What to Do About Gary Ott? Here Are Four Options for Removing the Salt Lake County Recorder

(Al Hartmann | Tribune file photo) Salt Lake County County Recorder Gary Ott sits with his chief deputy Julie Dole before the Salt Lake County Council’s presentation of findings of the county auditor’s performance review in Oct. 2016. A week later, the Salt Lake County Republican Party censured Dole, accusing her of hiding Ott’s health status.

Ott’s term currently runs through 2020. Here are the options for what could happen moving forward.

1 • Salt Lake County Council could cut funds

Gill’s office scoured the state Constitution for any option for the county to remove Ott and found that once an elected official is in office, there is no mechanism for removing him or her if they become mentally incompetent. But the council does control the recorder’s purse strings, and it’s considering flexing that muscle.

The council Tuesday voted unanimously to hold a hearing next week on changing Ott’s budget. Council members have discussed the possibility of cutting Ott’s salary to remove any incentive for him remaining in office throughout the remainder of his term.

Unknown is whether such a move also could involve the pay of his top deputies, who are essentially running the office and have been subject to unsubstantiated allegations of exploiting Ott for personal gain.

The move to look at the office’s budget comes after a week of escalating tensions between the employees running the recorder’s office and other departments and officials at the county, according to Councilman Arlyn Bradshaw. The office has used internal staff to create its own software that it recently launched, which Bradshaw said is creating issues with the other departments that interact with the recorder’s office. Any mistakes from the launch would come at a bad time.

“We’re in a cycle within the property tax system where valuation notices are supposed to be sent next month to all landowners in the county,” Bradshaw said. “The way we know who those are is through the recorder’s office.”

2 • Negotiating an early retirement

There has been talk, confirmed recently by his secretary and personal friend, that negotiations for an early retirement package may be in the cards.

If Ott was provided incentive — including continued health-care coverage — to step down early, the question of forcible removal would become moot, at least in this case. Resignation more than 65 days out from the 2018 general election would trigger a special election. If Ott resigned within 65 of the 2018 general election, his replacement would be a Republican nominee appointed by the county.

3 • Ott’s family could step in

There is no indication Ott is currently married. He has two ex-wives. He told the Deseret News he was “pretty much” married to his secretary, Karmen Sanone, who some county officials have accused of manipulating Ott by insulating him and hiding the truth about his health.

Ott has siblings in southern Utah who until recently haven’t been actively involved in his life. But if the family believed Ott was being manipulated and treated poorly — and wanted to step in — state law gives them priority over any unrelated person. They could file for legal guardianship or conservatorship, said Jennifer Lee, an attorney in estate law, and the court would give preference to any distant or close relative.

Gary Ott’s brother, Marty Ott, said the family was aware of the issues surrounding the recorder, but said the family was just beginning to consider what options it has. That includes taking the matter to court to obtain control over Ott’s affairs, but Marty Ott said family members weren’t to that point.

“There’s not a cookbook here. There’s no recipe. These kinds of things take on a personality of their own,” Marty Ott said. “We’ve had some people come forward that have been very helpful in explaining not only legal implications but other routes that may even be more helpful.”

“The fact is that that’s always been our primary concern is his welfare, his safety, and whether or not he’s being treated properly,” Marty Ott said this week. He said the family was willing to sit down with Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams to work out an agreement for his possible early retirement. “We want to make absolutely sure that before that happens that Gary is well served and so is the county.”

Call it the nuclear option. Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck, D-Salt Lake City, earlier this year pitched a bill that would create a framework for removing county officials from office. Legislators balked, saying they needed more time to consider the bill. They met Wednesday morning to discuss the concept again, and Chavez-Houck now has a Republican backer in Sen. Daniel Thatcher, R-West Valley City, and plenty of interest from other legislators.

Lawmakers made clear they want to tread lightly to make sure they don’t pass a bill that could allow vindictive voters or political rivals to remove an elected official they simply don’t like. So Thatcher recommended a three-part framework Utahns would have to follow to remove a mentally incompetent person from office.

If at the county level, the council or commission would have to vote unanimously to move to phase two, a mental competency exam in a courtroom. If a judge found the elected leader to be incompetent, and if the condition couldn’t be treated with medication or other means, the council could vote — unanimously — to remove the official from office.

Thatcher made clear the call to action stems from concerns over the case of Ott, who Thatcher called a close personal and political friend. He said the most recent time he talked to Ott, it was clear there was a problem.

“After about 15 seconds of lucidity he started yelling at me for taking his tools before [his deputy] quickly whisked him away and out of sight,” Thatcher told committee members.

Darcy Goddard, chief policy adviser in the district attorney’s office, told lawmakers on the Political Subdivisions Interim Committee they may need to change the Constitution to provide the framework to remove elected officials in the future.

“Our office certainly thinks if you do intend to do something, it would almost certainly require a constitutional amendment,” Goddard said. “Right now, the specific provision for removal would not allow a statute to go forward that would relate to mental or physical capacity.”

