Posts Tagged ‘Tucson Weekly’

2nd June
2009
written by madge

Photo courtesy of Western Sky Communications – visit them for your all your graphic design and photo needs.

“I have a vision of trying to maintain the essence of Tucson as we grow,” Trasoff says. “I’m going to bring an ability to guide the growth and have it be more intelligent growth, more future-thinking growth.”

The former TV newscaster, who has spent the last two decades doing public-relations work and serving on the boards of various local non-profits, says Ronstadt has sold out the city to special interests and balanced the city’s budget on the backs of the poor, the children and the elderly by enacting tuition fees for KIDCO, an afterschool program, and creating a $14-a-month “garbage tax.” (See “Numbers Racket, Oct. 13.)

“I morally objected to putting on a tax that had such a dramatic impact on working families and the elderly,” Trasoff says.

It gets better…

He also points out that for all her complaints, Trasoff has offered no alternative to balancing the budget without the trash fee. Trasoff says she hasn’t had enough access to the city budget to determine how to eliminate the trash fee, but vows that if she’s elected, she would trim it back until it was eliminated.

The candidates also clash over downtown redevelopment. Ronstadt says there’s a lot going on, even if it doesn’t appear that way.

“I respect and understand people’s perception that nothing’s happened,” Ronstadt says. “The reality is that a lot of stuff is happening and had to happen the way it did.”

Among the projects that Ronstadt cites: The completion of the historic train depot; ongoing work on several condo projects, including one at the site of the long-abandoned Thrifty block along Congress Street; the remodeling of the Rialto Theatre; the ongoing reconstruction of the Fox Theatre, which is scheduled to open on New Year’s Eve; and the proposed Science Center.

Trasoff says progress has been too slow and the city should have funded reconstruction of the Convento, one of the Tucson’s earliest settlements, on the west side of the Santa Cruz River.

Ronstadt says the council hasn’t done that because it didn’t make sense to put in a park before a master plan for the entire area was fleshed out.

Trasoff squashed Democratic primary opponent Steve Farley by a nearly 2-1 margin in the September Ward 6 primary. As of Oct. 3, she had raised $42,452 and received the same amount in matching funds from city taxpayers. She still had $46,603 going into the last month of the campaign, according to reports filed last week with the city.

Ronstadt, who declined to dip into the city’s matching-funds program, had raised $75,330, with $19,402 coming between Aug. 25 and Oct. 3. He had $49,883 entering the final month of the campaign.

Trasoff calls Ronstadt’s decision to not use public funding another example of how he has sold out to special interests.

Ronstadt says he decided to not participate because the money comes from the city’s general fund. He says if the campaign funds came from some other kind of revenue source, he’d probably use the program.

“It’s wrong to take tax dollars to run a personal campaign,” Ronstadt says. “It is absolutely wrong.”

 

Photo courtesy of Western Sky Communications – visit them for your all your graphic design and photo needs.

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