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Joyce Clark Unfiltered

For "the rest of the story"

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

For the past seven years I have blogged about Glendale issues…the good, the bad and the ugly. Whether on city council or off I do not plan to stop.

Cardinals Way Dedication

I am running for re election as your Yucca district councilmember because I love this city and I love its people. I love representing you and I am good at it. It is an honor and privilege to serve you. My experience as a councilmember has given me the advantage of understanding how to maneuver within the corridors of power to achieve objectives that benefit Glendale’s residents and especially Yucca district residents. I always do my homework and research on every issue that comes before council. Residents and staff alike acknowledge my strength in this area. I have always been accessible to all. I listen to all points of view and have been known to change my position as the result of a strong, well reasoned argument. I have always been mindful of my expenditures because the money I spend is yours, not mine.

This has been the strangest election campaign in history.  Candidates have not been able to approach voters to meet and greet and share their personalities and positions on issues. This campaign has been all digital. That works well if all have internet access but that is not always the case and that is very concerning.

I have tried to figure out why my opponent, Bryce Alexander, is running. He has no experience in participating in the Glendale community.  His background is that of a network architect. He dabbled briefly (for about a year) as a downtown Glendale art gallery owner and is currently an associate pastor at a local church.

On July 5th on his website he finally posted what he is for and against. There are several problems with his list. First, it’s too little and too late. The very things he offers are the very things I have championed for years and for which I have a proven record. We seem to hold similar views and the only difference is that I have extensive experience and leadership in each of them.

  • My opponent is against police defunding. When the issue first surfaced weeks ago I immediately stated publicly that I would never support defunding the police and rather I will continue to defend the police. It’s taken him several weeks to get to the same position. One of our children is a retired law enforcement officer and as a Mom I have heard far too many horror stories of the dangers he faced. I support law enforcement…always have and always will.
  • My opponent is against new taxes. I have a proven record of no property tax increases for the past 4 years.

    Bryce Alexander

    That, and my reputation as a fiscal conservative, is my record.

  • My opponent says he is strong on crime prevention. Again, my record proves my position. I have always supported the funding of the Glendale Police Department resulting in an agency that ranks among the top 3 agencies in the Valley in terms of officers’ pay and benefit package.
  • My opponent supports neighborhood revitalization. I guess he’s forgotten or maybe he’s not aware of the fact that it was my work that created the city’s Neighborhood Revitalization Program. This program, during its lifespan, awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars in neighborhood grants to upgrade some of our most disadvantaged neighborhoods.
  • My opponent says he is strong on parks and road infrastructure maintenance. It was my suggestion, adopted by the city council last year, to allocate ten million dollars a year for the next four years to upgrade existing parks and to add new amenities. My record of support for the residential street repair program is strong and has been appreciated.
  • My opponent claims to be strong on transparency and ethics in government. When you don’t have any issues to claim as yours, all politicians drag out these often used buzz words. They are platitudes. During my term, I have sent out 188 weekly E Newsletters; 6 semiannual district newsletters mailed to all 11,000 households in the district; posted innumerable times alerting residents to timely issues and shared my positions on current issues on Facebook, Twitter and NextDoor. I have also written this blog for seven years discussing Glendale’s issues. I am available via email, text or phone call. All of these means of contact are offered regularly.

So, that brings us back to why is he running?

I keep thinking about a statement he posted on Facebook on June 19, 2018 that stated, “I always get that special feeling when my name appears in print.”

Draw your own conclusion about such a statement.

If you conclude that Mr. Alexander is on an ego trip, you may be right.

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

We all, well most of us, use some form of social media. It could be Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, etc. How do we use them? We post family and friends photos. We post about ideas or values we appreciate or admire. We use social media to update the world on our status. In other words, our use of social media reflects our personalities, what we value, and what we believe in. It is a reflection of ourselves.

Recently, an intrepid user of all social media sent me a series of screen shots captured from Mayoral candidate Michelle Robertson’s Facebook pages. Out of curiosity, I went to her Facebook pages to see these postings for myself. Amazingly, they were all gone. Not some of them, but all of them. Ms. Robertson, or perhaps her campaign team, seems to have carefully scrubbed (erased) any posting that did not reflect her current, carefully cultivated image as a moderate candidate for mayor of Glendale.

Now when you look at her Facebook postings from the past two years there are very few, perhaps as a few as a half dozen postings in each year. Those postings that kept are filled with unicorns and rainbows, puppies and babies…all very benign and extremely non-controversial…unless you hate unicorns or babies!

None of the Facebook screen shots sent to me was anywhere to be seen. So, I thought I’d peel back the onion a bit and share with you a sampling of the items Ms. Robertson deleted.