That’s a heavy lift, one that would possibly come after Ott’s situation is already resolved. Utah’s Constitution can be amended only if the House and Senate pass a bill with two-thirds majorities and it then is approved by voters in the next general election. The earliest that could happen is November 2018.

Still, lawmakers on the committee signaled they’re ready to move forward next session. They unanimously agreed to create a bill file that will become the vessel to move forward in February. While Ott was the impetus for the impending bill, Rep. Val Potter, R-North Logan, said he was interested in action whether Ott is still in office next year or not because Ott’s case isn’t the first and it likely won’t be the last.

“This has happened” before, Potter said. “I don’t think we know how many times this has happened.”

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Salt Lake City faces $1M, last-minute budget shortfall

SALT LAKE CITY — Only days away from when the Salt Lake City Council was scheduled to approve the city’s $237 million budget, city leaders learned they’re facing a more than $1 million shortfall.

The shortfall is due to a revised property tax rule adopted by the state, city leaders said Thursday.

“This is disappointing news and will make our decisions about how best to balance the city’s needs with available revenues much more difficult,” City Council Chairman Stan Penfold said in a statement. “The mayor’s recommended budget is very constrained in the first place, so this added limitation coming at the last minute makes it even harder to meet the expectations residents have for services in Salt Lake City.”

Penfold said council members are exploring options to address the shortfall, and they still expect to approve the budget during Tuesday’s meeting.

“There are no easy answers, and we will look at all options to balance the budget,” Penfold said. “In the year ahead, we will need to take a hard look at how we further tackle our infrastructure and maintenance issues citywide.”

Mayor Jackie Biskupski’s budget assumed $2.6 million in new growth in property tax revenue, but the city will only receive $1.53 million this year, city officials said.

Property taxes make up about one-third of the city’s general fund, which pays for city services such as public safety, street maintenance, parks, planning and zoning, housing and neighborhood development, and the offices of the city attorney, City Council and the mayor.

Sewer rate hikes that will double rates over the next five years. Millions more for homelessness, affordable housing and roads. Those are just a few highlights from Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski’s budget proposal unveiled Tuesday.

The revenue shortfall is the result of how the Utah State Tax Commission now calculates growth in property taxes, city officials said. The new interpretation, which went into effect this year, separates tax on real estate and buildings from tax on personal property — such as vehicles, computer equipment, machinery and furnishings.

City officials said the tax commission informed local governments of its final property tax revenue estimates Thursday, an annual notification that occurs each year shortly before budgets for the coming fiscal year must be adopted.

Under state law, the City Council must adopt a budget no later than June 22.

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Real Salt Lake: as Rsl Teeters on Edge of Lost Season, Gm Waibel Says It’s Time ‘to Get a Little Uncomfortable’

(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Real Salt Lake forward Joao Plata (10) reacts after narrowly missing a goal on a penalty kick, in MLS action, Real Salt Lake Vs. Atlanta United, at Rio Tinto Stadium, Wednesday, April 22, 2017.

If not at rock-bottom, RSL is certainly in the vicinity as it closes in on the season’s official halfway point. RSL is 4-10-2 through 16 matches, is conceding goals at a historically bad rate, and most troubling, missing windows of opportunity to escape its dreary situation.

The latest episode, the 6-2 loss at FC Dallas, again left Mike Petke beside himself. But as he has so often, the RSL coach delivered a blunt and straightforward postgame response that went viral around MLS. Petke said he “couldn’t protect people anymore,” that he has “to take the gloves off now,” and the stretch of play is “blowing my mind.”

RSL has allowed a league-high 35 goals in 16 games. It sits at a league-worst minus-20 goal differential after allowing 11 goals in road trips at Houston and Dallas last week. Now in the midst of a FIFA international break, Waibel, Petke and the players have gotten an opportunity to get away from the bad start, digest what has gone wrong, and why it continuously has stayed wrong.

“It’s one thing to lose,” Waibel said, “it’s another thing to lose and not try. While I’m not accusing any player of not trying, there’s a level of commitment when you put this jersey on that I have to believe you have. Because ultimately, it’s my decision to make, and I’m going to have to make some tough decisions.”

Waibel’s decisions will come during the summer transfer window, which opens July 10. No movement is allowed within MLS for the next four weeks, but it seems Waibel has seen enough. The GM said RSL will make one roster move for certain this summer — and likely more.

“Any time you’re a struggling team,” Waibel said, “you know change is inevitable.”

It could come organically, too. RSL welcomes back four players who represented the U.S. at the U-20 World Cup in South Korea this week, and Waibel said he expects injured players David Horst, Jordan Allen and Demar Phillips all will be in training within the next week. Waibel did note this is RSL’s first full transfer window with Petke as coach and, after the early coaching change, a rash of injuries and poor performances, this could be a key month for RSL’s long-term future under Petke.

“We haven’t given Mike the freedom to select the players that he believes in,” Waibel said.

