Tucson supports Vail's bid to incorporate

2013-06-05T00:00:00Z Tucson supports Vail's bid to incorporateDarren DaRonco Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
June 05, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Tucson officially supports the residents of Vail, should they form Pima County's newest municipality later this summer.

The City Council, once an ardent opponent of new municipal incorporations, unanimously passed a resolution supporting the incorporation. The vote cleared another obstacle on the path to incorporation for the 120-year-old Vail area because existing cities have the ability to block new incorporations within six miles.

Vail supporters, who have been pushing for incorporation for three years, were pleased by the council's support.

"We're really appreciative of Mayor (Jonathan) Rothschild and the council," said George Mower, president of the Citizens for Vail Committee. "They've been very supportive. The county's been very supportive. … Everyone has been very helpful."

The issue still has to be put on the ballot and approved by Vail voters.

Mower said his group is close to collecting the 722 signatures necessary to qualify for the ballot. He anticipates filing those within the next few days.

Once filed, Mower said, it's in the hands of the people.

"We're going to go around and educate people on the issue," Mower said. "But it's up to them to decide."

If approved, the newly minted town would fetch about $3.2 million in state-shared revenue, which would comprise most of the initial budget.

Any other revenue sources, such as a sales tax or municipal property taxes, would have to be decided once a mayor and council were seated. It's likely the fledgling town would contract out for police service, road maintenance and other services that are estimated to cost about $2.6 million per year. The Vail School District; fire protection; and water, sewer and trash service would be unchanged.

City staff would be kept at the bare minimum. A part-time town manager and a few other administrative positions would cost $138,000 a year. It's expected the mayor and town council would be unpaid.

The proposed town of Vail would cover approximately 43 square miles and have an estimated population of 11,500.

Contact reporter Darren DaRonco at 573-4243 or ddaronco@azstarnet.com

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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