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Valley-based Greenlight Communities has made it their mission to become the first privately funded real estate developer to focus solely on providing attainable rental housing to communities across Arizona. Greenlight believes everyone deserves housing they can afford and feel proud to live in. 

As part of an ongoing effort to give back to the neighborhoods it serves, Greenlight Communities is proud to announce two new charity partnerships for this month with the Arizona Builders Alliance and Kids in Focus for its next Greenlight Gives Initiative.

The organizations are two of many that have felt the helping hand of Greenlight Communities, which will be donating $6,200 combined to the organizations this month.

The Arizona Builder Alliance, continuing its Annual Backpack Drive, is providing children access to both backpacks and various essential school supplies. Greenlight Communities is proud to donate $1,200 which will provide 200 backpacks for Valley school children.

“The Arizona Builder Alliance is doing something critical,” said Patricia Watts, Co-Founder and Partner at Greenlight Communities. “School supplies are an essential part of receiving an education. No child should be deprived of that and Greenlight is proud to support the ABA in this effort.”

Greenlight Communities is continuing its neighborhood outreach by also partnering with Kids in Focus for their annual Noche Para Los Niños event, which will be held in November.

Kids in Focus is dedicated to empowering at-risk youth to reach their potential using photography, to ignite their imagination, and enable children to gain a new perspective on themselves and their environment. Proceeds will fund photography mentoring programs for Phoenix’s most vulnerable children to help them build resilience, self-confidence, trust, and hope. 

“Greenlight Communities became aware of Kids in Focus earlier this year and knew we had to step up and participate,” said Watts. “This initiative gives children the ability to channel their artistic expression into something beautiful and empowering. The moment we became aware of this opportunity, it was a no brainer to jump in and support.”

Greenlight’s charitable endeavors are part of its Greenlight Gives Initiative which has already assisted several Arizona based organizations over the past year including Maricopa County Animal Care and Control, Save the Family, Central Arizona Shelter Services, American Red Cross, and more. Greenlight Gives focus is primarily on providing housing, education and support to those most in need throughout the Valley.

For more information on Greenlight Communities or its Greenlight Gives initiative please visit LiveGreenlight.com or call (480) 609-6779.

About Greenlight Communities

Greenlight Communities believes that everyone deserves to live in a home they can afford in a community that they love. By disrupting the traditional apartment model, Greenlight is able to develop attainable rental housing that meets that needs of today’s budget-conscious renter. Combining modern design with technological advancements in construction and operations, Greenlight’s Cabana apartment brand will provide studio, one and two-bedroom units in well-located communities through metro Phoenix. More than 3,000 units are currently under construction or in planning and development.

North Scottsdale Property Among Best Locations in the Valley 

DMB Associates, Inc., the developers behind highly acclaimed DC Ranch and numerous other communities across the Phoenix metropolitan area, announced that construction has started, and activity is thriving on the next phases of One Scottsdale, comprised of 75 acres just north of Loop 101 on Scottsdale Road.   

The 21-acre portion of the property located between Thompson Peak Parkway and Legacy Boulevard currently consists of a Hilton Home2Suites hotel along with several retail/dining shops and medical offices.  There are several other users looking at the site for additional uses that are currently in negotiations and would take a majority of the remaining land.

Company officials said completion of the infrastructure to support the first phase hotel and retail deals, which closed on the property in 2021 is expected by the end of this month.   The Hotel will be the first building to be completed in this phase and is projecting an opening in October 2022.  The first retail building is expected to commence construction this summer with an opening in 2023.   

South of Legacy Boulevard is another 54 acres of One Scottsdale that DMB is planning for as a mixed-use “village”.  It is currently anchored by several for rent and for sale residential projects, a potential resort hotel and a mixed-use restaurant/office project consisting of approximately 200,000 sf.  DMB began initiating this phase of development in 2020 and just closed on the first, class-A multi-family parcel with StreetLights Residential earlier this month. 

“North Scottsdale has evolved into an incredibly, dynamic area.  We were honored to play a role in that with DC Ranch and now with One Scottsdale.  Because of our proximity to vibrant neighborhoods like Grayhawk, new corporate headquarters along the 101 and thriving luxury hotels, car dealerships and shopping to our south we’re pleased that our next phases will largely add some additional opportunities to support what is already developed around us,” said Michael Burke, DMB Senior Vice President of Commercial Development. 

All told it will likely take about 7-10 years for the full build-out of One Scottsdale’s 75 acres depending on the market. 

America’s Most Awarded Polo Event — Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships Hits the Field at WestWorld of Scottsdale on Saturday, November 5th
*More than 13,000 people attended 2021 event*

(SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.) America’s Greatest Polo Party – The Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships: Presented by Talking Stick Resort, returns on Saturday, November 5th to WestWorld of Scottsdale for another blockbuster day of polo matches, events within the event and new experiences to wet your whistle! More than 13,000 fans turned out in 2021 for the one-day event.

Brand new for 2022 – Prosecco and Popcorn by Harkins TheatersGrimaldi’s Pizza & Beer Disco, an expanded Scottsdale Charro Lounge, Arizona’s top Saxophonist, the return of The Riot House DayClub and much more! This year’s event is also likely to feature the polo debut of a former National Hockey League star (but Shhh more details to come!).

Top U.S. polo Star Nic Roldan returns as well to play alongside the first family of American polo Marc and Melissa Ganzi, who are the event’s defending champions and own the prestigious Aspen Valley Polo Club.

Among the polo teams for 2022 the United Kingdoms’ Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club and Wales Polo Team, Aspen Valley Polo Club, USA Women’s Team, Switzerland, and the Arizona Polo Club.

As part of the 2022 festivities – retired NFL Star AC Caswell will once again bring his Million Dollar Mingle charity experience to the event.

Guests seeking the ultimate VIP experience can get reserved seating and tables in The Molina Fine Jewelers Drivers and Players VIP Lounge, the Barrett-Jackson Champagne and Jazz Lounge, and Prime: A Luxury Tent Experience by Steak 44, Neiman Marcus, Barrett-Jackson, and Bentley Scottsdale. There is also premier and sideline parking options available for those who want to park fieldside.

Besides the polo action – fans can also enjoy The Polo Party’s signature events within the event like the Canine Couture Dog Fashion Show presented by Lugari Pet Salon, the World’s Longest Catwalk Fashion Show produced by Phoenix  Fashion Week, a preview of Barrett-Jackson’s 2023 Scottsdale Auction and halftime performances by the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, plus much more!

“We are so excited to bring Arizona and the Valley of the Sun yet another exciting year for The Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships,” said Beli Merdovic of Bentley Scottsdale. “As the event goes into its 11th year and we (Bentley Scottsdale) go into our 8th year as the Title sponsor we are thrilled to kick-off an incredible lineup of events, polo matches and cars on November 5th. We are equally as elated to show off and give everyone a sneak preview to our new Bentleys for 2023.”