 

The first screen shot is from July, 2017 when she was a candidate for Maricopa County Superintendent of Public Instruction. Back when Robertsom was a Democrat activist she embraced a lot of Human Rights Campaign posts and it certainly looks from this post that she supported the Black Lives Matter movement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The second screen shot is from July, 2017 and expresses her support for the LGBTQ community and the Resist movement.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This screen shot is from August, 2019 and clearly demonstrates her support for Elizabeth Warren as her preferred Democrat Presidential candidate. There’s no expression of support for Biden, the presumptive Democrat Presidential nominee.

 

 

 

 

  

 

I don’t have any issue with her positions but these are the ideas and values that are important to Michelle Robertson. You may agree with some of them, all of them or none of them. That is not the point.

The point is that these postings represent the real Robertson and you, the voter, have the right to know what causes and ideologies she supports and what her value system is. This is the real Robertson that was erased. Why?  Did she think the real Michelle Robertson would not get enough votes? Did she fear that these kinds of posts and these positions and causes  might alienate Glendale voters?

I don’t think Robertson gives Glendale enough credit for its diversity of thoughts and populations. Second, I can’t imagine running for an office while hiding the real me while pretending to be something that I’m not. I’m clearly the opposite. I write my blog so that my constituents can really know what I’m thinking on a variety of issues.

As I reviewed her current postings on her campaign page I noted that while she emphasized what she described as failings of our current mayor I didn’t see what she plans to do to make Glendale “good.”  For that is her campaign tag line, “Good for Glendale.” It sounds great but exactly what makes her good for Glendale?

 I didn’t see any positive action that she would employ should she be elected. What’s her platform? What does she want to accomplish for you? What does she intend to do to improve your quality of life?

What I did find on her Issues page were complaints about the current mayor and a sprinkling of aspirational goals without much meat on the bones. Here’s one example: “You can count on me to be engaged in working in partnership with our state and federal legislative delegations…” That’s dandy but the city employs a lobbyist in Washington, D.C. that lobbies for every possible dollar to which the city is entitled. Doesn’t she know that Mayor Weiers served in the Arizona State Legislature and as a result of that service he developed excellent working relationships, including our present delegation?

Other very generalized promises include restoring the city’s internal audit program. The only problem with her statement is that she ignores that the city has an internal audit committee that oversees the work of an independent auditing firm; ensuring city council transparency.  In order to be fully transparent, I wonder how she plans to get around confidentially protected Executive Session material; and supporting light rail.  Council abandoned the concept of light rail and used the savings generated for its beefed up Pavement Management Program,

Voters should pay attention to her lack of participation in and contributions to our community, Glendale.  While she says she’s lived here for most of her adult life, she doesn’t appear to have volunteered for any service on a citizen board or commission. She is not a member of Kiwanis, the Salvation Army, the Chamber of Commerce or any other non-profit organization devoted to Glendale.  I see no service to the community in her resume. I suppose she can claim any career work in the fields of social services and mental health but did these positions have any relationship to Glendale? If it did I would assume she would say so.

What about attendance at Glendale 101 University? It’s available free to any resident and provides in depth knowledge about the how and why of the operations of nearly every City of Glendale department. That would have been great preparation for someone considering a run for mayor of the city.

She appears to have no legislative experience. Her only experience seems to be within the Cartwright School system. I’m not sure that would prepare anyone to take the reins of a city of 250,000 people. Her career is exclusively in education, largely as a kindergarten teacher. Her first campaign for office was for an education position because she said that was her passion. Now, suddenly, she is passionate about a Mayor’s position that has no authority over the school districts within our city? The decisions made regarding your children’s education is made by your school district’s board, not by the city.

She appears to be what many would call a “perpetual candidate.” Two years ago she ran for the Maricopa County Superintendent of Public Instruction. She lost. Well, that didn’t work out so well, so why not take a shot at running for Mayor?

There are those who seek recognition and adulation as a public figure. It makes them warm and fuzzy all over and provides validation of their self worth. Is that part of her persona? We don’t know because she has only chosen to offer platitudes, not substance. She is a ghost candidate.

Your reason to vote for her should be grounded in truths. What can you learn from her social media? Has she shared her plan for Glendale? Do you even know what her plan is? Do you value her previous experience in contributing to Glendale? For she seems to have none. Do you know where she wants to take Glendale? What exactly, makes her good for Glendale?

What she is against is irrelevant.

Ask yourself, what does she stand for? Do you share her values?

She doesn’t deserve your vote if you can’t answer those questions.

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

 

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Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

In the last blog of this series I have to throw Mayor Weiers’ opponent, Michelle Robertson, into the mix. The minimum number of signatures needed to become a mayoral candidate is 1,267. She submitted a little over 2,300 signatures.

