Monday, August 27, 2012

Following Ordinances Impacts our City


The other day my neighbor stopped me. She said her mom, who is also a Taylorsville resident, was frustrated by the numerous number of code and ordinance violators in her neighborhood. She expressed concerns about our city "going down hill" because residents have stopped taking care of their property.

Other residents of Taylorsville have expressed similar concerns. Generally we have one or two code enforcement officers who drive around the city and remind residents that they do have a duty to keep their property nice and to obey the laws and ordinances of the city.

Complying with the ordinances helps your property value and your neighbor's property value. If you choose to not mow your lawn for a month or let your weeds grow four feet tall, it impacts your neighbors. Most people like living in neighborhoods where the properties are well maintained. 

When properties are unsightly, it impacts our ability to attract good businesses to Taylorsville. Businesses want to locate in cities where residents care and take pride in their properties. 

Studies show that crime increases when property maintenance decreases. We keep our city healthy and vibrant when we all do our part to keep our property well maintained. 

Here are some other code enforcement tips that will help us maintain a healthy community:

  1. Trees overhanging the sidewalk must be trimmed up to a minimum height of seven feet above the sidewalk.  During the summer months, code enforcement officials are inundated with calls about low-hanging trees making it difficult for pedestrians to use the sidewalk. In addition, trees must be trimmed to a minimum height of 13-1/2 feet above the roadway. 
  2. All bushes, vines and other vegetation near the city sidewalk must be trimmed back to the edge of the sidewalk. Vegetation which encroaches on the sidewalk makes it difficult for pedestrians. This is especially true for those with special needs such as wheelchair-bound individuals and individuals with motorized wheelchairs. Vegetation must also be trimmed so that it does not overhang the curb line.
  3. All residential property is required to have landscaping in the front of the home.  Landscaping can take on several forms- grass, all types of plants and other allowed vegetation, decorative rock, mulch and bark. Lawns must be kept mowed and watered.
  4. Basketball standards must not be left at curbside. This causes an obstruction to vehicles on the roadway. Portable basketball standards must be completely on your property and not overhang the street.       
  5. All R-1 zones in the city (most of the residential areas) must be maintained as single family dwellings. That means that only one family can live in the home. We have an influx of calls about homes in R-1 zones being converted into multiple family dwellings. This is in direct violation of single family dwelling (R-1) ordinance.    
  6. Taylorsville contracts with West Valley Animal Services for all animal complaints. If you have a problem with a neighbor who has an animal that is troublesome, please contact West Valley Animal Services at: 801-965-5800. West Valley Animal Services is able to address any problems you may have with a neighboring pet in a timely manner.
  7. All owners of rental properties in the city are required to obtain a business license to rent their dwelling out. This license is renewable every year and has a minimal fee. Classes are available throughout the valley to assist owners of rental property, including screening potential renters and what information to include in a rental agreement.
Please contact the Code Enforcement Division of the City of Taylorsville at 801-955-2011 or 801-955-2013 if there are any questions.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Adopt-A-Street


By Mayor Russ Wall

This past month we “caught” a few residents cleaning up some of our streetscapes along major corridors. We appreciate the Deans, Paynters, Burnetts, and other scout troops, church groups, and families. These great people gave us an idea to begin an “Adopt-A-Street” program. 

We are looking for scout troops, church groups, neighborhood service groups, and families who are willing to "Adopt-A-Street" in Taylorsville. When you adopt a street, it means you commit to help keep the streetscape in good order - taking care of weeds, removing graffiti, and notifying the city of any problems. We are focusing on the main corridors of the city and would love those interested in a service project that residents and businesses can appreciate every day as they drive our streets. 

If you are interested in adopting a street, please email jimorgan@taylorsvilleut.gov or call John Inch Morgan at 801-963-5400.

Monday, August 20, 2012

New Taylorsville Logo


Our city budget was reduced $1.7 million over the past few years because of a drop in business sales tax revenue. To counteract this, one of our top priorities as a city is to attract businesses to Taylorsville, both from within and outside of the state. 

Recently we began developing some marketing materials for economic development. Through that process city officials decided to adopt a new city logo that looks more modern and progressive. One version looks like a seal and the other one prominently portrays our city name. 



Coming up with a logo for a name as long as “Taylorsville” was a difficult one. We wanted the logo to look athletic and collegiate - baseball has been a big part of Taylorsville and we also host the main campus of the Salt Lake Community College. 

