Two envelopes

Lakes Golf Course fight draws congratulations

Kudos to Eileen Breslin, Linda Swain, and their tireless lawyer, Tim Barnes. For more than six years they have fought to save the Lakes Golf Course at no small personal cost (e.g., time, stress, financial).  

Those of us who moved here when Ahwatukee had one supermarket and access via Guadalupe and Elliot only, chose to live in this new settlement because of the promise of many recreational amenities including a tennis clubhouse with 24 courts, two golf courses (ACC and Lakes), a swimming pool and lots of open space for biking and hiking. 

Others followed as, Ahwatukee and the Foothills became a thriving community. Many stores, restaurants, and means of access are now available. However, we lost the tennis club and many tennis courts to an unscrupulous developer. 

The Country Club deteriorated when the same developer left the club with no operating capital (kept all member down payments). The Lakes and the “new” Club West were closed at the hand of another developer who sought personal gain at our community’s expense.

 But we still love our community and want to protect what we can of the amenities that drew us here in the first place. 

Thanks to Eileen, Linda, Tim, and the many others who assisted. The greening of Ahwatukee and the Lakes may soon be at hand.  

- Cathie and Chuck Corbin

 

Golf course CC&Rs must be enforced at the Lakes

Laws which are drawn up, historically, especially CC&Rs for golf course use only, are supposed to be enforced. Hoping Judge Hannah gets reelected because he understands this and he has honor.

Who is pressuring Mr. Gee to do his job and honor his contract running the Ahwatukee and Foothills golf courses he is supposed to manage responsibly? Is he a golf property manager or a greedy land developer?

This is an election year, yet I don’t see any of our elected legislators coming to our aid by putting Wilson Gee’s foot to the fire on running all the courses in Ahwatukee we entrusted him to run responsibly.

 His thumbing his nose at all the court orders he has lost to do his job, bring the golf courses in Ahwatukee and the Foothills up to standards and not be an opportunistic land developer is despicable and illegal, the way I see it.

Mr. Gee is muscling us and threatening to go to the Supreme Court with his case. He has lost in all the state courts, so he can make a quick buck to sell the land to home developers. His defense is he calls himself a slave to the golf properties he just neglected. 

Golf property always increases our property values in Ahwatukee and other surrounding areas, nationally, except when this catastrophic mismanagement happens with no respect for the laws and our state courts ruling in our favor. Where is traditional justice?

-Dr. Jeff Eger

 

Foothills resident says he’s running for HOA board

I’ve decided it’s time to give back to our community, so I’m running for The Foothills board and would appreciate your support. If we’ve not met, read on to learn a bit about why I hope you’ll feel good about voting for me in the upcoming election.

Prior to moving to The Foothills in 2001, we lived up the street in Lakewood where I served as president of our sub-association for a few years. 

I also served as chair of the Lakewood Landscape Committee; I led their seven-figure landscape renovations and upgrades project which delighted the community, raised property values and won awards. 

I retired from corporate life this year and have been serving as an interim board member on The Foothills board since February. The learning curve is steep, so I have a running start. 

I’ve been listening, learning, asking lots of questions and helping identify visible and “behind the scenes” process improvements. I come from a working world of creative problem solving, active listening and data-driven decision making with an action orientation. I’m not a fan of analysis paralysis! 

The Foothills will soon be 35 years old. We have infrastructure and amenities that need attention or soon will (e.g., lakes, walls, landscaping). I’m all about tackling our issues head on while looking for ways to maintain and improve over time. 

With our unique location next to South Mountain Park, we have everything we need to keep The Foothills desirable, relevant and the envy of the southeast valley for decades to come! 

My goal is to do just that — and I know that means working together with you to ensure that we don’t stray from this vision, even when a perhaps unpopular longer-term path is prudent. I believe we must make key decisions with a longer-term lens. 

What’s next? A virtual “Meet the Candidates” session today, Sept. 16, followed by voting and the annual homeowners’ meeting in October. If you’re not receiving email or text blasts from the association and want to be in the know, just let Matt Jacobs at Premier know. His email is mjacobs@premieraz.com. 

Please support me in securing a two-year term on The Foothills board in October. You will not see any campaign signs with my name of them littering your views as you drive in the neighborhood. 

