City Council Work Session
Transit Study and Implementation Plan
The City of Surprise will conduct a Transit Feasibility and Implementation Study that will address the city’s current and future transit needs. This Transit Feasibility Study is intended to build on the transportation section of the City’s 2035 General Plan and to focus on the feasibility of a range of transit partnerships, service options, delivery methods, as well as a staged implementation and strategy supported by financial and funding recommendations. The study will examine various modes of public transportation that could be implemented both within the city’s boundary and through possible regional connections into the larger Metropolitan area.
The City anticipates holding a series of public outreach events and public hearings throughout the approximate 9-month process. Some of these transit connections could potentially be implemented within the next five years. If you would like to receive future e-mails and text messages about this and other city news and events, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/notifyme and sign up for “Current News Releases.”
Business License Fees
Business licenses are issued to all persons who practice, transact or carry on business within the municipal limits of Surprise. These licenses are issued to identify businesses and make sure their owners are accountable for their actions, to protect the public health and safety and to keep track of businesses for tax purposes.
Fees are charged to recover a portion of the costs associated with the licensing process. The current business license fees have primarily remained the same since they were established in 1995. Staff is recommending an update to simplify the administration of the fees and evaluating the accuracy and reasonableness of the fees. The proposed new license fee targets approximately 75% cost recovery and the renewal fee is set at 50% of that fee.
Council is expected to take action on the item in October and the new fees, if approved, will be effective January 1, 2018 for the 2018 calendar year renewal cycle.
City Council Meeting
Staff presented on the annexation request of an undeveloped parcel located between Happy Valley Road and Jomax Road, 147th Avenue to 155th Avenue. The annexation proposal is for a 2.49-acre parcel under single ownership of unincorporated land adjacent on three sides to the Rancho Mercado subdivision within Surprise city limits. In a concurrent development application, Bonita Ranch – Parcel A is part of a rezoning case that includes Bonita Ranch – Parcel B and C that was heard by the Planning and Commission on July 20, 2017 and will be heard by City Council on a later date.
Events & Meetings
Raising a Reader Literacy Workshops
Southwest Human Development introduced Raising a Reader to Arizona seven years ago. The program now serves 1,000 children and families in addition to distributing over 3,500 books each year. Based on a national evidence-based model, the program is an early literacy program that offers a proven, cost-effective and scalable way to educate parents about the importance of early literacy and how they can help build these skills in their young children to prepare them for school. The program is an eight-week series of 2 hour sessions. I helped kick-off the program at the Surprise Resource Center and Adelante Health Care Center last week along with representatives from Friends of the Library.
Central Arizona Project (CAP) Meeting
Councilman Jim Hayden, City staff and I met with CAP Board Member Alexandra Arboleda on Monday, August 14 to discuss the current status of water issues today and how they relate to CAP.
Mark Your Calendar
Registration Opens for Surprise HOA Academy
Registration is open for the popular Surprise HOA Academy! The goal of the Academy is to provide expert information for HOA residents, board members and managers. Topics include contracts, fiduciary duty, CC&R enforcement and code compliance.
Academy Class Dates:
- Monday, October 16
- Monday, October 23
- Monday, October 30
- Monday, November 6
- Monday, November 13
6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Public Safety Building Auditorium
14250 W. Statler Plaza
Surprise, AZ 85374
Download the HOA Academy registration form online at www.surpriseaz.gov/HOAacademy. Registration closes on October 10. Please register early since seating is limited. For more information, please contact Ruby Sitea at 623.222.3242 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
City Accepting Parade Entries for 3rd Annual Veterans Day Parade
The City of Surprise is looking for patriotic-themed parade entries for the 3rd Annual Veterans Day Parade, which will be held on Saturday, November 11. The parade, which will honor the men and women in uniform who have selflessly served our country, will begin at 9:30 a.m. and run along Bullard Avenue near the Surprise Recreation Campus.
The city is seeking clubs, organizations, groups or residents who would like to participate in the parade. There is no fee to participate. Interested parties may obtain an entry form online at www.surpriseaz.gov/specialevents or at the Community & Recreation Services Offices located at 15960 N. Bullard Ave. For more information, contact Community & Recreation Services at 623.222.2000. Entries are due by October 27.
Did You Know?
City Council Meetings on Facebook
The city recently launched a new way for residents to connect to what’s happening in their community! All City Council Work Sessions and Regular Meetings will be streamed live on the city’s Facebook page. For 13 years the city has televised Council meetings on Surprise TV and later began streaming that broadcast on the city’s website www.surpriseaz.gov. Now, we’re adding Facebook Live streams to the mix!
Council Work Sessions are held the first and third Tuesdays of the month at 4 p.m. and Regular Meetings begin at 6 p.m. Agendas are posted at least 24 hours in advance of the meetings at https://agenda.surpriseaz.gov/. To watch these meetings, and to follow all city news and information, Facebook users can like us on www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise.
City Opens District 3 Council Vacancy Application Period
The City of Surprise is currently accepting applications for the position of Councilmember District 3 (Mesquite) that was vacated by John Williams’ resignation on August 15. Applicants must reside within the District 3 District Boundaries. The term expiration for the appointment will be December 31, 2018; and the remainder of the four-year term will be placed on the next scheduled Council election in August 2018.
Interested persons must submit an application to the City Clerk’s Office prior to the close of the acceptance period, which is 5 p.m., Wednesday, August 30. By the end of the following day, the City Clerk will forward all applications received, by eligible candidates, to the City Council and post on the city website (www.surpriseaz.gov).
Council will interview each applicant at a public hearing, during a Special Meeting, Tuesday, September 5, at 3 p.m. Public comments will be received at the public hearing and may also be submitted to the City Clerk through the close of the business day on Tuesday, September 12. All comments will be sent to the Council and posted online by the end of the next business day.
Per city code, a district candidate must be selected by the Council no later than the second regularly scheduled council meeting following the public hearing, which is scheduled for 6 p.m., September 19. Applications are available for pick up the City Clerk’s Office, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Applications are also available at www.surpriseaz.gov, under the City Clerk section. The last day to pick-up and/or submit an application will be Wednesday, August 30 at 5 p.m., in the City Clerk’s Office. For more information please call 623.222.1200.
Arizona League of Cities and Towns Conference
Every year, elected officials throughout our State gather for the Arizona League of Cities and Towns Conference in August. This year, the conference will be held in Oro Valley beginning Tuesday, August 22. For that reason, I will not distribute a newsletter next week but I look forward to briefing you the following week.