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Joyce Clark Unfiltered

For "the rest of the story"

Please note: Tom McCarthy very recently passed away. Tom had been a voice in Glendale for many years and was well known in our community. He was a first rate attorney and long-time advocate for downtown Glendale. He was a gentleman and most certainly, a scholar. He will be missed. My condolences to his wife, Diane McCarthy. Your family and Tom will be in my prayers as well as those of many Glendale residents. I am so sorry for your loss, Diane.

It has been 17 years and 317 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

I had planned to post this blog yesterday afternoon but then Paris. It just didn’t seem appropriate. Many people share their speculations with me. Lately, rumors and speculation abound about  Councilmembers Chavira and Aldama and yes, sadly…disgraced former Councilmember Sherwood.

There are no hard facts in this blog but rather a compilation of rumors and speculation melded together from a variety of sources. Let’s begin with the Sahuaro district. At this moment things have quieted down but don’t expect it to last for very long. Sherwood claims he will run for his Sahuaro seat again. That may be problematical for him. He has lost a great deal of support and previous donors to his campaign coffers are fading into the political mist. The fire union is frantically looking for someone to run against newly elected Sahuaro district Councilmember Ray Malnar. Don’t be surprised if a Phoenix Deputy Fire Chief, Larry Contreras, whose move into the Sahuaro district was publicly announced by Chavira, becomes their candidate of choice.

In the Yucca district voters will choose a councilmember on November 8, 2016. Expect events to heat up there as well. Rumors have it that current Councilmember Chavira will not run for reelection. Instead, there is speculation that the Tohono O’odham will hire him for a position perhaps as Marketing & Communications Director or Public Safety Director (he seems qualified for neither). It appears that Sammy’s support of the casino may have paid off for him big time. A competing camp believes that under the mentorship of Ruben Gallego, newly elected U.S. Congressman representing Arizona’s 7th District , Chavira may run for the State Legislature providing the fire union some representation in that body.

All of these rumors led me to do some speculating of my own. Now, imagine this scenario, Chavira and Aldama are very close…buddies. We know that Aldama wants to run for mayor so badly it hurts. Everything he does as a councilmember seems to be specifically designed for that goal. Right now Aldama is on a different election cycle. If he were to run for mayor he would have to resign from his council seat and he would no longer enjoy the power of incumbency to assist him. But what if he could stand for reelection in the same cycle as the mayor? With a little shuffling it could happen. Imagine his buddy, Chavira, giving Aldama a heads up that he is not running again way before he announces that publicly. Aldama, as Ocotillo district Councilmember, claims his residency in the Ocotillo district as required by law. But he has a perfectly good home in the Yucca district (where everyone believes he lives) and he could pull a nominating packet to run for the Yucca district council seat right now. If he were to win the seat it would put him up for reelection in 2020, the very same time the next race for Glendale’s mayor would take place.

If you live in the Yucca district and have always harbored the desire to run for city council, get ready. Without Chavria running, the seat will be wide open (even if Aldama decides to run for this seat). The next election is exactly a year from now. Call the Glendale city clerk and ask when nominating packets can be pulled.

They say that truth is stranger than fiction. If even a smidgeon becomes reality it will be a strange Glendale indeed. For political junkies it makes for interesting conversation.

Lastly, food for thought: People tend to gravitate to and associate with like-minded people. Over the coming months take note of just where Mark Burdick in his run for mayor is getting his support…Frisoni, Aldama, Chavira…hmmm…

© 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.

It has been 17 years and 314 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

Tonight, November 10, 2015 Ray Malnar was sworn in as Glendale’s newest councilmember representing the Sahuaro district. Gary Sherwood is definitely gone and to be forgotten. Councilmember Malnar, in his acceptance speech, set just the right tone. It was positive and hopeful as he suggested that Glendale can have better days ahead.

Many people have said that there are apparently two more sleazebag councilmembers that need to hit the brick road…Councilmembers Chavira and Aldama. Councilmember Chavira is up for reelection in 2016 and Councilmember Aldama faces reelection in 2018. We’ll see what the future holds for both.