Petke’s explanation of the state of RSL after the disaster in Texas has been measured. It was a controlled tirade from a coach who wants more out of the players. He went as far to say he was “appalled by certain things” discussed going into a game and not being utilized during play.

“That tells me one of two things: either they’re not listening or they’re not good enough,” Petke said. “I’ve never been a part of something like this.”

Not since RSL’s earliest days have those around the club seen things go this bad. For context’s sake, RSL has allowed 35 goals in 16 matches; in 2012, 2010 and 2009, it went the entire season conceding 35 goals or fewer.

RSL went to Texas and got squashed after winning two out of three, confirming Petke’s warning that RSL still has a long way to go.

“Every player plays a little better on a daily basis when they know someone is behind them ready to take their job,” Waibel said. “And as much as we all want to believe we go to work every day doing our absolute best acting as if someone is pushing us, I’m sure everyone when they look in the mirror probably has one or two days that they didn’t do that.”

RSL is at a crossroads. The injuries are waning, performances have been subpar and something needs to change to arrest what looks like a free fall.

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(Rick Egan | The Salt Lake Tribune) Real Salt Lake forward Joao Plata (10) reacts after narrowly missing a goal on a penalty kick, in MLS action, Real Salt Lake Vs. Atlanta United, at Rio Tinto Stadium, Wednesday, April 22, 2017.

Real Salt Lake » Club has allowed more goals in first half than some previous RSL teams gave up in entire seasons.

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“My job is to watch out for this club,” Waibel said, “and lately we’ve seen enough that it’s frustrating everyone and I have to put pressure on these players rather than coddling and making them as comfortable as they’ve been. It’s time to get a little uncomfortable.”

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Thousands Celebrate Pride in Salt Lake City

SALT LAKE CITY — The colors of the rainbow took over the streets of Salt Lake City Sunday morning, symbolizing a diverse crowd where differences are celebrated.

“The movement and the beauty and the love and the support that we have for diversity and for our LGBTQ community is very strong,” says Stephanie of Salt Lake City.

It’s not something people would necessarily expect here in Utah.

“I think we’ve come a long way. We still have a lot to go, which is why we have these,” says Bobby, who traveled from Cincinnati, Ohio for the Pride Parade.

However, each year, the acceptance grows and so does the parade.

“We only saw a group of one protesters; everyone else had such love,” says Emerald of Woods Cross.

“It’s been getting bigger and bigger and better every year,” says Aaron of Salt Lake City.

Senator Jim Dabakis, D-Salt Lake City, has been at every pride parade.

“I’m just wondering if these glasses are too gay for the senate? I’m getting a mixed reaction,” Dabakis said of his attire for the event.

Dabakis said he remembers what it used to be like.

“From 1994, where there were 100 people in the shadows, to this: The entire community is out here celebrating,” Dabakis said. “Guess what? We’re not going to put all these people back in the closet.”

People here are proud, not only of who they are, but where they live.

“It’s made me really happy to see the community is becoming a lot more accepting,” says Hayley of Bountiful.

It’s a place where you can love whoever you love.

“We have to love one another,” Stephanie said. “We have to be able to accept one another and be able to be open to what love is. Love is love.”

Even when there are setbacks and rainy days.

“There’s a lot happening in the world today, so it’s important to come together,” Bobby said.

A rainbow is on the horizon in Salt Lake City.

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An Inmate Makes It off the Mental Health Waitlist, but Solutions Still Sought

Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — A mentally ill woman who was featured in a Deseret News investigation about how inmates are waiting five months or more to get into the state psychiatric hospital in Provo was transferred to the facility on Tuesday.

Diane Prigge, 62, of Provo, was still in jail nearly eight months after she had been ordered to receive treatment from the Utah State Hospital when her case was profiled last week. Prigge had been arrested nearly a year ago on misdemeanor charges but could not proceed with her case until she was healthy enough to participate in her own defense.

Aaron Kinikini, legal director of the Disability Law Center in Utah, said news of Prigge’s transfer was met with “relief tempered by frustration.”

“The frustration is constant that there is this waitlist,” said Kinikini, who is representing inmates in a class-action lawsuit against the Utah Department of Human Services over how long it takes to get a bed at the psychiatric hospital. “It would be so much more productive if some high-level decision-makers could be proactive about looking at this issue rather than waiting until someone files a lawsuit.”

Thirty-five men and women with severe mental illnesses are still vying for one of 100 beds at the Provo facility.

Another 28 inmates are receiving regular visits from social workers through the hospital’s outreach program but remain incarcerated despite being deemed by mental health workers to be too ill to participate in their own defense.

Gov. Gary Herbert’s spokesman, Paul Edwards, said on Tuesday that the governor is “deeply concerned” about the people on the waitlist and would like to see legislators address the issue in interim session.

Edwards also said the governor is interested in large-scale mental health reforms undertaken by places like Miami-Dade County in Florida, but that autonomy in those issues is usually given to counties.

