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renzimug2.jpgResponding to a request from U.S. Rep. Rick Renzi [R-District 1], the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors approved a list of federal support funds it wants to receive.
By Mike Cosentino
Larson Newspapers

Responding to a request from U.S. Rep. Rick Renzi [R-District 1], the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors approved a list of federal support funds it wants to receive.

At the meeting Monday, March 5, Supervisor Tom Thurman asked the board to come up with five items to give to Renzi, who is on the Appropriations Committee in the U.S. House of Reprasentatives.

The board approved an action regarding the 2008 appropriations for designating Sedona as a National Scenic Area, support for the Secure Schools Act to keep about $750,000 coming to the county school district, to make sure the federal government keeps providing payments in lieu of taxes to the county for federal lands such as Indian reservations that are not on the tax rolls, to provide highway funding for I-17 and to help with funding through the Farm Bill for keeping open space in the county.

?They probably won?t fund any of it,? District 3 Supervisor Chip Davis said.

Much of the county?s list is a response to proposed or perceived cuts by Republicans rather than seeking new funds.

One area the county would like to see considered is the designation of Sedona as a National Scenic Area.

Renzi is concerned that this designation might hinder tour operators and forest users.

A NSA designation could hinder development.

Renzi wants to see this issue debated at the local level before seeking federal approval.

Other items on the list are to try to ensure continued support for the Secure Rural Schools Act, support for highway funding for the I-17 corridor and help with Farm Bill funding that will allow the county to control land and water conservation.

Specifically, the Secure Rural School Act allows the county funds to hire a grant writer who has helped the county secure more than $2 million in funds, according to Tim Carter, county schools superintendent.

?The Farm Bill question could allow the county to deter lot splitting and provide more money for the acquisition of water rights. It is a way to preserve open space [in the county] and help keep ranches intact,? Davis said

The county would also like to see the U.S. Forest Service buy back over 300 acres of land the county had to acquire before building the Mingus Avenue Extension.

The cliff rose, an endangered species, needed to be protected, which necessitated the purchase, Davis said. Now that the road is completed, Springer said she would like to look to the Forest Service to buy the land.

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