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Cindy Barks

Stories by Cindy

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Five years after Doce Fire, recovery continues on Granite Mountain

Granite Mountain has come a long way in the past five years. Long gone are the sooty rocks and charred log waterbars that were left behind by 2013’s Doce Fire.

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Lakes at lowest levels in 10 years

Prescott’s 2018 precipitation is driest on record, National Weather Service says

Remember last year when Willow and Watson lakes were overflowing for weeks?

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City hopes to have airport runway prepped for new airline

With commercial-airline bids pending in July, the City of Prescott appears poised to kick off a $6.1 million safety project on the Prescott Airport’s main runway in the coming months.

Prescott’s total of sober-living homes drops below 30

Under new law, state will take on regulatory authority

From a high of 200 or so in 2016, the number of sober-living homes in Prescott has now declined by nearly 90 percent — to a total of 28.

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City continues to formulate process for distributing money from homeless donation meters

Based on the hundreds of coins deposited so far, the community is responding to the City of Prescott’s new Change for the Better program.

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Prescott trail miles grow from single digits to triple digits in two decades

The century mark

It started as three half-mile trails in city parks 21 years ago, and it didn’t stand still for long.

Policy change increases city’s PTO accrual limit

Prescott Council approves greater ‘safety net’ for employees through paid time off cap

In an attempt to make City of Prescott employee benefits more competitive, the city has approximately doubled the amount of paid time off that workers can accumulate.

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July 4 fireworks may return to downtown Prescott this year

Wildfire concerns continue

Fireworks displays that coincide with the peak of wildfire season: It has long been a July 4 dilemma for the City of Prescott.

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7 candidates file for 3 legislative seats in LD1

All 3 incumbents seek re-election to Arizona Legislative seats in Prescott-area District 1; primary is Aug. 28

Seven candidates, including the three incumbents, appear to be headed to the Aug. 28 primary for three Arizona Legislative seats in Prescott-area District 1.

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Arizona Eco's 3,300-home proposed development draws more public outcry

The singular nature of the Point of Rocks: It is one point that gets no argument in the ongoing dialogue on development in Prescott’s Granite Dells.

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Local podcasts have the Star Wars franchise covered

New ‘Solo’ movie opens today

If the model number of the Millennium Falcon (YT-1300F) or the color of the milk consumed by Luke Skywalker (blue) are details that come easily to mind, several local podcasts might play right into your pop-culture IQ.

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First phase of Watson Lake dam work wrapping up

Boat dock scheduled to be open for Memorial Day weekend

After several weeks of activity featuring concrete trucks, cranes, and barges, Watson Lake should be back to normal for the coming holiday weekend.

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Prescott Police Department proposes new officer to be proactive on school danger

Prevention vs. reaction

In a preemptive move that aims at keeping Prescott off the tragic school-shooting list that includes Parkland, Santa Fe, and Newtown, a new officer could soon join the ranks of the Prescott Police Department.

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Prescott pushes ahead with new airport terminal plan

In a community accustomed to landing at the top of national lists for charm and history, any showing among “the worst” is rare.

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Open Space Alliance concludes its two-decade run

End of an era

Ridgelines were in jeopardy, scenic tracts along Granite Creek were facing development, and trail development was floundering.

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Prescott to pay $20M toward pension debt

The City of Prescott is expected to add about $20 million more in payments toward its public safety pension debt in the next fiscal year — on top of the $25 million it is paying this year.

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Hotshot museum group ‘right on course’

Opening of center set for June 29 at Prescott Gateway Mall

Over the nearly five years since the loss of 19 of Prescott’s Granite Mountain Hotshots, those close to the tragedy heard a recurring comment: “Something needs to be done.”

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Efforts underway to revive Prescott Area Arts and Humanities Council

Free mixer planned for Friday at Smoki Museum

One of the community’s longtime arts-advocacy groups is hoping for a successful sequel performance.

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Trail of the Month: Glassford Hill Summit

For a bird’s-eye view of the scope of recent wildfires, head to PV’s highest point

The views from Prescott Valley’s Glassford Hill Summit Trail are always breathtaking – showcasing virtually every surrounding promontory.

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Summer of continued road construction

Heavy 2018 construction season

If construction crews and detour signs seem to be clogging Prescott streets a bit more than usual this spring, it’s not your imagination.

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New Hotshot Learning and Tribute Center seeks volunteers

The T-shirts from fire departments around the country are a potent reminder of the outpouring of grief that came after 19 of Prescott’s Granite Mountain Hotshots died fighting the Yarnell Hill Fire nearly five years ago.

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$1 million for Hotshot pension salvaged

Original $7.5 million appropriation was swept away in favor of education funding

The wave of red that brought in higher salaries for Arizona’s teachers also swept away a bill that would have helped the finances of the City of Prescott.

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A glimpse into early-Prescott architecture

May 5 Historic Home Tour features North Prescott Townsite area

Between the 1870s and the 1930s, Prescott was a city on the move — evolving from dirt streets and Victorian homes to massive Depression-era public works projects.

Council has no interest in raises, but eyes ballot changes

Prescott City Council members have no interest in asking voters for a raise, but they could opt to put a number of other changes on a future ballot.

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Fix is coming for 99-year-old dam at Watson Lake

Granite Creek Dam rehab project launches

In place of Watson Lake’s typically tranquil kayak-and-canoe scene this week were massive barges, cranes, and air compressors.

