Holiday travelers will get a break from highway construction. The Arizona Department of Transportation has announced there will be no construction closures over the holiday weekend, and that includes this afternoon, when thousands of people traditionally head to the high country. ADOT spokesman Doug Nitzel says these breaks will not affect completion of projects:
Area projects that will be suspended include the highways 69 and 89 traffic interchange and Interstate 17 from the Sunset Point rest area to Black Canyon City. Arizona Department of Public Safety officers will be targeting suspected drunk drivers and other unsafe driving behaviors.
The Bureau of Land Management is offering some camping safety tips. According to Recreation Planner Len Marceau, people should think about outdoor safety first this holiday weekend and be extremely careful with campfires. Never leave a fire unattended and make sure it is out completely before leaving the campsite. Check with County, State or other Federal Land Management Agency for any fire restrictions before heading out. Off-highway vehicles need to stay on existing roads and trails, since cross country travel is not allowed and could be dangerous. Bring your own firewood and most importantly, take plenty of water. Some campgrounds in the Prescott National Forest include the Alto Pit Recreation Site, the Granite Basin and Lynx Lakes recreation areas and Mingus Mountain and Potato Patch.
Construction to replace the Granite Creek bridges in Prescott has begun. This Arizona Department of Transportation project will replace 2 existing bridges with a single, wider bridge designed to carry increased traffic volumes. Construction will require traffic to be routed across one of the existing bridges as the other structure is demolished and half the new bridge is constructed. After the first half is completed, traffic will be shifted to the new bridge while the remainder is constructed. ADOT is advising drivers to slow down when approaching the work zone and to be alert for workers, equipment and traffic control. Construction is scheduled to last one year.
Chino Valley will celebrate Territorial Days this holiday weekend. Tonight “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian” will be shown at Community Center Park starting at dusk. Tomorrow morning at 6, the 11th annual 10K and 2 mile Fun Run will be held at Memory Park. Participants can pick up packets at the High School office from 3 to 5 this afternoon or at the starting line from 6 to 7:10 tomorrow. From 6 to 9:30, the Lions Club will host a pancake breakfast at the Senior Center. The 23rd annual parade follows at 9:30 at Heritage Middle School and ends at Memory Park. Those who can’t make it to the parade can hear it live on Cattle Country, 94.3 FM KDDL. Activities at Memory Park take place from 11 to 2 and the Corn Dinner is from 3 to 7 at Del Rio Elementary School. On Sunday morning, the Yavapai College English and Western Horseshow starts at 8:30 at the Chino Valley campus.
A 24 year old Prescott Valley man has been sentenced for manslaughter. According to the Yavapai County Attorney’s Office, the incident stems from a pursuit with Prescott Valley Police on the evening of December 10th, 2008. Police observed Josiah Fawcett speeding and running a stop sign. He then fled after police tried to stop him, speeding up and running additional signs. He ultimately broadsided the vehicle driven by the victim, Ron Pagoda, after swerving to miss the motorcycle of the endangerment victim, Doug Jones. The collision occurred at the intersection of Robert Road and highway 89A. Yavapai County Superior Court Judge Thomas Lindberg sentenced Fawcett to 10 and a half years in prison for manslaughter and more than 2 years in prison for the endangerment charge, to be served concurrently. Fawcett was also sentenced to 3 years probation with 90 days in jail for the charge of extreme DUI, and he must pay more than 47 thousand dollars in restitution.
Prescott Valley Police are releasing further information on a Sunday homicide. Fifty-eight year old John Chance suffered a gunshot wound, blunt force trauma and stab wounds. Chance was found in the garage of his Hacienda Lane residence, where he was pronounced dead. The formal Medical Examiner’s report and findings will not be released until toxicology can be performed. Police are informing residents that the suspect in this case, 59 year old Calvin Divens has been arrested on one count of first degree homicide. The victim was known to Divens and Chance was the intended target of the assault. The investigation into this case is ongoing.
The City of Prescott has a new way of getting regional information out to the public. The Regional Asset Inventory features information on demographics, such as labor force by industry and occupation, major public and private employers and population by age, household income, race and educational attainment. The information provided is not just from Prescott, but from Prescott Valley, Chino Valley and Dewey-Humboldt as well. Economic Development Director Jane Bristol explains this information can be helpful to business owners seeking to relocate to the area:
Bristol says this information will be updated periodically:
Other informational areas include Location and Environment and Services. The inventory can be located online at cityofprescott.net.