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December 2019 | Vol. 6 Iss. 12



AIMEE WINDER NEWTON ENTERS THE GOVERNOR’S RACE By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


laiming “I’ve spent my life solving problems,” Taylorsville resident and Salt Lake County Councilmember Aimee Winder Newton now hopes to create some for the other Republican candidates seeking that party’s nomination for governor. “Utah is at a pivotal moment, and we can seize it,” Newton said in the two-minute video announcing her candidacy. “My vision encompasses not just the next four years but the next 40 years.” Newton joined current Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox and businessman Jeff Burningham in the Republican gubernatorial race before former governor Jon Huntsman Jr. announced his run in mid-November. “I wholeheartedly endorse Aimee and have since I first heard she was considering the race,” Taylorsville City Council Vice Chair Meredith Harker said. Other members of the city council — and Mayor Kristie Overson — have all said they are pleased Newton is running but are not ready to officially endorse a candidate until they have studied the issues further. Newton was actively involved in the Taylorsville incorporation effort more than 20 years ago. When the city was finally incorporated (July 1, 1996), Newton was the city’s first communications director. Her father, Kent Winder, was elected to Taylorsville’s first city council. The Taylorsville High School, Ricks College and University of Utah graduate also grew her own business and served for several years on the city planning commission. Taylorsville resident and Salt Lake County Councilmember Aimee Winder Newton has officially entered the Utah governor’s race. (Photo courtesy of Continued page 8

Aimee Winder Newton)




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Eagle Scout candidates lend a helping hand at the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


more than century-old tradition is drawing to a close in just two months, on Dec. 31. But before that happens, countless active Boy Scouts in Taylorsville and throughout the state and nation are scrambling to finish up service projects to attain their coveted rank of Eagle Scout. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is officially severing its affiliation with the Boy Scouts of America at the end of the year. According to a report in “Esquire” magazine, when that occurs BSA will lose nearly one out of every five Scouts. “For 105 years, the relationship between the Boy Scouts and the Mormon Church has been important to both groups,” the national magazine reported. “The Church has been the largest participant of the Boy Scouts in the United States, making up nearly 20[%] of all of the Boy Scouts’ 2.3 million youth members.” The affiliation between the Church and BSA actually dates back nearly to the moment the Boy Scouts officially incorporated in the United States, on Feb. 8, 1910. “I am emotional about it; I’m sad to see it end,” said Cory Rushton, who was a Taylorsville Scoutmaster for a quarter-century, from 1992 through 2017. “[Being a Scoutmaster] helped me stay young. It was rewarding to see boys become men. It was a super program.” Rushton offered his comments while holding a paint brush behind the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center (1488 West 4800 South) where he and several other volunteers were assisting one of those beat-the-clock Eagle Scout candidates. “For my project, we are staining and painting several things [at the heritage center], including a couple of buildings, an out-


Taylorsville Historic Preservation Committee Chairwoman Susan Yadeskie, Eagle Scout candidates Andrew Valora and Kyle Jones and preservation committee member Wendy Cochran (L-R) pose behind the antique ice sled Kyle restored for the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

house, two benches and a cider press,” said Eisenhower Junior High School eighth grader, Andrew Valora. “I took a field trip here when I attended Fremont Elementary School a few years ago. I chose this project because it helps the local community.” Taylorsville City paid for the paint, stain and brushes — a worthwhile investment, according to one elected official. “When Eagle Scout candidates take on projects at the heritage center, it saves our own maintenance crews time and money,” said Mayor Kristie Overson. “I mean, the work has to be done. But more importantly, it’s just a great tradition. The museum has had a great relationship with the Boy Scouts for years.” Andrew got the idea to complete his project at the heritage center from his mother, who works with a member of the Taylorsville Historic Preservation Committee.

“I am an aide and teacher at Eisenhower Junior High, where Wendy Cochran is a (financial) secretary,” Betsy Valora said. “I told her Andrew was looking for a service project, and she suggested he contact the museum. We’ve lived in Taylorsville 23 years. This place provides a fantastic way to hold on to our heritage.” “We need a lot of projects done at the heritage center and scouts help out a lot,” Cochran said. Then-Taylorsville City Councilman Curt Cochran’s wife added, “I love being a part of the preservation committee. It’s fun helping the community preserve its past.” A member of Taylorsville North Stake Troop 948, Andrew is the third Valora boy to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Meantime, from the Jordan Stake Third Ward Troop 636, Cottonwood High School senior Kyle Jones is racing, along with his younger brother, to join their three older




The Taylorsville City Journal is a monthly publication distributed directly to residents via the USPS as well as locations throughout Taylorsville. For information about distribution please email brad.c@thecityjournals.com or call our offices. Rack locations are also available on our website. The views and opinions expressed in display advertisements do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions held by Loyal Perch Media or the City Journals. This publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express written consent of the owner. © 2019 Loyal Perch Media, Inc.

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brothers in becoming Eagle Scouts before the end of the year. His project required restoring a piece of equipment at the heritage center, believed to be even older than the 100-year old Boy Scouts of America. “We’ve suggested restoring this old ice hauling sled as a service project to several Eagle Scout candidates, but Kyle was the first one willing to take it on,” said Taylorsville Historic Preservation Committee Chairwoman Susan Yadeskie. “We believe the sleigh dates back to between 1900 and 1910. He did such a great job.” Kyle said nearly all of the rotted wood from the original sled had to be replaced. He credits much of his assistance on the project to an adult neighbor, adviser and master craftsman Paul Spiers. “We took the sled to Paul’s business (Inspired Retail Solutions), where he helped me replace the broken wood and shave the (sleigh) runners,” Kyle added. “We worked on it for about a month. Some troop mates helped, but I couldn’t have gotten it done without Paul’s help.” “I’m proud of him; there was a lot more work to the [sled restoration] project than Kyle thought there would be,” Todd Jones said of his son’s effort. “If Kyle and his brother finish up their projects in time, we will be five-for-five—sons becoming Eagle Scouts.” Of course, the Boy Scouts of America will continue to have troops scattered throughout Utah next year. But members of troops currently sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will have to join different groups — typically sponsored by other religious organizations —to continue earning merit badges and Eagle Scout ranks. l

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Hundreds of state employees to move to former American Express building in January By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


onths after Utah lawmakers were patting themselves on the back — and calling it a deal “too good to be true” — hundreds of state employees are packing their offices and cubicles to make the move to the former American Express building in Taylorsville (4315 South 2700 West). “This (renovated American Express building) is going to create a new standard for state offices,” said Sarah Boll, assistant director of the state Division of Facilities Construction and Management. “In state government, we are trying to give our workspace more appeal. As new, younger employees come to work, we are trying to include things they expect. We need to do it to recruit.” Earlier this year, the legislature’s Executive Appropriations Committee unanimously approved a $56 million expenditure to purchase and renovate the American Express building. At the time, lawmaker Karen Mayne — whose senate district encompasses the property — said, “This is one sweet deal.” “The purchase price for the 31.77-acre parcel and building was $30 million, with another $23 million budgeted for renovation,” Boll said. “That is much more acreage than we need. We plan to consider opportunities to lease part of the acreage once all the renovations are completed.” Translation: restaurants (fast food or others), exercise facilities, daycare centers or other amenities may pop up in the area in the years ahead as businesses try to attract clientele from what has become a massive state government footprint. State laboratories, the Utah Office of the Medical Examiner and the Department of Public Safety Calvin Rampton Complex are all in the same area. “There are about 700 state employees in the area now, and when it is fully renovated, the (American Express) building could hold another 1,600,” Boll said. “The way our (renovation) phasing is going, the third floor (of four in the AmEx building) will be completely done for a January move-in. Construction will continue on the other floors at that time,

Above: Hundreds of state employees will begin moving into the former American Express building in Taylorsville next month. (Sarah Boll, DFCM) Below: Massive renovation was necessary at the former American Express building in Taylorsville, as it was being transformed into a state office building. (Sarah Boll, DFCM)

but it should not bother those employees who move in first.” The newly arriving employees are coming from the state office building north of the State Capitol. Part of the motivation in getting them relocated next month is to free up additional parking around the capitol during the 2020 State Legislative Session. About 300 employees are expected to begin occupying the Taylorsville building next month. “We definitely consider this the creation of a new state campus,” Boll said. “This is a terrific opportunity for us to rethink and modernize our workspaces. When finished, the building’s work environments will serve as a model for office space all over the state.” In fact, once the build out is complete in the American Express building, Boll said her department will begin a comprehensive effort to reevaluate all of the state’s work areas. “We plan to create a statewide space master plan,” she said. “We will be looking at 50 buildings the state owns, along with 30 leased properties, just in the Salt Lake Valley. We believe it is better to own than to lease.