“We would love to see that kind of solutions approach because we do believe that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure in these instances,” Edwards said. “We very much welcome a full discussion of that and what it means from a cost-benefit analysis.”

Other top elected officials in Utah were largely silent on the issue. Senate President Wayne Niederhauser declined to comment. House Speaker Greg Hughes did not respond to texts or calls.


Heather Barnum, a spokeswoman for the Utah Department of Human Services, said the hospital could not discuss what happened in Prigge’s case. But she said the department is open to engaging with lawmakers on improving the mental health system in Utah, whether that involves a special session convened by the governor, a meeting of experts or any other format.

“Whatever they decide, there can’t be any harm in dialogue on something that we share as a critical issue for the state,” Barnum said.

The Utah State Hospital spends approximately $20 million a year — or 1 in 5 mental health dollars — rehabilitating mentally ill inmates so that they can continue with their court proceedings.

In the last legislative session, the hospital lobbied for and received $3 million to open an off-site facility in what will likely be the Salt Lake County Jail to begin treating male inmates without having to move them to the hospital.

But Kinikini said lawmakers are playing whack-a-mole with stopgap solutions that don’t address the real issue and criticized a “lack of vision and leadership at the top” for the problem.

“Who knows whether the demand is going to outstrip that thing right when it opens,” Kinikini said, referring to the off-site unit.

Utah Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis, D-Salt Lake City, recalled when the forensic unit was first established at the state hospital as a way to alleviate pressure at the Utah State Prison.

Davis said he’s not surprised to see that the same problem continues today, only in a new location.

“It’s just frustrating to see that we’re this far behind the eight ball and nobody has been decrying this issue,” Davis said. “These individuals that are being incarcerated in jails waiting for a bed in the forensic unit is criminal within itself.”

Davis, who worked for 16 years in public relations for what is now known as Valley Behavioral Health, suggests the state focus on mental health services for juveniles in order to eventually decrease Utah’s population of mentally ill adults.

Rep. Steve Eliason, R-Sandy, also voiced his concern, saying he is “deeply troubled” by the revelations that Utah has the longest waitlist out of the seven Western states surveyed by the Deseret News.

Eliason added that he is committed to running legislation on the issue next session but said he didn’t know what the solution is yet.

“It’s clear that we currently have a crisis on our hands,” said Eliason, who pushed for a statewide suicide hotline in the latest legislative session and helped legalize needle exchanges in Utah last year. “The numbers speak for themselves.”

Many advocates and elected officials said that programs that were supposed to help people like Prigge and others on the waitlist — such as the Justice Reinvestment Initiative — faltered because of the state’s decision not to expand Medicaid.

A 2016 study by the Utah Association of Counties showed that the Justice Reinvestment Initiative had successfully diverted more than 6,000 low-level nonviolent offenders away from incarceration but had failed to provide them the necessary substance abuse or mental health treatment afterward. Thus, the number of drug-related charges has actually gone up, not down, the report said.

The cost of treating those offenders’ mental health and substance abuse problems is $21 million, according to the Utah Association of Counties.

Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams said that the result is that cash-strapped counties have been left with the responsibility of treating residents’ mental health and substance abuse issues without getting enough funding.

“The reinvestment never happened,” McAdams said.

A small-scale Medicaid expansion program meant to help several thousand low-income parents and childless adults who are homeless, criminally involved and have a mental illness or substance abuse problem has also been stalled since last year, pending federal review.

Edwards said Herbert has been in “direct conversations” with U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price about getting those waivers approved, which he said would help low-income Utahns get mental health care.

Davis County AttorneyTroy Rawlings floated the idea of convening a panel of mental health and criminal justice experts to bring recommendations to the legislature to fund.

The five-month waitlist, Rawlings added, is an “unacceptable embarrassment to Utah.”

“We’re better than that. As a state we’re better than that. As a people we’re better than that,” Rawlings said, adding that he would like to see an expansion of mental health courts in Davis and other counties.

In 2010, Davis County created a mental health court modeled after Salt Lake County’s successful program. The idea is to help those who are mentally ill and charged with a crime resolve their cases without jail time. Graduates regularly credit the program for helping them break the cycle of recidivism, Rawlings said.

“The sooner we can get these people treated, out of custody in appropriate placements, on the proper medications, with therapy and treatment to keep them out of jail, in the long run, the more money it saves taxpayers,” Rawlings said.

Some communities around the country, like Miami-Dade County, have undertaken large-scale mental health reforms that involve retraining police to divert mentally ill offenders to treatment instead of jail and providing follow-up care for up to a year after inmates are released from jail to ensure that they are getting housing, medication and other services.

But Rep. Edward Redd, R-Logan, said he would prefer to see how the off-site unit in Salt Lake County jail works before taking any bigger steps.

An internal medicine doctor who works as a psychiatric prescriber at Bear River Mental Health and at the Cache County Jail, Redd acknowledged the “huge” need for community mental health resources.

