Virtual State of the City Address lets Residents Connect with Government

PARK CITY, Utah. — Tomorrow night at 7 p.m., Park City Mayor Andy Beerman will deliver his third annual State of the City address, in which he offers a progress report on long-term goals and looks ahead to top priorities and pressing challenges.

The half-hour address is available to the public via Zoom (join here). Residents are encouraged to tune in and participate through live online chat and questions. After his remarks, Beerman will take a few questions from the virtual audience before turning the microphone over to the City Council, which will address public comments and questions for another hour (link here for the council portion).

People can also follow along on Facebook live.

Historically, State of the City evenings have been lively in-person events with an audience of a couple hundred citizens. This year Beerman hopes to recreate some of the magic of years past through trivia questions and live polls on Park City-related topics. But the address won’t be all fun and games: Beerman said he’ll delve into subjects such as traffic problems – including the debate over whether and how frequently to turn Main Street into a car-free zone – and ongoing affordable housing challenges.

Beerman acknowledged that Park City, like everywhere, has serious work to do in the aftermath of 2020, and that nerves are frayed after a year of COVID impacts and continuing uncertainty.

“It’s been tough year and a stressful year; anxiety levels are high,” Beerman said. “There’s a segment of folks out there who are frustrated. We’re going to put things into historical perspective. We’ll see whether that helps.”

Beerman said that many things the city is grappling with today are generational in both nature and solution, meaning no quick and easy fixes: “Every year that goes by the problems get more complex, more expensive, and more acute,” he said.

The address will include an update on the City’s visioning work, which is an ongoing effort to synthesize Park City’s core values, priorities and pillars into a comprehensive, unified package.

The controversial Arts District plans and funding issues are not on the agenda. Beerman said there is nothing new to report on that yet but that City Council is working on it and “anybody that’s interested really ought to be tuning in” to council meetings.

For those planning to participate in the State of the City meeting, note that inappropriate online comments will result in removal from the forum. And those seeking to question Beerman should be aware that he won’t get to answer all the questions he receives; crafting inquiries that are broad in scope and relevant to a large number of residents will increase the chances of getting answered.

For those who pose questions that Beerman doesn’t answer, participating in the session with city council afterwards is likely to offer opportunities to drill down deeper on issues of high interest.

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