeless (SLC hosts 3 homeless shelters, a VOA teen homeless shelter, a homeless emergency hotel and many of the homeless service providers), affordable housing (SLC has helped build 1500 affordable units in 5 years, more than any other city) and education (a State and school board responsibility). It seems like they run off the same script and pass the script out to anyone. The same language is always used.
  The anti-police protesters argue that the City and Council doesn't listen to them and blames the Council for the problems. But many on the Council have years of experience in their careers helping homeless and they have fought for reducing police brutality, successfully for years, more than any of the protesters. It is ironic that the police in Salt Lake City are so short handed due to the police protecting the anti police protesters who have protested on hundreds of days.
  Salt Lake City promised more cops years ago. They promised more visible police in the neighborhoods to reduce crime. Ballpark has had a 60+% increase in violent crime in the last year. Ballpark Community Council Chair Amy Hawkins, who focused the Council on crime prevention when she became Chair, organized the biggest pro police group that I have seen give comments to the City Council in almost 10 years. I think that it made a difference.
  The Budget Amendment gives direction to the City to try to start another Police Academy class this month, or next, and try to staff the SLCPD which is down around 80 officers now. The Chief had said, in a previous City Council meeting, that it could take years to restore staffing to what it was at the beginning of the year. There was an unofficial lifting of the hiring freeze since October with the interpretation that the Police Department could hire to fill authorized staffing levels. This vote, officially, makes it public. There still is an issue with salary which, in the past, has treated police officers the same as other City employees with a standard 3% raise (except for a year ago).
  Ballpark has made a big difference.


FREE ZOOM WITH SLCPL MEETING ROOMS 
  Over the last year, we have been asking Salt Lake City to fund our virtual community council meetings. In several cases the low budget Zoom service, which is limited to 100, was maxed out and many were not able to participate in the meeting. A very contentious project on Foothill, that the East Bench Community Council was against, did not allow many to participate due to the 100 limit. The City eventually offered to host either Zoom or Webex or another service but community councils balked at the perceived influence and control that the City could exert. After many months of back and forth and a promise to solve the issue, the Administration suggested that community councils use the virtual meeting rooms services of the Library.
  Elizabeth King is the SLCPL Events Services Manager (eking@slcpl.org, 801-524-8218) that provides the service. She said that "The Library has multiple licenses and can accommodate the various community council meetings as listed on the City's website (authorized community organizations). We aren't limiting the number of times groups can meet, and we're accepting requests for the remainder of 2021. Although we advertise rooms are available in two-hour blocks, meetings can extend beyond the two hours. Zoom does not automatically end sessions and there are no conflicts since we don't book back-to-back meetings. (in other words, the virtual meetings can go past 8PM but the reservation must begin by 8PM)...... The maximum attendance is 300 and there's an option to live stream to Facebook or YouTube for overflow. We can provide assistance with setting up the live stream, but it would have to be hosted on the council's Facebook page or YouTube channel. Additionally, someone from the council would be responsible for managing the streaming. Many community groups have been using this service and have not encountered major problems. The role of library staff on the day of the event is to meet the organizer for any final questions and to start the meeting. After turning over host controls to the group, our staff leaves. We also offer practice sessions for those unfamiliar with Zoom and would like an opportunity to test out its many features. We welcome other community councils and organizations to use our virtual room service.... The application and more information about the service is available online https://rooms.slcpl.org/request-a-virtual-meeting-room. If you have further questions, please reply to this email or contact me at eking@slcpl.org.   Elizabeth King   Events Services Manager 801-524-8218 
reservations@slcpl.org 
 
SLC OFFERS FREE SLOW DOWN TRAFFIC CALMING SIGNS DELIVERED
  Salt Lake City is offering free traffic calming that urge traffic to slow down. There are several different versions. Google slc.gov and livablestreets.  lara.handwerker@slcgov.com will hand deliver up to 3 signs to your door. This is an effort to try to get traffic to slow down. It appears that speeding traffic is increasing. Whether it is due to frustration about street projects or lack of police (which have been encouraged to not give tickets due to the pandemic which would require a lot of face to face contact), speeding traffic is increasing.

LEGISLATURE BEGINS TUESDAY. FASTEN YOUR SEATBELTS
  The significant Legislative dates are:  
Tuesday, 19 Jan 2021 First day of the annual General Session
Thursday, 21 Jan 2021 Last day for a legislator to designate priority bill request number four

       (House) or priority bill number five (Senate) 
Thursday, 28 Jan 2021 Last day for the Legislature to either pass or defeat each base budget

       bill 
Friday, 29 Jan 2021 Last day to request bills or appropriations without floor approval 
Friday, 29 Jan 2021 Last day to approve bills for numbering without floor approval 
Monday, 22 Feb 2021 Last day for the Legislature to present a bill to the governor, where the

     governor is required to act on the bill before the end of the session (governor must act

     within 10 days after it has been presented to governor)
Saturday, 27 Feb 2021 Last day for Executive Appropriations Committee to complete all

    decisions necessary to draft the final appropriations bill 
Tuesday, 2 Mar 2021 General appropriations bills, supplemental appropriations bills, and s

     school finance bills shall be available to legislators 
Tuesday, 2 Mar 2021 Any bond bill made available to legislators 
Tuesday, 2 Mar 2021 Last day for a motion to reconsider 
Tuesday, 2 Mar 2021 Last day to consider bills from own house 
Wednesday, 3 Mar 2021 Last day for legislators to prioritize fiscal note bills and identify 

   other programs for new funding 
Wednesday, 3 Mar 2021 Last day final action must be taken on bond bills 
Wednesday, 3 Mar 2021 Last day final action must be taken on each general appropriations

   bill, supplemental appropriation bill, and school finance bill 
Thursday, 4 Mar 2021 Last day to pass any bill with a fiscal note of $10,000 or more 
Friday, 5 Mar 2021 The final appropriations bill shall be made available to legislators by

   calendared floor time and final action must be taken 
Friday, 5 Mar 2021 Last day of the annual General Session 
Thursday, 25 Mar 2021 Last day the governor may sign or veto bills 
Tuesday, 4 May 2021 Last day a veto-override session may begin 
Wednesday, 5 May 2021 Normal effective date for bills 
 

SLCPD DOWN 76 POLICE OFFICERS
  Chief Brown told the Salt Lake City Council January 12, that Salt Lake City is down 53 vacant funded positions with 3 looking to leave in January. 20 more were allowed but were unfunded so the SLCPD is down 76 sworn officers plus dozens of civilians. The Chief said that staffing is at a critical point now and there is no debate, this was a year like no other and it has had a huge impact. The Chief said that it will take 2 years to at least restaff to handle this. It is expected that the SLCPD expenses from the protests and COVID will be in a future budget amendment. (There will be another discussion on police staffing next week.) So far, the SLCPD is using attrition funding to remove the hiring freeze and use the 2021 budget. But the Chief and Administration asked for and got a straw poll to express support for hiring of more police through a class. It officially takes 40 days to remove the hiring freeze legally. But this will allow the City to start the increased effort to hire more officers. I put the synopsis and report on SLC Police in the downloads section.
  In addition, the SLCPD reported on a virtual training on diversity called Culture City (given virtually due to COVID restrictions). There were some complaints that virtual diversity training is not as good as face to face but that is the world we live in. The Administration is still looking for an Eastside Precinct property but the costs are still outside of budget. 
  This City has lost 2 employees to COVID and as of January 12, 40% of the Fire Department has been vaccinated. The City expects 80% vaccination rate by next week and have agreed that SLCPD and 911 dispatchers will be vaccinated next. 
  The police still have issues with maintaining homeless camp removals at 700S, 900S and 500W. The City has 7 social workers on duty with 3 vacancies. After Operation Rio Grande, the police/social worker teams moved back to c0-responder and suicide, welfare checks, unwanted individuals on property and homeless. They work closely with MCOT. The Chief keeps repeating the success by giving the example of a woman, who from 2013 to 2016, had 70 police calls and was taken to emergency rooms 69 times for a total taxpayer cost of $238,000. Now, with help from the SLCPD and social workers, she is in her own residence and stable.
  The City Council had a vigorous discussion on the fact that mental health is a County issue but they aren't funding it. The County cut mental health 50% over 10 years ago and gave it to a private company. Councilman Andrew Johnston, who works with the homeless at VOA in his day job, said that the police and social workers are underfunded and he is not sure that Salt Lake City can handle it alone.

FREE LIMITED STORAGE FOR HOMELESS WHICH LIMITS WORKING
  The City is continuing the homeless storage program but the normal storage hours are 7 to 9 AM and 5 to 7 PM Monday through Friday. There is some flexibility in changing the hours to work with the homeless and, as an example, this week in January, the hours ar 9 AM to 4 PM to "accommodate outreach workers who are trying to get people in to the new SLC Temporary Winter Housing Program." The facility is located at 502 W 300 S. It is generally pretty full. I think that the homeless deserve more. This facility seems to encourage homeless camping  
  
SALT LAKE CITY REVENUES SO GOOD THAT FUND BALANCE IS $13 MILLION HIGHER
  Salt Lake City's Mayor gave a report that the emergency fund has a balance of 16.5% which is higher than any fund balance since Mayor Rocky Anderson. That equates to $13 million above the targeted 13% fund budget. The State has a similar 13% rainy day fund balance.

WASATCH GARDENS, 
  The RDA approved loaning money to Wasatch Gardens for redevelopment of 3 homes around 8th South into 7 small apartments and a big office. I am against the Wasatch Community Gardens' loan since it decreases affordable housing in SLC and could decrease student population at the local school. It replaces 3 homes that could house 3 families of 4 each, equalling at least 12 (including 9 students). The 8 studio units for 70% AMI are over $10,000 rental revenue but 3 homes are less expensive to rent. In addition, it is not mixed income which is more appropriate for the area and better from a sociological perspective. The rent can still go up each year and the proposed rent of $1200 a unit still is too high for most workers in the City. I think that this is a poor investment and should not be considered affordable housing. I put last month's affordable housing stats for the City in the downloads section.

GLENDALE WATER PARK NEEDS TO RETURN TO ACTIVE RECREATION WITHIN 3 YEARS
  It turns out that the City is required to return the Glendale Water Park that is being completely demolished to the ground needs to return to some kind of active recreation within 3 years or federal funds could be impacted. So the community needs to quickly step up and push for the best project they want, within reason. I personally think that the best and quickest way to return the Park to use would be to build several swimming pools for the community, finishing off with an indoor pool.

SPRAGUE LIBRARY TO OPEN TO LIBRARIANS WEEK OF JANUARY 19TH
  Sprague Library, which just finished reconstruction, will open to librarians next week. The Sprague Firehouse Library Pickup will remain for pickups since the City's Libraries are all closed due to the COVID issue. The Library is looking at recording a video of the new interior changes and hopefully, that will be online soon.  
  
ARCHITECTURE FIRM WANT TO DO PERMANENT CONSTRUCTION NEXT TO SINGLE FAMILY HOMES
  Architectural Nexus wants to regularly construct tiny homes (about 12 by 20 feet) in their back parking lot on Parleys Way. Although the area is mainly offices, the parking lot that they want to construct the tiny homes is adjacent to a single family home neighborhood and they want to do their construction at the back of the parking lot next to the homes! They already built one tiny home but there were complaints about the noise from homeowners. The firm wants permission to regularly build tiny homes as an educational experiment but the zone does not allow that. The City would have to change the zone or allow a text amendment. 
  I feel that the construction of tiny homes is an important educational learning experience but it belongs next to a community college or university, not next to single family homes. Let's see if the City will respect the single family home neighborhood.

RDA HOUSING POLICY MISSING LANGUAGE TO NOT DECREASE PROPERTY VALUES
  The RDA Board reviewed and approved the RDA Housing Policy which includes:
"Foster a mix of household incomes in projects and neighborhoods and to disperse affordable housing projects throughout the City to achieve a balance of incomes in all neighborhoods and communities.
c. Promote equity and anti-displacement efforts through the development and preservation of affordable housing in low-income neighborhoods where underserved groups have historic ties, including neighborhoods where low income individuals and families are at high risk of displacement.
d. Contribute to the development of sustainable, walkable neighborhoods to expand housing choice near transportation, services, and economic opportunity."
  The RDA and the City should adopt an addition that says that the Housing Development Fund should have a policy that priority should be given to projects that will not decrease property taxes of adjacent properties. Among the many reasons is that placing high density projects like SROs next to single family home neighborhoods will decrease the value of the properties. If the adjacent properties are owned by the City or are part of a CDA-Commercial Development Area, if the value of adjacent properties go down, it defeats the purpose of a CDA/RDA development area.

CAPITOL HILL UTAH HAS TOO MANY GUNS TO BE THREATENED
  Utah seems to be afraid to open the State Capitol to the public during the first week of the 2021 Legislative Session. There appears to be a plan to protest the election and law enforcement is afraid of armed conservatives will invade the Capitol grounds. Note to law enforcement, Capitol Hill has more concealed carry individuals concentrated in one area in the State than anywhere else. I would expect that anyone who actually enters with a gun (which is not really allowed and would be confiscated) and draws it would face at least a dozen legislators who carry the biggest guns available. They carry them proudly and often show them off. Note to criminals: don't mess with super armed legislators.
  
KILLER SHOULD HAVE BEEN IN COUNTY JAIL 
  A killing in January was committed by a killer that should have been in County Jail, but like most serious criminals, he was loose, on the street and killed someone in Glendale. He was arrested within a couple of days but it was obvious he should have been in Jail a long time ago. Even criminals were afraid of him.
  
SLC CITY COUNCIL GIVEN WOODEN TREE BOWLS FOR THEIR SERVICE
  It actually is a nice gesture and wooden tree bowls can be quite the art. Sometimes they are very valuable. This was an opportunity to provide funding for an artist, publicize his work, and make use of a tree that the windstorm destroyed. 
  On a similar note, the President finally declared the area that experienced hurricane force winds in September in Utah to be a disaster area so Salt Lake City can utilize FEMA resources and funding to help mitigate that disaster. The earthquake disaster did not affect the City but citizens and businesses can apply for FEMA funds and FEMA has received 279 applications.


SLC/UTA TRIES TO JUSTIFY SPENDING $170 MILLION ON QUESTIONABLE BUS
  UTA gave the SLC Council a briefing on the $170 million South Davis Connector that Davis County wants to spend all of their new transportation taxes on. The project's path will be either 400 West of 300 West in SLC and terminate at the North Temple FrontRunner Station. Although the Davis County portion with be a real BRT with bus only lanes and stations every 4 blocks, the Salt Lake County version on either 300 or 400 West would be essentially an Enhanced bus system (at 1/10 the cost of a real BRT) and have stations every 2 blocks. The goal is to have a bus frequency of 10 minutes. 
  The argument is implied that it will require spending $170 million to get a 10 minute bus frequency. That is a bad argument since $10 million will provide 10 frequency. Another argument is that a BRT will lead to redevelopment. Ogden is betting on that for their 25th South BRT. But Ogden's problems in that area are compounded by a landowner that denies any attempt to redevelop his vacant and unused property. There is also a halfway house and the rest of the streets in the path are stable residential homes. Trying to rezone and redevelop those properties will take decades. I know San Diego tried for years to rezone and redevelop light rail station areas without success. Single family homeowners are very effective in fighting against rezoning their areas. UTA contends that West Valley City was successfully redeveloped due to the BRT, the only UTA real BRT ever built. I can make a better argument that former Mayor Winder was more instrumental in redeveloping his City's center. The UTA BRT was temporarily suspended, with the 2 unused bus lanes saved for future restart of the BRT. The BRT never garnered more than 3200 passengers a day despite taking away lanes that could handle 10,000 vehicles a day.
  The biggest takeaway, in my mind, was the contention that the 455 and 470 buses currently have around 4000 a day ridership. The reality is that the ridership now is around 2100 passengers a day. The predicted ridership is 2000 to 3000 riders a day. For $170 million, in my opinion, it would be cheaper to buy 5000 potential riders an electric vehicle.
  
SALT LAKE COUNTY PUBLIC SAFETY, AGAIN, IS INADEQUATE
  A recent shooting and killing in Salt Lake City's Glendale neighborhood appears to have been committed by a known gang member implicated with many shootings that include homicides and had been charged with violent felonies! WHY WAS HE ON THE STREET KILLING PEOPLE?! BECAUSE OF INADEQUATE COUNTY PUBLIC SAFETY FUNDING! Although he does not appear to be allowed bail for the killing (all arrestees are considered innocent until proven guilty), he has a $100 bail for his driving a vehicle without a license!
  
NEW STUDY IMPLIES TRAX ALONE DECREASES VEHICLE USE
  There is a new study on 400 S. TRAX reducing vehicle use. I agree that it has in the past but the present ridership is 7419 riders a day vs 23513 just before the COVID pandemic (March). It will be interesting to see how fast ridership returns. Car sales seem to have picked up (which saves SLC due to sales tax - just down 5%!) and some experts do not expect a return to those ridership figures for years if not a decade. I do expect the Red Line TRAX to be the first to return to normal ridership. FrontRunner is still under 5000 and even the Davis County bus runs are around 2000. The Governor just released his recommended budget with $350 million for FrontRunner. I would think that those 5000 riders would prefer to take the $70,000 instead of the new FrontRunner project. 
  I have a concern about giving TRAX all the credit for reducing vehicle use. 200 S. ridership has expanded significantly and bicycling infrastructure on 300 and 200 S. seems to have helped increase bicycling. 200 S. was also the beneficiary of a span of service expansion due to SLC Prison Tax. Interestingly, UTA equated the ridership increase on 200 S (before span of service increase) to new bus stop amenities but a study specifically said that the reason for the increased ridership could not be attributed to the new bus stop amenities. (I have an issue with spending money on bus stops when bus drivers are ordered to stay 1 to 4 feet from the curb!)
  The BRT proposals are also questionable since spending $170 million on the South Davis Connector for a predicted 2000 ridership is not a good idea. I also do not like the seating in BRTs. It looks like UTA is using the BRT projects to buy electric buses but I think UTA should buy regular electric buses for regular routes. $170 million could buy over 100 electric buses!
  The 900 S. bus service expansion and the new 4 bus on Foothill is also part of the reason for decreased vehicle use on 400 S., in my opinion. My point is that giving all of the credit to TRAX will tend to make people think that "if you build it they will come". It has created pressure to build projects that I do not believe are economically viable or realistic. The worst case was the S-Line, promised with a 5000 a day ridership but is now around 600 a day (used to be 1400 a day). The supergentrification of Sugar House was due to the large amount of open space in the area (in my opinion and in the opinion of SLC Planning). 
  During the report on the study, Prof. Reid Ewing said inclusionary zoning might help increase ridership. I agree that we need inclusionary zoning but SLC Council refused to implement it 2 years ago (November 2018). In that meeting, the potential plan was to give a 200 unit apartment building a $500,000 credit for Impact Fees in return for a 10+% affordable units. But it still is not being implemented in SLC, despite many big projects and SLC not being able to spend all of the Impact Fees (transferring over $5 million to Pioneer Park because SLC was unable to find a space in the Downtown area for another park - one of the reasons that we are fighting for the Fleet Block park). A recent oped in the SLTrib assumed that we did have inclusionary zoning but you are right, we do not and we should be making that the highest priority. I give credit to SLC for the number of affordable units that they did help produce (I put a list in the downloads section.)
  But to encourage more use of mass transit, which I push for, requires more bus service, not projects,in my opinion. This week's UTA meeting will discuss the Draper Lehi BRT but there are only 105 riders a day on the 871. The VIA system is subsidizing riders at $35 a rider! You probably saw my FrontRunner oped in the Trib. I also have pushed for $1 fares but UTA and SLC keeps resisting! UTA actually raised the reduced FarePay fare. SLC did not spend $1 million of their Prison Tax last year and HIVE is not popular. UTA got $187 million for COVID but still refuses to reduce bus fees (fare elasticities of buses are much different than rail due to parking and ticket machine throughput). 
  One last potential to decrease vehicle use, in my opinion is to require much wider sidewalks. Walking on skinny sidewalks encourages driving, even less than a block! But SLC keeps approving skinny sidewalks with projects despite a Complete Streets ordinance. I am against the Street Typologies proposal since it decreases speeds and will, in my opinion, send a lot of new traffic to formerly quiet neighborhood streets. That is already happening with new street projects that decrease speeds.
  Rail is not a build it and they will come plan. Spending money on projects instead of more service is not a good way to increase ridership. I want all bus service, and span of service to significantly increase before spending money on projects. Especially spending $170 million on a BRT when that money would be better spent on new electric buses (with regular bus seating). Note that a new electric bus can have as much interest and comfort as a rail (if the bus goes to the curb).
  Interesting study but I still want to see more bus service first before more projects.  
  
IT IS OFFICIAL, CYCLE TRACKS ONLY ARE CLEANED EVERY COUPLE OF MONTHS
  SLC is committed to expanding the use of the separated bike lanes called cycle tracks. Although they were listed as not creating a maintenance cost, they require maintenance. Depending on weather, the City's plan is to clean them "every 6 to 7 weeks". That is also the schedule for regular bike lanes. The separated bike lanes are swept with specialized equipment, that, in my opinion, is super polluting. "The Fleet Division is considering electrification and alternative fuel options across the entire fleet with a priority on high use and heavy equipment as funding and new equipment options are available." I still do not like cycle tracks since they are not adequately maintained, they create dangers for cyclists with driveways and they cost 10-20 times more than wide 10 ft bike lanes with rumble strips.


