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Councilmember Ken Remley October Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also follow me on Facebook @CouncilmemberRemley for weekly updates.

Surprise Day of Service

Show your community pride by participating in a day of community service on October 16 from 8 a.m. to noon. Volunteers will meet at 8 a.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N. Hollyhock St., before venturing out to various cleanup and beautification projects across the city. Projects will run until approximately noon. To volunteer, contact Larry Garcia at 623.222.1522 or larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov.

2050 MAG Regional Transportation Plan

Do you want a choice of safe and reliable options to get around the Valley of the Sun? From September 13 – October 13, Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) is asking for your input and review of the MOMENTUM 2050 Regional Transportation Plan, 2022-2025 Transportation Improvement Program, and 2021 MAG Conformity Analysis. More details here: azmag.gov/Newsroom/Public-Notices

Recognition at Ottawa Football Game

Ottawa University hosted its first home football game on Saturday, September 4. Ottawa wanted to spotlight its partnership with the City of Surprise during halftime by recognizing Mayor and Council, who support the partnership.

Surprise City Council receive recognition from Ottawa University.

Surprise Fiesta Grande

Our annual street festival is back! Join us for the 8th Annual Surprise Fiesta Grande to celebrate our city’s cultural heritage on Saturday, October 9 from 5 – 10 p.m. Admission and parking are free! Plus, we’ll have free shuttle drop-off to the area. Authentic Mexican food, classic car show, arts and crafts, music & live entertainment, and more! Please visit surpriseaz.gov/fiestagrande for more details.

Care & Share Expo

The 2nd Annual Care & Share Expo will be held on Saturday, November 13. This year’s all-ages event will be from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. at the Surprise City Hall 1st Floor Parking Garage, 16000 N. Civic Center Plz. Your participation or sponsorship will help the community connect to human service organizations, health resources and medical checks. This free event is a one-stop source for accessing programs and services that promote health, financial growth, and self-empowerment. Plus, there will be fun for the entire family! For more details, go to bit.ly/3yM9LGs

Surprise Fall League

Arizona Fall League logoThe month of October truly is for baseball, and with the start of the Arizona Fall League, the City of Surprise sets the stage for baseball’s future breakout stars. The Surprise Saguaros, one of six teams who compete in the Arizona Fall League, will begin their season Tuesday, October 14 at Surprise Stadium. The roster for the Surprise Saguaros will include the top prospects from the Kansas City Royals, Texas Rangers, Cincinnati Reds, New York Yankees and Washington Nationals. Click here for schedule and pricing bit.ly/2XOn0dj

Family Fun at G.A.I.N Night

Surprise Police Department badge.Surprise Public Safety officials invite you to attend the upcoming G.A.I.N. Night (Getting Arizona Involved in Neighborhoods). This free, interactive community event is Saturday, October 23, from 5 – 9 p.m. at Mark Coronado Park – 15960 N. Bullard Ave. There will be trick-or-treating, a gaming trailer and laser tag, live music, a Chick-Fil-A hot air balloon, public safety displays by Surprise Police and Fire-Medical, and so much more! Food and beverage will be available for purchase. For more information, please visit surpriseaz.gov/specialevents

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my next monthly Community Meeting on October 27 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Check the City website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is October 5 & 19 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance or you may tune in at surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page facebook.com/cityofsurprise or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley September Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also follow me on Facebook @CouncilmemberRemley for weekly updates.

Senior Center Update

The Surprise Senior Center began the next phase of reopening on August 9. The center is now open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday through Friday for member-led activities, special groups, clubs and self-led fitness in the gym without reservations.

All participants are required to fill out a new enrollment packet when returning to in-person programming. Facemasks are strongly recommended and social distancing is encouraged. High-touch areas will be cleaned and sanitized frequently throughout the day.

For information call 623-222-1500.

Dates, times and capacity requirements are subject to change without notice. At this time, there is no open recreation.

9/11 Remembrance Ceremony

The City of Surprise will be holding a ceremony at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, September 11, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. We will honor the victims, survivors and heroes of that day. Mayor Skip Hall, Fire-Medical Chief Tom Abbott and Police Chief Benny Piña will speak as part of the ceremony.

