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Headlines Wednesday, January 18, 2017

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Businesses and community leaders honored at annual chamber banquet

Sarah Yates delivers a colorful acceptance speech after being named “Total Citizen of the Year” by the Brigham City Area Chamber of Commerce on Friday night.

By Nelson Phillips
Staff Writer

The Brigham City Area Chamber of Commerce held its 111th annual banquet on Friday night, honoring business and community leaders for their contributions to the financial and civic health of the community in 2016.
The event, held at the Academy Center in Brigham City, was attended by more than 230 people, and featured food, fundraising and speeches by the honorees.
Ivy’s Music Studio was selected as Home Based Business of the Year. “I feel very honored to have been selected, with so many great home-based businesses in Brigham City,” said owner Ivy Andreasen, a former Peach Queen. Andreasen credited her association with the Chamber of Commerce as having helped build her music business, as she doesn’t advertise, but instead relies on word of mouth.
The selection for Small Business of the Year may soon not look so small, as Frank May Ski-doo in Honeyville is poised to move into a new building.
“We’re honored to even be just associated with you guys,” said Frank May Jr., who together with brother, Steve, own the business. “There’s a lot of great businesses out there, small and large, and for being in Honeyville to even be considered, we’re really proud.”
The Medium Business of the Year honor went to Idle Isle Cafe, and owners Travis and Jana Porter, who took over the restaurant in 2015.
“I’d like to begin by thanking Corbin’s Grille for providing a non-Idle Isle meal for me on a Friday night,” said Travis, who expressed gratitude to his employees, his wife, and the people of Brigham City for supporting their business.
Honors for Large Business of the Year went to Brigham City Community Hospital, which employs 249 people in the Brigham City area.
“It’s a great honor to stand before you and accept this award on behalf of all of the many employees, physicians and volunteers of the hospital,” said hospital CEO Richard Spuhler. “I want to thank the chamber for this award, and I especially want to thank you as a community for your support of our hospital.”
The highlight of the evening, however, was the speech by Total Citizen of the Year (and former News Journal editor) Sarah Yates.
“I wanted to tell you about coming to Brigham City in 1959, and what I had to do for business in that day,” began Yates, recounting how she was hired as the advertising manager for the News Journal. “I only had two instructions: Which businesses to avoid because they didn’t pay their bills, and which businesses to not go into the back room with the manager.” Yates said she had to walk up and down Main Street going from business to business, from Forest Street to Second South, calling it her “year as a streetwalker.”
She continued that she learned that the store owners and managers along Main Street were the salt of the earth.
“Those people, like you now, were the people that make up the center of this town,” Yates said. “Those people kept this town alive economically. They were your ancestors.”
Yates then thanked members of the chamber for “making this town what it is,” as well as for honoring her.

Mantua council concerned about potential impact of Niagara

By Cindy Bach
Staff Writer

If comments and concerns expressed by the Mantua Town Council at a meeting on Jan. 5 are any indication, proposed plans to support operations of a water bottling company coming to Brigham City could face some hurdles.
Brigham City hopes to build a collection and distribution facility near Brigham City’s spring and maintenance shed on the north side of Mantua Reservoir that would be used by the Niagara water bottling company to fill trucks with spring water that would be transported to the company’s facility currently under construction on Forest Street in Brigham City.
The plans for the facility were presented to the council by Brigham City’s director of public works, Tyler Pugsley, who said his city isn’t seeking approvals or permits at this time, but just informing Mantua about developments as they occur.
As part of an agreement with Niagara, Brigham City agreed to sell 2-4 truckloads of water (450,000 gallons per day initially, and eventually as many as 900,000 gallons per day) to the company and construct an appropriate loading facility. Niagara will pay the costs of constructing the loading station, if approved, which would be about half the size of the existing maintenance shed.
The agreement will be the focus of a discussion between the municipalities regarding whether or not the proposed operations will constitute a commercial enterprise.
Mantua Mayor Mike Johnson informed Pugsley that there had been informal discussions between himself and Brigham City Mayor Tyler Vincent, and following that, Johnson contacted the town’s attorney.
“He [town attorney Miles Jensen] felt like this would require a business license and that it would require a rezoning to make it a commercial zone,” Johnson said. He indicated that the community would largely be opposed to such a move, and that there might not be enough political will among the council to make it happen.
“I guess I would need some talking into this process because a rezoning effort would be contrary to what we’ve had so far and doesn’t go along with what most the town members want,” Johnson said. “So just as a preliminary, that’s kind of what we’re looking at. That would be a big hurdle as far as I’m concerned.”


Are Willard’s ordinances hindering growth?

