PRESCOTT VALLEY – The motto for Prescott Valley's 25th anniversary may well be the statement Mayor Rick Killings-worth repeated like a mantra at Thursday's Town Council meeting:
"We are not annexing the Prescott Country Club."
About 40 residents of Prescott Valley, Dewey and the PCC – which is in the county – attended the meeting. A dozen took the opportunity to variously berate or warn the council regarding its intention to annex 320 acres of state trust land south of PCC.
The town wants to annex the land so that it can bring sewer and water service to Bradshaw Mountain Middle School and a proposed Safeway strip mall on Highway 69 in front of the school.
PCC resident Vicky Cooksey told the council that the proposed annexation violated state law because Prescott Valley would completely surround the country club. But on a map projected on the wall, Community Development Director Richard Parker pointed out that the annexation, in fact, would leave unincorporated areas from the northeast to the southwest of PCC. The proposed annexation has not "created an island" of PCC because those areas remain open, he said.
Another resident feared that putting in sewer would force PCC residents to abandon their septic systems and tie into the sewer. Both Parker and Killingsworth explained repeatedly that, although state law permits a municipality to force small "package plant" waste water treatment plants to tie into a sewer system that runs within 300 feet of the plant, the Prescott Valley Water District will not provide service to areas outside town limits. If PCC doesn't annex into Prescott Valley, Prescott Valley won't provide service to the country club, they said.
A Dewey resident complained that the town's continued annexations will "take away" Dewey's tax base, if the residents ever decide to incorporate. He received audience applause when he told the council, "I like Dewey the way it is. Please don't encroach on Dewey."
Killingsworth said Prescott Valley incorporated 25 years ago to protect its boundaries, and that Dewey had that same right.
Others made similar complaints of the town "inching" toward Dewey. "I'm no brain surgeon, but I can see what you're doing," said one.
"You're taking too much," another said. "I don't understand why you need all that land."
At the end of the public hearing, Killingsworth explained again that the town is not annexing PCC, and will not force PCC residents to tie into the town's sewer system.
"We do not and have not taken on annexation of people who do not want it," he said. "We can't do that."
The last speaker, Dewey resident Earlene Williams, asked the council if it would permit Dewey to incorporate. Town Attorney Ivan Legler explained to the audience that, under state law, the county commission cannot allow a new incorporation within six miles of an existing incorporation without that existing incorporation's permission.
"Will you allow that?" Williams asked.
"Dewey would have to bring that to us," Killingsworth said.
The Town Council voted unanimously to approve continuing with the annexation process.
In other business:
• The council heard no public comments about its plan to annex 160 acres of State Trust Land north of Glassford Hill. Parker said the town has not established an intended use for the land. The action is part of an intergovernmental agreement with the City of Prescott on municipal boundaries.
• The council approved Granville developer Joe Contadino's request to rezone three acres of the subdivision's property from commercial use to multi-family use, as long as three other residential acres change to commercial use.
However, the council disapproved his request to waive the town's 2 percent surcharge on rents from the apartments on the multi-family site. Parker said that, in order to "remain consistent with other development agreements," the town must not waive the surcharge.
• The first financial audits for the StoneRidge and Pronghorn community facilities districts received council approval without comment.
The Town Council manages roads and parks in those subdivisions separate from the balance of the town as part of development agreements, according to Public Works Director Larry Tarkowski. The arrangement allowed the developers to float millions of dollars in bonds to build water and sewer infrastructure, roads and parks, he said. The residents who buy homes within those subdivisions must pay for the bonds, and the Town Council oversees that payment.
According to the balance sheets, Pronghorn's debt is $3 million; for StoneRidge the debt is $14.8 million.
Art Merrill is a reporter for the Prescott Valley Tribune. Contact him at email@example.com.