Thursday, July 30, 2015

Sunday, July 5, 2015

LOVE Takes Vacation... See You August 3

LOVE is taking a vacation. This, after 8 plus years of continuous publishing. Its been a big job for a few people.

Each summer we have published even when there has been little of which to publish and even though many of our readers are vacationing.

This year, however, we are also vacationing.  We will be back on line August 3 with our review of key happenings during our 30 day absence. (Heather will be back on line in September). If something really significant happens we will send at email to our mailing list. So, please be sure to sign up for it.

You can still get your news about Oro Valley and Pima County right here.

Simply visit LOVE and click on the tab that says "Oro Valley News" or the one that says "Pima County News."  It will have the latest info from local and regional publications about Oro Valley and Pima County respectively.

We hope that you will enjoy the summer. We know that we will.

You LOVE Team

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Much Ado About Nothing

Last Wednesday, there was an incident in which Oro Valley Vice Mayor Lou Waters and Oro Valley resident Tom Kamoske scuffled. It happened when residents were going to a scheduled appointment to turn in recall petitions on Mayor Hiremath.

If you have not seen the video, then you a probably wondering what really happened? Was Vice Mayor Water's attacked? Was resident Tom Kamoske pushed to the ground by the Vice Mayor? Did they scuffle? Was anyone hurt?

The Incident

The following is exactly what happened:
  • About 80 individuals wearing "Red Shirt" that voice support of Hiremath  formed a gauntlet through which those supporting his recall must pass through in order to submit their petitions to the town clerk. 
  • Vice Mayor Lou Waters was standing inside this gauntlet, partially in the path of the submitters
  • Vice Mayor Waters was taking pictures of the submitters as they walked through the gauntlet
  • The submitters walked past and to the right of Vice Mayor Waters.
  • Oro Valley resident Tom Kamoske blocked Water's camera lens by putting papers in front of Water's camera as he walked past Waters.
  • Waters pushed Kamoskie with his left arm as Kamoske passed him
  • Kamoske continued two steps, then turned back to face Waters. In turning back Kamoske fell. It seems to us that his left ankle gave way as he turned back at Waters. 
  • Waters watched Kamoske fall.
  • Waters then turned to face the submitters to take pictures of the other submitters. 
  • Then Waters turned to photograph Kamoske on the ground.
The total event was 13.3 seconds! We've slowed it down in the video at right so that you can see it  in detail.

"Much Ado About Nothing"

So why is this such a big deal?

Waters claims he was  injured. It is obvious that this not the case. After he pushed Kamoske, Waters turned to take pictures of other submitters. How injured could have possibly been? Certainly, not injured enough to even take personal note.

Kamoske claims that Waters push caused him to fall. How is it, then, that he took two steps and then fell after he turned to face Water.

In is on both sides: "No harm. No foul."

At worst, Kamoske, who was charged by Oro Valley police with assaulting Waters is guilty of 2 counts of bad judgment. The first count has to do with putting the papers in front of the camera. The second is turning back after being pushed.

At worst, Vice Mayor Waters is also guilty of using bad judgment. As the sitting Vice Mayor of Oro Valley he should not have been at this event. He should not have been taking pictures so as to intimidate the Oro Valley residents submitting the petitons. He should not have shoved Kamoske.

It's all politics

So, why the big deal?

It is a big deal because the Oro Valley police, supporters of the Majority-4, decided to turn this into a big deal. It was they who "investigated" the incident and "convicted" Kamoske. They should have simply said to bother parties: "Grow up."

Now, supporters of the Majority-4 are trying to say that the new candidates and those who support change are "thugs."

Waters seeks restraining order
Vice Mayor Waters has filed for a one year restraining order against resident Kamoske. 

A triple play of insanity

It's all politics, folks. And it makes us sick! It's a "triple play of insanity."

A town resident acts foolishly. A vice mayor participates in an event the he should not have been at; and then pressing charges when he, himself, pushed the resident. And, an outrageous, obviously biased enforcement of law on the part of the Oro Valley police.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Meet Candidate Shirl Lamonna

Oro Valley resident Shirl Lamonna will be a candidate for Oro Valley council in the November election.  Lamonna is a 10 year resident and a friend of LOVE.

