A public hearing hosted by the Hideout Town Council Monday night brought out comments that were overwhelmingly against the town’s effort to annex into Summit County.
Council Members didn’t respond to public input. They are scheduled to hold a work session Tuesday night at 6 p.m.
During the electronic public hearing, the Council heard from 37 speakers. Of those, only five supported the town’s effort to annex to 350 acres owned by Mayflower Stichting near Richardson Flat.
The critics said while they sympathized with the town’s need for a revenue base or for services, they felt the Hideout plan was imprudent and rushed. Council members were told they need to work with the regional stakeholders, like Summit County and Park City, rather than alienate them.
Among the comments, Kurt Shadle, a former Hideout Council member who resigned this summer, read from a petition he said was supported by residents in the town and addressed to Council.
“We thank them for their efforts, but we need to be working with our neighbors, not further dividing us from them. We need to leverage our current position to organize a regional approach to planning, involving Summit County, Park City and Wasatch County, in an effort to jointly solve our region’s traffic, housing and shopping issues. We urge the Mayor and Council to find a way to work with Summit County and Park City on this and other issues. This annexation petition was signed by two former Council Members, two current Planning Commission members, one former Planning Commission member, and almost 100 town residents, which I might add is significantly more than those that voted for anyone in town government now or anytime in the past.”
Resident John Leoni recalled how he met Mayor Phil Rubin, when he moved in last spring. He said he was once proud to live in Hideout, but now he’s ashamed.
“I know that this is a very quick rush to provide services, which I do believe we need. And I think that should be forthcoming in a mutual collaboration between, working with our neighbors and our neighboring county. But I really feel like this was just sprung on us. There was no communication with any of the people that we had here. I never received a mailing. I never received, “Would you guys like to do this or not? We were never asked about our opinion about this. And instead we are ashamed going into Park City now, when I come from Park City, and I love Park City and I love Hideout as well.”
Amy Sage, a resident in the nearby Retreat at Jordanelle, said she’s concerned that Hideout will pressure her neighborhood to annex. One reason is that a planned chairlift in the development proposed by Nate Brockbank would operate over their houses.
“Quite frankly, I know you’ve told us to kind of trust you. But your current actions, with what you’re doing with county-wide, with people who have a lot more power than our HOA, is not really inspiring confidence in me, that you’re not going to use structural pressures on us in the future. And so I’m not unwilling to entertain these discussions about what should happen in our neighborhood. But I kind of feel like you guys have made me feel like I can’t really trust you to be making these decisions on behalf of everyone.”
Park City resident Rich Wyman said the town’s annexation process is amateurish.
“You guys are a barely-functioning City Council. Three months to take public input? And it is so unprofessional. I’ve been going to City Council meetings for decades, and I’ve never seen anything as amateur as yours. If you vote to proceed, I hope your terms are all very short, and you’re all voted out of office very soon.”
Wyman noted that up to that point, every speaker at the hearing was against annexation.
But some supporters later appeared. Chris Ensign said he has developed in Hideout—and praised Brockbank, though he’s a business competitor. He said Park City should be a good neighbor and support Hideout, which is just trying to create a development like Kimball Junction.
“Developers have gone into Park City for 100 years, and made the city what it is today. And yet they point a finger at Hideout and other communities and accuse em of greed. We all wanna live there, we all wanna play there, we all wanna shop there. We all want to be a part of that special place. Hideout is no different than Park City. So I hope they would more so start to step up and be a good neighbor, support the direction, help Hideout grow, and do like they’ve done previously. They’re not doing something that Park City has not done.”
Also, Madison Keller said Summit County is being hypocritical, when they’re trying to foster big projects near Home Depot, and also by the Factory Outlet Mall. They just don’t want Hideout to do the same thing, she said.
And resort employee Spencer Knight said he’s in support because he wants a chance to live in the Park City area.