By Vincent Manfredi
Ask not what Maricopa can do for you, but what you can do for Maricopa.
The city of Maricopa needs your help today. As you may have heard, state Rep. Bret Roberts is sponsoring a bill (HB2802) at the State Legislature to allocate $35 million to help build an overpass at Riggs and State Route 347. This intersection is in Maricopa County and sits on Gila River Indian Community land. It would be part of a full plan to widen SR 347, add an overpass or two and fund other fixes to save lives and time.
Propositions 416 and 417, the Pinal County Regional Transportation plan and tax passed by voters in 2018, may still be tied up in court a while, but this bill (HB2802), along with Prop 416 funds, gives us a huge start to compiling the money needed to fix SR 347. I continue to champion this cause for Maricopa at every turn, but no one has a louder voice than constituents.
Legislative District 11’s Rep. Mark Finchem and Sen. Vince Leach have already cosigned the bill (HB2802). Legislative District 8’s Rep. David Cook, Rep. T.J. Shope and Sen. Frank Pratt all support the bill. But for this bill to get a hearing in committee and a vote on the House floor, we need your help. One way to do that is to send emails to the lawmakers who will decide how the bill will progress through the House, and if it even gets a vote at all.
Please email Rep. Regina E. Cobb at RCobb@AZLEG.Gov. Cobb is the chairman of the Appropriations Committee. Let her know your 347 horror stories. A second person to reach out to is Rep. John Kavanagh, vice chairman of Appropriations, at JKavanagh@AZLEG.gov.
If you have a few extra minutes, letting Rep. Richard C. Andrade and Rep. Leo Biasiucci know how you feel regarding SR 347 and how they can help is important, too. They are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the Transportation Committee. They can be reached at RAndrade@AZLEG.gov and LBiasiucci@AZLEG.gov.
Finally, please visit AZLEG.gov/MemberRoster, pick some members of both political parties and ask them for their support. Please copy House Leader Rusty Bowers RBowers@AZLEG.gov, Rep. Roberts BRoberts@AZLEG.gov and me Vincent.Manfredi@Maricopa-AZ.gov on your emails.
If Maricopa can win Battle of the Burbs three times in a row, we can certainly write some emails that will achieve something that will have a lasting and long-term impact for Maricopa, right?
Vincent Manfredi is a Maricopa City Councilmember and minority owner of InMaricopa.