I wanted to share an Arizona Republic news story by Chris Coppola. In it Coppola reports that Chandler is starting its search over again for a new city manager. Here is the link:

http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/chandler/2015/11/06/chandler-city-manager-search-starts-over/75235616/ .

Kevin Phelps, under consideration as one of two finalists for Glendale’s position of city manager, was one of the five finalists for city manager in Chandler ultimately rejected by their city council.

Let’s hope Glendale has the strength of fortitude exhibited by its sister city, Chandler, and rejects its two finalists and starts over. Glendale’s consultant, Slavin, did a poor job of securing candidates for the city. If Chandler can start over, so can Glendale. Glendale deserves better.

For the better part of an hour Glendale’s city council rubber stamped every agenda item. Not one agenda item was pulled for further questioning. Yet we know that while some of the items may have been “of a routine nature or discussed in workshop,” that was not the case with every agenda item. They appeared to show very little interest in the items they approved and on several occasions Mayor Weiers seemed to practically plead for some council input on anything. It was disappointing and literally painful to watch. Has this council slipped back into the modus operandi of previous councils?

© 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.

PLEASE NOTE: YOU WILL NOTE THAT I HAVE NOT PUBLISHED MANY BLOGS LATELY. I HAVE BEEN CONSUMED WITH A PERSONAL FAMILY ISSUE WITH MANY, MANY DOCUMENTS TO READ AND ABSORB. THE ISSUE SHOULD RESOLVE ITSELF BY THE END OF OCTOBER.

It has been 17 years and 281 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

It would appear so. Like a fall bonfire’s smoke, there is the smell of desperation in the air. His recall election is fast approaching and early ballots for Sahuaro district voters go out on Wednesday, October 7th. His campaign has been placing robo calls (one can assume the fire union is footing the bill) to voters in his district. In them, Sherwood apparently calls on voters not to believe all the lies being told about him and that they have been created by interests outside of Glendale. No one is buying his rhetoric. The “lies” Sherwood refers to are of his own making. He didn’t need help from interests outside of Glendale.

He had a district meeting (a rare event) on October 1, 2015. Isn’t it amazing that it was scheduled just before early ballots are mailed? There is something to be said for the power of an incumbent.  I know that when I ran for council there was a prohibition for councilmembers from using city resources for (if I remember correctly, for at least 60 days…it could have been longer). He has tried to explain away his lousy driving record with its array of suspensions and warrant for his arrest. His rationale? All those court documents he was receiving were just junk mail.

Sherwood’s history as the Sahuaro district councilmember is not a record of pride:

  • From the start of representation he has been arrogant about and dismissive of his constituents’ voices
  • He was frequently heard on the 4th floor of city hall crowing that he was the “real” mayor of Glendale
  • He followed his own agenda rather than that of his constituency
  • His extraordinary meeting with former City Manager Brenda Fischer and his advocacy for her hiring
  • His apparent alliance with Fischer and her inner circle, Frisoni, Tindall and Burdick leading to their favoritism and advocacy for his positions on issues such as the Coyotes deal
  • His rationalization for support for the casino seems to change on any given day but many continue to believe that he traded his vote of support for the casino with Councilmember Chavira’s vote of support for the Coyotes
  • His stance on Foothills Library closure and advocacy for Becker billboards was in direct opposition to the majority of his district residents’ wishes
  • As Vice Chair of the Valley Metro transit board he has, before hearing or considering the wishes of the people of Glendale, staked out a position not only in support of light rail in Glendale but that the route should be through its downtown
  • Lastly and perhaps most troubling, is his flaunting of the law. The most serious of which was his out-of-town car rental while his drivers license was suspended and he paid for the vehicle rental with a city ProCard. If there had been any kind of accident he would have subjected the city to tremendous liability. There is also the outstanding matter of Glendale taxpayers footing the bill for his illegal behavior

Unfortunately Sherwood has not lived up to his campaign billing, past, present and future. Sherwood’s and the fire union’s desperation are palpable. Apparently their polling is showing that Sherwood will lose his recall election by a vote of 3 to 1. So, they’ve put up campaign signs with every imaginable endorsement they can scrape up. For instance, now “education” supports Sherwood. Who in “education?” Do Sherwood and the fire union think voters are so dumb that they do not know that the city has no influence or control over local school districts? The city does not fund education in any way, shape or form. This is the same ploy both Chavira and Aldama used in their campaigns when they said they supported and were supported by “education.” It’s meaningless. Another favorite is Sherwood’s endorsement by “paramedics.” Which ones? Of course the firefighter paramedics are predominately union members and the fire union is underwriting the cost of Sherwood’s campaign.