Gates will open at 10:00am on November 5th.

“Last year was our biggest year ever with a quarter mile of tents. We maxed out the site and expect to again this year with an experience unlike anything in this American sport of luxury,” said the event owner, Jason Rose.

General Admission tickets start at $40 and includes field-side experiences like the Sanderson Lincoln Black Label Lounge and several other DJ-infused party tents including the Grimaldi’s Pizza & Beer Disco, Prosecco & Popcorn, and the Riot House DayClub – the “bird’s nest” of American polo.

“The beauty of this event is that it sits at the intersection of so many senses, creating a unique atmosphere that can’t be replicated,” said The Bentley Scottsdale Polo Championships General Manager, Leslie Owen.

Tickets and tables are now on sale. For tickets, tables and sponsorships please visit www.ThePoloParty.com. Corporate sky box sponsorship opportunities, group sales and private polo tents are currently also available for sponsorship. There are also spectacular vendor opportunities to be showcased on Vendor Row alongside dozens of vendors.

Those seeking sponsorship for calendar year 2022 or 2023 should contact info@ThePoloParty.com or call (480) 423-1414.

A new school year is about to begin and with it, the welcoming of a new Director of Education who will bring a fresh perspective.

With a new year comes new opportunities for learning, for growth, and for connection. With that in mind, Gateway Academy, the Valley’s top school serving students diagnosed with High Functioning Autism, is proud to announce its new Director of Education, Anthony Terrill.

Terrill will be filling the role with years of educational experience after beginning his career as a physical education teacher and since devolved to hold positions such as Dean of Students, Vice Principal and Principal at many schools throughout the valley.

Terrill received his bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from the University of Arkansas and his master’s degree in Education from Texas A&M Kingsville. He is accomplished in a variety of areas having worked and volunteered with youth for many years with an emphasis in behavioral health, social work and education.

With an educational philosophy based on his belief that all students can learn at a high level, given a positive learning environment, strong and knowledgeable leadership, a committed and focused educational team, an encouraging community and a supportive household, Terrill will be a great asset to the Gateway Academy team.

“Gateway Academy is a school like no other and I am excited to be able to join a remarkable school and community that strives to provide a great education and experience for its students. The staff have been extremely welcoming and encouraging as I make the transition into the role,” said Terrill. “I am most excited about getting the opportunity to enhance the educational experience for the students, staff, and families here at Gateway Academy.”

Gateway Academy is an established leader in educating Twice-Exceptional students and students with High Functioning Autism for grades 6-12. Gateway highlights a curriculum that supports academic, social and emotional development. Gateway has the staff that makes them the number one choice for families with who have been diagnosed with High Functioning Autism.

Gateway currently has open enrollment for the upcoming school year and is offering free tuition through scholarships. As an accredited, non-profit school, Gateway Academy accepts both Empowerment Scholarships as well as State Tax Organization Scholarships. They encourage parents of prospective and current students to visit their ESA Parent Support page, where they can find a list of eligibility requirements.

Gateway faculty will be returning on July 5th, with an Open House and a “Meet the Teacher Night” on July 8th, and the first day for students is set for July 11th. Students will dive into STAR Assessment sessions at the end of July and beginning of August, and Curriculum Night is scheduled for August 18th.

For more information about enrolling at Gateway Academy, call (480) 998-1071 or visit https://www.gatewayacademy.us/

 

About Gateway Academy

Gateway Academy was established in 2005, and offers a private education for students, in 6th through 12th grade, with a diagnosis of a Level 1 Autism Spectrum Disorder, and students who are Twice-Exceptional. The school operates a year-round program from July – May of each year, and enrollments are accepted throughout the year.

A new school year is about to begin and with it, the welcoming of a new Director of Education who will bring a fresh perspective.

With a new year comes new opportunities for learning, for growth, and for connection. With that in mind, Gateway Academy, the Valley’s top school serving students diagnosed with High Functioning Autism, is proud to announce its new Director of Education, Anthony Terrill. 

Terrill will be filling the role with years of educational experience after beginning his career as a physical education teacher and since devolved to hold positions such as Dean of Students, Vice Principal and Principal at many schools throughout the valley.

Terrill received his bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology from the University of Arkansas and his master’s degree in Education from Texas A&M Kingsville. He is accomplished in a variety of areas having worked and volunteered with youth for many years with an emphasis in behavioral health, social work and education. 

With an educational philosophy based on his belief that all students can learn at a high level, given a positive learning environment, strong and knowledgeable leadership, a committed and focused educational team, an encouraging community and a supportive household, Terrill will be a great asset to the Gateway Academy team. 

“Gateway Academy is a school like no other and I am excited to be able to join a remarkable school and community that strives to provide a great education and experience for its students. The staff have been extremely welcoming and encouraging as I make the transition into the role,” said Terrill. “I am most excited about getting the opportunity to enhance the educational experience for the students, staff, and families here at Gateway Academy.” 

Gateway Academy is an established leader in educating Twice-Exceptional students and students with High Functioning Autism for grades 6-12. Gateway highlights a curriculum that supports academic, social and emotional development. Gateway has the staff that makes them the number one choice for families with who have been diagnosed with High Functioning Autism. 

Gateway currently has open enrollment for the upcoming school year and is offering free tuition through scholarships. As an accredited, non-profit school, Gateway Academy accepts both Empowerment Scholarships as well as State Tax Organization Scholarships. They encourage parents of prospective and current students to visit their ESA Parent Support page, where they can find a list of eligibility requirements. 

Gateway faculty will be returning on July 5th, with an Open House and a “Meet the Teacher Night” on July 8th, and the first day for students is set for July 11th. Students will dive into STAR Assessment sessions at the end of July and beginning of August, and Curriculum Night is scheduled for August 18th.

For more information about enrolling at Gateway Academy, call (480) 998-1071 or visit https://www.gatewayacademy.us/

About Gateway Academy
Gateway Academy was established in 2005, and offers a private education for students, in 6th through 12th grade, with a diagnosis of a Level 1 Autism Spectrum Disorder, and students who are Twice-Exceptional. The school operates a year-round program from July – May of each year, and enrollments are accepted throughout the year. 

Featured Editorials


Photo Credit: Arizona’s Family

In the immortal words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends towards justice”. It took 12 years worth of arc, but Paradise Valley finally found its justice in the form of a thorough electoral spanking.

After three terms as Town Councilman, Paul Dembow lost his bid for a fourth term, and lost it in devastating fashion. With all votes counted, Dembow came in 4th place out of 4 candidates, and it wasn’t even close. Dembow earned a total of only 1,493 votes, which was barely over half of the 3rd place finisher, political newcomer Christine Labelle, who gathered 2,817 votes.

