Silent auction set for ‘found bikes’ in Smithfield

SMITHFIELD — Twenty-four found bicycles that have been kept at the Smithfield City Police Department will be sold at a silent auction, the City Council decided Wednesday.

Bicycles that aren’t purchased will be donated to Aggie Blue Bikes, an organization on Utah State University campus.

“I like the idea of giving the bikes to Aggie Blue Bikes because they have the power to refurbish them and make them like new before they give them out again,” Councilwoman Kris Monson said. “But if there are people in the community who want the bikes first, they should be able to have them.”

Chief of Police Johnny McCoy said the bicycles were found abandoned by various individuals in the community and members of the police force. “Some of the bikes are in really, really bad condition, but some are quite good,” McCoy said.

In 2003 Smithfield held a similar silent auction to dispose of found bicycles they’d been collecting. While they raised about $300, McCoy said it was more work than it was worth.

“I know it’s probably easier to just give all the bikes to Aggie Blue Bikes,” Mayor Darrell Simmons said. “But I want to make sure our community has a chance to benefit from the bikes first.”

In other business, Michael Kidman, an employee at Jones Simkins P.C., reported the findings of Smithfield’s annual audit report.

“In a lot of ways this was a break-even year,” Kidman said. “And that’s not bad considering the financial environment we’re all in.”

Kidman said unlike previous years Smithfield had more income for operating systems like water and sewer.

“Your operating income has been a problem in the past,” Kidman said. “But thanks to steps taken by the council, we’re seeing an improvement from where we’ve been.”

Simmons said the staff was to be thanked for these improvements.

The council also discussed the possibility of allotting more than 100 water shares for a water feature Logan city is building as part of their canal project.

City Manager James Gass said building the water feature is part of the agreement Logan made with FLOW, an ad-hoc community group that has fought to keep the canal running through an open culvert rather than Logan’s plan for a closed pipe.

“Logan is asking several cities as well as USU to commit water shares that can be directed through the water feature,” Gass said. “There would be no water loss for us; it’s just going to be redirected. It’s a non-consumptive water feature.”

Gass said Logan would meter the water to ensure there was no loss, and if any water was lost, Logan would make up for it.

“The irony here,” Councilman Jeffrey Barnes said, “is that FLOW fought tooth and nail for Logan not to do anything to the canal. And now, they’re having Logan make huge changes by building this water feature, and they want us to step in and provide them with the water to do so.”

The council agreed they would be willing to give Logan the water shares as long as an official agreement was made up to ensure protection of Smithfield’s water.

“I think it’s a good idea to help Logan out,” Gass said. “They legally probably don’t even have to build this water feature; they’re just trying to keep the peace.”

Published in cooperation with the Hard News Cafe. Original story is here.