Salt Lake Mayor Palmer DePaulis, after a two-month squabble with the City Council, is asking the council to approve the appointment of former City Councilman Grant Mabey to the Salt Palace Fine Arts Advisory Board.
The city must appoint three members to the board under an agreement with Salt Lake County and the state of Utah to co-administer the complex and provide up to $325,000 in money for the county-owned facility.The council rejected DePaulis' first three nominations in August, saying the appointments were not geographically balanced. The defeat ignited a feud between the mayor and the council's conservative majority voting bloc known as the Gang of Four.
DePaulis has resubmitted two of his original candidates, arts advocate Marcia Poulson Price and attorney Anthony L. Rampton, both of whom the council supports. Mabey is the third "compromise" candidate.
Councilman W.M. "Willie" Stoler, who led the drive against the mayor's appointees, said the candidates are acceptable, pointing out that DePaulis' first candidates did not represent the interests of the city's "common man."
"I sat next to Grant Mabey in our (council) meetings and I know that Grant speaks for the common guy, the guy who sits in the balcony," Stoler said.
Stoler objected to the mayor's original slate of candidates because they were not "geographically balanced." All three appointments were from District 3, Councilwoman Sydney Fonnesbeck's Avenues district.
The Salt Palace Board will advise the county on administering the facility's arts-related operations, which include Symphony Hall, the Arts Center and the Capitol Theater.
The board was expected to meet for its first session Tuesday afternoon, a spokeswoman at the Salt Lake County Commission offices said. The county and the state have already approved their appointees to the board.
Salt Lake City's appointees will not have been approved by then, but DePaulis said last week the city won't "lose any ground" without immediate representation.
Mabey is from the city's west-side District 2. He chose not to run for re-election in 1987 and was replaced by Councilman Wayne Horrocks.