Good Afternoon ladies and gentlemen.
Below is a letter from Oro Valley Mayor Satish Hiremeth. We are honored that he has chosen the TRUTH Blog and are happy to pass along his comments. I was discussing the current issues facing a residents, and he opined that what we do between now and the end of November 2015 will either be one of the best things to happen to Oro Valley, or one of the worst. I couldn’t agree more.
To readers of the Truth,
As you know by now, there is an attempt by individuals to recall not only myself but Council members Joe Hornat, Mary Snider and Lou Waters. I want you to know that it is their right to follow the democratic process allowed for recalls if in fact, they believe that we are not leading our Town in a positive direction. I also want you to know that I support the process but would like to give you some background information so that you are better educated if someone asks you for your opinion on the recall.
In 2010 when we four took office, there was a $3,000,000 deficit between the tentative budget and the final budget. The deficit was overcome by creating expense savings of $1,500,000 and creating a revenue source of $1,500,000. This path was chosen because we have residents in our town of equal proportions. In difficult economic times, there are those who will scrimp and save to make ends meet and are comfortable with that path and then there are those who will work longer hours, get a second job, etc., so that their quality of life will not be sacrificed. Most elected officials make the mistake of choosing one group over the other thereby automatically alienating one-half of their resident population. I am very fortunate that we four, along with then Councilmember Steve Solomon, chose to respect both sides and chose a path of equal parity.
The only original member from the 2010 council was Councilmember Bill Garner and his voting record is as follows:
Tentative budget Final budget
2010 Yes No
2011 No No
2012 Yes Absent
2013 No No
2014 No No
As a result of Councilmember Garners voting record, never having voted yes on a final budget, I cannot in good conscience give him any credit for the success that Oro Valley has achieved since 2010.
In my opinion, there are two types of individuals; constructionists and destructionists. Constructionists first look for the opportunities that a situation may bring to see if there is any value. Once the value is determined the risks are evaluated and then a rational decision is made. Joe Hornat, Mary Snider and Lou Waters and I are of this camp.
Destructionists only look for the risks first in every situation. This is problematic because all things have a certain amount of risk associated with them and if this is the first focus, often the opportunities are missed. This doesn’t apply only to new situations being presented but applies to existing situations as well. It is easy to criticize but it is much more difficult to have a vision. The four of us have a solid, well focused vision for the town of Oro Valley.
The successes in Oro Valley since we took office have been numerous. We have been able to balance the budget, preserve public safety, invest in our roads, expand services in both transit and the library (while saving approximately $800,000), partnered with city of Tucson to bring an additional 2000 acre feet of water into Oro Valley, to name but a few.
In one of the worst recessions in our history, we currently have a surplus after beginning 2010 with a deficit shortfall of $3 million. In actuality, this surplus is in addition to the investments we four made in the Aquatic center ($2.2 million), Naranja Park ($2.3 million) and burying the underground wires along our Oracle road scenic corridor ($2.1 million). One could make a legitimate argument that, in essence, we would have had additional monies of $8.3 million added to our contingency reserve fund balance had we not made those investments improving services and bettering the quality of life for our residents.
In closing, everything you see in our town since we were elected in 2010 was done by design. NOTHING that you see today happened by accident or by luck. If you think that there is a discernible difference in our town compared to other municipalities and you like your public safety, roads that you drive on, the quality of your schools, the arts and culture, the recreational opportunities and the quality of your life in general…then you must realize that this is directly attributed to me being your Mayor and Joe Hornat, Mary Snider and Lou Waters being your council members. Now you know the Truth.
Satish I. Hiremath