Editor: I would like to address the issue of our high speed of traffic on Main Street in Heber.
The speed limit on Main Street is 35mph, in my opinion it should be 25mph from 600 South to 500 North. This is the main downtown area. Students cross Main Street to get to schools, our city park is in this area of town, plus all of the businesses who suffer from lack of parking and high vehicle speeds.
I have a downtown business and watch on a daily basis traffic going so fast that it is not safe to cross the street. The average speed of any vehicle at any given time is 40-50mph. I have in fact used my own vehicle to clock others, including Semi Trucks. Every day I hear and see brakes being locked up, horns blowing while vehicles and semi-trucks run red lights.
I know this issue has been presented to our Mayor, city council, police department, county council, and county sheriff department. My husband attended a city council meeting a few months ago to present our concern, the night he went there were several other concerned citizens also present with the same reason. Yet nothing has been done, the problem just keeps getting worse.
I keep wondering if we are going to have a tragic accident with lives lost, or the whole downtown area permanently contaminated and closed because of a petroleum or toxic chemical spill before our elected officials and public safety personnel do something about it.
Just today I followed a car through town from 1200 South to 500 north going 45mph. The car turned west and went down 500 north to home. When I pulled up beside the car I am sure the women thought twice before being responsive enough to see what I wanted. I asked her if she knew what the speed limit was in town, she promptly replied 45mph. If our residents do not know what the speed limit is, how can anyone just passing through. The only posted speed limit sign between 1200 south and 500 north is the one just past the Hub.
I would challenge the Mayor, city council, county council, police and sheriff departments to come and sit at the corners of 100 N., Center St., and 100 South from 7am to 10pm (under cover) and then tell me we don’t have a problem.
When something tragic happens I will be one of the first people in line to hold these people accountable for not keeping the citizens of Heber City safe.
Wasatch County Assessor
Editor: The article on the Wasatch County Assessor on January 15, 2014, begs for answers on several points:
1. Why is a person allowed to run for an elected position when not qualified in the first place?
2. Why does Utah state law allow three (3) years to successfully take and pass the required test? a. I believe the person running for any position (if there is a requirement to be passed) should only be allowed one (1) year to qualify.
3. Who is paying for her trip to Las Vegas to, again, take this test?
4. If she does not pass and a new (Republican) is appointed to fill her term, will they be qualified?
I guess anyone could run and, if elected, fill the position for three years, and then, after collecting wages for that period just “move on” to other employment Sounds like a good deal to me.
Attend Sundance and Enjoy
Editor: The Issue: Wave’s editorial position: Sundance Time Again
We Suggest: Attend and enjoy!
The name of the event is the Sundance Film Festival, not the Sundance Stargazing Festival. Here is what we pleasantly found going on there in 2014:
We had no trouble finding free and convenient parking. The Shuttle Bus system was easy to navigate and the shuttles were free and ran frequently. Attire for most of the people at the event were colorful down jackets, snow boots or tennis shoes and jeans. We were able to enjoy several wonderful films at $15 per ticket. The 125page, comprehensive festival program was informative and free.
On one of the first days of the festival, we attended a delightful film at the Egyptian Theater which featured approximately 65 one-minute clips of random individuals of all ages dancing at home, work or in their yard. Remember the line “Dance like no one is watching?” We watched this 65 times as the audience smiled and laughed. This film made the crowd want to get up and dance in the aisles.
Next, we attended a premier documentary about an independent minor league baseball team that played in Portland, Oregon during the mid 70’s. The team was owned by Bing Russell, grandfather of the directors, Chapman and Maclain Way. This was a very entertaining and informative documentary about this low-level professional baseball team, and judging by the crowd’s reaction, the Way brothers did a wonderful job of telling this story of the team and their grandfather. While we did not find a need to see anyone from Tinseltown to enjoy this event, we were pleasantly surprised when the brothers introduced Bing’s son, actor Kurt Russell and invited him to join the Q&A after the film. During a question directed at Kurt about his father, Kurt clearly became choked up, and took a moment to compose himself. Through teary eyes, he apologized and explained that the video of his dad in the film was the first time he had heard his father speak since he died in 2003. If that is stargazing, give me more. It was nothing like a trip to the zoo that you mention, and we certainly would not have shared that poignant moment by watching them get off a plane at Heber Airport.
