News in Price, Utah

VITA is There to Help With Taxes

Press Release

Taxes are a fact of life, and for most people doing them is well… taxing. So, the Southeastern Utah Association of Local Governments (SEUALG) has a program, that under certain conditions, provides free tax preparation services to residents.

The program is called VITA, which stands for Volunteer Income Tax Assistance.

One of the parameters to get this service is what kind of return is being prepared. There is a scope of work in which the taxes for people can be done. Usually, most of the taxes done by the agency are fairly uncomplicated.

“To see if you qualify, bring your taxes into one of our sites and one of our volunteers will check if it fits within our scope of work,” said Tristan Garvin, the manager of the program for the Southeastern Utah Association of Local Governments (SEUALG). “Some of those that don’t qualify are those with Schedule F (farm taxes), taxes with rental properties included in them, certain business expenses, non-taxable combat pay (among other among other types of military filings), foreign tax, as well some others. The income level that qualifies a taxpayer for this service is one who earned under $55,000 last year.”

Another factor is the amount of money a filer makes. The program has been set up to help low to moderate income taxpayers.

“The program is active in all the counties that SEUALG serves (San Juan, Grand, Emery and Carbon),” he explained. “There are sites in each county where people can take their taxes to be done. Tax documents will be prepared by trained volunteers that have professional supervision over them. Sometimes, people become concerned about just anyone seeing their tax returns. In terms of privacy, all the volunteers and people associated with handling tax documents and information sign a confidentially agreement to not divulge information they may see when performing tax preparation. In addition, all those involved in tax preparation must be finger printed and have a background check before they can work on any person’s taxes.”

Besides going to the physical sites themselves, individuals can also use websites affiliated with the program to do their own taxes.

“We encourage those that do not fall into the scope of work for VITA to go to Myfreetaxes.com (which is supported by the United Way) where the qualifying amount an individual makes is higher at $66,000 a year,” he said.

People also ask questions about what happens if something are errors with the tax preparation that is being performed by the volunteers.

“VITA is a program is operated by the IRS,” he stated. “We report directly to an IRS employee, and the IRS takes full responsibility if anything goes wrong because of the tax preparation that is performed.”

The various physical sites have varying staffing and hours. In San Juan, there are six volunteers, in Moab and Emery County, there are three, and in Carbon County, there are 15, 10 of which are students at USU Eastern under the direction of Henning Olsen, a business professor at the school. The other five volunteers come from a professional accounting firm located in town. To become a preparer, volunteers receive 10 hours of instruction and must take a test to qualify to prepare taxes.

Last year, sites in the region completed 636 returns through all channels. The average income for the people that had their taxes done this way was $20,770. The total tax refunds that came back to the region amounted to $638,535, or an average refund of $1,434.

Preparation services will began Feb. 7 and will continue until April 15.

Services this year will be available at the following locations, dates and times. Note that some sites work by appointment only and that some hours of operation may be subject to change.

Emery County Food Bank:
Castle Dale (95 East Main in the old courthouse upstairs in the box office)
Cleveland (City Hall, 130 West Main Street)
Ferron (City Hall, 130 West Main Street)
Green River (Epicenter, 180 South Broadway)
Huntington (Town Hall, 20 North Main Street)
For an appointment, call Sarah at (435) 609-0549.

USU-Grand County Extension:
125 West 200 South
Moab, UT 84532
By appointment only.
Call Mike at (435) 259-7558.

USU-Eastern Site:
Reeves Building Room 130
500 East 400 North
Price, UT 84501
Open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Call Henning Olsen at (435) 613-5219 for an appointment
Walk-ins are welcome.

Carbon County Senior Center:
450 South Fairgrounds Road
Price, UT 84501
Wednesdays
Call the senior center at (435) 636-3202 for an appointment.

Mexican Water Chapter:
Highway 191 Milepost 2
Bluff, UT 84512
Call chapter house at (435) 650-0118 for an appointment.

Rep. Watkins Reports on Second Week of 2019 Legislative Session

Representative Christine Watkins (center) with CTE students Chloe Wilson, a USUE welding student (left) and James Bryner, a Carbon High student (right).

By Rep. Christine Watkins

We had a whirlwind week at the legislature last week. We were very busy in committee meetings. The first three weeks are when the appropriation committees meet.

