Newspaper Archive of
The Sundance Times
Sundance, Wyoming
April 16, 2015     The Sundance Times
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April 16, 2015

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Page 7 The Sundance Times Thursday April 6 201. ,J[. contiOued from page I to-make sure:- S~mdance is included, He also outlined the benefits ofp g in the alition, such as access o g loan fund for/: higher-risk loans, expertise and sistance within ture and worldorce opment. Atl~nson told the that NEWEDC also 5013c foundation which it is available to ar, range festivals, career fairs and other events free of . Members for Sundance thi be$2000, he said. Karla Greaser- o~%~- , - hydro, City En provided an update on current projects, begin- ning with the SCADAmon- itoring system. A panel has been and will be installed ordination with the lic Works Director in the couple of weeks, shesaid For the TUURA Park wa- ter and sewer p and 21st Street water loop, Greaser stated that the easement for the-latter has been ,filed and cerm- ments have been received on the permit,to from the tof Environmental mostly requesting more information. tot asa package. Greas er's rec ~wRs to accept the low bid approximately $190,000 from Timberline Services; later in the meeting, an project' to rejuvenate Sundance Pond, hut Clerk- er Kathy council that she has re- ceived a grant agreement for $25,000 from Wyo- ming Game and Fish. The council granted permis- sion for the mayor to sign the agreement once it has been app by CityAt- and Fish will be present at the next council meeting to discuss the plan. incorporate the secOnd phase of the port of entry project and for dition support and en, gineering services for new Sundance Elementa* ry School. The council granted per- mission for Hughes and Brooks to create and sign m of the funds were Originally the business's headquar ters project. The will be used to extend :the sewer line and install ter and sewer services fore the street goes said Ken Rathbun, lodge Engineering. the month and told:the council that Officer itmore is on a Homeland ment's computers. Greaser prese change order for the: cil's consideration as: they move forward t~e budgeting process. The additional funds address the * between the scope of work order, she i(~ The next regular ing of the Sundance City Council will take on May 5. money scarce BY SARAH PRIDGEON Senator Ogden DriskiU warns that purse strings at the state level are likely to tighten in the near future, which could have strong repercussions for local government entities. "Money for you guys is scarier than heck coming up," he told the Crook County Com- mission last week. Gas prices are falling, said the senator, and oil is about at capacity with prices set to crunch if the situation is not fixed. The amount of money available to distribute to towns and counties will likely decrease over the next few years. The senator explained that he represents three counties, two of which are on one side of the hardship divide: Crook and Weston. The other, Campbell, is on the richer side of the divide and has, he said, different needs and views. "You guys will really want to do research on how they do the hardship counties," Driskill commented. "I'm left in a terrible spot, I need you guys to really know what you wantf Driskill suggested that the county and mu- nicipalities should accelerate their plans for projects involving such things as streets and water that will need to be presented to the State Lands and Investments Board for fund- ing. If the budget slips, he said, the cost share percentage will go down as the money goes away and government entities will be expect- ed to pay a higher match for their funding. According to Driskill, the state appeared during the session to be taking the attitude of "hurry up and spend before the money is gone". He indicated that funding was allo- cated two years in advance for the first time - money was earmarked and pre-spent. "We spent lots of money this year - spent it like it wasn't coming up on hard times," he commented. DriskiU estimated that around $14 miUion has been spent on a high altitude training center for athletes and $25 million on an enhanced oil recovery project. A lot has also been spent on the university, he said. Of the many individual projects that were granted funding, he added, he wasn't even able to get a bike path in a Teton County killed, jokingly asking whether the county might also want any bike paths. Around $160 miUion has also been spent to revamp the State Capitol, which Driskill noted is a "done deal". The Legislature has leased a large building for the next three years, Governor Matt Mead will move into an old funeral home across the street and the Capitol itself will become a construction zone in August. "It will change the dynamics of the Legisla- ture a lot," the senator said, explaining that people have grown used to knowing where one another's offices are. On the plus side, Driskill said, he co-spon- sored a hospital bill this year that will see $100,000 directed to Crook County's medical services. He sponsored more bills than any- one in the state and saw around 30 of them passed. The senator also offered kudos to Represen- tative Tyler Lindholm for his work in making the Department of Environmental Quality aware of the situation in northeast Wyoming regarding landfills. He suggested that there may be a bill coming to address the liability issue for hauling garbage across the border to South Dakota. sa ;ures BY SARAH PRIDGEON out to be really bad advice," both if things stay as they are she commented, explain- and if the county decides to Tina Wood, Clerk of Dis- ing that her employee has a change them. trict Court, appro dhed the nNmber of years of experi- "There's a reaction for every County Commission last ence is stil!: working, at a action, he said, noting that week with her fellow elected starting wage. if one person is given a raise county officials to discuss Wood told the commission then others will want a fair a revamp of salary struc- that being fiscally respon- match and that duties differ tures for county employees, sible did not pay off in this between offices. Because the county lacks a case and that she does not County Attorney Joe Bar- system at present, she said, want to lose her employee be- on stated that a tier system there is discrepancy within cause she cannot pay them would give the elected of- and between departments as to how much employees are currently being paid. Good employees are not easily replaceable, she stat- ed, telling the commissioners an appropriate wage. She re- ficials some certainty when quested permission to bring setting and increasing wag- up the employee's salary in es. He agreed with Wood that line with the other deputies her employee is an example in the courthouse, of getting "locked in" by hay- Wood also presented a pro- ing no system. that it can cost significantly posed tier system for county "The county doesn't tune- more to replace an employee salaries - a first draft pre- tion without people -- you ce than to compensate them pared with County properly. She also noted that deputies are expected to take on the duties of an elected should a situation