We found the enthusiasm and joy of the festival crowd was contagious and we look forward to our visit to the Sundance Film Festival in 2015.
Mike & Jan Altieri
Airport Board Should be Made up of Locals
Editor: I too attended the January 16 [Heber City] Council Meeting. I believe as Merry Duggin who wrote in last week’s letter to The Wave that it was a contentious meeting with three of the old council members voting or objecting to various refreshing changes offered by the new mayor. I hope future meetings do not hold out with this same behavior.
I thought Mayor McDonald’s decision to appoint citizens to some boards was an exceptional way to involve the citizens of this community. However, after naming citizens to the Airport Adversity Board; immediately Mr. Bradshaw objected and Mr. Rowland and Mr. Patterson agreed, I did not understand that their objection overturned what the Mayor presented. A discussion followed suggesting two Heber City council members be put on the Airport Advisory Board, yet another guest from the audience suggested the Advisory Board was not pleased with those currently serving from the Council. One of which is Mr. Rowland. However, I as a citizen object strongly to Mr. Rowland being on this Airport Advisory Board. Because as my memory serves me correctly, when Mr. Rowland ran as a ‘write-in’ candidate for mayor his largest contributor was Mr. Nadim Abuhaidar who is the current Heber Airport Fixed-Based Operator (FBO). This is truly a conflict of interest and Mr. Rowland should be removed and not be considered for a future position on this board. Individuals from our community seems to be a great solution to this situation. I believe those assigned to the Airport Advisory Board should be from our county, Wasatch.
Those who do not live in our county, may have alternative motives for our community. I know of one on the board today that doesn't live in our county; there could be others.
Let’s get our community more involved in all areas of city/county government.
Inversions and Smog
Editor: I’m somewhat new to Utah (2005) but quickly discovered that Salt Lake City has a serious problem with air pollution and that it is only getting worse. One common theme is the temperature inversion and how it traps pollution along the valley floor.
Inversions are naturally occurring weather events. They aren’t caused by man. Under normal atmospheric conditions, the average temperature loss (lapse rate) as air rises is about 3.5 F per 1000 feet. I routinely check the temperature atop Bald Mountain at Deer Valley and the Heber Airport. I noticed a few days the temperature atop Bald was more than 20-30 degrees warmer than at the airport. The elevation difference is a little less than 4,000 feet, but let’s just uses the round number and if normal atmospheric conditions existed, the temperature on Bald should be 14 F colder.
What I have noticed in our valley is that on days when we too are affected by inversions. We might call it haze where the definition of the mountains is not quite as sharp as on totally clear days. I’m told that 20 years ago, haze was unheard of. It is believed that some of this gunk is moving into our valley from the Provo canyon but certainly much of it is coming from the same place it does everywhere in the world, our tailpipes and chimneys. Our valley has enjoyed spectacular growth but with that growth comes more pollution.
One thing that is painfully obvious. An once of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Salt Lake City has been wrestling with this for years yet it continues to worsen. Our leaders need to get out in front of this now or our grandchildren will be asking how we could have been so derelict as to allow this to happen. There are measures we can take immediately.
First, Heber City can kill the idea of expanding the airport. The large jets an expanded airport would serve, in addition to noise pollution, deliver actual pollution. Secondly, they can impose density limitation on all new developments. No more mixed use projects with high density housing to placate a powerful developer. Thirdly, they can get serious about a functional bypass that will allow the ever increasing number of heavy trucks to pass quickly.
The county can also take a hard look at density and simply freeze it at current levels for the valley floor. The county council is not under the slightest obligation to enrich anyone with an increase in density. If they buy landed zoned RA 20, they get to develop it at RA 20. It’s not the council’s problem if they can’t make $10M off that parcel.
Do we want no burn days or mandatory emissions inspections? Do we want our children to wear breathing masks to school like they do in China? Do we want bad air day warnings so that such things as taking a walk are advised against? A few simple practices now and we can avoid the certainty of those measures. We can do it.