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Gov. Spencer Cox greets Fairview Mayor Dave Taylor and his wife, Janice, during Cox’s stop in Fairview on his inauguration day, Jan. 4. It was Cox, who was mayor of Fairview at the time, who first hired Taylor as Fairview city planner in 2007. Last week, Taylor announced he was stepping down as mayor for health reasons.

 

Dave Taylor, key figure in Fairview for 13 years, steps down as mayor

 

By Rhett Wilkinson

Staff writer

1-20-2021

 

FAIRVIEW—Mayor David Taylor, who has been at the center of city government activities in Fairview since he was hired as city planner in 2007, has stepped down, citing health concerns.

Taylor played a key role in restoration of the Peterson Dance Hall, reconstruction of the Fairview City Hall and development of the sports park on the north end of the city.

More recently, he grappled with repair and replacement of segments of the “spring line,” the mile-long pipeline that brings about 50 percent of the city’s culinary water from Fairview Canyon into the city, as well as a proposal to reuse water from the sewage treatment plant for secondary irrigation.

His resignation was announced at a special meeting of the city council, held virtually, on Tuesday, Jan. 12. No information on the nature of the health problems was released. Taylor had about a year to go on his term as mayor.

“We were saddened to have Mayor Taylor leave us,” Councilman Cliff Wheeler said. “He’s done a good job, and we wish him and his family well. Especially with his health conditions, we hope he recovers quickly.”

As mayor pro tempore, Wheeler will fill in as mayor until a new mayor is appointed.

Wheeler said the newspaper notice for applications for mayor would be printed Jan. 27. The period to apply ends on Feb. 10, and the council expects to appoint a new mayor Feb. 11.

In 2007, Spencer Cox, then mayor of Fairview, hired Taylor for the new position of city planner. But his role quickly became broader than his job title.

He became the primary grant writer for funding to renovate the town’s historic dance hall. The project attracted $1.8 million in loans and grants. The city’s debt obligation came to less than $7,000 per year.

In 2012, he retired from paid employment and became chairman of the city planning commission as well as a member of Sanpete County Search and Rescue. During the Wood Hollow Fire that year, while he was checking on a neighbor, fire swept through and destroyed his own home in Indian Hills.

Within a couple of years after retiring, he returned to his paid position with the city. In 2014, he put together a funding package and headed up work to develop the sports park north of the rodeo arena. The area includes lighted tennis courts, a lighted basketball court, two lighted sand volleyball courts and six horseshoe pits.

Also in 2014, he began helping to line up funding to restore the Fairview City Hall. Initially, the city planned to keep the original stone exterior and build new rooms inside the old walls with an addition on the rear.

Then it turned out the old stone walls were unstable, so architects came up with a plan to salvage the stone and use it as facing on new, reinforced concrete walls.

The plan was revised a third time to make change the arrangement of space inside the building and to give more prominence to the library addition on the north side of the building. The new library was named after the late Cleone Eccles, a native of Fairview, whose husband and children direct the George and Dolores Dore Eccles Foundation. The Eccles Foundation was the major private donor to the project.

Shortly after Taylor became mayor, the city water superintendent walked the length of the spring line and came back with the report that the line was in jeopardy of falling apart. Taylor lined up an engineering study aimed at completely replacing the line. But Fairview didn’t get the grant it had hoped would fund the project.

Then in 2019, a mudslide severed the line. Taylor arranged for emergency repairs with city funds. He also coordinated and effort to improve two city-owned springs in the canyon and replace small portions of the pipeline.

Recently, Taylor had been heading up an initiative to redirect water that had passed through its sewage treatment plant and was being dumped into the Sanpitch River. The plan calls for reusing the water for secondary irrigation.

Taylor has been serving as mayor and city administrator. Wheeler said it would be great if the council could find someone with enough time to step into the same role. “We don’t know what the pool will bring,” he said.