A Tour Through Dark Hallways

Issues the Cave Creek Politburo Doesn’t Want you to Know

If you haven’t seen the viral U-Tube called “Out of Shadows,” you should, because that, plus this information aims to “wake” many Americans and Cave Creek citizens who have gotten so busy in their lives they don’t know what is going on with their government and media.

So, as we approach the council election which will be full of mostly self promotion and “real issue shell games,” lets take a look at what our once Democratic Town Government has devolved into these days. Simply put, secret meetings, citizens cut out of pubic process and deliberation, Socialist Skype council meetings, proposing to lavishly blow millions more on a piece of swamp land in the midst of the most abrupt and vast Government ordered shut down on our economy in history.

A Few Huge Headlines.
If you reject Secret, Socialist Government, you’ll be interested in these revelations:
A. Mayor Bunch has done away with public comment on almost all key action item votes.
B. We have an un-elected advisor actually acting as the defacto Mayor.
C. Fat paid Town Government closed their doors for 4 weeks, either by Mayor Bunch or Carrie Dyrek. Who was it? 
D. No sales tax windfall from Sprouts.
E. Stasi Ernie proposes Secret police snooping on CC businesses.  See Ernie’s facebook site.  Ernie demands that businesses stay closed at the same time he apparently orders Town Hall closed. Who’s on first, Ernie?
F. Why not Sell CC Town Buildings?
G. “Complaint Driven System” is a Fiction!

So, let’s tour Dark Hallways of CC to see how a previously “open” Democratic Town Government has become the Politburo Arizona style.
First, Mayor Ernst T and his alter ego and un-elected Advisor have fashioned a sideshow scheme to eliminate the Citizens of Our Great Town from the Democratic Process.

ET has all but eliminated Public Comment on Most Key Council Votes. Believe it or not, they even eliminated Citizen input while deliberating in closed budget meetings on a near 50% increase in the Town budget, now $30 million. Politburo!
With the sneaky and questionable “Advisor,” a number of Executive Sessions (Secret) have been occurring. Historically those have been limited to employment matters and contracts.  Now it seems it is almost anything the council wants to keep under wraps. Crazy Secret government, The Politburo, like Gorbachev and Lenin.

Now, the ET duo for a month had mostly closed Town Hall for business (see photo of sign on front door of Town Hall), shifted to unnecessary “virtual” council meetings in which citizens can not have direct interaction or even “input” into the Democratic process. A virtual council meeting was held Monday, April 20 in a mostly closed video network.
So, the town building  door was locked, public comment by citizens was cut off by politburo. Though sometime after April 16, live people began to answer the phones much more regularly. Earnest T and his advisor now go to virtual council meetings so they don’t have to hear the thoughts and concerns of those dang citizens.  Publicly debated issues are now handled by the CC Politburo behind close doors in E-session.  Here’s a great example: If you don’t know the process of Boiling the Frog, ET and his advisor are closing off, step by step by step, the fabulous process of open government envisioned by the Framers of our Constitution. It has worked superbly well for 230 years, but is quickly and steadily being eroded.

Another Town Myth: Complaint Driven System (CDS)
According to the Arizona Law, a Town or City must follow its own Laws. Well, that sure makes sense. If a government is going to pass a law more or less on “itself” or its residents then that government should follow through and enforce its own laws.

Emanating out of the Slick and smoozy Francia regime came the feel good Town Hall Meetings and the Bull…. notion of a “Complaint Driven System.” Well, the Voters of Cave Creek have been duped and fooled!!

A Town can not just “make things up as they go.” They have to propose a Law, deliberate the new law and then pass the new law as the Legislature does, before it becomes a  law in the Town. The CC Town Council is for all intents and purposes a Legislature. Well, all of this regular Bull Council members and Carrie Dyrek promote that we have a “Complaint Driven System” is completely concocted, contrived and they Pulled it out of Thin Air. So, Francia and his ilk did not have to operate a straight forward Town Government and Do Their Jobs by Enforcing the Laws on the Books.  Instead, they Concoct this new Fiction called “Complain Driven System.” As the Fairy Tale goes, we only “do something if a Neighbor complains.”

