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Eddie Maddock: City Council Deals Are Destroying Our Sedona Dream

SedonaEye.com columnist Eddie S. Maddock revisits the City of Sedona Dream and why Home Rule and the City Council are destroying it.

Sedona AZ (May 20, 2018) – Whether an idiom, proverb or adage, the saying ““a watched pot never boils”” takes on a totally new meaning in Sedona, Arizona. It might more appropriately be changed to “”watched pots never STOP boiling” in this neck of the woods.”

And as election time approaches, there are so many pots a-boiling that keeping track can be a fulltime job, if not mission impossible.

Adding fuel to keep those pots active are many, many rumors, some without merit and, in particular, relate to the periodic return of the ballot measure Alternate Expenditure Limitation, a.k.a Home Rule. Much has been written elsewhere about the concept of the measure, but “alternate expenditure limitation” defines it in a nutshell.

It’ has frequently been repeated in the event voters deny continuation of Home Rule it will either eliminate or vastly decrease funding for such “city services” as, for example, the library. While such a possibility cannot be denied, let’’s first get something clear.

Our library was established prior to the incorporation of Sedona by volunteers and, to this day, although the city presently provides funding for the operation, it is not owned by “the city.” Volunteers and private contributions made it happen, including design and construction of the present beautiful facility, and the physical efforts to relocate from the former location on Jordan Road.

1958: A volunteer group, Friends of the Library, established Sedona’s first library in donated space, with three shelves of books and magazines also donated. https://www.sedonalibrary.org/history.html

The same was true for the Humane Society of Sedona. Volunteers likewise made that happen without one penny from “a city.” Why? Because it didn’t exist. Minimal funds were, however, derived from both counties and perhaps a grant here and there. Keep Sedona Beautiful has the same story to tell. And, in fact, so does the original Sedona Oak-Creek Canyon Chamber of Commerce, established over 50 years ago and survived prior to incorporation, supported by private individuals, members and volunteers.

No matter where you go in the country, an Elks Lodge is right around the corner. With more than 850,000 members and 2,000 Lodges nationwide, Elks are providing charitable services that help build stronger communities. Join today.

Fundraising galas occurred frequently up at the Elks Club and were always well-attended with proceeds dedicated to benefit one cause or another. People cared. There wasn’t a tug of war for funding as exists this day and age. Community support prevailed.

Posse Grounds was alive and well, and accommodated many local events. We had the Art Barn uptown with a stage for performances, and all did very well without city funding.

We had no boundaries. People actually got along and smiled at each other. That old-fashioned way of life has been traded in for a new trend of power and money grabbing, in what all too often appears to be a result of self-indulgence for quite possibly the wrong reasons.

And unlike other cities/town, Sedona doesn’’t provide such things as water and garbage pick-up. So no, Folks, they cannot cut service in the event Home Rule is denied by voters. YOU pay the providers and it has nothing to do with our city government. The same is true of the Sedona Oak Creek Fire District and the Sedona Oak Creek Unified School District. They are NOT part of incorporated Sedona, but function through regional districts. And unlike, for example, Cottonwood, the City of Sedona does not own the airport.

Same as the fire and school districts, the Chamber of Commerce provides a regional service, but somehow manages to reap huge financial benefits from the City of Sedona which, of course, remain highly contentious.

How many folks would be brokenhearted if eliminating “Home Rule” would force cancellation of the city/chamber contract, headed up by people who seem to be unable to give an accounting of just how many of their members are located outside Sedona City Limits and do not deserve to be promoted via incorporated city funding? That remains a mystery since a simple cursory review of the members listed in the Chamber’s publication (providing such information reveals exactly where they are located) and maybe one or two not even in Arizona?

Further, not all 86336 zip codes are located within Sedona City Limits; however, a quick physical count of the onsite location of members really shouldn’t be that difficult to ascertain those who legitimately are entitled to be promoted at the alleged “official City of Sedona Visitors Center.”

In fact, again unlike most municipalities, actual necessary services provided by Sedona government are pretty much limited to the police department, wastewater treatment plant, providing and maintaining infrastructure which even at that is also limited considering our two major routes belong and are maintained by the State of Arizona.

And, of course, perhaps the primary reason voters approved incorporation? Community development – for the purpose of issuing permits in order to control such things as high density projects and ensure tasteful architecture to blend with our special environment.

Keep that in mind as you observe approval of at least two more major resort hotels in the near future; Upper Red Rock Loop and Soldiers Pass Road/89A, formerly Biddles. Will defeating Home Rule negate anything like that?

Since the basic services provided by incorporated Sedona are essentially limited to a Police Department, Wastewater Treatment Plant, Community Development and limited activity by the Public Works Department, how badly would Sedona residents suffer if Home Rule were to be denied?