I’m all about always doing what is best for the community and cheesy signs just don’t do it for me. Plus, we have a new million-dollar irrigation system and I don’t want to risk causing damage to our common area property. 

Finally, each homeowner will have four votes since there are four open board positions. Please vote all four of yours for me, as allowed by our voting guidelines. Thanks for your consideration.

-Jon Samuelson

 

Foothills’ vote made

candidate forum possible

On July 30, members of the Foothills Community Association took the first major step toward steering the HOA in a new direction by overwhelmingly approving a package of much-needed reforms.

There is an election underway in which the HOA’s members can now take the next critical step:  choosing board directors who support the reforms and their goals of promoting transparency and accountability while serving the interests of the members.

Thanks to the reforms, tonight (Wednesday) there will be a candidate forum during which the seven people running for the Board can introduce themselves and describe their plans.  HOA members can ask questions, including whether the candidates support the reforms and will seek to implement them in good faith.

Many AFN readers are already aware of how lopsided the vote for the reforms was.  But it is worth looking inside the numbers.  Homeowners voted 11:1 in favor:  1,223 (92 percent) to 109 (8 percent).  Nearly three-quarters of the votes against the reforms were cast by a handful of corporate members:  302 of 411 (including 267 by just one corporation).

My neighbor and colleague Rob Doherty is running for the board and I urge all HOA members to vote for him.  Those who follow Board meetings are well aware of Rob’s professional demeanor and abiding sense of service to the HOA’s homeowners.

Rob created the reform website, TheFoothillsInfo.com, and he has placed his reform platform on it.  I invite all HOA members to check it out and see for themselves how thoroughly Rob is prepared to move the HOA forward.

To ensure there is a majority of Board directors who support the reforms, it is critical that reformers win all four seats that are open in this election.  There are three additional candidates running who are committed to the reforms:  Vicky Glover, George Lemley, and Michael Warren.  

All four reform candidates have written letters to the AFN, and information about them is on the reform website. I hope you will cast your ballots for Rob, Vicky, George and Mike.

There is one incumbent board member running:  Jon Samuelson.  He was appointed in January to fill a vacancy. I think it is fair and proper to question him about his record while serving on the board.

Samuelson was a vocal opponent of the reforms. He printed a long letter against them in the AFN and he alone among the board directors supported a scheme by the board president that would have prevented the reforms from being in effect for the ongoing election.

At tonight’s forum, I will ask Samuelson why homeowners should trust that he will be on their side now, when he was so clearly against the wishes of 92 percent of homeowners in opposing the reforms.

I hope you will ‘tune in’ to the virtual candidate forum at 6 p.m. this evening.  Instructions for attending the virtual meeting are on the HOA’s website:  https://foothillscommunityassoc.nabrnetwork.com (an HOA login account is required to obtain the instructions).

By electing a Board that will lead the HOA in a new direction, we will restore harmony in our community and move forward together.

-David Randolph

 

Everyone has a responsibility to be counter in Census 

There is less than a month for you and your family to be counted in the once-every-decade census.

The confidential questionnaire is simple and takes just a few minutes to complete. The results, however, are dramatic for the next decade because they determine how billions of federal dollars are allocated per state. The results also assist our Independent Redistricting Commission in drawing the boundaries for the future state legislative and Congressional lines. 

The deadline is Sept. 30. If you have not yet participated, please take a few moments to complete online at www.2020census.gov.

-CJ Briggle 

Skipping meals not a choice for many in Valley

In an effort to boost her lagging fund-raising efforts against Mark Kelly, Martha McSally now has a commercial running that suggests you “skip a meal” and donate to her campaign.  She apparently doesn’t realize that there are thousands of people in Phoenix, Maricopa County and in Arizona who regularly skip meals, but not by choice.

They simply do not have the money to feed themselves and their families. Maybe Martha ought to “skip a meal” and donate to these people herself. 

-Judy Wade

 

Maricopa County supervisors need more transparency

Three billion dollars is a great deal of money and yet most of us have absolutely no idea how the current five members of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors are currently spending this budget. 