Surprise Fiesta Grande

Our Annual Street Festival is back! Join us for the 8th Annual Surprise Fiesta Grande to celebrate our city’s cultural heritage on Saturday, October 9 from 5 – 10 p.m. Admission and parking are free! Plus, we’ll have free shuttle drop-off to the area. Authentic Mexican food, classic car show, arts and crafts, music & live entertainment and more! Please visit surpriseaz.gov/fiestagrande for more details.

Sunday in the Park

Sunday in the Park returns to Mark Coronado Park this fall! Join us on September 19 from 3 – 7 p.m. for live music, various food trucks, an assortment of beer and wine, and family-friendly entertainment such as bounce houses, face painting, a trackless train and more! View event details: bit.ly/3sw1lBr.

Future dates for this event are October 17 and November 7.

Motorcycle Safety Class

Join the Surprise Police Department for a Motorcycle Safety Class on Sunday, September 19, from 8 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. in the Surprise Stadium parking lot, 15850 N. Bullard Ave. There will be time for participants to apply their learned skills on an interactive course, promoting optimal response to dangerous riding situations. This course is for current motorcycle riders. A valid driver’s license and motorcycle endorsement, motorcycle, and helmet are required to attend this class. This class is not for new riders to obtain an endorsement. For more information, please email DriveWise@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.4500.

2022 Spring Training Schedule

Major League Baseball has released the 2022 Cactus League Spring Training schedule in conjunction with the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers. Opening Day is set for Saturday, February 26 with the Texas Rangers taking on the Kansas City Royals at Surprise Stadium.

Additional information regarding the upcoming season, including game times, ticket details, specialty packages and fan health & safety guidelines, will be announced at a later date. If you are interested in ticket information, please visit SurpriseStadium.com and sign up for our email alerts.

Water Supply in Surprise is Secure

Surprise's Water Supply is Secure.The US Bureau of Reclamation has announced a Tier 1 shortage for Colorado River operations for 2022. This shortage declaration does not mean a shortage at your tap. But, it’s still very important to be wise consumers of this precious resource. Learn more about how Surprise is prepared and how you can help conserve: bit.ly/3k1DBBy

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my next monthly Community Meeting on September 22 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Check the City website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is September 7 & 21 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page a facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley August Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also follow me on Facebook @CouncilmemberRemley for weekly updates.

RideChoice Update

An elderly man and woman approach a Valley Metro van.Discounted transportation options are now available to more Surprise residents! Our Valley Metro RideChoice program has expanded to include veterans, and the FY2021 Income Limit Category has changed. People 65 and over and people with disabilities still automatically qualify for this program. Learn more here: https://bit.ly/3xVZjMR

National Digging Day

Grass is marked with red, yellow and orange utility markings.Have you ever wondered what the different colored markings on roads or in yards are? They’re a sign that a homeowner or contractor has put safety first and had utility lines identified before excavation. Utility lines that serve the community, such as natural gas, electricity, sewer, and water, can be buried anywhere. Striking a utility line not only poses a safety risk but can also cause an interruption of service to customers. The city of Surprise and Southwest Gas encourage homeowners and contractors to call 811 or visit call811.com/ at least two full working days before digging to request a utility line locate. Be safe…always know what’s below before digging!

Neighborhood Grant Program

Surprise City Council approved funding to support the Neighborhood Grant Program, providing eligible neighborhoods with small grants to fund neighborhood events, functions, or community improvements. Recognizing an opportunity to encourage community engagement and build strong relationships with communities in Surprise, the city designated $10,000 to support the grant program for FY22. For more information about the grant, visit surpriseaz.gov/NGP

Water Conservation Rebates

Water Resource Management water rebate thumbnail.Water conservation rebates are now available for eligible Surprise residents! City-serviced residential, commercial, and HOA customers can apply to receive rebates for irrigation controllers, xeriscape landscape, and turf removal. Funds are limited and are first-come, first-assisted! Don’t delay; save today! https://bit.ly/2U2kn5c

Ready, Set, Go!

