The Salt Lake Tribune from Salt Lake City, Utah on October 21, 2000 · 16
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The Salt Lake Tribune from Salt Lake City, Utah · 16

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Salt Lake City, Utah
Issue Date:
Saturday, October 21, 2000
Page:
16
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i L 0Jjf£attfaJ(f0ri!mnf PageB-4: CONSUMER CORNER B-5 UTAH BRIEFS B-5 BUSINESS GLANCE B-7 9 OCTOBER 21 2000 ¥ t YESTERDAYS k MARKETm Indicators Utah’s Top Performers ' — L"l — The Bloomberg Utah Index " e WT) v measures the stock ’ k performance of the - state's nuijor CLOSE: pubMy held 24071 companies ANALYSIS Stock prices rose for a second straight day Friday as bargain-hunting Investors extended a broad rally in technology stocks MCI Boosting In-State ' Information Call Charge MCI WorldCom customers in Utah who dial 555-1212 and ask an operator -to help them find an in-state telephone number are going to have to pay a lot more for the service The company is getting ready to raise its charge for Utah from $149 to $199 per call The rate increase is set to take effect November 1 spokeswoman Leland Prince said MCI WorldCom raised the price it Charges Utahns to help them find out-' of-state numbers from $149 to $199 in July “These types of fees can really add up for frequent users" said Richard ' Sayers editor of 10-10PhoneRatescom an Independent telecommunications Web site Prince said consumers who do not want to pay the increased fee can dial MCI WorldCom’s 10-10-9000 number that allows callers to get two phone numbers for 99 cents But Sayers suggests that one way callers can avoid expensive calls to 555-1212 is to use free Web-based telephone books Ogden Appointments The city of Ogden has filled new positions intended to help expand existing businesses attract new companies and revitalize residential neighborhoods Ward Ogden a city employee of 17 years and three newcomers to municipal work: Dixie Kramer Tammie Cote and Doni Nicholas have been named senior project coordinators Each is charged with the economic development of one quadrant of the city and is commissioned to revitalize downtown and help develop Business Depot Ogden Their combined annual salaries total $208499 — Ogden is paid $54698 Kramer and Cote $52094 each and Nicholas $49613 Teltrust Sues Global Net Salt Lake City-based telephone company Teltrust Communications Services Inc is suing a California company for allegedly violating an agreement in which pay-phone calls were illegally routed to a Teltrust switch Teltrust had entered into the agreement with S&B Communications Inc also known as Global Net a company that represents pay-phone operators Teltrust had agreed to provide services to Global Net’s customers for which it would charge a fee and pay a commission to Global Net for calls routed to the Teltrust switch In a lawsuit Tiled in 3rd District Court in Salt Lake City Teltrust al-— — -leges that in an attempt to Increase commissions Global Net illegally Rerouted calls from pay phones to the Teltrust switch When customers received bills listing Teltrust as the service provider they refused to pay the lawsuit claims As a result Teltrust's bad debt increased by more than $300000 above the commissions that the company owes Global Net the lawsuit claims Teltrust also claims the Illegal rerouting of calls cost it more than $6 million In profits between April 2000 to December 2001 Teltrust has asked for unspecified damages for bad debt and lost profits to be determined at trial UPN Switches Utah Affiliate Station KJZZ opts out of relationship with Viacom subsidiary Ogden’s KAZG begins contract in 2001 BY MARTIN RENZIIOFER THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE Starting in January there will be a new player among Utah’s network affiliations and Salt Lake City’s KJZZ (Channel 14) - currently a UPN affiliate Is becoming an - independent station This week Ogden’s KAZG (Channel 24) signed a'10-year agreement with Viacom-owned UPN KAZG which Is cable Channel 8 on AT&T Broadband begins broadcasting UPN programming Jan 16 The station licensed to Utah Communications LLC currently airs home shopping programs “We’re delighted we were able to work it out” said Larry Rogow chairman of Venture Technologies Group LLC and a partner In Utah Communications LLC Venture Technologies also owns UPN affiliates In Las Vegas Peoria 111 and Lansing Mich “UPN frankly Is becoming a better network We'll bring a new kind of station to the people of Salt Lake City In reality we’re serving all of Utah" The Utah market is the 36th largest in the United States UPN's negotiations with KJZZ broke down over program content