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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

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10/10/2012 3:21:00 PM
Verde Santa Fe annexation to city now buried
Time line
Informal meetings with city officials to discuss process

Jan. 13, 2011 --The first meeting, called by Jim Iacovacci, was held at the Cottonwood Recreation Center. Verde Santa Fe residents were invited to hear about the proposed annexation and listen to officials of the city and other affected governments to answer specific questions and talk about the pros and cons.

Jan. 31 --Interested participants invited to attend a second meeting to determine the level of interest. About 50 people attended and began organizing campaign.

February 2011 --the VSFOFA committees began work on the process.

Supporters published an informative website, conducted research into the law and made the formal request.

March 11 2011-- VSFOFA delivered an annexation request letter to the City Manager's office and provided a release to the newspaper and radio stations.

March 10 2011 --Stephen F. Malin sent unsolicited email to the people with emails in the VSF Directory opposing the annexati0n. He established a Gmail address of keepvsfincornville@gmail.com to receive comments.

On April 7, 2011 the Cottonwood City Council voted to move the annexation process forward.

The Council unanimously approved directing staff to file a blank annexation petition, map and legal description for the Verde Santa Fe Subdivisions with the County Recorder's office in order to begin the annexation process.

September 9, 2011 -- Cottonwood files blank petition with Yavapai County Recorder.

October 6, 2011 -Required public hearing held at Cottonwood Recreation Center 150 people attend. About 40 speak.

October 10, 2011 - Petition circulation may begin.

October 8, 2012 -- Campaign ends.



Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter


COTTONWOOD -- The campaign to add the Verde Santa Fe communities to the City of Cottonwood boundaries has officially come to an end after a full year of collecting signatures.

The process was wrapped up at noon Monday Oct. 8. Campaign organizing chairman Jim Iacovacci and volunteers had a goal of collecting petition signatures of owners of more than half the properties, both in number and of value of property.

The city determined that goal to be about 488 petition signatures of the 974 properties. Some property owners hold more than one parcel.

With one week to go before that deadline, the Verde Independent reported that 182 signatures had been collected. City Manager Doug Bartosh reported the final number of petition signatures at the deadline was 193, representing 224 properties, approximately 40 percent of the number needed.

Nikki Arbeiter, the city planner handling the annexation attempt, said the week prior to the deadline that two-thirds of the signatures were coming from permanent full-time residents.

Dave Alton, who served as a spokesperson for the effort, said he was disappointed that the absentee owners were not more involved and concerned about the future of the community.

Organizers were always worried about the participation of absentee owners and the city assisted by mailing petitions to those out-of-town permanent addresses.



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Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, October 13, 2012
Article comment by: Ridiculous Paranoia

This was not an effort by Cottonwood. It was people in Verde Santa Fe who requested the vote. Frankly, I and many others in Cottonwood are glad the snobs in VSF want to stay in CORNVille. Stay there, pay higher fees, and don't expect us to coming running to bail you out when things go south in your tinsel covered shacks.

Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Article comment by: Tresa Stitley

When we purchased our retirement home here in Cornville, we specifically chose to live in Cornville - an unincorporated community.

With Cornville, we get lower taxes, lower insurance and excellent fire and ambulance service. Also, we only get about two notices a year from the town - one for the annual Easter egg hunt and the other for the annual potluck towards the end of the year.

We are appalled at Cottonwood's uneccesary and exorbitant spending. A sidewalk and curb from Cottonwood to Clarkdale? A Round-About at a SCHOOL CROSSING!?! What would they have decided to do to Verde Santa Fe? Put in sewers at a homeowner cost of about $15K each!

Cottonwood is a small town trying to be a big city and gobble up all our cherished communities - like they have tried in the past with Jerome and Clarkdale.

If the people want to live in Cottonwood, they should move to Cottonwood. When they purchased their houses they knew we are in Cornville. We see absolutely NO advantage whatsoever to being annexed to Cottonwood and hope this matter is now put to rest - forever!


Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Article comment by: Mike Rigsby

The growth of cities is inevitable history has shown us that over and over. As a long time resident of this area the survival of the fire district seems to be important to the people within the area that is trying to be annexed. The City of Cottonwood has very professional dedicated firefighters who are proud of their Department. But there is something about the Verde Valley Fire District that makes the citizens want to hold on to that service. The Cost does not seem to be a problem for the tax payer. So here is a thought. Maybe it is time that the people of Cottonwood get the information and facts about forming a fire district or allowing either the Clarkdale Fire District or Verde Valley Fire District to expand into the City of Cottonwood. The property owners of Clarkdale allowed a fire district to form and that seems to work very well for them. The merger of the Verde Rural Fire District and The Cornville Page Springs Fire District is going well and Cornville did not loose itís identity as a result of that merger. If the City of Cottonwood Fire Department were to become a fire district and merge with either The Clarkdale Fire District or Verde Valley Fire District or any combination of that. The mix of those people and the knowledge they bring to the table would do nothing but benefit us all. But it would not save a dime in the beginning only create the basis of a unified fire service that would be in place as the City of Cottonwood grows.

Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2012
Article comment by: What Campaign??

I would like to know one little thing. Who thinks there was a true "campaign" to have Verde Santa Fe annexed?? I live in VSF ... nobody said a word to me trying to convince me to sign the petition. A few days before the deadline, someone slid a petition under the front door. Some campaign!!

The City of Cottonwood should be UPSET at the staff time and funding that was wasted in this "campaign." I think a couple people just wanted their 15 minutes of fame by getting their name in the newspaper a few times.




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