Southern Utah News Articles
Kane County considers capping salaries
After a long discussion on capping employee salaries at 10 years of service, the commission opted for additional study. Dave Owens, representing the Employee Association, asked for two weeks to do some analysis. The commissioners want to work with the association.
Commissioner Daniel Hulet said, “The county needs to do something now regarding longevity. We created this problem.”
Kane County Assessor Linda Little is worried the county would be “punishing employees who have knowledge in their field.”
Commissioner Mark Habbeshaw said employees in other counties are being laid off.
Commissioner Doug Heaton said, “I live in both the public and private sector. The public is exempt from all the market forces. Elected officials set wages. There are no market forces for parity. It is not fair if our wage scale is above the private sector.”
“It is a mistake to look at it overall. We need to look at services offered,” said Heaton. “I see an entitlement mentality in the public sector, that I don’t see in the private sector.”
Dave Owens said, “We need to look hard at the salary market. We need to recognize what the commission has accomplished for the employees.”
Habbeshaw commented that we have to consider the taxpayer who pays wages, whatever the economy is.
All the commissioners were in agreement the county has to get a handle on the finances. “We have to do something.”
The commission decided to postpone their decision on modifying their contract agreement with Tyler Hoskins for the Transportation Plan. Hoskins has changed firms.
Mike Avant, TC Engineering, said his company is not in the State Pool and asked if they can be used, since being in the State Pool is a requirement.
Kane County Attorney Jim Scarth had several recommendations and modifications to the contract to protect the county. The commission said they might need to re-bid.
The Land Use Authority had more than 10 parcel joinders on the agenda, and were approved by the county commission. They are from Swains Creek and Zion View Mountain Estates. Parcel Joinders are a significant loss to the Kane County tax role, Fire Protection District and Snow Removal District.
Hulet commented they are taking “buildable lots and making them un-buildable, but one advantage to the county is lower density once they are combined, because they cannot be split.”
Land Use Administrator Gary Smith has completed a study of appeal fees and attendance policies with other counties. The fees range from $150 to $500. Kane County is $200. The cost to the county is considerably more for each appeal.
The commission decided to leave the fee at $200. They also approved putting on application fees, “it is highly recommended that they appear personally or by electronic.”
The commission approved several amendments to the Land Use Ordinance that are now “consistent with the state code.” The changes covered repairs to non-conforming buildings, the width in matric changed from 600 to 200 feet, definition of a dry subdivision, dry subdivisions and water hauling and defined agriculture as 10 acres or more. The commissioners commented that when one is hauling their own water, they are responsible for water quality.
A zone change to commercial was approved from Ag on parcel 2-6-3-0-3 and from, R 9 on parcel 2-7-25-2.
The commission approved Resolution 2010-10, to adopt the Jim Baker property exchange for the road realignment. The commission also instructed Road Supervisor Bert Harris to complete the chip and seal on the new alignment this season. Also approved were the necessary quit claim deeds for the property exchange.
Although Iron County requested Kane County include Bull Thistle on the noxious weed list, which already has 29 species on it, the county declined to do so. Bert Harris said it is not on the state list. Wildlife and cattle eat it and it is not causing an economic hardship.
Habbeshaw said, “I don’t feel like taking the lead from Iron County on this issue, after comments they made on our RS2477 road issues.”
Craig Hansen was appointed as representative to the Human Services Council.
Sandy Kerr told the commission on funding for the Kane County Domestic Violence Sexual Assault Coalition and Victims of Crime. The grant for $21,000 was approved.
Hulet said, “We want to thank you for the services you have done in Kane County and for writing grants.”
Deputy Sheriff Tracy Glover and Layton Construction updated the commission on the progress of the public safety facility. Some lines have been re-routed as a result of the archaeology study.
Setbacks have been dealt with and now they are ready to move on. They are working with Kanab City on the sewage system. They are still resolving the questions on an auger and maintenance. The engineering for what the city is asking, an extra box, requires a lot of engineering on the sewage line and is very costly.
Habbeshaw told them all, “We appreciate your patience. There have been a lot of setbacks not anticipated.”