Special to the Tribune
Editor's note: Prescott Valley voters will decide two ballot measures March 12 in addition to choosing a mayor and electing three members of the Town Council.
Proposition 422 is called the Alternative Local Expenditure Limitation, also known as Home Rule. Proposition 423 is for the General Plan 2025 update.
Months of meetings of the Planning and Zoning Commission with town staff and the public culminated in the 2025 General Plan update that goes to the voters March 12 for the final say.
"It's a compilation of the efforts of various departments within the town," P&Z Commission Chairman Rick Duskey said. "It's been compiled by an awful lot of well-informed, hard-working people who spent a lot of time on it, hours and hours."
Duskey also referred to the two-month review period that the General Plan underwent from the City of Prescott, Yavapai County and the Arizona State Land Department. General Plan 2025 updates General Plan 2020, which voters ratified in March 2002.
He heads a panel that began discussions on the General Plan in June 2011. The final draft went to the Town Council this past August.
"Every 10 to 20 years, towns, cities, and counties throughout Arizona and the Southwest revisit their general plans to ensure that an up-to-date connection exists between residents' values, visions, and objectives; state law; and the physical development of their community," states the introduction of the General Plan.
"The General Plan 2025 is very important to present and future generations and serves as residents' official statement defining the nature of future growth, development, and revitalization in Prescott Valley," the document reads.
The 252-page document notes Prescott Valley has grown about 52 percent from 23,535 residents according to the 2000 federal census to 38,822 residents as of the 2010 census. The town encompasses about 24,363 acres while its surrounding sphere of influence covers 27,000 acres.
The General Plan's chapter on growth areas element lists several subdivisions, including StoneRidge, Granville, Pronghorn Ranch, Viewpoint and Quailwood.
The chapter of growth areas is one of 12 chapters in General Plan 2025. The General also includes chapters on vision and guiding principles, and elements on land use, housing, circulation (traffic), environmental planning and water resources, recreation and open space, cost of development and economic development.
The chapter on housing is new to the General Plan, and was compiled largely with the help of planner Ruth Mayday.
The housing element became necessary because of population growth, Duskey said.
"The availability and affordability of a variety of housing options is critical to the continued growth and success of any community, and Prescott Valley is no exception," the chapter begins. "From studio apartments to spacious single family homes, most housing needs can be met within the boundaries of the town. The Housing Element outlines a framework for the development of a range of housing opportunities in the Town of Prescott Valley."
The General Plan update faces no organized opposition, and nobody submitted arguments in the voter pamphlet for or against voter ratification.
Even vocal town government critic Tom Steele said he will vote for the General Plan. However, he said, "There are portions of the General Plan that I don't favor. For example, there is not enough emphasis on more and better parks and open space."
The thrust of the General Plan is "smart growth, and that is in relation to available resources like water," said Ernie Del Rio, the retired Bradshaw District ranger for the Prescott National Forest. He added the General Plan encourages infill to reduce costs that come with sprawl.
Del Rio and his wife, Jane, participated in the General Plan 2020 and 2025 updates. He said the 2025 update places more emphasis on education than the previous update.
He urges voters to read the vision state and implementation plans.
General Plan 2025 is available online at www.pvaz.net.