Biggs: Cavanaugh is fiscal conservative in name only

Braden Biggs, left, and Pinal County Supervisor Kevin Cavanaugh. [Credits: Braden Biggs; Pinal County]

By Braden Biggs

Supervisor (Kevin) Cavanaugh talks a big game about being a fiscal conservative and wanting smaller government. However, his actions and the direction of his office say otherwise.

The budget requested by the “honourable” supervisor for the 2022/2023 financial year was discussed with his counterparts during the meeting on May 18. To my surprise, he asked for over half a million dollars ($555,766) to run his office, an increase of $53,418 from fiscal year 2021/2022. Cavanaugh is looking to retain six office workers (including himself) while no other supervisor has more than four. And Cavanaugh is the only supervisor to have two offices. With the redistribution, he would have one in Coolidge and one in Maricopa. Why?

He justifies all of this by stating that he has such a large area that he had to cover, however, Supervisor (Mike) Goodman, who serves the largest number of citizens who reside in unincorporated Pinal County ( about 77,000), manages to get a desk of them and works efficiently with himself and a member of staff.

Supervisor Cavanaugh wants to talk about how his office needs these staff members to serve his district, but he doesn’t realize that these roles are meant to serve all of Pinal County, not just his district. In fact, one of its employees is a lawyer, which we pay. Despite the fact that the county has many attorneys and more appropriate offices that are supposed to hire and retain these types of employees. What is this employee for?

It would seem that the Overseer, despite his rhetoric about smaller government, really wants to spend our hard-earned money and blow the budget while expanding government rather than shrinking it. This, plus millions of dollars in litigation costs, proves he is not the conservative he claims to be.

Supervisor Cavanaugh’s requested budget is $185,603 higher than the lowest district (District 2) and $301,288 higher than District 4, the district with the lowest budget.

A spreadsheet shows Pinal County supervisors’ budget requests for their offices. [Pinal County]

Braden Biggs is a resident of Maricopa.

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