LaVerkin City Council discusses budget matters, noise complaints, child safety

LAVERKIN – The LaVerkin City Council met Wednesday to discuss and approve the tentative budget for the upcoming 2014-15 fiscal year.

The general fund tentatively stands at $1,525,510, with $267,542 in the “appropriation of funds” line item.

“The appropriation of funds is basically, as one person put it, the ‘rainy day’ fund,” City Manager Kyle Gubler said. “That money is there and is actually available, but we are using less of it this year than we have in a long time.”

LaVerkin City is required to maintain 5 percent of the general fund in the appropriation of funds line item – a total in the amount of $76,275. However, of the remaining $191,266 available, the city has allotted only $82,210 for the 2014-15 fiscal year.

“We have to balance and we have to be conservative so we can build that appropriation of funds back,” Mayor Kerry Gubler said.

The mayor requested that members of the City Council sit down individually with the city manager and review the budget in full before the public meeting scheduled for June 4. Residents are invited to attend the public meeting and comment on the budget items.

The tentative budget for the 2014-15 fiscal year was passed by the council.

During the public comments portion of the meeting, LaVerkin resident Candace Harris expressed frustration over the HVCF Crossfit Black Ridge gym. Harris said the gym has moved in behind her home and is “super loud all of the time.” She and her neighbors have tried to speak to the gym’s employees about the volume of the music during workouts, she said; however, the employees were rude to them on the last occasion. The employees of Crossfit Black Ridge informed her they were not breaking any ordinance and, therefore, did not have to turn the music down.

“I had to take my grandbaby to the front of the home to sleep,” Harris said, “because even with all the doors and windows shut we could still hear it.”

She and her neighbors have called the LaVerkin Police Department numerous times, Harris said, and nothing has been done about the noise.

After the meeting, La Verkin police Chief Benjamin Lee said he is a member of the HVCF Crossfit Black Ridge gym. On his second day working out at the gym, he said, he went to the back brick wall separating the workout facility from the homes in the neighboring subdivision. He then sat on top of the brick wall. Lee asked employees at the gym to turn up the music full blast.

“As the music was going, a minivan started, and the sound of the minivan was louder than the music playing,” Lee said. “I assume you can probably hear it from their house, but it wouldn’t be any louder than a car radio from a neighbor.”

Lee said the economic impact of the gym outweighs any drawbacks associated with noise.

“That building was an empty box for five years,” the police chief said. “So if you weigh those options, you have a commercial zone with hundreds of people coming into LaVerkin to work out and get healthy.”

During the final portion of the meeting, Councilman Ken Hooten addressed Lee about concerns he has for the local elementary school children as they walk home from LaVerkin Elementary. Hooten, who is also a crossing guard for the elementary school, said in the past, with previous police Chief Lloyd Watkins and previous officers employed with LaVerkin Police Department, there was almost always an officer stationed in the school zone. These officers would have their emergency lights activated, slowing traffic down.

This afternoon, I had two individuals try to run over me and the kids,” Hooten said. He added that he understands Chief Lee has limited resources, but he said he feels having that police presence there, particularly in the afternoon, is important.

The next LaVerkin City Council is scheduled for June 4 at 6 p.m. in the LaVerkin City Council Chambers, located at 111 S. Main St. in LaVerkin.

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6 Comments

  • Sparky May 8, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    The Chief of Police is a member of the gy,…no conflict of interest there.

    The comparison between the car radio and the gym is truly moronic. A car radio isn’t on several hours per day, it drives away after a few seconds. I guess the chief figures he’s entitled to set and speak for the town regarding economic now.

  • Beaver Native May 8, 2014 at 9:57 pm

    I,understand the need for safety of the guard and children. If people are trying to run down students and guards when there is no police presence, then the police need to be present whenever possible until the individuals are caught. Perhaps setting up surveillance cameras might help catch the perpetrators, since this seems to be a trouble spot.

  • Carol May 9, 2014 at 6:39 am

    Correct me if I am mistaken, but are the Police here for our safety and the safety of others? I can think of nothing more important that the safety of our children! La Verkin is not SLC and I would HOPE that our Police Department could take a bit of time out of their BUSY schedule to protect the children of La Verkin! When you talk about job description…I would think this would fall under the Police Departments job description. I agree with Mr. Houten, that we need police car lights to SLOW DOWN the people traveling at 40-50 miles per hour. I am confused as to why there is not a school zone speed limit there? I am assuming because it is a highway and if so…we definitely need the support of our Police Officers to make sure Safety is the #1 concern for our town of La Verkin. (town…not city)

  • Tim Klingonsmith May 9, 2014 at 7:51 am

    Concerning the cross fit gym ! It would be different if they would close their big roll up door! And have a little respect for people! The music they play is music not all people would like to hear all Hours of the day! There is no reason they need to play it that load!

  • Burton May 10, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    I think people should keep in mind that these businesses in town are paying a nice penny in city and state taxes. I can put up with some noise during the day and a little more traffic if it means it keeps my already to high property taxes down. Bring on the commercial businesses La Verkin! Jobs for locals and tax revenue for the city.

  • Burton May 10, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    sorry, town.

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