By Nelson Phillips
Staff Writer

Willard City Councilmembers engaged in a discussion at their regular meeting Thursday regarding the city’s development ordinances, and whether they’ve been hindering growth.
The issue came up when City Planner Bryce Wheelwright brought a question from the city’s Planning Commission, asking to know whether the city was willing to “be negotiable” on certain ordinances for developing property.
“The more negotiable you make things, the more you raise that question about being arbitrary and capricious,” said City Recorder Teri Fellenz.
“Not necessarily,” countered Councilmember Jared Profaizer. “Willard has had very little growth, and one of the reasons why is that we’re so firm on so many things. If we really want to expand and pay for some of these infrastructures that we want to pay for, we might want to make it a little easier for somebody to come in here and build.” Profaizer continued that in discussions he’s had with builders, the consensus was to stay out of Willard because it wasn’t as convenient to build in as the rest of the county.

News Briefs

BC man dies while snowmobiling
The Box Elder County Sheriff’s Department has confirmed that a Brigham City man died while snowmobiling in the mountains above Mantua.
According to a press release issued by Chief Deputy Dale Ward, at about 1 p.m. Monday afternoon a call was received by Box Elder Dispatch saying the man, identified as 57-year-old Kent Brian Tanner, was in distress and not breathing. The caller stated he was performing CPR.
“During this process it was established that the individuals were in the back country snowmobiling,” wrote Ward. “They were in a fairly remote area and the snow was such that the Search and Rescue could not get some of the equipment into the area.” Ward identified the area as being east of Perry Reservoir near the Weber County border.
Tanner did not respond to CPR, and passed away “from an apparent heart attack” prior to emergency crews reaching the location by snowmobile.
Once Search and Rescue arrived on the scene, a landing zone was identified and a Life Flight helicopter was brought in to take Tanner’s body off the mountain.
An autopsy will be performed at the Utah Medical Examiner’s office in Salt Lake City to determine a definite cause of death.

Grifter sentenced in home alarm scam
An Idaho man who defrauded elderly Box Elder County residents in an alarm company scam has been sentenced to one year in jail.
Joelseph Frank Jenkins, 38, of Victor, Idaho, was originally charged in September with one count of second-degree felony communications fraud, 26 counts of third-degree felony exploitation of a vulnerable adult, 29 Class B misdemeanor counts of theft by deception, and one Class A misdemeanor count of engaging in a construction trade without a license.
In a plea bargain reached with prosecutor Blair Wardle, Jenkins plead guilty on Nov. 28 to one count of third-degree felony communications fraud, three counts of third-degree felony exploitation of a vulnerable adult, three Class B misdemeanor counts of theft by deception, and one Class A misdemeanor count of engaging in a construction trade without a license, with all other charges being dropped.
As part of the plea bargain, Jenkins has agreed to pay restitution to all 32 victims, whether pleading guilty or not in each individual case.
On Wednesday, First District Court Judge Brandon Maynard sentenced Jenkins to one year in jail for the attempted communications fraud charge, one year in jail for the construction trade charge, sentences to run concurrently, with credit for 89 days already served. Jenkins was also sentenced to prison time on each of the remaining charges, but Maynard suspended those sentences and put him on three years probation, ordering him to pay half of future paychecks toward victim restitution once he secures a job. Jenkins was also fined $793 for court fees.
Jenkins would approach homeowners pretending to be a representative of their existing alarm company, stating he had to replace a chip in their alarm system for an upgrade. He would then get them to sign what he called a “work order” for the upgrade, which in actuality was a new alarm contract with a company called Safe Home Security Inc, which resulted in over $78,000 in fraudulent charges to those homeowners. Jenkins scheme was to pocket the commissions received on the fraudulent sales.
For each felony charge, Jenkins faced a possible zero to five years in prison, up to 20 years total, 6 months jail time for each Class B misdemeanor and 1 year in jail for the Class A misdemeanor, resulting in possible jail time of two and a half years.

Box Elder organizations get United Way grants
United Way of Northern Utah (UWNU) has awarded $200,000 in grants to 25 nonprofit agencies in Box Elder, Morgan, Oneida, and Weber counties.
In Box Elder County, Adele C. Young Intermediate School, Box Elder Community Pantry, Box Elder County 4-H, Box Elder Family Support Center, Brigham City Fine Arts Council, New Hope Crisis Center, The Pregnancy Care Center of Brigham City, and Your Community Connection Family Crisis Center all received grant money to fund programs that provide community services in the categories of basic needs, education, and income.
“These grants have an immediate, tangible effect on the community,” said Tim Jackson, Chief Operating Officer of UWNU. “We put funds raised through local campaigns into programs that provide essentials like food and shelter, help children succeed in school, and help families achieve a stable income.”
Community Services Grants are made possible through support from corporations and individual donors. In addition, available grant funding was increased through a sizeable donation provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Humanitarian Services.
Some of the services that will be supported include the Housing Case Management and Diversion Program run by the Homeless Veterans Fellowship; the Teen After School Program run by the Brigham City Fine Arts Council; and vocational training for individuals with disabilities provided by EnableUtah.