Thursday, June 27, 2013

Fire Safety/Fireworks Restrictions

Now that summer is here, we want you to be aware of some important safety tips:

  • There is extreme fire danger this summer with high winds, low humidity, and high temperatures. Please take note on fireworks restrictions and use good common sense when using fireworks. Fireworks cannot be used near fields, the Jordan River, and other open public lands. (See map below) Recently an Ordinance passed by the City Council restricted these areas. Please see the UFA website for details on restrictions and fireworks safety. Better yet, come enjoy the professional fireworks at Taylorsville Dayzz and bypass residential firework parties!
  • Keep all matches and lighters away from children. Teach your children to report any loose matches or lighters to an adult immediately.
  • Supervise children around outdoor grills.
  • Before using a grill, check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line.
  • Do not wear loose clothing while cooking at a barbecue or when handling fireworks.
  • Be careful when using lighter fluid. Do not add fluid to an already lit fire because flames can flashback up into the container.
  • Dispose of hot coals properly - douse them with plenty of water, and stir them to ensure that the fire is out. Never place them in plastic, paper or wooden containers.
  • Never grill/barbecue in enclosed areas - carbon monoxide could be produced.
  • Make sure everyone knows to Stop, Drop and Roll in case a piece of clothing does catch fire.

Have fun, but think safety!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Green Waste Collection - Coming to a Curb Near You!

Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District, Taylorsville's waste and recycling provider, announced they will begin collecting green waste as a subscription service beginning in March 2014. Customers will be able to put yard and lawn trimmings, fruit and vegetable scraps, and leaves in a specially designed green waste cart for collection on their normal garbage and recycling day.

“Green waste pick up is being asked for by an increasing number of our customers,” said Wasatch Front Waste Executive Director Pam Roberts. “We are excited to offer this additional service.”
Customers are invited to pre-subscribe by sending an email to with their name, address, and phone number; or by calling 385-468-6325. The green waste program is optional and by subscription only for an annual fee of $115 and a one-time, nonrefundable $60 cart fee to be paid by October 31, 2013.
“This service is just one more way that Wasatch Front Waste is staying green, innovative, and cutting edge,” said Taylorsville City Councilmember and Wasatch Front Waste Board Member Dama Barbour. “My community and the others using Wasatch Front Waste continue to be very well served.”
·      Green waste includes all UNBAGGED lawn and yard trimmings (grass clippings, branches, leaves, garden waste), fruit and vegetable scraps, eggshells, coffee grounds, and tea bags. NO food, oils, fats, grease, paper, or plastic bags.
·      Curbside green waste collection will begin in mid-March and end in mid-December (a firm start and end date will be announced).
·      Collection is the same day as customers’ regular refuse and recycling day.
·      Customers will receive a special green waste cart with vents to release moisture.
·      Carts will be delivered to homes beginning in December 2013.
The non-refundable $60 cart fee allows Wasatch Front Waste to purchase and deliver the carts.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Council Summary 6/19/13

Tonight at the Taylorsville City Council meeting, the council voted unanimously to appoint Andrew Brown to the Budget Committee.

The Council also heard from Pam Roberts, Executive Director for Wasatch Front Waste and Recycling District. The new billing process has started out rocky, but she assured that they are still the same great people providing the same great service. They are encouraging recycling because it is cheaper to drop off recycling  materials than waste material. Wasatch Front Waste is starting a subscription Green Waste program. For more information, see The annual cost is $115 and it is an optional service. Taylorsville represents the largest city in the service district with 16.6 percent of their customers. Taylorsville residents gave Wasatch Front Waste with a 97 percent rate in their satisfaction survey.

Aimee Newton, communications director, gave a report on the city's communications. The city uses a variety of mediums to keep residents and businesses informed - newsletter in the center of the Taylorsville Kearns Journal, e-newsletters for both residents and businesses, print and TV media, and the website and social media. She talked about social media - this blog, YouTube channel, Facebook page, and Twitter account, and showed the council demographics and stats for some of these mediums. She showed examples of media coverage to get good news about Taylorsville out to the general public, and how it has also been used for economic development efforts.

