No contest of the formally accepted final election results has been filed by either of the losing candidates within the 5 day time limit as stipulated by state law. Now, let’s see some loose ends cleaned up. Sammy still has campaign signs up, well past the proscribed 15 day limit. Sammy, take your campaign signs down. You are not above the law.

In August of 2016, Mark Burdick, former Glendale mayoral candidate, sent out a campaign mailer without the disclaimer, “Paid for by …” as is required by state law. Arizona State Statute 16-912 says, “A political committee that makes an expenditure for campaign literature or advertisements that expressly advocate the election or defeat of any candidate or that make any solicitation of contributions to any political committee shall include on the literature or advertisement the words ‘paid for by,’ followed by the name of the committee that appears on its statement of organization, or five hundred dollar exemption statement.” Burdick publicly admitted the omission of this required disclaimer.

In mid-August, City Clerk Julie Bower notified City Attorney Michael Bailey of a violation of ARS 16-912(A.) Bailey had said that he received the City Clerk’s notice and had taken action by shipping the complaint to an outside counsel, namely the Scottsdale City Attorney.

This is a cut and dried situation. Burdick sent out a campaign mailer without the legally required disclaimer. Burdick admitted that it had occurred. So, what’s the problem? Why the delay? It has been over a month. We should have been made publicly aware of the fine imposed upon Burdick and that it has been paid. Instead…silence.

On or about August 17th the City Clerk requested that Burdick provide the cost of producing and mailing the piece. The fine is 3 times the amount spent for production (includes the consultant’s time for designing the piece) and mailing. Since it was mailed to voters within all of Glendale the cost would be substantial. To mail a piece in my district (with perhaps one of the lowest active voter totals) is about $3,000. Multiply that times six districts and a conservative figure would be somewhere in the $15,000 to $18,000 range. Three times that cost puts Burdick’s fine in the neighborhood of $45,000 to $54,000.

Has the fine been assessed? Has Burdick paid the fine? Either the City Clerk or the City Attorney has the responsibility of public notification…for an action that should have been completed by now. It’s the city’s loose end and merits being tied up.

On another note city council met in workshop this afternoon. Councilmembers Jaime Aldama and Sammy Chavira were absent although Sammy did participate, sort of, telephonically. There were only 2 agenda items: 1. Costs associated with workmen’s’ compensation claims and 2. Proposed regulations for donation drop off boxes and permissible flagpole heights.

The presentation on item #1 generated no council comments or questions…not one. Item #2 generated a great deal of comment and questioning by councilmembers present. It holds true that councilmembers tend to spend more time and energy on issues that directly affect residents than on big picture issues. After nearly an hour of discussion council gave consensus to bring both items back with the request for further information related to how other Valley cities handle both issues. Upon advice of the City Attorney Bailey other “clean up” code/zoning items staff had been prepared to present to council were tabled due to insufficient notice to the public.

© Joyce Clark, 2016        


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