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Latest regional, state and national issues

Nelson: Replacements for Lesko are numerous

I read your story about the many candidates that are seeking to replace Rep. Debbie Lesko.
Opinion

Elam: Artificial intelligence, real intelligence and fighting crime

Everyone wants to stop violence today, but no one knows how. Some think we will be able to find the answer with Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) because it has amazing capacities that our scientists …

Church: Thanks to Pearson for his efforts

Like many of my golfing friends here in Sun City, I moved here after retiring, hoping to continue competing at a high level in local tournaments.

Copeland: Believes abortion is murder

Some people are acting as if abortion is a God-given right. I’m sure that God, who values all human life, would not be in favor of abortion.
opinions

Forsythe: Peoria is being ruled by small group of elites

Democracy is worth fighting for - Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, John Adams, et al per the Declaration of Independence - 1776.

Hinojosa: Latino community deserves a full commitment to opportunity

Hispanic workers, from entrepreneurs to farmworkers, are a unique strength of the American economy.

Flood: Teeing it up for Hospice of the Valley

It was a picture-perfect day out at Grayhawk Golf Club for Hospice of the Valley’s 2024 Pro-Am Golf Tournament, presented by Cigna Healthcare.
Opinion

Akerhielm: Responding to letter, "Climate panic movement not catching on"

Former Republican senator and physician Tom Patterson makes some good points in his letter. However, his true colors are revealed when he declares that going green will drive us into poverty based on …
Opinion

Esposito: History is being made. Will you be a part of it?

A nine-year journey, starting with the three-year effort to get Fountain Hills designated as an International Dark Sky Community, has finally led to the April 8 groundbreaking ceremony for the …
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Dear Valued Readers: Thank you for supporting us at Independent Newsmedia through your voluntary pay contributions. We hope you agree that our dedication to covering nonpartisan, community news is …
Take the Civility Pledge

Civility Checklist

How to engage in respectful, honest & civil dialogue about public issues.

Checkmark Take the high road.  Respond to the topic — not the person. Refrain from demonizing others for their opinions. Assume those you disagree with are, like you, genuinely interested in improving the community.

Checkmark Be respectful. Bullying, public humiliation, insults, name-calling, harassment, and threats directed at another person — or that person's race, gender, religion, ethnicity, etc. — have no place in civil discussions. Find ways to respectfully disagree without questioning someone's character or motives.

Checkmark Be truthful. Base your opinions/arguments on facts. Value honesty. Make only accurate statements when making your point and avoid exaggeration and stereotypes. When appropriate, cite your sources of information that others may question. 

Checkmark Don't misrepresent. Always identify your opinions as opinions (not stating opinions as facts). Never misrepresent the views of others or falsely claim your opinions represent someone else. If quoting the words of others, identify and credit the source.

Checkmark Listen  & learn. It's both polite and respectful to listen to those we disagree with (as well as those we support) and be genuine in our attempts to understand their point of view. Expand your mind by thoughtfully seeking out views that don't agree with your own.

CheckmarkLook for common ground. When disagreeing with others, look for even small areas of agreement — which can be the gateway to working together for the greater good.

Checkmark Respect privacy. Keep private things private — whether it involves your own information or those with whom you disagree. Revealing private information about someone else is rude, unethical, potentially harmful and, in many cases, illegal.

Checkmark Set a good example. Practice civil behavior online as well as in public and in your interaction with others. Encourage others to practice these civil behaviors. And it's OK to challenge disrespectful behavior — but be courteous, respectful and helpful in your approach.

Now that you've read the checklist, take the Civility Pledge. 

Your Community Your Voice
Apache Junction
Jason Fischbeck

Fischbeck: Keeping your home safe on a budget

Security concerns are always at the top of mind for homeowners. Whether you are wanting to protect your packages from porch pirates or protecting your family from intruders you can install a security …

Chandler
Chandler City Councilmember Mark Stewart | 2023 (primary headshot)

Standing against human trafficking

Chandler has joined forces with other cities, police departments and nonprofits across the Valley to take a stand against human trafficking. We’re using state funding that equips police …

Florence

Reinhardt: Pinal County’s water resources must be managed carefully

An Arizona Department of Water Resources report found all of Pinal County’s groundwater is spoken for. Yet over 700 rental homes have been approved in Casa Grande which circumvent water laws. …

Fountain Hills

Landau: Councilwoman Toth’s connection to Turning Point Action is troubling

Conservative Fountain Hills Town Council member Hannah Toth touts her employment as a "voter analyst" at Turning Point Action. Her boss, Arizona State Representative and TPA director Austin Smith, …

Glendale
Glendale Mayor Jerry Weiers

Weiers: Mayor’s Military Mission may expand to Glendale arena

On a Friday night last May, there was hardly a dry eye in the house as members of the Mayor’s Military Mission, proud families, and friends honored the nearly 350 young men and women from high …

Gilbert
Morgan Hall, PhD, Axis for Autism

Common signs of autism in young children: what you need to know

Over the course of my 20-year career, I’ve learned that parents who suspect their children have autism are almost never wrong. These parents often worry about whether their child will …

Goodyear

Mueller: Regarding airport concerns in Goodyear

Regarding concerns with Goodyear Airport: The opinion writer lives 7.3 miles from the airport, which is not close, at that distance no trainee flies at rooftop altitude.

