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Thursday, April 02, 2009

The Deepening Recession and Ogden Valley

The recession is hitting everyone, even the independently wealthy readership of the highly affluent Ogden Valley Forum. We know of three entire subdivisions that are in various stages of foreclosure or at least in the stage of a last ditch note transfer to avoid foreclosure. There are surely more.

The latest is the infamous Rivers Cluster subdivision, aka the Rivers Ghetto Wetland project. Word has it that an investor group from Sun Valley (not related to SnowBasin) is proposing fewer residences and more high end commercial, including an upscale chain hotel. They have been speaking with the Huntsville Town Planning Commission in hopes of annexing into the town.

We at the forum will be offering our own stimulus package over the coming weeks and months. For several weeks we have been shaving our personal Grocery budget with the help of three powerful web sites. In fact, recently we stocked up on enough meat to satiate a family of carnivores for months and purchased $382 worth of groceries for $180.

Ultimately, we will post permanent links on our sidebars, but for now we will link these powerful sites below:

Pinching Your Pennies

Grocery Smarts

Deals To Meals

Happy shopping (and saving).


Ron Gleason said...

It was written

'... is proposing fewer residences and more high end commercial, including an upscale chain hotel. They have been speaking with the Huntsville Town Planning Commission in hopes of annexing into the town.'

The current preliminary approval with Weber County only includes residential units so how can you say 'more high end commercial'. The current zoning with Weber County is residential only.

The town of Huntsville, cannot remember which group, wrote a letter to the Ogden Valley Planning Commission stating that they have no desire to annex the property for inclusion within the town.

Is there any way to review the Town of Huntsville's zoning ordinances?


Ron Gleason

The Lone Listener said...


Just listened to both Planning Commission audios for Huntsville. Amazing stuff in there.

Re your question about is there a way to review Huntsville's zoning ordinances? Yes, Ron G.- they are online at But don't waste your time. Because Huntsville apparently has two Mayors, Jim MacKay of the Town Council and Jack Cox of the Planning Commission. And "mayor" Jack says that "none of the town ordinances address the concept of a "village". So all new ordinances would have to be written to accomodate a "village".
But we should not worry about that either since the developer whether the Sun Valley Investor group, represented by a Hal Christiansen or another favorite, Danny Mason from SLC... They will help with writing the necessary ordinances! Sound familiar?

And according to the Feb. 26, 09 P/Z Commission Meeting, and anyone can listen to it for themselves by merely clicking of and going to the minutes and listening to the actual audio, there are some really cool revelations! We all in and around Huntsville are going to be RICH beyond our wildest dreams!

For example:

Suddenly the Town (according to "mayor Cox" and the Town Council advisor present) wants a sewer system! A Modular one insists "mayor Cox" which will accomodate the whole town after the new annexations have taken place such as in the Three Rivers development.

Another beauty, Hal's group (Aspin Engineering) moved up from Las Vegas (now there's a confidence builder!) and his investor group from Sun City, Idaho? They are alledgedly not connected to Earl Holding. Who represents Snow Basin on the GEM Committee --Steve Rogers? (watch out for a misdirection from ole Hal...not Earl Holding...but Rogers?) They consist of three medical professionals (a dentist, orthopedic surgeon and a gastrointestional specialist).
Ole Hal wants his investment group to gobble up the Rivers subdivision (Redstone) which is going into foreclosure with Zion's Bank (watch out for Scott Anderson, Pres. and Huntsville resident and FOM - friend of Mayor and local Representative Froerer.) But wait! Enter Danny Mason from SLC who also wants to purchase the Rivers swamp land rescueing it from foreclosure and build his vision of a "village" with mixed use (condos, cheaper homes - that float apparently, and a Hotel (Ark? on seasonal pontoons?). So they are trying to figure out how to get together 2.4 Million to purchase the swamp. Watch out for an Obama bailout deal here too! Zion's, first took the stimulous money but understand they may have "buyers remorse" now. Pres. Anderson's salary bonus might be in jeopardy? But the money spicket will soon be flowing at our grandchildren's expense.

But Hal a real smooth local farm boy talker had them eating out of his hand changing from condos, store fronts with sporting goods and clothing, ski and snow board equipment etc, and a motel/hotel for seasonal snow bums (Eden Redux??) And he smoothly slithers into a golf course, mixed use housing, etc. with Town sections followed in exchange for up zoning from 1/4 acre residential to "you pick confusion sized lots" and commerical zoned and annexed into Huntsville. Mayor Cox gets so excited he announces the Town would give ole Hal or Danny M. a "letter of acceptance" stating the Town agrees to the annexation and zoning changes if they meet the Towns demands. "After all the value of the land is in the prospects of the upzoning!" a Planning Commission member chimes in. I didn't know the Planning Commission could do that!??

