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Joyce Clark Unfiltered

For "the rest of the story"

Campaign finance reports were due by 5 PM on Thursday, September 29, 2016. As of this posting (after 5 PM on Friday, September 30, 2016) Sammy Chavira’s campaign filing report has not been posted by the City Clerk. Why, you say? Because Sammy has not turned it in. Sammy apparently believes that the laws that everyone tries to uphold do not apply to him. It’s not terribly surprising considering his attitude toward a simple traffic ticket. He failed to appear in court and subsequently had his driver’s license suspended. In addition the Campaign for Truth and Leadership committee and Fire Fighters interested in Registration and Education PAC have not turned in their latest and now overdue campaign finance reports either. These organizations spent a considerable amount of money in support of Sammy’s reelection.

The amount of money spent on the Glendale mayoral race is truly astounding. Burdick reported spending $121,489.60 and Weiers spent $107,356.97. The total for these two races is $228,846.57 or slightly over a quarter of a million dollars. What bumped up the numbers was for the first time there were TV ads, notoriously expensive. Burdick led the way with TV ads beginning during the Republican convention in mid-July and they were run repeatedly and relentlessly until August 30, 2016, the day of the Primary Election. Weiers had no option but to run his own series of TV ads.

It appears from now on a person should not consider running for mayor in Glendale unless he or she can amass a war chest of a minimum of $100,000. That will put many would-be candidates out of the race. It’s a shame that it has come to that.

There could be as many as four aspirants in the 2020 election for mayor. Many suspect that former Councilmember Yvonne Knaack still harbors ambitions. Add to that Councilmembers Turner, Tolmachoff and Aldama, all of whom seem to be jockeying for a run. Throw in a dash of former Assistant City Manager and major player in the Burdick failed contest, Julie Frisoni. During the election season some voters received a survey call asking for a favorable or unfavorable opinion of Julie Frisoni. Many considered it strange since she wasn’t running. It seems she may be preparing for a political future and could decide to run against Lauren Tolmachoff for the Cholla district seat or perhaps…gasp…mayor. A Cholla city council seat  seemed a far more likely proposition if Burdick had won the mayoral contest but despite the outcome Frisoni and her backers may decide to give it or a mayoral race  a try in 2018.

In the other races more modest sums were spent: Vice Mayor Ian Hugh spent $26,815.31; Councilmember Ray Malnar spent $11,696.13 and I spent $11,489.70. Collectively that amounts to $50,001.14. However, we do know from Sammy’s previous campaign report that he had already spent $57,905.98 and we will await seeing what shows up in his overdue report. So far, the collective total for council races is $107,907.12. Anywhere from $10,000 to $40,000 is a typical amount that is usually spent on a Glendale city council race. In its previous campaign report, The Campaign for Truth and Leadership spent $45,218.56 (donated to it from the United Food Workers). The committee is now terminated. The entire amount was not spent on pro Burdick and pro Chavira mailers or anti Weiers or anti Clark mailers (about $30,000). Some of the funds (about $15,000) was spent in support of Larkin and Andrade.

Let’s total what we know has been spent in Glendale’s elections per the latest submitted campaign finance reports. Two candidates spent $228,846.57 on the mayoral races; $107,907.12 was spent on the 3 city council races; and another $30,000 was spent by an Independent Committee. That totals $336,753.69. I suspect Sammy’s missing report will show additional expenditures of about $20,000 bringing the total spent in this round of Glendale elections to somewhere in the neighborhood of $350,000. That’s a surprisingly large amount of money to spend in a Glendale election cycle and has never occurred before.

I don’t have an answer to this escalation of political spending. A friend suggested that perhaps there should be a cap of maybe $50,000 for a mayoral race and $20,000 for a council race. It’s intriguing. It would cause the candidate to spend wisely and effectively. This person believes it would force candidates to have more interaction with voters and perhaps more reliance on social media which costs relatively nothing. What’s your take on the state of Glendale races?

© Joyce Clark, 2016          

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

I’m going to take one moment to brag. In 2000 I ran for councilmember of the Yucca district as a write-in candidate and beat my opponent, the incumbent Martin Samaniego. No other candidate in the State of Arizona has done that. Sixteen years later, I ran for councilmember of the Yucca district and beat my opponent, the incumbent Sammy Chavira. No other candidate in the State of Arizona has defeated two incumbents for the same position.

The results are now final and both Mayor Weiers and I have won our contests. They were close elections. I garnered 1591 votes and Sammy had 1545, a margin of 46 votes. Mayor Weiers received 13,172 votes and Burdick had 12,767, a margin of 405 votes. Again, every vote counts.

