Scottsdale’s Big Ideas Should Start With Basics

From today’s Scottsdale Republic:

Again, the champions of Scottsdale’s unique character and quality of life have to endure the insults of Paradise Valley resident Jason Rose (“Before knocking the city, consider all its positives,” May 28 Scottsdale Republic).

Indeed, there are many reasons to love Scottsdale. Almost all happened before Rose started getting taxpayer subsidies from his client, Mayor Jim Lane, and the other RINO “Republicans” on the City Council (Linda Milhaven, Dennis Robbins, Suzanne Klapp, Virginia Korte).

Rose brags about enjoying Scottsdale’s amenities, many of which don’t even exist in his hometown of Paradise Valley. It’s no accident that he didn’t include the $75,000 taxpayer-funded subsidy for his puffed-up polo match. Perhaps it has something to do with a city-hired consultant report that all but ridiculed the notion that the polo “event” returns anything close to that value to the city.

The bar district reduces crime in Scottsdale? Ludicrous.Look at the weekly police report, posted on The overall crime rate may indeed be less, but that’s a state and national trend, not just in Scottsdale. If we are going to thank anyone for it, we should thank the underpaid men and women of the Scottsdale Police Department rather than bar owners.

Scottsdale hasn’t raised taxes? We’ve raised them a lot, including bed taxes, sales tax to pay for purchasing land for the McDowell Sonoran Preserve (not for a Desert Disneyland), and worst of all the council has quietly pushed to raise fees for water, sewer, solid waste and other services.

The greatest thing we could do is recognize the real reason for our success: Tourism … real tourism, not the human-zoo tourism that happens on Friday and Saturday nights in his beloved bar district. Then we should do everything we can to maintain our tourism appeal.

Of course you can’t do any of that if you can’t balance a budget ($3 million structural deficit at last public discussion), keep a lid on debt ($1.3 billion), and keep up with maintenance instead of subsidizing professional golf, polo matches, and Super Bowl parties.

Mayor Lane spent the better part of his last campaign denying that Scottsdale had an $8.7 million structural deficit (when planned spending exceeds forecast revenue). Then Lane and his colleagues “balanced” the budget by transferring money from reserves. This has been going on for several years.

Let’s pay attention to the basics. How’s that for a “big idea?”

John Washington is editor of

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1 Comment

  1. Sure glad that the Scottsdale Republic finally allowed you to tell the truth about Rose’s exaggerated expose published late May. As the city’s self appointed Spin Meister, Rose is a talented guy but some of his ideas are just too impractical. His claims for largest, biggest, best in the US and Europe just make Scottsdale look foolish in the eyes of the rest of the country. Scottsdale marketing and PR should recognize and promote its’ real jewels ie: arts district, old town, preserve, some of the West World events and not make up unrealistic promotions. The Hot race last August was a disaster with about a dozen people needing EMT help. Hopefully, Rose will get the jest and be creative yet honest in his next big idea.

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