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So, we will review our contracts to determine whether we can get out of some leases.” Boll said another goal in creating the master plan is to avoid building new structures. She claims renovation costs are about $150 per square foot, while new construction is closer to $500 per square foot. According to the DFCM website, the renovated building and grounds will include: “central security and check-in, a well-appointed café with indoor and outdoor seating, a large gym and a pond and walking paths with remarkable views of the mountains.” “I am so happy to see that building being filled, and I think the state is wise to create this large campus,” said Taylorsville Mayor Kristie Overson. “The additional employees are likely to draw other businesses into the area as well. And this should provide a big boost to our BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) project. I hope it encourages the state to provide more funding for the mass transit project.” Following the initial January move-in, other state employees are scheduled to follow next August and a year from now. l

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Taylorsville Army vet calls her donated $4,500 patio and pergola an ‘oasis’ By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


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Taylorsville military veteran who has been battling Post Traumatic Stress Disorder nearly 20 years now has a beautiful patio, firepit and pergola in her backyard, courtesy of the Home Depot Foundation and a local veterans’ support organization, “Continue Mission.” “I am so grateful for what they have done, though I don’t feel I deserve it,” Mandee Stakely, 42, said. “This will be my oasis — a place to relax and think about life.” The new amenities — valued at $4,500 and installed by Home Depot employee volunteers on their day off — should help Stakely occupy a more positive “head space” than where she was 18 years ago. Nearly everyone over age 30 remembers exactly where they were on the morning of 9/11 (2001). Many Utahns watched the horror unfold on television. But Stakely was much closer. As an Army staff sergeant and chef, Stakely was stationed at what was then called Fort Myer, adjacent to Arlington Cemetery, only 2.5 miles from the Pentagon, just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C. While most of us first think of New York’s Twin Towers when we remember that tragic September morning, American Airlines Flight 77 also crashed into the Pentagon about 34 minutes after the second tower was struck. All 64 people aboard the plane were killed (including six crew members and five hijackers) along with 125 people in the building. “All of the freeways and roads were seized up and they closed our base,” Stakely said. “I began preparing food for the emergency responders who were assisting at the Pentagon. That night I saw the Pentagon from the freeway.” It would be a couple of years before Mandee realized her close encounter with the 9/11 devastation at the Pentagon caused her PTSD. Stakely grew up in California and returned there when she left the military in 2007. In 2010, she moved to Utah. In 2015, she lost her husband (a Navy veteran) to suicide, just two months after they wed. In 2017, she moved into her Taylorsville home. “I struggled to figure out life after the military and became involved in different veterans’ support organizations,” Mandee added. “I wanted to get out of the house and be active. I approached improving my mental health from a

Volunteers from Home Depot installed this patio and pergola in a Taylorsville backyard as part of the company’s nationwide “Celebration of Service” campaign. (Photo courtesy of Elana Johnson)

physical standpoint.” That’s when Stakely became acquainted with the Utah-based organization “Continue Mission.” “I would say they found me,” she said. “Up until this past summer (when her parents retired here), I had no family in Utah. Continue Mission is my family. It provides a comfortable atmosphere and involves all family members. Their goal is suicide prevention and mental health through physical fitness.” A quick scan of its website shows the organization supports golfing, running, white water rafting, archery, skiing, bowling, rock climbing and even axe-throwing events, among others. Continue Mission was founded in 2014 by U.S. Army (retired) Sgt. Josh Hansen and his wife, Melissa. “We started Continue Mission after my husband served two tours of duty in Iraq,” Melissa Hansen said. “Our program helps people try different physical activities to remain active.” Josh Hansen reached the decision to join the Army later than most, at age 30. “I decided to join after 9/11 because I felt very obligated to serve my country,” he said. “I worked as an IED

(improvised explosive device) hunter. During my deployments, eight IEDs exploded under my vehicle. I suffered neck and back injuries, along with many concussions.” The Hansen’s website states: “Continue Mission is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving veterans with service-connected physical, mental, and emotional injuries. We aim to inspire, empower and involve veterans and their families and referred service members in recreational and educational programs that promote health and wellness and positive life changing experiences. We are dedicated to raising mental health awareness and taking an active role in suicide prevention.” It’s also through Continue Mission that Stakely received her backyard oasis. “Mandee has been in our program for several years,” Josh Hansen said. “She’s gotten to the point where she wanted to do more volunteering for us. She’s manned our information booth at various activities. It’s been very uplifting to see, and it’s amazing to see her improvement.” Someone active in Continue Mission told the Home Depot Foundation

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These volunteers from Home Depot installed a patio and spruced up a Taylorsville back yard as part of their “Celebration of Service” campaign. (Photo courtesy of Mandee Stakely)

about Stakely. That’s when 21-year Home Depot employee Elana Johnson entered the picture. “I called Melissa at Continue Mission to speak with her about Mandee,” Johnson said. “She sounded like the perfect candidate for our ‘Celebration of Service’ campaign.” When Johnson and Stakely finally spoke directly, the patio, firepit and pergola makeover idea was born. “Mandee said her backyard was overgrown with grass and weeds, and she wanted to create a retreat,” Johnson said. “Eventually, I requested $3,500 for the project. The Home Depot Foundation actually boosted it up to $4,500.” Two prominent vendors, “Oldcastle Infrastructure” and “Rapid Set Concrete,” also donated materials and labor to the project. Finally, in late October, about 30 Home Depot employees from eight different Utah Home Depot stores showed up at Stakely’s Taylorsville home to volunteer their time to complete the project. “The new patio is 12 feet-by-12 feet with an aluminum pergola over it,” Johnson said. “We furnished the Melissa Hansen (L) and Elana Johnson (R) flank military veteran Mandee patio with chairs, cushions and a gas firepit. The pergola Stakely as she celebrates her new backyard oasis. (Photo courtesy of has solar lighting. And we provided Mandee with pots Mandee Stakely) she can plant flowers in next spring.” Additionally, an 18-inch small retaining wall was constructed, and the surrounding lawn was mowed, weeded and mulched. “I am still kind of dumbfounded by everything they did on the project,” Stakely concluded. “I don’t have any children, but I share my home with my boyfriend and three dogs. I finally feel like I have a place to relax.” The Taylorsville project was part of the Home Depot Foundation’s ninth annual “Celebration of Service” season. According to a news release, “from Sept. 19 to Veterans Day, members of Team Depot pledged 100,000 hours of service to activate more than 600 volunteer projects across the country.” In just eight years, the foundation has transformed more than 45,000 homes and facilities for veterans. The organization states that more than 35,000 Home Depot employees are military veterans themselves. For more on the Home Depot Foundation or to nominate a veteran to receive a donation, visit homedepot. Mandee Stakely com/foundation. For more on Continue Mission, visit continuemission.org. l

I would say they found me. Up until this past summer (when her parents retired here), I had no family in Utah. Continue Mission is my family. It provides a comfortable atmosphere and involves all family members..

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Continued from front page Successful fundraising will likely be key in the GOP governor’s race. Newton believes she is well on her way in that challenging arena. Immediately after her campaign announcement, Newton began accepting online donations, promising donors their funds would be “triple matched.” “The matches were promised by other donors,” she said before the triple match period had ended. “We won’t know the total raised for a few days. My fundraising team said we had a huge number of people donating anywhere from $3 to $5,000. I am also reaching out for larger donations.” As an example of the challenge Newton faces, earlier this year Gov. Gary Herbert donated $50,000 to Cox’s campaign. Herbert has also promised to host a fundraising golf event for his second-in-command. “Councilwoman Newton is a fiscal conservative who is consistently mindful of taxpayers,” said Salt Lake County Council Chairman Richard Snelgrove. “She is smart, collaborative and hard-working. She will be a fantastic governor.” Snelgrove replaced Newton as the county council chair at the start of the year. In 2018, she served as the council’s first female chair. “I’m not running to be someone; I’m running to do something,” Newton also adds in her announcement video. “We (the Salt Lake County Council) oversee a $1.2 billion budget — the state’s second largest.” Newton also touts the council’s effort in recent years to reform the criminal justice system, make government more transparent and break the cycle of intergenerational pov-


Additionally, Newton cites among her top priorities in seeking the governorship: education, housing affordability, transportation and air quality. In addition to Huntsman, other potential GOP candidates for governor include retiring U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop, former Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes and former Utah GOP Chairman Thomas Wright. No Democrats have announced for the race so far and Utah has not had a Democratic governor since Scott M. Matheson (1977– 1985). During that 35-year hold on the governorship, one Republican to hold the post — for just 14 months — was the late Olene Walker. If elected, Newton would be only Utah’s second female governor and, presumably, the first to serve a full four-year term. Newton has long touted the value of females becoming more involved in the Utah political process. In recent years, she has hosted educational forums for women, at her Taylorsville home. Among her attendees was Harker. Before officially tossing her hat into the ring, Newton visited all 29 Utah counties from April to July this year. “I wasn’t out to attract a lot of attention (on the tour),” she said. “I wanted to understand what was going on in each area. I learned a ton about county issues.” “I’m a conservative Republican,” Newton said in her announcement video. “Utah has such a bright future.” To view Newton’s announcement video or to learn more about her campaign, visit www.aimeeforgovernor.com. l

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Taylorsville resident Aimee Winder Newton has served on the Salt Lake County Council nearly six years. Now she’s entered the race to be Utah’s next governor. (Photo courtesy of Aimee Winder Newton.)