The County Recorder invalidated a substantial number of them. I don’t know exactly how many but it was a bunch. In addition, approximately half of dozen of Robertson’s circulators presumably admitted to Robertson’s attorneys that they had done some creative writing and had filled out sheets with bogus information. Her defense team, once they knew that Weiers’ attorney was preparing to call these circulators as witnesses, agreed those signatures were no good and withdrew them. When the dust settled Ms. Robertson had only 57 more signatures than the minimum of 1267 needed.

The same convicted felon that collected 43 signatures for Bryce Alexander also collected signatures for Ms. Robertson. I believe he collected in the neighborhood of 65 to 70 signatures. Invalidation of him as a circulator was as important to the Weiers campaign as it was to mine. Again, I remind you neither Weiers nor I prevailed on getting the convicted felon’s petition sheets invalidated as the judges ruled he had all of his civil rights restored and was a valid circulator.

The same paid circulator, the convicted felon, worked for both campaigns and signed the back of these 2 petition sheets. The yellow highlighting and notations are mine. I erased the photos and ask you to figure out which one is Robertson’s and which one is Alexander’s. They are eerily similar, aren’t they?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another paid circulator signed the back of these two petition sheets. Which is Robertson’s and which is Alexander’s? They seem to be identical.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I bring all of these anomalies up for a reason. There are questionable practices being performed by some petition gathering companies and in turn, by the candidates themselves who knowingly submit questionable signatures.

When a local candidate for office turns in petition sheets to the city’s clerk, the only function of the city clerk is to certify that enough signatures have been turned in. The clerk’s office does not validate signatures. Most candidates don’t know this and therefore, don’t check their opponent’s signatures for the required number of signatures as valid. Some of us do. I did.

When a candidate believes the opponent does not have enough valid signatures the only recourse is to file a suit in Superior Court. That is the mechanism that requires the county recorder’s office to check and to validate or invalidate signatures. But it is more complicated than that. The candidate challenging signatures for validity must list every sheet number, line number and reason for challenge for each signature being questioned. The county recorder does not and will not check every signature. It will only check signatures identified by the complainant. I found somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 signatures I believed to be invalid. The county recorder agreed that 43 of those were invalid.

Another aspect of collecting signatures is the use of petition signature gathering companies. A few are reliable and honest but there are others that are not. The unreliable ones will hire any warm body willing to do the work and often do not check backgrounds. That’s how we get convicted felons going door to door to collect signatures…amid the most unusual event in our country’s history…a pandemic. I doubt that the paid circulators wore masks, gloves or social distanced when going door to door, offering the same pen for people to use when signing the petition. How many signers were put at risk? We’ll never know.

The less reputable petition companies do not validate the signatures that are collected. Why would they? In today’s market, a candidate must pay from $1.00 to $3.00 per signature. If the company had to strike invalid signatures before submitting them to the candidate, it would eat into their billing to the candidate. Some candidates have paid for sheets that are garbage…filled with invalid signatures.

The petition signature gathering process has been corrupt for years by practices such as these. That is why we see 40 or 50 challenges in court per election cycle. These practices are not conducive to good government. Filing and defending suits in court for suspected petition wrong doing are expensive and clog the courts diminishing their ability to deal with legitimate cases.

 Alexander and Robertson used paid circulators to go door to door during the worst pandemic this country has ever experienced. To pursue their goals of getting on the ballot they were willing to put the public’s health during CoVid 19 at risk.

Particular to my challenge is the fact that Mr. Alexander never took the stand on his behalf to swear that he was, in fact, the circulator of the challenged petitions. He can state publicly, now that the challenge has been decided, that he did circulate those petitions. How can you believe that what he may say now is not just political expediency? One can say anything when one doesn’t have to swear to it in court. There will always be this little, grey cloud of doubt hanging over him. It should cause everyone to consider his ethics.

Mr. Alexander has this quote as a part of his banner on his Facebook page, “I am a champion of truth. I hate lies. That means I tick people off when they repeat political lies.”

Oh really?

You should judge Mr. Alexander’s declaration in the light of his quest to get on the ballot…any way possible.

P.S. On May 7th the City of Phoenix announced that for its November, 2020 election it will require candidates to use online petition signature gathering. See here:https://patch.com/arizona/phoenix/city-phoenix-launches-new-online-candidate-nomination-petition-process . Will this action remove some of the corrupt practices currently in place?

© Joyce Clark, 2019         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

Let’s begin with a story. It is Tuesday, March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day. It also happens to be the Democrat Presidential Preference Election Day. CoVid 19 is in full force so many voters that day chose to drop of their mail in ballots at a polling location. One of the polling locations was the Westside Church of God on Bethany Home Road just east of 83rd Avenue.

