By James Sandefer, Special to The Explorer - Tucson Local Media: Editorials

By James Sandefer, Special to The Explorer

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Posted: Wednesday, November 11, 2009 12:00 am

Mayor Loomis was given an opportunity to refute Geri Ottoboni's letter to The Explorer with a four-column article citing "the importance of experience, and facts."

Loomis negated to mention some other facts about his so-called "leadership."

Let's elaborate.

Under the Loomis "leadership" —

1) About $50 million was approved for retail developers in the form of subsidies. The revenue generated from these ill-conceived giveaways has been so short of projections to be funny — if it wasn't so sad.

2) When this present council saw fit to put the sales tax revenue into an escrow account awaiting the Supreme Court ruling in the CityNorth case, Loomis cast the only "no" vote.

3) The Ritz Carlton resort at Dove Mountain in Marana was coming to Oro Valley. Loomis and his "pals" committed approximately $900,000 for a water facility plus a 2 percent bed tax "kickback." That was bad enough, but Loomis saw fit to give the Sheraton (now The Hilton) the same 2 percent "kickback" — with no justification. That fiasco has cost us upward of $3 million and is still ongoing.

4) Loomis spent about $11,000 on his European sojourn to Roche and other facilities. One and a half years later and still no report from the mayor to the council justifying the trip. Loomis gave a two-minute presentation to the Roche people. That cost us about $5,000 a minute, when a video could have been done for $5.

5) He talks about "sustainability." Talk is cheap. He voted "no" on the issue that was passed. He also voted "no" on the proposed economic development commission that the council passed. Loomis seems to think he always knows what's best for the people. Not so.

6) Thousands of us that were being serviced by the Rural Metro Fire Department. It was under the leadership of Loomis that Golder Ranch Fire District took control of pretty much everyone's fire service. That wouldn't be bad if our rates didn't escalate so dramatically — in many cases, double.

7) The voters turned down the $48.6 million bond issue for the Naranja Park construction. Loomis wasn't satisfied with "only" $48.6 million and he voted for a $154,000 expenditure.

8) We have a 2 percent utility tax on our gas, water and electric bills. That ill-conceived tax was due to "sunset" this past April until Loomis kept it going on a 4-3 vote.

9) Loomis consistently touts the merits of TREO and voted to give them $40,000 this year. Why? Loomis is on their board of directors and as recently as last month TREO paid for his trip to Albuquerque. Talk about a quid pro quo.

10) Our contingency fund is to be used for one-time expenditures. In May 2009, Loomis lead the charge, convincing Carter, Kunisch and Abbott to raid this fund against the recommendation of then Town Manager David Andrews. Why? To keep extra police that even the police chief said were not necessary.

11) Loomis is not truthful when he discusses the termination of Mr. Andrews at a council meeting on Sept 23. Loomis orchestrated the forced termination of David. Loomis said his "intuition" told him the council would terminate David that evening. Really? That alone is enough reason to not re-elect Loomis.

12) As a final way of proving his inept leadership, a few weeks ago at the State of The Town Speech, Loomis said on TV a property tax on Oro Valley homeowners might be necessary. Sure. Give money to his cronies at TREO and then tax the citizens. What a sham.

There's plenty more, but the above dozen items should prove one thing to the voters of Oro Valley — Loomis must go.

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