Saturday, November 13, 2010

Where are the reporters?

This blog has been documenting the extremely misguided changes the Governors office is making to the Arizona Department of Mines and Mineral Resources and the Arizona Mining and Mineral Museum.

As stated in the Aug 17th blog post, the only significant publicity this has attracted is a single article in the Arizona Republic. Shortly after that article was published, the reporter no longer worked for the Republic. No other reporter has picked up the story.

The typical news reporter may not appreciate or understand the value of the mineral museum. However, there are aspects of this story that should be easily understood and of interest to every Arizonian. These have been discussed individually in prior blog posts:

The Governors office misrepresented the change as cost cutting. That was a hoax.

Although she said she would use “no public funds” the Governor is actually spending millions (during and economic crisis) to support her pet project, the Arizona Centennial Museum. The money is being funneled through the Arizona Historical Society, which got a 50% budget increase.

The changes (which do not cut cost) jeopardize K-12 science education. Fieldtrips to the mineral museum are an experience remembered for a lifetime. Governor Brewer plans to deprive 3rd graders of that experience, and is not doing it to cut cost.

Arizona’s last place in science education makes spending money to reduce science education particularly foolish.

The new museum planned for the same building (5C Arizona Centennial Museum) is irrelevant in 2010.

The Governors treatment of museum volunteers was shameful

The Governor is jeopardizing other worthy centennial celebration projects.

The Governors actions will damage the Arizona economy by harming the mining industry

Hundreds of tips on these various angles of the story have been sent to various news media across the state. None have been interested.

Do today’s news reporters do nothing but listen to the police scanner for stories?

Are journalists and investigative reporters extinct?


  1. Send your data to Rob O'Dell at the Arizona Daily Star. The Rio Nuevo Audit is out and the AHS spent 1.4 million dollars for nothing.

  2. Dick...saw your comment in the T/C. Keep at it, dont give up. Again did anything happen at the annual meeting?????

  3. I have not received any information about the recent AHS meeting.

  4. Your volunteers/supporters should have been there to show how they feel. Only the AHS Board of Directors can fire the AHS Director Woosley. At least you would have shown the membership and espicially the Board that they mean nothing. Did Woosley ask the board first about this boondoggle Centennial Museum idea.
    In any case the chance that AHS and the Centennial Commission can raise any kind of money for these boring exhibits is just about nill. Woosley has no track record in raising funds. And you ask in the article above why the reporters dont care? Thats why she cant raise any money.......nobody cares. Just sit back and watch the whole rotten idea fall apart and then pick up the Mineral Museum again after the whole Centennial goes away in a year and a half. After that nobody will care. They barely do now.

  5. If you look at the "about me" paragraph in the right portion of the screen , you will see that this blog is the effort of one person. I don't control or direct anyone. I can't send anyone anywhere. At present, there is no organized effort to save the mineral museum. However, a group appears to be forming to plan a private mineral museum.

    If you look at the AHS board minutes from last winter, you will see that the AHS director told the board she was not allowed to tell them about centennial museum planning.

    As far as just "picking up" the mineral museum after the centennial museum fails, that is not easy. The law was actually changed (HB 2251) to give AHS control of the state mineral collection. They own it. That's why the sole objective of this blog is the repeal of HB 2251. AHS is not qualified to properly preserve that collection.

  6. Taking care of minerals is easy compared to old photos, fabrics,leather, paintings etc. Its a space problem. They dont have the space available......You have a big fight, I dont envy uou but good luck. Whoever talked Brewer into this boondoggle needs their head looked at.

  7. Many minerals are fragile and some are not chemically stable. Just wrapping them in the wrong kind of paper can ruin them. Identification and documentation are especially important. The AHS does not have the knowledge and skill required to properly care for the state mineral collection.

  8. Point well taken. Same for the fragile historic artifacts. Lets just say they dont have enough staff to do it. They didnt before and they dont now.
    With the budget cuts coming after the midterm election lets see how much the AHS has to cut. They will be the darling of all of all of the other state agencies. "How much did you get cut?" ..."Oh we dont have to we are being saved from cuts because we are building a party house for the Governor!".

  9. Actually, the 2010 Joint Legislative Budget Committee report prepared by Caitlin Acker shows that the AHS has 59.9 full time equivlvent paid positions.

  10. In your dreams. Go to the AHS website. All of the staff are listed. Some are listed in two different areas. No way 60 FTE.

  11. Then AHS should ask the JBLC to correct the budget. Page 280 of the FY2010 JLBC budget summary (prepared by Catlin Acker) shows 59.9 full time equivalent positions.