Why were both races so close? I am not a political analyst but I think it comes down to 3 factors.

The first factor is money. Chavira raised $79,435.74 and spent to date $57,905.98. I raised $13,081.80 and spent $8050.53 to date. Chavira’s campaign outspent me 7 times to date. Burdick raised $108,376.00 and spent to date $98,779.15. Weiers raised $130,226.95 and spent $85,423.66 to date. I suspect the final figures will be greater once we see the Post Primary Campaign Finance Reports due to the City Clerk by September 29, 2016.

The amount of money spent on these two Glendale races is incredible…$250,159.32…a quarter of a million dollars just by the candidates’ campaign committees. Now add in the Independent Expenditures by Political Action Committees (PACs). The Truth and Leadership PAC appears to have spent $45,000 in opposition to Mayor Weiers and myself. The Fire Fighters Interested in Registration and Education spent $13,000 in opposition to Weiers and me. I have not been able to find the figures on what the Revitalize Arizona and Residents for Accountability PACs spent but I would estimate at least $50,000. Now the figure combining candidate expenditures and independent expenditures balloons to an estimated $350,000. That is stunning for local races.

With that kind of money both Chavira and Burdick send out scads of campaign mailers touting their credentials with fire…one as a Phoenix fire fighter and one as a retired fire chief. For many voters who don’t really pay attention to elections and just show up at the polls, what’s not to like? Fire fighters are heroes who save us. Both Chavira and Burdick banked that this alone would cause the uninformed voter to vote for them.

The second factor is involvement. Sammy is a strong case in point. Although I did not raise the kind of money that he did, I possessed something far more powerful…the interest, support and commitment of so many Yucca district residents that invested themselves in my campaign. Sammy, just as he had performed his job as a councilmember, was AWOL. He paid a company to get his petition signatures. He paid the same company to distribute his campaign material within the district and…are you ready for this? He paid each poll worker (and there were many) $120 plus lunch and dinner, to work each voting location. I had volunteers, citizens who did all of these things willingly and fervently.

The third factor is indefensible records and lies. Burdick and Chavira had records of previous service that they simply could not defend. Burdick never stood up to the fire union as chief and ceded his authority to it. Burdick admitted publicly that he lied about Weiers’ record upon advisement of his campaign consultants. Chavira used the same rhetoric against me that he used in his last campaign. They were lies then and they were lies this time. It’s like the boy who cried wolf. He couldn’t sell his lies a second time around. Sammy’s lack of service as a councilmember angered many Yucca district voters. Burdick’s and Chavira’s lies and exaggerations were deliberately used as smoke screens, to divert the voters’ attention away from their own poor records.

I will have two more blogs on this campaign’s analysis upcoming. One will be on the politics of the actors/supporters of this election and the other will be on the performance of the County Recorder’s Office. Once they have been posted we can all return to the issues facing Glendale. My blog will continue for those who have expressed concern that once I was elected, I would cease to write. I appreciate your continued readership during this campaign season. I bet you are glad Glendale’s races are over. I know that I am.

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to
http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

PLEASE NOTE: I AM LEAVING “DONATE TO MY CAMPAIGN” UP FOR NOW. I DO HAVE CAMPAIGN DEBT. I DON’T KNOW THE FINAL FIGURES YET AS INVOICES CONTINUE TO ARRIVE.

I WILL LEAVE THE CHAVIRA VIDEOS UP THROUGHOUT THE MONTH OF SEPTEMBER FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO HAVE NOT YET VIEWED THEM.

We’ve all heard the expression, “Every vote counts.” Two of the current Glendale races as well as some state races demonstrate exactly how important your vote is.

In the US Representative race for Congressional District 1 the lion’s share of votes come from Pinal County but a few votes, and I mean a few, come from Maricopa County. Paul Babeu has 2 Maricopa County votes and Wendy Rodgers has 5 votes. Every vote counts.

In Congressional District 5 Christine Jones and Andy Biggs are separated by 733 votes out of a total of 77, 126 votes. Every vote counts.

In the County Recorder’s race Helen Purcell leads Aaron Flannery by 374 out of 283,552 votes. Every vote counts.

In Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers leads challenger Mark Burdick by 339 votes out of a total of 24,367 votes. Every vote counts.

In my race I lead Sammy Chavira by 34 votes out of 2,886 votes. Every vote counts.

It appears that with the results of September 1st, Glendale’s votes have been counted. There may be a very few stragglers left to count but they will not affect the fact that Mayor Weiers and I have led our races throughout the count and have won our contests. I suspect our leads may increase by a few, very few, more votes.

