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Modified: Wednesday, Oct 16th, 2013


John Mayes is the new director of the Powell Museum.
MUSEUM DIRECTOR

Former city councilor John Mayes was hired Oct. 15 to be director of the Powell Museum, according to Mark Law, president of the museum’s board of directors.

Law said the board identified Mayes as a prime candidate for the position and approached him about it. After some consideration, he accepted.

Mayes was defeated earlier this year in his bid for reelection to council.



CITY ATTORNEY

Robert Wingo has resigned as Page city attorney to accept a position of deputy city attorney in Surprise.

His final day here will be Dec. 5, according to the resignation letter he submitted to Mayor Bill Diak last week.

“I sincerely appreciate the opportunities that the City of Page has provided me during my

tenure as assistant, and then city attorney,” he wrote. “Again, thank you for your support during the last six-plus years; I wish you and the city of Page nothing but the best for the future.”

Wingo was promoted from assistant city attorney last year after Rick Olson resigned as city attorney to become city manager.

Olson has announced his intention to step down as city manager, and has his eye on the open city magistrate job.



89T

The newly paved, shorter U.S. 89 detour route in northern Arizona is now fully open with no restrictions after the Arizona Department of Transportation completed fencing along the corridor to help prevent livestock from crossing the roadway.

The temporary U.S. 89 (U.S. 89T) route opened with limited access on Aug. 29, three months after construction began the $35 million project to pave Navajo Route 20, which was mostly a dirt and sandy road before work began in late May.

Until now, the roadway was limited to only daytime use and speed restrictions were present in areas where the fencing had yet to be completed. Along with fencing, crews have recently finished final lane striping and installed recessed pavement markings to enhance safety along the corridor. The maximum speed limit for the corridor is now 55 mph.

The 44-mile-long U.S. 89T route runs parallel to U.S. 89 from Gap to LeChee and is accessible from U.S. 89, approximately 17 miles north of the U.S. 160 junction (Tuba City exit). Previously a Navajo Nation roadway, U.S. 89T will be maintained by ADOT while it is in use as a detour.

The U.S. 89T project became necessary after a Feb. 20 landslide closed a section of US 89 between Bitter Springs and Page. It is not part of the ultimate solution to repair U.S. 89.

After an extensive geotechnical investigation of the US 89 landslide, ADOT’s proposed solution is to move the travel lanes away from the active landslide and construct a rock structure to stabilize the area.

The projected $40 million repair is already on the fast track. Design on the repair began in late August and ADOT is meeting with potential contractors this fall. ADOT’s goal is to start construction by mid-2014, if extensive environmental and right-of-way clearances are finalized.

After the reconstruction of US 89 is complete, US 89T will be returned to the Bureau of Indian Affairs and will be referred to again as Navajo Route 20, with maintenance handled by the Navajo Division of Transportation.



AIRPORT

The Page Municipal Airport board at its Oct. 14 meeting was updated on airport closures to accommodate resurfacing of the runway.

A letter from City Manager Rick Olson set the following schedule for runway closures:

—From 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Oct. 16 and 17 for preparation and crack sealing.

—From 6 a.m. Oct. 23 to 8 p.m. Oct. 27, perhaps longer depending on weather.

—A brief closure Nov. 25 will be required for painting.

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