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Complaints filed against Granite Shoals mayor

Granite Shoals Mayor Aaron Garcia

Four complaints were filed against Granite Shoals Mayor Aaron Garcia for perceived violations of the city’s charter and ethics ordinances. File photo

Four official complaints have been filed against Granite Shoals Mayor Aaron Garcia for perceived violations of the city charter and the city’s ethics ordinances. The council addressed the complaints during its regular meeting on Tuesday, March 28.

Granite Shoals resident Suzanne Ort, wife of Councilor Phil Ort, filed the complaints against Garcia on March 16. Three of the complaints are for alleged violations of the city charter and one is for an alleged violation of the city’s ethics ordinance. A three-councilor committee was formed to investigate the charter complaints, and the city’s Ethics Review Committee will investigate the ethics complaint.

“I had complaints submitted against me that, in my opinion, are frivolous and malicious in nature,” Garcia told “I am not concerned. This is all an attempt to discredit me.”

The first and second charter complaints reference Garcia’s perceived violation of Article 8.01 in the charter when he formed and appointed members to the City Manager Search Committee and an employee benefits research committee in December 2022. The third complaint references Garcia’s involvement in the firing of the city’s contracted building inspector, Mike Light, in November 2022, which Suzanne Ort said violates Article 14.04 of the charter, citing “wrongful interference.”

The ethics ordinance complaint alleges that Garcia failed to fulfill an undisclosed public information request made by City Secretary Dawn Wright on March 7. The city’s Ethics Review Committee will review the complaint and see if it violates any of the ethics ordinances. The committee was originally formed in September 2022 to investigate ethics violations made by Councilor Phil Ort for the same complaint of failing to fulfill a public information request.

After a lengthy executive session during Tuesday night’s meeting, the council formed a three-person committee to investigate the charter complaints consisting of councilors Micheal Berg, Steve Hougen, and Kevin Flack. 

“We’ve got allegations. We just want to see if there is any merit to them,” Mayor Pro-tem Ron Munos told

Garcia left the executive session early, and Munos ran the remainder of the meeting in his absence. There is currently no timeline on how long the committee’s investigation will take.

Suzanne Ort told that the root of her complaints is in Garcia’s handling of the city manager search.

“The main reason (I filed the complaints) is that I felt the public should know what is going on,” she said. “I don’t think people were aware of why the contract negotiations were tainted and interfered with.”

She is referencing Garcia’s sole approval of an advertising brochure for the position of city manager through the city’s contract with Strategic Government Resources

Garcia originally formed a search committee to facilitate a streamlined process with SGR, but, ultimately, the committee never met and Garcia approved the brochure without consulting either the committee or the council. The council then terminated the SGR contract and chose to hire City Manager Peggy Smith, who was then acting as interim city manager.

In January, Garcia announced that he would not be running for re-election. Only two more council meetings remain until a new mayor is elected on May 6.

CORRECTION: In a previous version of this story, incorrectly reported that Suzanne Ort had filed her complaint against Aaron Garcia for his failure to fulfill a public information request that she submitted. The complaint was filed by Ort against Garcia for his alleged failure to fulfill a public information request made by City Secretary Dawn Wright. apologizes for the error.

2 thoughts on “Complaints filed against Granite Shoals mayor

  1. Seems to me like Suzanne Ort is uncovering the truth and underhanded bullcrap that is always going on up there on the hill and people don’t like it. I wish you the best Suzanne. Keep fighting.

  2. This has all the earmarks of a witch-hunt! There is bad blood coming from the complaining side. Might have something to do with a pending trial involving a vandalism case. Mayor Garcia is an honorable man and a dedicated public servant. Can’t say that about the complainant.

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