Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Eagle Mtn. Drug Rehab Home Commentary

"At the March 17 meeting, the City Council tabled the application. Council members asked Boberg to provide a professionally drafted landscape plan -- she had submitted a sketch made on a computer -- before it grants approval." Salt Lake Tribune

I love how our city council can't just say they don't want this type of business in our community.

Instead, it sounds like they're making excuses such as landscape plans to further delay issuing a permit for this drug rehab home.

If you're not for it, just say it.

As for future business in Eagle Mountain, I wonder how that grocery store is coming along?

Eagle Mtn. Drug Rehab Home Update

" Gloria Boberg said the state has given her proposed group home in Eagle Mountain preliminary approval.

Now Boberg, executive director of The Ark of Little Cottonwood, just wants the city to move ahead and give her the conditional-use permit she needs to open her doors to professionals and veterans recovering from substance abuse.

"We're at a standstill waiting," Boberg said of her plans for The Ark of Eagle Mountain. She also operates a substance abuse treatment center in Sandy.

Ken Stettler, director of the state human services department's office of licensing, said inspectors did an on-site review looking at safety issues and other aspects of the program. But the final license will be issued when the city issues its permit.

Steve Mumford, the city's planning director, said the city is waiting too -- for plans showing how landscaping would be used to screen parking areas at the house.

"We're waiting in limbo," Mumford said.

At the March 17 meeting, the City Council tabled the application. Council members asked Boberg to provide a professionally drafted landscape plan -- she had submitted a sketch made on a computer -- before it grants approval.

The action came as residents claimed the group home would pose a threat to public safety and would lower property values.

Boberg said earlier that the council appeared to be dragging its feet to appease the neighbors.

But Mumford said the city is not asking Boberg to do anything it wouldn't ask any other business applicant.

Boberg said she was going to meet with a landscaper today and have the plans ready for the city before the April 7 meeting." -Salt Lake Tribune

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cafe El Lago Visit

It only took me two years after moving to Eagle Mountain, but I finally decided to go to Cafe El Lago located in Saratoga Springs.

Pretty nice inside. If you're a booth person you won't like it considering they only have tables with chairs.

Once you enter the host seats you. So, a step above a place like Cafe Rio or Bajio.

Once you're seated they offer you complimentary chips and salsa. They do charge for refills on the salsa and chips. The chips seemed like they were made there.

I ordered the enchilada plate. It came with your choice of three enchiladas. I choose one shredded beef and two cheese. Each platter combo comes with the traditional pinto beans and rice. They also serve posole as a third side item.

Overall a good value at $8.75. Most Mexican restaurants I've been to lately only offer 1 or 2 enchiladas in their combo meal and are pushing $10+ dollars a meal.

Check out their website if interested. cafeellago.com

Proposed Eagle Mtn. Drug Rehab Group Home Delayed

" Eagle Mountain » The City Council wants more time to decide if it will let a group home for professionals recovering from substance abuse operate here.

The council voted Tuesday to table the Ark for Eagle Mountain's application until April 7. Councilmen Ryan Ireland and David Lifferth said they want more information, such as a detailed site plan showing landscaping and parking, as well as information on relapse rates from the Ark's other facilities in Utah.

But Gloria Boberg, the Ark's executive director, isn't happy about waiting even longer.

"It's just petty crap," Boberg said after the council meeting. She said the council could have approved the permit and required her to bring in the detailed plan later.

Boberg, who applied for a conditional use permit in November, accused the council of dragging its feet to appease neighbors who view the home as a threat." - Salt Lake Tribune

New Home Nightmare for One Eagle Mtn. Couple

"Eagle Mountain » Kenny and Paige Woodson thought they were doing all the right things when they bought a house here.

They got the lowest-possible interest rate on their mortgage. They had a building inspector go over their new home with a fine-tooth comb before closing.

"We covered our bases as best we could," Paige Woodson said.

But on Feb. 27, more than a week after they moved in, the Woodsons discovered their house had a serious problem: It wasn't connected to the sewer system. Their sinks, bathtub and toilets all emptied into a utility conduit that eventually overflowed into the basement.

"It's a $300,000 Port-a-Potty," Kenny Woodson said, describing the situation. For a week, the Woodsons ran to a convenience store to use a toilet, and looked for showers wherever they could.

While the Woodsons have received a lot of sympathy for their plight, they have yet to find someone who will step up and take responsibility for the error -- and pay the more than $7,000 it took to fix it.

The builder and the city have laid blame at the feet of the developer, The Ranches LLC, which has gone out of business.

City Administrator John Hendrickson said even though the city approved the sewer connection, it did what it was supposed to do, even if the plan it was working from was flawed.

"We followed the procedure that we normally follow," Hendrickson said, adding the Woodsons are welcome to file a claim with the city's insurance carrier.

The house was built in 2007. It sat vacant when the bank foreclosed on the property until February, when the Woodsons bought it.

When the sewer started backing up, a plumber thought it might be a clogged pipe. When it looked like it might be a crushed pipe, city crews came in and discovered the error.