But “I think we’re doing the best we can at the moment,” Redd said. “We’ve got a good program going, it’s a funded program. I think we run that for a year or two and see what happens.”

Redd said he agrees that the state would likely see cost savings if officials were to invest in preventive medical care instead of catching patients once they’re already involved in the criminal justice system. But getting the mental health community, state agencies and the Legislature to unite around a solution is “not something you can get done overnight,” Redd said.

“Quite honestly, some of us on the front lines are so busy trying to take care of patients that we sometimes get distracted and don’t try to address the bigger issue,” Redd said. “We get stuck in our silos.”

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Emigration House in Salt Lake City

Emigration House, Salt Lake City Residence, Utah Architecture, Architect, US Home Images
Emigration House in Salt Lake City
Utah House: Contemporary Rural Home in USA – design by Steven Christensen Architecture

Emigration House
Design: Steven Christensen Architecture
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
Emigration House

Emigration House, a project by Steven Christensen Architecture of Santa Monica, California, has received a Special Mention distinction at the Architizer A+ Awards. The Architizer A+Awards received entries from over 100 countries, and its winners represent the best of architecture and design worldwide.

The jury included such industry luminaries as Denise Scott Brown, Bjarke Ingels and Tom Kundig, as well as personalities from outside of architecture such as Tony Hsieh (CEO, Zappos), Yves Behar (Fuseproject), John Edelman (CEO, Design Within Reach), Cameron Sinclair (Architecture for Humanity) and Barry Bergdoll (MoMA). Special Mention awards were given to the top 15 percent of entries in each category, and other firms to receive the distinction include Morphosis, Neri&Hu, and OMA.

In addition to their recognition for Emigration House, Christensen’s office was awarded the Jury Prize in the Unbuilt Hospitality category for Liepaja Thermal Bath, a hotel and spa in Liepaja, Latvia, and Heptagon House, a guest house in Heceta Beach, Oregon. Winners were recognized at an awards gala on May 11th at the Highline Stages in New York City and will be featured in a forthcoming book by Phaidon Press.
Construction on the home is slated to begin June 2017.

Emigration House

The canon of architecture offers many significant examples of hillside houses cascading down toward a significant view. This project addresses an unusual site constraint, where the best view is over your shoulder.

This 6.8 acre Emigration Canyon site, located on the overland carriage route shared by prominent migrants from the Donner Party to…

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mercantile establishment

Mentor Program Keeps Salt Lake Teachers on the Job

SALT LAKE CITY — First-year teacher Veronica Hernandez has something in her class few teachers get: a mentor, whose only job is to help new teachers succeed.

“They give you great ideas that you wouldn’t have thought of yourself, adding tools to your teacher toolbox,” Hernandez said.

One of those tools: her peer mentor recently suggested engaging students by getting them up and moving.

On this day, Hernandez took a break from instruction and had students follow an online exercise class.

“First graders are wiggly after lunch,” said peer mentor Sarah Machol. “So I’m really excited to see her trying some of those things.”

Hernandez and other teachers say this kind of support boosts morale by providing specific feedback.

“Knowing that I have another set of eyes that are here help me become the best teacher I can be,” said Eliza McKay, another first-year teacher.

Unlike many districts, which have mentors who also teach and maintain other duties, Salt Lake City School District hires peer mentors who focus only on that job. Leaders applied for a legislative grant to pilot the program.

“This is the first program of its kind in Utah,” said Peer Assistance Review (PAR) supervisor Logan Hall. “It’s their entire job to help novice teachers to be successful.”

This is important because 56 percent of new teachers in Utah quit, according to the University of Utah’s Education Policy Center. Of those teachers in Salt Lake’s PAR program, only twenty-three percent quit.

With that kind of difference, Salt Lake City School District now pays to continue the pilot.

“What do our teachers need most? That is the key question,” Hall said.

And teachers said their needs are being met.

“I really love what I do, and coming to work and having the support makes me feel like I can do what I need to do here,” Hernandez said.

In the end, mentors believe skilled, satisfied teachers benefit students.

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Goldman Sachs Golden for Downtown Salt Lake City

(Chris Detrick | The Salt Lake Tribune) Employees work in the call center of Marcus by Goldman Sachs in Salt Lake City Wednesday, May 3, 2017.

Now, it also has taken up seven floors in the spanking new 111 S. Main, the office tower connected to the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Theater.

The company’s current employee head count in Utah is about 2,350, making it Goldman Sachs’ fourth-largest office with nearly 7 percent of its 34,400 workers worldwide.

And David Lang, the partner in charge of the Utah office, projects the workforce could grow to 2,700 this year.

“What we’re finding as a firm,” he said in a recent interview, “is that there’s a huge population of people who want the global investment bank experience but don’t necessarily want to work in New York or San Francisco.

“They want the professional experience of working for a global investment bank, but they want the lifestyle associated with Utah and the quality of life.”

Higher bosses, wider tasks • The roster of people serving in the Salt Lake City office reflects a greater number of senior managers than before. Their positions also signal the broader range of tasks they oversee.