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Reflections contest creates more than interest for Taylorsville students By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com


undreds of Taylorsville students took part in this year’s National PTA Reflection contest, a free contest for young artisans that began more than 50 years ago. Started by Colorado State PTA President Mary Lou Anderson, Reflections has come a long way in new categories and opportunities for even the youngest of students since its inception in 1969. What remains is the heart and soul of the contest itself. “Hundreds of volunteers across the state of Utah volunteer many thousands of hours each year to bring this program to the children of Utah,” said Reflections Specialist Rebekah Pitts. “Look Within,” this year’s theme, gathered in six Taylorsville area schools. Three categories stood out as favorites: Literature, 2D Visual Arts and photography. For students, the benefits of participating far surpassed the initial thrill of creating something new. “I would have done it even if it hadn’t been an assignment,” said Rebekah, fifth grade student at Fox Hills Elementary. “All of the kids [in my class] had to choose something to do. I’ve never done it before and I wanted to try it.”

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Rebekah entered the 2D art category. She used glitter paint, color pencil, marker and pencil as her mediums to make her spirit deer. “The painting was the hardest part,” she said. “It was hard to get it even, and you had to glob a lot on.” She enjoyed the “drawing” part the best. She wants to be an illustrator for her own books when she grows up. “Reflections is the self-esteem boost the children feel when they participate,” Pitts said. “Every entry is celebrated.” Reflections has grown to include students from all 50 states as well as Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and U.S. military school overseas. And that says a lot when you consider the contest began much smaller. “There were three categories at the time: Literature, Music and Visual Arts, and 234 entries that first year,” said Pitts. “[Today] over 300,000 students participate nationwide. Each state is allowed to send 30 winners on to compete at the national level.” Last year, nine national winners came from Utah. Between 10,000 and 13,000 entries are submitted each year according to utahpta.org. The competition is fierce. Still, students keep submit-


“Creating art around a yearly theme gives the children a chance to reflect and create something original,” said Pitts, who believes every child should have an opportunity to share his/her work. “There is something for everyone.” Though for several years Utah piloted two categories — theater and art — and while 3D art was chosen to be a part of the visual arts category, theater was not selected and has been discontinued, said Pitts. There is always a process of re-evaluation, and from the very beginning, Reflections hasn’t been carved into stone. Scholarships were first given to national winners in 1984, and photography was added as a category in 1986. Kindergarteners were able to join Reflections in 1995, and film production and dance choreography were added as categories in 2005, said Pitts. What does that mean for future entrants? “The diversity of categories ensures that there is something for everyone,” said Pitts. “Many children who do not excel at sports find a place to shine in the Reflections program.” l

Last year’s, state award of Merit winning entry. Artist is Carter Proud from Calvin Smith Elementary. Of the 183 state winners, five awards were for students from Taylorsville. The 2018 theme was “Heroes Around Me.” (Photo courtesy of Rebekah Pitts, Utah PTA Reflections specialist)





he long line at the local auto body shop isn’t The Utah Department of Public Safety sugjust for oil changes, it’s for winter tires too. gests on its website to have jumper cables, a With temperatures (and leaves) dropping, it’s tow rope and small shovel in case the car gets time for a refresher course on safe winter driving. stuck, reflectors or flares to make sure your car is visible to others driving, flashlight and bat1-Know the conditions Technology affords us the privilege of teries, extra winter clothes, first-aid kit, battery knowing road conditions before ever leaving or solar powered radio, sleeping bag, fresh water and non-perishable food, paper towels and the house. Utah Department of Transportation has hand warmers.

more than 2,200 traffic cameras or sensors which gives visuals and data on all major UDOT roads. Drivers can then adjust their routes or schedules according to the heaviness of traffic making for less congestion and less risk for accidents. The UDOT app means you can see all those cameras from your phone. 2-Prepare the car Make sure the car is prepared for the road conditions, first with good tires. Snow tires give greater tread for better traction. Snow and ice should be completely removed from the windows, headlights and taillights prior to driving to ensure visibility. If your car is parked outside overnight, place towels over the windows. This keeps the windows from icing over.

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3-Control the vehicle Keeping the car under control requires some safe driving tips. The most obvious: drive slow. Despite our impatience or urgency to get to the desired location, slow driving is the safest driving. Staying under the speed limit, which is meant for ideal conditions, becomes even more important when traveling over snow, ice, standing water or slush. In drivers education courses, prospective drivers learn about the rule for distance between your car and the one in front of you. Driving 60 mph? Stay six car lengths back. 70 mph? Seven car lengths back. This distance should be increased even more during wet conditions to allow the car time and space to stop without rear ending the vehicle in front.



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Mayor, police chief stop by Calvin Smith Elementary to speak with third graders By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

A benefit to having your teacher serve on the Taylorsville City Council is you get to hear from some high-level guest speakers. In recent weeks, city council Vice Chair Meredith Harker’s Calvin Smith Elementary School third graders listened to Mayor Kristie Overson and Unified Police Department Taylorsville Precinct Chief Tracy Wyant. Other teachers or community groups can also request either of them as guest speakers by contacting their offices. (Photos courtesy Meredith Harker)

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Celebrate the Holidays with Events, Giving

Dear Friends and Neighbors, For me, the chance to give a gift is among the highlights of the holiday season, and I know that I am not alone. In Taylorsville, we have taken to heart the wise words of St. Francis of Assisi: “For it is in giving that we receive.” We know Mayor Kristie S. Overson that the happiest people are not those getting more but those giving more. The gesture of acquiring, preparing and bestowing something of value to friends and family around the holidays is a time-honored tradition extending thousands of years. “Giving presents at Christmas is a Christian tradition that is widely practiced around the world,” according to an article on the history of gift-giving by Gifts International. “But the practice is not exclusive to Christianity. Several other religions mark the end of the year with a similar custom, such as Hanukkah or the Hindu celebration of Pancha Ganapat.” Likewise, we in Taylorsville are a giving community, and it’s not only at Christmastime. I have experienced this kindness and generosity throughout the year, and saw it again just this past month at a silent auction and bake sale organized by 13-year-old Toby Tirell of Taylorsville, who is raising money to purchase ballistic vests for police dogs (see story on Page 5). Toby’s desire to give is truly inspiring. At City Hall, we also have organized a citywide Holiday Giving drive for items to donate to the Golden Living Center this year. Items are being collected at the receptionist’s desk on the second floor. Please consider donating a gift for seniors living at the center, such as a $5 McDonald’s gift card, blankets for laps, scarves, easy-on slippers, candy, shampoo, lotion, washcloths, soda for bingo prizes, teddy bears or grabber tools. Additionally, I know that residents across the city are generously donating their time and talents at this time of year. Volunteers gathered on recent evenings at the Taylorsville Food Pantry, for instance, to stuff bags with food for those in need during the holidays, and Granite Education Foundation’s Santa Sacks program has worked to help lighten the holiday load of low-income families in the school district (See more at www.granitekids.org). Many others, still, have given their talents at community holiday concerts and performances, which I have immensely enjoyed. Thank you to all; it means so much to me that I live in a community where giving is the essence of who we are. I extend to you every wish for a very Merry Christmas, happy holidays and a joyous New Year! –Mayor Kristie S. Overson

WHAT’S INSIDE – December 2019 Frequently Called Numbers, Page 2 Council Corner, Page 3 Transportation, Page 4 Public Safety, Page 5 Environment, Page 8

Plenty of opportunities are available to celebrate the holidays this year in Taylorsville — from attending events and musical performances to giving to holiday donation drives. At the top of the list is the annual Saturday with Santa event, sponsored by the Taylorsville Preservation Committee, with support of the Parks and Recreation Committee and Cultural Diversity Committee. The day promises plenty of fun for everyone — from children’s crafts, games and tasty treats to guest singers and

choirs. There will be participation prizes for the kids, hot chocolate, wassail and more. Of course, Santa will be there, too! It is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 7, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Taylorsville-Bennion Heritage Museum, 1488 W. 4800 South (See more on Page 5). The Taylorsville-SLCC Symphony Orchestra will perform its Winter Concert on Friday, Dec. 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Bennion Junior High. Get into a festive spirit with a free night of music. (See more on Page 7).