Certainly it would be unfortunate if grants to non-profits are reduced or eliminated; however, does the public in general have enough grit and determination to keep these services up and running if such a thing were to occur? After all, most were established without Sedona city funding in the first place.

For example, a very recent event was paramount in precipitating the effort to pull this information together.

Featured in “Kudos The Good Life” (May 16-22, 2018) is a recap of The Rotary Club of Sedona’s 2018 Chili Cook-off: In addition to chili-chef winners, there are impressive lists of the names of sponsors for the event. For example, a total of nine sponsored “Beverage, Parking, Shuttle and Judges’ Gifts, seven sponsored “Habanero” and two people were “Serano” sponsors. A total of thirty-two stood up for “Jalepeno and Chili Pepper” while an impressive one hundred eleven donated to the “Rotary Silent Auction.” Keep in mind those numbers, totaling one hundred sixty-one businesses and individuals willing to give of their time, effort and products to make this annual event happen, remain really quite impressive…and prove that community spirit has not taken a leave of absence and grit and desire to make things happen. It can be done with or without incorporated Sedona.

After all, prior to 1988, when boundaries didn’t officially define Sedona City Limits, that’s how folks lived, cooperatively, and in unity without beating a path to a City Hall for funding.

Each and every civic organization offered not only group unification, but brought the community together at events such as the Chili Cookoff sponsored by the Rotary Club.

For so many years Sedona lived “the Impossible Dream.” Has that purpose become so faded and distorted that it no longer exists?

IMPOSSIBLE DREAM LYRICS:

To dream the impossible dream,
To fight the unbeatable foe,
To bear with unbearable sorrow,
To run where the brave dare not go.
To right the unrightable wrong,
To love pure and chaste from afar,
To try when your arms are too weary,
To reach the unreachable star,

This is my quest,
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless,
No matter how far.

To fight for the right
Without question or pause,
To be willing to march
Into hell for a heavenly cause.
And I know if I’ll only be true
To this glorious quest
That my heart will be peaceful and calm
When I’m laid to my rest.

And the world will be better for this,
That one man scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage.
To fight the unbeatable foe.
To reach the unreachable star.

Read www.SedonaEye.com for daily news and interactive views!

 

567 Comments

  1. @To RS says:

    Suggest you check out SE letter to editor from Warren Woodward – “Sedona Council Candidates Pass Fail Question”

    Sure seems to me like Tony Tonsich, the mayoral candidate, and Council candidates Noelle Julian and Sam Tardio have a commonality that might just get them elected because all three of them said NO to the following question according to Woodward: “. If elected, would you support the City’s long standing practice of financially supporting promotional advertising for Sedona tourism?”
    Repeating and according to Woodward, the three of them said “NO.”

    Based on that alone I certainly don’t have a problem voting for all three of them!!

  2. steve Segner says:

    If elected, would you support the City’s long standing practice of financially supporting promotional advertising for Sedona tourism?”

    Remember 10,000 people make a living in sedona, and they vote and write checks. .

  3. To @To RS says:

    That’s fine and dandy

  4. @to RS says:

    Yep I guess the money guy who dropped Tony fiqured him out quickly and that’s why they dropped $ him..

    Doesn’t take a brain surgeon to fiqure out his TRUE mindset and what a hypocrital phoneyhe is…..

    Not sure who im voting for but it ain’t gonna be that liar….

    Yes on homerule for me… If he’s agaisnt it… I’m for it.

  5. Sedona Pete says:

    @steve Segner “Remember 10,000 people make a living in sedona, and they vote and write checks.”

    Is that so? Prove it, Segner. PROVE IT.

    The last official census indicated Sedona’s population was just around 10K. If what you say is true that means EVERY Sedona resident has a job here? INCREDIBLE. Call Congress. We’re magic. Hail Trump!

    What about those who are retired?

    Your statement is asinine unless they have phony addresses within City Limits which they use to finagle voting fraud? Of course you wouldn’t know anything about that would you O Worldly No-It-All!

    10K making a living in Sedona and voting and writing checks. . . . WTF does anybody listen to his BS!

  6. Eddie Maddock says:

    The following email from Sedona City Clerk Susan L. Irvine is in response to my request to her in August of 2014. Her figure, as indicated, reflects the number of Sedona registered voters during the March 2014 election as being 6,495.

    Can it be true Sedona presently has 10,000 registered voters as so stated in a current comment appearing on SedonaEye? @Steve Segner “Remember 10,000 people make a living in sedona, and they vote and write checks. .”

