Archive for Ten year plan


Sedona Center alive and well thanks to effective advocacy and political opposition to closing


Recall that in December 2013 the College and a majority on the District Governing Board agreed to sell the Sedona Center and the Chino Valley Center, while also selling and then  rebuilding the Prescott Valley Center at a cost estimated around $50 million.  Furthermore, recall that the December 2013 ten-year-plan allocated more than 95% of $103.5 million to specific West County development. There was not a penny for Sedona Center development.

At best, the development plan suggested that the College lease 10,000 square feet sometime in the future for a Sedona facility. (The College killed off the nationally recognized film school in Sedona no doubt in preparation for the possible sale and also closed down virtually all for-credit courses.)

To many, the College plan was  to restrict development of almost all Community College live classes and all other live activity to the West side of the County. Specifically,  in the Prescott/Prescott Valley area.

The College administration misjudged the Verde Valley. When word came of the closing and selling of the Sedona Center, there was an outpouring of opposition to the plan.  The administration may have  also misjudged Sedona’s former and present mayor and Sedona’s City Council. While they were extremely polite in their response to the contemplated closing and selling of the Sedona Center, they were forceful and  unanimous in vocal opposition to the decision.  

Another part of the plan, intended for Prescott Valley, also fell through. Apparently, the administration failed to foresee the possibility of Northern Arizona University (NAU) backing away from the plan for a major health complex in Prescott Valley. NAU’s reluctance surfaced   after it hired a new President. It wasn’t long after that when the College announced it was scuttling plans for the $50 million plus development in Prescott Valley and reducing future expenditures to around $18 million.

The College administration has also backpedaled on its decision to close the Chino Valley Center.  It has given Chino Valley a reprieve of several years to increase enrollment.

The overall result of not selling the centers  is to begin returning the Community College to one that serves all the citizens of the County. While there is a long way to go, the trend to locate virtually all live classes and activities in Prescott/Prescott Valley has at least been slowed. 

Below is a copy of a portion of the original December 2013 plan as approved by a majority of the District Governing Board. It shows their intention to sell the three centers.  The Blog couldn’t resist reminding readers of the plan as the College prepares for an open house at the newly renovated Sedona Center.




College saves $30 million or more by reducing size of Prescott Valley construction project

Reduces building program from 136,000 square feet to 50,000 feet; is the “primary hub” of Allied Health Care

The District Governing Board was told by the College Administrators at the April 18, 2017 Board meeting that it was definitely reducing construction on the Prescott Valley Center from 136,000 square feet to 50,000 feet.  It informed the Board in writing that “The Prescott Valley Center will provide needed space to accommodate the Allied Health programs and Mountain Institute JTED health occupation programs. This investment will extend the useful life of the facility and delay our need to build a new campus. As the youngest and fastest growing community in Yavapai County, YC still believes additional space is needed in PV; however, we have reduced the scope of the expansion to 50,000 ft rather than 136,000 ft as originally envisioned. Prescott Valley is still envisioned as the primary hub of Allied Health programs (except Nursing).”  You may find this statement in the agenda, which can be accessed by clicking here

The original $103.5 million capital development plan is now at $76 million. This is a savings of $27.5 million, all of which resulted from changing construction at the Prescott Valley Center. There was an additional $3 or more million saved but that money was reallocated to the Sedona Center.





Nation’s Chairwoman Addresses College Governing Board

The new Chair of the Yavapai-Apache Nation, Jane Russell-Winiecki, shared the Nation’s concerns about the direction of post-secondary education on the East side of Yavapai County at the March 7, 2017 Board meeting. She stressed her concern about the investment of large capital on the West side of the County while investing little in the East side.

She urged the Governing Board to meet with her and her Council to discuss the future of post-secondary education in the Verde Valley.  You may view her remarks below.





Reduces capital development expenditures from $103.5 million to $76 million; Verde gets 13.6 percent for development while supplying about 30% of tax revenue

The Yavapai Community College revised master plan was unanimously approved at the March 7, 2017 Governing Board meeting. Under the revised plan, the amount intended for the Verde Valley goes up from less than 4% in the original December, 2013 plan to 13.6%.  The new plan has also been extended from 10 years to 14 years.

The College intends to spend or has already spent $65.6 million on the west side of the County for renovation and new construction. Because citizen advocacy saved the Sedona Center from being placed on the auction block and sold by the College, it is now improving that facility by spending $6.6 million. It also anticipates that some point spend about $3.8 million on redoing building “L” on the Verde campus.