Ready, Set, Go! Emergency evacuations infographic.Are you prepared to evacuate if necessary? It’s always a good time to be reminded of “Ready, Set, Go!” a program designed to help keep you safe from seasonal threats. Take some time to read about emergency preparedness and the 5 P’s of Evacuation. Learn more at https://ein.az.gov/ready-set-go

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my next monthly Community Meeting on August 25 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Check the city website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is August 17 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance, or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley July Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for weekly updates.

4th of July Celebration

38th annual 4th of July celebration flyerJoin us on Sunday, July 4, at 6 p.m. for the 38th Annual 4th of July Celebration at Mark Coronado Park. There will be food trucks, music, and a fireworks display at approximately 8:40 p.m. Admission is FREE with a canned food donation.

If you’re looking for a cooler way to celebrate, tickets are now on sale for the 4th of July Pool Party at the Surprise Aquatic Center. Space is limited! For more information or tickets, call 623-222-2500.

Roadwork

A new traffic signal is being installed at the intersection of Waddell Road and 145th Avenue. As a result, drivers can expect intermittent lane restrictions while signal preparation work occurs. The signals are tentatively scheduled to be fully operational by the end of August 2021.

Citizen Patrol

Surprise Citizen Patrol is a volunteer-based program consisting of 62 highly trained individuals who donate their time and skills to further the Police Department Mission. On June 19, 2021, I attended the Surprise Citizen Patrol Annual recognition dinner at Briarwood Country Club. This event recognizes the individual efforts of all the highly dedicated City of Surprise citizen patrol members and congratulates recipients with special awards. Thank you for all you do here in Surprise!

Maricopa County Public Health

Maricopa County is conducting a survey on the impacts of COVID-19. Your responses about your experience will help guide future funding for recovery efforts. Open to all residents 12+. Click the link to take the survey now through July 5: http://bit.ly/3i1sqti.

City Court Judges Reappointed

Presiding Judge Louis Frank Dominguez and Associate Judge Catherine A. Gaudreau

Congratulations to Surprise City court Presiding Judge Louis Frank Dominguez and Associate Judge Catherine A. Gaudreau. Council has reappointed them to new 4-year terms beginning July 1. Thanks to both judges for their continued service to the City of Surprise!

Surprise Sanitation Customers

Surprise sanitation customers will see a change on their city utility statement beginning July 1, 2021, as a rate increase determined by a structured schedule is implemented. Beginning July 1, single-family solid waste (trash) customers will pay a monthly base rate of $23.50. This is an increase of $0.10 per month. Please note that residential wastewater and water utility rates will remain unchanged.

FY 2022 Budget Approved

Fiscal Year 2022 budget thumbnailSurprise City Council approved the Fiscal Year 2022 City Budget. The budget is focused on maintaining our current level of service as the city continues to see steady growth and focuses on the Council’s commitment to maintaining quality public services and infrastructure. This budget includes 25.5 full-time positions in the General Fund and eight new employees in water, sewer, sanitation, and sports and tourism to address the city’s growth. Also included in the budget are operational costs for new capital projects such as Countryside Park and Fire Station 308; and services such as the Maricopa County Library contract. Additionally, the adopted budget includes $121.5 million for planned Capital Improvement Projects. Details and information on the City’s budget are always available on our website at surpriseaz.gov/budget.

Heat Relief Stations in Surprise

The City of Surprise is a Heat Relief Network partner. The city provides hydration and refuge stations for those in need of a place to cool off during Arizona’s hot summer months. Listed below are the City of Surprise Heat relief stations:

  • Surprise Resource Center – Refuge & hydration: 12425 W. Bell Rd., Building A, Suite 124
  • Surprise Fire-Medical Station #301 – Hydration: 16750 N. Village Dr. East
  • The Salvation Army – Refuge & hydration: 17420 N. Avenue of the Arts Blvd.

You can help those in need of relief by donating water bottles, sunscreen, sunglasses, and hats at either the Surprise Resource Center or Surprise Fire Medical Station #301.

Please also remember, Hot Cars Can Kill! The Surprise Police want to remind you to:

  1. Never leave a child alone in a car
  2. Check for kids, pets, and vulnerable persons before you lock your vehicle
  3. Call 911 if you see a child alone in a vehicle

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my next monthly Community Meeting on August 25 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Please note, there will be no Community Meeting in July. Check the city website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is August 17 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance, or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley June Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for weekly updates.

