Well, first we got the hot and now we’re beginning to get the much need wet. Let’s hope this monsoon will delivery gently and reasonably often over the next 6 weeks.
My last update sure generated quite a few comments, almost exclusively very positive, and a few (indirectly) just a bit more than negative. That’s life, here in Carefree as it is everywhere that free speech is still tolerated. I gave my perspective and made that clear. When this Newsletter and associated website were started I made a point of saying, “Facts, no nonsense”. When I do express my opinion I try to make that clear and I don’t pretend it is news. Now I’ll get back to the more typical Council meeting updates and some other news.
Late Breaking News:
It has been brought to my attention by a neighbor that there is another high-density development being proposed for the 40 acre parcel with Eastwood on the east border. The property is bordered on the west side by Windmill Lane and sits on the south side of Cave Creek Road across from Sky Ranch Airpark. An original plat plan filed by a different developer several years back called for 40 homes in a gated community, which was consistent with the Carefree General Plan, long-standing zoning, and homesites in the area. This new development anticipates 118 homes and will require zoning changes and probably an amendment to the Carefree General Plan. If approved, after review and discussion by the P&Z Commission, the plan would go before the Town Council for their final approval. A July 7th letter to neighbors advised that a meeting will be held at the Holland Center, Quail Room, at 6PM on Tuesday July 18th, presumably open to the public. You may view the letter and proposed plan layout for StageCreek on the CFM website, here.
My perspective as a close neighbor to both Eastwood and this proposed development is that it appears the town may be willing to change the semi-rural character of Carefree’s east end, forever. Sadly, construction revenue is short lived and will not sustain any municipality unless the municipality has viable attractions to draw in both residents and visitors who are willing to open their pocketbooks in Carefree establishments. You may recall that when Eastwood was approved, after much discussion, and after the existing zoning was changed to allow high density, we were assured that Eastwood would serve as a “buffer” between the low density zoned land to the west and the Garden Office complex to the east. What will be said about this new development, if approved? Another “buffer” or will it be yet another opening to more high density development on another adjoining 40 acres to its west?]
Town Council Meeting, July 11, 2017 at 5:00PM – This meeting was pushed back a week because of our Independence Day Holiday. We should all take a breath and remember why there was an Independence Day 241 years ago. I hope yours was enjoyable. Vice Mayor Crane was absent. The Agenda was short suggesting it would be a fairly quick meeting, and it was.
Items 1 – 4, Consent Agenda: These items were all related to routine town business (meeting minutes, bills, financial reports, event permits, etc.). All approved 6 – 0.
Item 5, Call to the Public: No one spoke.
Item 6, Current Events: Mayor Peterson took this opportunity to discuss what he referred to as negativity in various newsletters and blogs. He indicated that he was not pointing a finger at anyone and went on to say that while the members of the Council sometimes disagree they all like and respect one another. They all get along. Council members Krahe, Croyer, Orrico, and Farrar voiced similar sentiments. Councilman Krahe said that Carefree was on the verge of something wonderful but did not elaborate. Councilman Farrar also announced that Corrado’s will host a monthly Italian/American Social Night, every third Thursday of the month at 6:30pm; you don’t have to be Italian to join in (the first meeting will be held on July 20th), and Councilman Van Allen welcomed a new MCSO lieutenant, Matt Summers, back to Carefree. Matt is one of 3 MCSO lieutenants assigned to District 4.
Item 7, Award the Contract for tenant improvements to 33 Easy Street: The Town Administrator discussed the bid process, and results, and then announced that Kroll Contractors, Inc., had provided the lowest bid and recommended that the Council approve awarding the contract to Kroll in the amount of $366K, with a 10% contingency. Completion, for use as the new Council Chambers, is expected to be in time for the November or December 2017 Council meeting. Approved 6 – 0.
Item 8, InterGovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the State: R/M Chief Kraetz provided an overview of the agreement, which is essentially an annual revision to the agreement Carefree has been party to since 2006. It is a mutual agreement with the State Forest Service for resource sharing during emergencies. On a side note, the Chief stated that the entity known as the ‘Carefree Fire Department’ is a necessity in order to be eligible for Grant$. Companies such as Rural/Metro are not eligible for those funds. Approved 6 – 0.
Item 9, Executive Session: The public portion of the meeting ended at 5:33PM, when the Council voted to go into Executive Session.
Item 10, Adjournment: Following the Executive Session the Council meeting was adjourned at approximately 7PM.