Prescott City Council Candidates Update – Feb. 8 2021

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Special Edition – Prescott City Council Candidates
February 8, 2021 


We are offering the following information so you have an opportunity to read about the Prescott City Council Candidates for the vacancy caused by Billie Orr’s resignation. The council voted to appoint a candidate of their choice to fill the 33 months left of her term. They had the option of filling this seat temporarily and allowing the citizens to choose in the August Primary/November 2021 election, but chose not to let the people of Prescott have a voice. It should be noted that five candidates were selected IN A CLOSED EXECUTIVE SESSION from a pool of 24 individuals, many of whom were likely eminently more qualified. Since none of it was made public, how would one know?

On Tuesday, Feb. 2 the Prescott City Council selected the following candidates for consideration of the three year vacancy: Connie Cantelme; Andre Carman; Jim Lamerson; Eric Moore; and Roger Clark Tenney.  Selections from their applications are below.  The applications can be read in their entirety HERE.

The Council is expected to conduct public interviews of the five finalists on the morning of Tuesday, Feb. 16, although the time has yet to be determined. Meanwhile, the process will be open to comments from the public at city.clerk@prescott-az.gov. For more information on the vacancy and the upcoming meeting please contact the City Clerk’s Office at 928-777-1245. You can also email Mayor Greg MengarelliThe City CouncilCity Manager Michael LamarCity Attorney Jon Paladini

Please also consider writing a Letter to the Editor or submit a “Rant and Rave” to the Courier TODAY in order for publication before the Feb. 16 meeting. We must keep this in the news.

The voting is the vetting

If you don’t allow citizens to vote, then the Council has to do thorough background checks for financial, legal, medical or other issues before an appointment is finalized. Most employers have stringent background check requirements (including credit reports) as part of the process of selecting finalists. These five candidates have had no such scrutiny. State law requires a financial disclosure form be filed AFTER appointment. Contrast that with the election process, which requires financial information disclosure to be completed as PART OF the election process.  Absent an election, the appointment process cannot and should not be finalized until background and vetting have occurred.

It is worth noting that if the vetting is not done ahead of time, financial and legal exposure could be an issue, putting the Council members and the citizens at risk. The ensuing extrication would distract Council agendas and exposure to potential legal issues, not to mention embarrassing the individual in question. The unintended consequences are significant and potentially far more costly than a special election.

What were the criteria used to select these five candidates?  If there was criteria, why isn’t this criteria public information?

Vice-Mayor Scholl justified her reason for not holding an election during two recent meetings (1/12 and 2/4), stating that it was critical for the council to have someone who could hit the ground running** as well as to provide stability throughout the remaining 33 months of Billie Orr’s term because of the City Council’s upcoming difficult agenda.  Are there any medical, financial, legal or personal impediments (i.e. time constraints) that these candidates may have that would interfere with the continuity of service over 33 months that Scholl stated was paramount to making this an appointed position for the entire time period?  **Lamerson is the only candidate that has served on the Council, does that mean that his selection is predetermined?

As you read the selections from the Prescott City Council Candidate Applications, keep the following in mind:

  • Jim Lamerson suffers from publicly disclosed MS. His application for the council position is very difficult to read and is cursory. (Councilman Blair has stated that “his record stands for itself”.)
  • Public records appear to indicate Andre Carmen may have financial and legal problems.
  • Roger Clark Tenney is an employee of the PUSD. So is Alexa Scholl. What if there is an issue regarding the school district and two sitting Council members had to recuse themselves? 

Constance “Connie” Cantelme
Cantelme is President of Keswick Construction and ran for Prescott City Council in 2017.

DESCRIBE YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE FUNCTION AND PURPOSE OF THE CITY COUNCIL:
My understanding of the function of the Prescott City Council is to understand the issues, both good and bad, that arise and provide guidance and potential solutions to resolve or enhance the city and its businesses and residents. The council represents the taxpayers and residents and should vote for the betterment of the community.

WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE CITY OF PRESCOTT OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS?
My vision for the city, for the future, is economic success, preservation of our historic past, keeping our millenials, controlled growth, enhanced infrastructure, and working on our transportation issues. Emphasis on water preservation is also a concern. 


Andre E. Carman
Carman is a local attorney.  Review of public records available for Andre Carman suggests legal and financial concerns that must be considered as these would undoubtedly be raised and vetted during a normal election process.

DESCRIBE YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE FUNCTION AND PURPOSE OF THE CITY COUNCIL.
The function and purpose of the City Council is to set the vision and mission for the City staff to execute; oversee City operations from a macro level; appropriate funding for City operations; promulgate ordinances and policies; and appoint City executive leadership. Council members also need to be active in the community by attending dedications, welcoming new businesses to the City, being involved in economic development, and supporting philanthropic and charitable endeavors that advance the City’s vision.
 
WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE CITY OF PRESCOTT OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS?

