Castle Valley Comments
July 26, 2018

Several items of business were discussed during the monthly meeting of the Castle Valley Town Council, which was held Wednesday, July 18 at the town hall. In response to an advertised request for proposal for the upgrade of the irrigation system at the town hall property, the council opened the only bid that was received by the deadline. Ken Drogin submitted a bid for $4,155 to perform the work of repairing the system that was specified in the bid request and the council accepted the bid. The irrigation system has been plagued with low pressure or no pressure in areas and other issues that have been problematic when trying to get water to the lawn and plants.

Grand County Council Member Greg Halliday was on hand to give a report on the activities of the county council. Halliday reported that the hiring of a code enforcement officer for the county areas outside of the incorporated municipalities has netted the county $11,000 in revenue so far this year. Also, the rental income for special events at the Grand Center has brought in an additional $12,000.

Grand County has apparently become the research center in the nation to study the tamarisk leaf beetle, according to Halliday. The study is to find out why some of the tamarisk trees die and others do not. A dozen or more years ago the beetle was introduced to this area to kill the non-native and invasive tamarisk (also known as salt cedar) because the tree has effectively altered the river corridor’s natural functions and processes. The trees are also found in the Castle Valley area including the creek beds and washes. The beetles have spread along the Colorado River, into Moab and Castle Valley and are apparently spreading into Arizona threatening some species of birds. But many of the tamarisks seem to be surviving year after year, which is apparently what all of the concern is about.

The council approved $1,600 for a plat of Castle Valley boundary survey estimate, which is needed in the process to get the town out of the Spanish Valley Water and Sewer District. Council Member Tory Hill protested the excessive expenditure stating that the plat shouldn’t be necessary and should be available at the county recorder’s office, but voted in the affirmative with the rest of the council to get the process moving along.

The council also discussed using a grant to thin a portion of the greenbelt lots owned by the town. It would open the dense overgrowth of Castle Creek by thinning the trees and brush to just native vegetation, which among other things would reduce the fire danger. The thinning crew would also use glyphosate, a broad spectrum systemic herbicide, to paint the stumps and prevent the trees from growing back. The council wants the thinning to take place without the herbicide to kill the plant roots but possibly using another method to kill the unwanted trees. The issue was tabled for further discussion.

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“It’s movie night again at the Castle Valley Library,” according to Faylene Roth. She says they will be showing the movie “Brigsby Bear” on Thursday, Aug. 2 at 7 p.m. at the library. The movie is an imaginative tale of the power our superheroes have on our lives. Comedian Kyle Mooney (Saturday Night Live) plays a young character raised under bizarre circumstances who suddenly has to face a world he knows nothing about. Despite the name and plot, Faylene says this movie is a comedy for adults. Be sure to join them for this fun movie – and the popcorn, too.

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Thursday, July 26, marks a significant anniversary for those of us living in the Castle Valley. It was 46 years ago on this date that the Grand County Commission approved Castle Valley River Ranchos as a subdivision. I have a blueprint of the original plat of the subdivision showing the boundaries, the legal description of each lot, the lot numbers and the names of the streets.

The document simply says: “On July 26, 1972 at a joint meeting of Grand County Commissioners and Grand County Planning Commission, approval of this development was granted.” It is signed by John E. Keogh, chairman, Grand County Planning Commission and Grand County Surveyor; Mars Pope, chairman, Grand County Commission; Ralph J. Miller Sr., Grand County commissioner; and Albert Daniel Holyoak, Grand County commissioner.

The map shows lots one through 351, which are located east of the town hall building and were known as Unit I. The lots west and north of the town hall and the upper 80 acres area consisted of lots 352 through 447. They were known as Unit II and were added to the subdivision a little later.

ByBy Ron Drake