    From: Susan Irvine
    Date: 8/28/2014 8:44:42 AM
    To: Eddie Maddock
    Subject: Re: SEDONA REGISTERED VOTERS

    Hi Eddie,

    I don’t have the current numbers yet but for the March 2014 election there were 6,495 registered voters in Sedona. The current number should be close to that.

    Susan

    Susan L. Irvine, CMC
    City Clerk
    City of Sedona
    928.282.3113
    Email: SIrvine@SedonaAZ.gov

  7. Sedona Chamber mixer says:

    HELD OUT OF SEDONA OF COURSE.

    Sedona Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau, From Chamber E news Monday June 18th.

    “Join the SCC&TB & CCoC teams, along with 400+ Verde Valley entrepreneurs on Tuesday, June 26, from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at the Blazin M Ranch, located at 1875 Mabery Ranch Road in Cottonwood. Enjoy friends, food and a little networking to boot!”

    Funny how hotels outside of Sedona don’t pay any of the $2.5 million the SCC&TB Gets. Maybe they are trying to make Sedona a better place to ” Live,work, play and visit”, by holding all their events out of Sedona?

  8. Hal says:

    50 Destinations So Magical You Won’t Believe They’re in the U.S

    http://a.msn.com/03/en-us/AAyFBgS?ocid=st

    Sedona didn’t make Top 50. Page AZ and Antelope Canyon did. Without $$$$ paid to Sedona Chamber of Commerce. Lesson up here to Sedona businesses & people voting to pay more taxes to them.

    Or ignore as usual.

  9. Dave says:

    “Remember 10,000 people make a living in sedona, and they vote and write checks. .” @Steve Segner

    Great News! With that many people living and working in Sedona it must mean the need for affordable housing has suddenly vanished. We’re in the Sedona money! Oh Happy Day!

    Now if we can convince all those voters to vote NO on Home Rule maybe we can ALL sleep well at night. That would be a switcheroo for those worrying about losing their unlimited spending power presently provided by unlimited Home Rule. And whether or not their candidates will be elected to continue on with the giveaways to sate their own appetites for the life style to which they’ve become accustomed. Yep nothing lasts forever. We shall see.

  10. DDS says:

    Blazin M is a fun family friendly event venue and it holds up to 280 people max. The Sedona Chamber typically attracts less then 100 to its mixers and many are employees of business owners that send them for social events because they pay annual dues for the tickets. I don’t understand why there would be any issue with employees in Cottonwood having a place to go and socialize paid for by their business owners because driving to Sedona isn’t what locals do because of the tourist jams and cost to eat there. Thank you. I read the Sedona Eye daily.

  11. Joe in west Sedona says:

    Hello Brain Dead Sedona Voters!

    Need any further reasons to Vote NO on Home Rule since Sedona taxes are again being spent to promote another of their outside Sedona City Limits beneficiaries, Blazin M Ranch, courtesy of the misnamed city funded Sedona Chamber of Commerce & Visitors Bureau.

    A super place. It’s an example of how the “regional” Chamber of Commerce, funded by millions of $$$$ of hard working, sometimes struggling Sedona City Limits licensed businesses will dump on nonmembers and promote competition. That is their job like you know to support their members regardless of where geographically they’re located. (deleted by editor)

    As bizarre as this story unfolds could it be possible the proprietors of Blazin M are counted in the 10 thousand claimed to live and vote in Sedona? How in God’s name did this insanity insane come about? The answer to that is as dumb as the question. Stupid (deleted by editor) heads seated on the SEDONA City Council that’s how.

    City Council & Candidates do you even have a clue how this must be working to make Sedona the laughingstock of all Arizona? WISE UP! More to the point WISE UP SEDONA VOTERS (all 10 thousand of you) OMG LMAO (deleted by editor)

    If you vote for nothing else VOTE NO ON HOME RULE! Join the FB convo now above. It’s getting late!

  12. Donna Joy Varney says:

    The State does a Sedona Profile.

    Which shows us a total of Sedona Jobs as 5,584.

    NOT Steve’s bogus numbers

    http://www.sedonacity.com/SedonaFactCollective/AZ%20Commerce%20Authority/report.pdf

    Education, health care & social assistance 1,006
    Arts, entertainment, food & recreation services 816
    Retail trade 446
    Manufacturing 233
    Professional, scientific, & administrative services 698
    Public administration 117
    Construction 417
    Transportation, warehousing, & utilities 131
    Finance, insurance & real estate 271
    Other services, except public administration 301
    Agriculture, forestry, fishing, hunting, & mining 26
    Wholesale trade 86
    Information 140

    Jobs in Retail & Arts, entertainment, Food, Recreation 1,262 NOT EVEN CLOSE!

    Vote NO on Home Rule!