Lamonna is very knowledgeable of what is happening in Oro Valley She has been following Oro Valley events and participating in the "call the audience" portion of the Oro Valley council meetings. In addition, she is a frequent commenter on LOVE.

Shirl is also very knowledgeable of what is happening in Pima County. She is currently working as research assistant to Pima County Supervisor Ally Miller. "I have the experience and knowledge of government dealings. This will allow for a fast learning curve as I have already researched every type of agenda item for the supervisors meetings am already familiar with many of issues that will impact the residents of Oro Valley."

Lamonna is not new to Oro Valley politics. Together with Oro Valley resident Debra Arrett, she led an effort to seek a public vote on the towns purchase of the El Conquistador Country Club. Were it not for a clerical error that vote would have occurred.

She led the successful effort in 2011-12 to block a rezoning of a parcel known as "7-I". That parcel, located on the northwest corner of Tangerine and Rancho Vistoso Blvd, was scheduled to have been rezoned for apartments. Lamonna mobilized the neighbors and kept our community informed. Read her incisive analysis of the 7-I situation to get an insight into the exceptional fact-based quality of her work.

We asked Lamonna why she has decided to run for council.

"I moved to Oro Valley, like so many, because it was a suburban, small town. It didn't just have the feel of one. It was one. Instead, Councilmembers Hornat, Snider and Waters with the Mayor have given us almost 800 apartments, a doubling of our utility tax, an increase in our sales tax, a $31 million dollar plan for Naranja Park (including an amphitheater and event center) and numerous higher density rezonings. They have changed the entire “dynamic” of life in Oro Valley."

Lamonna continued: "I’ve attempted to change the direction of this Council by using the tools available to citizens – heading opposition to the apartments as previously mentioned, attending Planning and Zoning sessions, speaking at Council meetings, and finally heading up the T.O.O.T.H. Referendum Committee. Nothing has worked. So now it’s time for me to step up to help shift us towards fiscal responsibility, transparency and sensible development."

We asked Shirl what she will bring to council that the current incumbents don't.

"I am an independent thinker who will research and analyze every issue before making a decision. I am running for YOU – to ensure your voice is heard."

Friday, June 26, 2015

Bits and Pieces

Meet the new candidates tomorrow
"Just a friendly reminder that you can meet three Town Council candidates this Saturday, June 27th and sign the petitions to help get them on the November ballot. The event is from 9am - 3pm at the Town Council Courtyard and at the Oro Valley Public Library. Refreshments will be served. Please see the attached flyer." (Source: Steve Didio email)

In light of the "insanity" that occurred at town hall Wednesday when Hiremath recall papers were filed, lets hope that only those interested in meeting the new candidates attend this event.

Petitions submitted to recall Mayor Hiremath

Oro Valley, Arizona (June 25, 2015) - At approximately 10 a.m. yesterday, June 24, 2015, signatures for a recall petition for Oro Valley Mayor Satish I. Hiremath were delivered to the Town of Oro Valley Clerk's Office. The petitions were submitted by the Oro Valley Citizens for Open Government Committee.

The Oro Valley Clerk's Office has 10 days in which to process the petitions and verify that the total number of signatures eligible for verification is equal to or exceeds the minimum 2,765 required signatures.

Pima County will then have 60 days in which to verify the signatures before the petition process moves forward. Once the county verifies the signatures, they will come back to the Oro Valley Town Clerk for a final check before they are legally filed. (Source: Town of Oro Valley Press Release) 

Group forms to oppose Pima County Bond
Taxpayers Against Pima County Bonds has formed. According to a group press release: 
"The real myth is “new bonding will not affect your property taxes.” The fact is, last year on my tax bill, I paid almost $170.00 under the category "county bonds secondary." This represents almost 5% of my total tax bill! It does NOT include the roughly $1,385 I pay in other secondary property taxes, many of which are also bonds for other things. And secondary property taxes are in addition to the primary property taxes we pay. Bonds DO affect your taxes! Pima County now wants to borrow close to $816 Million. This is a 57% increase over what Pima County currently owes. If my taxes on the existing Pima County Bonds are $170 a year, what can I expect them to go up to after they borrow another $816 Million? It's basic economics, the more you borrow, the more you need to pay back! " (Source: Taxpayers Against Pima County Bonds Press Release)

Their webside is

 Hecker Leads Pima County Bond Support
"A group in support of the Pima County bond proposal has formed and begun to lobby the public to vote for the $815 million bond plan. The group, called "Yes on Pima County Bonds", held a news conference Monday to announce the effort.