Senior Center Phased Re-opening!

The City of Surprise is re-opening programs at the Senior Center in a phased approach, with limited front desk access and exercise classes available now. The Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St., is a hub for connection and activities for those age 50+ and adults with disabilities.

All Senior Center participants will be required to fill out a new enrollment packet when returning to in-person participation. Enrollment packets are available at the Senior Center during the hours listed online at surpriseaz.gov/seniorcenter. Completed packets should be dropped off at the Senior Center. Membership is $12 per year for Surprise residents and $15 for non-residents. Fees are due with membership forms.

The Senior Center meal program has also returned to in-person sit-down meals. Call 623.222.1500 two days in advance to reserve your spot. A home-delivered meal option is available through Banner Olive Branch if you cannot participate in the in-person program. To see if you qualify, please call 602.264.4357.

Facemasks are encouraged but not required. Dates, capacity requirements, and times are subject to change without notice.

Gaines Park Dedication Ceremony

A dedication ceremony was held on May 15 to celebrate the completion of Floyd Gaines Park. The park, located at 16001 N. Nash St., in the city’s Original Town Site, includes a lighted youth ball field, netting, fencing, restrooms, and a lighted and paved parking lot. Floyd Gaines was a pioneer in our community and an avid champion of its youth and parks and recreation services. I was honored to speak at this event and am so proud to have this park as a part of our community.

Hollyhock Pool Now Open!

Come and cool off at the Hollyhock pool during open swim hours every day from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.! Open swim fees for residents are $2 for youth (6 months-17 years) and $3 for adults. All non-residents are $5. Swim lessons are also available. For more information, contact Parks and Recreation at 623.222.2000.

Veterans’ Services

The Vetlink Foundation is offering a monthly Coffee for Vets event on the last Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the City of Surprise AZ TechCelerator located at 12425 W. Bell Rd. Come enjoy free coffee and bagels and build connections with other veterans. Each event will have a guest speaker who will discuss a veteran-related topic. RSVP by calling 623.303.4355.

Rent and Utility Assistance

The Surprise and El Mirage Community Action Program (CAP) has a new online portal to apply for rental and utility assistance. Please visit http://hsdclientportal.maricopa.gov/ to complete a pre-screening assessment. Those needing assistance with the online process can call 623.222.4673. Eligibility restrictions apply. surpriseaz.gov/3549/Community-Action-Program-CAP.

Free Showers

Free showers every 2nd & 4th Tuesday of each month at the Salvation Army in Surprise between 10–2 p.m. at 17420 N. Ave of the Arts. Food, medical care, haircutting, and pet care resources are also available. Made possible by Church of the Palms, Salvation Army, and the City of Surprise. Call 623.222.1600 for more information.

We Care Program

We Care is an automated system designed to call a senior or homebound person once a day to check on their welfare. If the daily call is not answered, an automatic alert is sent, and personnel from Surprise Police or Citizens Patrol will be sent to the home to check on the individual. If you or someone you know could benefit from this program, you can submit an online application at surpriseaz.gov/wecare and the Surprise Citizen Patrol will contact you to schedule a required home visit and interview.

Prescription Drop-off Box

The City of Surprise Police Department has a prescription drug collection bin in its lobby for easy disposal of unwanted drugs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The focus of this program is to provide a safe location for individuals to dispose of unwanted, unused, or expired medications and ultimately reduce the likelihood of these medications falling into the hands of children and teens. Visit the link below for more information: surpriseaz.gov/3359/RX-Drug-Drop-off.

Vial of Life

Please stop by our Surprise Fire Medical Administration office, located at 14250 W. Statler Plz., Suite 101, where you can pick up a Vial of Life. The Vial of Life contains a medical emergency information form that should be filled out, put back in the vial, and stored in your refrigerator for safekeeping. A sticker also comes in the vial that can be placed on your refrigerator to alert first responders that you have this information available. The vial of life is designed to provide important medical and emergency information to first responders when you cannot. While you are there, you can also pick up a Pet Finder window sticker that alerts first responders to the pets in your home.