The largest amount of savings came from reducing the size of the Prescott Valley project. According to VP Clint Ewell, this decision saved about $33 million.

Despite the increase in spending for development on the East side of the County, those taxpayers are still coming up short.  After all, they provide about 30% of primary tax revenue each year for the College.

The complete report to the Governing Board by VP Clint Ewell, which runs about 11 minutes, can be viewed below.


College presents formal changes to capital development plan to Governing Board at its March 7, 2017 meeting — Verde Valley citizen awareness pays off 

Yavapai College Vice President of Finance and Administrative Services, Dr. Clint Ewell, announced major changes in the $104 million dollar capital development plan adopted by the Governing Board in December, 2013.  Ewell wrote to the “Board that “With the changes made thus far, and the approval of the new recommended changes,  the Capital Master Plan  budget would be reduced to approximately $76M, down from the original $104M estimate.”  This is a saving of $28 million dollars.

The biggest reduction came as a result of a reduction in size of the construction projects on the Prescott Valley Campus.  Verde Valley representatives (Oliphant, Filardo, McCasland) and the Verde Valley Board Advisory Committee had raised questions about the construction in that town for at least three years.  Their watchfulness and a change in presidents at Northern Arizona University may have caused the College to back off its plans for a 136,000 square foot addition.  Here is what Dr. Ewell wrote to the Board at Tuesday’s meeting.

“YC still believes additional space is needed in PV; however, we have reduced the scope of the expansion to 50,000 feet rather than 136,000 feet as originally envisioned. Prescott Valley is still envisioned as the primary hub of allied Health programs (except Nursing). This represents a reduction of roughly $33.1M.”

There are now more than sufficient funds available to construct a career and technical education center (smaller) and a residence hall (pay for itself) on the Verde Campus.



Savings estimated at $38 million; new plan needed; where will savings go?

It has become clear that the plans for a major Yavapai College Prescott Valley Allied health Center, first announced at the December 13, 2013 Governing Board meeting, have been scrapped. The College made this announcement initially at its May, 2016 meeting and reaffirmed the decision at its September, 2016 meeting. There has been no movement to change since September.

Originally, the College intended to build a 136,000 square-foot building at a cost of $52 million at the Prescott Valley Center. That was to house an expanded Allied health program, possibly in a partnership with northern Arizona University. The College says it  will now build a 9,000 square foot addition at a cost of about $5.8 million at the Center and cap the cost of a future university learning Center at $14 million.

It is unclear what caused the College to alter its course. The President suggested it discovered it didn’t need the programs that were intended to occupy the facility. However, a change in the administration at NAU, which appeared to be an early major partner,  may have something to do with the decision.

Under the December, 2013 $103.5 million capital development plan the Sedona Center and Chino Valley Center were both to be closed and sold. Money from the sale of those properties was apparently to be used to help pay toward the $52 million construction costs at the Prescott Valley site. The Sedona Center idea collapsed because of enormous public opposition to the plan and there appears no effort to close down the Chino Valley Center as contemplated in December, 2013.

In addition to selling the two Centers, the College’s December $103.5 million capital renovation and construction plan was apparently to be supported  by regularly increasing the primary property tax rate and student tuition. With the collapse of the Prescott Valley project and the continued development of the two centers, what plan is the college following?

The answer seems to be that there is no revised plan. The College and Governing Board are plowing ahead in the dark.





Second phase of $119 million Master Building Plan well underway

Money flowing like water; huge amount of funds going to Prescott campus

The Penelope Wills’ administration is continuing to pour money as fast as it can into various construction projects throughout the College system.  However, the largest amount of money by far is for, you guessed it, the Prescott Campus.  

money flowing like water 3The efforts by the Verde Valley Board Advisory Committee and the two Verde Valley representatives on the Governing Board to slow down and require the administration to justify these multi-million dollar projects have been for naught.  Wills’ has never had her hands on so much tax money she can spend without interference from the Board.

Here is the latest information on current building projects as of December 29, 2015.

Building 29 on Prescott Campus

Demolition and utility location is underway for the Regional Economic Development Center, Building 29 as design nears completion. Construction documents are expected to be complete on December 16. Construction is scheduled to begin January 11 and continue through June 1, 2016.

Building 31 on Prescott Campus

Site utility location and other civil engineering functions are underway for Lifelong Learning, Building 31. Lifelong Learning staff will be moving to Building 1 Room 200 on December 16 and will return to Building 31 on or about June 1, 2016 which is when construction is scheduled to be complete.

