To the Editor: Before the Pinetop-Lakeside Town Manager’s Office, (Kelly Udall, manager), was named in a 2010 law suit for conspiring  to violate Arizona and public works contracting statutes, Udall’s contract was renewed every few years.

However, in  011, with Town Attorney Foree advocating on behalf of Udall, the Town Council, (not including Councilwoman Vanesian), approved an “open-ended” contract  for Udall with a full year’s compensation if he is ever terminated.

In addition, keep in mind the following:

• Arizona’s population is about 6,482,500.

• Pinetop-Lakeside’s population is about 4,500

• Governor Jan Brewer’s base salary is $94,000 annually

• Manager Udall’s base salary is $115,677 annually-that’s $21,677 more than the governor of an entire state.


• Manager Udall is not required to work a specific amount of hours per week

• He receives a $500 per month vehicle allowance

• $100 per month cell phone allowance

• 25 days per year paid vacation.

• 12 days paid sick leave.

• Paid medical, life, short-term and long-term disability insurance.

• Paid related travel expenses.

• Paid related dues and subscriptions, and more.

But even more concerning, Udall’s contract agreement provides that Udall’s base salary is raised whenever any Pinetop-Lakeside department head receives a raise. For instance, if the Finance Director receives a raise of 10 percent, Udall will automatically receive a 10 percent raise. (Udall as Town Manager is also the Town’s Personnel Director who assigns, with Council approval, such wage increases.)

Outragous? You decide. To read the entire Udall contract, please go to

Be informed!

Mark Jacobs, People’s Vision Committee

(18) comments

jim beck

If the little town Pinetop-Lakeside's Town Manager is making $21,677. more than the cheif executive of the entire state of Arizona, there is something seriously wrong with our Mayor and Town Council, (to have awarded him this much). Four seats on the council will expire in June, 2013, (Irwin, Hughes, Webb, and Smith). Even after the Manager's Office admitted his guilt by signing the consent agreement in the AZ Attorney General's lawsuit, instead of firing the Manager Udall, these councilpersons approved Mr. Udall's open-ended-you have-a-job-with-us-forever, contract. Not only that, but they also approved the additional provision in his contract that allows Mr. Udall to recieve a raise whenever he suggests to the Council that one of his department heads should receive a raise!! OUTRAGOUS!!!
It's time for Pinetop-Lakeside voters to vote out local representatives that are not working in the best interest of the people. Smith and Webb will not be seeking another term, but it is likely that Irwin and Hughes will. Please remember these two names and let's get them replaced!!

wes alderson

Thank you for your insicive letter, Mark. It's great to hear from you again. Of course, most of us folks on the Mountain also know about the certain other unmentionable matters that roll around in the back halls of our local government. Rather than mention those here in a public forum, it is best for anybody who wants to discover the depths of our goverment depravity to ask those in the know about it in private.

Your comments, and those of Jim Beck cause me to wonder whether the contract given Kelly that is so easily abused, was due to stipidity or malignant plotting. I know several of the current council personally, from past interractions.

It pleases me to say that they are all highly intelligent businessmen, accountants, and engineeers. Therefore, I can't force myself to believe that they awarded this contract series based on stupidity. It grives me to use the logic which forces the other alternative - namely that somebody, somehow, stacked the deck, and the result is self-abusive government.

wes alderson

Oh, and Mark - one other thing? The name you chose for your letter is too easily missed, in view of its urgent content. May I please suggest that any title needs to be an attention grabber such as, "Self-Abusive Government In Pinetop-Lakeside?"

In that manner, more people will read the letter in the printed edition.

che guevara

Common sense and logic would lead one to believe that anyone making six-figures plus per year would certainly be in a position to afford their own transportation costs to and from work , especialy in such a small town as Pinetop-Lakeside . Additionally , you would also think that this same annointed individual could also afford their own cell phone service as well . Awarding such outrageous allotments for normal living expenses is a time honored method of being able to increase the already high salary of a privlidged individual without these additional monies being taxed as earned income . This same thing also happens among the privlidged ones in Navajo County Government as well and most likely in Apache County too . It's all run by a club of good o'l boys and you are either a member of the club or your are not , period . One also has to wonder what influence the local Theocracy plays in this scam as well , as ten percent is most likely kicked upstairs , so to speak . There are countless examples locally of annointed ones gorging themselves at the public teet with the blessing of their underlings who pick up the crumbs and recieve favors in return . That's politics , the lowest form of human endeavor . I also find it interesting that the WMI recently ran an article about how the Town of Pinetop-Lakeside is whining that the increase of summer revenue has not been comeasurate with the increase in summer traffic on the roads . How long can the citizens of PT-LS continue to be taken advantage of by a few members of the Club ? Then again , what would one expect from a Town that employs a Town " Official " who is a thrice convicted felon ( this is public information by the way ) . Strange place indeed .


