Mayor's Corner 11/8/2018

Dear Friends:

I’ve always been particularly sensitive to all things dealing with our wonderful service men and women. It’s so important that we honor our veterans of previous generations and those brave, stalwart individuals who are now protecting our freedoms; both here at home and on foreign soil. They’re truly protecting freedoms for all mankind.

Last week I met Tyler Calder, Alpha Battery Commander of the 222nd right here in Richfield. I told him that we love our soldiers, and pledged to him that we will continue to do all that is in our power to support them. I told him that communities are always in need of heroes, and that we all recognize Alpha Battery’s place in filling that need. They are ready at a moment’s notice to serve and protect us, and they have a most distinguished record of protecting the rights of all men and women to live in Freedom’s Light.

Next Monday, November 12th we will recognize those who have served our nation with our Veterans Day Program at the Sevier Valley Veterans Memorial in the Richfield City Cemetery. The 10:30 a.m. program will not only have Alpha Battery’s participation, including our speaker, Ryan Palmer. It will also feature great patriotic music by the Pahvant Elementary 5th Grade Chorus. The Richfield High School Jazz Band, under the direction of Mr. Brian Thompson will also perform.

As many of you know, Veterans Day began as a celebration of the armistice, or cessation of hostilities, at the end of World War I, which occurred on November 11, 1918. At that time, it was thought to be the end of “the war to end all wars.” We all know that didn’t turn out to be the case, but now we use Veterans Day as another opportunity to show our loyalty and appreciation for sacrifices made in our behalf. Let’s turn out en masse to honor our heroes of the past and the present.

Mayor's Corner 11/1/2018

Dear Friends:

One week ago today, we passed a milestone at the new Richfield Visitor Center.  We hosted our two thousandth visitor since opening in late June. That’s right --- 2,000!  This includes folks from 40 states, 5 Canadian provinces and 24 additional foreign countries.

There are so many people who have made this dream a reality.  I wish I could name and thank each individual, but I know I’d miss someone.  So to all, a collective and heartfelt “Thank You”.

The most meaningful and important part of this effort is that we have tried our level-best to provide direction to travelers who needed help.  We have provided ideas for folks that have kept them in our area for extra days.  We have encouraged travelers to try out local restaurants and drive-ins.  We have sent them to local shops for repairs and supplies. Time after time, we have explained how easy it is to access our unique stores that set us apart from others along the interstate.

We’ve now moved to our fall and winter schedule; 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday thru Saturday.  Even though we have a good, solid base of volunteers, we would love to have more who would help for a few hours each week.

No special knowledge is required and training from our wonderful staff is provided. Call or come in and we will answer questions and share our enthusiasm for this very important service. After all, service is the rent we pay for the space we occupy.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 10/11/2018

Dear Friends:

Election season is fast approaching.  We’re not electing city officials this year, but you’ll have the opportunity to vote for county, state and federal officials over the next few weeks.  This year in Utah, the election of officials seems to be taking a back seat to ballot issues like Our Schools Now, medical marijuana, expanded Medicaid, and redistricting.  Study these issues and make informed choices.

One very important local issue will appear on Richfield residents’ ballots.  It’s the renewal of the city’s ZAP tax.  Eight years ago, Richfield residents voted to establish this small addition to the sales tax, which goes directly to fund parks and recreation facilities and programs.  This tax is 0.1%.  For those of you who are mathematically challenged like me, that amounts to 1 cent on a purchase of $10 or 50 cents on a $500 purchase.

That seems like a pretty miniscule amount, but it makes a huge difference in the city’s ability to maintain and equip our parks and recreation programs.  Last year those “few cents” on everyday purchases totaled $230,000.  An interesting and important fact to consider is that visitors to our community, whether they’re from elsewhere in the county or from the other side of the world, contribute to this tax.  We think that’s more than fair, since they also enjoy the use of our facilities and programs.

Without the ZAP tax, we would have to reduce or eliminate some of our services in this area, or increase taxes somewhere else to make up the difference.  You might be asking yourself, “why do we have to vote on this again?”  When the state legislature created the ZAP tax, they required that voters need to reapprove the tax every 8 years in order to keep it on the books.

Please don’t let this issue get lost among all the other ballot initiatives.  You’ll be receiving your ballots in the mail next week, and I ask you please consider this an important issue for Richfield’s future.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 10/18/2018

Dear Friends:

All summer long, we’ve wondered if we were going to turn into dust and blow away.  At the same time, other parts of the country have battled hurricanes, tropical storms and flood waters.  The gentle rains we had last week were the perfect prescription for relief.  We absolutely need a long, snowy winter, but those rains were a huge blessing.  We prayed for rain, and I certainly hope we’ve all expressed our individual and collective appreciation to the providential supplier of such blessings.

I had a knee replaced earlier this week.  The good news is that my chore list at home will be put aside for a few days.  It goes without saying that a full crew of workers would need to be hired to replace me!  Seriously, I’ve been very little help for months and my contribution to home duties has been only in my mind.  I’d like to say this was all by design, but it was really just a pain!  This too shall pass, and hopefully I’ll be able to earn my keep again.

I recently spoke to librarians from around the state who were in Richfield for a conference. After telling a couple lame jokes, I expressed my appreciation for our wonderful librarian, Michelle Olsen.  She is a wonderful person who is always thinking of others and trying to improve every person and situation.

Every day, in fact, I think of how fortunate I am to work with such great people here at the office and in our city.  Our employees and volunteers are amazing folks who do their best to make things work to the benefit of all of us.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 09/13/2018

Dear Friends:

This is a most beautiful time of year. You may notice a lot of visitors in town over the next week or so. It’s the annual Rocky Mountain ATV/UTV Jamboree! Dozens of volunteers will help insure that all will have a great time. Each of us will interact with our visitors in some way.

My greatest hope is that it will be a safe week. To that end, Intermountain Life Flight will be landing at the fairgrounds on Monday morning. They will be working with hospital professionals during the week and will be in town as much as possible. Help us keep things safe by watching out for extra ATVs on the streets.

Sevier County has worked hard to provide food and fun for these great visitors. I understand that local residents are invited to participate in a couple of the evening events. That’s great, because it will give us a chance to meet and greet people from all over our country and beyond.

An unrelated event happening during this Jamboree week is a special program at Richfield High School. On Thursday night, September 20th, Captain Ron Lewis, US Navy Retired, will present a program on remembering those American heroes who’ve never come home from war; our Missing in Action (MIA) and Prisoners of War (POW).

I’ve heard Captain Lewis speak. He’s an amazing person who loves our country. Everyone is invited to hear him and find answers to the questions we all have about the 82,000 Americans who have not yet be repatriated to our soil. Advances in modern technology are helping and other efforts are working, but we must never forget these heroes and their families

Please come for an hour of patriotism and promise. The event begins at 7:00 p.m., and there’s no admission cost. It’s sponsored by American Legion Sevier Post 37. God Bless America. And may God bless our fighting men and women who protect our freedoms at home and abroad.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayors Corner

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  • Mayor's Corner 11/29/2018

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