Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Meet Carlos Mercado

Dr. Carlos Mercado is one of the newest members of St. George Rotary. "As soon as I open my mouth, you can tell I'm not from southern Utah," jokes the medical director of the new Liberty Dialysis Center, one of 70 such rural and outlying clinics across the United States. Liberty Dialysis in St. George is located at 1173 S 250 W, #402. Born in Columbia, South America, the Nephrologist (specialist in the function and/or diseases of the kidneys) spent much of his young life in New York City. One of three children of educated parents - his mother was fluent in six languages, his father also a Nephrologist and both his brother and sister are engineers - Carlos graduated from medical school in Columbia, then completed his 3-year residency in Miami where he was the first non-Jewish physician at Cedar Sinai Medical Center. From Miami, Carlos practiced in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida then accepted a position as the medical director for a dialysis center in Greenfield, North Carolina.

On December 19, 2007, Dr. Mercado became a resident of St. George "We are very happy here but I'm going to talk to the Chamber of Commerce about the snow," he joked. "There was nothing on the subject in their relocation packet, but we love the warm weather and find the people to be very nice!"

His membership in SGR has also been a pleasant experience. Though he struggles to attend regularly due to his busy schedule, when he is able to be to meetings he finds it "a good opportunity to socialize, relax and have a few laughs."

Monday, December 22, 2008

While Waiting for Santa, SGR Meets New Members

Three days before Christmas, Bob Bramlage, SGR's new Sergeant-at-Arms was on duty greeting Rotarians and other visitors to the 3723rd regular weekly meeting of St. George Rotary. Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in the holiday favorite "Silent Night" followed by "We Wish You a Merry Christmas." Our very own Flag Man Lee Warren invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Dan Strobell asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Reed Noble conducted a lucrative Horseplay in support of Coins for Kids while Durant McArthur collected fines.

President Jeff expressed the thanks of the entire club to Greg Basso, Shar Heitkotter, and Bob Bramlage for a great Christmas party held last week.

Reed Noble indicated the nominating committee had found "a glitch in the bylaws" and asked the board to review the changes which will reflect the election for two years of a secretary and treasurer. Linda Sappington will continue as secretary for a second year, but Ken Seefeld will assume responsibility as Treasurer when Mark Armstrong steps down. Nominations for two new 2-year board positions and for president in a couple of years, will take place on January 5 with the election to follow on January 12. Thanks to Reed and his committee including Byron McLeese, Ken Sizemore and Nick Lang.

President Jeff also reported a check in the amount of $550 has been received from Rotary International. This simplified grant supports the Dictionary Project.

Gil Trujillo reminded members of the upcoming All Clubs Luncheon in Salt Lake City on January 6. Former RI president Frank Devlin ("Create awareness . . . take action!") from Mexico City will be the featured speaker.

Ken Sizemore reminded members to complete the Member Satisfaction Survey. To date, only 19 from among SGR’s 93 members has been returned. Although most comments were positive, Ken indicated there is a shortfall in areas of "member orientation and education, public relations and concerns about the increasing level of fines during Horseplay." He also indicated some of the surveys suggest a need for more information about the Rotary Foundation, current opportunities for club service and the need for a better microphone. Ken also indicated some members’ spouses were concerned about the amount of time required to be a Rotarian.

The program involved Classification Talks by Chad Michaeli, Carlos Mercado and Richard Brown. See the blog page to "Meet Chad Michaeli" and "Meet Richard Brown" and watch for "Meet Carlos Mercado!"

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas . . . St. George Rotary Style

Rotarians and spouses gathered on Monday, December 15 for the 3722nd meeting of St. George Rotary Club and SGR's first ever daytime Christmas party. Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in a festive rendition of "Jingle Bells" followed by a harmonious version of "Joy to the World." Lee Warren led members in the Pledge of Allegiance. Sterling Spafford asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal - which included a choice of prime rib, ham or turkey.

