Candidates for public office often promise voters they will impose sound fiscal management and pursue economic development and jobs by streamlining regulations. Unfortunately, most candidates have little or no experience in doing these things. Too late, voters realize their elected Council representatives think sound fiscal management means limiting spending to match every dollar that comes in; that economic development involves voting yes/no to developer proposals; that any jobs they bring to town are good, even if they are low-paying positions that aggravate our net labor import each day.
Fiscal Management: If you are going to be responsible for overseeing and budgeting the expenses of a service enterprise as large as Scottsdale – spending hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars each year – you’re more likely to succeed if you have been accountable for finding major cost efficiencies and expense reductions sometime during your career. I have!
If you make policy decisions addressing long-term liabilities like employee pensions, it would be valuable if your background included pension plan design, evaluation and even a dispute resolution with the ASRS that saved citizens millions of dollars. Mine does!
If you are responsible for protecting the coveted AAA bond ratings of the city, knowing what earns a AAA rating is imperative. This understanding is developed by actually meeting with the major rating agencies – Moody’s, Fitch and S&P – explaining your “business model,” and arguing for a rating. Multiple times, on behalf of numerous enterprises including the City of Scottsdale. I’ve done this!
Economic Development: At the July 10 Candidate Forum at City Hall (broadcast on Channel 11 each Sunday since), I commented business recruitment is most successfully done if you “speak the language” of business decision-makers, understanding the financial and operational factors that drive business decision-making. For ten years I was CFO of the Tennessee Valley Authority, a government enterprise whose dual responsibilities were generating electricity and promoting economic development throughout the Tennessee Valley. Years earlier, I was Vice President of Economic Development for a Fortune 100 company. Economic development and job creation is something I’ve done!
Regulations: To govern in ways that impose regulations, it is valuable to have experience in a regulatory environment. Nationally, I have testified before Congressional oversight committees and negotiated with the SEC, OMB, GAO and handful of other three-letter regulatory agencies. Locally, I have lived with the regulatory environment at our City level – both as the regulator (serving as your City Treasurer) and as the regulated (as owner of Scottsdale Airpark News, a winner of the Chamber’s 1995 Small Business of the Year Award.) I know what regulations help economic development and which ones hurt!
You expect your Council will insure your tax dollars are spent wisely and pursue visions to attract businesses and visitors, always to enhance the economic prosperity of citizens. I am experienced and committed to these goals and I ask for your support in the upcoming Council election.