I am the House vice-chair of the Business and Economic Development Committee and we have been listening to state department reports and requests. We also started listening to all of the groups in the state who want financial help. I am a sponsor for a number of requests. The Prehistoric Museum, Bryner Museum and the Helper Arts Festival have made requests. We have at least one hundred entities asking for financial requests.

The Medicaid Expansion bill, SB96S4, seemed at times to suck the air out of the room. Until Thursday, I was not supporting the bill, but when Rep. Ray Ward’s bill was put in as a back-stop, I found it more acceptable. One of the reasons leadership and the governor wanted it heard and passed quickly was so that the April 1 enrollment deadline could be met. If a federal waiver is not given (leadership has been told by the federal Medicaid people that it will be given), then Medicaid will basically fall back to Proposition Three with just one or two administrative changes.

A bill that would increase the alcoholic content of beer sold in Utah grocery stores from 3.2 to 4.8 percent cleared its first hurdle in a Senate committee Thursday. The 3.2 beer is probably not going to be made much longer, so we need to legalize the 4.8 percentage beer.

A bill that would have loosened requirements for legal notices to be published in a local newspaper failed to pass the Utah House with a vote of 35-39. This bill had the potential of hurting our small rural newspapers.

I voted in favor of a bill that will stop the practice of giving schools a letter grade each year for their performance, a system that has been largely criticized for relying too much on test scores and accounting too little for diversity. It passed out of committee and is headed to the House Floor.

On Friday, Feb. 8, the House had the distinct honor of welcoming the families who have lost their loved ones serving in the armed forces in 2018. We are deeply indebted for the service and sacrifice of these men and women. It was a very touching time and heartbreaking to see so many young children without their mom or dad.

We are increasing floor time this week so I know I will be able to present my three bills to the body for their consideration and vote. I have picked up a new bill, HB207, License Plate Placement Amendments. The bill removes the requirement to have two license plates displayed.

I am the appropriation sponsor for the Coal Country Strike Team. It has not been before my committee yet, but after the opinion article in the Deseret News, I am sure people have been alerted to the issues we have in Carbon and Emery counties. It was a tough week; thanks for all of the calls and emails.

Email: [email protected], Cell: 435-650-1969, Facebook: Representative Christine Watkins District 69

SUFCO Mine Announced for Lease Modification Project

ETV News stock photo by Jeff Barrett

SUFCO Mine in Sevier County is one of two mines that were recently announced for special projects by the Trump administration. This will affect many in the area as a large number of the population from Castle Country travel to SUFCO for work.

The project approval was for lease modifications at the mine. It has been stated that these modifications are projected to extend the mine’s life by at least five years.

Five tons of coal are produced at SUFCO per year, which has been in operation since 1941. Acting Interior Secretary David Bernhardt expressed the need for these projects as they ensure that the mines are operational for years to come and provide well-paying jobs, as well as affordable energy, to Utahns.

These projects were announced by the U.S. Department of Interior and were approved through the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Assistant Secretary Joe Balash went so far as to boldly state that approvals such as these mean that the war on coal is over.

“In coal towns across this country, the American dream is alive and well,” Balash stated.

Currently, SUFCO produces an estimated five to six million tons of coal per year and has a small surface footprint. SUFCO is one of the most productive, not to mention technologically advanced, underground coal mines to date.

The lease modifications for SUFCO are projected to support employment for nearly 385 mining jobs.

Bridge Project Update Brought to Price City Council

An update on the Utah Department of Transportation’s bridge rehabilitation on 100 North was given to the Price City Council on Wednesday evening. The project will begin on March 11 and take approximately 120 days to complete.

The strategy involves installing a false deck to catch debris as well as removing existing asphalt overlay and concrete deck. This will expose the steel beams that were from the original design. After this is complete, there will be a new concrete deck and sidewalk. There will also be polymer overlay, a fence and striping.

The project has been titled the “West Price Bridge Renewed.” The construction will close the area for the full amount of 120 days and will provide a detour. Drivers will be asked to bypass Exit 240 and take Exit 241 as a substitute. There will be crews monitoring the traffic that is expected to occur during this time. Contractors expect this job to be accomplished before school begins again in the fall.

The public and community is invited to an open house to learn more about this project. It will be hosted on Thursday, Feb. 28 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Everyone is invited to the event and there will also be invitations sent out to 5,000 people in the local area. This invitation will include a hotline number and email.

