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River Heights joins list of cities to ban ‘spice’

November 12th, 2010 Posted in Opinion

By Megan Allen

RIVER HEIGHTS–River Heights is the latest on the list of cities and towns in Cache Valley to ban the use, production, and sale of the synthetic cannabinoid known as “spice.” The City Council moved this week to adopt the same ordinance that has been established by Cache County.

“It won’t take any effort, we just have to change the name on the paper,” said Councilman Rob Gines.

Councilwoman Francine Davis voiced concern about passing the ordinance. “Once the state adopts the ordinance, all the county ones become null and void,” she said. “What’s the point of passing it if it won’t matter anyway?”

Mayor Bill Baker had the answer.

“If we don’t adopt it, River Heights would be the only place in the state that spice is be accepted,” he said.

While the state mandate would be all encompassing, it would leave out cities and counties that have not passed the ordinance themselves. It would create the same law among the places that have already set their own. The State Legislature won’t pass the law until at least March, so passing it in River Heights now would give the city and county time to prosecute if needed, Gines said.

A public hearing on the issue will be held as part of the next council meeting on Nov. 23.

At Tuesday’s meeting, current treasurer Jim Brackner introduced his replacement, Ross Mann. Mann has started his training and will begin to take over as Brackner nears retirement. “We’ll stretch out the overlap as long as we can,” Baker said.

River Heights has been working on replacing all water meters with digital meters that are easier to read. “The new meters will allow every house in the city to be read in about 45 minutes,” Baker said. A requisition was approved to pay for the remaining 120 meters that need to be replaced.

The other big project council members are pushing for is to put lights around the major signs in the cities. Installing these lights would not cost the city a lot of money, public works official Kent Parker said.

“Rocky Mountain Power will install the electricity breaker for free,” he said. “All we would have to do is install a pole for it and pay $5 a month for the power.”

Davis is heavily invested in the project and wants to see it completed by Thanksgiving. “We need to add these lights and make the signs more visible for people driving through town,” she said. “They need to be aware of these areas.”

Councilwoman Kathryn Hadfield reminded everyone of the upcoming Christmas tree lighting that will be held Dec. 6.

The next council meeting is scheduled for Nov. 23 at 6:30 p.m.


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