President Jeff offered his enthusiastic thanks to Linda Baker who has accepted the position of chair of the Vocational Service Committee, replacing Kerry Hepworth who will now chair Club Service replacing Kimberly Johnson who recently left the club due to a change in her job assignment. Thanks also to Bob Bramlage who has accepted the position of Sergeant-at-Arms!

President Jeff also announced the formation of the Nominating Committee with Reed Noble as chair, along with Nick Lang, Byron McLeese and Ken Sizemore. Nominations will take place on January 5. Elections will be held on January 12.

A special thanks to the Holiday Inn for their outstanding service to SGR during 2008.

Jeff Morby lead a brisk Horseplay with Nina Heck collecting fines on behalf of Coins for Kids.

Chaired by Shar Heitkotter, Greg Basso, Bob Bramlage and Jack Petersen, the party was a laugh-riot-a-minute as Santa's elves distributed hand selected gifts ranging from shower caps to stuffed toys, candy bars and other goodies. Thanks to everyone involved . . . and Merry Christmas to you and yours!!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Meet Dick Brown

Probate attorney Richard Brown is SGR's newest member (inducted Monday, December 8) sponsored by Ken Seefeld. Richard practiced law in the state of Washington for more than 38 years before returning recently to his Utah roots. Born in Logan, he and his family relocated to the state of Washington when he was 10-years-old. A graduate of Olympia High School and the University of Washington with a BA degree, Richard went on to also graduate from the University of Utah Law School - so any allegiance to a sports team is somewhat muddled, he jokes! He currently limits his practice to estate planning and probate but during his legal career in Washington he also served many years as a City Attorney. The most well known of the cases in which he was involved was that of Mary Kay Letourneau. "I was only involved peripherally," states Brown, "but it was an interesting and high profile case which got a lot of media attention."

He and his wife, Anne are the proud parents of six young adults - including two they adopted from Costa Rica. He and Anne also enjoy their role as grandparents to 17. In his spare time, Richard enjoys golf, pickleball, bridge, reading and watching football on TV.

This Rotarian was a member of the Des Moines, Washington Rotary Club for five years and was hopeful there would be an opportunity to belong to "this wonderful organization when we moved to SunRiver. That club did not materialize, so I jumped at the chance when Ken suggested I join St. George Rotary."

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Here Comes the Judge

Rotarians and visitors gathered on Monday, December 1 at the Holiday Inn for the 3720th meeting of St. George Rotary. Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in a rousing rendition of "You’re A Grand Old Flag!" Lee Warren ("the flag man") invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Durant McArthur asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Shar Heitkotter conducted a very abbreviated Horseplay with Jack Petersen collecting fines in support of Coins for Kids.

Announcements: Representatives from the two teams participating in the Jr. Rotary Bowl were on hand to introduce team members from Desert Hills Middle School and Hurricane Middle School.

Congratulations to David Clark, newly appointed Speaker of the Utah House of Representatives. Dave appointment is the first in more than thirty years a representative from southern Utah has held this high position.

Richard Isom reminded members of SGR to order their DRB souvenirs, sign up for the golf tournament and collect their tickets for the 23rd Army Band Concert and the DRB Banquet where Rod Zundel will emcee and Phil Tuckett will be the keynote speaker.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced Judge James Shumate from the 5th District Court who shared his insight on judicial proceedings as well as issues relating to drug use in the community. According to the Judge, the new courthouse came as "a really sweet deal . . . a perfect coming together! The city needed more space, so they took the current courthouse. West Elementary School was outdated and needed to be replaced, so the courts got the Tabernacle property and the school district was deeded property by the city. It was a ‘win-win’ all the way around!" The current courthouse includes four small courtrooms, but only one is designed for jury trials. "We have seen some high profile cases in the past year or two which has tied up all available space and made for a whole lot of ‘hurry up and wait’. The 5th District Court sees about 10,000 cases a year, so we have to keep things moving," noted the judge. The new $29 million building will include 8 courtrooms, including one designated for federal court. "Hate and discontent is my stock-in-trade," stated Shumate who also noted "case fillings are rising as economic indicators fall!"

