County official: no communication with Sterling backers in at least two years

The Mohave County supervisors approved an area plan for the proposed city of Sterling in 1999, but subsequent agreements fell through and no progress has been made, according to a county official.

Moreover, Karl Taylor, subdivision coordinator with the Mohave County Planning and Zoning Department, said he has not had any communication with the developers for at least two years.

Taylor also said he was unaware that Sterling's promoters planned to host a dinner Thursday night in Lake Havasu City.

Mohave County Planning Commissioners Carl Flusche and Tres Brooks and County Supervisor Buster Johnson attended the dinner.

Taylor said the owners of the land for the future city proposed a development agreement with terms unacceptable to county officials.

"The developers wanted the development agreement to be extremely long," he said.

"I think it was 60 years."

Taylor said the agreement would have locked in subdivision regulations that have since been revised.

Robert Hibbs, one of three principals with Topok Mesa Limited Partnership, the holding company that owns the land, responded, "What we are saying to Karl is we take a look at the time it takes to build out a community of this size, and you realize it will take 40 years."

Taylor said the owners also did not submit a master infrastructure plan, a requirement before proceeding.

The plan would have covered roads, a sewers, a highway interchange over railroad tracks and washes as well as proposed community facilities such as parks and schools.

Hibbs said the owners cannot submit the plan until after they bring a master developer on board.

The master developer will finance the improvements.

Hibbs and the other partners have not submitted documentation for an adequate water supply when the city is fully developed, Taylor added.

He said the Arizona Department of Water Resources issued a letter indicating that the owners have enough water to start the city.

"They did not identify how large the aquifer is or who has the water rights," Taylor said.

Hibbs said the water supply is adequate to meet the state's requirement of a 100-year supply.

He said the partners did not submit documentation because of the length of time it will take to build the city.

"There is more than enough water to complete the entire city," he said.

"We have over 8,000 acre-feet of water secured for this project."

Hibbs said water quality is high.