I believe Sedonans have just been scammed by the organization called Let the People Vote (LTPV) on 89A! LTPV doesn’t seem to really care about letting the people vote. I attended the ADOT Board meeting May 20 where Councilor Mike Ward, on behalf of City Council, requested ADOT’s Board to extend the deadline on the 89A Route Transfer deal from June 30 until December 15 so the referendum election on November 8 will have meaning and citizens’ votes will actually decide the issue.
Councilor Ward affirmed the current council’s respect for the citizens’ right to vote. When I saw former Mayor Colquitt there representing Let the People Vote on 89A I thought maybe, just maybe, Sedona was united on this issue — to let the people vote and decide if we take back the road or not. Instead the former Mayor urged ADOT to go ahead and put in the 108 lights as soon as possible and said she was sure in November the results of the election would overturn council’s decision. I couldn’t believe my ears.
Was she really NOT asking ADOT to hold off until the election? Was she really telling ADOT to go forward to install the lights and her group would deliver the votes afterwards in a meaningless election in November?
I realized then that the goal of the referendum petition is not really to let the people decide. Let the People Vote on 89A seems to have already, before the vote, decided that the majority don’t want the route transfer. Where is the democracy the petition carriers talked about when they urged people to sign? Where is the statement on the petition they carried that says the purpose of the referendum is to overturn the council vote?
On my copy of the petition it requests that the motion of the Council on Feb 22 to take over the highway “shall be referred to a vote of the qualified electors of the City of Sedona for their approval or reject…” Ms Colquitt must be forgetting that some people signed the petition requesting the right to vote on the issue but would vote in favor of the route transfer. It seems that for her and LTPV group, since she was speaking for them, the peoples’ votes don’t really count.
Colquitt admitted that the goal of LTPV is “apublic vote to overturn the decision of the Sedona City Council to take ownership of 89A.” While we know that is the LTPV steering committee’s goal, they had, at least until now, couched it in the cloak of actually letting the people decide in a vote.
This echoes Councilor Dinunzio’s comment at the May 10 Council meeting that the initiative for the referendum “was not to let the people vote,” but to stop the route transfer.Councilor Dinunzio, who signed the petition, further stated, “They’re probably doing cartwheels that there doesn’t need to be a vote.”
On the contrary, they should also have asked ADOT to wait until after the vote. Hey Sedona, we’ve been had.
In my opinion, that referendum should be declared null and void and just as it says on the petition that, “It is a Class 1 misdeameanor for any person to knowingly sign an initiative or referendum petition with a name other than his own,” maybe it should also be a misdemeanor to misrepresent the purpose of the referendum to the petition signers. By not urging ADOT to hold off any action on 89A until after the referendum, the group known as Let the People Vote on 89A showed their true colors.