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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.

No project as large in scope as this one is simple or easy to create. This project is wide-ranging and complex reflected by the fact that it has taken over a year to put all of the pieces in place. There are 5 different agreements:

  • Development Agreement with ECL Glendale, LLC. (approved by city council on Sept. 8)
  • Government Property Improvement Leases with ECL Glendale, LLC. (approved by city council on Sept. 8)
  • Purchase and Sale Agreement with ERD Glendale, LLC. to purchase approximately .2942 acres of city-owned land (scheduled to come before city council on Sept. 22)
  • Option Agreement to purchase real estate with ERD Glendale, LLC to purchase approximately 4.154 acres of city-owned land (scheduled to come before city council on Sept. 22)
  • Parking Agreement(s) (scheduled to come before city council on Sept. 22)

The Development Agreement acknowledges that this project qualified as a business expansion economic development project. The term of this agreement is 25 years. The agreement spells out the terms of a 25 year “partial” Government Property Lease Excise Tax (GPLET). Under Arizona Revised Statutes (A.R.S. 42-6208) a GPLET may be applied only to amusements and their related retail and restaurant concessions. It allows for a 25 year partial exemption of lease excise tax for recreation and entertainment uses. Once the project has completed all construction (October, 2022) the company sells the project to the city for a token amount. The city becomes the lessor (owner and landlord) exempting ECL from paying property tax.  ECL becomes the prime lessee (renter) paying the city a token annual rental payment and pays annual lease excise tax instead of property tax. After 25 years the GPLET terminates and cannot be renewed. At that time the project reverts back to ECL, becomes private property and pays property tax rather than a lease tax.

The Government Property Improvement Lease further refines the terms of the 25 year partial GPLET. The terms remain as represented above but they are spelled out in excruciating legal detail. It’s a 50 page document (yes, I read it all) that only an attorney would love. It even covers what happens if there is “an act of God” that destroys the project.  It’s a very detailed, boring, yet important document.

The company is obligated to operate and maintain the project for at least 25 years continuously. The company agrees to completion of construction of the entire project on or before October 31, 2022. The city recognizes the right of the company to develop, construct and use the property under its current Planned Area Development (PAD) zoning. The city will provide expedited plan review. The city will provide a Fee Waiver in the amount of $1M in permit, plan review and inspection fees but this waiver does not include Development Impact Fees (DIF) which is estimated to be a one time payment of $4.4M.

Purchase Sale Agreement for 0.29 acres allows ECL to purchase for $10 a square foot, totaling $126,000. This small sliver of city-owned land is situated on the southwest corner of Montebello Avenue and 95th Avenue. It enhances access to the project site.

Option for Purchase Sale Agreement for 4.15 acres allows ECL to purchase for $10 a square foot, totaling $1.8 M. This land would be used for water retention, employee parking and maintenance operations for the project.

Parking Agreement(s) provide for the project’s overflow parking needs at the city-owned Black lot on all days but football game days and mega events at the stadium (attendance must be 40,000 minimum). ECL will maintain the black lot and pay for all associated utilities. This agreement will also be approved by the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority (AZSTA) and the Cardinals. Additional agreements between the Bidwill family and ECL may provide alternate parking should the city decide to develop the Black Parking lot. Obviously, with this project and others within Westgate and Zanjero, at some point the Black Lot parking land becomes so valuable for development that its use as a parking lot no longer makes financial sense.

The Return on Our Investment (ROI) is substantial. Keep in mind the city always uses conservative figures and I think it is fair to assume the numbers provided could be higher. Over 25 years the county earns $60.4M or $2.4M a year; the schools earn $90.6M or $3.6M a year; and the state receives $309.3M or $12.3M a year. What does the city earn? Over 25 years $240.5M or $9.6M a year. During construction of the project the city earns construction sales tax of $5.9M; $1.8M for the sale of remnant land parcels; and DIF fees of $4.4M. I personally think the annual revenues will be higher, especially during and after the Super Bowl in 2023. This resort project is sure to be heavily promoted during the Super Bowl generating a ton of viewer interest and a spike in tourist visits to Glendale.

