Thursday, June 27, 2024

Mary Murphy’s Vision for Oro Valley: Ensuring Fiscal Sustainability

Insightful perspectives directly from the candidates 
This is the last part of our series on the Sun City Candidate Forum held on June 12. Last week, we wrote about Mo Greene's council goals. Tuesday and Wednesday we featured the thoughts of Elizabeth Robb and Tim Bohen.  Today we feature the thoughts of Mary Murphy. For personal reasons, Murphy was not at the forum. So we asked her the questions asked the candidates. These are her responses.
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Mary Murphy’s vision for Oro Valley is one of fiscal sustainability, transparency, and community engagement, ensuring that the town’s unique character and quality of life are preserved while fostering sustainable growth and development. These are her thoughts and her words:

No property tax: Build revenues by working with local businesses
Murphy emphasizes the crucial role of the sales tax in providing Oro Valley’s revenue. She believes that fostering strong relationships with local businesses is essential to upholding the town’s high standard of service. “Sales tax plays a very important role in our Town’s revenue,” she states. “It is imperative that we have Council members who foster strong relationships with our local businesses in order to maintain our standard of living without reliance on a property tax, which I will never support!”

Tighten spending by prioritizing “Needs” and “Wants”

Murphy advocates for a balanced budget and a focus on prioritizing needs over wants to control spending. “By focusing on a balanced budget and prioritizing ‘needs’ over ‘wants’, we can control our spending,” she explains..

Maintain Oro Valley’s unique character-use land to the highest standards
Murphy stresses the importance of maintaining Oro Valley’s unique character by supporting only the highest standards for the limited remaining undeveloped land. Murphy has also made it clear that she has not accepted any developer or outside money, ensuring her decisions are made in the best interest of the community.

Look for annexations that “pay their own way”
Murphy emphasizes the importance of a rigorous cost-benefit analysis for annexations. “Any annexation must be considered on a rigorous cost-benefit basis. Only then can we make certain that any annexations enhance the quality, character, and financial health of the town.”

Engage the community in the journey
Transparency and collaboration are central to Mary Murphy’s vision for government. She plans to prioritize these values to ensure that residents can directly contact her. “Residents deserve representatives who will be easily approachable and available, and that is exactly what I plan to do,” she asserts. To achieve this, she plans to reintroduce “Council on Your Corner,” with monthly meetings around town, including in Sun City. Her initiative aims to give residents a direct voice in governance.

Conserve drinking water and use it wisely
Water conservation and wise water use are critical issues for Murphy. She advocates for continued education on water conservation and participation in regional recharge projects, as well as emphasizing xeriscape landscaping with native plantings. “Reducing our municipal turf areas, especially those watered with potable water, is key, and I am committed to working closely with my fellow council members to ensure that this happens,” she states.

Limit adding or increasing user fees to “controllable amenities”
While generally opposed to new user taxes, Murphy acknowledges that higher fees for non-residents using controllable amenities, such as the Community Center and The Aquatic Center, could be considered under certain circumstances.
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