  13. ARIZONA LIBERTY says:

    2016 Registered Sedona City Voters
    Coconino County 2,055
    Yavapai County 4,851
    Total 6,906

  14. Steve segner says:

    Joe, or should I say Donna, the Sedona Chamber of Commerce is an organization funded by its members they are a Valleywide organization with some members even in Phoenix ,they were more than entitled to have meetings. And yes Joe,/Donna it is a regional chamber that represents members of all the Valley we all understand that .
    The chamber also promotes all activities in the verde Valley so we don’t wear out our precious hiking trails. the VERDE Valley has much to offer for people visiting Sedona and staying in Sedona , The City/visitor bureau marketing program has never talked about any individual business it talks about the beauty of Sedona and things to do in the area .
    We must all remember that Sedona is A tourist town always has been is supported by tourists $$$$.
    The cities and the chambers new program is about balance that’s what everybody’s been asking for, some people in town just want to kill the chamber out of jealousy and spite. If you don’t believe me ask around Why Baker no longer has a business in West Sedona really interesting story .
    The Chamber of Commerce does not get any money from the city, the visitors bureau is a vendor for the city I just wanted to bring that up before Donna starts another tirade falsehood and lies,
    Last week there was a three hour meeting at the city Council they went into detail on the visitor bureaus new plan,not one person from the Community came and spoke against the the funding.
    Chamber news:
    Last week the City Council unanimously OK’ed our FY19 Tourism Bureau plan, fantastic news for all of us concerned about traffic, our quality of life and keeping the economy strong.

    The vote means we will hit ‘pause’ with our marketing by not increasing our promotion of Sedona for the next year. We won’t advertise inside Arizona at all this summer, hoping to make a small dent in our traffic congestion. We declined an 11% tourism budget increase, asking that the money help pay for scheduled transportation improvements.

    By reinvesting 23% of the budget right here in Sedona, we will preserve local trails, expand our wayfinding signage and develop ideas for improved parking.

    We’re ready to go with smart phone platforms to get people out of their cars with live parking reports and GPS-supported information for easily seeing Sedona on foot.

    Our first-ever Sustainable Tourism Plan will be a guide for managing tourism with stewardship, preservation and visitor education in mind. It’s a partnership with the City and will be ready this fall.

    Tourism drives our economy, and it’s exciting to be part of a community-wide desire to manage it for the benefit of all
    Just a reminder to everybody that if home rule does not pass you can pretty much expect no paving ,no parks, no dog park no pools , no funding from library and absolutely no new traffic programin Sedona and funding for almost no nonprofits and those are facts voting no on home rule is a tea party issue remember that

  15. Mary says:

    @stevesegmer |||We’re ready to go with smart phone platforms to get people out of their cars with live parking reports and GPS-supported information for easily seeing Sedona on foot.|||

    HOLD ON !! I hope it’s not that local guy who developed this portable sightseeing ear & phone & recorded smack in car & carry in your hand junk of years ago & it never worked.

    NO WAY WERE PEOPLE GOING TO WALK. NO WAY WERE PEOPLE GOING TO DRIVE THEIR CARS AND SIT IN TRAFFIC. NO WAY ARE PEOPLE GOING TO USE MORE THAN AN APP & THEN IT BETTER BE FREE.

    You all are old. Ask somebody under 18 what’s up w/travel apps & learn.

    HOLD ON AGAIN !! Unless you’re providing portable A/C units IT’S NOT GOING TO WORK. Been tried before & was BIG FAIL.

    Happened about same time as the city built those roasting ovens they call bus shelters that no body uses. DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE 100 plus weather first. People don’t like walking across the road at Tlaq where I work because it’s too hot outside!!

    People won’t ride the trolley. People won’t ride a bus. IT’S TOO DAMN HOT & IT’S NOT WORTH THE EFFORT WHEN YOU CAN USE YOUR OWN CAR ON THE FEW FEET OF HIGHWAY IN SEDONA.

  16. Liz says:

    Back to square one Councilors? Segner says you approved another traffic study. Ridiculous.

    Here’s one free.

    Two roads, too much drive through cheapo tourist traffic, too few quality dollars spent any more by upscale tourists. Air quality growing poorer because Sedona is a basin and the acid from car exhaust is eating our rock faces. Sliding Rock will be closed more than its open this year because you invited daytrippers that clog the roads for a view or hike after which we’ll have to pick up their tons of (deleted by editor) diapers and depends and food and garbage. Give us a break! You are worried about a nonexistent straw issue having effect on fish after e coli tourist population kills most of Oak Creek and its fish?

  17. Tony Tonsich says:

    I’d like to start off that I am not associated with the tea party or the group in town that is tea party. You will have to look at one of the other mayoral candidates for that.

    I would also like to state again the the city of Sedona is currently set up to spend as much money as possible.

