Skyscrapers coming to downtown Carefree???

At the monthly Planning and Zoning meeting in Carefree on October 19 a proposed change in the maximum building heights was delivered by the Town Administer.  There were two parts to the document. One was to increase the height allowed for 'commercial' buildings that were outside of the Downtown Core. That height would go up to 30 feet, from the 24 feet now allowed.

The second part...the REAL SHOCKER was to consider allowing buildings in the Towns' Core to be as high as 70 feet. This would mean you could build a 6 or 7 story building in the center of our town. The presenter, in his preacher like style, went on and on about buildings in Scottsdale that were this high, with balcony's that were terraced and landscaped and in Scottsdale no one complained. Given he does not live in Carefree, maybe Scottsdale is his role model. He did not indicate who or what needed this kind of new height approved. But knowing this town administrator and the mind set of some of the current council one would assume that something is brewing in the back rooms...(like a big tall new hotel?)

When I was allowed to speak on this subject, at the meeting, I made it very clear that this kind of a modification to our General Plan would be a "significant" i.e. MAJOR change (as opposed to a minor change) and would require a vote by our citizens.  I expressed great opposition to this proposed 70 foot height. I asked what the approved height for the Ed Lewis condo project was and was told it was either 46 or 48 feet...they were not sure.

I didn't move to Carefree and build a new home to live in a Scottsdale-like environment with lots of very tall buildings and homes that are 4 to the acre.  Those of us who want Carefree to stay CAREFREE, need to holler as loud as we can to stop this kind of thinking from destroying our town.  Let the folks at Town Hall know your thoughts on this subject; contact them at, or better yet, come to the council meetings and tell them in person.

Jim Van Allen
A Carefree Conservative


The Outpost

For all of you who are opposed to the Outpost, the gas station and other commercial uses at the NW corner of Pima and Dynamite, we need to send a lot of e-mails to the city council to counter the huge amount they are receiving in favor of it.

The latest round of blast e-mails, in favor of it, stress the return of Pinnacle Peak Patio as the reason and they come from people all over, but most of them do not live in the area. The applicant is claiming he will rebuild Pinnacle Peak Patio as part of the project however staff has received NO agreement for them to even use the name much less operate the restaurant. As we have pointed out in the past, the site plan has a relatively small restaurant site, but it is way too small to house even a scaled down Pinnacle Peak Patio. Also, if Pinnacle Peak Patio couldn’t make it financially at a much more favorable location, why would they suddenly be successful at a more remote site? I personally want to see Rawhide, Greasewood Flats, and Pinnacle Peak Patio back, but the reality is they are gone with only Rawhide even still operating anywhere and that is not in Scottsdale. I would support a valid plan to bring them back, but this isn’t it and there is NO proof there is any real intention to recreate Pinnacle Peak Patio, here or elsewhere or guarantee it will be done if this application is approved.

The other major point is that if approved, this change would set a very bad precedent by putting commercial in, and next to, rural neighborhoods. People move to this area to be in a rural setting, many to also have horses, which does preserve at least some of the western image. The life style they moved here to enjoy would be in serious jeopardy if this change is approved.

While these two points are major ones we want to stress to the council, there are a host of other real, documented, reasons why this proposal should be rejected, which are listed below.

Precedent setting (staff agrees). It will be precedent setting in placing commercial next to rural, the lowest developed density, and will degrade the Rural residential life style people move here to enjoy. Staff analysis shows that there are NO locations where rural neighborhoods are next to commercial in the city, except for a few that existed prior to the city taking over the planning of that land. Further staff analysis shows there are NO locations in the city where a gas station or convenience store, is next to rural neighborhoods.

No Need Demonstrated (staff agrees). There is no need for more commercial development in the area and it will compete with existing struggling businesses. The applicant has not provided ANY analysis to prove that commercial is needed here or anywhere in North Scottsdale. Many rezoning applications (commercial to residential) have been approved lately that contained analysis that proved that there is excess commercial land already. Also, basic planning practices place commercial near the higher population density residential uses, both to reduce vehicle trips and to help the commercial survive. This site is nowhere near the residential it will serve, in fact this area has the lowest population density in the city.