BALLPARK VIRTUAL MEETING ON NEW SLC CRIME PLAN
  I put the new SLC Crime Plan developed with the U.S. Attorney, the Sheriff, the SLCPD and the U.S. Marshals offices in the downloads section in the right. This discussion on increased crime has been accelerating over the last few months and I am republishing some of the old blog below to show what has been involved.
  On January 7, Ballpark Community Chair Amy Hawkins gathered a group of almost 150 interested community members and law enforcement in a virtual meeting to understand the new efforts to fight the increase in crime in Salt Lake City. The Plan will focus on the so called Apex criminals, the less than 10% of criminals that commit the 80% of the crimes. Ogden was able to see over a 20% decrease in crime in a specific area with a similar plan. 
  Chief Brown said that Salt Lake City was not going to limit the stepped up enforcement to an area. Tha question was asked by an ACLU employee but legally, enforcement can be focused on an area by providing more law enforcement into the area, even if it is much more patrolling than in other areas. An example is using Compstat data to see where most crime is reported and increasing patrols in that area with the expectation that it will result in more arrests. It was also used in the 2015 "broken windows" quality of life enforcement, the Operation Diversion efforts and the Operation Rio Grande.
  The Sheriff and her staff explained in detail the standards that the County Jail has to meet that result in maybe 50 being booked into Jail a day and 50 are released. The Sheriff said that there have been no Jail restrictions since July of 2017! That is not true. I have several opeds in the Tribune that point out a different report from Chief Brown and SLCPD officers. The Jail Dashboard shows that misdemeanors, which could include simple assault, do not seem to be a large portion of the Jail population (Google slco.org and Jail Dashboard). Only very serious felonies constitute the big portion of incarcerated. 
  The Sheriff said that COVID has required more isolation and reduced beds with hundreds of Oxbow Jail beds not used. That is a misdirection. One of the reasons for the State paying for 300 beds in other counties during Operation Rio Grande was due to the County Jail not opening the 300 open beds at Oxbow due to lack of funding!
  Essentially, the County Mayor and Council refused to provide funding to staff, and open all of the Jail beds along with funding for the DA to properly prosecute and incarcerate criminals. A DUI that results in injury or death can get out of jail with $500 (requires a $5000 bond) and the Jail releases car thieves with a $100 bond. For a year, the Jail was authorized to reopen the hundreds of open beds at Oxbow but there was such a big turnover in Jail personnel (due to 20% being assaulted a year and very low pay - same problem with lack of beds at the State Prison) that those beds were not utilized. About 10 years ago, over the objections of Sheriff Winder, the Mayor and Council repurposed the $9.4 million a year Oxbow Jail bond that was paid off into other projects. One was the Pay for Success that argued that paying for drug treatment would be better than funding more Jail beds. The problem is that each Pay for Success person, when arrested for criminal activity, is sent back to the treatment program that they can walk away from anytime! No jail for regular criminal activity! At best, the cost of the program, paid for by private companies as an investment, would cost the County $11.7 million. But around $100 million were repurposed from the Jail bond for other uses by the County. If the DA and Jail and Sheriff had use of some of those funds, it would significantly decrease crime in the County.
  I go into more detail below with the November and October blogs.
  Another issue brought up was the inadequate nuisance ordinance that has only had one success in two years (as of the end of 2019). Mayor Mendenhall, when she was a Councilwoman, developed a new ordinance that was supposed to identify and focus solutions on crime magnet stores and motels like Wayne's Corner and the State Street and North Temple low cost motels. She said during this week's Council meeting that she is restarting the effort to fight the nuisance properties. She is going to have regular meetings with County Health, law enforcement, Zoning and her staff (like the last several years focusing on Ballpark properties) to identify and find solutions to crime magnet properties. 
  In one case, a motel owner of two properties is refusing to sell their properties on North Temple and Main Street to the City for redevelopment. The major successes in stopping crime in these motels were the result of the properties being bought by the City. The Capitol Motel on 17th and State is being redeveloped by HASLC. The Skyline Inn on 17th S and Foothill was bought and is being redeveloped by Foothill Shopping Center developer. The Georgia Apartments was declared a hazard by the Fire Department and bought for redevelopment (HASLC tried but failed to get budget approval until a week after the deadline!). All were significant crime magnets.
  Mayor Mendenhall agreed, during Tuesday's Council meeting that the County Jail restrictions were a problem, especially with the City getting 16,000 more calls a year than expected. They intend to focus with the new Crime Plan on felonies, not misdemeanors. With the City sworn officers down 64 as of November 30, the City is starting a new Academy but there is a problem attracting new recruits due to the public disrespect for officers during the many recent protests.
  IT WAS NOTED THAT SALT LAKE CITY HAS THE WORST PROPERTY CRIME IN THE COUNTRY IN ANOTHER RECENT COMMUNITY COUNCIL MEETING.
  
THE BELOW IS FROM THE DECEMBER BLOG:
PIONEER PARK COALITION MEETING CONFIRMS SLC NOT TAKING CRIME SERIOUSLY
  During the December Pioneer Park Coalition meeting, the U.S. Attorney celebrated the success of the Ogden and Federal Government law enforcement efforts to decrease crime. The goal was to find the so called apex criminals that commit most of the most dangerous crimes. Ogden was able to get a 25% violent crime reduction in 3 to 5 years. By focusing on just 72 criminals, Ogden was able to reduce reported crimes 20 to 30% in 2 years. U.S. Attorney Huber said that there is no reason Salt Lake can't do it. All they have to do is call me. He added "Maybe I should call."
  Chief Brown also mentioned that many of the shelter resistant homeless (only around 22 out of 160 homeless campers accepted housing and shelter beds) refuse help.
  We have been witnessing this for almost a decade! For almost 10 years, undercover cops would complain that they would buy drugs, arrest the dealer and book them into jail, only to have them laughing a few hours later next to that cop who was trying to make another buy.
  What will it take for the Legislature, the counties and law enforcement to work together to ensure that counties are compensated for jailing criminals that really should be in prison (even for dozens of misdemeanors), that APP and prosecutors get enough money to keep threats in jail or under effective supervision and that the majority of prisoners get effective mental health treatment in jail and afterwards to decrease their threat to residents and businesses?
  A good example of how bad it is concerns a car thief who was caught earlier this month and immediately released on $100 bond! He was arrested on several felony counts including probation or parole violation but released with $100!! He almost killed a cop when he was on the street and he gets out after stealing a car with $100!
  Chief Brown recently said that they had to roust the homeless camp around St. Mark's in Salt Lake City. They directed their efforts to pull the drug dealers out of the homeless in the area. There is constant frustration in law enforcement about arresting the same criminal dozens of times. 
  My Salt Lake Tribune oped in November summarized the issues at: 
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2020/11/05/george-chapman-well/
  In addition, in the last few months, I have provided emails from law enforcement that go into detail about the issues.
  
CATALYTIC CONVERTER THEFT RING OPERATING NEAR LIBERTY PARK
  There have been many complaints about questionable loitering and criminal activities in the area around 13th South and State Street. I recommend that everyone keep an eye on the Registered Sex Offender List since there is a large concentration of former prisoners in the 1200 South and State area. Another big issue that was noted in the last Liberty Wells Community Council meeting in December, is several residents had their catalytic converters stolen! The replacement can be as much as $1000! Please report any questionable activity to 911. 

SLC REARRANGING POLICE TO COUNTER LOSS OF OVER 60 OFFICERS THIS YEAR
  Over the last few months, this blog has gone into detail about the loss of sworn police officers from Salt Lake City. This year, with the pandemic, the protests, the overtime and retirement, has resulted in Salt Lake City losing 70 cops (around 10 just graduated from a new Police Academy) this year. In 2019, there was a loss of 25 cops. In 2019, 37 left by October 30. In 2020, 52 sworn officers left by October 30. At the same time, there was a around a 10% increase in calls for service. There were 232 days of protests that were monitored by the City's police. Between July 1 and October 31, 45 officers left out of 569 authorized FTEs which is about 8% of the force!
  There is a grant that the City applied for to add 10 more police with federal funding. The October class of 10 (laterals that were former police transferring from other areas) can hit the ground running and there will be another class in January.
  The Police Chief and Mayor is under pressure to provide more visible police and will disband the 8 member Community Intelligence Unit that liaisoned with community councils and worked on trouble complaints from those groups. They will go onto patrol. The bike patrol with the Chief's killer bumblebee uniforms will continue (I still think that they should be called murder hornet uniforms.) and will try to have a meet and greet in January.
  A captain or lieutenant will now attend each community council meeting and liaison with the bike squad. The Council was concerned about the change since the CIU officers were very popular with the community councils. The police will try to have the command staff at each community council meeting but there are conflicts (5 on first Wednesday). 
  The Chief asked the City Council for $300,000 for 30 more shotguns that fire a plastic lead sock to decrease the use of lethal force.  The $600 shotgun is accurate to 20yds and more. The 30 shotguns will be added to the 89 older models..

SLC MOBILE COP CAMS DEPLOYED TO SMITHS AND FAIRMONT SKATE PARK
  The Sugar House Community Council asked for a mobile cop cam to discourage drug sales at the Fairmont Park Skate Park and it got one in December. Several Smiths parking lots also got the camera trailers due to a rash of car burglaries in the grocery store parking lots. Chief Brown said that they were effective at discouraging criminal element loitering after the St. Mark's homeless drug dealing rousting. "The sheer presence moves the element out." They were used for two weeks since after that they decrease in effectiveness.
  The SLCPD said: "We have obtained the trailers over the last 5 years with grant monies, some of that money is no longer available. However, we still utilize grant money to repair damaged trailers or for the routine upkeep of the units. We currently have six trailers, 5 of an older style ($50,000 +) and one new style ($27,000 ish), however the new one has had integration issues so we have yet to deploy it mostly due to getting it fixed during the height of COVID, so it remains to be seen whether that kind will be viable long term yet. 
  I cannot speak about budget funding as that is out of my purview.  We are currently designing and building a few longer term high visibility cameras that will be mounted on semaphores or utility poles to be less vulnerable to vandalism, which is a significant problem with the trailers.  They should help with areas that have long term issues or areas that might leave a trailer more vulnerable to damage, and cost much less around 10K.   Overhead security light systems will not be useful for us as they generally too intrusive in neighborhoods (shining into bedroom windows at night, and would kill the trailers batteries way too quickly).  We are currently low on storage/recharge space with our current cameras trailers and due to the design of the masts of the old style trailers we can’t get them into an underground parking structure for storage or recharge.  So due to the storage, and budgetary constraints in it’s current state we can’t effectively afford to bring more cameras trailers online until a stable long term funding and storage solution is established."
 
FROM NOVEMBER BLOG
JRI NEEDS MORE ATTENTION PUBLISHED
  The Salt Lake Tribune published my commentary on the Justice Reinvestment Initiative this month (at https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2020/11/05/george-chapman-well/).  I pointed out that the U.S. Attorney was right to complain about criminals not being taken off the street for more than a few hours and many had been arrested dozens of times.  I also agreed with a previous oped that JRI needs a bigger budget since it is essentially an unfunded mandate on the counties.  I also agreed that the JRI effort made sense since drug users should not be in prison (the main objective of JRI).  But drug addicts that commit crimes everyday that they are on the street should be incarcerated and the system should be re-evaluated by the State to ensure that.
  One of the best legislators, in my opinion, is Rep. Hutchings who has been sponsoring the JRI bills and trying to fine tune the effort to make it effective.  Unfortunately, he has lost re-election.  He will be missed.  I can't think of anyone else who knew as much about justice reform in Utah.  He was considered so knowledgeable that he has testified in Washington DC about it.  Rep. Eliason did win re-election and he has been instrumental in pushing for better mental health funding and systems including MCOT, the mobile mental health team.  Rep. Dunnigan also won re-election and he has plans to sponsor a noise ordinance that will target those vehicle owners that remove their muffler systems.  Vehicle noise is not supposed to be over 85 db but many remove the mufflers and replace them with equipment that results in much louder noise.

JRI DISCUSSIONS AT LEGISLATURE IGNORE COUNTY PROBLEMS
Following on the JRI Audit, CCJJ (Utah's Committee on Criminal and Juvenile Justice) had a report that I questioned.  The CCJJ Report page 4 says: "county jail populations do not appear to have been negatively impacted by the JRI reforms, though more data is needed"!!!
  But the recent JRI Audit pointed out that Adult Probation and Parole is not able to provide appropriate services to the recently paroled.  Part is due to the indirect pressure to reduce bed use at the State Prison and it is also caused by the inability of Corrections to fully staff the beds that are supposed to be provided (mainly due to low salaries).  The Audit showed the result.  Too many violent criminals are being released with not enough supervision.
  That has resulted in the U.S. Attorney and other law enforcement and government prosecutors complaining about being inundated with criminals who have been committing many, many violent criminal actions.  The unfunded mandate put on the county jails and prosecutors from discouraging sentencing violent criminals to prison is a burden on local taxpayers and victims.  Many of these criminals should not be released and should be in prison.  
  Using a gun should result in prison no matter how hard APP argues against that. APP is actively discouraging sentencing violent criminals to prison.
  Again, I urge the Legislature to analyze and study the realistic need for Prison beds (which shouldn't affect the Point development - which can start now); what are the salary requirements to fully staff the Prison and what do counties need to help prosecute violent criminals and send them to Prison.  The Prison should also be available to provide extra beds for counties that are not able to provide enough beds to take criminals who may be committing over ten felonies while released. 
  When asked by the Judiciary Interim Committee Chair about the county jail populations issue, Kim Cordova said that she did not think that there was an issue!  Asking any Salt Lake County police chief should confirm that the Jail does not accept booking for less than third degree felonies. (with a few exceptions).  The actual number of criminals that should be on the Salt Lake County Jail graph should be two to three times more.  The Jail Dashboard  which I am familiar with, and I have written about in newspapers, showed many have over 100 arrests until recently and some have over 200 arrests.  The Jail IS REFUSING misdemeanor arrests.
  Sen. Hillyard was correct to say that police often take arrested criminals back to treatment instead of jail (Salt Lake County's Pay For Success in particular).  County jails implement limits and police are told what crimes are accepted for booking.  
  The Legislature should continue collect data and accept testimony from police chiefs and DAs and sheriffs to show the real life situation.  This Committee and I have been having this same argument (well before the Audit) for two years.
  
  Sheriff Rivera was asked about this issue and responded with this (MY RESPONSES ARE IN CAPS):
 "First, there have been no booking restrictions in place at the Salt Lake County Jail since July 2017. The reason our population appears consistent is largely due to a carefully monitored Over-Crowding Release program that affects those in our facility following the booking intake process." (THAT IS NOT  TRUE.  THE JAIL BOOKING RESTRICTION EFFECTS REPORT FROM 2017 IS STILL IN EFFECT.  SLCPD STILL COMPLAINS ABOUT IT!)
  "When you look at the current jail dashboard numbers it is important to understand that due to COVID-19 we have reduced the overall number of inmates in our facility so that we are better able to protect the health and safety of inmates." (ONLY 184 BEDS ARE BEING USED AT OXBOW INSTEAD OF THE OVER 500 BEDS AVAILABLE)
  "In terms of our felony population, at the time I am writing this our dashboard shows that 45.4% of the jail population has been booked on charges below a second-degree felony.
Felonies
First-degree - 398
Second-degree - 368
Third-degree - 507 
Misdemeanors
Class A - 108
Class B - 19
Class C - 3
  Additionally, the prison does not have the authority to hold anyone prior to conviction and sentencing. Currently, in our facility 81% of people have not been sentenced, including those charged with first- or second-degree felonies who we are required to detain pre-trial. The number of individuals awaiting trial is most impacted by the challenges COVID-19 is having on the courts rather than with the prison or their staff.
  You are correct to say that JRI impacted county jails. The reclassification of possession charges from felonies to misdemeanors impacted us in two ways:
  People convicted of misdemeanors now serve time in jails rather than prison.
Jails are no longer eligible for Conditions of Probation (COP) reimbursement for the individuals serving misdemeanor possession sentences in our jails. When these charges were felonies we were reimbursed when time was served in our facility.
  I hope you find this information helpful. JRI is well intentioned but its success will be dependent on all five parts becoming fully implemented. Having alternatives to the jail for individuals being detained with nuisance crimes like intoxication can both reduce costs to the jail and give that individual a chance to receive resources outside of the criminal justice system. It is important to look at the whole criminal justice system. The court process, community-based services, and incarceration alternatives like receiving centers will all play a critical role in this initiative being fully realized."
  (IN OTHER WORDS, JRI HAS PLACED AN UNFUNDED MANDATE ON COUNTIES THAT HAVE RESULTED IN MANY CRIMINALS STAYING ON THE STREET AND COMMITTING CRIMES.)
 
 
FROM THE OCTOBER BLOG
JUSTICE REINVESTMENT INITIATIVE NOT WORKING
  The JRI Audit (in the downloads section on the right) showed that JRI is not working as intended.  Too many individuals are being arrested again and again without resolution of their mental issues or drug and alcohol issues (usually covering up their mental issues).  The goal of not incarcerating drug users in prison is an appropriate and respectful effort.  But when criminals misuse the system to continue criminal behavior, it is not working.  The vast majority of drug users do not commit victimless crimes and if they commit crimes everyday they are on the street, they should be incarcerated.  In addition, the State forced an unfunded mandate on counties.  There is a systemic problem with the JRI efforts, in my opinion.
  When the County refuses to fund appropriate jail space but leaves 184 beds open there is a problem.  (Note that the County Sheriff's budget is $5 million less than last year! - The County budget is being discussed in public hearings now - DA and Sheriff presentations are in the downloads on the right.)  When the DA has 14 prosecutor positions unfilled there is a problem.  When judges admonish Adult Probation and Parole (the Audit showed APP was underfunded and undermanned) for recommending probation for someone who empties a gun into a car full of people, there is a problem,
  When a robber is sentenced to 1 to 15 years in prison, ends up in jail for 30days and 6 months later tries to shoot some cops who surround him, who shoot him until he stops being a threat, there is a problem.
  He should have been in prison and you don't need an audit to tell you the system isn't working.  You don't need the US Attorney to tell you there is a problem (he recently complained about the lack of enforcement of laws by Utah government).
  The Legislature should study the cost to properly incarcerate threats to society and fund either the State or County to take those threats out of society and demand that all treatment centers that receive federal funds, track and report all results for a year.  The Audit was unable to show the results for treatment!  It appears from the Utah Department of Health scorecards that success after a year is less than 40% and in 5 years, it may be less than 10%.
  One important finding that was missed is the Audit shows that the Salt Lake County Jail inmate population expanded but has been stable for many years!  That is due to the SLCO Jail's booking restrictions.  (The Audit missed that data!)  The JRI Audit graph in the Appendix should show a doubling or tripling of jail inmates but the Jail only allows first and second degree felonies to be booked!  Law enforcement can influence some flexibility but they are told to try to follow the rules since arrestees tend to walk out before the arrest reports are finished!  The Audit provides a dashboard that goes into more detail at:
 https://public.tableau.com/profile/utah.legislative.auditor.general.s.office#!/

SLC INTERNAL AFFAIRS SENDS TWO POLICE TO POST INVESTIGATION
  During the last few months, there have been many complaints that the Salt Lake City Police Department is out of control and regularly exhibits police brutality.  The cases that turned up that did show police brutality were immediately corrected when reported.  There have been many times when the violence of a critical event has not been reported but the result has often been the person responsible for not reporting the incident has been forced to retire (as in the case of the police canine officer who did not report these incidents).  There have also been complaints that the Police Union/Association is too powerful and the State is too lenient with police.  The reality is that Utah has a vigorous system that targets unprofessional law enforcement conduct called POST.  Utah is ensuring appropriate police conduct with POST.  In the past, officers have been terminated from law enforcement positions in the State, or suspended from practicing for a time or punished in other ways.  The following are statistics for the last five years for SLCPD, DPS and UDC (provided by POST): 
?
Complaints:
Salt Lake City PD - 26
Department of Public Safety - 42
Utah Department of Corrections - 84
Cases:
Salt Lake City PD - 9
Department of Public Safety - 19 
Utah Department of Corrections - 67
?
Breakdown of complainants and if a case was opened for each Salt Lake City PD complaint:
2020 - 2 referred from SLCIA, and were opened as cases
           1 citizen complaint that was not opened.
2019 - 4 citizen complaints, 3 were not opened and 1 was
           1 referred from another agency during background investigation, was opened as a case
2018 - 5 referred by SLCIA, 4 were opened, 1 was not *as we were being audited
           1 anonymous complaint was not opened
           1 incident was observed by POST on the media and was opened as a case
2017 - 3 incidents were observed by POST on the media, 1 was opened as a case, the other 2 were not
           2 citizen complaint, neither were opened as cases
2016 - 1 referred by SLCPD, opened as a case
           1 anonymous complaints, not opened
           3 citizen complaints, none opened
           1 incident was observed by POST on the media and was opened as a case

UTAH JUSTICE AUDIT PROVES OUR CLAIMS OF POOR PUBLIC SAFETY
  There is an important Audit on Utah's Justice Reinvestment Initiative (JRI) that hit the Legislature this month.  It showed that our criminal justice system is not working well.  JRI stopped sending drug users to prison and forced counties to incarcerate them in the county jail which was costly and effectively an unfunded mandate.  The vast majority of drug users do not commit victimless crimes.  The Audit is in the downloads on the right.  The appendixes show the incarceration numbers and drug and alcohol (SUDs) treatment numbers.  But, as the Audit mentioned, they couldn't get the treatment providers to prove their success.  The State has indicated that the 1 year successful treatment is around 40% but it may take as long as 5 years to reflect real life percentages of success.  The federal government believes successful opioid addiction treatment is around 5%!  Interestingly, I have seen only one person that has gone through the system after Operation Rio Grande that has been able to continue working and stay away from drugs.  She keeps being mentioned as a success and i congratulate her.  But is there anyone else?  The problem, as I indicated several years ago in a commentary in the newspaper, is without jail or incarceration for more that a day, there is no real incentive to enter and continue drug treatment.  The Salt Lake County Jail refuses to book anyone except for first and second degree felonies and they are released, usually, within a day.
  Not noted in the graphs, Salt Lake County limits jail populations and releases everyone, even felonies to not get above a limit. and refused to jail drug users.   In other words  it is worse than the graph in the appendix of the Audit shows.  
  When judges admonish APP (which the Audit said is underfunded and understaffed) for recommending probation for someone who empties a gun into a car full of people, there is a problem.  
  When a robber is sentenced to 1 to 15 years in prison; ends up in jail for 30 days; and 6 months later tries to shoot some cops who surround him; who shot him until he stopped being a threat; there is a problem.  It also created riots and a lot of damage.  He should have been in prison.  You don't need an audit to tell you the system isn't working.
  When the county refuses to fund appropriate jail space and leaves 184 beds open there is a problem.  When the DA has 14 prosecutor positions unfilled there is a problem.  You don't need the US Attorney to tell you there is a problem.
  I urge the Legislature to study the cost to properly incarcerate threats to society and fund either the State or County to take those threats out of society and demand that all treatment centers that receive federal funds, track and report all results for a year. 
  