The desire is for the community to be updated during this task. Members of the community are encouraged to ask questions and express concerns during the open house that can be answered by those actively participating in the project.

Slick Roads Cause Early Morning Semi Accident in Spanish Fork Canyon

At approximately 7:30 a.m. on Friday morning, authorities were dispatched to an accident at mile marker 193 in Spanish Fork Canyon.

Due to slick roads resulting from the winter storm, two semis that were traveling westbound slid into each other, resulting in a jack-knifed trailer on the road.

At this time, the accident is still being cleared and traffic is stop and go. Utah Highway Patrol anticipates that the accident will be cleared around 11 a.m.

Cottage to Commercial Program Aims to Grow Small Businesses

Photo courtesy of Taren Powell

A kickoff was hosted at the Emery County Administration Building in Castle Dale on Wednesday for the new Cottage to Commercial program.

The Cottage to Commercial program was created with a very specific goal in mind: to assist and accelerate both new and existing businesses in Emery County.

Ethan Migliori with USU Eastern presented during this kickoff luncheon and spoke about the mentoring, counseling and training that will be provided for those that wish to grow or start their businesses.

Currently, the Cottage to Commercial trainings are anticipated to begin on Feb. 27. These will begin with two trainings, one at 12 p.m. and one at 6 p.m. The topic of discussion for the initial trainings will be “Myths of Expansion.”

These trainings are slated to also take place in the county building, which is located at 75 East Main Street in Castle Dale. While dates are subject to change and the most efficient way to ensure the training schedule is to follow the Cottage to Commercial Facebook page, a list of the anticipated schedule is as follows:

  • February
    • 27th – Myths of Expansion Training
  • March
    • 14th – Web Basics
    • 27th – Myths of Expansion Training
    • 28th – Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Social Media
  • April
    • 11th – Growth by the numbers
    • 24th – Myths of Expansion Training
    • 25th – Employees Do’s and Don’ts
  • May
    • 9th – Web Basics
    • 23rd – Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Social Media
  • June
    • 13th – Marketing
    • 27th – BOSI DNA type training

Winter Storm Results in Orangeville Accident

On Thursday afternoon, a heavy snow storm proved treacherous as an accident occurred in Orangeville near Emery Telcom.

The Emery County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene. A silver van was traveling along the roadway when the slick conditions caused it to veer off of the road and land in the shrubbery on the other side.

With the assistance of a tow truck, the van was safely extracted from the roadside. Any possible injuries as a result of the accident are unknown at this time.

Continue to check with ETV News as information is made available.

New Member Welcomed to the Wellington City Council

An appointment and oath of office have both welcomed changes to the council in Wellington City.

First, on Feb. 6, during the regularly scheduled Wellington City Planning and Zoning meeting, the board appointed Shelly McKinnon as commissioner chair.

Then, on Wednesday evening, the Wellington City Council welcomed a new council member. Bethany Perea stood before the council with city recorder Glenna Nelson to perform an oath of office.

After reciting the oath, Perea signed the proper documentation to be sworn onto the council. Following this, Perea was invited to take her seat and participate in the remainder of the meeting. Perea expressed her excitement to being welcomed onto the council.

“We’re grateful that you’re willing to take on the challenge,” stated Wellington Mayor Joan Powell.

Gagon Family Medicine Presented with HealthInsight Award

Gagon Family Medicine was one of only 76 medical practices in Utah to receive the 2019 HealthInsight Quality Award. 

Special recognition was given to Gagon Family Medicine on Wednesday afternoon as the entire staff was presented with HealthInsight’s High-Performance Award.

For 2018, HealthInsight recognized 76 outpatient medical practices throughout Utah for their commitment to improving performance and promoting patient-centered care. HealthInsight’s Quality Award Program acknowledges high-performing health care provider organizations in each state in which HealthInsight serves as the Medicare program’s Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) contractor.

While many practices throughout the Wasatch Front and Southern Utah received recognition, Gagon Family Medicine was the only local award recipient. This is the second consecutive year that the practice has received the award.

According to HealthInsight, the Quality Award Program was launched in September 2004 to promote transparency in health care. By using publicly-available quality data to identify high-performing providers and publicizing the results, HealthInsight aims to help providers improve health care and help patients become more active and informed participants in the own care.