 Maricopa County is the fourth largest county in the country and a small group of five people control the budget for our county. Candidate Jevin Hodge would like all county residents to know more about their Board of Supervisors and that is why he describes the Board of Supervisors as ‘the most important position you’ve never heard of.” Jevin wants to change that. 

Jevin Hodge is running to ensure everyone has a seat at the table and a voice in the governing process. If elected, Jevin would like to see the board hold meetings at times when it is convenient for the public to attend.  He also wants to prioritize the health and safety of all Maricopa County residents and bring transparency to the Board of Supervisors. 

 A native of Arizona, Jevin is running to represent District 1 which includes all of Ahwatukee and most of the East Valley. If elected, he will be the first African American elected for a county-wide position in our over 150+ year history. 

I am confident we will all benefit from his commitment to accountability and transparency. 

 -Laurie Nerat

 

Fontes makes voting more secure for everyone

With Trump and the Republicans actively working to undermine the concept of free and fair elections, it has been a great relief to know my ballot is being handled by Maricopa County Recorder Adrian Fontes. 

For the past four years, Recorder Fontes has worked to make our elections secure and accessible to everyone, regardless of party. 

Among the many ways he has made voting easier and more transparent are text alerts for mail ballots, which allow you to track your ballot from the time it is prepared to when it is verified and counted. Sign up for text alerts by texting EV to 628683 (MCVOTE).

That’s why I’ll be voting to give him another term this November. 

-David Boyles

 

Our society needs 

government oversight

Oligarchs make decisions based on their personal needs, not for the good of the general population. They call themselves good salesmen, but I am not buying what they are selling. 

We have industrial chemical sites in northeastern Texas, in Cancer Alley, and on the Marcellus and Utica Shale oil plays. Some are owned by Koch Industries. These chemical sites are allowed to retch and belch hazardous and toxic chemicals into our air.

Government watchdogs, such as OSHA and the EPA, are being neutered by the present administration. Do the oligarchical owners of these sites live next door and monitor the sites themselves? I don’t think so. 

I saw our Post Master at a House of Representatives Hearing. He said that he would stop taking machines out of our Post Offices. Removal continues. Mail is still delayed and the fallout from mail delay continues. This has become life-threatening. 

In May of 2020 militiamen walked into the Michigan Capitol rotunda with assault weapons. They posed there for hours. Was there any oversight?  

Over 2,000 tons of ammonium nitrate (remember the Oklahoma City bombing?) exploded in Beirut Lebanon on Aug. 4. It had been stored in a fireworks storage area since 2013. Why were tons of chemicals left unsecured with no government oversight or hazardous designation? Lebanon’s oligarchy failed oversight responsibilities. 

Are more of these types of events in our future with the oligarchs we are electing? 

Our government works well with oversight. With oversight we are all better off. 

-Marc Riske

Air Force veteran 

explains his vote

Senator John McCain and I didn’t agree on many things but I would never imagine calling him a loser. 

As a U.S. Air Force veteran, I was stunned that the Commander in Chief of our Armed Forces had the audacity to call any of us losers. 

We sacrificed family, time, faith, community and sometimes our soul to proudly serve in order to preserve the safety of our country.

My power now is in my vote. I will remember in November.

-Joe Goldblatt

 

Wants to return Sheriff 

Penzone to another term

We must return Sheriff Paul Penzone to office. We cannot afford another Arpaio-esque blatantly discriminatory administration. 

A valid reason Maricopa County Republican Sheriff candidate Jerry Sheridan sees peaceful protests in the area as uncontrollable mobs destroying all property in its path; he may be prejudiced against African Americans.

In documents obtained by Blog for Arizona concerning the former Maricopa County Chief Deputy’s former nephew-in-law, Christopher Butts, one passage from Dec. 7, 2009, identified “Uncle Jerry (Sheridan)” as someone (along with Butts and other family members) who routinely used the N-word when commenting on President Obama.

The complete quote:

“This came to head as Butts was discussing to others in squad room at the end of shift how his Uncle Jerry’s father went outside and shot the American flag after Obama was elected. Butts said Uncle Jerry was there when this occurred. Butts went on to say how the N-word was commonly used by all members of his family, including “Uncle Jerry” and other family members who are members of the office, when referring to Obama.”

Sheridan is an Arpaio sycophant. Vote for Penzone. 

-David Gordon

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