One of the favorite haunts of paid petition circulators is any place that is hosting an event or where people visit on a regular basis, such as a grocery store. For the same amount of time and effort they can maximize the number of signatures they can collect.

At least one was standing at the Westside Church of God location on March 17th. When people showed up to vote or to drop off their mail in ballots they were asked to sign one and/or both of two petitions. One petition was for a candidate for a local school board and the other petition was…wait for it…for my opponent. Many people signed that day. Here are the two petitions with a total of 20 challenged signatures that were the subject of my court challenge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I contended in court that Mr. Alexander, although he signed the backs of the petitions, did not collect the signatures or witness the signatures. In fact, Mr. Alexander appears to have signed the backs of those two petitions. I think it is fair to say it is his signature when compared to his signature on the Candidate Statement of Interest form presented here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were able to make contact with several of the petition signers. To protect their privacy, I will not refer to them by their names.  For the sake of brevity I am offering the relevant portions of only 2 of the 3 witnesses’ telephonic testimonies from an official transcript. I have never met them and do not know them. They agreed to testify of their own volition when asked to do so by my attorney.

I personally think their testimonies would have been more compelling if they had been able to appear in court in person. That was not able to happen because of CoVid 19 and proved to be disadvantageous to us.

Clark Attorney (CA): “…You’re a Glendale resident; are you not?”

Witness #1 (W1): “Yes, I am.”

CA: “…do you recall signing a petition sheet for a candidate for the – for a Glendale Council race?”

W1: “Yes.”

CA: “Do you remember the name of that individual?”

W1: “No, I do not.”

CA: “…was it for a council race?”

W1: “Yes, it was for city council.”

CA: “Did you sign more than one petition for a city council race?”

W1: “No, not for the city – I just signed one for city council. There was another one that I signed for, that was for a school board; I believe it was.”

CA: “Were you sent a petition sheet with your signature on it?”

W1: “Yes.”

CA: “Did you review that petition sheet?”

W1: “Yes. I did.”

CA: “Did that appear to be the petition sheet that you signed?”

W1: “Yes, it was.”

CA: “Did that petition sheet – did it have a photo of an individual on the upper left corner?’

W1: “Yes, it did.”

CA: “Was the person whose photo was on that petition sheet, was he the one you signed for?”

W1: “No.”

CA: “Now, in terms of the person who you saw on the petition sheet that was sent to you, that bore your signature, do you ever remember seeing that individual at that time?”

W1: “No at all.”

****************

Clark Attorney (CA): “Do you recall signing a candidate petition sheet for a candidate for Glendale City Council?”

Witness #2 (W2): “I do recall.”

CA: “When was that approximately?”

W2: “I think St. Patrick’s Day, so it was the 17th.”

CA: “…have you seen a copy, since that time, of the petition sheet you signed?”

W2: “I have, yes.”

CA: “Did you recognize your signature on that petition sheet?”

W2: “Yes, I did.”

CA: “And on that petition sheet did you see a photo of a man in the upper left corner, for where the candidate goes?”

W2: “Yes.”

CA: “Do you ever recall seeing that man before?”

W2: “No, I don’t.”

CA: “In terms of who was present when you signed on St. Patrick’s Day, I take it that means that that man was not present?”

W2: “Yeah.”

CA: “So, in other words you’re certain that he was not the circulator?”

W2: “Yes, I am.”

The Superior Court judge in her oral ruling at the end of the hearing that day stated, “The Court also has heard the testimony of the three people who testified here at this hearing. They indicated they were qualified electors. They indicated that they did sign the petition, and the Court does find that their testimony fails to establish by clear and convincing evidence that the circulator improperly verified these signatures, and so those 20 signatures at issue, the Court finds to be valid.”

The only question that needs to be asked and answered is, why didn’t Mr. Alexander testify on his behalf that he did circulate and witness those signatures? It would have put to rest all speculation about his being the circulator or not.

I suspect, although I cannot prove,  it was because Mr. Alexander’s attorneys did not know exactly what my witnesses would say and in not knowing, they advised him not to appear that day in case he was called upon to answer questions that he would not have been able to answer truthfully.

There is one more element to this tale of petitions and petition circulators and that will be the subject of my third and final blog on this issue.

*Please accept my apology if the graphics do not appear lined up correctly. No matter what adjustments I make it doesn’t seem to help the situation.

© Joyce Clark, 2019         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

I am writing this particular blog on Tuesday, May 5, 2020. As of this date I had already challenged the validity of some nominating petition signatures of my presumptive opponent for the Yucca district city council position, Bryce Alexander, in Superior Court. I did not win the case and so, I appealed to the state Supreme Court. It has not yet been decided and I may not know their decision for several more days. Whether I win or lose at the Supreme Court level, once the decision is made I will post this blog.