Why such a stark repudiation? Well we have spoken at length about his temperament and ethics, which certainly played a major role. We cannot discount the strong campaigns run by the other three candidates as well. Additionally, Dembow’s hubris regarding campaigns certainly played a role; he seemed fond of virtue signaling about a lack of advertising and fundraising as if they were not a part of normal campaigns.

Voters also mentioned to us the anti-Dembow ads from a PAC that they saw across town, and while it is impossible to attribute votes to any one particular group, this allowed the candidates to stay in their own lane and focus on a more positive campaign. After all, it’s always a better look for a candidate to not personally attack another candidate. The sane folks of PV thank you, mystery PAC advertiser.

Also, Jerry Bien-Willner won re-election to Mayor in a fairly resounding way against Councilmember Julie Pace, but that win comes at a significant loss as his primary ally in Council is now gone. He may still be Mayor, but his opponent in the race remains in Council and now has an additional ally, which will be a solid consolation prize for a loss.

But the commentary about how the dynamics on Council have changed as a result can wait for another day. We would rather simply celebrate that our town just got a little bit better, our leadership significantly more mature, and our town in general a little bit more of a Paradise. Therefore, today we will simply appreciate that…thank you, Paradise Valley voters! You got this one right!

Money is traditionally a significant determinant of a political campaign’s success, but as we are prone to saying, that alone doesn’t make or break an election; all the money in the world won’t matter if you don’t use it well, or your message doesn’t resonate. This lesson was as pronounced as it could possibly be in last week’s Scottsdale City Council election results.

Indeed, it appears as though two candidates will not go through to the run-off election in November, and last place belonged to the number one fundraiser of the group: Dan Ishac. His prolific and quick fundraising apparently didn’t amount to much however, primarily because he doesn’t appear to have spent much of it. At last check, he had about $50K in his campaign account, presumably to have plenty of “dry powder” for the general election. Instead, it looks like he’ll be giving plenty of refunds. The lesson? Never assume anything, especially when you’re a political newcomer.

Also, the top two vote getters are the two incumbents who ran for re-election, Kathy Littlefield and Solange Whitehead, and they are also the two who will avoid the run-off and have already won re-election. Littlefield raised very little money, but has a strong, devoted fan base. Whitehead had a relatively strong campaign, but the big lesson? Incumbency matters.

Additionally, the voters seemed to make a fairly clear choice between NIMBYism and YIMBYism. Littlefield and Graham are likely the two candidates who are most resistant to new development (and they finished 1st and 3rd), whereas Tim Stratton, Raoul Zubia and Dan Ishac seemed to be the three candidates who were most open to building more, yet they finished in the bottom three spots and will not move on to the run-off. The lesson? NIMBYism won the day.

How does this set up for the general election? Well it is down to one position, and Barry Graham is currently in the pole position for that seat, with Pamela Carter set to face off with him in November. This will be Republican vs Republican, with a former local party leader facing off against a Trump Republican. Barry Graham has deep experience that is relevant, yet as we all know, that doesn’t necessarily matter. Who will spend their money better and whose message will resonate more, those are the questions.

Photo by Arianna Grainey

We don’t need to tell you that any time you attend any large public gathering, there is always a risk to some degree. The news has been filled with plenty of instances just this year of psychotic mass shooters who decide to use a heavy concentration of people as an opportunity to inflict pain and suffering on others. Considering how Scottsdale will have numerous instances of such gatherings on nearly any given weekend (such as in any nightclub), our city could be at risk of such a mass casualty event.

Should we worry? Well now that we know that our city is being proactive about training for this very possibility, perhaps not.

The Scottsdale Police Department is collaborating with the Riot Hospitality Group for a mass casualty training session this Wednesday. It will be taking place in Old Town and will essentially be planning for the sort of mass shooting events that have plagued our country for years.

While we certainly cannot live our lives in fear, it’s not unrealistic to be concerned. While many more recent mass casualty events have centered in places like schools, or in a supermarket in the case of the recent Buffalo shooting, we don’t need to go too far back to see an entertainment gathering being the target. After all, it was only five years ago that a shooter targeted a concert in Las Vegas and killed 60.

We certainly don’t want to focus on negative hypotheticals, and we have been blessed to have any local violence primarily in one-off situations, typically very late-night and presumably alcohol-fueled. But between the Waste Management Open and corresponding concert events and with Super Bowl festivities coming to Scottsdale early next year, the opportunities are there for a deranged individual to do damage. It seems like a very good time to be proactive and plan ahead.

As the old cliche goes, with great power comes great responsibility, but great responsibility also comes with great recreation options. Any area that is such a hotbed for tourism and recreation can easily turn into a target for those looking to do harm. Therefore, we are pleased that our city recognizes this and is being proactive about the need for preparation and caution.

The first election is thankfully right around the corner, so we will get a reprieve from the political ads for a brief few moments. But in the meantime, partially lost in the shuffle of the competitive primaries in Arizona is the Scottsdale City Council race. And some significant battle lines are being drawn around the issue of development.

Indeed, the most pressing issue of this election is almost certainly the subject of development, whether we want to build more (YIMBY) or less (NIMBY). Regular readers know where we stand on this subject, but how is this issue playing out for this race? Some local activists give us some clues.

A local email newsletter has made it clear where they believe the battle lines are drawn. The attached email ridicules candidates Tim Stratton and Daniel Ishac for their donations. Both have received significant donations from leadership within the Riot Hospitality Group, the owners and operators of several Old Town clubs and businesses. The same organization also gave significant financial assistance to Tammy Caputi and Suzanne Klapp in their successful runs in ‘18.

Additionally, graphics posted by frequent and vociferous supporters of NIMBYism have made it clear who their preferred candidates are: Kathy Littlefield, Barry Graham, and Pamela Carter. Littlefield is no surprise at all, as her tendency to vote down multifamily projects is well known. Barry Graham’s time as a Planning Commissioner must have given them sufficient clues as to which way he will lean. Pamela Carter is the big surprise here though; her focus on mitigating sex trafficking seemed to lean more towards being a niche candidate getting her cues from national messaging and not local needs.


Also notable is that all three candidates seem to be very strongly aligned with the Republican party, with Graham having been in local party leadership. We must wonder aloud if NIMBYism is becoming a facet of a bit of a local purity test for the Scottsdale GOP, much like stricter immigration standards are at the state and national level. 

Candidates who get over 50% in this election will automatically be elected, but since there will almost certainly be leading candidates who do not hit this threshold, and as such the run-off election will be in November. But Tuesday will be an important first look into whether the NIMBY or YIMBY set will set the course for the Scottsdale City Council for the next few years.

Federal Legislation Previously Introduced In U.S. Senate

A U.S. House version of S. 3308, a bill that would authorize the Colorado River Indian Tribes to lease a portion of its federal Colorado River water allocation, has been approved in a vote on the House floor. Arizona District 3 Congressman Raul Grijalva introduced the House legislation as part of a larger drought relief bill. It awaits passage in the Senate. It would then go to President Biden for his signature.

