Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Our Fifth Anniversary

This month, this past February 5th, marks the 5th Anniversary of the LOVE Blog.   In five years we've made nearly 1,700 posting, received ten's of thousands of comments, and had hundreds of thousands of visits.  We birthed the blog from "The Oro Valley Watchdog." This was an online publication created by Phil Richardson, who, by the way, was our first commenter.

The LOVE Blog furthered Phil's efforts. We added the feature of blogging, where you, the reader, could comment on our postings.  Even five years ago, blogging was not the "norm".  We were at the forefront of the technology. You embraced it.

During the past five years, we have commented on every major issue Oro Valley has faced.  We started with what Art defined as the "Outrageous Giveaway".  In fact, that was the subject of our first post.

The "Outrageous Giveaway" is an agreement between the Town and a Developer where the town gave away half of Oro Valley's sales tax revenues to the Developer for 20 years in return for having an upscale shopping center.  The Developer, Vestar, had mailed thousands of glossy, expensive postcards (like Steve Solomon's expensive postcards) which purported benefits that turned out to be lies (like Steve Solomon's expensive postcards).   Voters, giddy with the prospect of a beautiful upscale center and a movie theatre, approved the agreement.  Instead of LaEncantada, however, the voters got the Foothills Mall!   Today, the Oro Valley Marketplace has such upscale stores as Wal-Mart, the haute cuisine of an In 'N Out Burger, a Petco, a Famous Footwear, and a host of other middle of the road, see them anywhere restaurants and stores.  Oro Valley will be living with this agreement until 2026!

What is striking about Art's sharp and continuing analysis of the "Outrageous Giveaway" was that Art was dead-on. He was never wrong. He saw the Marketplace for what it was, he told it like it is, and he was right.

Since that time we have fought many battles.

We warned that the Utility Tax would be just another permanent revenue building measure when it was approved by a previous council with the promise that the tax would "sunset".  It did not "sunset." Instead, this Council's gang of five, used it as a means of doubling your utility taxes.  We led the fight against a property tax for the Mayor Paul "Looney Tunes" Loomis' Naranja Theme Park.  We were right. The voters turned it down by an astounding majority vote.  This fall, we advocated to kill apartments for the Ford Property and on 7-I in Rancho Vistoso.  The residents arose against these "travesties".  They won.  We won.

That's our tradition.  You may not like what we say, but you will find that what we say is dead-on.  We simply won't back off.  We are going to continue to "call it like it is".

The LOVE Blog is stronger than ever. There are LOVE Blog "reporters" everywhere.  The Blog is no longer a one man show or even a two man show. The LOVE Blog has a life of its own. It is your blog!  So this is your anniversary too!

Happy Anniversary to all!


OV Objective Thinker said...

WOW!!!!! I have several thoughts about this momentous occasion.

Probably the most heartwarming to me is the fond memories that I have of being able to yank art's chain, in writing and in a forum that many of his closest friends also see. And to think of how many times he has gotten so pissed off that he threw me off of the blog only to realize that I was a valuable comment asset. Had it not been for me all that pent up energy and emotion in him may have been dangerous. Always looking out for ya, artski.

Now on to the less attractive. The "Outrageous" giveaway has turned out to be a very positive venture for Oro Valley. I wonder what other taxes we would have had to implement if we were not the recepient of all of the sales taxes we have realized from OVMP. And in a strange sort of way what makes it even better for us is that Vestar will never realize their total dollar goal as the time will probably run out.

The MINOR utility tax (NOT TAXES) has helped keep the property tax boogie man out of our wallet. So if you look at it from a positive viewpoint, it has been a blessing in disguise.

I know Richard just probably forgot to mention some of the other great accomplishments. Because to quote him "you will find that what we say is dead-on." How about the several LOVE candidate endorsements that have totally flopped either before the election ever took place, or they were defeated or once in office this blog turned on them. There is quite a string of the latter.

And most recently there is the failed recall effort that was the "talk of the town" on ye olde LOVE blog.

But overall I would agree that this has been a successful venture. It has given to the community a chance to vent, maybe share a few common interests and to make a new friend or two. HI NOMBE!!!

And in closing I want to take just a moment and send a big thumbs up to our departed friend Zev. He was a good person, with a strong set of personal values and a valuable asset to this community.

BLOG ON!!!!!

artmarth said...

Dick--- Thanks for the kind words. The fact is, I wasn't the only one that saw through the "Vestar charade."

Unfortunately, the "giveaway" took place prior to the blog's inception, so many voters were not aware we were being "snookered" by an out of town developer looking for the all mighty dollar.

I believe, partially because of the blog, the electorate is much more educated today, and they see right through the likes of "The Trashman," Solomon and his feeble attempt with the financial assistance of Special Interests, to buy the election.

Good for you for continuing to enlighten, educate & inform our neighbors as it concerns the political goings on in Oro Valley.

Faveaunts said...


Thanks for keeping the community informed! Awesome job!!!

Victorian Cowgirl said...

Since Thinker is still carrying on about the difference between TAX and TAXES, I will repost my previous response to him here:

"Everyone refers to tax in the plural form...as taxes. But besides that, since we have THREE utilities that are now being taxed at 4% instead of 2%, that is an increased tax on THREE separate bills, therefore the tax IS plural!"

And now I'll add this:

What time of year is it? It's the time of year when we pay our taxes. It's just ONE TAX. It's called INCOME TAX. But what do we say when referring to it? We say "Income Taxes." We say things like, "I had to pay a lot in income taxes this year" or "I'm going to be doing my income taxes on Saturday morning."

It's just ONE TAX, but we pay it to two different entities...the State Gov't. and the Federal Gov't.. So it becomes TAXES (plural).

Thinker complains that the anti-Solomon signs are "lies" because they say taxes rather than tax.

Funny, he didn't complain when Solomon claimed to have balanced the budget "through a combination of cuts, improved efficiencies, and innovations..." but mentioned NOTHING about how he also balanced the budget by raising taxes.

So according to Thinker's rules of campaigning, Steve Solomon is a liar.

Victorian Cowgirl said...


Since you just said that Zev "was a good person, with a strong set of personal values and a valuable asset to this community," I thought I'd direct you to a comment that Zev made about you on this blog on 1/14/08...

"Mr. OV Objective Thinker, you have a propensity for diluting your answers with off-subject commentary and woeful attempts at a mish-mash of explanations disguised as statements of fact."

Yes, Thinker, you were correct to give "a big thumbs up" to Zev. I couldn't agree more. :)

Nombe Watanabe said...

Congrats to the best blog in AZ!!

"Long May You Run" -- N. Young