The new city flag voting deadline of Wednesday, February 28th is almost here. VOTE on the city website today. This website will ask you first to mark “ok” on flags you like then next it depicts all the flags flying in a light breeze. Here you select your favorite. It only takes about 5 minutes to vote.
Scottsdale’s founder, Winfield Scott’s birthday is Monday, February 26th. Celebration is held in front of the Scottsdale Historic Museum (Little Red Schoolhouse) at the western entry to the Civic Center. Noon is the usual time for history humor and birthday cake.
Recent CITY COUNCIL DECISIONS:
Approved 4 to 3 (no votes were Lane, Milhaven, Korte) to provide matching funds up to $30,000 to print the first Scottsdale Arts District 2018 Visitor’s Guide booklet. Local artist Bob Pejman of Pejman Galleries, Scott Eubanks of Gallery Russia and French Thompson of French’s Jewelry were major designers of the 66-page edition. The FREE publication includes representative art images of gallery offerings and a map to locate restaurants, cultural venues, public art, fashion & luxury boutiques, interior design businesses, dining and hotels in Scottsdale’s major destination area. Your free copy is available at hotels, the two Ambassador carts (5th Ave and Brown/Main), any gallery and at the Fashion Square tourist desk. See details at http://www.scottsdaleartsdistrict.com/
Approved 6 to 1 a Public Art stylized jackrabbit called Sonoran Jack for the NW corner of Indian School Road and Marshall Way. This council vote overturned the Development Review Board’s recommendation to deny approval. The DRB concerns were close proximity to Indian School traffic and the liability of climbers on the 26 foot structure plus summer hot metal. Case 15-DR-2017
Approved 7 to 0 Loloma Lands Purchase and Sale Agreement for $27,750,000. This does not include the Scottsdale Artists’ School, Stagebrush Theatre or its parking lot. It does include the trolley transit station south of the Museum of the West and the vacant land to the west of the Scottsdale Artists’ School on 2nd Street and the Goldwater Blvd curve.
Approved 6 to 1 (Smith) authorized $231,185 transfer from Capital Improvement Plan in-lieu Parking Fund to Operating Special Programs Fund to test 51 parking sensors in the NE quadrant of the downtown. The sensors will identify open parking spaces and send messages to cellular apps. It may also log if the parked car has exceeded the 3 hour limit.
No vote, only discussion on those controversial yellow-green rental bikes occurred at the last city council meeting. No specific ordinance exists to control their abandonment problems. The rental bike firms received Business and Tax Licenses and can proceed with business. The city has NO money in the business nor is receiving any revenue. Bike executives have repeatedly stated in public meetings that they have hired “extra employees and we will respond within 24 hours”. The fact is that the bikes remain as much as a week on sidewalks, on neighborhood lawns and blocking ADA (handicap) access which IS ILLEGAL. The topic has not been placed on a future council agenda therefore no directive or vote will occur. Use the following information and color to contact the companies: LimeBike (Green and Yellow) firstname.lastname@example.orgCall or text: 888-546-3345 Spin (Orange)Call: 888-262-5189 www.spin.pm (instant messaging available) Ofo (Yellow) email@example.comGR:D (all green) firstname.lastname@example.orgCall: 602-753-4743 (SoBi app)
Directive to city staff: Proposed/future Capital Improvement Projects funding policy research was sent to the city staff as a directive. With a $350 million target to fund for deferred city infrastructure and maintenance of city properties, the council requested impact numbers of 3 major funding methods. Individual council members voiced their support or non-support for General Obligation Bonds (secured by a secondary property tax on residential and commercial properties), increase the sales tax (Scottsdale is the lowest in the state), increasing the storm water drainage fund. The council work study session is scheduled for March or April 2018.
CURRENT ISSUES that impact you and your city
Dirty Money issue: State lawmakers voted Tuesday to block any efforts by Arizona cities and counties to find out – and inform the public – who is funneling money into local elections through nonprofit groups. You may have encountered citizen volunteers who request your signature to get “Dirty Money” on the ballot to require that contributors of over $2500 identify WHO is sending dollars to support a ballot issue or candidate. If on the November ballot and is approved by AZ voters, no entity can hide their source of funds as is currently the practice.
On a 33-25 margin the Republican-controlled House voted to prohibit local government from requiring organizations declared to be tax-exempt by the Internal Revenue Service from registering as political action committees, even if they are putting money into races.
