Bayfield says no to use of town logo on private solicitation

Thursday, March 13, 2014 10:26 PM

Bayfield town trustees don't want the town's logo to be used in a private business offering.

On March 4, Town Manager Chris La May relayed a request from a company, Service Line Warranties of America, that wants to offer insurance on people's utility service lines. Coverage would include repairs by local licensed plumbers, with no deductables, he said in his written staff report.

"The company would use our town logo and letterhead if we allow it, to notify residents of the warranty program," La May said. "It's an insurance policy. It would cover repairs up to around $4,000. There was concern that using the town logo and letterhead would look like an endorsement of the town."

Trustees agreed with that concern.

"I'm not comfortable with them having free rein over our logo," trustee Rachel Davenport said. "Just from appearances that we are supporting it. It's less supporting and more allowing."

Trustee Michelle Nelson added, "If I had a house in the older part of town, it would probably be a good program. But there are concerns about the logo."

What if other entities like the cable company want to use the town logo, trustee Tom Au asked.

"It depends on how they use it," attorney Dirk Nelson said. "If I got a letter that appeared to be from the town, it would affect me differently from a company that wants to sell me insurance."

La May didn't know how much the service line warranties will cost. "There's no requirement to do it," he said.

Mayor Rick Smith said, "The bottom line is it's an opportunity for residents. The town is allowing the company to do this for them. If they live where there have been sewer line problems in the past, such as the south end of town." He suggested letting the company make the offer, but without using the town logo.

Trustee Ed Morlan asked, "If the town says you have to fix your service line, could they file a claim?"

La May thought it would have to be an incident, like a broken line. He didn't know if a town directive to fix a line would qualify.

Morlan responded, "You are saying at some point you have to fix your service line."

Public Works Director Ron Saba chimed in, "Absolutely. There are places that need to be fixed."

In his written report to trustees, Saba said, "We are finding many issues with customers' sewer services, not our mains. We've found 10 to 20 that roots are coming from the services into our mains that at some point have a potential to cause a back-up. We're cleaning out our mains as we go and making a list of customers that will need to have their lines inspected and repaired."

La May said he would put information about the service line warranties in the town newsletter "along with a warning that you are responsible for your service line."

Also on March 4, La May reported that he talked to Upper Pine Fire board member Mack Coker about shooting off July 4 fireworks at Joe Stephenson Park downtown instead of the high school because of the construction there.

"Our best bet at this time is Joe Stephenson Park," he said.

July 4 fireworks were moved from there to the high school in the early 2000s because of traffic congestion at the park, especially if emergency responders needed to get in or out quickly.

The July 4 fireworks have been cancelled the last two years because of high fire danger.