IT'S BACK - SRO/MINI CABRINI GREEN/CRIME MAGNET MOTELS
  The renamed Single Room Occupancy proposal, now Shared Room housing, is set for public hearings on November 10, and November 20.  The City insists that it solves the issue of affordable housing.  This is Pamela Atkinson's push and dream.  She has been pushing this proposal for years.  It will allow SROs throughout the City except in single family zoned areas.  
  Interestingly, the City's Housing Authority tried to build an SRO next to a single family home (on 1725 S. Jefferson St.).  It was 74 units and the RDA turned it down only because it was noncompliant with the zoning.  If the City's SRO proposal passes, that project can receive City funding to proceed!  It is zoned RMF35 now.

THE ABOVE IS FROM PREVIOUS BLOG ENTRIES BUT RELATED TO CRIME FIGHTING IN SLC
  


BELOW IS THE REST OF JANUARY BLOG (FIRST WEEK)

SLC WOULD RATHER SPEND $5 MILLION ON A BUILDING THAN A PARK
  It appears that the Salt Lake City Council along with the arts community would rather spend over $5 million on the Fisher Mansion along the Folsom Trail rather than the Fleet Block. The Mayor told the Council last month that there wasn't enough money for two regional parks, Glendale Park that was the old water park and the Fleet Block. But there is enough money for a $5 plus million to stabilize and renovate the old Fisher Mansion. 
  $5 million was about the same amount of money that was repurposed from the southern end of Downtown park, at one time supposed to be around 5th South and Main Street, to Pioneer Park. This City promised another Downtown park from park impact fees. The park impact fees should be used for a downtown park and not a vanity project, the Fisher Mansion.
  The plans may also not be legal since ADA requirements are ignored. The plans call for an upstairs without an elevator but the City says that the upstairs will not be available to the public and therefore does not need to be ADA accessible. That is not correct. I expect an expensive legal fight on this.
  On another note regarding the Budget Amendment 6 that had the Fisher Mansion funding, there were funds proposed for a consultant for redesigning the Glendale Water Park. At a minimum, it should have a big, Olympic size, public swimming pool along with a generous park area.
  There was also a budget item for more police (A-5) but the funding was deficient and I expect that Salt Lake City will be down 100 officers by summer. They are down over 65 now.
  The budget amendment also had funding transferred from unused land bank and landlord proposals and repurposed for acknowledgeably more important increased rent assistance, service models for the vulnerable and $750,000 for the winter shelter at the Airport Inn. The State is providing $525,000 for operations for the Millcreek and Airport Inn winter shelters. The County is providing $234,320 for the operations at the Millcreek shelter.


PICTURE OF THE YEAR IS UTA THROWING BUSES UNDER THE BUS
  I am making the picture of the year the sign that UTA placed at a bus stop that tells the bus driver to stay away from the curb. What that means is that bus riders have to step into the street to step up into the bus. It also makes the UTA plan to raise the curb 6 inches as part of the millions budgeted for bus stop amenities (along with Salt Lake City) questionable and "WHAT WERE THEY THINKING".
  The reason for the sign is UTA's frustration over scuffed tires (that are leased) and broken mirrors. The broken mirrors were because, after firing the bus stop manager (who won a big lawsuit against UTA for his termination ), bus stops were placed in illogical places like right next to power poles, or trees or other signs which bus drivers had a problem maneuvering around.
  The bus stop manager was fired because he questioned UTA's plan to quickly build bus stop amenities on 200 South without proper ADA specifications. UTA wanted to quickly build the bus stops to get public good will and approval of Prop One, the old proposed sales tax increase for UTA. UTA claimed a 20% improvement in ridership due to the new bus stops as a selling point for the tax increase. But an analysis and report actually said that the increased ridership COULD NOT BE ATTRIBUTED to the new bus stops! Prop One failed but Senator Harper passed the tax increase a few years later in return for a $100 million 48th South Mid-Valley Connector BRT (in my opinion).
  So while UTA and Salt Lake City (using prison tax money) insists on spending money on raising curbs 6 inch, buses will avoid getting close to the curb and riders will have to step down one foot into the street from the new and "improved?" expensive bus stops and walk to the bus, in the street and step up one foot into the bus (if it isn't lowered). Picture of the year -  WHAT WERE THEY THINKING?

SLC SALES TAX REVENUES DOWN ONLY 5.4%
  Many have asked about Salt Lake City's sales tax revenue during the pandemic. Overall, it appears that sales tax receipts, including projections, are just 5.4% less than the projected sales tax revenue before the pandemic! 
  The biggest group of businesses projected to be negatively impacted are the "Accommodation and Food Services" which is down 45.4%. Real Estate and Rental and Leasing is projected to be down 20.9%. Along with Retail Trade, Wholesale Trade, Manufacturing, these groups are the top 5 sectors and are over 79% of Salt Lake City's sales tax revenues. Vehicle and grocery sales are obviously a big deal for the City's sales tax receipts and they were up.
  The City's biggest revenue decreases are in parking and tickets. I put the November sales tax report to the City Council in the downloads section to the right.
  
  ​
DECEMBER 2020
I RESPECT SLC MAYOR MENDENHALL FOR LEADERSHIP THIS YEAR
 Over the years, I have had many fights over policy issues with Salt Lake City’s present day Mayor and former councilwoman Erin Mendenhall. Many of the arguments have been reported in many commentaries by me in the Salt Lake Tribune. The issues have included lack of solutions to homeless issues, too much emphasis on rail transit, bicycles, higher density in single family areas, traffic calming with road diets and tax and fee increases. I gave many reasons to support her opponent for mayor during the last election.
  In one of the most unusual years ever in the history of our State, this City has endured an earthquake that damaged the City and County Building. The COVID 19 pandemic dealt the City a serious blow to providing services and public hearings. The pandemic resulted in a potential tsunami of evictions. The Road Home was closed by the Lieutenant Governor with the loss of up to 1000 beds for the homeless and homeless camps proliferated throughout the City. 
  The City had the most serious riots ever and daily protests in the City’s streets demanding defunding of the police. One of the City’s police K-9 officers was charged with aggravated assault by the DA.  The City also endured hurricane force winds that destroyed thousands of the City’s mature trees. 
  Mayor Mendenhall had a lot to do with this City’s successful resolutions of the worst problems any mayor could expect. She led the City’s identification and repair of the earthquake damage to the City’s buildings. She helped create a very successful virtual meeting system that resulted in hundreds of citizens being able to provide public comments to the City Council. She created a winter emergency shelter for the homeless earlier this year and identified and agreed to using a hotel for this year’s winter shelter. She changed the system for rousting homeless camps by insisting on a more respectful plan of offering services including housing, court/ assistance with citations and addiction treatment before allowing the County Health Department to remove the biowaste and encourage the homeless to not congregate together.
  She and the Chief of Police were adamant that protesting was a legitimate right at the same time that destructive riots would be aggressively stopped. She expressed solidarity with Black Lives Matter and implemented a complete audit of the police budget. She followed through on releasing bodycam recordings within 10 days of disturbing but justified shootings. She suspended the City’s K-9 force immediately on learning of a disturbing use of force that was not reported. She removed the police hiring freeze when the force lost many more than usual to retirement, competition with other agencies, extended overtime due to the constant protests, and the public perception of police brutality.  
  She started a renter’s assistance fund to help decrease evictions in the City and started planning on affordable housing solutions. She was able to procure Allen Park before it was bought for high density development. 
  This has been a difficult year for not just Salt Lake City but cities worldwide. Our City has been able to keep some semblance of normalcy with tax revenue a little less than normal (ABOUT 10% down) and the City’s public servants still able to be responsive. Our Mayor deserves credit and recognition for that.  I still will push her and my City to be better but she has impressed me this year.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING DISCUSSION AFTER BUILDING 1500 UNITS SINCE 2015
  At the beginning of December, the Salt Lake City Council had a big discussion and review on affordable housing. From the notice:
"Housing issues are at the forefront of this discussion, which covers affordability, increasing housing supply, diversifying housing options, and neighborhood compatibility. Additionally, an update from City staff on the adopted Growing SLC Housing Plan will help provide valuable context to this discussion.
The Council is currently reviewing a few housing-related land use petitions including RMF-30 Zoning changes and a Shared Housing proposal. The Council anticipates other petitions, including an Affordable Housing Overlay and off-street parking changes, in the foreseeable future.
The goal of the discussion is to link these proposals together and consider them with a “big picture” policy context. Alone, these proposals each impact City housing policy. Combined and coordinated, they become part of a clearer vision. This briefing will help inform the City’s efforts to expand housing opportunities within Salt Lake City. The Council will not take action on these proposals at this meeting. Each item will have future stand-alone briefings and public hearings before the Council takes action."
  The Council noted that relatively affordable housing is only available in Glendale. The recently passed demolition ordinance may not help much since only about 160 properties seem to be involved. There is an RFQ on a gentrification study. Despite the fact that the public hearings of the RMF30 and SRO proposals are closed, BEFORE ANY BIG CHANGE IN ZONING, THE GENTRIFICATION STUDY SHOULD BE FINISHED AND ANALYZED. Growing Salt Lake City expires in 2022. The City hopes that the housing mitigation program will decrease loss of affordable housing (requires landlords to replace affordable housing lost during reconstruction). The City Council would like to discuss the housing mitigation program more, an ordinance for anti-displacement right of first refusal (to allow tenants to buy a building before eviction) and identify neighborhoods that need help and develop mitigation measures. They also noted that the demolition of the Overnighter Motel was complicated by a fire that delayed final demolition for a few months. 
  The City staff provided an updated number of affordable units that "includes only those units that the City helped fund. There may have been other affordable units built without public funds but (SLC doesn't) have access to that information.
The short answer is that 1,500 new units of housing that is affordable to people earning up to 80% of AMI (Area Median Income) were built and opened since 2015.....
This year (2020) was the biggest year on record for opening new affordable units, with 723 total. That volume of new affordable units is in part a reflection of the Council’s greatly increased investment in affordable housing since 2016/2017.
 Most of these affordable units are guaranteed to remain affordable for the next fifty years. Levels of affordability vary depending on the project, ranging from no income (permanent supportive housing) to a maximum of 80% AMI. The size of affordable units also varies, from studios to 3-bedroom units.
In 2021, 567 additional new affordable housing units are scheduled to open.
The attachment (IN DOWNLOADS) includes names and addresses of each project that received City funds for meeting the requirements for incentives for building affordable housing units."
  I still think that affordable housing plans need a reset to not negatively impact the implied promise of single family zoned areas. The City should realize that well intentioned plans can lead to much higher housing costs like in the Sugar House area where rents increased 300% in the last ten years.
  The City’s SRO/Shared Housing proposal would put affordable rooms in many stable residential neighborhoods with many long term owner occupied housing. Why would a developer spend money to build apartments if there is a chance that an SRO is going to be built next door? The problem is the low rent proposal is similar to the budget motels on State Street and North Temple. If Salt Lake City can’t stop the increase in crime near the budget motels, it shouldn’t be proposing to put similar housing in other residential neighborhoods. 
  Another proposal is to encourage redevelopment of rental properties with a new RMF30 ordinance that will effectively encourage the removal of many older and affordable housing units and replace them with market rate higher density. Even apartment owners have an issue with this proposal. This proposal will result in affordable rental property owners getting an offer that they can’t refuse to sell and allow redevelopment of their properties. This will result in an eviction tsunami.
  The affordable housing overlay proposal is designed to increase density in all areas of the City by making more flexible use of all space including odd lots, alleys and big lots. But the proposal will increase traffic and parking issues that are already a contentious issue in the City. Owner occupied housing cements neighborhoods and trying to increase density with higher density homes, apartments and rentals (which developers contend provide more return on investment) destroys neighborhoods and encourages flight to the suburbs.
  Another proposal is to decrease the parking minimums to encourage using alternate forms of transportation that are more socially acceptable to some. Recently, the City had to rescind removing a few parking spots in the 9th and 9th neighborhood due to broad community opposition. Other areas are increasingly concerned about the lack of on street parking in front of their house and businesses. Red China proved that encouraging riding bicycles does not stop people from wanting to drive vehicles. In China, there are 50 lane roads that are congested!
  Another threat to quiet residential streets, lowering speed limits, is being discussed. Lowering speed limits to 20 or 25 MPH on arterials will effectively treat neighborhood residential streets that are not for through traffic, as arterials and encourage through traffic. There won’t be any difference between the speed limits on residential streets and arterials! 
  Many of the new higher density developments do not provide wider sidewalks. In fact, most sidewalks in front of 3 and 5 story apartments are the same 4 feet width which is not enough for a wheelchair, a stroller or even a bicyclist to share the sidewalk together (side by side). Skinny sidewalks do not encourage walkability. They encourage driving and the need for more parking!
   Some of the best proposals to encourage affordable housing are being ignored. Housing should be allowed on the 80% of the City not zoned for it.  The City considered inclusionary zoning two years ago but dropped it. It would have required affordable units in new developments with Impact Fee credits. Parks encourage new housing but the City has been slow to consider new parks like the Fleet Block. Another proposal for thousands of new housing units is the State Street area which has not advanced the plan much in the last 6 years!
  Respecting residents through respectful housing plans is important for a good affordable housing plan. If this City keeps increasing density in low density residential areas, it will drive residents out to the suburbs, increase the cost of housing in the City and do the exact opposite of what the City wants to do. The SRO, RMF30, affordable housing overlay and parking and speed limit proposals should be returned to staff for a better analysis.

PIONEER PARK COALITION MEETING CONFIRMS SLC NOT TAKING CRIME SERIOUSLY
  During the December Pioneer Park Coalition meeting, the U.S. Attorney celebrated the success of the Ogden and Federal Government law enforcement efforts to decrease crime. The goal was to find the so called apex criminals that commit most of the most dangerous crimes. Ogden was able to get a 25% violent crime reduction in 3 to 5 years. By focusing on just 72 criminals, Ogden was able to reduce reported crimes 20 to 30% in 2 years. U.S. Attorney Huber said that there is no reason Salt Lake can't do it. All they have to do is call me. He added "Maybe I should call."
  Chief Brown also mentioned that many of the shelter resistant homeless (only around 22 out of 160 homeless campers accepted housing and shelter beds) refuse help.
  We have been witnessing this for almost a decade! For almost 10 years, undercover cops would complain that they would buy drugs, arrest the dealer and book them into jail, only to have them laughing a few hours later next to that cop who was trying to make another buy.
  What will it take for the Legislature, the counties and law enforcement to work together to ensure that counties are compensated for jailing criminals that really should be in prison (even for dozens of misdemeanors), that APP and prosecutors get enough money to keep threats in jail or under effective supervision and that the majority of prisoners get effective mental health treatment in jail and afterwards to decrease their threat to residents and businesses?
  A good example of how bad it is concerns a car thief who was caught earlier this month and immediately released on $100 bond! He was arrested on several felony counts including probation or parole violation but released with $100!! He almost killed a cop when he was on the street and he gets out after stealing a car with $100!
  Chief Brown recently said that they had to roust the homeless camp around St. Mark's in Salt Lake City. They directed their efforts to pull the drug dealers out of the homeless in the area. There is constant frustration in law enforcement about arresting the same criminal dozens of times. 
  My Salt Lake Tribune oped in November summarized the issues at: 
https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2020/11/05/george-chapman-well/
  In addition, in the last few months, I have provided emails from law enforcement that go into detail about the issues.
  
CATALYTIC CONVERTER THEFT RING OPERATING NEAR LIBERTY PARK
  There have been many complaints about questionable loitering and criminal activities in the area around 13th South and State Street. I recommend that everyone keep an eye on the Registered Sex Offender List since there is a large concentration of former prisoners in the 1200 South and State area. Another big issue that was noted in the last Liberty Wells Community Council meeting in December, is several residents had their catalytic converters stolen! The replacement can be as much as $1000! Please report any questionable activity to 911. 

SUGAR HOUSE GAINS CITY ACTION ON 2100 S. BUT CRISIS UNFOLDING
  The December Sugar House Community Council Transportation Committee had a big community meeting (virtually but well attended) that focused on what to do to increase safety on 2100 South east of 1700 East. Some residents continued to press for a road diet (which left the community fighting 50/50 for and against it a couple of years ago). SLC Transportation Direct Jonathan Larsen provided a solution with radar detection speed signs. It seems that the City bought a few of the signs years ago but had problems finding residents and homeowners willing to have them permanently installed. The residents who had asked for the meeting volunteered to permanently host the speed signs. It is expected that the 30MPH speed limit will be better adhered to with the very bright and visible signs.
  One of the big issues that brought the big turnout was based on recent road closures and construction, any change to 2100 South would send traffic to adjacent streets like Ramona and Hollywood (to get to 2100 East).
  Other issues were four lanes are better for bicyclists on a congested arterial or collector like 2100 South. The road diet on 1300 East destroyed any possible safe bicycling on 1300 East (although the City disagreed, Bike Cops said that they didn’t feel safe on it after the road diet). This State has a 3 foot clearance requirement for motorists going around bicyclists which are allowed in the right hand lane.
  Since the road is already 30MPH, it should not be reduced and more traffic calming should not be implemented unless the neighborhood, including Parleys Canyon Road (east of 1700 East), Ramona and Hollywood agree with it. They will have to endure the increased traffic and pollution and negative impacts on their streets from major street changes on 2100 South.
  The traffic on 2100 South is such that a road diet would increase pollution which can be up to 7 times higher next to congested roads than the rest of the Valley.  
  Based on past experience with road diets on well traveled roads, residents (and businesses) on the street would find it almost impossible to get out of their driveways, side streets and even pedestrians would find it hard to cross when there is no break in vehicles. That can happen if there is over 10,000 Average Daily Trips on a road.
  The community should not recommend anything major street changes until the Highland, 1300 East bridge over I80 and 900 East road projects are finished.  Even without a new project, the area is going to be construction central for the next few years. Residents and businesses should expect mitigation plans to help and not make it worse.
  The 21st East and 21st South intersection needs improvement. Schoolkids, and pedestrians and bicyclists are constantly in danger crossing through the area.  But suggestions like roundabouts actually can hurt safety. Four lanes on a roundabout are unsafe for bicyclists especially and are difficult for pedestrians to cross. Discouraging driveways and left hand turns near the intersection would help (like eliminating the north driveway into the gas station, not allowing left turns into Blue Diner parking, etc). The best example of the danger is at 900 East and 2100 South where Walgreens has a driveway on 900 East so close to the intersection that left hand turning vehicles is a constant danger to pedestrians, bicyclists and even cars.  
  The more important pressing issue is ensuring appropriate mitigation plans for the I80 bridge and 900 East construction plans, that 4 lanes remain on Highland at least from 27th South to Richmond due to the high traffic,
that businesses on Highland are appropriately notified about the upcoming road redesign to ensure that they can participate (I am not sure that they understand what a potential road diet that Millcreek wants will do to businesses and bicyclists. It may require a shared raised wide sidewalk like the 9 Line Trail around 1000 East, in both directions. Supposedly the 900 East reconstruction design has one on the east side. (SHCC deserves to see the final draft design next meeting in January).
  Note that we were able to get the IZZY South design to decrease driveways (to help bicyclist and pedestrian safety) but the SHCC should have a blanket plan to discourage more driveways on 2100 South.  
  SHCC should demand NOW that some funding for adjacent street traffic calming should be available from the Highland and 900 East (and I80 bridge) construction budgets.
  Highland should get more attention now since construction on Sugar Alley is removing parking for restaurant pickup, making it worse by closing the right hand southbound lane (putting covered sidewalk in the road!).  Suggestions include stopping left hand turns into Sugar House Commons (the light is half a block away – the left hand turn lane should be lengthened at the lights) and at Sugarmont (in both directions), removing parking across from the liquor store since it backs up traffic going north due to left hand turns encouraged for liquor).  
  There will be a chip seal on Warnock to Millcreek this next year that will take a day or two. The recent road construction on Highland by Sugarmont was due to a water line break. Lynn Jacobs, the SLC point of contact for the major Highland Drive redesign, expects a survey to go out in January to firm up designs. There will be a sewer line installed on 2100 South next summer from Yuma to 2100 East and a future 700 East to 1700 East reconstruction soon.