I want to share the under belly, the nefarious side of signature gathering for nominating petitions. There are as many petition gathering companies in Arizona as the number of fingers on both of your hands. Some are very reputable…and some not so much.

I, along with many candidates throughout this state, work hard going door to door collecting the needed signatures. You can usually tell when a candidate has done so because the signatures will reflect people who all live on the same street. For example, I went door to door on several streets so I have an entire sheets that have signatures from people who live on those streets.

 I started to collect signatures immediately after I filed to run last winter. I had already gathered the minimum number of signatures needed to file when Covid 19 hit. Just like any other candidate I wanted to obtain the maximum number of signatures (which is usually double the minimum amount required). Then I would have a cushion in case any signatures were declared invalid for any reason.

I did use a petition gathering company for those extra signatures. I used a person I know to be reputable and honest, especially since the person has a relative who was elected and had served in local, political office. This person knew the importance of and valued the need to obtain valid signatures. Before giving me the signatures collected, that company went through each sheet and verified the signatures and struck all those that were invalid. Being careful, I did my own verification after I received the petition sheets. I knew the signatures that I turned into our city clerk were indeed valid.

There are some petition companies out there that don’t necessarily operate in this fashion. They will hire anyone. In some instances, the petition signature gatherers may have a criminal history including felonies. These companies claim to do background checks. However if they are doing so, they are doing a lousy job of it. I am certainly not accusing but I suspect Mr. Alexander (and Michelle Robertson, a presumptive mayoral opponent) used such a company and you will understand the basis of my speculation shortly.

The minimum number of valid petition signatures required for nomination in the Yucca district is 160. Mr. Alexander turned in 210 leaving him a cushion of 50 signatures should any of his signatures be challenged. My challenge at the Superior Court consisted of some of Mr. Alexander’s petition signatures as invalid and I contended that only 134 of his signatures were valid. That was well below the 160 signatures required to get on the ballot.

The County Recorder agreed with me in part and did invalidate 42 of Mr. Alexander’s signatures leaving him with a maximum number of 168 signatures – only 8 over the minimum required to become a candidate.

The balance of my challenge would be decided by a Superior Court judge and my challenge was twofold: I contended in my suit that while Mr. Alexander signed the backs of two petition sheets (totaling 20 signatures) as the circulator, he did not witness those signatures and he was not the circulator of those sheets. On the back of a petition sheet the signer is attesting to the fact that he or she was the circulator and witnessed the signatures. When a person signs as having collected and witnesses those signatures and in fact, did not do so, those signatures are struck from the total count of signatures.

We were able to secure 3 witnesses, all Yucca district residents, who had signed the Alexander petitions and testified in court that it was not Mr. Alexander who asked them to sign the sheets and that they had never seen him before. I did not know any of the witnesses. They were not friends, acquaintances or supporters. They were principled strangers who wanted to do the right thing.

Mr. Alexander did not appear in court. He did not get on the stand and swear on the bible that he circulated those petition sheets and witnessed their signatures. Why didn’t he? The Superior Court judge ruled that the witnesses’ testimonies were not “clear and convincing” and validated those 20 signatures.

The other basis of my challenge was that 43 signatures should be declared as invalid because they were obtained by a convicted felon who had not had all of his civil rights restored thereby disqualifying him from being a petition circulator. On this issue the judge ruled that his civil rights had been restored and therefore his signature collection was also valid. This was a more of a technical issue and rested on the interpretation of previous Arizona Supreme Court decisions which apparently the Superior Court judge did not consider important enough to shape her ruling.

That is why I sit here today as I write this, waiting to hear the decision of my appeal by the Supreme Court. Bryce Alexander may end up on the ballot as a candidate for the Yucca district council seat by the skin of his teeth…8 signatures over the minimum required for nomination.

However, I want to bring up something Bryce Alexander wrote on his Facebook page on April 29th:

“Update: I have received notification that the incumbent has filed a notice to appeal the ruling that the petitions signed by voters was valid.

I do not yet know the basis for the appeal, nor do I wish to speculate on the motivation of Joyce Clark to drag this out at this time. Time will reveal and clarify her intentions.”

Mr. Alexander cannot possibly be as ignorant or uninterested in his fate as he portrays himself to be in this post. He had two attorneys from a very pricey law firm representing him in Superior Court. It would have been a dereliction of their duty to not inform their client of the action and my basis for challenging the validity of his nominating petition signatures.  By the way, I wonder who paid those high priced attorneys? And how much was their fee?

