Regional / North America / United States / Utah / Counties /
Utah counties are not only political organizations but are also defined, in most cases, by physical geographic features. The most common way Utah counties are seperated is by mountain ridges, although other features are sometimes used. This seperation also tends to isolate groups of communities along religious, ethnic, and social groups which are similar in the same mountain valley but quite differnt from one valley to the next. In the more rural counties the lines between counties tend to be more arbitrary, but still have some distinction from one county to the next, especially as the school districts also tend to be organized by counties as well. It is important to note, however, that incorporated areas do not have to exist within one county. A noted exception is the community of Draper, Utah which exists in both Salt Lake County as well as a small portion in Utah County. Incorporated municipalities are viewed, in the eyes of the state government, more as co-equals with counties rather than subordinate to them. This line can be blurred, however, considering many smaller communities in rural Utah tend to contract out municipal services to the county governments, resulting in police, sewer, and fire services being run by the county government even within formally incorporated areas. If you can't find what you are looking for in a community you are searching, it is suggested that you look in the Localities sub-category of the county for neighboring communities which may have more of what you are looking for. Each of the counties has been cross-linked with all of the communities in them as well as each community cross-linked to each county they are inside.