The Community Council of Scottsdale is a small but pretty vocal group of (mostly) South Scottsdale seniors who pay attention to how Scottsdale politics and city government affect their quality of life and cost of living.
They meet every third Thursday of the month at the Granite Reef Senior Center and usually have a speaker or speakers to address relevant current issues. There’s nominal cost to join. I think it’s $5-10/year to pay for cookies and drinks–I usually throw a $10 or a $20 bill into the coffee can every six months or so–and you can’t buy better entertainment than watching these folks get riled up. Woe be unto the politician or bureaucrat who wanders into this den of lions unprepared! Or forgets to show up (Dave Richert).
Bob Littlefield gave a presentation to the group last night about the proposed $200 million bond (and tax increase) that the mayor and city manager want to put on the ballot this fall. I’ve sat through a bunch of city meetings and I’ve never left one feeling as informed as I did after his presentation last night.
Say whatever you will about Bob (and I have my issues with him occasionally), he knows his stuff. I’m in awe of someone who can remember virtually every council vote–frequently even down to the date–for his entire ten years in office. Did you know he’s never missed a city council meeting? NEVER. He mentioned that fact in passing last night after the presentation; not bragging, just mentioned it. I have to tell you, I think I would have bragged about it!
By contrast, it’s embarrassing to watch council members (and the mayor) flail during council meetings when it’s obvious they haven’t even read their agenda packet, let alone understand the history of a particular issue.
I didn’t see even one of Bob’s more vocal critics at this meeting. Too bad, because regardless of how they feel about Bob, they could have learned something. Few people have paid as much attention as I have lately, and I learned a LOT.
I’ll ask Bob to write up some of his comments (which he made almost entirely without notes) so that I can publish them here for those of you who missed the meeting. I’d also add that council candidates Chris Schaffner, Guy Phillips, Copper Phillips (prospective), and Chris Serena were there…but not Suzanne Klapp, Ron McCullagh, Debra K., Joe Meli, or any prospective candidates. Too bad. They could have saved themselves quite a bit of pre-campaign issue research…and even Klapp and McCullagh could use it. Goodness knows Jim Lane could, too.