Steve Simpson approached the San Juan County Commission on September 9 with a request to repurpose $12,000 in money that was originally raised to restore the swinging bridge at Bluff. The restoration has not happened because the proposed cost is prohibitive.
Simpson requested that the money instead be used to help the Bluff area with internet service. Internet service for Bluff, as well as cell phone coverage, has been poor. Simpson said the businesses need the coverage in order to compete.
With the transfer in use, Simpson also requested an additional $5,000 from the county. Bluff business owners have added $5,000. The Commission approved the request to repurpose the original money for the reconstruction of the swinging bridge and to award an additional $5,000.
In other business at the September 9 meeting, Davis Filfred approached the commission to seek funding for the Utah Navajo Fair, which is scheduled to take place this week in Bluff.
A resolution was passed by a number of the Navajo chapters requesting funds from the Navajo Revitalization Fund. Unfortunately, the request was not presented at the Navajo Revitalization Fund meeting in August. As a result, all of the money that was available at one time (which totaled $2.5 million) has already been appropriated.
Filfred reports that the Fair committee has $17,000, but that is not enough to cover commitments already made. All contributor amounts are down from last year, and some who contributed last year have not donated anything this year.
The Commission suggested they talk to the Navajo Revitalization Board to see if they can advance the money.
The San Juan Heritage Council needed to replace three members. Tim Chamberlain, Mary Den Yazzie, and Phil Lyman are appointed to four-year terms.
Building permits are issued to Blue Mountain Power Partners for a metering tower and for an addition on a private residence.
At the September 3 meeting of the Commission, Sheriff Rick Eldredge provided information on the State Prison Relocation Committee.
The counties are trying to get the State of Utah to contract out more beds and thereby build a smaller main prison facility. Counties, such as San Juan, could expand their jails if they had firm State Contracts for prisoners.
Eldredge presented two agreements with Utah Navajo Health Systems for commission approval.
The first is titled “San Juan County Fire and Emergency Services Department Use Agreement for Montezuma Creek Fire Station” and the second is a “Mutual Aid Agreement”.
Both agreements have been previously reviewed and, with a few minor changes, are now ready for signature. The documents have been signed by Donna Singer of UNHS.
The Spanish Valley Water ruling from the State Engineer has been protested by the Nature Conservancy. This will slow down the progress on the water system in Spanish Valley.
County Planner Nick Sandberg said the Gunnison sage grouse hearing, originally scheduled for September 5, has been rescheduled to October 8.
At the Commission meeting on August 26, Commissioners discussed meetings with the Utah Department of Transportation.
Apparently, a series of road projects are being planned on Highway 191 in San Juan County. Beginning in 2014, road work will be completed on the highway from Dry Valley to Devils Canyon.
Commissioners discussed the Lands Bill and how the county might develop a position.
They are considering three public open houses to seek input and give opportunity for citizens to review plans. Meetings would be held in Monticello, Blanding and Bluff.