  • To be a magnet city for educated, ambitious people, which will help drive economic growth.
  • To be known as the city with the highest quality of life in the Southwest.
  • To have well-principled water and environmental policies to protect current and future health and prosperity.
  • To be a city with a proactive suburban vibrancy that does not compromise its small town sense of community.
  • To be a collaborative regional leader for the prosperity and controlled growth of the region.

Jim Lamerson  (very difficult to read his handwriting)
Lamerson owns Lamerson’s Jewelry on Cortez St. and served on the council.  He lost his bid for a council seat in 2019.  If you are interested, google him and read the many letters he has submitted to the Daily Courier.  Unfortunately, Lamerson suffers from MS.

DESCRIBE YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE FUNCTION AND PURPOSE OF THE CITY COUNCIL.
To guide the city

WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE CITY OF PRESCOTT OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS?
Retain our small town western character and ambiance. Protect the assets of the city with rational growth management with water, sewer, police, fire roads & trash.


Eric Mitchell Moore
Moore is the owner of Jay’s Bird Barn/Hallmark/AZ Field Optics. 

DESCRIBE YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE FUNCTION AND PURPOSE OF THE CITY COUNCIL.
I believe the function and purpose of the City Council is to provide leadership and make policy on the local level. In addition, the City Council needs to work in cooperation with our neighboring communities, the county and the state. Council members have the duty to listen to their constituents and to represent and govern by the voice of the people—to not have their own biases and personal agendas. My purpose as a city councilman is to support our infrastructure, our Fire and Police, ensure our water resources, and work to maintain our quality of life.

WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE CITY OF PRESCOTT OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS?
As a business owner, I recognize the need for manageable, sustainable growth. My goal for the City of Prescott is to maintain the quality of life that we now enjoy. As a city, I feel we need to focus on issues affecting growth—infrastructure needs, the Prescott Airport, water mains, sewer lines, roads, public safety, protecting our water resources, open space, recreation and trails. Other priorities include the continuation of a vibrant downtown area and a robust, diversified economy. I envision maintaining the charm and quality of life in Prescott as we grow.


Roger Clark Tenney
Tenney is the Assistant Principal at the Prescott High School

DESCRIBE YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE FUNCTION AND PURPOSE OF THE CITY COUNCIL.
Prescott’s City Council represents the interests of the citizens of Prescott in dealing with present issues, with an eye to the future of Prescott. The council works together under the leadership of the mayor and with the advice of the city manager and city attorney to develop a deep understanding of issues impacting Prescott and its citizens. Council members employ this understanding to represent Prescottonians as they respond to citizen concerns, allocate resources toward city priorities, and approve or alter necessary city ordinances and programs for the benefit of Prescott’s citizens.
 
WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE CITY OF PRESCOTT OVER THE NEXT 10 YEARS?
I will be forever grateful that when my family chose to move to Prescott in 1983 that we found a beautiful, welcoming community that has become my hometown. Over these next 10 years, I envision a Prescott well-known for welcoming a variety of viewpoints, that skillfully manages intelligent, water-wise growth I envision a family-friendly Prescott with a robust technology-based job market, and with world-class recreational amenities and open spaces like Granite Dells. I envision Prescott with excellent medical care and facilities, with an active airport, and with excellent community schools and colleges. I envision Prescott with well-maintained streets and parks. and with public-private partnerships that enhance the quality of life for all our citizens.


As a reminder: You can also email Mayor Greg MengarelliThe City CouncilCity Manager Michael Lamar;
City Attorney Jon Paladini.

Please also consider writing a Letter to the Editor or submit a “Rant and Rave” to the CourierTODAY in order for publication before the Feb. 16 meeting. We must keep this in the news. 


Start a discussion on:
TWITTER @IndivisPrescott
Facebook (Public page) /Facebook (Closed group)
prescottindivisible.org 
Info@prescottindivisible.org
Prescott Indivisible on YouTube


Prescott Indivisible
P. O. Box 12694
Prescott, AZ 86304


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Prescott Indivisible was founded in 2017, when Paul Hamilton and Nicole Romine put an ad in the local paper, requesting local progressives to show up at the library. Over 100 people lined up. In short order, we had formed a local chapter of the national Indivisible movement. Within six months we adopted a set of Guidelines that sets the framework in which we work, designed a logo and printed and sold t-shirts. Our mailing list quickly expanded from 100 to over 1,200. We usually have 100 or more attend our general monthly meetings.

Prescott Indivisible has a strong track record of activism. We adopted the team concept: Communication/Events; Voter Education and Elections; Education; Environment; Human Rights; Immigration and Peacekeepers to assist with safely issues. Initially we had a steering committee that consisted of volunteers. After our guidelines were adopted, the steering committee is made up of elected officers and members at large and the heads of the various teams, or their designees. A diverse group of community activists, social justice advocates and others that have volunteer ties to non-profits and religious organizations, the steering committee assists the teams when asked and sets the agendas.

Our teams and their members have worked diligently to make their voices heard. We have made thousands of calls, mailed hundreds of postcards to our legislators in Arizona and in congress. We have collaborated with like-minded organizations to advocate for issues of crucial importance to Arizona and the nation.

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