June 14, 2023
New Business began with a short Public Hearing reviewing the recommendations of the Town’s Planning and Development Committee on a General Plan Update. At that time, the Town’s Resolution no. 23-06 formally approved the General Plan update.
Mayor Wood was authorized to sign a letter from the Town requesting the Forest Service (FS) provide all water monitoring program information and equipment used by now-retired FS hydrologist Greg Olsen.
Kevin McKay was added to the Town’s Planning and Development Committee, with the acknowledgment that his field experience in general contracting will be a great asset to the group.
The sale of a portion of Santa Rita Ave. right of way and a portion of Fourth Avenue, adjacent to a parcel owned by Mark Berg, was approved.
June 28, 2023
A request by the Portillo Family LLC to finish building a six-foot concrete block rear wall of their 423 W McKeown Ave property, which runs along Smelter Ave. was approved after a public hearing.
The contract for fire protection and emergency services with Patagonia Volunteer Fire and Rescue was renewed for July 1, 2023 through June 30, 2024.
A resolution was approved, amending the Town Code to add Article 8-4, on short-term and vacation rentals, including provisions for “bed tax.”
Two arrangements between the Town and Santa Cruz County were renewed for FY 2023-2024, both with 5% increases over previous year’s costs. Resolution No. 23-08 extends the SC County Animal control Inter-governmental Agreement, bringing the annual cost to $26,520. The agreement for law enforcement services with the SC County Sheriff’s Department is renewed, with at a new fiscal year expense of $376,356.
Mayor and Council approved sending a letter of support to Dr. Amrul Rajib, STSP/RSA Program director for ADOT Road Safety. The letter is on behalf of the Red Rock Acres Homeowners Association, asking ADOT for a full safety study at the intersection of Harshaw Road and Red Rock Dr. being constructed by South32.
July 12, 2023
Tim Regan gave a report on activities at the Patagonia Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company for the last month. There had been 11 calls, of 117 year-to-date, and 735 volunteer hours put in. The department participated in the Fourth of July parade and conducted the fireworks in the evening.
In Call to Public, Cornelia O’Connor mentioned the conflict with the Train Track Trail (TTT) and the County’s new ownership of former South32 land at the intersection of the Cross Creek Connector road and SR 82. The County has expressed disinterest in keeping the trail open through the intersection. O’Connor views the trail as very popular and desires a design solution that keeps it open to the public.
Robert Proctor, head of Friends of Sonoita Creek and a trails advocate, concurred with O’Connor, adding that it is an important connector between the Town and the multiple trails of the Borderlands Wildlife Preserve and the Arizona Trail’s Passages 3 and 4 at the Casa Blanca Trailhead.
The Town staff was directed to engage Joy Herr-Cardillo as pro-bono counsel to prepare an Amicus Brief for the town, in pending litigation filed by Patagonia Area Resource Alliance (PARA) and roughly seven other local and national environmental groups.
Jesus Valdez was welcomed as incoming Santa Cruz County Manager.
Santa Cruz County Supervisor Bruce Bracker gave a lengthy report on the Supervisors’ recent concerns and actions, including the slowness in new broadband service; a review of flood control models, where adding a second dimension to the models might take some Patagonia homes out of the designated flood plain; the ongoing County studies of tourism and economic development; studies on how to support wineries and food truck activities; and a 2.5% decrease in property taxes. Bracker made no commitment to keeping Train Track Trail operating through the Cross Creek Connector, saying only “it’s an open process.”
July 26, 2023
Town Manager Robinson reported on negotiations with South32’s CrossCreek Connector (CCC) contractor, Hunter Construction, for the town’s landfill to receive excess dirt for a fee.
The Mayor and Council approved the Cady Hall Rental Agreement, as recently amended.
The Mayor and Council approved the sale of a portion of the right-of-way of Pittsburgh Ave. to Scott Stanley. The Mayor and Council approved a new short-term Business License Form previously agreed upon.