Arizona Ombudsman’s office finds Quartzsite council at fault

A report by the Arizona Ombudsman agrees with Quartzsite Mayor Ed Foster that the town wrongfully denied his request for access to information about the town’s finances and payroll.

Foster has alleged that the town blocked his access to information about where town money was going, speculating that there were more people being paid by the town than there were employees listed in the books.

The Ombudsman’s office agrees, saying in its cover letter to Mayor Foster:

We substantiated [your] allegation and found that the Town wrongfully denied your public records request. We recommend that the Town release the appropriately redacted records, but they did not agree. We have no legal authority to order the Town to comply with our recommendation. However, you have the option of proceeding to a court of jurisdiction to request a judge review the matter and consider issuing such an order.

The full report is available to read here, courtesy of the Qtown.us blog.

17 comments

  1. Now Roth and others can get restraining orders against Councilman Joe Winslow, to quit violating ARS statutes.

  2. Just read the actual report….Un believable!!
    What part of “hiding the payroll” do they not understand. I especially liked the last few letters where the Town tries to use the logic that the public does not need to know….oh boy…is someone writing a book on this? Looks like a best seller to me…

  3. Another worthless bureaucracy saying they found wrongdoing…. but good luck!!!

  4. anotherdayinparadise

    Shocker!!!!! Does the town of quartzsite follow any lawful order. Come on now, taft and gilbert are above it all. They don’t follow the law they make it.

  5. IT sucks, I know anotherday, I even fought the County Attorney over 1st Amendment rights being violated in Quartzsite! WELCOME TO MY WORLD!!!

  6. anotherdayinparadise

    I feel for you. You got to keep fighting another day.

  7. We live in the land of political nepotism. If an employee is accused of theft, the police are all too zealous to show up and slap on the cuffs, willy-nilly, then ask questions later. However, when the accused is employed by the public — a member of the fraternal order of politicians — all of law enforcement is suddenly as impotent as limp wimps needing Viagra. The only time politician feet are ever held to fire is when the accusation is child abuse, spousal abuse, or discrimination abuse (as defined by PC). All accusations of high crimes and misdemeanors get free passes, as with diplomatically immunity.

  8. This time around I hope NOBODY gets re-elected. Kind of like what happened last time with the Supes and Sheriff, but maybe we will get it right this time. And if we don’t get it right, recall them until we do get it right. Why Americans let their elected and non-elected officials get away with what they do is exactly why we are in the position we are in.

    Taxes are going up. Inflation is happening and will get worse. Law Enforcement is in the revenue generating business instead of the keeping the peace business. Politicians write laws that protect them NOT YOU! (look at the law Dan Field got passed in record time that takes the Yakima debt and places it onto your back) And when someone says “Hey, I tend to disagree with all of this”, they get arrested, harassed, ticked, jailed, you name it. Then to pour salt into the wound, the local newspaper piles it on by not reporting the truth and/or completely goes along with the lie. In Quartzsite Jennifer Jones had to start a newspaper to get the truth out there.

    For these reasons America will have a revolution. I just hope and pray it’s a revolution of ideas, and we get back to the Constitutional Republic, not this sick and dying democracy we live in.

    Vote Ron Paul 2012!!!

  9. Are we going to see an armed Chief Jeff Gilbert standing at the doors of Quartzsite Town Hall refusing a U.S. Marshal entrance to serve Court Subpoenas and Search Warrants protecting Town Manager Alex Taft, Asst-Town Manager Al Johnson, and the only job he will ever hold in Law Enforcement again unless he applies for a job with TSA?

    Now if Mayor Elect Ed Foster would only start a Civil Action against the Town of Quartzsite he could find out even more during the Discovery phase and have the fun of asking the Court to slap Chief Jeff Gilbert, Town Manager Alex Taft, and Asst-Town Manager Al Johnson with Contempt of Court and share copies of the booking photos when they are delivered for their stay at the famous La Paz County “Bed & Breakfast”!

  10. if that happens, a lot of cronies will have plenty of egg on their faces, egg that will have kept them from office after the next election..

  11. It won’t happen. Ed Foster won’t file a Civil Action and Gilbert will most likely get a slap on the wrist, Alex Taft will walk and Johnson will move back under the bridge!

  12. Could it be? Yes it could! Something’s coming, something good…if I can wait! Cowell and Taft are meeting at the Eatery right now. They’ve got no idea what’s really going on!

  13. Consider stripping their indemnification away for wanton behaviors and sue them as an individual person. What they did and continue to do is misfeasance to say the least. I am interested in the payroll issue, i.e. more checks than employees. Perhaps you should contact Judicial Watch for their opinion and guidance.

  14. anotherdayinparadise

    Judge, I call Chief Jeff Gilbert to the stand….. a a aum um Chief Jeff Gilbert did not appear sir.

  15. I have been told that the Town of Quartzsite has budgeted over $300K for attorney fees for fiscal year 2012. What ever happened to the $15-35K spent per year on attorney fees for the Town of Quartzsite? All this over a few FOIA request for check and we haven’t even gotten to the false arrests of Jennifer Jones and Michael Roth!

    Now lets throw in the $2.7 MILLION taken from the HERF funds to balance the books and make payroll for the Town of Quartzsite! Are we looking at a good argument for mismanagement along with misappropriations of funds to you?

    We all know that this is just the beginning of things turning against the people that are running the Town of Quartzsite. At first it is just the cost of attorneys to defend the un-defendable just before the judgments against the town! After all, why should they worry? As far as there are concerned it is YOU that is going to have to pay for their fun ride.

    They run the town, the police department, the bank accounts, and they are slowly changing the rules to take more money out of your pockets. You are the only one that controls your vote, for now…

  16. anotherdayinparadise

    Thanks Paul Staudt for the above post. That is a great statement and it is the hard truth no matter how difficult it is for some to swallow. Hopefully this will help open everyone’s eyes so they can see what’s going on and begin doing what needs to be done to correct the problem.

  17. Take a look at this post from the Greater Phoenix Tea Party Web Site to learn more.

    http://phoenixteaparty.ning.com/forum/topics/mutiny-aboard-the-u-s-a?page=3&commentId=3782906%3AComment%3A121080&x=1#3782906Comment121080

    It looks as though Town Manager Alex Taft is trying to change the rules to her liking and removed the powers of the Mayor Elect Ed Foster even more. To spend over $300K in attorney fees, change the towns procedures to protect you leaves even the best of supporters wondering, “Was is so damning and damaging that you would risk everything to keep them from seeing the books?”

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