The legislation would provide Arizona critical drought relief while upholding water rights for the Colorado River Indian Tribes (CRIT).

Congressman Grijalva, Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee, included the Colorado River Indian Tribes Water Resiliency Act of 2021 in the House Natural Resources Drought/Wildfire Package Legislation.

Last year, Senator Mark Kelly introduced S.3308 a bill co-sponsored by Senator Kyrsten Sinema that would give CRIT the authority to lease a portion of its Arizona allocation for off-reservation use within Arizona.

Since the legislation was introduced and following feedback from a March 2021 Senate Indian Affairs Hearing, CRIT has agreed to several changes that are reflected in the House bill. The House legislation explicitly authorizes CRIT water conservation and clarifies that the tribe can receive fair market value for its water if it is used for conservation.”

CRIT Chairwoman Amelia Flores said, “We thank Congressman Grijalva for moving this much needed legislation forward. As Chairman of the Natural Resources committee, he shares our respect for the Colorado River and our commitment to save the life of the river. He also understands that Arizona needs drought relief now.”

CRIT water leases will not increase overall water usage on the Colorado River because under the terms of the legislation CRIT is only able to provide this water that they have conserved, likely by fallowing farmland. The revenues from conservation agreements, leasing, and storage will allow CRIT to invest in more efficient agriculture techniques and improve its aging water delivery system. The revenues will also help provide much needed governmental services to the tribal members

The legislation and implementing agreements ensure that CRIT will maintain enough water for use on the Reservation to address the needs of its community and farmers while still continuing to provide water to help maintain water levels in Lake Mead. CRIT has a decreed water right to divert 719,248 acre-feet per year to serve lands in both Arizona and California which is among the most senior rights in the basin.

Tribal water leasing is a common practice. Congress has authorized 24 tribes to lease water to third parties off the reservation, including 17 in the Colorado River Basin. CRIT is merely seeking similar rights benefiting other tribes.

The legislation was written in collaboration with the Arizona Department of Water Resources, the United States, and the Colorado River Indian Tribes. It is supported by water users including the Central Arizona Water Conservation District, SRP, the City of Phoenix, the Arizona Municipal Water Users Association, environmental groups (including the Environmental Defense Fund, the Audubon Society, and American Rivers), and it is consistent with principles adopted by the National Congress of American Indians.

About the Colorado River Indian Tribes:

The Colorado River Indian Tribes include four distinct Tribes – the Mohave, Chemehuevi, Hopi, and Navajo. There are currently about 4,572 Tribal members. The CRIT Reservation was created in 1865 by the Federal Government for “Indians of the Colorado River and its tributaries,” originally for the Mohave and Chemehuevi, who had inhabited the area for centuries. People of the Hopi and Navajo Tribes were relocated to the reservation in later years. The reservation stretches along the Colorado River on both the Arizona and California side. It includes approximately 300,000 acres of land, with the river serving as the focal point and lifeblood of the area.

By Councilwoman Solange Whitehead

Photo Credit: Arizona Republic

We have long taken pride in the city of Scottsdale as a great place for a number of reasons: ideal for living, raising a family, golfing, eating, drinking…but now Scottsdale is getting national kudos as a prime destination for something else: bachelorette parties.

Scottsdale is now ranked as the #2 destination for bachelorette parties by frequency, trailing only Nashville and ahead of more presumptive bachelorette party hotspots such as Miami and even Las Vegas. Surprised? Maybe you shouldn’t be. It speaks to the importance of a vital aspect of Scottsdale: the Old Town Experience.

After all, we often talk about how Scottsdale is a golf destination, or a great place to live and raise a family. It’s safe to say that no one is considering Scottsdale for these reasons; they are coming here because of that amazing nightlife and myriad activities all concentrated in a small part of a relatively large city.

With that comes a whole lot of spending: according to thebach.com, the average party includes around $5,500 to $7,000 in spending per event. And with 11,600 parties planned for the area in 2022, well…you can do the math. That’s a lot of money pumped into our local economy, and lots of tax revenue that we are pulling away from other destinations.

With that comes a lot of responsibility, and the city clearly takes it seriously. After recent spates of violence, a task force was developed to nip that problem in the bud. Additionally, while not directly germane to bachelorette parties specifically, Scottsdale is now the first city in Arizona to be designated as a “Cease City”, which is one that trains employees on how to spot and battle against sex trafficking. It is a city that is a destination for many visitors and many seeking a good time, and that is a designation that the city both recognizes and is ready to protect.

But it all begins and ends with Old Town; that is the center of the party, that is the revenue machine for tourism. And while the voices of those in north Scottsdale typically have an outsized say in our governance and will often give lip service to the importance of tourism, they’re not the ones bringing in those tourists. Perhaps we would be best served to take a step back and consider the needs of those in our entertainment district. It might be easy to forget about if you live here, especially if you are older and don’t frequent it much these days, but that doesn’t mean that it’s not vital to our city.

By Nancy Cantor

I have been involved with our schools for so long……as a student, as a parent, as a volunteer, as an advocate, as a proud neighbor and many will agree, a noodge. Always a noodge and my teachers encouraged me to be a noodge. And that is what I am going to do now.

Bond and override elections are critically important to all phases of learning. Don’t grumble since 1993 politics has inserted itself into all phases of education especially maintenance  and operation of schools, even in Scottsdale. Our last Bond and Override evolved from the unfinished business in the mid 90’s that left several of our schools with facilities that had building safety issues and conditions that did not support the advanced technology all of our students are involved in. And some with out of date infrastructure like plumbing for drinking fountains and chillers for the air conditioning and then there were the actual building structures that due to settling had walls that were ready to buckle and cave in and roofs that were leaking due to the walls and settling. 

What we have today are facilities that are safe and better accommodate education technology and address the different learning styles of our kids (my grandkids and great grandkids). They also accomplish several elements of sustainability and energy conservation.

I have stayed involved and serve on the Bond and Capital Override Oversight Committee (BOC). A long with seven other folks it has been our task to understand the use of the 2016 Bond and Override funding. And make sure that the concerns of the community and neighbors of our schools were understood by the district. Director of Building Services, Dennis Roehler spearheaded the effort, along with Transportation Director, David Jacobson and CFO Shannon Crosier.

This year we must renew SUSD’s Capital Override to avoid losing those valuable funds in the future.   We encourage everyone who votes to vote “yes” on the Override. Scottsdale residents have always taken pride in our schools and our students. In fact education is one of the factors that has lead us to be a World Class City from primary grades to institutes of higher education. Are we perfect? Not by a long shot, we still have much noodging to do.

I want to thank my fellow members of the Oversight Committee for the time and effort they have all put in for our students and teachers. 