More to the point, it would preclude any requirement that these so-called “dark money” groups identify donors. And it would bar local governments from auditing the books of these groups or requiring them to respond to subpoenas, even if there were allegations that they were violating campaign finance laws. HB 2153 now goes to the Senate, which also is also dominated by Republicans.
Protect Our Preserve PAC was accused of using paid petition signature circulators. As you recall, this is the expense (lacking enough volunteers) of most council candidates. Actually the POP PAC has more than 230 unpaid citizen volunteers at the libraries, parks, trailheads, soccer fields and knocking on neighborhood doors. The goal is 25,000 valid registered Scottsdale voter signatures to place the questions on the November ballot of (1) allowing construction in the Preserve (2) allowing the use of Preserve Funds to build a tourist attraction or other project inside the Preserve. Anyone can volunteer to carry the petition and get signatures at book clubs, social groups, your own neighborhood and elsewhere. Their website www.ProtectOurPreservePAC.com or https://www.facebook.com/ProtectOurPreservePAC
Capital Improvement Project decisions. Please follow carefully the March and April deliberations of the city council on not only HOW city proposed short and long-range projects will be funded but WHAT will be funded. Channel 11 (can’t get with Direct TV) is the city channel that broadcasts all council meetings—usually 5 pm on Tuesday evenings. At the last city council meeting, proposed projects in WestWorld and the Desert Edge (formerly Desert Discovery Center) were removed from consideration in the Capital Improvement list. Funding sources would need to come from elsewhere.
Photo Radar tickets--Does the city make money on them? Scottsdale issued 49,191 photo radar tickets, which accounted for $6,827,127 in gross fine remits — while $2,941,825 was provided to the state and county and $1,622,653 was paid to American Traffic Systems, $979,221 went to the city’s court enhancement fund which pays to “enhance the technological, operational and security capabilities of the city court,” and a total of $1,283,476 was left over and classified as a “city surplus,” according to the result of a public records request.
EVENTS to put on your calendar
Dirty February and March …Cactus and Grapefruit League baseball schedules for all teams are at this link https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/full-2018-spring-training-schedule-cactus-and-grapefruit-leagues-begin-feb-23/ Ticket information for Giants stadium is at www.scottsdaleaz.gov/springtraining
FREE: Friday and Saturday, Feb. 23, 24; and Friday and Saturday, March 2, 3 from 4–10 p.m. Scottsdale’s Canal Convergence* along the Arizona Canal from Scottsdale Road to Marshall Way Bridge on the Scottsdale Waterfront. Experience screen-printing workshops, outdoor dance performances, international and local artists, a community bike ride and a series of artist talks and poetry readings. There will be live music by local bands featured each night. For more information and the full schedule click on this link http://canalconvergence.com/
*Eight free creative workshops. http://canalconvergence.com/workshops/
*Friday 6-7 and 8-9pm amazing art light exhibits in specific locations. Also select a drink at Casablanca Rooftop Lounge and hear six different international and local artists speak about their work. See images and locations at this link http://canalconvergence.com/artist-talk/
*Saturday, Feb 24th from 4:30 to 6 pm Community Sunset Bike Ride Tour of our Public Bring your bike for a tour of public art accessible from the Arizona Canal’s multi-use pathway. Featured public artwork stops will be Water Mark, Industrial Pipe Wave and Copper Falls. Meet at Soleri Plaza 15 minutes early to join in on the fun. Details at http://canalconvergence.com/community-bike-rides/
Most Sundays until April 8th noon to 4 pm Sunday A’Fair FREE outdoor concerts on the lawns of Civic Center plus arts n crafts market and food vendors. Bring a blanket and picnic basket or buy food there. Details www.ScottsdalePerformingArts.org
This Friday-Sat.-Sunday (23-24-25) are the final days for the Arabian Horse Show. Stroll the highly decorated stalls after cheering the Arabian competition in all the arenas this weekend. WestWorld is an easy drive north on the 101 and east onto Bell Road. Parking signs will lead you to the location.
Thursday SPECIAL ART WALKS 7 to 9 pm on Main Street and Marshall Way north of Indian School Road. On March 1st is “Native Spirit” and on March 22 photography “Worth a 1,000 Words”. Experience impressive art forms at gallery receptions and in street entertainment. Details at www.ScottsdaleGalleries.com
Saturday, March 3rd from 8 am to 1 pm SRP will host its Water Conservation Expo at the SRP PERA Club on the far western end of Continental Drive, Tempe. Go south on 68th /College and turn west at Supai School to the PERA gate. Learn ways to save water and money; get advice from landscape professionals; find out about rebate programs and meet Dave the Garden Guy. Register at www.srpnet.com/expo There are some discounted RainBird and Smart Sprinkler Controllers plus a free Evolve Technologies showerhead while the supply lasts.
