150-acre land donation key piece of economic development

Mohave County Procurement Director Rebecca O’Brien and her staff pose with county supervisors after a presentation on the National Procurement Institute’s award for Achievement in Excellence in Procurement.

Photo by Hubble Ray Smith.

Mohave County Procurement Director Rebecca O’Brien and her staff pose with county supervisors after a presentation on the National Procurement Institute’s award for Achievement in Excellence in Procurement.

The Mohave County Board of Supervisors took the following action at Monday’s regular meeting:

• Approved a budget transfer of $965.85 from the Public Works parks contingency fund to parks motor vehicles to cover the purchase of a new street sweeper, which was budgeted for $25,000. Public Works Director Steve Latoski said the street sweeper would be assigned to Hualapai Mountain Park, where dirt and debris collect on the roadways, even without storms. Street sweepers are positioned throughout the county, and it’s both onerous and costly to transfer them to Hualapai Mountain, he said.

• Authorized application for the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant in the amount of $11,850 to be used to buy safety and search rescue equipment for officers.

• Voted 4-1 (Buster Johnson opposed) to acknowledge receipt of and to review a petition to include a half-mile section of Hope Road in the Golden Valley area for acceptance in the county’s tertiary road maintenance system.

• Authorize funds for an appraisal of a parcel at 420 Old Highway 66 in Kingman and move forward with a public auction.

• Authorized the Arizona Attorney General’s office to defend Mohave County in the tax lawsuit, South Point Energy Center vs. Arizona Department of Revenue and Mohave County. This involves a power plant on tribal land in the Fort Mohave area, and South Point appeals its assessed taxes every year, County Attorney Ryan Esplin said.

KINGMAN – After a quick discussion about Mohave County paying for an appraisal, the Board of Supervisors on Monday approved a 150-acre donation of land in Dolan Springs that will be key piece of economic development in the area.

The land is being donated by Marvin and Inger Lustiger, and has a current assessed value of $55,109, though that will probably increase with a third-party appraisal.

The land is adjacent to Pierce Ferry Road, a fast-developing corridor to Grand Canyon West, which attracted more than 1 million visitors for the second year in a row.

In a letter to Lustiger, County Administrator Mike Hendrix said the county would certainly be interested in acquiring the land as it is currently in discussions with the Bureau of Land Management to trade property along the transportation corridor.

With Monday’s unanimous approval, the board authorized the county to pay for an appraisal of the property to determine a value for the donor, who will choose the appraiser. Hendrix will then sign all the documents related to the transfer and approve the money to pay for the appraisal.

Supervisor Buster Johnson wanted to know why an appraisal was needed, as the county had accepted land donations in the past without appraisals. County Attorney Ryan Esplin explained that the appraisal was more for the benefit of the person donating the property, but it will also benefit the county by having a “benchmark value” for the BLM exchange.

Hendrix said this particular piece of property is surrounded by BLM land, and “fits the bill” for a future trade with the BLM for land that will bolster economic development.

“We requested the land to be donated at no cost or inconvenience to the donator,” Hendrix said. “He very graciously agreed at no cost to Mr. Lustiger. These are the conditions.”