 

Nancy Cantor

In partnership with the Bond and Capital Override Oversight Committee:                  

Wally Graham
Stuart Rhoden
Maryann McAllen
Nikki Territo
Mike Norton
Jose Velarde
Michael Peabody

Anyone who checks Zillow or even reads the news at all is almost certainly aware of the incredible rise in housing prices since the pandemic, as work-from-home policies led to an exodus of people away from high-cost areas such as California towards lower-cost areas like Arizona. However, the impact of that is that Arizona can no longer be considered a low-cost area, as housing prices have skyrocketed.

Many have opined about the unsustainability of this phenomenon and have been openly wondering when it would reverse. Well it looks like we have an answer; it has already begun to reverse.

In what could only be described as prices cratering, imploding, or whichever hyperbolic verb you choose, home prices in the area just dropped 5% from the month before. This has followed a major spike in asking price changes as many sellers are now realizing the new reality: that they were just a little too late.

That said, it is worth noting that the median sales price is still $457,500, which is still very far above what it was pre-pandemic, so it raises a larger question: is this just the beginning? Will this resemble something closer to the ‘06 crash?

First, it’s important to differentiate how this is different. The last crash was built on overlending based on dodgy credit standards and adjustable rate mortgages in the years preceding. Credit standards and scores from homebuyers are significantly higher now compared to then.

However, one way that our current situation may be even worse is the amount of non-housing debt, such as credit cards and car loans. Current levels are nearly double what they were before the last housing crisis. In a rising interest rate environment, interest on credit cards and any non-fixed rate debt will rise. It might not take too much of a jobs recessions to begin a bit of a wave of bankruptcies, car repossessions, and perhaps forced selling of homes.

Additionally, the reports have been myriad on the looming water crisis in Arizona. Without a near term reversal of this trend, it is very easy to see how Arizona will be no longer seen as a great place to move to for many people, and how many may strive to leave and avoid those future consequences altogether. Fewer people moving in than moving out would obviously apply downward pressure to housing prices.

Considering how far prices ran up in the first place, there is quite a bit of room left to the downside, so thi is very likely just the beginning. Will we get the sort of housing bargains that were available around ‘09 and ‘10? Highly unlikely. But people who have been priced out of buying recently should feel a bit better, as 12 or 24 months from now will likely lead to some better buying opportunities.

By Ronald Sampson

Arizona isn’t a stranger to bitter GOP primaries; after all, in a right-leaning state, the winner of the primary is usually the winner of the general election. Real power is on the line, and whenever that’s the case things can get ugly and nasty. This year seems to be taking the cake however, it’s coming at an awful time, and it is all centering around a one-man wrecking ball.

Yep, even though Donald Trump isn’t on anyone’s ballot, he is still managing to be the source of a potential political civil war for the GOP. He is doing his best to make Arizona a big purity test of whether or not candidates are willing to overturn an election.

Look no further than our gubernatorial primary, which has become a de facto battle between Trump and nearly everyone else. The symbolic nature of Trump holding a rally for Kari Lake and Mike Pence holding one for Karrin Taylor-Robson on the same day told the story better than we ever could. The fact that it happened right around the disturbing video and testimonial from the White House during the January 6th insurrection was just an extra chef’s kiss of oddity.

Perhaps even more bombastic is the battle between AZ GOP Party Chair Kelli Ward and anyone who doesn’t sufficiently kiss Trump’s ring. She even went so far as to censure Speaker Rusty Bowers for having the audacity of…giving testimony to the January 6th commission when asked. The nerve!

Kelli Ward is absolutely doing her best to sow as much discord as possible, picking fights with a few members of her caucus including both Bowers and TJ Shope, both respected members of their legislative caucus, as well as breaking tradition by very openly helping out Kari Lake in her primary. She doesn’t need to be doing any of this, but she must perceive that some great rewards are coming her way by doing Trump’s bidding.

Meanwhile, despite what Trump thinks, he almost certainly will not be President again. His efforts to make everything revolve around not the principles he espouses, but about what he thinks is a stolen election. And when you follow the whims of someone who is 110% focused on their own self interest, it won’t work out well for you when your interests no longer align. When Ron DeSantis or Greg Abbott gets the Presidential nomination in two years, all of this butt-kissing will be mostly for naught.

Despite Biden’s best efforts to fail, Roe v. Wade ensured that this year won’t be a slam dunk for Republicans. Everyone needs to be focused and on the same page, but a one man wrecking ball is making that very difficult.

Credit: Gorman and Company

If you read this blog regularly, you know that we have a housing shortage issue which is playing a major role in housing prices spiraling out of control. We also recently gave kudos to Mesa for having the foresight to be willing to build more and reject the local NIMBY voices of the community. Well we have a few more Valley cities that are starting to understand the value of building.

Enter Glendale and Tempe to the list of cities that are getting it right, as a recent story details. They have plans under construction for significant amounts of affordable housing, defined as being at 30% or less of income. They will be utilizing an affordable housing development tax credit passed through the legislature last year.

This comes with the backdrop of a rental crisis in Arizona, one that is felt most acutely in Scottsdale. There have been heart-wrenching anecdotal stories of incredibly burdensome rent increases with little warning. This is in addition to hard data, which puts rent for one-bedroom apartments in Scottsdale amongst the top 10 in the country, averaging $1,950 per month.

With falling housing prices, there will likely be a corresponding drop in the price of rental homes, but this will almost certainly only happen after a lag period, one that many might not have time to wait for. And this doesn’t consider apartments, the only affordable option for many people. There must be other catalysts, and some of them (such as a recession) are less palatable.

But the cities of Glendale and Tempe are coming to the side of simple Economics: that to suppress prices, you either must suppress demand or increase supply. And while our water issues may eventually suppress demand, increasing supply is within the wheelhouse of every city council and every planning board in the state. All it takes is to ignore the loud, organized NIMBY voices, to not let perfect be the enemy of good, and to BUILD.

Glendale, Tempe, and Mesa…who will be next to poach citizens, increase their tax base and boost their overall economy with sound building principles and an understanding of economics? We call on the Scottsdale City Council to stem this future bleeding of talent and riches, and get to the work of increasing housing supply before other cities get wise to the wisdom of this strategy.

The August election is almost within sight, and Q2 campaign finance reports were due on July 15th, giving us more insight as to how each of the candidates is doing in the vital money race. So how do the candidates stack up as we approach the election?

We will start at the bottom, and two candidates are in very precarious positions as far as money is concerned. Outsider candidate Pamela Carter is in the worst position; with only $10K raised so far and under $1,400 cash on hand (CoH) as of the end of June, it is difficult to see how she gets any traction. Also in a very tight money position is Kathy Littlefield; she has raised over $30K but has spent nearly $43K, with much of it dedicated to signature collection. She only has about $1K CoH, which would normally be cripplingly low; however, she has very wide name ID and strong grassroots support, so while not ideal it is not necessarily a death knell of a campaign.