That is not the case in the county. There are still 88,000 votes uncounted. In the tight races listed above these final votes will most certainly impact those races.

What many potential voters fail to appreciate is that Primary races are just as important as General races. Often Primary races are 2 person contests. In those races, you are electing your representative at the Primary, not the General. Yet voter non-participation is traditionally higher for Primaries. Primary participation is usually about 9% to 10% of total voter registration. That’s crazy. 10% of the voters decide the outcome for everyone.

It’s especially true in local, city races. Often there are just two candidates for an office. Whomever wins the Primary, wins the race and is elected. The race is done. It’s over. There is no need for the contest to appear on the General Election ballot.

You and I know the Presidential race between Trump and Clinton is tightening up every day. It may well turn out to be the closest Presidential contest in U.S. history…and you think your vote doesn’t count? Believe me, it will.

© Joyce Clark, 2016          

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

The Primary Election is this Tuesday, August 30, 2016. For Glendale candidates the election will be over with the day’s results. Councilmember Ray Malnar and Vice Mayor Ian Hugh are running unopposed and will continue to serve in their capacities.

Mayor Jerry Weiers is facing former Fire Chief Mark Burdick and I am running against the incumbent, Sammy Chavira. Since there are only 2 candidates in each of these races, they will be decided in the Primary. A candidate must receive 50% of the vote plus 1 vote. Historically, there has been only one time in the state when neither primary candidate received 50% plus 1 and had to continue on to the General Election. It’s a rare occurrence.

As I sit writing I immediately think about all of the people who had enough faith and trust in me to become part of this campaign…there are too many to list but know this…I am in your debt.

Several people deserve special mention. Former Councilmember Norma Alvarez of the Ocotillo district insisted that I give running serious consideration and made a good case for my consideration. Norma, thank you for setting me on a path that provides me an opportunity to serve my community once again.

The other is my long time friend and confidant, Dawn Monaghan. She, as always, is a sounding board, editor and someone who keeps me on track when I tend to stray. Thank you Dawn.

Lastly, but certainly by no means least, is my family. It was they whom I asked about the idea of running again. They were immediately enthusiastic and urged me to do so. They walked with me, they hung signs and in true familial fashion, got angry about the lies my opponent spewed about me.

Based upon the feedback I have received from hundreds of former constituents, I feel very confident. A phone survey is no more than a snap shot in time and we had enough money to do just one. The results were that I was leading Sammy two-to-one. I guess we will find out if the phone survey was accurate very shortly.

I will be with my supporters on Election night. Mayor Weiers is hosting a viewing party for election results and I and my people will attend. If, and when I win, I will host a thank you party for my supporters and contributors at a later date.

Now is the time when all candidates get nervous. No one is ever certain whether they will win or lose. You hope you’ve done everything you could do to persuade and to educate voters and now it’s their turn to judge you with their votes. In a peek into the review I and my campaign staff made, here’s what we did:

  • Put up 80 campaign road signs 4’X4’
  • Put out 250 yard signs 18”X24”
  • Called an estimated 5,000 voters
  • Sent out weekly blast emails
  • Sent out 5 campaign mailings
  • Personally walked and called voters
  • Made automated calls to voters
  • Produced mini videos posted on my internet sites
  • Went to meet n greet events
  • Participated in the Glendale Women’s Club forum
  • Placed an ad in the Glendale Star
  • Responded to media requests for biography and answered their specific issue questions
  • Distributed 7,000 flyers within the district
  • Handed out campaign material at voting locations
  • Established a campaign website, www.joyceclark.com
  • Wrote numerous posts on www.joycelclarkunfiltered.com , on Facebook/Clark for Council and Facebook/joyceclark
  • Had many, many late night phone conversations tossing ideas back and forth and sometimes just musing over observations re: the campaign. Thank heaven I’m a night owl.

Being detail oriented here are a few funding facts. My campaign donations came from:

  • 21 contributions of $100 or more were from Glendale/Yucca district residents.
  • 10 contributions of $100 or more were from outside of Glendale. They were from friends, former colleagues and retired Glendale employees.
  • 22 contributions of $50 or less were from Glendale/Yucca district residents.
  • 5 contributions of $50 or less were from outside of Glendale. Again, they were from friends, former colleagues and retired Glendale employees.
  • I did receive 3 unsolicited PAC contributions totaling $1200 from 3 police associations that came with the endorsements I received from the Arizona Police Association and the Arizona Fraternal Order of Police.
  • No special interest money or PAC money was sought.

This campaign was funded by people, just like you. Unlike my opponent, I am beholden to no one except the people of the Yucca district and greater Glendale. I serve you, not special interests. For as you see, my campaign was funded primarily by Glendale and Yucca district residents. I can’t thank them enough.

