Knowledge Over Noodles
Oct 27, 2016 03:41PM ● Published by Cassie Goff
YCC members, Cottonwood Heights City Council and staff members enjoyed the YCC annual dinner. (Cassie Goff/ City Journals)
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By Cassandra Goff | Cassie@mycityjournals.com
The Cottonwood Heights Youth City Council (YCC) hosted its annual dinner with the city council and staff. This year, the dinner was held on Oct. 13 at 6 p.m. in the Community Room of the new Cottonwood Heights City Hall located on 2277 East Bengal Blvd.
As the YCC members arrived that night, they sat down with department heads or city council members to discuss city happenings. YCC Mayor Scotty Woolston called for attention as everyone settled in. He welcomed everyone to the dinner and asked for everyone to give a quick introduction of themselves. Mayor Kelvyn Cullimore began the introductions as the rest of the YCC members, city council and staff followed one by one.
After the introductions, YCC’s Planning Commission Representative Michal provided a recap of the happenings of the previous planning commission meeting.
Woolston regained the podium and invited the first two tables to retrieve their food from the buffet provided by Noodles & Company as well as drinks catered by Reams.
As the different tables were excused to get their food, conversation between youth members and city staff members erupted. The youth asked the city workers a variety of questions including what their staff positions were, what they did for the city and what their jobs entailed.
Cullimore was asked to speak as the majority of attendees regained their seats. He began by telling the YCC his brief autobiography. He had run for student body president every year when he was in middle school and high school and only won once when he was a junior, through default. After high school, he attended BYU and picked up government as a hobby. When he graduated, he quickly became involved with forming the incorporation of Cottonwood Heights.
“This city is like my child,” Cullimore said. He helped raise it and it’s hard for him to let go. He described how he is a part-time mayor, even though the workload is full time. He constantly tries to balance family, work, politics and church but sometimes his wife has to help him out.
Cottonwood Heights Police Chief Robby Russo spoke briefly about the department and then opened for questions from the YCC. They asked him what his best and scariest experiences were in the line of duty.
“I got to deliver a baby,” Russo told them before describing his scariest moment, which happened when he was working undercover in drug enforcement.
Russo had visited a drug house and was waiting for retrieval when two police officers knocked on the door. The man inside the house grabbed a shotgun and announced that if the officers were coming in, he was going to shoot them. Russo reached discreetly for his ankle pistol, prepared to shoot the man inside the home to protect the fellow uniforms. However, he knew the officers would not know that he was an undercover so they would shoot in response to gunfire. When the door was opened, the man inside the home quickly found out that the officers were just looking for some thieves that had run behind the house. They quickly left after not finding information on the robbery.
One of the YCC members asked Russo what the best excuses were for getting out of a ticket.
“Don’t cry,” Russo told the girls in the room. “If you cry, you’re getting a ticket.”
He instructed the YCC as new drivers to be careful with left turns and distractions because he has found those as the main causes for accidents with teen drivers.
One last question was about the crimes in Cottonwood Heights.
“You’d be surprised,” Russo said as he described how drugs and domestic violence were some of the most prevalent crimes in the city.
The YCC members applauded Russo as he took his seat, and Woolston drew the evening to a close soon after. All the YCC members left the building with a smile on their face and newly found knowledge.