Tucson Local Media: Opinion

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Tuesday 08/16/2016
Why we need to save our police
Posted: August 16, 2016 - 2:56 pm

This past year a private school in Oro Valley requested that the Town provide them a School Resource Officer (SRO) with the school paying 100 percent of all the costs. This routine consent agenda item was passed along with the other consent items 7-0 by the council and is cited by Zinkin, Burns and Garner as their support of our SROs. What they don’t mention is that year after year they have demanded cuts to our police budget including cuts to the number of police officers, their equipment, and our SROs. When these cuts were wisely rejected by a 4-3 council vote they used this as an excuse for voting “NO” to the entire town budget, effectively voting to shut down our entire town. Both Garner and Burns are on record of publicly insulting and belittling our police (Arizona Daily Star, 4/17/14 & Northwest Explorer Online, 8/4/16). We need to save our police and SROs from Zinkin. Burns & Garner. This is one of the many reasons that the Oro Valley Police have not endorsed them but have chosen to endorse Rhonda Pina, Bill Rodman and Steve Solomon for Oro Valley Town Council. (A few examples of Mike Zikin & Bill Garner publicly calling for cuts to our police officers, their equipment and our SROs; 3/23/11 Northwest Explorer, 5/18/11 Council Meeting, 5/1/13 Council Meeting, 4/17/14 Arizona Daily Star, 12/3/14 Council Meeting, 5/20/15 Council Meeting).

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Wednesday 08/10/2016
Put children first
Posted: August 10, 2016 - 4:00 am

We hear a lot about K-12 education here in Arizona and we know the critical need for funding and upgrading our K-12 schools, but what about early childhood education? Early childhood education provides the tools for kindergarten readiness beginning at birth. Think about this fact: 90 percent of a child’s critical brain development occurs before age 5.   

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Tuesday 08/09/2016
Political signs are trashy
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:33 am

What a trashy-looking town Oro Valley has become with the “I Have the Biggest” Trump mentality of political signs blowing around during this Monsoon Season.  Recent visitors from New Jersey were not impressed and I was angry. Candidates like Brendan Burns, Bill Garner, and Mike Zinken don’t have to flaunt their “Manhood!” through H-U-G-E signs supported by fringe tea partiers, bottomless dollar interests of developers hungrily waiting to blade more desert, and anonymous out-of-state monies supporting their own agenda...GREED AT ANY COST!   Instead these three intelligent men  speak to people at house parties, walk around neighborhoods, and tirelessly look for ways to better our town while questioning some of the proposals that our present majority town council has blithely accepted. 

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Sheriff race politics
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:33 am

When Deputy Sheriff Terry Staten (a Republican) indicated his desire to run for Sheriff of Pima County, Chuck Huckelberry, the Pima County Administrator and a Democrat, advised the current Pima County Sheriff, Chris Nanos (also a Democrat) to put Mr. Staten on leave of absence (LOA) without pay. The reason being his running for office would adversely affect the operation of the department. The LOA was put into effect even before Mr. Staten formally “put his hat in the ring” and became a candidate. 

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Let’s think
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:34 am

Boys, put on your thinking caps. Both Brendan Burns and Mike Zinkin are experienced and dedicated Oro Valley Town Council members who have proven their value to public policy matters of Oro Valley. Neither are in anyone’s hip-pocket and deserve re-election.

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Solomon is ideal choice
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:34 am

For the past 20 years Steve Solomon has been working to improve our community. Through his small business, he donated 13 acres of his property to preserve our historic Hohokam archeological site. He was also a charter member of our library. Steve Solomon has volunteered his time on many Oro Valley committees and was a guest instructor for our town’s Planning Institute. He has received numerous awards including the Metropolitan Pima Alliance Common Ground Award and the Governor’s Archaeology Advisory Council Award in Public Archaeology. When he was on Council in 2010-2012, he helped balance our budget by cutting spending without sacrificing our critical town services. During those two years, he implemented several smart growth initiatives and along with Vice Mayor Waters, formed our new and expanded Sun Shuttle Dial-A-Ride transportation service. His past private and public service makes him the ideal choice for a new Council Member. Please vote Steve Solomon for Oro Valley Town Council.