SLC PUSHING MORE TRAFFIC ONTO ADJACENT STREETS WITH STREET PLANS
  Traffic management during road construction is difficult. Salt Lake City acknowledges that and understands the concerns of many communities that will be impacted during streets’ reconstruction that are part of the $87 million bond passed by voters two years ago. Street reconstruction, especially the projects with large design changes that take a long time, shift rush hour traffic through streets, often single family and residential, that were not designed for large traffic volumes. In addition, trucks also divert onto neighboring streets to escape the construction project streets. Many diverted drivers express their frustrations with higher speeds. All of that results in a significant decrease in safety and much more traffic, pollution and noise for those neighborhoods. Often, the traffic continues for years after the projects.
  When 1300 East and 1300 South had lane reductions (from 4 to 2 traffic lanes), traffic diverted to nearby streets and the traffic stayed higher. It did not go down. When 2700 South and 500 East were reconstructed, traffic significantly increased along with more speeders on nearby parallel roads. The residents on those streets have been complaining about the need for traffic calming to slow down the increased volume and decrease speeding.
  Some of the streets scheduled to be reconstructed in the near future include 300 West (which will shift traffic to West Temple), 900 East and 1100 East (which will shift traffic to 800 East and 1000 East), 900 South (which will increase traffic on nearby east west streets) and 200 South (which could shift traffic to the Avenues and 300 South).
  When Salt Lake City reconstructed 1300 East over the last two years (the time required to replace old water and sewer pipes at the same time), traffic increased significantly around the single-family neighborhood street north of Sugar House. The area asked for a traffic study (which they got) as a prelude to preparing a CIP request for traffic calming. But the neighborhoods that are impacted shouldn’t have to wait for reconstruction to start. In every street reconstruction project, traffic in adjacent, formerly quiet neighborhood streets, increased.
  The problem in Sugar House will be much more difficult for residents and businesses since UDOT will be closing 1300 East at times next summer to replace the bridge over I-80! Although the City and UDOT have been meeting for over 6 months to work on mitigation measures, the detour routes that they are suggesting are often ignored and that create serious safety issues in adjacent neighborhoods. Although UDOT and SLC Engineering and Transportation are trying to plan for and mitigate impacts on neighborhoods, more should be done.
  Potential plans are to install local traffic only signs or use temporary speed bumps. There will also be adjustments made regularly to offset unexpected motorist responses to detours. And to make it even more complicated, the plans have to include not impacting emergency services. 
  Salt Lake City residents and businesses should not have to endure the long road reconstruction projects without mitigation measures put in place before the projects start. For those neighborhood streets already impacted by past projects, the City owes the neighborhoods traffic calming measures to decrease speeds and volumes of traffic. Neighborhood streets should not have to tolerate the destruction of their neighborhood character when minimal traffic calming is a very inexpensive funding addition considering that the streets reconstructions can be over $10 million. Traffic calming can be had with raised crosswalks (as on 2700 South and 500 East) for $8000. The City’s proposed temporary speed bumps or any traffic calming should be permanent.
  Trying to apply for CIP funding sometimes takes years to result in a project. That is too late. The City Administration and Council should require all road projects to plan for and implement traffic calming on streets that could be impacted. SLC time to step up and do the responsible thing.
  The same issues are cropping up in other areas. The effort to install bulbouts and mid-block crosswalks on State Street will increase pollution and encourage traffic onto adjacent neighborhood residential streets. State Street is a vehicle corridor. It needs a wide bike lane instead of median planters and BRT.  Spending $100 million on those plans would be better spent on more frequent bus service, mixed income housing and parks with lots of trees. State Street has a lot of car lots so the idea of planting a lot of trees around them will reveal that CAR LOTS DO NOT LIKE TREES. Anything that pushes bicyclists into traffic (like bulbouts) is not safe.
  Salt Lake City is planning on spending RDA tax increment on Life on State implementation. I can think of better uses of the money and the adjacent communities should have a list instead of "look what we can give you for free". There is a proposal and CIP application on Kensington and State for further traffic calming. This is where a little girl was killed by a negligent driver. A camera system would be more effective at making drivers more careful. The proposal is to spend up to half a million on the project. Would you rather spend half a million on this project or increasing frequency and span of service on the 200 State Street bus, or a park or moving car lots, putting up cameras with lighting (Ubiquity GE lighting -they did it in San Diego but got backlash)? 
  Neighborhood streets should not be expected to perform as arterials. Arterials like 300W are for vehicles and should accept higher speeds. Neighborhood streets like Kensington, West Temple, 800E, 1000 E and even 600E (without the right hand turn only concrete) can continue to be slow 20-25mph streets but slowing traffic whether by road diets or speed limits push traffic into other areas. Twice in the last decade, work on 1300E increased traffic on the formerly quiet and bikeable 1100E to the point that it is no longer sage to bike on 1100E. I should point out that the former 4 lanes on 1300E was safer for many bicyclists that I knew after the road diet (I was spending most of the week in San Diego for work). They preferred using the outside lanes and got the legally required 3 ft clearance.
  My issue is neighborhood streets should be comfortable for everyone and shouldn't function as through roads.  That is what arterials are for. I contend that they should keep through traffic out of residential and quiet low use streets.   
  There is road for through traffic and a safer road for pedestrians and bicyclists and kids. All roads shouldn't be everything to everybody. One of the budget items agreed last June, is a traffic calming study. 
  Recently, West Temple and 400 East have been complaining about increased traffic and speeding on their streets. The West Temple street will be significantly negatively impacted by the new 300 West street reconstruction. Traffic calming for that should start now. The 400 East street deserves attention now since the 500 East project, which implemented a questionable shared street going south that can backup traffic to 5 MPH, was responsible for the 400 East impact. 500 East is a collector! At least the Fire Department insisted on minimum raised crosswalks.
  BOTTOM LINE, ARTERIALS NEED 4 LANES FOR THE 90% OF US WHO USE VEHICLES.

SLC PUSHING TO INCREASE DENSITY AND HEIGHT IN NEIGHBORHOODS
  Salt Lake City is about to embark on a major planning effort to expand housing density in the Ballpark area! The goal is to encourage housing development with so called "compatible infill". There will be a steering committee review of the information to ensure public engagement on January 14 (tentatively).
  The concerns of many in the neighborhood about increased density include:
PARKING
  There is a continued lack of parking. Seniors should not be expected to walk 100 feet to transit stops.  The Taylor Springs parking lot managed by HASLC is usually full and shows that seniors and low income DO drive. The 900 S. Bennion apartments are 200 feet from a bus stop and another 100 feet from TRAX. The Book Cliffs' nearest bus stop is over 1200 feet. Ironically, the recent meetings of the Central Ninth Community Council complained about lack of parking (a consistent problem from 9th and 9th which caused an almost riot during the roundabout construction and the arguments of hundreds against a rezone at 400 East and 9th South). Some are so desperate that they a placard restricted area!  Parking requirements should be close to the number of apartments.  Bicycle safety is significantly decreased if there are so many cars parked on the street that safe bicycling is not available (due to dooring and lack of visibility from driveways).
MOUNTAIN VIEWS AND SHADOWS
  SLC has had this discussion many times before. Residents should have a right to morning sunshine and mountain views and sunshine in their gardens and yards.  The mountain views should not be impacted through non compliant zoning (achieved with a conditional use permit or otherwise). The City's efforts to ignore the importance of morning sunshine (remember the infamous Life, the Universe and Sugar House report) are a constant irritation.
  The increased height will also intimidate neighbors and other potential residential building projects. In other words, don't destroy neighborhood possibilities with high density projects. (My arguments against SROs apply - who would want to build apartments next to a potential SRO site?)
TREES
  SLC has a tree ordinance that is not being implemented. Removing a tree should result in planting the number of trees equal to the radius of the tree removed (it is unfortunately not leaf equivalent). Trees removed from before demolition of the homes should be replaced with one tree per 2 inch of diameter of old trees removed. 
SIDEWALKS
  Sidewalks should be wider to allow a wheelchair and or stroller to be walked with by a pedestrian side by side. Sidewalks should not be so limited to not allow side by side walking or use by wheelchairs. If sidewalk is not wide enough for two wheelchairs, ADU lawsuits should be expected. I know the people who sue on this issue (they end up with a mediator that forces SLC to make right). HASLC should not be ignoring ADA fairness since they should expect some ADA residents. In addition, if easy access to mass transit is part of the reason for lack of parking, sidewalk widths should reflect that and allow more than one person at a time to use the sidewalk width. Also when buildings are close to sidewalks, there is a danger from falling ice.
SRO PROPOSALS
  SLC appears to be poised to approve an HASLC SRO on 1725 S JEFFERSON that the RDA turned down due to not meeting zoning requirements.
  All apartments in the City should have wide sidewalks, ground floor retail, cameras accessible by cops and enough parking to not impact the neighborhoods.
  
SLC INADVERTENTLY PITS EASTSIDE AGAINST WESTSIDE FOR NEW PARK
  During public comment in the December Salt Lake City Council Formal Meeting, the Mayor said that the City could not afford 2 regional parks pointing out that the proposal to make the Fleet Block a park is not viable financially since the Glendale water park (being demolished) has to remain a park. I disagree that the chances are slim for 2 regional parks. Mayor, you should not be setting up the Westside against the Ballpark and Central Ninth and Downtown area for who gets the next park. I know you didn't intend to imply that but that is what it sounded like. SLC repurposed around $5 million that was supposed to be used for a Downtown park and used it to redevelop Pioneer Park to discourage homeless (it didn't work). The area deserves a park and the City planned on it until a couple of years ago. The park will create a healthy area and it will attract businesses and more redevelopment of the commercial area surrounding the Fleet Block. Why isn't the city asking companies in Utah to contribute. Kennecott took over the proposed Rose Canyon Park and they should welcome a good will generating proposal. They also recently destroyed an ancient irreplaceable Australian cave with important ancient human tools!
SLC IGNORES POTENTIAL FOR UTA $1 FARE
  The City approved an ILA with UTA to continue to provide increased service on 2, 9 and 21 routes. Those routes were going to get better service in August of this year (2020) and UTA should be providing more service for this City's money.  The City did not spend around a million of the Prison tax promised for transit expansion. The City refused to discuss the idea of encouraging UTA to lower the fare to $1 which could be significantly effective at increasing ridership, due to the bus fare elasticities. Instead, Salt Lake discussed using funds to provide on call service like Uber and Lyft similar to UTA's VIA service in SW SLCO. That rider subsidy is over $35 a rider! It would be cheaper to help fund a semi used car lease at $100 a month!
  
SLC SPENDS STATE STREET RDA FUNDS FOR MILKRUN TRAX STATION
 Salt Lake City RDA decided to use RDA funds to build the milkrun TRAX station at 650S Main Street that the adjacent property owners were supposed to pay for it. Until further adjacent development, the City committed funding. There is an assessment area but there is not enough coming in yet. UTA has the money ($187 million from the CARES Act) and instead of Commissioner Christensen's dream TRAX station, UTA is spending over $5 million on a Sandy parking garage, $100 million on a gold plated bus garage and over a million on a clearfield trail. UTA has the money.

SLC COUNCIL DESERVES CREDIT FOR HANDLING TSUNAMI OF COMMENTS THIS YEAR
  I complain a lot because I want more from my City. But over the last year, I was impressed by the patience of the Council and Mayor in enduring hundreds of comments, in some cases listening to the same exact speeches for 5 hours! Council Chair Chris Warton deserves a lot of credit for his heroic patience during this year's meetings. I also should thank Councilman Andrew Johnston for his very relevant blog on the District 2 website. It fills in a lot of the important details that the newspapers miss.

WHEN WILL SLC BAN DIESEL IDLING AND CLEAR THE AIR?
  The Legislature passed an anti idling bill this last year but Salt Lake City has not changed their anti idling ordinance! I fought against it several times at the Legislature (and in opeds) and the Legislature previously only allowed an educational implementation. Only one person seems to have been ticketed in the last 6 years. But now is a good time to make a significant impact on air pollution in the Valley. I was against the anti-idling law when it was directed at cars, especially when parents need to keep their kids comfortable in the car.
  But with the increased truck traffic in the Valley, it is time to pass an anti-idling diesel truck engine ordinance. Diesel emissions are immediately harmful. Newer cars are less likely to pollute than diesels. Diesels are 24% of the predicted transportation CO2. It is also estimated that 20% of light and medium duty fail emissions standards and around one third are illegally modified. If you care about the Inland Port creating more pollution, you should demand that Salt Lake City pass an anti-idling diesel truck ordinance.
  
PEDESTRIAN LIGHTING STUDY TO INCREASE CROSSING SAFETY
  During discussions at several community councils on safety concerns about pedestrians crossing at 700E and 900S after dark, we asked the City to work with UDOT to increase the illumination of pedestrians crossing 700E to make them more visible to left hand turning vehicles. We suggested having a directed light showing on/at the riskier areas where cars from 9th S turn onto 700 E.  UDOT knows more but Carmanah.com seems to have something like that. The light would only turn on when the pedestrian crossing button is pressed and last until the light changes back. The 9-Line and 900 South are scheduled to be reconstructed to Warnock in 2023.
  Adam Lough is the Traffic Studies & Design Engineer at UDOT Traffic & Safety. He has this to say about our questions: "Looking at this location in Google Earth, it appears there are already overhead luminaires on all four corners of this intersection. This configuration is usually what we design for and should provide adequate lighting for pedestrians at night. When we can't get overhead lighting due to conflicting overhead utilities, we have the option to install under the mast arm lights to illuminate pedestrian crosswalks in high volume locations. The mast arm lights turn on at the same time the overhead lights and remain illuminated until daylight. We choose not to turn them on & off with the pedestrian activations for a few reasons. First, some pedestrians choose not to push the button and we don't want them to be crossing in the dark. Second, luminaires turning on and off all night are an annoyance to nearby residents and businesses. Third, we don't want the lights cycling on and off to distract other users of the intersection, potentially causing accidents. We are testing the Carmanah pedestrian lights at mid block locations with Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFB's), where we don't have street lights. We do have a concern with testing these types of lights at intersections where they could potentially shine into the eyes of pedestrians or motorists due to their mounting angle. We continue looking for lighting solutions to enhance pedestrian awareness. We will visit this location sometime this week to make sure the existing lighting is adequate and if not, see what can be done to improve it. I know Region II is working with SLC on a future project to narrow up 900 S and therefore reduce the crossing length."
  The biggest danger is crossing 700 East, not 900 South.

SLC REARRANGING POLICE TO COUNTER LOSS OF OVER 60 OFFICERS THIS YEAR
  Over the last few months, this blog has gone into detail about the loss of sworn police officers from Salt Lake City. This year, with the pandemic, the protests, the overtime and retirement, has resulted in Salt Lake City losing 70 cops (around 10 just graduated from a new Police Academy) this year. In 2019, there was a loss of 25 cops. In 2019, 37 left by October 30. In 2020, 52 sworn officers left by October 30. At the same time, there was a around a 10% increase in calls for service. There were 232 days of protests that were monitored by the City's police. Between July 1 and October 31, 45 officers left out of 569 authorized FTEs which is about 8% of the force!
  There is a grant that the City applied for to add 10 more police with federal funding. The October class of 10 (laterals that were former police transferring from other areas) can hit the ground running and there will be another class in January.
  The Police Chief and Mayor is under pressure to provide more visible police and will disband the 8 member Community Intelligence Unit that liaisoned with community councils and worked on trouble complaints from those groups. They will go onto patrol. The bike patrol with the Chief's killer bumblebee uniforms will continue (I still think that they should be called murder hornet uniforms.) and will try to have a meet and greet in January.
  A captain or lieutenant will now attend each community council meeting and liaison with the bike squad. The Council was concerned about the change since the CIU officers were very popular with the community councils. The police will try to have the command staff at each community council meeting but there are conflicts (5 on first Wednesday). 
  The Chief asked the City Council for $300,000 for 30 more shotguns that fire a plastic lead sock to decrease the use of lethal force.  The $600 shotgun is accurate to 20yds and more. The 30 shotguns will be added to the 89 older models..

SLC MOBILE COP CAMS DEPLOYED TO SMITHS AND FAIRMONT SKATE PARK
  The Sugar House Community Council asked for a mobile cop cam to discourage drug sales at the Fairmont Park Skate Park and it got one in December. Several Smiths parking lots also got the camera trailers due to a rash of car burglaries in the grocery store parking lots. Chief Brown said that they were effective at discouraging criminal element loitering after the St. Mark's homeless drug dealing rousting. "The sheer presence moves the element out." They were used for two weeks since after that they decrease in effectiveness.
  The SLCPD said: "We have obtained the trailers over the last 5 years with grant monies, some of that money is no longer available. However, we still utilize grant money to repair damaged trailers or for the routine upkeep of the units. We currently have six trailers, 5 of an older style ($50,000 +) and one new style ($27,000 ish), however the new one has had integration issues so we have yet to deploy it mostly due to getting it fixed during the height of COVID, so it remains to be seen whether that kind will be viable long term yet. 
  I cannot speak about budget funding as that is out of my purview.  We are currently designing and building a few longer term high visibility cameras that will be mounted on semaphores or utility poles to be less vulnerable to vandalism, which is a significant problem with the trailers.  They should help with areas that have long term issues or areas that might leave a trailer more vulnerable to damage, and cost much less around 10K.   Overhead security light systems will not be useful for us as they generally too intrusive in neighborhoods (shining into bedroom windows at night, and would kill the trailers batteries way too quickly).  We are currently low on storage/recharge space with our current cameras trailers and due to the design of the masts of the old style trailers we can’t get them into an underground parking structure for storage or recharge.  So due to the storage, and budgetary constraints in it’s current state we can’t effectively afford to bring more cameras trailers online until a stable long term funding and storage solution is established."

UTAH REFUSES MONEY FROM FEDS FOR HOMELESS SOLUTIONS
  New York City, and other cities, were offered FEMA funds to house homeless in non congregate housing to decrease spreading COVID among the homeless. But, in Utah, there seems to be a resistance to using the money since they have access to other money (BUT NOT ENOUGH MONEY). The State said: "The Department of Workforce Services did initially pursue Public Assistance (PA) FEMA for non-congregate shelter, but determined there were other sources of U.S. Housing and Urban Development, CARES ACT funding that were appropriate and could be quickly deployed in the DWS response to COVID-19 for non-congregate shelter related to homelessness.  
To my knowledge, there has not been any state delegated FEMA funding invested into non-congregate shelters for homelessness. If service providers or the county has applied for assistance directly with FEMA, that information has not been shared with me."
  It is frustrating that this State does not use the money available for homeless housing! Recent homeless interviews in the paper expressed a lot of frustration on not enough funding for hotel rooms!
  The City has that they have almost 2000 beds available between hotels and shelters. There is also a new extended service storage facility. 
  The City recently obtained the use of the Airport Inn to use as homeless housing. The City says: "The shelter expenses will be paid through a combination of funds, with much of it coming from federal CARES funds. It will be a joint effort among the City, County & State.....The Council action makes it possible to move ahead but the City won’t have a role in operating it.
  Other homeless costs are in a budget amendment below:
E-20: Enhanced Homeless Camp Cleanup – ($760,110 from CARES Act Second Round)
These funds would provide enhanced cleaning services at encampments throughout the City for the remainder of Fiscal
Year 2021. They will be allocated to the Grant Fund and administered by the Community and Neighborhoods Department
(CAN). The HEART staff within CAN determined where addition encampment cleanup is needed and where portable
restrooms and restroom attendants would be appropriate, calculating costs for those locations based on estimates
provided by the Advantage Services Clean Team. (The portable restrooms located in the Rio Grande area several years ago
would remain in place, serviced by the Clean Team and funded through this fiscal year.) The City’s homeless services
coordination group, which meets weekly, would determine if and when the enhanced funds might need to be shifted
among the initial sites listed below, or to new sites, as situations change over time.
he initial sites listed below, or to new sites, as situations change over time.
Priority Location
Weekly
Cost Weeks Total
Taufer Park Area $3,740 39 $145,860
Downtown/St Mark’s Episcopal Church
Area $4,250 39 $165,750
North Temple $3,740 39 $145,860
Ball Park $4,300 39 $167,700
Granary $2,850 39 $111,150
I-80 Overpass @ 700 East $610 39 $23,790
Total $19,490 $760,110
  Katie McKellar at the Deseret News had a good summary of the homeless situation in a recent story at:
https://www.deseret.com/utah/2020/10/23/21530961/utah-salt-lake-city-homeless-camp-cleanup-outreach-services-unsheltered-tents-taufer-park
  Only about a quarter of those homeless offered housing accept. Before the rousting of Taufer Park next to the Senior Center on 700 South and 300 East, there were around 170 homeless camping out there. There are also 100 drug treatment beds available but they are hard to fill. Michelle Hoon, the City's homeless czar, said that "114 offers of resources have been extended to 82 people, according to city staff....Only 16 have accepted placements, and 61 have refused."  Katie writes a great story.
  