“In 2009, we began recognizing physician office practices for effective use of health information technology, patient care management practices and exemplary performance on nationally-recognized quality of care measures,” said Sandra DeBry to the Gagon Family Medicine staff during the award presentation. “The high performance award, which you are getting, the highest of the high, recognizes practices that have achieved above the 75th percentile on benchmarks on at least six quality measures or patient experience measures.”

To qualify for the award, practices must submit publicly-available measures along with a description of how the practice has achieved the score.

“Just getting the quality to the level that you have it at takes a ton of work. Then, submitting an application that says you’ve done all those things and collecting the data is a lot of work,” DeBry said.

An entire team reviews the submitted applications and notes specific items that stand out. DeBry explained that one of the most notable aspects of Gagon Family Medicine is the abundance of praiseworthy statements submitted by patients. Some such statements included a patient who drives two hours to see the team at Gagon Family Medicine while others praised a courteous and knowledgable staff.

“Your patients clearly love you,” said DeBry.

Gina Gagon then took the floor following DeBry’s presentation to praise the entire staff of Gagon Family Medicine.

“Every single one of you contributes to the results that we’ve achieved. So, I hope you understand that we recognize that and we really appreciate the role that you all play and the effort that you put into it,” said Gagon.

Introduction of Rural Online Initiative Given to Green River City Council

Representatives from the Rural Online Initiative explain the program to Green River City Council members.

Green River hosted its monthly city council meeting on Tuesday evening.

The meeting began with representatives from the Rural Online Initiative presenting the program. The Rural Online Initiative was funded in March of 2018 and signed by Governor Gary Herbert. The mission of the initiative is to provide Utah’s rural workforce with education and resources to prepare for, find and obtain remote work opportunities.

The types of virtual jobs available are essentially any job that uses a computer as its primary tool, such as writing, web design, graphic design, education, etc. The Rural Online Initiative program provides participants with the following start-to-finish experience: application, placement, training, skills and development.

The program is offered free to 15 rural counties throughout Utah. Those that wish to continue growing their skills can also be offered reasonably-priced classes to continue education and expand job skills. The next class is scheduled for the first week of March and citizens of rural communities are encouraged to sign up for free at RemoteWorkCertificate.com.

Other items discussed at the meeting included GRIT’s (Green River Improvement Team) spring and fall clean up campaigns, bonuses for two new Emery County deputies and upgrading the John Wesley Powell Museum’s phone and internet systems.

The next Green River City Council meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 12 at 7 p.m.

Utah Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium & the Carbon and Emery Opioid and Substance Use Coalition: A Road Beginning with Community

The Little Cities of Hope Series

By Jac’lyn Bera and Ashley Yaugher, PhD

The growing influence of opioid use in rural America is detrimental. As it continues to progress, rural communities are faced with dwindling resources and limited treatment options. In the coming months, the “The Little Cities of Hope Series” will bring information and awareness to this topic to our communities through ETV News. These articles are brought to you by members of both the Utah Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium (UROHC) and the Carbon & Emery Opioid & Substance Use Coalition. Both of these groups seek to decrease the opioid epidemic we are facing as well as shed light on the positive and influential efforts our great communities are making to turn the tide on this epidemic.

In the Fall of 2018, UROHC* was formed to support patients and healthcare providers in the three most at-risk counties in the State of Utah. UROHC brings together hospitals, federally-qualified health centers, local health departments, and public and behavioral health entities in Carbon, Emery and Beaver counties via monthly meetings where local experts create plans to combat Opioid Use Disorder (OUD) in Utah. Three defining goals create the pillars for the foundation of UROHC: prevention, treatment and recovery. UROHC has opened a door to a conversation and debate surrounding prevention, treatment and recovery that allows communities to learn, grown and explore the opioid epidemic within the sanctity of their own support networks, giving empowerment back to communities faced with this ever growing concern.

In addition to this consortium, local community members and representatives have come together to form the Carbon & Emery Opioid & Substance Use Coalition. This coalition began in the Fall of 2018 and seeks to coordinate the efforts of our communities to comprehensively address the opioid epidemic we are facing. The coalition seeks to decrease stigma; increase effective prevention, treatment, harm reduction and other efforts; and come together to create healthier communities. We welcome all community members and stakeholders to join us on the first Monday of the month at 11 a.m. at USU Eastern’s Jennifer Leavitt Student Center in Price. Together, we can make a difference in our communities!

