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Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference
The City of Surprise was well represented in Tucson for the League of Cities & Towns Conference. Elected officials statewide mingled and discussed topics that relate to all cities. I was able to meet with representatives from COX, APS, CAP and Swire Coca-Cola as well as attend several conferences that included topics of homelessness, changes in the future of recycling, public safety, retirement system updates and future plans.
Advanced Meter Infrastructure Replacement Project (AMI)
The City of Surprise will replace approximately 16,000 residential, commercial and irrigation mechanical water meters with new automated meters. The new water meters will allow customers to monitor their water usage in real time, allowing them to set usage alerts and detect possible leaks. The $5.474 million AMI project is funded entirely by the city’s water fund. Customers will not see a charge for the meter or installation nor will they see an increase of water rates. Customers will be notified via postcard mailer if they will be receiving a new meter. For more information please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/watermeter.
The City of Surprise is facing many struggles and obstacles in maintaining its recycling program due to soaring operational costs. The city began curbside recycling in 2004 and the revenue generated by the recyclables helped to offset the cost of providing the service. However, since December 2017, the city has incurred growing expenses to the program which can no longer be absorbed. As city staff research to find a cost-effective solution, they encourage all residents to continue positive recycling behaviors. It is also important to remember that only bagged trash may be placed in the black containers. If you wish to place recyclable materials in the black container, please ensure they are bagged properly.
Surprise HOA Academy
The City of Surprise has opened registration for the 2019 HOA Academy. This five week academy strives to provide expert information for HOA residents, board members and managers. Residents who would like to learn more about living in an HOA community, serving on an HOA board or who just want more information on the laws surrounding HOAs, are encouraged to attend.
Classes are held on Wednesdays from 6:00-8:30 p.m. beginning October 16 at the Public Safety Building Auditorium, located at 14250 W. Statler Plaza. For more information on this academy, the online registration form and the complete list of class dates, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/HOAacademy.
2019 Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP)
The City of Surprise placed twenty-five interns in departments all over the city for six weeks this summer. During this time, they worked 20 hours per week and learned about public service careers. The interns learned skills and etiquette from their supervisors as well as received training from the Surprise Youth Services team. We are proud of your participation and thank you for your hard work!
Breakfast with Congresswoman Debbie Lesko
The Chamber of Commerce hosted a meeting with speakers that included Congresswoman Debbie Lesko, Ottawa University President Dr. Dennis Tyner and Dysart Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Quinn Kellis. The topic of discussion was Education: New Direction and New Opportunities. Thank you for the continued focus on Arizona’s education system.
Arts HQ Gallery
The West Valley Arts Council has just opened their newest photography exhibit, Painting with Light. The exhibit will run until October 4. Don’t miss this opportunity to view the latest art in Surprise.
Community Dog Park
The City of Surprise Community Dog Park will be closed from September 9 until October 7 for annual maintenance. This closure will affect both the large and small dog parks. Residents are urged to utilize the Dick McComb Dog Park located at 17894 W. Westpark Blvd.
The city is offering a free Estate Planning class, taught by Ted Meyer with Coventry Financial Group, which will cover several topics of interest. There will also be time set aside for questions and answers with an estate planning attorney. This class is offered September 12 and 26 from 10:00-11:30 a.m. in the Council Overflow Room at City Hall. For more information or to register, please contact Ruby Sitea at 623-222-3242.
I was honored to interview Police Chief Terry Young and Fire Chief Tom Abbott regarding overall public safety updates. This taping is currently running on Surprise TV via local cable providers and online at https://surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/index.php/watch?v=4Q3jnjk5sOg. Thank you to our police and fire departments for their daily efforts to ensure the protection of our residents.
Hazardous Household Waste Collection
The City of Surprise will continue the scheduled appointment format to make Household Hazardous Waste Collection events more convenient for residents. Pickups will occur from September 30 until October 11. To scheduled your appointment, please call 623-222-1920 beginning September 9.
Care & Share Expo
The Veteran, Disability & Human Service Commission is pleased to announce the first Care & Share Expo scheduled on Saturday, October 5. This is a free community event creating connections to human service organizations, as well as disability, veteran and health resources. It’s a one stop source for accessing programs and services that promote health, financial growth and self-empowerment. There will also be fun events for the entire family. For more information please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/careshareexpo.
Day of Service
The City is seeking over 200 volunteers to participate in the Fall Day of Service on Saturday, October 19. This event helps to promote community pride and engagement. There will be several indoor and outdoor service projects, including painting, sorting, yard work and more.
Following the community service project completion, an island party will be held with a BBQ, live music, games and fun!
For more information or to register, please email Ervin.Cutwright@surpriseaz.gov. Groups of 10 or more must RSVP with a group name.
Veterans Day Parade
The City of Surprise is now accepting parade entries from clubs, organizations, groups and residents who want to show their patriotic spirit and honor those who bravely served our country. The parade will be held on Monday, November 11. Entry forms are available online at www.surpriseaz.gov/specialevents or at the Parks and Recreation Office, 15960 N. Bullard Avenue. Entries are due by October 27.
City Council Meetings
As a friendly reminder, City Council Meetings will be held on Thursday, September 5 and Tuesday, September 17 this month. City Council Work sessions begin at 4:00 p.m. while City Council Meetings follow at 6:00 p.m. We hope to see you there.
Did You Know?
The City of Surprise is considering Major Amendments to its General Plan 2035 in relation to transportation and growth. The public has until October 7 to review the proposed amendments and comment online by visiting www.surpriseaz.gov/GeneralPlan. Comments may also be mailed to City of Surprise Community Development Services, c/o Joshua Mike, 16000 N. Civic Center Plaza Surprise, AZ 85374.