SLC PASSES NEW WATER CONSERVATION PLAN THAT ENCOURAGES WATERING
  The City has passed the new but essentially unchanged Water Conservation Plan for the City that still ignores the efforts of many to conserve water. The City still requires 30% plantings in the front yard and pushes park strip trees (despite 75 recently dying due to non watering).
  In the recent windstorm, the City lost 1500 City trees and 3000 private trees that needed significant pruning or removal. Stephanie Duer, the City's Water Conservation manager said:
  "You asked that the plan be flexible on the rule regarding the 1/3 planting requirement for front yards and parkstrips. These landscape codes (21A.48.030, 21A.48.055 and 21A.48.060) are primarily governed by the Planning Department. I recognize that the “1/3rd rule” seems arbitrary, and, well, it is. It was a compromise between Planning’s desire to ensure walkable streets and conservation – both laudable concerns. In the 2020 conservation plan update, I have listed the review of these codes to determine if they still are meeting our shared desired intents. Your concerns will absolutely be included in that process. ....
  The Utah Rivers Council, a number of years ago, launched a program to “Rip Your Strip”, encouraging homeowners to remove turf from parkstrips and cease watering, much to the detriment of our urban forest. Bill Rutherford (the Urban forester at the time) and I partnered to attend every community council and other public event we could to educate property owners of the potential dire consequences of not watering established trees. When Urban Forestry didn’t have the funds for a public education campaign, I found funds to produce a brochure on how to water trees (please see the attached pdf). Our water conservation landscape code requires that trees be placed on their own irrigation zone, so that in the event of a drought or other water shortage, lawns can be left to dry but trees can be maintained.
  I still think that this City can do better. All trees should be replaced with leaf equivalent. A big tree should only be cut after dozens are planted. Rocky Mountain Power and other developers cut trees and try to replace one for one. The City says that a "specimen tree" (one appropriate for the climate) should be replaced with the equivalent radius of the old tree. In other words, a 24 inch tree should have 12 1-2 inch trees planted. But park strips are not watered enough. SLC should not be planting trees on small park strips, especially the 1-2 foot strips. This City only plants around 2000 trees a year.
  
SLC PASSES DANGEROUS SCOOTER ORDINANCE
  The City passed a new scooter ordinance that is about the same except the City now gets some money from the service providers. But there is no required speed limiter button for sidewalks, even though most scooter riders ride on the sidewalk. Riding a bike or scooter in the Downtown area on sidewalks is illegal. Scooters should not be allowed in SLC without a speed switch and bicycles should be allowed on Downtown sidewalks. One shouldn't have to be a lacrosse player to handle this. I expect that eventually an older person will be killed by reckless scooter riding. Sad.
  
GOVERNMENT SHOULD NOT LOOK FOR EXCUSES TO SPEND MONEY PUBLISHED
  Legislative leaders recently have been suggesting that there is money to fund FrontRunner double tracking. They used the typical, "let's run it up the flagpole and see what people think or if anyone will object". That resulted in a story in the Salt Lake Tribune about how great the idea was! Recent discussion at the Legislature included a presentation that said that UTA's consideration of FrontRunner expansion supports economic development and real estate development but cars and trucks and roads are better at it. My commentary was published in the last week of December in the Salt Lake Tribune:
  Recently, the Salt Lake Tribune had an article on increasing FrontRunner service with hundreds of millions of state funding to match potential federal funds. The goal is to provide a train every 15 minutes (FrontRunner double-tracking could see big infusion of state funding). But before even suggesting borrowing and committing to spending hundreds of millions of local taxpayer dollars, there should be a vigorous cost benefit study. 
  During discussion on the future of FrontRunner, in the Interim Transportation Committee, it was pointed out that weekday ridership is 4401 (as of November 11) and may not return to pre-pandemic ridership for as long as decade. If the cost of the suggested improvements were amortized over 30 years compared to expanding the freeway and roads, the cost of roads and subsidy per rider may be significantly less than rail. In the evenings, FrontRunner per rider subsidy may be hundreds of dollars. The Wasatch Front Regional Council was asked to do an analysis of the costs to provide a better decision. 
  Although the present cost for double tracking FrontRunner may be half a billion dollars, the suggested plans include electrification of FrontRunner at a cost approaching almost $2 billion dollars! A couple of years ago, there was a study and analysis of the effect of spending over $10 billion on rail projects in the LA Basin. If found that ridership was almost the same partly due to a large decrease in bus service and the significant increase in car and personal vehicle use. Building expensive rail projects in a pandemic is not a wise and fiscally responsible way to spend taxpayer dollars. It may be cheaper to buy every potential rider a semi used vehicle instead of double tracking FrontRunner. Utah should recognize that personal vehicles make our families, our economy and our Country more efficient. There is no mass transit substitute for taking a family’s schoolchildren to school, sports and other activities. There is no mass transit substitute for trucks delivering products door to door or transporting in and out of plants.
  Legislators are also pushing for Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) projects at about  $100 million each with the Ogden BRT and 48th South Mid-Valley Connector closest to operation. The predicted ridership is 2000 to 3000 per day. But a road lane can carry 5000 to 10,000 vehicles a day! The 48th South corridor is already congested and committing two lanes to a BRT should be expected to increase congestion and pollution. The Ogden BRT is following a similar bus route with only a 5 minute time saving. A vigorous cost benefit could provide a better use of the $100 million in taxpayer money.
 Although high use mass transit can arguable decrease pollution, personal vehicles are reducing pollution every year due to better anti-pollution technology and gasoline and they can carry a full family very efficiently. Roads and vehicles are ,available 24 hours a day while transit, especially FrontRunner and TRAX, is not. Roads are used by 90% of citizens while transit is now used by less than 2% of citizens. Roads are more effective at encouraging economic development than rail with very few exceptions.  A more reasonable plan would start with bus and only consider projects if ridership develops. Government should not look for excuses to spend money.

 
 
NOVEMBER 2020
JRI NEEDS MORE ATTENTION PUBLISHED
  The Salt Lake Tribune published my commentary on the Justice Reinvestment Initiative this month (at https://www.sltrib.com/opinion/commentary/2020/11/05/george-chapman-well/).  I pointed out that the U.S. Attorney was right to complain about criminals not being taken off the street for more than a few hours and many had been arrested dozens of times.  I also agreed with a previous oped that JRI needs a bigger budget since it is essentially an unfunded mandate on the counties.  I also agreed that the JRI effort made sense since drug users should not be in prison (the main objective of JRI).  But drug addicts that commit crimes everyday that they are on the street should be incarcerated and the system should be re-evaluated by the State to ensure that.
  One of the best legislators, in my opinion, is Rep. Hutchings who has been sponsoring the JRI bills and trying to fine tune the effort to make it effective.  Unfortunately, he has lost re-election.  He will be missed.  I can't think of anyone else who knew as much about justice reform in Utah.  He was considered so knowledgeable that he has testified in Washington DC about it.  Rep. Eliason did win re-election and he has been instrumental in pushing for better mental health funding and systems including MCOT, the mobile mental health team.  Rep. Dunnigan also won re-election and he has plans to sponsor a noise ordinance that will target those vehicle owners that remove their muffler systems.  Vehicle noise is not supposed to be over 85 db but many remove the mufflers and replace them with equipment that results in much louder noise.

JRI DISCUSSIONS AT LEGISLATURE IGNORE COUNTY PROBLEMS
Following on the JRI Audit, CCJJ (Utah's Committee on Criminal and Juvenile Justice) had a report that I questioned.  The CCJJ Report page 4 says: "county jail populations do not appear to have been negatively impacted by the JRI reforms, though more data is needed"!!!
  But the recent JRI Audit pointed out that Adult Probation and Parole is not able to provide appropriate services to the recently paroled.  Part is due to the indirect pressure to reduce bed use at the State Prison and it is also caused by the inability of Corrections to fully staff the beds that are supposed to be provided (mainly due to low salaries).  The Audit showed the result.  Too many violent criminals are being released with not enough supervision.
  That has resulted in the U.S. Attorney and other law enforcement and government prosecutors complaining about being inundated with criminals who have been committing many, many violent criminal actions.  The unfunded mandate put on the county jails and prosecutors from discouraging sentencing violent criminals to prison is a burden on local taxpayers and victims.  Many of these criminals should not be released and should be in prison.  
  Using a gun should result in prison no matter how hard APP argues against that. APP is actively discouraging sentencing violent criminals to prison.
  Again, I urge the Legislature to analyze and study the realistic need for Prison beds (which shouldn't affect the Point development - which can start now); what are the salary requirements to fully staff the Prison and what do counties need to help prosecute violent criminals and send them to Prison.  The Prison should also be available to provide extra beds for counties that are not able to provide enough beds to take criminals who may be committing over ten felonies while released. 
  When asked by the Judiciary Interim Committee Chair about the county jail populations issue, Kim Cordova said that she did not think that there was an issue!  Asking any Salt Lake County police chief should confirm that the Jail does not accept booking for less than third degree felonies. (with a few exceptions).  The actual number of criminals that should be on the Salt Lake County Jail graph should be two to three times more.  The Jail Dashboard  which I am familiar with, and I have written about in newspapers, showed many have over 100 arrests until recently and some have over 200 arrests.  The Jail IS REFUSING misdemeanor arrests.
  Sen. Hillyard was correct to say that police often take arrested criminals back to treatment instead of jail (Salt Lake County's Pay For Success in particular).  County jails implement limits and police are told what crimes are accepted for booking.  
  The Legislature should continue collect data and accept testimony from police chiefs and DAs and sheriffs to show the real life situation.  This Committee and I have been having this same argument (well before the Audit) for two years.
  
  Sheriff Rivera was asked about this issue and responded with this (MY RESPONSES ARE IN CAPS):
 "First, there have been no booking restrictions in place at the Salt Lake County Jail since July 2017. The reason our population appears consistent is largely due to a carefully monitored Over-Crowding Release program that affects those in our facility following the booking intake process." (THAT IS NOT  TRUE.  THE JAIL BOOKING RESTRICTION EFFECTS REPORT FROM 2017 IS STILL IN EFFECT.  SLCPD STILL COMPLAINS ABOUT IT!)
  "When you look at the current jail dashboard numbers it is important to understand that due to COVID-19 we have reduced the overall number of inmates in our facility so that we are better able to protect the health and safety of inmates." (ONLY 184 BEDS ARE BEING USED AT OXBOW INSTEAD OF THE OVER 500 BEDS AVAILABLE)
  "In terms of our felony population, at the time I am writing this our dashboard shows that 45.4% of the jail population has been booked on charges below a second-degree felony.
Felonies
First-degree - 398
Second-degree - 368
Third-degree - 507 
Misdemeanors
Class A - 108
Class B - 19
Class C - 3
  Additionally, the prison does not have the authority to hold anyone prior to conviction and sentencing. Currently, in our facility 81% of people have not been sentenced, including those charged with first- or second-degree felonies who we are required to detain pre-trial. The number of individuals awaiting trial is most impacted by the challenges COVID-19 is having on the courts rather than with the prison or their staff.
  You are correct to say that JRI impacted county jails. The reclassification of possession charges from felonies to misdemeanors impacted us in two ways:
  People convicted of misdemeanors now serve time in jails rather than prison.
Jails are no longer eligible for Conditions of Probation (COP) reimbursement for the individuals serving misdemeanor possession sentences in our jails. When these charges were felonies we were reimbursed when time was served in our facility.
  I hope you find this information helpful. JRI is well intentioned but its success will be dependent on all five parts becoming fully implemented. Having alternatives to the jail for individuals being detained with nuisance crimes like intoxication can both reduce costs to the jail and give that individual a chance to receive resources outside of the criminal justice system. It is important to look at the whole criminal justice system. The court process, community-based services, and incarceration alternatives like receiving centers will all play a critical role in this initiative being fully realized."
  (IN OTHER WORDS, JRI HAS PLACED AN UNFUNDED MANDATE ON COUNTIES THAT HAVE RESULTED IN MANY CRIMINALS STAYING ON THE STREET AND COMMITTING CRIMES.)

STREET RECONSTRUCTION DESTROYS NEIGHBORHOOD STREETS
  We have been complaining about lack of traffic calming on streets next to road reconstruction for years without getting acceptable resolutions.  When 1300 East and 1300 South had lane reductions (from 4 to 2 traffic lanes), traffic diverted to nearby streets.  When 2700 South, 1300 East and 500 East were reconstructed, traffic significantly increased on adjacent roads.  During the last Liberty Wells Community Council meeting, there were complaints about the increased traffic and speeding on 400 East.
  Salt Lake City agrees that "traffic management during road construction is difficult."  But the result is a significant decrease in safety and much more traffic, pollution and noise for those neighborhoods. 
  Some of the streets scheduled to be reconstructed in the near future include 300 West (which will shift traffic to West Temple), 900 East, 1300 East (at I80 for a new bridge) and 1100 East (which will shift traffic to 800 East, 900 East (until it undergoes reconstruction) and 1000 East), 900 South (which will increase traffic on nearby east west streets) and 200 South (which could shift traffic to the Avenues and 300 South).
  The City and UDOT have been meeting for over 6 months to work on mitigation measures for the I80 at 1300 East bridge replacement project but the detour routes that they are suggesting are often ignored and that create serious safety issues in adjacent neighborhoods.  Potential plans are to install local traffic only signs or use temporary speed bumps. There will also be adjustments made regularly to offset unexpected motorist responses to detours. And to make it even more complicated, the plans have to include not impacting emergency services. 
  Salt Lake City residents and businesses should not have to endure the long road reconstruction projects without mitigation measures put in place before the projects start. For those neighborhood streets already impacted by past projects, the City owes the neighborhoods traffic calming measures to decrease speeds and volumes of traffic.  Traffic calming can be had with raised crosswalks (as on 2700 South and 500 East) for $8000. The City’s proposed temporary speed bumps or any traffic calming should be permanent.
  Trying to apply for CIP funding sometimes takes years to result in a project. That is too late. The City Administration and Council should require all road projects to plan for and implement traffic calming on streets that could be impacted. SLC time to step up and do the responsible thing.

SLC SRO PROPOSAL WILL HURT AFFORDABLE HOUSING
  Salt Lake City is continuing to push the SRO proposal, now called shared housing ordinance (to get away from the bad history of SROs).  But this ordinance will discourage housing in Salt Lake City.  What developer will invest millions in an apartment building, if an SRO may be placed next to the new building!   This City will actually encourage developers to build housing elsewhere.
  This proposal seems to be like Palmer Court, the second biggest medical response draw in the City which should prove it is not a good idea.  Experts do not recommend all unaffordable due to increased loitering and encouraging and enabling criminal behavior, like crime magnet motels.  Even Dr. Marbut, this Country's Homeless Czar, said treatment should be proven and then expanded first since trying housing first does not work.  "If you only talk about roofs, you are only going to grow homelessness".
  The City may plan to house seniors and disabled and students but low cost housing also attracts criminal elements like the crime magnet motels.  SROs are not a solution to housing until treatment is working.  During recent homeless camps' outreach, only about 22 out of 160 accepted housing!
  This ordinance will discourage the building of higher density housing in Salt Lake City.
Implement inclusionary zoning instead.

BALLPARK AREA PROJECT GETTING PUSHBACK
  In 2017, the City Planning Commission gave a tentative approval to the Book Cliffs Apartments near 1200 South and West Temple.  But the neighborhood was more interested in demolishing the Housing Authority owned homes on the property instead of worrying about the project.  The project is back on track and now neighbors are fighting it.  Many in the neighborhood are concerned about lack of parking (19 spaces for over 50 units), increasing height of building which destroys mountain views and increases shadows, inadequate tree replacement and sidewalk widths.  The Planning Commission is tentatively reconsidering the project at their December 9th meeting.
  Specifically,
PARKING
  We keep having the argument about lack of off street parking.  Seniors should not be expected to walk 100 feet to TRAX.  The Taylor Springs parking lot managed by HASLC is usually full and shows that seniors and low income DO drive.  The 900 S. Bennion apartments (listed by the Housing Authority as proof that parking stalls are not needed) are 200 feet from a bus stop and another 100 feet from TRAX.  The Book Cliffs' nearest bus stop is over 1200 feet.  And thinking that seniors will have no problem walking two or three blocks is not thinking. Ironically, the recent meetings of the Central Ninth Community Council complained about lack of parking (a consistent problem from 9th and 9th which caused an almost riot during the roundabout construction and the arguments of hundreds agains a rezone at 400 East and 9th South).  Some are so desperate that they a placard restricted area!  Parking requirements should be close to the number of apartments.  Bicycle safety is significantly decreased if there are so many cars parked on the street that safe bicycling is not available (due to dooring and lack of visibility from driveways).
MOUNTAIN VIEWS AND SHADOWS
  SLC has had this discussion many times before.  Residents should have a right to morning sunshine and mountain views and sunshine in their gardens and yards.  The mountain views should not be impacted through non compliant zoning (achieved with a conditional use permit or otherwise).  The City's efforts to ignore the importance of morning sunshine (remember the infamous Life, the Universe and Sugar House report).
  The increased height will also intimidate neighbors and other potential residential building projects.  In other words, don't destroy neighborhood possibilities with high density projects.  (My arguments against SROs apply - who would want to build apartments next to a potential SRO site?)
TREES
  SLC has a tree ordinance that is not be implemented.  Removing a tree should result in planting the number of trees equal to the radius of the tree removed (it is unfortunately not leaf equivalent).  Trees removed from before demolition of the homes should be replaced with one tree per 2 inch of diameter of old trees removed.  The project proposal is to replace old trees with one one inch diameter tree!
SIDEWALKS
  Sidewalks should be wider to allow a wheelchair and or stroller to be walked with by a pedestrian side by side.  Sidewalks should not be so limited to not allow side by side walking or use by wheelchairs.  If sidewalk is not wide enough for two wheelchairs, ADU lawsuits should be expected.  I know the people who sue on this issue (they end up with a mediator that forces SLC to make right - SLC had to redo a restroom and provide better ADA accomodations in the City County Building).  HASLC should not be ignoring ADA fairness since they should exxpect some ADA residents.  In addition, if easy access to mass transit is part of the reason for lack of parking, sidewalk widths should reflect that and allow more than one person at a time to use the sidewalk width.
DEPOT DISTRICT PLANS IGNORE PEDESTRIAN BICYCLE SAFETY
  The Depot District/Station Center plans for the almost 4 acres owned by the City's RDA and mostly vacant for decades was presented recently.  The area is between 400 West and 600 West and between 200 South and 400 South.  It shows shared streets, big planter boxes and other amenities to prettify the streets.  
  But there is pressure to allow higher buildings in the area (a recent 190 foot building proposal was withdrawn due to SLC questioning if it was appropriate for next to the homeless services!).  I expect high buildings will end up in the area which will result in a lot of shadows and ice buildup on sidewalks and streets.  There is, so far, no plan to mitigate the resulting danger.  Years ago, the old Granite Building Block on 2100 S. and Highland had sidewalks that became slippery when wet!  During winter they were even more unsafe.  Pedestrian sidewalks and streets should be designed to counter the ice and water buildup that will make surfaces slippery and unsafe.  Ice falling from tall buildings should also be mitigated with setbacks.  The City County Building has had an accident from a falling icicle and the Capitol buildings have falling icicle problems.
  The planter boxes may also create visibility problems on a shared street (something that the 300 West project also has a problem with).

SLC COUNCIL DISCUSSES MANY HOUSING PROPOSALS IN ONE MEETING
  "On Tuesday, December 1, at 2PM, the Salt Lake City Council will discuss a variety of planning petitions related to housing issues.
  Housing issues are at the forefront of this discussion, which covers affordability, increasing housing supply, diversifying housing options, and neighborhood compatibility. Additionally, an update from City staff on the adopted Growing SLC Housing Plan will help provide valuable context to this discussion.
  The Council is currently reviewing a few housing-related land use petitions including RMF-30 Zoning changes and a Shared Housing proposal. The Council anticipates other petitions, including an Affordable Housing Overlay and off-street parking changes, in the foreseeable future.
  The goal of the discussion is to link these proposals together and consider them with a “big picture” policy context. Alone, these proposals each impact City housing policy. Combined and coordinated, they become part of a clearer vision. This briefing will help inform the City’s efforts to expand housing opportunities within Salt Lake City. The Council will not take action on these proposals at this meeting. Each item will have future stand-alone briefings and public hearings before the Council takes action."
  This should be one of the most important meetings of the year at the Council.

