Two days prior to the year’s end, Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter announced the appointment of Village of Oak Creek resident Connie Harris to the Yavapai College District Governing Board.

The position — which represents YCDGB District 3, comprising the upper Verde Valley communities of Clarkdale, Cottonwood, Jerome, Sedona and the Village of Oak Creek — was created by the resignation of Al Filardo in December. The appointment is valid from Harris taking the oath of office during the YCDGB meeting Tuesday, Jan. 10, through Dec. 31, 2018.

Just prior to stepping into the role of Yavapai County District 3 Supervisor on Tuesday, Jan. 3, Randy Garrison said it would be some time before he understood the full extent of his responsibilities.

“I’m constantly learning what abilities I have,” Garrison said. “I still don’t know what the job pays.”

Add this one to the list.

Recently, there have been an array of phone scams to hit Arizona, including the Sedona area. They have included an APS scam in which business owners are told their power will be turned off unless they remit payment immediately via pre-paid debit cards. There have also been a rash of calls in Yavapai and Coconino counties from scammers saying that those being called missed jury duty and that a summons for their arrest will be issued unless they pay a fine — once again by pre-paid debit calls.

Leading up to election day, Laura J. Hamblin, a human resources and employment lawyer local to Prescott, wondered at the lack of information regarding Arizona Proposition 206.

“I thought, ‘I can’t believe the business community is not educating voters as to the implications of this law,’” Hamblin said in a roundtable address hosted by the Camp Verde Chamber of Commerce on Dec. 19. “All of the ads were for the proponents of [the proposition] .... Ignorance is not a defense. That’s where the chambers of commerce come in about educating employers.”

Now that short-term vacation rentals are legal throughout Arizona, the largest third-party online home rental service is now making things a little easier.

On Thursday, Dec. 15, Gov. Doug Ducey and Airbnb announced an agreement between the online home sharing company and the Arizona Department of Revenue on the reporting and paying of taxes on behalf of Airbnb hosts. The agreement furthers the governor’s vision of embracing new, 21st century business models in the sharing economy that benefit all Arizonans.

In October, Sedona City Attorney Robert Pickels called Senate Bill 1487 one of the worst pieces of legislation he’d ever seen.

Two months later, his feelings haven’t changed.

On Dec. 14, more than 20 members of the city of Sedona staff and council members as well as council members from Cottonwood, Jerome, Camp Verde and Clarkdale met in Sedona City Hall. There, they talked on a variety of issues facing the 2017 state legislature with state Reps. Bob Thorpe [R] and Brenda Barton [R] as well as state Sen. Sylvia Allen [R]. All three represent the Verde Valley.

As the temperatures continue to drop — especially in the northern part of the state — APS officials want residents to know that they’re ramping up their efforts to ensure the lights and heat stay on.

Steve Gotfried and Alan Bunnell, members of APS’ communications team, came to Sedona on Dec. 7 as part of the company’s statewide media outreach. In an interview with the Sedona Red Rock News, they talked on a variety of issues that pertain to Sedona, including the proposed rate increase intervention, winter preparedness and an ongoing APS scam.

Get your last sentimental shots in now, because come January, the unofficial shooting area at the Old Dump in Clarkdale will close.

Due to high levels of lead, arsenic and antimony, the U.S. Forest Service has been mandated to close the area off Forest Road 493 to remove contaminated soil. These three contaminants are all used in manufacturing bullets. No other waste from the old dump — such as hazardous gases — was observed at critical levels. The roads will not be closed. The area is part of the Prescott National Forest. The non-discretionary action is the result of the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act and a study taken under direction of Anne Fischer.

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