Tucson attorney and chairman of the Pima County Bond Advisory Committee Lawrence Hecker is listed as the group’s chairman.

Business consultant and former Tucson Regional Economic Opportunities chairman Steve Eggen is treasurer of the group." (Source: Arizona Daily Star

Do you think that Hecker has a conflict of interest being chairing the Pima County Bond Advisory Board and now leading the cheerleading effort?

"Waters: From CNN To Council"
Rose Law Group published an exclusive interview with Council Member Lou Waters.

Entitled: "From CNN anchor desk to Oro Valley Town Council", the article asked why he ran for office. "Service always has been in my DNA, so I ran and won . . . twice." Later in the article he notes: "Far too many of our “politicians” will say or do anything to remain in office. And far too many things they say are just not in the best interests of the constituents they serve."

Rock Ridge Apartments Needs Tenants
Rock Ridge Apartments are located on the west side of Oracle Road, just south of Lambert Lane. The've been in town a long time. They need tenants. And the prices actually look pretty interesting. Want to learn more?

We imagine that apartment pricing in Oro Valley is going to get even better for the consumer as Russ Rulney's apartments, located just south of Rock Ridge on the east side of Oracle near completion. It is a monster development.

Oro Valley Releases Latest Crime Statistics
Oro Valley Police Department has issued their latest crime statistics.  Almost have of Oro Valley's accident intersections are at 3 major intersections. Oracle and Magee are, once again, at the top of the most frequent collision intersections.  Next are LaCanada and Tangerine and Tangerine and First Avenue.

The report includes information on how quickly police reach the scene of an incident, traffic or otherwise.  90% of the time or more officer response is at or under the allotted time for a particular incident priority. For example, our police responded to 97% of top priority incidents within one minute. There were 14. (Source)

Coffee with a Cop This Morning 
 "The Oro Valley Police Department is excited to announce its June Coffee with a Cop event located at Jerry Bob's, 10550 N. La CaƱada Drive, Suite 140 . It will be on Friday, June 26, 2015 from 7 to 9 a.m. This marks the one year anniversary of its inception." (Oro Valley Police Department Press Release)

November Sees The Q and Brew 10K
"On Your Left Fitness is excited to partner with the North Tucson Firefighter’s Association (NTFFA) in hosting the Q and Brew 10K Run/Walk in conjunction with NTFFA’s BBQ Cook Off. Over 30 firefighter teams will be cooking up mouth-watering BBQ for you to enjoy after your run." The race is Saturday, November 21 in Oro Valley. (Source) On Your Left also sponsors a Test N Tune events at Steam Pump Ranch.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Vice Mayor Waters Gets In Hassle At Town Hall.. Gets Town Resident Arrested

Yesterday, we reported that Oro Valley resident Ryan Hartung would deliver recall petitions on Oro Valley Mayor Satish Hiremath that morning. He did so, submitting more thatn 3,400 signatures. This is 20% more than required.

Apparently, the event caused Vice Mayor Lou Waters, who himself is subject a November election recall, to participate in a "gauntlet" of about 50 people wearing red "We Support Mayor Hiremath T Shirts."

Hartung  and some supporters walked the gauntlet to deliver the petitions, while police stood by idly.

Waters, however, did more than participate in the gauntlet

The event got ugly because Waters was walking around, putting his camera in the face of those delivering the petitions. This included an Oro Valley resident who wound up being cited by the police because he defended himself from this intrusion. Read the details in the Arizona Daily Independent. Read the Arizona Daily Star report here.  Read a follow up Arizona Daily Independent report which also includes a video of the incident.

(We watched the video. The incident was benign.)

According to one Oro Valley resident believes that the person who actually instigated the incident may have been Water's spouse: "If it's true that 'a woman standing next to Lou Waters' was the instigator, that woman is most likely his wife.  She has a reputation for trouble-making."

"Lou Waters got in [ Oro Valley resident's] face today with a camera. Lou lunged at him as he was apparently doing to other people all day and somehow [the resident] ended up on the ground and went to file police report against Lou. They made him wait a half hour. Meantime  the police took a report with Lou and claimed that [the resident] was the one at fault and arrested him"

According to another resident: "

According the the Independent, Waters was not cited by the police because he "is their boss."

