KINGMAN – It’s a critical time to plan for two interchanges on Interstate 40, but the city has to be strategic in selecting between Kingman Crossing and Rancho Santa Fe Parkway, Mayor Monica Gates said Tuesday at the Kingman and Mohave Manufacturing Association monthly meeting.
Both projects offer a lot of benefits, she said during an update on the proposed interchanges.
One proposal is to have the city construct both interchanges simultaneously, partly funded with a 1 percent increase in the sales tax that was approved by a 5-2 Council vote.
“We have no development agreement,” Gates said. “I worry that we start competing with each other and cancel each other out.”
Another proposal came from Kingman Regional Medical Center to build and fund only the Kingman Crossing interchange.
The citizens of Kingman expressed their will to sell city-owned property for Kingman Crossing at the last election, Gates mentioned.
“So you can see we have two very different situations here,” she said. “My No. 1 priority is to move forward with Kingman Crossing.”
The city is getting “push back” from the community and its citizens on the sales tax increase, which would put the total tax close to 9.35 percent, she added. One car dealer told her he might have to change his expansion plans to Golden Valley.
The proposal estimates the cost of building the interchanges at $80 million, but Gates said her numbers are closer to $130 million.
“The way this proposal is, it would burden the citizens with $130 million debt over the next 25 years,” the mayor said.
Revenue generated from the 1 percent tax increase would go into the general fund, with half of it “earmarked” for pavement preservation and half to unspecified capital improvements. However, Gates said that can be changed once the money is in the general fund.
One KAMMA board member suggested the city put the scenarios for each interchange on its web site. At the very least, there should be more workshops for public input on the projects, Gates said.