financial Issues and Channel 14's commitment to local sports which tended to pre-empt UPN prlme-tlme programming “They were philosophical Issues” said Channel 14 station manager Randy Rigby “We were uncomfortable with programming content and the lack of performance financially In this Utah area Some of the content was over the edge of cutting edge” Rigby mentioned "Shasta McNasty" a sitcom about a rap group as an example of programming with mature content He also said that the controversial professional wrestling show “WWF Smackdown” was “hot-listed" with most programmers meaning too many advertisers were unwilling to buy time during that broadcast “It’s too early to tell what type of programming we’ll have” said Rigby "We’ll draw upon a pool of movies and programming that Is more viewer-friendly” KJZZ airs Utah Jazz basketball and University of Utah and Mountain West Conference college sports It also broadcasts reruns of “Friends” “Frasier” and ' "Newsradio” and has acquired the rights to reruns of "Just Shoot Me” for the fall of 2001 and "Will & Grace” for the fall of 2002 “We’re really excited about the Mure” said Rigby "To be an independent In today’s marketplace Is the best position to be in” Rigby said that while his negotiations with UPN broke down Wednesday UPN already had a deal in place Monday Steve Carlston UPN's executive vice president Network Distribution said that while negotiations were under way with Channel 24 no deals had been signed until the talks broke down with KJZZ “We were negotiating with Channel 24 in case the deal with KJZZ fell through” said Carlston who spent five years in charge of Channel 13 (KSTU) In Salt Lake City He left in 1997 "Randy feels slighted and I’m disappointed because we are friends He made it clear that we couldn’t come to an understanding and he couldn’t be a UPN affiliate Channel 24 was available We tried to deal in good faith but there were demands made that could not be met” Photo by btevt C WUnonThn AMX'lntd Prim Black Diamond employee Jack Biggerstaff grinds the pick on an ice axe Tuesday In Salt Lake City The - company makes a variety of specialty gear for rock climbers skiers and other outdoors enthusiasts Utah Ice Cream Families Merge Farr Better Russell's say it is the best way to survive in competitive market BY PHIL SAUM THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE Two of Utah’s last remaining family-owned ice-cream ' companies have merged Farr Better Ice Cream Co of Ogden and Russell’s Ice Cream of South Salt Lake recently formed the Farr RusSell Group As giant national companies dominate the nation’s food industries spokesmen for both families said the merger was prudent “In this day and age you’ve got to keep moving and growing” said Lynn Russell whose grandfather Howard Russell co-foundcd Russell’s Ice Cream “By having a bigger presence It really does help” Mike Farr whose great-grandfather Asael Farr founded Farr Better Ice Cream said the companies bring different strengths that will make the combined company a stronger competitor Farr is strong in hard ice cream ice-cream sandwiches and similar products Russell's strengths are in soft ice cream and production "You put the two together and you have a really good business” Farr said The new company will have national distribution and be one of the largest regional ice-cream companies in the country he said The merger will give the Farr Russell Group a sizable presence In Utah which has one of the highest rates of ice-cream consumption in the country The Salt Lake City metropolitan area ranks seventh In the country in ice-cream consumption with residents savoring an average of 25 gallons a year according to the International Ice Cream Association in Washington D C Utah ranks third among Western states in ice-cream production making nearly 20 million gallons a year according to Ice Cream Association figures The two companies have long histories In the ice-cream Industry Farr Better Ice Cream was incorporated in 1920 and Russell's Ice Cream started in 1946 The combined company employs 125 people Members of both families will remain in the dally operation of the company although specific positions and job titles remain to be decided Farr said Details of the merger were not divulged and Farr declined to reveal the expected sales of the new company Nonprofit Group to Control High-Power Lines Out West BY STEVEN OBERBECK THE 8ALT LAKE TRIBUNE The Wasatch Front has become ground zero for the booming outdoor-equipment industry BYPAULFOY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS At busy factories in the Salt Lake area Petzl America and Black Diamond Equipment claim to chum out the world's highest sales for carabincrs the essential climbing aid The cordial rivalry — business is booming for both — makes this a cap!