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February 2020 | Vol. 7 Iss. 02



early nine in 10 registered voters across Taylorsville approve of the jobs their mayor and city council members are doing, according to the first citywide survey the council has commissioned in nearly a decade. “Taylorsville elected officials have tied with those in Millcreek for the highest voter approval ratings we have ever measured,” said Y2 Analytics Partner and Research Vice President Kyrene Gibb. “To have 87% of responders approve of the job they are doing is incredible.” Gibb and her company shared the results of their survey at a recent city council meeting. On the survey question “Do you approve or disapprove of how the Taylorsville mayor and city council are handling their jobs?” 9% strongly approved, while 78% approved. Just below the 87% approval for elected officials, survey responders gave fire and emergency medical services an 82% approval rating, while police came in at 76%. Between those two, the quality of the city’s culinary water and its garbage collection efficiency each earned 79% approval ratings. “It’s nice to see our residents have faith in our community and their elected officials,” said Mayor Kristie Overson. “But the survey also gave us some great suggestions. It’s a good measuring stick. (Y2 Analytics) did a top-notch, professional job. I think we got an incredible product for what we spent.” Taylorsville City officials paid Y2 Analytics $14,040 for the survey. Future surveys, which are not yet scheduled, will cost about $5,000 each. “Years ago, surveys like this were typically done over the The overall 87% approval rating Taylorsville residents gave their mayor and city council members in a recent survey is the highest rating the survey company has ever seen. (taylorsvilleut.gov) phone,” Gibb said. “A survey Continued page 5




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February 2020 | Page 3

Performing arts center construction passes midway point; still on time, under budget By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


he $39 million Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center, southeast of Taylorsville City Hall, continues to take shape this winter. Crews barreled past the midway point on the construction project, still aiming to have the work substantially completed by early October, with the first shows in the new facility before the end of the year. “Following the ceremonial ground breaking in December 2018, actual construction began a month later, on Jan. 21, 2019,” said Jacobsen Construction Project Executive Jim Cavey. “We placed our highest block on the project almost exactly a year later. People passing by (driving on 5400 South) will see even more significant changes to the appearance this spring.” A wetter-than-normal spring a year ago has given way to a more temperate winter the past couple of months, allowing crews to remain on schedule and under budget. “We’ve been averaging about 70 workers per day at the site,” said Jacobsen’s Project Engineer Burke Peterson. “It has been a good, safe worksite with no significant injuries.” The new 67,500-square-foot MVPAC will be a Salt Lake County facility, managed by its Arts & Culture Division. Associate Division Director for Theatre Operations Jeff Gwilliam is actively monitoring the work and was on hand for a recent construction staff meeting and media update. “Jacobsen has done an excellent job remaining on schedule, and we are still confident they will reach substantial completion by the first week in October,” Gwilliam said. “However, after that, we aren’t sure how long it will take to install all of the additional equipment into the building (lighting, sound systems, etc.) and to test them. All of the cogs


are moving, but I can’t give you a hard date on when the first shows will be performed here.” The Taylorsville Arts Council has made it clear they would like a weeklong run of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” performed by their volunteer actors, singers and dancers, to be the inaugural show in the shiny, new MVPAC. But Gwilliam said the local group has not yet been promised that slot. “We have not seen their formal, written requests for those dates,” he said. “But I know the (Taylorsville) Arts Council has been talking with our events management team. I’m sure they are working together on that now.” County officials are also considering naming rights for the MVPAC, though there is no progress to report on that front. “Facility naming rights are handled through the county mayor’s office,” Gwilliam said. “I know [Salt Lake County Community Services] Director Holly Yocom has been discussing that. But, so far, I have not heard anything official about it.” County officials are still standing by their decision not to include an outside electronic sign between the MVPAC and 5400 South, which could be used to advertise facility events. “Taylorsville is in charge of landscaping around the new arts center, and I know they were talking about putting trees out there,” Gwilliam said. “A sign might not be practical there, with cars going by at 45 miles per hour. If the city wanted to put up a sign, they would have to work with UDOT to get permission.” The MVPAC will include a 440-seat main theater and a more intimate 225-seat theater, along with rehearsal and event space.

“This is an average size project for Jacobsen; it’s our bread and butter that we do day in and day out,” Cavey said. “However, it is also awesome and unique. We know this project will have a big impact on this entire side of the valley. That is what makes the project neat for us.” Jacobsen officials are determined to make sure all of their subcontractors also understand the significance of this project. As new workers come, the construction company provides them with an information card that is expected to be taken to heart. “Your work on the MVPAC will be

A blue sky day in mid-January allowed arts center construction crews to continue progress on their steel framework at the north end of the new arts center. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)




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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making life better for the Salt Lake County community by providing much-needed rehearsal and performance space,” is how the information on the card begins. Then it continues, “Your work will provide countless opportunities for generations of … performers. This is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to build a signature project.” After two years of design work and another 13 months of construction, the Taylorsville Arts Council is still champing at the bit to perform its first show in the Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center, or whatever it may be called by the time the ribbon is cut. l


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Continued from front page like this might have easily cost $30,000 to $35,000. But now we can do nearly everything by email and online, which reduces the cost significantly.” Of the approximately 25,000 Taylorsville residents listed on the public Utah registered voter list, a random sampling of 11,701 names were placed in the survey pool. Email addresses were found for about 70% of these people, while the other 30% received letters in the mail, asking them to either respond to a web address, or phone in if they did not have computer access. “Virtually everyone responded to the survey online; I think we had fewer than 10 call-in responders,” Gibb added. “Of the 11,701 registered voters we contacted, 937 responded. That 8% response rate is about average for these kinds of surveys.” That response rate gives the survey a 3% margin of error. “The survey gave us some great ideas of things we can do,” Councilman Dan Armstrong said. “I expected our public safety responders to earn high ratings. Everyone I talk to loves our police and fire service. But the survey also offered some valuable suggestions.” Specifically, one of the most surprising responses came to the question: “What recreational amenities, if any, would you like to have access to in Taylorsville that are not currently available?” One out of every five responders said they want an indoor swim-

ming pool in the city. “We have discussed an indoor swimming pool over the years, but, as always, it’s a money issue,” said Council Vice Chairman Brad Christopherson. “We have even discussed the possibility of enclosing the outdoor pool. I think it might make sense to add on to the Taylorsville Recreation Center (4948 South 2700 West) to include an indoor pool. The rec center also has only two basketball courts when I think it could handle six to eight of them. But those are county facilities. We will need to talk with them again.” Beyond the swimming pool issue specifically, Christopherson was pleased with the survey results. “What I took from it is, ‘stay the course, keep doing what we are doing and keep being fiscally responsible,’ which are all positive findings,” he said. “The survey will help us set priorities.” Talk of a citywide survey became more prevalent several months ago, in the midst of a controversy over animal services in Taylorsville. The city partners with West Valley City for animal control and their joint-owned animal shelter houses one of the few controversial gas chambers still in operation, for euthanizing animals, across the entire country. One city council meeting last year was filled with animal advocates demanding city leaders either pressure West Valley leaders to get rid of its gas chamber or switch animal services to Salt Lake County, which does not

have a gas chamber. Since then, West Valley animal services has changed leadership. The gas chamber remains, but officials say it is virtually never used anymore. In the survey, Taylorsville animal control services received a 63% approval rating. Several city officials expressed belief that particular controversy appears to be behind them, provided the new West Valley animal services management continues on its current trajectory. Other key findings shared in the survey: Two-thirds of residents say Taylorsville is heading in the right direction. Residents’ major concerns are focused on traffic and growth. Crime is a significant secondary concern. Just under half of residents feel they get

enough attention from city leaders when they raise issues. Residents would prefer receiving information about the city in three main ways: the Taylorsville Journal (36%), an email from the city (26%) or through social media (14%). The types of new businesses residents would most like to see in Taylorsville are grocery stores and sit-down restaurants. Overson said she and city council members will now discuss when they might want a follow-up survey, as required by their contract with Y2 Analytics. The general consensus at this point indicates the next one may come about a year from now. When it does, those 937 registered voters who responded to this first survey will be asked to do so again. l

Taylorsville residents rate service from their Unified Police Department very high. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

You were just in a car acident, now what? Unless you’re one of the few anomalies in the world, we’ve all been in an accident. We’ve experienced that sickening feeling when your car makes unwanted contact with another vehicle. We’re frustrated and disheartened. While we may want to crawl into a hole, we can’t. There are things to do and we’ve given you 10 to be aware of (in no particular order). 1.Have an emergency kit in your car. While this step comes before the accident occurs, it’s essential to be prepared. Whatever you kit entails, make sure it has a first-aid kit, flashlight, reflective triangles and a small (and simple) camera in case there’s been damage to your phone. We’re typically frustrated or frazzled after an accident and not inclined to rational thinking. Being prepared limits the possibility of forgetfulness. 2.Take a deep breath. Accidents are traumatic experiences. Taking a breath will shift focus from what just happened to what needs to be done next. 3.Get a status check on everyone in the car. Check with each passenger to see if they are OK. Have someone call

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

911 immediately if someone is injured or unresponsive. 4.Move to a safe location. Most insurance companies recommend relocating the vehicle to the sidewalk or shoulder of the road as soon as possible after the accident. If the damage to the car is minor, this should be relatively easy. But if there are major injuries or questions about the safety of the car, leave it where it is, even if its blocking traffic. 5.Increase your visibility. Turn on your hazard lights and set out your attention items from the emergency kit—flares, orange cones, reflective triangles, etc. One accident should not lead to another. Take precaution to ensure other drivers on the road remain safe. 6.Stay calm. It is very easy to lose your temper in this situation, it’s human nature. Keeping your cool will keep the situation from getting worse. If it wasn’t your fault, it’s easy to want to let your emotions loose on the other driver. This will cloud your judgment and may lead to something that does not help the situation. You still need to exchange information. l




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Recorder Cheryl Peacock Cottle leaves ‘big shoes to fill’ as she retires from Taylorsville City By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com


fter working nearly 18 years for Taylorsville City — the last 12.5 as city recorder — Cheryl Peacock Cottle retired from the post, Jan. 31. “I worked with 16 different city council members, five of the city’s six mayors and two city administrators,” Cottle said, shortly before stepping down. “I consider them all good friends and will miss them.” Family health issues and a desire to spend more time with her growing family prompted Cottle to make the move “a couple of years earlier than I had originally planned.” “She’s done a fantastic job, and we are definitely going to miss her,” said then City Council Chairman Dan Armstrong. “I understand she is leaving for family reasons. She will be sorely missed.” After growing up in northeastern Utah, Cottle moved to the Salt Lake Valley more than three decades ago. “I happily grew up in the small town of Vernal but moved to Taylorsville in 1987 where I raised my children,” she said. “I have spent the past 30-plus years here, except for a brief period living in South Jordan. My husband, Darwin Cottle, and I have been married for 13 years and have a very large blended family. Between us, our combined family includes 15 children, 53 grandchildren and 17 great-grandchildren. They keep us very busy!” Cottle met her husband in a grief support group after each of their previous spouses had passed away. “Darwin was already retired from the state of Utah when we married,” she added. “He likes to say, ‘Now I only work for my wife, and it’s the best job I’ve ever had.’ He’s a very kind and thoughtful person who has been such a blessing in my life.” Cottle began her Taylorsville City career as a part timer in March 2002. “I was initially hired by former Mayor Janice Auger to take city council minutes and to do some executive assistant work,” Cottle said. “I then became deputy city recorder in 2004.”


