Pima County Board retaliates for Miller’s budget review request

Four long time members of the Pima County Board of Supervisors taught newcomer Supervisor Ally Miller a tough lesson on Tuesday at their regularly scheduled meeting. In retaliation for her request that the County review the budget and find money to fix roads, they eliminated planned road projects in her district.

In a 4 – 1 vote,  that was clearly carefully orchestrated and likely in violation of Open Meeting Laws, the Board heard from multiple people in Supervisor Ray Carroll’s district demanding Colossal Cave Road repair. Supervisor Richard Elias then moved to have money reallocated from Miller’s district to fix the Colossal Cave Road, which is in Carroll’s district.

According to attendees, a group came into the meeting late; just in time for a vote on the matter. They had been called by a County operative to attend the meeting and urge the Board to fund the Colossal Cave Road. The meeting had run unusually long, and their appearance right before the vote gave the appearance that they effort had been carefully coordinated. One of the men in the group told another attendee that he had never attended a Board meeting before, but had been called by Ray Carroll’s office and asked to come at the appointed time and ask for road money.

Carroll and County Administrator Chuck Huckelberry appeared to be quite pleased that they had successfully stripped an entire district of road repairs for the 2014 cycle despite the fact that the repairs had already been approved by Huckelberry. Carroll and Supervisor Sharon Bronson laughed after the vote.

“This should outrage all the voters in this district,” said Miller, who called the move “vindictive. It was purely out of spite for me shining the light on the mismanagement of your tax dollars.”

One former Pima County elected official said, “Ally will be okay. These guys can enjoy this for a minute, but the public will see it for what it is. They got cocky and have crossed the line.”

Geri Ottoboni, a resident in Miller’s district said, “They need to go. This is probably Ray Carroll’s way of increasing our gas tax. Stealing from one district to pay for another is a typical Ray Carroll move. People need to know how he is so dishonest, while appearing to be helpful.”

The Pima County Board has crossed the line numerous times, but the public seems to have grown accustomed to the waste, fraud, and abuse. It is unlikely anything will change. One Arizona Daily Star “reporter’ posted on Facebook that the move did look like “retaliation against Miller by other supervisors for her going to the staff to have them re-do their list of priority projects in her district. Definitely rough politics, but it’s a game she has got to learn to play.”

Taxpayers however, question the ethics of being pawns in the game the Board is playing. Residents of Miller’s district are organizing an effort to enlist the neighborhood and homeowners associations in petitioning for an investigation of possible collusion and ethics violations.

Just this month, the Arizona Attorney General’s office agreed to investigate a complaint filed against supervisors, Elias, Carroll, and Valadez for Open Meeting Law violations at the January 14, 2014, meeting.

In 2010 Supervisor Carroll was put on notice by the Attorney Generals’ Office for a violation of Open Meeting Laws.

The retaliation is a result of an agenda item by Miller to “Identify spending reductions in the current Pima County budget in an effort to increase the pavement preservation and road repair funding allocation.” Huckelberry has stashed over $20 million in non-medical consultant accounts in various County departments. Miller had argued that those funds could be reallocated for road repair. She has also fought the County’s effort to raise the gas tax.

After years of neglect under the county administrator, the County would need $267 million to bring all county-maintained roads up to an acceptable standard, according to Huckelberry.

The roads in Supervisor Ramon Valadez’s district are paid for in separate fund setup by Valadez’s predecessor Dan Eckstrom.

Knowing that the obvious retribution would raise questions, Supervisor Elias tried to get out ahead of complaints. He said that this is “Not Chris Christy-gate.” He claimed it was simply an economic decision.

In another matter, not one representative from Raytheon showed up in support for a proposed road realignment supposedly designed for Raytheon by Huckelberry. Despite this lack of support, the Board voted 4 – 1 to fund the project which will move the road near vacate land. It is widely believed that the move is intended to benefit County cronies.

The head of TREO, Joe Snell brought out supporters for the road from his organization and the Southern Arizona Leadership Council, who said they supported the road as an “economic driver.” Both groups can be counted on to back various government officials’ requests and provide members who will speak publically in favor of their plans.  Huckelberry’s plan for the County to build a research and business park, which he say will be part of aerospace and defense corridor, was first conceived in 2006 – 2007. In the meantime, Raytheon built a new facility in Alabama and fired a majority of their Tucson security staff last month.

Related article:

Pima County to use Arizona Military Installation funds to buy open space

Listen to Miller discussing meeting with Tucson radio host Jon Justice

21 Comments on "Pima County Board retaliates for Miller’s budget review request"

  1. well it appears to be another example of why baja az is on the way down the drain. In the ads they also had a article on how they want to push raytheon out although they claim its an attempt to allow them to ‘expand’. Problem is once before when raytheon tried to expand they could not, also they would have explosives in the area for their projects and need MORE room. To top this off they want to add another runway to an airport that is under utilized already. They also claim they want to add more industrial type building in the area,again something that raytheon does not need or possibly want due to their business profile. There used to be a TRW business up in mesa/queen creek and they had problems with the FD up there because of explosives. I think they have also left as has the rocket builders for ejection systems which moved to calif to be out in the boon docks around sacramento.

    I guess this along with the act of taking funds from one questioning members district should be enough for people to see that NEW POLITICIANS are needed, but since they are all D’s with greedyhalva ties that will never happen. baja az has some of the sleeziest politicians that can be bought at ALL LEVELS and ALL need to be voted out as soon as possible IMNSHO.

  2. The Pima County Board of Supervisors, just like every other elected board, has a fiduciary responsibility to all of the tax payers of the area they represent. They may not steal from Peter to Pay Paul. Paul will never object.