Building 15 on Prescott Campus

Programming of Building 15 is scheduled to kick-off in March of 2016.  According to the College budget, it will spend over $5 million on renovating and construction on this facility.


Chino, CTEC and Prescott Valley will be receiving ramadas for use as outdoor seating. Work is underway to construct the foundations for these units with assembly expected to be complete and ready for use by the end of January.


Buildings 29/30/31 on Prescott Campus:  Pavement Rehabilitation – In design. (Actually most likely capital expense disguised as preventive maintenance.)

Sedona Center Stucco Repair/ Painting – Completion November 13

Sedona Center Roof Replacement – November 16 through December 15

ADA Parking Lot Modifications at the Verde Valley Campus – In design–probably capital project disguised as preventative maintenance.

Smith Group continues control

The Verde Valley Campus and Prescott Campus Wayfinding and Open Space Committees continue to secretly work with SmithGroup/JJR to develop a plan for open space improvements for fiscal years 2016 through 2020.

CTEC renovations completed for $5.2 million

College Celebrates “Grand re-opening” 

The public attended an open house event at Yavapai College’s Career and Technical Education Center (CTEC) at the Prescott airport on Saturday, October 10. The open house was intended to celebrate CTEC and learn more about the facility’s recent renovations and the valuable programs it offers. A brief program of welcome and remarks about the project was given to those in attendance.CTEC GRAND OPENING SHOP 2


The CTEC Campus is enclosed by a 108,000 square foot building, which sits on an eight-acre site. It houses 12 programs and the Yavapai College Rural Center for Entrepreneurship.

The $5.2 million renovation accomplished the following:

Added four new classrooms

Expanded space and labs for several programs

Incorporated 10,000 square feet of storage space

Enlarged the student computer commons

Created two computer labs

Replaced aging overhead lights with energy efficient LED lights

Added noise abatement features.

Programs offered through CTEC include Electronic Technology, Gunsmithing, Welding, Industrial Machine Mechanic, and Applied Pre-Engineering. The College reports that technical education is one of Yavapai College’s fastest growing offerings and prepares students for well-paying careers while helping to boost the local economy.

Blatant unfairness. None of the programs offered at CTEC today are available to High School students in Sedona and the Verde Valley.  Almost all of them are available to High School students on the West side of the County.  The unfairness of this situation has existed now for about 8 years, when the College administration closed down the development of the Northern Arizona Regional Skills Center on the Verde Campus and moved most, if not all, CTE training to the Prescott side of Yavapai County.

Prescott Valley predicts College expansion in next five years

Newspaper story says College medical complex coming in next five years 

The Prescott Valley Tribune ran a story written by Les Bowen on May 7, 2015 extolling the economic development in Prescott Valley.  In that story, Mr. Bowen wrote that the Yavapai Regional Medical Center’s east campus and the Mountain Valley Regional Rehabilitation Hospital  are attracting doctors and smaller health care-related businesses to Prescott Valley.

expansionHe also wrote that “In the next five years, town leaders are looking at the opportunities that will come with the planned expansion of Yavapai College facilities in Prescott Valley, in partnership with Northern Arizona University, offering bachelor and graduate programs and expanded courses of study in nursing and health care-related fields.

This will come as a shock to many who have been hearing from the College Administration that the Prescott Valley campus idea has been pushed back for many years.  The administrators and some on the District Governing Board are fond of saying that the Prescott campus expansion in the ten-year-development-plan is just a concept–not a plan.  Well, seems like the folks in Prescott Valley think it is a plan. 

Sedona Center formally removed from auction block

McCasland effort brings about formal decision on not selling the Sedona Center

It has taken more than a year, but the College District Governing Board finally agreed to formally take the Yavapai Community College Sedona Center off the auction block as a part of the ten-year-development plan. That action was taken at the Governing Board meeting on Tuesday when it was removed from the ten-year-plan by a 5-0 vote.

The measure was formally brought before the Board for a decision because of the efforts of Board Representative Deb McCasland. Since she was elected to the Board, McCasland has consistently pushed to have the development plan reviewed including the selling of the Sedona Center.

CongratulationsThe formal Board decision was made possible only because of the tireless efforts of outraged Sedona citizens and others, who protested the action repeatedly to the Board over the past year, the Sedona City Council, the former and present Sedona Mayors, and the Verde Valley Board Advisory Committee.

Congratulations to everyone for saving post-secondary education for the Sedona area of the County!