Friday, October 28, 2005

StandardNET/Standard-Examiner:Group says Bountiful broke promise in raising taxes for rec center

Ronald Mortenson is in the news again. This time, addressing the fact that the property tax increase, related to the Rec Center, is 33 percent higher than advertised in the voter information pamphlet.

I've made my admiration of Mortenson no secret. I have no idea how someone that spends as much time, as he does, out of the Country doing serious work in places like Iraq and Sudan (and soon Pakistan)-- can have the fortitude to do so much here.

Yet, Mayor Johnson has had the gall to challenge Mortenson's positive impact on the community.

And that Steve Rawlins should say, 'Mortenson is the only resident that has complained to him', should put the rest of us to shame.


Dispute erupts at N. Salt Lake City Council

My first thought after reading this article was, "Is this for real"? It read like some script out of Hollywood, or an episode of "Cops".

Dispute erupts at N. Salt Lake City Council

Brian Elkins: Q & A

Update: Let me first apologize to Brian Elkins for misleading him regarding the purpose of the Q&A that I sent him. I had no intention of deceiving him. I'm sorry. As an aside, I thought his answers were thoughtful and perfectly suitable for posting. I would not have posted it if I had known that he did not wish it. He sent me this email shortly after this post.


I didn't realize you were going to post the questions and answers on your

I wish to clarify that I believe all people should be treated equally
regardless of their religious, ethnic background, gender, socio-economic
status or sexual preference.

You have my permission to post this on your blog if you wish.


Brian Elkins"

I received answers to some questions that I posed to Brian Elkins who is running for City Council in North Salt Lake.


I'm curious about how you feel about Equality Utah's recent endorsement of your candidacy? Do you welcome their endorsement? Are there ways in which you may disagree with their viewpoint?

I'm honored to receive an endorsement from Equality Utah. They are the only
organization that contacted me with regard to an endorsement and I was
flattered to receive it.

They wished to provide a campaign contribution but I turned it down as I am
not accepting any campaign contributions.

You can go to the Equality Utah website and read their mission statement and
what they support. Many people incorrectly think that Equality Utah is in
support of gay marriage, that is far from the case. Their mission statement
does not even begin to address this particular issue.

I would imagine Equality Utah has some members who are in support of gay
marriage and others who are not.

I was asked privately at "Meet the Candidates Night" if I was concerned that
the endorsement might harm my chances at being elected. My response was that
I honestly did not know but if it did end up making the difference between my
being elected or not I will graciously accept defeat but I will retain my
honor and integrity.

I asked this person if the endorsement meant that I would not have his vote
and he replied in the affirmative. I'm disappointed that I will not have his
vote but I certainly understand his reasons. I honestly enjoyed talking with
this person and I wished we had more time to speak. We were both very
cordial and listened to each other's opinion and I believe he respected my
opinion and I certainly respected his.

He feels marriage is strictly between a man and a woman. Unfortunately it did
not occur to me at the time to mention that Equality Utah did not have a
position on gay marriage.

As far as their mission statement is concerned I fully support it. I feel it
is important in our society that the strong support the weak and oppressed.

One thing I think I need to mention is that I am straight and I am married to
a lovely woman!

What position do you take on the recent land dispute between North Salt Lake and Salt Lake City? Do you support Mayor Briggs' actions in this regard?

The most recent proposed plan I have seen from the city calls for a ten acre
cemetery, twenty acres for development and 50 acres of open space which would
include natural open space, parks and soccer fields. I fully support this

Needless to say I support Mayor Briggs' position.

Where do you stand on the Rec Center Debate? In particular, what do you think about the escalating costs associated with the facility?

I honestly do not know enough about the Rec Center debate to voice an opinion.
If you know of a website that would enable me to learn more about it I would
certainly appreciate you passing it on.

What do you feel is the greatest challenge that NSL faces in the next few years?

I think the greatest challenge facing NSL will be the ability to provide
adequate services (in particular water, emergency services and educational
facilities) to the burgeoning population. I recently heard that NSL is the
second fastest growing city in Utah (of course that is fairly easy to
accomplish since we have a small population at this point).

Regardless of how the election turns out, will you continue to blog after November?

Yes, but I don't know if it will be about politics.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Local Candidates vs. Local Bloggers

I wonder if any of the candidates running for municipal office are concerned that the local blogs feature more prominently in search engines than the official campaign websites? Campaigns come and go. Bloggers are forever.

