Hey it’s the holiday season and we’re supposed to be festive all up in this joint, aren’t we? Some people, they just have to get their Grinchy Grump on. It seems as if the Jones family has a bone to pick with my family, I suppose me in particular. We disagree on may things, I’m sure, but mostly we disagree about the City of Glendale and how they should run the arena the citizens voted to build and operate. This disagreement may be easily summarized as the Coyotes. I am a committed fan of the team and Mr. Jones is not.
Brief History AGAIN
Mr. Ken Jones has been party to two referendum attempts to bring the Jobing.com arena lease deal with Hockey Partners to a ballot. That’s his right to object to the workings of his government and to use every tool at his disposal to make his voice heard, I’ve never disputed that.
This summer during the first failed R12-01 petition gathering attempt, Mr. Jones saw fit to label our Glendale First! group (including my angelic daughters) as thugs. His characterization spread internationally overnight, soon our band of merry men and women were known throughout the land as thugs. Mr. Jones, through a hilarious misquote by the Glendale Star, is also indirectly responsible for the “Tricky Clams” moniker since adopted by our gang of thugs. We believe he actually said “tricky clowns”, interesting considering the email I received today from the Jones household.
The first referendum attempt failed for a myriad of reasons, including not gathering enough signatures. Mr. Jones and Mr. Cobb also made significant errors when filing their paperwork, read “Too Little, Too Late, Too Mistakey” for the details. When Mr. Jones and Mr. Cobb turned in their petitions, Pam Hanna (Glendale City Clerk) notified them of their errors and instructed them what they SHOULD have filed (click here).
After the first failure, Mr. Jones promised to try again after the arena lease deal was renegotiated and approved by the City Council. He did, this time with a new partner, Francine Romesburg through their new PAC “Back To Sanity” (BTS). Oddly, though, BTS made the exact same mistakes in the current R12-02 paperwork for the latest referendum attempt, read “Deja Vu All Over Again” for the details if you wish. After the city notified BTS of their errors (click here), our group issued a press release explaining those errors.
Paperwork Filed Again
BTS submitted their corrected paperwork on Friday, December 14. By the way, after checking the new submissions, their paperwork is still technically deficient if you’re keeping score.
The effect of filing the new paperwork would be to reset the beginning date BTS was legally able to gather signatures on their petitions while the date petitions must be submitted to the clerk remains the same, close of business Thursday, December 27. Thus, instead of having the 30 days allowed by law, by dint of their paperwork errors, BTS has a total of 14 days to gather 7,000+ signatures.
When we received the revised paperwork (100 Word Summary) from the city, we noticed that the timestamp was wrong. Instead of being stamped with the actual date the papers were brought in, December 14, the date was stamped December 4. Now, honestly, the likelihood that BTS would come close to getting the required number of signatures in the full 30 days was very slim. The odds that 7,000+ signatures could be collected in 14 days is proportionately more difficult.
If BTS was allowed the extra 9 days based on the December 4 timestamp, would they be any more likely to gather the necessary signatures? A rational person looking at the facts would say no. So what’s the big deal? I have a responsibility as chairman of Glendale First! to our membership and to our goal of opposing R12-02, just as I did with Prop 457 and R12-01. Part of the job is checking to be sure the rules are being followed, particularly important since each of the opposed projects were littered with fatal errors. So, if BTS wanted to somehow mount a legal challenge to their 14 day requirement based on an erroneous timestamp, it’s my responsibility to do what I can to call the mistake to the attention of the people that can rectify the situation.
Polite Coyotes Thugs
I try to be polite in most of my dealings with people, within reason. Certainly the Glendale City Clerk’s office has been cooperative with our requests. However, since the Arizona Courts have recently been lenient with the rules, it’s important that there be no possible error with dates in this case. To that end, even though I assumed the Clerk’s office would rectify the situation, I wrote an email to cover our bases. Here it is:
We noticed that the time stamp on the documents filed by “Back To Sanity” political action committee on December 14 in response to your December 12 letter regarding R12-02 to them were actually timestamped as received by your office December 4.
We realize that is surely a simple clerical error, but the importance of the date in a signature gathering exercise is important. Any signatures gathered before the 100 word description and referendum text were filed with your office are invalid for consideration. Therefore, if an argument was made that the corrected documents were filed with your office on the date of the receipt timestamp, “Back To Sanity” would potentially receive ten extra days to gather their necessary signatures. This would, of course, require an expensive defense by the City.
Therefore, I’d like to formally request that some sort of official document be provided to “Back To Sanity” correcting the oversight and that the document be made public in some fashion. If you have done this already, please accept my apologies.
As Chairman of Glendale First! I’d like to thank you for the work your office does, we have had the opportunity to work with your office for six months now and have had nothing but excellent experiences.
I have included Mr. Skeete’s office and Mr. Jones as cc: recipients of this email.
Chairman, Glendale First!
I included Mr. Skeete as a cc: on the email because he is the Acting City Manager and also Mr. Jones. I would have included Ms. Romesburg as well, but I don’t officially have her email address. None of this was intended to be snotty toward anybody or to cause anyone grief. Everybody can decide for themselves if it’s out of line.
Why You Hef To Be Mad?
We haven’t received a response from Ms. Hanna yet, there’s no rush anyway. As I said, the purpose of my email was as much to get on the record with our objection to the incorrect date as it is to have an “official” correction. However, Mr. Jones (or @RottenGlendale suspect Mrs. Jones based on the email address) apparently took offense at my email and characterized it as scolding Ms. Hanna. I received the following email this morning from “Peggy Jones” with the subject “re Fallar’s email”:
Hello Pam, some people think they know much more than their brain has the capacity to handle.
I find it not interesting, but humorous, that a free loading Coyotes fan from the metropolis of Cave Creek, Arizona, is criticizing how you do your job.
This particular person’s only value comes out when he, or it, is completely ignored. That is what I am doing now, and plan to continue doing in the future. I don’t believe there are any worthwhile benefits to reading the rantings of a clown, and we all have better things to do.
Have a nice day.
(a Glendale citizen and taxpayer)
C: Horatio Skeete
C’mon, Ken/Peggy, really?
Your crack about brain capacity is ironic, don’t you think? I mean ironic in the context of your personal repetition of the same errors five months apart even though you were instructed in the correct procedure on this very blog AND by the city clerk. I can understand you being upset about your errors and the fact that it cost you over half your allotted signature gathering time, but that wasn’t our fault.
As a proud citizen of the town of Cave Creek, I beg to differ with your characterization of my email as critical of the way Ms. Hanna does her job. As stated in the email and in this blog post, the purpose of pointing out the incorrect timestamp was to eliminate that as a potential argument for you to take to court later. It’s as simple as that, your PAC legally has 14 days to gather roughly 7,000 VALID signatures on your R12-02 petitions.
If, as you state, you were completely ignoring me, shouldn’t you have refrained from sending that email to my email address? I do agree that the rantings of this particular clown may be worthless to you and that we all have better things to do.
Hopefully, Ken and Peggy, we are rid of each other soon. I should warn you that I will be around and watching as much as possible until this particular issue is resolved completely. Ken, you have a lot of stamina and have stuck to your principles for quite some time in this Coyotes fiasco. I have as well, perhaps the biggest difference between you and I is my adherence to the rules and attention to detail.
Have a nice day.
UPDATE: December 20
We received a copy of a letter sent to “Back To Sanity” (BTS) by Glendale City Clerk Pam Hanna yesterday correcting the datestamp issue. Click here if you want to read it.
That should be the end of this issue, the date BTS provided new documents and, if those documents are correct, the first date they were able to gather signatures is December 14.