Consider a Donation to the Taylorsville Food Pantry Volunteers at the Taylorsville Food Pantry gathered over two evenings to stuff bags full of food for those in need during the holidays. The sacks were given out to 75 families along with a turkey for Thanksgiving, and 75 more will be given again with a turkey or ham for Christmas. “We have the best volunteers in the world,” said warehouse manager Sue Lane on one recent evening at the pantry. Twelve volunteers pitched in to stuff the bags for Thanksgiving, setting up an assembly line to complete the job in less than an hour. Sacks were piled high with food, ready to be picked up. The Taylorsville Food Pantry, located at 4775 S. Plymouth View Drive, is open on Mondays from 1 to 3 p.m., Wednesdays, 4 to 6 p.m. and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to noon. Each month, the pantry provides food to about 1,200 people, and for Thanksgiving they gave away the gift bags filled with stuffing, cans of olives and green beans, pumpkin and pineapple, cranberry sauce, cream of chicken soup,



| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

City of Taylorsville Newsletter CELEBRATE THE HOLIDAYS CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 The City of Taylorsville also has organized a citywide Holiday Giving drive for items to donate to the Golden Living Center this year. Items are being collected at the receptionist’s desk on the second floor. Seniors living at the center are in need of the following items: • $5 McDonald’s gift card (The center often takes the seniors to McDonald’s, which they really enjoy). • Blankets for laps • Scarves • Easy-on slippers with backs • Candy • Shampoo, lotion and washcloths • Soda for bingo prizes (The residents especially like Dr. Pepper, Coke and Mountain Dew). • Teddy bears • Grabber tools City Hall has been decorated for the holidays by the Youth Council, as is tradition. Youth Council members set up the large tree in the foyer and placed the ornaments. Outside, city crews have strung thousands of green, white and red lights. It took a couple of days for city workers to string the lights, including the large Christmas trees In keeping with tradition, last year’s out front, snowflakes on light poles and strings of lights Youth Council trims the tree at City Hall. along the roofline. In addition, the city is supporting Granite Education Foundation’s Santa Sacks program, which works to help lighten the holiday load of low-income families in the school district. Now in its tenth year, the program is expected to bring the magic of the holidays to nearly 3,500 students in the school district where 65 percent live at or below poverty level. A list of needed items can be found at www.granitekids.org or at Amazon.com under the @Santa Sack’s wish list. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!

TAYLORSVILLE EVENTS Dec. 4 – 6:30 p.m. City Council Meeting @ City Hall

Dec. 6 – 7:30 p.m. Taylorsville Symphony Orchestra Performance @ Bennion Junior High School. (See Page 7)

Dec. 7 – 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday with Santa @ Taylorsville-Bennion Heritage Center. (See Page 5)

Dec. 10 – 6 p.m. Planning Commission Meeting @ City Hall

Dec. 24 – Afternoon Christmas Eve. City Hall closes at noon.

Dec. 25 – All day Christmas. City Hall is closed.

Dec. 31 – Afternoon New Year’s Eve. City Hall closes at noon.

Jan. 1 – Afternoon New Year’s Day. City Hall is closed. Find a full calendar of events every month on the city’s website, where you can also submit your own events for possible publication. Go to www.taylorsvilleut.gov.

TAYLORSVILLE FOOD PANTRY CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 canned milk, wheat thins and sweet potatoes. Samples of ibuprofen and Tylenol also were thrown in for good measure. “After a long day, they’re probably going to need it,” Lane said with a smile. Thanks to a generous donation of $3,000 from Coldwell Banker, the pantry was able to purchase the turkeys to give away. Representatives from the Coldwell Banker Foundation planned to present a large cardboard check at the City Council’s December meeting. The pantry relies almost exclusively on donations to provide for those in need. For Christmas, the pantry is seeking donations of hams, mandarin oranges, Raman noodles, macaroni and cheese cups and instant oatmeal. The instant meals are needed, in particular, for children who will not be able to eat at school during the holidays. “When school’s out, a lot of the little kids have to fend for themselves,” Lane said. The pantry stocks its shelves with donations from the Utah Food Bank, which sends two deliveries a month, as well as contributions from churches and private donations from individuals and businesses. Many grocery stores also donate food to the food bank, which brings some of those items to the pantry. To receive food at the Taylorsville Food Pantry, one must be a Taylorsville resident (most neighboring communities also have pantry-like services where their residents can receive food) and fall within income guidelines. The maximum monthly income for a family of four, for example, is $3,075. The Taylorsville Food Pantry was started in a trailer park in 2003 and moved to its current location after the city provided space. The Taylorsville Food Pantry provides two days of food per visit, and visits are limited to four times per month. Find more information about the pantry, including how to volunteer and donate, at: www.taylorsvillefoodpantry.org

December 2019

COUNCIL CORNER By Council Member Ernest Burgess As we gather with friends and family during this holiday season, I am reminded how important it is to show our gratitude and appreciation for each other. I never want to take anyone for granted. Our Taylorsville home is made up of so many dedicated, caring people who each are working to make our community the best it can be. We, as a Council, appreciate those contributions so very much. While we may approach things differently or carry perspectives that vary, we each serve on the City Council for the same reasons — because we care a great deal about our community and the people who live and work here, as well as those who visit or are simply passing through. I am reminded of a beautiful Christmas story, titled “The Gold Wrapping Paper.” The story describes a father who was working very hard just to keep food on the table for his family. One Christmas, he scolded his 5-year-old daughter after learning she had used up the family’s expensive roll of gold wrapping paper to cover an empty shoe box. The little girl, replying to her father on Christmas morning, whispered, “Daddy, it’s not empty. I blew kisses in it until it was all full.” Of course, the father was crushed and begged for his little daughter’s forgiveness. The story tugs on my heartstrings each time I read it. It helps me remember how essential it is to be appreciative of others and that they really do care. Sometimes we get busy and we forget to help people and be kind. But sometimes we only get one chance. It is hard for me to talk about but I still clearly remember the last time I saw my own father. I was only

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |


Wishing You Peace and Joy This Season 13-years-old. Before leaving the house, he told me to mind my mom. Those were the last words he said to me. There were some wires that were supposed to have been raised but were not. I’m still not sure exactly what happened but he became tangled in those power lines while doing some work. Of course, I wish that I could celebrate the Christmas season with my father once more. The loss of loved ones impresses the point even more powerfully that we must treasure and cherish all of those around us. Sometimes, we may face disagreement. We may not always see eye to eye. But we certainly are more similar than different. Maya Angelou put it perfectly in her poem, the “Human Family”: I note the obvious differences in the human family. Some of us are serious, some thrive on comedy. Some declare their lives are lived as true profundity, and others claim they really live the real reality. … note the obvious differences between each sort and type, but we are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike. We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike. We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.

Left to right: Curt Cochran (District 2) Ernest Burgess (District 1) Dan Armstrong, Chair (District 5) Meredith Harker, Vice Chair (District 4) Brad Christopherson (District 3) Forgive me for waxing sentimental. Perhaps, it is the season that causes me to reflect. I am grateful for this wonderful time of year that brings people together. It is my hope that we treasure what is truly important. Tell those around you how much you care; think of them fondly, as well-meaning and in the best light. Give others the benefit of the doubt. There is great joy in discovering that the best present is the presence of those we love. I and my fellow Council Members extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to you. We wish good tidings to you now and throughout the New Year!