For the record, my campaign is paying my attorney’s fees. Unfortunately, we won’t know the answers about his campaign finances until after July 15, 2020, when the next campaign filings are due. Early ballots will have already been mailed out to voters and the Primary occurs two weeks later on August 4, 2020. So much for a timely full disclosure. Perhaps Mr. Alexander will be willing to share that information on his Facebook page.

Of course he knew my motivation in that I was challenging on the basis that he did not personally circulate those two sheets and that a convicted felon who may or may not have had his civil rights restored circulated his petitions. He just didn’t want to reveal the basis for my challenge as doing so might raise some questions among his followers.

Anyone who knows me even remotely knows that I can be feisty and sometimes I have “a take no prisoners attitude.” If I had been challenged as not being the circulator after I signed the back of sheets attesting that I had, I would have been incredibly angry. I would have marched right into that courtroom, taken the stand, sworn on the Holy Bible to tell the truth and then testified that I did, in fact, circulate and sign the backs of those petitions. Yet, Mr. Alexander did not. Again, why not?

It is now late Thursday afternoon and I just learned that I lost the appeal before the state Supreme Court. I do not have the details yet. I suppose those details are irrelevant. I would be lying if I said I was not disappointed.

In my next blog on this topic, I will be sharing some of the petition sheets Mr. Alexander submitted and some that Ms. Robertson submitted. Once the petition sheets are submitted to the City Clerk, they are a public record. There’s more to this story because not all petition sheets are created equally.

© Joyce Clark, 2019         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

On May 7, 2020, the Planning Commission will hear and will either approve or reject an applicant’s proposal to put a Love’s travel stop at the intersection of the Loop 303 and Bethany Home Road. I posted a blog on March 7, 2020, entitled A look at the Love’s site location. This blog is a follow up based upon additional information provided by the applicant.

Some people asked, why couldn’t the Love’s be sited on the east side of the Loop 303 and Bethany Home Road rather than on the west side of the Loop 303? The city possesses no magic wand that can order a land owner on the east side of the Loop 303 to accept a Love’s. Property owners are free to sell their land if they so choose and a developer has the right to accept or reject possible development as it sees fit. The city cannot mandate that the property owner on the east side of the Loop 303 accept the development of a Love’s.

Many objections to the proposed Love’s centered on the charge that it would bring crime to residential development one quarter of a mile away from the proposed location.  I asked the applicant for crime statistics at a comparable Love’s. The applicant provided me crime statistics for the Love’s Travel Stop on 1610 S. Miller Road, Buckeye, Arizona. I will provide a summary of the data they provided below and where possible, include the exhibits they provided.

SUMMARY OF APPLICANT’S RESPONSE:

Five hundred and seventy-four (574) calls for service at Love’s were recorded by the Buckeye Police Department over a 5 year period. That averages approximately 115 calls per year or approximately one call for service every 3 days. 65 different categories were provided from 911 Hang Ups to Welfare Checks. I have listed below the top ten categories; total number of calls over the 5 year period; average number of calls per year and the percentage of the total call volume for each listed:

 

Type of Call       # Call Over 5 years           Average per year         Percentage of total 5 year call volume

Accident                     64                               13                                    11.5% 

Theft                           41                            8                                         7.4%

Traffic Stop                35                            7                                          6.10%

Welfare Check           33                           6.6                                       5.75%

Agency Assist             31                           6.2                                       5.40%

Citizen Assist              29                           5.8                                       5.05%

911 Hang Up              23                           4.6                                       4.01%

Trespassing                23                           4.6                                       4.01%

Business Check          22                           4.4                                      3.83%

Suspicious Activity    20                           4                                          3.48%

Unwanted Guest       20                           4                                          3.48%

Suspicious Veh.          16                        3.2                                          2.79%    

 

Of the 574 total calls for service over the 5 year period, less than 25 calls were violent in nature. Of these, 9 were assaults (1.8 calls per year) and 8 were drug related (1.6 calls per year). Below is the complete listing of all crime categories (65) statistics covering a 5 year period provided by the Buckeye Police Department.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The applicant stated the following, “Love’s takes crime prevention and detection seriously. Accordingly, each employee receives training on how to identify and report illegal activity. Additionally, each employee is trained on how to detect and help victims of human trafficking. Love’s sees itself as a partner to local enforcement and therefore takes necessary steps to eliminate criminal activity.”

The applicant also submitted visual graphics depicting the Love’s proximity to the proposed location as well as comparing its proximity to residential at its Buckeye location. In case you cannot read the graphic, it is 1,355.2 feet from the nearest residences at the Buckeye location compared to 1,334.1 feet from residences at the proposed at the Loop 303/Bethany Home Road location.  The Buckeye and Glendale locations are virtually identical with both being approximately one quarter mile away from the nearest residences.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The applicant also notes that at the Buckeye location there is also a Quik Trip Travel Stop immediately south of the Love’s location on S. Miller Road. The Quik Trip is 765 feet from the nearest residences.

