1990: Work on ECDC begins, golf course goes for 18 holes
Editor's Note: This is one of a series of articles about the history of the Sun Advocate and the county it covers as a newspaper. The article is being written from front page stories that appeared during each year in commemoration of the 120th anniversary of the newspaper's birth in 1891.
Wellington Fire Fighters figuratively took up arms in a revolt in January because their city did not have a written agreement with other municipalities and the county to fight fires. They said they would not fight any fires outside the boundaries of their city because without an agreement they were not protected for liability or injury.
By the end of January the Carbon County Commission had acted on the situation and had proposed an agreement with the Wellington Fire Department. In April the Wellington City council signed a new five-year agreement with the county for fire fighting services, but the final contract was not totally cemented together until early July.
The East Carbon Development Corporation continued to pursue its dream of building a huge landfill in the east county area. In February they were working on their regulatory permits and hoping they would come through soon. In May it was reported that the landfill developers had received two draft permits toward the project. In mid-June the company had finally acquired all the permits needed and began construction of the facility. In August the company closed on all the property they intended to use for the landfill business.
In February it was announced that Wal-Mart would build a store in Price. The construction of a 71,000 square foot store was to begin in the spring and was expected to be done by Oct. 1.
The saga of Barry Bryner, by 1990 the ex-sheriff of Carbon County ended quietly in February when Bryner waived the right to a trial and entered no contest pleas on the charges of failing to respond to a police officers signal to stop and a class B misdemeanor for DUI. Judge Ray M, Harding then told Bryner that after a pre-sentencing investigation by the Utah Department of Corrections he would schedule a pronouncement of judgment on March 23 in the Fourth District Court in Provo. The judge fined Bryner $600, told him to pay legislative fees of $400 and $541.28 to Carbon County for restitution. He was also sentenced to serve concurrently a one year and six month sentence in the Utah County Jail. However in the end he allowed Bryner to substitute 120 hours of community service for the $600 fine and put him on probation in lieu of the jail time sentences, with the exception of 35 days in jail.
The expansion of the golf course from nine to 18 holes was also begun in 1990. At first it was going to be developed with grant monies by Price City, but eventually that money was turned over to what was to become the Carbon County Recreation Special Service District to administer. In March the county proposed just such an organization to administer the money and handle the golf course to keep it public.
But the formation of putting together a recreation-only district came under a lot of fire from residents who feared protestors for the plan began a petition drive to kill the new service district from being formed, but they only gathered about 1,000 signatures by the time for turning the petition in (May 2) and they actually needed over 1,300 to stop the move. In mid-May the commission voted to create the district. The board of the district was created by putting one person from the commission on it and then by picking six citizens from the county to sit on it as well.
The district was set up by only utilizing mineral lease monies that came into the county, different than what many residents were concerning about (the ability to levy property taxes). However the next month a petition signed by 13 Carbon residents was submitted to the Seventh District Court asking it to review the decision of the commissioners concerning the formation of the district. They also asked that the issue be placed on the ballot so residents could vote on it.
The new Carbon County Sheriff, Jim Robertson, had been talking about building a new jail since he was appointed in 1989. A new jail was needed for a number of reasons, some of which had to do with outside forces pushing the county to build a better facility. In April a discussion concerning the site of a new jail emerged with Robertson wanting to build the new facility on the same block as the courthouse while commissioners seemed to think a better place for it would be out in the industrial park south of Price. They were worried any site on courthouse block would not leave enough room for expansion of the facility if needed.
A big story of the year was the lack of water in the area. Snowfall was poor not only in the valleys but in the mountains and by spring all entities within Carbon that supplied water were talking about or enacting restrictions on outside water and some other uses. Warm April temperatures melted what snowpack was in the mountains and soon little was flowing into Scofield or down drainages throughout the county. By the end of May, restrictions and other methods had reduced the water usage in Price City by 30 percent. The lack of water also ravaged more than just lawns. According to a report in the Sun Advocate on June 21, the drought had also decimated grazing areas throughout the area, particularly in the San Rafael.
In November a well-known and well-loved monument was dedicated in the Price Peace Garden as the Doughboy statue that had been in place in Hiawatha was given its due. The statue, which was originally dedicated in the mining camp on May 30, 1922, had an original plaque with five names on it of local men who had been lost in World War I. A second dedication had taken place on June 6, 1948 when another plaque, naming those who had been lost during World War II was added to the monument.
When the township of Hiawatha ceased to exist, there was concern over where the statue would end up, because there was talk of it going to the Veterans Memorial Park near Camp Williams in Salt Lake County. However, through the efforts of many locals the statue was finally placed in the Peace Garden where it stands today.