The Honorable Mr. Richard Elias, Chairman
Chairman Elias, Members of the Board.
My husband and I are residents, taxpayers and community volunteers southeast of Tucson in Pima County. We live with our family in the Empire Mountains, quite near the Las Cienegas National Conservation Area.
As taxpayers in Pima County we have made the decision to live in an area that is cut off from many services typically received from property taxes. One example is the maintenance we pay towards the upkeep on the Pima County public libraries. The closet library to our home is 35 miles one way. The closest Community Center is not in our Supervisor District, nor is the library for that matter. We have no large regional park where our children and families can play sports and our only pool is in the City of Tucson. In the 425 square miles of the Vail Unified School District, we have two traditional parks, one in the City of Tucson in Rita Ranch and the other a shared park with Cienega High School. Due to the downturn in the economy it is difficult for me to even make the meetings to advocate one or two extra facilities in the area like I used to.
The reason I mention all of this is not to complain but rather to impress upon you the value of our Open Space and Habitat protections, which also includes our mountain parks and also cultural resources such as the recent Bar V. Acquisition and previously the Empirita Ranch. This is the return on our investment and the reason we fight so hard for it. Of course, the County would probably toss us out if it could, but then who would fight for it so hard and pay all of those high impact fees *wink*
Recently a small group of citizens sat with Ms. Hogue of the AZ. State Land Department and discussed the importance of preserving another historical feature on state land in conjunction with park planning with previous 2004 bond money for the Esmond Station Regional Park. She said that land should be available for use in FIFTEEN to TWENTY years. We will not give up however.
The one thing I ask, please not to make Davidson Canyon an example to exact State Land reform.
This issuance of the Flood Plain Use permit to cross the Davidson Canyon was maybe a judgment call based in fear of being sued. Who knows? Sometimes people just get tired.
We are here to let you know that we support you and have legal reasons to back you in your decision to revoke this Flood Plain Use permit. And then deny it. The buck stops here with the continued threat to our community assets.
You have been given the legal tools by many to stop this road across the Davidson and it is the ethical thing to do. Especially with the recent Outstanding Waters designation of the reach 2 stream miles upstream from the haul road crossing.
Just, again, please do not confuse it with Arizona State Land Reform and our current helplessness on that front. We must fight one battle at a time. Know one thing. As much as we scream and holler, in the end Pima County has to continue to protect its investments or voters will no longer vote the same way at the polls.
Thank you for your interest,
Vail/Cienega Corridor Volunteer
Attached: Photos of two perennial springs on separate private properties- taken Dec 2008. One is within 500' of the west haul road. (west side of the Davidson)
Perennial spring in region
Second perennial spring in region