Headlines Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Smart meter test run in BC
By Mike Nelson
A resolution to establish fees for Brigham City residents who choose not to have smart meters installed on their homes was pulled from the table during Thursday night’s council meeting as the project moves forward.
Discussion about the opt-opt out fees was tied to the proposed city-wide rollout of the smart meter equipment, but the complete rollout, it was discovered, was never authorized by the city council, making discussion of any opt-out fees unnecessary at this time.
In April, the Brigham City Council unanimously approved the purchase of the hardware and software necessary to run the system as well as an initial purchase of 120 meters to be installed on homes as part of a test phase. As the public power department ran tests, it was determined then, they would report back to the council before implementing a complete rollout.
But last month, Brigham City Administrator Bruce Leonard said, “We decided to move forward on this and get this system deployed,” adding that the city has purchased some 1,300 meters with a goal of having the meters installed citywide over five years.
The project was supposed to begin this month but has stalled pending further action or direction from city officials.
Now, after some review, Brigham City Public Power Director Dave Burnett said his department will proceed with installation on 120 homes on Brigham City’s west side. Burnett has spent much of the last three years studying and preparing to bring smart meters online in Brigham City.
Strike force serves knock-and-announce warrant in Brigham City
Box Elder Narcotics Strike Force served a knock-and-announce warrant at a Brigham City residence last Wednesday which resulted in the arrest of one woman for possession of narcotics with intent to distribute and a man being cited for drug possession.
“The strike force had received complaints of suspicious activity at the residence and , with further investigation, obtained a search warrant,” said Brigham City Police Lt. Dennis Vincent in a press release issued Thursday morning.
Vincent, who serves as the public information officer of the strike force, said agents, comprised of officers from Brigham City Police, Box Elder County Sheriff’s Department and Adult Probation and Parole, recovered marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin, prescription pills and items consistent with the use and sale of drugs.
“It was a pretty good take for us,” said Vincent.
Public defenders talk challenges, successes
Lawyers from Box Elder County’s Public Defenders Association appeared before the Box Elder County Commission during an unusually scheduled Tuesday meeting, telling of challenges they face, but also praising the work done by county law enforcement, corrections and justice employees.
In attendance were attorneys John Pace, Kevin McGaha, Bernie Allen and Malone Molgard, whose group contracts with the county to provide indigent defense in criminal cases. The meeting, normally scheduled on the first and third Wednesday of each month, was held on Nov. 18 to allow County Clerk Marla Young to report the official election canvas results in accordance with timelines set by state law.
“We’ve had an adventurous time these past few years,” said Bernie Allen, acting as spokesman for the group. “At a certain point in time our beloved Supreme Court passed a ruling that indicated people have a right to a preliminary hearing on Class A misdemeanors, whereas prior to that it had only been felonies that those rights were granted.”
Rose sentenced to 270 days in jail
Former Tremonton Police Officer Jeremy Rose was sentenced Monday to 270 days in the Weber County Jail. In October, Rose plead guilty to two counts of second-degree felony sexual exploitation of a minor; second-degree felony communications fraud, two third-degree felony counts of stalking, third-degree felony dealing in materials harmful to a minor, and class A misdemeanor of stalking.
While still a police officer in 2013, Rose faked email accounts from a pornographer, using them to convince a then 15-year-old female to send him nude photos. Rose also secretly videotaped the girl in various states of undress, and put software on the girl’s phone allowing him to track her location and activities.
Rose potentially faced 30 years in prison for his crimes, but Second District Judge Scott Hadley suspended prison for nine months jail time and three years of probation. Full details on the Rose sentencing will be in the Dec. 3 edition of the News Journal.
Willard subdivision moves forward
The developers of the 27 lot Granite Ridge subdivision in southeastern Willard received permission from the Willard City Council to move forward with phase one of their development.
Eric Householder, one of the developers, opted to defer decisions regarding water capacity and who is responsible for what to phase two of the project. Willard City reportedly has enough water flow available to hoop up as many as 50 homes in that area.
“We know moving forward that we’re going to have to address the storage issue,” said Householder. “In the past we have committed to you to using property on the site for a tank site, but it looks like we’ll have to go higher on the mountain.”
Householder said his company is committed to making that happen while prepaying impact fees which may be incurred during each phase in order to get the project moving forward.
The council had no objection to the request, and left it to City Attorney Kevin McGaha and City Planner Bryce Wheelwright to incorporate it into the development agreement, which will then need to be passed by a council vote.
2014 elections certified
The Utah State Board of Canvassers met Monday to certify the final results for all statewide and multi-county races and questions posed to voters on the ballot of the 2014 general election.
“The county clerks throughout the state ensured a smooth election for the 577,973 voters who cast a ballot in the general election,” read a press release issued by the Lt. Governor’s Office.
According to that press release, a late increase in by-mail ballots resulted in a higher than anticipated final voter turnout percentage. Of Utah’s 1,249,654 registered active voters, 46.25 percent voted. Included in this year’s election were 742 candidates statewide, of the 1,156 candidates who filed a declaration of candidacy. Also included were 19 ballot propositions voted on throughout the state.
“I would like to thank every election official in the state of Utah for their great work during this year’s election,” said Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox.“ County clerks, their staff and poll workers receive little recognition for the long hours and the tremendous service they provide to the people of this state.”
Preliminary results were completed and posted by 11:20 p.m. on election night which, according to the Lt. Governor’s Office is consistent with previous elections. However, the press release said, there were delays throughout election night in the posting of the results and the Lt. Governor’s Office plans to identify the reasons for the delays and take steps to mitigate those issues in the future.