Thursday, January 8, 2015

Guest View-Diane Peters: Why you should sign the Tee’d Off in Oro Valley Petition (Part 2)

This posting addresess the issues raised by some of the residents whose homes are in the vicinity of the golf course.

They have valid concerns that their property values will decrease should the course be allowed to deteriorate in the event that the Town of Oro Valley does not purchase the property; or should a developer buy it and use it for apartment buildings or a gas station.

It was disingenuous for Mayor Hiremath and Council Members Hornat, Waters, and Snider to emphasize maintaining property values as a reason to purchase the course because they are well-aware that these land uses will never happen and the course will not be allowed to deteriorate. This is illustrated below.

Below are 6 reasons not to fear a decline of your property values:

Reason #1: Troon will manage the course whether the town buys it or not.
The golf course will not be allowed to deteriorate. The 5-year renewable contract is between Troon and HSL Properties. Therefore, Troon will manage the course whether HSL owns it or whether the town owns it.

Reason #2:  Current zoning can not be exercised because of space limitations.
According to the Town’s Power Point presentation, the current zoning allows for residential, commercial offices, public offices, retail, religious institutions, restaurants, recreational facilities, social center buildings, hotel, golf course, clubhouse, and equestrian facilities. However, the zoning can’t be exercised due to space limitations.

The course's fairways are only 50-75 yards wide. There isn’t enough room to build the streets and other infrastructure  required to service the buildings.

Reason #3: Current permitted appurtenant uses are not being exercised now.
These uses include small retail shops, cocktail lounges with live music, day nursery, game center, fitness center, satellite receiving station, and equestrian exhibition arena. Again, these uses are currently permitted. They have been for years.

Reason #4: Draconian land use must be approved by council.
The same council members who say they fear some draconian use of the land, actually have substantial control of this use. A gas station, liquor store, or fast food restaurant (for example) could only be built with a  Conditional Use Permit (CUP) and this can only be approved by a majority vote of the Town Council.

Therefore, the mayor’s claim that another owner of the property could build residential properties or a gas station and “no one could stop them” is nothing more than a scare tactic designed to persuade those living along the golf course from signing the petition.

Reason #5: Shifting excuses for why they want to buy this property.
The council majority "speak with forked tongue". Think about it. First the mayor and majority-4 council members stated that the main reason they wanted to purchase this land was to have a Community Center. Then they changed their reason to wanting to control the land in the center of town and protect the property values of homes along the golf course.

Then, when the petition drive began, they turned to scare tactics by stating that if the town doesn’t buy it, that the land could be developed as apartments or a gas station instead, even though they are well aware that the only way that could happen is if they voted to allow a CUP. Why would they vote to approve a gas station or apartments if protecting your property values is truly the reason they want to buy this property?

Reason #6: Changing the land use isn't deemed profitable. If converting the property would be a profitable venture, why isn't HSL doing just that?
Would converting the property be a profitable venture? Consider that the land in question has had at least three different owners in the last 20 years. Those owners were in the real estate investment business (unlike the Town). If any of the prior owners thought they could make a profit exercising their "rights" to develop that property per the current zoning, wouldn’t they have done so?

Tomorrow Part 3: A Look At The Contract
Diane Peters has lived in Oro Valley since 2003, moving here to escape the humidity of the East Coast. Combining her love of animals and writing, she wrote her first protest letter at the age of 12 to the Canadian Prime Minister in support of ending the annual baby harp seal hunt. Years later, she flew by helicopter to the ice floes off the coast of Newfoundland to photograph baby harp seals. Her other interests include reading, nature photography, traveling to National Parks, Native American history, art galleries, museums, and politics. In her past life, she worked at various University Hospitals in New England assisting in Oncology Clinical Trials and preparing manuscripts for publication in medical journals. Her husband is an Army veteran who served in Germany and South Korea. A former hippie, he attended the 1969 Woodstock Festival.


Richard Furash, MBA said...

