editor: Fred Miller February 17, 2020 #2 February/2020
Hello, Well I had hoped to have some info on the Bisbee economy, but am waiting on building permit information. The City has initiated a new system and taken over tabulating the building permits from the County, consequently it is taking some time to get the info. In the meantime...the public safety pension (PSPRS) situation continues to get worse with no solutions proposed. (roughly 1/5 of Bisbee's general fund budget, goes to paying pensions) The issue was not even mentioned as a problem when the lege convened and legislators and the governor continue to ignore the economic devastation wreaked on smaller cities and towns. Il Duce is coming to Sierra Vista perhaps some good citizens and elected officials might be in the audience and make that point to his face. Fire, Police, and Corrections employees, as well as elected officials, justices of the supreme court, judges of the court of appeals and superior court, and commissioners are covered by the system. Oh gee... maybe that is the problem...To Mayor Smith's credit he has consistently spoken out in favor of reform after documenting the hardships for Bisbee and other communities. If you read some of the articles below, it is very clear there are few checks and balances on administration of the pension fund. I gotta get this in the hopper if it is to do any good...talk to you soon. fred
COUNCIL MEETING TUESDAY FEBRUARY 18 7:00 CITY HALL
Background here: https://www.bisbeeaz.gov/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_02182020-328 Of Interest: Item 3 approval of the nuisance ordinance Item 4 Bisbee Vogue requests a license from council to construct a fitness court at Higgins Hill Item 7 purchase of 18 tasers by BPD Item 8 direction to staff for proposed increase in bed tax YES, YES, A 1000 TIMES YES! Item 9 exec session to discuss legal matters...unknown what is being discussed AGENDA INVOCATION: A Moment of Silence PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE MAYOR’S PROCLAMATIONS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS: CALL TO THE PUBLIC THE FOLLOWING ITEMS WILL BE DISCUSSED, CONSIDERED AND/OR DECIDED UPON AT THIS MEETING: GENERAL BUSINESS: 1. ACCOUNTS PAYABLE: Subject to availability of funds 2. Approval of the Consent Agenda A. Approval of the Minutes of the Regular Session of Mayor and Council held on January 21, 2019 at 7:00 pm. B. Approval of the Appointment of John Balas to the Planning and Zoning Commission. C. Approval of the Appointment of Michael Schmitzer to the Planning and Zoning Commission. D. Approval of the Resignation of Richard Soto from the Airport Advisory Commission. E. Approval of the Resignation of Darin Giltner from the Youth Council as the Adult Advisor. F. Approval of a Liquor License Application for Baba Bar Bisbee locates at 74 Main Street, Bisbee, AZ, Yonatan Adin Evans, Applicant. OLD BUSINESS 3. Discussion and Possible Approval of Ordinance O-20-01; Amending the City Code Section 10.1.8, Nuisance. Theresa Coleman, City Manager NEW BUSINESS 4. Presentation by Bisbee Vogue, Inc. for support in the use of city land for Bisbee Outdoor Recreation Center to build a Fitness Park at Higgins Hill and possible approval for a license to construct the Fitness Park on city property. Theresa Coleman, City Manager 5. Discussion and Possible Approval of the Notice of Intent to Adopt Ordinance O-20-02, Accepting the transfer of real property from the Dycus Family Trust located at 416 N. Street Bisbee. Theresa Coleman, City Manager 6. Discussion and Possible Approval to publish a request for proposal to provide a self-serve aviation fueling terminal. Jesus Haro, Public Works Director 7. Discussion and Possible Approval of the purchase of 18 Tasers to include batteries, cartridges, maintenance & support for Bisbee Police Department from AXON Enterprises, Inc. in the amount of $38,236.75. Albert Echave, Chief of Police 8. Discussion and Possible Direction to Staff regarding a possible Increase to the Transient Lodging (Bed) Tax. Theresa Coleman, City Manager 9. Possible Approval of a Motion to enter into Executive Session for the purpose of Discussion and Consultation with City Attorney to provide legal guidance on pending matters. Per ARS § 38-431.03(a)(3)(4), the City Council may vote to go into executive session for discussion or consultation for legal advice with the attorney or attorneys of the public body and for Discussion or consultation with the attorneys of the public body in order to consider its position and instruct its attorneys regarding the public body's position regarding contracts that are the subject of negotiations, in pending or contemplated litigation or in settlement discussions conducted in order to avoid or resolve litigation. 10. City Manager's Report: · Other Current events (No Discussion) COUNCIL COMMENTS OR FUTURE AGENDA ITEM SUGGESTIONS: (Council members may suggest topics for future meeting agendas, but Council will not here discuss, deliberate or take any action on these topics.): · Councilmember Hanson would like to give an update on the Youth Council · Mayor Smith would like to comment on Communication and Transparency.