Sammy and his big money, special interests have tried to divert the voters’ attention away from his shameful record. He violated his campaign promises almost immediately and the most disturbing was the use of taxpayer dollars as his personal checkbook for travel. Here is a link to the original Arizona Republic story by Paul Giblin: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/glendale/2016/03/04/glendale-councilman-sammy-chavira-charges-24k-trips-3-years-taxpayers/78857734/ .

Sammy receives two paychecks. One is from the Phoenix Fire Department and is estimated to be approximately $100,000. The other is his $35,000 paycheck as a councilmember. Yet he still used nearly $25,000 of taxpayer money for personal trips to DC, for example. He has missed a dozen council meetings, has been late and has participated telephonically in others. He hasn’t done the job of a full-time councilmember yet he wishes to be reelected. He is a man with a broken moral compass and a man whose only priority is that of the special interests that bankroll his campaign.

Over my 16 years as councilmember I had an excellent record of service. I introduced innovations such as a Care Card program that provided discounts on prescriptions. I was fully accessible by phone, in person and by email. I helped so many of you with code issues or other issues with the city. I sent district newsletters to every household twice a year and held regular district meetings. I did not abuse the taxpayers’ trust and did not charge mileage or my monthly cell phone bill to the city, as some councilmember’s did. I challenged city personnel to defend their financial and policy recommendations to city council. I was honest, ethical and tried to make decisions that served the best interests of the people of my district and the city as a whole.

I have done the best I could and am at peace with my efforts. I sincerely thank those who have believed in me and worked so hard to elect me and I thank my family as well. I look forward with hope to writing a thank you to those who voted for and elected me.

© Joyce Clark, 2016        

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

PLEASE CHECK OUT THE LATEST CHAVIRA VIDEO. IT WAS INDEPENDENTLY PRODUCED AND NOT PAID FOR OR AUTHORIZED BY CLARK FOR COUNCIL. IT IS TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN.

Glendale’s local election this year, just as the national one, is one of the strangest I have ever seen. Mark Burdick, candidate for mayor, has been running TV ads for well over the past month, most of which have been against Mayor Jerry Weiers, also a candidate. His TV ads are based on one tiny snippet of information with liberally applies doses of innuendo and outright lies.

The kind of money needed to run TV ads for 2 months is very, very large and that money comes from special interests. The most notable special interest by far is the fire union. They desperately want Burdick to win. Think of the power they would have with the 5th largest city in this state having sway over its mayor and agenda.

Recently when interviewed by the Glendale Star Burdick admitted to lying about Weiers and also admitted the advice came from his campaign consultants because that was the only path to winning. Here is what he said to the Star editorial board on June 28, 2016, “As a ‘city insider’ by his own admission, Burdick has publicly stated his willingness to use deceptive claims and misleading statements to garner votes his political advisors assure they will render.”

His campaign consultants are the likes of Julie Frisoni, former City of Glendale employee and apparently at one time in former City Manager Ed Beasley’s inner circle; she is also allegedly responsible for aiding and abetting IceArizona while it was in contract negotiations with the City of Glendale.

Mark Burdick, when he was the city’s Fire Chief, never stood up to the fire union. Consequently, the union virtually ran the City of Glendale’s Fire Department. Burdick was also unable to control his department’s budget and in nearly every fiscal year had asked for more money to cover overtime.

Burdick’s inability to draw a line between the best interests of the city and the fire union’s agenda is demonstrated by his past performance as Fire Chief.  Burdick’s position as a former Fire Chief doesn’t qualify him to be mayor. The two positions are drastically different. If that is what you want, go no further. Vote for Burdick.

But I ask you to consider this. There are many Glendale residents who want city infrastructure, including our streets repaired and maintained; they want to see not only restoration of but more recreational opportunities for their families; they want to see a permanent West Glendale branch library and Heroes Park completed as designed; and they want to see library hours restored.  They have many pent up needs unmet because of the national recession.

None of these citizen wants will be realized if Burdick becomes mayor. Burdick has made a large part of his election rhetoric making sure “public safety” receives more money.  Burdick will insure that all available money will go to “public safety” – but not all public safety — just the fire department. Look for new fire stations, more personnel and enhanced salaries and benefits for fire personnel…and of course, more overtime at time and a half pay. If your choice is to use all available city money for public safety rather than distributing it in an equitable manner, insuring that there will be money for needs other than public safety, read no further. Vote for Burdick.

