By Monica Alonzo
By Stephen Lemons
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Dulce Paloma Baltazar Pedraza
By Ray Stern
By Pete Kotz
By Monica Alonzo
By New Times
YES on Prop 102, giving councilmembers a pay raise tied to the salaries set by the state legislature for members of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors. This would raise councilmembers from $18,000 to about $38,000; mayor from $37,500 to about $48,000. Low pay for elected leaders is a sure-fire way to keep a lot of good folks from serving. This is no longer a part-time council. We demand a full-time effort and must be willing to pay for it.
NO on Prop 105, to change the terms of mayor and council from two to four years, staggering terms and limiting each to two terms. If any level of government demands ballot accountability, it's the council. Some goofball with a four-year term could easily thumb his or her nose at voters; facing constituents every two years helps keep them on track and honest.
NO on Prop 200, requiring voter approval for any sports, entertainment or convention facility over $3 million. This is the retaliation of the Paradise Valley neighborhood that was angry the city wanted to build an amphitheatre in that area. Apparently it makes no difference the council backed down because of neighborhood opposition; this proposition was the thank you the council got. It's gross overkill. Prop 200 is so badly worded that it could apply to neighborhood sports facilities--literally stopping many needed city projects in their tracks. So the council put its own version on the ballot--Prop 106--to specify that only major facilities were covered. We say NO to that one, too. To show how silly all this hand-tying can get, Maryvale wants the city to build the amphitheatre in its area, but if either of these measures passes, they'd have to wait two years for a city-wide vote on whether they could have it. Now, that's dumb.
YES on the "clean up" provisions on the ballot: Props 100 and 101 on the city's retirement system and Prop 104 to allow the council to name one of its members to fill a mayoral vacancy.