Shumate also oversees Drug Court which has a 22% recidivism rate compared to Purgatory Correctional Facilities 82% recidivism. About 1/3 are heroin addicts. "We haven’t had a case involving a meth lab in about two years because our addicts have switched over to heroin which is cheaper and freely available in Las Vegas - though it is absolutely fatal if abused," notes the judge. Over the past 9 years, more than 360 have graduated from Drug Court which costs approximately $4000 annually compared to $50,000 for a year in prison. "This is a very effective and worthwhile program. We are saving lives one human being at a time," states Shumate.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Join in the Jubilee

June McAfee and Lee Warren welcomed Rotarians and visitors to the 3719th meeting of St. George Rotary held Monday, November 24, 2008 at the Dixie Center in celebration of the 28th Annual Jubilee of Trees hospital fundraiser. Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in the first and fourth verses of "My Country, Tis of Thee." Lee Warren ("the flag man") invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Reed Noble asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Nick Lang conducted a lucrative Horseplay while Kris Neal collected fines in support of the Childrens Justice Center.

Richard Brown’s name was read for a second time as a prospective new member. Richard is being sponsored by Ken Seefeld and will come into the club with a classification of Attorney. Comments relating to Richard's upcoming induction should be directed to any board member.

Richard Isom displayed the new DRB t-shirts and sweatshirts - all done up in festive red and navy blue. He also announced Rod Zundel will serve as the emcee for the DRB Banquet and SGR's own Steve Radmall - longtime secretary to the DRB Foundation board - has been named Parade Grand Marshall.

PROGRAM: Chris Coons, IHC's Southwest Region Vice President, introduced the program, thanking Kerry Hepworth and the hundreds of volunteers who take part in many ways in the success of the Jubilee of Trees, now in its 28th year. Chris expressed the need for funds from the Jubilee and other sources to purchase a much-needed Life Flight helicopter. Gary Stone, Southwest Region Vice President, reiterated the need, noting the hospital has been using its fixed wing aircraft since 1989 which “can’t land on I-15 or in a remote location in Zion National Park. In this challenging geographic region, we need this new technology with a crew of trained critical care nurses."

Julie Gerth, Emergency Department Manager, noted a Life Flight helicopter will shave off 16 minutes in emergency situations. "Sixteen minutes may not sound like much, but minutes matter to heart muscle. This equipment will save lives! DRMC is already one of the top 100 hospitals in the United States with a 99.6% response time within 90 minutes, but we can still improve the quality of life for the citizens of Washington County.”

Kerry noted, “the goal is to raise $2.3 million by 2010. The machine actually costs $7.2 million, but IHC will cover the cost of $5.6 million. We’ve already raised $1 million through events such as the Jubilee of Trees and the Jubilee Cup. With this helicopter, we can save the lives of pre-mature babies, accident victims, heart attack victims. We always need more volunteers and more donors.”

Friday, November 14, 2008

Meet Chad Michaeli

Born and bred in St. George, Chad Michaeli is a homeboy to his core. A graduate of Dixie High School (where he was a Flyers linebacker), Dixie State College and Southern Utah University with a Masters in Accounting, Chad is now an auditor with the accounting firm of Hafen, Buckner, Everett and Graff. While in high school, his career goal was to be a chef, but after an LDS mission to Australia, Chad decided to study accounting instead while also serving in the National Guard as a medic for more than a dozen years. After returning from his two years in Australia, he married the girl "who followed me home," but she passed away not long after they were married. He later married the former Debra Larson. When he’s not pouring over someone’s financial data, Chad particularly enjoys any and all time spent with his wife Debra and the couple’s four children - reading, camping, fishing or just being outdoors.