Water Wise

Water Resource Management logoYou may have heard talk in the news media recently about the Colorado River and a potential shortage declaration. The Western United States, including Arizona and the Phoenix metropolitan area, has been experiencing a drought for more than 20 years, with an official drought declaration in June 1999. Drought is a normal occurrence in the southwest desert. However, as the drought in the Colorado River Basin continues to extend, the Lower Basin states of Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Nevada along with Mexico may face reductions in their Colorado River water deliveries through a “Tier 1” declaration by the Bureau of Reclamation.

What does this mean for Surprise water customers? A Tier 1 shortage declaration will not affect Surprise’s water allocation or its deliveries to customers. Although there will be no immediate impact on municipal water supplies, Surprise remains committed to water resource management and water conservation measures. Shortage on the Colorado River does not mean shortage for Surprise’s customers at the tap. Being efficient with water has been part of our long-term water management strategy, and our water conservation program provides resources to assist customers.

Furthermore, Surprise is not directly delivering its Colorado River allocation. Instead, we use our Central Arizona Project (CAP) water allocation to recharge the aquifer, storing water for future groundwater pumping. As always, water users must follow water-efficient practices to protect our precious resources. Find out more information about drought and how it affects Surprise water customers on our Drought Resiliency and Preparedness website: surpriseaz.gov/droughtmgmt.

Retail Survey Results

The City of Surprise launched its annual Surprise Retail Survey on April 5, and more than 5,100 responses later, we have the results!

The city uses the survey data to identify the city’s retail strengths and opportunities to bring additional amenities closer to home. In the past, the survey has helped bring in establishments like In-N-Out Burger, Texas Roadhouse, Oregano’s Pizza Bistro, and Costco!

Select survey insights are listed below, with full results available at surpriseaz.gov/retailsurvey.

2021 Surprise Retail Survey results summary

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my monthly Community Meeting on May 26 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Please note there will be no Community Meeting in July. Check the city website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is June 15 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance, or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley May Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for weekly updates.

New West Valley Veteran Hub

Flag thumbnailVeterans, service members, and their families now have a new place to access resources, support, and assistance in the West Valley. The City of Surprise is proud to offer the West Valley Military and Veteran Success Center a new home within the Surprise Resource Center at the AZ TechCelerator Campus, located at 12425 W. Bell Rd., Suite 124. The center includes various military and veteran support services and resources, made possible by the generous support of partner organizations and all West Valley cities. For more information on the West Valley Military and Veteran Success Center, call 623.222.1658 or visit the City of Surprise website at surpriseaz.gov/veterans.

Senior Center Exercise Programs Re-Opening!

Fitness classes operated by the Surprise Senior Services Team have re-opened! To register, please call 623.222.1500. In addition, the drive-thru meal program is still available with advance registration.

Surprise Fire Department Lock Box Program

Surprise Fire-Medical offers a Lock Box Program to allow first responders quick and safe access into your home during an emergency. In an emergency, the fire department can use its unique key to open the lock box and access your house key to gain entry into your home. Having a lockbox can add precious lifesaving minutes during an emergency and also saves on property damage. For more information, visit surpriseaz.gov/1656/Lock-Box-Program, or call 623.222.5000.

Surprise Library Access

The Maricopa County Library District is moving into the next phase of re-opening at all county-run libraries. Customers can stop by the library during Pop-In Pick-Up hours to browse every shelf and all selections, rather than a limited collection. Hollyhock Library, located at 15844 N. Hollyhock St., has Pop-In Pick-Up hours Monday – Thursday, 1 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; and Saturday, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. The library is closed on Sunday. For more information, please visit mcldaz.org/locations/northwest/.

State of the City Video

State of the City thumbnailThe 2021 State of the City video premiered on April 13. Please take a few moments to view it if you have not had the opportunity. This video captures how our strength, effort, and strategic planning place the city’s trajectory toward future success. Watch the video here: surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov. The video will also replay on the Cox 11 cable channel at select times. To view a schedule, please visit surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/schedule.

Fiscal Year 2022 Recommended Budget

City of Surprise proposes a budget focused on maintaining current service levels as the city continues to grow. The budget continues to focus on Council’s commitment to maintaining quality public services and infrastructure. A public hearing and tentative Budget adoption is scheduled for the May 4 Regular City Council Meeting, with final budget adoption planned for the June 1 meeting.