Likewise, healthcare providers are building pathways, at the grass-roots level, of open communication and trust within the populations that are being most affected. Thanks to the efforts of healthcare providers like Carbon Medical’s Helper Clinic, the Southeastern Utah Health Department, Four Corners Community Behavioral Health and many others, the use of best practices, mental health resources and healthy living practices are reaching all corners of the community. This allows people to pursue their best quality of life and engage in a future that is not impeded by opioid use.

As UROCH and the Carbon & Emery Opioid & Substance Use Coalition set out onto this road for recovery, the efforts, actions and voices of community members are not only desired, but needed. These efforts, along with other community initiatives, aim to raise awareness for available resources and services within the community. This March, UROCH is sponsoring the 2019 Opioid Recovery Summit: Roads to Recovery, which will be held at Utah State University Eastern on March 5th, 2019. This summit will feature a variety of topics surrounding opioid use, healthcare, and the ways communities are being impacted.

Register online for the summit here: http://urohc-opioid-recovery-summit.eventbrite.com?s=90655982

The creation of the Utah Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium and the Carbon & Emery Opioid & Substance Use Coalition are stepping stones to improved rural health. The Coalition is a local effort, while UROHC seeks to inform other counties and states facing the opioid epidemic as well, and it aims to teach others how to build and thrive upon the foundations of a healthcare consortium. Through the development of the Utah Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium, communities that have felt limited, unsupported and underserved are being presented with the power to find answers and most predominantly: solutions. To get involved, join us at our next Carbon & Emery Opioid & Substance Use Coalition meeting on March 4.

*The Utah Rural Opioid Healthcare Consortium (UROHC) is HRSA Funded

Price City Participates in Cloud Seeding Project

Price City joined with the Price River Watershed Conservation District recently to participate in a cloud seeding operation for the region. Cloud seeding is described as a viable way to augment the natural water supply showing from a 10% to 15% increase in snow water equivalent.

Cloud seeding began in the early 1950s. By 1973, the Utah Cloud Seeding Act was passed by legislature. From Dec. 1 to March 31 of each year, 71 sites in Utah are put into effect. The Utah Division of Water Resources provides financial assistance of 50% to this project.

The Price River Watershed Conservation District hosted discussions during various meetings for final decisions on cloud seeding and what it would mean for the area.

Price City is not the only area that has chosen to participate. Salt Lake City was recently highlighted for their decision to also take advantage of cloud seeding. There are also areas that chose to opt out, such as Helper City.

Currently, there are five projects being sponsored. These projects are Central and Southern Utah, Northern Utah, West Uintas, High Uintas and the Emery Project. The cloud seeding management company is the North American Weather Consultants and the equipment for the seeding is provided by Campbell Technology.

Savvy Senior: Helping Seniors Extend Their Driving Years

Dear Savvy Senior,
What tips or resources can you recommend to help elderly seniors extend their driving years? My dad, who’s 82, is still a decent driver, but I worry about his safety going forward.
Inquiring Daughter

Dear Inquiring,

With more than 40 million licensed drivers in the U.S. over the age of 65, there are lots of resources available today to help keep older drivers safe and behind the wheel longer. Here are some simple steps you can take to help keep your dad driving safely.

Get his eyes checked: Because about 90 percent of the information necessary to drive is received through our eyes, getting your dad’s eyes checked every year to be sure his vision and eyewear is up to par is an important first step.

Check his meds: Does your dad take any medicine or combination of medicines that make him sleepy, light-headed or loopy? If so, make a list of all his medications (prescription and over-the-counter) and dietary supplements, and take it to his doctor or pharmacist for a review. You can also get help with this online at RoadwiseRX.com.

Evaluate his driving: To stay on top of any potential driving issues, you should take a ride with your dad from time-to-time watching for problem areas, such as: Does he drive at inappropriate speeds, tailgate or drift between lanes? Does he have difficulty seeing, backing up or changing lanes? Does he react slowly, get confused easily or make poor driving decisions? For more tips, see the National Caregivers Library driving assessment checklist at SeniorDriverChecklist.org.

