Hope and Change?
or is it
I’ll Keep the Dollars – You Keep the Change?
I attended the past Sunday’s ‘Candidate Forum’ and was both pleasantly surprised and disappointed.
The following is MY opinion based on what I observed and heard at the forum. I did NOT take copious notes or covertly (or, for that matter overtly) use a tape recorder to copy every word spoken.
I made no attempt to make my presence known to the candidates; I was merely one of the anonymous faces in the crowd.
The forum was held in the Independence Hall Theater and the room was only about 2/3 – 3/4 full.
I was disappointed in that the candidates commented on the apparent lack of enthusiasm demonstrated by the “poor” turn-out and attributed it to the pervasive apathy of SCA residents.
None of the candidates recognized the fact that the low turn-out MAY be the result of:
1. the Residents’ pervasive distaste with the election process (as a result of the antics during last year’s election).
2. the non-responsiveness of Board members (once they sit on our Board)
3. the overall lack of Residents’ wishes and concerns reflected during Board meetings.
My informal survey of friends’ and neighbors’ reason for not attending the forum revealed that the most common response was:
“Why bother – it never changes”
The format of the meeting allowed each candidate an opening statement, followed by a Question & Answer session, and finally a closing statement from each.
Yes, each opening statement was a carefully-crafted diatribe we’ve all heard before about the importance of experience and the importance of fiscal responsibility.
Some of the questions and concerns were pertinent, and some bordered on ludicrous (and addressed problems not under the control of the Board); for example, the streets in SCA are PUBLIC streets and the Board has NO control over speed limits, etc.; that is the purview of the Henderson Police Department.
Another individual asked a question about the alleged “illegal” Disclosure and Indemnification statement enclosed in everyone’s quarterly coupon payment book, and went on about how it violates IRS Regulations…..if so, maybe we should elect a new HOA Attorney?
It was disappointing that more time was wasted on this topic than was spent on the pending Pulte lawsuit.
The recent crime-wave was touched upon, and Mr. Weddle (I BELIEVE) promoted the virtues of Neighborhood Watch Programs; now, while Neighborhood Watch Programs ARE important, it was disappointing that none of the candidates spent any time discussing the virtues of the SCA Community Patrol.
Fiscal responsibility was a favorite topic.
Mr. Quinn and Ms. Tobin spoke at length about the topic. Mr. Weinstein made a statement to the effect that, as someone living on a fixed income, he is acutely aware of the effect of dues increases and always considers the plight of Residents in that position.
Ms. Tobin (I BELIEVE) made a statement to the effect that the last budget sounded like someone reading off a page of random numbers.
It does appear that a few candidates (especially Mr. Quinn and Ms. Tobin) have the experience and accounting acumen needed for our multi-million dollar budget.
Ms. Tobin also made a refreshing statement that...
... the Board works for the Residents, and that the Residents should be treated like customers, not like an annoyance (haven’t I heard that before???)
There were, however, a few disappointments.
During the discussion of the future of the infamous restaurant, it APPEARED the ‘fix was in’ and some kind of food establishment is in the works.
Mr. Quinn made an arbitrary and capricious statement that
“re-purposing” the restaurant area to another use ‘would cost half a million dollars’.
REALLY? - did he actually get contractors’ estimates OR was this an off-the-cuff comment supported by nothing more than an intimidating figure? (note to the Board: if it would REALLY cost $500,000 to‘re-purpose’ the restaurant, I’ll do it for $450,000).
The point is, SCA has been subjected to poor accounting procedures supported by vague and capricious data – we DO NOT need (nor can we afford) any more of these antics.
I was surprised that there were no comments or discussions about the pending Pulte lawsuit – something that affects all of us.
Because of a personal commitment I needed to leave the forum shortly after 4:00 PM – thus I cannot comment on any discussions that took place after that time.
I would hope that an extensive discussion about the Pulte lawsuit took place during my absence.
I would also hope that some of the positive statements made by the candidates (especially the “newcomers”) are put into place IF they are elected, and do not merely evaporate like so much desert rain.
THAT, in my opinion, is the reason for such a “poor” turn-out….
...as the saying goes...
“Fool me once, shame on you; Fool me twice, shame on me”
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We want to thank Robert for sending us his thoughts.
We'd like to know if any other Sun City Anthem unit owners attended the forum.
Do you agree or disagree with Robert N ?
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