Safety Team Reviews Star Valley Roads

Mayor Chuck Heron wants highway speed limit lowered to 45 mph on edge of community

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Spurred on by a desire to make his roads safer, Star Valley Mayor Chuck Heron's longtime quest is finally getting some action.

Representatives from the Arizona Department of Transportation, Gila County, Payson Police Department, American Automobile Association and Federal Highway Administration have coalesced to Star Valley for a three-day road safety inspection of sorts this week.

The road safety assessment team, which includes Heron and Streets and Roads Chair Richard Pinkerton, began its work yesterday, Monday and will wrap up tomorrow, Wednesday. The group will submit its findings to the ADOT director as well as the ADOT district engineer in Prescott.

Heron said the group would look at roads throughout the town as well as the possibility of lowering the speed limit east of town, where a recent accident claimed the life of two teenagers from the Valley.

A major concern for Heron is the lowering of the speed limit from 55 mph to 45 mph further east of town.

"We want it (lowered to 45 mph) two-tenths of a mile east of the county yard," he said.

Heron said ADOT Director Victor Mendez assured him "he'd get right on it." Mendez proved true to his word.

The group will likely wrap up its review Wednesday around noon, Star Valley Town Manager Vito Tedeschi said.

Members of the group include: Karla Petty, FHWA; Chuck Budinger and Richard Weeks, ADOT; Jerry Farr, Gila County construction manager; Tim Eiden, AAA; and representatives from Payson PD and the Diamond Star Fire District.

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