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Smoking ban in city parks gets Prescott Council OK

By late May, smoking will be banned in Prescott city parks, except for designated areas.

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Trail of the Month: Prescott Heritage Trail

The story of “Mike the Dog” is uniquely Prescott.

Council to consider host of amendments to City Charter

At its study session at 1 p.m. Tuesday, April 24, the council will discuss possible changes to the Prescott City Charter.

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Prescott changes course on commercial service at municipal airport

Decision could result in several-month gap in passenger service

The City of Prescott said Friday that it is putting the brakes on efforts toward interim commercial service at the Prescott Municipal Airport.

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Prescott's launch of program to manage homelessness raises questions on human dignity

‘Change for the Better:’ Is it compassionate?

Compassion — and questions about whether the city is showing enough of it — was under consideration Wednesday morning during the kickoff of the city’s new Change for the Better program.

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Cleaning up Watson Lake

Prescott approaches final steps in plan for pollution reduction

Within a year, Prescott should have an answer to a longstanding question: What can be done about the polluted waters of Watson Lake?

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Alexa Scholl chosen as Truman Scholar

Scholarship will ‘open doors’ in council member’s choice of law schools

Prescott City Councilwoman Alexa Scholl, a college student at Arizona State University, has joined the ranks of four decades of exceptional U.S. scholars who have gone on to become prominent politicians, journalists, and judges.

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PHS students help to make a point on the dangers of distractions

Message: Driving (or marching) while distracted can cause problems

Marching while blindfolded, and driving with eyes glued to a cellphone: What do the two activities have in common?

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City hopes new airline will help boost passenger numbers

Nearly a decade since airport reached 10,000-enplanement goal

Assuming that Boutique Air can fill or nearly fill its proposed 36 weekly flights, the Prescott Municipal Airport could reach its coveted 10,000 enplanements per year for the first time in nearly a decade.

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Phippen ‘Cowboy in a Storm’ statue nearly complete

With his arms and head securely in place, all the cowboy needs now is his lasso. And that will be coming soon.

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Prescott’s program to discourage panhandling set to begin this spring

Within weeks, signs will begin appearing at busy Prescott corners urging passers-by not to give to panhandlers.

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Prescott considers ‘Change for the Better’ program to manage homeless issue

Panhandlers on the streets of Prescott could soon face a number of roadblocks to their efforts to collect money.

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Proposal for flights to LAX, Sky Harbor comes out on top with Prescott Airport Advisory group

Prescott air passengers could have the option soon of daily roundtrip flights to Los Angeles and Phoenix, aboard an eight-seat aircraft described as “the Porsche” of airplanes.

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Prescott Airport could have commercial flights again within weeks

Interim contract process has been expedited, city officials say

Flights to LAX, Sky Harbor, or Hawthorne, California, could be offered within the next month or so at the Prescott Municipal Airport, depending on the airline chosen to take on Prescott’s commercial air-service contract.

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Emergency meeting set to consider 3 bids for commercial flights at Prescott Airport

An emergency meeting of the Prescott Airport Advisory Committee will take place this weekend for consideration of proposals from airlines hoping to step in to provide commercial flights at the airport.

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Getting there: The rugged route to Castle Hot Springs

For visitors to the historic Castle Hot Springs, part of the adventure is getting there.

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Castle Hot Springs gets a makeover; set to reopen in October

Reviving a Yavapai County icon

Years before Phoenix would become a mecca for wintertime visitors in the early 1900s, a remote little spot in southern Yavapai County was the spa choice of the rich and famous.

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Improvements are coming to I-17, says ADOT

More than 200 people turn out for unveiling of state’s plans

In the midst of a recent Phoenix summer, Black Canyon City resident Venora Jones and her 92-year-old mother-in-law found themselves stuck in an hours-long traffic jam on Interstate 17.

Homeless work program could help keep city streets, facilities clean

The program that would put homeless people to work could be beneficial not just to those who would be given an opportunity to work, but to the city’s roadsides, golf course, and airport as well.

Catholic Charities apartment projects get city rezoning

This week’s approval of a rezoning for a 51-unit apartment project at the Catholic Charities site on West Gurley Street is just the first step in the required review process, Prescott officials emphasized this week.

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I-17 widening, reversible lanes, climbing lanes could help ease traffic problems

Public meeting set April 3 to discuss proposed improvements

Solving traffic problems on Interstate 17 has been on the radar of state and local officials for years.

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One-day traffic counts on I-17 reach the 60,000-vehicle mark

How did we get here?

Drivers heading north on Interstate 17 on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving 2017 were not in for a fun and relaxing “over the river and through the woods” type of trip.

Prescott’s pension sales tax generates $910,298 in first month

City forwards January sales tax receipts to PSPRS

With Prescott’s new 0.75-percent sales tax bringing in nearly $1 million in its first month, the city took another step this month in erasing its crippling pension debt.

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New trail highlights Prescott’s latest purchase of Granite Dells open space

Trail of the Month: Easter Island

Just in time for what is shaping up to a warm and mostly-sunny Easter weekend, a new trail in Prescott’s Granite Dells will take visitors figuratively to “Easter Island.”

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Prescott Council leans toward smoking ban in city parks

Final decision by Prescott City Council expected in April

The right to light up anywhere in Prescott’s parks could be stubbed out soon, in favor of limited smoking areas.