November 1, 2018
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The sour taste from this incident will not soon fade away.
Along with an affordable housing plan, long-range transportation planning represents one of the most important needs of the Verde Valley.
The pattern seen in Cottonwood over the past 30 years concerning a new city hall has hardly been an example of bold leadership.
The next time there is a major development issue in Rimrock or Lake Montezuma, how would it be received if Mayor Tim Elinski and City Manager Ron Corbin showed up and told the folks on the Beaver Creek Association that this development needs to be run past the Cottonwood City Council first.
Cottonwood – like any government – is always interested in the prospect of growing itself. The city just doesn’t want to come across as a bully in the process.
In this time of year when the joy of giving is paramount, this is the very best gift you can give yourself, your friends and family.
With Michaels, the concern is more with the fact that Cottonwood still mandates wearing face masks when social distancing is not possible. It has less to do with the city finding a way to having a marquee event in as safe a manner as possible.
It’s the chance to grow as a single community with a unified vision and coordinated approach to infrastructure and development.
Arizona has not come close to duplicating the single-day high of 5,416 cases reported June 29.
Originally, Gov. Doug Ducey said students could return to the classroom Aug. 17. Now, he’s holding firm to that date with the disclaimer that it’s based on those who can and those who can’t.
In all honesty, Mayor Elinski is getting what he deserves with this proposal by Mathews and Tosca. Elinski is guilty of doing the absolute right thing the absolute wrong way.
Wear a face mask because it’s a wise safeguard for public health. Wear a face mask because our leaders have encouraged it and you want to be a good citizen. Wear a face mask because it’s the right thing to do.
Here we are, 144 days after the first COVID-19 case was confirmed in Arizona and some things have become startling clear.
The social media malady of not reading past the headline has created its fair share of confusion over the intent of Gov. Doug Ducey’s curfew order this week.
What the state’s jobless report fails to show is the number of people who are out of work by choice. They could be working.
From a healthcare perspective, reopening Arizona’s economy on a statewide basis could be just as disastrous as keeping it closed has been economically.
Any level-headed person has to respect the sentiment on both sides of this debate. People are dying. People are also dying to go back to work.
During the worst of times we’ve seen the very best of the Verde Valley.
There are many silver linings to find in the COVID-19 pandemic that has gripped the nation.
Whatley is right on this one folks. The same degree of accountability being asked of those who serve on the town’s appointed boards and commissions should apply to those who serve Camp Verde in an elective capacity.
As we have seen with the Spring Creek Ranch project, land developers can be a persistent bunch.
The Camp Verde Town Council should waste no time in dismissing the fraudulent complaint against Town Manager Russ Martin for violating the Arizona Open Meeting Law.
Author Stephanie Lahart best summed up personal integrity with the adage “Say what you mean and mean what you say.”
More than anything, the Town Council failed in its mission to “Inspire public confidence in Camp Verde government.”
Status quo seems to not exist in the vocabulary of still-new Cottonwood City Manager Ron Corbin.
At almost every level today in American politics, statesmanship has become a lost art. They’re all politicians who cling to party loyalty at all costs.
With school district consolidation again becoming front and center in the Verde Valley, skeptics are going to see political motivations in the Mingus Union School Board’s effort to leave John McTurk’s seat vacant until voters can decide the best person for the job.
Cottonwood’s newest foray into boundary expansion via annexation comes without the landmines that typically turn a perfectly good idea into an ugly political fight.
The Camp Verde Town Council met last night behind closed doors to decide what to do about the mess Joe Butner created.
A case of conflicting values represents the rocky waters still to be navigated for a just Arizona law that mandates punishment for people who sell opioids such as fentanyl.
In building and preserving the Roman Empire, Julius Cesar is credited with the divide-and-conquer approach to war. It’s stood the test of time.
It’s hard to argue with the logic of “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
This was an ugly night for the Camp Verde Town Council. This situation could have been handled 100 different ways and all of them would have been better than the ambush approach used by Butner.
We can hope for the best with all the political players tossing their hats into the ring in 2020. At the same time we should probably expect the worst.
Any victory folks in the Verde Valley claim in the current trio of major land developments in the region can only be viewed as a battle in a war.
Too often with incorporation and annexation efforts, proponents of self-government get lost in the weeds of details to the extent they overlook the simplicity of the process.
