Tag Archives: Surprise Sundancers

April 20, 2017 • Newsletter

City Council Work Session

Dial-A-Ride Changes

City staff presented Valley Metro’s Northwest Valley public transportation service model changes at Tuesday’s meeting. Beginning July 1, Valley Metro will discontinue the current Northwest Valley Dial-a-Ride service model to provide more service options and standardized regional transportation for seniors, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) eligible, and income-qualified riders. Three transportation options will be available to customers when the new model begins July 1: the Senior Bus, Paratransit Shared Ride and RideChoice Taxi Service.

Seniors who frequently visit the Surprise Senior Center, on average 3-5 days per week, can catch a ride on the city’s shared route Senior Bus. The Senior Bus will follow a dedicated route to the Senior Center and provide door-to-door pick-up and drop-off service; fare for the bus will remain $2 per one-way trip. The bus will be available Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding city holidays.

Paratransit Shared Ride is recommended for ADA certified customers, seniors and income-qualified general public who schedule rides for local medical and works trips greater than 7 miles and, generally, outside the city of Surprise. ADA certified riders may also use the service for medical and work trips anywhere within Maricopa County up to ¾ miles of bus service. Multiple vehicle options will be available for customers when booking their trips; the service contractor will schedule vehicles accordingly based on customer needs.

Customers booking Paratransit Shared Ride are required to schedule trips 1-14 days in advance; same day booking is not available. The service will operate daily 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.; trip fares are $4 each way.

Similar to the current Dial-a-Ride program, RideChoice Taxi Service provides 24 hours per day, 365 days per year service for riders with the ability to self-book and choose from multiple service providers. Riders will be allotted 16 trips per month however customers needing more trips are able to work with city staff to review monthly trip allowances on an individual basis.

RideChoice trips are managed on a RideChoice card that must be renewed each month; unused trips do not carry over. Customers can choose to load money to the RideChoice card to pay for trips however cash and credit cards are still accepted. RideChoice accounts can be self-managed online and by smart phone. Fares are $3 per one-way trip for riders. Riders will be responsible for any fare amounts that exceed $21 (city’s match is up to $18 per trip).

Valley Metro will contact current Northwest Valley Dial-a-Ride customers directly to educate them on the changes to the program and the new options. In addition, Surprise staff and representatives from Valley Metro will schedule a public meeting at the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N Hollyhock Street, in May to discuss the service models and answer questions.

Surprise will continue to share information about changes to Valley Metro’s Northwest Valley service model at www.surpriseaz.gov/transportation as it becomes available.

City Manager’s FY18 Recommended Budget Discussion

City Manager Bob Wingenroth presented a $336.5 million Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Recommended Budget to City Council. The Recommended Budget maintains existing city services and identifies creative options to maximize some resources. That includes securing outside revenue sources and reallocating the operating budget to provide new positions that address public safety, water and inspection demands. Two public safety grants (SAFER Grant and COPS Hiring Program) will partially fund a five-member Fire-Medical Peak Time Response Unit and two police officers, focused on community policing, through 2019. The Recommended Budget also includes $49.8 million to support the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), which is used to maintain, preserve, and/or replace city infrastructure. This includes funding for pavement preservation of city streets, vehicle replacement and aging communications, information technology, recreation and utility infrastructure.

There are also two recommended financial policy revisions regarding the Minimum Fund Balance Policy for the General fund and the Stormwater and Workers’ Compensation funds that will provide clearer definition for the reserves to strengthen the city’s financial position.

The FY18 Recommended Budget is available at www.surpriseaz.gov/budget. Council is scheduled to vote on the final budget in June.


City Council Meeting

Reappointment of Public Safety Personnel Retirement System Board Members

City Council unanimously approved the re-appointment of Kenneth Broadfoot as the citizen member and Jim Hayden as Chairman of the Public Safety Retirement System Local Board, both serving a four year term expiring April 18, 2021.


Events & Meetings

Good Friday Breakfast

I joined hundreds of other leaders in the West Valley for the Good Friday Breakfast on Friday, April 14 at the WigWam. Speakers included Adam Agee, lead singer from Audio Adrenaline and Pastor Greg Laurie from Harvest Christian Fellowship, one of the largest churches in the United States. Pastor Laurie will also be leading Harvest America in Phoenix on June 11 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale.

