Tune in to the Jeff Oravits Show this Tuesday at 3PM on 97.1 the Big Talker for a discussion with Dwight Kadar, member of Arizona Liberty.
Arizona Liberty Statement on Bond Proposal:
Arizona Liberty’s mission is to inform Sedona Fire District taxpayers of the ongoing waste and abuse of their tax dollars before they vote this November on a bond issue and before they receive their property tax bill. Arizona Liberty also wants to impact the financial decisions of the Governing Board.
The Governing Board has proposed spending $26 million for capital outlays, $18 million through a bond issue and $8 million from future property taxes.
Since the 2012-13 fiscal year, the Governing Board has approved more than $78 million for employees’ wages and benefits, while approving only $7 million for capital outlays, less than 10% of approved personnel expenses. The $7 million included $2.3 million for a brand-new station that handles less than one call per day at a cost of $11,500 per call. Much of the proposed $26 million of capital outlays have been sacrificed in favor of higher and higher wages and benefits. Now, the Governing Board wants taxpayers to pay a $26 million tab.
The Governing Board also tentatively approved a $17 million budget for fiscal year 2017–18, an increase of $1.1 million, almost 7% higher than the prior year. This budget is $5.4 million higher than fiscal year 2012-2013 actual spending, an increase of 47%. The proposed budget includes additional support staff positions and a 3% cost of living adjustment (COLA) for employees.
During the six-years Fire Chief Kris Kazian, a Scottsdale resident, has managed District operations, increases include 13% more operations staff, 31% additional personnel expenses, 47% more total expenses, and 63% higher District property taxes, while general inflation increased less than 7% and square-mile area covered and population protected remain the same.
Arizona Liberty, dedicated to informing Sedona, Verde Valley, and Northern Arizona residents on important issues that impact their daily lives, was instrumental in defeating efforts by environmental groups last year to have Sedona designated a national monument through a Presidential proclamation under the 1906 Antiquities Act.
Arizona Liberty hopes to have the same success in defeating Sedona Fire District’s bond request.