Paving complete on Ina Road

Paving is complete on Ina Road.

Paving is complete on Ina Road.

The paving portion of the Ina Beautification Project has been completed. The final mainline pave was the final step of the project that included a complete milling and repaving of the Ina Road and several side streets in the area.

Traffic control markers will remain in place through next week, though all lane restrictions and road closures have ceased.

Town of Marana crews will stripe and paint the roadways next week, but there will be no road closures or expected delays. Next month new light poles will be installed, but traffic restrictions are expected to be minimal. 

The Ina Beautification Project was a comprehensive beautification/improvement project is designed to make the area even more appealing for customers now that the Ina Interchange is accessible again.

Town of Marana did a complete mill and fill of the asphalt on both Ina Road and Aerie Road. All Town streets north of Ina Road, except Camino de Oeste, will have a surface treatment added.

Landscaping was added to bring additional color and plant life along the corridor. New street lights, sidewalks, and accessibility ramps will improve safety and visibility.

Marana rejoins Sun Corridor

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The Town of Marana has rejoined Sun Corridor after a seven-year absence from membership to the program. The Marana Town Council unanimously approved the move at their April 16 meeting.

“As a partner with Sun Corridor, the Town will receive access to top elected and business officials through exclusive meetings and updates; be presented with opportunities to weigh-in on development issues and attraction strategies; receive invitations to site selector road shows, media tours and business leadership trips; receive recognition at sponsored events; marketing services and inclusion in ‘confidential attraction projects,’” said Marana Director of Economic Development Curt Woody. “This will give us the opportunity to participate as a regional partner. It would give us the opportunity to help drive the discussions and strategies to help shape the economic development for not just the town of Marana, but for the region as well.”

“We’re thrilled to welcome the Town of Marana as a member of the board of directors,” said Sun Corridor Senior Vice President Laura Shaw in a release. “The Town of Marana will add its voice and expertise along with 71 other Board members (including the Towns of Oro Valley and Sahuarita, as well as the cities of Tucson and Sierra Vista) to aggressively  attract and expand  primary companies in Southern Arizona.”

Sun Corridor is a nonprofit organization focused on coordinating economic development within the Southern Arizona region. Covering Pima, Pinal, Cochise and Santa Cruz counties, the organization specializes in promoting STEM industries: aerospace and defense, automotive, bioscience, healthcare, renewable and mining technology and transportation and logistics. 

“Sun Corridor’s focus is on the business client and placing them in the best possible location in the region,” Woody explained. “This new model is good for the entire region. Regional momentum builds local momentum and Sun Corridor has put Southern Arizona on the national radar.”

Although Marana was not a formal member of Sun Corridor, the Town’s economic development team had a good working relationship with the organization. Joining Sun Corridor strengthens the Town’s relationship with the group, and gives the Town a formal voice on the board of directors and a larger presence in the business recruitment process.

Ed Stolmaker and Marana Auto Body receive the 2019 Branding Iron Awards


As part of the 2019 Marana State of the Town Luncheon, the Town handed out their Branding Iron Awards. The Marana Branding Irons are awarded to on individual and one organization who have made a "mark" on the community.

Some of the past recipients of the awards  include former U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, former Mayor Ora Mae Harn, Wheeler & Charlene Abbett, and Sargent Aerospace & Defense. 

This year the nominees were evaluated by a panel made up of Town staff and members of the Marana Citizens Forum.

INDIVIDUAL: Ed Stolmaker

Ed Stolmaker receives the Branding Iron Award from Mayor Honea on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

Ed Stolmaker receives the Branding Iron Award from Mayor Honea on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

Previously having served as President/CEO of the Chamber of Commerce for 15 years, Ed Stolmaker has left a mark on the Marana Community. His partnerships with the town, businesses, and Marana Unified School District have played a major role in making it the fastest growing community in Southern Arizona.

Ed led the effort to align the Chamber to address six key efforts: business development, economic development, public policy, workforce development, improving quality of life, and regional growth; all in an effort of building business and community relationships.

During his tenure, the Marana Chamber of Commerce was named Tucson’s best chamber for three years in a row.

He gave Marana a greater platform and stronger voice through his service on the board of Arizona Chamber Executives from 2005-2009 and again beginning in 2017. He also spent 10 years on the Marana Health Center Board of Directors and served as President of Sanctuary Cove's Board of Directors.

Ed recently retired from his position as President/CEO of the Marana Chamber of Commerce, but he is still an active member of this community. Please join me in congratulating Ed Stolmaker for his impacts on the community.

GROUP: Norma and Victor Castaneda of Marana Auto Body

Norma and Victor Castaneda   accept the Branding Iron Award from Mayor Honea on behalf of Marana Auto Body on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

Norma and Victor Castaneda accept the Branding Iron Award from Mayor Honea on behalf of Marana Auto Body on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

For the organization award, we would like to recognize Norma and Victor Castaneda of Marana Auto Body. They have brought many smiles to many faces, and they always work hard to make sure anyone and everyone in Marana is taken care of.  They have been seen on multiple occasions at Circle K, McDonalds, on frontage roads and even in the desert helping others on their own time, free of charge. From helping with tows, jumping a car that is dead and even giving people on the streets food, these people are extraordinary with the largest of hearts.

