Race: Payson City Council
Education: Master Degree BYU
What are the biggest issues facing your city and how do you plan to address them?
1. Payson is expected to double its population in the next 10 years. We need to plan smart growth while maintaining our “small town” feel. The new Master Plan that should be finished shortly will be a vital tool for addressing smart growth. It is imperative that we plan for sufficient roads so that we do not have gridlock and plan for the needed capacity in our infrastructure. Great cities have excellent higher-education opportunities. That is why I have been working with METCH and UVU to ensure that they come to Payson as soon as possible and have classes that Payson residents need and want. Our citizen surveys show that as we continue to grow in Payson many residents want to keep our “small town” feel. A vibrant downtown which becomes a gathering place is therefore vital. One of the initiatives that I helped devise and am working on is to bring a culinary experience to downtown Payson. The plan is to work with Utah Valley University (UVU), Mountainland Technical College (METCH), Salt Lake Community College (SLCC) and a private culinary school in Park City to have start up eateries established by the newly-graduated chefs in downtown Payson. We are working to obtain a building to be shared by up to six different eating establishments. This will help revitalized downtown and attract people from outside of Payson to our great city. One of the things I have learned about downtowns from the out-of-state revitalization conferences I have attended, is that we need to consider them as if they were a mall. Malls have a few anchor stores augmented by supporting stores. I envision the restored Huish theater as the anchor for the downtown area. If we had Payson Community Theater performances downtown 2-3 times a year, plus recitals, old movie runs, outside entertainment, business retreats, etc., all at the Huish, many people would come to the downtown area day and evening. We could recruit stores and dining that would flourish with this new foot traffic. We need to work with the private sector to raise funds to finish restoring the Huish.With its narrow streets and historical buildings, our Payson downtown is very unique compared to that of other cities in Utah. All Utah towns have people, housing, business parks and shopping, but we are one of the few towns that has a historically unique downtown that other cities have tried to replicate - such as is the case with the Riverwoods and the Gateway Plaza. Our downtown could be the heart and soul of Payson and give us an identity.2. Economic Development is also a big concern for our citizens. That work has always been a special interest of mine; that’s why I started the Economic Development Committee Payson (EDCP) seven years ago, even before I was a member of the City Council. Smart economic development is key to improving infrastructure through acquiring a wider tax base.I, along with the mayor, have actively been recruiting Home Depot, new car dealerships, hotels, and restaurants. I created a PowerPoint that we have shared with people that makes a good case for attracting a Home Depot. This presentation has been shared with people connected with Home Depot. We have a 400-acre business park that is being severely underutilized. I helped streamline the business park development guidelines, changing them from 62 pages to 3 ½ pages. This made the approval process more simple and made it easier to attract businesses and less costly for them to build. Since then we have had four new buildings built in the business park. Currently two more buildings are in the approval process. I am working with a company in California that wants to build many very nice office/warehouse buildings in the business park. 3. Much of our city’s infrastructure – including sewer, water lines, storm drains, and roads - requires modernizing or bringing up to code. As part of Payson's master plan, we will have a study done on our underground infrastructure and roads. We need to have a 10-year plan detailing the modernization of our aging infrastructure and how to secure funding to pay for it. Growing the number of retail businesses in the city will help increase our tax base which will provide more funds to help pay for the updating of Payson’s infrastructure.
What sets you apart from other candidates?
As chairman of the Payson Economic Committee I am out in the trenches daily trying to bring Payson better shopping, dining and recreational experiences. Working with the Economic Development Corporation of Utah and Utah County I help recruit new businesses to Payson to provide more employment opportunities to our citizens. I am heavily involved with bringing METCH and UVU to Payson.
What relevant experience do you have for this position?
Served 4 years on the Payson City Council Founder and current Chairman of the Payson Economic Development CommitteeBoard member of Mountainland Technical College (METCH) (appointed by Governor Herbert)Two-time President of the Payson Chamber of Commerce President of the Historic Downtown Payson CommitteeCouncil representative to the People Preserving PeteetneetChairman of the Payson Historic Preservation CommitteeBoard member of the Utah Lake CommissionManaging member of the Huish Cultural Arts and Learning CenterPast member of the Tour of Utah Bike Race Payson Committee
What previous elected positions have you held?
Payson City Council
Is there anything else you want our readers to know about you?
During the last four years that I have been on the city council I discovered an overlooked opportunity and initiated the refinancing of the city's bonds which is saving the city $817,161. I also launched and sponsered the PARC initiative.With this money we have built pickleball courts, helped the Payson community Theater, Payson Chorale, Peteetneet, and Band in the Park, and commissioned a beautiful mural downtown. Some PARC items budgeted for this year include a shade structure over the play ground equipment in Memorial Park and the engineering of the dry creek trail by SR 198.) Currently I am organizing a working group to ensure the earliest entry possible of UVU (Utah Valley University) and METCH (Mountainland Technical College) in Payson. To make this happen we will need the new north interchange built, Frontrunner reaching Payson and state funding for the UVU and METCH buildings. The working group includes representatives of Payson City, UVU, METCH, MAG (Mountainland Association of Government), UDOT, UTA, Nebo School District and land owners.Mayor Bill Wright says “Citizens of Payson, it is an honor for me to support Brian for a second term as a Payson City Council member. He has worked extremely hard to ensure that Payson’s future is bright. Brian has devoted his time and substantial talents to attract quality businesses to Payson. I can say without reservation that he is dedicated to the city of Payson.I love Payson and have actively strived to make Payson a better place to live, work, shop, dine and recreate since moving here 17 years ago. The various opportunities I have taken to serve the community and the experience I have gained doing so demonstrate my ability to represent you effectively and energetically on the Payson City Council. I am excited to help continue moving Payson forward.