Kaysville to pay for new cops with power funds

May 31 2012 - 4:24pm

KAYSVILLE -- A member of Kaysville Citizens for Responsible Government is taking city leaders to task for wanting to transfer power fund revenues to the general fund to pay the $265,000 annual cost of adding three new police officers to the force.

But Mayor Steve Hiatt claims there is nothing illegal, unethical or improper about using the power fund revenues as long as rate payers are properly notified of the action in advance and enable them to provide input at a budget hearing.

"As a rate payer, I expect the money that I pay in my power bill be used to purchase electricity and to maintain the infrastructure to deliver that power to me and the community," said Orwin Draney, long-time Kaysville resident and citizen's group member.

Kaysville City owns and operates its own power plant.

Draney is also questioning city leaders about how they have notified the public of the budget meeting where the budget transfer issue is to be discussed.

The hearing is to be held at 6:30 p.m., June 19, at Kaysville City Hall, 23 E. Center Street.

"I express my concern that (Hiatt) is not following Utah State Code that says that every power company rate payer is to receive a written notice by mail of the date, time and place of the hearing," Draney said.

Hiatt said the city will notify the public of the budget hearing through a mailed postcard rate-payers should receive roughly 13 days prior to the meeting.

"The city would notify the public even if it weren't a legal requirement," he said.

"If there was genuine concern on the part of Mr. Draney that something was done illegal, than he had better dang-well turn us over to the Attorney General's office. But (Draney) knows no laws have been broken, so he is taking his complaints to the media. Mudslinging is the poorest form of patriotism and citizenship in my view," Hiatt said angrily.

What is frustrating is Draney received answers to his questions at a May 15 council meeting, Hiatt said, and any attempt for him to raise the issue by bringing it to the attention of the media is "nothing short of dishonest."

However, Hiatt is not surprised the issues are being raised by Draney, a member of the Kaysville Citizens for Responsible Government group, which has made other unfounded accusations against the city.

Some of those accusations have included election law violations, voter violations and claims of nepotism with the city's hiring practices, Hiatt said.

"It is a shame this group is bent on making false accusations," Hiatt said.

He said claims over the past few years that have cost the city about $30,000 in legal fees in having to respond to them.

Auidio recordings of the exchange:

Orwin Draney's comments:

Mayor Steve Hiatt's response:

Councilman Miller's response:

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