You will begin to see the new logo in our social media, on vehicles, and on our new street signs. Other items will be changed out as needed, as to not incur additional expense. Although some street signs were just recently changed out, Public Works has committed to put the new logo decals on at no cost. We will also have a special logo for the street signs around 4800 South to designate our historic district. We are excited about these new changes as we move the city forward in a positive direction. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

8/15/12 City Council Meeting

At the council meeting the following individuals were approved unanimously:
Tom Ollis to serve on the Economic Development committee.
Steve Faurschou and Curt Cochran were re-appointed to serve on the Planning Commission.

Sanitation Director Pam Roberts presented her quarterly report. She describe plans for the Area Cleanup Program in Taylorsville. The dumpsters will be delivered to neighborhoods Sept. 21- Oct. 23. She noted one container will be provided per four homes. Residents are encouraged to call ahead with needs for large amounts of green waste. Roberts also reviewed the process for the Sanitation District to become its own organization effective Jan. 1, 2013. The official name would be the Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District.

The council voted unanimously to establish a notice of pending ordinance change regarding electronic billboards. This ordinance was presented by Community Development Director Mark McGrath. He said the ordinance does three things: 1) It gives notice that the ordinance is under review and provides notice that anyone applying for electronic billboards will have to comply with the city's final ordinance. 2) It notifies the planning commission that an ordinance must be amended. 3) It dictates that the pending ordinance expires on Feb. 15, 2013. This ordinance will be reviewed by the planning commission next week and they will provide recommendations to the city council.

The council voted to transfer bailiff services to Salt Lake County. They are the only part of the old Taylorsville Police Department remaining. The bailiffs would then be employees of Salt Lake County.

Ryan Perry of the Salt Lake Valley Fire Service Area reviewed the time line and process for Taylorsville's annexation into the Salt Lake Valley Fire District. The first suggested tentative date for a public hearing was Sept. 12. 

The city council adopted a final budget, which includes a 15 percent tax increase. At the Truth-in-Taxation hearing Tuesday night seven residents spoke on the issue. Two spoke against the tax increase, one was neutral, and four spoke in favor. At this council meeting the city council was charged with passing a balanced budget. Three council members, Barbour, Burgess, and Overson, voted in favor and Johnson and Rechtenbach voted against. The motion that passed was to keep the safety walls and additional maintenance funding in the budget, which is the reason for the 15 percent tax increase. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Employee Softball Game with Harmons

Last Monday employees from the Taylorsville Harmons did a service project cleaning up Vista Park. They ended the day with a softball game where they challenged Taylorsville City employees and contractors.

Thank goodness we had some off-duty firefighters who came to help field our softball team.


This cute lady in the yellow shirt is the Taylorsville Harmons store manager, Becky Larkin. Harmons had so many great employees and we enjoyed getting to know them better.



This was the Taylorsville City team. We had our firefighters, Mayor Wall, City Administrator John Inch Morgan, Councilmember Ernest Burgess, Judge Marsha Thomas, Pat Kimbrough, Don Adams and me.


Here is Judge Thomas playing catcher.


Our fans included Kris Heineman, Robin Bronson, Pat's daughter, Michelle, and the Taylorsville HS cheerleaders.



Mayor Wall is up to bat...


Economic Development Donald Adams played with all his heart.


Councilmember Burgess did a great job as the bat boy and later as the pitcher.


Judge Thomas hits an awesome grounder.


Bob Harmon and his mom came to support their team.



Councilmember Dama Barbour and her husband, Jake, were great team supporters!




Harmons arranged for a petting zoo! My kids had fun riding on one of the horses, petting ducks, sheep, and other animals.


We all had fun eating delicious brauts made by Harmons! The Mayor bought our dinner.


Team Taylorsville City won the softball game! But the real winners were the employees from the Taylorsville Harmons who did a great service in the park, and put on such a great event for us. They want to make it an annual event and our employees are thrilled! We had so much fun!!


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

8/8/12 City Council Work Session


Electronic Billboards
Recently there has been a trend towards converting traditional billboards into high tech internally-lit electronic billboard signs. The new billboards are generally much brighter and potentially obtrusive to certain land uses. Current Taylorsville code does not address under which circumstances a billboard may or may not be converted which may leave us susceptible to being forced to allow conversion.

New Police Leadership
Police Chief Tracy Wyant introduced the new management team for the Taylorsville precinct - Lieutenants Wayne Dial, Mike Schoenfeld, and Randy Thomas.

 

Lt. Wayne Dial will be the executive lieutenant. He was part of the former Taylorsville Police Department as the assistant chief. Prior to Taylorsville he worked in the Salt Lake County Sheriff's office for 22 years. According to Wyant, Dial displays great professionalism and integrity. "We are honored that he was willing to stay." Dial said he is excited to be part of the new precinct. "It's a new day in Taylorsville," he said.