    That is why the Sedona library, the one that received over $1,200,000 from your property taxes last year. The one that has a stock account that in their most recent tax return was valued at $2,862,460 and checking and savings accounts valued at $1,147,000. The library also pays salaries of $903,480. I think if the city were to stop funding the library, the library would be fine FOR ABOUT 30 YEARS !! No bake sales required. Contact me and I’ll give you a copy of the Library’s most recent tax return.

    The Sedona Chamber, the one that clogs your roads with day trippers, who according to the most recent traffic study 50% of whom DO NOT STOP IN SEDONA !! I can send you a copy of that too. The Chamber president Jennifer Wesselhoff even admitted in her most recent presentation to the Sedona City council, that they will stop advertising for day trippers FOR THIS SUMMER ONLY. Could it be because we are voting?

    Segner and those that use his name are believers in the Nazi strategy if you tell a lie big enough and long enough people will believe it.

    I’m sorry about the yelling,(all caps) but there is so much money at stake the chamber supporters will just keep trying to fool you.

    When you vote, vote NO on Home Rule, vote in a new council. Prove to the liars you are smarter than they are.

  18. Donna Joy Varney says:

    I am voting NO on Home Rule for many reasons.

    Rejecting Home Rule will allow us to clean house,kick out the rats and leeches sucking our city dry while they get enriched and build their assets.

    The City of Sedona jurisdiction is defined by the city limits. With a No Vote the residents can stop the insane idea that the city should be subsidizing the entire verde valley.

    Businesses and private clubs need to pay their own bills. It is not the taxpayer's job to subsidise them.

    Please vote NO.

  19. Joe in West Sedona says:

    FYI @Steve Segner You’re way off base. For one thing my name IS Joe & my wife isn’t a Donna. Judging from your lengthy diatribe you’ve got it bad. Cool your jets.

    Let me thank you for your detailed explanation of all the reasons the City shouldn’t fund a Chamber outside city limits or anything else regional.

    The purpose of incorporation is to define a specific geographic area as a City or Town and set up rules, codes, and regulations to govern THAT SPECIFIC AREA. (Not to play nursemaid or Big Brother to an entire north central part of the state.) That goes for financial support to any member driven special interest club representing Verde Valley or State of AZ or Maricopa CO and elsewhere that lines up at city hall for a handout.

    The Chamber/City contract can be cancelled at any time and my hunch is some council candidates favor withdrawing funding to the Chamber or cancelling the contract entirely. They might have healthy support from Sedona voters. (you’re hallucinating or high on something if you think 10,000 so cut the crap.)

    Remember I’m Joe in west Sedona. Get a grip and don’t exaggerate the Chamber’s importance. It’s not, it’s a freebie job resource for a few connected Sedona area residents that don’t qualify for the big leagues out of town.

  20. F.Y.I. says:

    The City is being run for tourists and tourists businesses. The City Manager and City Council are not inclusive – residents are personae non gratae. The culprit for Sedona’s poor quality of life and horrendous traffic woes is the Chamber of Commerce. Day-trippers and drive-throughs galore are its legacy.

    By giving City funds to the Sedona Red Rock Trail Fund, the Chamber of Commerce is violating the Arizona Constitution’s “Gift Clause” prohibition against “any donation or grant, by subsidy or otherwise, to any individual, association or corporation.”

    Voting against Home Rule is no tea party issue. Residents need new people on the Council who want to stop the God-awful traffic that makes us prisoners in our homes.

  21. @fyi says:

    Whaaaaaaa!

  22. Mike H says:

    The chamber, city staff and their supporters are like sharks, all appetite, no brain. What will revenue be like when all the residents move out and all the tourists are one time visit no stop drive thru? Whoops, no revenue. The golden goose that was Sedona is dead.

    I’ll make you a promise, if the current status quo is maintained, I’m moving. One less resident to use city services. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA What’s so funny? The city provides almost no services to residents. If you are the chamber and city staff? Gold plated.

    Residents last, pay up sucker! “Traffic is your destiny !”

  23. steve Segner says:

    (deleted by editor) Tony said:
    I ask all the readers to keep in mind that all the city management projections of shutting down the city are made on an almost $50 million projected budget.

    Tony any way you cut it the new number will under $13,000,000 Fact,
    funding police and waste water you will have $1,500,000 or less to run the city!

    Facts… What is your budget….. For get the 38 or 50 million budget that paves roads and fixes roads, gone….for Get the saving by firing all the staff and cutting the chamber…

    You will still only have $1,500,000 or less….and That will not cover severance packages for all the city employees…
    All city services will stop….
    The is “T” part starve them

    Tony please show us how you will run the city with $1,500,000 happy to meet you any time let do the numbers at the Library you want to De fund

  24. Marcie says:

    If anyone is able to translate @Steve Segner comment on June 20 @1:31 ??? This is the Brain running Sedona? The man appears to be illiterate. Where does that leave the city council and staff?

