See also: Is the Bloom Off the (Jason) Rose?
The Scottsdale Polo Championships will be back this fall, thanks to the Scottsdale City Council unanimously approving the use of taxpayer money to fund almost half of the event's budget.
Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane -- who uses Valley P.R. hotshot Jason Rose's firm Rose, Moser, Allyn for campaign consulting -- was one of those council members who voted to give $75,000 to the Scottsdale Polo Championships LLC, run by Jason Rose, wife Jordan Rose, and partner Jennifer Moser.
Jason Rose proposed this idea himself to the Scottsdale Tourism Development Commission in April to get approval before the agreement went before the city council.
"Mr. Rose said the event is requesting $75,000 to help defray the cost of holding a polo event in Scottsdale," the board's minutes from the meeting say. "Since the polo industry is limited in Arizona, the teams will need to transport 12 to 16 horses each from southern California. They have to be stabled for four days at WestWorld. The teams have to be flown in and provided accommodations. Professonal polo players like Nic Roldan do not play free. The request is consistent with the goals and criteria for use of tourism funds."
The cash came from the city's bed-tax collections, which is indeed taxpayer money. The board approved Rose's proposal 6-0.
The next month, the agreement was proposed to the city council, and was approved without discussion, including a vote from Lane. The only opposition to the proposal came through a citizen comment from mayoral candidate John Washington, who explained that the city shouldn't be subsidizing private events. No council member provided any feedback on that.
Rose has been a campaign consultant for Lane for some time now, and Lane's most recent campaign-finance reports (through the end of May) show he's been paying the Rose, Moser, Allyn firm a $2,000 per month retainer, plus various expenses, like a $300 logo design.
Arizona Corporation Commission documents show Jordan Rose listed as the "statutory agent" of the Scottsdale Polo Championships, with Jason Rose and Jennifer Moser listed as "members" of the corporation.
The city's agreement requires Scottsdale Polo Championships provide at least $84,000 worth of P.R. for the event, and based on a look at Rose's Twitter account, it appears that he's holding up their end of the deal:
That said, it seems Lane at least could have at least recused himself from the vote.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
A woman at Mayor Lane's office told New Times yesterday that she'd forward our request for comment to the mayor. As of the time of this post, there hasn't been a response.
Additionally, it appears that this isn't the first time Rose and Lane have...connected.
If it's any consolation, a city council report notes that a marketing agency figured the "overall event economic impact for the city of Scottsdale" would exceed the $75,000 that the city's putting in.