Councilman Skip Hall

September 1, 2016 • Newsletter

Bell Road/Grand Avenue Update

The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) continues to issue weekly project updates for the Bell Road/Grand Avenue bridge project. Pictures below are courtesy of ADOT.

Work continues as follows:

  • Eastbound Grand Avenue roadway is being reconstructed.
  • The retaining wall panels of the bridge over Grand Avenue will continue to be built for the next few months.

**City, County, and State law enforcement will be patrolling the area. Please obey all traffic signage and posted speed limits.**

As always, please allow plenty of time and observe all traffic control signs and barricades. Thank you again for your patience during this project. For more information, please visit the project website at or you can contact ADOT’s project hotline at 855.712.8530, press option #1.

Events & Meetings

Youth Services Administrator Interviews

Vice Mayor Jim Biundo, Councilman Roland Winters and I joined staff to interview the final three candidates for the Youth Services Administrator on Monday, August 22. Former Youth Services Administrator Paul Bernardo has accepted a promotional opportunity within the city which led to this opening. Congratulations to Paul!

Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce Meeting

I attended the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting on Tuesday, August 23. City Manager Bob Wingenroth provided a city update. With many thanks to him and the staff, there are many great things happening in Surprise.

City Manager Bob Wingenroth

Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference

The Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference began on Tuesday, August 23. This conference is a great opportunity to reconnect with other Council Members throughout the state, network with agencies who work with Surprise and help build the momentum the City Council has been able to achieve.

Part of this year’s conference included meetings with Cox Communications regarding digital contour and EPCOR regarding their plans to combine their water districts. In addition, I was able to attend several sessions including the impact of military bases in Arizona, how communities can make progress toward a future workforce, and innovative programs that have shown success for cities. City Council attended a focus group discussion on why our youth leave the State; Surprise was represented by our very own Surprise Youth Council (SYC) Member Samantha Salazar. Following the youth session, members of SYC competed in the Democraseed Challenge and placed third in the challenge. The Center for the Future of Arizona and Arizona State University’s Office of Entrepreneurship partnered to with the Challenge to foster creative civic engagement projects. Congratulations to our SYC team!

Councilman John Williams and I received service awards during the Legislative and Service Award Luncheon on Thursday, August 25. Congratulations to John on his years of service. I have enjoyed serving with you!

Boards & Commissions Interviews

Councilmembers Rachel Villanueva, Roland Winters and I interviewed candidates for the City’s current Boards & Commissions vacancies. Recommendations will be made to the full City Council at the regular City Council meeting scheduled for Tuesday, September 6. There are two vacancies on the Disability Advisory Commission, one vacancy on the Board of Trustees, two vacancies on the Personnel Appeals Board, two vacancies on the Planning & Zoning Commission and three vacancies on the Tourism Advisory Board.

Desert Premier Home Realty Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting

District 5 has another new business! Desert Premier Home Realty celebrated their grand opening with a ribbon cutting on Tuesday, August 30. Desert Home Premier is a real estate agency that focuses on homes for sale in Surprise, Sun City, Sun City West, Peoria, Goodyear, Avondale, Glendale, Scottsdale and other areas near Phoenix. Best wishes to the owners, Jay and Lynn Otlewski, on their new location!

Mark Your Calendar

Surprise Civic Center Hosting Two Art Events

It’s an evening of art at Surprise Civic Center on September 8. Experience a showcase of fine art photography at Surprise City Hall, followed by an art exhibition at Arts HQ.

The City of Surprise Arts & Cultural Advisory Commission is hosting an event featuring the photography work of artist Archie Tucker in the Mayor’s Atrium of Surprise City Hall, 16000 N. Civic Center Plaza, from 4-5 p.m. Then from 5-7 p.m., Arts HQ presents the opening reception for its exhibit, Exhibicion de Arte, at its gallery located at 16126 N Civic Center Plaza.

Both events are free. For more information on the showcase, please call 623.214.7537. For more information on the Arts HQ exhibit, please call 623.584.2626.

Free Marketing Workshop

If you are looking for tips and tactics to promote your business free of charge, the city is hosting a Guerilla Marketing workshop on September 8. The workshop will be taught by marketing and business author Al Lautenslager, and each attendee will receive a copy of his book, “Market Like You Mean It”.

The workshop will be held from 10-11:30 am at the AZ TechCelerator-Building D, located at 12425 W. Bell Road. To reserve a spot, please call 623.222.3322.

Did You Know?

Primary Election Results

Surprise voters elected two new city councilmembers in Districts 2 and 4, returned an incumbent to District 3 and re-elected the mayor in Tuesday’s primary election.

The news is based on preliminary, unofficial results reported by the Maricopa County Elections Department.

Running unopposed, Sharon Wolcott was re-elected as mayor, having received 14,243 votes or 97% of the vote.

In District 2, Jim Hayden defeated incumbent Vice Mayor Jim Biundo, with a vote tally of 3,289 votes (57%), versus Biundo’s 2,483 votes (43%).

In District 3, incumbent Councilmember John Williams defeated Gisele Norberg. Williams received 1,057 votes (57%) to Norberg’s 781 votes (43%).

In District 4, with 998 votes (57%), Ken Remley defeated incumbent Rachel Villanueva who received 754 votes or (43%).

All positions carry a four-year term, expiring December 31, 2020. New terms begin on January 1, 2017.

All results are preliminary until all of the ballots dropped off at City Hall on Election Day and all Provisional Ballots are counted. A final ballot tally is expected by September 5th, if not sooner, from the Maricopa County Elections Department.

Contact Me

Office: 623.222.1325
Mobile: 623.451.3975

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