Saturday, November 14, 2015

Roundup omits key passage from ASU e-mail

 (Gazette Blog Editor's note: Mediocre journalism is one thing; intentionally deceiving readers by omission is quite another.  A few days ago, we printed an e-mail from Arizona State University Senior Vice President and University Planner Richard H. Stanley to Rim Country resident Don Adams about the status of an ASU Payson campus.  So, apparently, did your Payson Roundup - except they inexplicably left out the bad stuff the VP had to say.  We were tipped off by former Payson town councilor and Gila Community College Board member Tom Loeffler, who sent this e-mail:)

The Payson Roundup correctly quoted part of V.P. Stanley's e-mail. However they seem to have left out the part, and I quote, " commitments have been made...and the discussions to date have not progressed to formal negotiations."

As citizens and businesses of Payson, we should know all the facts on subjects that concern us so I've attached the entire E-mail for your consideration.

Please feel free to pass it on in the spirit of transparency.

Response letter from Richard H. Stanley'
Senior Vice President and University Planner
November 5, 2015
Dear Mr. Evans: I write in response to your November 3 email to President Crow regarding the consideration being given by leaders of the Payson community to the establishment of a university campus in the region.
As has been reflected in the press, Arizona State University has had discussions over a number of years with the Mayor of Payson and other community leaders about their interest in attracting a university partner to Payson, and we tend to agree that increasing opportunities for individuals seeking a post -secondary education would have benefits for the region and for the state of Arizona.
ASU is committed as an institution to expanding access to higher education. We operate five campuses in Metropolitan Phoenix, and we have in -person educational programs in Tucson, Lake Havasu City and Yuma. Establishing a presence in Payson would be in keeping with the university's mission to provide an affordable quality education to as many qualified Arizonans who wish to pursue a college degree.
But while our conversations regarding Payson have included general discussions of the financial and logistical requirements necessary to make operating such a campus successful, WE HAVE MADE NO COMMITMENTS AND NO COMMITMENTS HAVE BEEN MADE TO US AND THE DISCUSSIONS TO DATE HAVE NOT PROGRESSED TO FORMAL NEGOTIATIONS.
If and when it is determined that there is a viable proposal for creating a university campus in the Payson area, we likely will be interested in continuing the discussion to determine if ASU would be the right partner for the project.
In all of our development projects, we take pains to seek input from residents and businesses who have a stake in the project. IF WE WERE TO ENTER INTO FORMAL NEGOTIATIONS ABOUT ESTABLISHING A PRESENCE IN PAYSON, WE WOULD BE COMMITTED TO SEEKING PUBLIC INPUT INTO OUR PLANS and the project would be subject to our own due diligence, as well as all local and state regulations pertaining to such a development.

Richard H. Stanley'
Senior Vice President and University Planner
Office of the President
Fulton Center 410, 300 E. University Drive
P.O. Box 877705 Tempe, AZ 85287-7705
(480) 965-8972 Fax: (480) 965-0865

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