Changes make shifting council assignments moot

By Curtis Riggs | June 10, 2009

Committee functions eliminated instead
CAREFREE – Mayor David Schwan’s assignment of council members to committees incited discord during Tuesday’s council meeting.

A new Green Initiative committee was formed to look at green building issues and ways Carefree can become more environmentally friendly. So far six-term Councilman Bob Coady is the lone member of this body.

While the town’s contribution committee is still around, the council’s decision not to make donations to area non-profit groups this year renders the mission of this committee moot. Council newcomer Susan Vanik is the only member of this committee after Schwan removed Coady from it just prior to the meeting. After the council voted to reduce this year’s contributions to $20,000 from the planned $42,554, it was decided to eliminate the contributions altogether.

“You can’t borrow to give money to charity,” Councilman Doug Stavoe said in reference to the $1 million budget shortfall Carefree is facing this year.

Council newcomer Peter Koteas voiced his displeasure about Schwan’s assigning him to the Planning and Zoning oversight committee.

“For you to imply that everyone is accepting of this is incorrect,” he told Schwan. “I told you I will not be able to attend P&Z meetings. I will look like a fool when I don’t show up.”

Schwan told Koteas Town Attorney Tom Chenal is now rendering an opinion about council members attending P&Z meetings so this issue was also rendered moot.

Several council members took issue with Schwan assigning two members to a committee when there only needs to be one. Schwan said he assigned two members to most committees to ensure “diversity and a difference of opinion.”

Coady said he was “not on board” with the assignments because of two people being assigned to some committees.

“Last time Glenn Miller and I worked together,” he said. “It worked out fine, but there was no need for two people on a project.”

Schwan said he was “flummoxed” by talk of council members not liking their assignments.
“I asked if you accepted them at the end of the meetings and you all said yes,” he said, referring to individual sessions he held with council members prior to Tuesday’s meeting.

Stavoe, a longtime Carefree resident who has never lived in a homeowner’s association, suggested the title of HOA representative be changed to homeowner’s representative to be more inclusive of all residents.