Vol. 15 Issue No. 38 | September 23 – 29, 2009

Cave Creek Council eliminates SUPs for businesses

By Linda Bentley | September 23, 2009

‘I don’t see where we’re giving up any necessary regulations’

dave kendallCAVE CREEK – Monday night’s council meeting marked the debut of a song written by Greg O’Reilly, “Cave Creek Forever” (aka “Circle the Wagons”), performed by Dave Kendall of the Cave Creek Cowboy Crew.

O’Reilly said he likes to think of the song as a rallying call for the town.

The 50-day hiatus may be a record for the town going without a council meeting, which also began with absolutely no one wishing to speak during Call to the Public.

Al Macias from the Census Bureau made a brief presentation about the importance of the decennial census.

“April 1 is Census Day,” said Macias, who stated the questionnaire is short and safe, citing all census workers take a lifetime oath to not disclose any personal information collected during the census to any person or government agency.

And, he said, “It’s important,” citing $400 billion is at stake for allocation to states and Arizona is expected to gain two congressional seats.

Green Advisory Committee Chair Patrick Grady and committee member Theresa Rigney presented the committee’s recommendations to council for a “Sustainability Action Plan,” the adoption of which they said will assist with grant feasibility.

Mayor Vincent Francia complimented the committee on the dramatic step of taking the idea from talk into action.

Councilman Ralph Mozilo said the town has done everything it can to prevent paving parking lots to avoid the heat island problem, which has now brought them into conflict with the state and county over clean air (PM-10 and dust).

Council voted unanimously to accept the committee’s Sustainability Action Plan.

Council voted 5-2, with Vice Mayor Ernie Bunch and Councilman Jim Bruce dissenting, to continue an item until Oct. 19 to accept a deed of roads in a subdivision as a gift to the town in exchange for the maintenance of such roads.

Grady, who is president of the HOA, stated the community pursued this because they believed it was public policy and said the homeowners have spent $55,000 to bring the roads up to the town’s standards.

Planning Commissioner Ted Bryda, who requested council table the item until they had more information, questioned whether the roads were public or private, noting there is only one way in and one way out. He also asked what benefit it was to the town to take on any additional responsibilities for road maintenance.

Although council voted unanimously in favor of the first reading of moving special use permits (SUP) out of the zoning ordinance and into the town code by adding Chapter 114 - Special Events to Title XI – Business Regulations, it was not without some trepidation.
The proposed ordinance also eliminated the requirement for SUPs for events held on private property and would only pertain to events held on public property or in a public right-of-way.

Planning Commissioner Bill Allen told council, if they looked back at why SUPs were initiated in the first place, it was due to traffic even though the events were held on private property, and questioned the wisdom of wiping out all authority.

Cave Creek Coffee Company owner Todd Newman said he supported “anything we can do to drive business to this town,” and asked what they wanted to be as a town – if they wanted Cave Creek to be a sleepy town that just withers away.

Bruce said, “I, personally, hate this thing,” but added he wasn’t there for Jim Bruce but for the best interest of the town. He said he believed it would backfire but would support it.
Bunch said he was “just ecstatic” over the ordinance and stated, “I think it’s a pro business move.

Councilman Steve LaMar said, “I don’t see where we’re giving up any necessary regulations,” and stated it was a small way for council to show its support.

Francia said, “I think it’s time for this to happen. Council is extending trust to businesses,” but said he would like to see a couple of changes before the second reading that included a process for notifying the town marshal and possible restrictions if a business, for example, has been cited for three noise violations.

Planning Director Ian Cordwell said when too many people start coming to Cave Creek to spend their money council can deal with the “problem” at that time.

Council unanimously ratified a payment made to Boates & Crump in the amount of $26,247, as per the court-ordered judgment stemming from a complaint filed against the Desert Hills Water Company in 2006, which the town subsequently acquired.

Council was also unanimous in accepting Technical Design Guideline Number 2 – Transportation, which Town Engineer Wayne Anderson said was developed by the town’s traffic engineer.

Francia said, after reading the guidelines, “I had a coefficient of friction breakdown.”

The town appointed the mayor, vice mayor and Mozilo to serve as the president, vice president and secretary, respectively, with the remaining council to serve as directors of the town’s Municipal Property Corporation, which, according to Town Clerk Carrie Dyrek, has no money and doesn’t meet, but still needs to file an annual report with the Arizona Corporation Commission.

Council voted unanimously to adopt the League of Cities and Towns’ amendments to its Model City Tax Code, by reference and then voted unanimously in favor of the first reading of the ordinance to adopt those amendments.

Council approved an amendment to extend the contract between the town and 3D/International, Inc. for construction management services for the wastewater treatment plant project.

Council also voted unanimously in favor of authorizing staff to proceed with a request for proposals for legal services. Dyrek said it is a significant part of their budget and something the town has not looked into for a number of years.

Town Manager Usama Abujbarah, responding to concerns, assured the town is not required to go with the lowest bidder and this was not the result of either the town or Mariscal Weeks, its current representation, being unhappy with one another.

Dave Kendall performed the song “Cave Creek Forever,” music and lyrics by Greg O’Reilly, marking the debut of the song. It was sung at the beginning of the first council meeting in approximately 50 days.
Photo by Linda Bentley