Sunflower Studio Offers Yoga, Meditation and Fitness Classes

City Welcomes Twisted Sugar with Ribbon Cutting

Taylorsville has a new yoga studio. Sunflower Studio has opened at 6357 S. Redwood Road, unit F. The new business was celebrated with a Ribbon Cutting this past month held by city officials and ChamberWest. Owner DeAnna Silcox said the studio provides an inclusive, nurturing place where your physical and emotional well-being are safe to explore. “Life as a human being can be quite the ride, can’t it?” she notes. “Ups, downs, lefts, rights, sometimes awesome, sometimes not so much. Finding such a place, can be a breath of fresh air!” Sunflower Studio cultivates an epic, fun, chill atmosphere to support all who enter the doors in nourishing acceptance for this life’s wild ride. It is currently offering yoga, mindfulness meditations, fitness classes (with a disco ball), sound baths and other health promoting workshops. Contact Sunflower Studio by phone at 801-856-6203 for more information, or look to their website at www.SunflowerStudioUtah.com You can also follow the studio on Instagram @sunflower studio Utah, or Facebook @Sunflower Studio Utah

Twisted Sugar is open for business in Taylorsville. City officials and ChamberWest representatives welcomed Twisted Sugar with a Ribbon Cutting on Saturday at its new location, 3544 W. 6200 South, suite 101. Twisted Sugar bakes cookies fresh daily and serves up a variety of delicious sodas. In all, it offers more than 18 flavors of cookies and over 70 drink combinations. You can also create your own drink flavors. Hours are Monday through Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Other Utah locations include Syracuse, Layton, Centerville and Saratoga Springs. See more at: www.heytwistedsugar.com


| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

Crews Work to Move Aqueduct at 6200 South

Utah Department of Transportation crews spent the fall working to move an aqueduct near 6200 South and Bangerter Highway in advance of the construction of a freeway-style interchange there. The aqueduct work resulted in the one-week closure of road near the intersection in October and some lane closures in November. The segment of the Jordan Aqueduct is being relocated in preparation of the new interchange at 6200 South and Bangerter Highway. Construction has occurred primarily on the west side of Bangerter Highway and is now complete. The interchange construction phase will begin in spring 2020. Over the past few months, crews worked to place a 78-inch pipe on the north and south sides of the project corridor and a 36-inch water line under Bangerter Highway. Work also included the installation of a new turnout vault to provide water to the existing pipe. You can view a photo gallery showing the magnitude of the work on the city’s website at www.taylorsvilleut.gov. UDOT is currently reaching out to property owners to conduct right-of-way negotiations on property acquisitions ahead of the planned construction schedule of the interchange. Property owners can expect to be contacted by UDOT representatives within the next few months. The latest information, as well as contact information, can be found on UDOT’s website at www.udot.utah.gov/bangerter6200south/ The aqueduct relocation will shave a year off the construction time of the interchange. The 6200 South interchange is expected to be complete in 2020 while other interchanges along the highway will take two years to finish.

City of Taylorsville Newsletter New Bangerter Interchange Eases Commute Times The new Bangerter Highway interchange at the 5400 South, as well as those at 7000 South, 9000 South, and 11400 South, have significantly shortened commute times. The work has resulted in better traffic flows to not only Bangerter Highway but also its cross streets. Prior to the projects, the travel time from I-80 to I-15 would take an average 42 minutes during the evening commute. This has been reduced by eight minutes to 34 minutes, according to UDOT. Traffic analysis projects this to be reduced to 22 minutes once Bangerter becomes a full freeway. As one of our valley’s largest north-south corridors, Bangerter Highway moves an average of 58,000 vehicles per day. With continued growth on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley, that number is expected to double by 2040 and without major improvements, delays would increase by four times over the next 25 years. The Utah Department of Transportation is making improvements at various intersections along Bangerter Highway to reduce travel times and congestion, connect communities, and improve overall safety along the corridor. To meet the current and future needs of drivers and nearby communities, UDOT is replacing traditional intersections with grade-separated interchanges. Grade-separated interchanges allow one street to pass over the other. By removing traffic signals and creating fewer interruptions, traffic will move more freely and at speeds that are more consistent in all directions. In December 2018, the Transportation Commission accelerated funding for the next phase of construction on Bangerter Highway. The funding includes new interchanges at 6200 South, 10400 South and 12600 South.

Winter is Coming Soon Please remember these winter parking restrictions: No Overnight Winter Parking (November - April) for Snow Removal (City Code 11.20.130) No Parking for more than 24 Consecutive Hours (11.20.135) No Large Truck or Trailer Parking in Residential Area for more than three consecutive hours (11.20.060) No Parking for Repairs, Maintenance, or to Display for Sale (11.20.140)

Thank you and stay safe!

December 2019

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |

13-year-old Taylorsville Boy Raises Money to Protect K-9s Toby Tirell wants to be a police officer when he grows up and hopes to be assigned to the K-9 unit. It is one of the reasons the 13-year-old Taylorsville boy held a silent auction and bake sale this past month. Specifically, he organized the event to earn money for ballistic vests for UPD K-9s. “They protect us so we need to protect them,” he said. Toby said he had heard a news report about two years ago when a K-9 with the Unified Police Department was shot and killed. “It was because he didn’t have a vest,” he said. “I don’t want that to happen again.” Toby is a Boy Scout and is working on earning the highest rank of Eagle, which requires that Scouts set goals and organize a community project. Toby decided upon the silent auction for K-9s as that project. He contacted the Unified Police Department about their needs and then went to a company that sells the vests, where he secured a discount from the supplier. Of course, his mom and dad and Scout troop, as well as the community at large, have helped along the way, he added. “We ended up raising $1,800” from the silent auction on Nov. 8, said Toby, who will continue accepting donations through mid-December. He hopes to be able to purchase two vests for the UPD K-9s. You can donate to the project by contacting Toby on Facebook @Tobys K9 Eagle Project. Mayor Overson and Police Chief Tracy Wyant were among those attending the auction. Chief Wyant, who purchased a pig sculpture at the sale, said the effort is greatly appreciated. “We can’t thank Toby enough for his concern and effort,” he said. Mayor Overson agreed. “Toby’s thoughtfulness and care for our community is truly inspiring,” said Mayor Overson. “The youth in Taylorsville are amazing.” Toby is a student at Bennion Junior High School.

Police Chief Encourages Schoolchildren to Avoid Drugs and Alcohol Police Chief Tracy Wyant paid a recent visit to Calvin Smith Elementary School, where he spoke with third-grade classes for Red Ribbon Week. Chief Wyant of the Unified Police Department’s Taylorsville Precinct talked about making good choices, staying healthy and avoiding drugs and alcohol. He said he always enjoys meeting with the children, and Council Member Meredith Harker who teaches third-grade at the school thanked him for taking the time to come to the school to talk about an important subject. “We are so grateful for all that the chief and Police Department do for us and our city,” she said. Red Ribbon Week encourages students to remain drug-free. It was started in 1985 and is aimed at mobilizing communities in educating youth about the dangers of drugs and alcohol. The campaign is observed annually in October.








Dec. 7th - 2 to 4 p.m.

Sponsored by the Taylorsville Preservation Committee with support of Parks and Recreation & Cultural Diversity Committees

Join us at the TaylorsvilleBennion Heritage Museum

1488 W. 4800 S.


| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

City of Taylorsville Newsletter

December 2019

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |

First ‘Idea House’ in Taylorsville Shows Renovation Possibilities


TAYLORSVILLE SENIOR CENTER Upcoming Events for December: • Birthday Tuesday Meal and Entertainment provided by Calvin Law: Tuesday, Dec. 3, entertainment at 11 a.m., meal at noon • Snowman Winter Craft: Thursday, Dec. 5, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. • Entertainment – Eisenhower Jr. High Choir Holiday Show: Monday, Dec. 9, 11 to 11:30 a.m. • Step-by-Step Guided Acrylic Snowman Painting: Tuesday, Dec. 10, 1 to 3 p.m. • Bone Health: Wednesday, Dec. 11, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. • Entertainment – Salt City Rangers Holiday Party and Special Meal: Tuesday, Dec. 17, 11 a.m. to noon • Good Grief, Creative Grief Processing: Thursday (3rd monthly), Dec. 19, 1 to 3 p.m. • Entertainment – Tony Summerhays Holiday Show: Monday, Dec. 23, 11 a.m. to noon

Drop by the center at 4743 Plymouth View Drive, or call 385-468-3371 for details.

Taylorsville-SLCC Symphony Orchestra The city’s first “Idea House” has been completed. Located on Bitter Root Drive in Taylorsville, the house is the result of a renovation program that provides energy efficient, healthy and sustainable homes. It is the result of a partnership between the City of Taylorsville and Salt Lake County, in conjunction with the Community Development Corporation of Utah (CDCU). The goal of the renovation program is to raise awareness of ways Taylorsville residents can reduce monthly energy expenses, with the additional goal of providing homeownership opportunities to residents while revitalizing aging houses. Renovations may include roof replacement, energy-efficient windows and doors, appliance upgrades, plumbing repair, and hard floor installation to prevent asthma and allergies. Idea Houses are renovated using HOME and Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds and then sold to income qualifying Taylorsville residents. Upon completion, these homes are displayed to the community through an open house, serving as models for renovations that can be implemented by existing homeowners. The Idea House in Taylorsville was listed for sale in the fall. As part of the national Green and Healthy Homes Initiative, the Idea House program fulfills CDCU’s mission by: • Providing low- to moderate-income families with safe and healthy home environments • Increasing surrounding home and business value and reducing crime • Providing a model for safety and energy efficiency CDCU is a non-profit organization that was founded in 1990. It has built or rehabilitated more than 400 homes throughout Utah and helped more than 4,000 families in over 125 Utah communities become homeowners. If you are interested in learning more about the program, please contact CDCU at 801-994-7222 or visit www.cdcutah.org.

