Jun 202014

By Naomi Hatch

The Snowflake Town Council voted last week to ask the Arizona Legislature to revisit changes it made last year to consolidate election dates, which require municipal elections to occur at the same time as the election of state officials.

The legislation did not address the issue of the majority vote threshold in races for council in municipalities that have mayors who serve a four-year term or those that do not directly elect their mayor. Because of this, the majority threshold to win outright in the primary for council candidates would be based on the total number of votes cast in the election, regardless of whether those votes were cast for state or local office.

The vote threshold would likely be unachievable for a council candidate, and the winner or winners would not be determined at the primary, forcing cities and towns to bear the unnecessary expense of funding a run-off or general election to determine the winner.

Town Clerk Barbara Flake explained that the council was being asked to approve a resolution “fixing something the legislature did.”

Flake said that the majority vote threshold for council candidates will be based on the total number of votes cast in the local election, divided by the number of seats and then by two as a temporary fix for the 2014 election. Approval of this resolution would codify the same methodology used in HB 2126, permanently making the majority vote calculation threshold consistent for all cities and towns.

The council unanimously approved Resolution No. 14-10, requesting that the legislature amend the statutes related to this issue.

In other action June 10, the council:

* Appointed Roger McDowell to the Planning and Zoning Commission.

McDowell had submitted a letter of interest to fill the vacant position.

“I think he would be a good asset to the Planning and Zoning Commission,” said Councilman Tom Poscharsky as he moved to appoint McDowell.

In response to a question from Mayor Kelly Willis, Planning and Zoning Administrator Dale Call explained that there was one vacancy on the commission and there would be one more by the end of the summer.

* Approved a one-day liquor license requested by the White Mountain Submarine Veterans for its annual golf tournament.

In response to a question posed by Mayor Kelly Willis, Director Roy Biddle said that the tournament “is a huge success,” noting it was so successful last year they had to tailor it back a little this year.