In a long-awaited and enthusiastically-supported move, the Blanding City Council unanimously approved plans for the Meadowlark Subdivision, a new residential development created by Windscape Development.
The new branch of Tri-Hurst construction, established for residential development, includes plans for townhomes, twin homes, single-family homes and lots in the southern part of the city. The city council believes the development is a welcome addition to the city.
The public approval process for the development began in September 2018. With the plans now approved, Windscape is wasting no time getting busy. Groundbreaking for the subdivision is slated on June 3.
Blanding Mayor Joe Lyman recognized the long process, stating, “This is kind of a ground-breaking thing here, and if we’ve learned something, hopefully we’ve learned how to streamline things so that we – and any developer – can be more effective in moving things through, getting them right, and getting them done in a timely fashion.”
In other business at the May 14 meeting, the Blanding City Council recognized Desert Rivers Credit Union as a new business on Main Street.
Council members commented on how beautiful the building is and how much it improves the look of the corner of Main and Center streets.
The council also heard brief reports on water, city recreation, and police. Mayor Lyman said he’d been on several ride-alongs with Police Chief JJ Bradford and likes the direction Bradford is going with the police department.
Mayor Lyman reported on the county commission. He expressed concern that the county is taking illegal actions and that citizens lodging complaints are not getting support – or even responses – from state officials.
Lyman encourages city residents to flood the Attorney General’s office with mail and emails about the “blatant ignorance for the law.”
No members of the public commented during a public hearing on the budget and transferring public funds.
There was also discussion about city cleanup. The council discussed working with the county to open the landfill and reimburse the county for the citizens who take advantage of the free dump day.
Last year, the city cleanup effort worked in conjunction with the Utah National Guard. Mayor Lyman expressed a desire for a similar partnership this year.
Finance Director Kim Palmer discussed the need to update policies and fees for requests for information through the Government Records and Access Management Act (GRAMA).
Palmer said that most requests take just a few minutes, but others could take months to research and compile. They need to have an appropriate fee attached to them.
State requirements and templates from other cities were used to develop a revised policy. The next steps are to move it to a public hearing for future meetings.
Public comment was made by County Attorney Kendall Laws about a training on May 30 by the Utah Division of Records and Archives Service on records and information management (RIM) and government records access and management act (GRAMA) requests.
Laws encouraged implementing a local appeals board for GRAMA requests.
He briefly discussed the benefits of establishing such a board and what it would entail.