All of this raises questions about Vice Mayor Water motives.
  • Why was he even at this event? 
  • What did he hope to accomplish running around with his camera?
  • Does he actually think that bullying tactics are going to win him reelection?
When asked by one council member why he was there he said it was "... Because they are trying to take my job."

Many suggest Vice Mayor Waters, that there would not have been a recall had you done his job. 

The Oro Valley Police Department issued a press release reporting another version of the events. It states that the resident assaulted Waters and that Waters suffered injury. We checked with one of our contacts who saw Waters after the incident. There was no  injury. Here is the police release.
"Town of Oro Valley Vice Mayor Lou Waters assaulted

Oro Valley, Arizona (June 24, 2015) - On June 24, 2015 at 10:01 a.m., Town of Oro Valley Vice Mayor Lou Waters (76 year-old) was assaulted outside the Town Administration Building. The victim, Waters, was photographing individuals gathered in support of Mayor Satish Hiremath. Over one dozen witnesses reported to the Oro Valley Police Department officers and detectives that Oro Valley resident, Thomas John Kamoske (63 year-old), assaulted Waters by charging at him and shoving papers into the camera lens. This action pushed the camera back into the face of Waters, resulting in an abrasion and contusion above his right eye.

Witnesses also reported that after the assault on Waters, Kamoske fell to the ground, claiming he had been pushed by Waters. One witness captured the fall on video, which shows Kamoske deliberately falling to the ground.

An investigation was conducted and probable cause existed to arrest Kamoske. He was cited and released into Pima County Justice Court for Assault (M3)."
Apparently, the Oro Valley Police Department has already done such a "thorough" investigation that they have convicted the resident! Notice also that the gathering is said to be in support of Mayor Hiremath. The real purpose was to hassle the citizens of Oro Valley who were turning in petitions to recall Mayor Hiremath.

Guest View-Don Bristow: Oro Valley Should Consider Alerternatives To A Full Sevice Community Center Restaurant

Monday, you have the opportunity to meet with the architect, Klindt Brenenridge, who is working on the rehabilitation of the Oro Valley Community Center and Recreation Center. In this guest view, Resident Don Bristow shares his thinking about the project.
Included in the initial proposed remodeling of the Oro Valley Community Center is the second floor restaurant area. Before committing the residents’ money and this area to a full-service restaurant operation, there must be a discussion regarding the need and economics of the Town operating a restaurant.

Is the Community Center what the name implies or is it a County Club? If it is a County Club, a full-time full service restaurant is appropriate.

Operating a full time restaurant will result in increased operating and maintenance costs and most likely additional tax dollar subsidies. It also requires competing with the private sector restaurants within Oro Valley. Operating a restaurant is difficult and takes full-time commitment to make a profit. Just ask the owners of restaurants operating in Oro Valley. Who in the Oro Valley government is capable of evaluating Troon’s restaurant management performance or offering professional advice? There are alternatives that must be presented and evaluated.

One viable alternative for the everyday operations of a Community Center restaurant, is a snack bar type operations which is open for a continental breakfast to early evening. It could also serve as a coffee and tea access point. A walled off bar, operating during scheduled golf hours, would meet the needs of most patrons. The kitchen could remain, but be used by outside catering companies which would be hired and paid for by the sponsor of golf outings or other events.. A full-service catering company would supply all necessary support items such as tables and chairs, linens, china,  and silverware. There are other alternatives that can and must be publicly discussed before any of the residents’ tax dollars are spent for a full-service full or part time restaurant.

The large area currently dedicated to the restaurant could utilize moveable walls to create multifunctional rooms. As the available square footage of the Center is limited, this would be a good potential use and have much lower operating and maintenance costs.

What do you think?

Attend the Architect Open House at the Community Center on June 29, 2105, from 6 to 7 p.m. However, in a one-hour time frame there may not be sufficient time for the residents to be heard. Therefore, after the meeting contact our Councilmembers and Town Manager to share your thoughts.
Don Bristow is a long-time Oro Valley resident and 2014 candidate for Oro Valley Town Council. Don is a frequent speaker at Oro Valley council meetings and has been a member of various Oro Valley committees.