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“Certified Municipal Clerk.” The professional achievement requires many hours of study, attendance at recorder training conferences and years of experience. More recently, Cottle received the Taylorsville City “Employee Award of Excellence” in 2013 as well as the “Mayor’s Award of Excellence the following year. And, diligent to the very end, Cottle earned her “Master Municipal Clerk” designation, also from the IIMC, just weeks before retiring. “It took me a long time to earn [the Master designation], and I was excited to finally

lar Dystrophy Association in Salt Lake, from 1989 to 2001. Each year MDA held a national fundraising telethon, back in the days when the show was hard to miss because there were so few television channels. The comedic icon who hosted that annual telethon visited Utah one year while Cottle was on duty. “Jerry Lewis made an appearance at our local MDA fundraiser, and I got to introduce him,” she said. “I loved him. He was charming in person and very funny.” But her fond memories of Lewis are likely nothing compared to the fond memories she’s leaving with Taylorsville City

As one of her final official duties last month, retiring City Recorder Cheryl Peacock Cottle administered the oath of office to the three re-elected Taylorsville councilmembers. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

reach that goal before my retirement,” she said. “She has been amazing and wonderful to work with — so meticulous,” said Mayor Kristie Overson. “Cheryl has a sign on her desk that says ‘Nice Matters,’ and she really lives by that. No matter what I need, whenever I see her, she has a smiling, happy face. I will miss that. It will be different and hard without her. I wish her well.” Prior to going to work for Taylorsville City, Cottle did have a momentary brush with celebrity, while working for the Muscu-

co-workers. And Cottle says those feelings are mutual. “I’ve loved my job at Taylorsville these last 18 years and the people I’ve worked with are like my second family,” she said. “I will truly miss interacting with them. But it will be nice to have a little more time to focus on fun things in my life, especially spoiling my grandkids.” Just before press deadline, Cottle’s Taylorsville City recorder replacement was named. We will introduce you to Jamie Brooks next month. l


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That was a particularly exciting time for Taylorsville City government, as construction of the “new” city hall was being completed. An open house and public tours of the new building were offered April 30, 2003, and the first city council meeting was held there a week later. Prior to the move — when Cottle first started — Taylorsville City offices were in a strip mall on 4700 South, just west of the belt route. “My first office was in a tiny annex at the strip mall location,” Cottle said. “We all called it ‘the closet.’ Back then, we recorded city council meetings on cassette tapes, and I took minutes from those tapes. The new building was beautiful, and the move was awesome.” City Administrator John Taylor will also miss Cottle. “I truly hate to see her go, and she will be very difficult to replace,” he said. “Her recorder position is one of the most important in the city, yet also one of the quietest, and she has done it incredibly well. She helped me early in my career and was invaluable in my transition to this job. She was also always very kind doing it.” Born in Frankfurt, Germany, Cottle, 63, moved with her family to Vernal at a young age, where she graduated from Uintah High School in 1974. A generation later, all four of Cheryl’s children — two boys and two girls — graduated from Kearns High School, from 1995 to 2003. One of those sons, along with a wife and three of Cottle’s grandkids, are now living back in Vernal. But it’s another child, living further away, who also prompted the city recorder to leave her post at this time. “My oldest daughter lives in Houston and is due to have her first baby the end of January,” Cottle said. “I will jump on a plane immediately after retiring and spend a couple of weeks down there. She and her husband are just over the moon about having their first child, and I am anxious to go help them out.” After serving as deputy city recorder for a little more than three years, Cottle moved into the recorder position in June 2007, when her predecessor, Virginia Loader, left to take the same position in Riverton (a post she still holds today). “Virginia, [former Taylorsville mayor] Janice Auger and I are great friends and call ourselves the ‘Three Amigos,’ because we worked together for several years, and we each lost beloved spouses to cancer,” she said. “They were a great support to me through my loss.” Just a year after becoming city recorder, Cottle completed an ongoing educational program through the International Institute of Municipal Clerks to earn the designation of

Taylorsville City Journal

Planning Commission member Wendel working to unseat Dunnigan for his District 39 Utah House seat


woman who quite literally travelled the world during her young adulthood — visiting 32 countries in two whirlwind years — decided a quarter century ago to put down roots in Taylorsville. Over the past 15 of those years, she has donated, by her estimate, 18,000 volunteer hours to the community. Now, Lynette Wendel is focusing her attention on trying to upset one of the longest-seated and most-respected members of the Utah State Legislature at the ballot box this fall. Wendel is now gathering the 1,000 petition signatures required to get her name on the Democratic primary ballot in the race for Utah House Seat 39, held for the past 18

By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com tie Overson, a former member of that same group. “She is very enthusiastic. I applaud her. She is bold and brave.” But on the other hand … “Jim Dunnigan is a former city council member and is very supportive of our city,” Overson said. “He has done an incredible job organizing Taylorsville Dayzz. He’s very kind and helpful. He keeps Taylorsville’s interests at heart.” And don’t expect any more advice from City Administrator John Taylor. “Jim Dunnigan has been incredible as our state legislator; he’s extremely accessible,” Taylor said. “He has done an incredible job coordinating Taylorsville Dayzz. He

One of Taylorsville City’s most active community volunteers, Lynette Wendel, is running for the Utah Legislature. ( Photo courtesy votelynette.com)

years by another community stalwart, Republican Jim Dunnigan. Assuming Wendel becomes the official Democratic candidate to challenge Dunnigan (at press time there were no other declared candidates), the race promises to be a difficult one for Taylorsville City elected officials to choose a side. Likely, most of the non-partisan Taylorsville City Council members will not endorse either candidate, because both Dunnigan and Wendel have donated much of their time and effort to improving the community. “Lynette has been a champion volunteer and an amazing member of our Taylorsville Planning Commission,” said Mayor Kris-

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

helps the city in many ways.” And Wendel? “My hat goes off to anyone who provides the city service by volunteering their time, and Lynette has done that for years,” Taylor continued. “Politics is a personal challenge, and I congratulate her on entering the race. It should be an interesting one.” Despite her years of volunteer service to Taylorsville City and many other organizations, Wendel said she has never been particularly “politically active.” “I have not run for an elected position before and have always been registered as an independent,” Wendell said. “I will now have to register as a Democrat. But I hope no one

will make the decision whether or not to vote for me based on my party. My decision to run is an extension of my public service. I appreciate the vast majority of voters in my district are unaffiliated. I think it shows the nature of our area.” By her own admission, Lynette’s adventurous nature and willingness to accept new challenges are attributes she took time to grow into. “In high school, I was so shy I would not even call to order a pizza delivery,” she said. “I was born in the suburbs south of Chicago and had not touched more than possibly four midwestern states until I was well into college at Eastern Illinois University.” Her notion of Utah back in those days? “Well, I watched Donnie and Marie (Osmond) on Friday nights,” she said. “We loved them, and we tried to put on our own show for our parents after theirs.” Accompanying her mother on a business trip to Florida provided Wendel with her first plane trip. Her second flight was much longer. “In the summer of 1988, while attending college, I flew to Australia for a three-week tour of the Outback,” she said. “I was in a photography program, capturing ‘a day in the life of Australia.’ My parents supported me going, and it was a wonderful experience.” Upon returning, Wendel finished her degree in psychology, with minors in sociology and Spanish. And, after working two years to pull together seed money, Lynette departed the country in January 1992 for an excursion that made her Australian “walkabout” look like a stroll around the block. “I booked a one-way flight to London in January 1992, with about $9,000 I had saved,” she recalled. “I ended up being gone two years — until December 1993, after visiting 32 countries, including Egypt, Israel, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. My budget was $10 per day, eating stale bread and bruised fruit. I worked odd jobs like picking strawberries and painting a barn. I slept on park benches and sometimes on a beach.” By then, presumably, Wendel would have had the nerve to phone order a pizza. After finally returning to the states, she spent a year working at the Grand Canyon where she met her husband of now 23 years, Mark Wendel. He was piloting canyon tour flights at the time. After already seeing much of the civilized world, her first time to touch Utah was while the two were dating when they flew to visit Bryce Canyon and Zions national parks. Not long after that, they decided to make Utah home. “Mark got hired by SkyWest, and we could have lived in a lot of different places,” she said. “By then we had gotten to know the

Salt Lake Valley and knew we wanted to live on the west side. We rented our first apartment in Taylorsville. And except for a short time in South Jordan, we have lived here ever since.” The couple bought their first Taylorsville home in 1997 and lived in it nine years. Living in their current home since 2006, the couple has no children but a pair of dogs. Wendel also makes frequent trips to the Midwest to care for aging relatives. “I’ve always said we were born to take care of parents and grandparents, not children,” she said. On her campaign website votelynette. com, Wendel mentions as her key campaign issues: education, air quality, housing, health care, transportation and animal services. “I have found myself on [Utah’s] Capitol Hill more and more in recent years, for a variety of issues,” she said. “That’s when I began to make the decision to run. There just seems to be a disconnect too often between what the public wants and what lawmakers are doing. I have a lot of respect for (incumbent Representative) Jim Dunnigan. But he has served the past 18 years, and I think it might be time for new ideas.” Dunnigan promises to run a serious campaign and said he does support his constituents’ positions. “I consistently opposed the recent tax overhaul legislation, supported by most of my fellow Republicans,” he said. “Voters in my district opposed the change and that is how I voted.” As for Wendel’s candidacy, Dunnigan isn’t too familiar with his opponent. “People have told me she is running; I don’t know her really well,” Dunnigan said. “We always have to campaign hard in every election no matter who we run against. We will run a vigorous campaign.” If Wendel wins her election, she will join District 34 Representative Karen Kwan (if Kwan is also reelected), as two female Democrats representing Taylorsville voters. “I really like Lynette as a person,” Kwan said. “We are seeing a shift in our districts, with much more diversity. I enjoy working with Jim [Dunnigan]. He’s been around a long time and is an expert politician. There’s a lot of time left in that race. I’m waiting to see if any other Democratic candidates announce. But if I had to choose now, between Lynette and Jim, I would endorse Lynette.” That’s a bit more of an endorsement than Taylorsville City officials are prepared to offer. But it’s also another sign, the Dunnigan–Wendel race — if those, indeed, turn out to be the opponents this fall — should be interesting. l

February 2020 | Page 7

Incumbents sworn in, elect Harker as Council Chair


By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com Three incumbent Taylorsville City Council members, Ernest Burgess, Curt Cochran and Brad Christopherson (L-R, Photo 1), repeated their oaths of office Jan. 8after each earned resounding ballot victories two months earlier. Burgess had more than 25 family members on hand for the ceremony (Photo 2). Later in its first meeting of the new decade, the council elected Councilwoman Meredith Harker as their new chair and Christopherson as vice chair (Photo 3).


Incumbent Taylorsville City Council members sworn in. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

VISIT UTAHSIMPLEFUNERALS.COM OR CALL 801-916-5317 Taylorsville City Councilman Ernest Burgess and family. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

New Taylorsville City Council Chair and Vice Chair. (Carl Fauver/City Journals)

Page 8 | February 2020

Taylorsville City Journal

FEMA grant funding assisting the Unified Fire Authority in a big way


hen it comes to making big wishes to get the things they need, Unified Fire Authority officials have found a more reliable method than leaving milk and cookies out on Christmas Eve. UFA members express their “wishes” (in the form of grant requests) to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, through its “Assistance to Firefighters Grant” program. Recently, that technique earned a more than $400,000 AFG grant for the local fire authority. And since they got what they asked for the first time, UFA officials plan to request a much larger “present,” later this year. “We need to make seismic structural upgrades to several of our UFA fire stations and have drafted a grant request to FEMA for $2,746,275,” said Assistant Fire Chief Mike Watson. State officials spent last month reviewing the grant request. It was expected to be formally submitted to FEMA last Friday (Jan. 31, after press deadline). Meanwhile, the already approved smaller grant will be spent this year on a completely different, new UFA program. “The Unified Fire Authority has received a $422,000 federal grant to assist our firefighters with crisis management,” UFA Captain Richard Rich recently reported at a Taylorsville City Council meeting. “The grant will fund several different things.” Assistant Fire Chief Jay Ziolkowski said much of the funding will be spent creating a partnership between his department and the University of Utah to benefit UFA firefighters. “This funding has to do with improving mental health, what’s being called ‘brain wellness,’” Ziolkowski said. “We conduct baseline physicals and baseline blood screening tests for all of our firefighters. This grant will allow us to do similar baseline ‘brain health’ testing.” The University of Utah has been contracted to conduct the tests and create those baselines for the 430 existing UFA firefighters, along with those who are hired this year. Part of the grant is expected to fund additional U of U staffing. Another part of it may go to the firefighters themselves. “We will try to pay firefighters to undergo the testing,” Ziolkowski said. “Even though attitudes are changing, there is still a stigma attached to mental health. But we feel it is very important and hope to compensate our firefighters for the time they spend getting tested.” In short, UFA officials said the tragic and traumatic things firefighters see while on duty take their toll. And today’s firefighters don’t spend as much down time together as they did in years past, which traditionally provided them an opportunity to talk through their feelings. “Firefighters used to sleep in shared

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

By Carl Fauver | carlf@mycityjournals.com

FEMA-approved grant funding will pay to secure this backup electrical generator — outside Taylorsville City’s UFA Fire Station 118 — as part of an effort to keep the station functioning, after an earthquake. (Carl Fauver/ City Journals)

dorms at their fire stations and always ate meals together,” Ziolkowski said. “But now there are more private rooms at fire stations, and they often don’t all eat together.” In addition to creating baseline mental health testing, the new program will also establish peer counseling within the Unified Fire Authority. “We plan to provide some of our firefighters with training so they can assist others in coping with mental challenges related to the job,” Ziolkowski said. “This new program is not being developed because our newer personnel are somehow ‘softer’ than previous firefighters. It’s being created because we have more of an awareness of the issue now. It is another attempt to break down the [mental health] stigma.” Firefighter mental health screening is expected to begin at the University of Utah in March. As for that much larger $2.7 million grant proposal, Watson is confident FEMA will approve it. “My best guess is we have an 80% or higher chance of getting the full amount to complete our upgrades, in preparation for a potential earthquake,” he said. “We feel we have done our job in getting the cost figures together. We also have letters of support from our UFA board members.” One of those board members is Taylorsville Mayor Kristie Overson. “It is critical for our city to have emergency services ready to go at all times,” Overson said. “That is why the new Station 117 was built. We were afraid the old station would crumble. If we have an earthquake, we have got to make sure our fire stations are ready to respond.” As it turns out, Taylorsville City’s two UFA stations are well ahead of the earthquake-ready curve. Watson said Station 117, which opened less than three years ago on Redwood Road (4965 South), was built to

code and will require no funding. Station 118 (immediately west of city hall at 5317 South 2700 West), meanwhile, will need very little retrofit funding. “We have 24 fire stations in our system and 15 of them need work,” Watson said. “The nine most recently built stations (including 117) do not need anything done. In Taylorsville, Station 118 was found to be structurally sound. In essence, the money we need to spend there will be to strap equipment down.” This will include securing the station’s back-up electrical generator, mechanical and electrical equipment and piping. “Every piece of equipment in the fire station that is more than 6 feet tall or over 400 pounds needs to be secured,” Watson said. The firm UFA contracted to inspect the stations and come up with anticipated costs (KPFF Consulting Engineers of Salt Lake) estimates the total seismic retrofit at Station 118 will run $26,000. Taylorsville City would be on the hook for 25% of that, or $6,500. Other municipalities UFA serves will face much higher costs for the 25% match FEMA requires. “The vast majority of the grant funding — $2.3-million of it — will be spent on structural improvements, which KPFF determined would not be necessary at Station 118,” Watson said. “We are excited to make these improvements. We’ve been telling the public for years to prepare for an earthquake, and yet we have not had the funding to completely do it ourselves. Now we will catch up (if the grant request is approved).” The Unified Fire Authority expects to receive the official word from FEMA on the $2,746,275 request by Dec. 30. Work on the seismic upgrades at Taylorsville Station 118 and the others requiring it throughout the UFA system is expected to begin about a year from now. l

CENSUS 2020 BEGINS ONLINE MARCH 12, 2020 The U.S. Census helps fund our schools, health care, roads, and other important parts of our community. It’s quick, easy to fill out and confidential.