It's not all business for this small-town body shop. It's about helping the community and the people that live here. They truly make a difference.  

Tangerine Corridor Project wins multiple awards

The Tangerine Road Corridor Project has been selected one of Public Works Projects of the Year  by the American Public Works Association’s for 2019 in the category of Transportation - $25 million to $75 million. 

Tangerine Corridor Project won several awards.

Tangerine Corridor Project won several awards.

The APWA Public Works Project of the Year Award was established to promote excellence in the management, administration and implementation of public works projects by recognizing the alliance between the managing agency, the consultant/architect/engineer, and the contractor who working together to complete public works projects.

Projects eligible in the Transportation category include roads, bridges, mass transit that serve any or all modes of travel, including bicycles and foot traffic.

The Town of Marana partnered with the Town of Oro Valley, Pima County, the Psomas Design Team and contractor Tangerine Corridor Constructors (TCC) - a Granite Construction/Borderland Construction on the project, to improve a  five-mile segment of Tangerine Road from Dove Mountain Boulevard/Twin Peaks Road to La Cañada Drive.

The newly constructed roadway delivered to the public:

  • A four-lane roadway with landscaped medians 

  • The elimination of dip crossings and upgraded culverts to provide 100-year flood access

  • Pedestrian and bicycle facilities

  • The installation of additional turn lanes and signalization at key intersections

  • Wildlife linkages for wildlife corridors along this stretch of roadway

Tom Houle served as the Project Manager for the Town of Marana.

To be eligible for the national award, the project first had to be honored at the state level. The Southern Arizona Branch of the American Public Works Association also named it Project of the Year, Transportation, $25M-$75M category.

The Deer Sculptures on Tangerine Road.

The Deer Sculptures on Tangerine Road.

Those were not the only awards for the project. The project also won a 2019 IPI Partnered Project of the Year Award from the International Partnering Institute. The Partnered Project of the Year Award recognizes teams who distinguish themselves by implementing IPI’s best practices and by fostering high-trust and collaborative relationships on their projects. Those involved in the project “demonstrated a commitment to the partnering process, achieved excellent results and delivered an outstanding project.”

The award level for the Tangerine Road, Dove Mountain Blvd./Twin Peaks Road to La Canada Drive Project will be revealed at the IPI Awards Ceremony luncheon on Friday, May 17.

“All of these awards are true honors,” said Houle. “This one means a lot because we were judged by international competition.”

The project also received the 2018 Arizona Transportation Partnering Excellence Award.

The award, established in 2005, recognizes partnership teams who “demonstrate a high degree of achievement through the practice of partnering principles” as well as “display the application of the partnering processes related to the transportation industry.”

According to Perry Powell, the Chair of the AZ Transportation Partnering Excellence Award Committee, the project impressed the judges because the “partnering approach gave great evidence for how important it was to the success of your project.”

Jacob Cox receives 2019 Youth Legacy Award

Jacob Cox accepts the Youth Legacy Award from Mayor Honea on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

Jacob Cox accepts the Youth Legacy Award from Mayor Honea on the 2019 State of the Town stage.

As part of the 2019 Marana State of the Town Luncheon last week, the Town handed out their third annual Youth Legacy Award.


The Marana Town Council created the Youth Legacy Award in order to acknowledge youth in the community who make Marana a better place for everyone. Recipients of this award benefit others in the community through acts supporting:

Heart: promoting a healthy and supportive environment for youth;

Body: Fulfilling essential needs such as food, shelter, and safety; or

Mind: Creating educational opportunities enriching young minds. 

This year the nominees were evaluated by a panel made up of Town staff and members of the Marana Citizens Forum.

Jacob Cox


 For the last three years, Jacob Cox has run the school supplies drive at Rattlesnake Ridge Elementary. He began in 2015 as a third grader, and the intent was to take school supplies with him on his summer trip to Peru and deliver to a small school in the mountains where many students didn't even have shoes to wear, much less have supplies to use for learning.

Jacob expected to have a few handfuls of crayons, pencils and some notebooks to take with him, but when he went to pick up the supplies from the drive, the boxes were overflowing. The response from the students, teachers and parents were overwhelming.  

When he went back to school after his summer break in Peru, he made another presentation to his school with photos of some of the students who received the supplies. The joy on the faces of the students who were getting their very first backpack, or their own box of crayons for the first time, is indescribable.

Jacob was limited on what he could take with him to Peru, so to ensure all supplies went to a new home, he worked with another school in the district to get the supplies to the teachers and students who needed a little help. Jacob went on to run the supply drive for the next 3 years, up until his last summer in elementary school in 2018.

Interstate 10/Ina Road ramps open to traffic

Lane restrictions set to continue for several weeks

Ina Road exits are now open.

Ina Road exits are now open.

The Arizona Department of Transportation has opened all four ramps between Interstate 10 and Ina Road in Marana. The opening marks a significant milestone for the interchange reconstruction project that began in 2017.

Although the ramps are open, crews must complete final elements of the project. Lane restrictions are scheduled to continue for the next several weeks.

Ina Road is open with a single lane in each direction between Silverbell Road and Camino de las Capas.

The westbound frontage road between Orange Grove and Cortaro roads will remain closed for the time being.

