InMaricopa readers this week overwhelmingly said improvements to State Route 347 at Riggs Road are tax dollars well spent.  

More than 1,200 readers responded to this question: Our governor says the 347/Riggs Road overpass is “wasteful taxpayer spending.” Do you agree? 

Of those responding, 87% said they did not agree with Gov. Katie Hobbs, who recently cut $25 million for the Riggs Road overpass project at SR 347, which would eliminate the traffic light at the existing intersection that greatly bogs down and angers commuters. 

Hobbs said she faces a nearly $1 billion deficit and several transportation projects must be cut. 

Just 11% said they agreed with the governor’s decision. 

Jim Irving, a City of Maricopa Planning & Zoning commissioner and volunteer coordinator for Maricopa Unified School District, is one of those who sees both sides of the issue. While he supports funding for the overpass project, he said he understands Hobbs’ dilemma.

“The governor is forced by law to come up with balancing the budget,” Irving said, adding that that means she must make some difficult decisions to abide by state law.

Barely registering were the fewer than 2% of readers who were undecided. 

While most InMaricopa Facebook responders chastised the governor’s decision, there was a mix of reader opinions: 

  • Tammie Forrest: “Disagree, our governor is a cheating traitor. No one cares what she thinks. She had to be worried about securing the border instead of worrying about the 347 project.” 
  • Barry Vogel: “Apparently not enough people have died in that intersection.” 
  • Janice Nickeson-Chavarria: “Year after year after year after year after year…fatality after fatality after fatality, accident after accident after accident, and soon it will be a two-hour average daily commute on the 347 stretch between Maricopa and I-10. I have been hearing about this for 16 years, and nothing.” 
  • Kurt Harless: “Sorry gang, the fix for 347 is not an overpass at Riggs. Need Smith-Enke to connect to I-10 due east.”  
  • Michael Abraham: “I don’t like Hobbs and not happy she axed funding. However, accidents are the responsibility of the drivers.” 
  • Steven Durette:I leave at 5 [a.m.] and the stupids who can’t drive have been leaving earlier and jacking up my stress-free commute. Keep your poo box in the right lane if you’re going to stink everything up and drive 40 [miles per hour] in a 65. Learn to use your cruise control.” 
  • Bill Robertson: “That’s exactly part of the problem — too many commuters in the 6 to 7 a.m. window. Employers should be asked if start times can be staggered with earlier or later start times.”