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Don’t let opponents scare you
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:35 am

One of my favorite quotes is from the late New York senator Patrick Moynihan. He said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.” It’s election time in Oro Valley, so once again it’s time to invoke Sen. Moynihan’s wisdom.

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Do what’s best for Oro Valley
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:35 am

So much has been said about the three incumbents running for the Oro Valley Town Council. They did not vote for the budget, they vote against the Mayor and his cronies all the time and do not want the best for the residents of Oro Valley. Having lived in the area since 1983 and annexed around 1986 I have a different view. The Mayor and his cronies run a dictatorship. I am not sure that any of his band of three have ever had an original thought or idea. Re-electing the incumbents will at least let the citizens get to see the other side of all the issues that face the town. Too bad the votes on everything will still be 4 to 3 at the worst.

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Sharing opinion to help you with vote
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:36 am

The three current council members seeking re-election to the Oro Valley Town Council are Burns, Garner and Zinkin.These incumbent candidates have demonstrated a more citizen centered approach in governing by pushing for transparency, financial responsibility and in representing residents’ concerns at council meetings. Mayor Hiremath and council members Hornat, Snider and Waters (The Majority 4) are not up for re-election at this time and typically vote as a block on such important Oro Valley issues as the new sales tax, golf course, restaurant, etc.The “new” candidates - Pina, Rodman and Solomon - are aligned with the Majority 4 seeking election to the Burns, Garner and Zinkin seats. You have probably noticed “group” signs for these new candidates as well as mailed flyers, much as you saw them for Hiremath, Hornat, Snider and Waters in the recall election. That’s likely because ! the three challengers are using the same expensive voting consultants as the gang of four used in the recall election last fall. Don Cox, through his “Triple E” PAC, has mailed a “kill piece” – attempting to damage the reelection chances for Burns, Garner and Zinkin. Hiremath, Hornat and Waters have been contributors to this PAC.It is important to note that if this election results in even 1 of the challengers being elected, the result would be a new council with a more than likely 5-2, 6-1 or even 7-0 vote mix instead of the current 4-3.That is important because 5 or more votes would be a disastrous “super majority” on the council making the current majority even more developer-centric. Super majority votes are required when deciding major plan amendment changes such as land use (commercial designation to or from residential designation) as an example. Also, resident official protests or challenges to council decisions require a 6 vote majority to settle.In summary, a! vote for Pina, Rodman or Solomon is a vote for the Mayor and his gang. Hope this opinion helps you to decide how to vote on the future of Oro Valley!

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Name calling and misinform-ation don’t work
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:36 am

Having been a reader for a number of years, I still have a hard time understanding the misinformation, the name-calling, and the constant focus on one issue politics in Oro Valley. It’s been nothing but second-guessing even since the first hint of up-scale shopping at Oracle and Tangerine. Now it’s week after week of golf course politics. It’s time for the six candidates running to be specific on what they are going to do to improve things for all people living in Oro Valley and stop the name-calling. It’s time for all those running to understand something basic in running for office. Someone wins, Someone loses. Get over it. You don’t like what happening in Oro Valley, then come up with a better plan to improve things. It’s never good to have one party rule, with no difference of opinions. And it’s never good to be disruptive, and divisive just for the sake of nothing else to offer. Unless the present incumbents can come up with something to improve Oro Valley, then get out of the way and let people who have some ideas, instead of We Should Have, or We Shouldn’t Have. If the present incumbents can’t come up with something besides name calling, no, no hell no. I can’t see any other choice but to vote for Solomon, Pina, & Rodman. And one last thought. Our present Pima County Supervisor Ms. Miller I hope will take note of this letter. Because No, No, Hell No, and Don’t Blame Me, doesn’t work forever. Sooner or later politicians in office have to be productive, and willing to work with the majority to get things done. 

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Everyone is special
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:32 am

It amazes me how the term “special interest” is thrown about in elections. If you have a child in school you have a “special interest” in schools. If you are retired and receive Social Security and Medicare you have a “special interest” in protecting these.  If you play tennis or ride a bike you have a “special interest” in tennis and bike riding.  