We have a very distinct middle tier in the money race, where three candidates currently sit. Barry Graham has had relatively tepid fundraising, bringing in only $25K so far. However, he has managed to keep $20K as CoH, implying that his deep ties with the local Republican party allowed him to activate volunteers and get ample signatures without paying for them.

Meanwhile, Solange Whitehead (who already had over $46K in her campaign account from the last cycle) has raised $27K but has spent all the way down to $11K CoH; most of the funds were spent on campaign print materials, such as signs and literature. Lastly, Raoul Zubia also exists in the middle tier; he has only raised $17K but has kept $13K CoH as of the end of Q2.

That means there are only two candidates in the highest tier of cash. Tim Stratton has raised $42.5K and has managed to keep over $32K of it. However, the pales in comparison to the top performer of the bunch, which is actually Daniel Ishac: the candidate who was last to have their own website beat the group in fundraising by bringing in nearly $71K and managing to hold on to over $44K of those funds.

While the money race is nowhere near as important as the count of the votes, they are often strongly correlated. While major expenses such as street signs often do not seem to be reflected in all of the Q2 reports, that will balance things out some going forward. But we currently have a good snapshot into who currently has a leg up going into the most important part of the first election.

Lake Mead – Photo Credit: LATimes.com

Water is a precarious subject here in Arizona; we all know that it may be a major problem in the next few decades but live our lives like it’s not. We probably know that our major sources up north are at essentially record low levels but we’re not trying to prevent new people from coming here. We have written about it often, but relatively little changes.

Except that things actually have been changing…quietly. The city of Scottsdale has been moving towards reducing its water footprint, with significant success already. The city has already reduced its water usage by 8% compared to last year, and residents have pitched in an additional 2.5%. More notably, the city’s cuts haven’t seemed to have a major negative impact; there was some low hanging fruit it would seem.

The first stages of this plan seem to be centered around the hope that Scottsdalians will voluntarily cut their usage by 5%; the plan is that as long as drought conditions do not continue to run unabated, that volunteer cutbacks will allow them to avoid mandatory cutbacks. However, as 70% of Scottsdale’s supply comes directly from the Colorado River, it leaves it uniquely beholden to it, so success with voluntary drawbacks may still lead to mandatory reductions if conditions demand it.

The current leg of the plan only directly impacts the agricultural sector here, which as anyone who knows what the 5 C’s in AZ are, this should come as little surprise. One would assume that the agricultural sector will continue to be further impacted, as there will likely be little political appetite for sparing that sector if it means meaningful water cuts for everyday citizens.

The initial findings in Scottsdale are somewhat heartening. The people were asked politely to cut back on their water usage, and they did in a material way. This sort of voluntary compliance is great to see, even if the way things are going, it may soon not be enough.  

We appreciate Scottsdalians stepping up for one another. That said, having 70% of our water coming from the Colorado River should give pause to anyone who lives here. After all, our future is completely out of our hands, so we fear that polite asks for volunteers are likely just the beginning.

By Councilwoman Betty Janik

I am pleased to endorse Barry Graham for a first term on Scottsdale City Council. Barry has given generously of his time, serving on several boards and commissions, often as chairman. His experience on the Transportation Commission, the Building Advisory Appeals Board, and most recently the Planning Commission, are an asset to City Council. He is Council ready. He has over 10 years of experience in business and public accounting which is exceptionally beneficial to Scottsdale. I have known Barry for several years and appreciate his commitment to making informed decisions that are data based. He carefully studies issues that come before him, he asks incisive questions, and puts Residents First in decision making. He is a man of integrity as evidenced by his positive campaign.

I endorse Solange Whitehead for Scottsdale to serve a second term on City Council. She is a consummate problem solver and is genuinely honored to represent Scottsdale residents. In her four years, she has served the needs of individuals by working one on one with them to solve their problems. She has successfully championed environmental issues such as establishing tree canopies to reduce the heat island, advocating for open space, and protecting our Preserve. She is a voice for the underserved insuring funding for service programs. Finally, Solange tackles the most controversial issue in Scottsdale: development. Projects she ultimately supports have been negotiated down in height, up in design standards, have trees and open space, and include stipulated construction timelines. Her reticence to cater to the pro- or anti-growth narrative has often made her a target. I admire her fortitude.

I endorse Kathy Littlefield for a third term on City Council. For the past 8 years, she has devoted herself to the city she loves, Scottsdale. Her respect for the citizens is clear in every decision she makes. Kathy’s years of service on the Audit Committee have bolstered internal control systems and confirmed the accuracy of financial systems. She keeps government focused and protects the city’s financial position. Her time in office gives her historical perspective. She knows what questions to ask when reviewing documents. She was the first council person to oppose the DDC/Desert Edge project. Above all, she respects the special character of Scottsdale. She is a proponent of small business, which gives Scottsdale its unique character. She reviews proposals for development through the lens of neighborhood preservation. Her votes represent the will of the people. She is Your Voice on Council.

Respectfully,

Councilwoman Janik

Photo Credit: paradisevalleyaz.gov

Things certainly seem to be heating up in the race for Paradise Valley Mayor between incumbent Jerry Bien-Willner and current Councilmember Julie Pace. As we get towards the finish line (there will not be a run-off after the August 2nd race) things have gotten a bit testy, with significant accusations from Pace and shots back from Bien-Willner.

The current ruckus seems to be a result of the tabled suggestion to move setbacks in the town from 20 feet from the road to 10 feet. This would in essence reduce the amount of separation each property has from the roads around it, something which was clearly not particularly desired by many townspeople led by Pace.

The PV Planning Commission agreed and voted 7-0 against recommending it; a harsh blow to the idea. However, Pace has since come out saying that Mayor Bien-Willner is now denying ever promoting it, and has disseminated quotes from meetings seemingly demonstrating some degree of support, and of course implying that he is being dishonest when he denies it had his support.

While not bringing up this particular charge, the mayor has struck back by posting this particular blog on his website which attempts to show a very clear difference between Bien-Willner and “his opponent”, as well as making his case for re-election and also making it clear that he will never send any unsolicited robocalls or texts. We hope for his campaign’s sake that he’s at least willing to knock on some doors himself.

Will any of this move the needle in either direction? Tough to tell, but time is running out to try to get some last minute shots in. Over 200K ballots had been processed in Maricopa County as of the weekend of the 17th, with many more either in transit or sealed and sitting on a counter. The ability to flip a vote is shrinking by the day.

That said, even if Pace were to lose her challenge to Bien-Willner, she will still remain on council. Ergo, we can look forward to these sorts of conflicts for additional years in this case, a prolonged tension that will likely float over council like a gray cloud, even after the local papers are no longer full of campaign ads and op-eds from the supporters of candidates.