This begs the question. Do bloggers rank well with voters?

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Mayor Kay Briggs Homepage

I've considered sparing my readers, (all five of them), the funny story about how this website came to my attention. But I can't resist-in part. Needless to say, I happen to be friends with someone close to Briggs' Campaign. I'm pretty tight lipped, offline, about my blogging and they were so obviously involved that I steered clear of the subject matter. Now that they've found me out, they've sent this link my way.

Mayor Kay Briggs Homepage

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

NSL Campaign: Brian Elkins Blogging

I recieved an email from City Council Candidate, Brian Elkins informing me of his new blog. I offered to link to him if he'd agree to answer some questions--Well, why wait! I really like blogging during an election cycle because political awareness is heightened. (Here's a little hint to anyone interested in running for office in the future-start blogging now. And, no, that isn't why I'm blogging--I don't fit the public-servant mold.) Here's hoping that this brave new world we call 'Blogosphere' will continue to do some good. Time is short and the election cometh.

Brian for NSL City Council

Kay Briggs: Campaign website

I hear whisperings of a campaign website for Kay Briggs.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Citizens For Tax Fairness

Citizens for Tax Fairness has updated their website with some questions for the Candidates.

Citizens For Tax Fairness

Kaysville: Patrick Buchanan

I'm breaking my own rule in mentioning Kaysville. Earlier I tried to limit the focus of this blog to six cities on the south end of the County and Kaysville was not included. But, my attention has been drawn up to Buchanan's campaign website in which he repeats an allegation originally levelled at Kaysville governement in 2003. Kaysville is moving funds from the power company to the General Fund. This is the same charge as one other city I blogged about earlier-Bountiful.

What other cities in Utah participate in this sham? These citizens should band together and lobby for a change in Utah law to make this practice illegal.

Kudos to Candidate Buchanan.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Sitemeter Search of the Day: "Farrer for Mayor"

No joke. Somewhere, someone sharing my name is running for Mayor. I'd vote for 'em!

Google: "Farrer for Mayor" | Engage in local politics — early and often

A recent comment on this blog accused Kay Briggs of being disengaged from the citizens. Of course the only time these kind of comments come are during the election cycle when somebody has something to gain from the accusation. So, you'll forgive me if I think the charge is a little hollow-a little forced.

This editorial by Marjorie Cortez struck a chord with me.

"There's a jillion ways to be involved without ever leaving one's home. Seemingly every elected official in Utah has a telephone and e-mail address. Most, if not all, governmental bodies have their agendas available online. Some meetings are broadcast on cable and Web casts. Engagement is but a mouse click away."

So what if Mayor Briggs doesn't have a website. You can be sure that won't be sticking around after this election. The Mayor gets out, in his way, and tries to make a difference. (Besides, I like being among the top results in a search for his name ;) ) He should not be faulted for taking a stand on the 80 acres owned by NSL. After all, It is our land, not SLC's!

What do you think?

Engage in local politics — early and often

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Time to have my vision checked: Farmington City Council won't pay for cable program

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the Farmington city council has shown that they can be trusted with a budget. Way to go Farmington!

City to meet candidates, but not on cable

Monday, October 10, 2005

The Rumors of my death...

My voice has been notably silent during the recent primaries and I've been fighting the urge to feel guilt about it. If it weren't for the solitary voice of Centerville Citizen goading me onto greater activity I might not be explaining myself now. The fact is that my job is demanding more of my time than before and blogging takes more energy than I've had. That doesn't mean that I haven't remained a political junkie-I simply haven't broadcast my views for a while.

I received an interesting email from a Phill Wright, a candidate for Bountiful City Council, that informs this post. I'm no longer a resident of Bountiful, but am not immune from the politics of the city. I've felt comfortable enough with Mr. Wright to encourage my family members to vote for him. Although, they are neighbors with another prominent candidate and may vote another way. Although he supports the Rec Center he has expressed dismay that costs have escalated. I believe that he is the kind of person that could prevent further cost increases. He has proposed the novel concept of selling Bountiful Utilities, or at least, lowering the rates to remain competitive with Utah Power. In my estimation he could have taken a harder stance on the Rec Center but his is the most reasonable response I've seen to the whole debacle.