The Property Tax Rate in Surprise

A slide showing a summary of primary property taxes.We’ve been receiving some questions about the City of Surprise tax rate. It has not increased. The primary tax rate in the City of Surprise is $0.7591 per $100 of assessed property value, plus the secondary property tax rate (from the voter-approved 2017 GO Bond) of $0.3880 per $100 of assessed property value. These rates multiplied by the assessed value of your home determine what you pay in property taxes. If the value of your home increases, you will see an increased tax bill; however, that is not due to an increase in the property tax rate but rather an increase in the assessed value of your home.

Schedule of Existing Primary and Secondary Property Tax

   Current Rate  Current Levy  Proposed Rate  Proposed Levy  
 Property Tax          
 Primary Property Tax Rate $0.7591 $9,135,500 $0.7591 $9,974,200 Per $100 assessed value
 Secondary Property Tax Rate $0.3880 $4,669,500 $0.3880 $5,098,200 Per $100 assessed value

Passport Services are Back

U.S. PassportsPassport services are back at Surprise City Hall by appointment only. Regular business hours for passports will be Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the City Clerk’s Office, temporarily located in Development Services. Applications for first-time passport books and passport cards are accepted and they can also help review paperwork for renewals. They do not offer passport photos, so be sure to have your pictures with you at your appointment. To make an appointment, or for questions, please visit surpriseaz.gov/passport or call the City Clerk’s Office at 623.222.1200.

Surprise Covid-19 Vaccination Numbers

The Arizona Department of Health Services reported the overall number of Surprise COVID-19 cases at 13,585 on April 15. Through that day, 45,330 Surprise area residents received at least one vaccine shot. Below are the number of vaccination totals for ZIP codes in Surprise as of April 15.
85374 – 20,841
85379 – 13,001
85388 – 8,398
85378 – 3,090

Benevilla Community Baby-Shower

Monday, May 10, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., Benevilla & Friends will be hosting a drive-thru baby shower for expecting moms and moms with infants up to 6 months old. Mothers can drive-thru and pick-up at Arizona Charter Academy parking lot located at 16025 N. Dysart Rd. Donations will also be accepted during this event!

#6 Safest City

Surprise is ranked the #6 safest city in Arizona, according to a new SafeWise report. Congrats to our community on this accomplishment & a big thank you to Surprise PD for helping to keep us safe! Here is a list of Arizona’s 10 Safest Cities: safewise.com/blog/safest-cities-arizona/.

Free AZ Small Business Association Membership!

Economic Development Department thumbnailIn recognition of the continued small business recovery process resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Surprise Economic Development Department is teaming up with the Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) to offer Surprise small businesses a free year of ASBA membership now through May 10! To sign up, please visit asba.com/surprise. Please also see the City of Surprise Economic Development webpage to learn about many other resources available for Surprise businesses!

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my monthly Community Meeting on May 26 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock St. Masks are recommended, and social distancing will be in place. Please check the city website at surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Please call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

City Council Meetings

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting is May 18 at 6 p.m. in the City of Surprise Council Chambers, located at 16000 N. Civic Center Dr. City Council meetings are now open to in-person attendance, or you may tune in on surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or on Cox channel 11 to watch the meeting live.

Councilmember Ken Remley April Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for weekly updates.

State of the City Video Premiere

Surprise Arizona State of the City thumbnail.The 2021 State of the City Video Premiere is scheduled for April 13 at 6 p.m.! Please tune in as we reflect on our community’s resilience and look forward to what’s on the horizon. To view live, please visit surpriseaz.gov/SurpriseTV.

Fiscal Year 2022 Budget Retreat

Surprise City Council will hold a Budget Retreat on Friday, April 16, in City Council Chambers at 9 a.m. The retreat will be open to public attendance and will also be televised for viewing. It will be live on surpriseaz.gov/surpriseTV, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise, and Cox channel 11.

Gaines Park Ballfield Update

The park continues to take shape! Irrigation has been installed, along with concrete flat work at the restroom, fence installation, which included the dugouts and backstop, and the bases for the field light poles have been set.