February 2020 | Page 9

Page 10 | February 2020

Taylorsville City Journal

New changes at Jackling for students, teachers, parents By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com


t wasn’t an easy decision, nor a quick process, but come the 2020-2021 school year, Jackling Elmentary will be taking on new students. Jackling currently has 350 students; Carl Sandburg has 240, the number they will be losing as the school year closes. “That little pocket of 40 students will go over to Hunter Elementary because [the students] live close to that school,” Principal Robyn Roper said. The 200 remaining will come here,” Roper, who has been with Jackling for four years, is excited to bring in new students and feels that Jackling will be a positive experience for the newcomers. “My teachers overall are excited and feeling positive about the fact that they don’t have to move definitely and they can stay in their building,” Roper said. “I’m sure there’s some anticipation and angst with a new teammate, a new colleague coming into their grade level and new students. But I think, overall, the teachers are pretty positive.” Currently, the school has seven classrooms not in full-functioning use, so there is extra space. But that’s not all. “I’m anticipating that we’ll hire one more teacher per grade level,” Roper said, stating that the school tries “really, really hard not to increase class size.” The school itself is in good shape, receiving a score from an outside analysis com-

Journals C I T Y


pany of 61 out of 100 for its infrastructure. The score was reflective of how the building would hold up during an earthquake, among other things, Roper said. “Sandburg Elementary was given a score of 8,” she said. “It is a big difference, particularly because [the schools] were built [in the late ’60s and] only a year apart.” “Not only is the population declining in this area, but the school enrollments are getting smaller,” Roper said. No longer is there a “high 600, even 700 kids in the school. It’s not fiscally responsible to use the taxpayers’ dollars to leave these buildings open if they’re not operating to capacity.” Still, “hurt feelings” and “negativity” have come from some according to Roper, who admits that a change like this is an “emotional thing,” no matter what the numbers show. She knows that some kids attending Jackling for the first time will feel anxious, so she and her leadership team have some plans in the works. Among the plans include a welcome letter written to every new student from current Jackling students, open houses in the spring, tours of the school for parents and their families, even some big posters that will be hung throughout the school to relay the message, “Welcome, we’re so glad you’re here!” “The transportation department has

looked at where every student lives over in Sandburg in relation to Jackling, and they will do some courtesy bus stops for kiddos that have more than a 10 or 15 minute walk,” Roper said, adding that she and her director have walked the distance themselves and were able to do the walk in 20 minutes. “As a parent myself, I wouldn’t want to send my 8-year-old boy for a 20-minute jaunt in the morning, but a fifth or sixth grader would be a walk they certainly could handle.” Along with ease in getting to school, “we are working hard to improve student learning,” Roper said. “We [also] have a big focus on family engagement.” A STEM lab opened at Jackling in the fall of 2019. “We are working so hard to provide programs to improve student learning,” Roper said, adding the lab even has “little lab coats the students can put on and goggles. They’re doing a lot of hands-on learning. It is super powerful for student achievement.” Every student uses Chromebooks. “We are a one-to-one school,” Roper. “Students need the technical skills to prepare them for college and career in the 21st century.” Roper and her leadership team, and even some teachers, are making home visits this school year. “We talk about goals for life, [about] their wishes and dreams,” she said. “We are

Connecting communities along the wasatch front

Survey results: Taylorsville residents love the jobs police officers, firefighters, elected officials are doing | Cover A recent public opinion survey among Taylorsville residents shows, people love the work their emergency responders and elected officials are doing, but they also want more sit-down restaurants, grocery stores and an indoor swimming pool. FACEBOOK.COM/ THECITYJOURNALS

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

just really trying to get to know them. One of my second grade teachers, Mrs. Katie Page, has visited every single one of her students. She’s just phenomenal.” Bridging learning between school and home is important to Roper, who believes that the greatest success of a student comes from parents who are involved in their student’s mastery. Through the 2019-2020 school year, the students, parents and teachers have been taking part in a “Big 3 Night.” “A couple of months ago, the school held its first event.” Roper said. “Previous to the event, the teachers in each grade level identified three big math standards for the year. Getting the parents involved and practicing with the child at home bridges that academic [gap]. If the students can master these three big math standards, they will be successful in the upcoming grade.” Jackling Elementary currently offers an after-school choir program and a junior coach’s program with Playworks Coach Morganne Nielsen to teach leadership skills. A science club began in early 2020. “I would certainly like to include band or orchestra, or something with the arts,” Roper said. “As we grow and have more teachers, perhaps we’ll bring in more programs like that.” l




Meet the City Journals Team Keith Curtis | Account Executive email | keith.c@thecityjournals.com “I really love what I do, I enjoy building relationships with businesses to help them grow their customer base and be successful.”


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February 2020 | Page 11

Share the love, not the cold By Priscilla Schnarr


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 demonstrate repeatedly that viruses Businesswoman Rosaleen says when and bacteria die almost instantly when people are sick around her she uses Coptouched by copper. perZap morning and night. “It saved me 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.” heal wounds. They didn’t know about Some users say it also helps with viruses and bacteria, but now we do. sinuses. Attorney Donna Blight had a 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 seconds. headache, no more congestion.” So some hospitals tried copper touch Some users say copper stops nightsurfaces 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.” illnesses by over half, and saved lives. Copper can also stop flu if used earColds 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. smooth copper probe and rubbed it genDr. Bill Keevil led one of the teams tly in his nose for 60 seconds. confirming the discovery. He placed mil“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 time. touched the surface,” he said. He asked relatives and friends to try The handle is curved and finely texit. 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 the market. you and your family. Now tens of thousands of people Copper even kills deadly germs that 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. than usual and they feel better. The EPA says copper still works even 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. ly works.” Now thousands of users have CopperZap is made in America of simply stopped getting colds. pure copper. It has a 90-day full money People often use CopperZap preven- back guarantee. It is $69.95. tively. Frequent flier Karen Gauci used to Get $10 off each CopperZap with get colds after crowded flights. Though code UTCJ10. skeptical, she tried it several times a day Go to www.CopperZap.com or call on travel days for 2 months. “Sixteen toll-free 1-888-411-6114. flights and not a sniffle!” she exclaimed. Buy once, use forever. advertorial

Page 12 | February 2020

Parent/Teacher Home Visit Project connects parents, teachers, students


By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournal.com

hat makes your family special? As you consider the answer to this question, reflect on this scenario: Two school teachers come into your home. They have pre-scheduled a visit with you, promising you that the visit has nothing to do with your child’s grades or school performance but something else. They want to get to know your child better, and they want to know a little more about you. Savannah Maez, who has been teaching second grade for five years, frankly admits that the Parent/Teacher Home Visits Project offered at her school, and other Title One schools in the Granite Schools District, has taken some time to get going. “It’s hard to reach out to parents,” she said. “But once you get a few [visits] done, [the excitement] kind of spreads, and everyone just wants it.” And that includes an excitement-filled interest from teachers. “So, right now, I can barely contemplate walking into the bathroom to do what I need to do before we go out [on visits],” Mary-Jane Forbyn, who has been teaching fifth grade for 13 years, said. “On the other hand, once we get there, the excitement with the family is going to energize me, and you’re going to see me just perk up and re-bloom for the day.” As for the parents? “People are really willing,” Maez said. It doesn’t take the parents long to discover that the home visits are just what was promised. Questions such as: “What are your hopes and dreams for your child?” “What makes your family special?” “What’s cool about your kid?” take the front row seat, and the worry about a report to the DCFS (Division of Child and Family Services) travels quickly out the front door. “This is not a trash-your-child program,” Forbyn said. “This is a ‘how can we know you better? How can we connect with

you better?’” Still, visits can be difficult to achieve at first, Principal Andrea McMillan said. “When I first arrived here, I was the third principal in three years,” she said. “Because the community felt as if the school really didn’t care about them — especially after the security doors were put in for the safety of the students — and many felt like the school really didn’t care about the community anymore.” McMillan also said she felt the need to begin “planting the seeds of home visits.” Principal at Taylorsville for three years now, McMillan currently has 26 teachers (including educational assistants) who are on board with the Parent/Teacher Home Visits Project. These educators receive training provided by the Utah State Office of Education, travel in twos to homes of families in the Taylorsville Elementary School boundaries and are paid a stipend for their time. Not all educators are on board, however — they may have young children at home or feel uncomfortable about entering a home where they don’t know the individuals. But all those who participate are happy they’re engaged, especially when they see increased involvement from parents in various school programs or a child doing better in class because of the project. Still, there are things that even teachers don’t expect. “I think the biggest surprise for me is to see just how healthy the home environment is overall,” Forbyn said. “It’s easy to see a struggling kid as the one who comes from this horrible background or horrible circumstance. And then we get over there and we are meeting these loving families who have all their interest in their child that they should. And it’s been very nice for me to have my head turned on that.” As for the students, Maez said the home Visits are “a badge of honor. They love it.” l

Principal Andrea McMillan showcases the number of homes visited so far this school year. (Kathryn Elizabeth Jones/City Journals)

Taylorsville City Journal

City of Taylorsville Newsletter


February 2020

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400

MAYOR'S MESSAGE Dear Friends and Neighbors, Staying in the know about what is happening in our community has never been easier. As a city, we are active on social media channels and launched our new website this last summer to put all the information you need literally at your fingertips. We understand the importance of making sure Mayor Kristie S. Overson information about our community is readily available. We know that the vibrancy of our city depends on the involvement of residents and each of us as neighbors. It’s up to all of us to become informed so we can ensure that our city is the best it can be. We also want to deliver information in the way that you want to receive it. It is why we included a question about preferred communication methods in recent polling conducted by Y2 Analytics. Results of that survey came back this past month (see accompanying story for details) and indicate that most residents prefer to receive information on these very pages. Fifty-one percent of residents are turning to the Taylorsville Journal to find information about our city, and it is a pleasure to communicate here. On these pages, we publish the latest news and events about our city. We include important public safety information, articles about new businesses, Heritage Remembrances, and environmental, education and transportation news, as well as messages from your elected officials, including me in the form of my monthly Mayor’s Message that you are reading right now, and the City Council’s column that can always be found on Page 3 of this section. Besides news on these pages, residents would also like to receive an email from the city, with social media information coming in third as the preferred method of communication. According to the survey, only 2 percent of residents report currently receiving most of their information in an email from the city. However, 26 percent said they would prefer receiving city news this way. We see this as an opportunity where we can meet residents needs a little better and so toward that end, we have launched eNotifications to better communicate with you through email. You can subscribe to receive email notifications on our website at www.taylorsvilleut.gov/services/e-notifications. There, you can choose to receive updates on news and events, postings of agendas and minutes, important emergency alerts and other notifications from the city. It is easy to change your preferences and you can unsubscribe at any time. We hope you will utilize this additional resource. It means a lot to me that our residents want to stay informed and involved in our city because I know that with that effort, we will only continue to get better. –Mayor Kristie S. Overson

WHAT’S INSIDE –FEBRUARY 2020 Frequently Called Numbers, Page 2 Council Corner, Page 3 Public Safety, Page 6 Heritage Remembrances, Page 7 Environment, Page 8

New City Survey Reflects ‘Remarkably Good’ Ratings Responses were evenly gathered from each of the city’s five City Council Districts.