All of these revenues are generated because the city, in order to attract this project, was willing to forego $1M in fee waivers, agree to accept excise lease tax rather than property tax and already had an abundance of available overflow parking constructed. In return for which, the city will generate almost $10M a year in new revenue. The city did not have to pay a dime to entice the project. The city does not write a check as an incentive to the developer for anything. I think that it is a win-win for Glendale and ECL. That’s why it won my immediate and enthusiastic support from the time I first learned of the project.

There are cities across this country that will never have this kind of opportunity but Glendale has spent the past several years positioning itself to attract just such a project.  As I said in my last blog there are intangible benefits as well. This experiential retail, entertainment concept is a brand new concept and will be the very first anywhere in the world. It will claim the attention of both the retail and entertainment industries and provides a blueprint for marrying the two concepts together. Glendale was on the map as a host city for the Super Bowl and the Final Four but this project moves Glendale to a new level of prominence.

I thank ECL for choosing Glendale as its partner and for hanging in there for over a year to execute tedious, legal, governmental documents that can be frustrating at times. It’s a challenge for all concerned to bring a project such as this to reality. Kudos to Glendale and ECL for making it happen. I am very proud to welcome them as the newest member of our Glendale family and the Yucca district.

© 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 is a blog I have been dying to write for the past year. I simply couldn’t wait to announce this project until tomorrow. So, I will write for a couple of hours and post it in the wee hours of tonight. In this first blog I will give you the big picture regarding the project and in my next blog I will go into detail for those of you who may be nerdy like me.

A year ago our City Manager shared with me that there was a possibility that a Crystal Lagoon project could be coming to Glendale and specifically to my district, the Yucca district at the southwest corner of Cardinals Way and 95th Avenue. I had no idea what the concept was so the first order of business for me was to do my research. What I learned made me anxiously hopeful that Glendale could land such a project. I was excited about the prospect and periodically asked our City Manager Kevin Phelps about the success of the negotiations always ending with, “Can I announce it yet?” For months the response was always, “Not yet.”

The concept was born with Fernando Fischmann, a trained biochemist and a real estate developer. His first project was in San Alfonso del Mar, Chile. The obstacles in the creation of a large lagoon as an amenity to his real estate development project were immense and frankly, solutions were non-existent.  At the time there was no cost effective technology available that could be utilized to maintain a large body of water.

He did what any other genius entrepreneur would do. He did the research himself by setting up his own laboratory to invent the technology needed for his project. He successfully patented his newly created technology allowing him to build major residential/lagoon projects worldwide. Today there are at least a 100 Crystal Lagoons throughout the world — in every South American country; southern European countries like Spain and Greece; the Middle East from Egypt to Jordan; Canada and dozens of lagoons in the United States. The list of projects is extensive.

But it was time to apply the concept to not just residential projects but to a commercial/retail/office/hotel concept.

One of the first such projects will be in Glendale. The developer is ECL Glendale, LLC.  The project site is 48+ acres and will host 9 complimentary components:

  • an 11 acre lagoon style water park planned to include scuba diving, windsurfing and water jet packs
  • 175,000 square feet of retail space
  • 130,000 square feet of office space
  • 3 hotels offering a total of 630 hotel rooms
  • amusement rides
  • family entertainment center
  • fly and 4D theaters
  • restaurants and bars
  • a performing arts and film venue space

There will also be the first ever “aero bar,” a 135 foot elevated bar in the middle of the lagoon with a 360-degree view. It also will include the world’s largest helium balloon. The balloon will be on a tether with a gondola that raises riders 400 feet in the air offering a bird’s eye view of the entire Valley. Some of the newest elements have yet to be announced and you will learn of them in the coming months.

