The January 21, 2014 afternoon city council workshop session was another “in and out” session. The agenda order was reversed to accommodate someone…probably Councilmembers Sherwood and Chavira as they left the session early.  There were 4 items: Public Comment; Selection of Vice Mayor; Annexation Policy; and the Annual Comprehensive Financial Report.

Councilmember Sherwood started the discussion on Public Comment at council meetings by suggesting that citizen comment be moved to the end of the meeting and that the comment period be reduced from 5 minutes to 3 minutes. You can see the coalition forming. Councilmembers Martinez, Chavira and Knaack agreed with Sherwood but Alvarez and Hugh dissented.  Citizen comments will be moved to the back of the bus once again and there will be less time to offer them. So much for encouraging public involvement.

Knaack was nominated by Martinez to continue to serve as Vice Mayor. Alvarez nominated Sherwood who immediately declined. Alvarez would have supported anyone but the one person she has clashed with continually and considers to be the devil incarnate – Knaack. The majority had no problem keeping Knaack as Vice Mayor for another year.

Annexation Policy was presented by Executive Director Jon Froke. After he presented council unanimously agreed to continue the policy as it currently exists with no changes. It apparently was too much for Alvarez to understand and she remained silent.

Executive Director Tom Duensing presented the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFRA). Eyes glazed over and Vice Mayor Knaack thanked him for bringing this item forward. She was reassured that the city’s finances are being reported properly by the current auditing firm. This must have been another topic too deep for Alvarez as once again she remained silent.

Under Council Items of Interest Councilmember Alvarez requested that the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority (AZSTA) be invited to present to council at workshop on the current status of Camelback Ranch. Won’t that be an interesting discussion!

In less than an hour…badda bing…workshop was over. Results?

  • Citizen comments moved to the end of council meetings.
  • Citizen comments reduced from 5 minutes to 3 minutes.
  • Vice Mayor Yvonne Knaack will continue as the Vice Mayor for another year.
  • City’s annexation policy remains unchanged.
  • CAFRA finds no major financial faults in city’s financial reporting.

© Joyce Clark, 2014


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