Mayor's Corner 01/17/2019

Dear Friends:

We’re always looking for new businesses here in the city.  There would be no better news than to have a company looking at our valley favorably when considering starting or expanding a business.  We need to have different sites available for different needs, and we do.

As many of you know, we have a business park south of town.  It’s on the East side of Highway 118, near the Sevier County Maintenance Yard.  The park contains 70-plus acres of land, with all the utilities installed and ready for development.  You can help!  Each of us has a different circle of acquaintances and contacts.  Please be on the lookout lookout for small manufacturers who want a beautiful, functional location that is ready for tenants.

There are other locations that fit into Opportunity Tax Zones on the west side of our community.. Sevier County Economic Development Director Malcolm Nash can explain the advantages of building or investing in an Opportunity Zone.

Everyone probably gets tired of hearing me say to shop locally.  It may sound like an old, tired phrase, but that doesn’t make it any less important.  Every resident should understand how the dollars spent with local merchants go all around our community several times.  It’s really the life-blood of a regional hub such as Richfield.

In my experience, our local businesses are very competitive for most goods and services.  Let’s make our own retailers the first and last place to shop.  If I honestly look at it, I have never once saved by traveling north or south to shop.  When you factor in the cost of travel, including eating, and the FACT that you buy more than you intended to buy, we would all be better off to shop here!  Besides, I haven’t seen too many stores from Salt Lake or St. George with their names on our baseball fields or supporting any number of local causes.  Let’s support those who make our community great!

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/10/2019

Dear Friends:

You may not know (or even care), but I’ve served on the Utah State Board of Juvenile Justice Services (JJS) for the past three years.  During that time, I’ve formed opinions based on the dozen or so seminars and some thirty-plus meetings with the top professionals in our state in that field.  These professionals lead JJS and make decisions about programs and strategies that affect our youth in schools, courts, and our Shelter Receiving Center in Richfield.

Adolescence is remembered more than any other time of our life, largely because it involves a lot of “firsts”.  I’m sure you and I could each name a hundred or more.  It’s a time of elasticity in the brain.  It’s the time our brain is built, rewired and remodeled.  We remember things.

When we become adults, most of that brain remodeling ceases.  I believe that adolescence is being stretched on both ends now.  We can’t just hold our breath while our children and grandchildren pass through it.  We can make a difference in the lives of our youth by simply and actively getting involved.

As always, I have made some resolutions for this year.  They don’t involve a lot of brain-stretching, but they do involve change.  I’ve committed to be more willing to listen and more willing to look at problems from different points of view.  Along those lines, She Who Shall Not Be Named has all ready declared that I need to readjust the way I look at my garage collection.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 12/27/2018

Dear Friends:

By now most of the plastic toys your children and grandchildren received for Christmas are broken and beyond repair.  The new clothing we received did not make us look any thinner.

Do you ever talk to your clothing?  She Who Shall Not Be Named has caught me talking to nearly all my clothing, and I wasn’t being very nice!  Everything used to glide on and I could jump in and out of things in a second.  Now, clothing is made to trip me up.  Stockings must be put on while seated (and holding my breath).  Belts are more than just a fashion statement.  They need to have a certain amount of give in them.  It’s called the “bend and give.”

We are blessed beyond measure to live in this free land.  Challenges are ever-present and Freedom is still not free.  But we espouse that it is every man’s right to live in freedom’s light and we should accept the reasonability that comes with our liberty.

I was just reading about current living conditions in Venezuela.  It breaks my heart to know that millions, there and elsewhere, are mostly living minute to minute.  Trying to get even the most basic ingredients for a traditional holiday meal is completely out of reach for most.  The average Venezuelan lost 24 lbs last year.  Even though I’d like to lose some weight, this is a diet I don’t want to try.  Their inflation rate has now reached 40,000 percent.  Yes, forty thousand!