ECL Glendale, LLC. plans to begin construction this year, probably late Fall with a target completion date of October of 2022. That gives them a few months of operation to work all the bugs out before the Super Bowl comes back to Glendale in 2023. It’s an ambitious schedule but as all elements will be constructed simultaneously, it is doable.

So, how much will this plethora of entertainment cost the visitor? I understand that an All Day Pass will be $20 per person. That seems to be a competitive price compared to other water venues in the Valley.

Why am I so excited about the project? It’s a one-of-a-kind attraction for not just the State of Arizona but for the entire Southwestern United States. But even more importantly, it forever ensures that Glendale is the premier sports and entertainment destination in all of Arizona. Now, all we need is basketball and soccer to capture the entire sports market. Maybe if the Coyotes Hockey team actually leaves Glendale as they have threatened to do for several years we could repurpose the arena for basketball? Or perhaps the property owners of the “Vision 4” properties on the west side of the Loop 101 might try to lure additional sports venues such as basketball and soccer to their site? Who knows?

This soon-to-be resort site compliments and adds to all of the existing and soon-to-be constructed development in the Westgate and Zanjero areas. It causes Glendale to become a year round tourist destination, similar to Disneyland or Disneyworld. It also increases Glendale’s viability as a host city for mega events such as the Final Four. Lastly, it will generate slightly less than $10 million a year in new revenue for the city and will create an estimated 1,800 jobs.

This was a difficult and complex project to bring to reality. It has a lot of moving parts and I will get into those moving parts in my next blog.

I don’t believe anyone else, other than our City Manager, Kevin Phelps, could have successfully concluded this project. He is a master at development and exactly what Glendale needs to become eminently successful in a highly competitive market as cities out bid and jostle one another to land mega projects. Mr. Phelps has also put together an outstanding team of senior management responsible for the success of this project. It includes Brian Friedman, Director of Economic Development; Lisa Collins, Planning Administrator; Vicki Rios and Jack Friedline, Assistant City Managers; and Craig Johnson, Director of Utilities. If I omitted anyone please accept my apology. Michael Bidwill, representing the Bidwill family, also contributed to the project’s success by working with ECL Glendale, LLC. to craft a parking agreement.

I don’t think I can express the momentous effect this project will have not just for Glendale and the Metro Valley but for the entire state. This project is in the forefront of a new type of retail. As was expressed today, people no longer just want to buy things. We are entering a new age where people want experiences…memories that are invaluable. That is the promise of this new concept for Crystal Lagoon and the new buzz words are ‘experiential retail.’

© 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.

As I’ve remarked previously, due to the COVID pandemic this has been one of the strangest campaigns I’ve had. People must wear masks and socially distance. Bars and gyms are still not open. Tubing on the Salt River, a long-held, dearly loved outdoor activity is not allowed. The traditional, annual Glendale Women’s Club candidate forum was cancelled. Going door to door was frowned upon. Holding a campaign event was impossible. The life blood of a political campaign is reaching out to as many voters as possible in person. That was not to be.

How does a candidate campaign in this environment? Everyone is going digital and using the internet. Major candidates are running TV ads but the cost is prohibitive for a local council race. I think more mailers have been used in this campaign than in any previous one. By my count and I’m not sure I acquired all of them, at least 30 mailers from the 2 contested races—mayoral and Yucca council seat—hit your mailboxes. I estimate their collective value at about $65,000. In addition, the fire union dropped 2 door hangers for Robertson and 1 door hanger for Alexander, representing another estimated $5,000 and that does not include the manpower used by the union to deliver them. Add the cost of political consultants, polling, digital advertising, campaign signs and the expenses become even more significant. This may turn out to be the most expensive campaign cycle that Glendale has ever had.

I did note one very strange set of campaign finance reports – those of Corey Bowen. Mr. Bowen filed a statement of campaign committee organization on September 9, 2019. Candidates’ nominating petitions were filed at the end of March, 2020. Mr. Bowen never submitted nominating petitions and was therefore out of the Yucca council race at the end of March, 2020.

