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Friday, September 22, 2017

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The Latest from District 3...

Overlay Road Work

Please be advised that Yavapai County will be performing new asphalt overlay and shouldering on Del Rio Drive in Verde Village; Crown Ridge Road in Village of Oak Creek; Montezuma Lake Road in Lake Montezuma; and Cactus Wren, Quail Run, and Red Rock Lane in Cordes Junction. Construction will begin September 25th and continue through November 20th. One lane of traffic will be open at all times in all construction zones. Travelers should expect delays, use caution when driving through construction zones, and obey all posted construction speed reductions and temporary traffic control changes.

For additional information, please contact Yavapai County Public Works at 928-771-3183 or visit us on the web at

POW/MIA Recognition Ceremony

Members of the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors were on hand for the National POW/MIA Recognition Day event held at the Northern Arizona VA facility on Friday 9/15/2017.  Master of Ceremonies, Alisha Pestana of Prescott High School JROTC, led the audience of nearly 100 people through the event including a Color Guard, Student Address, Musical Salute and a key note address from Mr. Walter ECKES, FPOW, U.S. Marine Corps Vietnam Veteran. 
Mr. Eckes is a United States Marine Corps Veteran who served in the military from 1964-1970 as a radio operator. After being deployed to Vietnam in 1965 he was captured as a FPOW in 1966. He returned to his unit after a harrowing escape, eluding his captors for 4 days, before finding refuge. After his tour in Vietnam, Mr. Eckes remained on active duty unit 1968.  He then served in the Marine Corps Reserves for two years before he was Honorably Discharged in 1970.
Honored POW/MIA guests present at the event included:
Ronald Byrne
John Cathey
Wayne Daniels
Ammi Miller
Gregorio Oliva
Daniel Roberts
Walter Eckes
Peter Marshall

Public Input Needed

The Northern Arizona Council of Governments (NACOG) is seeking public input on traffic safety concerns in Coconino, Yavapai, Apache, and Navajo
Drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians may contribute their perspectives through an interactive mapping survey available online at
The survey is part of a regional Strategic Transportation Safety Plan, a cooperative effort between NACOG, and the Flagstaff and Central Yavapai Metropolitan Planning
Organizations. The goal of the Plan is to reduce crashes by implementing solutions for safer travel in the region.
“Transportation users’ first-hand experience is important to identifying high-priority safety concerns. Public input, along with an evaluation of crash data, will be
instrumental in reducing fatal crashes,” said Jason Kelly, NACOG Planning Director. 
In addition to survey input, the project team welcomes additional comments via email at or by mailing comments to GCI, 67 E. Weldon, Suite
103, Phoenix, AZ 85012.
Burgess & Niple, Inc. is the design firm developing the Strategic Transportation Safety Plan. For more information, please contact the NACOG project manager at 928-213-5245.

Yavapai County Search and Rescue Team - 1st Place in Statewide Competition

On August 5, 2017, the Yavapai County Search and Rescue Team (YCSRT), Backcounty Unit, competed in the Annual State swiftwater rodeo. The event was held at Saguaro Lake Ranch in Mesa, Arizona. The YCSRT team had a total of 10 members represented in this competition.  Team one consisted of Josh Schmidt, Dan Hughart, Curt Freeman, Tim Wielinski, Scott Mahon and Ryan Viscket.  This team took first place for the second year in a row.  6 agencies competed.

Team two consisted of Tip Schmidt, Dan Dravis, Michael Priniski, Martha Ballard and YCSO Detention Officer Russ Dodge. This team took 3rd place overall.

Events in the competition included several ‘real world’ scenarious such as the rescue of multiple persons trapped in floodwaters, medical based rescues, raft and kayak handling skills, knot tying, and a technical rescue.

Sheriff Mascher is very proud of both team’s efforts in the event and appreciates the devotion to training and selfless service of all YCSRT members. The Swiftwater team has proven invaluable in the recent past regarding river and flooding based rescue operations. 

