A referendum defeating the Traverse Ridge Special Services District’s budget and certified tax rate was overwhelmingly passed by voters Nov. 4, according to City Recorder Rachelle Conner.
Prior to that, and expecting that the referendum would pass, the Draper City Council made a decision to establish a new TRSSD administrative control board. The council’s first step in that process was to select five people to act as a temporary advisory committee to the district.
The city council has served as the TRSSD board since the special service district’s creation in 1999 when the district was established under state code as a condition of the development of the SunCrest area.
“We felt like that’s what the community wants up there, a more direct involvement in the services they receive, more transparency, more control. The best way we feel to do that is to have those residents do that,” Councilmember Bill Rappleye said about the city’s efforts to create a new TRSSD control board.
City Manager David Dobbins said that in researching how to go about appointing a new board, the city found conflicting information in the state code.
One portion of the code advised that a board could be appointed by the mayor, while the other information found required notifying the public over a four-week period and accepting applications from those who met the requirements to serve. It also indicated that board appointments could not be made less than 60 days after the first notice went out. The requirements for the advisory committee and the board are that the applicants live in the special services district and are registered voters.
“To avoid any conflict, we decided to go with the lengthier process,” Dobbins said of the decision to first establish a committee and then create a board.
Dobbins said they advertised for the positions on the city’s website and contacted Traverse Ridge residents for whom they had email addresses. Then the city council and mayor conducted interviews in early October to begin the process of transitioning the district’s administration.
“The city had gone through the process of accepting applications for the formal board, so through that process, the mayor and city council selected people to serve on the temporary advisory committee,” Dobbins said. The five chosen for the committee are Amy Baird, Blain Carlton, Nathan Lunstad, Greg Nuzman and Sharon Ullman.
Rappleye said the reasoning behind first having a temporary committee before formally establishing the board in December is a matter of preparedness and a more smooth transition.
“Right now, we thought we’d take those interested parties and let them be part of that committee, interact with us, so that if, and when, they get appointed they can hit the ground running…be up to speed, ready to go and have an action plan in place,” he said.
The advisory committee is not required by state law.
“The city council felt it would be helpful in the transition of the management of the district from the city to the control board to have this temporary committee,” Dobbins said. He noted that the committee had already held its first meeting in late October with 30 to 40 TRSSD residents in attendance.
Dobbins said the committee will advise the city on how to transition services provided in the service district so that those services will eventually be managed by the new board and not by the city council.
Dobbins said the city council has indicated their intent to formally appoint people to the new administrative control board in December.
Meanwhile, he said, the council will continue to take applications for that new TRSSD administrative control board.
“They may not be the final people appointed. We may not be done interviewing. Obviously, we want the best-qualified candidates and a good cross-range of people,” Rappleye said about the five who make up the temporary advisory committee.