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Culp: Partisan politics and divisive rhetoric must end


In a video intended as a response to Mayor Dickey’s recent State of the Town address, Councilmember Skillicorn proclaimed, “the common-sense Conservative majority has done more in one year than the previous six combined.” The list of accomplishments was limited to bringing back prayer, firing a lobbyist, “fixing” the sign ordinance and “banning” future mask and vaccine mandates. 

No item on this list has resulted in any tangible improvement to our community.

Terminating the contract with the town lobbyist reduced expenditures by approximately $25,000. The legal fees incurred to hire outside counsel to investigate the eight ethics complaints brought against Skillicorn are likely to exceed that amount.  

One need only drive down Saguaro or Shea to know that the sign ordinance has not been “fixed.”

Banning future mask or vaccine mandates, like the 5G moratorium, is a meaningless gesture. A mandate issued by Maricopa County or the State would preempt any inconsistent provision enacted by the town.

During her presentation Mayor Dickey took no credit for the remarkable improvements to our shared spaces and business climate that we have witnessed during her tenure. Rather, she gave credit to the town’s staff and commissions, volunteers and community and business leaders.

Despite her obvious and longstanding enthusiasm for the town, the mayor did end her speech on a solemn note. Observing that in the prior year’s address she described the state of the town as “vibrant,” for this year the mayor chose the phrase, “at a crossroads.”

The mayor did not expressly identify the toxic partisan politics and divisive rhetoric brought to our town by Skillicorn and his supporters as a factor in bringing us to this crossroads. But there are many of us who believe it is the only factor and that it must end.

Reader reactions, pro or con, are welcomed at AzOpinions@iniusa.org.