Ms. Peters,
TucsonBass is the biggest proponent of hate speech and name calling on this blog. I have noticed that short guys have a tendency to bully people. Just ignore him. I am looking forward to Part 3.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Spending hours reviewing the Town's Power Point presentation, the Parks and Recreation survey, the appraisal, and the contract is what you call not doing a single minute of homework?

Put some facts where your mouth is.

And you're admitting that the majority-4 WILL DEFINITELY APPROVE a CUP for a gas station or some other use that will drive down adjacent property values even after they told us that the reason they want to purchase this property is to protect the property values of residents in that area? So you're admitting that they're LIARS?

You and your buddies on the council have all painted yourselves into a corner with this one.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Didn't the Council turn down a request for rental truck sales at the ACE store on Tangerine? The Troon/HSL contract (if you read it) states that the property must be run as a golf course, and to terminate the contract requires written permission from the Resort owner, which is Lopez (page 27). Maybe Tucsonbass should separate the facts from his perception of the truth. Maybe he should do homework instead of being a bully for the 4 of them.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Some things I've learned about you: When you can't argue with the facts, then you simply try to discredit the person presenting the facts. Whatever you attack is the very thing that you fear. Right now, you fear how much time I've put into this because it means I know more than you'd like me to know about it. So the message you're trying to send is...she doesn't know what she's talking about because she hasn't put the time into it. Nice try but colossal fail.

Regarding the P&Z meeting, which is off topic, I already gave you PROOF of why I left the meeting early and it had nothing to do with not wanting to put the time into it, which was your assertion. Is that your "go to" argument for everything now? I haven't put the time into it? That's a pretty weak argument that can be easily discredited. But I guess you have to resort to weak arguments when you don't have a strong one.

Your opinion of me, how much work I've been willing to put into this or any other town project that I've been involved with, is just that...your opinion simply based on your severe biases, but never based on fact.

You implied that the council would approve a CUP for a gas station, etc. because no CUP has ever been rejected before. You're using scare tactics.

Pick one: (1) The council is buying this property to protect property values of the 1300 homes along the golf course...or...

(2) The council doesn't really care about anyone's property values so if the owner requests a CUP for a gas station, they will most likely allow it.

You (and the council) can't have it both ways.

If you've actually read any of the reasons to sign the petition, you would know that our opposition has to do with a lot more than finances! You've offered no rebuttals to any of our arguments. If you could, you would.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

To disagree is not to "attack".

I implied nothing. I simply stated a historical fact.

There are several excellent reasons to purchase the property. It doesn't have to one or the other as you state. But that's how you present your argument.

Ownership of the property eliminates future potentially severe negative impacts on several hundred residences.

The potential positive economic impact on the community is tremendous.

The price is well below the appraised value.

It provides a community center which has been the desire of a large segment of the community at a cost that is far below what it would take to build from new.

In my opinion those trump the donwnside risks.

Still you present nothing to support your position other than your verbiage. And history tells us that your verbiage has been on the wrong side of many, many successful projects and desires of the majority of the residents of Oro Valley.


Richard Furash, MBA said...

I notice that you didn't respond to UNBELIEVABLE who said that "Tucsonbass should separate the facts from his perception of the truth." And you didn't respond to his/her comment about what's in the contract. What's in the contract is a FACT. You love FACTS don't you?

Richard Furash, MBA said...

"To disagree is not to attack." I agree. Unfortunately, you do not know how to disagree without attacking. You present no facts, just unobjective opinions and name-calling. Accusing me of not sitting through a P&Z meeting, commenting on my supposed past performance, saying I need to get a grip on reality, accusing people of hate speech or of being NIMBY's, etc. those are ATTACKS. They are not facts. They are not based in reality.

If your purpose was to state a historical fact, why not state the historical facts of all the golf courses in the Tucson area and around the country that have closed or have been losing money for years? No. Your purpose in stating that a CUP has never been rejected was to instill fear by implying that there was a very good chance that a CUP for a gas station would be approved as well. You're fooling no one.

