Category Archives: Politics
Downtown Voices Coalition, downtown Phoenix’s only grassroots stakeholder group that champions issues of urban excellence, like small and locally owned business, historic preservation, sustainability in a broader perspective, and good government, is hosting a series of one-on-one online conversations with the four remaining candidates for Phoenix City Council. The four candidates will be in conversation with our Edward Jensen, our group’s Secretary as well as an ardent observer in Phoenix politics and governance.
Leading off the conversations will be Laura Pastor, a program director at South Mountain Community College and the daughter of U.S. Congressman Ed Pastor, on Friday, October 4, from 7:00-8:00pm. Justin Johnson, running against Pastor for the District 4 seat, will be in conversation with Jensen on Monday, October 7, also from 7:00-8:00pm. Johnson is a real estate developer and the son of former Phoenix mayor Paul Johnson. Conversations with Kate Gallego and Warren Stewart are being scheduled for the week of October 7.
The conversations will be hosted on DVC’s Google+ page as a Google+ Hangout On Air, an innovative platform to allow many observers from Phoenix to watch and participate in the conversation. Twitter users can send in their questions and comments using the hashtag #DVC4 and #DVC8 (depending on the district represented). Participants who do not have Google+ can watch on DVC’s YouTube channel, youtube.com/DVCPhoenix. The conversation will then be available on the DVC YouTube channel for watching after the live event has concluded.
“I am pleased to be hosting these one-on-one conversations,” said Jensen. “This is a unique, first-of-its-kind way to engage with the candidates and the questions that will be asked are not the conventional questions asked in debates and fora. It gives the candidates an opportunity to envision that they are in their respective City Council seat and working to accomplish their agenda.”
The questions are focused around the central theme of governance and how the candidates plan to accomplish their policy proposals while they are in office. The four subthemes are “City Hall and the Next City Manager,” “Governance and Intergovernmental Relations,” “Downtown / Urban Phoenix and Urban Living Infrastructure,” and “Sustainability and the Environment in a Broader Context.” The one-on-one conversation format will allow Jensen to pursue different lines of questioning based on the answers given, allowing for tremendous flexibility. About 15-20 minutes at the end will be reserved for audience questions.
Downtown Voices Coalition is a coalition of stakeholder organizations that embrace growth in downtown Phoenix, but is mindful that healthy growth should be based upon existing downtown resources — the vibrancy of neighborhoods, the strength of the arts community, the uniqueness of historic properties, and the wonderful small businesses that dot downtown. For more information, visit downtownvoices.org.
Pictured here is Downtown Voices Coalition’s statement on the proposed amendment to the City of Phoenix’s anti-discrimination policy. The organization’s position on this matter is in keeping with one of its nine guiding principles – diversity – outlined here:
“Downtown should reflect a sensitivity to the diverse ethnic, socio-economic, and educational backgrounds, along with the variation in age groups and sexual preferences that are an important characteristic of our downtown neighborhoods. Success of downtown redevelopment will embrace this diversity and incorporate it as a dynamic community asset.”
Paul Barnes, long-time president of the Neighborhood Coalition of Greater Phoenix, was lauded for years of service to Phoenix neighborhoods and good city planning policy at a surprise retirement party at the Helen Drake Senior Center, 7600 N. 27th Avenue. Nearly 100 neighborhood advocates and city officials and employees attended the August 30 event.
Here Mayor Greg Stanton and Members of Council, Michael Johnson and Daniel Valenzuela, share their stories about Paul and his dedication, hard work, and positive impact on our city.
Like all Phoenix residents, the Downtown Voices Coalition Steering Committee is interested in who will be elected as the next mayor and city council. The organization hosted a standing room only mayoral forum at the Lexington Hotel on June 9, 2011. The Arizona Republic covered the event here; likewise the Phoenix New Times here. Taz Loomans, author of the popular Blooming Rock blog, summarized her “tweets” of the forum here. Video of the mayoral forum will be available on this site in the very near future.
