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County hosts ADOT state board meeting, dinner
Members of the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) State Transportation Board got a closer look at local airports and learned more about the San Luis, Ariz., ports of entry during special events in Yuma County last week.
The Yuma Metropolitan Planning Organization (YMPO) hosted a dinner for board members and dignitaries at the Pivot Point Conference Center on Feb. 7.
“We had a very high turnout of elected officials from the Yuma regional communities,” Charlene FitzGerald, YMPO executive director, said.
Earlier in the day, ADOT board members and management, accompanied by elected officials, toured the Yuma International Airport. Craig Williams, airport authority director, made a presentation and led a sack lunch tour.
The attendees also toured the Defense Contract facility and Rolle Airfield.
“The airport is in desperate need of funding to complete improvements, including some roadway improvements for the roadway into the airfield, that will create economic development opportunities,” FitzGerald said.
At the dinner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection representatives gave a statewide overview of the ports of entry operations in Arizona, with a closer look at the San Luis Port of Entry I and II.
“The main theme continues that there is need of funding to support staff, and the reconfiguration of San Luis I is a high priority to promote POV (privately owned vehicles) and pedestrian movement and decrease border wait times. The delays cause a loss of economics in tourism and trade, jobs and more,” FitzGerald explained.
Mayor Al Krieger welcomed the attendees, presented a narration of the train light display at the Pivot Point and shared some history of the train and the Colorado River.
The following day, San Luis, Ariz., hosted a state board meeting. Topics on the agenda included updates on finances, reports by state and district engineers and a multi-modal planning report of projects in the State Transportation Improvement Program.
Board members also heard a presentation of local projects by ADOT Yuma District engineer Paul Patane and discussed overweight permitting for trucks from Mexico at the San Luis POE II.
Currently, the governor-appointed seat representing Yuma, La Paz, Mohave and Yavapai counties is vacant. The seat is due to be held by La Paz County, with rotation to Yuma County for the next six-year term.
In addition, YMPO celebrated its 30th birthday Feb. 7. Greg Ferguson, chairman of the Yuma County Board of Supervisors, read a list of officials at the time of the agency's designation in 1983.
YMPO plans an anniversary open house sometime this spring. In the meantime, the agency will present a 30th anniversary logo to the executive board on Feb. 28 at the monthly meeting at Yuma City Hall, Room 190, at 1:30 p.m.