Tuesday, February 16, 2010

An Open Letter To Sun City Posse Members (And Other Interested Oro Valley Citizens)

We have been made aware that an email has been sent out to Sun City Posse Members in which certain statements are made that are totally erroneous.

The writer of the email (below) stays clear of endorsing candidates, but only "passes on some information on the candidate's position as it concerns the Oro Valley Police."

This is all well and good. What is not good is misrepresenting what some of the candidate's positions are.

Our blog unabashedly supports two candidates: Mike Zinkin for Mayor & Dr. Don Emmons for Council.

NEVER has Dr. Don Emmons or Mike Zinkin said they "want to pare up to $1 million off police budget" or "those who won't commit one way or the other," or suggested they "want to cut the OV police force," as the letter writer claims.

THIS IS NOTHING BUT SCARE TACTICS, and we hope our readers will not be influenced by this propaganda.

To set the record straight, both Mike & Don will NOT be intimidated by the police unions that were instrumental in the dismissal of our Town Manager David Andrews.

If additional budget cuts become necessary, Mike & Don will look at all areas to cut, including the police department that is responsible for almost one half of Oro Valley's total budget. Both of these candidates have stated on record that will will do nothing to sacrifice the safety & welfare of our community. This is something all Oro Valley taxpayers should be aware of.

Here is the email that was sent out. It is unedited other than deleting the name of the sender.



Just passing on some info that may be of value to you.

This Oro Valley Primary election and the final one will be done through the mail - no voting places. So this should not interfere with our Special Event on 3/9/10.

Running for Council:

Those for keeping police officers:

Mary Snider
Joe Homat
Lou Waters

Those who want to pare up to $1 million off police budget and those who won't commit one way or the other:

K.C. Carter
Mark Finchem
Matthew Rabb
Don Emmons

Running for Mayor:

Keeping THE POLICE status quo:

Loomis (incumbent)
Satish Hiremath

Want to cut OVPD force:

Mike Zinkin

xxxxxx (name removed)


Nombe Watanabe said...

This is SO like the "allegations" which surfaced against former town mgr. Andrews. Why am I always caught off guard when dirty tricks surface in a one-horse town local election. It makes me sick. I know I should not be shocked, but here I am shocked. It makes me want to cut the police department budget just for spite. I wonder if Oro Valley is worthy of home rule.

artmarth said...

Nombe--- Perhaps the question that should be asked is--"Who gave the writer of the email the information that was written?"

The truth is one thing. But to try to influence an election by attributing false statements to any candidate should offend every voter.

Desert Voice said...

Nombe and Art,

Very interesting that two candidates who signed the email acknowledged at the SC forum that they are connected to Police. Snider says "law enforcers run in my family" and named her husband as a former FBI agent. She added that OVPD honored her with the Citizens of the Year award in 2006.
Water volunteered that in past years, he volunteered on the SC's citizen police force.

While Hornat said that he thought Danny Sharp was a wonderful leader, he did not mention that when he first arrived in OV, he volunteered with Pinal County's Police or Sherrif's office. He lists his work at Ft Huachuca on his resume. Isn't that special ops training? If so, he too, has a law enforcement background.

In addition, Hornat fired out that Sharp does not own a commando car. This is a clear misrepresentation of this discussion. Sharp wanted to use Seizure Funds to purchase a $250K commando car for his own use.
Council was working with him on how to "find" unnecessary expenses to trim. Hornat's presentation of this imformation was intended to confuse voters about the facts.

How can they feel "free" of bias when issues regarding the PD surface? It left me wondering if they will voluntarily recuse themselves from voting on such matters if they are elected to Council.

While Snider researches most issues, she seems not to when it involves the Police. She implied at the Sun City Dem meeting that as OV expands and grows, more crime will arrive, a statement with which this writer agrees. But it contains an implied
threat that SC residents will be less safe if cuts are made in the police. It is the quality of OVPD's work, not the numbers of police, which provides safety. Does she hear about the waste in their department?
Where is her openness to consider the results of the independent evaluation?