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Leadership is a quality
Posted: August 09, 2016 - 9:32 am

Oro Valley Leadership is the slogan the mayor and his majority on the town council have used in their election, last years recall, and now to support the three challengers who are supposedly independent. It’s the same old trick by mayor, using FB video posts with himself, Mary, Lou, and Joe telling us how great these three independent candidates are, and just like last time he has found some police and fireman to give an endorsement. My feeling is police and fire shouldn’t get into politics. When they do it makes you wonder if their loyalty is to the people or the politicians. 

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Tuesday 08/02/2016
Readers should ignore Cox
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:13 pm

Don Cox claims that he submits letters “to counter crap put forth by the uninformed.”  Meanwhile, his letters are filled with more crap than a dozen horse stables and your readers would be well-served by ignoring him.  Case in point, his recent letter discussing who’s to blame for the high density rezonings that paved the way for three Oracle Road apartment complexes.

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Incumbents don’t want publicity
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:14 pm

We are getting very close to the date on which ballots for the Oro Valley Town Council election will be in your mail box.  Things have been unusually quiet. You may think that is because everything is going well and the local election is therefore not really important.  Unfortunately that isn’t the case.

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Great Oro Valley PD doesn’t need saving
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:14 pm

I have been a resident of Oro Valley for 14 years. My husband and I raised our two children here after retiring from law enforcement. Recently I observed political signs erected by Steve Solomon with wording “Save Our Police and SRO.”  I’m confused as to why Mr. Solomon feels it’s necessary to highlight such sentiments. I don’t believe our Oro Valley PD needs to be saved. They do a great job for our community and are respected and appreciated.  The current counsel, including the 3 members up for re-election, just voted to add an SRO to Pusch Ridge Academy as reported by the Explorer.  I have attended various meetings through the years and have never once heard any discussion by any council member which would lead me to believe our OVPD was in jeopardy and needed to be “saved”. Yes, we all know Mr. Zinkin has always questioned why OVPD, the largest receiver of tax payer money, is not subject to an audit as other city agencies are, but he has never pushed to shut down our SRO’s or Police Department.   This subject came up in the re-call last year when Ryan Hartung was accused, incorrectly, of being against the OVPD. He emphatically denied any truth to those rumors. So I have to wonder is Mr. Solomon jumping in with the usual allies of the Mayor initiating accusations and fear.  Is he using the current events and attacks on our national law enforcement agencies as a political ploy to get elected? Whatever his reason I am appalled he is using law enforcement as a pawn in his election bid. I am a retired Sergeant of the NYPD with 20 years’ experience, married to a retired Sergeant of the NYPD with 21 years’ experience. My brother is a retired NYPD Sergeant with 25 years and his wife is a retired 1st grade Detective.  Lastly I am the proud daughter of an NYPD Lieutenant retired with 30 plus years. So yes I have a right to feel offended by politicians who use us for their gains and fear mongering.

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Don’t get caught in this “Ally” fight
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:14 pm

In what is fast becoming Pima County’s very own version of Hillary Clinton’s email scandal, Ally Miller, the sitting Supervisor for District 1, has shown a penchant for bad judgment and an unhealthy mistrust of people with whom she has political disagreement. 

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Safety tips for getting back on the road to school
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:10 pm

As the new school year begins, AAA wants to remind motorists about safe ways to share the roads with pedestrians, bicyclists and school buses.

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Put pool safety at the top of your list
Posted: August 02, 2016 - 2:09 pm

The heat is on! My sons and I have found ourselves near a pool a fair share of times to beat the heat so far this summer. A nice dip is one of our favorite escapes from Tucson’s summer heat. Watching my younger son try to keep up with his older brother during a recent swim reminded me of the importance of the swimming lessons they had both taken when they were younger.

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Wednesday 07/27/2016
Fuel quality makes a difference
Posted: July 27, 2016 - 4:00 am

Not all gasoline is created equal, and AAA has discovered significant differences in the quality of gas sold at U.S. retailers.

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Tuesday 07/26/2016
Support Rodman
Posted: July 26, 2016 - 9:34 am

Charlie Hurt, Melanie Barrett, Tom Drzazgowski and I have worked with Bill Rodman on the Oro Valley Planning and Zoning Commission at various times during the past 4 years. Each of us enthusiastically support his election to the OV Town Council. Here’s why:

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