This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
The Utah Attorney General's Office filed its formal opposition Monday in a fight against a judge's order to pay millions of dollars in past-due bills to the man appointed to oversee a polygamous sect's property trust.
The A.G.'s office says it recognizes the fiduciary's "important role" and "significant" debt and stands "ready to negotiate, and to voluntarily agree to assume some funding for [him] on an interim basis." Nevertheless, the state's top law man believes the court erred its multimillion-dollar ruling.
In March, a judge ordered the attorney general to pay $5.5 million four years of United Effort Plan debts owed to Bruce Wisan and his contractors within 90 days. If the state takeover of the trust is upheld in court, Wisan would be able to sell UEP trust property and repay the taxpayer money.
The A.G. paid $275,000 to Wisan while protesting the ruling. In its filing, the A.G. also asked the appeals court to "end the stay of the sale of Berry Knoll farm or of any other trust property. Lifting that stay, will, in turn, enable Wisan to raise the funds necessary to meet his costs and expenses."
Wisan was appointed to run the trust once controlled by the Warren Jeffs-led Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints after it was taken over by the state of Utah in 2005.