At last week's council meeting, Council Member Lou Waters, council liaison to the Conceptual Design Review Board ("CDRB"), explicitly stated why he did not want CDRB member, Gil Alexander reappointed:
"We [are] nurturing someone to be a member of CDRB to fill a position that is sorely needed." It is Council Member Waters' belief that replacing Mr. Alexander with this individual will make "CDRB better".This now adds a completely new element to a council members role as "liaison" to any board or commission. It is not merely to be a conduit. It is to be a active participant in shaping the membership of a board.
We have included a video of the dialogue among the council members on this particular part of the discussion. After Council Member Waters completes his explanation on nurturing a new member, Council Member Zinkin asks if this move of not reappointing Mr. Alexander is a means of providing an opening for this "nurtured" individual. Council member Snider is heard saying "Yes." Council Hornat then says: "If we found a better candidate, we found a better candidate. It's just that simple."
Is it the responsibility of a town council member to nurture someone for a volunteer position? These positions are supposed to be open positions for which residents of the town can apply. If the board and commission members are already preselected, why does the town go through the process of seeking candidates for these positions? Why are possible volunteers wasting their time going through what is merely a formality? More importantly why are we pretending that the position is available when it is not?
At the end of the discussion, Council Member Zinkin states: "That's not what the letter said." He is referring to letter the Mayor Hiremath sent to Gil Alexander. That letter stated that Mr. Alexander was not being reappointed because of some alleged violation of the Oro Valley code of ethics. As we noted in our posting last Tuesday, Mayor Hiremath was unable to define what that violation actually was, when he was requested to do so by Council Member Garner. In fact, Mayor Hiremath got angry and slammed the gavel, closing discussion.
As it turns out, it appears that Mr. Alexander was not reappointed to his position on CDRB in order to make space for this "nurtured" individual. Rather than be forthright about their true intention, the Mayor and and what appear to be co-conspirators chose to smear Mr. Alexander's reputation. if this is the case, then shame on them!
We excitedly await the announcement of the individual who is being proposed for CDRB. We want to see how this individual will make CDRB so much better.