When Glendale residents picked up the Glendale Republic of May 23, 2015 the headline screamed Fire department understaffing stirs concerns in an article by Matthew Casey. It reflected a deliberate strategy by Joe Hester, then President of the Glendale chapter of the fire union, (who really ran the department) to use scare tactics to get additional revenue …immediately…to expand the fire department. Hester said, “It seems pretty obvious there is a crisis by any way you measure it. Our folks are extremely disappointed in the budget process.” Here is the link to the original article: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/glendale/2015/05/22/glendale-fire-department-understaffed/27713737/ .

The most telling statistic in the article was provided by then Glendale Fire Chief Mark Burdick. He offered Glendale Fire Department response times for 90 percent of calls by year:

  • 2010   8 minutes 11 seconds
  • 2011   8 minutes 10 seconds
  • 2012   8 minutes 6 seconds
  • 2013   8 minutes 12 seconds (Jerry Weiers becomes Mayor)
  • 2014   8 minutes 12 seconds

Burdick said publicly that fire response times had not deteriorated and in fact, had remained constant for 5 years. What he said last year is in complete contradiction to his campaign rhetoric of today. Will you believe what Burdick said last year when he was not running for office or the hype he has offered now that he is running?

There are many factors that impact fire response times. Two of them are major determinants: the city’s transportation system and Automatic Aid. The city’s rigid grid system of streets often impacts response times. Glendale’s congested major arterial streets often make it difficult for fire to respond quickly. Fire’s Automatic Aid system is valley wide. All city signators to Automatic Aid are required to answer neighboring cities’ calls if there is no close unit within the affected city. Did you know that Glendale answers more calls into Phoenix than Phoenix answers calls in Glendale? That is not the only imbalance between Glendale and its neighboring cities. It is imbalances like these that require units farther away from an incident to respond. It is not uncommon for Glendale to receive an emergency call only to find the closest unit is answering a call in a nearby city.

Those who are assisting Burdick’s effort to become mayor have their own agenda and that is to regain the power and influence they lost when Jerry Weiers became Glendale’s mayor.

Burdick’s only “economic plan” is to ensure that the fire union’s demands are met. At what cost? Forget your libraries, forget your parks, forget more recreational opportunities for your children, and forget improved sanitation or water services.

Voters in Glendale, you have a choice and as you make your choice I ask you to consider the following. Mayor Jerry Weiers is a good and decent man and during his first term he has silently and without any fan fare, done much to benefit the city we all love. Jerry Weiers lead the city’s economic turn around and has begun the city’s trek toward restoration of financial stability. The city’s bond rating has been upgraded in the process. Few people know that Weiers was able to obtain 18 free (no cost to the city) police cars. He also started the city’s Christmas parade, sure to become a tradition like Glendale Glitters. He convinced Westgate to restore the city’s 4th of July. He is fully involved with many charity groups and his major focus is always on our veterans. He has lead a council not as unified as people would believe. He has restored Glendale’s credibility with other Valley cities.

Glendale voters, the choice is clear between a man whose first and apparently only priority is to use all available city resources for the fire department and a man who realizes that Glendale has many needs and the distribution of city resources must be prioritized and used as equitably as possible; a man who continues to hold as priority #1 the continued financial health of the city. That man, a man I believe who has earned your vote, is Jerry Weiers.

© Joyce Clark, 2016        

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

PLEASE CHECK OUT THE LATEST VIDEO ABOUT CHAVIRA’S RECORD TO THE LEFT OF THIS COLUMN

In July, 2016 three Political Action Committees registered in Glendale. The first one is Glendale Forward. It registered as a PAC on July 6, 2016.  Here is the link to the Glendale City Clerk’s page about its registration with the city: http://glendaleaz.com/Clerk/documents/GlendaleForward.pdf . The registered Chairman of this PAC is Mike Colletto. Mr. Colletto is the Director of Legislative Affairs for the Professional Fire Fighters, the Phoenix chapter of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF). The registered Treasurer is Stephen Gilman, a firefighter who works for the City of Goodyear.

The second one to register with the City of Glendale on July 20, 2016 is the Campaign for Truth and Leadership. Here is its link: http://glendaleaz.com/Clerk/documents/CampaignforTruthandLeadership.pdf . Its Chairman is Bill Scheel, of Javalina , a consulting firm. He managed Chavira’s last campaign in 2012. Its Treasurer is Darryl Tattrie of Common Cents Consulting. It registered as an Independent Expenditure Committee. An independent expenditure committee, by law, may not consult with or share information or its plan of action to support a candidate with the candidate. Consider that as a wink and a nod for which politics is famous.