LEGISLATURE PUNTS ON HYDROGEN EFFORT TO STOP NATURAL GAS USE
  There was an effort at the Public Utilities Interim Committee to get the Committee to endorse a bill to push hydrogen to show how environmental Utah is to the U.S. Olympic Committee.  It was heard but not acted on.  It seemed to ignore the negative impact on budgets and using Utah's plentiful natural gas resources.  Concerns about hydrogen include decreasing importance of Utah natural gas and engineering limitations.
  Emphasizing development of hydrogen use and infrastructure, in my mind, decreases the potential to increase use of Utah's abundant natural gas.  
  Specifically, the effort to push so called green hydrogen (made with solar or wind power and electrolysis of water versus grey hydrogen made with natural gas) will defocus Utah from increasing the use of Utah's abundant natural gas fields.  If they are not used, they will continue to leak.  It has taken us decades to ring out/engineer natural gas development, delivery and use in engines and turbines.  It did not come overnight.  
  I know that UTA and others had issues with power loss by converting buses to natural gas.  That seems to have been mostly fixed.  Utah has also emphasized building a significant infrastructure for the UTA buses and school buses.  Utah and other states have been planning for a natural gas fueling system for major highways for trucking.  Note that the emissions are much better with natural gas versus diesel (NOx emissions are about the same).  Natural gas fuel cells are also available.  The fuel delivery infrastructure of natural gas has taken decades to be set up and shouldn't be discouraged by changing focus to hydrogen. 
  The engineering required to create an effective infrastructure is significant and may take decades.  It require compression to 700 atmospheres and cooling to -253 C.  It also carries 1/4 of the energy per unit volume of natural gas.  The facts are that diesel is about 10 kwh per liter of fuel, LPG/LNG is about 6 kwh per liter, hydrogen is about 2.5 for liquid H2 and 1kwh for 350 atmosphere H2, Lithium Ion batteries are about .3 kwh per liter.  It has taken us over 100 years to develop and perfect the infrastructure to deliver liquid fossil fuels (50 years for LNG).  
  Engineering is not easy or quick.  It is really complicated.  Just because there is a good idea, doesn't mean that it can be implemented quickly.  It applies to nuclear, solar, wind, fossil fuels, cars, trucks and roads.  Hydrogen is much more expensive than our abundant natural gas, is super explosive with leaks that are hard to control (I used to work for a company that couldn't stop helium from leaking!), it will explode if there are any impurities in the piping and it can have disastrous effects on piping (making it brittle).
  My biggest concern is that focusing on hydrogen in Utah will hurt the economy of our natural gas developers and users.  Utah should be focusing on using our resources, not jumping on a so called environmental bandwagon without significantly more analysis.  
  I am also upset that LA and California ordered Mitsubishi turbines for IPA that are certified to work with hydrogen since their goal is to stop burning fossil fuels, even if it does not make sense.  I get really upset when they say that Utah is polluting the atmosphere when their mismanagement of forest fires (and natural gas storage) creates four times more carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere every year than burning Utah coal.  And Utah citizens have to breathe their mismanagement.  
  The efforts to use sustainable energy in Utah would be best focused on a solar panel with battery credit for homes and businesses in Utah to increase the efficiency of our electricity infrastructure and prepare for a worst case earthquake when only those solar panels with batteries will be able to provide electricity.  We did not have electricity for 5 days this last year due to a windstorm.  About 20 years ago, power was lost during a cold Christmas for a few days.  Emergencies happen and Utah should prepare for them.  Increasing use of solar panels with batteries would be better marketing than claiming Utah is jumping on the environmental bandwagon with hydrogen.  Also, Utah could consider removing the electric vehicle registration fees, if we want Utahns to buy more power that is mainly produced by coal, very efficiently.
  For a more in depth analysis of so call green hydrogen, see: https://e360.yale.edu/features/green-hydrogen-could-it-be-key-to-a-carbon-free-economy

SEARS BLOCK PLANS IGNORE CRIME MAGNET 13TH S. WAREHOUSE
  The Sears Block between 7th and 8th South has a proposal to build a high rise with market rate apartments and with a higher height than zoning allows.  I am against it since height variances should only be allowed for mixed income buildings.  But what is more upsetting is one of the City's biggest homeless camping areas is next to the vacant Sears warehouse next to the TRAX line on 1300 South.  That building needs to be demolished or converted to any use to deter homeless attraction.  The new demolition ordinance should be targeted at that building to force redevelopment first before the Sears Block building is approved.

RESTROOMS IN PARKS LISTED
  The Salt Lake City Council asked for more information on restrooms and this is what the City's staff reported:
  "Below is Public Services’ response to public restroom questions:
E-20: Enhanced Homeless Camp Cleanup
What is the strategy and criteria for restroom location selection?
Is the Portland Loo operational by the former Road Home Shelter site? If no, what would be needed to make it operational?
The Portland Loos are in operation and there should be an Advantage Services attendant at the gate.
Are there publicly owned restroom facilities that are or could be opened for public use?
From the Facilities’ perspective: Both the City and County Building and Plaza 349 are open to limited staff numbers, and partially opening them for restroom access would require the addition of attendants, increased janitorial service, a shift in CBI Security responsibilities, and turning on building HVAC systems (they are turned down to unoccupied status to conserve energy). Opening restrooms for occupied City buildings could increase COVID exposure to employees.
From the Public Lands perspective: Public restrooms are available in most of Salt Lake City’s neighborhood, and community parks and in our natural areas throughout the warmer months. However, all park restrooms close each fall in advance of winter’s frost to prevent damage to the above-ground plumbing, which is not designed to withstand winter temperatures. Those facilities reopen in the spring.
Portable toilets are placed in several high-traffic areas for use throughout the winter.
Vault toilet facilities remain open year-round, as they are not subject to freezing pipes.
Below is a list of portable toilets set throughout the winter in parks and natural areas.
Public Lands Site/Winter Portable Restrooms
11th Ave Park    1 Regular
Cottonwood Park 1 ADA
Jordan Park Greenhouse Restroom 1 ADA 1 Regular
Jordan River Par 3 Park 1 ADA
Library Square
Library Manges
Liberty Park 9 Regular 3 ADA
Memory Grove Park 1 Regular
Model Port Park Vault toilet
Popperton Park 1 Regular
Reservior Park 1 Regular
Riverside Park 1 Regular
Rosewood Park 1 Regular
Rotary Glen Park 1 Regular
Sunnyside Park 1 Regular
Warm Springs Park 1 Regular
Westpointe Park 1 Regular
   The Sugar House Community Council will discuss whether to ask the City for a portable restroom for Fairmont Park this Wednesday December 2 at 7pm during their monthly meeting.

SLCPD DESPERATE FOR OFFICERS CLOSES CIU OFFICE
  Since SLCPD is down over 50 officers and overtime has been limited to reduce turnover, the Police Department is rearranging their personnel to try to return some sworn officers to patrol.  The popular Community Intelligence Unit that worked with community councils is being disbanded in January of 2021 and their liaison with community councils will be the responsibility of the captains for the area.  It will be an interesting change.  I am not sure how effective it will be.  Years ago, the CIU position was a stepping stone to higher office in the Department but community councils objected to the turnover and wanted, and got, the City to agree to keep CIU officers in the position for at least 18 months.  Many of the CIU officers became well known to the community and were able to solve issues that were a problem without hands on efforts.

OPPOSITION TO 17TH S. FOOTHILL LAMPLIGHTER SQUARE
  During a meeting so well attended that it hit the Zoom limit of 100 (which resulted in many being left out), the owner of the 1700 South Foothill development (on the west side of Foothill) reported on his plans for the east side of Foothill at 1700 South (he bought the old Lamplighter Inn that was causing a crime problem).  He wanted to increase the height of the building; provide mixed use including a new liquor store; and expand it east onto adjacent single family home property.  Over 70% of attendees objected to the project which will need City Council approval.  The main reason is the increased height will destroy valley views and traffic will be increased too much.
  Again, for any community councils expecting a high turnout over Zoom, consider using the City's offered virtual meeting systems.  SLC's Director of Community Engagement, Weston Clark, is ready to help host meetings using City resources for any of the popular virtual meeting systems.
900 S. S-LINE PROJECT APARTMENTS PROJECT
  The City has indicated that the 900 S. S-Line property that used to be a garage will probably be redeveloped into an apartment building with around 50 residential units.  It meets zoning so the community council will not really have a say.

HAWTHORNE ELEMENTARY PROPOSAL FOR TREES PUSHED
  After years of pushing for more trees in schoolyards, several SLC School Board members have agreed and ordered staff to plan to plant trees next to 700 East on the Hawthorne Elementary School property.  Sometimes pushing works.
300 W. PROJECT WILL SLOW TRAFFIC TO 25MPH
  Although most of the 300 West reconstruction will not decrease travel lanes (I still do not think UDOT will allow the block just north of 2100 South to decrease lanes from 3 going south to 2), the project will decrease the speed limit to 25 MPH.  I am not sure that that makes sense for an arterial.  30 MPH is a more appropriate speed limit, especially since there is no parking on the street and streets like 2100 South are more unsafe with a 25 MPH speed limit (It is 30 MPH now).

ALMOST NO COMMENTS ON UTA BUDGET THAT INCREASES FAREPAY
  At a public hearing on the UTA budget, I was told that only one person was commenting on the budget!  That is a sad commentary on our mass transit system.  The deadline is effectively over since it will be adopted Wednesday December 2.  
  My comments were, in short, UTA should not be spending almost $2 million on a trail at the Clearfield Station.  That Station desperately needs more parking.  UTA should not be spending almost $5 million on a parking garage in Sandy.  The TOD tenants should be paying an assessment to UTA to build the parking garage.  Giving away so much property for free to a public private partnership for a TOD that it results in inadequate parking is a bad way to run a mass transit company.
  UTA should implement a $1 fare for buses since it got $187 million in CARES Act funding.  UTA should do a vigorous cost benefit analysis for each of the $100 million proposed BRTs since there is no evidence that they actually encourage ridership; they are unsafe; they require 2 lanes that may increase congestion and pollution and the $100 million could be better spent on 10 more bus routes. 

UTA HIRED 169 DRIVERS IN 2019 FOR $2.1 MILLION
  In a report to the Legislature, "UTA's Chief People Officer has calculated the approximate cost of turnover for Bus Operators at $12,534. In 2019, UTA hired 169 operators to replace employees lost to turnover for a calculated $2.1 million cost. Some published reports, citing SHRM data, say that direct employee replacement costs can reach as high as 50%-60% of an employee's annual salary."

SLC SHOULD PUSH FREE PET LICENSES FOR LOW INCOME/SENIORS
  SLC's Budget Amendment 5 includes the new cost for the County providing animal services and raccoon abatement.  The raccoon abatement program should be publicized to community councils.  SLC should also subsidize the cost of licenses for the companion animals for seniors and low income.  Many do not have the ability to pay for the licenses and vaccinations.  The City should work on that.  The County ended the free senior licenses.  
  Another item in the Amendment, A10, should be permanent lighting not temporary lighting and lighting should be more extensive for the Resource Center areas.  Neighbors near the Resource Centers are regularly accosted by aggressive homeless who loiter.  Funds should also be provided for cop cams or to provide cameras for adjacent businesses accessible to police.

WATER CONSERVATION PLAN INCREASES WATER USE AND KILLS TREES
  The new water conservation plan for SLC still does not provide flexibility for properties that are trying to minimize water use.  There have been several complaints to zoning enforcements that some properties do not meet the minimum planting requirements due to their minimizing water use.  I pass many properties that have beautiful yards with all decorative rocks or other designs that minimize water use but they do not meet the minimum 1/3 green/plantings.  The City should stop wasteful zoning investigations and fights by landowners that are trying to minimize their water use.
  There is an exception that should be  noted in the Water Conservation Plan:  Park Strip trees, City owned but the responsibility of property residents, should be noted that they need to be watered correctly.  I still believe that most residents do not water park strip trees enough for them to flourish.  A two foot wide park strip is often not regularly watered.  The bags can hold water for a week but many recent trees planted (75) have died due to property owners not understanding the requirements to maintain the trees.  This has resulted in a very wasteful result, lots of dead trees.  
  Park Strip trees should be listed and addresses recorded to allow mailing instructions on maintaining trees.  I understand, a couple of decades ago, during a drought, the City encouraged stopping watering the trees and many were too stressed out to survive.  The City should understand that water conservation should not be killing trees.
  The City has 1500 city trees and 1600 private trees.  Dominion Energy recently helped plant 250 trees.  Sugar House Park lost 70 trees including many blue spruce trees that were over 50 years old.  The Park also lost a copper roof from a pavilion but the Park was able to turn it in for a nice return on investment (copper prices are high) and it used the money to replace the roof.  The Park is using off duty police to remove people camping after hours.
CROSSWALK LIGHTING NEEDED FOR PEDESTRIANS
  Several community council meetings expressed concerns about the lack of lighting to emphasize pedestrians crossing the street and protect them from left hand turning vehicles.  700 East (especially around 900 South), 300 West (especially around 900 South) are two especially dangerous intersections especially at night.  SLC has said that they will research how to increase lighting for pedestrians crossing the street in those areas and the 900 South and 300 West reconstructions may provide funding for those solutions.

UTAH IN LA-LA LAND THINKING 3 MONTHS DRUG TREATMENT WORKS
  Dr. Marbut, the Country's homeless czar, during his recent visit to Salt Lake City, said that best practice solutions for homeless that do not want housing or are resistant to housing is to fundamentally change how services are delivered.  We have so moved away from consequences (not criminalizing) that we will always have problems.
  Treatment needs 1-2 years not 3 months.  "Utah is in la-la land if you think 1-3 months will work for a 15 yr homeless drug addict."  I am sad to report that Utah is in la-la land and it is not a musical.



OCTOBER 2020
UTA GOT $187 FROM FEDS BUT REFUSES $1 BUS FARE
  UTA received $187 million from the federal government through the CARES Act.  They are saving $100 million to be spent in the next year in the budget that is being discussed now at the Board of Trustees meetings.  But, UTA is spending $87 million this year on other things than trying to get more people to ride mass transit.  UTA gets around $50 million a year in fare revenue (predicted to be about $30 million annually for a few years).  And UTA did help UVX BRT in Provo use free fare (with federal funding).  So why isn't UTA using the CARES Act funds to lower fares to $1 on buses?  (Note fare elasticities for rail are more complicated since parking lots are usually full and ticket machines are limited in the number of tickets per hour that they can dispense.  Lowering fares on rail are not very effective at increasing ridership.  The exception is the FrontRunner free fare days which parents use as a free Disneyland E ticket ride.)
 I respect UTA's efforts to develop and operate an efficient transit system but the important subsidy per rider should be part of the analysis.
  The subsidy of the VIA Southwest SLCO per rider is over $35 per rider which is admittedly less than the subsidy per rider for the previous bus system.  FrontRunner, in evenings may have a subsidy per rider of hundreds of dollars.  The S-Line subsidy per rider (considering a $30 million replacement of rails in 30 years) may be well over $10 per rider.
  Roads are more efficient since they can take vehicles, trucks and families and help the economy by making delivery of goods more efficient.  Roads are used by over 90% of citizens while transit is used by less than 3% and can't carry products.  Roads are more effective at encouraging economic development than rail with a few exceptions.   
  An analysis of roads costs show that the cost for a 10 mile 2 lane 20 year road is around $200 million at most and can carry 3 million vehicles per year for about a $3 subsidy (gas tax is about 25 cents).  In addition the 30% less pollution with rail or BRT should be expected to be matched by vehicles within 5 years since newer vehicles are 90% less polluting that 20 year old cars.
  A more reasonable plan would start with bus and only consider projects if ridership develops.  Rail and/or BRT should only be considered if there is a destination with 40,000 employees (like a university or the International Center).  Note that UDOT has a proposal to run an advanced bus down 5600 West that should be considered.
  Why isn't UTA promoting the expanded span of service for buses that can go past midnight!?  Why isn't UTA promoting studies that show wearing masks on buses protects against COVID infection!?  And why is Salt Lake City spending their valuable transit funding (several million a year - last year they did not spend $1 million of it) on increasing span of service on 2, 9 and 21 routes when UTA is increasing span of service anyway!!?  It seems that SLC is paying for something that was supposed to happen without SLC funds!  Salt Lake City is suggesting now that service on the 4 route (400 South to Foothill and South - which may go eventually to Little Cottonwood Canyon) increase their span of service, then routes in the north part of Salt Lake (Rose Park).
  Rideuta.com has data that provides significantly more transparency on UTA's operations, ridership and bus stop use (I put the October reports in the downloads section in the right.).  In addition, there is a recovery section on rideuta.com/recovery that goes into detail about the new efforts to provide safe ridership on UTA.  UTA is buying 117 new vinyl seats for rail lines to make it easier to regularly clean the seats.
  There is expected to be another service expansion in April of 2021.  Also, Kent Millikin is leaving the Board and Lindon Mayor Jeff Acerson (who spent years on the UTA Board and is much more knowledgeable that the other two Board of Trustees) will join the Board of Trustees when he is confirmed on November 18 at the next Senate Interim Session.
  Senator Harper's pet project, the Mid Valley Connector BRT (about $50 million around 48th South) skipped the EIS since UTA expected local taxes to pay for all of it.  But at the last Interim Session, UTA said that they are working with FTA for it and that should require an EIS (which should show that the two dedicated lanes via a road diet would make 48th South even more congested).
  Other notes from the session regarding UTA include that S-Line ridership is still around 650; the Wasatch Front Regional Council is working with interested parties to analyze the cost of roads versus transit; UTA is double tracking and building a station around Vineyard for FrontRunner which makes sense since FrontRunner trains shouldn't be stopping like they do there on every run; UTA is spending over $4 million on a parking garage in Sandy (that should be paid for by property assessment fees); UTA is studying where to put 4 TODs along the Draper to Lehi TRAX line (paid for by the FTA).
  Each of the hundred million dollar BRT projects will serve about 2000 a day predicted but take up two lanes of traffic.  The 200S BRT is the South Davis Connector.  The 35Max BRT is no longer in service but UTA has asked that the two exclusive lanes be saved for future BRT when ridership increases (if ever)
  The 33rd S and Redwood Rd buses are still running over 2000 a day.  They did not go down in ridership as much as most other routes.  That shows that they need more frequency (and the 217 Redwood Road bus should be going around in circles twice each route).
  And a final note on UTA:  We have been complaining for years that UTA and SLC should not be spending millions on bus stop improvements when buses are ordered to stay one to 4 feet from the curb!  I saw a sign on a bus stop recently that reminded bus drivers to stay 4 feet from the curb (to avoid hitting the bus mirror on a power pole).  But the orders started when the manager in charge of the leased bus tires got tired of the scuffed tires and ordered drivers to stay 1 to 4 feet from the curb!
  Anyone having mobility issues can't easily go into the street and it requires the ramp and time (which wastes the effort to speed up the buses).

JUSTICE REINVESTMENT INITIATIVE NOT WORKING
  The JRI Audit (in the downloads section on the right) showed that JRI is not working as intended.  Too many individuals are being arrested again and again without resolution of their mental issues or drug and alcohol issues (usually covering up their mental issues).  The goal of not incarcerating drug users in prison is an appropriate and respectful effort.  But when criminals misuse the system to continue criminal behavior, it is not working.  The vast majority of drug users do not commit victimless crimes and if they commit crimes everyday they are on the street, they should be incarcerated.  In addition, the State forced an unfunded mandate on counties.  There is a systemic problem with the JRI efforts, in my opinion.
  When the County refuses to fund appropriate jail space but leaves 184 beds open there is a problem.  (Note that the County Sheriff's budget is $5 million less than last year! - The County budget is being discussed in public hearings now - DA and Sheriff presentations are in the downloads on the right.)  When the DA has 14 prosecutor positions unfilled there is a problem.  When judges admonish Adult Probation and Parole (the Audit showed APP was underfunded and undermanned) for recommending probation for someone who empties a gun into a car full of people, there is a problem,
  When a robber is sentenced to 1 to 15 years in prison, ends up in jail for 30days and 6 months later tries to shoot some cops who surround him, who shoot him until he stops being a threat, there is a problem.
  He should have been in prison and you don't need an audit to tell you the system isn't working.  You don't need the US Attorney to tell you there is a problem (he recently complained about the lack of enforcement of laws by Utah government).
  The Legislature should study the cost to properly incarcerate threats to society and fund either the State or County to take those threats out of society and demand that all treatment centers that receive federal funds, track and report all results for a year.  The Audit was unable to show the results for treatment!  It appears from the Utah Department of Health scorecards that success after a year is less than 40% and in 5 years, it may be less than 10%.
  One important finding that was missed is the Audit shows that the Salt Lake County Jail inmate population expanded but has been stable for many years!  That is due to the SLCO Jail's booking restrictions.  (The Audit missed that data!)  The JRI Audit graph in the Appendix should show a doubling or tripling of jail inmates but the Jail only allows first and second degree felonies to be booked!  Law enforcement can influence some flexibility but they are told to try to follow the rules since arrestees tend to walk out before the arrest reports are finished!  The Audit provides a dashboard that goes into more detail at:
 https://public.tableau.com/profile/utah.legislative.auditor.general.s.office#!/

SLC OFFERS FREE ZOOM, WEBEX VIRTUAL MEETING HOSTING
  For some reason, the recognized community organizations in Salt Lake City have not all accepted the City's offer to host the community organizations through Webex, Teams or Zoom.  In fact, "no recognized community organizations have accepted the offer".  This is an offer that should be accepted since it also allows more virtual meetings that can help organize the City's neighborhoods and citizens.  It is also a good reason to organize and work to be recognized by the City.  The City is getting much better at public engagement and they participate in these meetings.  Please consider taking advantage of the offer.

900 SOUTH ROAD DIET IGNORES BICYCLING REALITY
  Salt Lake City is starting the public engagement process of redesigning and reconstructing 900 South.  It will also tie into the 9-Line Trail project that is prioritized to focus on 300 West to State Street.  We have been asking the City to upgrade the priority of the pedestrian and bicycle bridge over the railroad tracks for years but that project is still at the bottom of the priority list.  The railroad tracks divide the City and any project that eliminates that division should be prioritized.  
  The City's proposal is to make 900 South a 25 MPH road with 3 lanes.  But the City is still planning a typical wide center lane instead of a wide bicycle lane to accommodate 2 bicyclists riding side by side or passing one another.  The center turn lane should only exist at traffic lights since left hand turns kill a lot of pedestrians and bicyclists.  Angled parking should be eliminated due to the negative impact on bicycle safety.  The City has also been asked to increase lighting at 700 East to light up pedestrians crossing the road for left hand turning vehicles to better see.  Also missing from the plans is bus pullout lanes to eliminate vehicles being stopped by a bus stopping (or spending 5 minutes deploying a ramp).  The 1300 East road diet created mile long backups because of that problem, buses stopped in the middle of the street.
  With all of the development around the Central 9th area in the near future, the new roadway surface reconstruction may be a problem.  The City is attempting to coordinate with property owners and developers to minimize and eliminate any utility work on the street after the new road is paved.  As always, they are trying but they expect some developers will come in late with other plans.
  The 900 South Asian Market rezone, approved, got a lot of comments at the recent City Council meeting.  But the rezone doesn't really impact the Market.  Whether the Market stays is up to the Market manager, not the landowner that wants the Market to stay.  The nearby residents were upset at the potential increase in development possible with the rezone and the lack of parking for the restaurants on the property which are already negatively impacting the neighborhood (all of 900 South has parking problems - the City is conducting parking studies on the street).
  The biggest threat to the neighborhood character will happen when the 9-Line Trail on the side in front of the Market goes in.  That will encourage redevelopment.
  Although I am usually against road diets, 900 South is not used as much as other roads like 13th South, 1300 East and 2100 South and I don't expect much negative impact.  The bicycle community needs a better east west bicycle route and 900 South makes more sense for a road diet.  I am against lowering the speed since 30 MPH is low enough to ensure safety and keep through traffic on that street instead of speeding through adjacent streets (that resulted from other road diets and bicycle boulevards).  I know that hundreds of bicyclists want more safe space for bicycling and less roadways for personal vehicles, trucks and parking.  But despite claims that roads encourage personal vehicle use, the reality is personal vehicles and trucks and roads make our families, our economy and our Country more efficient.

