Open Minds. Closed Streets

It’s not often the former stomping grounds of drug lord Pablo Escobar are invoked for municipal inspiration.  Then again, Bogota, Colombia is not infamous like it was two decades ago. Today, a renaissance is occurring.  There can be found remarkable ideas Scottsdale and other Valley cities should adopt. It’s a Sunday tradition in Bogota to close many city streets from … Read More

Odds & Ends To The Week

*Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu starts his congressional race in a commanding position on the GOP side but his campaign has been a comedy of errors since announcing. *No truth to the rumor that Jeb Bush is looking at Brock Landers, otherwise known as former Congressman Ben Quayle for Vice President.  Keep those Bush-Quayle signs in the closet. *Few elected … Read More

Kudos To Scottsdale Mayor Lane’s Innovative State of The City Approach

The Scottsdale Center for the Arts is a fine facility.  But for years it served as a dungeon for the Mayors of Scottsdale State of the City.  Few attended the dimly lit serenade. Leave it to a reformer like current Mayor Jim Lane to change the approach.  His upcoming address on February 25th is timely to remind all, how he … Read More

Phoning Home For Freedom

Once upon a time Jay Lawrence was the 1-900 voice of Arizona freedom, rocking KTAR late nights for liberty lovers.  Now, he’s a member of the State House of Representatives. Once upon a time Jill Norgaard was doing something else.  Now, she’s a rising Republican star in the same House of Representatives. One of the first things lawmakers learn is … Read More

Scottsdale’s Best Politician

It would be easy to recognize Mayor Jim Lane for such a distinction. Ethics. Reforms. Results. Well-regarded by his peers. An overwhelming favorite to be re-elected for a final term later this year. And there are others that could be duly considered. But the distinction goes to someone whose name identification isn’t as high but respect from all is never … Read More

Scottsdale’s Reinvestment Results

Driving through north Scottsdale these days can bring a twinge of sadness. The beloved site that once housed the city’s most enduring watering hole, Greasewood Flat, is now being bladed for new homes. The same fate is set for the acres once hosting Pinnacle Peak Patio. Sure, businesses come and they go. But the inability of these particular owners to … Read More

A Republican Guy?

Guy Phillips first ran for the Scottsdale City Council in 2010.  That was the year of the Tea Party.  With little money Phillips, a rock-ribbed Republican, rode the wave to a surprisingly strong finish, albeit unsuccessful. But he didn’t give up.  Two years later he won.  Now, Scottsdale City Councilman Guy Phillips is up for re-election. During his first term … Read More

The Adult

When Doug Ducey was elected Governor of Arizona he pledged to bring more business acumen to the job.  What voters may not have anticipated was his adeptness for politics.  Surely some of that has to do with the skills of his Chief of Staff Kirk Adams and others nearby like Danny Seiden and Daniel Scarpinato, but even with those ear … Read More

The Dumbfounding David Smith

There are few more interesting municipal elected officials in Arizona today than Scottsdale City Councilman David Smith. Having served as the City Treasurer he was the ultimate insider.  Then as a candidate he ran as a quasi-outsider.  Smith is whip smart and no matter one’s view of him he cannot be questioned about his affinity for the community. Recently, however, … Read More

Toll Brothers 2 In Scottsdale

One of the worst city managers in Scottsdale history was Jan Dolan.  She intimidated staff and fought so much with Barrett-Jackson she almost forced them away.  Space, even online, does not permit her laundry list of errors.  But we would like to focus on one, for Scottsdale history may be repeating itself at great consequence to taxpayers. Following the landmark … Read More