Snider is disappointing in her 100%, enthusiastic, unquestioning support of PD's leader and does not question what voters say about his uneven service delivery in the community. "Where there is smoke, there is fire." Where are her objectivity and listening skills?

I hope the intelligent, reflective, experienced voters in Sun City see through this irresponsible representation of facts and trust their gut when they vote.

Nombe Watanabe said...

I think most people respect and support the police.

I object to dirty tricks and false statements. I also hope as D. Voice has stated that "the intelligent, reflective, experienced voters in Sun City see through this irresponsible representation of facts and trust their gut when they vote."

To SNIDER and HORNAT: You can only lead if your heart is pure. Think about it.

Fear the Turtle said...

It just doesn't make any sense why one would risk so much by sending out this type of information without having facts to back it up.

This person is being hung out to dry if there are no documents to back these statements, and should send out a retraction letter ASAP.

Show us the documents to back the statements in your letter!

Christopher Fox said...

Food, shelter, clothing. Necessities of life. If any single necessity in a budget consumes 50% of that budget, it is unrealistic to presume that that necessity is untouchable. I think most bloggers here are fully aware that I support deep cuts in all aspects of the operation of the Town of Oro Valley, and feel that frills are absolutely out of the question right now. Painting a fleet of close to if not more than 100 vehicles just to be 'en vogue black' is absurd, so I hope nothing is budgeted for this folly. Jiminy crickets, I wish I had more time to dedicate to this kind of thing.

Anyway, I am leaning on the same lines as Nombe; does the Town of Oro Valley really merit home rule? I would like to see Issue One pass with a 50.1 to 49.9 margin, just so council, whoever they are, takes its fiduciary responsibility with the utmost seriousness.

Christopher Fox

Zev said...

Although I most recently proclaimed that I would not continue to post on this site I feel that this issue is of supreme importance. I live in Sun City and am a member of 'The Posse', which is intended strictly to have groups of residents go out each and every evening in Sun City vehicles and patrol our neighborhoods from the hours of 11pm-2 am.

I received the e-mail as printed here directly and would first like to clarify one point that has been written in this stream following same: Mary Snider and Joe Hornat did not sign this 'memo'.

Now to the reality of my own involvement:

After having received this e-mail I wrote the following to the sender, a 'Posse' leader:

"I believe that the information you presented is somewhat tainted. To my knowledge no candidate has suggested paring off 1 million dollars from the police force nor has Mike Zinkin advocated cutting the force. Council, by a vote of 5-2 (incumbent mayor included) has voted for an independent management study of the Department due to many factors (as they have also done for the Parks and Rec department also) AND as they should be doing on a regular basis by one means or another. That those who are for an independent study are 'against' the OVPD and those who oppose an independent study are 'for' the OVPD is perpetrating a wrongly held belief. I am well acquainted with virtually all of the 'players' named (xxxxxxxx being the exception and can, step by step, give an analysis of each and every one of them.(portion redacted) Your portrayal, though seemingly unintentional, is deceptive. And please, I truly care about Xxxx Xxxxxxx and appreciate his service (portion redacted) but, having attended a 'forum' he gave here in Sun City, it was evident to me that his bias overshadowed reality."

"I have been attending Council meetings for three years, know virtually every 'player' in the OV community along with virtually every issue. Your assertions simply do not paint an accurate picture."

"I suggest that you attend the Mayoral Candidate forum on this coming Thursday between 6-8pm, speak with Mike Zinkin personally and then and only then will your judgement be one of fairness."


"I apologize I upset you with my e-mail. There are others who also feel I was in error. I sincerely appreciate your response. I will attend the Mayoral forum. You can contact our Board of Directors about your feelings as I report to them."


