From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 3, Number 38 - December 18, 2003
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Holgate resigns

by Cat Urbigkit

Sublette County Commissioners had a full day Tuesday, with Road Superintendent Dan Holgate tendering his letter of resignation, effective at the end of the year.

"We have accepted, with great regret," Commission Chairman Gordon Johnston said, expressing the county's appreciation for the job Holgate has done.

"We wish you the very best of luck," Johnston said.

The commission decided it wants time to search for a new superintendent and appointed Travis Sour as interim road superintendent.

After nearly 13 years of working for the county, Holgate has agreed to accept a position with EOG Resources in Big Piney.

Sublette County Sheriff Hank Ruland, Undersheriff Henry Schmidt and Coroner Don Schooley spoke with the commission about the need to purchase a vehicle for the coroner's use. Schmidt explained that currently Schooley hauls bodies in the back of his pickup truck when the need arises.

Schmidt explained that if it were a member of his family being hauled away, "It wouldn't happen.

"I think it's pretty disrespectful to the family," Schmidt said.

At the motion of Commissioner Bill Cramer, the commission agreed to purchase an appropriate vehicle for the coroner's use.

In other business, the revision of the county comprehensive plan was subject to a public hearing at the commission meeting Tuesday. The hearing drew few members of the public and the revised plan was adopted by the commission.

When one member of the public suggested more restrictive wording be included in the plan, Johnston said it simply wasn't necessary.

"If you want it to work right, elect the right county commissioners," Johnston said.

Commissioner Betty Fear pointed out that the commission won't really know how well the plan works until after it is in place, but glitches could be worked out as needed.

"I'm happy with it as it stands now," Fear said of the revision, making a motion that the county adopt the plan, which passed unanimously.

James Rogers' request to rezone from agricultural to rural residential-20 acre minimum zoning on a 40-acre parcel off of the Fayettte/Pole Creek Road was denied by the commission, even though the county planning and zoning commission had recommended approval on a 3-2 vote. Johnston took issue with the fact that Rogers purchased the property on Sept. 16, and on Sept. 20 proposed the rezoning under the family exemption, which allows a single division of land to a member of the landowner's immediate family.

Johnson called it "a blatant attempt to circumvent our current regulations and misuse of Title 18 exemption ... It's wrong, wrong, wrong."

Mark Eatinger argued that the Rogers' application meets the requirements for the family exemption as established by the legislature.

"Nowhere in the law does it say how long a person has to own a piece of property before you are able to give a piece of that to a relative," said Eatinger.

Cramer said he agreed with Johnston on the issue.

"I think you are within the rights provided in the statute ... but I can't support it," Cramer said.

The commission was unanimous in its vote denying Rogers' request.

In other planning business, Jack Richardson's final plat dividing 28 acres of Old Brazzill Subdivision into 12 lots was approved by the commission.

Rick Foley and Brad Waters spoke with the commission about the courthouse complex building project. Waters explained that there appears to be two unresolved issues with the state fire marshal's office, both of which he believes are being addressed. Foley said work on the detention center should be completed the first two weeks of January, with hopes for the fire marshal inspection on Jan. 20. If all goes well, the county can move into the new facility at that time.

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