In his first campaign finance report filed on January 1, 2020 which reported financial activity through December 31, 2019, Mr. Bowen reported contributions of $2,950.00 and expenditures of $1,086.42 leaving him with a balance of $1,853.58. In his second report covering the period through March 31, 2020, he spent $266.51 leaving him a balance of $1,596.82. Here’s where it gets strange. By the end of March, 2020, he and we know he is not on the ballot and is no longer a candidate for the Yucca council seat.

In his next campaign finance report covering through June 30, 2020, Mr. Bowen spent another $828.29 as if he were still a viable candidate:

  • On 5/21/2020 $98.01 to Lyft for “campaign transportation.”
  • On 6/1/2020 another $53.01 went to Lyft for “campaign transportation.”
  • On 5/2/2050(sic) he spent $491.28 to WalMart for “campaign event supplies.”
  • On 6/1/2020 he spent another $255.99 at WalMart for “canvassing supplies.”

In his last campaign filing report covering through July 18, 2020, he continues to spend $658.89 as if he were a viable candidate:

  • On 7/2/2020 $56.50 to Lyft for “campaign transportation.”
  • On 7/13/2020 $42.01 to Lyft for “campaign transportation.”
  • On 7/2/2020 he spent another $226.89 to WalMart for “campaign event supplies.”
  • On 6/1/2020 to WalMart $33.49 for “canvassing supplies.”
  • On 7/03/2020 to Adelina’s wedding venue for $300.00 for “campaign event venue.”

Mr. Bowen, the non-candidate for the Yucca district council seat, now has a balance in his campaign committee account of $39.62. How can this be? How could he spend over $1,500 for campaign expenses when he is not on the ballot? It’s not the amount of money spent but the principle involved. I know that some of the readers of this blog work in the Maricopa County Attorney General’s Office. I would hope one of them would bring this to the attention of the Attorney General.

In my race with my opponent, I ask you, the voter, to consider several issues. He has declared himself to be a Democrat. Part of the Democrat agenda is to “defund the police” or at the very least, reprioritize police expenditures. That seems to be a nice euphemism for saying defund them. In his campaign material he says, “…we need to reduce the tax burden on each citizen…” One way to reduce that burden is to reduce or reprioritize police funding. How could the two police unions support this man when this is part of his agenda?

My opponent’s major support comes from the fire union. As I’ve stated previously, they poured money into his campaign with signs, a mailer and a door hanger, not because he’s an outstanding candidate but because of the mere fact that he is my opponent. I did a blog on union release time and the fact that city council eliminated one of two union release time positions for fire and police. This action angered them to the point where they would have supported cardboard cutouts of candidates in opposition to the Mayor and myself.

Most disturbing is his Facebook comment, “I get a special feeling when I see my name in print.” This is an unusual remark to make. It seems my opponent is in this race to become more recognized, more important within our community. That’s not a valid reason to run.

Keep in mind I took him to court to challenge the validity of his nominating petition signatures. I produced witnesses, registered Yucca district voters, who swore that it was not he who witnessed their signatures on his nominating petitions. My opponent never went to court and swore on a Bible (remember he’s an Associate Pastor) that it was indeed he who witnessed those signatures.

Lastly, my opponent is cerebral, a thinker…not a doer. His entire platform is comprised of initiatives I have done or I am currently doing. He offers no new ideas. I have a proven record of successful performance. I get things done. I have helped countless Yucca residents to resolve problems. I am accessible and take calls and texts from residents all the time. I have been there when you needed help.

My opponent’s motive for running is questionable. I will always harbor doubt about his nominating petitions and their validity. He has not contributed to the life of our district or community. His only support comes primarily from the fire union and I think it’s fair to assume he will support their extensive agenda. He has offered no new initiative that you can support or would be excited about. He really is a cardboard candidate.

