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The town of Star Valley will save more than $120,000 by contracting with Payson to provide law enforcement and animal control services. For the past 10 years, Star Valley has contracted with the Gila County Sheriff to provide those services.

Shortly after the Town of Star Valley was incorporated in 2005 it annexed the land east of Lion Springs to Preacher Canyon.

“At the Aug. 18th council meeting, the council carefully weighed the benefits and liabilities of the annexed land. After careful consideration, the council has decided to move forward with the de-annexation process,” said Tim Grier, Star Valley town manager.

He said there would be a special meeting at 4 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 25 for the first reading of the ordinance to de-annex the land.

Taking on DPS

In the council’s continuing efforts to improve the safety on S.R. 260, which goes through the heart of the community, it has considered every measure to slow traffic and make the state highway corridor safer.

“This has often been met with frustration as the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) dictates speed limits, placement of signs, whether or not to have a stoplight, round-about, pedestrian crossings, elk signs or any other changes on the highway that might reduce speeds and make the highway safer. The state legislature took away the town’s ability to use photo enforcement, which was an effective tool to slow speeds in the past,” Grier said.

The town has contacted the Arizona Department of Public Safety and asked it to provide patrol on the highway.

“The director of DPS has informed us that they will not patrol their state highway,” said Grier.

He said the mayor and council believe DPS has a duty to patrol the highway. “The highway patrol shall patrol the highways of the state, both day and night, and enforce the laws of the state. The highway patrol shall investigate accidents which occur upon the highways. Procure the names of drivers and descriptions and license numbers of the motor vehicles involved and transmit forthwith to the vehicle superintendent a copy of the report of the investigation,” according to state statute.

Grier said, “We believe the law is clear according to statute, review of Attorney General opinions on point, and case law. The Star Valley council has directed me as attorney for the Town of Star Valley to contact the director of DPS and inform him that we expect DPS to provide patrol and accident investigation as the law requires.”

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