Covid-19 Vaccination Information

If you are having technical difficulty creating a login/password or other issues using the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) Vaccine Registration/Scheduling system, please call 602-542-1000 M-F 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. or email azvaccinesupport@azdhs.gov. If you do not have access to a computer and need help setting an appointment by phone, ADHS has established a call center to assist. Call 1-844-542-8201 and press Option #8 to be connected to a navigator. This service is also available M-F 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. For additional information, please visit ADHS – Covid-19 Vaccine Registration.

Property Maintenance Ordinance

The city of Surprise is requesting public comment on the draft Property Maintenance Ordinance (PMO) that was presented to Council. The PMO is the guiding document that establishes minimum standards for all property, residential and commercial building maintenance throughout the city. The goal of the PMO is to keep the city safe, healthy and blight-free. Meetings have been scheduled to encourage residents and business owners to learn more about the ordinance and ask questions. The next public meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 13. Attend in person in the Surprise City Hall Community Room or online. Links to the virtual public meetings are available online at Property Maintenance Ordinance. The webpage also includes the option to submit a comment on the draft ordinance.

Surprise Recreation Campus Hall of Fame

Surprise Recreation Campus Hall of Fame thumbnail.The City of Surprise Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission has voted to induct Charley Pride and Buck O’Neil into the Surprise Recreation Campus Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame was established to honor those who have contributed significantly to the Surprise Recreation Campus.

Other 2021 Hall of Fame inductees include: Gold Glove winners Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Joey Gallo of the Texas Rangers; and Alex Gordon of the Kansas City Royals.

Surprise Day of Service

Show your community pride by participating in the 4th Annual “Bean Bag Day” event Saturday, April 24th.

Volunteers fill bags of beans.Participants can help bag bulk pinto beans into individual packaging for ease of distribution through the Valley View Community Food Bank to those in need.

For more information or to volunteer, please contact Larry Garcia at larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1522.

Opening Soon!

B&B Appliances is on track to open next month at the former Luby’s location on Bell Road, east of RH Johnson Blvd. B&B Appliances is a local family-owned appliance retailer that sells “mis-ordered”, scratched and dented appliances as well as brand new ones.

City Hall & City Council Meetings Reopening

Surprise City Hall, all admin buildings (except the Sr. Center) and all public meetings are reopening to in-person attendance beginning April 12. The reopening comes as Governor Ducey announced that Arizona has hit several important public health benchmarks. The Governor also called for any remaining local government mask mandates to be phased out. As a result, Mayor Skip Hall has signed a proclamation terminating the face covering mandate in Surprise. Get the details here: https://bit.ly/3sqqUTT

District 4 Community Meeting

Please join me for my monthly Community Meeting on April 28 at 6 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, located at 15832 N. Hollyhock Street. Masks are recommended, and social distancing will be in place. Please check the city website at www.surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Please call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

Councilmember Ken Remley March Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for weekly updates.

Flying Pig Embroidery Ribbon Cutting

On February 22, Mayor Hall and I attended a one-year anniversary ribbon cutting for Flying Pig Embroidery, located at 13059 W. Grand Ave, Suite 9. Please feel free to drop in and say hi. They have reasonable pricing. Congratulations to them on their anniversary!

A New Leaf West Valley VITA Program

The City of Surprise has partnered again with A New Leaf who facilitates the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program, which provides free tax preparation assistance. The program will be available until April 15 at the Surprise Resource Center and April 14 at Riverboat Bingo. To make an appointment, call the Surprise Resource Center at 623-222-1600. For additional information, visit www.turnanewleaf.org/services/financial-empowerment.

A listing of the Surprise Resource Center hours.
Click to view larger image

Greenway Road Improvement Project

Utility work for the Greenway Road Improvement Project will require a hard closure of Greenway Road between Legacy Park Boulevard and Northwest Ranch Parkway beginning 5 a.m. Saturday, February 27 to 5 a.m. Sunday, March 14. This project will finish the south half of Greenway Road (approximately Cotton Lane to Sarival Avenue), adding two travel lanes and eliminating areas where multiple lanes merged into one lane. The Greenway Road improvement project is part of the 2017 voter-approved GO Bond-funded projects. For further details, please read the Greenway Road Closure press release.

