A Bountiful man who was on the City Council for four years has been chosen to serve at least eight months on the council.
J. Dean Hill, 66, was appointed to fill the unexpired term of Phyllis Southwick, who resigned. Hill, who served on the council from 1982 to 1986, lost a re-election bid in November 1985; Southwick was re-elected at the same time.Southwick submitted a letter of resignation March 8 saying that she wanted to spend more time with her children and grandchildren. Sixteen people applied to be considered for the position.
After public interviews and a closed session Tuesday night, the Council quickly nominated and approved Hill for the position at its Wednesday meeting. The decision was given a little comic relief as a visiting Boy Scout chimed in a loud "aye" vote with the council's unanimous decision.
Hill was sworn into office by City Attorney Layne Forbes and took a seat with the council.
"I think I still have my own old nameplate," said Hill, smiling as he referred to the identification plates attached to the council's desk.
Hill, who runs a local engineering and surveying business with his son, said he felt because of his past experience on the council that he could quickly become acquainted with current issues.
Already Wednesday night he said he was willing to enter the fray concerning Bountiful's sanitary landfill - formerly the Bay Area Refuse Disposal.
"I am concerned about the treatment we are getting over BARD," he said.
He said that he has no plans to run for the council seat in November. Hill will serve until Dec. 31, after which he says he and his wife have other retirement plans.
Hill, who has five children and 20 grandchildren, said he has lived in Bountiful for 30 years.
Councilman Keith Barton, who made the motion to approve Hill, commended the caliber of people who applied to fill the vacancy.
"I thought it was going to be a very, very difficult decision. It even became more so after talking to the 16 candidates. I am very impressed with the very professional people, the great quality of citizens who are sincerely interested in keeping this a good place to live," he said.
Mayor Dean Stahle, commenting on the selection process, said that the council was quickly drawn to the three applicants who had previous experience on the council because of the short time period and their ability to "get up to speed" on the issues.
Stahle invited the 15 not chosen to run for office in November. A mayor and two council members will be selected in this year's municipal election.