Sedona AZ (September 27, 2019) – Many of us have either worked in a position or hired someone into a position where the last line of the job description, and sometimes in fine print, states “…and all other duties as assigned.” The seven Sedona City Council positions are no exception. I suspect that many of our citizens are familiar with much of what being a member of the Sedona City Council entails. Routine work includes: preparation and participating in city council meetings, meetings with individual/groups of constituents, meeting with city staff, and researching upcoming and potential policy decisions. The good news is that our city staff does the work of pulling together the applicable information, performing the required public outreach, and providing policy options to the council. These work products are available to the public on the city website.
Besides this routine work you might be surprised to learn that there are over 20 “other duties as assigned” activities. All seven members of the Sedona City Council are involved. After the last council election the mayor facilitated the naming of individual council members to one or more of these “other duties as assigned” activities. Examples of these assignments include participation in the following organizations; Arizona Forward, Coconino Plateau Water Advisory, Greater Arizona Mayors Association, Housing Committee, Northern Arizona Council of Governments Regional Council, Public Safety Personnel Retirement System Committee, Sedona Chamber of Commerce Community Investment Committee, Sedona Chamber of Commerce Marketing Committee, Sedona Oak Creek Unified School District, Sedona Community Center, Sedona Humane Society, Sedona Public Library, Sedona Recycles, Verde Front, Verde Valley Caregivers, and the Verde Valley Regional Economic Organization Long Range Strategic Planning Committee. The frequency of meetings varies, and preparation time can also vary greatly. One of the assignments I have is as the city of Sedona representative within the Northern Arizona Council of Governments. The council’s mission is to facilitate the acquisition and deployment of federal program dollars to the 31 cities, towns, and counties of northern Arizona. As part of that assignment I also sit on the Head Start/Early Head Start executive committee.
Recently six of the seven city council members took part in the 4-day 2019 League of Arizona Cities and Towns conference in Tucson. At the conference we interacted with approximately 1,200 fellow Arizonans who are mayors, councilors, city staff from most of Arizona’s cities and towns, staff members from the league, along with several of our state legislators. Many topics were presented and discussed including: Arizona Progress Meters, education, short term rentals, housing, water rights, homelessness, domestic violence, broadband, economic development, 2020 legislative priorities, challenges of the Public Safety Personnel Retirement System, and post traumatic stress disorder assistance, among others. We also got to hear messages from Arizona senators Kirsten Sinema and Martha McSally. Gov. Ducey also participated in a 45-minute Q&A session facilitated by the league. This event and other similar events give our council members the opportunity to learn about what has and has not worked in other communities, and to understand the benefits and weakness of various policy decisions.
As Sedona City Council members, we strive to be open to new ideas, participate in continual education, and listen to the many voices in the community. Your city council works to improve, enrich, and protect our beautiful community. Reacting to a changing landscape and making progress at solving community challenges can be difficult. Our “other duties as assigned” efforts help to ensure we are exposed to other ideas and best practices. All of this ultimately contribute to our community’s continued success.
The views that I am expressing are my personal opinions and not necessarily the opinions or positions of the city of Sedona or Sedona City Council.