BY BEN BURGOON | FEBRUARY 20, 2013
Reelect the town council
A special interest slate of candidates for town council led by Scottsdale lobbyist Adam Trenk has organized for the purpose of sweeping the current town council out of office, firing key staff who disagree with them and stopping all development. If elected, that is exactly what they will do which will set Cave Creek back 20 years. Residents who attended the Sonoran News Candidate Forum on January 30 understand how uninformed and misguided but determined these people are. Before you even think about voting for them, consider the following facts:
1. While many cities and towns are bankrupt or facing bankruptcy, Cave Creek has weathered the storm and is largely back to normal.
• Town cut the budget and staff by some 35% among a host of other measures.
• Diversified and continue to diversify the tax base. Sales tax has increased 30 percent this year.
• Retired Spur Cross debt 9 years early.
• Maintained an AA credit rating - among the best in Arizona.
• Improved financial accountability.
2. The town has not only weathered the worst economic downturn in Arizona history, but has established $3.4 million cash reserve.
• Current plan is to increase the cash reserve to about $5.5 million to ameliorate the effects of a double dip depression - which is a distinct possibility.
• Once the cash reserve is in place, consideration will be given to possible reductions in local sales tax rates, water rates or other fiscal issues.
3. Citizens voted in 2002 to purchase the unreliable private water company.
• Citizens voted 2 to 1 to authorize the Town to procure a $50 million loan for water and wastewater improvements.
• The unreliable private water company was purchased.
• Dramatic improvements were made to the water utility, which had not made any improvements for 30 years, and continue today.
• Water now meets all EPA standards and service is reliable.
• Won 'The Best Water in Arizona' award from the State of Arizona.
4. Federal requirements made it necessary to replace the overtaxed wastewater treatment plant.
• New wastewater treatment plant completed and the old plant removed.
• New plant won a prestigious national American Public Works Association award.
5. Purchase and improvement of the water utility and completion of the wastewater treatment plant made it possible to begin to bring in new business such as Walmart along the Carefree Highway corridor and increase town revenues while protecting the iconic Town Core.
6. Council supported the annexation and acquisition of 4,000 acres of open space.
This town council has dedicated itself to the very survival of Cave Creek during the most challenging period in its history and clearly achieved success. Council members are already focused on the formidable challenges that lie ahead. They aren't perfect, but certainly look like it compared to the special interest slate.
Reelect council members Shelley Anderson, Jim Bruce, Ernie Bunch, Dick Esser, Steve LaMar and Tom McGuire.