City Council Work Session
The City Council hosted a joint meeting with the Planning and Zoning Commission on Tuesday, September 16th. Below is a summary of the discussion. Misty Leslie, City Attorney, presented on the Open Meeting Law. She reiterated that all legal action must be held in public meetings. She also discussed how modern day technology can play a role with quorums and violations.
The goals and policies of General Plan 2035 were also discussed. Based on this discussion, a work plan will be developed. The Council agreed that future growth is contingent upon economic development that will bring employment to so many of our residents. MAG (Maricopa Association of Governments) estimates that 91% of employed residents leave Surprise daily to commute to other cities for work.
The City Council also discussed our priorities and objectives based on last fall’s retreat. In addition to jobs, some of our priorities include building a downtown, preservation, and connectivity. Furthermore, we want to improve our quality of life with the addition of neighborhood planning, housing rehabilitation and redevelopment, recreation and open space as well as arts and culture.
The Planning and Zoning Commission asked the Council to consider a few minor amendments to our current Plan. Those amendments include moving the date of the annual Summit to the fall to allow the incorporation of decisions into the spring budget process, simplifying status reports and consolidating requirements to streamline the process and improve clarity.
City Council Meeting
City Council unanimously approved the renaming of the current Original Town Site recreational facilities on Hollyhock to the Roy Villanueva Community and Recreation Complex. The area currently houses Gaines Park, the Surprise Senior Center, Hollyhock Pool, Villanueva Recreation Center and Hollyhock Library. Roy Villanueva served as our City’s Mayor, Vice Mayor and Council Member for almost 40 years prior to his passing in July 2013. During his many years of service, Roy initiated many important improvements in the areas of housing rehabilitation, economic development, utilities, police and fire services and federal grants. The official naming presentation will be part of the Surprise Fiesta Grande celebration on Hollyhock Street, just north of Grand Avenue, from 12 noon until 9 p.m.
Events & Meetings
One Step Beyond, Inc.
On Thursday, September 11th, I attended the grand opening of One Step Beyond, Inc. One Step Beyond is a non-profit providing comprehensive programs to individuals with developmental disabilities in the West Valley. They began providing services in 2003 in Peoria, Arizona. Their mission is to provide responsive, progressive and dynamic programs that will empower individuals with development disabilities to realize their dreams of optimal independence, meaningful employment, significant relationships and full participation within their communities. Mayor Wolcott and I with a representative from One Step Beyond, Inc.
Spotlight Entertainment Performing Arts
I attended the grand opening and ribbon cutting for Spotlight Entertainment Performing Arts Studio, located at the corner of Bell and Reems Roads, on Saturday, September 13th. Spotlight Entertainment offers a unique approach to Musical Theatre by combining singing, dancing and acting. All students participate in a full musical theatre-style production twice a year. Tiffany Nebeker, the owner of Spotlight Entertainment, has been operating her business since 2010.
Mark Your Calendar
Movie Night at Surprise Recreation Campus The Surprise Recreation Campus will be hosting movie night on Saturday, September 27th. “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” will be featured on the big screen at 7 pm; however, gates will open at 6 pm. Concession will be available and the Stadium food and beverage policy will be in effect.
Surprise Talent Show
The City is looking for its most talented residents! If you have any special talents such as singing, acting, playing an instrument, etc., this talent show is for you! Applications will be accepted through October 2nd and auditions will be held in mid-October. Applications can be downloaded as www.surpriseaz.gov/recreation or you can get an application at the Community and Recreation Services offices located at 15960 N. Bullard. Auditions and participation in the talent show are free. The show will be held at Valley Vista High School’s Performing Arts Center on Friday, November 7th at 6 pm. Prizes will be awarded for youth, teen and adult categories.
Reminder – Newsletter Distribution Change Since City Hall work hours have changed to five days a week, there will be a change to the distribution of my newsletters. You will receive them on Friday evenings at 5 pm each week beginning in October. The first Friday evening edition will be sent on October 3rd.
Reminder – HOA Summit The next HOA Summit will be held at City Hall in the Community Room on Thursday, October 2nd. This Summit will feature roundtable discussions with Directors and staff from Public Works, Public Safety, Economic/Community Development, Code Enforcement, Neighborhood Services and Intergovernmental Relations. Additionally, Bob Wingenroth, City Manager will provide a City update. If you are on an HOA Board or a resident of an HOA, please plan to attend. You can register with Ruby Sitea at 623.222.3242.