Q&A: Councilman Scott Moore talks Paradise Valley limited government

Scott Moore

The Town of Paradise Valley Independent reached out to Paradise Valley Councilman Scott Moore to ask him how he defined limited government. This is what he had to say:

*What does “limited government” mean to you?

Limited government is defined in our approved 2012 General Plan, which was approved by the voters and listed on our town’s homepage under mission, vision and values. This list of values and visions have remained consistent since our town’s inception and something I strongly support. Limited government is achieved through our actions not just words.

  1. Diligently preserve the special character of Paradise Valley by enforcing the land-use policies identified in the town’s General Plan, town code, and SUP agreements.
  2. Continuously provide high quality public safety services for town residents and visitors.
  3. Regularly invest in public facility and infrastructure projects.
  4. Conscientiously manage the town’s financial resources.
  5. Consistently identify opportunities to create and promote a more sustainable community.

* What aspects of a limited government contribute to the unique and special qualities of the Town of Paradise Valley?

Our town government has done an exceptional job over the years of preserving what makes Paradise Valley so special. The town has benefited from a high level of community involvement. Our mayor and council, boards and commissions along with our entire judicial bench are volunteer positions that collect no salary. Our limited government model puts revenue where it belongs — helping our residents.

I’m committed to ensure we provide our police and fire departments with the resources they need to keep us safe and I will remain committed to our Town’s principles of fiscal responsibility of limited government so we ensure our town never requires a property tax

*How can a local government evolve over time?

Many factors can affect the way we govern, such as legislative changes at the state level. Recently, our state Legislators have been proposing a bill that would have changed construction sales tax from being assessed at the job site to collecting it at the point of sale. The Town had $43 million worth of construction activity occurred within town limits over the last fiscal year and those tax dollars collected would have been dramatically reduced if the proposed bill were to have passed. With current legislation already passed in the house, effectively the town has lost $750,000 of revenue due to the changes in the MURA amendment.

This cut in revenue threatens our already limited staff. With that being said, our staff has done an excellent job at managing our robust new resorts and remodel developments, along with our residential remodels and new builds, all while keeping within a balanced expenditure limitation budget.

* Having a limited government municipality is something many residents vocalize their support for — why is this is such an important aspect to Paradise Valley residents?

Rules limit government. One example is zoning plays an extremely important role because it helps limit government involvement by regulating property uses that protect our primary 1-acre residential character. SUP properties create the highest quality resort developments while maintaining that balance with our residents and neighborhoods. The town relies on resort development for maintaining that quality of life we all enjoy, while at the same time funding critical town services we all expect and receive.

* Does having a limited government ever present challenges?

Yes. With most of our hillside lots already developed, predominantly what remains are the most difficult lots that require very complex civil engineering and infrastructure. With a limited government model, staffing requirements needed to carefully review these developments to ensure first and foremost the safety of our residents can be difficult and challenging. With that in mind I have been working with my fellow council members, Town staff and our legal department to ensure the town has the ability to contract with our own expert engineers and specialists to help staff in reviewing these very complex development submittals.

Working with Councilwoman Pace and the Planning Commission we have added language to the draft Hillside Ordinance document addressing these and many other issues. These changes will ensure that all hillside development will meet the utmost in safety standards without overburdening our already very limited staff.

News Services Editor Melissa Fittro can be reached by e-mail at mfittro@newszap.com or follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MelissaFittro

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