Headlines Wednesday, January 27, 2016
A conservative meal
Utah Governor Gary Herbert chats with Representative Lee Perry and Senator Peter Knudson at Friday’s Lincoln Day GOP dinner.
Box Elder Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner event attracts GOP stars
by Nelson Phillips
It was a veritable who’s who of Utah Republican politicians Friday night, as the Box Elder County Republicans hosted both local and state dignitaries at Brigham City’s Academy Center for their annual Lincoln Day dinner event.
Among those attending were Senator Mike Lee, Governor Gary Herbert, Herbert’s challenger Jonathan Johnson, Attorney General Sean Reyes, Congressman Rob Bishop, State Representatives Scott Sandall and Lee Perry, State Senator Peter Knudsen, as well as many other local county, municipal and party officials.
“It’s a night to showcase our party’s stars, as well as being a fundraiser for the county party,” said Joel Ferry, Treasurer of the Box Elder County Republicans. The event drew approximately 200 people, at $25-$30 per plate, and featured chicken or salmon dinners prepared and served by the Academy Center’s soon to be opening Corbin’s Grille. The main course, though, was Utah’s unique brand of Republican politics, mixing fiscal and social conservatism with a dash of religion. And dinner attendees were well fed.
“It’s a good time to be a Utahn,” said Governor Herbert, after praising his fellow Republican office holders. “We’ve had great success economically throughout the state, we are one of the best performing economies in America today.” Herbert attributed that success to Utah’s culture and heritage. “When those early Mormon pioneers came in and said ‘this is the place’, and worked together to make the desert blossom like a rose, that was the culture of working together and over-achieving to get things done, and that’s what we’ve inherited.”
Herbert lauded the state’s rising high school graduation rates, blasted moral relativism, praised the cooperative spirit and good leadership of the state, and said the successes in Utah were due to adherence to conservative principles.
Senator Mike Lee praised the Academy building, and the “beautiful” town of Brigham City before speaking about the role of government in American life.
Autopsy reveals BC man’s death was natural causes
by Nelson Phillips
The death of a Brigham City man on Thursday afternoon caused a heavy police response at the Twin Pines Apartments at 580 North Main in Brigham City.
An autopsy determined the death to be the result of natural causes stemming from multiple health issues, but rumors about the death ran rampant on social media networks.
Police and emergency medical personnel responded to a pair of 9-1-1 calls received from the shortly after 2 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 28. Upon arrival they found Christopher Armondo Gallegos, 56, unconscious and not breathing. Attempts at reviving Gallegos at the scene were unsuccessful, and he was pronounced dead at Brigham City Community Hospital shortly thereafter.
Several police cruisers and crime scene units responded to the area because of the suspicious nature of a 9-1-1 call received by Box Elder Dispatch.
“A call came in as though somebody had possibly broken into the apartment, was possibly beaten up, and was unconscious and they couldn’t tell if he was breathing,” said Brigham City Police Chief Mike Nelsen. “When our detectives got down there, they called for more people when they found that the individual was not breathing.”
Unsure of what they had found, police taped off the area and treated it as a crime scene. That was followed by wild speculation and knowingly false eyewitness accounts being posted on social media outlets regarding what had happened.
“I seen them carrying guns from the seen [sic],” wrote one man on the News Journal Facebook page. The same man wrote he had seen tarps covering three cars because of blood. Others stated that the decedent had been beaten severely, and that several people were involved in some sort of violent altercation. Rumors were spread over the objections of family members, who were asking that people wait for official information.
In an attempt to quiet the rumors, Brigham City Assistant Chief of Police Dennis Vincent said on Thursday night that there was a lot of misinformation being spread.
“At this point our investigation doesn’t support that,” said Vincent, regarding rumors of a violent scene. Vincent continued that the cause of death was unclear, and an autopsy was being performed at the medical examiner’s office in Salt Lake City.
The preliminary results of the autopsy indicated that Gallegos had died from natural causes and not violence.
“There was no indication of Gallegos being beaten, or anything else like that which has been going around,” he said.
Almost lost in the furor surrounding this story is the fact that a local family is in mourning after losing a loved one. A viewing for Gallegos will be held on Friday, Feb. 5, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Gillies Funeral Chapel, 634 East 200 South, in Brigham City.
Slowing the flow?
by Nelson Phillips
State Senator Lyle Hillyard (R-Logan) has introduced a bill that would limit the amount of revenue any municipality in the state can collect from speeding tickets.
Senate Bill 100 would limit the amount any city could collect to 25 percent of its general fund revenue, mandating that any additional funds over that cap be turned over to the state of Utah. Hillyard doesn’t try to hide the fact that the bill is aimed squarely at Mantua, the little mountain town between Brigham City and Wellsville, known far and wide for its zealous enforcement of speed limits along U.S. Hwy 89-91.
“Mantua gets a third of its revenue from the speed trap they run on the highway,” said Hillyard. “I don’t think it’s appropriate for law enforcement to have a financial stake in the amount of tickets they write. If they want to continue to patrol that stretch and write tickets for health and safety reasons, fine, but my bill is designed to remove the financial incentive.” Hillyard said that he’s heard a lot of complaints from constituents and business travelers about high fines and over-zealous enforcement of speed limits through the town.
Pool, bowery reservations open
Brigham City is currently accepting online reservations for park boweries and the swimming pool.
Park Boweries are available to reserve from May 16-Sept. 3. Fees range from $30-$60 for residents, and $60-$120 for non-residents. Reservations will be made on a first-come-first-served basis.
The pool can be reserved June 6-Sept. 3. Fees are $350 in June and $400 in July and August for weekdays, and $500 for weekends (Friday and Saturday). The fee includes up to 200 people. There is an additional $1 per person charge for every person over 200. The pool is available for reservation Tuesday-Saturday from 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m. and Wednesday-Saturday from 8:30 p.m.-10 p.m.
Reservations can be made online at www.brighamcity.utah.gov and click on the “I Want To” tab, then click either “Reserve a Bowery,” or for the pool, click on the “sports registration” link. Reservations may also be made in person at the Hervin Bunderson Center, 641 East 200 North. Fees are due at the time of the application to confirm and hold a reservation.
Information on availability and cancellation policy may be requested by calling 435-734-6610.
Teens injured in crash
Two teenage girls and a 19-year-old man were injured Saturday night in a crash that happened in Honeyville.
According to Utah Highway Patrol Lt. Lee Perry, just after 8 p.m. the two girls in a 2000 Nissan Maxima had come to a stop on eastbound 6900 North, and then proceeded to pull through the intersection east into the path of a 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix that was traveling northbound on SR-38.
“The Grand Prix struck the Nissan in the passenger side causing it to veer to the left and it went off the roadway to the right and over a fire Hydrant and over several landscaping rocks,” wrote Perry. “The Gran Prix spun and went off the road to the right and came to a stop in the westbound lane of 6900 north on the east side of SR-38.”
The driver of the Grand Prix, 19-year-old Kaden Stephens of Tremonton, suffered an arm injury. The teen girls in the Maxima suffered injuries to their pelvises and lower extremities. All three were transported by ambulance to Bear River Valley Hospital in Tremonton.
The driver of the Maxima was cited for failure to yield the right of way.
According to Perry, between Saturday and Sunday over 20 separate crashes were reported in Box Elder County, largely due to the snowstorm that moved through the area.