Incompatible with the area (staff agrees). Commercial uses, other than ranches, are incompatible with the Desert Foothills Character Area Plan, the Desert Foothills zoning overlay and with the rural life style this area provides.

Dangerous location. It would be located at an already dangerous intersection. The applicant has not provided any analysis that really addresses the traffic impact on this intersection, but they did project it to produce 2,589 more daily trips in the area, further stressing the intersection even without considering the turning movements required.

Existing zoning correct. The property is well suited for residential use, and/or other uses already allowed in the R1-190 zoning district. There are other existing residential properties that are closer to the power line corridor than this property is. This property, because of its elevation, also has great views in every direction except right at the power lines.

Existing zoning ratified. Citizens ratified the 2001 General Plan and both the current General Plan and the General Plan Task Force approved GP Update show this parcel as remaining Rural Neighborhood land use. Further, the state land department, that is in the process of rezoning the other 3 corners of this intersection, hasn’t tried to get ANY commercial in this area, because there is no need and it is nowhere near the population it would support.

The fact is this applicant has not provided the basic information staff needs to even evaluate the proposal so staff is still recommending denial of the General Plan amendment because of this and the reasons stated above. This is an important point too. If the General Plan case is denied, the zoning application automatically dies too.

Please e-mail the city council with your concerns. Feel free to use any of the above, but it is important to also state why you are opposed to it, based on your vision for the area, reasons why you moved there, etc. We know there will be development there sometime, but it should be compatible with the area and why people move there. The Council needs to hear from people who live in the area and therefore are affected. Note that there are a few people who do live in the area who support it, but either because they believe Pinnacle Peak Patio will be re-built there or because they actually believe more commercial is needed, both of which are refuted by the above arguments.

This is the final push and you are all also encouraged to attend the city council hearing, December 1, at city hall, to submit a card or speak. While this case should be denied, there are no guarantees so staying on top of it will pay off. FYI, I can’t attend the meeting because I am having a medical procedure that afternoon, so I am relying on the rest of you, and any friends you have who have similar feelings, to convince the council it should be denied.

Phone or email your council about case numbers 1-GP-2015 for the General Plan case and 10-ZN-2015 for the zoning case.

Howard Myers


Destroy Islamic terrorists in Syria

The Western world has to go into Syria and Iraq to eliminate ISIS. ISIS has established a caliphate, and if we destroy it in Syria and Iraq its tentacles in other countries will hopefully tend to wither away. The Islamic terrorists in Europe take their instructions from ISIS in Syria, and maybe we can draw the terrorists in other parts of the world back to Syria where they can be eliminated.

We cannot continue with limited air strikes and tepid ground action against ISIS, because contrary to President Obama, ISIS is not a "contained JV" organization. Unfortunately, the West (U.S., Great Britain, France, etc.) and some Arab countries have to put together a coalition for a large scale military operation against ISIS. This could require tens of thousands of ground troops, armor units and air forces to annihilate ISIS.

The White House does not understand the serious threat ISIS poses to the free world. We cannot continue with a piece meal approach to an enemy that is growing and wants to destroy us.

Donald Moskowitz
Londonderry, New Hampshire


Same old same old

The arrogant attitude of Muslim extremists of superiority and the subjugation of us lowly Christians is nothing new. It began around 1100 AD when Christians resorted to the Crusades to stem and repel the expanding Muslim takeover of land. Then at the formation of the USA our first presidents had to pay ransoms for the ships and crews which the Muslim pirates, known as the Barbary Pirates, extracted from us. These ransoms accounted for up to 20 percent of our national budget! Finally President Jefferson used our newly formed navy to ultimately defeat them.  Today this same Muslim extremist attitude of intolerance and superiority is alive and well, but this time most Christians have become sheep. Our Pope and most priests and minister remain silent as hundreds of thousands of Christians and non extremist Muslims are slaughtered and tortured. It took the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin to decide enough is enough and bomb the hell of ISIS who the United States created. Recently Obama has dropped warning notes on targets we were scheduled to bomb an hour later. Our own Air Force Pilots are complaining that the Obama administration is only allowing them to attack 25 percent of the targets which they suggested. Fourteen years after the 9/11 attack which has brought us here, both GW Bush and Obama won't allow us to see the 28 pages in the 9/11 commission report which implicates Saudi Arabia in the whole thing? Does anyone really give a damn???