What attracted him to St. George Rotary Club? "Gerry talked me into it. He had nothing but good to say about the club and its members, and I wanted to get to know people and have a chance to hang out with someone other than a bunch of boring accountants!" Sponsored by Gerry Buckner, Chad’s classification is Auditor.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Teams Announced for 2008 Dixie Rotary Bowl

At the Holiday Inn on Monday, November 10, Reed Noble and June McAfee greeted Rotarians and visitors to the 3718th meeting of St. George Rotary. In commemoration of the 233rd anniversary of the U. S. Marine Corps, Ray Robinson conducted the SGR Choir in a resounding "Marine Corps Hymn." Lee Warren ("the flag man") invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Lee Sheets asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Due to the meeting topic, President Jeff pronounced a 1040 for $3 per member present in lieu of Horseplay. Funds raised will be donated to the Children’s Justice Center.

Announcements: President Jeff announced Kimberley Johnson has been given a new assignment with the state of Utah and as such, will be leaving the area and St. George Rotary.

The SGR board meeting will be held Wednesday, November 12 at the Five County Association of Governments office.

The November 24th meeting of SGR will be held in the Entrada Room at the Dixie Center which will be hosting the Jubilee of Trees.

Dean Nixon needs 3 - 4 band judges for the Dixie Rotary Bowl parade.

Program: Gary Benson, chairman of the 23rd annual Dixie Rotary Bowl, expressed his thanks for the outstanding work done by assistant chairman Richard Isom and to all members of the DRB planning committee, including Steve Johnson, Ed Rogers, Ro Wilkinson, Phil Tuckett, Dian and Bunk Robinson, Ray Robinson, Jeannine and Stan Holt, Lee Pratt, Don Pendleton, Dean Nixon, Kris Neal, Ken Isom, Jeff Morby, Eldon McArthur, Kyle Case, Eric Cook, Lisa Hayes, Brock Bybee, Lil Barron, Linda Baker and Bill Fowler.
Richard Isom shared TV spots soon to be showing across the state. He also introduced representatives from the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) and the Great Northwest Athletic Conference. Mike McGary from Cherry Creek Radio stations announced the "Orediggers" from the Colorado School of Mines in Golden, CO and the "Vikings" from Western Washington University as the teams to face off in the Dixie Rotary Bowl on Saturday, December 6.

The Colorado School of Mines in Golden, is a public research university devoted to engineering and applied science. It has the highest admissions standards of any public state university in Colorado and has distinguished itself by developing a curriculum and research program geared toward responsible stewardship of the earth and its resources. In addition to strong education and research programs in traditional fields of science and engineering, Mines is one of a very few institutions in the world having broad expertise in resource exploration, extraction, production and utilization.

Western Washington University in Bellingham is one of six state-funded, four-year universities of higher education in the U.S. state of Washington. The university is located in Bellingham and offers bachelor's and master's degrees. In 2007, US News ranked Western Washington University number two in the public, master's universities (west) category, while placing 18th overall in the west (both public and private).

Both teams are enthusiastic about participating in the nation’s first bowl game of 2008 being held in St. George, including a national TV broadcast.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Meet the House Candidates

On Monday, Nov. 3 at the Holiday Inn, Jack Petersen and June McAfee greeted Rotarians and visitors to the 3717th meeting of St. George Rotary. On the eve of an historic national election, Ray Robinson lead the SGR Choir in a thoughtful rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner." Lee Warren ("the flag man") invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and Nick Lang asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Steve Johnson conducted an energetic Horseplay while Jerry Rasmussen collected fines in support of the Children’s Justice Center.

Announcements: Ray Robinson introduced Laura Schroeder, a student with YouthLINC preparing for an adventure in Thailand.

Richard Isom invited SGR members to sign up for the DRB golf tourney. He also introduced the first collectible DRB made-in-America souvenir pin. Team announcement will take place next week.

Thanks to Linda Sappington for the article in the Neigborhoods section of the Spectrum about the recent dictionary project. June McAfee expressed her appreciation to all who participated. The last two schools will receive their dictionaries this week.

