Russell Sias' rent receipt, as provided to La Paz County investigators on Monday, 5/10/10
I smell desperation in the air, do you? In a last ditch effort to disqualify opposition candidates Chaunce Hamilton and Russell Sias, someone has filed a ridiculous complaint that they were not Quartzsite residents. Since misinformation is constantly being disseminated about when or if you are an AZ resident, this seems like as good a time as any to discuss the issue.
Last Monday, investigator Frank Haws of the La Paz County Prosecutor's Office made a special trip down to Quartzsite. He questioned both Chaunce Hamilton and Russell Sias about how long they had been Quartzsite residents.
Chaunce and Doris Hamilton, "own and have operated 'Rice Ranch' for the last 23 years. This is land which has been in the family for over 65 years!" They live on site, in the home at the south east side of the property. Chaunce's non residency allegation would be laughable if it were not so totally pathetic. I guess someone didn't bother to read his campaign flier!
Russell Sias had no problem producing an annual receipt for "Split Rail", the Quartzsite RV park that he and Susan lived in for several years before accepting the management position at Crawford's. (see photo at top of post) and in addition to his AZ drivers license and vehicle registration, Sias also has membership receipts for the Rock and Gem Club. "I have no interest in getting involved in Quartzsite politics!" Investigator Haws exclaimed emphatically, as he thanked Sias for his cooperation in clearing up the matter.
And while we're on the subject of residency, it seems that Police Chief Jeff Gilbert, is a "4 year" resident of 3120 Newport Dr., Lake Havasu City, AZ,
but Gilbert is registered to vote at 450 N. Pilgrim Pl. in Quartzsite, a property owned by Lowell and Beth Williams (the County Magistrate, Quartzsite Division). This is especially fascinating because according to Councilwoman Barbara Cowell of Arizona Westcoast Realty (the agent) in her Desert Messenger ad (Vol. 6, issue # 108) that particular listing (#38013) has "never been lived in"! Perhaps realizing that the proverbial cat was out of the bag, that phrase was removed from Councilwoman Cowell's subsequent ad (current issue Vol 6 #109). I challenge the police chief to produce at least a utility bill in his name for that address.
The Gilbert's previous home (Rainbow Acres, lot #405 APN 302-32-422) was purchased from Leonard and June Davis on7-27-06, and sold to Joseph Merchant on 2-26-09. Rainbow Acres residents are not part of Quartzsite and therefore not eligible to vote, but a reliable source insists that Police Chief Gilbert was registered to vote while living there ...he reportedly just used the Quartzsite zip code.
Then, on 2-11-10, Jeff and Sondra purchased lots 6 and 7 (on W. Cowell) in the Palo Fiero sub division from former council candidate Eric Larson . Both properties are unoccupied, and have an unfinished home on them. They were allegedly purchased by Gilbert at a substantial discount (after at least one visit by the Police Chief and Building Official, Al Johnson).
Last, and certainly least, the alleged non residency of former candidate Deena Blythe has yet to be resolved. Perjury charges apparently stemming from her application for candidacy have not been dropped, as Blythe predicted. She is due back in the La Paz County Superior Court for a pre trial hearing on June 14th.
So what does the law say about residency? Well, it depends on whether you want to be a resident of Arizona or not. If you move in to Quartzsite on Monday morning, you can go to the MVD on Monday afternoon to change your drivers license and vehicle registration, then drive over to the County Recorder's Office and register to vote. If you don't want to become an Arizona resident, then I advise you to read the following definitions very carefully:
Resident Definition - According to MVD
State law requires that you obtain an Arizona vehicle registration and driver license, immediately if any of the following applies. If you:
- Work in Arizona (other than for seasonal agricultural work) –or–
- Are registered to vote in Arizona –or–
- Place children in school without paying the tuition rate of a nonresident –or–
- Have a business that has an office in Arizona, and that bases and operates vehicles in this state –or–
- Obtain a state license or pay school tuition fees at the same rate as an Arizona resident –or–
- Have a business that operates vehicles to transport goods or passengers within Arizona –or–
- Remain in Arizona for a total of 7 months or more during any calendar year, regardless of your permanent residence.
Out-of-state students enrolled with 7 or more semester hours, are not considered Arizona residents, regardless of employment.
Active duty military personnel based in Arizona who qualify for exemption under the Service Members Civil Relief Act of 2003 are not considered Arizona residents
Resident Definition - According to A. R. S. Title 43, tax code
19. "Resident" includes:
(a) Every individual who is in this state for other than a temporary or transitory purpose.
(b) Every individual who is domiciled in this state and who is outside the state for a temporary or transitory purpose. Any individual who is a resident of this state continues to be a resident even though temporarily absent from the state.
(c) Every individual who spends in the aggregate more than nine months of the taxable year within this state shall be presumed to be a resident. The presumption may be overcome by competent evidence that the individual is in the state for a temporary or transitory purpose.
(Editor: There is no legal definition for "temporary" or "transitory" anywhere in Title 43.)
Voter Registration Requirements - According to AZ Secretary of State
Q: What are the qualifications to register to vote?
- Must be a Citizen of the United States of America
- Must be a resident of Arizona
- Must be 18 years of age or more on or before the day of the next regular General Election
- Must not be a convicted felony, unless your civil rights have been restored
- Must not been adjudicated incompetent