AMC through the decades: 2000s

The Arizona-Mexico Commission continued to build its relationship with the Comisión Sonora-Arizona, Arizona and Sonora worked to promote tourism in the region and federal funding benefitted infrastructure along the border in the 2000s.  

Early 2000s 

The State of Arizona kicked off the 2000s with the opening of a trade office in Guadalajara. 

The State of Arizona, AAA Arizona and the State of Sonora signed a memorandum of understanding that same year to establish cooperation in the promotion of tourism and facilitation of cross-border travel.  

In 2001, the Arizona-Sonora Film Commission and the Arizona-Mexico Commission (AMC) Dr. Andy Nichols Award were established. The award recognizes those who contribute to public health through the development of policy.  

In 2002, Arizona exports to Mexico reached $3 billion. That same year, the State of Arizona hosted the 20th Anniversary Border Governors Conference. The Border Governors Conference is held annually to bring states along the U.S.-Mexico border together to discuss issues.

Arizona Governor Jane Dee Hull led an Arizona trade mission to Guadalajara and Mexico City that year to meet with Mexican President Vicente Fox.  

In 2003, Janet Napolitano was inaugurated as Governor of Arizona and led her first trade mission to Mexico City and met with President Vicente Fox. She also hosted him for a visit to Arizona.  

That year, the AMC established the Emergency Management Committee. The committee is still in place today and works to prevent and address emergencies through cross-border coordination.  

The AMC also established the Real Estate Committee, which works to supply real estate experts with services. 

Mid 2000s 

In 2004, the State of Arizona conducted a trade mission to Monterrey, Mexico. 

Governor Napolitano and Sonora Governor Arturo Bours toured the Port of Guaymas last year, as well. Port of Guaymas is located on the Gulf of California in the southwestern area of Sonora.  

In 2005, the AMC established the Sports (Ad-Hoc) Committee to promote “cultural, physical, and personal growth among children and teenagers through sports exchange between Arizona and Mexico,” according to the AMC

In 2006, the AMC and the Comisión Sonora-Arizona implemented the Arizona-Sonora 511 Travel and Transportation System Initiative linking cross-border travelers to timely traffic information in Arizona and Sonora.  

That same year, the Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection (SENTRI) vehicle lane opened at the Nogales-DeConcini Port of Entry. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) “allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travelers upon arrival in the United States” through SENTRI, according to U.S. CBP. 

President George W. Bush allocated $52.8 million in 2006 for improvements to Arizona’s ports of entry in his budget proposal.  

Late 2000s 

In 2007, Arizona and Sonora partnered with National Geographic to promote geotourism throughout the region. Geotourism is a form of tourism that sustains or enhances the environment, heritage, aesthetics, culture and resident well-being of a place, according to National Geographic 

That same year, $42 million in federal funding was secured for the design and construction of the San Luis II Commercial Port of Entry in San Luis, Arizona.  

$13.8 million in federal funding was also secured for the design phase and right-of-way acquisition for the expansion and modernization of the Mariposa Commercial Port of Entry. The expansion and modernization were completed in 2014.  

In 2008, Arizona and Sonora high school students competed in the Arizona-Sonora Bowl II, in celebration of Super Bowl XLII. Arizona beat Sonora. 

That year, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for the San Luis II Port of Entry. It officially opened in 2010. 

Arizona and Sonora created a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership in 2008 at the Lukeville Port of Entry. The two states secured funds for the construction of two additional passenger occupancy vehicle lanes.  

In 2009, $199.4 million is secured through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to modernize the Mariposa Port of Entry. Jan Brewer was also inaugurated as Governor of Arizona. 

That same year, the AMC and Comisión Sonora-Arizona celebrated their 50th anniversary. The commissions were founded in 1959 and have since worked together to address challenges that Arizona and Mexico face. 

Sierra Ciaramella

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