A proposed land development code amendment was considered. This proposal amended the section of the Taylorsville Land Development Code for side yard setbacks in the R-1-10, R-1-15, R-1-20, R-1-30, and R-1-40 zoning districts.

The council discussed the discharge of fireworks and specific areas of the city where they cannot be discharged. has an interactive map with more info on firework dangers. A map was shown of areas where fireworks are prohibited. These high risk areas include open space along the freeway, Jordan River, parks, and empty lots.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Taylorsville's 17th birthday party - TAYLORSVILLE DAYZZ!

Taylorsville City is turning 17 this year! After a 70 percent vote of the people to incorporate and become a city in 1995, Taylorsville has continued its tradition of responsive government to residents of this bedroom community. Taylorsville's population of 60,000 is located in the heart of the Salt Lake Valley.

Taylorsville Dayzz is a tradition looked forward to by many families in the city. Between the carnival, parade, 5K run, Utah Symphony, free concerts, and the best fireworks show in the valley, there is something to appeal to everyone. (FYI... Fireworks are not funded using taxpayer dollars - they are funded by sponsors.)

The Utah Symphony and Wasatch Cannoneers will perform on Thursday evening at 7:30 p.m. On Friday you can enjoy "Let's Hang On," a Frankie Valli/Jersey Boys tribute, which follows a performance by the Taylorsville Orchestra at 6:30 p.m. This year, Abbacadabra will be performing an Abba tribute concert on Saturday, June 29 at 8 p.m. 

New this year is a Movie in the Park at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday. Families can enjoy, "Despicable Me" with their friends and neighbors. There are also hot air balloon rides each night ($10 for adults, $5 for kids under 12). Nothing beats the view of the 20,000 plus people gathered to hear the concerts and see the fireworks. Bring your lawn chairs, water bottles, and your family!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

City Council Meeting 6/12/13 - Budget Passed

The city council unanimously adopted the year-end budget for 2012-2013.

After additional changes were made to the FY 2013-2014 budget, it was adopted with a 4 to 1 vote. The Mayor made adjustments to the budget, including decreasing staff and making some program cuts. The council asked for additional cuts, but made sure there were funds for Taylorsville Dayzz (most of Taylorsville Dayzz costs are covered by business and resident sponsors and the city helps with a small portion), the float, the awards banquet, road maintenance and another police officer through the COPS grant. 

The Council removed any salary increases for employees and reduced the amount allocated for mileage reimbursement. They also reduced the amount for sidewalks maintenance/repair. The approved budget includes a tax increase of $5.89 per month ($70.62 per year for the average home of $197K). It went from 47 percent down to 29.6 percent of the city's portion of property taxes.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Drug Court Graduation

Recently I attended the Taylorsville Drug Court Graduation. This is a voluntary program of which someone who is charged with a drug or alcohol offense can participate.

According to Judge Michael Kwan, “These people have realized that parts of their life are out of control and they want to gain that control back.” This program has been going for 14 years and has had 42 graduation ceremonies. Over 1000 people have graduated.

The graduation ceremony I attended had eight graduates. Speakers included Councilmember Kristie Overson who said, “I commend all of you for being here tonight. You are here because of some good and not-so-good choices. The not-so-good landed you here today, but the good choices are to work hard to be here tonight. I admire you for that and appreciate you. We are where we are because of those decisions. We look forward to you giving back to our community. Thank you for your example tonight.”

Then Police Chief Tracy Wyant spoke and congratulated them on their achievement. “You are at a new crossroads and a new chapter in your life. I would ask you give that some real thought and choose the correct path,” he said. “You made some mistakes to be here, but everyone in this room makes mistakes. You are not unique or isolated in that. Recognize that, but don’t allow that to keep you down.”

