Governor announces new SITLA director David Ure

SALT LAKE CITY — Gov. Gary Herbert announced Wednesday his concurrence with the School and Institutional Trust Lands Board of Trustees on the appointment of David Ure as the next SITLA director.

 (left to right) Margaret Bird, former school children's trust director; Kevin Carter, former director SITLA; Rep. Mel Brown; and Dave Ure at podium, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 22, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the offices of Gary. Herbert, St. George News
From left to right, Margaret Bird, former school children’s trust director; Kevin Carter, former director SITLA; Rep. Mel Brown; and Dave Ure at podium, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 22, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the offices of Gary. Herbert, St. George News

Ure replaces outgoing SITLA director Kevin Carter, who has served in that position since 2003. Under Carter’s leadership, SITLA earned more than $1.3 billion and helped grow the Permanent School Fund from $400 million in 2003 to just over $2 billion today. Also during his tenure, interest and dividends from the fund have grown from $8 million in 2003 to $45.8 million this school year.

“SITLA has been a great success story for the past 20 years” said SITLA board chairman Louie Cononelos, a former school teacher and retired mining executive. “Dave recognizes the need for responsible natural resource development and the Board is confident that he will provide the right leadership going forward.”

Ure is currently a member of the Summit County Council, a position he will resign from prior to taking this position Jan. 1, 2016. In the past, he served 14 years in the Utah Legislature and six years on the SITLA Board of Trustees. His wife, Mae, is a school teacher at South Summit Elementary School.

Gov. Gary R. Herbert, Dave Ure and Mae Ure pose for a photo, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 22, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the offices of Gary Herbert, St. George News
Gov. Gary R. Herbert, Dave Ure and Mae Ure pose for a photo, Salt Lake City, Utah, Oct. 22, 2015 | Photo courtesy of the offices of Gary Herbert, St. George News

SITLA is an agency independent of state government and manages 3.4 million acres of land held in trust for public schools and 11 other state institutions, including the Utah State Hospital, Utah Schools for the Deaf and the Blind and state teaching colleges. The agency generates revenue from energy development, mining, surface leasing and real estate development.

Ure will start at SITLA as director designee this fall and become director for a four-year term effective Jan. 1, 2016, to Jan. 1, 2020.

Submitted by the offices of Gov. Gary Herbert.

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3 Comments

  • beacon October 27, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    I’m sure Kevin Carter’s shoes won’t be difficult to fill. I hope this new man is made of better stuff and that we don’t hear more about unwarranted bonuses and such as we have in the past – bonuses, which by the way, didn’t even pertain to reasonable goals by most people’s standards. SITLA is supposed to be serving our children’s education not their own pockets. It’s interesting how they always like to talk about the value of the portfolio but talk very little about how much of that actually goes to our schools. Good luck, Director Ure.

    • Brian October 27, 2015 at 2:23 pm

      Ironically, you didn’t talk very much about how much went to education either. In 2014 $40.4 million went to K-12 schools, which is almost all of their interest and dividends. That is as it should be (the point is have the interest go to education, to to consume the capital, killing the golden goose). The 2015 Utah education budget was $3.6 billion, so draining the SITLA funds entirely would only give us half a school year. What, exactly, are you proposing to improve the situation? As for bonuses, I think they’re too high as well (by an order of magnitude).

  • beacon October 29, 2015 at 8:55 am

    I’m not proposing a different system, per se. I am suggesting that SITLA has had problems in the past and that although $40 M may have gone to school kids in 2014, this agency may be top heavy with personnel and wages. People complain about government and quasi-government agencies being too wasteful until they come close to home, then the strength of that ideology seems to fade a bit. It’s too bad that so many of these school trust lands were given away as political favors early on before SITLA was created. They have taken a bad situation and improved it. That doesn’t mean they should not be scrutinized regularly to make sure all is well.

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