I appreciate the opportunity The Douglas Dispatch provides our City Councilmembers to update our residents, and in particular, those who live with my Ward, on the business I have conducted for the City as a member of council.

On June 26-28, the mayor and I attended the Arizona-Mexico Commission (AMC) in Phoenix. While Douglas was on the map for the Port of Entry project, we solidified our progress with the federal government and also were told we would be in the 2021 budget for funding for this estimated $120 million project. In one of the “next steps” to seeing this huge construction project become a reality, the General Services Administration (GSA) will be in Douglas this week to give stakeholders a report on their work and the projected upcoming infrastructure needs of the new commercial port that will become one of the economic engines of our region.

There were also discussions with the Arizona Chamber Foundation to visit our city this summer as they offered funding assistance for community amenities or small capital projects we have in mind.

Steps continue towards finding a new home in Douglas for the University of Arizona. At the conference we sought the support of Governor Doug Ducey and his staff and followed up with information they requested to help them consider our proposal. It was encouraging, and we’ll be updating the public on the specifics once more information on that can be made public.

The work continues by our City Council working on behalf of our citizens as we deliberated and adopted the new City budget for this fiscal year which runs from July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020. It has some funding for much needed projects in the budget, including basketball court resurfacing, surface repairs to the baby pool and working on the design of an updated and transformed look of downtown along G Avenue as part of a phased program that will begin this year. You can watch the Council meeting presentation at the beginning of the June 10th Council meeting to get an idea of the art and streetscape possibilities we are considering and will be seeking additional public comment on.

Finally, the City Council was approached by APS for approval for soil remediation to clean-up a site they previously occupied leaving it ready for future development or public use. Starting in August at the Port of Entry to the west of the entrance, you will notice a large fenced area where they will be working. Parking will not be allowed in that area for the next year.

These are just a few of the projects and business of the City that we can be proud of. I am always interested in hearing from you with your ideas or comments and may be contacted at jose.grijalva@douglasaz.gov or 520-417-7303. Working together we can continue to make our community better.

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