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Q: Are there any posted speed limit signs in Mesa del Caballo? If there are, it needs to be enforced. There are way too many people speeding out here, and a child is going to get hit.

A: Like all residential neighborhoods statewide, the speed limit is 25 miles per hour in Mesa del, Sgt. Terry Hudgens of the Gila County Sheriff's Department said. Whether signage is adequate, he doesn't know, but there are some speed limit signs in Mesa del.

Enforcement, at least on a regular basis, is another issue entirely. "We are so thin on the ground, we are pretty much limited to answering calls," Hudgens said. "We have very little time to go on patrol."

He offers two options to residents of Mesa del and other unincorporated areas of Gila County:

Get a license number and, if possible, a driver identification and call the sheriff's department. "We can check registration, but the person who the vehicle is registered to isn't always the driver," Hudgens said. "We can tell them to take it easy out there, but unless someone is willing to go to court and testify against them, that's about all we can do."

If there is a specific time and place where a speeding problem is occurring, let the sheriff's department know. "We'll try to ... put (an officer) out there with radar, but they'll be on call at the same time," he said.

Q: Now that Payson has a Big Brothers-Big Sisters program, how does somebody go about volunteering to become one?

A: The new office of Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Gila County is up and running and accepting volunteers, Program Director Bob Zimmerman said. Adults over 18 who want more information on becoming a friend to a single-parent child should call 468-8375 or stop by the Big Brothers-Big Sisters office at 814 N. Beeline, Suite D.

The program is careful to match volunteer and child based on similar interests and personalities. After the initial match, a case manager works with volunteer, child and parent to make the relationship a positive experience.

Zimmerman said becoming a Big Brother or Big Sister isn't all that time consuming, but can make a huge difference in the life of a child.

And there is always a need. "Past experience tells us we will quickly run out of volunteers and have children on a waiting list," Zimmerman said.

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