Heber City Council Hears About Pride Banners And Gets An Update On The Airport Master Plan
Heber City’s Tuesday Council meeting discussed a variety of topics including LGBTQ Pride banners on Main Street and a report on the update to the Airport Master Plan.
At the June 4th Heber City Council meeting city residents expressed their feelings about the rainbow flags posted on Main Street that read ‘Pride in the Wasatch Back’. Heber City Manager Matt Brower explains the process the city goes through to determine if a banner should be placed on Main Street.
“It’s the city’s practice, when we receive a request to hang a pole banner is to first ensure that there's no request preceding it,” Brower explained. “Then if the request is found objectionable, it’s usually raised to my attention or to the mayor's attention. In this case it was raised to the mayor's attention. The mayor feels passionately about the youth of our community and is very concerned about the suicide epidemic amongst LBGT youth. The number one cause of death for youth ages 10 to 17 in Utah is suicide. She wants no more youth to consider suicide and wants no more families to be impacted by that. Hoping the flags will raise attention to this crisis.”
Brower says the flags will remain on Main Street through most of June before they are replaced by flags and banners in preparation for Independence Day celebrations.
Some have argued that allowing the LGBT banners might set a precedent that would allow for politically charged banners to be hung on Heber’s Main Street. Brower says that he imagines the policy will be given another look in the near future.
“I imagine that the council wants to debate a policy for pole banners in the near future,” Brower said. “Council asked staff some time ago to look at banners that are placed on open spaces in city parks. So, I imagine there will be a conversation taking place with council in the very near future.”
Additionally, at the latest Heber City Council meeting council members heard a report from new Airport manager Travis Biggs. Brower said the airport is preparing for an initiative to start in late summer.
“The city is intending to work in cooperation with the FAA to update the master plan that was last updated in 2003,” Brower continued. “The purpose of the master plan is like a business plan. It is to help us make sound financial decisions for the airport. Many have said well if you’re going to do a master plan update, you’re obviously going to expand the airport. That's simply not true. The update of the airport master plan is the necessary element to ensure that we're operating the airport in the most efficient and effective way we possibly can. This effort is expected to kick off probably in the August time frame. We’re excited about it. It will be a very public and a very transparent process.”
Heber City and the Airport’s Fixed Base Operator OK3 Air continue to be locked in a lawsuit.
“The master plan update is really unrelated to the lawsuit that’s in place now,” Brower explained. “The master plan update is a necessary element of running our airport business and the lawsuit was of course in place now for some time.”