Lieutenant Mike Schoenfeld, a current UPD officer, will be over investigations. "Lieutenant Schoenfeld brings a tremendous amount of experience in the investigation of narcotics, gangs, and other vice activities,"said Wyant. He has been with UPD/Salt Lake County for 16 years and says he is excited about the new team dynamic.

Lieutenant Randy Thomas has been with UPD/Salt Lake County for 18 years and has been running the K-9 unit for six years. He will be over patrol for the Taylorsville precinct. "He brings professionalism and enthusiasm," Wyant said. Thomas said he is looking forward to an exciting challenge. "I know where the bad guys hang out and we are going to make them go away," he told the council.

Wyant gave an update on the UPD transition and said things are ahead of schedule. The vehicles have been re-branded, real assets are being acquired, there was a minor hiccup with IT, but everything else has gone very smoothly. Wyant also indicated that the upcoming transfer will bring not only Lieutenants Schoenfeld and Thomas to Taylorsville but their network and expertise.

Other matters
Discussion was held regarding the City Center property, and future development and use of the land. Chairman Rechtenbach suggested a committee be established to give input on the master plan.

A discussion on our animal services contract with West Valley City was discussed. The council had concerns about their customer service and response. Because we have invested in the animal shelter with WVC, we cannot easily dissolve the contract without a penalty.

The council discussed a policy and fee schedule for special events parks.

Details of the Truth in Taxation hearing were given. The hearing will be Tues., Aug. 14 at 6 p.m. at City Hall - 2600 W. Taylorsville Blvd. Public comment will be taken with regards to the 15 percent tax increase.


Monday, August 6, 2012

National Night Out


Tomorrow night, Tues., Aug. 7 is National Night Out 2012. 

National Night Out is an annual event designed to strengthen our communities by encouraging neighborhoods to engage in stronger relationships with each other and with their local law enforcement partners. The goal is to heighten crime-prevention awareness, build support and participation in local anti-crime programs, and most importantly, send a message that our neighborhoods are organized and fighting back. It’s also the perfect opportunity to get to know your neighbors even better.  

This is something we, as a city would like to support next year. We would love to have residents plan a fun get-to-know-you event with their neighbors. 

If you would be willing to help plan a "block party" for your neighborhood next August, please email anewton@taylorsvilleut.gov. The city would love to be of support by sending elected officials to update neighbors on city issues, law enforcement to explain how to deter crime in your neighborhood, and even CERT team members to talk about neighborhood emergency response. You can also get help from the National Night Out website at natw.org

If your neighborhood is participating in National Night Out this year, please let us know!

For a list things to do to keep your home and property safe, please see this link.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

8/1/12 City Council Update


Michael and Jessica Stott were presented the "Best of Taylorsville" award for their innovative landscaping. Residents can nominate those who go above and beyond to help the city by beautifying their property. Please email jspringer@taylorsvilleut.gov if you'd like to nominate a neighbor.

Julie Warburton was approved by the council to serve on the Taylorsville Arts Council.

Salt Lake County Sheriff Jim Winder reported on the Salt Lake County Metro Jail. He noted that the city council will be participating in a tour of the jail in the near future. He said there are two jails - an adult detention center and Oxbow Jail. He gave the history of Oxbow and reported it has been closed since 2001. The Adult Detention Facility has been filled beyond capacity and releases people early because of lack of capacity. Winder sought support in 2009 to re-open Oxbow Jail and one unit with 160 beds was reopened. He would rather use the remainder of Oxbow than build a new facility.

An agenda item to surplus property at the Taylorsville Bennion Heritage Center was approved by the council. Some items are dropped off there that aren't needed by the center, and any funds received from selling them will go back to the center.

A resolution to begin the process of moving to the Fire District passed 4-1, with Johnson dissenting. City Administrator John Inch Morgan presented the resolution for the the annexation of Taylorsville into the Salt Lake Valley Fire Service Area for fire and medical response. This represents the first step in a five-month process for becoming part of the fire district.

Recently the economic development department had a graphic designer look at re-designing some marketing materials. The logo the designer came up was well liked for its collegiate and athletic look. With the main campus of the Salt Lake Community College in Taylorsville, Taylorsville's active baseball program and focus on promoting a healthy community, city officials decided to begin this new era of the city with a fresher and more progressive look. The logo will be implemented city wide and will replace the current "wagon wheel" logo. Several options were presented to modify the main logo to fit departments and the city's historic preservation focus. (i.e. on street signs, the new logo will be throughout the city, but in the historic district of the city a modified logo will designate the historic area.) City staff plans to change out items as they are needed, so there will not be additional expense.