Our legislative delegation had an opportunity to meet with Weber County this morning to discuss pertinent issues. There were a few interesting issues that came up:
1. Weber County vs. Division of Wildlife Resources - The Weber River flooded last year and caused a lot of property damage and loss of crops. Part of the problem relates to the bird refuge at Ogden Bay which collects water from the Weber River before releasing it into the Great Salt Lake. Because the bay backs water up the river during heavy runoff, it was necessary to breach the dikes surrounding Ogden Bay to allow water to be released fast enough to avoid further damage. Weber County has been working with DWR to find a permanent solution but an agreeable solution related to funding has not been achieved. The County has requested that the State Legislature look at finding a long term solution to the problem since Weber County is the end of the road for Summit and Morgan County water. It seems that this issue transcends just the jurisdiction of the local County level.
2. Juvenile Detention Center Closures - Funding has been waning and the State is considering closing the Roy Juvenile detention center. The Weber Sheriff's Office indicated that this would be a public safety nightmare. The next nearest detention center is located in Farmington. Due to the transportation problem, only the most serious juvenile offenders would be transported to Farmington and the rest would be released back into the public. It is vitally important for the state to fund this center and maintain the Roy facility.
3. Quarter Cent Funds - There is discussion for allowing Counties of the 2nd class (i.e. Weber County) to use existing quarter-cent tax funds for development of Urban Collector roads to facilitate following the plans as represented in the WFRC 2040 Plan.
Look for these issues and others to receive attention on the Hill in the coming weeks.