A new survey indicates that Taylorsville residents are happy with the way the city is being run and believe it is headed in the right direction. They are also highly likely to recommend Taylorsville as a good place to live. The survey by Y2 Analytics was conducted from Oct. 22 to Nov. 25, 2019. Invitations to participate were sent via email and regular mail to 11,701 residents. In response, 937 residents ended up participating by completing online surveys, which is well within industry standards. The survey has a 3 percent plus or minus margin of error. Overall, two-thirds of residents said the city is headed in the right direction, and indicated they enjoy a high quality of life in Taylorsville. Most also said the city is doing better than it was five years ago. “For a baseline survey where we’re going to residents for the first time, to see all of these questions scored about 50 percent and, really, above 60 percent for the majority of them, it is remarkably good and surprising,” said Kyrene Gibb, vice president of research and municipal services for Y2 Analytics. An overview of results was presented to

the City Council at their Jan. 8 meeting and can be viewed on the city’s website at www. taylorsvilleut.gov When asked about what they like about living in Taylorsville, residents pointed to location, proximity, and access to amenities, including accessibility to the freeways. The city is viewed as a family-friendly, positive place, Gibb said. Residents think of their neighborhoods as friendly, safe, quiet, nice, clean and with good people. “All of these words are positive descriptions,” she said. “They are pretty forward-thinking evaluations.” Residents also perceive an excellent or good value for their tax dollar. “The health of the city in the eyes of public opinion is quite good,” Gibb said. Additionally, residents gave very high ratings to the job the city’s elected officials are doing, putting the approval rating of the Mayor and City Council at a remarkable 87 percent. “Part of this is a sentiment about levels of government,” Gibb said. “The government closest to the people tends to receive the most positive ratings. But also relative to other cities



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City of Taylorsville Newsletter Oh Mai Sandwich Kitchen locates at Jade Square Oh Mai is open for business in Taylorsville. ChamberWest representatives and city officials welcomed Oh Mai with a recent Ribbon Cutting at their new location, 2975 W. 4700 South in Jade Square. Oh Mai, which has been in business since 2012, specializes in homemade, made-to-order Vietnamese sandwiches. They also serve pho and a variety of other dishes, as well as glutenfree options. Their menu items are naturally lower in calories and their cooking is free of MSG, tree nuts and peanuts. Taylorsville is Oh Mai's newest restaurant. They also have locations in Salt Lake City, Draper, Herriman, Holladay, Orem, Sandy, South Jordan and South Salt Lake. Come enjoy their delicious and healthy food, and visit their website for more information, www.ohmaisandwichkitchen.com


FEBRUARY 2020 Feb. 5 & 19 – 6:30 p.m. City Council Meeting @ City Hall

Feb. 11 – 7 p.m. & Feb. 25 – 6 p.m. Planning Commission Meeting @ City Hall

Feb. 13 – 6-7 p.m. Cultural Diversity Committee Meeting @ City Hall (see Page 8)

Feb. 17 – All day President’s Day, City Offices 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.

February 2020

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |


COUNCIL CORNER Welcome to the 1,500 State Workers Coming to Taylorsville By Council Vice Chair Brad Christopherson As a City Council, we like to say that Taylorsville is the place where community connects. It’s a catchy tagline, to be sure, but there is also a lot of truth to it. Not only is our city situated in a prime location, right in the heart of the Salt Lake Valley that connects neighboring communities along the Wasatch Front, but we are also a place where people individually can connect as neighbors, coworkers and friends. It is important to us to make strong all the building blocks that make up a community so that people find everything they need right here. With that in mind, we are delighted to welcome the 1,500 state workers who will be making Taylorsville their new home away from home. Crews have been working over the past several months to get the new multi-agency State Office Building at 4315 S. 2700 West ready for the workers who will move into their new space in phases this year. In a news story this past month, Fox-13 describes the new state office space as unlike any other government facility. “It's brighter, with large glass windows and views of the Oquirrh and Wasatch mountain ranges. There are places for small conferences, and spaces for telecommuters,” according to the report. “It looks more like a tech company in Silicon Slopes than a government building.” The new space was needed because the current 60-year-old state office building on Capitol Hill is aging and vulnerable to earthquakes and because the complex suffers from parking shortages. The plan is to demolish the old building in 2021. The first wave of about 400 employees moved into the new building in Taylorsville, starting Jan. 23 and

technology was connected for full functionality on Jan. 27. The state Department of Agriculture and Food is scheduled to move from its current facility at 350 N. Redwood Road into the new building in August, followed by the rest of the workers in December. (See pictures and a video of the renovation on the city’s website at www.taylorsvilleut.gov). In all, there will be nearly 400,000 square feet for employees in the new space on 31 acres. The location is easily accessible, just off I-215, and a new transit stop near the building as well as the nearby Midvalley Connector Bus Rapid Transit line are coming. Plans for the new space include a daycare on the first floor, large work spaces and room for collaboration. There are also plenty of restaurant options and businesses nearby. As a Council, we are putting together a fold-out pocket map of Taylorsville, including additional information about the city and amenities here as well as a pin featuring the city’s seal, to give to the state employees as a small gesture of welcome. We want them to find our Taylorsville home inviting, accessible and with plenty to do. We hope they will frequent our restaurants and businesses and take in some entertainment while here – perhaps see a show at our new Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center, also opening this year. Not only is the new State Office Building good for Taylorsville but it is a wise investment for the state that saves taxpayers money. When it is completely finished, the state will have spent about $100 million on the new state office building, according to Fox-13 News, but constructing new buildings would run taxpayers as much as $365 million. "It’s just a better use of space. This keeps us from having to build new buildings," Marilee Richins, depu-

Left to right: Curt Cochran (District 2) Ernest Burgess (District 1) Dan Armstrong, (District 5) Meredith Harker, Chair (District 4) Brad Christopherson, Vice Chair (District 3) ty director of the Utah Department of Administrative Services, was quoted as saying. The modern design and improved services, she said, also will help with retaining state employees. We are so happy that the state workers are coming to Taylorsville. We want them to connect with our community and know that this is where they belong. Without question, their contributions, as well as the beautifully renovated building where they will now work, will bring added value to our city and we are pleased to have them here.

City Council Elects New Leadership

Meredith Harker Chair, District 4

Brad Christopherson Vice Chair, District 3

Council Members Meredith Harker and Brad Christopherson were elected this past month by their City Council colleagues to serve as respective Chair and Vice Chair of the Council. New City Council Chair Harker is a lifelong resident of Taylorsville, representing District 4. She works as a thirdgrade teacher at Taylorsville's Calvin Smith Elementary School, and she and her husband have four sons. Vice Chair Christopherson is a partner at the law firm Hayes Godfrey Bell, P.C., and he and his wife have three children. He also grew up in Taylorsville, attending Eisenhower Junior High and Taylorsville High School. Christopherson also joined Council Members Ernest Burgess and Curt Cochran as they were sworn into serve another term on the Council. Each won re-election this past fall, and were sworn in by City Recorder Cheryl Peacock Cottle at the Jan. 8 City Council meeting. Christopherson represents Council District 3, while Burgess and Cochran represent Council Districts 1 and 2, respectively. Congratulations, Council Members!


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City of Taylorsville Newsletter

Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center is on Track Construction of the Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center is on schedule to finish this fall. Crews have been working on the center next to City Hall for almost a year. Its Ribbon Cutting was held Dec. 20, 2018, and as planned, it is scheduled to open at the end of this year. “We’re excited to see the skeleton and steel go up and get a sense of the volume and space,” said Jim Cavey, project executive with Jacobsen construction. The main theater also is coming together, with the stage, pit and supports all in place. Finishes, including the brick veneer on the eastside of the building, and additional framing with the setting of structured steel is next up followed by the installation of facility’s mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems. “You’ll start to see a big difference in the next two weeks. It will really start to take shape,” Cavey said. Installation of the block at the highest point on the building was expected Jan. 21, and the project, which recently reached its midway point of completion, is both on-time and on-budget. About 70 workers are at the site each day, with the goal of having the center substantially completed by the end of October. While a couple of test performances will take place at that time to make sure everything is operating correctly, the first actual performance has not been scheduled yet. There will be a move-in process when all lighting and furnishings will be installed. Salt Lake County representatives also are working with artists on the final design of the public art pieces. The interior art piece, called Adagio, was designed by New York artist Danielle Roney. It will be 15 feet by 10 feet and will sit 11 feet above the floor in the south lobby. In all, 1,343 polished stainless steel spheres will make up the sculpture to be installed in three separate pieces. Most of the fabrication is taking place at Roney’s studio in New York before shipment to Taylorsville for placement in the center. The exterior artwork will be placed on the southeast side of the City Center campus. Local art studio Tooza Design is designing the piece, which will incorporate light and color. When complete, the Mid-Valley Performing Arts Center will feature the 400-seat Mainstage Theater, 200-seat Studio 5400 Theater, a multiuse rehearsal room and support spaces, and professional theater services including ticketing, technical direction, event management and guest services. Salt Lake County's Arts & Culture division will manage the facility and handle all event booking. “It’s special to be a part of it,” Cavey said. “It has deeper meaning because we’re really getting to set the stage for the community’s vision.”

February 2020

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |

CITY SURVEY CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1 where we work, this is a remarkably high approval rating for elected officials so again that’s something commendable that I would point to.” Gibb explained that a majority-level response indicates a positive reflection while a two-thirds majority is a decided consensus. "Once we get to that two-thirds mark I would say that’s a really solid, big-picture conclusion," she said. "To be at the point where you’re really 8 out of 10 or higher is an overwhelming majority.”

Mayor Kristie Overson described the survey as a wealth of information. “It is affirming to how we are doing collectively as a city but also helps point out to us how, as we move forward, we can improve,” she said. “We are grateful for the positive responses and indications, as well as the confirmation from the survey that we are moving in the right direction,” Mayor Overson said. “We also sincerely appreciate the trust residents have placed in us and their validation. Looking forward, we remain strongly committed to this work and our focus as a city on continuing to make Taylorsville the preferred place to be.” City Council Chair Meredith Harker agreed. “My favorite part of this is how positive the responses were, that most people said, ‘Yeah, I love living here. It’s a good place to live and raise our family.’ “My buttons are bursting a little bit,” she added. “It’s a good feeling and I feel like we’re on the right track, and we have more work to do obviously but it is a good place to be and I think we’ll just get better.”


Residents' main concerns, both now and looking into the future, were focused on traffic and growth. In relationship to new business, they would like to see more restaurants and supermarkets, Gibb said. If an additional recreational amenity could be added to the city, an indoor pool was the most popular choice. Gibb said the survey provides an excellent baseline for additional tracking over time. She recommended that the city conduct additional surveying no more than quarterly.

City Leaders are Working with Legislators on Several Priorities this Year The 2020 General Session of the 63rd Legislature is underway. The 45-day session began on Monday, Jan. 27, and will run until midnight on March 12. Taylorsville’s legislators are working hard to represent the city and its residents, and are focused on furthering Taylorsville’s interests and goals. City leaders also are actively participating in the process. Toward that end, a Legislative Breakfast was held at City Hall this past month where city leaders talked to legislators about their priorities and how to best support their work at the Capitol. In addition to the Legislative Breakfast, Mayor Kristie Overson joined members of the Taylorsville Youth Council at the Utah League of Cities & Towns (ULCT) Local Elected Officials Day at the Legislature on Jan. 29. It is a yearly tradition for the Youth Council to attend the day, which provides an excellent opportunity for the youth to talk to legislators and see firsthand how the process works. Overall, city leaders have identified several priorities and are tracking a number of bills before the Legislature this year. Affordable housing, transportation and public safety issues top the list. Representing Taylorsville are: • Rep. Jim Dunnigan, House District 39. Rep. Dunnigan has long been involved in the community, serving on the Taylorsville/ Bennion Community Council before helping to organize Taylorsville as a city and then serving on its inaugural City Council. He also is chairman of the city’s Taylorsville Dayzz. He owns an insurance agency and holds a bachelor’s degree in business management from the University of Utah. To contact Rep. Dunnigan, call 801-840-1800 or email jdunnigan@le.utah.gov.

• Rep. Karen Kwan, House District 34. Rep. Kwan was elected to the House in 2016. She is an associate professor of psychology at Salt Lake Community College, where she was named SLCC 2014 Distinguished Faculty Lecturer. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Pepperdine University and a doctorate in educational leadership and policy from the University of Utah. To contact Rep. Kwan, call 385249-0683 or kkwan@le.utah.gov.

