By Nick Worth
The Navajo County Board of Supervisors approved a settlement agreement in the court case of Snowflake Power v. Arizona Department of Revenue (ADOR) and Navajo County. Jason Moore of the Navajo County Attorney’s Office told the board the agreement would reduce the 2011 full cash valuation for Snowflake Power from $12,664,000 to $5,500,000.
“The settlement was dependent on the bankruptcy trustee’s sale in October of 2010,” Moore told the board. “The sale was suggestive of the market value of that property.”
He recommended final approval of the agreement and the board voted in favor of it unanimously.
According to Moore, County Assessor Cammy Darris and County Treasurer Manny Hernandez, the county will have to issue Snowflake Power a refund of approximately $100,000.
Moore said additional litigation with Snowflake Power for tax years 2012 and 2013 is currently in the courts, but there are mitigating factors that could affect the disposition of those cases. Darris said those included factors such as improvements that were made to the property.
The board also heard from Deputy Finance Director Mary Springer, who told them FCI Construction has put in a guaranteed maximum price (GMP) bid of $4,895,000 for construction of a new Navajo County Jail services building and the retrofit of existing areas.
“At the time we first started the project we were looking at $4.4 million,” said Springer. She noted that there have been some add-ons since the process started, including extensive work on the jail’s security system.
“Some of those cameras have been there since 1976 and needed to be updated,” Springer said. She added that the new system would have all security controls for the jail in one location.
Springer told the board the needed upgrades added $400,000 to the proposed cost of the jail remodel.
The board approved the contract with FCI for a GMP in the amount of $4,895,000.
In other action March 12, the board:
* Reappointed Connie Bergstrand and Esther Peterson to two-year terms on the Navajo County Extension Advisory Board beginning on April 1, 2013, The board also appointed former Navajo County Supervisor J.R. DeSpain to a two-year term on the advisory board.
* Approved sending a sympathy letter to Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly for the loss of United States Marine Corps Sgt. Jonathon D. Davis, 34, of Kayenta, who was killed in action in Afghanistan.
* Granted a special event liquor license to the Show Low Chamber of Commerce to host a wine tasting and charity event on Saturday, April 27, at the Pinetop Country Club.
* Approved a proclamation declaring March 12, 2013, as Day of the Lady Bulldogs.
* Approved a proclamation declaring March 12, 2013, as Day of the Lady Bulldogs Dance Team.
* Recognized county employee Brent Turley for his excellence in personal performance, far exceeding organization expectations.
* Approved personnel actions.
* Approved an inter-local cooperation contract with the State of Texas for cooperative procurement.
* Approved an extension of professional services agreement with North Country Health Care for jail medical services until May 31, 2013.
* Approved authorizing Navajo County to be the fiscal agent for a federal grant and a state grant to sustain operations and substance abuse prevention education programs sponsored by the Navajo County Drug Project.
* Approved hiring 12 temporary public works summer employees from May 1 through Sept. 31.
Applicants must be at least 18 years old, have a driver’s license and be physically capable of doing the work. Public Works Director Homero Vela said an interest in engineering and construction would also be good, but was not a requirement. He said the county would be carrying out an aggressive program of summer construction work and noted the extra help would be needed.
* Approved going out for bids for gravel material for the Federal Emergency Management Agency approved repairs to Navajo Route 8027.
* Acting as the Navajo County Public Health Services District Board of Directors, the board approved the renewal of the immunization program, from January 1, 2013, to December 31, 2017.
By Nick Worth