Carefree's New Speed Trap

Looks like they are finished working on Tom Darlington and the speeds are set at 25 MPH.  This has to be the slowest speed limit for a major arterial in a City/Town.  I’ve been up there twice now and each time I have observed police monitoring the traffic with a Radar Gun.  Luckily I haven’t been nailed but given the unreasonable speed limit many of us here on the South end will avoid going up there to Shop and Dine.  I hope the City gets lots of revenue as the local business owners will lose some on this.

Gerry Coon


Carefree's Future Matters

Friends of Carefree, there was no Executive Session this month!  The regular Council meeting was held at 5 p.m.

Before we provide the usual council meeting recap we’d like to give you a brief summary from the 3 Budget Workshops that were held in April.  The new Fiscal Year (2017) begins July 1st.  The proposed FY17 Budget, to be tentatively approved at this meeting, will be $6.2M.  Projected Revenue from all sources is $6,214,728.  About 54 oercent of that is expected from local sales tax.  The remaining $2.9M is obtained from State Shared Revenue and local fees.  Expenses are projected to be $6,213,270.  The good news is that the new $6.2M budget will include about $150K for median revegetation!  There is very little in new capital or other expenses.  However the Town is actually expecting less income from Sales Taxes compared to the present fiscal year.

 Our Observations of the Bicycle Lane Project

As you have probably observed, the ADOT Bicycle Lane Project is winding down, to the relief of merchants and residents alike.  Temporary lane and side line stripping is essentially done.  The surface treatment must ‘cure’ for several weeks before the permanent stripping is applied.  You may also have noticed that the bicycle lanes are not the uniform 5 feet wide we were originally told was the Federal requirement.  In fact, many sections are only 3 or 4 feet wide, with some near the town core actually about 2 feet wide.  This is good news since traffic lanes will not be as dramatically affected (narrowed) as they might have been had 5 foot wide bicycle lanes been implemented.  Unfortunately sections of our medians did take a beating, so narrowed now that mature tree limbs have been hit and broken off by large trucks riding in the left lanes especially east of the town core.  Other sections of the medians were shortened, some disappeared entirely.  How less desertscape and more blacktop enhances our ‘Village’ life remains a mystery to us.

Sections of the road surface coatings appear to be unevenly applied but the town administrator has stated that he is not aware of any aspect that does not comply with the ADOT (project manager for our bicycle lanes) quality assurance procedures.  By contrast, the section of Tom Darlington from Carefree Highway to the Carefree town boundary appears to have been held to higher standards by Scottsdale, since they are responsible for that section of the roadway and used no Federal funds.  Interestingly, no bicycle lanes were provided.  We suspect that when you take free money from the government you live with their quality standards.

Town Council Meeting, May 3, 2016 at 5 p.m.

The Council meeting was the second expeditious affair this year lasting just 40 minutes.

Items 1 - 7, Consent Agenda:  All items were related to routine town business (meeting minutes, bills, financial reports, event permits, etc.), Approved 7 – 0.

The Mayor requested that Item 11 be taken out of order.

Item 11, Spirit of Carefree Award:  This annual award is presented to an individual who demonstrates broad community involvement and initiative to help make Carefree a better community for its residents.  Carefree resident and commercial property owner Harry Vardakis was presented with the 2015 award.  Local artist Peggy Pettigrew Stewart created the beautiful award and described its meaning and significance.  Harry was gracious as he humbly accepted the award.  Photos can be viewed here:

Item 8, Call to the Public:  No one spoke.

Item 9, Current Events:  The Mayor asked the town administrator to provide an update on the Bicycle Lane Project.  Mr. Neiss stated that the slurry sealing has been completed and the final stripping should be done in a few weeks.

Vice Mayor Crane mentioned that a significant Bashas’ remodeling project will begin in July and should be completed in November.  The renovation will include Starbucks, a new look, and new features including grills to prepare hot dogs and burgers.

The Mayor asked Gina (Marketing) to provide an update on Ray Villafane’s activities.  Ray will be here from May 15th – 25th to create another large sand sculpture, in the amphitheater area, which is hoped will last through the summer.  The theme for this and future works will remain a secret for now.

Gateway footer construction is expected to begin next week.  The steel fabrication is underway with orders placed.  [You may have noticed the 26 new faux gas lights are now operational, many currently illuminating vacant properties and empty parking lots.]

The Mayor mentioned that information and candidate packets for the upcoming Town Council election(s) could be found on the town website, or in Town Hall.

