Letters to the Editor, Feb. 7, 2007
Pro-choice does not guarantee pro-abortion
I would like to respond to this comment in the Jan. 31 edition:
"The Democratic Party is 100 percent 'pro choice.' That translates to "pro abortion" -- abortion on demand at any time during pregnancy." ‹ Frank Saporito
When I found out I was pregnant 17 years ago, the father assumed I would get an abortion because he knew I was pro-choice. The argument lasted a month, until I left to handle it as a single mother going to college.
I am now the mother of a great 16-year-old boy that he would be proud of, if he'd taken the chance to get to know him. He wouldn't. His loss. My gain, and the world's.
Just because a person is "pro-choice" doesn't guarantee them to be "pro-abortion," Mr. Saporito.
Diane Joens is just what Cottonwood needs
Diane Joens is the right choice for mayor of Cottonwood. This time of change and growth in the Verde Valley demands a leader with proven and practical abilities to steer our community toward a future of prosperity and stability. Diane Joens is just that person.
Time and time again, Diane has proven her practical approach to the issues facing our community. Seeing our beautiful and valuable public lands being used to dump trash and old cars, Diane didn't just complain about the problem. She acted, helping to organize The Stewards of Public Lands, a volunteer group successfully completing so many remarkable cleanups in our area. Diane is involved with fostering the master trail system in our Valley, which encourages tourism and brings tourist's money into the local business community.
Diane doesn't complain about the problems in our city, she figures out ways to solve them. She actively supported construction of the new Senior Center. Diane saw the problems with youth crime and worked toward the founding of the Youth Court. Diane saw the effects of drug use in our community and became a member of the Substance Abuse Council.
Diane understands the challenges facing local businesses in these changing times. After all, she and her husband have owned High Desert Landscaping here in the Verde Valley for 21 years. They have a personal stake in insuring the success and growth of the local economy.
Forward thinking is a trademark of Diane Joens' leadership style with special attention to intergovernmental relations and a sustainable economy. She has proven her leadership as a Cottonwood Council member and four years working for the Yavapai County District 1 supervisor.
We are fortunate that someone of Diane Joens caliber is willing to be our mayor. Please vote and vote for Diane Joens.
What is good for the goose shall also serve the gander
According to recent newspaper articles, Camp Verde Town Council candidate Mike Parry and the other offending candidates "didn't know" about the federal law concerning stuffing unauthorized items into U.S. mailboxes. They believe they are resident experts on violating the law, having circulated my "driving record" with no actual knowledge of the circumstances. How could they then make a statement such as "...and this just shows how you can get into trouble without even trying?"
Did Parry and others believe I was trying to get into trouble when they smeared my good name at a public Town Council meeting for an inadvertent act? I'm sure these people think this is different. I don't. What is good for the goose shall also serve the gander.
Many townspeople have urged me to take legal action against the town and those who participated in that slanderous and libelous foray. Those involved in that foray are the same ones involved in illegally placing campaign materials in your mailbox. They should heed their own words: "We don't need lawbreakers serving in our town government."
In the meantime, I am forwarding these reports to my attorney.
Here is who I have heard from so far
Since my last Letter to the Editor on access to Arizona 260, I have spoken to a number of candidates about their position. Norma Garrison, Jackie Baker, Harry Duke, Greg Elmer and Mitch Dickinson have all specifically told me they will work hard to help property owners along 260 to have access, which councilman Ron Smith pointed out is actually a protected right in Arizona Revised Statutes.
I am not condemning the other candidates for not seeking me out, but I would appreciate it if they would clearly make their positions known about supporting Camp Verde property owners' rights to access 260 and by so doing supporting Camp Verde's future economy.
Diane Joens best choice for mayor
With all the candidates running for mayor, it's time for a change.
One who comes to mind is Diane Joens, who has committed to her community. She is a leader and interested in what the community wants for Cottonwood.