Ken Sizemore, reporting on the recent membership training in Provo, noted SGR remains constant in the club’s efforts to increase membership by 12.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced David Clark ( R) incumbent and Terence Moore (D) opponents in the race for the District 74 seat in the House of Representatives. Moore expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to challenge Representative Clark noting he believes no candidate should run unopposed. He encouraged members of SGR to "vote your conscience . . . to let your voice be heard." Clark expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to represent this area for the past eight years and thanked his understanding employer (Zions Bank) for their support. "I wouldn’t trade a single day in the Legislature, although there are some days I certainly would not want to relive." Noting 5-6% of the total population of the state live in southwestern Utah. This year, Dixie State College received more funding than the University of Utah. He also noted Utah is the #2 state in the nation for doing business, the best fiscally managed state in America with a AAA credit rating. Moore noted "everyone should get into politics, then get out!" On the questions of ethics in government, Clark noted "there is not one of the 104 members of the house I have any questions about." Jeannine Holt reminded members to "don’t forget to vote!"

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Thompson Addresses Water Usage

Jack Petersen and June McAfee greeted Rotarians, visitors and guests to the 3716th meeting of St. George Rotary. Ray Robinson led the SGR choir in a rousing version of “God Bless America.” Lee Warren invited those in attendance to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance. June McAfee asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. David Clark took the podium for a spirited Horseplay to benefit the Polio Plus program with Shar Heitkotter collecting the fines.

Announcements: Mark Armstrong reminded members to look in their e-mailboxes for their electronic invoices for quarterly dues. Ken Seefeld noted he had hard copies for anyone who might prefer that format instead. Members with questions about their billings are encouraged to contact Ken or Mark directly.

June McAfee expressed her appreciation for the efforts of members to distribute dictionaries in 17 elementary schools in the county. There are three schools yet to receive their books, but distribution is scheduled for this week.

The club Christmas party is tentatively planned during lunch on Monday, December 15. Watch for more information.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced Ron Thompson, Executive Director of the Washington County Water Conservancy District which organization oversees 72,588 acre feet of developed water. Thompson indicated two power plants in the area generate approximately $1 million in revenues for the county. Projects in various stages of completion include Crystal Lake (scheduled for completion in 2010); Sand Hollow on the southern corridor ; Anasazi Tank which will help level the arsenic levels in local reservoirs from 70 parts per million to 10 parts per million based on the most recent federal directives. Other projects include the Warner Valley pipeline (2014) and the Anderson Junction Reservoir. The Water Conservancy District is also in the process of construction of a new building on the Red Hills Parkway.

According to the "5 foot, 20 inch" executive director, 47% of water is consumed in the county for commercial use. 38.7% is consumed by fulltime residents and another 14.3% is used by part time residents and visitors. In order to meet the water demands of an ever-growing population in Southern Utah, the Utah Department of Water Resources and Washington, Kane and Iron counties are in the planning stages for the construction of the Lake Powell Pipeline. This pipeline will convey water from Lake Powell to Sand Hollow Reservoir. The 139 miles of pipe will bring 10,000 acre-feet of water to Kane County, 70,000 acre-feet of water to Washington County and 20,000 acre-feet of water to Iron County. The project will be funded at an interest rate of 3-4% shared in the state and region. Construction will begin in 2015 with water delivery scheduled to begin in 2020.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Immigration Reform is Luncheon Topic

Jack Petersen and Don Pendleton greeted Rotarians and guests to the 3315th meeting of St. George Rotary Club on Monday, October 20. Ray Robinson conducted the SGR choir in a spirited version of “God Bless America.” Our “Flag Man” Lee Warren invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance. Ken Seefeld asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Ken Sizemore conducted an energetic Horseplay while Paula Bell collected fines on behalf of Polio Plus!

President Jeff reminded members invoices for the immediate past quarter were sent by e-mail. A hard copy invoice will also be distributed to members who prefer notification by that method. Any questions relating to invoices or amounts due may be referred to Mark Armstrong or Ken Seefeld.

President Jeff also offered the congratulations of the club to St. George City Mayor Dan McArthur on the recent groundbreaking for the city’s new airport. Club members broke into a spontaneous round of the “Dixie Song.”

