Prescott and Prescott Valley Councils are expected to sign an agreement (IGA) within a week regarding cost administration for the Big Chino Water Ranch Project. This is a big step toward importing water to this region from outside the Prescott Active Management Area.
"After an eventful year during which a number of major project issues have moved toward resolution, the communities now desire to enter into this supplemental administrative agreement dealing primarily with cost administration," explains Prescott Valley Town Manager Larry Tarkowski.
The eventful year Tarkowski refers to includes hearings, decisions made by an Arizona Administrative Law Judge and the Director of Arizona Department of Water Resources, and a trial partnership with Salt River Project to see what can be worked out to meet the Prescott AMA's future needs for water.
This supplemental agreement is scheduled for vote tonight by Prescott Valley Council and Prescott Council is expected to vote on it Tuesday. It basically allows both municipal governments to continue obtaining various professional services and bill the other partner its appropriate share, as outlined in the initial intergovernmental agreement (IGA) approved by both councils Dec. 7, 2004.
Since then, Prescott Valley has paid 45.9 percent and Prescott has paid 54.1 percent of costs for lobbying, legal fees and public relations to lay the foundation for building a pipeline from the Big Chino Water Ranch, north of Paulden, to the greater Prescott area.
This supplemental agreement allows Prescott and Prescott Valley to continue splitting costs of getting the project moving.
In other action at Prescott Valley's Council session tonight:
- Council will consider authorizing the Upper Verde River Watershed Protection Coalition to apply for grants through a consent agenda vote;
- Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter is scheduled to make a special presentation;
- And Council will consider approving a zoning change in Unit 16 on the northeast side of town from low-density residential to minor industrial commercial.
According to Community Development Planner Joe Scott, federal floodplain changes now exclude this area from regulations restricting industrial development and the amendment to the town's general plan could make more lots on the north side of Laredo Drive between Sherrill Drive and Ranger Road area suitable for light industrial businesses.
"The circulation element of the General Plan 2020 anticipates a future extension of Santa Fe Loop Road following the Agua Fria River along the north side of Unit 16," Scott said. "It is expected that future channeling of the floodplain will decrease the FEMA floodplain area and increase the areas in Unit 16 available for commercial and industrial use."
Prescott Valley Council members plan to gather around 5 o'clock tonight for their 5:30 p.m. voting session in council chambers at the public library, 7501 E. Civic Circle.