Litchfield Park

Experts: Is it OK to pay your employees in Bitcoin?

A trend has emerged where some celebrities, professional athletes, or other high net worth individuals are asking to be paid...

Mesa
A youth using the learning resources at the A New Leaf Connected Learning Center in Mesa.

AT&T, A New Leaf team up to bridge digital divide in Mesa

According to Digital Bridge K-12, around 200,000 K-12 students in Arizona don’t have computer or internet access at home. According to the National Telecommunications and Information …

Paradise Valley
Tim Dickman (Submitted photo)

Dickman: Why I am withdrawing from the Town Council race

Today I am announcing that I am terminating my campaign to run for the Town Council of Paradise Valley. My campaign started after I was approached by our current mayor and several town council …

Peoria

Rains: East Valley real estate market ready for a bountiful spring

Rebecca Hidalgo Rains

Last winter, the East Valley real estate market was in a state of limbo. Relatively high interest rates remained in effect, meaning fewer prospective buyers could enter the market. Despite the higher …

Phoenix
Tucson Roadrunners players on the ice during practice. Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo has been publicly sharing plans to move the minor league team to Tempe, but the Roadrunners and city of Tucson have not heard from Meruelo’s team in the process. (Cronkite News/Rudy Aguado)

Roadrunners, Tucson in the dark about plans to move team to Tempe

The Tucson Roadrunners and the city of Tucson have been left in the dark as former Arizona Coyotes owner Alex Meruelo publicly spoke about plans to relocate the minor league hockey team to Tempe, …

Queen Creek
Patrick Melvin

Melvin: There should be no partisanship when voting for a Pinal County sheriff

Whether Republican, Independent or Democrat — R.I.D. — there should be no partisanship in public safety. Our law-enforcement professionals need our support by ensuring they receive the …

Scottsdale

Klapp: American brewery and distillery businesses deserve fair representation

As a former member of the Scottsdale City Council, I know first-hand that our city has a burgeoning tourism, hospitality, entertainment and nightlife industry. Bars, restaurants, nightclubs, sporting …

Sun City

Copeland: Abortion is not a right

Some people are acting as if abortion is a God-given right. I’m sure that God, who values all human life, would not be in favor of abortion. He must be crying in Heaven, seeing all the …

Sun City West

Schmidt: Traffic in Sun City West

I am glad to see they are monitoring the traffic in Sun City West, especially on R.H. Johnson Boulevard.

Surprise

Surprise seeking nominations for Community Legends Awards

The city of Surprise is looking for nominations for its annual Community Legends Awards

The City of Surprise Veterans, Disability & Human Services  Commission is looking for the community to nominate individuals and groups making a difference  for the Surprise Community …

Tempe
Kyrene Aprende's Jaguar Players present "Mean Girls Jr." on April 28.

Kyrene Aprende to show a sensory-friendly ‘Mean Girls Jr.’

Kyrene Aprende Middle School’s Jaguar Players present their second annual sensory-friendly performance, “Mean Girls Jr.,” on Sunday, April 28, at 2 p.m.

Dime: Concerning the rule of law

Prudent judges typically strike down religious and political persecutions without a trial. If a U.S. citizen goes on trial, he/she must be treated fairly by an unbiased judge for justice and liberty …

McGinn: Signatures and due dilligence

Candidates submit “nonpartisan nomination petitions” with 297 valid signatures to secure a place on the primary ballot. The town clerk is responsible to review signatures based on …

Joyce: Mayor Dickey does her homework

2024 is an election year in Fountain Hills. Choices must be made. Town Council meetings often highlight contrasts that voters should consider. The recent council study session to discuss …

Dunham: Re-elect Mayor Ginny Dickey

I want to add my voice to those who advocate re-electing Ginny Dickey for Fountain Hills mayor on July 30. At a recent meeting I attended, she was introduced with a recitation of her past work …

Thomas: The town has the right and responsibility to defend itself

Thankfully, common sense prevailed at the April 2 Town Council meeting regarding the proposal for the town to not defend itself in the referendum petition lawsuit. The proposal was irrational, …
Gina Van Luven

Van Luven: May flowers bring sinus powers

It’s that time of year again where your sinuses may realize everything is in bloom. Allergies are the body’s reaction to a foreign protein it sees as an enemy. The result is your …

Hoagland: SCHOA needs your support

Back in the day, many years ago, together with my wife, I became a homeowner. That day was so exciting we were both almost vibrating. It was our first house, but not our last. Between then and now …

Ronca: Social media is not good government

In Fountain Hills some of our elected leaders believe that good government is best conducted on social media. Some “leaders” post claims of successes, complaints or conduct polls to …

James: A leader or a follower?

