1. What are some tips for driving on our roads?
Bouncing vehicle wheels create dust, reduce driving control and are the main cause of washboards. The best approach to driving on our roads is to take your time and enjoy the view –
- Minimize hard braking, especially around turns and at intersections; ideally, take your foot off the gas long before reaching a turn and intersection so you won’t have to brake at all
- Go up steep hills slowly, and if you have it, use 4WD to improve uphill traction
- Keep your top speed to 30 MPH, you’ll probably only add a 2-3 minutes to your trip through the ranch
- Slow down when approaching other vehicles traveling in the opposite direction; pass only if the vehicle in front of you pulls over
The great thing about incorporating these tips into your driving is you’ll save fuel, improve safety and your vehicle’s suspension and air filter will last a lot longer.
And please remember, cattle, and other wildlife, have the right of way!
2. How are my dues being spent on our roads?
Funds used to maintain and improve roads is the largest part of our member dues. The Board manages how these funds are used, based on the Road Committee recommendations. Each year our goal is to spend about 80% of our budget on basic quality maintenance (ie. grading & ditching) and improvements for access and road substructure (ie. culverts and surface materials).
Coconino County is governed by State Statutes as to how public funds are spent on roadways. If the road in question is not currently in the Coconino County Road Maintenance System and has not been accepted by the Board of Supervisors for maintenance, then the use of HURF funds is governed by State Statute §28-6705 which states:
- The Board of Supervisors may expend public funds for maintenance of public roads and streets other than legally designated state and county highways located outside the limits of an incorporated city or town. Before expending public funds thereon, such roads or streets shall be laid out, opened and constructed WITHOUT COST TO THE COUNTY and fully completed in accordance with a plat approved pursuant to §11-802 and §11-806.1, and in ACCORDANCE WITH STANDARD ENGINEERING ROAD SPECIFICATIONS adopted by the County Board of Supervisors to insure uniform compliance
- Public funds may be expended by the Board of Supervisors for maintenance of public roads and streets laid out, constructed and opened prior to June 13, 1975 even if such roads and streets were not constructed in accordance with subsection “A” of this section
Another method provided by State statute for improving a roadway that does not qualify for public funds is to form a Road Improvement District. The basic requirement for formation of such a district is that a consensus to incur the necessary expenses must be reached by either a majority of the persons owning property or the owners of 51% of the property within the limits of the proposed district. Each parcel will then be assessed an equitable share of the costs on each parcel’s tax bill. For details on Road Improvement Districts.
Unpaved/Primitive dirt roads are not always smooth and are often slippery when wet. The public will experience an increase in vehicle maintenance costs when regularly traveling on our roads.
4. Is there anything that can be done about the dust on my road?
Unpaved roads generate dust. There is nothing the POA or county can do about dust. “Dust palliatives” are defined as any substance, which when applied to unpaved roads, reduces the amount of dust which is created by passing vehicles or which is created by natural wind forces. The road committee has spent many months researching what experts have spent years on, looking at the effectiveness of dust palliatives in relation to the exorbitant cost and has not been able to find a cost/benefit advantage for the members of Four Hills Ranch POA. However, we will continue to review all materials relating to dust palliatives that are available.
Arizona experiences extreme temperatures with the summer season being the longest of the year. The dry climate encourages rapid evaporation of moisture. The POA does not have enough funds available to purchase the enormous amount of precious water to wet down dirt roads, especially when evaporation would occur in a very short time. Dust is a fact of life for our residents in the area..
5. When there are heavy rains, what will the Board do?
During and immediately after rainstorms, we can not do much. The Four Hills Ranch association Board does NOT have the ability to repair roadways during a rainstorm nor do we have equipment to pull stranded motorists from washes. If a person chooses to cross a wash that has been flooded, it is that persons responsibility to have the vehicle towed if it gets stranded.
Once the weather conditions have improved and the dirt surfaces have begun to dry, if required, the road committee will begin to repair damaged roadways in a timely and effective manner per normal schedule, unless there is no access. Please notify the road committee and board of directors of any situation where there is completely no access, so that we can make arrangements to set up a crew. Note that this may take several weeks depending on availability and weather.
During rainstorms and result of slippery conditions of the roads, we highly recommend the following:
WHEN IT RAINS:
a. Reduce your speed.
b. Expect delays.
c. Avoid driving in or through washes and dips.
d. Increase your following distance.
Natural disasters, especially flash floods, can destroy roads. Four Hills Ranch POA will repair and maintain only those roads within the maintenance system. A dry creek bed can become a raging torrent and wash out roads, bridges and culverts. Drivers are cautioned to drive at prudent speeds and exercise due caution on dirt roads Please see Monsoon Safety Tips for more information.
6. How can residents/owners help the association and Board?
Residents/Owners can assist the Board by reporting road sign problems, potentially hazardous road and drainage conditions seen within the Four Hills Ranch area by several ways. We can be reached through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or the board of directors at email@example.com.
7. Who manages the roads from Highway 64 to the east entrances of Four Hills Ranch?
Both Howard Mesa Ranch and Four Hills Ranch maintain the “Common Roads” from Hwy 64 through Howard Mesa Ranch to the east entrances of Four Hills Ranch.
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