Drivers should proceed through the work zone with caution, slow down and watch for construction personnel and equipment.

Schedules are subject to change based on weather and other unforeseen factors. For more information, please call the ADOT Bilingual Project Information Line at 855.712.8530 or go to azdot.gov/contact and select Projects from the drop-down menu. For real-time highway conditions statewide, visit ADOT's Traveler Information Site at www.az511.gov, follow ADOT on Twitter (@ArizonaDOT) or call 511, except while driving.

Town of Marana receives the GFOA's Distinguished Budget Presentation Award

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The Government Finance Officers Association is pleased to announce that the Town of Marana, Arizona, has received GFOA's Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for its 2018-2019 budget.

“Receiving this award demonstrates the Town of Marana’s dedication to financial transparency,” said Starla Anderson, the Town’s Interim Finance Director during the award submission process. “We are committed to providing the public with detailed information on how their resources are allocated to vital Town services and infrastructure investments.”

The award represents a significant achievement by the Town. It reflects the commitment of the Marana Town Council and Town Staff to meeting the highest principles of governmental budgeting. In order to receive the budget award, the entity had to satisfy nationally recognized guidelines for effective budget presentation. These guidelines are designed to assess how well an entity's budget serves as:

  • A policy document

  • A financial plan

  • An operations  guide

  • A communications  device

Budget documents must be rated "proficient" in all four categories, and in the fourteen mandatory criteria within those categories, to receive the award.

When a Distinguished Budget Presentation Award is granted to an entity, a Certificate of Recognition for Budget Presentation is also presented to the individual(s) or department designated as being primarily responsible for having achieved the award. This has been presented to Starla Anderson, Interim Finance Director.

There are over 1,600 participants in the Budget Awards Program. The most recent Budget Award recipients, along with their corresponding budget documents, are posted quarterly on GFOA's website. Award recipients have pioneered efforts to improve the quality of budgeting and provide an excellent example for other governments throughout North America.

Government Finance Officers Association is a major professional association servicing the needs of more than 19,000 appointed and elected local, state, and provincial-level government officials and other finance practitioners. It provides top quality publications, training programs, services, and products designed to enhance the skills and performance of those responsible for government finance policy and management. The association is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, with offices in Washington D.C.


Second Marana Macro Machines a hit + photo gallery

On Friday, April 12, the Town of Marana held their second Marana Macro Machines event. The event allowed people to get up close and personal with the machines that help Marana Town Staff and their community partners do their jobs to make Marana a great.


This event featured departments and divisions from the Town including Streets, Traffic, Facilities, Fleet, Pavement Preservation, Engineering, Police, Water, Animal Services, and Parks and Recreation. Additionally Northwest Fire, the National Weather Service, the Air National Guard, and several contractors were also on hand.

“This is a great way for our employees to interact with the public and show them what they do,” said Marana Public Works Deputy Director Fausto Burrell.

“The kids really love seeing all of the equipment we use to keep the parks looking great, and their parents love seeing all of the tools we use every day,” said Marana Parks Superintendent David Herman. “I’ve had a lot of questions from some dads about the battery powered chainsaw that we use.”

Marana Macro Machines was held at Marana Heritage River Park and was attended by students from area schools as part of a field trip opportunity, as well as a number of residents.

Manager's Message: Summer Parks and Recreation Programs

Marana Parks and Recreation invites you to Soak In Summer.

Marana Parks and Recreation invites you to Soak In Summer.

Although we have a few months left until the summer heat hits us, registration for our summer programs has already begun. This summer many of your favorite programs return, while we debut some exciting new ones as well

Fun at the splash pad.

Fun at the splash pad.

There will be plenty to do this summer for the kids. We have a few new camps, including the Full Day Summer Sports Camps and Summer Cheer Camp that will last all summer long, plus Teen Extreme Day Camps and Challenger International Soccer Camps.  Several old favorites also return, including our Create with a Beat/Art Day Camps, basketball, flag football, volleyball, and Speed & Agility clinics, summer horse camps, and both tennis and golf lessons.

There are a number of exciting programs for adults as well including pickleball, open gyms, a men’s basketball league, the “Dance Fit Fun” Fitness Class, Teen Paint Night in the Park, and we close out the summer with the 80’s Doggy Paddle Pool Party at the Marana Pool.

Our goal is to have programs for everyone in Marana. We have programs for our youngest residents with Tots & Me Story art, Pee Wee Sports Camp, and swim lessons. For active adults adult sports leagues, a variety of races on both land and water, fitness classes, walking clubs, and open gym. For the more creative we offer the Marana Community Music Theater, Paint Nights in the Park, and make and take garden classes. Our senior center offers a variety of great programs for only the cost of a Senior membership. These programs include fitness classes, dance classes, table games, and crafting.

Paint Night at the Park.

Paint Night at the Park.

This past year have expanded our programming to include children with special needs, which is why our Sensory Splash programs return to the Marana Pool and Gladden Farms Splash Pad.

If events are your thing, I invite you to come out to one of the free concerts or movies we offer, enjoy the fireworks at the Star Spangled Spectacular, or just indulge in the benefits of being outdoors in one of Marana’s parks, splash pads, or trails.

Marana Water represented at "Water Week" in D.C.