On July 22, 2016 a third PAC was born, Fire Fighters Interested in Registration and Education PAC.  It’s an out-of-state PAC located in Washington, D.C. Here is its link: http://glendaleaz.com/Clerk/documents/FireFightersInterestedinRegistrationandEducationPAC.pdf . The sponsoring organization is the International Association of Fire Fighters. Its Chairman is Harold Schaitberger, President of the IAFF and its Treasurer is Thomas Miller. Even though it is required on the registration form, there is no information provided about the Treasurer’s occupation or employer. It wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to assume it is the IAFF.

What do 2 of these 3 PACs have in common? They are suddenly created to support only fire-related candidates in specific, local elections such as Glendale’s and after an election they go to PAC heaven (or hell). The third PAC in this illustrious list is a permanent PAC. I assume its purpose is to register voters and to educate them. Perhaps that’s the kind of education Chavira meant when he misled voters in 2012.

These 3 PACs, recently registered in Glendale, were created for one purpose and one purpose only and that would be to mail campaign material supporting former Fire Chief Mark Burdick, currently running for mayor and Sammy Chavira, a Phoenix fire fighter, running for re election to the Yucca district council seat. These are the only two fire related candidates in Glendale.

So-o-o, brace yourselves for an onslaught of campaign mailings from this point until the election on August 30th. Usually at the bottom in small print or on the return address you can tell who sent them. If they are from Glendale Forward, Campaign for Truth and Leadership or Fire Fighters Interested in Registration and Education, they will be nasty and dirty. They will attempt to destroy Mayor Weiers or me. Their only purpose is to keep Sammy and elect Burdick. You should be very suspicious of their content.

On the other hand, you have read the facts the Arizona Republic and the Glendale Star have reported about Sammy. Sammy told reporters he would let his record speak for itself. It has. His spending on travel; his speeding ticket and subsequent actions; and his failure to appear at six months worth of council meetings and do his job are all actions and decisions he made as a councilmember. I have used facts that are on the public record and have been reported by various media. They tell you what he has done. I’ve told you what he has not done for the people of our district.

That he settled for a trailer instead of a permanent library like Velma Teague, the Main Library or Foothills Library. That he held only one meeting of Yucca residents in 4 years, choosing instead to take your money to go to Washington, D.C. to see the Pope.

 It is evident what he has done and more importantly, what he has not done for the people of our district. Along with the media I have tried to make everyone aware of Sammy’s record so as a voter you can make an informed decision, a choice for change and offered a way to get your voice back.

Our election is August 30th but early vote-by-mail ballots go out on August 3rd, and likely will arrive in your mailbox before August 8th. I ask you to return your mail-in ballot promptly as these early votes are a large portion of district votes. For many, the tendency once your ballot is received is to place it somewhere. It is sometimes forgotten and never returned. This election is critical and your councilmember will be chosen at the Primary. Make your vote count. Return your early ballot promptly.

I pledge as your councilmember that your access to me for your problems will be easy and my response prompt. Please help me to give your voice back.

© Joyce Clark, 2016

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SAVE THE DATE JULY 4 2016

It has been 18 years and 75 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

On February 26, 2016 Arizona Sports ran a story on Anthony LeBlanc’s reaction to Mayor Jerry Weiers’ remarks at his State of the City address. Here is the link:  http://arizonasports.com/story/566510/arizona-coyotes-ceo-glendale-may-want-us-to-stay-but-not-being-realistic/ .

In his prepared remarks with reference to the Coyotes the Mayor said, “I need to be clear about this. I want the Coyotes to stay in Glendale. The city wants the Coyotes to remain in Glendale. We have, since day-one, invited them to remain engaged in this process.”  In his recent remarks Mr. LeBlanc said this about the Coyotes’ refusal to engage in the bid process to manage Glendale’s arena, “…the team did not submit a bid to manage the arena because it refused to participate in a ‘flawed process’.” LeBlanc did not elaborate on his characterization of a “flawed process.”

Mr. LeBlanc went on to say, “I think they do want us to stay, but I don’t think they’re looking through a realistic lens of what that means.” Translate this statement to read that in his view “a realistic lens of what that means” is the Coyotes would only stay if Glendale continues to subsidize a portion of their annual loss. LeBlanc, et. al., may have retired their Fortress loan by adding additional owners but don’t forget they still owe a boat load of money to the NHL for another loan that covered buying the team.

What governmental entity is not only going to build a new hockey arena but also subsidize the Coyotes’ annual loss? It’s Glendale all over again. Tempe? Scottsdale? Probably not. Phoenix? Perhaps it can bury its subsidization of the Coyotes within possible plans to build a new facility for joint use by the Suns and the Coyotes.

The Coyotes want to manage their own facility. Then they collect all of the revenue generated by non-hockey events and they can claim a management fee that not only covers their cost to manage but off-sets their annual loss.

