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Some officials are trying to stop Mohave County

Rural Mohave County’s economic growth and resources are being coveted by the big cities to the south. To achieve their ends and quench their thirst, metro-area carpetbaggers are working to stop all economic progress in our communities.
We have seen major developers progress through the county’s planning and zoning processes. They are bringing upscale construction, parks, roads, sewers and other infrastructure, not just within their developments, but to the surrounding areas. This is being funded by millions of dollars being brought in from outside Mohave County — a virtual illustration of economic development.
And like the aforementioned carpetbaggers, Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) Commissioner Kris Mayes is practically legislating against one master-planned development in Mohave County. Ms. Mayes is fronting a strong attack against Rhodes Homes of Golden Valley. Now, regardless whether it is Jim Rhodes or anybody else, the issue is not the developer. The issue is that the ACC is starting to determine what gets built and what doesn’t get built in Mohave County.
I would wonder if that same scrutiny is being used all over the state and I doubt if it is because we have another large project in Mohave County that went through like greased lightning and nothing was said. And now all of a sudden they are pinpointing one deal — one development. Why?
We all need to look closely at what the ACC is attempting to do. The commission seems to be using new policies that increase the group’s ability to go beyond regulating utilities and, so they think, allows them to regulate our economy. And it looks to me like they are trying to stop Mohave County’s economy dead in its tracks.
If a development has an Arizona Department of Water Resources allocation and has followed all of the rules and inspection necessities and pulled the proper permits, the ACC should not be confiscating any groundbreaking shovels. The ACC should be spending its time regulating the costs of utilities without trying to shut down all building, and, in our case, our complete economy.
Of course, it is an election year. It’s always warm and fuzzy for some politicos to go out and attack a large business under the guise that one is protecting society. But underneath the surface, I see some officials of larger cities in the southern part of this state taking a long look at our water resources and thinking of ways to move water from up north down to their metro area… mostly in the Phoenix area.
We do have a large amount of water in our county and we are finding more all the time. I’m not saying we have an unlimited supply and I’m certainly not saying that we have enough for rooftops all the way to Vegas.
I’ve been attending the SWAG (Statewide Water Advisory Group) meetings in Phoenix and there have been statements made there that some people think we should send rural water down to where all the people are — and that would be the Phoenix area. In other words, they want to open the floodgates and put a big, long straw into Mohave County and suck our water, and with it our economy, into the big city. I will do whatever it takes to keep that from happening.
We certainly do not want to be a donor county with our water like we have been with other things. I question the ACC’s targeted roadblocks against this one developer.
I will continue to do my best to protect Mohave County residents’ and business owners’ property rights as well as our natural resources and environment. People who come here to invest in Mohave County with new jobs, infrastructure and improvements to our communities are appreciated. And those who come here to throw wrenches into our economy’s progress are not welcome.
Pete Byers is chairman of the Mohave County Supervisors.

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