Another factor for consideration is that there will be industrial/ warehousing/manufacturing buildings between the Love’s and the closest residences. The mass of those buildings may be 40 feet tall or taller and will act as a visual and noise buffer for the closest homes.

It appears that there are several facts that may make Love’s suitable for the proposed location. It is a quarter mile away from the nearest home. There is adequate buffering in terms of industrial buildings that will provide visual and noise buffering for residents. The Buckeye Love’s location seems to show that it does not produce greater crime for nearby residents. I would expect similar results to occur at the Glendale location.

I recognize that there are those who simply hate Love’s. It’s an emotional reaction. I cannot decide on the basis of emotion. Facts, in this case, are important. If any of the opponents have more factual information that has not been presented as of this date, then now is the time to present it.

I have provided all of the factual information that I have received. I will use it along with any other factual information provided to me to make my final decision. Part of that information will be to look at the Planning Commission’s decision and what factual information they used to arrive at their decision.

© Joyce Clark, 2019         

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’s Easter

Posted by Joyce Clark on April 12, 2020
Posted in City of GlendaleNational issues  | Tagged With: , , , | 5 Comments

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

Today is Easter Sunday. As a Catholic I watched mass from St Patrick’s Cathedral led by Archbishop Timothy Dolan. My first thought was this is different from any Easter during my lifetime. No family, no friends, as we continue to practice social distancing. My first reaction is think that this day is sad and different.

All my life Easter Sunday was marked by mass celebrating Christ risen after the third day. When I was a child it was always followed by a trip to my maternal Grandmother’s home for a grand midday Easter feast. Then we would go to my paternal Grandmother’s home for an evening repast. As grandchildren we looked forward to the bounties of goodies we received that day.

As a Mother and Grandmother the past remained with family coming to our home to gather and celebrate.

 One of my favorite things to do was to get plastic eggs and to fill some of them with money and others with notes from the Easter Bunny reminding our children and later grandchildren, to improve some aspect of their behavior. Some eggs had money and others not. The difficulty level for finding the eggs was dependent upon the child’s age and ability. The older kids had to really search to find theirs.  It was always a great day, filled with family.

This Easter, in the midst of the Covid-19, is not really sad and different. Instead it has provided an opportunity to reflect on the joy and celebration of the true meaning of the day. Jesus suffered, died and was buried. On the third day he arose again into Heaven. We celebrate that He died for our sins.

That’s what this day is meant to be. A celebration of His life and death…for us. Although I write this as a Catholic I am mindful that this season holds special meaning for my brothers and sisters of all faiths. We may recognize this season in different ways but we all share beliefs in some greater power than ourselves.

Covid-19 has forced us to abandon the commercial trappings of the day and to return to its true meaning. Many have or know of a friend or relative that has succumbed to this virus. It is certainly painful and sad for them. We must remember them, honor them and grieve for them. Know that on this day they are in the loving arms of your God.

As I sat on my back yard patio this morning I marveled at nature’s renewal at this time of year. My Orchid tree is in full bloom. The citrus trees are sagging with an abundance of fruit. The roses are in full bloom in brilliant reds and yellows. The trees are leafed out in a display of fresh, bright green foliage. Perhaps nature is meant to signal that Christ risen and in its own way, offers proof that this is a time for spiritual renewal for all of us.

 

 

 

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

This Sunday morning www.ncov2019.live shows 152 confirmed cases in Arizona. The spike in the number may be due to tests taken days ago. But what is concerning is that several days ago Arizona had 9 cases.

It is critical that we only make trips to grocery stores, gas stations, pharmacies and banks. Going to local parks is no longer advisable because you cannot control the mandate to practice social distancing.  You may be healthy but others may be asymptomatic. If we are going to stop the spread we must be smart and careful.

So, what am I doing? I have voluntarily stayed home the past two weeks with the exception of one run to Safeway during their new senior hours program to pick up prescriptions and a few staples. I also have attended one Glendale council budget meeting during which social distancing of 6 feet was practiced. I will attend this Tuesday’s council workshop meeting and voting meeting. They have been moved to the Civic Center Annex. Social distancing will again be in place and the only personnel at the meeting will be the councilmembers, the City Manager, the City Attorney, the City Clerk and several staff making presentations. The count of persons will be about 10 or less. I have become the Lysol Queen and I carry a can with me and spray my entire work area and chair. I also carry wipes and use them liberally.