Thurs-Sunday March 8-11th is the Parada del Sol final event--the Professional Rodeo at West World. Visit this link for more information and fees. www.Paradadelsol.net
Friday-Sunday March 9-11 Scottsdale Arts Festival in Civic Center lawns. Besides 200 nationally acclaimed artists and their works you can enjoy gourmet foods, AZ bands and entertainers. Details www.ScottsdaleArtsFestival.org
WHAT IS HAPPENING AT THE MUSEUM OF THE WEST?
It is all about Western Films, Characters, and Costumres
Location: 3830 N. Marshall Way - www.scottsdalemuseumwest.org
Saturday, Feb 24th at 1 pm Film documentary: “Reel Injun” directed by Neil Diamond and winner of Peabody Award.
Wednesday, Feb 28th at 1 pm Film: “Bringing Characters to Life: Costume Design and Character Development in Film”
Saturday, March 3rd at 1 pm Film: “American West in Film and Television: The Spaghetti Western”
Thursday, March 8th at 7 pm Speaker, Marshall Shore—Arizona’s hip historian. “You don’t know me, Arizona!”
Don and Charlie’s icon restaurant on Camelback Road east of Scottsdale Road is seeking a change from a full time restaurant to a hotel. The site is in preliminary plans for a 72 ft tall building with 182 room as a travel (not resort or conference) hotel. It will have a small conference room and restaurant. There is a potential that some of Don's memorabilia will be in the restaurant--he personally owns it all. The restaurant will be small and not duplicate the level of the current Don & Charlie's. The swimming pool will be on the 2nd floor for guests only. The parking is underground with necessary surface parking (about 10%) for departures and arrivals. No formal application has been made at this time but employees were informed months ago. It will take perhaps a year to complete all city procedures for project approval so in the meantime neighbors are hearing knocks on their door from Technical Solutions –a public outreach firm-- to keep them informed.
LAND USE CASES AND PROJECTS
Culinary School building will be replaced. The culinary school on Camelback Road—across from the Giants practice fields at Hayden Road—will be a new structure of 3 and 2 stories for an assisted living facility if approved by city council this year. The neighborhood open house this last week had excellent attendance with supportive comments from the majority of the nearby homeowners.
Wednesday, February 28th 5 pm in the Kiva (city hall) Planning Commission hearing on these cases:
Ryan Assisted Living Community (old Sassi Restaurant) 10455 E Pinnacle Peak Parkway request to amend stipulations #1,6,7 and the development standards including building height. 17 ZN 2017
Sienna Hills Phase 2 at 12190 E Shea Blvd request to change the land from Rural Neighborhoods to Suburban Neighborhoods and from R1-43 ESL to R1-10ESL on the north side of Shea Blvd and west of NWC of Shea/124th Street. 15-ZN-2017 & 6-GP-2017
Sienna Hills Phase 2 at 12182 E Shea Blvd request to abandon the entire 33 foot wide GLOPE easements on the north side of Shea Blvd west of NWC 124th Street 13-AB-2017
Winfield Hotel & Residences 4221 & 4223 N Scottsdale Road and 4216 & 4234 N Winfield Scott alley abandonment case 3-AB-2017 and rezoning case 7-ZN-2017 & 1-Incentive Infill District-2017 for a mixed-use development with building height of 90 feet
3636 N Scottsdale Road RACK requests a conditional use permit for a bar and pool hall. Cases 4-UP-2018 and 5-UP-2018
Early stage LAND CASES
23233 N 74TH Street Silverstone parcel G North…(south of Pinnacle Peak Road and west of Miller Road) request for approval of building elevations for new Master Plan Community on 27 acres. Case 10-DR-2018
12590 E Gold Dust Avenue request by owner to be exempt from current ESLO requirements to remove the 15 ft perimeter wall setback. Case 1-HE-2018
12012 N 68th Place request for an appeal of the Zoning Administrator’s ruling to provide relief from the required 750 foot separation between adult care homes. Case 1-BA-2018
Thought for the day: Do you realize that in about 40 years we'll have thousands of old ladies running around with tattoos?
Thank you for taking your valuable time to read the COGS E-Newsletter and to be an informed resident. Feel free to forward to your HOA neighbors or friends. Our help and support are totally free--might charge you a smile and thank you though.
Sonnie Kirtley, COGS Chair