Pictured from left to right: Jeane Jensen (Town of Gilbert), Asia Philbin (Marana Water), Senator McSally, and Brad Hill (City of Flagstaff).

Pictured from left to right: Jeane Jensen (Town of Gilbert), Asia Philbin (Marana Water), Senator McSally, and Brad Hill (City of Flagstaff).

Asia Philbin of Marana Water was in Washington DC last week representing the state of Arizona and the Town of Marana at “Water Week.” Every year, water professionals representing community water systems and water-related organizations converge on DC to discuss current water-related issues with the EPA, Bureau of Reclamation, congressional delegations, and others.

Philbin is the Arizona delegate for the American Water Works Association. She and others were able to discuss items with Senator Martha McSally and Senator Kyrsten Sinema, as well as many other representatives. They specifically explained the need for continued funding for water-related infrastructure and the importance of addressing emerging compounds like PFAs.

Water Week is the only national policy event of the year that draws together water professionals from across the country to advocate for the unique needs of drinking water and clean water utilities. It is not only an opportunity to advance policy priorities for the water utilities, including greater federal investment in water infrastructure, but also to celebrate the role these utilities play in communities nationwide.

The anchor event of Water Week is the National Water Policy Fly-In.

“As a new Congress takes control and infrastructure issues take center stage, your attendance and engagement are more critical than ever,” said the Water Week website.

Although the National Water Policy Fly-In serves as the anchor event of Water Week, there are other events in Washington and around the country that celebrate the importance of water and water utilities. In DC, water advocates participate in Congressional Briefings on water and celebrate with Members of Congress at a congressional reception. Outside of DC, utilities in communities from coast to coast celebrate Water Week by hosting facility open houses or other events that highlight the important contributions and benefits that drinking water and clean water utilities provide to support their communities.

Marana Regional Airport To Host U.S. Marine Memorial Service

Marine Memorial at Marana Regional Airport/Photo courtesy Tucson Local Media

Marine Memorial at Marana Regional Airport/Photo courtesy Tucson Local Media

Tom Wilson, Sr., Commandant of the Nighthawk 72 Marana Detachment #1344 Marine Corps League, announced today that there will be a Memorial Service at the Marana Regional Airport on Saturday, April 6, 2018 at 10:00AM to honor the 19 U.S. Marines that were tragically killed in an MV-22 Osprey Tilt rotor aircraft accident at the Airport on April 8, 2000. 

The ceremony will include posting of colors by the Marine Corps; wreath laying by various organizations; guest speakers Honorable Mayor Honea, Department of Arizona Marine Corps League Commandant John Rodriguez, and Cpl Joshua Hanson, 3rd Battalion 5th Marines 0331 Machine Gunner; rifle salute, taps, bagpiper and vocalist Amanda Sinner. 

A special missing man formation flyover provided by the Scorpion Squadron of the West Coast Ravens Formation Team. 


The event is free and open to the public. 

March 16, 2019 the roadside memorial was moved slightly northeast and a parking area was created. The new area is more suitable for the ceremony. 

 Additional Background Information The MV-22 Osprey Tilt rotor aircraft was conducting a training mission in support of Operational Evaluation (OPEVAL) when it went down at the Marana Regional Airport in Marana, Arizona on April 8, 2000. During the mission, the crew and Marines conducted Non-combatant Evacuation Operations (NEO) exercises as part of the Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course, with Marines embarking and disembarking the aircraft. The mission was conducted at night utilizing night vision goggles and forward looking infrared radar to enhance night operational capability. This mishap aircraft was part of the Multiservice Operational Test Team, based at Patuxent River, Maryland, but was temporarily attached to Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron-1 at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona. 

The 19 Marines Lost were as follows: 

3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division 
Sgt. Jose Alvarez, 28
Pfc. Gabriel C. Clevenger, 21 Pfc. Alfred Corona, 23 
Lance Cpl. Jason T. Duke, 28
Lance Cpl. Jesus Gonzalez Sanchez, 27
Lance Cpl. Seth G. Jones, 18
2nd Lt. Clayton J. Kennedy, 24
Lance Cpl. Jorge A. Morin, 21
Cpl. Adam C. Neely, 22
Pfc. Kenneth O. Paddio, 23
Pfc. George P. Santos, 24
Lance Cpl. Keoki P. Santos, 24
Cpl. Can Soler, 21
Pvt. Adam L. Tatro, 19 

 Marine Wing Communications Squadron 38, Marine Air Control Group 38 
Cpl. Eric J. Martinez, 21

Marine Helicopter Squadron 1
Maj. John A. Brow, 39
Maj. Brooks S. Gruber, 34
Cpl. Kelly S. Keith, 22

Marine Tilt-Rotor Training Squadron 204
Staff Sgt. William B. Nelson, 30 

Busy weekend in Marana

Saturday, April 6 is a very busy day in the Town of Marana. There are two fun events in our parks, a Memorial at the airport, and a Shred-It event for those needing the safe disposal of documents.

8:00 a.m. - Kids at the Park Day + Fitness Fun 5K

Kids at the Park Day on April 6.

Kids at the Park Day on April 6.

