Vernal, the county seat and largest city in Uintah County is in northeastern Utah, United States, about 175 miles (280 km) east of Salt Lake City and 20 miles (32 km) west of the Colorado border. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 9,089. The population has since grown to 10,844 as of the 2014 population estimate.
Vernal's economy is based on extracting natural resources, including petroleum, natural gas, phosphate, and uintaite (more commonly known as Gilsonite). This has led to the establishment of branch offices of companies such as Halliburton and Schlumberger.
Tourism also plays a role in Vernal's economy due to the town's roots in the Old West and being a large site of ancient dinosaur fossils. Vernal and the surrounding area are popular among outdoor enthusiasts as they are situated near plentiful spots for fishing, fly fishing, hunting, and other outdoor activities.
Vernal is along an east–west federal highway, U.S. Route 40, and a north-south federal highway, U.S. Route 191. (The two highways overlay each other heading west from the city.)
The city's Vernal Regional Airport has scheduled nonstop air service to Denver (DEN) operated by United Express with CRJ-200 jet aircraft. Passenger service is subsidized by the Essential Air Service (EAS) program.
Vernal's public schools include Ashley Valley Education Center, Uintah High, Uintah Middle School, Vernal Middle, Ashley Elementary, Discovery Elementary, and a branch of Utah State University. In 2015, the Terra Academy opened as a K–12 charter school. Private schools include White House Academy and Uintah Basin Christian Academy. In 2007, Uintah School District built new buildings for two elementary schools, Maeser and Naples Elementary, in the nearby communities to accommodate increased enrollment and eliminate unsafe older buildings. Other area schools include Davis Elementary, Lapoint Elementary, and Eagle View Elementary (pre-K–8). The National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) Rocky Mountain Branch.
Managed by the Age Friendly Foundation
Vernal is age unfriendly especially if you are not Mormon. They are nice to you until they realize you are not leaving your church, St James Catholic Church is where I go. There is no transportation at all!! I hope I can continue to drive. No real specialists or doctors outside of the dr who just refills meds so insurance will pay them. None of the local docs go to conferences or seminars about new treatments. Hard to get fresh health food. Not a lot of senior programs except the Golden Age Center. My neighbor gets meals on wheels and they do a good job. The senior center is not welcoming to those of us who are not Mormon. I was treated so unkind I never went back. I do things with my church but it is hard to connect with folks.
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How did Utah earn the grade of C? We examined the state taxes based on how age friendly they are. Utah has a state sales tax of 5.95%. Of particular interest is that Utah does have taxes on social security. There are no estate taxes. There are no taxes imposed on inheritance. Utah has an effective property tax rate of 0.67%. Weighing these taxes and other taxes most likely to impact the aging population is how Utah earned its state tax grade of C.
Learn more about taxes in Utah