Item 10, Second Reading of the Carefree Privilege Tax Code: The ‘Privilege’ Tax is better known to most of us as the Sales Tax.  As a result of changes to the State Model City Tax Codes, Carefree 2012-2014 Tax Code amendments need to be adopted.  Mr. Neiss stated that this is essentially a housekeeping measure.

Approved, 7 - 0.

Item 12, Town Council Chambers & Meeting Space rental:  With the current lease in the Post Office building expiring July 31st, and the 33 Easy Street building unavailable for at least a year, the Holland Community Center (34250 N. 60th Street, Scottsdale) has become the preferred option for rental space.  Although not in Carefree, it addresses all the requirements outlined by the town administrator which the other locations cannot provide on a consistent basis.  Rent is to be $4,000 per year and can result in a saving of almost $40,000 compared to a lease extension on the current space.

Approved, 7 - 0.

Item 13, Carefree FY17 Town Budget:  After 3 budget workshops the Council has tentatively adopted the 2017 budget.  The bottom line number is now set ($6.2M) and cannot be changed, although individual line items can be changed or moved.  A Special Meeting will be held on June 7, just prior to the regular council meeting, in order to complete the process and formerly adopt the new budget.  Approved, 7 - 0.

[This was yet another meeting during which we endured the ‘Carefree does not have a Property Tax’ reminder from the town administrator.  I cannot recall one instance when the former, 25+ years, town administrator lamented over a lack of local Property Taxes or even mentioned the subject.

During the budget workshops Mr. Neiss lectured that the midpoint value of a Carefree home is $535,000.  In Scottsdale, the local property tax on that value is $3,175, and in Phoenix it is $2,925.  These taxes are in addition to the County and School District taxes levied on Carefree, Scottsdale, and Phoenix.  Carefree does not impose a local Property Tax.  What Mr. Neiss continually fails to realize, or acknowledge, is that no Property Tax in Carefree was by design – the founding fathers he frequently references (when it suits him) wanted it that way.  It is also one of the reasons many residents chose/choose to live here.  No Property Taxes and small government are the envy of smart communities all across the country.  To our knowledge, Mr. Neiss does not live in Carefree.]

Item 14, Town Council Updates:  The Mayor mentioned that the Liberty/BMSC comprehensive agreement is on track and will be taken up by the ACC in June.  The agreement is expected to be approved.

Mr. Neiss advised that the Planning and Zoning Commission will take up the matter of setting commercial building height at 30 feet during their meeting next week (5/9).  Once they agree to town staff recommendations they are expected to forward the recommendations to the Council for consideration and approval in June.

Councilman Farrar humorously mentioned that May 4 is his birthday. 

Happy Birthday Grandpa Mike!

Item 15, Adjournment:  The meeting was adjourned at approximately 5:40 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Jim Van Allen and John Traynor


Decline to sign! Say NO to leftist Ballot Measures in Arizona

Leftists and union bosses from California are currently collecting signatures for three bad propositions they want to put on Arizona's November ballot:

-An anti-free speech measure that would put your name and personal information onto a publicly-available government database if you donate to non-profit organizations.  It would also give state bureaucrats the power to audit and investigate conservative organizations for the "crime" of supporting the causes and issues we believe in.

-A measure to increase the minimum wage to a job-killing $12 per hour and keep young people and low-skilled workers from climbing onto the bottom rungs of the career ladder, with a special exception for the union bosses (if companies agree to unionize, those companies would be exempt from a job-killing mandatory paid leave scheme).

-A measure to cap the pay of hospital CEOs, which is part of an effort to try to unionize hospital employees (so the same union system that ruined Detroit's economy would now run our hospitals).

Visit to take action against these leftist ballot measures and share the petition with your friends and family!

For Liberty & Prosperity,

Tom Jenney
Americans for Prosperity Arizona


According To PVT South

Dearly Beloved, The Fat Lady is singing and Trump is the last man standing, so it is full speed ahead to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. On Wednesday May 4 Fox News had a poll with Queen Hillary winning 54 to 41. (According to Harry Reid maybe--Give me a break).

Very early on a few days before the election President Carter was supposed to be beating Ronald Reagan, and how did that poll turn out? Time to get a grip. I must repeat myself. The Queen is going down 49 states to 1 but she doesn't know it yet. When it happens America can start humming again. Some boo birds will think the election was rigged so the National Guard should be at the ready in all 50 States. (A result of 8 years of Obama Care).