Suddenly, I’ve lost any interest in humor.  Don’t take our freedom and our blessings for granted.  May God bless the people of Venezuela with what they need for the light of freedom to shine in their hearts, their homes, and in their Halls of State.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 01/03/2019

Dear Friends

I’m asked regularly if it’s hard to come up with thoughts for an article each week. Thoughts race through my head like a whirlwind. The difficult part is organizing them so that they make sense!

I received a “new to me” old book of poetry for Christmas. I already read hours of Kipling, Henley, Frost, Whitman, Burns, Cummings, Yeats, Dickenson and others. I’m tempted to quote the well-expressed thoughts of these pros, but I’ll resist.

I can easily reflect on the year just passed or plans for this new one we’ve started this week. Early on in my first years of being Mayor, I remember thinking that preparation and safety were paramount in my responsibility. Although they have their place and still occupy much of my thoughts for our citizens, they tend to ebb and flow as the weather.

I am anxious to help our youth see and understand their vital role in their families, our community, and in the world. I hope they can find satisfaction in being helpful and hopeful. I’m confident that most will be able to navigate the tides of life and the rivers of emotion.

However, the bridge-builders can’t seem to make bridges fast enough or inviting enough to get all of our youth safely across the gulfs and gaps that are ever-present. What can we do? It may sound simplistic, but I would say, “anything we can!”

Pray for them. Plead with them. Light the path when possible. Get help where available. And above all else, don’t fall into the trap of telling them we know exactly what their experiencing. We don’t!

Grandparents, our role is to love and support both parents and children. We grew up in a simpler time. It may be fun to say we walked uphill both ways to get to school, but we didn’t. Perhaps our most important duty is letting today’s children know that we absolutely love and need them.   Make it a good year.

Mayor David Ogden

Mayor's Corner 12/20/2018

Dear Friends

If I talk any more about Christmases past, it will seem that I’m living in the past, and that’s definitely not the case.  To prove to you my forward-thinking nature, I’ve already resolved to eat less in the New Year and shrink. The intended result is that I won’t need to hold my breath when I tie my shoelaces!

Over the past few weeks, our City has been blessed with a wonderful Messiah performance, Christmas Tree Lane, great concerts, dozens of basketball games and other events and performances of all kinds.  This final weekend before Christmas, I’m excited to invite you to the 2nd annual Caroling in the Park event at the lighted tree in the City Park.

In recent years, the City Tree has been generously decorated by Richfield resident Doug Bentley.  The musical gathering at the park was an idea presented last year by Lucy Brown, a local 6th grader.  Lucy’s mom, Angela, recognized the potential and spearheaded the project immediately.  I’ve known and loved the Brown family for thirty years and I had faith in their faith that this would work.

This new tradition is the last Saturday before Christmas (which happens to be this Saturday).  Gather at the tree at 7:00 p.m.  Bring a flashlight.  Hot chocolate and song lyrics will be provided.  Carrying a tune is not required, but caring for friends and neighbors is!  Invite them to come along.  I urge you, no matter what the weather, to bundle up and prepare to sing songs of joy and goodwill as we gather at the tree.

I can envision, along with Lucy Brown, hundreds of citizens reveling in song as we firmly establish this great holiday tradition.  May we all have a joyful holiday season and remember this thought from CS Lewis, “True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less.”

Mayor David Ogden

Mayors Corner

  • Mayors Corner 6/11/20

    Dear Friends: Our country and our world are seeing a great deal of turmoil these days.  It’s my experience that all too often, misunderstanding breeds contempt.  That can hold equally true on the National Mall or in our own personal dining hall. It saddens me that still today, in 2020, we haven’t overcome attitudes that have divided us for decades and even centuries.  Everyone, and I mean everyone, needs to do and be better.  When I hear the phrase, Black Lives Matter, my reaction may be...