June McAffee gave a brief report on SGR’s dictionary project which she says is “going well thanks to the efforts of Rotary volunteers, including Rotaract students.” This year 2100 Washington County 3rd graders will receive their very own dictionary.

Richard Isom announced the first-ever Rotary Bowl Souvenir Pin, available at a cost of $5 each.

Greg Basso reminded members time is running out to order wheelchairs in time for Christmas. Please call Greg as soon as possible to make a contribution of support.

George Whitehead announced the celebration of cultural arts month at Dixie State College. He invited Rotarians to a variety of events associated with the celebration including a Gala Ball on Friday, October 24 at the St. George Community Arts Center. On Saturday, October 25 there will be a Concert at the Burns Arena.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced guests Washington County Sheriff Kirk Smith; St. George Police Chief Marlon Stratton; Washington County Commissioner Denny Drake; Mike Stewart, Supervisor for the St. George Field Office of Homeland Security; and Steve Branch, Director of the Salt Lake City Field Office of Homeland Security with responsibility for Utah, Nevada, Montana and Idaho.

Director Branch reported Homeland Security’s mission is to keep the country safe which is challenging because of scarce resources. The staff has recently doubled at the St. George office as a result of major recent changes in the approach for dealing with immigration issues through partnering with state and local municipalities. Director Branch noted, "If you enter this country illegally - it is a crime. We work to take these people off the streets, prosecute and deport them." Utah deports about 200 non-citizens a month from as many as 38 different countries. The largest share of deportations are to Mexico.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Meet Shawn Hatch

Shawn Hatch, one of SGR's newest members, came to St. George last year from Portland, Oregon following studies at Western States Chiropractic College including a six month internship in Peru. The bi-lingual Dr. Hatch is now in business as Advanced Spine and Rehab at 619 S. Bluff Street, Ste. 400 and can be reached by phone at 656-0234. Shawn grew up in southern Nevada, graduated with a bachelor of arts degree from SUU and served an LDS mission in Ecuador. In his leisure time, he enjoys any outdoor activities and playing ball - including basketball, baseball and football. He also plays the guitar "for fun, but not in front of an audience!" Shawn and his wife Stina are expecting their first baby next month!

What attracted him to Rotary? "I had been looking for ways to get involved in the community. When Nick (Lang) invited me to a meeting, I was impressed and decided to join!"

Monday, October 13, 2008

SGR Welcomes Senatorial Candidates

Don Pendleton and Jack Petersen greeted members attending the 3314th meeting of SGR. Ray Robinson lead SGR's choir in a spirited rendition of "In the Good Old Summertime." Lee Warren invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance. Sam McArthur asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Linda Baker took the podium for Horseplay while Don Dunham collected fines on behalf of Polio Plus.

Announcements: Jim Coleman reminded the prez, prez-elect/membership chair and the president nominee of the Saturday, November 1 meeting in Provo which focuses on membership.

President Jeff announced the receipt of a $545 simple grant from RI for the club's dictionary project.

Kimberly Johnson encouraged participation as volunteers or entries in the DRB parade on Saturday, December 6 leading up to the bowl game at the Hansen Stadium

Kris Neal encouraged members to make their seat selections for the DRB and get the reservation form back to her by fax ASAP.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced Steve Urquhart (R) incumbent and Brooks Pace (D) running for the Utah Senate District 29 seat. Pace called himself "an accidental politician" and thanked Steve for being a gracious opponent in this campaign. He noted "my cause is the future of Washington County. Bloomington and the advent of air conditioning got this big ball rolling, but with growth we have seen some great companies move to this area. I'd like to see an increase in tourism growth rather than retirement growth. Water? We have enough to support more than half a million residents. I support education, tourism, transit . . . but not the pipeline project."

