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Garland council passes 2011-12 budget

Though the issues with the Bear River are still at the forefront of Garland City Council members, the highlight at Wednesday’s city council meeting was the budget.  In all, 15 resolutions and two ordinances were passed.

One of the ordinances that passed was to set the planning and zoning commission meeting to the week before Garland City Council either meets in a work session or council meeting.  The previous schedule was the third week of each month.

Among other resolutions were the approval of the individual budget items such as general funds ($931,337), fire department reserve funds ($48,000) and charity theater budget funds ($12,000).  Two pieces of property were approved to changed hands.  These included, surplus property on 400 South and Main Street, which will be sold to adjacent property owners, and a property realignment involving a dirt road on about 100 North and 150 East.  The city had not cared for the street since 1949.

Regarding the future snow melt in the Bear River, the council decided to raise the height of the existing manhole near the river by 8 feet to alleviate potential flooding.  The group concluded it will seek a water engineer’s expertise in deciding the size of pump the city should purchase in the event the river reaches flood levels.

“The river is going to have to rise five feet before we have to worry [about pumping],” Mayor Arlon Bennett said.

“The $600 [manhole project] gives us immediate safety,” council member Dan Bowcutt emphasized.

Fire Chief Kent Menlove reported the department received a $19,870 Utah Fire Department Assistance grant.  The money will go toward buying fire uniforms for five more firemen, as well as for fighting wild land fires.

While on the subject of wild land fires, Council member Jonna Comstock wanted to make sure that Garland City residents are aware that even with the state’s new firework laws, the legal fireworks are only to be set off within 30 days of July 4.

Despite the rise in salmon costs, the fire department reported making $3,750 on firefighters’ salmon fry.  This was $500 up from last year, Menlove said.

Council member Fred Christensen reported that the Environmental Protection Agency is “coming down hard on mosquito abatement equipment and many chemicals are no longer legal.  He emphasized, that with the bird refuge nearby Box Elder County should be one of the worst places in the state for mosquito infestations, but that “we’ve been really effective in controlling [mosquitoes]” in Box Elder County.

The Garland Park may soon have six lights to cut down on vandalism and teenage loitering at night, Christensen said.   This way, he said, neighbors will be able to see into the park and tell who is in the park after hours. The city is looking into the cost of cast iron poles to see if these will be feasible

The council discussed the fact that Council members Comstock, Christensen and Doug Coombs will finish their terms this year.   Elections for the three spots will be this next December.


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