My name is Joe Price. I am a business and property owner in Mesa. The City of mesa wants to sell $130 million in bonds to build the 1.9 mile extension of Light Rail (LR) from Mesa Dr. to Gilbert Rd. on Main St.about 3 years before the schedule set by Valley Metro. My property is on Main St. near Gilbert Rd. where the LR is planned.
Valley Metro, who actually builds the LR system, does not have the money to build the 1.9 mile extension for at least 2-3 years. Scott Smith, a candidate for governor, and former mayor of Mesa, hatched a financing "scheme" (as described by the Az Repub) to build the extension early. And his "scheme" avoids the constitutional requirement to have a public vote to approve the $130 million in bonds to be issued.
A group of business and property owners filed a lawsuit to force Mesa to have a public vote before Mesa could issue the $130 million in bonds, plus interest. We had a hearing in March and after being taken "under advisement", Judge David Udall in Maricopa County Superior Court, Udall ruled Mesa could sell the bonds without a public vote. His decision held the bond BUYERS to assume all risk and Mesa is not pledging it's full faith and credit for repayment of the loans/bonds.I am appealing the ruling.
I'll be posting his ruling on mesawatch.com. Also some great information about what a horrible transportation and public policy decision Light Rail really is. I am going forward without an attorney. My group is intimidated by opposing Mesa and their endless bucket of taxpayer money which they use for legal bills and voter/taxpayer intimidation.
At least we are getting the legal venue out of Mesa. My opinion is political pressure by the City pretty much guaranteed the initial outcome.