Wellington officials discuss request to relinquish right of way with sale
The Wellington City Council met last Wednesday. There were no citizens from the community in attendance at the regularly scheduled meeting.
David and Tina Jensen appeared before the council with a proposal concerning a parcel of land they are buying from the city.
The Wellington council has agreed to sell a 20-acre piece of land in the industrial park to the Jensens and the couple requested that the city relinquish a portion of a right of way through the property.
According to a draft agreement, the city would maintain a 100-foot right of way along the edge of the property. The Jensens requested that the right of way be narrowed to 40 feet.
The council discussed water and sewer easements, power lines, road construction, and the overall plan for development in the industrial park area.
It was agreed that the city right of way be narrowed to 50 feet in the final agreement
The Jensens also requested that language be added to the contract allowing the couple the right to subdivide the property in the future.
The council debated the proposal and agreed that no such language was required. It was determined that full ownership of the property would revert to the Jensens when all terms of the contract have been met.
Once the couple have legal title to the land, the Jensens can do with the property as they wish as long as all city planning and zoning ordinances are complied with.
Attorneys representing both parties will now draft a final contract for the land sale.
The focus of the meeting then turned to a report by Wellington Police Chief Lee Barry.
Barry presented the council with a very detailed report of man-hours, miles, expenses, arrests, and calls for service provided by his department.
The chief told the council that one of the city's officers is scheduled for instructor certification training and another policeman will attend an interview and interrogation seminar.
Barry explained his efforts to comply with the council's request that he notify violators of city trash and cleanup ordinances.
The police chief presented photos of some of the properties in question and highlighted the police department's attempts to mitigate problems and warn potential violators.
There followed a lengthy discussion about the city cleanup efforts and problems with compliance and absentee landlords.
Barry advised the council of the process for convicting violators and of certain legal concerns if the city moves to clean up private property.
Councilman Glen Wells advised the police chief to move slowly in his efforts and to be sure to give citizens an opportunity to comply before issuing citations.
Councilwoman Paula Noyes said a local citizens group is willing to help violators clean up property if the residents were unable to do so themselves.
The councilmembers advised the police chief that enforcing compliance should be a three-step process: a verbal warning by police department; intervention by the citizens group if required and requested; and a citation as a last resort.
The police chief agreed to give the council a monthly update on the department's efforts to enforce the cleanup ordinances.
The chief then told the council that the new radio tower was up and running and that Wal Mart might give the department $1000 dollars as a Hometown Heroes grant.
There followed a short discussion about the ever increasing volume of traffic through the city and the need for strict traffic enforcement. Business then turned to council member reports.
Councilman John Pappas reported on the recent Carbon County Recreation Department meeting and Wellington's participation in the program. He told the council that Wellington youth accounted for only 6% of the total participating in the county program. He also reported that the county was planning to increase fees for the program by ten percent for 2006.
There followed a discussion about city youth participation and the increasing cost of the program. City Manager Ken Powell told the council that the city was currently paying the county $600 pr. quarter for participation in the program. It was decided that the city will get a count of the actual number of young people participating and do a cost-per-student study to determine if the city should continue supporting the county program.
Councilwoman Noyes reported that she had solicited bids for the installation of a water line on the south side of main street to help with beautification efforts. She is also securing estimates for laying a power line in the same area.
Noyes mentioned that a complicating factor was the need to secure approval from Utah Department of Transportation for any beautification projects. UDOT has exact specifications as to the height of trees, shrubbery, fences, etc.
Noyes also presented a proposal by citizen Kenneth Thayn about Christmas decorations in the city park. She said the proposal was to encourage citizens and businesses to decorate lighted floats and place them in the city part through the month of December.
The council was reminded that due to ongoing construction projects in the city park, there was only temporary electrical service available at this time. For that reason, the council decided not to endorse the project for this year.
Councilman Wells reported that the secondary water system is still in operation and will be until the weather changes. He advised citizens to take advantage of the late runoff water and to: "Put their grass to bed wet for the winter."
Mayor Houskeeper then reported on the ongoing billing issues with the price river water improvement district. He explained to the council the recent concessions PRWID had made to Helper City and the acceptance of the offer by Helper to temporarily transfer 200 water shares to PRWID as part of the payoff. The mayor also explained that a formula had been drafted to re-evaluate the amount of money owed by Helper city.
There followed a lengthy discussion about the water bill and about several hundred water shares that Wellington had turned over for PRWID use some time ago. Some council members were openly critical of PRWID's billing practices.
The mayor then told the council of a recent offer by Utah Power to sell the city several hundred shares of Wellington Canal water. He said he had offered to lease the shares for the cost of the annual water assessment, but had declined to buy at this time. He asked the council for their opinions on the matter.
Council members discussed the issue and decided to decline the offer at this time.
The meeting was then adjourned. The next Wellington City Council meeting will be on Wednesday, November 9th.