Join Marana Parks and Recreation for a FREE day of fitness and fun in Gladden Farms Community Park. This event is robust with activities that encourage families to get outdoors and explore their local parks and paths! The best part… it’s all FREE! Don’t miss out.

Not only is it the start of Splash Pad Season, but we will have a face painter, balloon twister, inflatables and more.

Come early and celebrate the new 2.5 mile extension of the shared use path in north Marana! Enjoy on-course entertainment provided by Salpointe High School Drum-line.

Kids at the Park Day

7:00 p.m. - Free Music In Marana: Caiden Brewer

Caiden Brewer

Caiden Brewer

Bring your dancing shoes for a night of free music in the park! Enjoy music while lounging in a chair or on a blanket (borrow one from us if you don't have one). The first free concert of the year is Marana's own Caiden Brewer. Brewer plays country music and has become a real fan favorite at Marana events. The show starts at 7:00 p.m. at Crossroads at Silverbell District Park.

Grab a bit from our great food vendors Carole’s Homemade Salsa & Up In Smoke BBQ and Sweet Sensations.

Free Music In Marana

9:00 a.m. - Paper Shred-It

Town of Marana and Shred-It partner for a paper shred event.

Town of Marana and Shred-It partner for a paper shred event.

Free paper Shred-It Event for Marana Residents with non-commercial documents that need shredding. The shredding will occur on-site at Twin Peaks Elementary from 9:00 a.m. until noon, unless the truck fills up. Donations to the Marana Community Food Bank are encouraged and greatly appreciated.

Paper Shred


10:00 a.m. - U.S. Marine Memorial Service

Nighthawk 72 Marina Memorial at the Marana Regional Airport/photo courtesy Tucson Local Media

Nighthawk 72 Marina Memorial at the Marana Regional Airport/photo courtesy Tucson Local Media

The Marana Regional Airport will host a U.S. Marine Memorial Service on April 6, 2019 at 10 a.m. The Memorial Service at the Marana Regional Airport is to honor the 19 U.S. Marines that were tragically killed in an MV-22 Osprey Tilt rotor aircraft accident at the Airport on April 8, 2000.

The ceremony will include posting of colors by the Marine Corps, wreath laying by various organizations, guest speakers Honorable Mayor Honea, Department of Arizona Marine Corps League Commandant John Rodriguez, and Cpl Joshua Hanson, 3rd Battalion 5th Marines 0331 Machine Gunner, rifle salute, taps, bagpiper, and vocalist Amanda Sinner.

A special missing man formation flyover provided by the Scorpion Squadron of the West Coast Ravens Formation Team.

The event is free and open to the public.

Other events

There are some other great events in Marana later in April.

April 12 - Marana Macro Machines

Marana Macro Machines, Friday April 12 from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Splash Pad at Heritage River Park.

Marana Macro Machines, Friday April 12 from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Splash Pad at Heritage River Park.

On Friday, April 12 from 9 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Splash Pad at Heritage River Park, get up close with the people and machines that work to make our community great! Free ice cream vouchers for the first 200 kids. Visit a wide variety of vehicles, including a sweeper, loader, blade, striping truck, landscape truck and trailer, fire truck, police squad cars, and morel Observe police squad car demonstrations and more.

Marana Macro Machines

April 27 - Camping Under the Stars

Camping Under the Stars

Camping Under the Stars

Join us for the 11th Annual Camping Under the Stars event!! Experience the great outdoors by camping overnight in our beautiful Ora Mae Harn Park. Registration will include your tent site, movie in the park, campfire, star gazing, crafts, games, and environmental exhibits

Camping Under The Stars


We are showing Peter Rabbit as part of our Marana Camping Under the Stars event. Join in on the fun and spend the night camping or just come for the free movie. Whether you come for just the movie or the movie and the camping event, it is sure to be a great time for all.

Peter Rabbit and his three sisters -- Flopsy, Mopsy and Cotton-Tail -- enjoy spending their days in Mr. McGregor's vegetable garden. When one of McGregor's relatives suddenly moves in, he's less than thrilled to discover a family of rabbits in his new home. A battle of wills soon breaks out as the new owner hatches scheme after scheme to get rid of Peter -- a resourceful rabbit who proves to be a worthy and wily opponent.

Peter Rabbit

Founders' Day Photos and Parade Video

This weekend’s Marana Founders’ Day was a huge success. Great crowds turned out for the parade and all the festivities at the Marana Municipal Complex. Relive the event with full video coverage of the parade and a great photo gallery.

Photos by JD Fitzgerald

Marana In The Media: Bringing history to life in Marana

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The Marana News had a story about this weekend’s Wings of Freedom tour at the Marana Airport.

An interactive tour coming to Marana gives the term “history lesson” a whole new meaning. This WWII plane tour brings real, fully restored World War II-era planes to Marana for a chance to brush up on history and experience what it was like to be around these giant metal birds.

The Collins Foundation is an educational, nonprofit organization that puts the “Wings of Freedom” tours together. Going to over 30 cities across the United States, the tour will take place at the Marana Regional Airport from March 29 to 31. 

The Town of Marana has been one of the tour’s stops for about 15 years, giving the community a little piece of World War II history no one else could provide. Attendees can even hop inside of each plane and take it up into the air with a pilot for a fee. 

Read the rest of the story at the Marana News.

