Maricopa continued attracting state leaders this week. 

Arizona Department of Transportation Director Jennifer Toth addressed Maricopa residents yesterday morning as part of the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce’s monthly breakfast series. 

While her monologue was short, Toth highlighted some of ADOT’s local and statewide projects, emphasizing the importance of maintaining existing roads and increasing capacity for better connection between communities.  

“Transportation is what connects all of us,” she said. “It’s what connects people, it’s what connects our communities. And as we continue to experience rapid growth,” we know that transportation network is vital to everyone.” 

She and ADOT Assistant Director Steve Bochen fielded questions about road maintenance and funding before preparing for an early trip back to Phoenix.  

That commute was a salient point for Arizona Rep. Teresa Martinez, the freshman GOP lawmaker in charge of Maricopa and also a breakfast guest.  

“The ADOT director is in charge of the entire state and she lives nowhere near Maricopa, so for her to come down to visit is extremely rare,” Martinez said. “It was a big deal and I’m glad she made that trip.” 

Part of that satisfaction comes from knowing several among ADOT’s top brass would experience traffic on State Route 347 for themselves.  

“There’s nothing like being stuck on the 347, waiting for your next appointment,” Martinez said. “I think unless you experience it yourself, you really don’t know how hard or how congested it really is. I’m thrilled they came, but I’m also thrilled they’re going to see it and experience it firsthand.”