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hendomoab
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April 15, 2015
Bill, I applaud your coverage of the entire Recapture saga. There is no doubt that it is a "hot-button" issue but I have found the SJR to be very competent and fair in its coverage. I can't say the same for some of Commissioner Lyman's claims.
New Hideout Community Center opens this week
Apr 15, 2015 | 1084 views | 0 0 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
New Hideout Community Center opens this week
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PGA golf pro Tyler Ivins (right) and Monticello City Manager Ty Bailey (left) at the counter of the new home for the Hideout Golf Club in Monticello. The new clubhouse opens this week. Staff photos
The new Hideout Community Center in Monticello is open for business. Tuesday, April 14 was the big day as the Monticello Senior Center began serving meals, the Hideout Golf Club sent out golfers from the new clubhouse, and the San Juan County Commission and Monticello City Council held their regular meetings. The new facility is a joint project between San Juan County and the City of Monticello. It provides a home for the County senior citizen program in Monticello and the city golf course, in addition to providing significant room for public meetings and large group events. Crews are busy putting the finishing touches on the building, including telephone connections and audio-visual equipment. The county and city both contributed to funding for the project, with a significant contribution from the Utah Community Impact Board (CIB). The CIB distributes loans and grants to government agencies. Funding for the CIB programs come from mineral lease royalties. One of the first orders of business for the County Commission and City Council on April 14 is setting the rental rates for the facility. It is hoped that the facility will be used for a wide variety of activities, including small conventions, large group meetings, wedding receptions, parties, and more. The facility includes an impressive kitchen that will be used to prepare the Senior Citizen meals and can be used to cater events in the community center. Martha Garner, the director of the Monticello Senior Center, has been busy for weeks helping to coordinate the process of moving out of the old center and into the new. Garner has been assisted by other employees and a committed group of volunteers. They have set up a beautiful room and a “serenity corner” to honor loved ones who have passed away. Senior programs in Monticello have been located in the basement of the San Juan County Library building for several decades. The old center was crowded and the north-facing entry provided a challenge in bad weather. The new facility is ADA-accessible and provides significant space for the senior programs. The center began delivering meals from the new facility on April 13. The clubhouse for the Hideout Golf Club has been located in the same building near the course since the 1970s. Since the course expanded from nine to 18 holes in 2002, golfers have been looking forward to a new clubhouse to match the grandeur of the golf course. They may have found a facility to match the course. The clubhouse is finished with beautiful cherry wood mill work, flat screen televisions and more. It features everything a golfer may need, including golf merchandise and clothing, an expansive front desk, food services, and a spectacular view of the course and surroundings through the windows and from the deck. Rental carts are located in the basement of the building. Golf professional Tyler Ivins is delighted with the new home of the course. The course is consistently ranked among the top five in the state of Utah and amoung the top 20 municipal courses in the nation. The Commission meeting and the Monticello City Council meetings on April 14 were held after the press deadline. Full coverage of the meetings will be published in the April 22 issue of the San Juan Record.
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Regarding concerns of Commissioner Lyman
Apr 15, 2015 | 1817 views | 1 1 comments | 25 25 recommendations | email to a friend | print
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DUST IN THE WIND
by Bill Boyle I need to respond to San Juan County Commission Chairman Phil Lyman’s letter to the Editor (see letter here) regarding the San Juan Record coverage of legal issues related to the Recapture Canyon protest. At an April 1 hearing, Federal Judge Robert Shelby rejected a motion, filed by three of the defendants, including Lyman, to dismiss conspiracy charges. Shelby’s ruling on the motion was the major focus of the article. Our coverage outlined the rationale behind the motions, the response of the U.S. Attorneys, and Judge Shelby’s ruling. It was not a good day in court for the defendants and we correctly reported it. We stand by our coverage as fair, balanced and accurate. I have had no communication with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) about the Recapture Canyon case. They respectfully decline to discuss ongoing legal matters. Our coverage of the case has come from motions filed in court and from actions in the court. • • • • • At the hearing, Judge Shelby decided to reschedule, again, a “James hearing”. The James hearing has been scheduled, delayed, canceled and rescheduled several times over the past several months. From my perspective, a judge ruling on a motion is certainly more newsworthy than a judge simply rescheduling a hearing. We did not report that the hearing was rescheduled, but we will certainly report on it when, or if, the hearing is ever held. The James hearing may be of critical importance to the defense. In a federal