If your dad needs a more thorough evaluation, you can turn to a driver rehabilitation specialist who’s trained to evaluate older drivers. This type of assessment typically costs between $100 and $200. To locate a professional in your area, visit AOTA.org/older-driver or ADED.net.

Take a refresher course: AAA and AARP both have older driver refresher courses that can help your dad tune-up his driving skills, and learn how to adjust for slower reflexes, weaker vision and other age-related changes that affect driving. Taking a class may also earn him a discount on his auto insurance. To locate a class, contact your local AAA (AAA.com), or AARP (AARP.org/drive, 888-227-7669). Most courses cost around $15 to $30 and can be taken in the classroom or online.

Another good resource to look into is CarFit. This is a free assessment program that will help your dad adjust his vehicle for a better fit, making it easier and safer to drive. CarFit events are held around the country in select locations. See Car-Fit.org to look for one near you.

Make some adjustments: Recognizing your dad’s driving vulnerabilities and making small changes on when and where he drives can go a long way in helping keep him safe and driving longer. Adjustments may include not driving after dark or during rush hour traffic, avoiding major highways or other busy roads, and not driving in poor weather conditions.

You can find more tips at AAA Senior Driving at SeniorDriving.AAA.com.

And finally, when it gets to the point that your dad’s driving isn’t safe anymore and he needs to quit, The Hartford Financial Services Group and MIT AgeLab offers two helpful resources. Go to TheHartford.com/lifetime – click on “Publications” on the menu bar – and download or order the “At the Crossroads” and/or “We Need to Talk” guides.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

 

Rocky Mountain Power Asking Customers to Help Lend a Hand to Those in Need

Press Release

SALT LAKE CITY (Feb. 12, 2019) — This month, Rocky Mountain Power is making it easy to show some love in the form of helping struggling families stay warm and safe.

The utility will match customer donations, $2 for each $1 donated, to the Salvation Army’s Lend a Hand program, which helps limited-income customers keep their lights on and their homes warm.

Last year, Rocky Mountain Power donations helped more than 1,000 households in need throughout Utah.

“These donations are helping the elderly, disabled individuals and struggling families in our community,” said Travis Tanner, Rocky Mountain Power regional business manager. “We appreciate our customers’ generous support for this great program.”

Customers who receive their bills by mail this will find a Lend a Hand contribution envelope included. Those who pay their bills electronically can request a donation envelope and send a check or enroll in the fixed donation program.

The program allows customers to donate any dollar amount, starting at $1 per month, which is then incorporated into their monthly bill. Fixed donations will also be matched 2-for-1 by Rocky Mountain Power and customers can call 1-888-221-7070 to enroll and/or request a contribution envelope.

All donations are forwarded directly to the Salvation Army, which verifies eligibility and allocates funds to those in need.

Customers who need bill assistance themselves can call Rocky Mountain Power representatives at 1-888-221-7070 to get help with payment plans and be directed to other agencies that may assist them.

About Rocky Mountain Power
Rocky Mountain Power provides safe and reliable electric service to more than a million customers in Utah, Wyoming and Idaho. The company works to meet customers’ growing electricity needs while protecting and enhancing the environment. Rocky Mountain Power is part of PacifiCorp, one of the lowest-cost electricity providers in the United States. More information at rockymountainpower.net.

Emery County Resident Arrested Following High Speed Chase

Photo courtesy of the Emery County Sheriff’s Office 

Emery County local Dennis Butler made a decision to celebrate his 66th birthday in a very unique way: by engaging in a police chase, complete with obscene hand gestures.

According to a probably cause statement, Butler was driving a silver vehicle near Moore, Utah and nearly collided with three separate vehicles on said road. Witness statements allege that Butler attempted to run vehicles off of the road and stole a Castle Valley Outdoors sign. It was also stated that Butler “mooned” those in the area.

An Emery County Sheriff’s deputy responded to the scene and began interviewing witnesses. However, this was interrupted by Butler, who was stated to have sped toward the officer’s vehicle at speeds around 58 miles per hour. The deputy was forced to move his cruiser from the road to avoid collision.

It was then that Butler “flipped off” the deputy while speeding by. From there, the chase began. Racing toward Moore, it is estimated that Butler was going upward speeds of 100 miles per hour. The chase ended peacefully as Butler parked his vehicle and entered a shed.

Once the deputy spoke with Butler, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle, he was arrested. Butler now faces three counts of aggravated assault, lewdness, theft, failure to stop or respond at the command of an officer and assault against a peace officer.