“You’ve got very senior people here with global responsibilities,” Lang said, “that are based here in Salt Lake, driving strategy.”

Those include 16 managing directors, who are just below the firm’s top management — up from one in 2011.

Their staffs often intermingle. In the 111 Main location, for instance, teams gather in large rooms where dozens of people sit in front of two or three computer screens, making decisions based on the financial news playing out before them and on large flat-screen TVs.

Almost all Goldman Sachs divisions are represented in the Salt Lake City office, including:

• Investment banking with more than 60 analysts.

• Global investment research involving another three dozen.

• Asset management with around 100 professionals.

• Software engineering, including 450 computer technicians.

Deep talent pool • A team in the New York office scouting for new areas of business came up with the idea of the consumer-lending operation.

It was kick-started in Utah, said Darin Cline, managing director of operations for Marcus in Salt Lake City, because Goldman Sachs already had a strong presence in the area and knew the hiring market and available talent.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs is an online service that offers fixed-rate, no-fee loans to people who are in over their heads in credit card or other debt.

Rates can be as much as 5 percent below what they’re currently paying and range from 5.99 percent to 22.99 percent. They’re offered to consumers with credit scores of 660 or better.

Goldman Sachs developed a simple, three-step approval process that aims to disburse funds within one to two business days.

But if an applicant wants or needs to talk to someone, that’s where the new Salt Lake City team enters the equation.

So for its new loan program, the company sought employees with good social skills who can express understanding to people calling about loans, helping them deal with difficult financial circumstances.

Besides about 150 loan specialists and managers, the office also has employees focusing on risk management and regulatory compliance.

“Leveraging the firm’s infrastructure and talent here enabled us to look for loan specialists who are really passionate, committed and caring to deliver a good customer experience,” said April Danile, the vice president responsible for loan origination.

Herbert Icasiano, vice president responsible for fraud prevention for Marcus, said the new hires receive rigorous training to give them additional skills they need for their jobs.

Boosting downtown’s diversity • Besides a job at a global financial powerhouse, what sells Utah to potential hires and transfers is the lifestyle, Lang said.

The Salt Lake City office hires about 250 college interns every summer, up to about 65 percent from more than 50 out-of-state universities. The company also imports employees from its foreign offices.

“You’ll see this is a very diverse office, and that’s one of the things we’re very proud of,” Lang said. “We are bringing a lot of diverse talent into the firm, [people who] are living and working in downtown Salt Lake City.”

What makes Utah’s capital city attractive to employees?

For one thing, Lang said, its relaxed lifestyle compared to New York, London or Hong Kong.

His own New York commute took about one hour and 15 minutes to and from home. Here, it takes 12 minutes one way. Housing costs and taxes also are lower in Utah, Lang added, and there’s an abundance of outdoor recreational opportunities.

The diversity of the Goldman Sachs workforce — the largest private employer on Main Street, according to Lang — its youth and above-market salaries have contributed to downtown swarming with bodies at lunch and into the night.

“They’ve really changed the face of downtown, in a literal sense,” said Nick Como of the Downtown Alliance.

Poster child for pitching Utah • The company has spent significantly on its Salt Lake City operations.

In 2009, the Governor’s Office of Economic Development gave Goldman Sachs a tax-rebate incentive of up to $47.2 million when the company planned to spend $51 million and create 690 new jobs. Those jobs were estimated to bring in $1.7 billion in new wages over a 20-year period along with $157.6 million in new state tax revenue.

Five years later, GOED extended the company a second tax-refund incentive, this one for up to $13 million over 20 years. The incentive was conditioned on the creation of 350 new Goldman Sachs jobs and a capital investment of up to $40 million in new office space.

This expansion was projected to bring in $1.1 billion in new wages plus state taxes of $43.5 million.

What appeals to GOED Executive Director Val Hale about the Goldman Sachs positions is that they pay at least 150 percent of the average salary in Salt Lake County.

Hale said GOED has been able to leverage Goldman Sachs’ expansion here in other beneficial ways.

“When we meet with other companies and when we give the ‘Why Utah?’ pitch, that we do so often in our office, we almost always point to Goldman Sachs as a great example of what can happen in Utah.”

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10-Day Planner: 30 Fun Things to Do in Northern Utah, Salt Lake City This Week

FRIDAY, May 12

BABY ANIMAL DAYS FUNDRAISER — Visitors will see twice as many baby animals this year and more. 3-8 p.m., Utah State University Botanical Center, 920 S. 50 West, Kaysville. Proceeds will benefit 4-H programs and the botanical gardens. Event will also run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 13. Tickets at babyanimaldays.org. $7 per person or $35 for a family of up to six people.

SIMPLE TREASURES MOTHER’S DAY BOUTIQUE — Locally handmade gifts, home and spring decor, treats and more. 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Legacy Events Center (Davis Fairgrounds), 151 S. 1100 West, Farmington. Event also runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, May 13. 801-451-4080. FREE-$1.