GOOGLE WEBPASS TO SUPER DUPER 5 G IN UTAH
  The FCC has given Google's Webpass wireless internet company permission to test their new low band internet system in Utah!  This could mean a semi 5G/wifi system in the Valley.  It will take a few months to see what they have planned but they seem to be moving fast.  Note that many other companies are installing 5G breadboxes around the City.  Interestingly, the City (forced by the FCC) allows the companies to install the 5G systems almost anywhere on City property or on utility easements.  Most importantly, they have a standard that they should be kept 15 feet away from any trees.  I wonder what will happen if they try to cut a tree down for a 5G tower?

NEW SLC COUNCIL COMMENTS SYSTEM IMPLEMENTS EFFICIENCY
  The Salt Lake City Council has implemented a new comment system for their formal meetings.  Before, they lumped everyone who wanted to comment together.  If they wanted to comment on specific ordinances or rezonings, citizens would have to wait in the queue with everyone else until they were called (first call in, first allowed to comment).
  The new system continues to encourage public engagement.  Only a couple of city council meetings in the last 10 years had close to a hundred attendees and commenters.  When the city went to virtual meetings with Webex and phone, it actually encouraged more public engagement and comments.  Comments exponentially increased with the George Floyd murder.  Unfortunately, the system the City Council implemented discouraged specific zoning and ordinance issues since there were hundreds of audio comments that focused on police brutality.  Only a handful of commenters were willing to endure the hours of complaints about the police to make their comments.  The new system goes back to separating each individual ordinance and policy in the agenda and allowing comments for those items.  General comments are at the end and tend to be fewer since those complaining about the police and homeless issues are not patient enough to wait to comment.  The system also requires signing up with contact information to discourage any inappropriate comments.  Over the last year, I only heard 2 or 3 comments that I felt crossed the line.  The Councilmembers deserve credit for spending the hours to listen to the comments over the last year.  I fought against the salary increase for the Councilmembers a few years ago but I have to admit that they are now earning every dollar of the extra salary.  Before this year, dedicated Councilmembers spent 20 hours a week on community work.   Over the last year they have spent, I believe, an extra 10 hours a week on working on City issues.  The City Council formal meetings used to be 1 to 2 hours but after May, they started running 3 to 5 hours.  The last meeting lasted 2.5 hours.  The system is much better and many of the issues were better covered.  The only problem was the new Century Link phone conferencing system did not work but the Webex system did do a great job.

NEW HOMELESS CAMP CLEANUP SYSTEM CRAWLS
  The City's new homeless camp abatement system is crawling month by month.  Over the last 3 months, only one camp cleanup has occurred.  Taufer Park camp cleanup was interrupted several times by protesters, including Friday.  But Saturday morning, the cleanup finished (surprise) and the SLCPD is supposed to keep campers away.  It is the closest camp to the 700 South shelter and I expect it to return.  The next scheduled cleanup, that may take just a month is 500 West in the Rio Grande area.  Others are to be around the churches around 300 East and North Temple and 1300 South.
  During the information gathering, the City counted 162 camping at night in Salt Lake City (big camps.  many more were camping in mini camps).  80 were offered beds but 60 of those refused.  The City has access to 80 beds/vouchers for women at hotels.  They also have 40 spots for men at Vincent De Paul Center (using City and State Funds).  The City is also working on a stay safe hotel for high risk homeless with 132 beds.  Switchpoint, a St George homeless shelter operator, is supposed to take over the winter overflow shelter which is still being planned but is not identified yet.  The County is hoping for 150 beds by November 1 in a "non-congregate setting".  The State is looking for another shelter, possibly in Tooele.  SLC Mayor Mendenhall says that she will not allow another shelter in the City, nor another winter overflow or a dedicated camping area in the City.

ROCKY MOUNTAIN POWER NORTH TEMPLE TO REDEVELOP
  Rocky Mountain Power is planning new offices on their North Temple/1500 West property to replace and consolidate all of their offices in Utah by 2022.  The North Temple offices will expand to 800 employees and include the Kern River Gas employees.  The company has been interfering with the Folsom Trail development which runs through their property, despite signing a contract to allow the Trail.  The new project should open up the logjam that is stopping the Folsom Trail from being completed.  The gas plant on the site will continue to operate until 2032.
  On another note, on the Folsom Trail, the Fisher Mansion was damaged by the earthquake and it will require significant repairs and stabilization.

WATERSHED COLLECTING INFORMATION BILL TABLED
  Rep. Stratton has been trying to bring good government sensibility to the Wasatch Canyons watershed and water management by SLC Public Utilities.  One of the new proposed Utah Constitutional Amendments is regarding allowing more input on water services by users of those services that don't live in Salt Lake City.  The Constitution does not now allow any City to sell their water, but Salt Lake City does it anyway and it theoretically can take it away at any time.  Rep. Stratton helped pass the bill for the Amendment on the ballot.
  In the last Interim session, he tried to get a bill through to provide more information for further
    possible actions.  It was tabled until November's Interim Session.  It would require SLC Public Utilities to notify its customers in the Canyons that they can comment and provide feedback on the services provided.  This encourages feedback on how extraterritorial jurisdiction may negatively impact the watershed.  For instance Salt Lake City alone cannot fight the biggest threat to the watershed, forest fires.  Canyon property owners often know more about the threat than the City.  It should be passed to collect more information.  The State's most influential water attorney, Clyde, convinced the Legislature's Water Commission to table it for a month.

CRAIG CARTER, WHO INSPIRED THOUSANDS, DIES
  Craig Carter, a close friend and fellow activist, has died.  He and I had many fights together against the City to make this City better, especially for those of us getting older and having mobility issues. He and I also collaborated on opinion pieces, regarding the importance and heroism of police officers.  His obituary, written by his wife Toni, from the Salt Lake Tribune says it better than I:
"H. Craig Carter
1930 ~ 2020
On Sunday October 18, 2020 I lost my lover of 44 years, partner in crime and "best friend" - Craig Carter. Craig was born May 28, 1930 in SLC to Margaret and Charles Carter. He attended South High. He was a proud marine serving during the Korean War aboard the USS Boxer. He attended The University of Utah where he was an active member and president of "Sigma Pi Fraternity"-- that's when he became a lifelong Ute."
Craig worked for "Restaurant and Store Equipment ", where he designed kitchens and restaurants. He later became the store and interior designer for Castleton's Department stores and warehouse. He then became the head consultant for Pool Display designing stores for Wolfes Sporting Goods, Blocks, Shapiro Travel Goods, Peerless Beauty, Gabby Gourmet, Copper Rivet's to name a few.
His 52-year, lifelong part-time passion started as a freshman at the "U ". His personal and social life became as one for Craig. He handled all the Ushers and Ticket takers at the various venues on campus, Kingsbury Hall, Pioneer Theater, the Old Einar Nielsen Fieldhouse, Huntsman Center, Rice-Eccles Stadium, including all of the U of U graduations. In any given year Craig supervised over 300 part-time employees considering everyone one of them "family"! Craig was an amazing public relations front man for the University. In 2002 he was awarded the "President's Staff Award" from then Pres. Bernie Machen, it was a first for a part time employee. Craig personality was contagious. He always had a smile on his face, loved people, was kind, compassionate and treated everyone with respect. He was always "happy" to see you. Craig cherished his friends and "everyone" was his friend.
Craig's community service extended to being the Chair of the "Judging Committee" of commercial floats for the "Days of '47 Parade" for over 20 years. He was a founding member of what is now the Utah Arts Festival. Mayor Ted Wilson appointed him to the Mayor's Task Force for people with disabilities where he served for over 35 years. Craig was also active as a Board member of Very Special Arts now Arts Access.
Craig was married to Lavon Gill, together they had four fabulous children, David A. Carter (Noelle) CA, Shauna Carter Mabey (Tom) UT, Suzanne Carter Macriss (Rob) UT, Christine Kent AZ, and 6 grandchildren, Molly, Sarah, Nick, Emma, Cici and Kyle.
Dean Collett brought us together in 1968, he recommended me to work for Craig as a football ticket counter. It was at Kingsbury Hall years later, I was selling candy, he asked to kiss me, that was our beginning! He always said, "Toni Russell married me and made me the happiest man in Utah." We have had an eventful, loving life together. Our love of cooking, entertaining, gardening, travel, books, music, and theatre were a part of our lives together up until his end. He will be missed by all our friends and family! When I married Craig, I promised to marry him for better or worse - and I did!
Special thanks Dr. Fred Gottlieb for not only his care of Craig but his friendship and to Good Shephard Hospice for their incredible care over the last five months.
A celebration of his life will take place next Memorial Day weekend because we could not celebrate his "90th" this year.
In lieu of flowers please make donation to Canines With A Cause or your favorite charity.
Please share your photos and memories with the family at www.starksfuneral.com."
  I, and many others, will miss his optimism and activism, and his love of dogs.

DUI PLUS DRUG PENALTIES TO INCREASE
  Rep. Eliason is proposing a new bill that would significantly increase penalties for DUI when it goes over a high blood alcohol level.  These are the incapacitated drivers that are causing the most deaths and injuries on Utah roads.  In addition, the increased penalties will be for using drugs like THC while over the alcohol limit.  I always wondered why the State didn't outlaw using THC while driving and especially with alcohol since alcohol with THC increases the THC in the blood!  Rep. Eliason, again, is making a better Utah.  He also has been sponsoring many of the bills that focus on increasing mobile mental health crisis units in Utah.

JAYWALKING AND UTAH YIELD FOR BICYCLISTS SHOULD NOT BE A CRIME
  Jaywalking laws, in a recent City Lab story, was reported to be a waste of time and effort.  It also was responsible for the SLCPD stopping Patrick Harmon which resulted in him being shot when he overreacted with a knife.  Councilwoman Amy Fowler has expressed interest in decriminalizing many laws like that.  She is right.  The City should decriminalize jaywalking (Former SLCPD Chief Burbank ordered his officers to stop wrighting jaywalking tickets but the law is still on the books and used by SLCPD.).  We should also decriminalize bicycling on sidewalks and streets (it is against the law in Utah for bicyclists to not follow all vehicle laws like a full stop at stop signs and requiring a full complement of safety lights).    
  UTA cops still focus on jaywalking (to and from bus stops and rail stations).  It can create situations that escalate fast.  I also want to decriminalize cruising on State Street.

MCCLELLAND CLOSURE EXTENDED DUE TO CONTRACTOR MISTAKES
  McClelland Street in Sugar House will remain closed for another month due to the concrete crew being pulled off due to a design flaw by the engineering consultant.  The McClelland experience to upgrade the street won't occur until 2021.  
  Neighborhood pedestrians have pointed out that the left hand turn from 2100 South should be eliminated since it requires speeding up to avoid oncoming traffic.  That creates pedestrian dangers.  The City is still evaluating the final design.  There are still two big projects on the street scheduled to be finished well after the summer 2021 McClelland Street change.  Road construction will be a pain for at least a year or two more.

SUGAR HOUSE TARGET OPENING IN SPRING 2021
  For those interested, the Sugar House Target opening may not occur until the spring of 2021.

SLCPD DOWN 38 SWORN OFFICERS
  Mayor Mendenhall, earlier this month, spent a lot of time at the City Council going over the loss of SLC police officers over the last year.  The report was due to the rumors that were being circulated that SLCPD was down 50 officers.  I was partly responsible for those rumors but I also said that I expected the City to be down 50 officers by December.  I asked for more information after the Mayor's report.  I reminded the City, that, during my presentation to the Legislature last month, SLC 911 dispatch said that much of the poor response time was due to lack of police officers.  I also said that he 911 Director is a great public servant who has significantly decreased 911 problems identified in the audit and I had other information that indicated that the City was not filling many positions.  The City has been more forthcoming and has said that we are down 38 sworn officers as of Oct. 16 and 24 civilian FTEs.   
  I have attached the loss spreadsheet.  Note that this City has usually lost 2-3 officers a month to retirement.  This was reported in last year's IACP Report.  It is due to Utah's public safety retirement system with a significant unfunded actuarial liability.  Note that the City just increased retirement contributions as allowed by the last legislative session.  
  These are the relevant City emails about this issue (from October 7 through 19th):
  "Communities can contact their city counselors to voice their support for PDs. This is their avenue for having their voices heard. Attend community and city council meetings. Call, e-mail, write representatives.....
  Some positions are “frozen”, but we have been given the green light to proceed with hiring up to a certain point. More clarification to come....
  We had been hiring lateral officers and putting them through a shorter academy, but we only have new hire academies scheduled moving forward.....
  New Academy class will have 12 new hires and 2 SLC firefighters.  We are currently in the process of hiring and will be starting an academy in three weeks......
  We are in the process of interviewing new hires over the next couple weeks. We currently have 100+ invited to interview (6 of whom are prior or current Explorers)......
  Funded Vacant Positions as of 10/16/2020  
Vacant Funded Civilian  24
Vacant Funded Sworn  38
  30 hired in academy - January 13, 2020
  20 of those hired in January 13, 2020 still employed"
  My commentary in the Salt Lake Tribune in August indicated that the SLCPD needs more funding and it appears that the City has agreed.  Bottom line, the hiring freeze is over and the new Police Academy class will start in November instead of next spring.  I know that hundreds have been demanding the police to be defunded but tens of thousands want more visible police.  The Mayor appears to be listening to the vast majority.  Ironically, she and Councilman Derek Kitchen were instrumental in pushing through funding (through the federal government) for 50 more SLCPD cops 5 years ago.  The then Mayor tried to stop it by saying the Academy couldn't handle more applicants but that was shown to be wrong.

SLCPD HERO STILL WITH SALT LAKE CITY
  I want to acknowledge the heroism of a Salt Lake City Police Officer Officer who, ten years ago on August 27, 2010, stopped what could have been and almost was a massacre of hundreds of Salt Lake City residents.  Officer Uppsen Downes, who "is still very much employed at SLCPD", engaged a fully armored and armed soldier who was intent on killing as many people as possible.  The soldier had failed to get to a high position in the Grand America Hotel and was on the street in body armor, helmet and with his automatic rifle and lots of ammunition.  When Officer Downes encountered him, he ordered him to drop his rifle.  The soldier unloaded his gun at him and Officer Downes was shot in the leg.  Instead of taking cover and waiting for backup, Officer Downes returned fire with three shots, one of which, miraculously, hit the soldier in the head.  That stopped the massacre that the soldier had planned "to make him famous".  I am convinced that Officer Downes should have been policeman of the year in America and that he saved hundreds of lives that day.  Ten years ago, it could have been different except for an Officer who explained that he was just doing his job.  He is a hero.  I think that he is the greatest hero this State has. 
SLC INTERNAL AFFAIRS SENDS TWO POLICE TO POST INVESTIGATION
  During the last few months, there have been many complaints that the Salt Lake City Police Department is out of control and regularly exhibits police brutality.  The cases that turned up that did show police brutality were immediately corrected when reported.  There have been many times when the violence of a critical event has not been reported but the result has often been the person responsible for not reporting the incident has been forced to retire (as in the case of the police canine officer who did not report these incidents).  There have also been complaints that the Police Union/Association is too powerful and the State is too lenient with police.  The reality is that Utah has a vigorous system that targets unprofessional law enforcement conduct called POST.  Utah is ensuring appropriate police conduct with POST.  In the past, officers have been terminated from law enforcement positions in the State, or suspended from practicing for a time or punished in other ways.  The following are statistics for the last five years for SLCPD, DPS and UDC (provided by POST): 
?
Complaints:
Salt Lake City PD - 26
Department of Public Safety - 42
Utah Department of Corrections - 84
Cases:
Salt Lake City PD - 9
Department of Public Safety - 19 
Utah Department of Corrections - 67
?
Breakdown of complainants and if a case was opened for each Salt Lake City PD complaint:
2020 - 2 referred from SLCIA, and were opened as cases
           1 citizen complaint that was not opened.
2019 - 4 citizen complaints, 3 were not opened and 1 was
           1 referred from another agency during background investigation, was opened as a case
2018 - 5 referred by SLCIA, 4 were opened, 1 was not *as we were being audited
           1 anonymous complaint was not opened
           1 incident was observed by POST on the media and was opened as a case
2017 - 3 incidents were observed by POST on the media, 1 was opened as a case, the other 2 were not
           2 citizen complaint, neither were opened as cases
2016 - 1 referred by SLCPD, opened as a case
           1 anonymous complaints, not opened
           3 citizen complaints, none opened
           1 incident was observed by POST on the media and was opened as a case
UTAH JUSTICE AUDIT PROVES OUR CLAIMS OF POOR PUBLIC SAFETY
  There is an important Audit on Utah's Justice Reinvestment Initiative (JRI) that hit the Legislature this month.  It showed that our criminal justice system is not working well.  JRI stopped sending drug users to prison and forced counties to incarcerate them in the county jail which was costly and effectively an unfunded mandate.  The vast majority of drug users do not commit victimless crimes.  The Audit is in the downloads on the right.  The appendixes show the incarceration numbers and drug and alcohol (SUDs) treatment numbers.  But, as the Audit mentioned, they couldn't get the treatment providers to prove their success.  The State has indicated that the 1 year successful treatment is around 40% but it may take as long as 5 years to reflect real life percentages of success.  The federal government believes successful opioid addiction treatment is around 5%!  Interestingly, I have seen only one person that has gone through the system after Operation Rio Grande that has been able to continue working and stay away from drugs.  She keeps being mentioned as a success and i congratulate her.  But is there anyone else?  The problem, as I indicated several years ago in a commentary in the newspaper, is without jail or incarceration for more that a day, there is no real incentive to enter and continue drug treatment.  The Salt Lake County Jail refuses to book anyone except for first and second degree felonies and they are released, usually, within a day.
  Not noted in the graphs, Salt Lake County limits jail populations and releases everyone, even felonies to not get above a limit. and refused to jail drug users.   In other words  it is worse than the graph in the appendix of the Audit shows.  
  When judges admonish APP (which the Audit said is underfunded and understaffed) for recommending probation for someone who empties a gun into a car full of people, there is a problem.  
  When a robber is sentenced to 1 to 15 years in prison; ends up in jail for 30 days; and 6 months later tries to shoot some cops who surround him; who shot him until he stopped being a threat; there is a problem.  It also created riots and a lot of damage.  He should have been in prison.  You don't need an audit to tell you the system isn't working.
  When the county refuses to fund appropriate jail space and leaves 184 beds open there is a problem.  When the DA has 14 prosecutor positions unfilled there is a problem.  You don't need the US Attorney to tell you there is a problem.
  I urge the Legislature to study the cost to properly incarcerate threats to society and fund either the State or County to take those threats out of society and demand that all treatment centers that receive federal funds, track and report all results for a year.
  I also put the DA and Sheriff budget proposals in the downloads section.

SLC WANTS TO SPEND $4 MILLION TO SAVE OLD BRICK BUILDING
  Salt Lake City has agreed to spend up to $4 million to stabilize and protect and restore the vacant for decades old Mattress Company building in the Rio Grande area that was damaged in the recent Magna earthquake!  The Mattress Company building on 3.92 acres should not be saved but demolished.  The cost would be should be better used for other uses like affordable housing encouragement.  The links below show how difficult it is to stabilize old mortar, old brick buildings.  An old brick building next to high rise, high intensity mixed use, mixed income buildings is not realistic.  Even UTA learned the hard way, after spending too much on trying to restore the old locomotive building that it wasn't worth it.
https://www.latimes.com/visuals/graphics/la-me-earthquake-safety-brick-buildings-20180209-htmlstory.html
https://www.nps.gov/tps/how-to-preserve/briefs/41-seismic-rehabilitation.htm
  This will be a boondoggle like the 255 S State project.  Another few million down the drain.  The City's RDA is still considering buying more property in the area, despite the many vacant buildings owned by the City for decades!  I am against buying more Station Center property or leasing ground floors.  SLC RDA should sell to developers who can quickly build higher intensity mixed use, mixed income buildings that fulfil basic design standards (form based design).   

SLC SHOULD BE PROTECTING SINGLE FAMILY NEIGHBORHOODS
  This City is rushing through the RMF 30 proposal to significantly increase density in residential areas.  The last public hearing is October 20.  The proposal will hurt affordable housing.  It will also affect schools since developers will build mostly one bedroom apartments that are for residents without kids.  Developers make more money with studios and 1 bedroom units.  It will also result in many more trees being cut for development.  This proposal, according to recognized experts, will destroy more affordable housing in Salt Lake City.  The City still does not have inclusionary zoning that could mitigate this disastrous proposal and developers are pricing most new units at a high market rate compared to older residential buildings.
  Salt Lake City should use the 80% of property in the City, mostly west of Redwood Road, that is not used for residential use and use that property for housing.  Single family zones are not creating the housing shortage.  Don't get me started on shared?? SRO housing, another boondoggle coming in November for every part of the City but single family neighborhoods.
  During discussion of SLC housing, Jim Wood, the State's housing expert, said that permits in the County are the 3rd highest ever for residential permits.  Covid has had minimal impact on residential unit construction.  The price of housing has gone up 53% in 5 years.  There are 38,000 homeowners in the City and 11,000 are clear of mortgages.  But 17,000 renters in the State are vulnerable to loss of housing due to evictions.

