This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated.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.
When it comes to perceptions about its relationship to the LDS Church, the University of Utah just can't win.
I wrote several years ago about former U. President Arthur Smith being summoned to a meeting in Utah County by a group of Republican state senators.
Sensing what he was about to encounter, he took along the U.'s student body president at the time, who happened to be the grandson of then-LDS President Gordon B. Hinckley.
Smith was castigated by senators who wondered why there were not more Mormon professors on campus and who had anecdotal evidence that some professors, particularly in the sociology and philosophy departments, were outwardly anti-Mormon in their lectures.
The veiled threats about budget cuts were almost as severe as the time Smith's successor, former U. President Bernie Machen, was threatened by legislators with a salary cut if he didn't let everybody run around the campus with their guns.
Then there was the time that Sen. Margaret Dayton, R-Orem, demanded an audit of the University of Utah Medical School to see if it was discriminating against Mormons after a BYU undergraduate student she knew didn't get accepted.
Now comes a complaint from a U. professor, both in emails to university brass and in an opinion piece in the Utah Daily Chronicle, that the U. is colluding with the LDS Church in religious discrimination.
The issue for bioengineering professor Gregory Clark is a recent posting on the U.'s Career Services job listing site for Property Reserves Inc., which has an opening for a land portfolio position.
One of the job requirements is that the applicant have a current LDS Temple recommend.
Property Reserves Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of the LDS Church and, as such, has a right to require a temple recommend. But Clark is concerned that requirement is listed on the U.'s website, especially when applicants are told to send their résumés to firstname.lastname@example.org.
U. spokesman Keith Sterling, however, said Career Services is simply an avenue for applicants to send their résumés and forwards them to prospective employers, with no involvement in assessing the applications.
The site contains a statement that the U. does not participate in the selection of candidates or in the hiring process.
Now, about those sociology professors …
The rest of the story • In my Wednesday column about Helper Mayor Dean Armstrong's pitch to the Utah Liquor Control Commission for a Type 3 stand-alone liquor agency on Helper's Main Street to replace the one that has closed, I should have noted that he was presenting the position of the Helper City Council, whose goal is to preserve the economic viability of Main Street.
I noted that Armstrong has a grocery store on Main Street, near where the proposed package liquor store would be, and that the owners of a competing grocery store also made a presentation to have a Type-2 agency inside their store, which is not on Main Street.
Armstrong pitched the Type-3 store, which will cost the Department of Alcohol Beverage Control about $3,000 more a month to operate than a Type-2 agency inside an existing business, because he does not want to sell alcohol in his Main Street store and the City Council wants the store on that street as part of its "lights on Main Street" campaign.
The mayor had no objection to the competing store owners making their presentation, but simply offered the City Council's position.
Mistaken identity • My column two weeks ago mentioned that Sandy Mayor Tom Dolan, Draper Mayor Darrell Smith and other honchos were at a table for the grand opening of Los Cucos Restaurant and left the waiter a measly $5 tip. Draper Communications Director Maridene Hancock then sent me an email saying Smith wasn't there, but my source said he definitely knew it was Smith at the table.
It took Hancock nearly two weeks to return my repeated calls for a clarification, but she finally did.
It turns out Smith has a twin.