Milam Glass Groundbreaking

Vice Mayor Todd Tande, Councilman Ken Remley and I attended the groundbreaking ceremony for Milam Glass on Monday, April 17. Milam Glass is developing a 22,000 square foot facility in the city’s industrial district, which will become their new company headquarters and employ approximately 50 people. The company has been in business since 1969. It started as a three-man residential glass company, and by 1977, it had become a storefront business and a leader in the commercial glass industry.

Council Conversation Taping

On Tuesday, April 18, I taped a new Council Conversation on water which will be aired on Surprise TV beginning next week. As part of the conversation, I interviewed Water Resource Management Director Terry Lowe and Director of the Kyl Center for Water Policy at Morrison Institute at ASU, Sarah Porter. April is Water Awareness Month for the Arizona Department of Water Resources. Watch the episode…

Council Conversation


Mark Your Calendar

WHAM Recycle Arts Festival

WHAM Art Association is hosting their Recycle Arts Fest: Exhibit & Fashion Show on Saturday, April 22 at WHAM Community Art Center, 16560 N. Dysart Road. The free neighborhood event is scheduled from 4 – 9 p.m. and will include a Recycle Arts Exhibit and Eco Styles Fashion Show, a creative art display that underscores the possibilities of working with reusable post-consumer materials.

Artists of all ages and talents are invited to participate. Enjoy food, music, free activities for kids and the spirit of community and collaboration at the Recycle Arts Fest– where creative expression goes green! If you are interested in becoming involved with the 2017 Recycle Arts Fest send an email to whamartassociation@wham-art.org.

Surprise Police Explorers Fundraising Event

The Surprise Police Explorer Post #2236 is partnering with a local business, Chipotle, for an upcoming fund raising event. The event will be held at Chipotle, 13869 West Bell Road in Surprise, on Friday, April 28 from 5 – 9 p.m.

Please remember to bring in a copy of the flyer (view flyer) or show a copy of the flyer on your smart phone or other electronic device in order to help the Explorers raise money (50% of the proceeds will be donated to the Surprise Police Explorers).

Chipotle is located on the southeast corner of Litchfield Road and Bell Road in Surprise.

Movie Night at Surprise Stadium

The City of Surprise presents Movie Night at Surprise Stadium featuring The Secret Life of Pets – rated PG on Saturday, April 29. This event is sponsored by Coulter Nissan, and admission is free. Bring your blankets and pillows, stretch out on the stadium grass and enjoy! Gates will open at 6 p.m. The movie will begin at 7 p.m.

The stadium food and beverage policy is in effect. Ice chests and lawn chairs are not permitted. For more information, please contact City of Surprise Community and Recreation Services at 623.222.2000 or visit www.surpriseaz.gov/specialevents.


Did You Know?

Surprise Sundancers Award Scholarships to West Valley Students

Surprise Sundancers, the official Surprise Recreation Campus Spring Training volunteer organization, with the support of the Arizona Community Foundation, awarded $135,000 in scholarships to west valley students.

The scholarship recipients were awarded the following:

10 applicants each receiving $5,000
19 applicants each receiving $2,500
25 applicants each receiving $1,500

The Surprise Sundancers provide scholarships to graduating students from high schools in Surprise, El Mirage, Youngtown or Wickenburg. Applicants must demonstrate high engagement in the community, be a participating student athlete, and have a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA.

The Surprise Sundancers will present the scholarship funds to the technical school or college on behalf of the student.

The Sundancers are a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization with over 800 members. They provide volunteer services during Spring Training and other city special events. Each spring training season, the Surprise Sundancers host an annual Charity Game in which all proceeds collected from tickets sales, merchandise, 50/50 raffle, concessions and programs are contributed to the Surprise Sundancers Scholarship Program as well as Surprise/Northwest Valley youth related programs and projects.

To learn more about the Surprise Sundancers, visit www.surprisesundancers.org or call 623.222.2000 for more information.


Contact Me

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975
Email: skip.hall@surpriseaz.gov

Ask a Question

September 4, 2015 • Newsletter

City Council Work Session

City of Surprise Integrated Water Master Plan Phase II Update

Staff completed the second phase of the update to the Integrated Water Master Plan (IWMP). With guidance from the Committee on Water Resource Planning, Terry Lowe, Water Resource Management Director, provided Mayor and Council an update on the status of the IWMP and gave each elected official a copy of the updated Water Resource section (Volume 1) of the IWMP. The goal of Phase II was to incorporate the finding of Phase I and the newly adopted Water Management Policies into Volume 1. The next step for staff is to update Volume 2 (Infrastructure) of the IWMP which is based on the direction and plan of the Water Resource section. It is intended for this project to take approximately a year, and it will be developed utilizing in-house staff.