During the ceremony Alan Kirkwood, a volunteer for Freeway Watch and the father of a child killed by someone under the influence, gave Judge Kwan an award for “his perseverance in making this program happen.”

A few of the graduates read letters that they wrote talking about their experiences in the program. One said how nice it felt to be “in a clear-headed state.” Another one said, “I am grateful there is a program like this available. Without this program I would not have been able to keep my license, and keep my job. I have been clean and sober for two years.”

A third graduate said, “I had no desire to quite doing drugs. After a few weeks in the program I realized how messed up my life was. It has been 12 years and I am ready to stand on my own. I don’t have to medicate to get through life.”

Marjorie Rawlinson, one of the graduates said, “It sucked in the beginning. It was so hard. They take over your life. I’ve been in it a long time.” She said that the $8 per month was a small price to pay to stay clean. “I’ve been doing drugs for 20 years. Today I have an actual relationship with my children. I was high most of their life, and now I know what is going on in their lives and they know what is going on in mine. It’s great.”

Participants are charged a fee based on their income level and the costs incurred. They begin with a court date each Tuesday to make sure they are on track with the judge. According to Kwan, “The statistics show that of 100 people ordered to have an assessment and treatment only one will still be in a treatment in a year.” Because of these stats, he said that close supervision is important. So are timely consequences and rewards. When a participant does well, they get rewards like attending court less often, and even gift cards. If they mess up, they may have to increase their court dates.

This program also includes drug tests and group treatment. The group treatment is run by someone who is a licensed substance abuse counselor and there is a minimum of peer treatment once per week. Counselors also encourage community-based support groups so participants can meet sober people and get into a sober environment.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Budget Public Hearing/Council 6/5/13

The city council meeting tonight was packed with approximately 90 people in attendance. Most of them were here for the budget public hearing. 

The "Best of Taylorsville" award was given to Dieter and Elaine Waegner. See a photo of their home and a description of why they won this award.

Katrina Thatcher was appointed to the Arts Council.

The March 2013 UPD Officer of the Month was awarded to Officer Jonathan Bushnell. During March Officer Bushnell's actions led to several self-initiated felony arrests. These felony arrests include the arrest of an individual for child abuse of a 4 month old baby, the arrests of two individuals that were in possession of drugs, a DUI arrest and an arrest for possession of a stolen vehicle.

The April 2013 UPD Officer of the Month was awarded to Detective Brett Miller. Det. Miller tenaciously pursues career criminals who victimize citizens. He develops cases that involve drug dealing, vehicle theft, and other felony crimes. Many of the perpetrators committing these types of crimes are violent and armed felons. In April he assisted when an auto dealer was burglarized and located a suspect. His work helped garner an arrest and almost all of the $75K in property was returned to the rightful owners.

The May 2013 UPD Officer of the Month was awarded to Detective Denise Ikemiyashiro. She assisted patrol officers on an incident where a violent gang member, in a stolen vehicle, began ramming police cars in an effort to avoid apprehension. Despite the fact that the perpetrator had reacted violently, Det. Ikemiyashiro developed a rapport with the individual which ultimately led to the corroboration of additional felony investigations.

Financial matters were the hot topic of the night. The Mayor gave his Mayor's report. He spoke about how he came up with the proposed budget after including suggestions from residents, city council members, and staffers. These additions included funds to better the city and with these additions the budget had a $2.3 million shortfall. He introduced some changes that were made to help reduce the shortfall. They include eliminating three full time positions and two part time positions. It also includes changing a full time position to part time. These changes brought the tax increase from 47 percent to 39 percent.

The council then opened the public hearing and heard from dozens of residents. Most of them felt like the budget should be cut. Some ideas included: getting rid of streetscape and park beautification, deleting compensation increases for employees, and cutting non-essential staff. Some also suggested not investing in economic development and getting rid of the volunteer committees.

Some items were cut out of the budget, but then the council asked the administration to cut things down to 26-29 percent tax increase and bring a proposal back next week.