Sahuarita Snippets / Green Valley Council Tellex

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Sahuarita Snippets / Green Valley Council Tellex is an opt-in subscription to our monthly newsletter published the first of each month by Gil Lusk, with permission of the QCPOA. The publication contains information about the town of Sahuarita and the Green Valley Council. It is for residents and long-term renters (6-months+) in Quail Creek.

December 2018

How did it get so late so soon? Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?
~Dr. Seuss ~

Rather than late, it seems more appropriate every year to ask, “How did it get so early so soon?”. This year Christmas came in October as stores were already decked out for the holiday, before Halloween. Perhaps next year the most popular costume for Halloween will be a Santa suit, or a crazed Santa’s helper who has been overworked for too many centuries.


Well, why don’t we begin with a new restaurant that is coming to town. Talk says it’s a real hot spot, beautiful to see and with a nice menu. It may have opened already but its spot-on for the Christmas Holidays. I think it’s going to be called The Grill.

The Green Valley News had a nice article on Sunday as to the massive shortage of construction workers in southern Arizona and its part in the delayed opening of the Grill and other construction sites in the valley. Also, some appropriate information about the cause of the shortages and outlook for the future.

With the destruction of pecan trees in Georgia, by the hurricanes, it might be good, if you use a lot of pecans for the holiday season, to shop early. Not sure when, but the price of pecans is going to be rising, certainly in 2019 if not before. FICO, our local pecan company, is expecting a great harvest this year which will be great for them. The new building being erected at FICO, along Sahuarita Road, is a refrigerated storage facility for the pecans. Their timing for its construction could not have been better given events in orchards elsewhere. Dick and Nan Walden and their family run a great operation as owners of the orchards. They remain, as they have since the 1940’s, great neighbors and friends of our communities, both Sahuarita and Green Valley.

As you know by now, Propositions 469 and 470 were defeated, in the voting. Copper Point development was voted down and the change of boundary for the town Treatment Plant was also defeated. Voting in Quail Creek had 3250 ballots cast early and 487 votes cast at the polls. Proposition 469 garnered 1,921 yes votes and 1,223 no votes in early voting and 225 yes and 240 no votes at the polls. Proposition 469 total votes were 6,105 yes and 6,377 no votes. Proposition 470 garnered 1,864 yes votes and 1,211 no votes in early voting and 211 yes votes and 247 no votes at the polls. Total votes for Proposition 470 were 6,117 yes and 6,314 no. Neither of the Propositions would nor will affect Quail Creek.

Home construction in Sahuarita remains strong and resales in Green Valley are also strong in the older neighborhoods with few properties for sale and those that are go quickly with few exceptions.

Sahuarita will be having meetings with the new Library designers in the next month to discuss needs, wants and desires for the new facility. Planning is moving forward for 2019 and 2020. Site will be on Sahuarita Road, east of Fry’s gas station on the old ball field.

JPar and Community Water are now on schedule with FICO to begin laying down CAP water service lines out to Nogales Highway along Pima Mine Road beginning in early 2019. Those lines will separate when they reach Nogales Highway with one line going under Nogales to the orchards and one line (JPar and Community Water) coming down the west side of Nogales Highway to the intersection with Old Nogales and then down Old Nogales to the four settlement ponds just north of our park on Old Nogales. The new section of highway on Nogales Highway, the 45 mph section north and south of Sahuarita Road, already has the pipeline installed.

For new residents, CAP stands for the Central Arizona Project, which brings water to central Arizona from the Colorado River by treaty with other states and Mexico. Also, an acre foot of water is the amount of water,12 inches, required to cover one acre of ground. Both the FICO and JPar water lines will carry, when operational, between 3 and 5 thousand acre feet of water a year.

Also, for new residents, approximately 82% of Arizona is owned by the Federal and State government and the Indian Nations. The remaining 18% is what we are living on, privately owned land. 12.7% of Arizona is owned by the Arizona State Land Department and that percentage can eventually be sold to private buyers in support of Arizona schools. That will not be happening quickly.

With the defeat of Proposition 463, a bond package for Pima County roads, we can be happy that the roads in Sahuarita are in good shape. The County will be seeking other methods to deal with roads but that is going to be a mixed bag and very hard to deal with. Only time will tell what they come up with, but something has to be done.

The State Legislature will be working on many issues in the coming session. Hard to know what will make it through and what will die on the vine. Discussions will continue in regard to raising the gas tax, that is pretty much a sure thing (the discussion). Another item that will be explored again is taxation of items purchased on the internet with no sales tax. If enacted, the State will almost surely require that the tax levied at the point of sale by the selling company be accounted for and returned to the State. This is going on for the following reason.

“On June 21, 2018, the United States Supreme Court fundamentally changed the rules for collection of sales tax by Internet-based retailers. In its decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair Inc., the Court effectively stated that individual states can require online sellers to collect state sales tax on their sales. This ruling overturns the Court’s 1992 decision in Quill Corporation v. North Dakota. The Quill case prohibited states from requiring a business to collect sales tax unless the business had a physical presence in the state.”

Madera Highlands would like to establish a Quiet Zone for the railroad along their development, because of the closeness of the homes to the railroad and the train’s use of horns as they go by. This will be a difficult and timely process. Recently, Benson, Arizona has applied for a Quiet Zone on the tracks that run through the town, tracks that receive a great amount of daily traffic. One of their early meetings, to get things started, was with representatives of the following groups; Federal Railroad Administration, Arizona Corp. Commission, Union Pacific, Cochise County, Benson and Arizona Department of Transportation. Yes, their application is more difficult and involved than the one at Madera Highlands, but it does involve quite a bit of work just to get started. 

Chuy’s Mesquite Broiler is still coming to Sahuarita. Problem is that their Mesquite Broilers use propane gas and that is taking more time for construction and approval. There are a few other things twisting in the wind but not ready for prime time as discussions are still on-going.

For those retiree’s who are tired of retire, here’s a small business idea for you. The old airstrip used for bombing runs in the 1950’s is still visible, running from Sahuarita Road up to the Walden Grove High School. Not sure of ownership, but what about having a 50 to 100 yard portion of that airway being put back in use for a business supporting drone traffic and model airplane flyers. Lots of folks fly model planes and drones are the coming thing. Could be a fun business with lots of ways to attract business. You might have a one of a kind business in Sahuarita and make a lot of enthusiasts very happy. Might be of interest to a club for their own use.

Speaking of business, Tubac is on the upside with at least two major projects coming into focus. A major shopping center at the Tubac exit of I-19, west of the interstate, on some 80 plus acres and a new conference center and resort north of Tubac. My understanding is that at least one is fully funded, and both are working with Santa Cruz County for permits. Might be a couple of years or might not happen at all, but it sounds like they are going forward at this time.

In conclusion, please have a safe and wonderful Christmas, Happy Hanukkah or Happy Holiday with your family and friends here in Quail Creek and wherever email or a stamp can reach.

December 2018

~ Charles Dickens ~
Never interfere with a great author’s insight but it would be good to allow for us older folks to belong in that one-half so welcome. We do have so many more happy associations to reflect and act upon. So how the Dickens can we say that?


Things are certainly continuing to improve at the newly named Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital in Green Valley under the leadership of a new CEO, Kelly Adams and a new ownership. It’s a great addition to the medical services available in Green Valley and Sahuarita. New residents should at least take a drive down and walk around a bit, get some information for your home.

We have a new restaurant coming to Green Valley, now being remodeled. The old Lavender’s French Restaurant at the Green Valley Country Club just off N Abrego Drive on Paseo De Golf is being reopened as an Italian Restaurant. Work is on-going so not sure of details for opening or menu. The restaurant, like the Grill, is open to the public.

The new park being formed in Green Valley from the old Canoa Hills Golf Course is still without a name and the deed has yet to be finalized due to easements and boundary line corrections. Not to worry as the park is coming and things continue to come together under the direction of the Pima County Flood Control District Director, Suzanne Shields. As the Chair of a Committee to create a Park Friends Group, we will soon be coming out to the public with information about the Friends Group and the things that it will or might be doing to assist the park. 

The old Clubhouse and Restaurant building for the gold course and its parking lot are still on the market for sale and were not included in the donation of the 130 acre park. A number of non-profit groups have looked at the building but have not bought due to the amount of maintenance the building will require. An issue yet to be resolved but a lease will probably be sought of the parking lot for use with the park.

Interest in the park by the 70 plus home owner associations in Green Valley and the general public is strong and there will be demand for all that the park offers.

After the first of the year there will be a new Green Valley Council Seminar being put on for residents of Green Valley who are new owners or who still do not understand how the town functions. The seminar will last for five sessions, all on Mondays from 8:30 to 4 PM beginning January 14th.

In addition, an OLLI program will address the past, present and future of Green Valley on four Fridays beginning February 8th, all just ninety minute sessions. My role will be as host for the first group and presenter for the OLLI program.

Green Valley is unincorporated and must rely on funds from Pima County to support the operations of the Green Valley Council, along with memberships from HOA’s. The Pima County Commissioners will be meeting in early December to decide on the $75,000 provided to Green Valley Council for its work.

The Green Valley Board of Representatives, all voting members for actions taken by the Council, is made up of 70 HOA Members and meets every month with the Green Valley Council Executive Committee. Our elected Pima County representative from the County Commission is Steve Cristy.

For those of you thinking of driving down to Mexico over the next month, just don’t. Confusion rains at all border crossings with the current situation still unresolved which is one issue which greatly affects another issue, reentry into the United States. December is a major travel month for Mexican citizens living in the United States returning to Mexico for Christmas with their families and for Citizens in Mexico to come north shopping for Christmas.

The current wait time for cars waiting to cross back into the United States varies from four to six hours and will vary radically given actions by US Customs and the Border Patrol. There are fourteen gates for cars and trucks at Mariposa Crossing, but the agencies only have enough employees to staff about four ergo huge wait times and long lines, especially in December. We love Mexico and go every chance we have, but there are times that it just doesn’t make sense due to conditions for reentry or problems right at the border. We continue to hope for Mexican airlines to return to Tucson so that flights to Hermosillo can be taken to connect with all Mexico air and bus transportation. Regardless, Phoenix offers flights direct to Mexico and several locations. Several airlines including Aeromexico, Delta, Spirit and Volaris.

Several years ago, you flew from Tucson to Dallas/FW and then to Mexico. It was really handy. Didn’t intend to become a travel agent this month but words can take me just about any place.

Starting January 1st, the Green Valley Council will have a new Chair. Don Weaver is resigning from the post where he has done excellent work over the past several years. He will still be involved as the Past Chair, for another couple of years so his knowledge and expertise will remain available to the Council. Replacing him will be the equally well qualified Vice-Chair, Thao Tiedt. It will be a very smooth transition.

Jeff Krueger, POA Board Member, represents Quail Creek on the Green Valley Council Board of Representatives and is doing a fine job as our representative. Being on our Board allows him to have firsthand knowledge of Green Valley issues and concerns while keeping our Board apprised of things as well as the residents.

Down to the end, Sahuarita has a public holiday celebration at Town Hall on Saturday, December 15th at 6 PM if you would like to come to the event. Always a lot of fun. Another nice event would be dinner at our new Grill followed by a tour of the region for festive and lovely holiday lights and scenes.

Thanks for reading and for your many well wishes. Your household might celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah or Happy Holidays but whatever it is just remember to have a safe and joyous Holiday and that you live in a nation that permits diversity of belief and spirit.
Gil Lusk
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee
Green Valley Council-Foundation

November 2018

True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost,
but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.

~ Arthur Ashe ~
November, always an interesting month.  Emerging as it does from Halloween, evolving into a season of faith.  Celebrating those who have preserved and continue to preserve our nation and our freedoms and remembering, with Thanks, the values and strengths of our family going forward.  A month in which time and seasons change and, yes, always an interesting month living with ying and yang.
With pomp and circumstance the season of elections is about to pass.  Anyone who regrets this passing, please stand up.  Thankfully, we, the unelected can return to doing business with our neighbors and communities.  All that can be asked is please vote, think of your ballot as an adios card for all the pomp.
So far, this season has been a unique experience, a wet season.  Even those who have lived in this area for decades cannot remember a September and October like the last two.  For at least the last two decades this part of Arizona has been in a drought, lucky to get close to an average rainfall of about eleven to fourteen plus inches.  (Tucson’s average is about eleven inches while the average for Green Valley is just over fourteen inches.)  You could say, justifiably, that the last two months have seen more rain and cloud cover than usual, including rain and the unfortunate flood damage in Amado. 
Affects of the weather, good or bad, usually pass into our economy.  The tremendous rainfalls in the southeast will affect prices on certain commodities such as fruits, vegetables and pecans.  In Arizona, the unusual rain is in the process of harming fields of cotton ready to be harvested.  But, on the other hand, depending on where the rain fell, it could be a good year for cattle and the grasslands. 
We had a little “sneaker” pop up in the news unbeknownst to the Town and most everybody.  Seems like Freeport is working with the Phoenix Museum and others to establish a game park on 1,500 of their acres west of the interstate.  Sounds like a firm conviction from the players with planning in the next stage.  Now don’t get your binocs out just yet as the project will take several years to put on the ground.  Still, quite a deal for Sahuarita and Green Valley.  Let’s hope it makes it to the ribbon cutting.
Things are moving ahead for the four ponds to be built by JPar and Community Water.  Will be just north of the site for the Verizon Tower on the west side of Old Nogales.  Purchase of the State Land involved is going forward which means that the ponds might be able to be open for bird watching.  If the ponds were on State Land as a lease, the ponds would be behind fences and locked.  At least now there is a chance to have more of a park setting, if we can reach agreements in the future with the company.
Cathy’s Sew and Vac has their grand opening on November 1. The ceremony is at 11 AM on the 1st, if you like ribbons.
Design has been agreed upon for the SAMTEC building for new technology companies.  The new hospital is currently in negotiations for their site plan and building design, which will be completed soon. 
Some folks asked about the construction on I-19 at Pima Mine Road and what was going on there, given the temporary nature of things.  The work has nothing to do with the pipe lines being installed for new Central Arizona Project water coming to FICO and JPar.  The glitch seems to be with the Department of Highways and I still don’t have an answer for that.
Haven’t really taken the time to really welcome, with a grand Huzzah, La Posada into the Sahuarita Community.  They are such a positive addition to our community and their residents bring another source of extensive and important careers to the fold.  They have some plans for additional work which will add even greater value to the community.  One of the goals going forward is to assure that Sahuarita remains one community, not a north and south split by Nogales Highway.  It’s easy to think of demographics between Rancho Sahuarita and Quail Creek, La Posada and Madera Highlands but that denotes the strength of our community, one community.  We may have different zip codes, but that is a blip.  We are a strong community because of our demographics and this will only increase in value as go forward.
Not to beat an undead horse, but one of the reasons behind the Quail Creek road extension to the commercial zone is that it links our residents with Sahuarita, directly, not indirectly, increasing the feeling of one Sahuarita.
The town is aware of the traffic backups occurring at the intersection of Continental Road and White House Canyon Road.  Our commitment to La Posada for a fix is moving forward and there will be a light at the intersection sometime next year.  Sorry, but it takes time to plan, get approvals and build.  All I know for sure is that it will be a nice intersection when the work is completed.
If Pima County Proposition 463 has been passed, you will see a fair amount of attention being paid to roads at this end of the county, particularly in Green Valley.  But it would also mean a lot for Sahuarita Road from the boundary of Sahuarita to Houghton Road, out east.  We have found that putting dirty clothes in a metal tub with a cover and driving out Sahuarita to the east is better than most clothes washers.
A new 80 plus acre retail center is being planned for Tubac on the west side of I-19 at the main Tubac exit, exit 34.  Will start with a new gas station complex and grow from there, according to information received.   Apparently being planned as an upscale center to fit with the general concept of Tubac.  Funding apparently exists so this might occur sometime after 2019 or 2020.
The Sahuarita budget is benefitting from the new stores in town, increasing new home sales and the addition of new residents in all sectors.  The town remains in good financial condition, with improvements planned and coming to add value for the work of the town.
Knowing that many of you have concerns about water and would like some information on that as well as the upcoming census, we had an excellent report given at the last Council meeting and wanted to provide that to you for your information.  This is the site of the full agenda for that meeting.
The information noted begins on page 193 and ends on 219.  It is a combination of text, PowerPoint and graphics.  The report on water is not all inclusive but will give you some local information and hints as to how water is being addressed within the agencies working on the issue.