By Alexander Lomax

I really wish I didn’t feel the need to talk about how the Arizona Democrats seem to be doing everything in their power to fail. The thought of GOP majorities and Kari Lake as Governor is not exactly a fun thought. I had hoped that after the Pima County Democratic Party’s abject failure to engage anyone near the political middle, their more mature parent would step in and show the way.

Silly me! That was clearly a ridiculous wish on my part.

The Arizona Democratic Party insisted on telling the Pima County Dems to hold their beer; they sent out an email to an unknown number of recipients (but seemingly including Jeremy Duda, noted local reporter now working with Axios Phoenix). In this, they praise Karrin Taylor-Robson for her significant donations to Dems in the past, including serving as a “bundler” (someone who brings together donations from wealthy donors to a single campaign or cause) for Democrats.

Why would they do this? Because they want that information to get out widely, so Republican primary voters move towards Kari Lake; Dems believe that she would be easier to defeat in the general election than Taylor-Robson.

And while I agree that Lake probably would be easier to defeat than Taylor-Robson, this is Arizona, and we’re staring down the barrel of a potentially bad year for Democrats up and down the ballot. Both of them would be favorites against the presumptive Dem nominee, Katie Hobbs. And while some Dems may find some comfort in a relatively sane KT-R administration (albeit one that is much further right than they would like), no one on the left seems to be the slightest bit comfortable with the idea of a Lake administration.

Rooting for the worst choice assuming they’d be easiest to beat…I’ve seen this. We’ve all seen this; when Democrats openly rooted for Donald Trump to win the Republican primary believing that he’d be a cakewalk in the general election. Yeah, that worked out swimmingly.

So the strategy was either to promote a truly unpalatable candidate in a year when many things will go against Democrats, or if KT-R is indeed the candidate, you’re telling your own base that she likes a lot of the same people as you do. Maybe she’s not so bad…

It seems pretty evident that the AZ Dems thought that they were playing 3D chess here, it’s just that everyone else sees that those “chess pieces” are black and red disks. I’m sorry, my fellow Arizona liberals; you deserve a heck of a lot better.

Street signs are perhaps the most obnoxious, useless and expensive form of political advertising around. As many politicos often say, “Signs don’t vote”. So why do we see so many of them every year? Because no one wants to be the one candidate without any signs.

However in a politically contentious and highly charged atmosphere as we currently have, we could all use something a bit light-hearted and non-serious. So with that in mind, let’s review the street signs of Scottsdale city council candidates and see who stands out.

Solange Whitehead
We love this. Red and blue on white, with both subtle Americana and bipartisan tones. Combined with “Winning Together” as a slogan, it is meant to appeal to everyone without pandering. Combined with the mountain background and use of the first name instead of the last, I fear that we’re starting out with the best one.

Grade: A


Barry Graham


This pic doesn’t seem to do justice to the yellow on top, which contrasts well against the bright blue. A reasonable slogan on there as well. That said, the weird blue dome design doesn’t make much sense from a design perspective. Not bad, but not spectacular.

Grade: B-

 

Kathy Littlefield


Any political consultant will tell you that two or more colors make for significantly more expensive signs than monochromatic ones, and that likely played into Littlefield’s choice. The horse is a nice touch of Scottsdale lore. The simplicity doesn’t really stick out too much, but it is a clean, wholly acceptable design.


Grade: B-



Tim Stratton

We like the two hues of blue…very sharp. The iconic mountains are also a nice touch, as are the differing colors of the URL. We would prefer a shorter, punchier slogan for a sign, but all in all, not bad.

Grade: B+

 

 

 

Raoul Zubia

Rarely do you find anything in street signs that is new, but that is a new color scheme for us, and we’re here for it. A saguaro is a bit tired when it comes to iconography, and I’m not sure that “Life Long Scottsdale Resident” is an impactful slogan.

Grade: B-

 

 

 

Pamela Carter

 

 

We’re not against having pictures in street signs, especially if you’re physically attractive, but the red on red is not a good choice. We have no idea what those starbursts are towards the top, the name of the seat is too small, and is that a QR code in the bottom left? No one’s going to look that up while parked. An A for effort, but when it comes to execution?

Grade: C-

Dan Ishac

 

As far as color schemes go…unless you’re promoting the Seattle Seahawks, not ideal. Strange contrast. Looks like an 8th grader could have made this. Uninteresting design, and putting your last name in large print while having your first name in the URL is a marketing misstep. The last name sticks out, which is the only thing keeping this from a failing grade.

Grade: D+

Photo Credit: Arizona Republic

We are wrapping up our Breakdown series as your ballot likely sits on your dining room table, and we have moved up progressively from the least well-known and covered statewide races to the most. And so we end with the highest prize in the state: who will join 99 other Americans in the US Senate, and can anyone topple Senator Mark Kelly?

On the Democratic side, Kelly has the luxury of not having any primary challengers. Along with being able to hold on to more of his campaign funds: with nearly $39 million raised and $23.3 million Cash on Hand (CoH) as of the Q1 reports, Kelly has shown himself to be a prolific fundraising with the entire DSCC apparatus fully behind him.

Kelly’s delicate dance between the left and the middle has been a work of art. While he has not ticked off Democrats to a degree that nearly begs for primary challengers (i.e. the Sinema Strategy), he has also been safe to not fall into various progressive traps that energize activists but turn off everyday voters in a center-right state like Arizona. Additionally, the one area where he was often considered extreme on by Republicans, gun policy (being the husband of Gabby Giffords and all), is now turning into less of a potential liability and more towards a new normal, as recent mass shootings have prompted Republicans to cross traditional party lines and support more regulations.

Kelly’s tightrope walk matched with his fundraising numbers makes him an extremely difficult incumbent to bounce. That said, as we have talked about at length before, with the economy and inflation dominating headlines, this would be the year to do it. So who is up to the task of defeating Kelly?

The Republican field has come down to three viable candidates as well as two also-rans. Starting with the also-rans, there is the steep decline of Justin Olson. Currently an Arizona Corporation Commissioner, formerly an AZ Representative, and a Finance Director for Turning Point USA, the powerful conservative movement, the stars seemed to align for a strong run. But with $275K raised and $143 CoH, the powers that be that he presumed he could call upon have apparently betrayed him, and he has had to resort to appearing on Russian-sponsored TV to stick out. Not a good look these days..

There is also Mick McGuire, who is the Adjunct General of Arizona and a career veteran. With nearly $2 million raised and nearly $1 million CoH, clearly he has received significant backing from outside of Arizona, with a compelling career that would appeal to many primary voters. That said, both him and Olson are having trouble gaining any traction, and neither seems to be polling above 2%.

For the viable candidates, we will start with Arizona AG Mark Brnovich. Consistently the front runner from the start until the last few months, Brnovich has used his current office in a somewhat political manner as opposed to earlier in his time as AG, where he was often considered more objective. As his lead has slipped, Brnovich has seemingly come a bit unhinged, relying on increasing politicization of his office as well as nunchucks. With only around half a million dollars CoH, he has rapidly slipped to 3rd place, and many speculate that his attempts for relevancy will not just leave him with a 3rd place finish, but also a diminished reputation.