IT'S BACK - SRO/MINI CABRINI GREEN/CRIME MAGNET MOTELS
  The renamed Single Room Occupancy proposal, now Shared Room housing, is set for public hearings on November 10, and November 20.  The City insists that it solves the issue of affordable housing.  This is Pamela Atkinson's push and dream.  She has been pushing this proposal for years.  It will allow SROs throughout the City except in single family zoned areas.  
  Interestingly, the City's Housing Authority tried to build an SRO next to a single family home (on 1725 S. Jefferson St.).  It was 74 units and the RDA turned it down only because it was noncompliant with the zoning.  If the City's SRO proposal passes, that project can receive City funding to proceed!  It is zoned RMF35 now.

SLC SHOULD BE ADDING PARKS, TREES AND OPEN SPACE
  If Salt Lake City wants more housing, focus on setting aside more land for parks.  The City's RDA couldn't find property to buy downtown for a park and gave the $4+ million to Pioneer Park to upgrade it.  I don't think that the upgrade was worth it.  If you want more housing fast, put a park in the Fleet Block as Michael Fife suggested in a recent oped in the Trib.  That will encourage development of housing.  It will develop like Sugar House which developed quickly due to the open space, according to SLC Planning.  Open space encourages housing and economic development faster than higher density zoning.  
  The City wants a park in the Westside of the City and is asking residents in a survey what they want.  About 6 years ago, the City tried to pass a parks bond to convert the Glendale Golf Course to a park!  It created a backlash and the bond proposal failed.  The new survey may be a prelude to a new bond proposal.  There was a survey 6 years ago that tried to justify the parks bond.   
  This City used to be called a Tree City USA.  But when the City cuts thousands of mature trees down each year and suggests replacing them with a 2 inch tree, despite policy that requires 12 2" trees to replace a 24" tree, our urban forest is being lost to City actions.  The fact that the City won't force developers and Rocky Mountain Power to replace trees in a similar manner (12 for a 24" tree), unless it is a "specimen tree - good for the area", is another factor that results in the loss of a lot of trees. 
  What I am trying to say is that the City should be making parks with lots of trees out of all of the vacant property that they own.
  The mural that shows victims of so called police violence (many incidents were justified) could even be saved with a park.  I have no problem with memorializing the dead.
PARKS OPENS SOME RESTROOMS INCLUDING PORTABLES
  After keeping park restrooms closed for most of the spring and summer, the City has opened many restrooms.  Five park restrooms were open as of last month and the City has also placed 20 portable toilets in the parks.

SLC RDA HAS SET PRIORITIES FOR STATE STREET
  The City has approved the Plan for the State Street CRA.  Unfortunately, almost no one in the area knows about it.  I disagree with its emphasis on prettifying projects like lighting and trees.  It encourages saving so called historic buildings.  It ignores encouraging car lots, especially block long car lots, to move.  It encourages midblock crosswalks, a road diet and a 20 mph speed limit on State Street.
  I disagree with most of the Plan.  I encourage mixed use, mixed income inclusionary form based zoning with impact fee reductions and flexible heights.  (The Planning Commission approved the increased height of the Sears block proposal without requiring affordable housing in return for the higher building.)  The goal should be much more than 3000 living units.  It should be 10,000 housing units.  Do not spend money on prettifying projects like lighting and trees.  Saving historic buildings should not be a priority.  Removing/moving car lots should be a priority, maybe to a block of car sales lots.  Develop Fleet Block as the Michael Fife park.  There should be no Midblock crosswalks, no road diets, no 20mph speed limit since all will increase pollution.  Target nuisance properties.  Where is the Downtown Park that was supposed to get $5 million (at one time Block 70 was supposed to be a BMX bike park!!)?

UTA SET TO CONTINUE OVERCHARGING RIDERS 2.50
  On October 21, UTA is scheduled to approve the continuation of overcharging riders $2.50 a ride!  Fares should be lowered to encourage appropriate ridership  goals.  I think that the fare for buses should be $1.  The reason for buses is rail requires parking and the Booz Allen Hamilton fare elasticity industry standard is affected by lack of parking and ticket throughput on machines.  Buses do not have that limitation.  We argued 10 years ago with UTA on that issue.  Ridership is down 50% and is expected to continue at that level for maybe years.  UTA is getting federal Covid funds and now is a good time to experiment with a $1 fare.  The ridership of FrontRunner is around 6500 a day.  The S-Line is 650 a day.  We need more riders to be encouraged to take transit and a $2.50 fare discourages that.
  These are the new fare proposals:
Adult
Route Deviation $1.25
Group Pass $15.00
Horizon Pass $42.50
Paratransit $4.00
Paratransit 10-Punch $40.00
Ride Van Plus $50.00 Monthly
FAREPAY Discount 20%
3) Free Fare
The following special groups may ride free of charge under these parameters:
• Free Fare Zone – Customers boarding/alighting in the free fare zone
• Children – 5 years and younger when accompanied by a fare paying adult
• Employees – Agency employees, retirees, and eligible dependents
• Personal Care Attendant – Must accompany a pre-qualified rider with a disability
• Paratransit Eligible – Individuals certified as ADA paratransit eligible
• Elementary Students – Must have a training safety course and travel with a school group
• Trainer/Trainees – Trainer with accompanying trainees learning to use the system
• Sworn Peace Officers – Either in or out of uniform and certified with proof of status
DocuSign Envelope ID: 8C81715F-07CA-4FA5-A25B-85EFB3F71AEE
UTA Fare Rates – effective December 1, 2020 Page 2 of 2
4) Reduced Fare
A 50% reduced fare discount will be offered based on the following parameters:
• Seniors: 65 years or older, must show reduced fare card or proof of eligibility and identity when
riding
• Disabled: pre-qualified by UTA, must show reduced fare card
• Medicare: valid Medicare card, must show reduced fare card or proof of eligibility and identity when
riding
• Youth: between the ages of 6 and 18 years old, must show reduced fare card or proof of eligibility
and identity when riding
UTA CLAIMS 2 EMPTY LANES OF 3500 SOUTH WITHOUT SERVICE
  UTA cancelled the 35 Max BRT on 3500 South that used two plus lanes of the street for exclusive operation (used to speed up operation during congested traffic).  But the ridership never got above 3200 riders a day and the lanes are still unused by anyone, bus or car.  UTA says that they will return service in April 2021 during the UTA service increase scheduled.  UDOT, who owns the street, sent me this information:
  "The Department has been coordinating with UTA on issues related to the 35 Max BRT line for several years. We recognize the closure of the BRT center lanes has been longer than originally intended, but the closure is not permanent. The 35 Max BRT lanes were initially closed due to the construction of the development in West Valley City near 2700 West with the intent of using them again once the work was complete. The pandemic resulted in the suspension of the 35 Max line due to drops in ridership and revenue. This has also delayed the re-implementation of the usage of the BRT lanes. UTA is currently working on the bus scheduling details and hope to have the lanes back in service with their April 2021 Change Day."  
  I still think that UTA does not know how to do BRTs.  I put the proposed BRT projects in the downloads section.  Most have predicted riderships of 2000 a day and will cost taxpayers around a $100 million.
UTA STILL PLANS 200 SOUTH BRT
   In answer to a question about the status of the South Davis Connector/200 South SLC BRT (which Davis County insists on being built with a SLC contribution of $67 million), UTA sent me this information:
  "with respect to a connection to the University of Utah we have not made a final determination on a Salt Lake County terminus for the Salt Lake Davis Connector.  We are planning to meet with the project policy group next month then take a recommend option to the public for comment.  We are currently evaluating a downtown SLC terminus as well as a 1300 East and Research Park option
  Salt Lake City still plans on a bus station around 700 East and 200 South and has budgeted $400,000 for the project.

CASE AGAINST NEW STREETCARS
  Despite several elected officials pushing rail and a TRAX extension south via Highland Drive, I have many more arguments that show that it doesn't make sense:
  The S70 (so called streetcar) width is important and was ignored during discussions on extending the streetcar.  It is recommended to have 14 feet clearance with a minimum of 12 feet.  Many streets under consideration (including 1100 East) do not have that clearance.  Another consideration is parking should not be removed (where allowed) just for a TRAX train.  (which tends to create problems if there isn't enough clearance to handle bad parking).  Highland Drive had a contentious road diet that was somewhat mitigated by allowing street parking in return for removing a lane of traffic in each direction.  I would consider a wide bicycle lane or raised shared lane to be more important than a low ridership rail line.  
  Without a great destination like a university, rail is not going to be used.  Before even thinking of extending TRAX, ridership should significantly increase to at least the 5000 that was promised and predicted.  It is at 650 a day now and may not go much higher for ten years (especially if the 500 East refugee housing continues evictions).  
  There should be a vigorous cost benefit analysis before spending hundreds of millions on extending the streetcar anywhere.  The important question is where is the best use for a hundred million in local taxpayer money.  
  Another issue, that became famous in Portland, is the fact that bicyclists keep catching their wheels in the rails since they were often parallel to bicycle travel.  I and many others can think of many better projects for the hundreds of millions required to extend TRAX north or south
  Finally, this is Utah and the TRAX/streetcar extension will destroy the view of the mountains with power lines.  The view of the mountains is sacred in Utah.  

SLC PUSHES TO KEEP ICE CREAM CONE SIGN FOR LIQUOR STORE
  The City has a sign ordinance that encourages saving historic signs like the Snelgrove ice cream cone near 2100 South and 900 East.  There is a project for the old Snelgrove/Nestle ice cream manufacturing property called Sugar Town that is a mixed use project with housing and..... a liquor store!  The City has been asking that the project keep the ice cream cone.  The ABC will probably win the battle.  Ice cream cones do not respectfully advertise liquor.

UTA NEEDS MORE BOARD OF TRUSTEES COMMENTS, PLEASE
  Over the last ten years, I have seen very few people comment to the UTA Board of Trustees.  These are important issues about mass transit and they deserve more comment.  It is much easier now due to the remote/virtual meetings, although the Board always read emails to the Board during meetings.  The new fare proposal is up for discussion and comments must be submitted by 4PM Tuesday before the Wednesday meetings.  Please comment and tell UTA to lower fares on buses to $1.
  "Public Comment will not be taken during the meeting but may be submitted through the means listed below.  Comments submitted before 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 20th, will be distributed to board members prior to the meeting:
o online at https://www.rideuta.com/Board-of-Trustees   
o via email at boardoftrustees@rideuta.com
o by telephone at 801-743-3882 option 5 (801-RideUTA option 5) - specify that your comment is for the board meeting
  UTA is also negligent in not publicizing the studies that show no transmission of Covid when passengers are wearing masks as required.  UTA is also replacing seats on their rail cars with plastic that is more easily cleaned and sanitized.   They will cos, on 117 light rail vehicles, $3,993,829.
  "BACKGROUND: The light rail vehicle fleet has fabric covered foam cushion seats. The current seats soil easily and require extensive cleaning. The thick foam acts as a sponge when moisture is introduced and requires deep cleaning to properly sanitize seats. To enhance the interior cleanliness of the light rail vehicle fleet, the new seats will be vinyl with a
lightly padded molded composite construction.
  DISCUSSION: UTA Staff is requesting approval of contract with USSC to replace seats on 117 light rail vehicles in the amount of $3,993,829. The new seats will be the same arrangement of the current seating configuration. The entire seat will be replaced including the frame, seat bottom/back, grab handles and mounting hardware."
I put the ridership data as of October 13 in the zip file with the BRT and FrontRunner project plans.  It also includes the bus stop boardings.  

CATHOLIC COMMUNITY SERVICES STILL PROVIDES HOMELESS SERVICES
  These are the hours of the Weigand Homeless Resource Center: 11:30AM–12:30PM, 5–6PM.  They offer "full services with the exception of haircuts. The showers are open, laundry facility is open, client storage is open, computer lab is open, housing and employment services are open, court is still going on every other Friday, and food stamps and Medicaid eligibility is still happening. Our clothing room is also open Tuesday and Friday from 7:00 am to 10:00 am.
  St. Vincent de Paul Dining Hall: 
9:00 am to 11:00 am- Good Samaritan Sack Meals
11:30 am to 12:30 pm- CCS Hot Meal
1:00 pm to 4:00 pm- Good Samaritan Sack Meals
5:00 pm to 6:00 pm- CCS Hot Meal

INN BETWEEN ABOUT TO GET EXPANSION
  The City is about to pass an ordinance that will increase the ability of respite care facilities, including The Inn Between, to be in institutional zones.  TIB presently houses 25 homeless assisted living patients and 25 respite care/hospice patients.  So this ordinance, if passed, will allow TIB to house over 70 in their facility.
  "The Inn Between was the original focus on this ordinance to find a proper land use ordinance for facilities that care for the seriously or terminally ill, focusing on the homeless, in this situation. After several years of hard work, the planning department has developed this proposal that would create a capacity ratio of one patient for each 950 sq/ft of the lot size for facilities in the institutional zones. This was a change from the current 25 bed limit. Under this proposal the Inn Between could have up to 60 beds for this purpose based on their 1.3-acre lot"
 
SLC REFUSES TO IMPLEMENT INCLUSIONARY ZONING AGAIN
  Several developer proposals have asked for higher height limits than zoning allows.  The City appears to be granting approvals without requiring affordable housing and inclusionary zoning.  This is a lost opportunity to provide affordable housing in the City.

SLC PRIORITIZES QTR CENT TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS
  I put the priority list of the Qtr Cent Transportation Projects in the downloads area.  Most are not getting any comments to the City Council and they should.

SLC OFFERS ONE HOMELESS CAMP CLEANUP A MONTH
  This is the City's plan for one homeless camp cleanup to start.  The City is starting with the 700 South Toefer Park (300 East) area.
  Sept 14, phase 1 portable toilets
                phase 2 oct 5 dedicated diversion starting with 1 site 
        Michelle is deciding with County what site will be next
  wk1 client services to get to know the area
  wk2 continue and set the closed date
  wk3 legal basic needs with justice court and legal help.  The City needs volunteers to help - call  801-535-7712
  wk 4 camp closure with notification 2 weeks prior
SLCPD will ensure no return
  But one camp at a time is not fast enough.  We still need to discourage criminal behavior.  It threatens health and public safety.  We need to discourage bicycle thefts and drug use and criminal behavior around more than 700 South.  Criminal behavior increases violence against the homeless by criminals.  Police walking patrols will discourage that.  Why is anyone living on the street now when the CARES Act provides funds for homeless housing, which should be distributed around many hotels.

SLC DEMOLITION ORDINANCE ABOUT TO BE PASSED
  The City is about to pass the new demolition ordinance.  But it still discourages surface parking lots and requires a lot of up front investment in plantings.  Even the fines may not be enough to encourage landowners to demolish their vacant properties.   I urge the city to lower the barrier to demolition, even if it results in a surface parking lot.  This City still collects more vacant buildings than anyone else and it discourages development and decreases property values.  The City should pass the demolition ordinance but stay on top of it to ensure that it gets rid of bad buildings.

COMMENTS ON LOCALLINK STUDY SO FAR
  In addition to the streetcar arguments above, my other comments on the locallink study that is the new Circulation Plan for the Sugar House/Millcreek/Holladay/South Salt Lake area are below:
  SIDEWALK WIDTHS AND DISTANCE FROM BUILDINGS
  We need wider sidewalks to encourage walkable streets!  Sidewalks don't work when residents need them for barbeques which block all pedestrian traffic (like Liberty Village).  Sidewalks need open width before planters and other obstacles to movement.  Kids on bikes don't do well on sidewalks with obstacles.
  MORE TREES ALONG PARLEYS AND WIDE SHARED SIDEWALK TRAILS
  The Parleys Trail should not be closed in winter and a plan should be developed to decrease safety issues on it.  Trees are needed along the Trail to safely allow dogs to walk on it.  Personally, I would rather walk on the streets just south of I80 to Tanner Park due to the noise.  Maybe it would be cheaper for the City to make it safer for bicyclists to use Parkway as the commuter bike route to Bonneville Shoreline Trail.
  The McClelland Trail should be using the streets since too many property owners want to fight against using the Canal easement for the Trail.  Greystone stopped SLC from using their development which goes over the Canal.  There is also the issue of safety since going between houses, essentially an alleyway, actually creates safety issues.  A body was found on the Canal property south of 27th South.  That unsafe perception won't change with pavement.  1100 East would be a better alternative since it already is used by bicyclists and pedestrians as a comfortable biking experience.  The City should pursue efforts to push 1100 East through to Brickyard.
  STREETS PRIORITY
  Side streets are not as important as arterials where bicyclists have to ride on the side of road.  Repaving should be prioritized on arterials before any side streets.  And the street contracts should go to the edge of the curb!  Contracts now do not specify that.  I wouldn't worry about resurfacing cull-de-sacs.
  BICYCLE AND PEDESTRIAN SAFETY
  Bicycle green conflict markings are not a solution and the best example of questionable safe bicycle infrastructure is 200W and 300S.  Separated bicycle lanes are not maintained daily to encourage bicycling.  Ten foot wide bike lanes would encourage bicycling more.  Bicycle safety is negatively impacted by roundabouts, chicanes, horizontals and bulbouts (which tend to encourage bicyclists to move into traffic lanes).  The area needs a better 20MPH bicycle commuting route east west and north south.  Ten foot wide bike lanes on streets or on raised sidewalks (east of 1300 East) make more sense than a road diet.  Hundreds of bicyclists want the road diet (like 1300 East which turned out lousy for bicyclists) but tens of thousands want the 4 lanes on 2100 South! 
  Left hand turns on arterials like Highland and 2100 South should be discouraged (like IZZY SOUTH proposal), except at traffic lights to increase bicycle and pedestrian safety.  Driveway entrance/exits near traffic lights should be discouraged for the same reason.  Lack of sidewalks is not the problem on Richmond.  It needs a 10 ft wide bicycle lane. 
  RESTAURANTS NEXT TO HOMES CREATES CONFLICTS
  Zoning should have a moderate and gentle zoning to higher density, not an abrupt change from single family to RMF anything.  Note that RMF includes restaurants that create parking, traffic, noise and smell conflicts (homeowners do not want a constant barbeque smell).
  BEST AMENITIES INCLUDE POCKET LIBRARIES AND PARKS
  Plazas need more trees and people.  Sugar House Plaza is essentially dead.  Restaurants should be encouraged to use that dead space.  Again, a right hand turn from 2100 S. to Highland should be considered through the Plaza (north of the monument).  The plazas should have enough power to allow food trucks and festivals to operate without extra power (on site restaurants would get a larger area for outdoor dining in return).  The area needs more pocket libraries and parks.  Plazas could have free wifi, power (enough for food trucks) and seating and tables to encourage use and people and traffic.  And lots of big trees.
  PRETTIFYING AREA SHOULD WAIT UNTIL DEVELOPMENT IS WELL UNDERWAY
  There are too many efforts to prettify the area with creative placemaking when the money could be better used for traffic calming on side streets.  Blocking sidewalks with planters or bike racks (unless bikes are stored parallel to and next to the street).  Stamped concrete crosswalks and the mobility hubs seem to be a waste of money that could be better used. There is a need for a Green Bike station at the McClelland S-Line Station.  Wayfinding should not be a priority (although some help is needed on connecting bicycle trails through the Sugar House Business District).  
  ENSURE PLANNING COORDINATION OF FUTURE CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS WITH CITY PLANS
  Until all construction is finished, which may take 10 years, Highland and other streets should not be reconstructed because each new building will tear up the street.  I am still not seeing coordination especially along Highland through Millcreek.  This City is planning on reconstructing 900 East but there are several new developments coming near the S-Line (north and south of it) that will destroy the brand new street!  Consider waiting until all building construction is finished.



COUNTY COUNCIL EMAILS
RSnelgrove@slco.org,JBradley@slco.org,ARbradshaw@slco.org,ANewton@slco.org,Agranato@slco.org,sldebry@slco.org,DHTheodore@slco.org,LLStringham@slco.org,DAlvord@slco.org

CITY COUNCIL EMAILS
james.rogers@slcgov.com,andrew.johnston@slcgov.com,chris.wharton@slcgov.com,amy.fowler@slcgov.com,dan.dugan@slcgov.com,darin.mano@slcgov.com,ana.valdemoros@slcgov.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 9727885
FORESTRY                 801 972 7818
MAYOR'S OFFICE    801 535 7704
NOISE                        801 580 6681
PARKS                        801 972 7800
PARKING ENFORCEMT
  535 6628
PLANNING/ZONING      
535 7700
SIDEWALK REPAIR  
        535 6934
SHOPPING CARTS   
801 403 0564
SMITH'S CARTS        801 759 7315
STREET REPAIRS      801 535 2345
UTA                            801 743 3882
WATER/SEWER        801 483 6900
WTR/SEWER EMERGCY
 483 6700
CALL2HAUL WASTE
801 535 6999
ANIMAL SERVICES
 385 468 7387
HEALTH DEPT/PEST
385 468 3835

OP  RIO GRANDE    385 266 6938

HOMELESS CONNECT   799 3533