I just have to say that this makes me ill to my stomach knowing that these people are ok with giving themselves raises and making that much money a year, even more money then our own govenor.. So I ask a simple question..How can this be ok for them to do but yet our police officers that work for PLPD have been on a pay raise freeze for about 4 years now...Arent they the ones that actually deserve a little more... People start putting the money where it really needs to go...

Rick Slo Low

In a depression you people have to pick on the one bright spot the politicians and administrators that make things happen.Our leaders are to be looked up to and admired.


Sounds like we are getting up a Convoy good buddy, now all we need is to get it to Council meetings and the ballot box. [smile]

over the hill

Thank you Mark for writing this letter full of good information for the taxpayers. Also for the commenters who took the time to read it and add their own thoughts on it. We must do what we can to let the folks know whats going on. Some don't care, some are busy working trying to stay ahead of the wolf and just too tired to get involved, and others like yourself can help educate them in whatever way you can. Maybe it's just striking up a conversation in the grocery line. But rest assured, after you pass this info onto them, they will think about it and hopefully pass it on as well. Again, thanks for taking the time to write this letter.


To Mom: Years ago congress tied their pay raises into the cost of lining index used for Social Security and Military pay cost of living increases. In May of that year they had received an 8.2 percent raise. Note: this was before the law took effect. In October they took a 2.6 or 2.8 percent raise (can’t remember the exact figure) along with the Military and Social Security recipients. Several incumbents broadcast that they had kept to this low October raise figure prior to November’s election while negligent in mentioning the May figure (Short term memory loss perhaps). The next assembled congress took it upon themselves to re-establish the old way of voting in a pay raise and distancing their pay from the cost of living increases affecting the Military and Social Security.
It seems a condition of those in charge to give overblown salaries to themselves first, and trickle down salaries to the others.


Sorry -should read 'cost of living index'.


Let's vote the whole bunch out next election! Unbelievable! Unconscionable! Egregious dereliction of duty to the taxpayers! Does Udall walk on Woodland Lake (e.g., water)? What is the contribution or value added that warrants this pay? I don't understand the need for this level of pay in such a small community.

wes alderson

ParkWMI, I certainly understand your idignation. How would you feel if the Town Manager had YOU arrested and put in jail for not agreeing with the powers that be?

However, two of your suggestions that we dis-elect the whole works does not work:

1. The Town Manager is not elected. He is given a contract by the decision of Town Council, and now that he has been given his new contract he cannot be simply fired. Instead, it would take a legal action against him by a local or State attorney willing to see the flaws in this situation.

2. The shining light in this whole works is Dara Vanesian. She should abolutely be re-elected because she is the only one in the bunch that does not go with the etehcially flawed proceduire.

wes alderson

There is one other element that Show Low Mom may not realize. Pinetop-Lakeside council members are paid a mere pittance for expenses. Their positions are not really "jobs." They are more or less volunteers.

Thus they are not in the position of granting themselves pay hikes.

However, they do select the Town manager and decide how much to pay him. And he has many contacts among the developers and contractors in Town . . . which is where it gets interesting, and I believe your word was nauseating?

wes alderson

The reasons are obvious why several of us keep getting knocked off line. This is not the fault of WMI - there are people stationed the Pinetop-Lakeside Town Hall, who are instructed by the "Powers That Be," to hit the complaint button when anybody dares to tell the truth.

The only way government can be good is for it to be non-secret. During the past several years, these events have occurred and have been swept under the Town Hall Carpet:

1. Town indicted for restraint of trade. Kelly Udall signs a reduced plea at the cost of millions of dollars to the Town.

2. Town manager (Kelly Udall) attempts to lay off a large percent of the local cops (who happened to know a little too much about certain "functions.") Citizens show up at Town Hall Meeting and prevent that.

3. Allegations circulate about certain questionalbe practices in the back halls regarding "Web Sites" accessed in Federal Heights. CO) by Town manager before he was hired here..

4. Kelly Udall, desipite failing to deny any of the above, is given a huge raise in pay and begged by the Council never ever to leave us.

Are we kidding? Ech!

wes alderson


Rick Slo Low

He has what it takes to be in politics.

jim beck

Rick Slo Low, When you say, "He has what it takes to be in politics," I assume you mean: Greed, a self-serving nature, a love for developers, a distain for public opinion, a small conscience,(based on his Federal Heights fiasco), and a disregard of the law,(based on the Town's recent conspiracy law-suit filed by the Az Attorney General).

wes alderson

Hey, Little Jimmy!

I knkow Rick and he means exactly that. Rick has a terrific sense of humor, but sometimes I think it's hard to laugh about somebody who is sacking the Town.

There is one big issue that Rick does not know about. I wonder if somebody can explain to him the Federal Heights matter?

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