Winter Concert

f ight o n E Friday, Dec 6 E a FR Enjoy ! music 7:30 p.m. Bennion Junior High


| www.taylorsvilleut.gov

City of Taylorsville Newsletter

DECEMBER WFWRD UPDATES GREEN WASTE COLLECTION The last pickup date for Green Waste Collection in 2019 for Taylorsville will be Thursday, Dec. 12. Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District reminds residents to not place the green cans out on the curb after that date. They will not be picked up nor emptied. The 2020 Green Waste Collection program for Taylorsville will resume Thursday, March 19, 2020.

FOLLOW THE DISTRICT ON SOCIAL MEDIA As we approach the cold, winter months, WFWRD experiences the possibility of bad weather affecting the ability to provide timely service to your neighborhood. Its Facebook and Twitter pages are the best way for residents and customers to find out if there could be a delay in service due to weather or traffic complications. Please follow the district on Facebook and Twitter to stay apprised of these issues, and also to receive waste and recycling tips.

‘Tis the Season to Prepare for Cold Weather Cold and freezing weather is upon us and your plumbing may not like it. Pipes can freeze and burst causing some of the most expensive repairs in a home. So let's go over some of the basics to make sure you have them covered: INSULATE EXPOSED PIPING If you have any exposed water or drain piping in uninsulated spaces such as in a crawlspace, attic or outside walls, make sure to insulate them. Ideally, you should wrap them with electrical heating tape first, and then insulate them. EXTERIOR FAUCETS Also commonly known as hose bibs, exterior faucets should be checked for leakage. Remember to disconnect your garden hoses from the outside faucets and drain the hose to prevent damage. Also remember: If your property is going to be unoccupied for several months, consider shutting off the water supply valve inside the home. If a leak were to occur without occupancy, the damage could be catastrophic and very expensive. LASTLY, A PUBLIC BUDGET HEARING is scheduled for Wednesday, Dec.18 at 2 p.m. at the Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District office, 1800 W. 4700 South. QUESTIONS? Please contact Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District by calling 801-968-9081 or visiting www.tbid.org. You can also follow the district on Facebook and Twitter.

Green Committee’s Fix-It Clinic is a Hit By Marsha Mauchley Taylorsville Green Committee Member The Taylorsville Green Committee held its third annual Fix-it Clinic in October, with the goal of promoting awareness of how fixing broken household items can save time and money. The key is to reuse. Some of the items the committee has repaired include chainsaws, lamps, sewing machines, electric fans, clocks, garden trimmers, small tables, bicycles and food hydrators. The Green Committee is considering holding more than one such clinic a year. The committee meets every third Friday at 5:30 p.m. at Taylorsville City Hall, and welcomes new members. Bring your ideas!

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Taylorsville City Journal

Good Principles for

Government Budgeting E

Salt Lake County Council | Aimee Winder Newton | District 3

very fall, Salt Lake County goes through its annual budget process. As the government entity with the second largest government budget in Utah (coming behind only the state budget itself), there are a myriad of programs, services, and expenditures that comprise the now $1.4 billion budget. In addition to the statutorily required functions that include assessing and collecting taxes, running elections, and core criminal justice/public safety roles, there are quality of life functions that make Salt Lake County a better place for families to flourish. These include our regional parks, recreation centers, open space, libraries, and other regionally significant amenities - some of which are funded through tourism dollars. I love living in Salt Lake County, both for the quality of life as well as the fact that we work hard to tackle tough challenges like childhood trauma, poverty, affordable housing, and more. It’s very important to me that county government performs its essential and important functions with integrity, transparency, and efficiency. The budget season is a time when I and my colleagues on the council must act in an oversight role over the executive branch to ensure funds are spent in accordance with the principles above. This is particularly important this year, given that the County Mayor’s proposed budget includes a nearly $18 million property tax increase. My goal is to find any unnecessary spending so that we can balance the budget without a tax increase, before we ever ask taxpayers for more. As we come to the close of this budget process, I want to outline some of the key principles I’ve brought to the budget this year, and every year prior. First and foremost, tax dollars collected don’t “belong” to the county. They are your dollars. Taxpayers entrust the county (or any government for that matter) with a portion of their hard-earned money, and in exchange, expect the government to perform essential, necessary functions for the constituency. There is no amount of tax dollars that is too small to be scrutinized. That is why I push back aggressively anytime I hear someone say, “It’s only x dollars… so we shouldn’t worry about it.” Any expenditure whether it’s $10,000 or $10 million should be reviewed, and if

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

it can’t be fully justified to the taxpayers, it should be cut. Second, I believe that all government functions should be viewed in two different categories: “need to have” and “nice to have.” The “need to have” list obviously includes things that are statutorily required of the county to perform, as mentioned above. I also consider public safety and criminal justice generally to be in the “need to have” category, since keeping our residents safe is absolutely one of the core functions of government. That doesn’t preclude the need to still find efficiencies in public safety and criminal justice, but this area should be highly prioritized. The “nice to have” list includes quality of life aspects of the county mentioned above, as well as any other program or effort that can easily be described as “good” or of benefit to the county, but not always within the absolute necessities. These two lists are by no means exhaustive here. But this demonstrates the same principle that every family in our county goes through in their annual budgets. They strive to live within their means and focus on essential family expenditures sometimes at the expense of luxuries. Lastly, I review each aspect of our budget and ask “is this the proper role of county government.” I’ve said many times that government can’t and shouldn’t be all things to all people. There are many programs or services that are better suited to other government entities, or even nonprofits or the private sector. Particularly in a tight budget year, it’s important to review each program, service, or expenditure and ask that question again and again. I’m confident that these principles are the essence of good budgeting, and I will always advocate for this approach any time government is given the trust of the public through their tax dollars. Though there isn’t always agreement among my council colleagues on budgetary matters, I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve and deliberate with them. And I am particularly grateful to the constituents who have trusted me to look out for their tax dollars throughout my years of service. l

December 2019 | Page 21

Cougars almost break school record, advance to state quarterfinals By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com


he last time Kearns High School played football in a semifinals game was 1993. This season they sat on the doorstep of breaking a school record for wins. “Thank you to all of you K Town Cougar fans, students, community, faculty and staff—the stadium was roaring,” Cougars head coach Matt Rickards said. “You never know what can transpire. We are focused on each week. We have focused on each game. We are getting better but not quite where we need to be as a team.” The Cougars nearly made school history. An 11th win in a season would have been the most in its 54-year history. Its two football state championships, 1972 and 1989, came in seasons with fewer games, but this year’s season came to an end with a 37-19 quarterfinals loss to Lone Peak. The Cougars run included only one regular season loss, to Riverton 32-26 on Sept. 13. In the back-and-forth affair, Riverton captured the lead with approximately four minutes remaining and held on for the win. In the Utah High School Activities Association newly designed rating performance index, the Cougars finished the season ranked fifth and earned a first-round bye in the state tournament. The RPI critics ridiculed the final season rankings. Lone Peak was forced to forfeit several games because of an ineligible play-

Senior Kolby Smallwood (No. 20) and sophomore Naki Leha (No. 24) were part of a Cougar offense that averaged 37.8 points per game. (Greg James/City Journals)

er. The rankings produced by win percentage were affected and a powerful Knights team ended up seeded 20th. Jon Oglesby, UHSAA assistant director, said reception of the new RPI was “positive overall.” But he acknowledged others have been critical of it for “various reasons.” “There is not much we can do about that but focus on the games we play,” Rickards said. Despite the uproar over seeding, Kearns decidedly won Region 2. The Cougars finished 6-0 in its region games, defeating Hunter, Cyprus, Taylorsville, West, Granger

and West Jordan. Senior quarterback Dakota Lynde completed 59% of his passes for 1,956 yards. His favorite targets included juniors Jack Kelly, Jeffrey Bassa and senior Austin Perry. They combined for 56 receptions and nine touchdowns. “We have numerous guys that could play at the next level,” Rickards said. Some have offers already. In our season, we have done well at establishing the run game and being efficient in the passing game. I think defensively we need to get better at tackling.” Sophomore Naki Leha led the team in

rushing with 1,386 yards and 20 touchdowns. Perry and senior Isiah Afatasi led a defense that allowed 19.5 points per game. Only Bingham and East allowed fewer points per game among class 6A teams. “We love our boys,” became the most liked Facebook post on the Kearns Metro Facebook page during the season. The supportive community filled the stands of each of the home playoff games. In the first round, Kearns defeated Hunter 31-14. The Cougars had won 10 games in a season twice before, 1989 and 1993. They are 4315 since 2015. They also advanced to the quarterfinals in 2018 and lost to Bingham 46-0. Earlier this year the Cougars lost a recent alum in a shooting, and another former player was injured in a trampoline accident. The team dedicated this season to Neko Jardine who was killed. They wore neeks#44ever in his honor on the back of their helmets. “One thing our guys have learned is how to deal with adversity,” Rickards said. “That is the backbone of what we teach, how to react when things happen in life. Unfortunately, we have had two major events that have happened that are outside of our control. It also lets them know that life is precious. We have learned to win the day. It sounds cliché.” l