The Wings of Freedom Tour is coming to the Marana Regional Airport from March 29-March 31.

The Wings of Freedom Tour is coming to the Marana Regional Airport from March 29-March 31.

NW Fire among top 1% of nation's fire districts

Northwest Fire engine.

Northwest Fire engine.

The Northwest Fire District, a community partner of the Town of Marana, announced that they have received an improved Class 1/1Y Public Protection Classification (PPC) rating issued by the Insurance Service Office (ISO) which places the District’s fire protection community in the top 1% in the country.

The enhanced score takes effect on July 01, 2019 and works to ensure lower insurance costs for property owners within the Northwest Fire District, including much of the Town of Marana and areas of unincorporated Pima County northwest of Tucson.

ISO collects and evaluates fire suppression capabilities in over 48,000 communities in the United States. ISO notes that most insurers use the PPC classification for underwriting and calculating premiums on residential, commercial, and industrial properties. The PPC score is a measure of the community’s overall ability to reduce property losses due to fires.  

The scale of a PPC rating ranges from 1-10, with Class 1 being the highest rating. Northwest Fire’s community Class 1 PPC rating, improved from Class 2, comes on the heels of a recent analysis performed by the ISO on the Northwest Fire community’s fire prevention and suppression systems. The ISO is one of two third-party entities that regularly assess the Northwest Fire District.

The Commission on Fire Accreditation International also evaluates Northwest Fire District is one of only 258 accredited fire and rescue agencies in the country.

Northwest Fire Boundary Map

Map of Northwest Fire’s coverage area.

Map of Northwest Fire’s coverage area.

Marana named the state's fifth safest city

Marana made the list of safest cities in Arizona by Safewise

Marana made the list of safest cities in Arizona by Safewise

The Town of Marana was named one of the top-10 safest cities in Arizona by safewise.com, ranking 5th overall. That is up from No. 6 in the previous rankings.

The Town scored particularly well in terms of violent crime, with just 0.89 violent crimes per 1,000 residents. In the previous rankings Marana had 0.93 violent crimes per 1,000 residents. The national average is 4.49 per 1,000 citizens.

Marana only had 26.24 property crimes per 1,000 residents.

To determine the safest cities in Arizona, safewise.com reviewed the 2017 FBI crime report statistics and population data.

Their evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. This makes it easier to directly compare the likelihood of these crimes occurring in cities with vastly different populations.

See the full list.

Marana was rated the fifth safest city in Arizona.

Marana was rated the fifth safest city in Arizona.

Pavement assessment beginning on Monday, March 18

A van with special equipment will be analyzing Marana roads.

The Town of Marana is committed to having the best possible roads. This goal led to the creation of the Town’s Pavement Preservation Program, which strives to preserve Town roadways on regular basis.

A van will help assess Marana roadways beginning Monday, March 18.

A van will help assess Marana roadways beginning Monday, March 18.

The Town has been collecting pavement condition data and prioritizing project selection for pavement preservation since 2009. Six years ago, the Town created a six-year pavement preservation program.  The program is in its last year of implementation.

As the pavement preservation program was developed in-house, it has evolved over the years to take advantage of advances in computing capabilities as well as changes in pavement preservation philosophy. The most notable latest advancement is the move to prioritize projects based on “life cycle cost concept.” In an effort to best prioritize projects and properly manage resources, the Town roadways will be undergoing a pavement assessment beginning on Monday, March 18. This will not only allow the Town to develop long-term maintenance plans and budgets, but also help guide Town staff into “applying the right treatment, to the right road, at the right time, and right cost.” This will allow the Town to best utilize their resources, while also providing the best possible driving surfaces.

“The pavement assessment will help the Town in initiating cost-effective decisions relative to the “what,” “where,” and “when” in terms of pavement maintenance and rehabilitation,” said Town of Marana Public Works Director Mo El-Ali. “What treatment is cost-effective; where are the treatments needed; and when is the best time to program a treatment?”

Special vans with cameras on the bumper will analyze Marana’s roads.

Special vans with cameras on the bumper will analyze Marana’s roads.

To conduct the pavement assessment, the Town of Marana will utilize IMS Infrastructure Management Services LLC, to complete a detailed inventory and condition rating of all roadways and collect right-of-way assets. The data will be collected and loaded into an asset management program specifically designed to assist the Town in developing a long-term pavement preservation program.  

The field surveys are completed in two phases using specialized surveying equipment.

The first phase will begin on March 18 and last two weeks. This initial phase will inventory and collect pavement performance data using a device known as a Laser Road Surface Tester or RST. This device measures pavement roughness, rutting, cracking and other surface distresses as it travels down the roadway. It will also be used to collect digital video and Global Positioning Satellite (GPS} information for cataloging right of way assets.

The RST is a one-ton Ford van with 4 inside mounted cameras and GPS receivers and a modified front bumper. Operated by three field technicians, the RST travels at posted speed limits and will survey each roadway at least once.

Ina Road opens over I-10 in Marana as interchange nears completion

Ina Road bridge construction/Courtesy ADOT

Ina Road bridge construction/Courtesy ADOT

Ramps connecting with I-10 expected to open in next few weeks

Ina Road has opened over Interstate 10 in Marana, a major step toward completing a modern traffic interchange that is one of the Tucson area’s largest road projects in years.