The city is currently working to enable teleconferencing for city council that hopefully will be soon in place. The public will not be allowed to attend council meetings but we still want to encourage public participation. If you go to the city website, www.glendaleaz.com you can obtain instructions that will guide you should you wish to participate. The city website will also have information about what’s open and what’s closed. If you need to pay your water bill, make sure you check out the site. It also lists reputable links for information on the virus and how to protect you and your family. Please check it out.

As new numbers and new information becomes available, the city reacts as quickly as it can to implement new advisories and directives. We are working hard to keep city personnel and the public as safe as possible.

If you are tired of cooking dinner every night, try “dine-out” at your favorite restaurant. I checked out the restaurants at Westgate and every one is now offering “dine-out” which you can have delivered or pick up at their location. Remember you still have a back yard. Use it to get out of the house to get some fresh air.

Text message friends or family or use Skype or Facebook Live. How about giving your senior neighbors or relatives a phone call? Find out if they are OK or need anything critical such as a prescription.

This is not any easy time for any of us. The best thing we can do is to follow federal, state and local advisories. Social distancing is more important than ever.

The phrase of the day is “Stay at home, don’t roam.”

Be smart. Be careful. I pray that all that read this stay safe and well.

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

At about 6 PM today Governor Ducey announced closures in Maricopa, Pinal, Coconino, Navajo and Graham counties, all of which have confirmed cases of CoronaVirus. The Executive Order requires restaurants to provide dine-out services only and they can deliver your favorite alcoholic beverage along with your meal. He also closed movie theaters, gyms and bars.

The Order preserves Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for those providers and facilities that are dealing with the virus; delays expiration dates on driver licenses and stops all elective surgeries. He is activating the National Guard to help grocery stores and food banks, all of which are dealing with a surge in demand.

All of this takes effect tomorrow, Friday, March 20th at the close of business. Congratulations to the Governor. I publicly thank him for taking this action to protect the health and safety of all Arizona residents. I stand behind him 100%. I applaud his action and will do whatever is required to assist him as Arizona works its way through this national emergency. Well done! Thank you!

Arizona now has 44 confirmed cases. The number remains low as there are not a lot of testing kits available. As they become more plentiful we will see that number rise dramatically. I found a neat site to which I direct your attention. It is www.ncov2019.live  . It was developed by a teenager and has quickly become a “go to” site for up-to-date numbers on CoronaVirus, worldwide by country and state by state in the United States. I try to check it once in the morning and once at night.

All grocery stores are providing senior hours to shop. This morning I took my 90 year old brother-in-law to a local Safeway to pick up some basics. I was shocked. There was no bread. There was no margarine. The only meats available were the high priced, very lean hamburger at $4.99 a pound and the most expensive cuts of beef such as steak. No staples like rice or beans unless you wanted to pay $5 for some exotic box of rice you’ve never heard of. They did have 5# bags of potatoes (one to a customer) but no Kraft Mac n Cheese. There wasn’t even a single can of Chef Boyardee spaghetti.  In fact, there were no pasta products to be had. Forget sanitizing products.  I could go on but you get the picture.   

Has everyone’s family suddenly ballooned to 20 members? The hoarding has become unsustainable and mind boggling. Maybe it’s time to limit the quantity of ordinary items such as these, to two per customer. I wish everyone would get a grip and start to think of others and their needs as well. Needless to say my brother-in-law filled about half a dozen items on his list. Looks like another trip will be necessary…maybe in about a week. Hopefully, the panic buying will have subsided.

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

Disclaimer: The comments in this blog are my personal opinion and may or may not reflect an adopted position of the city of Glendale and its city council.

Tonight, just a few minutes ago, Mayor Jerry Weiers declared a State of Emergency due to the CoronaVirus Pandemic. I stand behind him 100%. I applaud his action and will do whatever is required to assist him as Glendale works its way through this national emergency. Well done, Mayor! Thank you! I am proud to say that I have called for this action in previous blogs. I have included the Mayor’s proclamation and statement regarding the action he has taken:

 

I also applaud the Desert Diamond Casino in Arizona for closing down as of midnight tonight. As a sovereign nation they are not bound by federal actions or regulations. Their voluntary closure to protect all state residents is recognized and appreciated.

So far, Governor Ducey has not shown the same kind of leadership or fortitude despite the fact that the number of cases is increasing by the hour within the State of Arizona.  Just within the last few hours two cases have been confirmed positive for CoVid 19 at Luke Air Force Base.

Many major stakeholders are asking all Valley councilmembers to reach out to Ducey’s office to ask him to do the same and exhibit some leadership. I, as a Glendale Councilmember, publicly call upon Governor Ducey to lead the people of Arizona by mandating social distancing strategies in an effort to minimize the medical strain soon to be experienced by all medical facilities and providers in the State of Arizona. Here are some examples:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© Joyce Clark, 2020         

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.

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