LeBlanc praised a recently approved deal between Broward County, Florida and the NHL Florida Panthers. The deal allows the Panthers to get nearly all of the arena revenue and reduces any profit-sharing between the Panthers and the county. Since the Panthers first season in 1993-94 the Broward county’s public subsidy of the team has been $342 million (an estimated $14 million a year). It should be noted that the Panthers lost $36 million last year and another $27 million the previous year. Of course LeBlanc would think that’s a wonderful deal. Reality is that the majority of NHL teams can’t survive without public financial support. That has been the model for years but many governmental entities are under financial pressure and can no longer afford this type of model. It is a model destined to die in the future as the public clamors for sports franchises to pay their own way.

LeBlanc said three options are still being discussed. They are a shared arena with the Phoenix Suns in downtown, a partnership with Arizona State University or an arena in Scottsdale’s Loop 101 corridor. Hey, if the City of Phoenix wants to pony up and pay the Coyotes to play downtown, congratulations to all. Previously the Suns and the Coyotes shared an arena downtown and it was the fans who suffered with terrible sight lines while watching the games.

Is the Arizona State Legislature delusional? It has budget problems. Will it allow a portion of its allocation of state public money to be used to pay for a new hockey arena instead of educational purposes? It seems doubtful that Scottsdale will wish to pay the Coyotes to play in their town. It would be déjà vu as they refused to do so in 2001.

LeBlanc said if a new arena is built it will take at least three years. He went on to say they would “rather not move twice in five years.” Here is where the situation becomes problematical. Glendale and IceArizona currently have a two year agreement that allows IceArizona to manage the arena for $6 million per year. The first year of that agreement is nearly up leaving only one more year of IceArizona’s management. After that it is assumed AEG, the presumed new arena manager, and IceArizona will have to negotiate short-term tenancy for two more years. Will they be able to craft a mutually satisfactory tenancy arrangement? Then the question becomes if IceArizona can live with the deal for two years, why can’t it live with the deal permanently? Can LeBlanc and company afford to rebuild its fan base in another part of the Valley while it continues to rebuild the team?

No matter what the outcome I continue to have greatest respect and admiration for the players. They have endured a great deal since Jerry Moyes put the team into bankruptcy in 2009. They are a great group of men who certainly deserve more stability than they have had. They deserve better. Let’s see if cooler heads can prevail and a deal that benefits all entities can be achieved permanently. Isn’t it time?

© Joyce Clark, 2016

 FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

It has been 18 years and 27 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

Not only are we entering the intense portion of the national political season with the election of a new President but Glendale politics will soon heat up. Several have taken out nomination petition packets which are due in the City Clerk’s office between May 2, 2016 and June 1, 2016.

Current Mayor Jerry Weiers and mayoral contender Mark Burdick have already taken out nomination petition packets as have Vice Mayor Ian Hugh (Cactus district) and current Councilmember Ray Malnar (Sahuaro district) who recently unseated Gary Sherwood in a Recall Election. Neither of these current councilmembers, as of this date, faces a challenger. In the Yucca district current Councilmember Sammy Chavira has not taken out a nomination petition packet. Nor has anyone else.

On January 8, 2016 KJJJ radio aired interviews centered on the topic, “Is Glendale Bouncing Back?” It was a strange exercise as apparently Burdick had been interviewed by the station before talking to senior staff and Mayor Weiers and Vice Mayor Hugh. The consensus of senior staff and the Mayor and Vice Mayor is that Glendale has recovered but not completely. All felt there was more work to be done to achieve the holy grail of complete financial stability for Glendale. All believe Glendale is well on its way to doing so.

It was what mayoral candidate Mark Burdick said in this story that will trouble many. Burdick said the fire department needs more resources to reduce response times. The police department needs more detectives in north Glendale.” Despite the published fact that Fire Department response times have not increased in the past 5 years.

Everyone should be concerned that Burdick’s major agenda is throwing more money exclusively into the Fire Department. Burdick has acknowledged that the city is not in full financial recovery yet he is willing to take dollars…from somewhere…probably all other city departments…to throw to his favorite department…the Fire Department. What would one expect from a man who retired as Glendale’s Fire Chief? What else would one expect from a candidate who is counting on the tremendous financial and manpower support of the fire unions to try to capture the mayoral seat? He will owe them big time.

