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East Carbon officials respond to concerns raised by residents

Sun Advocate writer

During the July 28 East Carbon council meeting, financial issues dominated the discussion with concerns about the city's recent expenditures.

Public comment was heard about some city improvement projects, including the walking paths and all-terrain vehicle trails.

Although some controversy was displayed by members of the community, the council was able to answer a majority of questions presented.

Acting on an agenda item, , the council approved $2,000 for bullet proof vests for the police department and made a motion to fix a broken cage in a police Hummer.

Although painting the EC letters has taken longer than expected, the project should be done with the addition of white wash.

When asked about costs surrounding the walking and ATV trails, Councilmember Andy Urbanik assured the public that the projects were not paid for with city money.

East Carbon used grants from the recreation district, the division of parks and trails as well as government bonds to fund the trails, pointed out Urbanik.

"The walking trail cost a total of $300,000. $100,000 came from the special recreation district, with the rest from the division of parks and trails. The city's not floating that big of a bill," said Urbanik.

Not all the public's comments were negative. Residents indicated that they were proud of the city's improved look. But concerns were again raised about East Carbon employees, specifically about workers taking city vehicles home at night.

"They take home vehicles because water lines can break in the middle of the night," explained Councilmember Darlene Kuhns.

However, the council was aware that the public wanted to know exactly where city money was going.

The officials informed residents that the city's budget is a public record available upon request at the East Carbon City Hall.

"Look at the budget and, if you can find that these things (frivolous items) were paid for with city money, let us know," said Councilmember Joyce Caviness.

Other community concerns included stronger enforcement of speeding regulations and animal limitations as well as maintenance of new city facilities. Several councilmembers agreed to look into some of the matters discussed.

"I've said it before, that we have so much going on, it's going to be hard to maintain it," said councilmember David Avery.

After the lengthy comment session, it was apparent that the community had several concerns, but Urbanik indicated that he was glad to have the input.

"Obviously, we can't be everywhere and we depend on the citizens to inform us about things," said Urbanik.

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