Q.C. officials support formation of nearby town - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Q.C. officials support formation of nearby town

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Posted: Thursday, January 15, 2004 9:21 am | Updated: 5:08 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

The majority of Queen Creek’s elected officials said they probably would support a fast-growing northern Pinal County community’s effort to establish itself as a town, despite a possible dispute over shared borders.

Under Arizona law, Queen Creek and Florence would have to approve the formation of the proposed municipality, which would extend southeast from Empire Road just south of Queen Creek to Franklin Road, bringing the new town’s southern boundary within 5 miles of Florence. Also to succeed, twothirds of registered voters in the area would have to sign petitions.

The area being proposed encompasses the sprawling Johnson Ranch area of new home subdivisions in the far southeast Valley. The area’s population is expected to reach 100,000 within the next five years.

An informational meeting on the issue is set for 7 p.m. today.

Queen Creek Mayor Wendy Feldman-Kerr said she was happy with the prospect of a new neighbor, and that she could appreciate the residents’ desire for local control. "I think it’s very exciting and very good for them," she said.

Feldman-Kerr said there could be some "boundary issues," since the proposed town’s northern border appears to extend into county areas Queen Creek officials would like to annex.

Vice Mayor Lisa Coletto-Cohen said she respects the resident-driven incorporation drive but wants more information.

Council members Gary Holloway and Joyce Hildebrandt both said they don’t anticipate a problem with the incorporation effort, although they would like to hear more details.

Some nearby residents in more rural areas have said they oppose incorporation.

Four northern Pinal County residents organized the incorporation campaign, which would form a town bounded by Empire Road to the north, Ellsworth Road and San Tan Mountains Regional Park to the west, the Gila River Indian Community and Franklin Road to the south, and a Union Pacific Railroad line to the east, although the specific boundaries are still under discussion.Florence officials did not return calls for comment.

If you go

What: Briefing on proposed incorporation

When: 7 p.m. today

Where: San Tan Heights Elementary School, 2500 W. San Tan Heights Blvd., Queen Creek

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