The big gorilla in this race is the mayoral contest. There’s an old saying, “the past is prologue.” That means the past will inevitably be repeated. That certainly raises concerns with regard to the mayoral opponent Robertson. We know from publicly available records she accused her ex-husband of sexual molestation of their daughter and the court found her accusation to be invalid. We know that she accused the former Chief Financial Officer of the Cartwright District of sexual harassment. From her publicly available emails it appears that it was she who encouraged a mutually sexually charged relationship. I was disturbed to see the email photo of her breasts that she sent to him with reference to “the girls are oiled up.” Now that is disgusting.

Her scrubbing of her Facebook past demonstrating those causes she supports including “Black Lives Matter” should give you pause for concern. Her action appears to be intentional with the removal of controversial issues.

Another issue for your consideration is her commitment to retain her current job at the Cartwright School District while trying to be mayor. I, as a councilmember, can confirm that it is a full time job to serve and the mayor’s position is exactly the same. Promising to be a part time mayor does a disservice to every Glendale resident.

Again, the unions in their haste to back any opponent for mayor either did not vet this candidate or did and chose to ignore what they discovered. Either way, it screams of a naked power grab to run the City of Glendale to their advantage.

Having worked with the current mayor I know that the allegations the unions made against him are not true. It’s a tried and true tactic to take a snippet of fact and twist it until your opponent appears to be a monster. The fire union is very good at it.

Remember how you could go to your local polling location? It might be a school like Desert Mirage Elementary School or a church like Faith Baptist Church. No more. Thanks to COVID, this time you have a choice of five “Voting Centers” in Glendale.

For the August Primary Election, Maricopa County voters can cast a ballot at any Vote Center. Locations are open from July 8-August 4, including some nights and weekends. All Vote Centers listed are open on Election Day:

  • Arrowhead Mall 8/1/2020 Open 11am to 7pm; 8/2/2020 Open 12pm to 5pm; 8/3/2020 Open 11am to 5pm and 8/4/2020 Open 6am to 7pm.
  • ASU West Campus 8/1/2020 Closed; 8/2/2020 Closed; 8/3/2020 Open 8am to 5pm; 8/4/2020 Open 6am to 7pm.
  • Glendale Market Square 8/1/2020 Open 9am to 7pm; 8/2/2020 Open 12pm to 5pm; 8/3/2020 Open 9am to 5pm; 8/4/2020 Open 6am to 7pm.
  • Glendale Civic Center 8/1/2020 Open 7:30am to 6:30pm; 8/2/2020 Closed; 8/3/2020 Open 7:30am to 5pm; 8/4/2020 Open 6am to 7pm.
  • Glendale Christian Church 8/1/2020 Closed; 8/2/2020 Closed; 8/3/2020 Closed; 8/4/2020 Open 6am to 7pm.

You can drop off your ballot or vote in person on the days and times that these 5 Glendale locations are open. I can’t see how this scheme aids people in avoiding COVID but it’s the system that will be used on August 4th.

No matter what you do – drop off your ballot or vote in person, I urge you to vote on August 4th. Your vote matters…your vote counts.

© 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.

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.

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.

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 week I met with city personnel to get an update on the progress regarding Heroes Park Lake. My goal as the Yucca district councilmember is to secure funding for the completion of all elements in Heroes Park. One of the most visual elements of the park is the lake feature. So where are we on the lake? We know that to date, in Fiscal Year 2021, $4.2 million is available to construct the lake.

Currently, the lake is in the preliminary design stage. There have been ongoing discussions with Salt River Project to determine whether canal water or irrigation water would be used. The Mayor and I were keenly interested in using canal water but there are problems with doing so. SRP canal water has a lot of “stuff” in it including solids, garbage and yes, even fish. Pushing that water through mechanical equipment before it reaches the lake is a recipe for expensive costs in continually repairing the equipment. Obviously a wiser decision is to use irrigation water which is available to the site.

