The vote came after a two-hour public hearing filled with residents speaking largely in support of the police facility.
Still, there was controversy over the method to fund the station and whether or not the decision should have been made through an election rather than by a vote of the city council. Some residents questioned the size or layout of the proposed building. Others questioned going into debt rather than saving up and paying cash for a new station in the future.
Police Chief Sol Oberg took on most concerns at the start of the meeting, telling the audience that it was not the city manager or the city council who sought construction of the new facility.
“I was hired to ensure public safety, and this is the city’s biggest deficit,” said Oberg. “All it’s brought him are headaches,” he said in defense of John Thacker, city manager. “It’s a need and I’ve pushed him for it.”
Linda Gurr Major was one of many who spoke of the need for a new police station, calling it both “dire” and “absolutely critical.”
“It doesn’t seem morally right to not meet the needs for our police officers,” she said. “We don’t have to bring up the past. We need this now and this is a good way to finance it ... We want to continue to attract the best officers.”
The past, which was referred to frequently over the course of the evening, was a vote in 2010 that rejected funding a new police station with general obligation bonds by a vote of 57 percent to 43 percent.
Several residents said they would have supported it had they known then what they know now.
Many have recently toured the station, others have met with the police chief, and all found the current facility lacking.
“I’m embarrassed with the building we have that my fellow officers have to live and work in,” said Troy Killian, a Kaysville resident who serves on the Bountiful police force.
“Kaysville City does not have a certified evidence room,” he said. “It’s appalling the conditions our officers have to live in. We need to get it done now.”
The council authorized the issuance of bonds for a new facility in a 4-1 vote, with council member Susan Lee voting against the measure.
While acting as the Municipal Bonding Authority, the council authorized the issuance of bonds at 3.62 percent for a 17-year term and selected Wadman Construction, the low bidder, to build the police station.
More details will follow in next week’s Davis Clipper.