Monday, July 21, 2014

City Council 15-Jul-2014: Deer, Road Safety, & 5-Year Road Maintenance Plan

2014-07-15 Highland Road Conditions

Note all votes cast for motions were unanimous. There was a good amount of citizen interaction on two issues: Highland’s Urban Deer Management Program and Safety and Road Condition Issues on W Country Club Drive. Thanks to those who participated: Dale Wheeler, Brian Cook, Linda Walton, Devirl Barfuss, Lynn Bullock, Dave Dorton, and Rachel Springer.

Please refer to the formal agenda on the city website and the meeting presentation for more complete background info all issues.


  1. Public Comment: There were about 15 people in attendance.

    • 3 were there to discuss the urban deer management program (aka urban deer hunt). 1 resident brought pictures to show how the deer had impacted his garden. Brian Cook who is overseeing the program shared additional insight. The cost last year to Highland was negligible. Plus 5,550 pounds of ground venison were donated to food banks that feed the homeless (33,000 meals). Bountiful ran a relocation program and moved 18 deer at a cost of $42,000. I believe the survival rate of the deer when relocated is around 50%. 1 resident opposed the program citing concerns for the safety of children, animals … . She also mentioned that illegal hunting was the biggest problem. Brian Braithwaite made the comment that the city has not done a good job communicating the program to the residents  and we need to look at how to do a better job. Brian Cook, said the concerns were valid but that the program had been designed to alleviate them.  Again noting the need for improved communication. Please refer to “Highland’s Urban Deer Control Program – For or Against?” for details on this issue.
    • 4 residents commented on road and safety issues on W Country Club Dr. and N. Jerling. One of their asks was for a speed hump (bump) to help slow traffic. Other concerns were lack of a speed limit sign, obstructed view by trees and shrubs, and road condition. City staff agreed to put a speed limit sign up and the council asked staff to coordinate a meeting between the residents and appropriate staff members to discuss options.


  1. MOTION: Approval of Meeting Minutes for City Council Work Session – June 3, 2014 —Approved an amended version of the minutes with minor corrections by Rod Mann.
  2. MOTION: Approval of Meeting Minutes for City Council Regular Session – June 3, 2014 —Approved an amended version of the minutes with minor corrections by Rod Mann.
  3. MOTION: Approval of Meeting Minutes for City Council Tour – June 12, 2014. —Approved an amended version of the minutes with minor corrections by Rod Mann.
  4. MOTION: Ratifying the Mayor’s Appointments to the Highland City Beautification Committee – Laura Dawson, Ginger Ford, Mary Ann Jenkins, Judy Clayton and Denise Nydegger. —Approved.
  5. MOTION: Ratifying the Mayor’s Appointments to the Highland City Economic Development Committee – Roger Dixon, Jon McDaniel and Manuel Bueno. —Approved
  6. MOTION: Final Plat Approval – Highland Fields —Approved
  7. MOTION: Approval of Amended Contract with Highland Town Plaza, LLC (WPI) – the purchase of 0.36 acres and a 0.178 acre easement known as the Highland Water Company Building. —Approved
  8. MOTION: Ratifying the Mayor’s Appointment to the Highland Library Board – Tim Irwin. —Approved


  1. ORDINANCE: Amending Section 2.36.060 of the Highland City Municipal Code – Authority of the Community Tree Commission.  — The change was to clarify who had authority to act as the existing ordinance had some ambiguity in it with respect to line of authority. Approved with a minor clarifying amendment by Brian Braithwaite.
  2. RESOLUTION: Ratifying the Mayor’s Appointment as Alternate on the Lone Peak Public Safety Board - Rod Mann —Approved
  3. MOTION: Bull River Trail Easement– Brian Kapp property. The staff provided the following note to the council relative to this issue:
    ”During the construction of the Dry Creek Highlands Subdivision a trail was constructed between that subdivision and the Bull River Subdivision. Brian Kapp purchased and built a home in the Dry Creek Highlands Subdivision, this lot included an easement for the constructed trail. It was later determined that a portion of the trail had been constructed outside the trails easement and onto Mr. Kapp’s property. The city has been working with Mr. Kapp over the last number of years to resolve the issue of the trail being outside the easement. Mr. Kapp’s main concerns is if the trail is not in the prescribed trail easement and encroaches upon his property, what is his liability for that
    section of the trail versus the city’s liability.
    Mayor Thompson feels there are 3 options in resolving this issue.
    1. Purchase some of Mr. Kapp’s property, providing a trail easement in order to encompass the
    trail currently on his property, returning the liability under the city’s umbrella.
    2. Abandon the trail between the two subdivisions at the deviation points.
    3. Move the trail easement to match the trail- removing Mr. Kapp’s liability.”
    2014-07-15 Bull River Trail Easement
    * The area in red is the “problem area”.
    If the owner is amenable I would prefer option 3 as it is a no/low cost item and it takes care of one of the owner’s issues which is liability. The council decided to meet on Tuesday the 22 to go to the problem area and discuss the issue with the owner. I have already been to the area. It is a beautiful trail but it is a neighborhood optional trail. If the neighbors sign a petition to have the trail removed it can be removed. I suspect one of two things will happen; either the city will need to purchase the land the trail is on or the trail will be removed.


  1. Report – Road Maintenance Plan Introduction and Distribution. JUB Engineering reviewed a draft version of a 5 year maintenance plan with the council and answered questions. JUB walked us through a presentation which summarized the key points in the plan. The plan provides several options, depending on how much we are willing to pay, for maintaining the city roads which are in good condition – this represents approximately 68% of Highland’s roads. The key principles that the plan is based on are 1) that over the long term it costs less to maintain roads than it does to neglect them and let them fail 2) that it is more cost effective to spend money first on keeping the best roads in good condition than to improve the condition of roads that are in poorer condition, and 3) the maintenance schedule would be created based on what would be considered the best use of funds rather than any other criteria.
    The council will review the plan and will make a determination with staff as to what is the best way to proceed. Options could include: seek out a 3rd party to review the plan, take the plan as is, thank JUB and go our own route, ask for the plan to be refined so that we can move forward on it.
    I do wonder why we are only now getting detailed long-term plan that takes a “best use of funds approach” when the initial study was done in 2011. It seems to me that this would have been the point of doing the study.
  2. Report – Water Board. The mayor reported that the water board is working on recommendations for the planning commission on standards that are more conducive to water conservation. They are also looking at purchasing a few water meters to spot check pressurized irrigation water use. Note, the cost to add meters for all users of PI would be around $1M dollars. At this point this is really not a feasible option.
  3. Discussion - Committee Assignments. General discussion with council on committee memberships. The mayor asked the council to indicate where their interest lies in terms of serving on committees and boards either via personal conversations or email.

Executive Session

Met to discuss the sale of real property. The executive (closed) session is required since price was under discussion.


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