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Colds may be a thing of the past By Priscilla Schnarr

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More and more people are saying they just don’t get colds anymore. They are using a new device made of pure copper, which scientists say kills cold and flu viruses. Doug Cornell invented the device in 2012. “I haven’t had a single cold since then,” he says. People were skeptical but New research: Copper stops colds if used early. EPA and university studies Businesswoman Rosaleen says when demonstrate repeatedly that viruses and bacteria die almost instantly when people are sick around her she uses CopperZap morning and night. “It saved me touched by copper. That’s why ancient Greeks and Egyp- last holidays,” she said. “The kids had tians used copper to purify water and colds going around, but not me.” Some users say it also helps with heal wounds. They didn’t know about sinuses. Attorney Donna Blight had a viruses and bacteria, but now we do. Scientists say the high conductance 2-day sinus headache. When her Copperof copper disrupts the electrical balance Zap arrived, she tried it. “I am shocked!” in a microbe cell and destroys the cell in she said. “My head cleared, no more headache, no more congestion.” seconds. Some users say copper stops nightSo some hospitals tried copper touch surfaces like faucets and doorknobs. time stuffiness if used before bed. One This cut the spread of MRSA and other man said, “Best sleep I’ve had in years.” Copper can also stop flu if used earillnesses by over half, and saved lives. Colds start after cold viruses get in ly and for several days. Lab technicians your nose, so the vast body of research placed 25 million live flu viruses on a gave Cornell an idea. When he next CopperZap. No viruses were found alive felt a cold about to start, he fashioned a soon after. Dr. Bill Keevil led one of the teams smooth copper probe and rubbed it genconfirming the discovery. He placed miltly in his nose for 60 seconds. “It worked!” he exclaimed. “The cold lions of disease germs on copper. “They never got going.” It worked again every started to die literally as soon as they touched the surface,” he said. time. The handle is curved and finely texHe asked relatives and friends to try it. They said it worked for them, too, so tured to improve contact. It kills germs he patented CopperZap™ and put it on picked up on fingers and hands to protect you and your family. the market. Copper even kills deadly germs that Now tens of thousands of people have tried it. Nearly 100% of feedback have become resistant to antibiotics. If said the copper stops colds if used within you are near sick people, a moment of 3 hours after the first sign. Even up to 2 handling it may keep serious infection days, if they still get the cold it is milder away. The EPA says copper still works even than usual and they feel better. Pat McAllister, age 70, received one when tarnished. It kills hundreds of diffor Christmas and called it “one of the ferent disease germs so it can prevent sebest presents ever. This little jewel real- rious or even fatal illness. CopperZap is made in America of ly works.” Now thousands of users have pure copper. It has a 90-day full money simply stopped getting colds. People often use CopperZap preven- back guarantee. It is $69.95. Get $10 off each CopperZap with tively. Frequent flier Karen Gauci used to get colds after crowded flights. Though code UTCJ8. Go to www.CopperZap.com or call skeptical, she tried it several times a day on travel days for 2 months. “Sixteen toll-free 1-888-411-6114. Buy once, use forever. flights and not a sniffle!” she exclaimed. advertorial

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December 2019 | Page 23

Escalator up: How one Taylorsville High student teacher keeps on rolling By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com

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manda King loves to sing and conduct music. She also enjoys skiing, swimming, wheelchair basketball, opera, theater and riding up an escalator still sitting in her chair. She was at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado, playing at halftime for the Denver Nugget’s game once, which was really fun, she said. “But when I went up [the escalator], this big, big guy looks down at my face. ‘You can’t do that,’ he tells me. ‘You’re dangerous on the escalator.’” King smiles. “I’ve never fallen or had a bad experience on an escalator,” she said. “Besides, skiing is definitely more dangerous. I go really, really fast.” King, who is currently a student-teacher of Choir at Taylorsville High School and working on her Music Education degree, believes everything she does is a good fit. “One thing I really love is connecting with people,” she said. “And that’s something [you get] with team sports and with music groups. You have to have a connection, and that’s one thing I really thrive off of—being able to establish connections with people.” Connections that King remembers began for her when she was about 6 years old and went to summer wheelchair sports camp for the first time. “When I came in that first day I thought, ‘Wow, there are so many different people in wheelchairs!’” She continued to attend sports camp and joined the choir at about the same time which she “absolutely adored.” Orchestra began in middle school, as did wheelchair basketball, which has continued clear into college. “I didn’t know much about wheelchair basketball,” she said. “I’d played before. Camp was designed in a way that you could just dabble in [different] stuff, but I really didn’t know the basic rules of basketball. During one game the coach yelled at me. I got off the court and cried.” King has since had many encounters with coaches and admits she no longer takes the yelling personally. “Being able to talk and listen to people is important,” King said. Also, important is keeping at it when the going gets tough. “Sometimes I’d go, go, go, and then I’d crash,” King said. She was in Illinois for three years, playing for the University of Illinois wheelchair basketball and studying music education, when the first hint came. The training was “intense, and I was like going along, and my life imploded. I found out I had depression.” She returned home to Colorado and decided to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Amanda King also enjoys reading. Her favorite genre is fantasy. (Photo Courtesy Amanda King)

“I have an eating problem,” King said. “I also love being active. On my mission, I thought, ‘I can focus more on eating better.’ I’d struggle with sleep sometimes.” When King returned to Utah Valley University after her mission, she tried to take it easy. She didn’t take too many classes. And then someone asked her to play wheelchair basketball, and King couldn’t resist. She played with the team for two seasons before returning to school again last year. And today? “I’m back playing again for the Wheelin’ Jazz,” she said. “It’s a Division 1 team, and I’m the only female on the team.” She has plenty more going on. “Theater and opera are sitting on the side,” she said. “I did the Taylorville’s Got Talent a few weeks ago, and I won the adult division.” Come Dec. 16, her group of 115 students will perform at Taylorsville High School, and the day before that at the Assembly Hall at Temple Square. Sometimes, she still gets depressed despite her fulfilled and busy life. “I’m just now coming out of a low 2½week valley,” she said. Still, King said, it’s been an “adventure.” She talks about using a separate wheelchair cushion for conducting, figuring out where she needs to position the piano, where she needs to position herself, especially with a bigger group where, upon standing, she can see only the first three rows. There’s a lot of “experimenting,” a lot of “positioning” until things get figured out. “I don’t have everything in concrete,” she said. And that includes music. l

Taylorsville City Journal

This class project creates more than art By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com


hen Suzette Wilson began teaching at John C. Fremont Elementary 10 years ago, she had something important on her mind. I wanted to “reduce, reuse and recycle,” she said, speaking of her desire to teach both children and teachers what recycling was all about. “We do the boxes twice a week,” Wilson said, speaking of the recycling work of her 29 students. “We make sure we get all of the boxes from the food delivery. We get a lot of boxes from the cafeteria. We do all of the classes [unless they’re] on field trips and we can’t get into the rooms. It’s a fun project, and we do it all year long.” The best news? The children have smartened up. They talk about the animals getting hurt eating things they shouldn’t and starving because they feel full. They talk about sea turtles eating plastic bags. They talk about trees and about carbon dioxide and oxygen. They know a term called leachate — when plastic bottles break down to oil and the substance mixes with water. Once a week, Wilson’s students walk from class to class dumping class garbage into larger blue bins; one bin has wheels and looks like a mini dump truck. Boxes are scrunched, the paper is dumped, and organized mayhem ensues. Everything is gathered, and bins are wheeled outside where the contents are disposed of. It’s time to recycle. “Kids are smarter than adults,” Wilson said. “They know this is going to be their earth. Adults can make excuses why not to [reduce, reuse or recycle], but the kids know this is their place.” What can you recycle? The list is clear: • Glass • Newspapers • Paper • Cups that have had food cleaned out of them • Plastic containers, such as a milk jug • Plastic utensils and trays • Aluminum cans • Water-bottles • Cardboard • And yes, even tissue boxes, if you’ve cleaned the tissues out • And yes, robots. Or at least the stuff of robots. “We were kind of looking at recycled items, and we saw recycled robots,” Wilson said, speaking of her class art project. “Some of [my students] made a Mrs. Wilson robot. They gave me a nose ring and tattoos because I have a lot of nose rings and tattoos.” She laughed. “You have to be creative, you have to

