David Lifferth

EAGLE MOUNTAIN — Eagle Mountain's interim mayor stepped down last week after four months of service, saying he felt he had done the job asked of him and now wants to return to his career.

"I enjoyed being mayor, but it's not my career plan," David Lifferth said Thursday. "I just wanted to help out when it was needed. I feel I've done the work that was given to me, and I'm anxious to get back to my employer."

Lifferth, who announced his resignation Tuesday, has been on a leave of absence from his employer — www.myfamily.com — during his term of service.

Lifferth filled the void left when former mayor Kelvin Bailey resigned on June 30, citing professional and family concerns. City Councilman Vincent Liddiard acted as mayor pro-term for five weeks, and then the council chose Lifferth over resident Chad Larson for the interim mayor position on Aug. 2.

At the time of his appointment, Lifferth said he felt it was important to continue the financial policies of Bailey and provide the city with some continuity.

"The wise financial management started by Mayor Kelvin Bailey has benefitted the city of Eagle Mountain, and we've continued that," he said.

Much of Bailey's time in office was steeped in scandal after he pleaded no contest to charges that he faked his own kidnapping in 2003.

However, Bailey has also been lauded by many, including Lifferth, for his turnaround of Eagle Mountain's once-disastrous budget. When he took office in 2002, the city had a $480,000 budget — but has had a surplus in every year since.

The city's overall debt also decreased from $63 million to $51 million in that time.

Last week, the Federal Communications Commission approved the city's sale of its telecommunications system to Idaho-based Direct Communications. The original price tag for the system was $6.3 million, but city officials say the final sale price is likely higher.

The sale is expected to pay the city's debt down to below $50 million.

Lifferth said he leaves office with the city on the right track.

"We've got a very strong self-image, and we've improved our image overall," he said. "Areas like paying down our debt and improving our image — those are areas a city needs to do well in, and we've been doing well."

In November, Lifferth won a seat on the City Council. He said he is looking forward to that opportunity to continue to serve, and expressed confidence in councilman Brian Olsen, who won the mayor's race and will act as mayor pro-tem until he takes office in January.

"I have the greatest confidence in Brian Olsen," Lifferth said. "This time as mayor pro-tem will be like a three-week head start for him."


E-mail: jtwitchell@desnews.com