With regard to calling for more detectives in north Glendale Burdick is simply pandering to voter strength. It is no secret that the 3 north Glendale districts (Cholla, Sahuaro and Barrel) outvote the 3 south Glendale districts (Cactus, Ocotillo and Yucca) by a margin of 3 to 1. If he attempts to capture the majority of the voters in the 3 north Glendale districts he is going to have to promise them some goodies. Is it any wonder that he made a call for more detectives in north Glendale when more police personnel are needed throughout the city? It’s merely the first of what may be many goodies for north Glendale.

There is no doubt that every Glendale department is stretched thin as Glendale continues its path to full financial recovery. There is no doubt that every department has needs to be met. Allocating more money to the fire department must not occur at the expense of the many needs throughout Glendale.

The Fire Department and the Police Department must be thoroughly scrutinized under zero-based budgeting. Zero-based budgeting requires each department to begin with zero dollars and to justify the need for every dollar allocated to it. Explaining what dollars are needed and where they will be utilized provides openly transparent public knowledge to every Glendale taxpayer that must foot the bill.

Be careful of Burdick’s promises. His advisors, such as Julie Frisoni formerly embroiled in alleged shenanigans related to the $15 million dollar a year Coyotes contract, appear to be a very slick bunch not above promising those things that will garner him votes and using whatever dirty tricks are at their disposal. All signs point to a fierce fight for the mayoral seat and the fight has just begun…

© Joyce Clark, 2016

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such material. For more information go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

It has been 17 years and 306 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

PLEASE NOTE: Today, November 3, 2015 the voters of the Sahuaro district will decide to retain or recall current Councilmember Gary Sherwood. They have already submitted their Early Ballots. If for some reason you still have your Early Ballot you can drop off your completed ballot at any Sahuaro polling location today. Sahuaro district voters do have a choice. They can keep the same representative or opt for change by voting for Ray Malnar. Mr. Malnar is a man of honesty and character whose agenda is to serve the residents of his district in a fiscally conservative and meaningful manner. If the poll to the left of this column is any indication tonight when the votes are tallied the people of the Sahuaro district will have a new councilmember. It may be premature but congratulations to our newest councilmember, Ray Malnar.

How come the city has the capacity to use General Obligation (GO) bond funding (paid by sales tax dollars that flow into the city’s General Fund) to cover $22.3 million dollars to buy 99 acres from the Pendergast family to be used, in part, to satisfy the Bidwill’s and Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority’s requirement for parking for football games yet has no money to construct a West Branch Library? According to Erik Strunk, Director of Parks, Recreation and Library Services, “There are currently no general fund monies available for enhanced library services in this area. Again, the only money we know of that’s available right now is the $2.5 million in development impacts fee money.”

Isn’t it amazing? The city has the opportunity to buy land and voila! There’s money to pay off those GO bonds but to build a library, there’s no money…that is a lot of b_ll s__t. Remember in 2006 a majority of city council stole $6 million earmarked for construction of the West Branch Library and diverted it to construction of the Public Safety Training Facility.

This is but one example of the city playing games with money slated for construction of the West Branch library.

  • Fact:  Glendale voters approved $9.7 million in March of 1987. There is still $1.7 million in library capacity from that approval.
  • Fact: Glendale voters approved $411 million in November of 1999. There is still $7.47 million in library capacity from that approval.
  • Fact: Glendale voters approved $270 million in May of 2007. There is still $12.37 million in library capacity from that approval.
  • Fact: Right now, this very minute, there is over $20 million in bond capacity to build a West Branch Library.

At the September 16, 2008 city council workshop meeting the scheduled completion of the library was 2009 and staff said, “by 2010 the West Branch Library will serve a population of approximately 50,000 in the western area of Glendale, and it is anticipated that more than 1,000 people per day will utilize the services of this branch.”

Residents of west Glendale need to thank Mayor Weiers for asking staff to “refocus” on the promises made regarding what is now called Heroes Park at the northeast corner of Bethany Home Road and 83rd Avenue. We residents appreciate his concern but after waiting 17 years to see this park developed the only action that will suffice is to see dollars being spent.

So they throw us a bone and think that will keep us quiet. Their sop is to install a prefab building, a glorified trailer of about 7,500 square feet in Heroes Park. It will be smaller than Velma Teague Library and smaller than Foothills Library. Gee, aren’t we lucky? Now we will be required to be appropriately grateful.

In the 1975 film classic Network the news anchor Howard Beale stridently bellowed, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”

17 years is a long time to wait for this city make good on its promises. The residents of west Glendale are mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. If the mayor and certain councilmembers want our votes they are going to have to deliver.

© Joyce Clark, 2015

FAIR USE NOTICE

This site contains copyrighted material the use of which is in accordance with Title 17 U.S. C., Section 107. The ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law and who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democratic, scientific and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a go to http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond ‘fair use,’ you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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