Varied opinions shared on town priorities at Florence forum

By Mark Cowling | Pinal Central

FLORENCE — Candidates for Town Council offered a range of opinions on what the town’s priorities should be at a June 22 forum at the Community Center.

Cassandra Scherm said the town needs to embrace the housing growth now happening and make sure public safety is up to the task, with “the numbers that we need, and facilities,” and road improvements. “Just a lot of things are going to have to grow and change.”

Jose “Mo” Maldonado said it’s Territory Square, the area south of the Gila River long planned for development “and uniting north and south Florence. What better thing to do than unite the divisions we have right now? … Let’s get the parks and put them down there. Let’s get the flood zone raised. … Let’s make Florence the place where you want to go do stuff.”

Nicole Buccellato said the priority needs to be to bring in businesses and retain existing businesses in both Anthem and downtown. The town also needs to look at more programs for the elderly and the youth, including activities for youth who don’t play sports. She said after dark “the town goes dead,” but there used to be after-hours activities, including a teen center, an arcade and batting cages.

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