Summit County Council Will Keep An Eye On Legislative Doings

Feb 6, 2020

The Summit County Council will be keeping an eye on the Utah State Legislature until its scheduled closing on March 12th.

Deputy County Manager Janna Young and Council Member Kim Carson gave a presentation Wednesday to the Council.    

County Manager Tom Fisher said that the county isn’t pursuing any specific pieces of legislation.    That’s in contrast to last year.      

“Last year, we had a big year around renewable energy, and involuntary sewer districts around failing septic systems—a large push that actually kinda culminated about a three-year effort of moving towards that session.  I think we’re gonna be looking at the affiliated groups under UAC, whether that be the assessors, or the recorders, or the clerks to see what comes out of those groups, in order to see where the county might land.”

The legislature’s tax reform proposal has been dumped.    But the staff report to Council said the result is that the state’s budgeting is about $45 million underwater.   That could leave the county with some challenges finding funding.

Fisher said that money for tourism promotion is certainly important for the county and for the Park City Chamber/Bureau.        

“Early indications, at least, from some of the speaking that we’ve heard from legislative leadership is that they would like to continue funding the tourism.  I mean, it’s one of our largest parts of our economy and needed.   So we’re gonna see.   But we keep a close on those things, so we can weigh in when it’s necessary.”

One proposed bill would make it easier to conduct prescribed burns in forests.   Fisher said they have a mixed reaction to that.       

“Certainly that could help reduce fuels in our forest.  But who has the control about making sure that air quality is protected, or that fires are done responsibly, so that it doesn’t spread to a bigger problem.  So far, our fire district hasn’t seen an issue with the bill’s language, or our fire districts.  But again, we’re gonna watch that one close.”

Another proposal would exempt electric cars from a commercial personal property tax.    Fisher said they generally support that, given their goals on Sustainability.