Letter: Rejection of Stonegarden grant was anything but "petty".

Letter: Rejection of Stonegarden grant was anything but "petty".

Re: the Feb. 12 article "Petty rejection of Stonegarden grant felt by rural voters."

I was a community member who attended the lively Pima County Board of Supervisors meeting last year that resulted in a 3-2 vote to accept the federal funds. Mr. Andrew Gullo claims in his 2/12/20 Opinion piece ("Petty rejection of Stonegarden grant felt by rural voters") that Supervisors voted to reject this funding because it could not be used to help fund the Case Alitas migrant shelter in Tucson. This is far from the complete picture. By December 2019, the Board had discovered Stonegarden funds were paying senior officers nearing retirement excessive overtime for border security work. Unfortunately, per the Star's excellent 12/11/19 article "Pima County: Using Stonegarden grant for border security costs taxpayers", every $1 paid in overtime to these officers was creating an estimated additional $6 in unintended long-term pension cost obligations for County taxpayers. This month Supervisors did the responsible thing - they said no more "free federal money" that will cost local taxpayers millions, and that is definitely not "petty" cash.

Myra Donnelley


Disclaimer: As submitted to the Arizona Daily Star.

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