Point in fact, the Council recently passed a Sign Ordinance, but they removed the enforcement provision, so why have the Ordinance?
There is no such Law on the Cave Creek Books to even remotely support CDS. In fact, there cannot be such a law because Arizona State requires that Towns and Cities must follow their Own Laws. But, by doing this, the over-compensated Staff is shielded from doing the actual and proper job they are hired to do.

The Council Bubble from Reality is Bold and Continues.
On Monday, April 20, the Council held their meeting on an unnecessary Virtual basis, in which Comments from the Public had to be turned in at 2 p.m., four hours Before the Non Meeting.

So, in the midst of the Greatest Shut Down in All Human History, and a reduction of Town revenues of at least 85%, with virtually every Restaurant Closed in the Town of CC, after Ernie T Ordered all closed, he recently proposed a Stasi Secret Police type Surveillance of Speak Easy business violators. The Council smears Egg all over it’s own face Again. 
Two weeks ago the Council voted to approve $93k to pave its parking lot?  Really?

And in the midst of the Momentous free fall plunge in business and revenues, this Clueless Town Government/Council steps in a huge cow patty and votes to Move Forward to pay for an Appraisal on Harmony Hollow.
Harmony Hollow is in fact adjacent to Spur Cross Ranch, BUT IT IS NOT any kind of sensitive piece of land because it has no reported artifacts which would warrant a preservation effort and, especially with a $1.8 million price tag.

The end game, I think, is that the Town wants to build a previously proposed Tourist Center on the mostly flood-plain piece of property known as Harmony Hollow. The proposal is a massive 14,000 square foot structure, including what Former Mayor Tom Augherton once said, “would include a 200 space concrete parking lot,” historic pictures of which I am hoping to soon recover. This would be a huge $5 to $7 million waste of Town money on top of the $1.8 million land cost, a large span concrete bridge, plus costs of Corp of Engineers, which could have full Section 404 jurisdiction over the Creek and in the impacted area. Getting the Council to pay for a new appraisal has TA’s fingerprints all over it. Melissa Paxton, a great artist who regularly helped Friends of Spur Cross Coalition, is potentially being duped by the Town and being told “it’s going to be preserved.”  Surely, sweet Melissa doesn’t think a massive Visitor Center, with 200 concreted parking spaces is a better “Picture of Preservation, than let’s say worst case scenario, two private homes with a total of 8 or 9 occupants and a few cars? The difference here, now, is this is not an emergency like the victorious effort to Preserve Spur Cross Ranch. In that era, the onslaught of new sub-divisions was like a Normandy Invasion proposing 684 homes, golf courses, a Walgreens….etc. And if the Visitor

Center is not the end game, then what is?
Some think the council members have lost their minds.

As a brief retrospective, on April 15, I wrote an Editorial hitting on huge points about the Town’s illegal acts, such as ignoring lighting, sound and native habitat ordinances in order to pursue their personal philosophy, and a closure of Town Hall. Since April 16 at least the phones are being answered. Ducey’s EO did allow for restricting lobbies to provide for social distancing, but of course Cave Creek appears to be choosing the more restrictive measures on the Governor’s menu. All we heard from the Town and Council, now running for re-election, is Crickets, Silence and more silence. Not a peep from Town Manager either.

Bob Morris did a typical drop in the bucket side step saying my fact checker got the date wrong when the Town Council voted for a 50% increase in the budget to an amazing $30 million, an incredible $5,500 for every single resident in the Town.  Big whoop, Bob. I always strive to be accurate. But, really Bob, you are Silent on carcinogenic Water. Really?

More Cave Creek Politburo antics to come.

Gary Schmitt
Founder,  President
Friends of Spur Cross Coalition