WHAT THE BALLOT MEASURE REALLY DOES:
An Approved Prop 420 makes a change to the City charter, ensuring that any development in the Preserve other than trails, trailheads, or maintenance must go to a vote of the citizens.That's all it does. The collected Preserve Funds can ONLY be used for these purposes. Any proposed change to commercial construction or non-trail and non-maintenance use goes to public vote to approve or deny.
YES TO 420 puts the Preserve back in the hands of the voters, not a four politicians/city council majority .
- "The Preserve has always had a plan for an educational center."
- Response: The Preserve Ordinance specifically denies any commercial buildings, food service, events/activities after sunset and construction other than for the Preserve trails, parking lots and Gateway--to-trail entries)
- Voters approved the DDC/DE with the 2004 vote to allow funds to be used for "improvements thereto".
- Response: The Scottsdale City Attorney interpreted "improvements thereon" as meaning that any sitting city council can approve ANYTHING within the Preserve.)
- "A non-elected group will make decisions on the Preserve
- Response: There is no change in the Preserve Conservancy, city-council appointed Preserve Commission and the city council in-charge of management, maintenance and operations of the Preserve)
- "People with disabilities are denied enjoyment of the Preserve"
- Response: There are 3 trails that are ADA standards and wheelchairs walkers and disabled can enjoy the desert experience. Also the volunteers have many special trail programs for them.....FREE
- "The Desert Edge will provide educational classes and provide ASU with research facilities"
- Response: The Conservancy and 700 volunteer stewards have always provided FREE hikes, science fairs, symposiums educational lectures and group classes. These are all done without ANY buildings and in full conformance with the existing Preserve Ordinance. The Desert Edge business plan estimates it will charge a family of four $57 entry fee. ASU for years have been using the Preserve for a research grounds without the construction of expensive research buildings paid TOTALLY by Scottsdale resident taxpayers.
- "The Desert Edge is not a commercial use."
- Response: Admission will be charged, food and merchandise sold, employees paid, operations is by an outside organization and not city employees.)
- "The supporters of the YES Prop 420 are northern homeowners protecting their area."
- Response: The 37,608 signatures to get the Prop 420 on the ballot came from the ENTIRE city zip codes. Homeowners with YES Prop 420 signs on their front yards are throughout the city and not just northern subdivisions.)
- "Inside the Preserve boundaries is the best location for a tourist facility".
- Response: The city owns 80 acres next to WestWorld where capitalizing on the million visitors there makes sense. Taliesen West was another companion tourist location that should have been considered. The Preserve Fund is needed to pay for their estimated $68 to 72 million dollar for the Desert Edge so they must locate INSIDE the boundaries to capture it
- There are 51 Opposition ballot entries VS 11 Supportive in the Voter Booklet"
- Response: Interestingly, there are Scottsdale city council members in both the Pro and Con sections. Also, all of the supportive writers LIVE IN SCOTTSDALE. The majority of opposition names represent the tourism industry with hoteliers and travel-related firms who are focused on any financial return if they get commercial started inside the Preserve. It cost $100 per entry so obviously the "industry" could easily cough up funds.
CURRENT POLITICAL ACTIVITIES
1. Opponents have engaged in clever confusion-marketing. They copied our name Protect OUR Preserve, but inserted "YOUR" in place of "OUR" and copied our signs.
2. Laurie Roberts of the Republic condemned it as the "the boldest disinformation campaign of the year."
3. DDC creators and Council members in favor of the Desert Edge in the Preserve have engaged in fear-mongering tactics, using newsletters and emails, alleging that voters will lose control of the Preserve if Prop 420 passes. They seem to forget that Scottsdale has highly educated, informed voters who recognize insults to their intelligence when they hear them!
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