Early Thursday, traffic began taking Ina Road over I-10 and the Union Pacific Railroad tracks. While work continues in other areas of the project, one lane of Ina Road will be available in each direction and the speed limit will be 25 mph.

Ramps connecting Ina Road with I-10 are expected to open in the next few weeks. The final pieces of the project – widening Ina Road from I-10 west to the Santa Cruz River and connecting with a new bridge over the river – will be completed later this spring. Ina Road is open throughout that area of the project. 

Ina Road Bridge over I-10 is now open.

Ina Road Bridge over I-10 is now open.

Before this $128 million project, Ina Road offered just two lanes under I-10, and drivers regularly had to wait for trains to pass. The new overpass will offer four lanes while eliminating the need to wait for trains, enhancing mobility and safety.

Improvements also include replacing a single two-lane Ina Road bridge over the Santa Cruz River with two bridges, doubling the road’s capacity west of I-10, and creating a bicycle path that connects with The Loop, a system of trails and bike routes in the Tucson area. Meanwhile, new technology will monitor traffic and allow ADOT engineers to adjust signal timing based on need.

ADOT is overseeing the improvements, which are funded by the Federal Highway Administration, the Pima Association of Governments and the Regional Transportation Authority. The town of Marana contributed $7.9 million toward the cost of the new Santa Cruz River bridges west of I-10.

Ina Road is the third major I-10 interchange replacement in Pima County. Projects at Prince Road and Twin Peaks have created overpasses that eliminated the need for drivers to wait for trains. A similar project at Ruthrauff Road is expected to begin this summer.

Manager's Message: Spring into March with the Town of Marana

Marana Municipal Complex.

Marana Municipal Complex.

Marana Town Manager Jamsheed Mehta provides a monthly Manager’s Message to the Marana News.

There’s much to look forward to during the month of March. March Madness, Mardi Gras, St. Patrick’s Day, Spring Equinox—and now Marana’s Community Conversations!

The Town of Marana will host three community meetings this month at various locations, and we encourage our residents to come and learn about new development and construction projects, parks and recreation programs and the fiscal year 2020 budget process. 

A lot of new projects are reaching completion. 

The Town regains access to Ina Road Interchange soon, and with it the freshly paved and landscaped Ina Road, complete with sidewalks and accessibility ramps. New businesses are opening everywhere, including the Hampton Inn & Suites at Marana Center, and the future Dutch Bros. and Serial Grillers located near the Interstate and Cortaro Road. The town is also busy working on capital improvement projects that will further prepare our community for continued growth, like the North Marana Drainage Study. 

Meeting attendees will learn about the latest residential and commercial growth reports, as well as the General Plan update that maps Marana’s future for the next twenty years.

This is a big year for Marana Parks and Recreation. Town staff begins the 10-year Master Plan study that will give the community a chance to assess its recreation needs and interests, and prioritize projects that are publicly supported, financially responsible and environmentally sound. National reports find that 85 percent of Americans consider high quality park amenities and community centers important factors when choosing a new place to live, and more than 90 percent of Americans agree parks and recreation is an important local government service.

By participating in the 10-year Master Plan process, the public can have an impact on future park developments. Learn more about this process at the Community Conversations events, as well as all the exciting parks and recreation programming happening this year near your neighborhood. 

Every year, the Town of Marana organizes an annual budget based on the priorities set by the Town Council. The annual budget serves as the funding plan for policies, goals, and service-levels provided to the citizens of Marana, and gives staff the authority to spend funds according to the policy goals set by Town Council. Citizen feedback plays an important role in this process, and members of the public are invited to attend the meetings to learn more about budget year 2020.

Community Conversations will be held Wednesday, March 13 at the Wheeler Taft Abbett Library (7800 N. Schisler Drive); Wednesday March 20 at The Highlands at Dove Mountain (4949 W. Heritage Club Blvd.); and Thursday, March 28 at the Town of Marana Police Department Community Room. (11555 W. Civic Center Drive). All three events begin at 6 p.m.

We look forward to seeing you! For more information, visit our event calendar at MaranaAZ.gov

Jamsheed Mehta is the Town of Marana Town Manager.

The Marana Police Department honors their best

2018 Marana Police Awards portrait.

2018 Marana Police Awards portrait.

On Wednesday, March 6th the Marana Police Department held their annual awards ceremony. The event recognized police officers, volunteers, and civilians who contributed to the mission of providing unparalleled service, unwavering protection, and uncompromised integrity.

Officer Randy Korth was named Officer of the Year, Jennifer Mangialardi was named Civilian of the Year, and Guy Shaw was named Volunteer of the Year. In addition, Officer Abel Samano and Officer Neil Jordan were promoted to sergeant, eight officers were sworn in to service, and members of the Town's Technology Services Department and Public Works Department were awarded Letters of Commendation for their work on the new police facility. 

Officer of the Year-recipient Officer Korth has continually displayed a high level of performance and commitment that greatly exceeds expectations for the Marana Police Department. As a Field Training Officer, he trains, guides, and mentors new police officers and recruits. He understands the importance of this role and the impact he has on their careers. He is actively involved in the development of the field training curriculum and evaluation process of the program.   