- tal for carabincrs the metal oval rings used to fasten ropes It also highlights a thriving Salt Lake trade for outdoor gear In the tradition that built such gadgets as foldable "spy skis” for parachuting Navy Seals In the mld iouos — Salt Lake City hosts the Outdoor Retailers’ shows where the world's specialty shopkeepers buy goods Local companies sometimes outnumber vendors from any other US city The city Is becoming a haven for worshippers of snow and steep rock With Petzl and Black Diamond leading the pack Utah's urban Wasatch Front communities have more than 50 companies producing outdoor gear and supplies It is a concentration that makes Salt Lake a bargain hunter's dream Shoppers can count on factory and rctaU sales and finding quality gear at secondhand shops and organized swaps Some of the gear sells big overseas — skis in Norway packs in Japan and climbing hardware from Europe to Australia Otlier equipment caters to a particular use such as fat yet supple skis for Utah's powdery slopes Salt Lake City is riding a market for outdoor gear that topped $5 billion last year and is growing steadily according to Outdoor Retailer a trade group It is the gotta-have dic-for gear that keeps many Salt Lake companies busy from Evolution Ski Co’s handcrafted skis — an evolution from its spy-ski start — to Voile's unusual combination skls-snowboard Black Diamond sold 2000 of the innovative if maudlin "Avalung” breathing devices for surviving avalanches In the first year it marketed the product The company lost six employees to avalanches before it hit on the idea from a Colorado physician Fack maker Vortex uses a proprietory way to mold dense foam to fit tho contours of a hiker's back and hips for snug suspension With a clean design the packs add such nice touches as thumb-size rubber zipper pulls and Kevlar thread — each strand can withstand 110 pounds of stress — for fabric comers A molded sheet of rigid polycarbonate replaces sag prone aluminum frames in stronger packs Company owner Bill Crawley 35 can’t make packs fast enough to satisfy retail demand but ho will sell packs at wholesale prices out the factory door Every January Vortex sells slightly blemished goods for even less A glance east from downtown Salt Lake City makes See GEAR Page B-5 Paclficorp is Just going with the flow The parent company of Utah Power is Joining with eight other electric utilities to form a nonprofit corporation to operate nearly 30000 miles of high-voltage transmission lines in the Western United States Called RTO West short for Regional Transmission Or-pnlzation West the new entity is being organized at the suggestion of federal regulators eager to promote the deregulation of the nation's electricity markets "It wasn’t our idea to form RTO West’’ said Don Furman vice president of transmission for the Portland-based Paclficorp "It was one of those voluntary slash mandatory suggestions from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission FERC” Tho idea behind setting up RTOs across the country is simple said FERC spokeswoman Barbara Connors In order for a deregulated electricity market to develop on tho wholesale level producers and buyers of electricity need to bo able to move power unencumbered across thousands of miles of hlgh-voltago lines Without a single regional oversight organization electricity may end up flowing over lines operated by several different companies before it reaches its final destination And with each company charging a transmission fee tho results could bo "pancake rates” with the price of electricity Jumping slightly each time It moves from ono company's lines to another Connors said "HTOs will provide for smoother transfers of power and result in ono systemwide transmission rate” she said Furman conceded the formation of RTOs could lead to a more reliable transmission network as the deregulated market develops If individual companies maintain control over their own transmission lines there could be problems when the system needs to expand "The problem then becomes who Is going to build tho next piece of tho system when it Is needed” Furman said Under RTO West cnch company will keep the ownership of its transmission lines However decisions on their operations will bo mado by a centralized management Paclficorp and tho eight other Western utilities organizing RTO West will present a preliminary plan of their proposed organization to FERC on Monday Carabincrs aids for rock and lea climbers are a cash cow for local outdoors businesses

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