DANCE AMERICA ‘THE CONCERT’ COMPETITION — An adjudication only competition, where dancers receive awards based on scores instead of placements. 4:30-10:30 p.m., Peery’s Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., Ogden. Performance also runs from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, May 13. egyptiantheaterogden.com. 801-689-8700. FREE.


SURPLUS PROPERTY AND BOOK SALE — Don’t miss the opportunity for great savings. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Weber County Library’s North branch, 475 E. 2600 North, North Ogden. 801-337- 2617. FREE.

FAMILY ART SATURDAY — For children of all ages and their families; discover changing exhibitions and take part in hands-on art making activities led by a trained educator. 2 p.m., Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, 20 S. W. Temple, Salt Lake City. 801-328-4201. FREE-$5.

COMMUNITY EVENT — Featuring May Mania Demolition Derby. 7 p.m., Outdoor Stadium, Golden Spike Event Center, 1000 N. 1200 West, Ogden. smithstix.com. 801-399-8798. FREE-$26.

SUNDAY, May 14

CHECK OUT HOGLE ZOO — Enjoy the warm weather and visit the 42-acre zoo that houses animals, tropical gardens, and a train and carousel. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., 2600 Sunnyside Ave., Salt Lake City. 801-584-1700. FREE-$16.95.

BIRD SHOW — Check out the beautiful plumage of birds in flight and get up close with the stars of the show. 1 p.m., Education Indoor Space, Tracy Aviary, 589 E. 1300 South, Salt Lake City. Arrive 30 minutes early to ensure a seat. 801-596-8500. FREE-$7.95.

CLARK PLANETARIUM — Visit the Foucault Pendulum exhibit, the first real proof that the Earth spins, and not the sky. 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., The Gateway, 400 W. 100 South, Salt Lake City. 385-468-7827. FREE.

MONDAY, May 15

MAGIC MONDAY — Featuring Elias “Lefty” Caress, resident magician; event also includes comedy and chocolate or ice cream. 7-10 p.m., Hatch Family Chocolate, 376 Eighth Ave., Salt Lake City. 801-532-4912. FREE.

PRESERVE ALL FRONTS — “World War II Homefront Scanning Days” for the community to have memorabilia scanned as part of a project documenting the impact of World War II on Northern Utah. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Building 1955, Hill Aerospace Museum, 7961 Wardleigh Road, Hill Air Force Base. specialcollections@weber.edu. 801-626-6540. FREE.

‘BEAUTY AND THE BEAST’ PERFORMANCE — Don’t miss the rendition of Disney’s classic mermaid fairy tale. 7:30 p.m., The Ziegfeld Theater, 3934 Washington Blvd., Ogden. Performances also run Friday, May 19, through Saturday, May 20. theziegfeldtheater.com. 801-821-2625. $17-$19.


STANDARD-EXAMINER CAREER EXPO — For those interested in exploring the job market. 11 a.m., Golden Spike Event Center, 1000 N. 1200 West, Ogden. 801-399-8798. FREE.

PUPPET PERFORMANCE — Spotlighting professional ventriloquist Meghan Casey and her puppets. 6 p.m., Weber County Library’s Pleasant Valley branch, 5568 Adams Ave. Parkway, Washington Terrace. FREE.

YOUTH CHESS CLUB — Those ages 4-18 are invited to learn and play the ultimate intellectual game. 4 p.m., Weber County Library’s Ogden Valley branch, 131 S. 7400 East, Huntsville. All supplies will be provided. FREE.


MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT — Featuring Frontier Ruckus, known for folk rock with a strong verbal emphasis, “I Am the Water You Are Pumping.” 8 p.m., The State Room, 638 S. State St., Salt Lake City. Doors open at 7 p.m. Must be at least age 21. 1-800-501-2885. $15.

WILD WEDNESDAY: TWEETS AND TWITTERS — Check out songbird social media and learn how birds communicate. 3:45-4:30 p.m., Ogden Nature Center, 966 W. 12th St., Ogden. All ages welcome. Meet at the visitor center. 801-621-7595. $3-$5.

DANCE NIGHT — Live music by Gary Romer; line dancing, 7-7:30 p.m.; ballroom dancing, 7:30-10 p.m., Starstruck Dance Studio, 375 S. State St., Suite G, Clearfield. For ages 40 and older. 801-479-8664. $7.


BOOK DISCUSSION — Featuring “Putin Country: A Journey into the Real Russia,” depicting a rare glimpse into modern-day Russian life, by Anne Garrels. 7 p.m., Weber County Library’s Pleasant Valley branch, 5568 Adams Ave. Parkway, Washington Terrace. Books available at reference desk. 801-337-2690. FREE.

UTAH DANCE ACADEMY — Presents BELIEVE & Reach for the Stars! featuring the academy and competition teams as they showcase their talents. 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Peery’s Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., Ogden. smithstix.com. 801-689-8700. $5-$10.