I repeat...the council can't have it both ways. The problem with lying is that you have to remember what you've said...and when they said that the owner could build a gas station on that property and no one could stop him...they forgot that they had already said that they were buying this property to protect the property values of surrounding residents. If that's true, then they would never vote to allow a CUP for a gas station!


Richard Furash, MBA said...

History tells us that your verbiage has been on the wrong side of many, many projects and desires of the majority of OV residents.

Bill Garner elected twice despite you saying that you would work hard to make sure he was only a one-term council member. Zinkin elected. Burns elected. Zinkin recall failed. Latas elected in a landslide. Abbott re-elected. Naranja Park voted down.

These are more examples of you arguing with yourself and not with me. It must be exhausting being you.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Bad Investment? Fiscal Analysis? Okay...The total expense for the El Con purchase according to the Town Council including purchase and renovations is <$10,746,375>. This is solely based on Council and Troon's extremely optimistic outlook of the Golf industries future, despite the National Golf Foundation's report of a decrease in rounds played of approximately 6% which will "remain consistent with current levels for the next few years".

This amount does not include any renovations needed for the 31 tennis courts, Pro shop and restaurant. It also does not include the current $1 million a year of negative cash flow of the Country Club or the $300,000 per year negative cash flow of the Tennis courts. So, if you add those factors, the total costs for the next 5 yrs would realistically be closer to <$17,246,375> and once again, that is with an optimistic outlook and miraculous recovery of the Golf Industry.

With the .5 % tax increase projections at $10 mil in 5 yrs, they are $7 million in the hole. How do you suppose they will pay for this extra expense? OH, and the buildings are 30 yrs old and not ADA conformed which means there will need to be more renovations in the future to add things such as elevators, ramps, etc... AND, some of the properties are in the flood zone which could be an extra cost when/if flooding occurs and would definitely cost more for insurance. So, if this were a personal endeavor, would you think it's a sound investment? All of these facts above can be found in the presentation, appraisal, and contract between HSL and Troon. Let me know if you need me to point them out.

Finally, as far as fear mongering those who live on the Golf course about gas stations and such, THAT IS A LIE. The truth is in the appraisal, contract and purchase agreement that states that the HOA CC&R's agreement with the Resort stipulates that "an alternative use other than open space is not legally permissible. It is an extraordinary assumption of this appraisal that development of the golf courses to a use other than open space is not legally permissible."

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Dear Arizona Bass. Some things never change. As usual when you see something that you don’t agree with you attack the writer at a personal level. Reference your comments about Diane Peters leaving your meeting early. As we both know why she left early I can clearly say it has nothing to do with the current discussion and was better left unsaid.

As far as facts are concerned I challenge you to show where her facts are questionable.

Let’s check your facts. A few weeks ago you stated that the town received $1,000,000 in sales tax revenue from the Vestar Oro Valley Marketplace. I took the time to fact check with Town Hall and I can assure that number is grossly overstated. That doesn’t say much for one who prides himself on spouting the facts.

I await your comments on Lori’s analysis of the agreement.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Look at the language of the Troon contract in Pt3 of Ms. Peters Guest View.
The contract stinks. It is full of goodies for Troon and HSL.

Even if you want to vote for the purchase, you might be taken aback with the management contact!

This entire matter has been rushed. I do not believe the citizens have had a chance to reflect on the purchase.

Richard Furash, MBA said...

I wonder what the majority 4 has to say about the contract. Have they read it yet? Can they justify it?

Richard Furash, MBA said...

Flyboy.....By the way your nom de plume isn't very original. You had me guessing for at least 1.36 seconds.

In your questionable presentation you stated the following:

"A few weeks ago you stated that the town received $1,000,000 in sales tax revenue from the Vestar Oro Valley Marketplace."

I challenge you to find that and post it here for all to see.