Opinion

Reveles: Planned Trump rally poses financial threat to county

Posted 1/6/22

Congratulations Chairman McClure and Vice Chairman Serdy on your new responsibilities.

We meet during the sad anniversary of an unprecedented violent attack on our democratic republic; the first …

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Opinion

Reveles: Planned Trump rally poses financial threat to county

Posted

Congratulations Chairman McClure and Vice Chairman Serdy on your new responsibilities.

We meet during the sad anniversary of an unprecedented violent attack on our democratic republic; the first time our nation has not had a peaceful transfer of presidential power.

A time when some among us continue believing former president Trump’s fraudulent claims that he won the election, despite the actual outcome decided a year ago by all Arizona election-certifying authorities.

Late yesterday we learned Trump canceled his press conference scheduled for tomorrow in Florida, announcing instead that he “will discuss many of those important topics” at his Jan. 15 rally here in Florence.

Pinal County does not deserve to be besmirched by Trump’s apparent assurance that here he’ll find support for continuing his “big lie” campaign. Members of this board, I urge you to stand for truth as our neighboring Maricopa County supervisors have done.

Trump’s disloyal and virulent campaign must not be allowed to further divide what hard-working Arizonans are still struggling to create — an Arizona with wondrous natural resources, limited water supplies and a community of diverse peoples striving to build fulfilling lives for themselves and their children.

Trump’s delusional and unwelcome rally will surely aggravate already existing economic, civic and public health challenges facing Pinal County.

Moreover, his rally clearly poses a financial threat to our county. The Center for Public Integrity reported that after Trump campaign visits, 14 cities were left waiting to be reimbursed nearly $2 million in law enforcement and public safety bills. Mesa, Phoenix and Tucson were among those who struggled to get paid. Unpaid bills for services by law enforcement, a sector of workers Trump hypocritically claims to support.

In many of these unpaid bill cases there were no signed contracts between local governments and Trump’s campaign.

This raises concern for your board’s fiduciary responsibility to Pinal County taxpayers. Is Pinal County providing resources for the Trump rally and is there a contract binding Trump’s campaign to financial responsibility for costs associated with his political rally?

This unsolicited rally will surely increase public divisiveness thereby adding urgency to our need for building a stronger and more trusting relationship between our county residents and our county government.

At last month’s meeting, I briefly suggested a process for the board to provide increased opportunities for fostering positive and constructive relationships within Pinal County.

Therefor Chairman McClure, I request that today you give direction to county management for scheduling a series of special work sessions for in-person reports by each county department head allowing time for interaction with concerned county residents.

Further, I recommend sequential interactive meetings, beginning with the sheriff’s office for which the board budgets the largest sum of taxpayer funding, followed thereafter by the next largest budgeted department.

Mr. Chairman, I trust you agree that truth, transparency and accountability must guide our County. May we hear your direction to staff?

Editor’s note: Roberto Reveles is a resident of Gold Canyon. He made the above statement at the Jan. 5 meeting of the Pinal County Board of Supervisors.

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