JEWELRY MAKING/SILVERSMITHING CLASS — Bring design ideas, metal and stones, and learn how to create jewelry from Rene Venegas, a 16th-generation master silversmith. 6 p.m., The Local Artisan Collective, 2371 Kiesel Ave., Ogden. localartisancollective.com. $50 for each three-hour class.

FRIDAY, May 19

SUBLIMATION EXHIBIT — Opening reception featuring the artwork of Michael Ryan Handley. 7-9 p.m., Street Gallery, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, 20 S.W. Temple, Salt Lake City. Exhibit runs through Sept. 9. 801-328-4201. Suggested donation, $5.

TEMPLE SQUARE PERFORMANCE — Featuring the Sally Bytheway Chorale directed by Sally Brinton. 7:30 p.m., Assembly Hall, Temple Square, 50 N. Temple, Salt Lake City. For ages 8 and older. 801-240-3323. FREE.

MUSICAL ENTERTAINMENT — Featuring Austin Weyand, finger-style guitarist and his acoustic band. 7:30 p.m., Brigham City Fine Arts Center, 58 S. 100 West, Brigham City. bcfineartscenter.org. 435-723-0740. $8-$12.


STAR PARTY — Members of the Ogden Astronomical Society invite you to look through their telescopes; deep space viewing begins at dark. 6 p.m., White Rock Bay Campground, Antelope Island State Park, 4528 W. 1700 South, Syracuse. 801-721-9569. $10 per vehicle.

GAMING TOURNAMENT — For ages 14 and younger. 2 p.m., Weber County Library’s Southwest branch, 2039 W. 4000 South, Roy. Prizes will be awarded. 801-337-2670. FREE.

SPRING SHOW — Featuring La Rae’s Dance Unlimited and its presentation of “World of Dance.” 7:30 p.m., Peery’s Egyptian Theater, 2415 Washington Blvd., Ogden. 801-689-8700. FREE.

SUNDAY, May 21

YOUTH FISHING CAMP SIGNUP — Children ages 8-12 can learn how to fish in a safe, friendly environment; fishing dates: June 13-14, June 20-21, and June 27-28. 6-8 p.m., USU Botanical Center, 920 S. 50 West, Kaysville. Children age 12 must have a $5 fishing license. Equipment is provided, but you can bring your own. Register at usubotanicalcenter.org/education/youth/fishing. $30.

DISCOVER THE DINOSAURS UNLEASHED — Your family will enjoy a journey back to a time when dinosaurs roamed the earth. 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., South Towne Expo Center, 9575 S. State St., Sandy. 385-468-2260. $11-$47.

CHECK OUT THE ANIMALS — Learn all about 450 species. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Loveland Living Planet Aquarium, 12033 Lone Peak Parkway, Draper. 801-355-3474. FREE-$19.95.

Tasty Savings
Outdoor Entertaining


Salt Lake City reacts to Warriors complaints about “no fun” in Utah

Salt Lake City officials assure Kevin Durant and the Warriors they can have a ball in Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Not surprisingly, many Warriors players hoped to be spending their Western Conference Semifinals leisure time in Los Angeles rather than Utah.

Some Warriors complained “there’s nothing to do in Utah,” as they begrudgingly planned for games in Salt Lake City on Saturday and Monday.

Well, cheer up, Warriors. It turns out there’s plenty of fun to be had in Salt Lake City. It’s not like 1.1 million people live there because they have to, right?


No one asked Scott Beck, but as the president and CEO of “Visit Salt Lake,” he felt compelled to share with the Warriors a video showing all of the fun possibilities that await them this weekend.

(We can’t be sure, but it seems Beck and his staff may be trolling the Warriors even more at the video’s 1:40 mark by showing Jazz forward Derrick Favors dunking over Kevin Durant, while Durant was with Oklahoma City).

Beck personally reached out to the Warriors and their followers on Tuesday with this note:

Dear Golden State Warrior players, coaches and fans,

On behalf of Utah’s capital city, we can’t wait to host you in Salt Lake this weekend. We appreciate your concern that there’s nothing to do in Salt Lake, so much so that we’ve created a little video for you confirming the fact that, indeed, ‘There’s Nothing To Do In Salt Lake.’ Enjoy!

And just in case you do stumble across something to do while here in Salt Lake, all of our bartenders and servers are on notice to keep you up late!

Cheers, and GO JAZZ!”

Of course, “late” is a relative term in Salt Lake City. One of the things Beck didn’t mention is that Utah’s strict alcohol laws forbid any alcohol to be served after 1 a.m.

Leave it to Stephen Curry to put it all into proper perspective.

“Guys are disciplined. They know how to handle themselves in whatever city,” Curry told ESPN. “Obviously, most of the guys here are more familiar with L.A. than Salt Lake City. But at the end of the day, if you’re worried about extracurricular during the playoffs and that’s your priority, then you got it twisted already. It’s a business trip wherever we end up going. We’ll be ready.”