The City of Bisbee will hold a primary election on Tuesday, August 4, 2020, in conjunction with the county election, positions to be filled in the 2020 Election will be one (1) Mayor, to serve for a two-year term, and one (1) Council Member from each of the three (3) Wards, to serve a four-year term.
Candidate nomination packets for anyone wishing to run for the mayor or council are available now at City Hall, 915 S. Tovreavaille Road, Bisbee, AZ 85603. The filing period for candidate nomination papers begins March 9, 2020 and ends April 6, 2020 (no later than 5:00 p.m.). Contact the clerk’s office at (520) 432-6012 for more information or to schedule an appointment to pick up a candidate packet.
CHECK YOUR VOTING STATUS!
DEADLINE TO REGISTER FOR THE PRIMARY
The upcoming Presidential Preference Election will be held on March 17. Only the Democratic Party is participating and voters must be registered with the Democratic Party to vote. The deadline to register is February 18. You can change your party affiliation HERE if you are not currently a registered Democrat.
OVERVIEW OF THE LEGISLATURE
Monitor all bills here: https://azcapitolreports.com/webreport.cfm?webreport=26398&listid=69612&print=true To date, 1,588 bills and 126 memorials and resolutions have been introduced. Since there are 90 legislators, that is 17.6 bills per person. The lege has been ins session less than a month. Except for budget bills, no new legislation can be introduced from this point forward. Here are a few of the many...
HB 2028 candidate signs; Allows signs to remain in rights-of-way for six months Passed out of committee 8 to 1 HB 2899 fuel; Bump in gas tax. In committee this week SB 1664 civil liability; gun-free zones, sponsored by Senator David Gowan (R-Sierra Vista) The measure would make government entities that have gun-free zones civilly liable for criminal conduct in the gun-free zone. Passed out of committee on a party line vote 4-3. Goes to Senate rules committee this week. HB 2705 vacant; abandoned buildings; The bill will allow cities and towns to adopt ordinances used in many other communities across the nation to address this issue. Bill passed out of committee, goes to the Rules committee this week. Schools
SB1224: This bill takes money from our public schools and sends it to out-of-state, private, religious schools.It passed the Senate Education Committee on Feb 4 along party lines. Goes to Rules committee. This bill is part of a national privatization campaign with Arizona the poster child, as it were. HB2898 would allow even more communities to use state funds at private, religious schools in Utah and elsewhere.
You can make a quick call or send an email opposing SB1224 and HB2898. It’s quick and easy, and makes all the difference.
Arizona tax dollars for Arizona schools ESA vouchers have grown to nearly $100M annually through incremental expansions like this Voters defeated Prop 305 2:1 because they wanted NO voucher expansion Attacks against voters rights
Annother barrage of bills intended to undermine voting rights & the ballot initiative process. Many of these bills were written by ALEC, the Koch funded organization that is a bill factory for state legislators. A few tweaks and it is introduced Ballot initiative attacks:
HCR 2032 Would impose a "single subject" rule, hugely limiting what ballot initiatives can accomplish HCR 2039 Imposes geographic signature requirements making it nearly impossible to put initiatives on the ballot HCR 2046 Would require every ballot measure to be revoted on every 10 years
Voter suppression bills
HB 2343 Requires voter ID for dropping off early ballots HB 2827 Imposes unnecessary reporting requirements on counties in order to stir up conspiracy theories about voter fraud HB 2304 Imposes unnecessary reporting requirements on counties in order to stir up conspiracy theories about voter fraud
..................... ARIZONA VIOLATED VOTING RIGHTS OF HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS
The lawsuit revealed that since 2016 the registrations of nearly 390,000 Arizonans were not automatically updated when those voters changed the address on their driver’s licenses, as required by federal law.