Jim Lamon is a clean energy executive that sold his company to Koch Industries for an undisclosed value that seems to be somewhere in the 9-figures. He has pledged to spend ungodly amounts of his own money to win this seat, and he was not lying: he has spent $6.7 million as of Q1. He has made…interesting campaign videos that have caught flack from Democrats (which obviously is a badge of honor in a Republican primary). He looked well positioned to come out of nowhere to win the primary, until…

Blake Masters, protege of tech billionaire and libertarian activist Peter Thiel, came in with the full backing of Thiel, and later on, President Trump. Thiel had a recent primary win with J.D. Vance in Ohio and looked to be with a losing horse in Arizona….until this month. Masters has surged into a double digit lead across a couple polls. It is worth noting that Thiel made his fortune partially with the use of data (and is currently minority owner of Palantir Technologies, a data firm trusted by the US military), a machine that he is no doubt bringing to his political races. While many political consultants act like they know data and marketing, this machine is actually truly cutting edge. The Masters campaign likely knows the last time you cried, your favorite flavor of ice cream, and who your celebrity crush is. Essentially, the next Cambridge Analytica.

Thiel’s machine understands the application of data better than anyone in Arizona politics, and perhaps national politics. One could presume that that same degree of expertise would be brought in on the marketing side: it is much easier to apply those professional principles to politics than for political wonks to be proficient at data and marketing.

It seems clear that Masters will win the primary at this point, which will lead to one of the most intriguing showdowns in American politics this year: Peter Thiel versus Mark Kelly. This will be a gigantically expensive race with deep pockets on both sides. The moderated temperment of Kelly matches up well against Masters, although Masters’ data machine gives it an edge there. This will almost certainly be an extremely tight race; we are inclined to give a small edge to Masters, but as with many things in politics, there are numerous October Surprises that can happen, be it inflation decreasing, Arizona abortion rules igniting passions, or anything else that can’t be seen.

It will be tough to pick a winner in such a close race, so we’ll just grab our popcorn and enjoy the ride instead.

2022 Scrum


Data Orbital is pleased to announce the results of its latest statewide, mixed mode survey of likely Republican primary election voters. The survey was conducted from July 18th to July 20th.

The survey tested all Republican candidates whose names will appear on the ballot for Governor in the upcoming August 2nd Republican primary.

With mail-in ballots already being returned, Kari Lake shows a commanding 11-point lead over Karrin Taylor Robson. Lake is pulling away from the field as a poll conducted by Data Orbital earlier in July showed Lake only 4 points ahead of Taylor Robson.

Pollster George Khalaf had this to say about the latest results, “With nearly 250,000 Republican ballots returned, it is clear Kari Lake has maintained – and grown – her lead in the Gubernatorial race. We have seen the Undecided rate steadily drop from 28% in late June to 12%, with a little more than a week until Election Day. With what we are seeing in our polling, and every other public poll released on the Governor’s race, one thing is clear: Kari Lake is on her way to securing the Republican nomination.”

###

This poll of 550 likely primary election voters was conducted through a combination of live survey and text to web that collected 32.4% of the results from live caller landlines, 34.2% from live caller cell phones, and 33.4% from text to web. It had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.26% with a 95% confidence interval. Respondents were weighted on a number of different demographic figures based on prior primary election voter turnout figures. The poll was conducted from July 18 – July 20, 2022. All non-released questions would not reasonably be expected to influence responses to all released questions. The questions released are verbatim from the survey provided to respondents. Toplines and demographic data can be found here. Crosstabs for this survey can be found here.

 

The election for Scottsdale City Council is underway, and, as a candidate, I am committed to keeping Scottsdale prosperous and one of the lowest-taxed cities in the valley. 

I want this for you and for my own family. While collecting signatures to place my name on the ballot, the message I heard from residents became clear.  Voters love the amenities and quality of life in Scottsdale and they want a City Council that will encourage a vibrant city economy that pays for all the wonderful city services they enjoy.  With increasing inflation rates today, assuring that our city finances are healthy is more important than ever before.

I am a government finance professional; and, as a public finance and municipal lawyer representing cities and towns in Arizona and other states, I help them make deals that increase economic prosperity for their residents.  Additionally, since I served over ten years on the city’s Board of Zoning Adjustment and the Scottsdale Industrial Development Authority, I have put my knowledge and experience to work already for the economic benefit of the city. I’ve also served as a Pro Tem Judge in Maricopa County Superior Court.

I am running to keep your city taxes low, your property values high, and to reduce city debt while ensuring Scottsdale continues to have the best in class amenities and municipal services we have come to expect.  I will make long-term decisions to ensure the health of our magnificent desert preserve and parks, our outstanding police and fire services, our tourism industry, and our world-class dining, commercial and retail services.

We live in tough times. We are coming out of a major global pandemic, but now we are facing runaway inflation and rising interest rates.  Now more than ever we need someone on the City Council with my municipal finance experience and focus. We cannot turn to short-sighted and costly thinking that results in economic decline. There is no goal more resident-friendly than shifting the Council’s focus to keeping local property and sales taxes low and property values high.

The inflation we are facing will impact senior citizens and those on fixed incomes the most, and we must work hard to assure that our most vulnerable city residents can prosper as well.  We can do this by making sure we continue to foster increased economic activity that generates city revenues, working to assure that we have an adequate housing supply, spending taxpayer dollars wisely, and maintaining a fiscally conservative city budget.

I look forward to sharing my goals for my work as a councilman and thoughts on a wide array of issues over the coming weeks. Please contact me on my website at strattonforscottsdale.com.

I am here to listen to you.

By Mayor Jerry Bien-Willner

Dear Fellow Paradise Valley Resident:

I’m pleased to have the support of all the past Mayors of Paradise Valley who are active in Town affairs. Today, I am honored to share a recent video in support of my re-election from our dear friends and long-time Paradise Valley residents and public servants, former Paradise Valley Mayor Ed Lowry and former Paradise Valley First Lady Patsy Lowry:

Lowry Video

In the video, Ed says the following:

“I think Mayor Jerry has done a fabulous job of coalescing a lot of different ideas, people and personalities into a team that works well together. It doesn’t mean that everyone has to agree with each other. It does mean though that everyone has to listen to each other, respect each other and work together for the betterment of the town.”

I would like to thank Ed and Patsy for their kind words, as well as former Paradise Valley mayors LeMarr, Winkler, Parker, Clarke, Wick and others for supporting my campaign.

I hope you will join them and many other former Town leaders and residents in voting to re-elect Jerry Bien-Willner as Mayor in the August 2 election.

Thank you for the privilege of serving as your mayor.

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