The other Huntsville "mayor" (Cox) continues to insist, for a decade or more now, that the 74 acres of swamp land will make a dandy golf course. And the new "village" will only "enhance" the golf course. The sewer system effluent could be used to irrigate the course when and if the floods subside. No matter that Hal, the Civil Engineer said repeatedly it takes 180 acres to build a golf course... And no matter that the Nordic Valley Golf course folded a decade ago from non use. Amazing stuff this! Really, you need to listen to it for yourselves.

Now back to the "greater Huntsville area modular sewer system" (including annexed surrounding areas). The other Mayor, MacKay, commissioned (quietly apparently) a "Sewer System Feasibility Committee" which is currently working away. It is "headed by Councilman Steve Johnson".

Now just consider the possibilities! Here is where we sell our souls and destroy our quality of life on the crappy road to effluence (sewer water) and subsequent affluance (riches). I'm excited! Huntsville Town (and soon to be annexed surrounding areas like the Swampland Village to the South and perhaps the Swamplands to the Northeast of Town and East, suddenly has a "modular sewer system". No more 3/4 acres required for a building lot and no more septic systems which require the 20,000 sq. ft. drain fields. With a stroke of a pen on a new ordinance, every minimum sized Huntsville lot is suddenly three lots! (One quarter acre lots being the norm on sewer systems.)

Hot Diggedy Dog! We are all rich! Especially the MacKay's who own about 800 acres in and around Huntsville and the Froerer's who own how many acres? At least 26 right SE of Chevron. And our kids can be deeded a piece of the family plot on the cheap. Kids and old folks can again afford to live in and around the old and "new expanded Huntsville".

And best of all! All those 6% Realtor Commissions will again make let us drive around in a new Beamer or Benz's or one of those really really big super duper sized trucks that blow black smoke out the back. Now THAT my fellow Huntsvillians is a Stimulous package!! WOW!

And finally, "mayor" Cox states that "the GEM Committee chairman, Steve Clark, is associated with Powder Mountain."

This is getting too long to cover all the intell. thinking and planning going on behind unpublished minutes and under the radar. So listen for yourselves. Don't believe any of this! Get it from the horses' mouths or that other end. And Realtors are gonna hit it big real soon and even the little people will benefit from a sea of rooftops over Huntsville...a cluster subdivision at least! And we will love it. Trust will love it.

Get involved or get taken.

Valley said...

Ron, To clarify, the term "more" may have been unclear. Maybe a better term would have been "a mixture of residential and commercial."

Skipper said...

Do some of these Huntsville leaders have their head in a hole or a hole in their head?

Lone Listener said...

The Town Council is plaudited for receiving only $1 a year for their public service.

The Planning Commission appointees get nothing.

One Eden resident cynically said, "The people over in Huntsville are getting your money's worth."

The Planning Commission is appointed by the Mayor. And like the Illinois Governor, and many politicians across the Country, they only appoint those who agree with them.

So it would seem "the buck stops at the Mayor's front doorstep". If the people agree with the Mayor and his appointed commissioners and think he is doing a great job, then he is reelected. And he has been for about four or five terms now.

The mayor did say, and I agree with him on this..."I like going to Lagoon. But I would not want to live there." when speaking to the pro development and resort minded County Commissioners. "Our quality of life is being threatened. (sic or is being effected.)"

Huntsville sees itself as an island fighting to remain a viable permanent resident community. Yet independent outside influences have moved the historic elementary school. The School District plans to put it to grass and fold it into a larger Park System for the Valley (as its own taxing authority). And the big money and local greed is continuing to displace traditional families and fixed income residents, leaving no chance that young couples with children can live inside Huntsville. That is unless something drastic is done to make the Town affordable.

The drastic changes therefore; are being suddenly discussed in earnest, hence sewer systems, annexation, cooperation with developers, sharing secondary and culniary water, rezoning and ordinance changes and additions for "villages". And none of these Planning Commission members have any experience in urban development. Only very limited business experience.

But some residents surely must have reservations about such radical changes and figure "haste makes waste" and regrets in the long term.

The Lone Listener may just well be alone in this. But I think there is too much panic and too much poorly thought out and too little public discourse on the subject. The few (Planning Commission appointees of the Mayor) and the Town Council are headed into dangerous waters.
And these new and radical (panic) revelations are obviously scatter brained, ill advised and over reactions, although well meaning.

The real question is "Does anyone really care - in Ogden Valley, or in Huntsville?" And if they do will they find their voices and speak up here and elsewhere?