    Vote them OUT! Vote NO ON HOME RULE to UNfund for all those services we don’t have in the first place???????? They provide what we individually provide for ourselves. Why do we give them money???

  25. Mike H says:

    @steve Segner

    Hey stevie, are you upset that Tony is not responding to you? Maybe it’s because he does not feel the need to respond to every illiterate idiot in Sedona?
    Maybe it’s because you have never stated a true “Fact” in your life?

  26. @Mike H says:

    No city services!!??

    Mike get out from behind you computer and open your eyes man!
    Better yet say GOODBYE
    Ha ha ha ha ha ha
    You idiot

  27. Richard D. says:

    It’s true. Sedona does NOT provide services that other cities/towns do.

    Water and garbage are two major examples. So what would could they take from us? Oh, Parks & Recreation, The Hub? And those are lovely fuzzy-wuzzies but hardly vital. For those on the sewer and they threaten to quit “pumping”, maybe they can provide porta-potties? As for the roads? They are in general a pile of cracked up mixed up hunks of broken tar at best. So what?

    The plea that the sky will fall if the pantywaists at City Hall don’t have their over-inflated piggy squealing in delight cuz their credit cards might be on temporary hold might be forced to step down a peg and live like the flatlanders. Pity!

    No to incumbents. No to Home Rule. MIke H, Marcie & others are correct in what they write. Calling the illiterate pain-in the butt as they see fit. Truth is truth. This is Sedona NOT Sedina.

  28. Tony Tonsich says:

    Regarding the Library. I love the library. It has been massively over funded.

    I had an email exchange with Mr DeTar , president of he library board, over the last few days. I could not get him to admit to the $2,265,377 in publicly traded securities (stock) the Sedona Library owns shown on it’s most recent tax return.. Nor would he agree that the $534,076 savings account or the $613,291 in cash non interest bearing account were any more than operating funds. The library does show a depreciated building valued at $2,862,460. That is significantly different than Mr DeTar’s Our “assets” happen to be the building that was built with NO taxpayer money and strictly donated funds and in kind labor.”

    The “small staff” according to the most recent tax return was paid total compensation of $844,921.

    When we discussed the $22,357 that is shown on the Library tax return as payment to Joel DeTar, President -Elect, he said “As to how the accounting firm decided to list the payment to me, there was much discussion. They felt it would appear that we were trying to hide something if compensation to a Board member was listed any other way.” Mr DeTar elaborated ” My company did a renovation of the “house” that the Library owns next door. We brought it into compliance for ADA access so it could be used for the Friends of the Library permanent book-sale building.” I pointed out the Maintenance and repairs category of the tax return, which shows Expenses of $63,868 and $59,860. I don’t know if Mr DeTar or his company was paid any of the previously mentioned amounts.

    I will be happy to provide a copy of the tax return, to anyone who asks. As always, I am willing to back up my statements with documented proof.

    I think the library will be fine with just the over $1,200,000 it receives from your county property tax while we lower resident sewer fees for those residents like myself on a fixed income.

    NO on Home Rule. Stop the waste and giveaways to insiders.

  29. Keith says:

    What’s the true issue? Sedona needs to grow gradually not haphazardly. We don’t need tourists because they will find us.

  30. Richard S says:

    Tony T

    Who better then you would know how overfunded the library is?!

    After all your the president of a smalll (10 houses) HOA..

    The only thing smaller then that HOA is your small minded thinking..

  31. Oak Creek Canyon says:

    @RichardS You’re not the Richard S I thought because he has more class than to lower himself to say what you did. Like If the size of a penis or a HOA has anything to do with ones qualifications to be a councilor or mayor or serve in any capacity? My vote will go for Toncich because he responds with facts not fiction while your comments disgust.

  32. Richard S says:

    @oak creek canyon

    Oh please…suck it up..
    You must be a delicate flower.. Plus, there was nothing derogatory in the last statement…

    Grow a set will ya

  33. Al says:

    USA Today Friday story said the Supreme Court ruled that the government generally needs a warrant to track people’s locations through their mobile phones, according to USA Today. The case grew out of law enforcement’s use of the Stored Communications Act which allows phone records to be used if they can be helpful in a criminal investigation. USA Today reports that Chief Justice John Roberts and four justices said decades old rules on privacy are inadequate in an age of rapid technological advances. Naveed Kahn said Americans have no privacy. They gave it up to social network and use computers and this law is already antiquated. Reminds me of Sedona residents. They put up a huge ugly cell tower in the middle of the golden goose and won’t believe realtors that it hurt values. So the city will build more. Exactly like government workers everywhere.