Joe DuPont
Towanda, Pennsylvania


America cannot take chances

We know our world is filled with evil people and ISIS proved it again in Paris. The radical Muslims associated with ISIS are unable to do anything but kill and destroy. They are a cancer to any country and to all good people. Christian people of America would love to think we could simply just send more missionaries with Bibles to Syria and try to convert them all to Jesus. Tragically, all the women would be raped and chained while the men would be beheaded. It would be nice to hear about ISIS militants coming to their senses and leaving Syria with help and support for the free and democratic countries of the world. However, would we be able to trust them? How do we know which ones to trust?

We look upon Syrian refugees with suspicion and rightly so. We only need one rogue refugee to get into America, Germany and yes France and kill hundreds or thousands at a public event.  Is it worth losing innocent Americans over our sympathy for the refugees? This is not a hard question to answer. The answer is no.

We should try to help the Turks who need weapons and financial support in Syria. We should try to create some safe zones in Iraq and Afghanistan for those needing to flee Syria. Better and easier for them to go there than to come here.

Germany will soon regret opening their gates to Syria and America will regret it as well. Sounds unchristian? Is it unchristian to protect our families and our children? Do you open wide the doors of your house if you have a mix of non poisonous and poisonous snakes crawling in the nearby woods? I feel confident there are many good Syrian people. They need to stay in the Middle East for the time being.

What should America do immediately? Secure our borders. Stop entry into this country by all refugees from the Middle East. This is not a permanent decision but it needs to be in effect for the time being.  Work with others to create safe zones in Iraq, Afghanistan and even in Syria.

Work with other people. Don't gripe about Russia killing ISIS! Why do we care if Russia kills ISIS? Is our government worried that Russia will get the credit for stopping ISIS?  Are we afraid they might get control of some oil?  We must also support and applaud the efforts of what France is doing to combat ISIS. We must tell Turkey and all the other surrounding countries that they need to get involved in this because we will not be there to bail them out when ISIS begins to attack their communities. Finally, we must cut off as much of the money flow from ISIS as possible. This means taking out any oil refineries they have access to. If we are going to drop bombs on Syria we need to make them count.

Did somebody really say we should only let Christian Syrians into the country and not Muslims?  If somebody said that they had to be joking or crazy. We cannot trust the ISIS terrorists, period. They will say and do anything.

America cannot take chances. We are at war. 

Glenn Mollette
American Syndicated Columnist and Author


How many years

How many years can terrorism survive before it is destroyed for good! How many years can hatred contrive before it's truly understood! The answer my friend is just around the bend the answer it’s comin' to an end! How many years can terrorism survive before it all comes to a stop! How many years can Freedom try an be destroyed with a plot! The answer my friend is just around the bend the answer its comin' to an end! How many years will terrorism still thrive till this world makes it die! How many years can terrorist survive before no more tears that we cry! The answer my friend is just around the bend the answer is coming to an end! America's eagle will fly free! by our Gods grace and our Marines, sailors, airman and army! God Bless the USA!!

Lyle Anderson
Apache Junction


Why skip the turkey on Thanksgiving?

While President Obama is pardoning two turkeys for Thanksgiving, every one of us can exercise that same presidential power by choosing a nonviolent Thanksgiving observance that spares a turkey’s life.

And here are some good reasons:

You can brag about pardoning a turkey - like Obama.

You truly are what you eat. Who wants to be a “butterball”?

Fruits and vegetables don’t have to carry government warning labels.

You won’t sweat the environment and food resources devastation guilt trip.

You won’t spend a sleepless night wondering how the turkey lived and died.

Your body will appreciate a holiday from saturated fat, cholesterol, and hormones.

You won’t have to call Poultry Hotline to keep your family out of the emergency room.

Seriously, this Thanksgiving, let’s give thanks for our good fortune, health, and happiness with a life-affirming, cruelty-free feast of vegetables, fruits, and grains.

Our own dinner will feature a soy or wheat-based roast, mashed potatoes, stuffed squash, candied yams, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie. An Internet search on "vegetarian Thanksgiving" is getting us more recipes and other useful information than we could possibly use.

Carl Devlin
Cave Creek