Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Commission Approves 2013 Emery County Budget

The Emery County Commissioners met in their last meeting of 2012 to approve a budget for 2013 and other items of business. They approved an air space permit for Santa Claus to fly over Emery County in his yearly flight on Dec. 24.

A change order was approved for the Buckhorn Information Center. This change order involves the gathering area which has a fire pit and seating for lectures or other activities.

The commissioners agreed it will be a good project for Emery County and for Huntington City. McCandless said there is also talk of extending the Scenic Byway from SR-31 to Huntington State Park.

The commission agreed to send a letter to Pres. Barack Obama to voice the county's opposition to the proposal for the Greater Canyonlands wilderness area. This is a citizens proposal that would increase the acreage at Canyonlands and would include 196,000 acres within Emery County. Emery County believes in a balanced approach to public lands and they have been working for years in a grassroots effort to develop a county plan.

The commission approved the wildland fire budget for the $36,500 requested.

The budgets for the Castle Valley Special Service District were also discussed by Jacob Sharp, district manager.

Commissioner Horrocks thanked Tuttle for her hard work on the budget to keep the county inline financially. Tuttle explained the judgment levy the county is issuing. PacifiCorp is being reimbursed $319,310 for tax appeals for 2006-07. Between all the entities it was $1 million that needs to be reimbursed to the utility. To recapture some of these funds the county is imposing a judgment levy and the county tax payers will be responsible for 20 percent of the payback. This money to pay PacifiCorp back is not in the budget, because the money was collected six years ago. The judgment levy will help recoup some of the costs.

Commissioner Horrocks said 80 percent of the cost will be recouped back from the utility. Tuttle said this increase for Emery County tax payers is for one year only. Tuttle reported the school district will have to pay back $500,000 and will probably issue a judgment levy in 2013.

All of the budgets and the amended budgets were approved along with the approval to pay Pacifi-Corp back. Emery County Progress