CONNECT ISSUE 17
A generational decision
In 2018, the residents of Provo made a selfless decision that will impact generations to come. They approved a bond to build a new police headquarters, fire headquarters, and city hall—and a new fire station on Canyon Road. They did this based on the unanimous recommendation of the municipal council and after a months-long effort led by Fire Chief Miguel, Police Chief Ferguson, and me, to educate Provo
residents on the following:
• Although the existing police headquarters was designed for 42 police officers, the Provo Police department now had over 110 police officers and 50 civilian staff members, some operating out of broom closets.
• The existing police and fire headquarters and city hall were not seismically safe and would collapse in a moderate- level earthquake.
• The police department’s headquarters were inadequate for evidence storage and other critical functions.
• The Canyon Road fire station was a converted 1960s house that was not only in failing condition but was unsuitable for simultaneously housing firefighters of both genders.
• Waiting to bond would likely cost residents much more, given the increases in construction costs underway at the time. (This proved true; our architect reports that waiting could have tripled the price tag.)
Provo’s pillars are Welcoming, Safe and Sound, Economically Vibrant, and Forward-looking. In approving the construction of these buildings, Provo residents made yet another decision that aligns with those pillars.
On July 2, 2022, we cut the ribbon on our seismically sound city hall, which houses our new police and fire headquarters, as well as council chambers, a community room, and other city functions. As a city organization, we have not taken the opportunity to move into a new building lightly. Over the last few years, we have carefully re-examined our functions, our organization, and our staffing, from top to bottom, ensuring we take the right organization into the building, all with an eye towards serving you better. And the building is a model of efficiency, utilizing natural light and an all-electric HVAC system that, together with renewable energy offsets, will make it a net-zero building. If you haven’t come to see it yet, please do; it’s your building! We’re located at 445 W. Center Street.
I wish you could hear the expressions of excitement and gratitude for this building that I regularly overhear from police officers, firefighters, and other city employees. To you, the residents who made this possible, we wholeheartedly thank you.
Building Bends Backwards for Brunch!
The Development Services Department’sBuilding Division staff went above and beyond working with the owner and contractor of The Brunch House before their project began in order to help them stay on budget. The Building staff also collaborated with the Water Resources Division to find sewer credits that lowered impact fees for this project. So next time you’re eating the delicious international and traditional breakfast and lunch favorites at The Brunch House, thank the Building Division!
The Brunch House
1145 N 500 W Provo
A New Chapter in Library Services- On the Road!
For years, your public library has been providing books, movies, and programs inside the library. This summer, we’re increasing our offerings by taking library services on the road in our new Outreach Van.
The Outreach Van is equipped to provide library services and programs on the go. It arrived in Provo in May, but even though it’s brand-new, our Van’s summer schedule is fully booked! Most weeks, we have between 10-15 events planned in the community. We have plans to visit local parks for Stories in the Park, as well as assisted living facilities, school lunch sites, community events, and more. Watch for us driving through your neighborhood as we bring library services out of the building and into the community.
Keep our water clean
This Summer, let’s do our part to keep our surrounding ecosystem clean as we care for our homes and yards. Remember, everything that gets into our storm drain ends up in the Provo River and Utah Lake.
• Fertilizers and other chemicals need to be cleaned up from sidewalks, driveways, and other hard surfaces.
• Wash cars at the car wash, on the grass, or on gravel covered areas.
• Sweep grass and other garden clippings back into flower beds or lawns, or dispose of them in compost garbage cans.
• Dirt, compost, and other material should not be stored or stock piled in the street/gutter. Keep piles on property to prevent soil from being washed down the storm drain.
• You can help the neighborhood out by cleaning the gutter and around storm drain inlets in front of your house every so often.
Keeping our river and lake clean should be something we strive to do all year long. Remember, Only Rain Down the Drain! For questions and information about storm water visit our website: https://www.provo.org/departments/public-works/storm-water or call 801-852-6700.
Truth in Taxation
Utah law requires that property tax rates automatically adjust when property values increase or decrease, so the overall amount of money Provo City receives is the same from year to year. On June 7, 2022, the City Council announced their intent to consider raising the certified tax rate as much as 2.9%. For a median home in Provo, this would be an increase of $3.97 per year. Funds from the increase would be directed toward public safety.
The decision to consider a property tax increase requires a public hearing referred to as a Truth in Taxation hearing. This hearing will be held at 6 pm on Tuesday, August 2, in the Council Chambers at 351 West Center Street.