As Benjamin Franklin said, “When the well is dry, we know the worth of water.” In Sierra Vista, Arizona, the confluence of growth and water issues is a core theme in public policy discussions. Located 75 miles south of Tucson, Sierra Vista and the region rely heavily on the economic engine of Fort Huachuca, the State’s largest military installation and southern Arizona’s largest single employer. Fort Huachuca is located within Sierra Vista city limits. With a population of 46,000, Sierra Vista is Arizona’s 18th largest city. In a state known for tough water challenges, the water issues in Sierra Vista are among the most unique.
This case study was submitted to the Alliance for Innovation for consideration at the 2010 Transforming Local Government conference.