Southern Utah News Articles
County receives reimbursement for RS2477 road litigation
The Kane County Commission received a check for $421,000 from the State of Utah at its July 13 meeting. The money is reimbursement for RS2477 road litigation.
Commissioner Doug Heaton is attending the National Association of Counties organization in North Carolina, and was excused.
A title clarification on the Movie Ranch Subdivision parcel stricken from the recent tax sale was approved. With the property sold and resold, there was an overlapping of deeds. One owner had recorded and the other had not, with changes previous owners had agreed on.
As part of a boundary line adjustment, the county will quit claim deed it back. The small parcel had no value on its own to the county. Commissioner Dirk Clayson will speak to the adjacent property owner.
The commission approved $600 funding as part of a Six County Congressional briefing, which will include a two-day education of public land issues and tour.
Resolution 2015-14 was adopted. The Resolution supports the Gosar-Hardy Amendment to 2016 Interior Appropriations Bill opposing the designation of a Grand Canyon Watershed National Monument in northern Arizona. The county has certain concerns involving cancellation of optimum utility and protection of watershed mechanisms, historic multiple uses, and economic and cultural necessities involving local human populations in and near to Kane County, Utah.
Also adopted was Resolution 2015-15 in support of Representative Bruce Watermans’s H.B. 2647 “Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015” that would reform and enhance the utility and protection of forested watersheds and critical National Forest ecosystems, including multiple use benefit for economic and cultural necessities involving local human populations in and near Kane County, Utah.
Commissioner Clayson said there is a need for more local involvement with decisions because of local impact. “Our goal is a stewardship management of timber. There are burns and pollution rather than harvests.”
On a sideline, Commissioner Clayson said there are about four weeks of uranium mining and then 35 jobs will be reduced to five or less. This is part of the 20-year moratorium by the Department of Interior.
Lou Pratt, GIS, and Bert Harris, Roads Supervisor, updated the commissioners on road damage from recent flooding.
Stout Canyon has some severe damage. The National Resource Conservation Service, under the Emergency Watershed Project, indicated Stout Canyon qualifies for federal funding for repairs.
Commissioner Jim Matson stated, “Unfortunately, this is the aftermath of a good forest fire.” The commissioners approved the Stout Canyon Project and federal funding.
On Cottonwood Road, most of the damage is in the upper end. House Rock Road is flooded out. In the Vermillion Cliffs Subdivision, culverts couldn’t handle the amount of water flow. The commissioners requested a map of needed improvements and cost estimates be prepared.
Kodachrome Bridge will be done in a few weeks. Although there has been flooding on Hole in the Rock Road, Garfield County is keeping it open. Navajo Lake Road is on schedule to be paved in 2016.
A $500 donation to Bill Cox’s National Association of Counties Organization campaign costs was approved.
Hog Canyon will be closed from the Highway 89 entrance to the TV towers on Saturday, September 19, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. for a trail relay event sponsored by the Kane County Recreation Department. The trails will be open on the top. The commissioners requested a map of alternative entrances be prepared for ATV users that day.
Tim Burke, BLM manager for the Arizona Strip, had a preview of the proposed Business Plan changes for the Special Management Area which includes Coyote Buttes, North, Coyote Buttes South and the Buckskin Gulch, which is in Utah and Arizona. Permit fees have not been raised since 1997, and the business plan proposes an increase. Annual visitation is 25,000, permit revenue is $190,000 and cost overrun is $240,000.
The plan also proposed moving the permitting to Rec.gov to save money and better customer service. Another part of the plan is to transition away from the daily lottery and have two lotteries per year.
When Burke mentioned having permits available for The Wave in St. George, Commissioner Clayson said, “Kane County opposes having permits available in St. George. St. George has a different kind of demographic of visitors.”
Burke was asked why the BLM doesn’t expand the number of visitors to help with costs, because the number of people in the lottery is increasing. He responded, “The Wave is located in the middle of a Wilderness area and part of Wilderness consideration is solitude.”
Commissioner Clayson stated, “Kane is creating an adventure map for promotion with sights that are accessible by a normal passenger car.” Burke said they would be happy to help with photos.
The Draft Business Plan will soon be available for a 30-day public comment period.
During citizen input, Mary Craven asked what is being done regarding the recent flooding in Johnson Canyon. Commissioner Matson reported the BLM and Kane County Sheriff are working on it.