KINGMAN - Arizona Strip residents may have a new Sheriff's Office and County Attorney's Office before they get a new courthouse.
The Mohave County Board of Supervisors directed staff Monday to look for a new location in the Arizona Strip area for the Sheriff and County Attorney facilities first.
Late last year, Mohave Community College notified the county that it would not renew the lease the county had on a parcel of property in the Colorado City area. The county and state had several offices, including the Sheriff and County Attorney's offices, housed in an office on the property. The offices have to be moved off the property by September.
The county started looking for a new location in March. At that time, Mohave County Courts reminded the county that it had outgrown the courthouse in Moccasin and needed a new building.
Since then the Board has debated about building one large building to house the Sheriff, County Attorney, state offices and a courthouse.
Several residents in the Arizona Strip area and some members of the court objected to a combined office being built in the Colorado City area. Most claimed that establishing the new courthouse near Colorado City would damage the credibility of the court.
On Monday, the Board decided that time was running out and a new location for the Sheriff and County Attorney's offices needed to be found first.
"We've been pussy-footing around with this for too long," said Board Chairman Tom Sockwell.
Mohave County Public Works has been working on the project since last year and has narrowed the choices down to four choices. According to material supplied to the Board, two parcels are located in the Colorado City area, one is located in the Scenic area and the last is located in Fredonia area.
According to information from the Public Works Department, the first parcel in the Colorado City area is about 5 acres in size and would be leased from the owner. It is located a half mile north of Cane Beds Road on Highway 389. The county would have to work with the Arizona Department of Transportation in order to gain access to Highway 389. It would also have to drill a well on the property for water.
The second parcel in Colorado City would also be leased from the owner, according to the Public Works Department. It is also about 5 acres in size and is located at the intersection of Cane Beds Road and Highway 389. The county would not have work with ADOT to put in a driveway for the building. It would have to drill a well at that location too to provide water to the property.
According to the Public Works Department, the owner of the 1.5-acre Scenic parcel is willing to donate the land to the county. The parcel is located on Scenic Boulevard, two miles south of Highway 91. The county would have to rezone and also install a well like at the other properties in order to use it.
The county would have to purchase the 2-acre property on Highway 389 in Fredonia, according to Public Works. The site would have to be rezoned, an ADOT approved drive would have to be installed and the county would either have to drill a well or upgrade a connection to the local water system.
The donation of another parcel in the Arizona Strip area may be possible. The department received an offer from a property owner late Friday, but the details have not yet been worked out, said Mike Hendrix, deputy county manager of Public Works and Developmental Services.
Once a location is set for the Sheriff and County Attorney's offices, the county will decide if it will locate the new courthouse in the same place or find a different location.