By Linda Bentley | september 30, 2015

Prinzhorn pens his own early demise

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CAVE CREEK – On Sept. 16, Town Manager Peter Jankowski sent out an e-mail to staff saying, “Please be advised, as of this morning, David Prinzhorn has left the town as town engineer and no longer has an official position with the town.”

Although Jankowski previously stated Prinzhorn was terminating his employment voluntarily and would be staying through the end of September, Prinzhorn subsequently penned a letter to his “Water Advisory Committee (WAC) colleagues” that apparently spurred his departure into an immediate, involuntary termination.

David Prinzhorn

The letter opens with, “As most of you by now have probably heard, I will be departing the town of Cave Creek in the next few weeks.”

Prinzhorn claims he was being “forced out for political reasons” that he believed stemmed from Rancho Mañana Golf Course water issues.

It appears his “voluntary” termination came about after his snide remarks to council during the budget workshop where he said he may not be able to perform his duties or have enough money in his budget, indicating it depended on how council votes the following day on settlement of former Town Manager Usama Abujbarah’s lawsuit.

Prinzhorn’s letter criticized Vice Mayor Steve LaMar and stated LaMar felt the “illegal discharge of water to the golf course and ultimately Cave Creek Wash was ‘no big deal’ and I ‘escalated the problem into something bigger.’ So steadfast in his belief of this is that he convinced the mayor and possibly other town council members of this as well.”

Prinzhorn stated he “obviously caught someone ‘with their pants down’ and upset the apple cart.”

The letter goes on to state, “You may have heard that I have ‘resigned.’ I have not. I am being forced out, predictably near the end of this month, in an effort to suppress the truth.”

Despite knowing he would be terminating his employment with the town, Prinzhorn expressed astonishment at the fact the town had run an ad in the Arizona Republic for his replacement.

Prinzhorn then makes the following peculiar statement: “Additionally clouding the issue is the continuing belief that because I was hired by former Acting Town Manager Rodney Glassman, which whom I have only had five minutes of conversation, that I must not be good for the town because Rodney wasn’t.”

In the same sentence where Prinzhorn states he was hired by Glassman, he also claims to have only had a five minute conversation with him.”

It would appear that if Prinzhorn was hired after a mere five minute interview they already knew each other.

Prinzhorn continues, “By the way, other Rodney Glassman hires are on the future chopping block as well.”

Prinzhorn dwells on Rancho Mañana for another paragraph then moves on to tell the WAC it would be in the town’s best interest to adhere to the goals set forth in the “Desert Gold Initiative” for a “sustainable water future.”

In conclusion, Prinzhorn wrote, “You will undoubtedly have new challenges that will arise. Hopefully the town will secure a strong-willed utilities manager as my replacement that will have the same passion for turning this utility into something of value. Much work remains to be done. Your ‘mission’ will be to keep people ‘on-task’ with a clear view of the ‘big picture’ so as not to get caught up in the minutia.”

As soon Jankowski got wind of Prinzhorn’s letter, Prinzhorn was terminated on the spot.

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