Mohave County
May 2024
Volume 24 Issue 3

Bullhead City gets final approval for Metropolitan Planning Organization

General, January 2024, Journal | 0 comments

January 2024

BULLHEAD CITY – Bullhead City has achieved a significant milestone in its efforts to enhance its urban planning and infrastructure development. Thanks to the hard work of Bullhead City Staff and the City Council, along with support from various government agencies and elected officials, Bullhead City is now part of a newly designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). The Federal Highway Administration officially accepted the designation upon receiving a letter of support from Governor Katie Hobbs and supporting information produced by the City.
MPOs are independent planning bodies that cross city boundaries to ensure urbanized areas are adequately planned for. MPOs are empowered to seek grant funding that would otherwise be unavailable to the City, as they are funded by federal gas tax revenues through the state and a 5.7% in-kind match from the member organizations within the MPO boundaries.
Bullhead City’s journey towards obtaining the MPO designation began in March 2023 when City staff received a letter from the Federal Transit Administration stating that continued federal funding of the Bullhead Area Transit System (BATS) would be contingent upon the city forming an MPO.
Bullhead City Assistant Manager Travis Pruitt explained the reasoning for the new changes, “In accordance with the 2020 Census, The Census Bureau designated parts of the city an Urbanized area. That designation put us into a new category for how we receive funding.”
Both the urbanized area and the metropolitan planning organization changes present new opportunities for the City.
“The MPO designation is a significant milestone for Bullhead City. It will enable us to plan and develop our infrastructure more effectively and efficiently, focusing on enhancing mobility, sustainability, and quality of life for our residents,” stated Pruitt.
Karla Petty, Arizona Division Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), praised the City’s proactive and cooperative approach to securing the MPO designation. “I wish to express FHWA’s thank you and congratulations to ADOT and City of Bullhead for the proactive and cooperative manner used to ensure this important designation was completed,” Petty Stated. “I understand it is the first in the nation since the 2020 census.”
More work remains for the city before the new MPO is fully operational.
“We still need to get the executive board together for a meeting to approve the bylaws,” Pruitt said. “We also need to find a place for the MPO to operate. The MPO needs to hire a director and staff, and those employees will need offices.”
The accepted MPO designation prescribes the executive board of the MPO and consists of 7 members appointed by title. The Chair of MPO will be filled by the Mayor of Bullhead City, the Vice Chair will be the Vice Mayor of Bullhead City, and the remaining board seats will be filled by individuals holding the offices of Mohave County Supervisor District 2, Mohave County Supervisor District 5, Arizona State Transportation Board Member, Fort Mohave Tribal Chairman, and Bullhead City Council Member.
“Prescribing the board this way ensures adequate representation for everyone within the boundaries of the MPO now and into the future,” Stated Pruitt. “The MPO stretches from the Northern edge of Bullhead City to the southern tip of Mohave Valley and from the edge of the Colorado River to the Black Mountains. It encompasses Bullhead, Fort Mohave, Mohave Valley, including areas of Mohave County Districts 2 and 5, and the Fort Mohave Tribal Reservation.”
The City of Bullhead remains committed to its strategic goal of creating a sustainable, resilient, and vibrant community for its residents and visitors.
For more information, please contact Mackenzie Covert at (928) 763-0182 or email
– Mackenzie Covert

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