Obama created the Tea Party and the Republican Congress created Trump. So the American people are really confused about what is going on in Washington. Everyone knew the fix was in for Hillary, because that's how Democrats do things. But it was a shock to many when Trump came along and the Republican Establishment with its self righteous members went berzerk. Makes you wonder what Charles Krauthammer, George Will and Karl Rove the Mo, Larry and Curly of high politics will do when The Donald is on top of the ticket. Now they may wait to see who is on the bottom. Dearly Beloved, it won't be Jeb, but a short list according to PVT South should be Rudy Giuliani another New Yorker with a great resume. Newt Gingrich who understands Congress and how it works and Chris Christie who has been a good in your face Governor.

Vladimir Putin the Russian leader looking at the United States today must be thinking how in the Hell did they win WW2? Easy. That generation understood the problems with Germany and Japan and did whatever it took to win the war. This generation is too politically correct and all about what government can do for me and is incapable of winning anything.

One last thought--Will the United States be a number one world power in the future or is 70 years long enough?

PVT South

I am not voting FOR anyone … just AGAINST  

In 1990, I resigned from the GOP, and became a proud Independent (aka "unaffiliated" or "disenfranchised" voter). I had decided the Republican and Democrat parties were the two wings of the same loathsome socialist carrion-feeder. Since then, my usual vote has been of the "write-in" variety: NONE OF THE ABOVE. Since Reagan left office, the GOP has offered one RINO wimp after the other, indistinguishable from the run-of- the-mill Socialist-Democrat.

I am fed up with wimpy RINOs! Jeb and Marco should have run as the de facto Democrats they are. Ditto McCain and Romney the last two times. 

However, this time I will definitely cast a vote for someone, the first since 1990, and it will be for Donald Trump. It will be a vote cast AGAINST the Marxist running against him. Hillary Clinton is the product of political indoctrination by Marxist theorists and terrorists, such as Saul Alinsky. She climbed to power on her husband's coattails, conveniently turning her back on his multiple affairs and illicit behaviors, despite her claims to "protect and defend" women. 

In addition, she has proven to be a congenital liar, who is so convinced of the veracity of her statements she could probably pass a polygraph examination! I remember when she bragged to the New Zealand press corps she had been named Hillary in honor of the Kiwi apiarist's feat in conquering Mount Everest … except that the lady was already six years old when Sir Edmund climbed the mountain. Then, there were her lies concerning the whereabouts of the Rose Law Firm's records which …miraculously appeared on a tabletop in the White House. And, of course, there is her account of landing under sniper fire in Bosnia, which caused her and Chelsea to have to run in a serpentine path to avoid being hit….

The LameStream EneMedia are firmly entrenched in her camp, as they are in the camp of Sheikh Hussein al-Obamastan, the IslamoMarxist poofter currently occupying our White House.

No, I will grit my teeth and pinch my nose when I cast my vote, which will be AGAINST the Marxist enemy, not for Trump. I just hope he has enough common sense to choose an ultraconservative female, such as Judge Jeanine Pirro, as his running mate. Pirro is a "take-no-prisoners" ultraconservative, and a beautiful woman, not that appearances matter. Sadly Jeanne Kirkpatrick is long-gone, as she would have fulminated the Left as either president or vice-president. They say one should set a thief to catch a thief, so why not set a woman to offset Shrillary's appeal to the heady vapors of estrogen?

Finally, I leave you with this:

Satan' Sister - a limerick

So here's to that virago, Hillary,
Whose voice is both grating and shrillary:
We'll prevent her election,
And thus save our nation
From a fate that's far worse than the pillory.

(Indeed, her voice causes the immediate curdling of milk … while it's still inside the cow!)

Jean-Pierre A. Maldonado
Lafayette, Colorado


The Holocaust: Now we can forget

We are now past the annual “Holocaust Remembrance Day” activities and editorials. It seemed to me that there were fewer “remembrances” this year. Maybe this is inevitable. I wonder how long it will take before this horrible event is completely forgotten. How important is it to remember? What lessons should we learn? Even in years when there are many remembrances, there is very little said about HOW the Holocaust could have occurred in what was arguably one of the most advanced nations in the world. This is the real answer to the question of why it is so important to remember this event. How could intelligent and well-educated people commit such atrocities and why did so few speak out? Naturally, I want to offer my own answer, an answer which is as simple as it is frightening: the unchecked growth of government. Once power is centralized in the federal government there is a disincentive to criticize its actions for fear that you may jeopardize some provision of the law that benefits you or your friends.