Many voters in the Sahuaro district recognize that Sherwood has not been on their side. It seems he has supported powerful outside interests in return for future financial campaign reelection support. For that reason alone it appears that his constituency is prepared to reject him and to elect and “outsider.” Doesn’t that sound familiar? We see the same sentiment on a national level with voters prepared to vote for “outsiders” on both the Democratic and Republican sides of the aisle.

Voters in the Sahuaro district do have a choice. Ray Malnar is running against Sherwood in his recall election. In the past day or two, the following message from Ray Malnar was forwarded to me and I am sharing it with you, the Sahuaro district voters:

Dear friends,

Early Ballots began going out in the Sahuaro District yesterday. At the same time, messages are being distributed by my opponent and his supporters which do not address the issues. I want to continue to stay truthful and honorable. In this, the eleventh hour of the election cycle, I am asking that you help share the facts about my experience, ethics and position on key issues with people you know, especially those who live in the Sahuaro District.

Here’s a link to the  Ray Malnar for a Better Glendale website which will clarify who I am, what I stand for and why we are in this Recall Election. Please type in : https://www.raymalnar.com/   Please send this link out to everyone you know who might have a connection in Glendale.

Thank you,

 Ray Malnar, Candidate

Glendale City Council, Sahuaro District

602-869-1160

ray.malnar@cox.net

© 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.

 

It has been 17 years and 261 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

On September 17, 2015, the Glendale Star essentially offered Gary Sherwood the opportunity to explain away his driving suspensions and the active warrant. Here is the link:  http://www.glendalestar.com/news/article_2cb3cc58-5d-11e5-a1bd-b777ff1c7d23e9.html . His attempts to explain his remedial actions do not make the facts disappear.

No one is above the law…not a politician, not a priest. We are all accountable for our actions and must take responsibility for them. Stubborn facts remain. On 8/12/2013 Mr. Sherwood attended meetings at city hall. His license was suspended and it appears that he drove himself to city hall. The following day, in the St. Paul/Minneapolis area, he rented a car and presumably drove it while his license was still suspended. To compound his actions he used a city ProCard to pay for the rental thereby exposing the city to potential liability.

The fact that he disobeyed driving laws six times in ten years, had his driving license suspended several times, failed to appear in court and failed to take timely action to resolve his citations demonstrates his apparent belief that he is above the law. In 6 weeks, on November 3, 2015, the voters of the Sahuaro district will have an opportunity to decide between Ray Milnar and Gary Sherwood. Mr. Milnar has a finance background that will certainly be an asset to the city council. His community activities show that he is a man of principle and strong character. Sherwood has shown the voters of the Sahuaro district his apparent lack of principle on many occasions: Foothills Library, Becker billboards and the casino – to name but a few.

Sophocles once said, “Nobody has a more sacred obligation to obey the law than those who make the law.”

© 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.

It has been 17 years and 246 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

In political terms the Sherwood recall election is coming very soon…November 3, 2015. On the ballot you will see no rebuttal statement by Sherwood because he filed his statement after the mandated deadline. His failure to interpret the fine print is a typical Sherwood failing. He has often had to amend his campaign filings for the very same reason and he has been fined by the City Clerk for filing required documents late.

Sherwood created the mess that he is in. He reneged on his campaign platform almost immediately. He appears to have cut a deal with Councilmember Chavira and so he voted for the casino and in turn, Chavira voted for the Coyotes. His public announcement of his private interview with former City Manager Brenda Fischer immediately raised eyebrows. Once Fischer was on board he aligned himself with her, Frisoni and Burdick. There were reports of his having lunch with them individually on a regular basis.