You didn't just "upset" me. I find this notification to be no less than blatant misrepresentation in order to further a 'special interest (Sun City Posse/Sun City)' agenda. Why should I have to report my 'feelings(?)' to the Board; your e-mail was blatantly false and you should retract this statement IMMEDIATELY and own up to the contents as being just what they are, unverified and perverted with no basis in fact. That you stated that [the Posse cannot endorse a candidate or slate of same]; everyone here in Sun City, and I would assume, all who received this 'memo' know who you are and that which you represent. If this isn't an 'endorsement', I don't know what is."

"As to 'contacting' the board, if I have to do that I will carry it further than just that. This political 'memo' stinks to 'high heaven'!"

Zev Cywan

Note: I have received no reply to the latest of my e-mails. Also, portions of some material, as noted, have been redacted in order that names of certain individuals not be revealed.

The Zee Man said...

Thank you Zev for weighing in on this important issue.

Such falsehoods,misrepresentations or lies are simply unacceptable on the part of the Posse or any other group.

Fear the Turtle said...

If any Board of Directors approves this type of behavior, then they must have the most comprehensive Directors and Officers insurance policy available in the insurance marketplace, or in lieu of insurance are willing to assume the risk for this type of behavior.
This type of behavior could end up being very expensive for those who serve on the Board.

Desert Voice said...


Your are requesting that the sender of the email produce documentation, yes?

Discerning residents of Sun City should insist on this. Communications can be very skewed without them.

ALERT! A scam is circulating about a Census for Seniors during this period when the US 2010 census is circulating...It is 100% bogus, according to Paul Fimbres, head of Tucson's Census office. Because Sun City's residents are 55+, they need to be aware of this and not participate.

Mark said...

I am saddened to see such political chicanery. I don’t know who Del Balston is but his recent e-mail circulated to the Oro Valley Posse has fabricated a position that I have allegedly taken on an arbitrary $1MM funding cut to the Oro Valley Police Department. As a vocal advocate of truth and transparency I can’t let such a patent disregard for the truth go by.
I have been vetted by nearly every organization that has an interest in the Oro Valley Town Council election, including the Oro Valley Fraternal Order of Police. I have not been asked about a cut to the Police Department nor have I stated I would cut anything related to a core service provided by Oro Valley. Specifically, I have not said anything about a cut of any kind. I have been consistent in my position that Oro Valley cannot rely solely on spending cuts to work its way out of a budget deficit permanently.
In my professional position am asked by prospective residents of Oro Valley almost daily, “is Oro Valley a safe place to live?” Residents on my walking tours have told me that they view public safety, the feeling of security and our pleasant surroundings as the biggest contributors to our quality of life in Oro Valley.
I am of the mind that economic development is what has been lacking in Oro Valley for several years. And not just any economic development, but targeted, high yield, high value economic development.
Attracting the right companies with employees who have the capacity and opportunity within the companies they work for to grow their net worth will be a key contributor to an environment that supports increasing property values. Changing the culture of Oro Valley government to one of customer service focus and teaching Staff what business growth means to the increase in sales tax revenue yield is one of my highest priorities. This is the key to ensuring our protection of core services and our quality of life. Visit www.finchemforcouncil.com for more on where I stand on a variety of issues.

artmarth said...

Mark--- Thanks for trying to set the record straight, at least as it concerns your position.

I would say this: I hope the voters of Oro Valley take the time to visit your web site. They might find that you are a viable choice to serve on the council.

It's obvious that the writer of the email received input from another source with their own agenda.

We believe we know the self-serving source, but it's not for us to say.

Wouldn't it be nice if Mr. Balston came forth and offered a sincere apology to those he offended, and say, "I never should have listened to xxx!"

John Martin said...

A useful entry to this category might be a full accounting of officially documented positions on such issues from each candidate and/or links to their prospective sites or published positions.

Kudos to Finchem for calmly, professionally addressing his own position on the issue. Take a swipe and turn it into an opportunity to recruit some additional supporters. That's smart politics.