From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 9, Number 5 - April 23, 2009
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

County supports DEQ wood-stove swap

by Tiffany Turner

If 41 old wood stoves in Sublette County are replaced with new, EPA-approved ones, about eight pounds of toxins will be removed from Sublette County’s air.

That is the statistic given by Jennifer Frazier with Wyoming’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to county commissioners at their meeting last Friday.

Frazier and others have worked to organize a stove change-out program where individuals in the county with old wood-burning stoves can apply to receive a $3,500 voucher in order to remove, purchase and install a new EPA-approved stove.

The program has appropriated $150,000, which will pay for the 41 stoves and the administrative duties of the program, which include proving eligibility and procedural follow-through. If more than 41 valid applications are received, the DEQ will hold a raffle to determine who receives the vouchers.

In the case that all money is not used for individual projects, it will be replaced into the fund to be used at a possible later date.

“I would highly encourage … (someone) to apply for that money,” Frazier said.

Frazier was at the meeting ask the county to hold and disperse money to the contractors that take on the removal and installations. Frazier added they would urge voucher holders to choose local contractors for the jobs.

Originally, the DEQ had requested and been approved for the town of Pinedale to hold the funds but John Corra, Director for Wyoming DEQ, suggested that a different organization hold the funds.

“To be fair, John Corra wanted to open it up to all Sublette County residents,” Frazier said.

The county authorized County Clerk Mary Lankford to take on the duty of being the county contact and signing checks for the program.

“It would be interesting to see how may responses you get, because if it is quite a few it might be worth doing again, “Cramer said. “This is just a test drive.”

In other county news:

• The commissioners agreed to chip-seal or recover the first two miles of Calpet Road and make an upgrade the next six miles after. The additional six miles will be brought to the proper width and receive new gravel. While this work is taking place, the commissioners have asked the road and bridge department to speak with landowners farther down the road and urge them to do a land swap with the Bureau of Land Management so the road can be rebuilt without all of the sharp turns. The land swap has kept Calpet Road from being upgraded.

“I think we need to get off the dime and realize it’s our road and we need to improve it to that point,” Cramer said. “Because this will be a pretty good (-sized) project just going that far.”

• The commissioners approved a malt beverage permit for the nonprofit, A Women’s Work, to hold their event at the Sublette County Fairgrounds.

• The county unanimously approved hiring Civic Plus, a company out of Kansas City, to provide the service and Web templates for the county’s new Web site upgrade. The group specializes in government Web sites and is already working on Evanston, Uinta County and Cheyenne government Web sites. The group will charge a maintenance fee of $250 monthly after the initial setup charge.

Included in this fee are the design template, upgrades and training to the county employees to keep the site up to date.

“They have a train-the-trainer thing, where they would teach our folks how to take care of it,” Lankford said. “We will take care of it in-house.”

• The county commissioners discussed leasing their agricultural land that they are not using for a governmental purpose, which would make the property tax-exempt, in order to not pay residential taxes. If the county were to retain the property and create a gravel pit on a portion of the land, they would remain tax-exempt. However, if they lease the property, the person leasing it must use the land for agriculture and gross at least $1,000 yearly in order for the land to remain agricultural. The commissioners agreed to advertise leasing two county lots they own for agricultural purposes.

• The county commissioners unanimously approved a series of amendments to the Planning and Zoning (P&Z) subdivision resolution.

“Most of these are just very minor housekeeping-type amendments,” said Planning Coordinator Bart Myers.

All amendments passed unanimously in the P&Z commission meeting as well.

• The minor subdivision of a 3.47 lot zoned Rural Residential was unanimously approved. The lot is located just north of the Bloomfield and the Pinedale boundary. According to Meyers, P&Z staff and board recommended approval and the town of Pinedale, which reviewed the subdivision request since it was within one mile of the town limits, also had no issues.

• Commissioners discussed pay order issues for the Sublette County maintenance building with Brad Waters and Tony Chambers. Chambers and Waters were disputing change orders and timeliness of pay orders and bill payments for the final payments.

“What I see here is a difference of opinion between what (Waters) is recommending we do or don’t and what you are requesting,” Cramer said to Chambers.

The commission agreed to pay a large portion of Chambers’ pay order, with the disputed funds to be looked over by the county’s project manager and county attorney.

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