The office of councilmember beguiled Sherwood. Now he was somebody. He reveled in associating with the big dogs…Anthony LeBlanc, Michael Bidwill, Ned Norris, Jr. and Mark Becker. He not only advocated for their projects he was their biggest champion and constantly referred to his private conversations with them. He dropped names and made sure everyone knew he was their buddy.

After only a few weeks in office he began gunning for Mayor Weiers and brought topics to council workshop that he hoped would embarrass the mayor all the while proclaiming on city hall’s 4th floor that he was the “real” mayor of Glendale. Sherwood quickly became full of himself. He refused to listen to his constituency on issues such as Becker billboards and the library. When they spoke publicly he often denigrated and demeaned them. He failed to communicate on a regular basis with the people in his district. He failed to advise his constituents of important meeting dates on hot topics…such as the possible closure of the Foothills Library.

Sherwood dug his own hole with his seeming arrogance, cronyism and lust for power. If my unscientific poll on this blog is any indication, Mr. Ray Malnar, has an excellent chance of taking the Sahuaro district council seat. Right now there are 151 votes (74%) against Sherwood and only 54 (26%) for Sherwood. I suspect these results will be mirrored in the Recall Election on November 3, 2015.

Who is Ray Malnar, Sherwood’s opponent? I had an opportunity to sit down with Mr. Malnar over a cup of coffee (in my case, tea). He is a breath of fresh air and couldn’t be more different from Sherwood. Mr. Malnar is a man grounded by family, friends and his faith. He is a small business owner of All Stone Tile & Wood Restoration, a licensed and bonded company in business since 1995.

Mr. Malnar has not served on a Glendale Board or Commission but so what…neither did I when I ran for my council seat. Serving on a board or commission signals that a candidate may have been co-opted by the city and may have developed sympathies for city positions on issues. He has been involved in the life of our community in other, equally impressive ways. He currently serves as a Court Mediator and Court Hearing Officer for the Maricopa County Justice Court. He is a current board member of Choice Academies and the West-Mec School District. He was a Boy Scout leader for 15 years and has been involved in various church activities.

He is a graduate of the University of Utah and has a BS in finance, a BA in speech and communications and an MBA. His intellectual strengths are in finance, accounting, information systems, general business management and governmental affairs. He is not self-effacing but is quietly confident. He is eager to build relationships that foster trust and believes in empowering others. He is a gentleman and shows respect for all. He genuinely listens to those who wish to share their concerns or different points of view with him.

The voters of the Sahuaro district do have a choice on November 3, 2015. They can choose Sherwood and receive the same lack of representation, the same arrogance and the same distain for views he does not share. Or they can choose Ray Malnar, a man who has committed to representing his future constituents, who respects others and a man who has business and finance experience. Nationally we hear every day that the electorate is seeking change. Voters of the Sahuaro district have a rare opportunity to do the same by voting for Ray Malnar.

If you think it is time for a change in Sahuaro district representation please share this blog with family, friends and neighbors. Let them know they have a choice in November. Let them know they can vote for a good, solid candidate, Ray Malnar, who will do what Gary Sherwood failed to do…represent them.

© 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.

In the March 5, 2015 edition of the Glendale Star Becker Boards is running a full page advertisement. The ad states that Becker Boards will pay someone $1,000 to be donated to their favorite 501C3 charity if you can see a crane on their property on March 13, 2015 between 3 pm and 6 pm.  Becker is running a “crane test” on their property that evening try to prove that their proposed digital and static billboards are benign and really won’t bother you.

There are qualifiers to win the money: 1. you have to be able to see the crane with the naked eye; 2. you must see it from the first floor of your home or yard; 3. you must live in Glendale and 4. you must call your district councilmember or Mark Becker (602-740-9145) to have them come to your home to verify your claim. Oh, and only 1 donation per household. So don’t have your 5 family members call to make a claim.

It’s a great marketing shtick but Becker has missed the larger picture. In their stubborn attempt to get their billboards approved they do not realize their action as precedent setting. Should those billboards be approved the door is open to allow billboards all along the Loop 101 from Bell Road to 59th Avenue. With the exception of the Bell Road commercial corridor, the majority of property along the Loop 101 in Glendale is all residential with a sea of homes dotting the landscape. More applications for billboards along the Loop 101 are sure to follow.

