Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Despicable Him: Hornat Plays Politics With Steam Pump Ranch Funds

The gloves are off in the Oro Valley town council. The embarrassment continues (see our Monday post). This time it was about the 2016 budget and funding for Steam Pump Ranch.

Council Member Joe Hornat played politics with 2016 proposed spending on Steam Pump Ranch at the June 3 council meeting. He did it in an attempt to get at least one member of minority to vote for the Oro Valley record budget.

Hornat said this at the conclusion of a 3 minute speech on why he ignores things he'd like to see changed in the budget.

Hornat: We'll spend on Steam Pump if you'll vote for the budget

Council Member Hornat recommended approval of the budget if there were removal of the $425,000 planned expenditure for Steam Pump Ranch.

"In the interest of cooperation, if I can secure a better than 4-3 vote on the budget, I'll gladly entertain a friendly amendment to ... put it back in there."

In his remarks, delivered in shaky voice, Hornat said that he feels that the budget is a reasonable compromise even though there are some items on the budget to which he  does not agree.

According to Hornat "A no vote is a vote against the quality of life in Oro Valley... You need to look at the greater picture."

Council Member Snider (watch) voiced her support of the budget because town council sets policy; not budgets and whaterver town staff says is good enough for her.

Mayor Hiremath (watch) said that he felt that those who vote for the budget should get all the credit for its success.

Vice Mayor Waters, as usual, said nothing. He did vote 'yes.'

Council Member Burns told Hornat that Burns would vote for the budget if Hornat would agree to defund the golf course!

Garner: Hornat's attempt to defund Steam Pump Ranch is unconscionable

Council Member Garner did not let Hornat's threat pass.

Addressing the audience Garner observed: "You folks are witnessing politics at their finest, " Garner started.

"Steam Pump is going to fall in disrepair. To sit there and let a project lose $425,000 worth of funding over politics is completely ridiculous for a vote."

Garner then went on to explain why he was going to vote 'no' on the budget. "Yes. I am going to vote 'no' on the budget. I am consistent in voting 'no'. I will continue to vote 'no' on this budget ... There are efficiencies that we find in this budget and we refuse to do it. Now that we have this community/golf course we need to find even more efficiencies because we are going to be in really bad shape."

"I am not supporting the budget, Joe, and I think that it is absolutely unconscionable to think you would take $425,000 out of the town manager's recommended budget over Steam Pump for a vote."

Was Council Member Hornat thinking of the greater good when he recommended defunding Steam Pump Ranch?

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