Dear Fellow Voter:
In 2000, Scottsdale voters passed $358 million in bonds for 70 projects throughout the city. Libraries. Parks. Public Safety. Community Infrastructure. Some of the items were things that help make Scottsdale special. Others were just the basics of government. You can see the complete list at TheBestScottsdale.com.
It’s now been nearly two decades since that important vote and “tune-up” for our great city. Since then, residents have largely rejected proposals for new bonds to support community needs. There were a variety of reasons. The Great Recession was a tough time for everyone. That’s now in the rearview mirror. And the packages that were proposed were not unanimously supported by the Mayor and Scottsdale City Council as is the case now.
On April 15th, Mayor Lane and the entire Scottsdale City Council stood together and referred to the city’s November 5th ballot 58 projects totaling $319 million to make Scottsdale better. The council collaborated extensively on the final package with Scottsdale’s active citizenry. By law and if passed by voters, monies can only be used for these specific projects. And, by city ordinance, there is a “Citizen’s Bond Oversight” Committee in place to make sure the money is spent, if and as authorized by voters.
Bonds are backed by secondary property taxes. Normally, bond proposals mean a slight increase in these taxes. According to the Scottsdale City Treasurer, that’s highly unlikely this time. That’s because it has been so long since voters passed a comprehensive plan many of the bonds that paid for the project from the 2000 vote are being retired. That means your secondary property taxes, if you own a home, will almost certainly continue to go down even if Questions 1, 2 & 3 pass.
And do we ever need them to pass! Scottsdale infrastructure is crumbling, literally. A bridge in southern Scottsdale was just closed for 15 months for emergency repairs, causing traffic headaches for neighborhoods. A chunk of the Civic Center Mall in Old Town has been shut down for many months too for repairs.
Simply put, now is the time and this is the plan to keep Scottsdale special. Each of these projects were carefully considered and ultimately recommended after months of deliberation. They will positively impact every area of the city. And by investing in Scottsdale, you are also investing in yourself. No one will likely agree with everything in the plan, but it represents a government working with its residents to reach consensus and compromise on a quality package that will touch and benefit every resident.
Thank you for your consideration.
Andrea Alley, Dana Close, Dennis Robbins, Mike Norton, Paula Sturgeon
Co-Chairs, For The Best Scottsdale