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Councilmember Jack Hastings November Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my monthly newsletters. I am thankful and honored to have been elected as your District 5 representative. I will work just as hard for those of you who did not vote for me as those who did. I look forward to the opportunity to provide you with city updates, and I am always available to speak with you at jack.hastings@surpriseaz.gov, or by calling 623-222-1325. Please also follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/councilmanhastings.

Veterans Day Tribute Video

We would prefer to have had a Veterans Day Parade again this year, but due to the pandemic, we had to get creative! To show our support for veterans on Veterans Day this year, we made a video and decorated Bullard Avenue. The compilation of community video messages is featured online at https://surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/watch?v=uYS2BXMDw6w.

Small Business Relief Grant

The Surprise Small Business Relief Grant 2.0 program has started accepting applications! City Council approved an additional $100,000 in funding and an additional $25,000 for water utility payment relief. The scope of assistance has also been expanded to include small business retailers and non-profits with commercial space who were not restricted by the Governor’s Executive Orders.

Businesses with fewer than 25 employees and less than $2 million in revenues that have been affected by COVID-19 can apply. Grant dollars are intended to assist with rent, utilities, payroll expenses and other necessary operating costs. For eligibility requirements, the application and more, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/smallbusinessgrant. Applications will be accepted until December 11, 2020, or until funds last.

For water utility assistance, please call the Surprise Resource Center HOPE line at 623-222-4673.

Possible APS Power Lines down Cactus or Peoria roads

APS is trying to run power lines through south Surprise. They need to connect the power lines that run along the west side of the 303 to the Microsoft facility on Dysart Road and Olive Avenue. Options include Cactus Road, Peoria Avenue, or Olive Avenue.

APS is in the early stages of a public siting process to determine routes for new 230kV power lines. The project structures/poles will be between 115-195 feet tall.

Here is a 90 second summary from the end of the council meeting on October 20thhttps://youtu.be/59x3wmk-yAs?t=5459

Public input for the West Valley Central 230kV Connection Project is now being accepted. Members of the public are invited to learn more about the project and to submit comments at www.apswestvalleycentral.com. Comments will be accepted until November 20, 2020.

City of Surprise Utility Payments Now Accepted at Walmart

City-serviced water, sewer, sanitation and stormwater payments can now be processed in the customer service center of any Walmart, nationwide. A $2.00 convenience fee will be charged by the retailer for this service. The City of Surprise does not provide utility service to every property in the city. To find out if the City is your utility provider, please visit surpriseaz.gov/mysurpriseaddress.

Dysart Student Broadcasting Live (DSB Live) to Air on Surprise TV

Replays of select Dysart Unified School District high school sporting events will begin airing on Surprise TV on Thursday and Saturday evenings. Games are replays that have been student-produced by DSB Live, a student-driven broadcasting program for students in grades 9-12 at Dysart’s four high schools (Dysart HS, Shadow Ridge HS, Valley Vista HS, and Willow Canyon HS). Students develop and run every aspect of the show including operating state-of-the-art cameras and TriCasters, creating commercials, being sound technicians, producers, graphic operators, on-field reporters, and color commentators during sports broadcasts.

To watch live, please visit the DSC Live website at Dysart.org/DSBlive. Replays can be watched online at surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv or on Cox Cable Channel 11 (Thursdays at 8 p.m. & Saturdays at 7 p.m.).

Roadwork in District 5

Pavement preservation has been postponed due to weather for the following roadways:

• Litchfield Road, Waddell Road to Greenway Road
• Litchfield Road, Greenway Road to Bell Road

For additional information on road closures and traffic restrictions please visit surpriseaz.gov/roadwork.

COVID-19 Update

COVID-19 cases have continued to increase throughout Surprise and Arizona over the last few weeks. New cases had declined in August and continued to do so in September, but began to rise in October and have continued to increase since then. Over the past month, people in the 20-44 year-old age group account for nearly 50% of the new cases.

As of November 12, there were 266,562 confirmed cases and 6,240 deaths in Arizona. According to the AZDHS data dashboard, the positivity rate is now at 10%. To put things in perspective for Surprise residents, the following zip codes have experienced the stated increases from last week: 85379 – 10%, 85374 – 7%, 85388 – 11% and 85387 – 13%.

For your information, statistics are updated daily at https://www.azdhs.gov/preparedness/epidemiology-disease-control/infectious-disease-epidemiology/covid-19/dashboards/index.php. Additionally, I plan to continue the updates through this outlet. Maricopa County and Surprise still have mask mandates in effect.

Meet and Greet Meetings

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on November 14 at 9 a.m. at Chef Peter’s Bistro, 17300 N Sun Village Pkwy. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Upcoming Council Conversation

On November 18, I will be taping a Council Conversation to discuss downtown development, as I know this is an issue that is so important to District 5. My guests are Economic Development Director Jeanine Jerkovic and Carefree Partners Vice President Scott Phillips. If you have a question you would like me to specifically ask on your behalf during this important discussion, please email me at jack.hastings@surpriseaz.gov. Tune in to Surprise TV at https://surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/, or follow me on Facebook at, www.facebook.com/councilmanhastings to view the recording when it becomes available!

Hastings sworn in as new District 5 Councilmember

Jack Hastings was officially sworn in as the new District 5 (D5) Councilmember today at Surprise City Hall.

Hastings won the D5 seat during the August Primary Election over David Sanders, the council-appointed incumbent. 

Sanders was appointed on January 4, 2019 with a term expiration of December 31, 2020. However, in light of a recent ruling by the Maricopa County Superior Court where, in another jurisdiction, the term of appointment of a city council vacancy was challenged, the Surprise City Council voted October 6 to amend its Municipal Code to align with the ruling. 

The amendment changed the oath of office date from January to the date of the General Election, or the canvass of the General Election, for a candidate who receives a majority vote in a primary, or the greater number of votes in the General Election, respectively, against an incumbent who was appointed to a vacancy that occurred more than thirty days before the nomination petition deadline.

Therefore, with the General Election occurring November 3, Hastings was officially sworn in today, rather than in January. There will be a ceremonial swearing-in for Councilmember Hastings at the November 17th Regular City Council Meeting.

The 2020 Primary Election also determined council representatives for Districts 2, 3 and 4. Incumbent Patrick Duffy won in District 3, and incumbent Ken Remley won in District 4. In District 2, current councilmember Nancy Hayden did not run for reelection, and Alyson “Aly” Cline won the seat in the Primary. The swearing in for the positions in Districts 2, 3 and 4 will take place in January 2021, as none of them are replacing appointed positions and their elected terms expire December 31, 2020.