The Jake Files

May 10, 2006

Geo’s Exchange with Councilman Orlando

If you haven't read Geo's email interview with Councilmember Orlando yet, you can find it here.  His followup phone conversation can be found here.

As I've stated before, I am not in favor of the recall.  I understand Orlando's and Sepulveda's reasoning for wanting Pentz out as City Manager, I just don't agree that those reasons are grounds for terminating him.  What I really disliked, however, was the tone and manner of the meeting, and the fact that it appeared to be a predetermined agenda that Pentz would be fired after the review.  THAT's what got me fired up, yet I STILL DON'T SUPPORT THE RECALL.  Recalls are supposed to be for malfeasance or illegality in office, not for unpopular decisions.  And, it's only one decision among many more that the council makes.

Don't sign the recall petition.  Don't vote for the recall if there's an election.  It's divisive and unwarranted.

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Local News Roundup for Wed May 10

Raises to Bring Workers' Pay Up to Standards – Edythe Jensen, AZCentral.com

Just a thought: How enthusiastic were the councilmembers to increase pay PRIOR TO the Pentz forced resignation?  I know this has been a study in the works for a while, but it was the first thing I cynically thought of when I saw the headline.

GOP Spins Democrats' Signs – Paul Giblin, East Valley Trib

Haven't paid much attention to Pederson yet, as I think he's going to get pasted in the election.  The whole slogan "No one's senator but ours" is, I think, a loser, as it turns on the electorate feeling like Senator Kyl's in someone's back pocket, a la Duke Cunningham. 

Workers Welcomed as Long as They're Legal – Sarah N. Lynch, East Valley Trib

Huge Intel Layoffs 'Unlikely' – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Notice how they say "Huge" layoffs, and don't say "NO layoffs?"

Budget Reflects Changing Focus – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Anger to Draw More to Polls? – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

Downtown's Future to Rely on Past – Mike Burkett, Chandler Independent

KTAR Gains AM-FM Simulcast – Diane Arthur, The Business Journal

It will be interesting to see how this impacts the talk radio market in Phoenix.  We already had Stern on FM prior to his defection to satellite, and now they're advertising Tom Leykis for the afternoons.  Will the KTAR simulcast prompt KFYI and/or KKNT The Patriot to do the same?  Personally, I hope so.  KFYI has a great signal, but KKNT960 could really use the additional audience that FM would provide. 

New Poll: Napolitano, Kyl Maintain Leads in Re-election Bids – Mike Sunnucks, The Business Journal

AOL to Layoff 300 in Tucson Call Center – The Business Journal

Residents Begin Recall of Sepulveda, Orlando – Laurie Fagen, San Tan Sun News

Council Runoff Election Q&A – Laurie Fagen, San Tan Sun News

Enjoy!

Google Video of Mark Pentz City Council Meeting

Regular reader A.M. alerted us to the following video clips on Google Video that contain the infamous April 10th City Council meeting.

Part 1 (6 hours 14 minutes)

Part 2  (3 hours 50 minutes)

Part 3 (3 hours 18 minutes)

Enjoy!

May 2, 2006

Recall Petition Location

For those interested in signing a recall petition, I got this emailed update from Ray Pilara:

Petitions will be available for pickup and signing Thursday evening from
6:00PM through 8:00PM at the Chandler BMX Track.   The track is located on
the northwest corner of Frye and McQueen Roads.  The track can only be
entered from  McQueen, so you will need to be heading south on McQueen to
enter.  (U turns are allowed on McQueen.)

This is also posted at chandleraz.biz, where there is a note that petitions can be signed at Arizona Cactus Sales, 1619 S Arizona Avenue.

Just a clarification:  I have NOT changed my opinion on the recall (it's a bad idea), but I will continue to link to information about it.

April 28, 2006

Chandler Police Weigh in on Mark Pentz

Filed under: Arizona,Chandler,City Council,Mark Pentz,Politics — Amazing Jake @ 10:12 am

I'm catching up on the rest of Wednesday's debate so I can finish yesterday's post on it, but had to stop and point your attention to a comment posted by reader Paul Babeu, police officer and President of the Chandler Law Enforcement Association (CLEA).  The comment related to the Mark Pentz firing and provides background information from the perspective of the CLEA.  The comment was posted on an old topic and can be found here.  Excerpt:

 CLEA President and Chandler Police Officer Paul Babeu came before your body to express his distrust in Mark Pentz and to publicly report Mr. Pentz’s threat made on February 22, 2006 during a meeting in his office. Mr. Pentz threatened Officer Babeu, while acting in his capacity as President of CLEA, to deny a proposed salary increase for Police Officers. Mr. Pentz said while pointing to the $3.5 million figure in the budget, “we do not have to give this to you, I can simply say No, so be careful what you say publicly and how you refer to me.”

So, I don't have an opinion as to the truth of what happened in a closed door meeting between two individuals.  According to the same comment (which was the text of a letter sent to the Mayor and City Council), Mr. Pentz reported a difference of opinion as to the tone or intention of his comments.

I do find one thing interesting though.  Becky Jackson has declined to state a position on whether she would vote to rehire Mark Pentz.  Becky Jackson's husband is a police officer (in Phoenix).  The officers' association is upset about a threat (real or perceived) to withhold a pay raise.  You connect the dots.

Meanwhile, it's back to the replay of the debate.  Tune in later for my completed analysis.

April 27, 2006

Analysis of City Council Debate

I'm watching last night's debate and will be documenting my thoughts as I watch it (also known as liveblogging, although I don't think watching a taped replay qualifies as "live"), then followup with analysis at the end.  NOTE:  This is a VERY long post, so you might want to get a snack.  Go ahead, I'll wait. (more…)

April 25, 2006

Analysis of Chandler City Code on Active Duty Military Service

Geo did some research on the apparent inconsistency when Councilmember Sepulveda continued to receive his City salary while rank-and-file City employees who are called to active duty do not get salary continuation. 

George came to the following conclusion (read the whole analysis) after perusing Chandler city code: (more…)

Fundamentals of Recall Elections 101

I was musing recently about what the implications of the pending recall would be, namely, how would someone else be seated on the council in the event that the recall was successful.

Geo did some research and came up with the following (long post, but read it all): (more…)

Ray Pilara Pulls No Punches

From the Chandler Independent:

 “Frankly put, I was (so upset) after seeing how these two council members treated Mark Pentz,” Mr. Pilara said. “What really got me was listening to the diatribe these two men and two lame duck council members launched against him. When I heard them going after Mr. Pentz for no logical reason I smelled a rat. I believe they had a plan to nail Mr. Pentz during his review no matter what. I got ticked when I saw them overtly trying to screw him.” Mr. Pilara said he saw no reason other than politics as the driving force behind the two council members’ criticism of Mr. Pentz’s performance. “There were no valid grounds,” Mr. Pilara said. “He didn’t make any major mistakes. He kept the city in control budget wise. He was well accepted by the majority of his employees. What happened with Mr. Pentz is a charade.” (more…)

April 24, 2006

Precint134 on the Recall Effort

George Gregg of Precinct134 corresponded with the organizer of the recall effort against Councilmembers Sepulveda and Orlando, and posted the exchange here.  As I've stated before, I don't think this (the recall) is a good idea, and Geo seems to agree.  Ray Pilara also clarifies in the email exchange questions that arose regarding funding for the recall.

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