Council Considers Transfer Of Fueling Operation

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A decision by the town council could allow transfer of the fixed-base operation fueling lease at Payson Municipal Airport from ACD owners Jim and Charlotte Garner to CAVU owners Bob and Stephanie Oswald.

Councilor Judy Buettner said she was not comfortable voting on the measure following last Thursday's executive session.

"We were told there were some legal concerns and I would have rather we postponed the vote to find out more about those (concerns)," she said.

Currently, ACD holds the fueling lease with the town.

According to Town Manager Fred Carpenter, "problems exist on both sides of the lease" and the town has been looking to re-negotiate with ACD.

Town officials say the legal department's qualms center on whether ACD was late in filing required papers.

Jim Garner denies ACD was ever late.

Streichman said he could not comment on the validity of ACD's lease but either he, Deputy Town Attorney Tim Wright, or both, would be at the April 22 meeting to provide legal opinions.

Prior to the town council's vote on the fueling lease agreement, Henley made a motion that was seconded by Reese to open negotiations with whomever ACD wanted to sell their business to -- which is CAVU.

Yesterday (Monday) morning, Charlotte Garner delivered to town officials the notice of the lease assignment to CAVU.

Town attorney Sam Steichman confirmed that the town had received the lease assignment from Charlotte Garner.

Jim Garner said that the assignment would be completed at the April 22 council meeting.

If the lease transfer is made successfully to CAVU from ACD, Buettner said she was confident CAVU would negotiate with the town in good faith.

The council voted 4-3 April 8 in favor of the fueling lease agreement, with Councilors Barbara Brewer, Buettner and Dick Wolfe dissenting.

Home Depot

The proposed Home Depot store soared over its greatest hurdle April 8 at the regular meeting of the Payson Town Council.

In a unanimous vote, the council approved a zone change request for a portion of the 19-plus acre site that will be used for the almost 105,000-square-foot home improvement store and an adjoining 35,000-square-foot outdoor garden center.

The zone change will allow Home Depot officials to continue to develop the site for the eventual construction of the store.

According to Murphy, the change in zoning was probably the toughest obstacle developers faced.

The concern town officials had about the new store, Murphy said, was possible excess use of irrigation water in the garden center.

At an earlier open house and at the council meeting, Home Depot officials were able to answer those concerns saying they would use conservation methods such as drip systems and xeriscape or low-water use landscaping plants.

The real estate company Home Depot is using also was able to alleviate concerns the council and residents had about traffic and noise at the intersection of Highway 87 and Houston Mesa Road where the store will be built.

About five acres at the store site will remain residential which will create a buffer between the store and the neighboring subdivision.

Also, the Realtor is in discussion with the Arizona Department of Transportation about putting a traffic control sign at the intersection.

The new store is scheduled to open in January of 2005.

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