It doesn’t take long to identify a person as a leader or a follower. Gerry Friedel is a follower. He can’t decide when or what to lead on. He has been a follower of Councilman …

Kepler: Research TV news

We all know there is one political party who constantly attacks network news as fake. Let me give you a perfect example of network TV fake news. The other evening we were having a burger at a …

Villawatkins: Diversity is progress, why does Skillicorn want to go backwards?

I am writing this letter before the April 16 Town Council meeting wherein anti-DEI is on the agenda. Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is not political. It is progress. Yet, this is getting …

Cap: Opposed to proposed anti-Diversity, Equity and Inclusion policy

Why a DEI policy? Coming from Councilmember Skillicorn? Therein lies the rub. It’s not. It’s an anti-DEI policy. Why the bait and switch? Because it’s Allen Skillicorn. Nothing …

Nichols: Board needs to quit personal agendas

Hello fellow RCSC members. This is Denny Nichols, former president of the RCSC Board. I was privileged to serve on the RCSC Board during the time Fairway was rebuilt, so I know firsthand how …

Dompe: Vote for the best candidate, not a political party

I want to thank the Fountain Hills Times Independent for introducing its readers to the 11 candidates running for Town Council and mayor. What I was especially gratified to see is that there was …

Beaudry: Change can happen

I have read many comments about the board referring to past boards doing wrong that put us where we are today and the new board not listening to residents, being incompetent, not fixing the problems …

Livatino: No community under 35,000 has no library

I attended the exchange meeting of the Recreation Centers of Sun City April 8. It was an extraordinary experience of democracy in action. I don’t know who first established these exchange …

Gildersleeve: The candidates I’m supporting in the upcoming election

I am grateful that many Fountain Hills residents have thrown their hats in the ring for the upcoming local election. Regardless of your politics or vision for our town, I recognize that running for …
David Williams

Williams: FDA finally realizes that yogurt is healthful

To millions of Americans who gulp down daily spoonfuls of yogurt, the dairy product’s health benefits are a no-brainer.

Wilt: The importance of pedestrian safety

Thank you for the coverage of the importance of pedestrian safety last week. Like many in our community of Paradise Valley, I was devastated to read about the car accident that took John …

Bill: ASU support for Discovery Center

As the construction of International Dark Sky Discovery Center develops, so does the interest in collaborative opportunities with Arizona State University. Although ASU President Michael Crow …

Culp: Ethics claims against Councilmember Kalivianakis lack merit

Last month, after he was sanctioned for violating the Town’s Code of Ethics, Councilmember Skillicorn appeared in a video titled “Something Stinks in Fountain Hills.” In the video, …

Couture: Working toward a smart, yet conservative budget

I watched the April 9 town budget study session with interest, as there are people on the dais who are up for re-election. It’s important. Kudos to incoming Finance Director Paul …

Malkowski: Governance review needed

Our RCSC governance practices are broken and pose a threat to the future integrity of our community. Our governance documents (RCSC bylaws and RCSC board policies) do not, in some key respects, …

Shinkoskey: Are you helping democracy?

What are some personal things folks are doing that impede democracy?

Havard: GM failed to know his audience

Having attended the recent RCSC exchange meeting held at Sundial Recreation Center on April 8, I was surprised by a couple things. First was the very large number of RCSC members who showed up for …

Thornton: Hopefully Dark Skies event raised awareness

Thank you for the great article on the Dark Sky event on April 8th (“ County promoting half-hour Dark Skies Lights Out event ” on the cover of the April 2024 Apache Junction/Gold Canyon …
Karen Kerrigan

Kerrigan: Financial dangers grow with government overreach on 'junk fees'

Calls for government intervention in the economy are often promoted as a way to provide relief and fairness.

King: Protesters cause problems?

It is absolutely ridiculous that protesters feel they have the right to get in traffic and block people from getting to work, to stop emergency vehicles from possibly saving someone’s life or getting to someone to assist them.

Ganje: Quit kicking can down road

Much community concern and criticism has been laid out of late over the proposed closure or “reorganization” of the Sun City libraries. I similarly submitted an open letter with questions …

Somo: Peggy McMahon has a proven leadership record

When my husband and I moved to Fountain Hills four years ago, I was pleased to find a well-run small town due to visionary, responsible leadership from our mayor and Town Council. While Mayor …