    • They can do what ever they want because no one wants to call them on what they do. perhaps rightfully so because they will retaliate. Using our money BTW.

  3. Once again the GOB’s showed someone who is trying to better the plight of the taxpayers of Pima County just how much they really care about them. Not one whit and made it quite obvious that you either play by the crooked rules or your district can go take a flying crap and will get noting from the Huckster and is clowns. But what the hell, you DA taxpayers had a chance to change the make up of the BOS the last election and you did absolutely nothing about it. Hope you are real happy that its not about the good of all of the county but only those that “play ball” with the power brokers in this area.

    More taxpayer money will be spent on useless projects like these that are mentioned. Another runway? Are you kidding me?????? Why the hell do they need that. Oh wait because of the huge increase of air traffic at TIA?? I think not. Move a road when Raytheon has never asked or even attended a BOS meeting to ask and tell why it is needed?

    And Sugar Ray, you sir most certainly suck. You are not a republican and never have been. You are a Baja, AZ plant and always have been. You and your cronies are a disgrace to this area. How does it feel to represent taxpayers in the 8th poorest area of the country and help lead the fight against good paying mine jobs. You sir must so proud of your actions that have resulted in the highest property tax rate in the state and I can’t wait to see how high you will raise it again in June or July to feed the social welfare programs of the ILLEGALS and enviros and no growthers.

  4. Why not merge PC and COT governments, because they act exactly the same. We will need a name…I’ve got it, “The Mafia.”

  5. And on it goes. Does anyone wonder why there are people in Sahuarita & Green Valley who want to get out of Pima and join Santa Cruz? This has gone on for as along and Carroll and CHuckelberry have been in office Disgusting.

  6. JoJo did you go to the meeting to Support what Supervisor Miller tried to do?

  7. Carroll said nobody was invited they “just showed up.” On the ADS comment section one that attended said that the lady next to him had never been to a meeting, but was called by Carrolls office and directed to attend.

    Once again somebody is lying…and I think we know which politician it is.

  8. Thank God the new I-11 will be bypassing Pima County. Can you imagine that map twisting through all the districts but #1? Only someone very stupid would allow themselves to get involved in any project regarding this county. A DOT has caught on, business has caught on, and now if we could just get our uninformed citizens to catch on, life in this part of AZ might get better for all of us. Time for some investigations and recalls.

  9. Ray C – at one time was a ‘radio disc jokey’ of Irish militant music supporting the IRA and touting the FBI in his shows – as well as doing real estate contracting for a living – then suddenly becoming a politician man – perhaps the change of position has influenced his common senses… of what is what. Not good math Mr. C.

  10. There are other “Irish Bombers” on staff in the COT. I thought they tried to buy missiles from raytheon and were deported.

  11. I live in district 1. This is terrible, Thornydale Rd. is almost un-drivable and is way overdue for some repair. There has to be some kind of legal action that we can take to stop this sort of nonsense!

  12. Harry D (Hairy) | February 19, 2014 at 5:14 pm |

    The Raul and Dan machine just keeps going, going and going. If the voters would just make it gone.

  13. IcantbelievewhatIjustsaw | February 19, 2014 at 6:54 pm |

    Wow. A total loss for words.

    Regardless of political leanings, if the people of Pima County accept such behavior of their elected officials, they deserve the ruins that lie ahead.

  14. Wow, I heard that we the Pima County Tax Payers are paying TRIO 1/2 Million to supposedly bring jobs into Pima County> I also heard on the radio that Joe Snell who was pushing the road deal from Don Diamond Properties (they did not even mentioned his name just said “Developer”) is being paid $350 thousand a year. I guess all the other Cities surrounding Pima County fired Treo for doing such a bad job. It would be less expensive for Pima County to do what the other Cities have done and have their own Economic Development employee. That would be money for roads. They should just FIRE TREO. Use the money for roads.

  15. I was at the meeting for another agenda item. Ally Miller needs to learn how to work with others. Her simplistic Tea Party mindset is a huge disadvantage for the District she represents. It appears to me that almost everyone in the County government is fed up with her constant and shrill grand-standing.

    • Now THAT is one hilariously stupid comment! Obviously, not living in District 1.

    • This comment is part of the reason we are where we are. When the “simplistic mindset” of not having cheats for government reps, our taxes being used for what they are meant to do, smaller government, LESS TAXES and following the Constitution is a bad thing……….We’re all in trouble.

    • Questioning the status quo JSH…yes that is a real problem. The others have attacked her and treated her with disrespect since day 1. go back and review the videos…they will show who is shrill…you may have forgotten…videos don’t lie…:)

  16. It is about time someone spoke out about what is going on with the Board of Supervisors. Ann Day just sat there like a rag doll, getting nothing nothing done for District one. Maybe a few crumbs for just sitting there and do nothing for District one. Look what is happening to Tucson, perhaps a ghost town in no time. This is worse than Chicago type politics…Oh wait isn’t Ray Carol from Chicago. That explains everything.

  17. The arrogance of the Pima County Board of Supervisors and the County Manager are now on full display. This is the kind of behavior we see in dictatorships, in marxist and communist countries. This is the kind of crony politics that scares job creators away from Pima County. The County is in deeper debt than all other counties in Arizona combined, and now we see the money committed to fix roads in District 1 back in 2013 stolen by other supervisors just because they have a political majority? Ally Miller is asking the right questions. Why is it when our infrastructure is failing we are spending $25 Million on consulting of any kind? Now it may be time to ask the question, is it a violation of the fiduciary duty to the taxpayers of the Board at Large?

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