Diane Joens is a dedicated person to the community and family and neighborhood. She will go out of her way to help you and the community.
So when you vote, let's elect a leader who is committed, responsible, and caring: Diane Joens..
She has done an excellent job as a councilwoman, and her previous jobs.
Joens offers progressive change for Cottonwood
While looking at the statements made and put out by two of the candidates for mayor, I happened to find Diane Joens' Web page.
I really like her statements about what she would like to see happen for Cottonwood and the Verde Valley.
Her lists of accomplishments are very impressive and certainly show that she would be more then a part-time mayor.
Indeed, I believe that it is time for a change and "yes" let's move Cottonwood, forward.
How about a little peace and quiet
Two votes for sale to the candidate who can put an end to the loud thumping music box cars that are polluting our quiet community around the clock. Candidate must be willing to stand up for what is right and push for enforcement of city noise standards representing the majority of us who are affected by a small discourteous few.
Bill and Emma Pullman
Treatment of Barbaro an indictment of racing industry
A comment on your ironically titled editorial "Nature's Way is Best" on the long-overdue euthanasia of Barbaro, the injured Kentucky Derby winner.
The powers that govern thoroughbred racing have banned the use of artificial insemination in breeding race horses, due to their highly inbred lines. It was apparent to everyone after his injury that Barbaro would never race again. If he were a gelding, he would have been put down immediately. But as a stallion he would be worth a fortune as a breeding stud, if he could support his weight on his hind legs sufficiently to breed with a mare according to "nature's way."
The valiant and expensive effort to treat Barbaro was simply to try to reinstate his breeding ability. When it became evident that this wouldn't happen, he was put down.
Sales tax benefits are questionable
Political campaigns seem to me like the Christmas season. They seem to sneak up on you before you are prepared and by the time they end you are ready for a reprieve. Having just finished up a long campaign season last November, once again we have a campaign before us. Perhaps unlike past elections, this one should have our attention and it is one we should be prepared for as our community continues to transform and grow, in some good and some bad ways.
A letter appeared in your Jan. 19 edition from J.J. Silvas proclaiming the benefits of one of the candidates for Cottonwood mayor, Ruben Jauregui.
While the letter was written with the emotion of a pep rally, it is important to understand in more detail one of the points J.J. Silvas listed as a benefit of the mayor.
The fact that Cottonwood is sustained by sales tax revenue as opposed to a property tax sounds a lot better than it actually is. It means we are very reliant on growth and new sales taxes to generate municipal revenue. Growth should be sought after to enhance our community, not as a way to generate needed revenue for the city.
Only a small portion of our city's needs are met by the revenue brought in from the sales tax. The sales tax covers essential services (fire, police, etc) but it does not cover other services some of us think are very close to being essential, one being road maintenance. The city struggles to maintain these roads because there isn't sufficient funding. As recently as last week the City of Cottonwood announced that it was improving 12th Street, which is one of the many streets in need of improvement.
However, the money for this did not come from the city, but from the county. According to an article in the Verde Independent, that money is split between several municipalities and we take turns getting the majority of that funding every three years.
Improving 12th Street, is a good idea, but Mingus Avenue is a more essential and busy street. Because of poor planning and no funding, Mingus Avenue once again will not be improved. It doesn't appear that all of our services are adequately funded by a sales tax. There is a reason why Cottonwood is "one of a few cities" that bases its municipal support on a sales tax, it simply isn't an efficient nor effective way to meet the needs of a growing community.
Mayor Jauregui might tout this as a benefit, but a drive down many of Cottonwood's streets will remind you that while we might not have a property tax, it comes at a price.
Bella Montana will only add to our problems
I have previewed the Cornville Community Association's response letter to the proposed development at Arizona 89A and Cornville Road, known as "Bella Montana."