And, to make matters worse, the plan showed the sewer lateral in the wrong place. The city's crew discovered the lateral for the Woodsons' home was 80 feet due north of where it was indicated on the developer's plan.

Ryan Hales, who built the house, said developers mark the location of the sewer pipe with a green board stuck in the ground. Hales said his workers found such a board marking a pipe they believed was the sewer lateral.

"Ninety-nine percent of the time, it is there," Hales said. "In this case, it was the wrong place."

Nor was the error caught when the city inspected the sewer connection in February 2007.

Hendrickson said the connection passed the inspection -- water was able to run through the pipe -- and it appeared to be in the right spot, based on the plans.

But the inspection report by the city shows the sewer connection several feet away from the sewer stub on the development plan.

Kent Partridge, the city's building official, said the house sat vacant between that inspection and when the Woodsons moved in, and anything could have happened during that time.

Hendrickson said the house was bought as-is, and that was part of the risks the Woodsons assumed.

Kenny Woodson acknow- ledges assuming some risks, but a defective sewer wasn't among them.

"They shouldn't have sold us a house that was not livable," Woodson said." -Salt Lake Tribune

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Utah Lake Restoration Plan Accepted by Commission

"The final draft of a master plan to revitalize Utah Lake is done and ready for a review at the state level.
Larry Ellertson, vice chairman of the Utah Lake Commission, says the plan to restore Utah's largest natural freshwater lake and expand recreational opportunities has to go through a 45-day review.

The Utah Lake Commission voted last week to accept the master plan, which has been under development for the past year.

The plan proposes developing access to the lake for boating and fishing; creating a bicycle and hiking trail; eliminating invasive carp; and restoring native species, including the June sucker.

The commission will hold a public hearing on the master plan on March 26 in Provo." -Daily Herald

Bad News for Utah County Commuters

"Utah lawmakers in the House of Representatives shot down a transportation bill today that would have funded the construction of the Mountain View Corridor and the expansion of I-15 in Utah County. It would also have raised the vehicle registration fee by $20. Bill sponsor Representative Kevin Garn says many legislators switched their votes when representatives from Utah County decided to vote "no" on the bill, because of their opposition to the fee increase.

"$1.8 billion of this $2.4 billion bond goes to Utah County. Half of them didn't vote for it. If they don't want their project, I don't want it either cause it's not my project. If they don't want it, I don't think the rest of the state really cares," he said.

Garn, who sponsored the bill, didn't even vote for it himself. He said the good news is that $170 million allocated to transportation can now be used for other critical programs, but the bad news is the loss of tens of thousands of jobs and critical infrastructure for economic growth. The bill may be reconsidered sometime this afternoon." -KCPW.org

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Utah Tops "Happiness" Poll

"Looking for happiness — it's family-friendly communities for some, tropical paradise or the rugged West for others. A survey of Americans' well-being, conducted by Gallup in partnership with Healthways and America's Health Insurance Plans, gives high marks to Utah, which boasts lots of outdoor recreation for its youthful population.

The survey attempts to measure people's well-being. It examines their eating and exercise habits, work environment and access to basic necessities, just to name some of the criteria.

The massive survey involved more than 350,000 interviews. Examples of the questions include: Did you smile or laugh a lot yesterday? Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with your job or the work you do? Did you eat healthy all day yesterday? Do you feel safe walking alone at night in the city or area where you live?

The survey, which takes about 15 minutes, involved 42 core questions. Those taking the survey could get a score of up to 100. The actual difference between states wasn't great: The average score for the highest-ranking state, Utah, was 69.2 points, while the average for the lowest-ranking state, West Virginia, was 61.2 points." -yahoo.com

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Mortgage defaults are king in Eagle Mtn. for 2008

"Nearly 11 percent of all homes with a mortgage in the Provo-Orem area are in negative equity in the fourth quarter of 2008, and that number is likely to grow, according to a report released Wednesday by First American CoreLogic, a Santa Ana, Calif.-based seller of mortgage and economic data. In the third quarter, 7.9 percent were upside down.

Negative equity, also referred to as underwater or upside down, means borrowers owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth.

Of a total of 72,522 Provo-Orem properties with a mortgage in the fourth quarter, 7,713 were underwater. In Salt Lake City, 27,031, or 15.2 percent, of all properties with a mortgage were in negative equity in the fourth quarter.

"Once a homeowner goes into default, nine times out of 10, their homes will have a new owner within 12 to 14 months," he said. Eagle Mountain and Saratoga Springs, located in the former fast-growing north Utah County area, had the highest number of default notices in 2008, he said (Jason Eldredge, vice president of sales with Newreach. The Salt Lake City company tracks pre-foreclosure statistics in Utah)." -Daily Herald

The warm wind before the storm in Eagle Mtn.

Video Courtesy of KSL.com

"At Shana Allred's home in Eagle Mountain, she's certain every tumbleweed in town blew up against the back of her house. She lives on 70 acres of open fields." -KSL.com