Passions high as farmers argue over Coolidge land lease

By Aaron Dorman | Pinal Central

COOLIDGE — For the second straight meeting, council members debated the potential leasing of city-owned farmland as the 20-year tenant, Bruce Bartlett, argued against the process.

This time, however, the city voted to accept the high bid, which came from RPT Farms’ Mark Poe.

At the meeting, which took place Monday night, the two farmers argued with council members and one another about the process and the delay in making a decision about the roughly 300 acres which use effluent from the adjacent wastewater treatment plant.

“I’ve been farming all my life,” Poe said. “I was the highest bidder and I don’t know why we are at where we are now.”

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