  34. steve Segner says:

    Tony Tonsich
    goes to war with the library, that is how you get elected … go tony keep it up…

  35. LeRoy Jones says:

    My vote goes for Tony Tonsich. And in fact, my vote(s) will go AGAINST anyone and/or anything to which that extremely rude person (ID’s himself as Steve Segner) claims to support. His lame explanations and rants, pretty erratic and definitely self-serving, cause me to have the same reaction as fingernails on a chalkboard. Irritating as hell. Luv what Oak Creek Canyon wrote although question the validity of the source being “Oak Creek Canyon.” Isn’t that outside city limits? But, of course, the Segner fellow also lives up the canyon. Wish he’d stay there!

  36. Tony Tonsich says:

    The problem is easy, we have too many tourists and limited roads. If you pave all of Sedona, you will essentially destroy it to make it more accessible for tourists. Unfortunately, that is the strategy of the chamber and “Sedona in Motion”, a few more turn lanes and keep growing so a few greedy people can charge higher room rates. City staff loves it because it means more revenue for them to spend. They can’t imagine saying “Sedona is Full”. They can deny it, but we live in a small valley surrounded by beautiful red rocks and forest wilderness. The space is limited, so growth is limited.

    They can say “NIMBY” ( not in my back yard ) and close the gate behind us, but Sedona is geographically limited. It’s like denying reality. You can deny reality, but you can’t deny the consequences of denying reality.”

    The consequences of denying reality will destroy the Sedona we love.

  37. Angie In the Know says:

    Don’t sweat Folksies. That gal Jen with the chamber of commerce tells us that she and her 858 members (mostly outside city limits and who do NO contribute to Sedona City tax base, although she claims otherwise without a smidgeon of proof) – well “they” are gonna tackle the traffic dilemma!

    Yup – thems that largely created the fiasco by misappropriating advertising in the Phoenx area resulting in hordes of day trippers – well (again) they a-gonna fix it by identifying realistic alternatives to personal cars (presently the preferred method of tourists travelling to Sedona and thru scenic Oak Creek Canyon).

    Ya’ll heard that before?

    Well, it’s pretty damn nice of them since that Jen lady also claims (again without hard core evidence so it seems) it’s those 858 member (partners?) who entirely support the chamber of commerce. That only the tourism bureau gets that 55% of the bed tax! Now ain’t that grand? Such pushy self confidence to think anyone would believe such hog wash?

    But why not? City Council that let it happen and fat cats on City Staff believe her so who else should care?

    Need more reasons for a changing of the guards? NO to Home Rule will yank their chains quick as an eye. And new people on the city council will know we, the voters, are fed up – and serious about “not gonna take it no more.”

  38. Norma says:

    Sure Steve can say NIMBY cause he lives OUT OF TOWN!.

    TIME to follow the money

  39. Jack & Beth R. says:

    Here we go again. The League of Women Voters will sponsor and moderate at a public forum on Thursday, July 26, 2018 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. It will take place at the Sedona Campus of Yavapai College. Sedona City Manager Justin Clifton will make an opening presentation.

    Huh? How can that be?

    We stupid Sedona residents and voters are to believe Clifton is qualified to make a presentation that will be unbiased?

    The same gentleman who’s already gone on record in several other public and private meetings expounding the dangers in the event Home Rule should be denied, resulting in unavailability of funding for pertinent and necessary projects that have far too long been tabled?

    And why, City Manager, has there been a shortfall of money for necessary projects?

    Could it possibly be due to reckless decisions made by previous members of the City Council. Example? Approval back in 2013 endorsed LOUDLY AND STRONGLY by former Councilor Barbara Litrell, current President of The League of Women Voters.

    How can this City Manager, top employee of the Sedona City Staff, be considered for making a fair and just appeal on this highly contentious ballot issue when he, himself, is paid a very large salary?

    Even stretching the likelihood his wages could be somewhat jeopardized, the act itself reeks of CONFLICT OF INTEREST if not VIOLATION OF STATE LAW that has been offered on SedonaEye in several different examples.

    Back off, City Manager.

    Leave this one to those brave enough to appear before what might possibly turn into a public brawl with or without your appearance.

    If Sedona government along with that brazen city council who concocted the idiotic city/council contract for “destination marketing” had been stopped in their tracks when it was so obvious a done deal from the get-go there most likely wouldn’t be a problem for voters to say now ‘Home Rule? Sure. It works great!’ BUT IT’S NOT SO. HOME RULE SUCKS FOR MOST OF US except for those reaping undeserved benefits at city hall.

