BUCKEYE — The Agua Fria High School District already has one campus in the city of Buckeye, and if the Buckeye City Council votes soon to approve an annexation plan, there would be two district high schools in that city.
The council held a public hearing and first reading of a district-initiated plan to annex about 600 acres that would include Canyon View High School, which currently is in unincorporated Maricopa County.
The proposed parcels to be annexed would allow the city to follow state law in annexing contiguous land, with specified dimensional requirements, from the Flood Control District of Maricopa and Maricopa County Municipal Water Conservation District 1, to avoid leaping over land to get to the high school.
The Canyon View campus property accounts for about 50 acres, Buckeye senior planner Sean Banda said. The school is on the northwest corner of West Bethany Home Road and North Perryville Road.
The purpose of annexation is to provide Buckeye emergency services to Canyon View; there is no additional development anticipated, according to a staff report. This would enable a Buckeye police resource officer to serve the Canyon View campus’s 1,400 students.
The request involves six parcels. By state law, more than half the property owners involved must agree to the annexation. The area is already part of Buckeye’s planning area.
A parent who spoke at Tuesday’s council meeting expressed concerns about possible school district changes that might involve her son having to change schools.
She was told city and county governments have no say over such matters, but local school boards do.
She also said the unpaved portion of Bethany Home Road, west of the high school, is used for racing and other unsafe driving.
The next annexation step would involve an agenda item at the upcoming meeting of the Buckeye City Council.
Existing utility systems are expected to remain in place, as will access points to the school.
The closest Buckeye Police substation to the high school is at 21699 W. Yuma Road, near Dean Road, about 9.6 miles from the property proposed to be annexed, in a center than includes a library branch and the Buckeye Fire Department’s administrative offices.
Buckeye Fire Department Station 703, in the Verrado development, is about 6 miles from Canyon View.
Agua Fria High School District Deputy Superintendent of Operations Tom Huffman spoke at a May 4 board meeting about the proposed annexation. He said the district and Buckeye have a longstanding and positive working relationship, dating to before the 2005 construction of Verrado High School.
Verrado is the district’s only school presently within Buckeye city limits.
While Canyon View’s campus is in an unincorporated part of the county, West Valley cities are closing in. The city limits of Glendale are at 186th Avenue, about one block east of Perryville Road, and the northwest corner of Goodyear is about 1 mile from Canyon View, at Perryville and Camelback roads.
According to a handbook put together by the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, A.R.S. §9-101.01 bars the incorporation of an area within six miles of an incorporated city with a population of 5,000 or more unless the existing city or town grants permission for such
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