conspiracy case, communications between the accused co-conspirators can be used in trial. A James hearing can clarify what statements can be used as evidence in the trial. The remainder of the April 8 article was background information so readers could better understand the legal issues that were being discussed. (read the full text here). The article was about the court case and the legal actions, not about the BLM. • • • • • In his letter to the Editor, Lyman expressed frustration that the event was characterized as a protest of the closure of Recapture Canyon to motorized traffic by the BLM. The vast majority of those at the event believe that the protest was clearly the result of the ongoing closure of the canyon. They must not have been paying attention. While there is a long list of grievance that many local residents have with the BLM, it is fair to say that the closure of the canyon, and the subsequent events over the past eight years, was the trigger for the protest. The week after the event, Lyman wrote in the Deseret News that the protest was “an expression of objection and dissent related to the actions of the BLM.” (See letter here) Maybe I’ll use that in the future. It certainly fits better in an article than “the protest was and is about the clandestine relationship that the federal agencies, including our own local BLM, have with non-governmental organizations whose objectives are contrary to the health, happiness, safety, peace, and prosperity of our communities.” • • • • • At the May 10, 2014 event, more than 100 protesters rode ATVs nearly one mile into the closed portion of the canyon, including Commissioner Lyman. This includes many people who, after repeated assurances by Lyman that he would “not cross the line” that day, did not know they had followed him across the line and into the closed areas. As they approached the end of the clearly delineated pipeline maintenance road, the bulk of the group stopped, including Commissioner Lyman. After stopping for about 30 minutes, more than 50 motorized vehicles then traveled ahead through the canyon on a clearly more primitive trail. This is what the BLM calls the new trail that was carved through a portion of the canyon. The first photograph above was taken on that portion of the trail on the day of the protest. Below, and in contrast is another photograph of protesters traveling on the pipeline maintenance road. • • • • • On April 1, we reported that the BLM had responded to the Blanding City Council resolution condemning the BLM. (Read the full text here) The letter, signed by Utah BLM Director Juan Palma, is of intense interest because it is one of the few, if not the only, official statement of the BLM position on the matter. The contents of the letter were discussed in the article and readers were told that they could download the entire letter at the San Juan Record website. We also included a copy of the Blanding City Resolution on the website once again, to provide the council viewpoint. According to our reporter, a letter written by Commissioner Lyman was not discussed at the March 24 meeting of the Blanding City Council. The letter was placed on Lyman’s County Facebook page on April 9, 16 days after the City Council meeting. Our reporter said that while Councilman Joe Lyman mentioned that he had developed a rough draft response to the BLM letter, Lyman added that it was so close to the trial that they should probably wait and see what happens. Wise words. • • • • • It is an ongoing challenge to cover complicated and emotional issues such as the Recapture Canyon protest. We have published a large number of articles on the story and have tried to maintain objectivity in our news coverage throughout the process. In addition to our news coverage, we published a series of well-written articles on the issue by Joe Lyman and a number of letters to the Editor. Additional information, in its raw form, has been made available at the San Juan Record website. A long list of articles in the San Juan Record outline local frustration with the broken promises of the BLM. Including these and these. The articles in the newspaper were sent to our 6,000 weekly readers and copies on our website have been read by thousands of additional readers. Through these means and more, the San Juan Record has provided a broad range of information and opinion on the issue. From my perspective, all sides have had an opportunity to contribute and all sides have been represented. If you think that the coverage of Recapture has been “painfully one-sided”, you have not been paying attention or your views are painfully one-sided. • • • • • I continue to be concerned about Lyman using his official capacity as San Juan County Commissioner to advance his personal agenda and try to influence media coverage. The letter, from his county email account, is signed “Phil Lyman, Commission Chairman, San Juan County, UT” and he refers to his letter “on my County Facebook page”. As far as I understand, the county is not involved, at any level, with defending the current charges against Lyman. Lyman made a number of statements before the protest that he was acting as an individual and not as a Commissioner. As the trial moves ahead, we will continue to cover the issues in San Juan County. Lyman’s attempt to use his position to bully the media will fail.
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hendomoab
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April 15, 2015
Bill,

I applaud your coverage of the entire Recapture saga. There is no doubt that it is a "hot-button" issue but I have found the SJR to be very competent and fair in its coverage. I can't say the same for some of Commissioner Lyman's claims.
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