November 2018

I have come to regard November as the older, harder man's October.
I appreciate the early darkness and cooler temperatures.
It puts my mind in a different place than October.
It is a month for a quieter, slightly more subdued celebration of summer's death as winter tightens its grip.

~ Henry Rollins ~

This month’s quote is to remind all the residents who have fled from the north, just what they are missing, here in a softer man’s environment.  We love those stories of ice dams, black ice, frozen pipes and engine heaters but, and more importantly, we love the fact that you are here to tell us those stories.

As you drive along La Canada in Green Valley, have you ever noticed the nice plantings in the islands along the way?  Who takes care of those plantings?  Actually, it’s a combination of three groups, working as a team.  There is the County that does the maintenance, the Green Valley Fire District that maintains the water cisterns on the islands and the planners who design and oversee the process, a part of the Median Green Committee.  Are you a plant person, do you love setting out a garden and would you be comfortable working with the county and fire district?  The Median Green group is losing its current Chair and spark plug to retirement and they could use another person to come aboard and continue the work.  If you have an interest, please call the Green Valley Council office and they will put you in touch with the right folks.  Remember, it’s not a maintenance job, it’s to follow up and be sure that things are happening.

If Proposition 463 is passed you will hear a cheer coming across the river as the town is in real need of improvement off its roads.  The County, because of road conditions has directed the use of the funds, if approved, to roads that are in failing or poor condition, not new roads and infrastructure. 

The Green Valley Council is announcing a new program for the disposal of hazardous waste.  Rather than have a one or two day collection program they have arranged with the Sahuarita Waste Transfer Station at the end of La Canada, near Sahuarita Road to collect hazardous waste.  When entering the land fill there is a station to the right which is set up to collect hazardous waste on a regular basis.

For new residents to the area, the annual Green Valley Fashion Show will be coming to the Quail Creek Ballroom in the third week of February.  This is a wildly popular event, limited hyperbole there, for the ladies.  Plan ahead as the Ballroom only holds so many people.  Planning is already beginning to take shape.

The newly named Green Valley Hospital, now the Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital, had a nice open house last week with tours and guests.  The hospital is now with a management group that is experienced with operation of hospitals and a new CEO, Kelly Adams, who has been doing this kind of work for a long time.  Looks like a solid program is being put together at the “NEW” hospital.

Just for information sake, there are two of us from Quail Creek that interface with the Green Valley Council on a regular basis.  Jeff Krueger, POA Board Member, represents Quail Creek as a voting member of the Board of Representatives which meets monthly.  Gil Lusk is a voting member of the Green Valley Council’s Executive Committee, is a member of the GVC-Foundations Board and participates in the overall management of the Council and its programs.  There have been some questions as to how we interface with the Council thus, this paragraph.

The Green Valley / Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce under the guidance of President and CEO Joseph Erceg is making excellent progress in addressing the needs of Green Valley and Sahuarita, especially within the areas of regional relationships and economic development.  Their revamped web site is receiving great response as are working relationships with Chambers along I-19 and with Tucson for cooperative programs and endeavors.  Saving the best for last, it’s a pleasure to also note that Joe lives in Quail Creek and both the Chamber and Council bring their share of meetings and activities to Quail Creek.  Thanks to our ballroom, Chef and food service operations.

Resale of homes in Green Valley and Sahuarita remains strong in comparison to past years.  The area also continues to gain national recognition for a place to live and retire.  Rental properties also do well as people come to determine if they would like to live here or just escape from a different climate.

So, welcome back everyone and thanks to all our permanent residents who make this such a special place to live.  See you next month.

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee
GVC-Foundation Board

October 2018

I didn't realize it was October until I saw the Chicago Cubs choking. 
~ Jay Leno ~

Before you Cubbies start choking, it’s always nice to see someone who must now live with a bad quote. For those mid-westerners out there, lets hope that Jay is again wrong this year. Rare events like this should be celebrated.


We are close to a month of continued celebration! November, just around the corner, will see our streets and airwaves finally cleaned. Hallalujha, the truth is beginning to march on. To see and hear the last of the campaign signs and campaign attack ads will indeed be refreshing. Could we actually drive down a road in November and see actual weeds and desert? What a treat.

As for propositions, everyone should have received a booklet by now regarding those State Propositions being voted upon. Please read the material carefully, very carefully, before deciding how to vote. In all of these propositions, the important thing is not whether you vote yes or no, the most important thing is that you vote. Please vote. 

The booklet deals only with state initiatives, not Pima County or Sahuarita propositions. Proposition 463 is a County Proposition regarding issuance of bonds for county road repairs. The Green Valley Council has voted in favor of the bill as Green Valley roads are generally in poor condition and the money from the bond would be spent on failing and poor roads. It can be found on the internet and should be studied before voting.

Propositions important to Sahuarita are numbers 469 and 470. How each of you votes is of course up to you. It should be noted that the Sahuarita Town Council voted unanimously in favor of implementing the issues represented in the two propositions. Neither of these propositions will affect Quail Creek, as they pertain to actions affecting only Rancho Sahuarita, regardless of what you may hear. 

Here is the current list of business development in Sahuarita, just to keep you up to date. Let’s start with a general statement about the large increases the town is seeing in sales and construction taxes in this calendar year. FY-19 which began on July 1st, should be an excellent year for additional funds being collected. FY-19, as noted before, is going to be an extremely busy year for Sahuarita.

  • Brake Masters - Under Construction by Denny’s.
  • Chuy’s Broiler - Next to Ashley’s Furniture. Approved / waiting.
  • Culver’s - Old Credit Union location. Approved / waiting. Old credit union will be demolished.
  • Dutch Bros. Coffee - Next to Culver’s east side. Approved / waiting.
  • Cathey’s Sew and Vac - Next to Petco. Finished and in business.
  • Sushi place - Approved. Urgent Care stores by Safeway on Duval.
  • Starbucks - Next to Circle K by Sprouts. Approved / waiting.
  • County Library - By Fry’s Gas and Sahuarita School. In process.
  • New Lutheran Church - In process / vacant land east of Town Hall.
  • Samtec Tech. Center - Town of Sahuarita. Construction/plans review. Corner of W. Sahuarita and S. La Canada @I-19
  • New Verizon store - The Crossing Center. Approved and under construction.
  • Northwest Hospital - Approved. Construction/plans review
  • Verizon Tower - Final submittal for construction was finally sent in. It will be quickly approved, and this should clear the way for construction in the near future.
Extension of Quail Crossing Blvd. is going forward in segments. Construction planning is being done in this fiscal year. Hopefully by next fiscal year, FY-20, we will have received our 404 clearance from the Corps of Engineers for the river crossing and completed discussions with the Union Pacific RR. This should have the project under way at the end of FY-21 for completion in late 2021 or early 2022.


The US Army is working on disposal of bomb parts and materials from State Land east of Walden Grove High School. The lands were used for a bombing range in the 1940’s and 50’s and have yet to be cleared of possible hazards. This land is included in the approved annexation plans for Sahuarita and clearance is important. Plans are to completely search the lands, remove any items found and then restore the disturbed landscape. I will be working as part of the group working on this project for the Town of Sahuarita.

Recent flood waters in the Santa Cruz River may have provided some interesting information that could help with future understandings of flood plains. The rains that damaged property in Amado were classed as a 500 year flood event, at least by the media. When the flood waters reached Green Valley, we were fortunate to see that the river basically stayed within the river banks with little outflow. The river was high and running fast, but within the river channel. Even if it was a localized 500 year flood event, the fact that there was little overflow was a good sign.

Will be interesting to see what the folks who track all this eventually have to say. The new flood plain maps just being introduced show the effects of a 500 year flood extending well away from the river. Even the storm that gave us a 4” rainfall within a short time was not a major flood impact to this area. Quail Creek remains at a good elevation for future flood events whatever is found out about the recent rains. That wonderful 4” rainfall, whether more or less, gave our area of the state an above average monsoon, which was needed. Annual rainfall well above 11” for the year to date.

Sahuarita Road goes all the way east to the Sonoita Highway, Highway 83. Just mentioning this as some folks have been wondering why Sahuarita isn’t taking care of the road east of Walden School. The road is named for the town and someday we hope to extend out as far as Houghton Road, but right now the Town of Sahuarita only maintains the road out to Country Club Road, which is the end of our current town boundary. The County is responsible for the road from there on east.

La Posada has been a wonderful addition to the town and everyone continues to be excited and pleased to have them in our community. They too are looking at some new future plans but that will be for a future time when things are further along.

The Pecan orchards have been enjoying the recent rains but not sure I can say the same thing for their field hands who have to keep all those new three foot weeds and grasses cut. It was a massive undertaking, but they have won out for the time being. FICO, the Farmers Investment Company, is just finishing up construction work on a new structure by their store. I believe it’s a new cold storage facility for their still growing business.

The Sahuarita Town Council is now over the elections and the new council will take over in early November. Re-elected in August were Mayor Murphy and Kara Egbert and newly elected was Dalia Zimmerman. They will join the existing Council Members, Bill Bracco, Melissa Hicks, Lynn Skelton and Gil Lusk.

I would like to encourage everyone to log on to the new town website, it has a great amount of information and is better organized and arranged. It also has some nice pictures. 

Sahuarita has been talking about and planning a new Sahuarita District for the town and there will be an informational meeting on Oct. 4th from 5:00 to 6:30 PM in Town Hall. It will be a first step in eventually joining the two sections of Sahuarita together into a more unified town; Duval Mine Road and Sahuarita Road. It will be years before the District is fully realized but we need to begin thinking about this project now as it will require time and outside investment to complete.

I hope that you can find time to attend the meeting and this web site might be a teaser to get your interest up. 

Just recently there was a movie night down at the Quail Creek-Veterans Memorial Park put on by the town and it wasn’t really announced here in Quail Creek, to my knowledge. If it was, a lot of folks didn’t see it. The town has been made aware of this and, as a result the Snippets might have a few more announcements in coming editions. There are many programs put on by the town and the parks and recreation crew with many of them having potential interest for residents.

For the young at heart and those with mischief still attached to their DNA here is a program that might just do, for a night out. Followed by a more somber set of events for the still at heart.


October 2018

O hushed October morning mild Begin the hours of this day slow. Make the day seem to us less brief.
~ Robert Frost ~

Climate change must be starting to affect the upper mid-west and north-west. It’s not October and we already see a large increase in out of state vehicles and RV’s. We should probably pass the word that things are changing down here as well. Shops, stores and restaurants all welcome you back to your retreat, your home in the Green Valley/Sahuarita area.


At our last Green Valley Council Board of Representatives meeting in September, County Administrator Chuck Huckleberry addressed the group of 70 HOA representatives talking about the upcoming election and Pima County Proposition 463, a bond for road repairs in the County. At the end of his presentation the Council President, Don Weaver, called for a motion regarding the proposition. A motion from the floor, in favor of Proposition 463, was passed, unanimously by the HOA representatives present.

Progress continues to be made in favor of an additional 24 pickleball courts in Green Valley, supported by GVR. Nothing is final yet and plans and needs are still being discussed but there is progress.

The new park in Green Valley is still coming together. It will be a public park managed by the Pima County Flood Control District. Public meetings are being scheduled for November and December to orient residents in regard to the new Friends group for the park and plans going forward into the first of the year from the Flood Control District.

There is a lot of work and discussion going on in regard to bringing a major loop down from Tucson’s El Tour bike day as well as a similar event for the Green Valley / Sahuarita complex. Would not begin until at least next year, but lots of enthusiasm.

Rancho Resort in Sahuarita is apparently giving consideration to joining the Green Valley Council program as an affiliate member.

The Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital will be having a grand reopening on October 23rd from 4 to 6 PM This is the former Green Valley Hospital. Opportunities to meet the hospital staff, tour the hospital, learn about services and have some light refreshments. Kelly H. Adams, the new CEO of the Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital would like to meet you.

On Thursday, October 11, 9 AM to noon, there will be a Business Expo open to the public going on at the GVR West Center, behind Safeway in Green Valley. Free admission and an opportunity to meet many of the Green Valley Council’s preferred vendor program.

At this time, it isn’t looking good for the Cow Palace restaurant in Amado damaged by the recent flood. The age of the structure, nature of the damage and whether or not insurance will cover are the main obstacles. Due to water being in the walls and the age, the restaurant would almost surely have to be demolished and rebuilt.

I understand that the Longhorn Grill in Amado is being taken over by the owner of Twist and Shout and the 19th Hole restaurant. He plans to open a steak house at that location according to my information.

The Council is continuing to work with Arizona State University about putting a plan together for Green Valley in regard to economic development and the future. Much of this work is in cooperation and coordination with the Green Valley/Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce.

It should also be noted that Green Valley receives a great deal of support from Freeport-Mc MoRan and the grants awarded for critical things in the town. 

Think that about brings things to a close. Have a great October and welcome back to all our winter residents. We appreciate you all very much.

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee
GVC-Foundation Board                         

September 2018

My favorite poem is the one that starts 'Thirty days hath September' because it actually tells you something.
~ Groucho Marx ~

 Looks like September is going to be a rough month, with really bitter cold days and nights. Farmer’s Almanac is calling September this year, the month of terrible blizzards. Wonder how Dairy Queen will do with all those blizzards.

Don’t want to get ahead of myself here but the carniceria on Esperanza in Green Valley looks like it is getting close to opening. Not to be outdone, there is a sushi shop being opened by Safeway on Duval Mine, no date yet. Koi will not be on the menu.

As you may recall, some months ago I noted that the theater in town was for sale. That issue is now resolved. The current owners, who are retiring, have decided to keep the theater and, with that thought, have taken out a loan to do some work over there. So, all you twice a weekers, enjoy, enjoy.

The other night at Bingo, I noted that Culver’s was now confirmed and is coming. Was surprised to see that my Texas upbringing is still with me. Had several folks come up in the break just really excited about the news that Kohl’s was coming to town. Yes, it would be great, but Culver’s it is.

This was primary election week, the 28th. If results are in I will try to add them to this Snippet, in so far as the Sahuarita Town Council voting goes. Election results are in and it appears that Tom Murphy and Kara Egbert have been re-elected and Dalia Zimmerman has been elected for the third vacancy. Terms are for four years.

Last week I was in Phoenix from the 22nd to the 25th at the Arizona League of Cities and Towns Annual Meeting. The following snippets are from that meeting.

Arizona and the US Department of Transportation were both very upbeat in regard to funds that are coming from both places to deal with road issues in Arizona. Target dates for construction are 2021 and 2022. Initial primary focus will be on roads that are failing in the State. Location for the Sonoran Corridor, link between I-19 and I-10, has apparently been narrowed to two locations as a start point on I-19; Pima Mine Road and El Toro Road, both in Sahuarita. El Toro is the towns preferred route as it will provide two major feeders from the interstate thru Sahuarita and our eastern annexation. Not decided and still a future project. Very important decision for the future growth of the town. The road, linking I-19 with the Mariposa Border Crossing, highway 189 in Nogales, will be getting a major upgrade in the near future and is a high priority.

Private Public partnerships have not entered the picture yet, nor have toll roads. At some point the one rail corridor from Mexico to Arizona (our line) is also going to need something in the future or at least the addition of another line in Cochise County. First, however, is how to deal with the rail line running through downtown Nogales.

The use of drones is on the mind of many organizations and groups. It’s future growth still somewhat undefined and unregulated. Benson airport is making headway in this field as the place for testing and study of drone vehicles.

Current or average timeframe for placement of an economic development project on-site and open is from sixteen months to three years. This is dependent on efficiency and organization of receiving State, County or town. Sahuarita, at the present time, is doing well in this regard remembering that time begins once a project is agreed to and signed on to by a developer. Funded projects, like Northwest Hospital which is scheduled to open in late 2019, can be built and opened in two years or less.

Lots of discussion about the “New Paradigms” in economic development, such as Public/Private partnerships, collaboration, communication which are items already familiar to our area. Success of negotiations and deals with Mexico and Sonora were also talked about as we enter a new era of relations with Mexico. It was interesting that in their talks about new paradigms they failed to bring up one topic, which I was glad to bring up for them, and that is the Arizona State Lands Department. This is an agency that seems more inclined to resist new paradigms rather than work to create new ones.

During the last legislative session, a bill dealing with the Transitional Property Tax on Digital Goods failed to pass, but there will be another one coming in the next session with language yet to be determined.

This pertains to the collection of a sales tax on items bought and sold on the internet and don’t be confused by the term digital – it refers to just about anything you buy on the internet. Lots of details to work out, and Amazon is already working doing this. In the State, where is the tax assessed, at the point of sale or at the point of purchase? Since Amazon will have properties in Arizona, the tax, either point of sale or purchase, would come to the State for items bought by our citizens. But in other scenarios, if the point of purchase is in Kentucky, then the sales tax could accrue there. Arizona wants point of purchase for this reason. No real matter to us as we will just pay the tax on items purchased on the internet, but what does matter is that the tax revenue come to our state.

I know that your eyes are now closing, and you have an itch that must be scratched, but one more item, just to be sure you are fully relaxed.

Information on the 2020 Census of the United States. Yes, preparation is already started for collection and verification of the data. Coconino County is already hiring people. Arizona has been split into six districts for data collection and our point of reference will be Pima County. A three year process is unfolding. In 2018, each of six Counties must bring into existence a Complete Count Committee, in our case, the Pima Complete Count Committee with paid staff and personnel. There will be or is an office in Tucson. In 2019, that will be a year of informing and promoting residents of the state as to the importance of the census count and then in 2020, beginning on March 23rd, the process begins. On December 31st of 2020 the final and validated Census is given to the President of the United States. I assume the Census takes effect in 2021.

If interested in working with the census go to and look around, hiring is about to start for the folks who will be putting together name lists and other information in the community. The critical work deals with identifying all the residents so that contact can be made with them.

Every citizen on the census is worth $1,979.00 in dollars to help pay for any number of programs in the State. If a community undercounts its residents and misses say 300 people living in a town then think of it as a loss of 300 times $1,079.00 or about $527,000. It is also important this year as Arizona, with a normal count, should be adding one more congressional representative to Congress.

In 2020 the count will be taken using three methods; internet, telephone and paper. So, door knocking will be greatly reduced and allow for a more accurate census. Forms themselves will require less information to make people more comfortable in responding.
For part time residents and renters. If you live in this area for six months and one day, then you can enroll as a resident of this area.

One large item for Sahuarita, any annexation not completed by December of 2019 cannot be included in the 2020 census for the town. La Posada will obviously count in the town census, bringing 700 new residents into our community and with it, additional revenue for the town.

Under the heading of “Don’t get too excited” I saw a new gate installed in the fence about where entrance might go for a Verizon tower. There is no word on this otherwise and the gate could be for other uses. For those with Verizon’s program called “hit or miss” or “Please drop by again” perhaps it is a sign of hope to come.

September 2018

Retirement at sixty-five is ridiculous. When I was sixty-five I still had pimples.
~ George Burns ~

One of the most important elements for Green Valley will be the 2020 Census as the number of residents there will be an important consideration in its future.

Another important item will be the availability of funds for improving roads because, as noted, roads in Green Valley are rated as more than 60% in poor or failing condition.

We are still waiting for the County to finish surveys and negotiations on easements at the old Canoa Hills Golf Course, now Green Valley’s new park. As we are in the process of forming a Friends group for the park the sooner we can have things settled the sooner we can start thinking of the land as a park and begin working on it. Looks like it will be after the first of the year at this point.

It’s interesting to hear folks in Green Valley that are concerned about growth of the town and the loss of the unique town culture and standing as an active adult community. One of the largest factors in control of growth in the town is the fact that very little land remains within the town boundary for development of any kind. Then too, there is the fact that the town is a special place with special people who understand and recognize the importance of where they live. Even so, planning is an important element to protect the uniqueness of the town because in the future as I-19 and connections to Mexico grow there will be pressures applied on the town to change and “modernize” from outside financial resources. Planning now and establishing a strategy for the future is not a waste of time and will work to the advantage of the town.

Homes for sale are an endangered species in Green Valley- there just aren’t that many left on the market. Great for sellers and nerve racking for buyers.

The Green Valley Council Executive Committee is urging Green Valley Recreation and their Foundation to come together to resolve issues pertaining to the funding and construction of additional pickleball courts in Green Valley.

Just click on Google to view the new website for Green Valley and please remember that we are always happy to have residents of Quail Creek adding valuable input on the Committees of the Council.

There was some discussion in Phoenix about the future possibility of contracting Interstate rest areas to local firms. Would not be surprised to see that come forward in a few years or less.
Thank you as usual for reading. A little quiet this month but things will be picking up in October. Have a safe month and take care.

Gil Lusk

Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee
GVC Foundation Board


August 2018

"Why are the desert blooms that spring to life after a monsoon so magnificent? The answer is – their impermanence. The lush growth and blooming flowers do not last very long here in the desert, and this new growth only happens once a year. If this growth was never-ending, we would soon take it for granted. Likewise, our human lives. What makes them so special and unique? Our fleeting impermanence." 

~ Alaric Hutchinson, Living Peace ~

"In case you missed it, this week the Arizona Commerce Authority unveiled the Arizona Assets Map, an interactive tool that identifies statewide resources across 27 different categories, including certified development sites, foreign trade zones, Opportunity Zones, land ownership, startup resources and community profiles with demographics" An interesting and fun site, if you would like to find answers to some questions you might have about Arizona.

"It will be open in July (June 2017)! They say the first of the year! No, I heard it will be February. The person, in the store next to it, said it was definitely going to be July 4th. Yeah, but, they are still advertising for employees." "Well, I'm here to tell ya pilgrim (John Wayne) it's gonna be the first, no the third, of August." OK, let's just hope that it finally opens sometime in early August – and if you don't know that this is the story of the Dairy Queen opening, then you just moved in, so welcome to Quail Creek!

However, we can say that MOD Pizza is now open in the Crossing center, enjoying crowds of folks who say that it is an excellent choice for pizza and salads, but it is a little acoustically impaired.

Was at a meeting tonight (7/25) and a fellow council member announced that Culver's and Dutch Brother's Drive Thru Coffee House are now signed, committed and coming to Sahuarita as of this morning. Assume the location will be the one discussed in the past, the old Credit Union location next to Pizza Hut and across the street from Mod Pizza. Things can always change but as of this evening it's looking very good.

There have been some long lines while Nogales highway and Duval Mine Road received a face lift in July. We regret the lines but hope that the new surface is to your satisfaction. The new pavement is called Green Asphalt and was developed by Tucson Asphalt. It is an exclusive, patent-pending product that uses a special rubber binder to provide superior asphalt pavement while saving money and natural resources.

Green Asphalt™ saves enormous amounts of resources, including time, money and fossil fuels. For example, based on a 10,000 square-foot paving job, the estimated savings include:

  • 33 tons of petroleum asphalt
  • 1,110 gallons of fuel burned at the asphalt plant
  • 37,000 pounds of CO2 emissions at the asphalt plant
  • 2,000 gallons of pavement sealer
  • 280 gallons of dump-truck fuel
  • 550 tons of sand and gravel
  • 1,527 tons of used-asphalt removal
  • 200 tires recycled from landfill
  • 670 cubic yards of landfill space

Beyond the energy-saving and environmental benefits of using Green Asphalt™, there are other advantages as well. It's largely self-sealing, and it also eliminates the process of removing all the old asphalt, so it reduces dust, noise, and traffic that result from using traditional asphalt binders. Best of all, by “going green” we save between $0.40 to $0.60 per square foot on paving projects, which quickly adds up to major savings

Our Public Works Director, MJ Dillard and Town Manager Kelly Udall deserve credit for their testing and study of this relatively new material for use in Sahuarita. If you have greater interest in this google Tucson Asphalt for more information.

Many of you have expressed concern over when the new Verizon wireless tower would be built, over by the County Waste Water Plant, since it has been a couple of years since this was brought before the Town Council. One of our residents in visiting the local Verizon store asked about the tower and was told that Verizon had submitted the plans and that the town was holding up the permit. Not quite accurate.

The town finally received plans for construction of the tower at the end of May, this year, and returned the plans after review and comment at the end of June. This was their first submittal and the town is now waiting for Verizon to resubmit. Approval of the project was given to Verizon by the Council about two years ago and they finally submitted plans at the end of May this year. Given their plan submittal for the tower it appears Verizon is beginning to consider construction in the next several months.

We haven't done a review on housing in a few months, but it's been a good year for Sahuarita. At the end of June for FY 2018, (FY runs from July 1 to June 30) there were 370 permits for new homes issued in Sahuarita representing some $115,000,000 in value. This represents the best year since 2010 for new home construction. In the history of the town the best year for new home construction was FY 2006 when 1,783 new homes were built. In FY 2018 the Town of Sahuarita received $1.5 million in building fees for construction. Just think, in 2006 the town received over $4 million in fees.

Quail Creek, in 2018 has also been a strong market for new housing with sales for the full year perhaps topping 120 homes. This would be for sales from January 1 to December 30 of 2018 and not just six months. It wasn't too many years ago when that figure for the year was a little over 50. Robson continues to offer housing with competitive design and price in this market.

Primary Election for the Town Council will be on August 28th here in Sahuarita. Three slots are up for election out of seven this year. The Town has had a very successful run over the past eight to ten years with plans set for that to continue over the next five or more years including completion of the Quail Crossing Boulevard beginning in late 2021. Please be sure to attend events in which the candidates represent their views and focus on those who appreciate the work being done and want to see it continue.