Korth continued his involvement as an instructor in advanced officer trainings, was the facilitator for the GOHS Warrant Grant, and scheduled a total of eight warrant sweep deployments throughout the year. In 2018, the GOHS Warrant Grant resulted in approximately 200 warrants being served totaling approximately $115,000 in bonds. 

Civilian of the Year-recipient Mangialardi won her award not only for her duties as the Administrative Supervisor to Police Chief Terry Rozema, but for her role in planning the annual awards ceremony and department Christmas party. This year, she undertook an endeavor to find a Marana family in need for MPD to adopt during the holidays. She coordinated the donation of toys, clothes, and money for a family comprised of a single mother and her four children living in a 400 square foot house in west Marana.

Shaw earned the Volunteer of the Year award for undertaking a number of roles in his six years as a volunteer. He most recently served as Treasurer  of the MPD VIP’s. This past year Shaw made significant contributions to the Marana Police Department by securing a $5000 grant from the Pima County Attorney’s Office for its Child Car Seat Program. He has been an instrumental organizer for the annual Pride 4 the Patch charity golf tournament, which has raised over thousands of dollars the past three years. This past year he volunteered over 415 hours.

Thirteen officers and civilian staff received the Citation of Excellence, including ten who dealt with a man brandishing a gun at the Starbucks at Arizona Pavilions. MPD was able to work with the store manager to discretely evacuate as many customers and employees as possible. Eventually the man was taken into custody without incident, but with the ever present potential of an active shooter, officers had to consistently evaluate the risk to the employees and public while assessing the situation. The coordinated efforts between the officers, dispatch, and Starbucks manager contributed to sound tactical decisions and evacuation that resulted in a peaceful resolution.  

For her efforts, Store Manager Teri Lewis was awarded a Chief’s Letter of Commendation.

Officer Caylee Baker received a Citation of Excellence for her role in apprehending a mail thief who was stealing and cashing checks from the mail. Officer Jared Voigt earned his Citation of Excellence for locating stolen jewelry, and not only returning it to the owner. LPO John Pathammavong received his Citation of Excellence for his training and mentoring of newer officers, especially those he was serving with on the midnight squad.

Officer Luis Magana and Officer Esteban Norzagaray were awarded the Life Saver Award for their actions last March when they were able to save the life of a man who attempted to commit suicide.

Officers Gave Tapia and Abel Samano were awarded the Medal of Valor for their roles in locating a bank robber who was deemed to be armed and dangerous. 

Dispatcher Sheila Blevins was awarded the Distinguished Service Award. She is responsible for the day-to-day operations of communications within the Marana Police Department. It is not uncommon for surrounding police agencies to call on Sheila for assistance and input for their communication and dispatching systems.  This past year, Sheila played a critical role in the Marana Police Department’s integration into PCWIN; which allows our dispatchers and officers to have radio interoperability with surrounding agencies in emergency situations. 

Officer Brian Neuman earned the Distinguished Service Award for his leadership. He is a General Instructor, Field Training Officer, Phlebotomist, and is HGN certified. He serves as an instructor for High Risk Stops for AOT. He continues to demonstrate his abilities as a knowledgeable officer, and completed the advanced accident reconstruction school through Northwestern University.  This has given him the opportunity to become a lead accident Reconstructionist for serious and fatal collisions 

Grace Neal has served over 29 years as a Marana Police Dispatcher and was awarded the . Distinguished Service Award.  During her career she has served in a variety of roles and has received numerous certifications and training.  Such roles have included; being a training dispatcher, Lead Dispatcher, and at times, has been appointed the acting supervisor of the unit. She has been awarded Dispatcher of the Year through the Association of Public Safety Communications.

Tina Destefano was awarded the Distinguished Service Award.  During her 23-year career as a Marana Police Dispatcher she has served in a variety of roles including; being a training dispatcher, Lead Dispatcher, and at times, has been appointed the acting supervisor of the unit. To this day she receives letters of appreciation from citizens who have appreciated her ability to communicate in a calming manner when they are in distress.  Tina was also awarded Dispatcher of the Year through the Association of Public Safety Communications. 

A pair of MPD Sergeants earned the Medal of Merit. Steve Johnson was awarded the medal for his role as a Homeland Security and Emergency Management expert, while Jose Alvarez was awarded the medal for his role in keeping illegal narcotics off the streets with the Street Level Squad of the Counter Narcotics Alliance. Over his three-year assignment at CNA, Sgt. Alvarez and the Street Level Squad was responsible for the seizure of over $173,000 and $134,000 worth of vehicles seized.

Officer Luis Magana and Officer Esteban Norzagaray were awarded the Life Saver Award for their actions last March when they were able to save the life of a man who attempted to commit suicide.

Officers Gave Tapia and Abel Samano were awarded the Medal of Valor for their roles in locating a bank robber who was deemed to be armed and dangerous.

Three members of the Town of Marana Technology Services Department and three members of the Town’s Facilities Management Division of the Public Works Department were awarded Commendation Letters for their work on the new Marana Police Facility. Mike Perez, Dan Bejarano, and  Joseph Mooney were the recipients from Technology Services, while Brendan O’Connor, Lee Boyett, and Jason Flood were honored from Facilities.

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