    Stay Home, City Manager. Tend to your two tots. They need you more than we do.

    Thank you for hearing our sides of this costly mess. We’re voting NO Home Rule.

  40. Zombie Jesus says:

    Christopher Fox Graham, editorial writer of the Sedona Red Rock News, is also seen on youtube doing his performance of “Zombie Jesus”. I could not sit through the whole 3 minutes of blasphemy.

    He writes frequent editorials on how well both the City of Sedona and the Sedona Chamber are doing for Sedona. Nuff said.

  41. @Zombie Jesus says:

    Caught 30 seconds of the Christopher Fox Graham youtube performance and was appalled. Especially when considering the announcement and photo in a recent RRNews of his new baby girl. Wow and this is the best our local printed newspaper has to offer? Pretty disturbing.

  42. Marcie says:

    About League of Women Voters forum on July 26. If City Manager Justin Clifton really cares about residents, instead of commenting about how bad approving Home Rule would be, why doesn’t he consider addressing some of the issues Steve Segner continues to yammer about on SedonaEye and elsewhere? Mainly Segner insistence that City of Sedona employs 10,000 ppl. Once segner even wrote they all vote in Sedona! Really? (“Remember 10,000 people make a living in sedona, and they vote and write checks.” Steve Segner, 6/18/18) Fact or fiction, Mr. City Manager?

    Here’s more of Segner’s allegations. (”The chamber also promotes all activities in the verde Valley so we don’t wear out our precious hiking trails. the VERDE Valley has much to offer for people visiting Sedona and staying in Sedona .” Steve Segner, 6/19/18) And why is this, Mr. Clifton? City taxes to promote the entire Verde Valley?

    And what about City of Sedona providing a police officer at the Sedona Oak-Creek Unified School DISTRICT’S High School? That is NOT a responsibility of Sedona City taxpayers.

    Also funding the public library is NOT up to the city. We residents are assessed a sizable amount on our respective county property tax bills to support the library which is a GOOD thing but we don’t need to be double taxed for the public service initiated and supported by Friends of the Library.

    The list goes on and on and actually sets forth a very good example of why legitimate voting residents should vote NO on Home Rule. Will City Manager Justin Clifton be prepared to address some of these really more meaningful issues instead of nonsense such as “reduction in water utility services” – Steve Segner, 6/9/18. (FYI – Sedona does NOT provide “water utility services” as it does NOT provide garbage hauling, the Sedona Oak Creek Fire & School Districts, the airport and a number of other services generally provided by incorporated municipalities.)

    But perhaps the biggest reason to vote NO on HOME RULE is if it would eliminate once and for all the City/Chamber contract and cut some of the unnecessary departments and staff and pork spending within City Hall.

    How about addressing that, Mr. Clifton?

  43. @Zombie Jesus says:

    The way to change things is to call Kyle Larson at the Red Rock News and demand Graham be fired. If you do nothing you are agreeing that a person like that giving you and others his opinion is OK. Say you will cancel your subscription if he does not fire Graham. Pick up the phone. Do it now. It will take more than one person calling.

  44. @@zombie Jesus says:

    Boy you sound awfully concerned for someone that doesn’t read the RRN.

    Yes Yes. All six people here that post on SE(you six and all of you alisas) call up the RRN and complain… only problem is the people on the RRN answering the phone will get confused when you use a new name but your voice sounds the same..

    Lol

  45. Former Subscribers says:

    Even tho we cancelled our subscription several years ago we continue to receive information from the RRN which frequently we’ve already read on SedonaEye. What amazes us is as bad as that publication seems to be they still have a mysterious way of influencing the outcomes of local elections. Bazaar!

    Let’s not forget the amount of money they rake in from the City of Sedona for Public Notices as an example. And the City could just as easily post those notices on line for free. Wankers everywhere.

    Let’s not overlook the chamber also spending big bucks (more city tax revenue?) for special publications as inserts etc and they also have a regular PR article featured – but for free? We doubt it.

    At least they aren’t doing it on our nickel for our direct purchase of the rag.

  46. @former subscribers says:

    Yea ok

    Please read the post by @@ Zombie Jesus.
    I ask you to read that cause you are included in the above.

    Funny stuff

  47. Marcie says:

    Be assured @@@Zombie Jesus if there are only 6 people making comments on SE then count me as at least #7 (hunch is there are many many more than that). There’s some old (or new) saying about if you repeat something enough times you will either believe it or it will in fact be true. Maybe that applies to BOTH the 6 people as well as the person(s) making the accusation? Just another point of view Children!!

  48. Jason says:

    about zombie jesus ….. man take it down … it sucks … scary no talent … it’s crap … end of review period.

  49. Saz Spottiswood says:

    Ditto

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