Heroes Park lake

Now that that issue is settled the city is working on the preliminary design. I have included a conceptual design staff provided to me. The lake will be sited on the east side of 83rd Avenue.  Its size is determinant upon how far $4.2 million dollars will go. It could be anywhere from 3.5 acres to 5 acres in size. I am also including a conceptual design of the entire park. In it you will see that the water goes further eastward. The additional water will be a future expansion.

It will take nearly a year to create the final design that includes all engineering for the plan. The goal is to have all design and engineering completed by May/June of 2021 so that the RFP for construction can be put out for bid immediately. I anticipate that the lake can be completed by approximately December of 2021. Don’t take that date to the bank just yet for something could happen to delay my assumption on the date of completion.

Heroes Park design

The point is that the lake will be the next element to be constructed in the park. It will be a fishing lake. Other good news is that library expansion or community meeting space, a recreation & aquatics center and the sports fields are back in the city’s Capital Improvement Program (CIP). This is first step toward getting funding allocated by the city council for the remaining elements. Rest assured I am working on my pledge to see the  park completed.

© 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.

Sometimes “a picture is worth a thousand words.” I thought a photo of the proposed site of the Love’s Travel Center would be helpful. So I went out to the site the other day and took this photo. I was sitting in my car immediately west of Cotton Lane at Rose Lane.

In the background you can see the Loop 303. The proposed Love’s site is at the Bethany Home Road exit of the Loop 303. The approximate distance between the proposed Love’s site and the nearest home is1,600 feet, about a quarter of a mile.

NOT TO SCALE

Conceptual Courtesy of Lincoln Property

Now, imagine an industrial building on the east side of Cotton Lane (with appropriate front setbacks). The industrial building will not be sited right along the western boundary of the property. It will be set back from Cotton Lane. I don’t know the distance but I would guess about 50 feet. That 30 to 40 foot tall building will act as a noise and visual buffer between the proposed Love’s and the nearest resident.

Please note that the property owner will be required to improve that portion of Cotton Lane that is adjacent to their property. That means Cotton Lane will be improved from Bethany Home Road to Glendale Avenue.

I hope this visual provides some perspective of context as we continue to discuss this issue.

© 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.

As the stadium and arena were announced back in the early 2000’s, residents who live in the adjacent areas were very concerned and many were upset. The farm fields that they had gazed upon from their windows was about to disappear. Many were saddened and angry that their way of life was about to change…forever.

Over the years we (including myself) have adjusted to the dramatic changes that have occurred in the Westgate and Zanjero areas. Humans are highly adaptable. Consequently, we now take alternate routes on football game days and when there are major events in the area. We cope with the tremendous traffic increases we experience on every major arterial in this area. Those residents who couldn’t adapt moved elsewhere but most of us stayed. Many of us now shop at the Tanger Outlets or enjoy a movie at the AMC Theater or go for lunch or dinner at the abundance of restaurants in the area. We enjoy and use the variety of entertainment while living on the periphery of it all.

Change is coming to another part of Glendale and the nearby county residents are unhappy about it. Several years ago city council made a policy decision to reserve the land beyond 115th Avenue to our westernmost boundary, especially around the Loop 303, for job creation. We call it the “New Frontier.” It has succeeded far beyond our expectations. For example, every parcel within the Glendale Airpark is in escrow, sold, in plan review or under construction. By the Loop 303 industrial and commercial development took off with the announcement of Red Bull, Rausch and Ball choosing the Woolf Logistics Center as their location of choice. It was followed quickly by White Claw who expects to be open for business by June of this year. There are 15 projects worth over $600 million dollars in various development stages that will offer over 1,500 good paying jobs to our residents.