With the current growth of Phoenix, Prescott and the Verde Valley running more or less unchecked, the demand for water and the need for conservation grows exponentially every year. Dropping a proposed 2,126 more homes, or about 5,300 people, into an area already ravaged by drought and water disputes seems irresponsible and shows the lack of forethought.
According to the 2000 census, the population of the Cornville area was 3,335 people. That number has surely grown since then to estimates of about 5,000 people. Cottonwood, according to the same census in 2000, had 10,610 people. Once again that number has surely grown as well. Even assuming about 20,000 combined persons in the area, an increase of 5,300. Or just under 27 percent of the area's estimated total population, seems to be an extreme increase and one that should involve not only the City of Cottonwood, the residents of Cornville, but all those who live in and around the area.
The development's hope to keep this quiet until it is too late for the residents to do anything about it shows that this development must be put through the utmost scrutiny and the strictest of permit processes.
The infrastructure of the Verde Valley is not designed for growth. We would need several years and several hundred million in tax dollars in order to bring the roads alone to an acceptable state, for even their current usage, not including a more than 25-percent increase in the specific area's population from a single development. We are not taking into account the site built homes and new residents that move to the Valley on a daily basis.
I am sure I do not need to go into depth about the water and well drilling issue, as it is front-page news in this newspaper. I did attend the Arizona State meeting regarding water issues held in Cottonwood, by Mr. Herb Guenther, and the information on the state as a whole was bleak. The Verde Valley was in just as much trouble for the long term as any other area in the state. Prescott wants to tap the Verde at the source, Flagstaff will be storing as much of the snow melt as possible due to their own water crises, and the Valley residents will be left to fend for themselves. With this proposed development we will just have more straws in the slurpee, so to speak.
The crime rate in Arizona raises as the population grows every year. The meth epidemic seems to be reaching the crises level in much of the Valley and Arizona leads the nation in Identity Theft crimes. It is simple to understand that an addition of 5,300 or so people will raise the number of crimes, as when populations increase the crime level follows. The Cornville area is serviced by the Arizona Dept. of Public Safety and the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office. Neither has a sub-station or office in the Cornville area. I understand that the development is to be a part of Cottonwood and would fall under the Cottonwood Police Department's jurisdiction but that does little to help the residents of Cornville.
The light pollution caused by this development will surely impact the area unless every restriction is followed and every attempt made to stop it before it starts. Already the glow of Prescott shines in the previously dark skies over Mingus Mountain. The last thing we need or want is a similar glow in our back yard. I, for one, like to see the stars at night and would be very upset at the neon glow so close to home. The City of Sedona has strict light codes, which could serve as a model for the development.
I could spend countless hours of research and investigation to further prove my point, and the point of many residents, that this project should not only be stopped in its tracks but that a model for restricted development in the area should be followed until several matters are corrected. Infrastructures and water issues are right at the top of the list of problems we currently have without an additional 5,300 people added into the mix.
I urge the utmost caution as it is not our children or grandchildren that will be paying the price for the City of Cottonwood's actions but us. You, me, my family and yours will be forced to drastically alter our lives so that a development that many residents oppose is able to make some money for the company that owns it. Hopefully the all mighty dollar's impact can be replaced with some much-needed attention to detail and planning by the City of Cottonwood. The outcome is clear; we have to start fixing this sometime, why not now?
We need leaders who have been in the trenches
Let your imagination take wings.
Let us go back to the early days of World War II.
Imagine if the present legislators in our Congress of these United States were in the English Parliament in the first year of The Battle of Britain. Where would England be today? Wow! What about the Battle of Dunkirk?
Imagine if they were in charge of Russia during the first or second year of the Battle for Russia? Where would Russia be today?
Imagine if these legislators were in charge of the United States during the first or second year of our War in the Pacific? Where would the United States of America be today?
I think that France had legislators like them in WWII; France surrendered in just 19 (yes 19) days!
Thank God we had real American legislators and strong and brave civilians and servicemen/women at that time. Also reporters (both newspapers and radio) and movie stars.