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draw attention,” Isabella said when asked As for art recycling plans in the future? LEARN MORE AND APPLY: about how recycling and art come together. “Nothing is on the agenda — yet,” Wil“You have to figure out how much [material] son said. “But you never know when I’ll get www.WLIUT.com/CDS you need, and you need lots of glue.” inspired to do [something] weird.” l “You have to get it just right so it can stand on its own,” Ambralii said. One robot, who lost an arm somewhere during the journey, is still standing proudly in class. Even though the robot is no longer complete, “it’s an example of reusing,” said Lillian. Not everything is reused, however, nor can it be recycled. “We don’t recycle tissues because we don’t recycle little snots. Trust me, they used to recycle them,” Wilson said, with the smiling. City Journals Other items not recycled include plastic that makes a crackling sound; plastic bags that jam up the recycling machine; pencils, because they are made using two or more products; and crayons — they melt on other s food recyclables. onate d r e c o The year is mid-way through, but the Local ger |rwriter@mycityjournals.com Writ cal Beat lo By recycling continues at Fremont. And sturs dents know what recycling and not recycling newspape ommunity over 27 years c 3 1 means: r es 5 cities fo serving 1 igital ad opportunit “If we don’t recycle the things that can d d n s a lt t u n s ri P ackable re be recycled, they will go to the landfill and Real and tr will just stay there,” Peyton said. “If we don’t recycle paper, we have to cut more trees down, so we couldn’t breathe,” Khapri said. “If we recycle, we have more clean air so more things can grow,” Rhylee said. “We wanted to be creative, and we have 74 54-59 2 really creative kids,” Wilson said. But the 1 0 8 most important thing is that kids learn how to ge 7 2019 | Pa August take care of the earth. “I need the kids to be the teachers for the rest of the adults.”










December 2019 | Page 25

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or some reason unbeknownst to me, us Utahans get way too hyped over holiday lights. Perhaps, we really like them because of the creative designs. Or maybe it’s because it’s a cheap or completely priceless way to spend a magical night with friends and family. It might even be a way for many of us to fight the seasonal depression that comes along with the winter darkness. Whatever the reason may be, we love some holiday lights. If you haven’t checked out these locations yet, I recommend them for a usually-completely-free experience (unless you’re buying some hot chocolate). My favorite light events over the past few years have been the Trees of Life. While originally named the Tree of Light, many residents have nicknamed the trees “Trees of Life,” for various reasons. One of the most stunning trees grows in Draper City Park (1300 E. 12500 South). Every year, over 65,000 lights are carefully strung throughout the tree. When lit (which occurs the first Monday evening after Thanksgiving) all of the branches of the tree are illuminated; making it seem like a tree from a magical world. Throughout the valley, many more Trees of Life are being decorated. The closest one to me personally resides in a cemetery. That’s where I would check to see if there’s a Tree of Life near you. Temple Square arguably has the most famous lights within the valley. Located in

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downtown Salt Lake City, Temple Square decorates their 10-acre complex with many different colors and styles of lights. This year, the lights will be on from Nov. 29 until Dec. 31. Check them out from 5 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. The Grand America Hotel in SLC (555 S. Main St.) is a building to sight-see all year round. When it’s lit up with Christmas lights though, it’s hard not to miss. City Creek (50 S. Main Street in Salt Lake City) will turn on their lights for the season on Nov. 21. Their event titled “Santa’s Magical Arrival” will kick off at 6 p.m., when the Candy Windows at Macy’s on Main Street are revealed. The Westminster College Dance Program will be performing “Eve” and will be followed by a fire fountain show. Light the Heights in Cottonwood Heights will occur on Dec. 2, beginning at 5 p.m. A holiday market will be open as City Hall, located at 2277 E. Bengal Blvd., turns on their lights for the first time this season. Other public spaces that are worth walking through to see the lights are This is the Place Heritage Park (2537 E. Sunnyside Ave., Salt Lake City), Gardner Village (1100 W. 7800 South, West Jordan), and Thanksgiving Points (3003 N. Thanksgiving Way, Lehi). Beginning on Dec. 6, Hogle Zoo (2600 E. Sunnyside Ave.) will host Zoo Lights! intermittently throughout the season until Jan. 5. This event does require an entrance fee of


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$9.95. On Sundays through Thursdays, they will be open from 5:30 p.m. until 9 p.m. On Fridays and Saturdays, they will be open until 10 p.m. One other event with an entrance fee that’s worth mentioning is Christmas in Color in South Jordan, at 1161 S. 2200 West. You’ll need your car for this one as you drive through lighted tunnels and landscapes for at least 30 minutes. Tickets are $27 per vehicle. Now back to the free-of-charge neighborhood lights. In Sugar House, Glen Arbor Drive (also unofficially known as “Christmas Street”) is a popular destination for holiday drivers. While driving, please be courteous of the street’s residents.  In Taylorsville, (another unofficial) Christmas Street has been causing quite a stir. It’s a festive neighborhood where the residents really take to the holiday. Located around 3310 W. Royal Wood Drive, this street is one to cruise down. The Lights on Sherwood Drive in Kaysville is also a neighborhood gaining popularity. According to their Facebook page, their Christmas light shows are fully controlled and synchronized to a light show. Shows start at 5:30 p.m. and run until 10 p.m. every day of the week. If you’re looking for even more places to visit, you might want to check out chistmaslightfinder.com. l

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Taylorsville City Journal

Son of a Nutcracker


t’s the time of year people pretend “The Nutcracker” ballet is a fun holiday activity. If you’re one of the lucky few who never sat through this weird production involving multi-headed vermin, living toys and one unsettling old man, here’s a recap. Picture a festive house in the late 1800s with dozens of dancing guests, skipping children and happy servants, basically it’s the “12 Days of Christmas” come to life. Young Clara and her obnoxious brother, Fritz, are the ballet version of little kids crazy-excited for Christmas. (The ballet version differs from real life because ballet dancers don’t speak, where real children don’t shut up from Thanksgiving to Christmas morning.) Dr. Drosselmeyer, Clara’s super-creepy godfather, appears at the party dressed like Count Chocula and presents her with a wooden nutcracker. Clara is over-the-top ecstatic, for reasons I’ll never understand. I guess children had a different relationship with nutcrackers in the 19th century. Clara’s brother is SO jealous of the gift (right??) that he flings the nutcracker across the room, because really, what else can you do with a nutcracker? Clara’s despondent. She wraps his broken wooden body in a sling (like ya do) and falls asleep on the couch, snuggled to her nutcracker. During the night, the Rat King and his minions sneak into Clara’s home, because why not? She wakes up and freaks out. The


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nutcracker turns into a handsome soldier and wields his sword to defeat the rodent army. “Nutcracker! You’re my hero!” screams Clara, if people in a ballet could talk. “That’s Prince Nutcracker to you, peasant,” he sniffs in pantomime, before taking her to the magical Land of the Sweets ruled by the Sugar Plum Fairy who has an unclear but definite sexual relationship with Prince Nutcracker. While in the Land of Sweets, Clara watches dancers from Russia, Spain, China and Arabia (?) as they perform in a culturally stereotypical fashion. Prince Nutcracker sits next to Clara cracking walnuts with his jaw like some football jock. Mother Ginger shows up in drag with a skirt full of tumbling children, then there’s a flower waltz and dancing pipes and tons more pirouetting before the Sugar Plum Fairy takes the stage to make everyone else look clumsy and insipid. It’s all performed to Tchaikovsky’s musical score that stays in your head through January. In the end, it turns out it was all a dream, as most stories involving young girls and adventure turn out to be. I told you that story to tell you this story. When I was a gangly 11 year old, still full of hope, I auditioned for Ballet West’s “The Nutcracker.” As the audition drew nearer, I practiced every spin and arabesque I’d ever learned. I played the music all day until my

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dad walked into my room, removed the album from the turn table and smashed it into pieces with his bare hands. I showed up at the audition with my hair pulled into a bun so tight it closed my eyes. An elegant dancer performed several steps that we practiced for a few minutes, then we performed for the judges. It was over so quickly. As dancers were given roles as soldiers, party goers and mice, I held my breath. But my number wasn’t called. I was heartbroken. Maybe decades later I’m insulted that the ballet judges couldn’t see my awkward talent. Or maybe I’ve endured enough versions of this tale to see it’s craziness. And if “The Nutcracker” is your family’s favorite holiday tradition, ignore my opinion. It’s all a dream anyway. l

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