It has been 17 years and 282 days since the city’s pledge to build the West Branch Library.

Just when you think there is no more to the Sherwood saga, up pop new revelations and actions. The Glendale Star reported on October 8, 2015 that once again it is alleged Sherwood violated open meeting law by sharing confidential city council executive session information. Here is the link: . Gary Hirsch, a long time Glendale activist, supported Sherwood in his first run for the Sahuaro city council seat because of Sherwood’s opposition to the casino, among other things. They became friends and met often, usually over breakfast. When Sherwood did his dramatic flip-flop on the casino issue, flipping from anti-casino to pro-casino, Sherwood and Hirsch had several conversations about the issue. In the email below (I have the full version of the email. However, I am only publishing the relevant part) Hirsch has, once again, asked Sherwood to explain why he changed his position. Sherwood then sent Hirsch yet another explanation for his abrupt about face on the casino issue. See below:

From: Gary Sherwood                                                                                                          Sent: Monday, November 25, 2013 5:21 PM                                                                           To: ‘GARY HIRSCH’                                                                                                          Subject: RE: TO                                                                                                           Sensitivity: Confidential

Please, please, please, keep this confidential between ourselves – not that I have to tell you that but I need to state it.

Gary –

“Michael Bailey asked the council in an e-session on September 10th for a confirmation that we continue the direction from the previous council – there was a lot of discussion but in the end, a majority of head nodding  (4-3) didn’t want to undo what had been previously been accomplished and this was at the recommendation of Mr. Bailey. This was needed because of recent rulings putting the one issue back to the 9th circuit court. When Michael’s letter came out on the 11th – it was by far stronger than what was discussed the day previous.”

Best, Gary

The first item that has got to grab your attention is the email is marked confidential and Sherwood requests that confidentiality be maintained (which Hirsch had done for 2 years). Why the need for confidentiality if everything Sherwood is saying is legally permissible? Perhaps because Sherwood knew it wasn’t and that he was violating executive session?? Haven’t we seen Sherwood do this before when he sent another email allegedly violating executive session with the admonition to former Councilmember Manny Martinez to delete the email after reading it? As Yogi Berra said, “déjà vu all over again.”

In the body of the email as Sherwood, in an effort to explain away his newly adopted pro-casino stance, reveals Michael Bailey’s (Glendale City Attorney) actions that occurred during that executive session. 

Sherwood knew better but it is just another example of his habit and pattern of ignoring the law. Don’t forget we saw this same behavior regarding his driver’s license suspensions and his Failure to Appear statewide warrant. If Sherwood has played fast and loose with executive session material and has ignored orders of the court, what other “omissions” of the law has he committed?

Aristotle once said, “At his best, man is the noblest of all animals; separated from law and justice he is the worst.” Sherwood seems to proven this adage over and over again for he appears to have been at his worst since his election to office.

Add to this latest revelation of yet another Sherwood allegation of wrong doing the fact that the city council called for an executive session at 11 AM on Friday, October 09, 2015. Here is the link: . One of the agenda items is:

  2. In accordance with the City of Glendale City Council Guidelines, adopted February 24, 2015, the City Council will meet to review and discuss an alleged violation of the Guidelines by Councilmember Sherwood. (A.R.S. § 38-431.03 (A)(1)) .

What will come of this extraordinary agenda item? Will the council, as a body, finally be the ones to hold Sherwood accountable for his actions by censuring him? That is the worst punishment they can apply under the Council Guidelines. Do they have the will and backbone to do so? Can Sherwood weigh in on his own censure? I don’t know the answer to this question as it has never occurred before. What if Sherwood is prohibited from participating and the balance of council is split 3-3? In case of a tie it is considered defeated. We will have to wait and to see if it appears as an agenda item on an upcoming city council voting meeting. Don’t hold your breath on this one. I do not expect that enough of the councilmembers will actually have the intestinal fortitude to censure one of their own. From past experience it can be expected that Chavira and Aldama will support Sherwood. Which of the other 4 councilmembers will balk and refuse to censure him? Weiers? Hugh? Tolmachoff? Turner?

It appears everyone has had enough of the Sherwood “drama,” especially the Sahuaro district voters. It’s time to cut Sherwood loose and to send him back to the private sector where he can wreak his own apparent brand of havoc there. The prevalent sentiment of Sahuaro voters is that Sherwood, instead of representing their interests, has blatantly represented his own.

Stay tuned. Just when you think there can’t be any more…there is.

© Joyce Clark, 2015


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