Always remember that Quail Creek represents a strong voting bloc, but our age demographic is only about 18% of the current population. People elected to the Council must understand this and appreciate the need for them to represent the entire community, not just Rancho Sahuarita. Finally, also remember that our town is non-partisan. The Council does not represent political party views, it represents the needs, values and concerns of all residents. In my years on the Council our discussions, debates and decisions have focused on Sahuarita, party has never been an item of discussion, never.

For those of you with dwarf fruit trees that have good hormones, please remember that excess fruit on the ground is not necessary. The Food Banks in Green Valley and Sahuarita can use all fruit produced and the donation really makes you feel a lot happier.

Hopefully all you cooks and bakers out there, tired from usage of your mano and metate, now have full bins of Mesquite flour. Mesquite flour is both gluten free and high protein (about 11-17% protein), making it a good alternative for people looking to avoid gluten and white flours. Additionally, mesquite has measurable amounts of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc. Not all of the mesquite pod is edible — a great deal of it is indigestible fiber. The most accessible edible portion of the pod is the pulp or pith between the brittle outside and the hard seeds. Our native brothers and sisters would have had a wonderful harvest.

August 2018

Mountaintops inspire leaders
But valleys mature them.

~ Sir Winston Churchill ~

As goes Sahuarita, so goes Green Valley. Sales of homes in Green Valley have increased to the point that there are very few homes left for sale. It remains a very popular and very affordable destination for active adults and seniors. A lot of folks don't understand that Green Valley was designed and created as an active adult community back in 1964. While we may share a zip code we also share a life style and culture. Quail Creek also basically shares the percentage of populations that live here part-time from more northern climes, so our communities have an off-season and a full-season. Sahuarita, on the other hand has one season and that is basically an "all hands on" season.

What follows is informational and possibly of interest to residents. It is a program that is supported by the Green Valley Council for residents and has been used and tested quite successfully for several years. The program is called Service Line Warranties of America. You will find it on the internet at and all you need do is enter your zip code. Currently our zip code has three plans available but there are a few others that might be added over time. The current three deal with interior water service lines, exterior sewage lines and exterior main water lines.

Let's say that you are away visiting family for a week and you return home and find that a water service line in your home has broken. Yes, your home owner's insurance will pay for most of the damage, but the Service Line plan will repair damage to walls and repair/replace the broken water lines, using local licensed contractors for a plan cost in this zip code of $6.58 a month. How about that main sewer line underneath those big tree roots, now needing to be dug up and replaced? Service Line plan is $6.33 a month for this work.

They also have a plan, not yet available here, for air conditioning and heating. This is just informational to residents of 85614 should you have the need for such service. The plans are designed to deal with issues that are not normally covered by home owner's insurance.

Green Valley has no resident elected officials that manage the town so there are no issues with the election except for the person who is the areas County Commissioner. There will however, be several referendums in the general election, that will affect both Green Valley and Sahuarita. Some of the proposed referendums haven't really been put in final print yet. It is most important that every voter read and learn as much as they can about the referendums as well as those running for office. More on the referendums in September and October.

The Green Valley Council Executive Committee held its annual day-long retreat in the Quail Creek Kino Conference Center on July 26. Topics focused on economic development and planning out the next five years of change and growth in Green Valley, especially as it pertains to achieving financial security. It was a very successful meeting.

This winter and spring I will be holding two sessions for the residents of Green Valley. One will be a five-day presentation, over five weeks, dealing with the history of Green Valley and detailing how the town is managed and operated; with presentations from all the main groups that make Green Valley what it is. This program will be presented by the Green Valley Council and I will host the meetings as I have done in previous seminars in Quail Creek.

A second session to be offered by OLLI (Osher Lifelong Learning Inst.) will be held in February and March and will consist of four sessions over four weeks. The first week will be a history of Green Valley and its institutions; the second week will deal with the present Green Valley, how it functions and the roles of various organizations and groups.

For the third week we will explore the future of Green Valley, its alternatives, options and possible outcomes and finally, in the last week we will have a broad open discussion on Green Valley and its needs for today and tomorrow. More information on both will be available in Sept. and Oct.

Seems like we have come to the end of the road for this month. We will hope that August is more in keeping with the monsoon season. I am told that if the temperature gets up to 125 degrees, there will be a large lobster feast at the Anza Pool. It was 120 degrees in Palm Sprungs yesterday (yes, they are no longer Springs) and outdoor pools had to be closed due to fear of immolation. (Please do not look for this story in the press – well, Facebook maybe.)

Thank you as always,

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee
GVC-Foundation Board

June 2018

“A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed
 and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”

~ Billy Graham ~
Quail Creek, home to a generation of mothers and fathers, most of whom have transitioned into that most lovable category of Grandmothers and Grandfathers.  Given the hundreds of thousands of hours needed as a team to produce todays “youngsters” it’s only right that you have a Mother’s Day and a Father’s Day every year.  

In the continuing saga of Dairy Queen, it must be reported that a ladder was seen propped up against the building just recently.  This may have positive overtones given that there were no police reports of a break-in.  

Sprouts new store has now been recognized as the most successful start-up and on-going store within their system.  This is a significant fact that should help other retail operations seeking a new location.

The Green Valley News reports that Amazon has chosen Tucson for an 855,000-sf distribution center at the Port of Tucson which is located just SE of Kolb and Valencia.  The Center will employ between 1,500 and 1,900 employees depending on the season.  Workers coming in from other locations to work here will certainly be looking at Vail and Sahuarita for housing.  Largely due to the quality and recognition of both the Vail and Sahuarita school systems and a nearby hospital.  Sahuarita will be helped by the paving of Wilmot Road, providing an easy commute to the work site.

Voters will elect three persons to the Sahuarita Town Council this year.  Town Council members running to continue their work on the Council are Tom Murphy and Kara Egbert while there will be one new councilmember coming from those running for the office for the first time.  There are currently about six candidates running but that number could increase by the end of May up to as many as eight or more.  The first election for the office will be a primary election held on August 28th to narrow the field of candidates for the general election in November.  You will be asked to vote for three of the candidates on the ballot.

We currently have a very productive Town Council and hope that both Tom and Kara are re-elected for another four-year term.  We will miss Duane Blumberg who is retiring so the newly elected Council member will be an important selection.  There will be opportunities to hear from those running for office here in Quail Creek and in Sahuarita.  Please do attend as many sessions as you can so that you can make up your own mind as to the best candidates.  The votes from Quail Creek and La Posada are important so that we can maintain a presence on the Council representing the issues, needs and concerns of senior residents.  Keep an eye on What’s Happening for times and dates for candidate meetings.

Here is the way that the primary election works, as I understand it, so take this information with a grain of salt (on the rim of a margarita) and you will be much more relaxed. When the primary election is over, the total number of votes cast for council member are counted so let’s say that 4,500 votes are cast in the primary election.  Any candidate that receives a majority, as defined by law, of the votes is considered to be elected.  A majority consists of the total number of votes cast divided by the number of seats available, in our case three, divided by 2 then rounding that number result to the highest whole number.  So, in this case if a candidate receives 750 votes they are elected.  (Here is the math in simplified version (4500 ÷ 3) ÷ 2 = 750).   If more than three candidates receive a majority vote, the winners are those with the highest vote count over 750.  If only one has a majority, the remaining candidates with highest four vote counts will run-off in the General Election.  “Happy Days are here again!”

2018 – 53RD Arizona Legislature, 2ND Regular Session.  A quick summary of the session for those who have an interest.

116 – The number of days in the session. The legislature adjourned sine die on May 4th, 2018 at 12:16am.

1,206 – The number of bills posted during the session. A few sessions back, a Joint Legislative Council staffer ran the numbers and each bill introduced by a sponsor costs the taxpayer a minimum of $3,500. That’s for a one-page bill that never gets assigned to a committee, debated on the floor or considered by the opposite chamber.

369 – The number of bills passed by the legislature. That’s about a 30% rate of return for the 53rd legislature, which is well within the rage of the expected over the last 5-years, with bill passage averages between 24% and 32%.

23 – The number of bills vetoed by the Governor. In all fairness, this number includes the 10 bills that Governor Ducey vetoed in protest of the legislature’s inability to pass a K-12 education funding package that secured 10% raises for Arizona teacher and another 10% by 2020, as part of his 20X2020 plan. The 10 bills were brought back during the final hours of the legislative session, passed, and signed.

346 – The number of bills signed into law. This number is consistent with the last few legislative sessions.

50,000 – The estimated number of teachers that marched to and protested on Capitol grounds in the final days of the legislative session during the strike.

Attempts were made at the County and State level to provide a funding source for repair and maintenance of roads in a ten-year plan.  The State effort failed and the County effort, which will require a unanimous favorable vote by the County Commissioners before it can be put to voters, will also fail as a unanimous favorable vote in the County is not possible.  This will affect both Sahuarita and Green Valley to some degree but is a real problem for Green Valley.  

"Now ex-Microsoft CEO Bill Gates is getting ready to make his own vision of future living real by buying up 25,000 acres of land in Arizona to create the City of the Future. The “smart city” will be named Belmont and will feature up to 80,000 residential units. “Belmont” will create a forward-thinking community"

FLASH-News breaker:  Now Sahuarita is getting ready to make its own version of future living by annexing 30,000 acres of land in Pima County, Arizona to create a City of the Future.  The “smart city” will be named "Sahuarita" and will feature up to 50,000 residential units.  Sahuarita is a forward-thinking community.

While our intentions and direction are the same as for Belmont it is obvious that our creation will be much slower than Belmont given the resources backing each project.  Regardless, we can learn from their successes and failures as we each go along and hope that private funding will become available as we move forward.  This is not a competition but rather a future team effort to do our very best at both locations.  (Bill doesn’t know this yet, so please keep this quiet for another year or two.)

Sahuarita's 2019 Annual Budget is now under consideration by the Town Council and will take effect at the beginning of our annual year on July 1st.  We have reviewed the Operations part of the budget for any adjustments and will soon review the Capital Improvement part of the budget.  Total budget for FY-2019 is balanced at $58,874,000.  FY 2018 is ending with a remaining positive balance in excess of $1,000,000.

The Tentative Budget will be adopted at the June 11 Council Meeting with a Public Hearing and final budget approval by the Council at its June 28 Council Meeting.  A Budget Book is available on the town website at
Please remember that the budget shown is a tentative budget and may be amended or altered before final approval at the end of June.

Quail Crossing Boulevard is almost complete from Nogales Highway down to the Santa Cruz River.  Dare we say that the road looks beautiful and a fine piece of work by the town’s Engineer and Public Works Division.  The time frame and budget to complete the road all the way to Old Nogales is contained in the 2019 budget over a period of three fiscal years.

In FY-2019, $1,186,000 is budgeted from previous years, to pay for work on the road now nearing completion.  In FY-2020 there are no funds budgeted but FY 2021, which begins in July of 2020 has a budget of $2,334,000 to complete the at-grade river crossing.  There is a remaining budget of $787,000 to build a new intersection at Quail Crossing and Old Nogales in the FY 2022 budget, which can hopefully be moved into FY-2021 or at least CY-2021.

Sahuarita staff and management have done a yeoman’s job putting this project together and supporting its completion.  It may take an extra year to get it all done but even this remains a miracle of effort and support.  If you go to the town budget, above, look at pages 161 and 162 where you can see the cost figures and breakouts for capital projects including the figures for the Crossing.  Figures appear on both pages.

The Town Council meeting on June 11 will vote on the budget, including our hoped-for plan for the extension of Quail Crossing Blvd.  Council meets at 6:30, so if you have time come on over and show your support for the road during the public comment period of the meeting.  Always nice for the Council to understand our support for this road.

Mod Pizza is now being outfitted with equipment and interior design.  For a detailed plan of the future store click on Mod Pizza.

While most readers will now be aware of the pending new hospital in Sahuarita, the information is included here for those residents now residing in cooler climes and not receiving local papers.  The following, in quotes, is from the news release provided by Northwest Hospital to local papers.


The first expansion project will be a medical campus including a "neighborhood hospital," physician offices and outpatient services in Sahuarita. The plan is contingent upon approval by the Town of Sahuarita's mayor and council.  If approved, the hospital is expected to open in late 2019.  The facility will have 18 beds and will be located on land just south and east of Sahuarita Road and I-19.  Planned services include an emergency room and two operating rooms. The second floor of the facility will house medical offices with planned services to include primary care, cardiology, orthopedics and general surgery.  We anticipate having approximately 150 staff members throughout the health campus." 

The hospital will house two floors and 70,000 square feet of space, assuming 35,000 square feet on each of the stories, on 4.5 acres.  It is understood that they hope to have all or part of the building in operation by the end of 2019.  Also encouraging is the use of the term “medical campus” which would seem to mean a well landscaped site with future possibilities in support of medicine, education or research.  Time will tell, we can only surmise.

Some years ago, Bob Sharpe sold a tract of land to Carondelet Hospital in anticipation of a local hospital being built next to Town Hall.  The recession and other matters got in the way and the plan was never realized.  Mr. Sharpe, not being easily put off, continued work on Rancho Sahuarita and within the past several months was finally able to negotiate a deal with the Northwest Hospital group.  The site was one of two or three being considered with a long due-diligence process required.  During that time no public release or mention was made of the possible hospital coming to Sahuarita so the press release, when they finally announced a decision was a surprise to the community.  

Sahuarita's Town Council will meet soon to consider the development and vote on it, as the town is involved in helping to support the development in terms of infrastructure and a general agreement.  Community support for the project is very strong and will be an economic plus for Sahuarita and its citizens.

Will this new hospital have an effect on the Green Valley Hospital?  Can both hospitals do well?  Certainly, there will be an effect on the Green Valley Hospital, but it does not have to be negative.  Green Valley and Sahuarita are populated by different age groups with different medical needs.  The two hospitals will hopefully work together in the location of staffing and specialties forming a team approach to medicine suited to our resident populations.  Cooperation, not competition will serve both well.  Remember that Green Valley has an average age over 70 while Sahuarita comes in at 34, populations requiring some of the same specialties, but also having much different needs. 