Can it happen again? Can it happen in the United States? Look at our own federal government. Each day our government’s power over the people increases, both through the maze of “entitlement” programs and through the increasing number of special interest laws, rules, and regulations. And our education system (the government schools) teaches children that government is good and that we should obey our government “leaders,” (he who pays the piper calls the tune). Therefore, the graduates of this system are not instinctively inclined to question the actions of the government.

The way to prevent a Holocaust from ever happening again is to remember that government has only one proper function, the protection of our liberty. We should keep it limited to that function. Eternal vigilance is the price of that liberty.

Roy Miller


Surviving a nuclear attack

At  there is information about how to survive a nuclear attack (e.g. by a rogue nation) and how the government might minimize casualties.

Alex Sokolow
Santa Monica, California


The truth is long overdue!

The newest revelations regarding the repeated deceptions carried out by Hillary Clinton and President Obama are finally coming to light. They have exposed the betrayal of President Bush's agreement with Israel. Both Hillary and Obama have blatantly ignored Bush's 2004 vital agreement with Israel. They have done everything in their power to wiggle out of those commitments, despite their having been overwhelmingly endorsed by the Senate 95-3 and by the House of Representatives 407-9 in a letter to Israel’s Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

President Bush's letter acknowledged the risks Israel’s proposed unilateral disengagement from Gaza represented – and assured Israel that America would do its utmost to prevent any attempt by anyone to impose any other plan than the Roadmap envisioned by President Bush on June 24, 2002. The US would maintain its steadfast commitment to Israel’s security, including secure defensible borders. It’s strongly committed to Israel’s well-being as a Jewish state.

It understood that an agreed, just, fair and realistic framework for a solution to the Palestinian refugee issue as part of any final status agreement would need to be found through the establishment of a Palestinian state, and the settling of Palestinian refugees there, rather than in Israel. It accepted as part of a final peace settlement that Israel must have secure and recognized borders, which should emerge from negotiations between the parties in accordance with UNSC Resolutions 242 and 338. It acknowledged that in light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli population centers, it would be unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations would be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of the Six Day War, that all previous efforts to negotiate a two-state solution had reached the same conclusion.

President Obama’s attempt to disavow Bush’s commitments was first orchestrated by then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Also, since coming to office in January, and contrary to the agreement, President Barack Obama has repeatedly called on Israel to halt all settlement activity in Palestinian areas, a demand rejected by the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

It will be interesting to finally learn whether American citizens can accept much of the disinformation our current president along with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have misrepresented to the American people. Will learning the facts be reflected in the outcome of the vote?

Esther Levens, CEO & Founder


The end of the Bill of Rights is at our fingertips

I recently got my first "smart phone" (I've been a late adopter in that particular area of technology). One of the first things I noticed about it was that I could use my fingerprint, rather than a pesky pass code, to unlock it. Much more convenient, isn't it? A password can be forgotten, but it takes pretty severe physical trauma to lose one's fingerprint. If your hand gets cut off, your phone is the least of your worries, right?

Unfortunately, the convenience of "biometric" identification comes with a cost. When you take that route, at least two judges (first a Virginia circuit court judge and now a federal judge in California) have ruled, you can be forced to put your finger on the phone to unlock it.

This has serious and unfortunate implications for rights protected by the Fourth and Fifth Amendments to the US Constitution.

Fourth Amendment: Even when there's a valid search warrant for a premises -- or a phone -- actually executing the warrant is law enforcement's job, not yours. If the door is locked, they can break it down, but you don't have to unlock it for them. If they find your hidden compartment full of evidence, they find it. But you don't have to show them where it is, or even tell them that it exists. And that's how it should be.

Fifth Amendment: Giving the police access to your phone is no different than telling them about every call you made, every text you sent, every note you wrote, etc. It is testifying against yourself, which you cannot constitutionally be required to do.

The usual response from proponents of unlimited state power  to such arguments is that the framers of the US Constitution couldn't possibly have imagined a future of "smart phones," unbreakable encryption, and so forth.

Maybe they're right. But what the framers COULD imagine was the possibility that the Constitution would require occasional amendments to keep up with changing times. Those who want to repeal the Fourth and Fifth Amendments have clear instructions for doing so. All they need is the support of two thirds of both houses of Congress and ratification by three quarters of the states' legislatures. A high bar, but not at all unclear.

Until and unless that happens -- and it won't -- resist much, obey little. And secure your phone with a long and complex pass code, not with your fingerprint.

Thomas L. Knapp
William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism