Editor:

I write this letter in support of re-electing Supervisor Tommie Martin. Over the last four years I have been engaged in Gila County inter-workings as an elected official. During this time I have also served as an Arizona Association of County Officials (AACO) board member and National Association of County Officials member. Until I became fully involved, I had no idea how influential Supervisor Martin has been on a state and national level. Her reputation as a leader, innovator and problem solver is unsurpassed. The relationships she has developed here in Arizona, across the West, and at the federal level have made her very effective at advocating for issues that are critical to Gila County and our rural communities. A few examples:

• President of the County Supervisors Association (CSA)

• President of the Western Interstate Region (WIR) of the National Association of Counties (NACo)

• NACO Public Lands Steering Committee member

• Rural Action Caucus member; vice chair from 2013-2016

I quote Craig Sullivan, executive director for the County Supervisors Association of Arizona, “There are not many county elected officials who have earned this kind of resumé. It underscores that Supervisor Martin is really unique — she’s informed and effective. Her colleagues see this and respect her for it — that’s why she is regularly asked to lead important efforts.”

An honest look at that timeline corroborates Supervisor Martin’s explanation regarding being hampered by the supervisors at the time. Within two months after Supervisors Humphrey and Cline were elected, the former county manager AND finance manager were replaced. The county manager was responsible for the placing letters explanation relative to Supervisor Martin flying first class and requiring assistance to meet the requirements of American with Disabilities Act, due to severe rheumatoid arthritis.

Secondly, the finance director (in combination with the county manager) was responsible for auditing and accounting. It has taken time and a great deal of hard work for the current county manager and finance director to bring policies, protocols and accounting up to date. Clearly, up to that point, some things were amiss and hands were tied.

My hope is, that constituents will see through the smoke screen. Talk is cheap and providing water at political rallies does not equate to the respect and credibility with constituents and peers through long-term commitment, service and productivity for the people in District 1 and all of Gila County.

Roy Sandoval, Gila County school superintendent

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