Sahuarita has a small number of Boards and Commissions that provide support for the Town and the Council.  I currently have one position to fill on the Board of Adjustment and am looking for someone with a background and interest in serving on this Board.  This Board only meets on an as needed basis which is generally only a couple of times each year.

In general, the board of adjustment is the body established to: hear appeals of decisions rendered by zoning administrators. interpret unclear provisions in the zoning ordinance. decide on applications by landowners to permit buildings or land uses which vary from the zoning regulations.

Please email me if you have an interest in this position.  Like all Sahuarita Boards and Commissions, service is voluntary.  Your work on the Board would be well appreciated.

June 2018

“Green Valley is a mindset, not a location.”
~ Reid Hoffman ~
(Reid's quote has been slightly altered, as his quote dealt with Silicon Valley, not Green Valley.  However, the quote works quite well for both locations.)

Green Valley and the Green Valley Council had a real surprise when they read the an earlier edition of the Green Valley News as it was reporting that Northwest Medical is planning to build a hospital in Sahuarita.  The announcement by Northwest was made after a long due-diligence process by them, working with Bob Sharpe and a few others.  Those with knowledge of the possible addition to Sahuarita were constrained by signed non-disclosure statements until Northwest firmly committed to the site and publicly announced it.

With the Green Valley Hospital emerging from bankruptcy, there was initial concern in Green Valley that the new hospital would again harm their local hospital.   It should be noted that Northwest would have analyzed the market here in this region; could it support two hospitals at this time given market growth and the nature of both Sahuarita and Green Valley.  

Northwest Medical management also obtained several years of experience with their Northwest Urgent Care Center on Duval Mine Road and newer facility in Oro Valley, north of their main Hospital on Orange Grove.

Moving on, the Green Valley Council is now meeting with the County to develop a working relationship regarding the new Green Valley Park at Canoa Hills.  The park will be owned by Pima County and will be under the management of the Pima County Flood Control District.  Funds to operate the park will come from the Flood Control District (70%) and County general operating funds (30%).  There are a number of operational and other matters that need to be ironed out, which is going to require time.  Even so, the County is already beginning to do some work on the property in preparation for its opening later this year.

It should also be noted that Pima County is not supportive of the initial name for the park, Green Valley Community Park, so the Council has been tasking with coming up with a new name.  Call the Green Valley Council if you have a suggestion.

A local Friends Group for the park is now in the development stage with discussion to begin in June by a small group of Green Valley residents to plan the new groups function and activities.  Actual formation of the Friends Group will not happen until the Green Valley Council and the County have agreed upon the way that the park will operate and the services to be offered.

Once those have been set out, the Friends Group will be created as a part of the GVC Foundation, Inc., a 501 c-3 organization, to help maintain the area, seek donations, hold events and interface with the County, GV Council and Flood Control District.  The small group that will organize and create the Friends is committed to gathering lists of those interested in becoming members by mid-July.  Actual formation of the Friends will be later in the year.

As expected, the attempt to obtain a source of funding for Pima County road repairs over the next ten years, failed and was voted down by Pima County Supervisors, 2-3.  Amendments requiring that a portion of the funds be diverted to other uses helped to defeat the proposal.  Had it passed, it would still have required a positive vote by Pima County residents.

Property has been purchased by Green Valley Recreation to build up to 24 pickleball courts, located off S. Camino De La Canoa in Green Valley, next to an existing softball field complex.  Those courts will be a welcome addition to the 16 courts here in Quail Creek to help support certain tournaments. 

The Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona is being tapped to help Green Valley on a number of economic development issues and concerns pertaining to the present and future of the town.  The work is being supported by the Green Valley Council, Green Valley / Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce, Green Valley Recreation and Freeport-McMoRan Foundation.

The Green Valley Council’s Executive Committee is planning a retreat at the end of July, here in Quail Creek, to discuss future plans and growth for the community recognizing and respecting the unique nature of Green Valley as a Senior Community.

Enough for now, but please do remember Father's Day.

Last Minute Addition.  A few months ago some of you responded to a survey regarding the Town of Sahuarita and that information has just been released.  This is a very readable and good survey analysis and hopefully you will take the time to read about your town and what residents of the town are thinking.  Always wondered what came before the Baby Boomers and you will find that interesting answer in this document. Click for 2018 Town of Sahuarita Citizen Survey Full Report.

Thank you as always,

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee

May 2018

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life
to something bigger than oneself.”

~ Joseph Campbell ~
For May is a month in which we can remember and thank the heroes in our lives. Those in uniform as well as those that we loved as mothers. Between the time of Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, May is a month of new growth and regeneration; a time worthy of remembering those who have given so much to each of us.

Those of you who frequent our local movie house (old name) may find some changes in the coming months. It appears that the theater may be on the market, perhaps seeking another independent owner. While our theater may not be a Lowe’s Metro-Plex it is and hopefully will remain, a fine place to see new films and chew on popcorn. At least local dentists continue to hope so.

With the retirement of our ace Town Councilman, Duane Blumberg, the flood gates have opened. At the present time fifteen (15) residents of Rancho Sahuarita have filed to run for the position. Remember the days when you would go to the Baker’s to buy a dozen rolls and they would always throw in an extra role? Not sure why we have more than a baker’s dozen filing to run but I am sure that we need at least one candidate from Quail Creek in this field. Hopefully we can have one person wanting to represent the interests of our community file before May 30th. You will be rewarded with an immense sala-d-ry, your own laptop, an office and the pleasure of working with a great group of people in Sahuarita.

Come November there will be a couple of referendums dealing directly with Sahuarita on the ballot. More information will be provided on the issues involved but both are important to the Town (no, they are not about bonds or tax issues). Neither directly affects Quail Creek, but both are important to how our town grows. One concerns permitting the town’s state of the art sewage treatment plant to service more residents and the other concerns an attempt to block another developer from entering the housing market in Sahuarita, already approved by the Town Council. Your votes this November will be important whether for or against the two items.

An interesting statistic involving roads. The Town of Sahuarita, in reviewing road conditions, has determined that 2% of our roads are in poor condition and that we have a goal to reduce that percentage, while not allowing any other roads to deteriorate from present favorable conditions.

The unincorporated town of Green Valley, dependent on support from Pima County, has 60% of its roads in poor condition with no real improvement of the situation in the works. This is despite the residents of Green Valley doing all that they can to gain support from the County for additional repairs.

Green Valley, its 30,000 residents, pays the same property tax that we do with the exception that the State returns a portion or those funds to Sahuarita while Green Valley’s share is given to Pima County.

Sahuarita road work this summer will focus on Duval Mine Road from La Canada to Abrego Drive and La Villita Road. Both projects are scheduled to begin in Mid-May running to the end of June. Work on Duval Mine Road will include Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) updates, pavement markings and signage updates. The Town will be using a new form of asphalt for these projects; a product called Green Asphalt. Price of the material is less, and tests have shown that it has excellent wear ability and other characteristics. Know that you have a question here; NO the pavement is not colored Green.

Town staff and Crossing developers are working to improve access to The Crossing from Abrego and S. Nogales Highway, to be done by the developer of the mall.

“Each year, in Sahuarita, approximately 25% of the pavement preservation budget is spent on roads in a “poor” category with treatments designed to bring them at least into a “fair” category.  The remaining budget is spent on roads in “good” and “fair” categories to ensure they do not degrade further.

Little note: In case you are wondering, the I-19 overpass just past Denny’s is the dividing line for road names. The road running up to the overpass from the east is called S. Nogales Highway. Once over the overpass you are now on W. Duval Mine Road. The road in front of our entrance is called S. Old Nogales Highway or Continental Road – depends on your mood.

In case you are wondering II, during WW I (1916) the Intercontinental Rubber Company had a plant in operation on Continental Farm, thus Continental Road.

Established at the request of President Wilson, it was asked to produce rubber using latex harvested from the guayule (guaie-uhlie) plant and stayed in business until after the end of WW I. Continental Farm was then owned by Bernard Baruch, Joseph Kennedy, and J. P. Morgan and would remain so until 1922 when Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands bought the farm and rented the fields to cotton farmers until 1949. Yes, we all own a part of History associated with the Barons of yore.

Can’t help myself. A book was written at the turn of the last century about certain individuals in American industry, referring to them as the “Robber Barons”. Little know tidbit is that this was a printing error and should have referred to them as the “Rubber Barons.” Moving on...

Status report on developments shows a lot of on going and planned development in Sahuarita, most of which we have discussed. As an update, it seems that life might still be present for Culver’s and an associated Coffee Shop at the former Credit Union building site, across from Pizza Hut and on S. Nogales Highway. Hopefully we will know one way or another in the near term, but it is a somewhat complicated project given demolition of the Credit Union and a few other items.

Nothing more on The Crossing in terms of new stores. TJ Maxx has opened, and Pet Smart will be along shortly. The Grand Opening event for Bealls Outlet will be from May 3rd to May 6th with a winning scratch-off card for the first 150 shoppers in line every morning. There will be a Grand Opening event for the entire Crossing development on May 7th at 11 AM, should you wish to attend. Formal attire is not required. Jeans should have holes over the knees – only.

Seems like Chuy’s Mesquite Broiler restaurant is still on tap for the old Solara Restaurant site, next to Ashley’s Furniture. It is already shown on Goggle maps.

The large building going up south of the Shell Station by Fry’s, visible from the interstate, is a school complex for children from Kindergarten to eighth grade to open later this year.

Plans for a new tech center, funded mostly by a $3,000,000 grant from the Economic Development Administration, are coming together on a site west of La Canada and just south of Sahuarita Road. The 32,000-sf Sahuarita Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Center (SAMTEC) structure is currently in design and should be out for bid by the end of the year. Construction is planned for 2019.

“SAMTEC with allow Hydronalix, a maritime robotics company, and Control Vision, an optical sensor and control systems company, to expand their existing Sahuarita-area operations. The town anticipates that SAMTEC will attract supply-chain service providers in support of these resident companies. According to estimates, the project is expected to create 75 new jobs, retain 31 jobs and generate $500,000 in private investment.”

There is a new website geared to updating information on emergencies and conditions within your zip code. Joining this website is easy, no cost, and highly recommended by our Police Chief, John Noland, and others in emergency services. The web site is Receive alerts for severe weather, criminal activity, severe traffic, missing persons and local events from our local agencies all related to the zip code (s) you enter when you join. Sahuarita’s zip code is 85629. Please join.

The Animal Services Program of Sahuarita, which began on July 1, 2017, has gotten through its start-up and is now more fully supporting animal care in Sahuarita. Licensing for pets is handled by the Parks and Recreation Department staff working out of the Anamax Recreation Center. Actual licensing is handled by an internet service, PetData. Help with licensing is available from the staff at Anamax. For the period from July 1 of 2017 to March 31 of 2018, 1,328 dog licenses were issued, 915 being renewals and 413 new. Still waiting on the figures for cats.

Animal Control and Community Services is handled by an Animal Control Officer in the Sahuarita Police Department. A former employee of Pima Counties Animal Control unit, he uses a Town van and equipment. Response time to injured animals and other issues has been greatly improved over past wait times from Pima County. Lost animals have also been found by systems put in place and citations have been given for things such as dog at large, unlicensed animals and vaccination violations.

As of July 1, 2018, license fees for dogs will be $19.00 for altered dogs and $64.00 for unaltered dogs. Senior owner fees will be $15.00 for altered and $22.00 for unaltered. Questions, concerns, needs please call 520-445-PUPS (445-7877) for support and help.

May 2018

Jeff Krueger, recent appointee to the POA Board, has been selected to represent the POA on the Green Valley Council Board of Representatives.  He will attend monthly meetings of the Board along with representatives of 74 other HOA’s on the Board.


Following a three-month exercise by the Green Valley Council, involving the residents of Green Valley, the Pima County Commissioners supported and approved donation of the Canoa Hills Golf Course, and creation of a new 130-acre Green Valley Park

The park will be a passive park, meaning there will be no ballfields or other such activities within the park. It will be maintained as a place for walking, hiking, picnics, bicycles, bird watching and perhaps, a nice dog park. The County will spend about $90,000 to bring the area back to life as a park and maintain it as needed. Thirty percent of the maintenance cost will be covered by the County general fund and seventy percent will be covered by the Regional Flood Control District of Pima County.

The park will not be irrigated or use water other than for drinking fountains and two restrooms. The old restrooms will be torn down and replaced with new facilities at two new locations. Freeport-McMoRan has already agreed to donate funds for the first new restroom and efforts are underway to find donated funds to build the second restroom. Fairways will remain open space but will be without water and allowed to return to a desert environment.

The park has five miles of golf cart pathways that will be maintained for users and modified as necessary to support use by seniors and disabled persons.
The Green Valley Council will work to establish a Friends of the Park organization as a 501 c-3 group to accept donations, grants and organize the establishment of a large volunteer organization. This will also allow for the local community to help manage the park and recommend needed services or changes over time through the Council.

The park is surrounded by 10 HOA’s with over 1,100 homes all of which strongly supported creation of the park. Almost 500 homes immediately back up to the former golf course, soon to be park, and will see their home values protected and actually rise as opposed to having a wasteland behind them such as happened after the Corona de Tucson golf course closed some years ago.

The golf course is 70% within the 100-year flood plain; is not a single parcel but rather a group of peninsulas running between developments and would cost a great deal to convert to another usage, thus the main reason that it is being donated.

The clubhouse is not in the donation and will be sold separately. Its condition is not good and will require a fair amount of work to bring back. However, the driving range will be included.

The park will be used by birders and will become an island favored by local animals. Other potential passive uses are possible, such as a gardening area for residents and will be discussed as things begin to happen and plans are made.

The park will be public and will not be part of the Green Valley Recreation membership. It will be open to everyone. A great development for Green Valley and area residents, even those of us here in Quail Creek and Sahuarita.

Covered in the Green Valley News is a new store that will be opening in part of the old Texaco station on Esperanza Blvd. in Green Valley, across from the Arizona Family Restaurant. It will be a Mexican style Carniceria or butcher shop selling meats, spices and other traditional Mexican ingredients. The owners have a similar shop in Tucson and will make a great addition to the area.