THOSE PERIPATETIC BILL SLINGERS
This article from AZ Central details the extent of traveling by State legislators. At the end of this article, I've noted where our LD14 people have gone. Where in the world is your state legislator? The answer may surprise you. Sixty legislators reported taking a total of at least 178 complimentary trips in 2019, according to new financial disclosures. Lawmakers are required to report when they accept trips from others if the costs exceed $1,000.Last year, that included tickets to locales as exotic as Kazakhstan and Bahrain, in addition to the usual haunts of American politicians, like Washington D.C. and gatherings of the National Conference of State Legislatures.Details of these trips are often sparse in legislators’ annual financial disclosures, however. Legislators are not required to report on their annual financial disclosures any trips that cost less than $1,000 — or even who paid for their travel expenses. Senate President Karen Fann, R-Prescott, reported taking 12 complimentary trips worth over $1,000 in 2019, more than any other lawmaker.These trips included gatherings of the Republic Legislative Campaign Committee in Denver; Santa Barbara, California; and St. Petersburg, Florida. It also included meetings of GOPAC, a Republican group, in Las Vegas and Florence, Italy.Rep. Mark Finchem, R-Oro Valley, took 10 complimentary trips — the second most of any legislator. That included trips to gatherings of the NCSL’s Nuclear Waste Management Working Group and the Heartland Institute’s Energy and Climate Conference. Twenty-five sitting legislators reported accepting more than $1,000 in complimentary travel to attend at least one meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council. Lawmakers flocked to the meetings of other groups. Thirteen legislators accepted trips to attend meetings of the NCSL and five reported accepting trips to attend gatherings held by the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials. Others traveled on trade delegations. Five, including House Speaker Rusty Bowers, went on a paid trip to Kazakhstan labeled as a trade mission.https://www.azcentral.com/story/news/politics/legislature/2020/02/12/see-where-arizona-lawmakers-took-free-trips-2019-map/4731122002/
The dollar amounts are approximate costs of the trips that have been declared. It is not required to be broken down any further nor who was paying for the trip.
National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) (Energy Conference) $1,000 - $25,000
Nuclear Energy Conferences Paris, France $1,000 - $25,000
American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Austin, TX $1,000 - $25,000
The Arizona Free Enterprise Club Washington, D.C. $1,000 - $25,000
xceInEd San Diego, CA $1,000 - $25,000
ALEC Washington D.C. $1,000 - $25,000
NCSL Nashville, TN $1,000 - $25,000
CSG Big Sky, MT $1,000 - $25,000
University of Arizona Washington D.C. $1,000 - $25,000
PUBLIC PENSIONS' PHOENIX FRAT HOUSE
MORE MALFEASANCE AT PSPRS
EVEN MORE MALFEASANCE AT PSPRS
GET YOUR AZ TRAVEL ID
Starting October 1, 2020, if you’re an Arizonan above the age of 18 and traveling by air within the U.S., you will need an AZ Travel ID (or another federally approved form of ID) to get through air travel security checkpoints and board your flight. The easiest way to be ready ahead of the deadline is to get a new AZ Travel ID driver’s license.
IN-DEPTH LOOK AT THE WATER CRISIS
I may have referenced this before, but it is one of the best overviews of why water is going to be the key battle in the coming years. It is a six part series from AZ Republic that reveals big problems with water availability. There are several bills in the current lege that attempt to deal with water issues. One of the most interesting-and likely to fail or get watered down-is well metering.
IN-DEPTH LOOK AT THE WATER CRISIS
I may have referenced this before, but it is one of the best overviews of why water is going to be the key battle in the next 20 years. It is a six part serices from AZ Republic reveals big problems with water availability. There are several bills in the current lege that attempt to deal with water issues. One of the most interesting-and likely to fail or get watered down-is well metering.
STATE/CITY SUBSIDIES NO HELP FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
This research study illustrates the race to the bottom by cities/counties/states that use tax subsidies to try and lure corporations to their state. Based on this data, the authors of the study conclude there is no “strong evidence that firm-specific tax incentives increase broader economic growth at the state and local level.” Arizona has been using these kinds of subsidies for years that have show no discernible benefit to residents and really shift the tax burden onto small businesses and residents. Read on below for some of the rationale...
The politics of taxpayer giveaways So if giving firms financial incentives to move into a particular city doesn’t make economic sense, why does it happen so much? Government officials think it’s good politics. The interaction between an incumbent governor and an election year is highly correlated with increases in incentive spending, suggesting a strong role for political determinants of incentive provision. In the raw data, per capita incentive spending increases by more than 20% in half of the cases in which it is an election year and the Governor is up for re-election versus one-fifth of the cases otherwise.These deals do provide clear talking points. They allow politicians to claim they are “creating” jobs. They typically involve a ground-breaking, which makes a great photo opportunity.It’s not a seldom-used tactic. Overall, “incentives amounted to nearly 40% of state corporate tax revenues for the typical state.” In several states, “incentive spending exceeded their corporate tax revenues.”Whether they make economic sense is just a detail that’s easy to ignore.