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North Logan: What to do with growing herd of urban deer?

February 3rd, 2011 Posted in Opinion

By Emily Pannell Johnson

NORTH LOGAN–North Park Police Chief Kim Hawkes gave a brief presentation on the results of the urban deer herd survey to North Logan City Council Wednesday.

The survey began in December, Hawkes said. The 256 survey responses received were geographically diverse, and based on the information provided there are anywhere from 260 to 570 deer in North Logan. The six-question survey revealed an almost even split between citizens who strongly feel the deer population needs to be managed and those who feel the deer should be left alone, Hawkes said.

Hawkes said he’s going to compile information for the city regarding options for deer population management and in the meantime the city should work on educating the public. Hawkes suggested posting information on the city’s website and in the newsletter on things the public can do to protect their property from damage.

Councilwoman Nancy Potter said the overall survey results will be posted on the city’s website and in next month’s newsletter.

The council also set a public hearing for Feb. 16 regarding the private sale of 1.4 acres of city land surplus for the construction of an assisted living facility. They approved a resolution that outlines the conditions by which the acreage, located on the corner of 2500 North and 400 East, can be declared surplus. City Administrator Jeff Jorgensen said the formal classification of the city land as surplus is conditional; the sale price must be right and it must satisfy the public interest.

The council also heard from Parks, Recreation and Facilities director Alan Luce, who presented a Recreation, Arts, Parks and Zoos project proposal for 2012. Luce is requesting RAPZ funding to renovate the city’s Little League, pony and softball fields. This is an important project due to safety, appearance, irrigation and maintenance issues, Luce said; the maintenance “quick fixes” currently being employed are ultimately exacerbating problems and the poorly installed irrigation system is overusing water.

Luce said the parks committee estimates the renovation will cost $130,000, which would include RAPZ funds as well as city contributions. While Luce acknowledges that the renovation will come at a substantial cost, he said the project must be seen as a source of revenue as well. He said by upgrading the fields, the city would have a greater chance of attracting tournaments and sponsors, which would ultimately offset some of the renovation costs. The council agreed to forward the proposal on to the RAPZ Council for review.

In other business, the council:

— adopted a resolution establishing the parameters by which $1.2 million worth of water revenue bonds may be sold. The overall terms will not be decided for four to five weeks; the main stipulation is that the overall savings to the city’s current bond payments must exceed 3 percent, though city financial advisor Dave Miner believes it will save the city more than 5 percent.

— received a recommendation from the parks committee that dogs be prohibited from all city parks except King Park and the west side of Meadow View Park, due to a significant number of dog owners failing to comply with leash laws and clean-up policies. The council requested that the parks committee compile possible solutions to present to the council at a later date.

— discussed the recent construction of a shed on private property within the city. While the shed complies with all city ordinances, Councilwoman Potter said it is “just wrong.” Potter proposed that the planning commission and the city council review the ordinance that applies to sheds and outbuildings. It was decided that the planning commission will put together information on the ordinance for the council’s review.

— adopted a resolution to update the city’s personnel policy. City Administrator Jeff Jorgensen said the resolution will merely align policy with practice.


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