The local copper mines are beginning to bring back their laid off workers and others as the price of copper begins to rise again. By the way, two very nice tours here in the area are the Sahuarita Titan Missile Site and the ASARCO Mineral Discovery Center on Pima Mine Road just past the Casino and Interstate.

The Green Valley Council and the Green Valley/Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce are continuing in discussions and meetings regarding the economic development of Green Valley and other issues.  Hopes are that the nature and development of both Sahuarita and Green Valley can be done in a fashion to support both communities; senior citizens in one community and youthful adults and children in another. These are important issues to a community like Quail Creek that lives, shops and resides to some degree in both communities.

Sometime in the Fall or Winter, you might be interested in a Seminar that will be put on regarding Green Valley, its history and the role of the Green Valley Council and other groups. Will be held in Green Valley probably over four or five days. Might include a few other topics of importance as well. Will be announced well in advance.

Have a wonderful May and Dads, don’t fret. You get nice words in the June edition.

Thank you as always,

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee


April 2018

“The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days of the year.”
~ Mark Twain ~
There is no known factual time, person or place for the beginning of the April 1st tradition of All Fools Day. Almost every European Nation has a story or tradition about how April 1st became All Fools Day, some going back to the Roman Empire.  For today, we can be thankful that this holiday has survived and continues to be celebrated.


Fair Warning: Somewhere in this edition there is an April Fool’s joke. Read carefully to see if you can identify the incorrect piece of data. The first person finding the joke and emailing me receives a free copy of Snippets for the rest of the year. Given the value of the prize all Quail Creek, Sahuarita and Green Valley employees are ineligible for the prize.

Sprouts, as everyone should know by now, had a fantastic opening in late February. Initial business has exceeded their expectations by 25% and seems to be a continuing trend. During the opening there were some traffic problems due to folks not knowing about a few things. People going to the store traveling west on Nogales Highway went to the traffic light at Abrego to turn left into the Crossing complex, which combined with the traffic on Abrego and coming from I-19 made for a clogged intersection.

Here’s the secret. Turn left at the traffic light at Circle K, go straight back to a hidden entrance to the Crossing complex and turn right behind Circle K. Other changes are being studied by the Town and the Contractor, to ease traffic congestion as more stores open. Looks like a race between TJ-Maxx and Pet Smart for the next store to open but Bealls could be a dark horse in the race. Would guess that May and June should be about right for at least one opening.

Users of the Shell Station, by the Dixie Queen, report that more work is going on inside Dixie Queen. Perhaps my earlier report on the demise of the Queen was premature, at least we can hope so.

For those of you who missed it in the news, the new K-8 school in Sahuarita, near I-19, will be called the Wrightson Ridge School. It is planned to open on January 1 for any of you looking for some part time work. Mount Wrightson was named for William Wrightson, a miner and entrepreneur in the region, killed by Apaches in the 1865 Battle of Fort Buchanan. A second resident of the region, Gilbert Hopkins, was killed at the same time traveling with Wrightson. Mount Hopkins was named for him.

This year, 2018, is the year of elections, including three seats for the Sahuarita Town Council. Incumbents for two of the three seats, Kara Egbert and Tom Murphy, will be running for re-election. The third seat, occupied by Duane Blumberg, resident of Quail Creek and former Town Mayor will be vacated. Duane will not be running again, which is a loss to the Town of Sahuarita and Quail Creek. He and his wife Margaret will be sorely missed at the Town Council meetings as will his wise and well considered approaches to concerns and Town issues. Gonna miss you Duane!

Annexation of La Posada is almost complete. The addition of some 700 residents to Sahuarita will be a real benefit for the town. The additional residents will increase our Share of State Revenues, an increase in the amount of State Income Tax shared with the towns and cities and other fund distributions based on population.

La Posada is an exemplary model for senior living in the United States; its association with Sahuarita is a very positive factor for our town and future development. If you have not been over to their Posada Java coffee shop you have missed a great one.

Biggest development question in town is centered on a rumored 70,000 sf structure planned for a new area south of the Shell station in Sahuarita, not far from the new Wrightson Ridge School. What is it? What will it be? When will we hear?  Two people in town know the answer but they have had to sign non-disclosure statements and they are holding tight, regardless of offers of cash, cars, vacations and physical abuse. Guess we will just have to wait and see what the rumors bring to us. It is a Rancho Sahuarita structure however.

Location for the new Sahuarita Library, funded by a bond issue several years ago, is now down to two sites, both off Sahuarita Road, west of Town Hall and the school complex. Will be a major facility on three or four acres. Pima County is building and planning the structure, but the Town will be providing input during those phases.

It appears that the contractor is getting ready to begin work on Phase One of the Quail Crossing Blvd extension, from Circle K down to the river. Once complete, the Trailhead for the Anza Trail to San Francisco, will be constructed by the County near the river. The County is anxious to complete the trail section between Continental Road and Pima Mine Road.

Design work for Phase Two of the Quail Crossing Blvd extension should begin later this year. Included in this process will be the need for a 404 Permit from the Corps of Engineers covering the at-grade crossing of the Santa Cruz River and an agreement with Union Pacific for a new intersection at Old Nogales and our front entrance. If things go smoothly we can hope for the road to be completed in 2020.

No word yet from JPAR regarding construction of the 36” water line coming down Nogales Highway from Pima Mine Road to four basins near the Pima County treatment facility across the road. Two new 36” tie in lines at I-19 have been placed, one going to Farmer’s Investment Company (the Pecan orchards) and the other to be used by JPAR. This is a link to the project as described in 2015.

Project Renews - JPAR, LLC
Tucson, Sahuarita and the State have begun consultation and work on the Sonoran Corridor, linking I-19 to I-10, south of the Tucson airport. This connector route will hopefully go along the north boundary of State lands planned for annexation into Sahuarita or become a new exit at El Toro. Still far from any decisions, but it is being worked on and Sahuarita is focused on it bringing value to the Town. 

April 2018

“The best way to find yourself is to
lose yourself in the service of others.”

~ Mahatma Gandhi ~
Green Valley, an unincorporated town of 30,000 people, epitomizes the very essence of the Gandhi quotation. It is a town that has grown and prospered since 1964 on volunteerism and active adults who have lost themselves in the service of others.

Green Valley Recreation has finally decided on a site for the construction of 24 Pickle Ball courts pending further input and meetings with the County. The site will be adjacent to the Baja Softball Fields, off Whitehouse Canyon Road on S. Camino De La Canoa. Their construction should ease the use of Quail Creek courts for the Senior Games and other tournaments.

The Green Valley Hospital continues its pathway out of bankruptcy. Users report seeing improving services and responses throughout the hospital. The Green Valley Hospital Citizen Advisory Committee and our Health & Human Services Committee is hosting another update forum to keep residents up to date with what’s happening with our hospital. The forum will be held on April 2nd at 1:30 in the West Center, 1111 S GVR Drive. RSVP to or call 520-648-1936.

The closed Texaco gas station on Esperanza across from the Family Restaurant has been sold with no clear indication yet as to what will happen there. It is being cleaned up and certainly looking better. If there are plans to do another gas station they will probably have to dig up and remove the old tanks as they have been unused for a very long time and there are time constraints on reuse of existing tanks. Exceptions to this are rare.

The Village Shopping Center by Esperanza Blvd is still on the market priced at $12,000,000 and is currently a weak link in the economy of Green Valley. The Chamber, Green Valley Council and others are working to find a buyer who can bring the center back to a well-managed and profitable state.

A new website has been set up for Green Valley to market the area and provide information for all those baby-boomers looking for a place to nest. The site is Try it, it’s very well done and something to send to folks heading our way.

The Task Force working to obtain community feedback and information on the proposed new Green Valley Community Park (the defunct Canoa Hills Golf Course) has concluded all its meetings and is now preparing its final report on findings to Chuck Huckleberry, Pima County Commissioner, in early April. The Task Force and its five sub-committees met with hundreds of residents in February and early March, including the HOA communities abutting the old golf course. Response, throughout the community, was extremely positive to accept the 135-acre donation of land, making it into a Pima County passive community park.

In mid-April Commissioner Huckleberry will present the final report to the County Commissioners requesting approval to accept donation of the 135-acres and create a new County Park, the Green Valley Community Park.

The Park will be maintained and kept up by Pima County as a passive park, dedicated to walking, hiking, bicycles, benches, picnics, bird watching and observation of the desert ecology. There will be no ball fields, motorized vehicles or other sports programs. Dog walking on leash will be permitted as will a dog park. The park will have five miles of paved paths and the greens and fairways will be returned to desert flora – no irrigated agrass areas. There are many other items that could be discussed but this summarizes the park and its use.

The Green Valley Council will create a non-profit 501 c (3) Friends of the Park organization to support volunteer activities, seek donations and grants for the park. The Council will report to the County when services are needed, issues need to be resolved or the Friends group has needs.

The Park will be a major new factor for the town of Green Valley in attracting new residents and supporting increasing valuations for those homes abutting or near the park.

With the departure of Jim Cleary, John Kozma, as our alternate, will represent Quail Creek on Green Valley Council’s Board of Representatives, until the POA Board appoints a new representative.

You should have received a new Green Valley Community Directory by now. The Directory has a good fold out map in the center and a lot of useful information in the introductory pages, with phone numbers, contacts for organizations, emergency information, day trip suggestions and mall maps. Worth a look-see.

Real estate figures for both Green Valley and Sahuarita remain good to very good depending on location. New home sales here in Quail Creek remain very good and on track for another year meeting or perhaps exceeding 120 new home sales. Resale figures are still on line for a good year with assessed valuations, according to Pima County and my property tax, rising again.

Thus far, in Sahuarita’s FY-18, 189 new single-family homes have been built. This is a far cry from the halcyon days of 2006 when 1,783 new homes were built in Sahuarita. Those were the days when construction of a new home here in Quail Creek took up to a year. In 2003 it took about three months for a new home to be built here in QC.

April is upon us and homes across Quail Creek are beginning to be prepared for extended periods of quiet time, as our many good friends from the north country begin to leave for cooler climes and old friends back “home”. We will think fondly of your return in the fall, as we sit outside in mosquito free heaven and “but it’s a dry heat”. We do miss you all and hope for safe travels on your annual commute and always good health.  Each year Green Valley and Quail Creek say Vaya Con Dios and hasta la luego amigos to about 40% of our neighbors hoping for your safe return to us.

Thank you as always,

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council
Green Valley Council Executive Committee


March, 2018

 “Remember, it isn't the dreamers who have good lives - it's the doers.
Remember also what I call the three Ps of success: passion, planning,
and perseverance.”
~ Homer Hickam ~

Spring is in the air!” Just doesn’t have the same meaning and magnitude in Arizona as it might above the 40th parallel north.  Aside from the Ides, March is the month that nature begins to come alive whether groundhog, polar bear or butterfly.  Here, of course, nature is almost always alive, and one can witness mostly upright critters on the Pickleball and Tennis Courts and fairways.  (I was going to say un-fairways but deciding that the outrage created by this use of humor might cause my early demise, decided not to.  However I am hanging in with upright critters against my less than better judgement.)

Passion, Planning and Perseverance.  The residents of Sahuarita have moved here because of their passion for the area and their support of planning for the future.  Only time will tell if Sahuarita has the perseverance to become a model village and community, but the opportunity is still in hand.  They say it takes a village, but first a village must be planned and implemented over decades.

Sahuarita  is growing and is currently rated as a top community in Arizona with strong ratings in schools and safety.  In one magazine we are rated as the 47th best community in the US and the only community ranked in the state of Arizona.  Over the next few years there will be increasing growth in Sahuarita due in no small measure to our current standing and the planned growth of the community in many areas.

New commercial and retail activities will be bringing another estimated 300 jobs to Sahuarita this year with at least that many coming in 2019.  The list of new stores slated for The Crossing at Sahuarita includes:  Sprouts, TJ Maxx, Bealls, Pet Smart, a Nail Salon, Cone Zone, Mod’s Pizza, Verizon and Starbucks.  That fills nine of the fourteen retail sites at the Crossing.  Across the street we believe that Culver’s is still working on coming to the former area of the Credit Union near Pizza Hut.

Further north, on South La Canada Drive just south of West Sahuarita Road (isn’t that a grand description?) you will see a new $4 million Sahuarita Advanced Manufacturing and Technology Center, called SAMTEC, on vacant land, being built by the Town. It has already attracted two companies to occupy the center on a lease, beginning in 2019.  It will rely on a $3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce.  It will join the University of Arizona's Tech Park and other tech centers in the metro area, but it won't amount to competition, said Bruce Wright, associate vice president of Tech Parks Arizona.  “This really broadens the opportunity for us to both grow and attract technology companies,” Wright said.

It also provides the opportunity for the two local businesses that will inhabit the center when it opens, to remain local. Hydronalix and Control Vision are looking for similar high-tech robotics and engineering companies to join them.  Hydronalix has 22 employees and is poised to grow, said Anthony Mulligan, president and CEO.  "The new center is going to be a milestone for us to grow tremendously," he said.

Control Vision President and Owner Daniel Crawford said his company is bursting at the seams, and his next three hires may have to sit in hallways because he's running out of space. That's a sign of growth, but it also illustrates his eagerness to move into a bigger space, he said. 

Still on the further north, south side of Sahuarita Road on the extension of South Rancho Sahuarita Blvd. by the Shell Station, Bob Sharpe, Founder of Rancho Sahuarita, has received firm commitment on a new 70,000 sf building.  The nature of this building has not yet been disclosed so it could be retail or commercial, but it is estimated that it will have 200 employees when completed in 2019.

Would you like a new Library?  The Town is in final discussions with Pima County regarding a new Library in Sahuarita.  Two sites, both along Sahuarita Road are being discussed for the $9,000,000 facility.  County funds are coming from a bond election held about ten years ago.  This should be under construction by the end of this year or early next year.

