Call to the Public draws hostility and lies

Lopez said the town’s credibility would be at risk after ‘assuring’ Ellison the funds for this project would be available to him
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bob mooreCAVE CREEK – Bob Moore (r) cannot seem to get enough Sonoran News bashing in and now uses Call to the Public of council meetings for his audience.

His latest rant took place on Monday, where he read part of a front page article in Sonoran News that explained our arrangement with the Gila (pronounced Heela) Bend Sun to meet the statutory requirements of legal advertising.

Moore, who has the dubious distinction of being the only person ever removed from the town’s planning commission for lying, went on about the “hateful treatment” of citizens who have served the town.

While Town Clerk Carrie Dyrek had been bombarded with public record requests during this election cycle, Moore later learned none of the requests Dyrek was working on and needed to be addressed at that time were from Moore.

So even though Moore did make requests around the same period of time, but not exactly at the same time, he later sent an e-mail to Mayor Vincent Francia that opened with, “I have a new visual: 4 monkeys … ‘hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil, smell no evil’.”

Moore said he took exception to our printed assertion that he was one of the “bombardiers” and stated, “So it’s beginning to look like the paper is once again seeking sensationalism like William Randolph Hearst yellow journalism of the 1890s … of course Don [Sorchych] was there for that …”

In his public rant as well as his e-mail to Francia, Moore wanted to know “just why [Cave Creek] is advertising in Gila Bend Sun a town that is 100 miles away and has a circ[ulation] of 600 … you being a marketing guy … I suspect you would not have chosen this publication to advertise track events in …”

During Call to the Public, Moore claimed the Foothills Focus has distribution of 7,000 in Cave Creek’s two Zip Codes.

To correct the record, I too spoke during Call to the Public to say Cave Creek is not spending any money to place ads in the Gila Bend Sun and that Sonoran News, which is delivered to every mailbox in Cave Creek runs the ads in both Sonoran News and the Gila Bend Sun, a newspaper of paid subscription in Maricopa County, simply to meet the legal requirement.

And while Moore claims Foothills Focus has distribution of 7,000 in both of Cave Creek’s Zip Codes, it is not, and has not been, delivered to mailboxes in Cave Creek and is likely only delivered to racks, the bulk of which are probably in Tatum Ranch, which shares Cave Creek’s 85331 Zip Code.

In any event, Foothills Focus is not statutorily qualified to run legal advertising.

gilbert lopezGilbert Lopez (r) then took to the podium and, holding up a graph, said, “This is what can happen sometimes when a meter goes bad.”

He held up a graph with a huge spike for one month indicating over 8,000 gallons of water were used that month, which Lopez said was the equivalent of two swimming pools and resulted in a $700 water bill.

He said he called the town, which he said agreed to lower his bill to $350, and invited them to come out and inspect his property to see he didn’t have any saturated areas consistent with a leak of that magnitude.

Lopez’s primitive chart indicated the usage shown was in thousands, which would mean the 8,000 shown would actually be 8 million gallons.

Since the average swimming pool requires anywhere from 18,000 to 25,000 gallons of water, it’s not clear what Lopez was actually trying to demonstrate other than a large spike in his water bill.

He was offended that no one from the town would go out and inspect his property to see there was no large leak.

Lopez then said, “Since we’re criticizing Sonoran News … Five years ago, the newspaper accused me of offering $10,000 to the chamber.” He asked, “Do I look like the kind of guy that would give away $10,000 of taxpayer money?”

He said, “And we pay money to this …”

Well, putting it bluntly, Lopez is a liar and he did in fact vote to give $10,000 to the Carefree/Cave Creek Chamber of Commerce.

I attended that October 15, 2007 council meeting during which council was being asked by former Carefree/Cave Creek Chamber of Commerce Director Ian Ellison to provide funding not to exceed $9,990 to start up an information center pilot project.

Lopez, who was a council member at the time, moved to authorize that expenditure.

After speaking with town staff, whom he said assured him funds would be available, Lopez said an amount of $10,000 or less seemed appropriate, although it still required council approval.

Lopez said the town’s credibility would be at risk after “assuring” Ellison the funds for this project would be available to him “and now they’re not.”

Lopez went on to say, “We are saying to one chamber that represents a large segment of our merchant community, ‘Sorry, we just can’t find $10,000 in a $38 million budget to help you out.’”

Because the town had $450,000 in the contingency fund “waiting for emergencies,” Lopez said he felt it was appropriate to take the $10,000 out of contingency and approve the request.

While McGuire seconded Lopez’s motion, he made it clear it was only to get it on the table and he did not support the motion.

Francia said he was very conscious of the budget and the town manager said the money was not there unless they went into the contingency funds and stated, “Contingency funds are for an emergency.”

Council voted 6-1 against Lopez’s motion.

So, in answer to Lopez’s question, yes, he does look like the kind of person who would give away $10,000 of taxpayer money to the chamber. He tried but failed.

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