Letters to County Supervisors

ProtestAs most of you know, I am encouraging people to write additional letters to the County Supervisors prior to their January 6th meeting opposing the smelter and asking them to vote NO!  I have posted some suggested issues for people to raise with them, to give everyone ideas on what to write.  You can find this information at What you can do.  I know of several letters that were sent last night.  Below are just two of them.  The first one was written by me and the second on, which this very well written, is from another resident.  I will keep the identity confidential to protect her privacy.

First letter, sent December 17, 2019

It is my understanding that two of you are in support of the smelter.  I believe that Holly will support her constituency so this is aimed at Duce and D.L.   If you do support the project, and I hope you don’t, then I am totally confused.
If any of you support this facility I can only assume that:
1.  You think that you know more than the residents of this community, 579 of which have signed the petition opposing the smelter, 325 of which attended the  P&Z meeting.  How could you possibly ignore that many people?  This isn’t just about me, like Alliance would have people believe, it is just about everybody in the Valley.  Please respect the wishes of the community.  None of you were elected to play King or Queen.  This is a representative government.
Or
2.  You haven’t bothered to read the documentation that you have received on the smelter.  If you haven’t read it you can’t make an informed decision and can not determine what is best for our Valley.  I would suggest that you read the documentation before the Jan. 6th meeting.
Or
3.  You would rather believe Alliance Metals (which consists of exactly one employee, Loren Barton) and Rose Law Group than the people who have spend endless hours studying this project and know it better than Alliance himself.  There is not a single point or fact that I and several other people have presented that has not been researched, annotated and presented.  Most of it comes from Alliance Metals own documents and ADEQ.  It isn’t made up like many of the talking points that they continue to spout.  If you would read what has been sent you will find many comments made by Alliance/Rose that have been inconsistent and incorrect.  I have pointed out numerous times when they have simply lied to make the project look good.  Oh, yeah, here’s one.  They said in their application that they would bring over 100 full time jobs to the area, publicly they constantly have said that  they will employee 30 people.  Here’s another.  We will make a $10 million investment in the county (August in Arizona Republic) and now it is $30 million.  Oh and yeah, here is another.  There will only be 5 to 7 trucks per day, according to the attorney who is not qualified to speak on these kinds of issues.  Loren Barton stated “a couple of trucks per hour”.  Which is it?  If you read the documentation, they can’t move the amount of material that they say they will with anything less that over 600 semi truck loads per month.  This doesn’t include service, employees and other deliveries.  Do I need to go on?  I can easily do so.
I ask that you educate yourselves on the issues before you make a final decision.  It makes no sense and borders on the unethical to make this decision without being informed and to trust a company with absolutely no history of ever having operated or owned this kind of operation, has a shady background and has to hire lawyers to even present their side.  Loren isn’t even qualified to represent the company!  I’ve met with him.  It was frightening how little he knew!
I ask you to trust the people who live here as to what is best for our community rather than lawyers and an outsider who has developed the habit of being untruthful ever since they started down this path.
I am attaching the document that I sent for the Commissioners on P&Z so you all have an opportunity to review the points.  Also read the documents from Sharon Rubin, Dan Berg and Don’t Waste Arizona, as well as all the other residents who wrote making individual points.  Please recognize that this community simply does not want this project here!
Thank you for your time.
Gary Saiter

Second letter sent December 17, 2019

Dear County Supervisors:  

This is a followup email in regard to my previous emails (this summer) regarding my concerns with bringing any sort of heavy industry – specifically the Alliance Metals aluminum smelter.  

My husband and I are two of the community members (and homeowners) from Salome who attended the recent P&Z meeting held at the Centennial Community Center.  We continue to have serious objections to having this smelter located in our area.  In fact, we object to this smelter anywhere in LaPaz County where our first responder and emergency resources are very limited.

As I am sure you are aware, rumors run wild in our community that at least one of you is indirectly benefitting from the Wenden location of this smelter. I have a very hard time not believing these rumors and will be one of those who supports further thorough research into this issue.  I know it may be difficult to divulge – but when you ignore the masses (our community) and plan to put your stamp of approval on this project regardless of the overwhelming desire of our citizens, there has to be an underlying reason for doing so.  To be blunt – it definitely “smells fishy”.  

If there is a second one of you who plans to support this smelter, then I feel I have to demand an explanation as to exactly why you feel that you must go against the overwhelming opposition of our community.  What exactly makes you want to vote for something that “WE THE PEOPLE” reject so strongly?  Again – it smells pretty fishy.  Answers will be demanded.  

And then, Ms. Irwin.  It’s easy for you to vote “no” when you know that your vote will not matter.  I would like (demand) you to face our community, in person, and also explain how it’s possible for the voices of the people to fall on deaf ears.  If you support our community WE want to HEAR from you NOW before it’s too late.  Help us to help ourselves.  Your obligation is to US – not them.  

I listened with an open mind to the presentation by the attorney for Alliance Metals.  I was not one of the hecklers. Nothing they said convinced me that this smelter will be good for our community.  To say that 2-7 trucks a day will be on our roads is quite contrary to the amount of work that we also were told to expect.  To say that there will be someone from the county to continually monitor the operation to insure our safety – again a farce.  There is no one who is qualified from this county to do that.  And no one to respond appropriately and quickly should an emergency arise.  I realize and do not care that ADEQ “signed off” on this project.  They signed off on meeting minimum requirement as presented by a company that I feel is not providing factual reports to anyone.   WE THE PEOPLE object to this project.  The simple answer here is – The people do not want it and therefore you cannot put your plant in Wenden.  Period.  Again – you represent us.  We do not feel that this smelter will benefit our community.  Period.  The Planning and Zoning Committee does not feel that this smelter will benefit our community.  Period.  

At the end of the P&Z meeting – the committee unanimously voted with the people and against Alliance Metals.  Each committee member voiced the reasons for their vote.  Their responses were in line with our concerns.  This is not the appropriate location for such industry.  HOW can you explain to me that you are so much better informed as to override both the P&Z committee as well as the people who reside here? Again – this smells fishy.  

We have volunteer fire services.  We do not have the emergency or medical personnel or facilities in our area (or in Parker) to support such industry.  You are leaving us here feeling like lambs being held in a slaughter house.  You are voluntarily destroying our future.  I believe moving the smelter here is in essence a death warrant for our community.  People will stop coming here.  Our schools will suffer (not benefit from the pittance of money stated by Alliance), and our town will quite probably rapidly dwindle away. We will not grow and prosper.  Our fate of hopelessness will be sealed by you – the people who were elected to represent US.  

At this point I feel that we, the citizens of Western LaPaz County are being railroaded by the three of you. That you, for some reason, feel that you have the right to change our very lives for a single industry.   I want you to fill in the blanks here and explain to me why you feel that you are smarter and wiser if you are choosing to vote “Yes” in favor of bringing this smelter to Wenden.  We have a right to hear from you.  And, last but not least:  You may feel that this little community can just be disregarded.  Do not misjudge us.  We may be a population whose majority is winter residents – but we actually CARE about our community.  Not only do we want this to be a place where our property values do not decrease and our quality of life remain the same or better,  but we also contribute greatly to others here.  WE are the ones who continue to support with participation and financial assistance for the betterment of this community.  WE support our schools, local food banks, churches, workers and their families.  WE are the ones demanding that you explain yourselves.  We will not be silent.

Please respond.  Please vote no.  Please bring your meeting to the Centennial Community Center on January 6.  

Sincerely and adamantly:
Confidential

 

We must keep up the pressure!  Write letters, make phone calls, let them know we do not want the smelter here!

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