Town personnel are looking at and analyzing the changes that might need to be made in Nogales Highway and Duval Mine Road from Walgreen’s to about the Safeway as new development along that stretch will put additional traffic on the highway and wait times for some streets to enter the main road.  The completion of The Crossing will bring more traffic in from Green Valley on Abrego Road and completion of Quail Crossing Blvd. from Quail Creek will add volume to the intersection with Nogales Highway and to The Crossing.  Some changes will need to be made but those are still under study and perhaps few or a simple one two changes will be all that is necessary.  

Quail Crossing Blvd. is still scheduled for Phase One work from Circle K to the river.  That work should begin at any time.  The remainder of the work to finish the extension is under discussion but my expectation is that the work will be completed in late 2019 or early 2020.  Please remember that this project, which is a very important one, is being done out of existing funds and was not a fully funded road project from the get-go.  Town staff are working hard to move this to completion and it is going to be finished.  One nice thing about this project is that it and The Crossing will generate additional sales tax funds for the Town making the road a project that will pay for itself in a few years.

With apologies, Snippets will occasionally have material that is repetitious in nature in trying to make communication with you all valid and up to date, even if only a small change has been noted.

March 2018

“If you're not religious, like me, how do you explain the
transformational power that certain places have? They bring an
incredible degree of attention to where you are and the passage of
time. You're looking at every flower twitching, wondering if it's just
the breeze or some magical pulse.“

 ~ Geoff Dyer ~

Green Valley can certainly qualify as a “transformational” place for the thousands who have experienced its magical pulse since 1964.  An unincorporated town of almost 30,000 people, guided almost entirely by volunteers, is not a usual place in the United States and yet it functions well, as so many towns did in the early years of our nation.  The Town depends on Pima County for its funding and work forces as needed. 

The Green Valley Council Board of Representatives met here in Quail Creek on the morning of February 15 so that residents wishing to see how this group functions could experience it for themselves.  Both the Green Valley Council and Sahuarita Town Council provided breakfasts for members prior to the meeting.  About 50 members of the Board of Representatives attended the meeting along with several guests representing the County and others.  About fifty residents also attended and had the opportunity to ask questions.

Green Valley Hospital CEO, John Matuska, spoke at the meeting providing information on the current status of the hospital and future plans.  The hospital is ready to emerge from bankruptcy with new owners in California and is already beginning to work on programs and medical specialists becoming part of the hospital operation.  It seems that the hospital is undergoing some very positive changes as part of the reorganization.

Quail Creek is now represented on the Green Valley Council with Jim Cleary, POA Board Member, on the Board of Representatives, and Gil Lusk sworn in as a member of the Green Valley Council Executive Committee.  Both are voting members.

Jim Cleary will be representing Quail Creek in an upcoming March meeting of the Green Valley Council as GVC has an HOA Attorney reviewing and reporting on HOA legislative matters, new laws and changes in existing laws from this year’s legislative session in Phoenix.  In the past, the Green Valley Council and Green Valley Recreation were very involved in getting a bill passed that allows for non-profit organizations, such as the Quail Creek POA, to use electronic voting instead of having to mail and collect paper ballots – a sizable change in the overall cost of required elections.

The GVC Executive Committee goes to Tucson on March 16th for its annual meeting with the Pima County Administrator and key county personnel to discuss issues and concerns affecting Green Valley and the immediate region.

Last year there was a joint effort on the part of Sahuarita, Green Valley and the Green Valley / Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce to have a fully certified rodeo held in the area.  The effort fell short last year and there was a thought that it might be tried again this year.  The process and difficulties in holding a rodeo proved to be too much for such an event, meaning that there will be no further effort to hold this type of event.

While not directly attached to Quail Creek or Sahuarita, a new 130-acre public park and open space is being planned, in place of an 18-hole golf course in Green Valley.  The course is being donated to Pima County for such a use by its present owner.  Numerous meetings have been held with groups and residents of Green Valley to achieve consensus on its planned usage.  The GVC Task Group assigned to conduct these meetings and report back to Pima County will do so in early April.  The 130-acre future park will have five miles of trail and will be maintained as a desert park, meaning there will be no green fairways or greens and little water will be required to maintain the park

Please remember that meetings of the GVC, except for Executive Committee meetings, are open to the public.  Several of the Committees bring in guest speakers, especially the Health and Human Services Committee, should you have an interest in attending a meeting.  Information on meetings and events is always available by calling the Green Valley Council offices or by checking out the website. 

Next month is Fool’s Month so come prepared for the usual droll and inane round-up of bits and pieces that might interest you.  March seems to be coming in like a lion-cub so here’s hoping for that proverbial lamb at the end of the month.  Have a great month – after all, that’s why you live here.

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council Member
Green Valley Council, Executive Committee  

February, 2018

Excellence is to do a common thing in an uncommon way.

~ Booker Taliaferro Washington ~

OK, let’s start off this month with a little teaser. Read Booker’s full name and pronounce his middle name. We’ll see how you do at the end of the Sahuarita segment with the pronunciation provided. Also, just another hint, if you have never read anything about Booker T. Washington, please do. He lived a very meaningful life at one of the more difficult times in our history.

As an American History Major I should know better. Last month I quoted anApache Blessing, thinking it wasn’t apache, but then not doing research nor clarifying on the signature line. The poem was originally written in 1947 by the non-Native author Elliott Arnold in his Western novel Blood Brother. The poem was then popularized by the 1950 film adaptation of the novel, Broken Arrow, scripted by Albert Maltz. My thanks to Robert Wagener for pointing this out.

Don’t forget to attend the Expo on Saturday, February 10, at the Madera Clubhouse. New to Quail Creek? Long-time owner? They have what you need to personalize or upgrade your home. Get help from over 60 vendors: interior design, custom built-ins, pull-out shelves as well as golf cart batteries, tax services and more! Learn about exotic land trips and how to pack efficiently at the Travel EXPO in the Silver Room. Don't forget the Girl Scout cookies at the front door!

Sprouts grand opening is on Feb. 28th and the first 200 folks making it through the doors will receive a prize. We can only hope that oxygen and ambulance service will be provided for those left, entering the store from 200 to 300. Should be a very welcome day. Not sure about the dates for Pet Smart, Bealls and TJ Maxx but I am guessing that Pet Smart will be the second store to open given current construction. No other information on stores coming into the mall yet, but they will be there.

When we first started mentioning that there was a new mall coming, along with a Sprouts, it was met with some skepticism by a few residents. Several were right on the money as it turns out. “Oh, yeah, we’ll see a Sprouts and other new stores down here when Feb. 30 comes around.” Missed it by a day or two, they did.

Permits are being gathered up by the company building Phase 1 of Quail Crossing Blvd. from the Circle K by Walmart down to the Santa Cruz River. Also of note is that the County has provided us with their plans to build the “Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail Llanno Grande Trailhead Project” for the Anza Trail by the river. It will be located alongside and at the end of Phase 1 of the Crossing extension. It contains landscaped areas, a 21 car parking area, handicap accessible restrooms and a few other items for users.

A General Obligation Bond, passed by the voters in 2004, provided funding for a number of projects, including the upcoming construction of the Anza-Llano Trailhead.  Pima County is the Lead Agency for the trailhead construction project, and the Town is not providing funding for construction. After construction, the trailhead will remain under the ownership of Pima County. However, the Town will have a role in maintaining the trailhead, which will be located within the Town limits, after the construction is complete.

Hope that most of you have seen the news regarding La Posada. The holdings of La Posada are being annexed into the town of Sahuarita, agreement having been reached by both La Posada and Sahuarita. This will add some 700 residents to the town. The legal process to finalize the annexation will take additional time but all should be in place before the end of the year. This is an exceptionally good annexation and will benefit both parties as we move forward. The agreement calls for Sahuarita to install signal lights at the intersection of Continental Road with the road to Madera Canyon. A roundabout will not be placed at this intersection.

There was a question a while back about the roughness of the newly paved sections of Nogales Highway. The reason for the roughness is that the town recycles the old pavement into a new surface, which saves a fair amount of money. A little rough but keeps the roads in good repair.

So let’s see how we did with Booker’s middle name, Taliaferro. It’s actually pretty easy. Starting with Tal and then ia, closing out with ferro. So we come up with Tal-Ia-Ferro. Was that your guess?  How else could you pronounce this name from Virginia in the 1850’s? Can’t think of many.

Take our town’s name for instance. Most people will call our town Sahrita, but that is wrong. Yes, it is easier to say, but our town is Sa-hua-rita, with a little extra emphasis on rita. Like some of us used to say Rita as in Hayworth.

Now, back to the middle name of Booker. The correct pronunciation of Taliaferro is, wait for it.…Toliver.

February 2018

That moment when you forget you’re
Volunteering to help change lives
Because it’s changing yours

~ Unknown ~

Announcing a very
SPECIAL opportunity to learn about and experience the workings of the Green Valley Council. Our concern on the Council is to provide a chance for the residents of Quail Creek to find out about the organization and the manner in which it provides leadership for the unincorporated town of Green Valley.

On a daily basis the residents of Quail Creek are involved in Green Valley; shopping, going to restaurants, doctors and dentists, banking, church, visiting friends and family and travel agencies. We, the residents of Quail Creek, live in two communities and are improved by the services and opportunities they provide at our doorstep.

As such, it is important that we are represented on both the Sahuarita Town Council and the Green Valley Council. Represented, so that we know what is happening in and to our supporting communities and so that those communities know our concerns and needs and help represent them to a wider audience.

On Thursday, February 15th, Quail Creek residents will have an opportunity to attend the monthly Green Valley Council Board of Representatives meeting---right here in the Quail Creek Ballroom.  The meetings are open to the public and begin at 8:30 in the morning, usually lasting about 90 minutes.  The Board of Representatives is made up of attendees appointed by their various HOA Boards in Green Valley, some 75 persons. Our POA Board has appointed Jim Cleary to represent Quail Creek with John Kozma continuing as the alternate representative.

Those services and stores noted above, that residents use on a daily basis, would have no centralized form of governance and leadership without the Green Valley Council, basically a volunteer organization that represents the views of its residents at the County and State levels in regard to obtaining County funding and interacting with laws and regulations at all levels. Helping with this set of goals there are seven standing Committees that hold monthly meetings and provide input and advice on the issues affecting our area. Committees that the residents of Quail Creek can serve on, should they so choose. These are not make-work committees; they work with and interface with major players in the fields that they advise on and do meaningful work.

On Thursday, February 15th, you will have an opportunity to hear from several speakers including Pima County Administrator, Chuck Huckelberry, Green Valley Hospital Chief Executive Officer, John Matuska as well as a number of other officials from various organizations.  Last month, in January, the Pima County Sheriff presented an excellent program, another example of the information and opportunities for discussion that are provided by the GV Council monthly.

A number of GVC Committee Chairs will be present as well, ready to provide information and examples of the work that they do on an individual basis after the meeting.

Why this meeting and effort on the part of the GVC? The GVC understands the importance of our membership in the Council and the skills and professional credentials that residents here can bring to the Committee structure and work of the Council in important times.  They are going to extra effort this month to hold the meeting here and to welcome Quail Creek into membership. PLEASE, PLEASE, if your schedule permits, PLEASE come to the meeting on the 15th. It will be worth your time and effort.

In December, I noted that the Committees of the Green Valley Council are:

  • Citizen Corp / Emergency Planning Committee
  • Community Services Committee
  • Environmental Committee
  • Health and Human Services Committee
  • HOA Relations Committee
  • Planning and Architectural Committee
  • Traffic and Arroyos Committee

If you see a committee that you could contribute to, based on your interests or past experience, please come on over on the 15th and chat with a member.

Almost all of the Sahuarita Town Council members will be present along with the Town Manager. Mayor Murphy will be introducing the Town Council, and they along with a lot of others present will be available for questions after the meeting.

Come early for breakfast if you like. If you haven’t been to the Clubhouse lately, you will be comforted with new chairs. Chairs should be rated by time; some chairs are ten-minute chairs and some, as in the past, have been thirty-minute chairs. (Length of time to dull certain senses.) Proud to say that the staff have achieved wonders with the new chairs, coming in at close to 90 minutes. Did I mention that the GVC meeting on the 15th lasts for about 90 minutes?

Hope to see you there. No, I did not forget!

Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council Member
Green Valley Council, Executive Committee

January, 2018

May the sun
bring you new energy by day
May the moon
softly restore you by night
May the rain
Wash away your worries
May the breeze
blow new strength
into your being
May you walk
gently through the world
and know its beauty
all the days of your life.
~ Apache Blessing ~

Being a new year, why not start out with the hope that this blessing will be part of your resolutions for the new year and that you will allow these elements to become part of your life.
Starting with this month the Sahuarita Snippets and Green Valley Tellex sections of this newsletter will be split so that each appears in its own area. Green Valley Tellex will be along in a few [or more] paragraphs.
As for Sahuarita, things continue apace regarding all the items that have been mentioned in the past few months. There is nothing new to report on Culver’s and a new coffee shop by the Pizza Hut. It appears that things are still moving forward but are not yet definitive. This is a difficult set of processes given the issues involved with the site, including demolition of the former credit union facility.
The Crossing continues to proceed with a projected opening of Sprouts on Feb. 28. No dates yet on Bealls, Pet Smart and TJMaxx but it would seem that Spring of ’18 will see them on-line as well. Lots of jobs, full and part time are on the way, just in case your spouse needs to find something to do, out of the house.
According to the Green Valley News, “Chuy's Mesquite Broiler is expected to open in February in the space once occupied by Solaris in the Valle Verde Center at Interstate 19 and Duval Mine Road.” It will be wonderful to see the former Solaris space finally back in business and with a well-known company such as Chuy’s.
Have any of you noted that the new Panda Express is now open for business behind the new Fry’s gas station in Sahuarita? Yes, it opened just before Christmas so stop by and welcome them aboard the Sahuarita Express.
I have been asked about the cleared area next to the new Circle K on the east side of the store, next to Quail Crossing Blvd. extension. That is showing as a planned site for a business, yet to be determined. It appears small but has enough room for a business and parking.
For those looking for out of Quail Creek Adventures Colleen Aldridge and her Trip volunteers continue to offer opportunities, once each month between November and May. January offers a trip to the universe. On Wednesday, January 24th, a tour of the Flandrau Science Center and Planetarium at the University of Arizona is on tap. As you should know, the U. of Arizona is a major player in the future of our space program. The trip will be announced in “What’s Happening” regarding sign up dates and details. Small fees are charged for the tours to simply cover expenses and may require carpooling. Sign ups are handled at the Concierge Desk in the Madera Clubhouse.
The Chinese New Year will be celebrated on February 11th, a Sunday. The Trips Sub-Committee is planning a trip to that celebration, held at the Dragon View Restaurant in Tucson. It is a celebration with events and pre-ordered meals welcoming the Year of the Dog. A fun event with good food and spirits. Sign-ups for this trip will be in early February, so plan ahead.
Twelve animals in the Chinese Zodiac but not a cat among um, except for the Tiger. Having been born on the cusp of Gemini and Cancer in the year of the Goat seems logical to me. Thank goodness there is the I Ching (Book of Changes) to keep things clear.
For new owners and late arriving seasonal owners Wilmot Road, has now been paved and provides another access to Tucson from Sahuarita. It can be found by travelling east on Sahuarita Road, past the Pecan complex, for about 6 or 7 miles with Wilmot being on your left in the curved portion of Sahuarita Road. The road offers stress free driving with connections to I-10, Kolb Road and Alvernon. Avoids I-19 and is a good access point for trips to the east side of Tucson. Check it out on a map to find connections from Wilmot in east Tucson. You might like it or you might prefer I-19.
Have not heard a final sales figure for new homes but based on earlier figures we should be close to 120 sales in 2017. If that is true, it will be our best sales year for years past, perhaps from the recession. Southern Arizona continues to be an attractive location for buyers and Sahuarita is certainly holding its own. No, its not like years 2006 and 2007 when home sales reached levels in excess of 300 or 400 homes, but it is showing an increase worthy of discussion. If wondering about the use of “our” in referring to sales please know that increased sales benefit our community, our need for new or increased amenities, resale values and additional funds for reserves and operations.