City of Surprise Stormwater Utility

On September 1, 2015, Water Resource Management Director Terry Lowe presented to Mayor and Council the next findings of a yearlong effort to develop and establish a Stormwater Utility. The FCS Group was hired to assist staff with the development of this utility. Their scope includes the development of fiscal policies, revenue requirements, operation and maintenance requirements, analyze capital improvement needs, establish a rate structure and rate, and public outreach prior to adoption. Currently, other funds, including the General Fund, HURF fund, and Wastewater Utility are funding activities related to stormwater management. The creation of a stormwater utility is the most fair, reliable, and adequate funding mechanism to pay for stormwater management. The study identified an equivalent dwelling unit (EDU) equal to 3,420 square feet which was derived from averaging the areas of the impervious surfaces (roves, patios, and driveway) for all single family residents in Surprise. The purpose of this calculation is to establish a means to understand each parcel’s impact to the City’s stormwater management responsibilities. The study calculated a charge of $2 per month per EDU would be required to properly establish the utility, develop a fund balance, and to cover the cost of the City’s stormwater management responsibilities. These responsibilities include street maintenance, underground storm drain maintenance, and regulatory compliance as mandated by the Federal and State agencies. Staff will begin the public outreach phase of the Utility’s development which will occur of over the next few months. City Council is expected to vote on whether or not to establish the stormwater utility later this year.


City Council Meeting

Recognition of Surprise Sundancers Board Recipients

Each spring training season, the Sundancers conduct a 50/50 raffle for the sole purpose of making charitable donations. This year, approximately $20,900 was collected and given to several organizations and local nonprofit community organizations. Some of the organizations include Rachel’s Challenge, Dysart Education Foundation, WHAM, Arizona Charter Academy, West Valley Arts Council, Surprise Fire and Police Departments, El Mirage Firefighter Charities and various youth scholarships.

The Sundancers receiving checks for their charitable donations

The Surprise Sundancers, founded in 2002, have played an instrumental role in our City. A special thank you to them for all they do for so many organizations, projects and programs!

Surprise Police Officer Receives National Award from VFW

Surprise Police Officer Wendy Klarkowski was recognized as an honored recipient of the Veterans of Foreign War Post 285’s National Law Enforcement Public Service Citation during Tuesday evening’s City Council meeting. Officer Klarkowski is currently assigned as a School Resource Officer (SRO) at Shadow Ridge High School. She became a police officer in 2010 and was selected to serve as an SRO in 2012.

Officer Wendy Klarkowski was recognized as an honored recipient of the Veterans of Foreign War Post 285’s National Law Enforcement Public Service Citation

Officer Klarkowski is regularly recognized for her dedication, commitment and exemplary service to our community. It’s an honor to have her in Surprise!

Bullard Avenue Community Feedback

At the end of July, the City implemented a traffic calming strategy on Bullard Avenue from Greenway Road to Peoria Avenue. Safety was the primary objective. The modifications included a reduction in the speed limit from 45 to 35 miles per hour, the reduction of travel lanes from two in each direction to one, the addition of four miles of bike lanes and three school zone with school crosswalks and the addition of a neighborhood electric vehicle lane.

The City hosted a community meeting on August 17 to allow residents the opportunity to share their experiences and opinions of the changes. More than 100 residents were in attendance. There were 55 speakers with only one in favor of the changes. Staff provided some background information at that time including factors considered, project goals and next steps.

Following the aforementioned meeting, a community survey was available for additional feedback. While the survey closed on August 30, the City received more than 1,900 responses. Again, an overwhelming percentage of input received was in opposition to the changes.

Details of the next public meeting are noted below.

AZ TechCelerator Renovation Project Update

Last April, City Council approved a budget amendment for a significant renovation project at the City-owned business incubator and accelerator program. This project was carried forward to the FY16 budget within the General Fund. Renovations include new exterior paint, landscape rehabilitation, upgraded wireless internet, a new monument sign and directional signage, as well as interior renovations and access control in buildings C and D. A re-launch is tentatively scheduled for October.