“Lost” Story Comes to Life in Jerry Spangler’s New Book, “Crimson Cowboys”

The Prehistoric Museum presents, in conjunction with the Castle Valley Archaeological Society (CVAS), “The Crimson Cowboys: The Remarkable Odyssey of the 1931 Claflin Emerson Expedition,” a lecture by Jerry Spangler. The lecture will take place at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 16 in the classroom at the Prehistoric Museum. The museum is located at 155 East Main Street in Price. Admission is free and open to the public. Spangler will discuss his new book in which he, and co-author James Aton, explore the incredible “lost” story of a four-year Harvard expedition that toured Eastern Utah in search of the Fremont culture.

In 1931, a group from Harvard University’s Peabody Museum accomplished something that had never been attempted in the history of American archaeology: a six-week, 400-mile horseback survey of Fremont prehistoric sites through some of the West’s most rugged terrain. The expedition was successful, but a report on the findings was never completed. What should have been one of the great archaeological stories in American history was relegated to boxes and files in the basement of the Peabody Museum at Harvard.

Now, based on over 1,000 pages of documents (field journals, correspondence and receipts) and over 400 photographs, this book recounts the remarkable day-to-day adventures of this crew of one professor, five students and three Utah guides who braved heat, fatigue and the dangerous canyon wilderness to reveal vestiges of the Fremont culture in the Tavaputs Plateau and Uinta Basin areas. To better tell this story, authors Spangler and Aton undertook extensive fieldwork to confirm the sites; their recent photographs and those of the original expedition are shared on these pages. This engaging narrative situates the 1931 survey and its discoveries within the history of American archaeology.

Jerry D. Spangler is a registered professional archaeologist (RPA) and executive director of the Colorado Plateau Archaeological Alliance, a Utah-based nonprofit company that works collaboratively with governments, private entities and conservation organizations to develop strategies that will further the protection and preservation of historic and archaeological sites on public lands to ensure their scientific and aesthetic values are retained for future generations. Spangler has devoted the past 30 years to archaeological research and public outreach with the express purpose of furthering the protection and preservation of cultural resources in the western United States. He is a recognized expert on prehistoric peoples of the northern Colorado Plateau and has published widely in peer-reviewed journals, monographs and award-winning books, including five on Nine Mile Canyon and the West Tavaputs Plateau. His latest, “The Crimson Cowboys: The Remarkable Odyssey of the 1931 Claflin-Emerson Expedition,” is the winner of the prestigious Don and Catherine Fowler Book Prize.

Annual Paint and Sip Night Colors the Carbon Country Club for a Good Cause

Hands became colorful as the fourth annual Soroptimist Paint and Sip Night took place on Saturday at the Carbon Country Club.

For just $40 a person, those in attendance were given two beverages, snacks, instructions and the necessary supplies. This yearly event is known to sell out so those eager for a seat were encouraged to purchase quickly.

The annual paint and sip night is fundraiser for Soroptimist that assists the organization in raising money that will support the betterment of women and children’s lives on a local and national level.

Youth City Council Sworn In By Orangeville City Council

By Julie Johansen

Prior to the regularly scheduled Orangeville City Council meeting on Tuesday, the Orangeville Youth City Council was sworn into office. Jessie Nicholson became the youth mayor while Nick Lake, Ethan Olsen and Morgan Hughes will serve as council members.

During the meeting, the youth council reported on their recent trip to the legislature at the Capitol Building in Salt Lake City. They expressed their gratitude for the opportunity see the legislature in action and tour the Capitol Building. They were impressed with Governor Gary Herbert’s speech during lunch at the Salt Palace. Mayor Swenson praised the youth for their willingness to serve and told them they would be the leaders for the future.

The flag ceremony for the meeting was performed by the newly-organized Community Scout Troop 300. The council voted to approve the formation of this community troop to serve the young men and young women of the county in January. The mayor told the young scouts they provided a moral compass for everyone.

Two young men, Zander Hughes and Chance Oldroyd, approached the council requesting permission to proceed with their Eagle projects. Hughes’ project will be a bike rack to be placed at the bus stop entering the city’s subdivision. Oldroyd discussed the possibility of redoing the sign of the rules at the skate park. Councilman Kirk McQuivey will be assisting the boys.

