There three candidates vying for the Utah County Republican nomination for Sheriff, the incumbent, Mike Smith, and two challengers, Hyrum Cox and Jeff Wabel. Mike Smith won by a sufficient margin at convention to avoid a primary.
The PARC tax is up for renewal in American Fork. It is an additional 0.1% sales tax voters first approved in 2014. So, if you spend $100, you will pay 10 cents. There are some questions around the sales tax that I hope to answer here along with sharing my own personal experience being on the board of one of the organizations which received grants from PARC funds.
What is the PARC Tax? How does it work?
The process starts by applying for a grant. Applications are then reviewed by the PARC Advisory Board of Directors, and a recommendation is made to the city council. The city council can then adjust and vote on an allocation resolution, as it did on April 27, 2021. (Later, the city council approved adding the Timpanogos Chorale to the list of grant recipients.) The city council then is responsible to hold the groups accountable to use the money as they outlined. New applications are submitted each year.
How is it spent?
About 60% is going to the parks and recreation. About 40% is going to arts and cultural events. There is some information available on the website, but it appears to be out of date. It includes up to 2020 but not 2021.
Brian Thompson, chair of the PARC Board, said that grant money was used for capital expenses, such as musical instruments, in the past, but going forward that won’t be allowed. Only operational expenses will be covered. He also said the Board is encouraging groups to become more self-reliant and less dependent on tax dollars. It is worth noting that there is no compensation for being on the board.
A significant portion of the PARC funds given to arts organizations is used to pay salaries. PARC funds allocated to the parks do not pay salaries. The city either uses outside contractors or provides its own labor for those projects.
It is time again for municipal elections in American Fork, and although we didn’t have a primary, both the mayoral and city candidate races are contested. The three top issues, according to residents, are growth, taxes, and code enforcement.
For mayor we have two candidates, Tim Holley and current mayor Brad Frost. We also have three city council candidates, incumbents Staci Carroll and Ryan Hunter, along with challenger Carissa George. Candidates appear here in the order they were interviewed.
It is time again in our two-year cycle for city council elections. This time we have 5 candidates, 3 of which are incumbents, running for 3 seats. There are some important issues including fiber, roads, and PARC tax oversight.
It is often hard to get information about city council candidates, so in an effort to help people become more informed about pressing issues, I have spent the time interviewing the candidates for you. Please still feel free to reach out to them if you have additional questions.
Staci Carroll has a background in family science and has studied how groups work together. She has worked for several different companies, from a small tech startup to being a marketing manager at NuSkin. She has also served on the PARC tax advisory board and has seen many positive things already come from the PARC tax.
Staci feels that she brings a different voice to the city, as a young mother with kids in the fray. With a father who served as a state senator, Staci feels that she understands how to effectively work with others. She said that so-called back room deals are really just people building consensus ahead of a public meeting, so better solutions are developed.Continue reading
In my one-on-one interviews I asked members of the American Fork City Council what concerns they hear from residents. Interviews take different directions, but I also asked most of them, “If your term ended tomorrow, what have you done or accomplished of which you’re proudest?” In some cases, they disclaimed any personal credit and described […]
David, thank you for another stellar round of posts. I really appreciate and enjoy your reporting and insights. Looking forward…
I like Mike! A good man, doing good things and if it ain’t boke, don’t change the Sheriff. He has…
You're welcome! Glad it helped.
Thank you for posting the audio in easy, well-organized formats for me to catch up on and educate myself about…
You're welcome! Thanks for your kind words and for adding your own view.