arise in which the elected can no lon- ger serve. "Along with that responsi- bility should come adequate pay," she said. In 2011, said Wood, she took the advice of two elected officials that she should not start a new employee on the would require some increas- used as a factor in determin- same wage as the person theyes to bring certain employees ing salary level. were replacing, in line, Wood said. "However we do it, someone "Unfortunately, that turned Discussions over a new is not going to like it," point- salary system were original- ed out Commissioner Kelly ly opened in January. The Dennis Clerk got to have good people," he Linda Fritz, County Assessor added, stating that, for most Theresa Curren and County offices, salaries are around Treasurer Mary Kuhl. Un- 90 percent of the budget. der the proposed system, anDiscussion was held regard- employee would be placed ining the particulars of install- one of three tiers represent- ing a new system, including ing years of service, each of the fact that there must be which has a wage range thatmoney in an elected official's corresponds to a percentagebudget to cover the increases range of the elected official's and whether years of ser- salary, vice to the county or years of Switching to a tier system overall experience should be Sundance recognizes national service BY SARAH PRIDGEON The City of Sundance last week joined a record number of 2630 mayors and county leaders across the nation in rec- ognizing AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers for their commitment to service and positive impact on chal- lenges facing the nation. The officials who contributed to the cause represented 149 million Americans, nearly half the population of the United States. The Sundance City Council signed a proclamation at the beginning of last week's regular meeting for a Mayor's Day of Recognition for National Service on April 7. The number of officials participating in the event has more than tripled since it was instituted in 2013. The Mayor's Day of Recognition is led by the Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers Ame- riCorps, Senior Corps and the Social Innovation Fund, in partnership with the National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties and Cities of Service. "We are thrilled by the extraordinary turnout of mayors and county leaders from across the country for this bipartisan recognition of the impact of national service," said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Commu- nity Service. Tour: continued from page 1 that would be representative of the area." The turnout, says Schilling, included 43 people such as county commissioners, mayors, city councilmen, private business people, chambers of commerce, the school district and the Forest Service. The meeting was conducted in an open "U" shape to facilitate conversation. "You never know how these things are going to go, and of course this was the first one, but it worked out just fine," he says. "There was a recognition for the need for greater collaboration between the communities and the citizens, greater collaboration throughout the county both in terms of government institutions and the private section and also just people working together." There was also, says Schilling, an agreement that growing the economy across the county may require a full-time em- ployee. "Those would be the key things, I think," he says. The next step, once meetings have been held in every coun- ty, will be to compile reports by county. "The compilation of all of these will be presented at the Gov- ernor's Business Forum, which is our annual Wyoming busi- ness forum, in November. It's too early to say what would be some key recommendations or strategies," Schilling says. "Well get a better feel for that on a trend line basis, after we v,e done, ,or, nine;oF ten ,0Lth s : It that ~eed :better ad~e~sing, ,or,-we .need, better~oordirlati~rr t~- cally, or we need to have a better databank of Who is doing what, or a better understanding of how you go about, say, financing economic efforts." ke vo?I elected officials were asked to Wood was given permis- T[M~~l Mo r: prepare a draft to present to sion to increase her employ- continued f, o P g the commissioners, ee's wages as she has money "We are all here again to ask in the budget to do so. The A Taste of Western and give the bank greaterthat you join us at the table," commissioners committed to opportunity to be a busi- she told the commission, work with the elected officials Campfire Onion Bombs ness incubator. Commissioner Steve Stahla and asked to see a firm pro- 1 To move forward required pointed out that issues exist posal for the new system. Submitted by Janet Jansen a resolution of support, the city's agreement to man- age the grant and a public hearing. Lenz also request- ed that the city donate half of the 25 percent match for the grant at $3125, with the chamber, museum and private businesses to provide the other half. The planning grant will provide a feasibility study of how the Main Street Program might be imple- mented in Sundance, said Allen, such as through beautification and facades. A motion was passed to support the efforts to apply for a grant and have Clerk- Treasurer Kathy Lenz draft a resolution in time for the next regular meeting. The State of Wyoming's Property Tax Relief Program is designed to assist individuals and families with household incomes less than the greater of half the county or state median household income. The tax relief for qualifying persons shall be in the form of a refund of ad valorem tax paid upon the person's principal residence for the preceding calendar year (currently the 2014 tax year). Qualification factors also include timely payment of property tax; residence in the State of Wyoming for a minimum of five years; household assets (excluding the home, a car for each adult household member, and IRA and pension funds) worth less than $115,455 per adult household member. For more information about Wyoming's Property Tax Relief Program or to obtain an application you may stop by the Crook County Treasurer's Office or call them at (307) 283-1244. Information and applications may also be obtained directly from the Wyoming Department of Revenue, Property Tax Relief Program, by calling (307) 777-7320. APlPli ations must be completed and filed with either the Department of Revenue or the Crook County Treasurer no later than Monday, June 1, 20'15. Peel your onions and choose even ones. Cut in half equally. Prepare a favorite meatball mix. (I use ground beef, Italian seasoning, oregano, chili powder, minced garlic, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce and bread crumbs.) Size your meatball to be squished between two evenly cut halves of onions (meat will come out ends which is okay). Wrap each onion bomb in heavy duty foil or double wrap with regular foil. No holes and compact as much as you can. Toss in the fire and try to get them in the coals. (No holes poked in them.) Cook for ten minutes; flip'era around and cook another 10 minutes or so. The people who gave me this recipe are long time campers. Thought it might work for branding fire! Crook County CattleWomen Recipes Brought to you