Next, Tasha Jewkes requested a donation for the community theatre. The council told her that a $100 donation would be possible.

Another citizen approached the council about changing the city’s ordinance regarding burial in the cemetery. The request was to be able to place a sealed urn with ashes on the top of a casket in the same grave. The council expressed that it will take this into consideration.

Staff reports were then given to the council. Kim Heiniger, maintenance, will also assume the duties of animal control officer. He reported dog activities for the past month and also that a road sander was ready to be picked up in Salt Lake City. Councilman Brandon Hoffman will assist Heiniger in getting the much needed sander to the city. The council also decided that the Orangeville Community Center could be used by the Emery High swim team for its banquet and a contract would be drawn up for repairs, if needed, of the building. A negative vote for membership in the Emery County Business Chamber was placed.

To conclude, council members shared that they are making plans for the annual Easter egg hunt, Orangeville Days, a public safety training and city cleanup. They are also considering revamping the beautification committee and the Mayor’s award program.

Emery County Public Lands Bill Passes Senate, Advances to House

The Emery County Public Lands Bill was voted for favorably on Tuesday as it passed 92-8 in the Senate.

The bill, which is a part of a package involving more than 100 public lands, natural resources and water bills, received a split vote by Utah senators. Sen. Mike Lee voted against the package while Sen. Mitt Romney voted in favor.

With the favorable vote, the package will advance to the House for voting in the near future.

Butch Cassidy Film Festival Delights in Helper

Ryan Piccolo (left) and Cindy Lund (right) teamed up to organize the festival.

By Andrew Hislop Tight on the heels of the Sundance Film Festival came the Third Annual Butch Cassidy Film Festival in Helper. The festival opened last Monday, the day after Sundance closed, with “Adventures of Power.” Premiering at Sundance in 2008, the movie was filmed largely in Helper. After his union leader father starts a strike at the coal-fired power plant, Power is discovered at an air drumming competition in Mexico. Sent to Newark to train with “The Jersey Krew,” Power defeats real drummer Dallas Houston and falls in love with a deaf girl who works in a Chinese restaurant. “Believing in one’s self and overcoming obstacles is what the movie’s really about,” said director and lead actor Ari Gold. “Helper is one of the stars of the movie; it just looks amazing.”

Tuesday featured documentaries by locals or about locals. First up was “Monumental Memories,” a travelogue directed by a young girl and featuring her family at various locales in Utah and the Albuquerque Balloon Festival. Next were encores of “Long Drives & Bidding Wars” and “How to Save a Life,” two films originally screened at the previous film festival. “Muledalgo,” an hour long movie entered in competition, ended the evening. It chronicles local Jake Hardy’s solo mule trip across The Swell. Starting in Goblin Valley and ending in Wellington, the film stars Jake’s mule Johnny Ringo and his dog Faye Larkin in an eight-day adventure.

“This was a piece of his soul, a spirit-type quest,” said his father, Leo Hardy, after the screening. “His production, his photography, his music, his mind.”

Day three featured dramatic shorts embracing the themes of life, death, heaven and hell. “Timber,” “Oasis” and “Gather” were all entered in the competition.

“Tonight is my favorite night of the festival,” said film festival co-director Cindy Lund on day three. “The theme of the festival is stories of the American West. Butch Cassidy is just one story, what’s yours?” After an encore presentation of “Thorn, Thank You for Coming,” there was a special screening of “Toss of the Coin.” It features Helper actor Morgan Lund as a demon who loses a coin toss to an angel over who takes possession of a dead body electrocuted by Sprat the Cat. “A sense of humor helps a lot when you’re an actor,” said Lund after the short film. Thursday showcased more documentaries of the American West. “The Lan,” “”In the Year of The Dog” and “Del Burke,” a film about a madam in a brothel in Lusk, Wyo., were all entered into the competition. On Friday was horror night. “Don’t bring your children,” advised Cindy Lund. All three films, including shorts “Sawtooth” and “Stone Hollow” along with dramatic feature “Elsewhere,” were entered in competition. At the conclusion of the festival, “Muledalgo” won the prize for best documentary and “Sawtooth” won best drama. A special thanks is extended to co-directors Cindy Lund and Ryan Piccolo as well as all those who helped make the Third Annual Butch Cassidy Film Festival a success.

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