Now Cotton Properties is about to develop on the west side of the Loop 303 from Bethany Home Road to Glendale Avenue. Located at the intersection of the Loop 303 and Bethany Home Road is a proposed Love’s Travel Center. The rest of the Cotton Properties parcel will have several industrial/commercial buildings on it and they will act as a visual/noise buffer between the Love’s and the county residents to the west. There is a concentrated swath of county residents who have expressed their opposition to any kind of development of Cotton Properties. It really doesn’t matter what is developed there. The residents are opposed to change of any kind. The farm fields that they had enjoyed for years is about to disappear.

They have decided to concentrate their opposition on the Love’s Travel Center and I and other Glendale personnel have received a lot of email in opposition to the proposed project. That is their right and I encourage their commentary. However, one would think Love’s was a creation of the Devil himself. There was one email that stood out from the pack and it was from a family of truck drivers who live in the county where the opposition is the strongest. I asked them for permission to use it and they graciously granted it. Here’s the “other side of the story:”

 

To Whom It May Concern:

 

First of all I would like to introduce myself to you. My husband and I, Joe and Kathy Papineau are both long haul truck drivers. We bought a beautiful home in the Russell Ranch subdivision. We have been in the trucking industry for over 20 years. We would welcome a Loves Truck Stop with open arms. In this letter I wish to offer an accurate rebuttal to all of the surrounding areas’ concerns and arguments on why they think a Loves Truck Stop is going to ruin their quality of life.

 

First of all, with all the warehouses and businesses going up in the area providing safe and designated parking for truckers’ transportation needs is a great idea. If there isn’t sufficient parking provided, they will be parking on the side of the roads. Due to Elogs (Federal regulations), they are not permitted to drive after loading and unloading. Even law enforcement may not ask them to move. Truck drivers must obey the federal laws. They will have no other choice but to leave debris and human waste on the side of our roads. That would be a disgrace to put truckers in that position. My neighbors will argue there are enough truck stops off of I-10. However, on the contrary, there is not enough parking. Throughout this country, there is a shortage of safe parking for truckers.

 

Secondly, my neighbors will argue about the crime a truck stop will bring. That is false. Now back in the 70’s and 80’s that may have been true. Nowadays all trucks have armed security. As a woman truck driver, I have never felt unsafe at a truck stop. It does not bring drugs, prostitution, human trafficking, or serial killers. This is fear mongering at its worst and is dangerous. Truck drivers deserve more respect. Everything that we all have or consume is delivered by a truck. Our food, lumber to build our homes, furniture and decor that we all love to use, eat or display is delivered by long haul truckers. The lack of knowledge about the trucking industry is not their fault. They have been misinformed by fear mongering. Statistically, 40% of all truckers are now women. Truckers are hard working and they deserve a safe place to park, sleep, shower, and eat. We owe it to them for all that they do in providing goods throughout this country. 

 

Also, my neighbors will use the argument of increased air and noise pollution. Today, most trucks have DPF systems to ensure that truck pollution is minimal. I find it to be very hypocritical, that my neighbors love Luke Air Force Base yet will not accommodate the trucking industry. The jets continually release fumes and jet fuel over our heads. The noise from jets breaking sound barriers is more harmful than a 100 trucks.

 

My neighbors argue about the traffic of the big trucks being solely caused because of the truck stop alone. With all of the warehouses and distribution centers, we already have more traffic than ever before. It has not caused any grief to residents except for making them go the actual speed limit. The truckers will not be detouring through neighborhoods or by the schools. Truckers are smarter than that. They like and appreciate the quick on and off access to highways.

 

We have a state prison right down the street. Residents seem to be more comfortable with incarcerated prisoners than truck drivers. The prison had two escapees a few months ago. Neighbors didn’t seem to mind a few escaped prisoners and appeared to think of it as of no concern.

 

So, on behalf of our family and for all of my brothers and sisters in the trucking industry, please approve this Love’s truck stop. We appreciate a clean and safe place to lay over as I am sure you also appreciate the delivery of food and consumer products we haul and you use.

 

Thank you very much for your time,

 

Joe and Kathy Papineau

18028 W. Medlock Dr.

Litchfield Park AZ 85340

© 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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