CITY COUNCIL ANYONE?
by Norm Wallen
Posted July 28. Originally published in Noise.
Well now, little 'ol Flagstaff has finally made the big time. Our recent election proves we have grown up as well as out; big money and dirty tricks. Among other things, we were told that it's a conflict of interest if a Councilmember lives near property ( McMillan Mesa ) she wants to protect from development but not for the CEO of the Chamber of Commerce to run for Council.Some are worried about the future; will candidates come forward? Will money buy elections here as elsewhere? The recent outcome should give pause to the big money people - but has it ever done so? But, let's look on the bright side. Even those most offended by the dirty tricks of Citizens for Sensible Government are heard to say that it did generate a big voter turnout ( though not much bigger than 1996 ). And think of the fun - no more messing around with those boring 'issues'; a free for all on one's personal style, who we like and dislike and whose consultants can come up with the cutest ads. Think of the possibilities.
It's not too early to start on 2006; at least one of the ( losing ) big money candidates has announced his intention to run again..So, lets do it right, let's put Karl Rove to work right here in our own home town. I must admit, these exciting new directions have caused me to reconsider my decision to never run again. Now that I know where the big money is, how much could I get to sell out? Those big time manipulators like nothing better than buying a convert; does anyone remember that Ronald Reagan was once a union president? Wouldn't they get a kick out of recruiting a penitant enviro activist who has seen the light - a born again speculator/ developer? So here's my platform:
* Repeal the Land Development Code and Design Review. Build as much and as garish as you wish, after all it's a free country - and for sale.
* Repeal the sign and lighting codes. Give incentives for bigger signs.More Big Mac neon. Who ( besides a few astronomers and high school kids ) cares about dark skies anyway? BRING BACK THE BILLBOARDS! Come to think of it, repeal all existing ordinances.
* Pass an ordinance prohibiting union organizing within City limits; adopt the Wal-Mart model of fairness to workers.
* Pass a maximum wage ordinance prohibiting employers from paying more than the
* Pass a 'small box' ordinance. No new retail under 150.000 square feet. Never mind that retail giants are the new colonials, destroying people and nature worldwide. Hey, jobs is jobs.
* Get serious about affordable housing. Work with the County to cap house taxes; assessments capped at $500,000. Bigger is cheaper!
* Get money out of politics! Work for a 'dirty elections' law. It's only fair; any candidate promising to run 'dirty' gets public funding.
* More soccer fields per capita than any city in the U. S.-or even Brazil. Make sure the fields exhaust the remaining reclaimed water before we need it for drinking.
* Tear down downtown and replace it with a 400,000 square feet Wal-Mart next to the 800,000 square feet convention center/ mega-hotel/ aquatic theme park/ stadium/ heliport.
* Encourage the Forest Service to put all lands in the Open Space and Greenways Plan into the base for exchange. Let's get some hotels at Walnut Canyon!
* Create incentives for speculators. Buy property, hold it for at least one year and get a city rebate on any capital gains.
* Formalize the historic role of the City Attorney- give developers whatever they want.
* Make Flagstaff the retail capital of the U.S. 100% of business must be retail. We not only don't need basic industry; we don't want it!
* Turn Michael Kerski loose to redevelop all the undeveloped land in town . Put all the infrastructure in NOW,at taxpayer expense. Give him immunity from lie detector tests.
* Replace the City Manager with someone who is up front about his or her agenda to get every possible new development and double the staff. Reaffirm the Manager's prerogative to silence ( fire if necessary ) any staff who disagree with him. No 'meet and confer' for us by golly!
*Expand Snowbowl into the Inner Basin. Get the Forest Service to trade the Mountain to Native Americans for Black Mesa and its coal.
* Move the railroad out of town or charge duty on all the nuclear and other hazardous waste going through. This alone will fix our financial woes.
*No more arguing about our growth rate. Who cares whether it's 3% or 6%? Lets get real folks - 150,000 by 20 - 20 or bust!
*Now that we've raised Council salaries, it's time for new qualifications. No realtors or businessmen who don't make $200,000 a tear. No teachers or civil servants who make over $30,000 a year. No unemployed who aren't on welfare.
* Change our motto to "Flagstaff, the town where everybody comes and anything goes"
I recognize that this is a limited list but I only got converted last week. If I'm your kind of candidate, let me know; please include financial statement.
Norm Wallen - the Flexible Candidate - for sale or rent.