Downtown Voices is now issuing a handy one-page “scorecard” to help voters who are especially interested in a vibrant downtown to determine who they might vote for as the next Phoenix Mayor. The group’s guiding principles (and space for other issues) are listed alongside the six certified candidates. Based on your own observations, talking with friends and family, and catching up on the news, you can use the “scorecard” to “check” who aligns most closely with the issues that are important to you. Click the graphic below to review and download the PDF:
For more information about the upcoming election for Phoenix Mayor and City Council, visit phoenix.gov/ELECTION/elect.html.
The Downtown Voices Coalition announces its first Downtown Mayor’s Forum. We are very excited to bring the candidates together for a downtown-centric discussion. Any and all residents of Phoenix are encouraged to attend.
Candidates scheduled to participate are Thane Eichenauer, Wes Gullett, Councilman Claude Mattox, Peggy Neely, and Greg Stanton. Arizona Republic Reporter Richard Ruelas has agreed to serve as moderator.
To spice things up, the format will include questions from one candidate to another. The forum will take place at the newly acquired and soon to be renovated Lexington Hotel at 1100 N. Central Avenue, which is one block north of the Roosevelt and Central light rail stop.
Seating is limited, so if you are interested in attending, please come early to get a seat in the meeting space. Additional seating will be available in the Cycle restaurant and bar, with the audio from the forum piped into the general sound system. Cycle restaurant, which rotates chefs every month, will feature its in-house menu for the evening.
Downtown Voices Coalition is a coalition of stakeholder organizations that embrace growth in downtown Phoenix, but is mindful that healthy growth should be based upon existing downtown resources — the vibrancy of neighborhoods, the strength of the arts community, the uniqueness of historic properties, and the wonderful small businesses that dot downtown. All of these assets should be stepping stones to be built upon, rather than shattered in the wake of rampant downtown development. For more information about Downtown Voices, please visit http://www.downtownvoices.org/
[Source: Mike Sunnucks, Phoenix Business Journal]
If you want a pin-up poster of Sarah Palin, would like to abolish progressive income taxes or think Ronald Reagan is the best president ever, you’ll probably be in downtown Phoenix this weekend.
Approximately 2,200 tea partiers are in Phoenix this weekend for a policy summit focused on federal spending, health care, taxes and immigration. The weekend event is at the Phoenix Convention Center.
Presidential contenders Tim Pawlenty and Ron Paul, Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, conservative commentator Dick Morris and U.S. Rep. David Schweikert, R-Scottsdale/Tempe, are some of the speakers.
Arpaio is considering a run for the U.S. Senate in 2012.
A host of conservative, anti-tax and anti-government groups are also in Phoenix advocating everything from the elimination of the Internal Revenue Service and progressive income taxes, to fighting labor unions and President Barack Obama on health care.
Sarah Palin will not be there, according to the event schedule. But conservative groupies of the former Alaskan governor can get a large poster of her — as well as Reagan — from the Young America’s Foundation. You just have to sign up for the group’s mailing list.
Judging from the exhibit hall and the sentiments among those attending, Palin enjoys strong support among the tea party activists for a possible 2012 presidential run.
[Source: Lynn Ducey, Phoenix Business Journal]
Former Phoenix City Councilman Greg Stanton has announced his candidacy for Phoenix mayor.
Stanton is deputy attorney general at the Arizona Attorney General’s Office and is seeking election to the city’s top post in the Aug. 30, 2011 election.
He has served as a city councilman for nine years, grew up in West Phoenix and attended public schools in the Valley. Stanton is married and he and his wife, Nicole, and have two children.
“I love Phoenix, my home for 37 years and the place Nicole and I are raising our children,” Stanton said in a statement. “But our city stands at a crossroads. Growth for growth’s sake can no longer stand. I am committed to making us more competitive, more aggressive, and more focused on growing jobs—not growing sprawl.”
Both the mayor and Phoenix City Council members serve four- year terms. The mayor can serve two four-year terms, while council can serve three.
Current Mayor Phil Gordon was elected to the post in both 2003 and 2007 and cannot seek re-election.
Others seeking the mayoral seat include city council members Claude Mattox, D-5, and Peggy Neely, D-2; and Wes Gullett, a political consultant and aide to Arizona Sen. John McCain.