Confluence Park Executive Board and
Technical Advisory Committee Minutes
Wednesday, March 18, 2015 4:00 p.m.
435 N. Main, LaVerkin, Utah
Bob Sandberg Washington County – HCP
Darren Cottam Toquerville City
Kerry Gubler La Verkin City
Clark Fawcett Hurricane City
Ken Hooten La Verkin City Council
Kathleen Nielson Grant Writer
Steve Meismer VRP
Gary Bezzant UDWR
Troylinn Benson La Verkin City
I. Meeting Called to Order: Kerry Gubler called the meeting to order at 4:09pm.
Motion was made by Bob Sandberg to approve the February 18, 2015 minutes as written, second by Clark Fawcett. Bob-yes, Kerry-yes, Clark-yes. Motion carried unanimously.
Darren Cottam arrived at 4:12pm
A. Access Points Grant-Kathleen Nielson
Kathleen passed around a copy of the signage that will be at the Center Street and Virgin River (SR9) Trailheads. She also had a full size version of them. The signs will be placed on an angle so you can look at the map and the Park. They are made of navalloy so they should last for a long time. The only difference with the actual sign and the copy is that the background on the sign will be a different color.
This is the final draft.
There will also be a Welcome sign beside the map at each location that will look the same as the La Verkin Creek Trailhead welcome sign only smaller. Beneath that will be a hazard sign warning of the danger of crossing the River.
Bob reported the Center Street trail is finished. The road base material is against the inside and tipped toward the outside so water can drain off. A new gate will be placed at the top with a step over right inside the gate so a horse can walk through it.
Virgin River (SR9) will be similar. They plan to use the existing gate there, but will modify it and add a step over.
Once the project is complete, the big gates will be locked with a combination lock. Now that emergency vehicles are able to get down to the Park, Bob will get the combination to the necessary departments.
Kathleen mentioned she has some concerns with the redesign of the parking lot and location of the kiosk/ bathroom at the Hurricane Trailhead. She will get with Hurricane City to work them out.
B. Water-Bob Sandberg
Bob reported he has a meeting with the Washington County Water Conservancy District Thursday, March 26th at 11:00am.
Virgin River Land Trust has offered to sell their water shares for $2,500 per share and spread the payments out over the next 15 years. Bob has given them a list of questions and has not heard back from them yet.
C. Group Use-Bob Sandberg
Bob stated in the past we have tried to accommodate groups wanting to use the Park by allowing vehicles and fires in specific locations and certain times of the year. He wondered how the Committee and Board feel about that.
Two groups would like to have an activity this year, one in April the other in June. A fire in April is questionable and one in June would probably only be allowed in the fire pit, if at all.
Steve said he was fine with Bob making those decisions.
D. Eagle Scout Projects-Bob Sandberg
Bob has met with the Eagle Scout from the last meeting who has decided he is going to build nest boxes for owls and kestrels, etc. He is also talking to one other boy who is trying to decide on a project.
Bob does have plans for a metal picnic table now, if anyone is interested in doing one.
E. Status of Friends of Confluence Park proposal-Bob Sandberg
Bob reported they are reviewing the proposal and so is DWR. It needs to be looked at and evaluated carefully so if the Board members could do that and let Bob know if they have any concerns or comments he would appreciate it.
Mayor Gubler reported DWR sent a letter asking the Board to hold off on making any decisions until they could do further research (see exhibit A).
Bob explained the County Commission would like to pursue something that could help Confluence Park but they are very cautious at the same time.
Commissioner Iverson has suggested looking at other areas that have put together a 501c3 to see how they handle it and if that would even apply to how we want Confluence Park to be.
Gary mentioned DWR has some concerns, it sounds like FOC is trying to replace this committee and he wonders about how the relationship will continue to work with the easements.
Kathleen said she felt like FOC wanted to be in control of what would happen in Confluence. The different 501c3’s she has worked with help support the existing board, not add an additional committee.
To her, the philosophy of the Park is the preservation of its quiet nature but not as a demonstration. To experience it, not recreate it.
Gary commented the whole proposal had a commercial feel to it.
Clark said he would like to see the revenue come in to improve the agriculture and the buildings but he is afraid bringing people in may come with a price that may not go along with the nature of Confluence. However, he would like to see what they have planned.
Mayor Gubler said getting water to the Park is the first thing that needs to happen.
It was mentioned that different people could interpret the easements differently.
Individually, each item being proposed is quite likely permissible under the easement but the package as a whole totally defeats the intent of the easement.
Ken feels the priority should be restoring dairy, grainery and the natural habitat.
Darren would like to green up the fields; it would be more visually appealing and needs to happen for fire protection.
Mayor Gubler said the County Commission is reviewing the proposal. That, and based on what DWR has said, this Board will table the issue until instructed otherwise.
Kathleen commented many times a building doesn’t need to be restored to what it actually was, you can have a remnant of the building and have photos and interpretive displays to demonstrate what it was like. If the old power plant could have enough interpretation, perhaps people would quit spray-painting it.
The Wood’s own the property by the Virgin River Trailhead and are willing to sell it. Once they decide on a price, they will let Kathleen know. Kathleen feels this entrance can be a type of byway stop. The Cities could have displays about each of their communities and the Water Conservancy District could have a presentation about the Virgin River.
The property is about 1 ½ acres and has an easement right through the middle of it.
F. Other needs
Ken would like a list of Eagle Scout projects that could be done in Confluence Park to hand out to the local LDS Stake.
G. Public Concerns for Board Consideration:
No comments were made.
H. Board members concerns:
The Virgin River Program stocked about 8,000 Woundfin Minnow at the mouth of
La Verkin Creek. The fish came from the Southwestern Native Aquatic Resource and Recovery Center. They also get fish from the Waweep State Fish Hatchery.
Motion was made by Darren Cottam to adjourn, second by Bob Sandberg. Bob-yes, Kerry-yes, Clark-yes. Darren-yes. Motion carried at 4:50pm.
Minutes taken by Troylinn Benson and Christy Ballard.