In spite of assertions by Scottsdale mayor Jim Lane and members of the City Council that the Desert Discovery “Disneyland” Center will only proceed subject to approval by a vote of the citizens, the language of this official city notice sign seems to indicate that the only aspects yet to be decided are small details. The location is not one of them. Neither is a no-build option.
In the inimitable words of contemporary social philosopher Bill Engvall:
Voters: “Here’s your sign.”
The current proposed project violates certain provisions of the Preserve ordinance. The council cannot grant any commercial licenses to operate within the preserve without a vote of the citizens. The ordinance specifically identifies commercial licenses as prohibited; the ordinance was approved by the voters and must be amended by the voters. Any action to the contrary by city council exceeds the powers given to them by the citizens and is therefor illegal.
You silly citizen!
To paraphrase city attorney Bruce Washburn, “If you are so sure that we are violating the law, we’ll just CHANGE the law!”
Washburn has already advised the city council in open session discussion of the DDC that they (council members) have the power to do whatever they want in the Preserve. Best case: they’ll come up with some kind of workaround. Worst: they’ll just ignore the law as not applying to or restricting the council, and just do it.
The longstanding modus operandi of Mayor Lane and the City Council majority is that whatever they do is legal until a judge tells them different. Which requires money and lawyers. On both counts, the city has more…and they use OUR money against us!
I, for one, am not willing to throw in the towel. People are just waking up to the reality of what council has planned for our land. Land we paid $130,000 an acre for with our hard earned tax money. Land the City promised would never be desecrated by commercial enterprise. No one wants to waste money on this ridiculous eyesore. It fits neither the character of the preserve nor the community.
I certainly respect the sentiment, but as Mike Norton observes below, any energy that isn’t going into kicking Lane & Cronies out of office is wasted.
If Lane gets reelected, he’ll be untouchable for another four years. FOUR YEARS. In which not only will he vote for the DDC in its current form, he will continue to destroy downtown, historic neighborhoods, and virtually every other part of Scottsdale.
It is so disappointing to read so many intentionally deceptive statements from the Mayor and the City Council members who are railroading the Desert Destruction Center through. Whether I get communications from Mayor Lane or from City Council members Milhaven or Smith, I read one duck and dodge statement after another.
We are told that the $1.7 Million was paid so “options” for going forward or not can be weighed, when in fact the contract calls only for the promotion of the DDC.
We are told that the $1.7 Million was spent so locations could be weighed when in fact the contract is to promote the Gateway Trailhead as the only option.
We are also told that the $1.7 Million was spent to determine the size and scope of the improvements, when in fact $1.7 Million would be enough to build a Visitors Center of the size originally contemplated for the McDowells
And as Kathy Littlefield points out, those who are ramming DDC through the Council including Korte and Lane do not have to admit their real intentions to voters until after the November election when, among others, Lane would term out if he won.
The only real way to stop this nonsense is to elect Bob Littlefield as Mayor and reelect Guy Phillips.
Excellent insights, Mike.
Your comments remind me of another brilliant city contract: the one with the Scottsdale Cultural Council. That contract contains not a single, objective deliverable, and like the city-subsidized (ie., taxpayer subsidized) Museum of the West, the Cultural Council won’t make their financials or attendance numbers public. Why should they? They only get $4 million every year from the city (ie., taxpayers)…plus, of course, free rent and they get to keep 100% of the gate.
I guess you can’t blame the DDCS folks for wanting to follow in those well-worn footprints!