Back Left – Tim Wielinski , Back Right – Dan Hughart, Left Front – Josh Schmidt,   Center Left – Scott Mahon ,Center Right – Ryan Visket, Front Right – Curt Freeman. The two seated subjects wearing yellow helmets are role players. 


Two New Yavapai County Public Fiduciary Licensees

Fiduciary from the Latin fiducia, meaning "trust," a person who has the power and obligation to act for another, under circumstances which require total trust, good faith and honesty.

Pamela Bensmiller, Yavapai County Public Fiduciary, just got two new licensed fiduciaries and said, “having two of our current employees, Janet Wells and Kathryn Blair, become licensed Fiduciaries is a tremendous help to our office and to the people we serve.” The Yavapai County Public Fiduciary office now has four licensed fiduciaries and one more in the process. The Arizona Supreme Court Administrative Office of the Courts oversees fiduciary licensure. A fiduciary is licensed only after passing a rigorous exam and extensive background check as well as meeting specific educational requirements and completing statutorily-proscribed periods of training, typically ranging from one to three years, with a currently licensed fiduciary.

The Public Fiduciary is appointed by the Superior Court for those persons or decedents’ estates in need of guardianship, conservatorship or administration and for whom there is no other person qualified and willing to act in that capacity. As a guardian, the Public Fiduciary ensures that the basic needs of an incapacitated person are met. Some of these needs include, personal, medical, psychiatric and housing needs. The Public Fiduciary is not a direct-care service provider, but rather, ensures that the persons for whom it is appointed have access to needed care, benefits and resources. As court-appointed conservator the Public Fiduciary manages and conserves those assets for the benefit of the protected person.

Janet Wells said, “we make sure adults who were born developmentally disabled, or older adults who have dementia and no one to care of them, are taken care of and not being taken advantage of.” Janet worked for Yavapai County Long Term Care for several years before coming to the fiduciary office, where she was required to work for three years before she could apply to be officially licensed. Janet went on to say “One of my favorite parts is seeing that those in our care are getting the benefits they’re entitled to, and making their lives a little easier.”

The Yavapai County Public Fiduciary handles primarily indigent cases when there are not sufficient funds with which to pay a private fiduciary and the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors has directed the Public Fiduciary not to compete with private fiduciaries whenever possible.

For more information you can go to or call 928-771-3153

Chip Seal/Fog Seal Roadwork


Please be advised that Yavapai County will be performing chip seal and fog seal work on various county-maintained roads in Congress, Cornville, Spring Valley, Peeples Valley, Yarnell, Bagdad, and Hillside. Construction will begin Monday, August 21st and continue through October 11th. One lane of traffic will be open at all times in all construction zones, and access to homes and businesses will remain open. Expect delays in the construction areas.

For additional information, please contact Yavapai County Public Works at 928-771-3183 or visit us on the web at 

Low-interest Federal Disaster Loans Available

Low-interest federal disaster loans are available to businesses and residents affected by the post-fire flooding from monsoon storms that began July 19, 2017, U.S. Small Business Administration’s Administrator Linda McMahon announced today. SBA acted under its own authority to declare a disaster in response to a request SBA received from Gov. Douglas A. Ducey on Aug. 1.

The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in Coconino, Gila, La Paz, Maricopa, Mohave and Yavapai counties.

Disaster Loan Outreach Center
Mayer Recreation Center
10001 S. Wicks Ave.
Mayer, AZ 86333
Opens 9 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 8
Mondays - Fridays, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Closes 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 24

Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. SBA can also lend additional funds to businesses and homeowners to help with the cost of improvements to protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

The filing deadline to return applications for property damage is Oct. 2, 2017. The deadline to return economic injury applications is May 3, 2018. 