Electing a person to office is no guarantee that person is a “qualified expert” to perform the job to which he or she was elected.
By acknowledging that county government is not designed to provide municipal-type urbanized services, the Village of Oak Creek has no other choice but to incorporate.
As stated in this very space five weeks ago, the indictment of a former business manager for the Valley Academy of Career and Technology Education most likely represents the tip of the iceberg in terms of skeletons in the VACTE closet.
It’s a safe bet that most of the folks reading this came here from somewhere else.
Yavapai County Development Services Director Dave Williams wasn’t kidding when he recently said the county is experiencing its largest growth in recorded history based on the number of residential single-family and manufactured home permits being issued.
The question of what the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors should do with its disgraced elected assessor has spun its way to the hallowed halls of the Arizona Legislature.
We’re sorry, but the backlash directed at the Clarkdale Police Department for its handling of the Cody Delafuente case comes across as cops protecting cops.
The issue of student-athlete drug testing at Mingus is one that needs to be debated and decided on the basis of fact and not emotion.
Despite all the bellyaching we’ve seen with this project, Yavapai County officials have yet to take a backward step in their planning for this new connector route.
When discussing the Valley Academy of Career and Technology Education, there is always an important separation of eras to make: “Before Bob Weir” and “After Bob Weir.”
Looking back over the years, there probably wasn’t a single hat that Lew Currier, Al Palmieri or Jane Moore has not worn in their service to the town. We’ve lost count of the times we saw former Mayor Jay Kinsella swinging a pick ax while working on town crews repairing leaking water lines.
The ideal outcome with any gun-on-school-campus situation is 100% student safety.
For the Mingus Union track and field program, the issue always has been “the track.”
What began as a request to delay the school district consolidation election for another year has ended up in a war of words over an alleged violation of Arizona’s Open Meeting Law by the Mingus Union School Board.
What began as a seemingly simple plan to re-birth some of Jerome’s nefarious history has turned into a real boondoggle for the mountainside community.
Here’s the truth about “Truth in Taxation” public hearings: They are going to tax us.
The good news is that participatory government is alive and well in Cottonwood. It’s not going to happen tomorrow, but we are getting there.
They don’t mention this at the annual law enforcement career day. Dead guys in cars.
In two separate actions Wednesday night, Camp Verde took a big step toward solving one of the long-standing shortcomings in the Verde Valley.
Legal debates can best be summarized by the philosophical clash between “a deal is a deal” and “let’s make a deal.”
Key to personal integrity is doing what you say you are going to do.
A familiar refrain in any government decision-making process is the admonition to “let us vote on it.”
Government pension programs promote an entitlement premise that there are guarantees in life.
Never accuse the elected officials in the Arizona House of Representatives and Senate of not being smart.
It was more than a decade ago when former Yavapai County Supervisor Chip Davis announced the Arizona Department of Transportation had prioritized the State Route 260 section between Cottonwood and Camp Verde for a major four-lane expansion.
The next time you grab your cell phone and go to your favorite app store, you can easily begin a new career as a criminal.
There has been a pattern of consistency that inspired confidence during Genie Gee’s run as acting superintendent at Mingus Union High School.
It’s doubtful there will be an Upper Verde school district consolidation election this year, but that sure hasn’t stopped people both pro and con from making claims about the impacts of such a merger.
The most heart-wrenching thing you’ll ever see is a kid getting called for a false start at a state track and field championship.
We’ve come upon the one-year anniversary of the Sedona-Oak Creek School Board’s decision to close Big Park Elementary School. The resulting wounds to the Village of Oak Creek are slow to heal.
A year ago, school district consolidation blew through the Upper Verde Valley like a Category 5 hurricane.
“Loneliness is the penalty of leadership.”
We’re nearing the one-year anniversary of the Sedona-Oak Creek School Board’s decision to close Big Park Elementary School. The resulting wounds to the Village of Oak Creek are slow to heal.
Just when you think you’ve seen the last possible way the school district consolidation ball could bounce, it takes off in a completely new direction.
Two incidents in the past week prove that if there are policies in place to police those who seek and hold public office, there is a lot of embarrassment and ridicule to avoid in the end.
Now, Republican precinct committeemen in Yavapai County will nominate three people to replace Stringer. The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors will select from those nominees the person to replace Stringer in the Arizona House of Representatives.
City council chambers and the best bar in town used to be the primary arenas for public discourse on community issues.
