Negotiation Over Task Forces Less Painful Than Litigation



Mayor Bob Edwards' response to a recent lawsuit was published in the Jan. 5 Payson Roundup, regarding the legality of his Task Forces. So far, he has not mentioned the three complaints made to the State of Arizona Attorney General, also regarding his Task Forces. The first complaint was made in September 2006 and two additional complaints followed.

He stated that this lawsuit will begin to cost the taxpayers of Payson -- only if the Town should lose the lawsuit. According to Mayor Edwards, his Task Forces are perfectly legal, and there should be no concern.

The use of local talent as a committee is very good for Payson, if they are established in a legal manner, such as the Airport, Planning and Zoning, Parks and Recreation and Surface Transportation Advisory Committees. These committees were established by the Mayor and Town Council.

They post their meeting dates in advance, and hold open meetings. The Mayor stated that, "These task forces are not created by the town, do not have any powers and are simply doing research and review." The legally established committees do not have any powers, and are simply doing research and review.

The members of these committees are citizens of the town of Payson, as they should be to make recommendations to the town council who appointed them.

Instead of nasty rhetoric and name-calling, the mayor should work to establish these Task Forces as legally appointed committees and the lawsuit and complaints to the AG's office would go away. Negotiation is much less painful than litigation.

Gordon Metcalf, Payson

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