BISBEE — A portion of Davis Road is slated for work now that the county Board of Supervisors has approved a resolution to widen the road from 100 feet to 200 feet as recommended by the Arizona Department of Transportation.

The county will work on obtaining the necessary rights of way over the next several months at an estimated cost of $125,000 for the stretch of the road from U.S. Route 191 to just east of Coffman Road. The planned improvements include the intersections of Davis Road and 191 and Davis Road at Central Highway, said Theresa Murphy, county right of way agent.

The Sheriff’s Office received approval to accept a $70,845 grant from the Southwest Border Arizona Region High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area to participate in the Southern Arizona Major Investigative Team for salaries and employee related expenses that will run through Dec. 31, 2021. The task force works under the guidance of a local Drug Enforcement Agency office. The mission is to combat illegal drug use, sales and smuggling occurring within the communities of Cochise County. The county will pay the $32,000 required match.

On a COVID-19 related matter, the supervisors approved a $352,000 grant through the Arizona Department of Health Services Intergovernmental Agreement and Cochise Health and Social Services.

Craig Janiszewski, county public health emergency preparedness coordinator, said the grant will provide funding for surveillance activities relating to COVID–19 and will allow for additional personnel to serve as case investigators, contact tracers and liaisons for schools, long-term care and assisted living facilities and businesses through Feb. 28, 2022.

A partnership with the Arizona Department of Safety and Health was approved, which will help improve and enhance current safety and health practices at all levels within the county, said Risk Management Coordinator Randy Denney. The agreement is set for a three–year period with a 30–day notice out-clause that can be exercised by either party. This agreement is voluntary and affords an alternative to traditional ADOSH enforcement activities. It allows the county and ADOSH to work together to bolster safety efforts drawing from ADOSH best practices and will focus on the Public Works department as a starting point.

“Through the implementation of injury and illness prevention programs, we expect to reduce frequency and severity of injuries in the workforce, enhance safety, and as a result, reduce workers compensation costs, while increasing our legal compliance,” Denney said. “Through the program, ADOSH will partner with us in implementing the best industry practices and improve upon existing safety programs as well as highlighting programs that are working well in other departments. The key elements of the injury and illness prevention program are management leadership, worker protection, employee involvement, hazard identification, hazard prevention and control, education and training and program evaluation and improvement.”

Supervisors Ann English and Peggy Judd recognized outgoing Supervisor Tom Borer for his service to the county and presented him with accolades as well as parting gifts and a plaque commemorating his two years on the board.

English said, “You are the only supervisor ever appointed. You are precious to us. You showed great leadership over the past two years.”

Judd added, “It’s been a pleasure to work with you. It’s been exciting to see someone we appointed work out so wonderfully.

Tom Crosby will take Borer’s seat in January.