Rep. Jim Dunnigan

Rep. Karen Kwan

Sen. Wayne Harper

Sen. Karen Mayne

• Sen. Wayne Harper, District 6. Sen. Harper is a long-time resident of Taylorsville, where he works as the city’s Economic Development Director. Sen. Harper was first elected to the Legislature as a member of the House of Representatives. He holds bachelor’s and master’s degree in history from Brigham Young University. To contact Sen. Harper, call 801-566-5466 or email wharper@le.utah.gov. • Sen. Karen Mayne, District 5. Sen. Mayne is the Minority Leader in the Utah State Senate. She is retired after working as a para-educator with the Granite School District. Sen. Mayne attended Ste vens-Henager College and is a graduate of the Chamber West Leadership Center. To contact Sen. Mayne, call 801-232-6648 or email kmayne@le.utah.gov. “We are so appreciative of all you do,” Mayor Overson told the legislators at the breakfast on Jan. 13. “We are truly fortunate to enjoy such a good relationship with each of you. You are attentive and responsive, and I have full confidence in you and your abilities. Best of luck this session and please call upon us if we can help you with anything at all.”

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City of Taylorsville Newsletter

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Your Participation in the 2020 Census is Vital Every 10 years, the United States Constitution requires a non-biased, non-political count of the nation's residents. Everyone counts equally, no matter where you live, your income level or citizenship/residency status. Getting an accurate or complete census count is very important. Census data will guide decisions on how billions of dollars annually are distributed to support education, nutrition, social and workforce services for the next decade. The information will also help determine where to build homes and parks, establish new routes for public transit, build roads, prepare for emergencies, and assist businesses in determining where to locate and what types of products and services to provide. Invitations to respond to the Census will be sent out between March 12-20, with a reminder letter following

up between March 16-24. If no response has been received beyond then, a reminder postcard will be sent March 26-April 3, with a reminder letter and paper questionnaire following between April 8-16. A final reminder postcard will be sent between April 20-27 before in-person follow-ups. Residents of Salt Lake County and Utah benefit from nearly $5.7 billion in federal funds distributed each year to our state and local governments using information from the U.S. Census. That’s about $1,870 per Utahn per year. A less-than-accurate Census count in 2020 is likely and could deprive Salt Lake County communities of needed funding to address challenges of growth, affordability and opportunity. Census data also determine the number of U.S. representatives each state sends to Congress and are used to set dis-

trict boundaries at the state, county and city levels. For more information of if you have questions, please visit Salt Lake County’s website at slco.org/ regional-development/census-2020 or the U.S. Census Bureau site at census.gov

Provide Your Input on the Draft 2020-2024 Consolidated Plan

Follow These Tips when Shoveling Snow

Taylorsville City is working to enhance our community by creating and maintaining sustainable neighborhoods through robust, proactive planning. The Draft 2020-2024 Taylorsville City Consolidated Plan will identify goals, priorities and strategies to support our community’s housing, economic development and infrastructure needs for low- to moderate-income individuals and families. Specifically, the Draft 2020-2024 Consolidated Plan will outline how federal funding from four U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) programs can be used, including: • Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program • HOME Investment Partnerships Program • Emergency Solutions Grant Program • Housing Opportunities for Persons with AIDS (HOPWA) Taylorsville City is committed to providing a desirable quality of life for all residents. Your feedback is needed in helping us to identify priorities for this available federal funding. Toward that end, you can take a brief survey through Feb. 14. The link is: www.surveymonkey.com/r/taylorsvilleconsolidated

The temperatures have dropped, the days have become shorter and the snow has begun to fall. So far this season, we have been blessed with “designer” storms, light snow in the valley and piles in the mountains. Taylorsville ordinance requires that snow be removed with in 24 hours of the end of the storm. This is required for the safety of our residents and guests. Snow removal can be a physically demanding chore and can result in serious injury. Injuries can range from muscle strains, broken bones to something as serious as cardiac arrest. As many as 100 deaths a year can be attributed to shoveling snow. Before the next blanket of snow arrives take a few minutes to review these snow-shoveling tips to avoid potential injuries.

By UFA Capt. Richard Rich

The following tips can help keep you safer when you set out to shovel: • Warm up. Warm your muscles before heading out to shovel by doing some light movements, such as bending side to side or walking in place. • Push rather than lift. Pushing the snow with the shovel instead of lifting can help reduce the strain on your body. When lifting snow, bend your knees and use your legs when possible. • Choose your shovel wisely. Ergonomically designed shovels can help reduce the amount of bending you have to do. • Lighten your load. Consider using a lighter-weight plastic shovel instead of a metal one to help decrease the weight being lifted.

Winter is Here CITY CODE 11.20.080 - PARKING PROHIBITED WHEN: It is unlawful for any person who owns or has possession, custody or control of any vehicle or trailer to park or knowingly allow to be parked any vehicle or trailer on any street or highway: A. After any snow and/or ice accumulation, until after the street or highway is cleared of snow and/or ice; or B. For a period longer than twenty four (24) consecutive hours; C. For any period longer than that allowed by appropriate signs, markings, or parking meters giving notice of such parking time limitation. (Ord. 14-03, 2-19-2014)

• Hit the pause button. Pace yourself and be sure to take frequent breaks. Consider taking a break after 20 to 30 minutes of shoveling, especially when the snow is wet. • Consider multiple trips. Consider shoveling periodically throughout the storm to avoid having to move large amounts of snow at once. • Keep up with snowfall. Try to shovel snow shortly after it falls, when it is lighter and fluffier. The longer snow stays on the ground, the wetter it can become. Wet snow is heavier and harder to move. • Wear layers. Dress in layers and remove them as you get warm to help maintain a comfortable body temperature. • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated while shoveling. If you do not exercise on a regular basis, are middle-aged or older, or have any health conditions, such as heart disease or high blood pressure, you should check with your doctor before doing any strenuous shoveling. Consider using a snow blower or snow removal service as an alternative means of snow removal.

February 2020

Taylorsville Bennion Heritage REMEMBRANCES This month’s historic memory is about two folks from the Bennion area, Walter and Ruby Palmer Nichols. Walter Nichols was born in 1866 in Crewkerne Somersetshire, England. He was one of 15 children born to William and Ann Webber Nichols. He started working at the age of six, carrying coal oil in bottles and cans to sell while earning his wages. He worked hard at many other jobs as a young child. At age 14, word came that money had been deposited for him to go to America. He arrived there in 1881 and worked for Samuel R. Bennion, herding sheep for $10 a month. Mr. Bennion was very good to Walt and one of the first things he did was give him some overalls and a shirt. Walt always spoke of him with praise and kindness. The first Christmas Walt was there, Mr. Bennion gave him a 50cent piece to save to bring his family to America. In the spring of 1884, Mr. Bennion told Walt he would pay the passage for his family to come to America. It cost $575, and Walt promised he would continue to work for him until the debt was paid, which he did. In 1898, Walt bought a four-bedroom home and farm in Bennion. (The home at 6200 S. 1881 West is still standing today). This is when he met his wife, Ruby Palmer. Ruby was born in 1881 to Alphonso Morris Palmer and Mary Frost Palmer in Taylorsville. She was the sixth child of a family of 12, including six boys and six girls. Her father was a blacksmith and a musician. Ruby loved to dance and got to know Walt; they married in 1900 in the Salt Lake Temple. Walt was 15 years older than Ruby and he took her to his home in Bennion where his mother lived with them for 10 years before passing away. The home where Ruby was born was a couple of blocks away from the home she lived with Walt. That home also still stands at 6061 S. 1700 West. Walt left for a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to the Central States when his third child was about two months old. Ruby didn’t know how to milk a cow, but she learned and took care of the farm. Walt was released after 18 months because he was ill. He had chills and fever for many years after. Walt and Ruby had 10 children, plus a 12-year-old orphan boy, who came to live with them; his name was Ralph Player. They took him in and loved him as if he were their own. Of the 10 children, five of them lived in Bennion and raised their families there. Their eldest son, Webber, was killed in a car-train accident at the age of 21. That was a very hard thing for Ruby to bear, but her family always said, “She is a woman of faith.” Walt and Ruby were hardworking, faithful people and both lived a life of serving others in the original Bennion Ward.

2600 West Taylorsville Boulevard • 801-963-5400 |


TAYLORSVILLE SENIOR CENTER Upcoming Events for February: • Closed for Presidents’ Day holiday: Monday, Feb. 17 • Family History Search Class (register): Monday, Feb. 3 and 10, 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. • Story Crossroads (register): Mondays, Feb. 3-March 2, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. • Birthday Tuesday Entertainment (Chris Dokas): Tuesday, Feb. 4, 11 a.m. to noon • Iceland, The Land of Ice Presentation (register): Friday, Feb. 7, 1 to 2 p.m. • AARP Tax Aide (register): Mondays, Feb. 10, 24 and March 2-13, 8 a.m. to noon • Free Health Screenings: Tuesday, Feb. 11, 9:30 a.m. to noon • Valentine’s Day Entertainment (Jenny Floor): Friday, Feb. 14, 1 to 2 p.m. • The Importance of Social Interaction Presentation (register): Friday, Feb.14, 1 to 2 p.m. • Good Grief, Creative Grief Processing (register): Thursday, Feb. 20, 1 to 3 p.m. • Beat the Winter Blues Ent. (DJ Ruby Tuesday): Thursday, Feb. 20, 11 a.m. to noon • Beat the Winter Blues Special Meal (register): Thursday, Feb. 20, noon to 1 p.m.

CLASS HIGHLIGHTS: • Univ. of Utah Exercise Class Series: Mondays, 4:30 to 6 p.m. and Wednesdays, 5 to 6:30 p.m. • Qigong (pronounced chee-gong) is an ancient Chinese exercise and healing technique that involves meditation, controlled breathing and gentle movement: Wednesdays, 4 to 4:45 p.m. • Drums Alive: Mondays, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. If you need to register for a class, you may do so by calling 385-468-3200 or stop by the front desk when you are at the center, 4743 Plymouth View Drive.

Enjoy a Month Packed with Programs at the Library The Taylorsville Library, at 4870 S. 2700 West, is hosting several events in February. They include:

Galactic Grown-Ups: Art and Cosmic Connection Monday, Feb. 3, 7 p.m.

Create intergalactic art as you learn about space with hands-on STEM activities for adults. Interpret NASA data to create fabulous art. You have the option to paint on canvas or on half-sphere domes. This program, in partnership with Clark Planetarium, is designed for adults. Please register online or by calling the Information Desk at 801-943-4636.

One-Two Punch – Monday, Feb. 10, 7 p.m.

Claudia Wilson's One-Two Punch method helps people understand how to have a healthy relationship with food without needing to count or track calories. Wilson, MS, RDN, CSSD, CSCS is the creator and author of the One-Two Punch concept and book. She is the founder of All of Nutrition and has been guiding individuals on their path to healthy eating for more than 20 years.

Parenting Book Club – Friday, Feb. 21, 10:30 a.m.

Parents, grandparents, caregivers: Anyone interested in parenting is welcome to attend! Children welcome, activities will be provided. This month, the library will be reading the book Under Our Clothes: Our First Talk About Our Bodies by Dr. Jillian Roberts. You can pick up a copy of the book at the Taylorsville Library. Books are located at the end of the Holds shelf, on aisle 3.

Adult Lecture Series: Explore Our National Parks – Tuesday, Feb. 25, 7 p.m.

Discover the amazing sites across the country run by the National Park Service with Clarissa Venditelli. Learn how best to explore the parks and the ins and outs of working for the NPS. Clarissa Venditelli spent a long career in technology followed by 12 years as an interior designer in her first retirement. She has worked as a Park Ranger and Volunteer with the National Park Service since 2012. She now fulfills her dream of exploring our beautiful lands nationwide.


City of Taylorsville Newsletter

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The Taylorsville Cultural Diversity Committee welcomes everyone!

Handle ‘FOG’ Carefully to Avoid Backups Fats, oils and grease: These dirty actors have the potential to cost you money if not handled properly. Problems can develop in your household drains and the Taylorsville-Bennion Improvement District sewer collection system due to their improper disposal. Also known as FOG, these commonly used cooking fats, oils and grease, if disposed in sink drains, can lead to sewer line backups in homes and businesses. Sewer main backups may overflow onto streets creating adverse impacts to public health and the environment. The easiest way to solve a FOG buildup problem is to keep it out of the sewer system. Here are a couple of tips: • Pour cooled FOG into a can or other container with a tight lid (coffee can, glass jar or plastic container) and dispose of it in the garbage. • Place baskets/strainers in sink drains to catch food scraps and other solids then empty the drain baskets/strainers into the trash. • Tell your family, friends and neighbors about problems associated with grease in the sewer system and how to keep it out. The solution starts in your home with your actions.

Join us for our next meeting February 13th, 6-7 p.m. City Council Chambers 2600 W. Taylorsville Blvd.


Wasatch Front Waste & Recycling District fees for 2020 will remain at $17 per month/per year ($204 per year) for one garbage can and one recycle can. The fee also includes annual Area Cleanup, Leaf Bag Collection, Curbside Christmas Tree Collection, and can repair/replacement. There is an increase, from $50 to $100, to the start-up fees on accounts for newly built homes. This fee increase covers the full cost of the waste and recycle cans for the new home. Please refer to the 2020 fee schedule at wasatchfrontwaste.org/rates-fees/ for more details on all district fees. WFWRD continues to find ways to be more efficient and keep costs as low as possible for residents. However, the district has been absorbing increased costs for labor, maintenance shop rates and recycling processing for the past three years. Therefore, WFWRD is anticipating a fee increase at the beginning of 2021 to sustain the current service levels. More details will be provided in the coming months. You may also contact Pam Roberts, general manager, for more information. She can be reached by phone at 385-468-6342, or email, PRoberts@wasatchfrontwaste.org.