Steve Urquhart expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to serve, noting "we have accomplished some good things up there. We are the best managed state in the nation and Utah is in pretty good shape in this economic downturn. We have reduced taxes by $400 million and increased funding for education by about 40% in the past few years - including Dixie State College which received more this year than any other college or university in the state. I appreciate the good work being done by our local elected officials . . . and I do support the pipeline project."

On the subject of immigration, Pace noted "it is a national problem, but the bulk of the impact is being felt in the SW United States. I am concerned about a bill passed by a single state which forces illegals into neighboring states. It does not solve the problem!" Urquhart responded, "Utah is a magnet for illegals. We need to do away with the driving card and educational support to illegals, but the federal government is 'missing in action' on this issue."

On water rights, Pace expressed the need to explore other water resources, including the Navajo Aquafer, conservation and alternatives to water use from the Virgin River and Santa Clara Creek." Urquhart responded that "our water should not flow downriver for other states to use. There are no phantom sources for water. If we say 'no' to the pipeline project, our future will be determined!"

Elections will be held Tuesday, November 4. Don't forget to VOTE.

Friday, October 10, 2008

SGR Meets the Candidates (10/6/2008)

Kimberly Johnson and Don Dunham extended a hand of welcome to members and guests. Ray Robinson lead the SGR choir in a rousing rendition of "You're A Grand Old Flag." Eldon McArthur invited members to follow him in the Pledge of Allegiance and June McAfee asked for the blessings of heaven on the meeting and the meal. Ken Sizemore took to podium to conduct a lucrative Horseplay while Dan Strobell collected the "filthy lucre" on behalf of Polio Plus!

Announcements: June McAfee reminded members of the assignment to deliver dictionaries to 3rd grade classrooms throughout the WCSD. Pick up books at Grant Carter's office.

Richard Isom enthusiastically shared one of several advertisements for TV promoting the upcoming Dixie Rotary Bowl (the first weekend in December).

Ken Seefeld announced the recent passing of Shirley Huskinson, wife of longtime Rotarian Garn Huskinson.

Program: Jeannine Holt introduced speakers Brad Last, incumbent candidate for the office of Utah House of Representatives (District 71); Don Ipson, Utah House of Representatives (District 75); Alan Gardner (incumbent) and Lyn Alder, candidates for the Washington County Commission. In remarks, Last called his service in the Utah Legislature "the most fun and at the same time, the most stressful assignment I have ever had." Ipson expressed kudos to Last and his colleagues calling their service "of great benefit to the people of this region!" The former president of the Utah Trucking Association, Chair of the Utah Applied Technology Colleges, Ipson is calling for a balanced budget and improvements in public safety. Alder, son of Doug and Elaine Alder has lived 22 of his 38 years in Utah's Dixie. A graduate of Dixie High School, Dixie State College and Utah State University, he is running as an independent "with the same priorities as my family has had in this community: education, environment, water, housing, roads, energy and taxes!" Alder feels there is an urgent need to develop renewable energy sources - "we should be developing our own (Boone) Pickens Plan! including a solar plant which would create power to be sold to California." Gardner, a member of the original sponsor of Vision Dixie, notes "our land is important and should not be locked up." Citing growth statistics, Gardner noted Washington County remains the lowest taxed county in Utah and supports the need to develop affordable energy sources such as oil shale. Citing growth statistics, Gardner noted the county has enough water to sustain itself for 10-12 years, but must move ahead on developing water from all sources.

Welcome to St. George Rotary Blogspot

When all else fails, I am not above borrowing a good idea from another club! In a make-up at Dixie Sunrise Rotary Club, I was introduced to the highly addictive hobby of blogging - joining in the fun with a couple of my daughters and my daughters-in-law - and with! (If you are interested in creating your own blogspot, Dixie Sunrise Rotary will be having a special program at their regular breakfast meeting on Thursday, November 6 at 7:15 a.m.) After creating my own, I decided to branch out to create I hope you will find our club's blogspot to be a resource for information about upcoming meetings, notes on past meetings . . . and even a joke or two. I welcome your suggestions and hope you find our blogspot to be much to your liking.