Yavapai County Finance Department Recognized for Excellence in Financial Reporting

The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting has been awarded to Yavapai County by the Government Finance Officers Associate of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for the year ending June 30, 2016.  “the CAFR is a great place to find out where the county receives it money, and where that money is spent.” Said Dan Rusing, Yavapai County Finance Director. CAFR stands for Comprehensive Annual Financial Report and can be found online at

The CAFR is submitted to GFOA for an intensive review of its content and to judge its quality based on established professional standards.  If the county receives a grade of proficient or higher in all thirteen grading categories, the county is awarded the certificate.  Rusing went on to say “The Finance Department spends a lot of time and energy each year to generate all of this information, and would like to encourage the public to browse the results.”

The CAFR is the main financial statement for the County and includes not only the financial numbers but also explanations of what happened during the year as well as statistical information, all of which helps explains what the numbers mean. 

This Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.  Todd Buikema, Acting Director of GFOA said, “the CAFR has been judged by an impartial panel to meet the high standards of the program, which includes demonstrating a constructive “Spirit of full disclosure” to clearly communicate its financial story and motivate potential users to read the report.”

“Transparency in leadership is important, and the CAFR is just one more tool the Board of Supervisors uses to keep the residents of Yavapai County informed.  Our neighbors keep us accountable” Said Board of Supervisor Vice-Chairman, Rowle Simmons.

Fire Restrictions Lifted

A coordinated decision has been made to lift fire restrictions across lands with similar conditions.  As of Monday, July 17th at 12:00 p.m., fire restrictions will be lifted across the following jurisdictions:

  • Prescott National Forest;
  • Yavapai County;
  • Bureau of Land Management – Phoenix District;
  • Arizona State Department of Forestry and Fire Management – NW District;
  • Lands serviced by Central Arizona Fire and Medical Authority (CAFMA- the former Central Yavapai and Chino Valley Fire Districts) which includes the Town of Chino Valley, Paulden and the areas surrounding the City of Prescott such as Williamson Valley, upper Copper Basin Road and Mountain Club area, Ponderosa Park off of White Spar Road, the Senator Highways area of Karen Drive, Sweet Acres, and Oak Knoll Village and finally the areas extending south of Prescott including Govt. Canyon, Diamond Valley, the Town of Prescott Valley and the Town of Dewey/Humboldt;
  • And all lands serviced by the City of Prescott Fire Department.

Coordination regarding this decision also included discussions with the Kaibab and Coconino National Forests in northern Arizona; the Tonto National Forest; and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.  Decisions and timelines regarding the lifting of fire restrictions on lands administered by these agencies are likely close or will coincide with the decision noted above.  However, visitors are encouraged to check the conditions and fire restrictions status on those lands.

“Despite some significant rain storms over the past week, we hadn’t seen enough rain across enough of the area to feel comfortable lifting the fire restrictions.  However, this weekend brought about quite a bit of rain in many areas and the forecast calls for a dramatic increase in rain chances across most of the state in the next few days.  The conditions are changing dramatically and rapidly reducing the threat of any significant fire behavior” – Pete Gordon, Fire Chief – Prescott National Forest

Prescott National Forest and our Inter-Agency Partners would like thank our local neighbors and forest visitors for their cooperation in preventing wildfires.  While all fire restrictions will be lifted on Monday, everyone is reminded that the potential for wildfires still exist and to please use caution with campfires and other potential ignition sources.  It is also important to pay attention to the monsoon weather where rain storms can cause flash-flooding and dangerous conditions can quickly arise several miles down-stream from the storm.

For a more detailed explanation concerning agency restrictions and fire information in general,  please contact the nearest land management agency office where you plan to work or play, visit or call the toll free Southwest Fire Restrictions Hotline    1-877-864-6985. The direct fire restrictions information website for Arizona is

Tissaw Trailhead Ribbon Cutting

Health Advisory


As our monsoon season approaches it is important to understand the risks we face from diseases mosquitoes carry like Zika, West Nile virus, Chikungunya, Dengue and Yellow fever and what you can do to prevent them. Arizona is home to about 50 mosquito species including Aedes aegypti, a mosquito that can carry and spread diseases like the Zika virus. This mosquito is well-adapted to the Arizona climate.