If your garbage or recycle can is broken or damaged, please call 385-468-6325. A district representative will come and repair your cans as part of your fees for services. You can also complete an online service order request at wasatchfrontwaste.org/report-a-problem-or-request-service/


As the recycling industry stabilizes, many organizations are creating new and innovative ways to recycle the materials we use daily. From paper to plastic to cardboard, WFWRD is working hard to find new opportunities to accept more materials and make sure they are being recycled in the most environmentally friendly way possible. Make sure to take the time to familiarize yourself with items that are currently recyclable by using the district’s new recycling guides, also found on its Facebook page and website. By reducing contamination, WFWRD can continue to keep costs low for all residents. Remember, when in doubt, throw it out!

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.

Donate plasma and save lives! New plasma donors receive up to $515 in a month! 4 convenient locations in the Salt Lake Valley. To find one near you visit grifolsplasma.com In addition to meeting the donation center criteria, you must provide a valid photo ID, proof of your current address and your Social Security or immigration card to donate. Must be 18 years of age or older to donate.

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

February 2020 | Page 21

‘The Power of Yet’ assists Westbrook students in finding their talents By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com


t isn’t every day that students showcase their talents while looking for another one to manifest itself, but such is the case with Westbrook Elementary students. Though in its final school year, a high number of students are moving forward to not only find but to develop their talents. Even those they struggle with and those that haven’t yet arrived are powerful reminders of what a student can a accomplish when he or she sets his or her mind to it. “The students came up with different theme ideas, and we voted, and Find Your Talent won,” said Jessica Sellers, student council adviser at Westbrook Elementary. “The news [of the school’s closing] has not shifted our plans. We are committed [to] Westbrook to make this a typical, fantastic year for the kids.” Two likely themes have developed at Westbrook. The first, Find Your Talent, run by the student council throughout the year, has engaged students to seek to learn something new — or improve something they already have going for themselves. Not surprisingly, the student council theme coincides with the school’s theme: The Power of Yet. “Just because you can’t do something now doesn’t mean you won’t ever be able to do it; you just can’t do it yet,” Sellers said. Earlier this year, the students chose the

book, “Spoon,” by Amy Krouse Rosenthal to begin their co-themes of the year. The story is about a spoon without talent. At least the spoon thinks so. It’s not a knife or a fork, so what can it do? But then the spoon realizes it can do things that are “unique to just spoons.” As members of the student council read this book to each class within the school, the classes were challenged to decorate their own spoons “highlighting a talent unique to themselves,” Sellers said. “Each class made a poster and these were displayed down the hallway.” To connect “The Power of Yet” to “Find Your Talent,” the student council has created a “Finding Your Talent” calendar. “[This is] our new year’s resolution as a school,” Sellers said, suggesting that seeing the calendar every day will “encourage students to try a different, new activity every day of the month. [We want students] to try some new talents or develop some things they have tried in the past, but haven’t perfected—yet.” Ella Walton, a sixth grader at Westbrook, has been busy taking on the two themes. She drew a book on her spoon because “I’m good at reading, and I can read fast,” she said. Ella is part of the Student Council this year, an opportunity awarded to excellent sixth grade students only. Her mother, Mele-

The “Power of Yet” finds a home at Westbrook Elementary. (Photo courtesy of Jessica Sellers)

na Walton, said she’s proud of her. “She’s developed more confidence doing new things,” she said. “Ella is more willing to help out at school.” When it comes to later in the year, school administrators plan on running an activity

day where kids will play different games with spoons, Sellers said. In the spring, another book, not yet to be revealed, will be read to the students about finding and growing talents, and an activity relating to the new book and theme will be initiated. l

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Page 22 | February 2020

Taylorsville City Journal

Pennies for Patients program to teach students at Bennion Elementary By Kathryn Elizabeth Jones | k.jones@mycityjournals.com


Granite School District is hiring Kitchen Managers, Nutrition Service Workers, and Nutrition Worker Substitutes! Applicants must have: High school diploma or equivalent, background check, and be willing to obtain a food handler’s permit. • • • •

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner positions available! 15 to 40 Hours per week with Flexible scheduling! Hiring at over 100 schools within the district. Pay starts at $12.25 per hour.

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Bennion Elementary Student Ambassador Leadership Team members holding their Pennies for Patients donation boxes. (Photo courtesy of Yamira Jolley)


hen the Leukemia Lymphoma Society approached Bennion Elementary this past October to do a student fundraiser with their Pennies for Patients program, sixth grade teacher Yamira Jolley, along with her Student Ambassador Leadership Team, jumped in with both feet. “This year, we decided to ‘share the love’ and donate our resources to members of the community who are truly in need,” Jolley said. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society a leader in “pioneering research for blood cancers and other cancers as well, exists to create a world without blood cancers today,” as stated on lls.org/Utah. They “are unlocking the cure for all cancers tomorrow.” And Jolley and her SALT team want to be a part of that. “The process will begin when each student receives a small box to collect pennies in,” Jolley said, though according to the LLS, “all forms of currency are accepted” (penniesforpatients.org). Each student will keep the small box on his or her desk, and as he or she brings in change from home, this change will be collected and sent to the office. Parents can donate online. As the “school meets various collection goals, students will be al-

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

lowed to participate in fun activities such as hat day, lunch with teachers and extra technology time on our school website’s ‘Tech Links,’” Jolley said. “We hope that the students will see that as a TEAM we are making a positive impact on our community,” Jolley said. The theme, “Every Hero Needs a Squad,” part of the Pennies for Patients program developed by the LLS, “ensures that no child has to take on cancer alone. Heroes need educators, parents and students in their squad to overcome cancer and live healthier lives.” The money gathered is used for “groundbreaking cancer research, patient education and support services, and advocacy efforts aimed at making treatments more accessible and affordable for families” (penniesforpatients.org). In a nutshell, the LLS “teaches students that even a small contribution can make a big impact when we all work together as a team (lls.org/utah).” And that’s what Jolley and her SALT Team want. “The school’s theme this year is ‘TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More, so it’s a perfect fit!’” Jolley said. “Traditionally, our SALT team kids have invited the student

Take the ElevateHERTM Challenge

body at Bennion Elementary and their parents to send Love Grams with little treats for Valentine’s Day.” But this school year, Bennion teachers wants to do more. “We are hoping to combine the (LLS program) with ‘Bend the Rules’ instead of doing Love Grams because there were some concerns with both projects in the past that we are trying to tweak,” she said. Jolley said access to the STEM curriculum through the LLS is an additional plus because it engages students and opens their Are you a business leader? eyes to future careers in science, technology, TM engineering and math. Connecting service to At no cost, the ElevateHER Challenge is easy to accept and will benefit your company. others with what a student may choose to do in their future life is a big help. Join businesses across Utah in “I think helping our students make a our mission to elevate the stature more personal connection through this fundof women’s leadership. Take the raising effort can spark some interest in this ElevateHERTM Challenge and stand with career path,” she said. other businesses as we pledge to elevate There will be a training assembly by the women in senior leadership positions, in LLS on Jan. 30 when “stories of actual paboardrooms, on management teams and tients who have been helped” will be shared. on politcal ballots. There will also be an explanation of how the fundraising will work. Jolley has high hopes LEARN MORE: that her teams’ fundraising project held between Feb. 3 and 13, will be a success. l www.WLIUT.com/challenge

February 2020 | Page 23

Eisenhower teacher thinks outside the coaching box By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com

J Single A (T-Ball & Coach Pitch) Ages 4-5 and Ages 5-6 Fees $65 Fees include: Hat & Jersey

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Page 24 | February 2020

unior high school basketball is not the NBA, but one teacher is giving opportunities for her players and students to learn about the game. “There was a good kid that I have taught in PE, and I knew he was a good kid,” Eisenhower Junior High physical education teacher Kayla Richmond said. “He was not quite good enough to make the team, but I knew he could be an asset to the team.” She asked him to help coach. He sat next to her as an assistant on the varsity team and led the JV team (his name is not disclosed at the request of the school). “The way he interacted with the other kids was great,” Richmond said. “He was positive and complimentary. I wanted him to still be part of the team.” Parents appreciated the team’s direction. “She is definitely thinking outside the box,” Melanie (a former player’s parent) said. “She is a phenomenal teacher and keeps the kids interested. To let a student take on a roll like this is a teacher going above and beyond.” Richmond has always allowed her varsity team captains coach the JV team. “I was the adult supervisor, but I let the students call the plays and make the substitutions,” she said. “They also reminded them of the plays and their jobs in those plays. I sat back and let them take over for the most part. The players are supportive. Most of the JV team were either friends anyways. I stepped in if the kids got out of hand.” The girls team at Eisenhower won the district championship for the second year in a row. The boys team did not fare as well, but Richmond still felt is was a good year. “The boys did not have a fantastic season as far as record,” she said. “It was a brand-new team, and we did not win as many as I had hoped, but a lot of kids don’t play club. In junior high basketball, Olympus and Evergreen dominate almost every year.” The athletic program in the Granite School District is to provide exercise, recreation, competition and fun to participants. The programs are designed to enhance the students’ academic experience. “I think sometimes you have to step back and let the kids figure it out,” Richmond said. “Sometimes, I observe to see who steps up and who doesn’t. I ask the players for feedback on what we did well and what we need to work on. I think it is important to have a community feeling so that the players feel heard. I am not perfect, but I like having the older players involved. It builds a bond.” She felt like her student participation idea was a success this season.

Eisenhower Junior High PE teacher discusses strategy during a recent basketball game. The team’s assistant coach was a student. (Photo courtesy of Eisenhower Jr. High.)

“These kids are very basketball smart,” she said. “This season, the one boy really liked the Phoenix Suns, and we razed him about it, and at the end of the season, he said, ‘Thanks for letting me coach alongside of you.’ It was really fun.” l

Taylorsville City Journal

Roll in and sink that shot — Wheelin’ Jazz a ‘very unique team’ By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com


group of athletes have grabbed support from each other while climbing to the top of the national wheelchair basketball standings. Each player came to be a member of the Wheelin’ Jazz team from a different path. One was shot in the chest, one lost a leg in a car accident, one fell nearly 40 feet and one was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident. “We have a very unique team,” former Paralympian and team member Jeff Griffin said. The Wheelin’ Jazz are a nonprofit organization currently ranked eighth overall in the National Wheelchair Basketball Association. The team provides much more to its players than trophies for winning contests. “There are more than 2,000 wheelchair basketball players in the United States,” Griffin said. “It all started when veterans started coming home from World War II. There are junior, pee wee and elite division teams like this one.” The team was organized in the mid ’80s by director Mike Schlappi. He has been a member of four Paralympic wheelchair basketball teams and was a member of the organizing committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. The team travels to participate in wheelchair tournaments around the country. They are members of division one in the NWBA, which includes 20 teams, a majority of those teams have NBA connections. “We wanted to expand on what Mike has built,” Griffin said. “It gives an avenue to help others that have had spinal cord injuries or physical disabilities such as physical, social and emotional therapy. This is one way to do that, to help them on their road to recovery.” The team has been ranked in the top 10 nationally for more than 25 years. Last season, the team were ranked third and came within one shot of advancing to the championship game. “I am a competitive guy,” Griffin said. “I would love to have a national championship here with the Jazz. Most people do not know that most NBA teams have a wheelchair team, too.” The team is made up of 15 players, including Taylorsville High School student teacher Amanda King, the only female on the team. Players practice once a week and will play approximately 20 games. The Wheelin’ Jazz could then qualify for the division championship. “It would be cool to partner with the Jazz and play a doubleheader with the Stars,” Griffin said. “That is something we are working on. We may be in wheelchairs, but we still feel the same as everyone else. We have

The men and women on the Wheelin’ Jazz take adversity head on as they attempt to qualify again for the wheelchair basketball national tournament. (Photo courtesy Wheelin’ Jazz.)

dreams and aspirations just like everyone else.” Schlappi spent time in Phoenix and Los Angeles. When he moved to Utah, he knew this area was in need of a team. “This is not professional sports, but we care,” Schlappi said. “We hope we inspire a lot of people. Sometimes when you are disabled, you need a role model. We all get each other. There is a whole lot more than what most people realize. We want to be that inspiration. If we can help someone, then it is all worth it.” Running the team is expensive. The proper wheelchair alone can be more than $3,500. Team members are currently raising s food onate d r e c funds to help curb travel costs and purchase ls.com gro LocBeaat lWriter | writer@mycityjourna the proper equipment. By local “This gives me a community that I can feel accepted in,” said team member Ryan Nelson. “In public, I can be treated differently, but here I am just one of the guys.” “We invite anyone that is in a wheelchair to come out,” said team member Ryan Nelson. “They may not play at this level, but they can still be welcome. They are still important to all of us. They can be part of a team,] but a part of the community. This is one of the greatest groups of men and women that just happen to be disabled.” l



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February 2020 | Page 25


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Stars enjoying successful season


By Greg James | gregj@mycityjournals.com


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Page 26 | February 2020

5-star Presenting sponsors

The G League is designed to help players find spots on the NBA. Former Stars player Naz Long is now with the Indiana Pacers. (Photo courtesy of NBAE.)


he Salt Lake City Stars are flirting with first place. At the midway point of the season, the Stars found themselves firmly in second place (as of Jan. 23) in the G Leagues Western Conference. They rattled off 13 consecutive victories at one point this season, which included a first-place finish in the G League showcase. The Winter showcase (held in Las Vegas in December) is an in-season tournament. The NBA used the showcase as a scouting combine. All 30 NBA teams attended to evaluate players and personnel. This was the first-ever league showcase, an NBA experimental event. The NBA uses the G League to try out possible rule changes. There has been debate in the league about having an in-season NBA tournament. As winners of the winter showcase the Stars were awarded the $100,000 prize money to be divided among the team. The championship game went to overtime, before the Stars came out with a 91-88 victory. The Stars led by as many as 18 points. The Grand Rapids Drive, Detroit Pistons affiliate, tied the game with less than two minutes remaining to force overtime. Stars head coach Martin Schiller was named G League coach of the month for December. His team compiled a 9-1 record over that time. He is the first Stars coach to win the honor since the team moved to Taylorsville in 2016. Schiller is in his third season as the Stars head coach.

