City Council Work Session
Surprise Transit Feasibility Study
The Surprise Transit Feasibility Study is developing a robust set of data about the demographics of who utilizes transit, where they are coming from and going to and why they are taking their trips. Last month, the transit survey was available for residents and visitors to complete. We received 1,774 completed surveys. Surveys were conducted through an online web portal, paper copies and through trained staff interviews with the public.
The survey results will be utilized to better understand travel markets, improve regional travel forecasts to predict transit ridership and highway use in the region, to help in the design of possible transit facilities and to support funding decision regarding transportation projects. City staff is currently utilizing the data to build an interactive analysis and visualization app for the next public outreach effort and evaluation for mode and route analysis.
A public workshop is tentatively planned for early summer with an additional Council update in August.
Surprise Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Strategic Plan
The goal of an ITS Strategic Plan is to identify strategies and tools to allow the City to manage its transportation network and information exchange related to traffic, public safety and special events that could disrupt normal traffic. Currently, the City’s traffic signals are controlled by a central location at the City’s Public Safety Building through a network of underground cabling (fiber optic) located in the City’s right of way, this is what the City labels it’s ‘ITS network’. The hope of the ITS Strategic Plan is to expand upon this current use to a more encompassing program that would use this ITS network for communicating to the public on potential road closures so alternate routes could be used. Other uses of the ITS Strategic Plan would be for the City to be ready to facilitate new technologies that would need to utilize the ITS network such as smart cars. Lastly, with there being endless possibilities of utilizing the ITS network, the ITS Strategic Plan gives the City a guideline in which to implement new technologies in an orderly format maximizing the use of funds, staff and equipment.
City Council Meeting
New Surprise Youth Council Members
The Surprise Youth Council (SYC) formally introduced its 11 newest members in a swearing-in ceremony on Tuesday. After a two-month recruitment process, these students were identified as possessing the skills, perspective, and motivation necessary to enhance the Council’s efforts to positively impact our community. With much enthusiasm, we welcome Tatilana Aguon, Tatiana Alarcon, Prince Alino, Alyssa Blandford, Aden Chudziak, Dakota Dolister, Carlie Hess, Bryan Main II, Alexander Mejia, Ian Petrow, and Maurice Policarpio. We look forward to the energy each of them will bring to the SYC’s events, service projects, and other initiatives over the coming year.
FY19 Tentative Budget
Action was taken to adopt the tentative expenditure limitation budget for FY2019 in the amount of $327,044,300 and authorizing publication of said tentative budget; Resolution # 2018-66. The tentative budget sets the maximum expenditure limit for FY2019. After adoption, the total expenditures cannot be modified to a higher amount, but can be reduced. The budget forms that serve as exhibit A to the resolution will be published twice prior to a public hearing and adoption of the final budget that is scheduled to occur on June 5. The final step of adopting the property tax levy will follow on June 19.
2018 Emergency Action Plan
The City of Surprise has maintained an Emergency Operations Plan for many years. The Surprise Fire-Medical Department has been working collaboratively with the Maricopa County Department of Emergency Management and members of various departments within the city to ensure all pertinent aspects of the current Emergency Operations Plan were evaluated and updated to meet the current emergency response needs at all levels of local government. Areas evaluated included, but were not limited to, transportation, public works, public safety, hazardous materials, communications, search and rescue, recovery and mitigation, health and medical, etc.
City Council unanimously approved the updates.
Events & Meetings
Read On Greater Surprise Meeting
Read on Greater Surprise met on Friday, April 27. Councilmembers Roland Winters and Patrick Duffy joined me along with Senator Rick Gray. The meeting focused on the process the City of Tempe utilizes to evaluate the needs for Pre-K education and statistical data on families in poverty. The group is interested in gathering similar data for Surprise, El Mirage, Youngtown, Waddell and Whitmann. A request for this data will be sent to First Things First, and it will be evaluated at the next Read on Greater Surprise meeting.
Special Joint Meeting of the Commission
The Arts & Cultural Advisory Commission, the Tourism Advisory Commission and the Community and Recreation Services Commission met on Monday, April 30 to collaborate on branding the city from each of their respective commissions’ perspectives. The meeting was productive and many ideas were shared. They agreed to meet again in six months.
Arizona Town Hall
Community leaders, residents and staff from the Arizona Town Hall met on Wednesday, May 2 to discuss funding PreK-12 education at West-MEC’s Northwest Campus. Guest speakers included Director of Government Relations from the Arizona Association of School Business Officials and Peoria Unified School District CFO Kenneth Hicks. Many great ideas were shared on what we can do to improve the education funding in Arizona now and in the future.
Mark Your Calendar
Surprise Safety Day
Join us for a day of fun at Surprise Safety Day on Saturday, May 5! Bring your family and friends to Surprise Aquatic Center, 15831 N Bullard Avenue, from 8-11 a.m. and enjoy emergency vehicle and equipment displays, including an appearance by Native Air helicopter; interactive exhibits and live demonstrations of Surprise’s public safety services; and water safety and CPR demonstrations. Plus, the Surprise Aquatic Center is offering free swim lesson assessments and will be conducting swim team tryouts. Participants should bring a bathing suit and a towel; the pool is heated.
Surprise Safety Day is free and presented in partnership with Surprise Community & Recreation Services, Surprise Police, Surprise Fire-Medical, Native Air and Banner Del E. Webb Medical Center. For more information about Safety Day, swim lesson assessments, or swim team tryouts, please contact the Community & Recreation Services office at 623.222.2000.
Surprise Day of Service
Are you looking for opportunities to help your community? The city is seeking volunteers for the Surprise Day of Service which will be held on Saturday, May 12 from 8 am until 12 noon.
On the day of the event, volunteers will check in at the Surprise Senior Center located at 15832 N. Hollyhock Street. Transportation will be required to get to most service projects which include painting, cleaning, trash removal and more.
Light refreshments will be provided for breakfast and lunch. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Jason Hughes at 623.222.3239 or Jason.email@example.com.
Did You Know?
Union Hills & 107th Avenue Intersection Closed
The 107th Avenue and Union Hills Drive intersection will be closed beginning 9 p.m. Friday, May 4, to realign two waterlines, a storm drain pipe and drainage structure. The intersection is scheduled to reopen by 5 a.m., Monday, May 21. Bell Road, Del Webb Boulevard, 115th Avenue and 99th Avenue may be used as alternate routes. Access will be maintained at all times for emergency vehicles.
The closure is required to construct a portion of the 115th Avenue and Union Hills Drive project that will intercept flood water from the northeast and carry it south to the Agua Fria River when complete. The project is a partnership between Surprise, the Flood Control District of Maricopa County, the city of Peoria and the Maricopa County Department of Transportation.
The project is scheduled to be complete in June 2018, weather permitting. For questions or concerns, call the construction hotline at 602.264.6416.