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  • Mayors Corner 6/18/20

    Dear Friends: Years ago, I was in a UDOT training to become a flagman for a local contractor.  A question was raised about emergency flagging at night and people not dimming their headlights.  I raised my hand and said, “When people don’t dim their lights, I hit them with my brights to remind them to be more considerate.”  The instructor replied, “Well then, now two of you are blind.” I’ve often thought of this lesson when I have been “straightened out” by others who have their bright light of...

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  • Mayors Corner 6/25/20

    Dear Friends: Last week, Richfield ReaperEditor David Anderson spoke to our Rotary Club about the news business.  How do each of us get our news?  How does it influence us? David said that we tend to gravitate to news sources that support or substantiate our own feelings and opinions about issues and ideas.  It’s important that we take the time to be truly informed.  It doesn’t hurt to look at things from a different perspective once in a while.  I’m so pleased that we have a local newspaper and a...

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  • Mayor's Corner 09/12/2019

    Dear Friends: I’ve been working hard to make the Community Development Center a reality.  I always enjoy reading The Richfield Reaper, and I particularly appreciated Melissa Winters’ comments in last week’s edition regarding the benefits of the proposed center.  I agree wholeheartedly. I always look forward to David Anderson’s Cruise Control.  David has had a unique view of life that is always engaging and entertaining.  Let me echo the sentiments expressed in the editorial about civility.  It...

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  • Mayor's Corner 09/05/2019

    Dear Friends: I think I might have some kind of Attention Deficit Disorder!  I have several things in my office that distract me.  They keep me from things that are screaming for attention.  Procrastination may be a side effect of my ailment. One thing that always grabs my attention is old maps.  I’ve created one to teach various groups about trails through Utah.  It shows where Native Americans, traders, trappers, explorers and pioneers traveled to make their mark on our beautiful state and...

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  • Mayor's Corner 08/29/2019

    Dear Friends: As reported in last week’s edition of The Reaper, the Sevier County Commissioners voted unanimously to move forward with a bond election this November to authorize their funding and participation in a new Community Development Center.  I applaud their decision.  It took courage to take this bold step. As the agency holding the election, they have to be somewhat neutral (“Just the facts, Ma’am) in the way they approach this election.  I, happily, do not have that same obligation! Why do I...

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  • Mayor's Corner 08/22/2019

    Dear Friends: Life’s hectic.  We are all constantly bombarded with so many issues.  The issue that is at the forefront of my mind these days is the proposed Community Development/Aquatics and Recreation Center. I’m happy to report that we’re making great progress. A project of this magnitude requires lots of planning and input.  It’s challenging, but I know the finished product will be worth it! We realized early on that a partnership between the City, the County and Snow College would be...

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  • Mayor's Corner 08/15/2019

    Dear Friends: Life’s hectic. We are all constantly bombarded with so many issues. There are, however, some things that continually need to be brought back to the forefront, and I’d like to discuss one such issue. We have made great progress with the proposed Community Development/Aquatics and Recreation Center. A project of this magnitude requires lots of planning and input. It’s challenging, but I know the finished product will be worth it! We realized early on that a partnership between the...

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  • Mayor's Corner 8/8/2019

    Dear Friends: I love Summertime.  It’s the season for ballgames, picnics, vacations, nature walks, and road construction!  Well, maybe I don’t love that last one quite so much, but we’re knee-deep in several important projects in Richfield, and we will continue to see a great deal of street improvements over the next 2 or 3 months. Local contractors are currently working on three different projects.  The largest is a road maintenance project that will impact virtually everyone in town.  Using the...

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  • Mayor's Corner 8/1/2019

    Dear Friends: I believe I’ve mentioned before how much I enjoy reading books by David McCullough.  Currently, I’m plowing (pardon the pun) through his book, The Pioneers.  My sister, Janet, suggested I read the book.  Lately, we’ve been talking about one of our ancestors who fell off the Mayflower.  Fortunately for me (and himself), he was rescued.  Otherwise, I guess I would fade away right now as I am writing about it. But I digress.  The McCullough book talks about the pioneer settlers of the...

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