MAYOR ASKS OBAMA’S AID FOR ROAD EXPANSION - During President Obama’s visit to Phoenix yesterday, Mayor Jonathan Rothschild pitched a Southern Arizona I-19 expansion project to the president as a means to possibly solve some pressing economic and border issues. "I said to the president ... the road to Mexico is the road out of the recession for our region," Rothschild said. "(And) a prosperous region and prosperous Mexico makes for a secure border." After hearing the mayor's ideas, the president responded with, "Let's get it built," Rothschild said. The Mayor was among a group of local leaders who traveled to Mexico City last month to push for improvements that could boost trade through Sonora, including better commercial traffic lanes at the Mariposa Port of Entry in Nogales. Federal officials in Mexico visited the port last week, and a report on improvements is expected soon. From the Star.
COUNCIL SIDES WITH NEIGHBORHOOD IN DISPUTE OVER CELL PHONE TOWERS - After a public hearing that lasted over an hour, M&C voted 6-1 to deny a special exception request by AT&T for a proposed 65-foot wireless communication tower to be located on the property of the Saint Francis Cabrini Catholic Church, near the intersection of Country Club and Ft. Lowell Roads. AT&T officials said the towers, which would be disguised as palm trees, are needed in order to fill gaps in coverage in the area. But neighborhood activist Marc Halberman said the towers should not be built in residential areas, and that other options exist. Story from KOLD/KMSB here, report from Zoning Examiner to M&C here.
FUNDING DISPUTE SHOULD NOT STOP RESTORATION OF HISTORIC FT. LOWELL SITE, SAY CITY OFFICIALS - Work may continue on a Pima County bond-funded project to restore the historic officers' quarters at Fort Lowell, despite a lack of funds to build an adjoining parking lot as initially planned and required by both federal and city codes, according to City officials. In a memo to the Board of Supervisors, County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry said he would cancel the contract by Aug. 25 with Durazo Construction to begin restoration work on the historic structures if the issue of the parking lot were not resolved. Although the site cannot be open to the public until City officials issue a Certificate of Occupancy, which cannot be issued until the parking lot is constructed, this should not hinder the restoration work from being performed. "The city and the county are in agreement that this is the priority for the remaining bond money and there is nothing precluding the preservation of those buildings right now," said City Historic Preservation Officer Jonathan Mabry. From the Star.
JOB OPPORTUNITY: FACILITIES ADMINISTRATOR - The General Services Department is seeking a highly competent, experienced leader for the Facilities and Communications Maintenance Division (FCM). FCM is responsible for managing and maintaining the City’s 500 building locations with approximately 6,000,000 square feet, as well as the City’s communications network that includes 3,200 radio units, 63 radio transmitter/receiver sites and over 300 miles of fiber optic cable. Minimum qualifications include a bachelor’s degree in business or public administration or related field, five years of management experience, and a valid driver’s license. City of Tucson job listing.
CONGRATS TO TPD’S VINCE VALENZUELA - Officer Vince Valenzuela, a six-year TPD veteran working in Operations Division South, has earned two medals, a bronze and a silver, in running events at the World Police and Fire Games in Belfast, Ireland. From KOLD/KMSB.