Price council reviews request for city's support of motocross event
At the last Price council meeting, officials reviewed a request for the city's support of an April motocross race slated at the Carbon County track.
Event supporters asked the city for help with equipment along with operators to prepare and keep the track in shape during the weekend of the race.
Generally, the county takes care of the services for events planned at the farirgrounds. But the county's equipment is committed somewhere else and the group has asked the city to provide help.
"As I have looked at this, I worry that we might be supporting a for-profit event," pointed out Mayor Joe Piccolo. "We can't legally do that."
In recent years, there have been strict guidelines handed down by courts about public entities providing money or services to private entities, particularly profit oriented enterprises.
As a way to encourage local goverments to grant requests for support, organizers frequently point to the business and money the events bring into town.
Last year, around 1,500 people from outside Carbon County came into the Price area for the race.
Even though many of the visitors stayed in recreational vehicles at the fairgrounds, the race fans and participants still spent a good deal of money on food, fuel and other items in the community.
Another concern for Price officials was that, if the city agreed to supply the equipment and manpower, it would take away the possibility that the event organizers could hire a private company for services.
"I had an idea that, maybe, we could provide a sponsorship through the wave pool and then they could use that money to hire a private firm to do some of the work," stated Nick Tatton, community director.
The council appeared to like the community director's idea, but the officials wanted additional details about the type of organization promoting the event.
Piccolo also wondered about how Carbon government could legally use the county's equipment to provide similar services, when Price has a problem with granting the request.
"The difference is that the race is taking place on county property and the cost of that help is included in the rental the event organizers are paying to the county," explained Tatton.
No definite decision was made by the council in connection with the matter.
Price officials decided the city should have the organizers come to a future council meeting to discuss the issue.
Price officials also wanted to see what happened with a different funding source the motocross organizers are appealing to for assistance.
Addressing an unrelated agenda item at the public meeting, the council took up the matter of an old power pole that city employees have recommended be removed.
While removal may seem like a mundane matter, to some residents in the area of 800 North and 300 East the pole has become kind of a landmark.
According to city officials, the unused pole has a vine growing up and around it and it has become a visual obstruction to people turning onto 300 East. They are also concerned that the pole is being weakened by the growth and might fall over one day.
"We have had complaints on the visual obstruction a number of times by several residents," stated Price Police Chief Aleck Shilaos.
The council talked back and forth about what to do. One member suggested that the pole, rather than be removed, could be cut down to a more manageable and safer height. However, it was pointed out that one resident became upset when some vegetation was trimmed away from the pole before.
"I think there will be some fallout from taking this pole down," stated the mayor. "The council needs to be aware of that."
Price City Attorney Nick Sampinos told the council that since the pole is a safety issue. Although controversial, officials must take action to direct staff as to what to do.
After other suggestions and some more debate about how to handle the delicate situation, the council decided that they would wait until after the next council meeting to direct employees so residents of the area can voice their opinions about the situation.
The council also passed resolution 2004-03, which establishes the electrical rates for non-profit religious organizations within the city limits. This was done because at one time the rates for some organizations were different from others. There was also some question about whether other rate payers had been indirectly supporting religious organizations through the payment of their bills.
The council also approved conditional use permits for four businesses.
Permits were approved for R and R Yard Service which is relocating to 254 South Carbon Avenue, for Two Brothers Communications at 59 East 100 North, Price V, LLC 540 West Price River Drive, and for Hans Miller for a farm and gardens supply store at 404 South Carbon Avenue.
The farm and garden supply business had a number of conditions included within the permit including replacement of some concrete at the site, some repairs on the property and that the business be set up for the retail sale of equipment only.