January 2018

Last month it was noted that we have renewed our membership in the Green Valley Council and are going forward with meetings and programs in 2018. This renewal was critical to our future and on-going relationship with Green Valley and its economic support of our community. Improvements that we help support in Green Valley yield positive results for our community’s position and values. We need to understand that Quail Creek is supported and sustained by two local communities, not just one.
The Green Valley Council is made up of a Board of Representatives, comprised of voting HOA members from seventy-five HOA’s in Green Valley and a Green Valley Council Executive Committee consisting of eleven voting members; six Officers and five Members at Large.
John Kozma, has been an excellent Quail Creek representative to this organization. This Board meets once a month on the third Thursday of the month from September to May.
The Executive Committee has asked that I join the Executive Committee as a voting Member at Large, effective January 1st. This was approved by the Representatives at their December 14 meeting. The Executive Committee meets once a month on the second Wednesday of the month or other meetings as required.
The February 15th meeting of the Board of Representatives will be held here in Quail Creek in the Madera Clubhouse ballroom. The meeting is open to the public and the press. Our intention is to acquaint residents with the workings of the Council and to establish a closer working relationship between Quail Creek and the Council. Further information will be forthcoming in February. Hopefully we will have a strong attendance from our residents as the meetings are informational and educational. So please put this event on your calendar for February 15. The meeting begins at 8:30 AM and usually ends at about 10:00 AM.
Don Weaver, President of the Council, has asked that I become the Council Liaison to the GVC Environmental Committee and assume the position of Co-Chair for a small task group that will be investigating the pros and cons of a proposed new public park on the former Canoa Hills Golf Course. The County and Green Valley will need to decide on this effort within the next three months to meet the requirements of the owner/donor of the property.
Other events and activities will be planned in the coming year as well, to expose residents to the work done by the seven committees of the GVC and the material that they have an opportunity to work with.
Green Valley, like Sahuarita, has historical significance as one of the first communities created and designed as an Active Adult Community, being founded in 1964, just a few years after Sun City was created in 1960. Sun City Arizona was not only the first 55+ active adult community in Arizona, but also the first in the country.
The Green Valley Council is a group formed to work with the County to provide input regarding needs and priorities, as Green Valley is unincorporated; taxes paid by residents of Green Valley are collected but go to the County. Green Valley has numerous amenities for its citizens, managed by Green Valley Recreation and paid for with annual dues from most of its citizens.
The 26 square miles of Green Valley contain some 29,000 residents with an average age of 71.5 and an estimated per capita income in 2016 of $36,003. The Green Valley Council depends on a small stipend from the County, donations, grants and projects to fund its operations. Pima County also provides some county services such as the Sheriff’s Department, road repairs and maintenance, the Library and Magistrate’s Office along with others.
So now we come to a New Year, a brand spanking new year named after its cousin, 2017; the new year of 2018. Who’s to know how things will go in this new year, except perhaps for the Farmer’s Almanac and the I Ching. It should be safe to say that Sahuarita and Quail Creek will continue to grow in both development and population. The Crossing will gradually fill with new businesses and other companies will begin to seek out Sahuarita as we see the additional commercial, retail and population numbers.
As the Sonoran Corridor emerges we will see that Green Valley and Sahuarita occupy a critical niche for growth coming from Mexico; its emerging middle and upper middle classes seeking to shop and recreate in Southern Arizona and increased commercial traffic from the Port of Guaymas and other locations. Planning has already begun to meet some of the coming changes and challenges in both Green Valley and Sahuarita. As a result, 2018 should be a year of both growth and planning for the future.
Green Valley and Sahuarita have an ambiance; an attitude about our communities that we do not wish sacrificed for monetary gain alone. Growth alone does not destroy ambiance and community value but growth without sound planning, set limitations and hard decisions can destroy what we hope to protect and create. The close of this decade will determine how successful our communities have been in creating the vision for a future that both protects our values and allows for appropriate growth. 2018 should be a great year.
Seems like a good place to let the plow horse rest. Thank you to those who have come this far in digesting the vowels, consonants and their brother, syllables, of this newsletter. My apologies to anyone with an upset stomach. Please don’t forget that if you do not want to receive this little newsletter you can inform the Editor of What’s Happening to remove you from the list.
Gil Lusk
Quail Creek Resident
Sahuarita Town Council Member
Green Valley Council, Executive Committee


December, 2017

“The two words 'information' and 'communication' are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through.” 

 Sydney J. Harris ~

Yes, we have a new name for our Snippets, coming to you each month, to continue serving as inexpensive bird cage or kitty litter liner. On November 20th the POA Board, by a vote of 3 to 2, approved our continuing membership in the Green Valley Council (GVC). You will now be getting liner material from two towns, one incorporated and one unincorporated. We will have a voting member on the GVC Board of Representatives, representing Quail Creek each month, on issues affecting Green Valley, over 70 Green Valley HOA’s and plans coming from the County, affecting this region. Key issues and notes will be mentioned here as with the current Snippets. Some new things are already being confirmed and set up for our membership but that’s for next month.

So, in casual conversation, if you note that Snippets is a great liner, you might consider using a more current name such as SnippEx. For a moment I was considering using “KleenEx” as the new name but that would create legal problems and change the nature of writing herein. 

Over the last several years, as Sahuarita has grown, Green Valley has been working on developing their economic development and plans for the future. It has become clearer, every year, that Green Valley, Sahuarita and their numerous HOA’s and residents are joined at the hip for now and for the future. It is important to understand that our concerns, economics, policies and location make it necessary that we work together to create a better future for all our residents. Over the last several years that has begun to happen as the Town Council and Green Valley Council work more closely with each other, helped by the Green Valley Sahuarita Chamber of Commerce and numerous residents involved in plans and projects for the future. 

The Chamber and GVC have Committees working on plans and the future economic development of Green Valley, assisted by our Mayor and Economic Development Manager. By maintaining our membership on the GVC, Quail Creek will now have a more defined role in working on these issues as well, important to our future valuations and growth. 

Your representatives on the GVC will be myself and John Kozma and one of our functions will be to keep our residents informed on events in Green Valley. We also, by being voting members, have the opportunity for our residents to serve on a variety of Committees active in Green Valley but pertinent to Sahuarita and Quail Creek as well.

Those Committees are:

•    Citizen Corp / Emergency Planning Committee
•    Community Services Committee
•    Environmental Committee
•    Health and Human Services Committee
•    HOA Relations Committee
•    Planning and Architectural Committee
•    Traffic and Arroyos Committee

Information on the Committees and on the GVC in general can be found here;

Hopefully, over the coming years, more and more citizens of our region will come to understand the importance of Green Valley and Sahuarita as a major complex offering people of all ages a unique living and educational experience. But that’s another story.

Sahuarita, here we come, ready or not. 

When old pots were on the wood fired range, coffee was said to percolate (yes, a few of us still percolate), but in community terms, Sahuarita is on the stove and percolating.

Construction of Quail Creek Blvd. extension will begin in December as the contract for the first phase has been awarded. This contract will build the road from the Circle K down to the river. I have asked the Town Manager to use funds remaining in the project to plan and construct the traffic control system at the intersection of Old Nogales and Quail Creek Blvd. That will leave the ‘at grade’ river crossing and the road from Old Nogales to the river to be completed. Those items will be discussed at an upcoming study session for inclusion in the new budget beginning on July 1, 2018.

Looks like Panda Express by Fry’s might be open in December and Dairy Queen might be considered for the National Register of Historic Places. At times, small little bees buzz around regarding The Crossing, implying that more stores are being signed up, but, so far, just buzzing and no honey.

While driving south on I-19, if you looked to the right as you passed over the Casino interchange, you might have seen a new Prairie Dog town being built with major tunnels. Quite impressive. Actually, what you are seeing is the burial of new Central Arizona Project (CAP) water lines. The main existing line is a pipe of 72 inches and two supply lines of 36 inches each have been joined to the main line. This is the beginning of the construction and placement of two 36” pipelines to deliver CAP water to the Pecan Orchards and the other down Nogales Highway to the four recharge basins just northwest of the Treatment Plant across the road from us. That work should begin in 2018 and finish in 2019.

On November 2nd we had an impressive turn out of some 240 residents in Quail Creek to hear about Sahuarita’s work on planning a new central downtown development. Response was very helpful, bringing some new ideas to the fore on what might be better or more beneficial. It was a very positive meeting which will be followed up in the future with other such meetings as we proceed. 

Later that evening we had a second meeting with the residents of Rancho Sahuarita at Town Hall. Again, very positive and good discussions. 

Rancho Sahuarita is opening new development areas for homes northwest of Anza School and is also moving into new areas south of the Shell gas station near Fry’s. Included in this area is a new school now under construction. 

“The Green Valley Fire Department has been certified to conduct ambulance service in Green Valley and the surrounding area. There are currently two active units, one of which will be on 24-hour duty and another one on duty during the day. Both are staffed with appropriate personnel. Ambulances staffed by GVFD will respond to emergency calls from Station 151 at 250 N. La Cañada Drive and Station 153 at 210 Continental Road.
AMR, formerly Southwest Ambulance, is a current provider and will continue answering calls. Who you get depends on who is closer to the call, GVFD Chief Chuck Wunder said. AMR is owned by Rural Metro Fire” as noted in an article in the Green Valley News.

New Home sales in Quail Creek for 2017 look very likely to hit 120 units, a major increase from a few years ago along with about a hundred plus sales of existing homes. The overall market in Sahuarita remains positive and that includes Madera Highlands, several other neighborhoods and Rancho Sahuarita. Sahuarita continues to pull new families, moving to Tucson and looking for homes, into our Town. The town’s reputation for safety and excellent schools remains a key factor. 

Weather patterns in the US also continue to add part time seasonal residents to Sahuarita and Green Valley as can be seen in current traffic flows and usage of key parking lots. Our population patterns really do seem to mimic those of a major seasonal vacation resort. As the years go by, this growth pattern is likely to continue, requiring advance planning and citizen participation. We will however always appreciate how fortunate we are to have so many friends and neighbors who bring their skills, knowledge and friendship to our communities during winters in the north and for other reasons. 

Seems like Quail Creek continues to grow clubs like Spring’s profuse and beautiful Baileya multiradiata but who can remember all those names? Come March 2nd, 2018 we will be doing a modified “Discover Quail Creek”, something along the lines of “Discovery: Quail Creek Clubs”. A whole day in the Clubhouse dedicated to our clubs; visit with Clubs and become acquainted – care to join? Program is being put together by the The Women of Quail Creek, POA Staff and a male or two veterans of the old Discover Quail Creek. What fun that was! Early notice to all our clubs – we will be hoping for your support, simply by having a table and participating.

The Trips Sub-Committee of the Education Committee (yes, we still work on providing educational opportunities) is still hard at work bringing new places and items to our residents. On December 5th, Trips is taking a group of 30 people on a behind the scenes tour of Tucson International Airport, led by TIA personnel. Included in the tour will be a visit to the TIA Fire and Emergency Response facilities. Lunch will be provided by the Triple Tee (TTT) truck stop which will surprise new guests with quality and quantity. For those guests needing a little extra care, haircuts and showers are available. Sorry to say, but this trip is already fully booked, but it is an example of the monthly trips that are given from November to May of each year.

Look for January’s trip information here with details to be found in “What’s Happening” prior to the sign-up for trips. 

As a last thought let me thank you, our residents, for the great turnouts to hear about the town’s plan for a new town center (240 people) and the POA’s 2018 Budget (about 300 people), approved by the Board. The turnout for the Budget meeting was the best turnout for any Quail Creek Board Meeting since Anza went to San Francisco. Thank you on behalf of our community for sharing your interest and views. As you know, the Board approved a $15.00 per month increase to our annual dues, reducing it down from $30.00 per month.

In the spirit of the coming season, have a wonderful Christmas with family and friends, whether here or out in the beyond. May the spirit of Scrooge on Christmas morning, live in your heart and your home.

Likewise, may this year’s celebration of Hanukkah, the Celebration of Lights, starting with the menorah’s first candle on December 12th and the last candle on December 20th, bring peace and re-dedication to you and your family.

Gil Lusk
Resident of Quail Creek
Sahuarita Town Council Member

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