The budget process for Oro Valley that began in January resulted in cuts to costs and personnel along with a modest tax increase. The town council was guided in part by the unanimously agreed upon vision that we adopted last September. Through it all we did the due diligence and examined a variety of options. We also considered the views of Oro Valley residents, and the town staff was responsive to the questions and concerns of the council members.
As mayor, my responsibilities include providing leadership and making decisions that make it possible to provide sufficient levels of safety and reliable services at a sustainable cost. To this end I refuse to be persuaded by the ambitions of individuals and factions. I will not be dissuaded by such disruptive and self-serving behavior.
Oro Valley residents have every reason to expect consensus not conflict, competency not controversy, and management not meddling. I saw the need for that when I declared that my election was about more than winning. I believed then as I do now that it is essential for us to govern Oro Valley with integrity and wisdom.
Throughout the past year in office I have worked with all concerned and participated in the process that has led to sound decisions that are in the public interest. I have demonstrated that I value hearing a variety of views while weighing the facts and balancing the budget.
Our aim is for Oro Valley to remain a Community of Excellence. The reality is that even well run municipal government is not free. However, the cost of delivering services in Oro Valley is relatively inexpensive. In this regard we rank among the most successful municipalities in Arizona.
The application of reason, information and fact is preferred to the intentional creation of distrust based on exaggeration and distortion. That approach belongs to those who covet power and would advance their own agenda at any cost.
It is argued that some of the changes we have made should have been initiated years ago. Yet we are not bound by what might have been, could have been or perhaps should have been. The creation of the budget for the next fiscal year is evidence that we are capable of taking action toward fundamental change that makes it possible for Oro Valley to be stable, solvent and poised for the future.
The notion that overwhelming public sentiment is against reasonable taxation to sustain valued services is delusional. The budget items and reorganization initiatives are designed to become more effective and efficient. They are the prudent things to have accomplished, as opposed to scare tactics and dramatic cuts that would diminish the quality of safety and services for Oro Valley residents. Ultimately that approach would lead to larger increases in an attempt to recover and rebuild at a future date.
The attempt to recall Mary Snider and Joe Hornat is without merit. It amounts to a politically motivated challenge to competent people who are dedicated to public service. The claim that they have been negligent in their duties is patently untrue. They are part of the majority on the town council that is making it possible to govern Oro Valley in challenging times.
Dr. Satish I. Hiremath is mayor of Oro Valley.