The Bullhead City Council approved all proposals brought to them during Tuesday’s meeting after swearing in Mayor Tom Brady and Council members Annette Wegmann and Steve D’Amico.
Included in Tuesday’s business was a $3.1 million bond to complete infrastructure work on the Arizona side of the Colorado River to meet the future second bridge that would improve access between Bullhead City and Laughlin.
The overall cost estimate for the entire bridge project has been revised upward to more than $56 million. The lion’s share of the money for the project will come from Clark County, the state of Nevada and a substantial federal grant. Bullhead City is responsible only for infrastructure and street work on the Arizona side of the river.
Members of the Laughlin Town Advisory Board last week expressed concern about the latest cost estimate and want to revisit the bridge project during one of their upcoming meetings.
Bullhead City Manager Toby Cotter again voiced interest in talking to local Nevada government officials to see what they would like to do to lower cost of the four-lane bridge, such as reduce it to only two lanes or cut back on aesthetic design elements.
But it’s no longer feasible “to say we’re not going to build the bridge” because the location was decided upon years ago, Cotter said.
The four-lane bridge is supposed to meet the Arizona side of the river at Bullhead Parkway near the Mohave Crossroads shopping center.
Cotter also said the work to be done by Bullhead City for the bridge project also will serve the shopping center, the Anderson Auto Group Fieldhouse and future development in the area.
“The money we spend won’t be lost,” he said.
A local bank will be financing the bond loan. Mohave State Bank will charge the city 3.01 percent for 10-year life of the agreement. They won’t penalize the city for opting to pay the money back early, either.
No approval from voters is required for this financing. Money to repay the loan will come from the city’s General Fund and no new tax will be established for this purpose, Cotter stressed.
Mayor Tom Brady said he is waiting to hear whether he’ll travel to Washington, D.C., to speak with federal legislators about the proposed land swap between the city and federal government.
Arizona’s U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar and U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl each have proposed pieces of legislation pertaining to a land swap that would allow the city to acquire 345.2 acres of Section 12, Community Park, now owned by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, and give up 1,100 acres of property in the Black Mountain Range. Don Laughlin donated the mountain location to the city in 2015.
“We’re optimistic it will happen,” Brady said after the meeting.
In other business, the council:
Allowed Blue Water Development 3, LLC, an extension of time to obtain permits for a commercial project on a parcel of land at the northwest corner of Highway 68 and Landon Drive. This is the fifth permitting extension council members have approved for this project that proposes 16 one-story buildings on 10 acres of land.
Approved updates to Chapters 9 and 10 of the city’s municipal code regarding property offenses.
Announced that City Hall will be closed on Thursday and Friday for the Thanksgiving weekend.