The Stars have had two players earn NBA team spots for limited contracts, Juan Morgan (Utah Jazz) and William Howard (Houston Rockets). The G League is a developmental league, and a majority of players are under league contracts. They could be signed at any time to join an NBA team. Jarrell Brantley leads the team in scoring at 18.3 points per game. The 6-foot-5 forward, who played at College of Charleston, also averages 7.2 rebounds per game. The Stars also feature a local collegiate product in Kyle Collinsworth from BYU. He was undrafted by the NBA but has averaged nine points a game this season. Another top player on the team is former Gonzaga star Nigel Williams-Goss The Stars’ home game on Friday, Jan. 31 will feature a Mike Conley bobblehead give away. The bobblehead features a combination of Utah winter sports skiing and the Utah Jazz. A special Stars ticket package is available for the game which will include the collectible. All home games at the Salt Lake Community College Bruin Arena feature bounce houses, face-painting and balloon artists in the kids’ zone. The Stars are owned and operated by the Utah Jazz. The team was relocated from Boise in 2016 when the Jazz purchased the team. The G League is the NBA’s official minor leagues. It is designed to prepare players, coaches, officials, trainers and front-office staff for the NBA while acting as the league’s research and development laboratory. l

Taylorsville City Journal

Less technology means better family connections says USU researcher By Jenniffer Wardell | j.wardell@mycityjournals.com


f you’re looking for a new goal that will help your family, try putting down your phone. That’s a suggestion from David Schramm, Utah State University assistant professor and Extension family life specialist. Schramm has recently completed a nationwide survey asking parents how they felt about the effect of technology use on face-toface interaction between family members. He said it’s that interaction that strengthens both spousal and parent-child relationships. Among the 631 parents surveyed, a full 62% said that the interference of technology was a big problem in their family. “It comes down to communication and connection,” said Schramm, also known as the USU relationship specialist “Dr. Dave.” “Cellphones get in the way of face-to-face conversation, and I wanted to get an idea of how prevalent it was.” In the survey, he used the term “technoference” to describe the way technology use interfered in face-to-face interaction with others. He also focused on two specific areas of family interaction — the dinner table and the parent’s bedroom. “I consider those two places where real communication and connection can happen,” he said. “I’m not anti-technology, but I think it’s starting to crowd out those areas.” Plenty of Americans feel the same way. According to the survey, 70% reported that technology interrupts family time at least occasionally. More than one-third of the adults said they used technology in their bed every night or almost every night. Forty-three percent reported that their spouse/partner uses technology in bed every night or almost every night. As an extension of that, nearly 25% said they felt like their partner’s use of technology in bed interferes with their sexual relationship. Forty-five percent considered technology a big problem in their marriage. Fifty-five percent felt like their spouse/partner spends too much time on their cell phone, and 48% said they wished their significant other would spend less time on their cell phone and more time with their children. Fifty-three percent admitted that they believed they personally are on their cell phone too much, while 59% believed their spouse or partner is on it too much. Thirty-eight percent of adults admit to using technology at least occasionally while eating at home with family members. Nearly as many people, 35%, reported using technology while eating at a restaurant with their spouse or partner at least occasionally. Sixty percent of the adults surveyed said they’re concerned about the influence technology has on their relationship with their children, and nearly one out of four wish they had more information about technology and parenting, but don’t know where to turn.

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

David Schramm suggests cutting back on social media to focus more on face-to-face time with your family. (Photo by Katka Pavlickova on Unsplash)

“The overall survey results show that higher levels of technology use and technoference adds up to significantly less time spent together as a couple, less satisfaction and connection, and higher levels of depression and anxiety,” he said. Though it’s a national issue, Schramm said his inspiration for the survey was personal. “I was in the kitchen on my phone during breakfast one morning, and my son walked right by,” he said. “It was my wife that said, ‘Do you want to say good morning to your son?’ I’m a family researcher, but it was really one of those ‘aha’ moments for me.” For those who might be in the same boat, he said that getting a little too attached to your cell phone is perfectly understandable. “We’re born with three essential needs to survive and thrive – safety, satisfaction and connection,” he said. “Cell phones especially can fulfill all three needs, which is why they’re so addictive.” Used appropriately, they can also be a thing that helps keep a family running smoothly.

“Cell phones can be really helpful for families,” he said. “They can bring people together who live far apart, and it can help parents keep tabs on the physical and emotional safety of their children.” The key, though, is to use your cell phone in moderation. As an extension of the survey, Schramm came up with two initiatives – K-TOOB (Kick Technology Out of Beds) and K-TOOT (Kick Technology Off of Tables). Seventy-five percent of those surveyed said that they thought K-TOOB is a good idea, while 88% felt that K-TOOT was a good idea. If you want to include either initiative as part of your New Year’s resolutions, however, Schramm suggests a slower rollout. “I think starting small is the best idea,” he said. “Especially for something so sudden, and that just came from one person in the family.” He added that one way to combat both those things is to start things off with a conversation. Everyone in the family should get the chance to share their feelings and work on a solution together.

“A great first step is sitting down and having an open discussion about it, with no set agenda,” he said. “Kids, especially teenagers, want to be heard.” If you’re uncertain how to make such a discussion happen, Schramm said that the direct approach should work just fine. “You can just say, ‘Hey, let’s have a tech talk. We can talk about the positives of technology, and maybe some things we can work on together for some more family face-toface time,’” he recommended. The most important thing, however, might be to start with cutting back your own phone time. According to Schramm, children need at least nine minutes of face-to-face contact each day. This is especially true at key points throughout the day, such as just after they wake up, just before they go to bed, and just as they get home from school. He added that spouses also need their own faceto-face contact time, moments where they can talk about their days and what they might be feeling. The opportunities for that contact time may be more innocuous than people realize. Schramm calls them “bids for connection,” a term coined by relationship expert Dr. John Gottman. These “bids” are everyday interactions between people that provide opportunity to share thoughts and feelings. That sharing deepens the connection between people. “We need to listen and watch for bids for connection,” Schramm said. “It can be something so small as (your child or spouse coming home and saying) ‘You’ll never guess what happened today.’ If you’re distracted, you can miss it.” Sometimes, those bids for connection can even be completely wordless. “If your child comes home mopey and dragging his feet, that’s still a bid for connection,” he said. “You can see that, and think, ‘Oh, how am I going to respond to that?’” If you don’t see enough bids for connection, or are concerned that you’ve missed too many, it’s possible to create more. The biggest thing is to ask questions that encourage discussion, then be ready to listen and respond to their answers. This helps your spouse or children to feel validated, an important aspect to deepening the relationship. “You can ask questions like, ‘What was the best part of your day?’ ‘What was the hardest part of your day?’ What was the happiest thought of your day?’” he said. “If you put your phone down, you can be more open to these opportunities.” In the end, Schramm said, the most important thing is to pay less attention to your phone and more attention to your loved ones. “Be in the moment,” he said. “Focus on who you’re with, and what you’re doing, without feeling the need to share it on social media.” l

February 2020 | Page 27

Clark Planetarium is out-of-this world fun By Christy Jepson | christy@mycityjournals.com


ooking for an indoor family activity to beat the wintertime blues? The Clark Planetarium is three floors full of state-ofthe-art science and space exhibits, and has out-of-this-world IMAX, star and laser shows, and boasts having the best science gift shop in the city. Located in The Gateway in Salt Lake City, the Clark Planetarium offers 10,000 square feet of interactive and hands-on exhibit space for visitors to explore, discover and play. There is no charge to walk through the exhibits at the Clark Planetarium. “Because Clark Planetarium is a division of Salt Lake County, we have basic funding that enables us to extend unique, interactive STEM and space education to those who wouldn’t have the opportunity otherwise…. we never want someone’s financial situation to get in the way of stimulating eager minds and creating wonder and awe about what makes our world and universe tick,” said Audra Sorensen, communication and development supervisor. There are three main exhibit areas in the planetarium: Earth, Near Earth and Beyond. In the Earth exhibit hall, visitors can step inside a giant tornado, make a volcano, watch the Foucault Pendulum, see the giant 6-foot Rand McNally Earth Globe, touch the second largest meteorite on display west of the

The Clark Planetarium opened at The Gateway April 2003. (Photo John Zierow)

Mississippi, look at one of the largest moon rocks on public display, and learn about the different phases of the moon. In the Near Earth area, there are exhibits about planetary magnetic fields, plasma, and a giant projection of the sun. Visitors can also

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see a time-lapse footage of the aurora from the International Space Station. Visitors can learn all about the solar system in the Beyond exhibit area. In this exhibit you can learn what planets smell like, watch water freeze, and give your own weather forecast from a location of your choice. The Io exhibit is the most immersive part of the planetarium. Visitors can stand on Jupiter’s closest large moon, Io, and drive a rover on Io to collect resources. The Northrop Grumman Exploration Space area is a play space for children. Children can climb inside a rocket, see a glow-in-the dark mural inside the rocket, play on a magnet board, and build and fly a rocket. The only cost in the Clark Planetarium are the show tickets to watch a film in the Northrop Grumman IMAX theatre or in the Hansen Dome theatre. The cost is $7 for shows before 5 p.m. and $9 for shows after 5 p.m. Children under 12 are $7 and 2 and under are free. The Hansen Dome Theatre is a domeshaped theater with a 55-foot diameter and can seat more than 150 guests. This 360-degree immersive experience can display accurate star fields, animated presentation, and take visitors on a trip through space. The Northrop Grumman IMAX theatre is 70 feet wide by 50 feet tall and can seat more than 250 guests. These IMAX films focus on science and nature. Some shows are available for a limited time while others are always available in their permanent collection. Also available are Cosmic Light Shows played on the Hansen Dome screen available Thursday through Saturday evenings. “We are opening seven shows in 2020. All our shows are documentaries, science-re-

lated, or space-themed,” Sorensen said. The original Hansen Planetarium, located at 15 S. Main St., opened on Thanksgiving Day 1965, in the old Salt Lake City library building built in 1904. This was home to the planetarium for almost 40 years. In April 2003, under a grant from the Clark Foundation, the Hansen Planetarium changed names to the Clark Planetarium and in cooperation with Salt Lake County built a much bigger space in The Gateway. The Clark Planetarium is open 363 days a year (closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas). The hours are Sunday through Wednesday from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., Thursday from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. The planetarium is located at 110 S. 400 West in Salt Lake City. For more information visit slco.org/ clark-planetarium or call 385-468-7827. l

SCHEDULE FOR NEW FILMS HANSEN DOME THEATRE: Jan. 17 - The Edge: To Pluto & Beyond May 25 - The Birth of Planet Earth Aug. 15 - Wayfinders

NORTHROP GRUMMAN IMAX THEATRE: Feb. 15 - Dinosaurs of Antarctica April 4 - Asteroid Impact July 4 - Into America’s Wild Nov. 14 - Out of Bounds/Angkor Wat