There are only 2 sections of the Loop 101 in Glendale. One section is from Camelback Road to Northern Avenue. That area is commercial with the WalMart Center at Camelback Road to Dignity Hospital West south of Northern Avenue. Billboards in that area are appropriate to a commercial corridor. However, the other section of Loop 101 runs from Bell Road eastward to 59th Avenue. Only Bell Road is commercial. Beyond Bell all one can see are homes. That area is not appropriate for the proliferation of billboards.

There is a large segment of Glendale citizens philosophically opposed to billboards as visual pollution. For them it is a matter of principle to keep billboards out of Glendale as much as possible.

There is a great deal of anger and frustration by residents in the Sahuaro and Cholla districts. They fought the fight against billboards and were pleased when the city council listened to their voices and denied the Becker billboard proposal. Now it has been resurrected and they must fight the same issue again. Councilmember Gary Sherwood has said publicly that he will bring the issue up every six months until it is approved. Is he pushing this issue because of the campaign contributions he received from the Becker billboard interests as well as attorneys from the Jordan Law Group, attorneys for Becker? That is for you to decide.

On another note: The advisory recommendations of denial of the proposed Foothills library sale and relocation made by three commissions, Arts, Library and Parks & Recreation were to be received by the city council at the March 3, 2015 city council workshop meeting. That did not occur and now we are hearing that those recommendations of denial will be presented to the council “sometime this spring.” Many residents are wondering what the heck is going on? It leads them to assume that there is some kind of secret deal between Midwestern University and the City of Glendale and that it is a fait accompli. Residents are decidedly unhappy between the billboard issue rising again and the limbo of waiting for a final decision on the proposed library sale. It’s time to put both issues out of their misery irrevocably and permanently.

© 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 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 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 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.

Since many residents of the Sahuaro and Cholla districts are not within the notification area I am passing on the Becker billboard letter in its entirety. Please pass this notification to interested friends and neighbors.

March 2, 2015

Re: Proposed Installation of Two 85 foot tall billboards (2 freeway oriented faces initially as digital) located along the West Side of the Loop 101 Freeway North of Bell

Dear Neighbor:

This letter is to inform you that we are applying to amend rezoning case ZON06-09 for the Palm Canyon Business Park Planned Area Development (PAD) within the City of Glendale. Palm Canyon Business Park is located at the northwest corner of Bell Road and the Loop 101 Freeway and in Glendale’s Cholla City Council District. The proposed PAD amendment will permit the installation of two billboards along the property’s Loop 101 frontage of which two of the freeway oriented faces will be digital and the other faces will be initially built as illuminated statics. The southern sign, located on the corner of Bell Road and the Loop 101 Freeway, would have two faces oriented toward the freeway (the southern face to be digital and the northern face to be initially built as an illuminated static) and one static face oriented toward the eastbound lanes of Bell Road. The northern sign would be located approximately 1,000 feet north of the southern property boundary (the northern face to be digital and the southern face to be initially built as an illuminated static). This northern sign would contain only two faces oriented toward the Loop 101 freeway and would not be oriented to the west. A site plan and illustrations are included with this letter for your reference.

We invite you to attend a neighborhood meeting at the time and location detailed below. At this meeting you can review additional exhibits of the proposed site plan and elevations of the signs and project. Representatives will be in attendance to answer your questions and discuss any concerns that you may have. The neighborhood meeting will be held at:

  • Arrowhead Elementary School
  • 7490 W. Union Hills Drive
  • Glendale, AZ 85308
  • March 18, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.

If you are unable to attend this meeting but wish to discuss the project you can contact me at 602-740-9145 or MBecker@BeckerBillboards.com or contact Thomas Ritz, City of Glendale Senior Planner, at (623) 930-2588 or tritz@glendaleaz.com .

P.S. On March 13, 2015, between approximately 3:00-6:00 p.m. a crane will be placed on the property at the approximate location and height of the future signs (one crane will be used- it will start at the northernmost billboard location for the first half of the time and then be moved to the southernmost billboard location for the second half of the time) for residents and interested citizens to view at their convenience. Sincerely,                                                                                                                                                 Mark Becker, Becker Boards Large

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