The mix of residential neighborhoods with an airport is hardly a new discussion in Cottonwood.
The Mingus Union School Board should ask the Arizona Attorney General’s Office for another review and full finding of fact over the Sept. 5, 2017, Open Meeting Law infraction for which the AG previously determined Mingus was at fault.
Gaining a little control over how much is too much when it comes to political signage and the degree to which we want our roadsides to remain uncluttered could become a sign of the times here in the Verde Valley.
For the past year, Jerome appeared -- at long last – to be embracing the idea of allowing for staggered four-year terms for the members of its elected town council.
So much of the 2018 administrative and governance decision-making processes at Mingus Union High School were of the deer-in-the-headlights variety.
Nothing short of Mingus Mountain has ever created a divide between the Verde Valley and the Prescott communities quite like the great water war of the 1990s.
The Arizona Legislature is on to something in its attempt to prohibit elected city councils from firing the municipal magistrates they hire.
More than 200 years ago, American statesman Benjamin Franklin said, “Nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”
When it comes to school district consolidation, we prefer clarity to confusion.
As the Camp Verde Business Alliance explores the prospect of re-establishing a chamber of commerce, there needs to be a realistic understanding of what makes small-town chambers tick.
We’ll soon be getting down to the nitty gritty on the Verde Connect project, a new local thoroughfare expected to link Beaverhead Flat Road with Arizona 260.
School district consolidation has never been a simple issue for folks in the Upper Verde.
Until the City Council learns that “community” and “city” are not synonymous when it comes to the way these federal grant funds are spent, a lot of folks will reach the conclusion that CDBG stands for Cottonwood Deserves Better Governance.
There is no such thing as instant gratification for those whose job it is to stimulate and invigorate their community’s economy. There are more false starts in this race than finish lines.
Those involved need to make sure such a legal fiasco is avoided in the future.
We’ve barely turned the page on the calendar to 2019 and already the renewed battle for Upper Verde school district consolidation is taking shape.
As for the ACLU-Arizona, it’s curious how the organization took up the cause of one student on this issue as a privacy rights intrusion, and then went out of its way to make sure every media outlet in Arizona knew the student’s name.
While the national focus is on who will blink first regarding funding for a border wall, there are some government money managers here in the Verde Valley counting the days for the federal government shutdown to come to an end.
Some clarity is in order to shine the clearest light possible on the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona challenge to Mingus Union High School’s badge identification policy.
As is the case with any conflict, there is probably a middle ground that eases the concerns about Mingus Union High School’s student identification badges short of doing away with the badges altogether.
There are some good lessons – and some not so good – about kids and the way they establish and follow through on the goals they set for themselves.
It’s hard to imagine an elected body coming into office with more problems to solve than those confronting the Mingus Union School Board.
Here in the Verde Valley, an abundance of Forest Service land and somewhat lax regulation created an opportunistic solution to folks challenged by the supply-and-demand realities of the local housing market.
When the Feb. 20, 1993, Verde River flood left Cottonwood’s lone bridge crossing terribly compromised, it became obvious we needed a second bridge crossing over the river.
Change is good and it’s been years since we’ve seen the kind of sweeping change now taking place in the Verde Valley.
Across the mountain in Prescott, city officials are in a quandary over the efficiency with which they deliver municipal services.
A favorite whipping boy for many Verde Valley residents is Yavapai College.
About 30 years ago, the Coconino County Board of Supervisors approved plans for a Sizzler Restaurant in Uptown Sedona in the area where the community post office is located today.
If there is anything to be learned about the consolidation of various fire departments in the Verde Valley as it applies to school district consolidation, it’s obviously a lot easier to accomplish when you have willing partners.
It’s an unenviable list of tasks awaiting the new Mingus Union School Board that takes office in January.
Throughout her 16-month run as Mingus Union school superintendent, one always had to wonder if Penny Hargrove ever once had her feet firmly planted.
We don’t get to vote on school district consolidation Tuesday, but that has not diminished the debate about the merits of merging the Cottonwood-Oak Creek and Mingus Union districts into one.
For the city, Cottonwood is at a philosophical crossroads as it moves forward in the search for a city manager to succeed Doug Bartosh.
"This one bothered me more than most," was about all Paul Sweitzer had to say when we said our last good-bye to legendary Arizona newsman Jim Garner a few years ago.