Taylorsville City Journal

Utah’s STEM and Charter School Expo lets students showcase science projects

Salt Lake County budget finalized for 2020

By Stephanie DeGraw | s.degraw@mycityjournals.com


Students demonstrate how the twisting of a forest fire creates fire tornadoes. (Photo provided by Beehive Science & Technology Academy)


ow student science projects apply to real life will highlight the seventh annual Utah STEM and Charter School Expo on Feb. 29. The event is free and held at the Mountain America Center, formerly known as South Towne Expo. Activities run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Students from Utah middle schools, high schools, and colleges/universities will be participating in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) projects at the event. “We ask the students how their project can be used in the real world to benefit society,” Kerrie Upenieks, Beehive Science & Technology Academy STEM coordinator/department chair, said. “Besides their project, students need to have a YouTube channel and post it on their website.” Beehive Science & Technology Academy is a charter school and serves students in grades sixth through 12th. They have expanded in 2020 to include kindergarten through grade five. Utah students can apply to have an exhibit at the expo by emailing principal@beehiveacademy.org. Beehive Principal Hanifi Oguz said last year’s event included displays from approximately 350 students from 20 Utah schools. Oguz estimated 4,500 people attended last year’s expo. “The expo provides a venue for students from across the state to showcase their STEM projects,” Upenieks said. “It allows companies and institutions with the opportunity to show how STEM is used to improve our communities.” Students also learn public speaking skills when they explain the science behind their projects to expo participants. They learn to engage their friends and teach them about science. The goal of the expo is to connect schools to the community, students to profes-

TaylorsvilleJ ournal.com

sionals, generate interest, and excitement for STEM programs in general, Upenieks said. During the expo, people can take part in hands-on experiments. There will be LEGO robotics, presentations, science shows, science trivia, and chances to win donated prizes. Demonstrations include a fire tornado demonstration, a robotics competition and a demonstration on static electricity among others. More girls have become involved with the STEM program in recent years, according to Upenieks. Some of their seventh-grade girls went to the national Broadcom MASTERS competition, where only the top 30 students in the seventh and eighth grades in America compete. Their school also had 11th-grade girls attend the International Science and Engineering Fair, where ninth to 12th graders from around the world compete. New this year will be a large, blowup planetarium where people can go inside to see simulated stars. To learn more, visit www.utahstemexpo.org. Sponsors to date are: STEM Utah, Beehive Science & Technology Academy, the Utah Association of Public Charter Schools, Accord Institute for Education Research, Westminster College, Weber State University, University of Utah, University of Utah Department of Physics & Astronomy, University of Utah College of Science, University of Utah Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, Utah State University Cooperative Extension, IM Flash Technologies, Sandy City, Utah Chapter of the Computer Science Teachers Association, Utah Association of Public Charter Schools, Neumont University, T.D. Williamson, Hill Air Force Base, STEM, U.S. Navy, Utah National Guard, ALS, US Synthetic Engineering, Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce, The Leonardo, Myriad, Merrick Bank, and Orange Peel. l

Salt Lake County Council | Aimee Winder Newton | District 3

s commutes sometimes seem to get longer, it’s easy for many Salt Lake County residents to wonder why on earth we don’t have an east-west freeway that would accommodate all the current and future growth on the west side of the valley. That was certainly one of the shared frustrations as I rode with the mayors of Riverton, South Jordan, and Herriman recently during a rush hour drive to see firsthand the transportation infrastructure challenges facing our southwest city residents. With large-scale projects like Olympia Hills being proposed, as well as the growth challenges facing Utah communities across the state, we have to decide today what kinds of communities—and what kind of Utah—we will leave to our kids as they raise their families. After working on these issues for some time now, here’s my view on some general principles that can help guide our decision making in Salt Lake County, and the state overall. To start, we know that “community” is first and foremost a local issue. I’ve been grateful to feel that sense of community with my neighbors in my hometown of Taylorsville in all the years that we’ve raised our family in the heart of Utah’s most populous county. There is a sense of shared pride among residents of a city that creates a foundation where families of all types can flourish. We also know that the way cities, communities, and neighborhoods are designed has a significant impact on the sense of community. Street connectivity, walkable and bikeable trails, mixed use developments, and access to public transportation all play a role. As we make decisions across all levels of government regarding growth, we must remember that local leadership with an eye toward preserving and creating genuine communities ought to drive the discussion. I believe the government closest to the people tends to govern best for the people, and that principle extends to planning and

zoning as well as community creation. Local leaders also must be cognizant of how the actions of one municipality can affect another. We are increasingly an interconnected region, and the flow of traffic between and through multiple cities is a daily reality. Increased collaboration and coordination among cities that share transportation infrastructure will make a tremendous difference. There are already efforts like this underway by mayors in Salt Lake County, and this ought to be lauded and encouraged. State leaders can provide a sense of vision and high-level coordination and support. We should look at ways the state can take a more proactive role in collaborative planning for large scale infrastructure needs including: water supply, sufficient revenue for regional transportation projects, and workforce development to match the countless jobs that have been created here or recruited to come here over the past decade. We know we desperately need an increase in housing supply and options, for people in all socioeconomic circumstances. But as we look toward new developments to deliver that, we must be careful that we’re engaging in smart development that is adequately balanced with infrastructure. For any developments that come my way as a County Council member, I’ll be looking at a number of different factors, some of which include the following: density levels and whether that region can support that concentration of additional residents, whether the infrastructure is on pace with the addition of new residents, and proximity to major transportation corridors. There are of course many complex aspects to consider. But if we engage in smart growth that is locally driven, regionally coordinated, and state supported, we can provide opportunity as well as community for the next generation of Utahns.

February 2020 | Page 29

Valentine’s Day: The Day of the Dead By Joani Taylor | Coupons4Utah.com Awe, love is in the air, tis the season to give your sweetheart an extra lift. If you aren’t feeling it, the barrage of commercials will make sure you don’t forget it. I say extra lift, because if you’re lucky enough to have a sweetheart, we should strive to lift them every day, but no sweetheart minds a little extra chocolate sauce on their ice cream once in a while. It’s not uncommon to hear naysayers find reasons to put down this national day of love, it’s too commercial, too lonely, too fussy, too childish. To be honest, having suffered the loss of my husband I was inclined to agree. There’s so much pressure put on us to celebrate Valentine’s Day with roses and a partner by our bedside it can make the rest of us feel… well… a little pathetic. I’m here to tell you to lighten up on yourself. It’s time to stop thinking there is something wrong with being single on Valentine’s Day! Who cares! Instead of focusing on the fact that you aren’t in a relationship this February, focus on loving yourself by giving love to those around you instead. Here are 3 ideas to get you out of the love day funk.

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1 - Give love to friends and family. It could be as simple as sending out a card or two to your closest friends or someone you know that is in a similar situation, to going all out and inviting people over for a dinner party and movie night. 2 – Give love to a stranger. This could be as simple as making a monetary donation to a charity, organize a collection of needed items for shelter or go great guns and spend a day volunteering. Do this in honor of your loved one if you’re missing one. 3 – Give love to an animal. Keep it simple and spoil your pet. Take your dog to his favorite dog park or spend an afternoon reading snuggled up with your cat. Maybe make a donation to a foundation that provides therapy animals for people, like Utah Pet Partners or run a food drive for the Humane Society. Just like Mother’s and Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day is a day meant to spend appreciating someone. It’s a day intended to lift someone special. What better way is there to lift ourselves up than to spend it lifting another? l


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Taylorsville City Journal

Scent of Mystery I blame Love’s Baby Soft for destroying my archeological career. Up until I started spritzing the perfume popular with the seventh-grade girls in my class, I’d never given any thought to how I smelled. My mom was lucky to get me to shower, yet, here I was, dousing myself in baby powder-scented toilet water. The perfume’s slogan should have been a warning, “Because innocence is sexier than you think.” Seriously? Who came up with that? Hustler magazine? My mom saw the signs and tried desperately to distract me. Basketball practice. Dance lessons. Piano lessons. But it was too late. I’d discovered this scent could lure 12-year-old boys to my locker better than a steak sandwich (which I also tried). But this wasn’t me! I didn’t care about boys! I had planned a life of adventure! In first grade, I decided to become an author. I read “The Little Princess” until I absorbed the ability to write through osmosis. I spent the day in my room, penning stories and jotting down poems then submitted my siblings to “a reading” where I’d share my work and they’d complain to mom. Becoming Nancy Drew was my second-grade goal. I was ready to uncover ridiculous clues to break up the den of bank robbers living somewhere in Murray, Utah. As a third-grader, I checked out library books so I could learn hieroglyphics. When the call came to go dig up tombs in Egypt, I’d be ready. I would trek near the pyramids,


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wearing khakis and a cute pith helmet, encountering mummies and warding off ancient curses. Fourth and fifth grade were spent honing my dance skills. Ballet, tap, jazz, hokey-pokey – I did it all. I’d practice every day, secure in the knowledge I’d perform on Broadway. Or at least the Murray Theater. In sixth grade, I discovered Paul Zindel’s “The Pigman” and my desire to write returned full-force. It was decided. In the future, I would be a writing, dancing, detective archeologist who spent equal time on the stage and the Amazon rainforest. But seventh grade! Boys! Gah!! Suddenly, I wanted to smell good. I became obsessed with every pimple, every pore and studied the beautiful girls who made glamour seem effortless. I read teen magazines. I learned I needed glossy lips and thick eyelashes to attract the opposite sex. (I tried to no avail to create the perfect cat’s eye, which turned out fine because I’m not a cat.) I had bangs so high and hairspray stiff, they were a danger to low-flying birds. I fell in love with Shaun Cassidy, which was crazy because, as a writer, how could I marry someone who sang “Da Doo Ron Ron”? Those aren’t even words! I earned money for Levi’s 501 button-fly jeans and Converse shoes. I bought Great Lash mascara, with its pink-and-green packaging - and Love’s Baby Soft. Sure enough, the glossy, smelly trap I’d set began attracting boys who were just

as confused as I was. Just last summer we played baseball in the street and now we circled each other like strangers, unsure of what the hell was going on. Hormones raged. Thanks to the distraction of the opposite sex, I never deciphered hieroglyphics. I never performed under the bright lights of a New York stage. I was never asked to solve the Mystery of the Secret Bracelet. I blame Love’s Baby Soft. If it hadn’t been for that innocent aroma, I’d be a world-renowned expert on ancient Babylonia, accepting Tony awards for my depiction of Eliza Doolittle. Seventh grade! Boys! Gah!! l




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Desert Star Presents “James Blonde: Agent 7-11 in License to Thrill” Desert Star proudly presents their latest parody on the James Bond series, that will shake patrons with killer laughs. This double-O-funny parody opens January 9th and it’s a hilarious musical melodrama for the whole family you don’t want to miss! Written by Jenna Farnsworth, adapted from “Casino Real” by Ben Millet (2009) and directed by Scott Holman. This show follows the story of BETSY’s best agent, Agent 24/7 who must face down the diabolical Professor Blowfish, but Director M&M won’t let her do it alone. Much to 24/7’s chagrin, he enlists the help of the overly smarmy James Blonde. The colorful characters include the ultimate femme fatale, Ivanna Yakalot, nerdy henchman Life Hack whose got a hack for every occasion, as well as gadget-guru QWERTY and alluring assassin Sister Mission Mary. Can Agent 24/7 and James Blonde find a way to work together to stop Professor Blowfish from brainwashing the entire world? Will they find the traitor in their midst before BETSY and the world are destroyed? Adventure, romance, and comedy with double-O-laughs come together in this hilarious parody James Bond mash-up, as well as topical humor torn from today’s headlines.

“James Blonde: Agent 7-11 in License to Thrill” runs January 9th through March 21, 2020. The evening also includes one of Desert Star’s side-splitting musical olios, following the show. The “British Invasion Olio” features hit songs from the Beatles, Rolling Stones and more mixed with Desert Star’s signature comedy. Food is available from an á la carte menu and is served right at your table. There is also a full service bar. The menu includes gourmet pizza, fresh wraps, appetizers, and scrumptious desserts.


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February 2020 | Vol. 7 Iss. 02



early nine in 10 registered voters across Taylorsville approve of the jobs their mayor and city council members are doing, according to the first citywide survey the council has commissioned in nearly a decade. “Taylorsville elected officials have tied with those in Millcreek for the highest voter approval ratings we have ever measured,” said Y2 Analytics Partner and Research Vice President Kyrene Gibb. “To have 87% of responders approve of the job they are doing is incredible.” Gibb and her company shared the results of their survey at a recent city council meeting. On the survey question “Do you approve or disapprove of how the Taylorsville mayor and city council are handling their jobs?” 9% strongly approved, while 78% approved. Just below the 87% approval for elected officials, survey responders gave fire and emergency medical services an 82% approval rating, while police came in at 76%. Between those two, the quality of the city’s culinary water and its garbage collection efficiency each earned 79% approval ratings. “It’s nice to see our residents have faith in our community and their elected officials,” said Mayor Kristie Overson. “But the survey also gave us some great suggestions. It’s a good measuring stick. (Y2 Analytics) did a top-notch, professional job. I think we got an incredible product for what we spent.” Taylorsville City officials paid Y2 Analytics $14,040 for the survey. Future surveys, which are not yet scheduled, will cost about $5,000 each. “Years ago, surveys like this were typically done over the The overall 87% approval rating Taylorsville residents gave their mayor and city council members in a recent survey is the highest rating the survey company has ever seen. (taylorsvilleut.gov) phone,” Gibb said. “A survey Continued page 5




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