Cecil Newell, Yavapai County Community Health Services Public Health Protection Section Manager reported, “YCCHS is performing routine trappings of mosquitos throughout the county - for the West Nile Virus no lab results have come back positive, however, we have found Aedes aegypti species in the Sedona/Village of Oak Creek area.”

Who is at risk?

While we see West Nile virus in our mosquitoes most years, imported Zika cases are new to Arizona and should be a real concern to everyone. Only 20% of those adults infected with Zika will experience any symptoms at all and are very similar to flulike symptoms.

What can you do?

 Remove standing water from around your house. The specific mosquito that we have in Yavapai County that transmits most of these diseases is called the Aedes aegypti (ae). Ae likes to stay close to home and won’t travel very far for a blood meal, which is what we call a “mosquito bite.” This means that if we remove the opportunities for reproduction around our homes we dramatically reduce the chances of being bit. Mosquitoes need water to reproduce, so by removing all standing water we remove the breeding grounds. This includes water dishes, bird baths, tires, anything that can hold as little as an inch of water can be a breeding ground for mosquitoes.

 Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants.

 Stay in places with air conditioning or that use window and door screens to keep mosquitoes outside.

 Sleep under a mosquito bed net if you are overseas or outside and are not able to protect yourself from mosquito bites.

 Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents. When used as directed, EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective, even for pregnant and breast- feeding women.

 Treat clothing and gear with permethrin or purchase permethrin-treated items. Treated clothing remains protective after multiple washings. See product information to learn how long the protection will last. If treating clothing items yourself, follow the product instructions carefully. Do NOT use permethrin products directly on skin. They are intended to treat clothing.

When do I need to take action?

Now. Start looking around the exterior of your home and remove or overturn anything that can hold water. Where do I need to take action? Start in your own backyard. With Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in Yavapai County, YCCHS wants to encourage and educate the public on the risk of mosquito-borne diseases.

WHY do I need to take action?

To protect yourself, your family and your neighbors.

For more information, see Arizona Department of Health Services webpage:


3rd Annual Arizona Sonshine Event


The Sonshine event was held at the Prescott Valley Event Center on June 15th and 16th and offered free medical, dental, and vision care to anyone that needed it.  There was no charge to enter, and everyone was welcome. 

Yavapai County Board of Supervisor Chairman Thomas Thurman was there on Wednesday to welcome the more than 300 event volunteers and thank the event organizers for bringing this service to the people of Yavapai County.

In addition to the free medical, dental and vision care, those who attended were offered free immunizations, HIV and Hep-C testing from Yavapai County Community Health Services (YCCHS).  Together with the Community Health Center of Yavapai, YCCHS was able to work with over 800 people during the two-day event on healthy eating, Well-woman health checks and assistance with applying for AHCCCS.

On Thursday the 15th, three of the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, Rowle Simmons, Craig Brown and Randy Garrison, were given the opportunity to tour the event and showed some of the new services that were offered this year.  This was the first year the Sonshine event was able to offer a place for the children to go and play while their parents were receiving the medical care they needed.  “This service is a real life saver,” said one of the attendees as she dropped off her three children. At the end of the tour, the event coordinators took the opportunity to thank the board officially for their ongoing support of the health and wellbeing of Yavapai Residents and the Sonshine event by presenting them with a Certificate of Appreciation.

“By the time the event was wrapped up, somewhere around 800 people had received over 1900 medical, dental and vision services,” said Michelle Ritzer one of the many coordinators for the event.  The local Seventh-Day Adventist church staff, which hosted this event, is already working on next year’s event where they hope to serve an even greater number of Yavapai County residents with these much-needed services.

For pictures of the event go to


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