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What it takes to run a town

Aug 08, 2023Aug 08, 2023

Recently, Cave Creek Mayor Bob Morris reported on several critically important projects within Cave Creek’s approved FY24 Budget. But how many of us really understand what is required to successfully execute those programs?

Kathryn Royer, Town of Cave Creek vice mayor

I’m often amazed how well our local government functions with fewer than 50 employees, almost half of whom work in the water and wastewater utilities.


Town Manager: Town Manager Carrie Dyrek provides direction and leadership for administering and operating all services for the Town of Cave Creek. Ms. Dyrek recently celebrated 25 years with the town in various capacities and serves as the focal point for operations as directed by the elected mayor and council.

Administration: The town Clerk’s Office works in areas related to appointed and elected officials, public records, elections, business licensing, contracts, communications and human resource compliance.

Legal Services: Sims Mackin, Ltd. represents and advises the town on legal matters. The town attorney is appointed by and reports directly to the town council.

Development Services: This department includes building safety and planning functions including managing all projects related to the development of the Town, public trails, parks, our Town Hall facility and rodeo grounds. It ensures that all new development meets Town-adopted building and fire codes and zoning ordinances to guide, manage and regulate future growth.

Magistrate Court: The Cave Creek-Carefree Municipal Court is funded by both towns. It records and processes all criminal misdemeanors, criminal traffic, civil traffic violations and town code violations in both towns.

Public Safety: This department includes law enforcement and fire and emergency medical protection. The law enforcement division oversees the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office which is contracted to deliver law enforcement services to the town. Fire and emergency medical protection provides a high level of community emergency services to help protect residents, visitors and businesses of Cave Creek.

Finance: The finance department ensures accurate and timely organization-wide reporting and fiscal oversight to ensure the financial credibility of the town.

Town Council (non-compensated): The council supports continuous improvement of the public experience and security of the town’s roads, water supply, sewers and public safety. Fiscal oversight is a primary responsibility of the elected officials.

Public Works: This area provides compliance and oversight for development projects, roads and rights of ways for the safety of the community.

Water and Wastewater: The Cave Creek and Desert Hills enterprise systems operate and maintain the Central Arizona Project pipeline, water treatment plant, reservoir/booster sites and distribution system. The wastewater enterprise system operates the collection system, wastewater treatment plant and reclaimed water system.

Cave Creek is fortunate to have a dedicated group of employees and volunteers who work collaboratively on various committees, commissions and the council. While there may be differences regarding processes or priorities along the way, healthy debate and open communication lead us to the most successful results. Questions are welcome at [email protected].

Kathryn Royer

Vice Mayor, Town of Cave Creek

“What does it take to run a Town,”? If that Town is Cave Creek, it DOES NOT take an eye for cohesive design, cooling elements like trees, and the will and expertise to attract much beyond Thrift Shops, Cowboy/Biker Bars, and the couple of times a year Motorcycle Conclaves that, for a week at a time, render the Community a beehive of gross and witless. Of course, we cannot ignore the plethora of Trump Flags fluttering from F150 Pickup Beds, daring all who look slightly educated to challenge them.

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