2016 Surprise Fine Art & Wine Festival

City Council approved the allocation of tourism funds, not to exceed $30,000, to the Thunderbird Artists for the Fourth Annual Surprise Fine Art & Wine Festival. The event is scheduled for January 22 through January 24, 2016.


Meetings & Events

Boys & Girls Club of Surprise Steering Committee Meeting

The Boys & Girls Club of Surprise Steering Committee met on Wednesday, September 2 to discuss the next phase of becoming a charter club. Momentum continues to build as we continue to progress and see the club into fruition.


Mark Your Calendar

Bullard Avenue Public Meeting – September 8

Residents are encouraged to attend the next public meeting regarding the Bullard Avenue changes in which survey results will be discussed. The meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 8 at 6 p.m. at Marley Park Elementary School, 15042 W. Sweetwater Avenue. I hope to see you there!

Fall Youth Sports Registration

Registration for fall youth sports, including girls’ volleyball, Babe Ruth softball and Cal Ripken tee-ball and baseball will begin next week. Registration will be offered from September 8 through September 25, with a special Saturday registration on September 26 from 8 until 11 a.m. at the Community and Recreation Services office located at 15960 N. Bullard Avenue. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. You can also register online at www.surpriseaz.gov/recreation.

Fall Clean-up Event

The Surprise Fall Clean-up Event is scheduled for Saturday, September 12 from 7 a.m. until 1 p.m. This event allows residents the opportunity to drop off up to 2,000 pounds of residential waste free-of-charge at the Northwest Regional Landfill located at 19401 W. Deer Valley Road. Acceptable items include lawn waste and other typical household refuge.

Please note hazardous waste items will not be accepted at this time. The City has scheduled a household hazardous waste event for October 10 from 8 a.m. until 12 noon at the Public Works Maintenance Yard, 13433 W. Firefox Drive.

For more information about either event, please call 623.222.6000 or visit www.surpriseaz.gov/sanitation.


Did You Know?

Traffic Restrictions

Due to the 115th Avenue drainage improvement project, weekend road closures have been scheduled beginning Friday, September 11 at 9 p.m. through 6 a.m. on Monday, September 14.

  • 115th Avenue north and southbound lanes from Beardsley Road to Union Hills Drive
  • 115th Avenue northbound lanes will be closed north of Avenue of the Arts

Please note the same restrictions will be in place the following weekend from 9 p.m. on Friday, September 18 through 6 a.m. on Monday, September 21. Please consider alternative routes such as 99th Avenue during these closures. For the most current information on traffic restrictions, visit the traffic restriction webpage at http://ow.ly/RKXZJ.

Farmer’s Market is Coming to Surprise!

Pitchfork Farmer’s Market is coming to the AZ TechCelerator, located at 12425 W. Bell Road, beginning on Saturday, October 10 from 8 a.m. until 1 p.m. and each Saturday thereafter.

Project Hydrate

Earlier last month, Surprise Police Officer Wendy Klarkowski learned about a severe water bottle shortage occurring at the St. Mary’s Food Bank. Extreme temperatures and a water contamination situation on the Navajo Reservation had led to the current shortage. Upon learning of the shortage, Officer Klarkowski, members of the SRO Coin Challenge and Student Council at Shadow Ridge High School created “Project Hydrate”.

When Project Hydrate began, the group set a goal to collect 5,000 bottles of water and set a deadline for collection of August 31. The group recently announced they’ve collected over 15,000 bottles of water, therefore tripling their original goal. Their success is due in part to three major donations, coming from parents of Shadow Ridge students who work for Walmart (1,920 bottles), Target (3,744 bottles) and an anonymous local company who donated 3,864 bottles.

Kids unloading water for Project Hydrate

I truly admire how the community came together for a fantastic cause!

Volunteers Needed

If you are looking for an opportunity to better our community, we invite you to participate in the Pride Community Clean-up event on October 10. In true demonstration of civic pride, this community-wide event will have volunteers cleaning neighborhoods across the city, from repairing and painting neighborhood fences to landscaping.

All volunteers are asked to meet in the parking lot of the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N. Hollyhock Street, at 7:30 am to receive assignments. The entire group will return to the Senior Center parking lot for lunch at 11:30 a.m. If you are interested, please contact Muriel Gutierrez at 623.222.3241 or muriel.gutierrez@surpriseaz.gov.


Contact Me

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975
Email: skip.hall@surpriseaz.gov

Ask a Question