Rent and Utility Assistance Funds

Rent and utility assistance is available for income-qualified El Mirage and Surprise residents. For more information, please call the City of Surprise HOPE line at 623-222-4673. Please note that Maricopa County is in the process of implementing a new online portal for this assistance, and applications will be limited until the portal is ready, which is expected by March 17.

Pavement Preservation Project

Residents in the Original Town Site will be affected by asphalt seal coating happening March 15-18, 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. View the map below.

A color coded construction area map.

2021 Spring Training

Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals Spring Training has begun! MLB has approved the City’s capacity and COVID mitigation plan, which includes social distancing, seating pods, limited capacity of about 25%, and increased safety and sanitization protocols. For ticket information and schedules, please visit www.surprisestadium.com

Spring Break Camp registration

Spring Break Camp thumbnailSpring Break is approaching fast! The City of Surprise Parks and Recreation Department is offering Spring Break Camp for youth in kindergarten- 6th grade. Camp is held March 15-19, 2021, from 6:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m. at the Sierra Montana Recreation Center, located at 14861 N. Spring Lane. On-site activities will include arts & crafts, games, sports, and more! To register, download a packet at surpriseaz.gov/recreation and then call the Parks and Recreation office at 623.222.2000 to schedule a time to register your child. For more information, please contact Michelle Yingling at 623.222.2233 or by email at michelle.yingling@surpriseaz.gov.

Surprise Day of Service

Thinking of volunteering? Why not consider volunteering at the upcoming Surprise Day of Service on March 20 at 8 a.m. We’ll be completing service projects throughout the city. To register, please contact Larry Garcia at larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.1522.

Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event

The City of Surprise offers Household Hazardous Waste Collection events to help protect the environment by properly disposing of items that may contain harmful chemicals. To participate in the program, you will need to schedule an appointment to have acceptable items picked up from your home. Request an appointment March 15 – 26 through the My Surprise app, or call Customer Service at 623.222.1920.

Community Resource Guide

The front cover of the Surprise Community Resource Guide.The City of Surprise has many resources available for those in need. For a complete listing of social services available throughout the City of Surprise, please check out our online Community Resource Guide, or stop by the Surprise Resource Center to pick up a hard copy.

National Community Survey

What do you love about living in Surprise? Soon, you can share your thoughts in the National Community Survey (NCS). In February, a paper survey was mailed to 2,700 randomly-selected Surprise households for the first phase of data collection. If you did not receive a paper survey, an online version will open for the entire City to participate in mid-March. This survey will allow residents to tell us what services they value the most and what the City can do to improve the quality of life in our hometown. The survey will also help us identify priority projects and indicate where limited city funding could be best spent to provide the services our residents desire most. Details will be provided on our website at www.surpriseaz.gov when they become available. For more information: 2021 National Community Survey.

Does your child need help with their school work?

Dysart Community Center has partnered with ASU’s USL program to have tutors available to meet with your child virtually. Children ages 6 to 18 are eligible for this program. If interested, please contact the DCC Youth Program Director at 623-249-3812.

Surprise Senior Center Hot Lunch Program

Seniors can get a free hot lunch through our Surprise Senior Center! Call 623-222-1500 two days in advance to order a meal for pick up M-F at noon.

Benevilla HOME Services Program

During COVID-19, local nonprofit Benevilla is offering free programs for seniors like grocery shopping assistance, emergency errands and phone pals. For more information, please call 623-584-4999 or visit https://benevilla.org/free-home-care-services.

Budget Update

The City kicked off its Fiscal Year 2022 budget-building process at the February 2 City Council Meeting. At the February 16 Council Work Session, Council received an overview on Budget Revenues. One area of this revenue pie chart that is often talked about is property tax. The City of Surprise has a Primary Property tax rate of $0.7591 (per $100 Assessed LPV), which is a tax levy used for general government operations and a Secondary Property Tax rate of $0.3880, which is a voter-approved tax levy limited to pay for General Obligation (GO) bonds. It is also important to note that the majority of the primary property tax rate that is collected by the County and goes to entities other than the City of Surprise. Only 11.2% of the property tax you pay goes directly to the City of Surprise. Below is a graphic that represents the property tax distribution.

A slide showing a dollar bill broken down into sections that represent property tax distribution.

Future Council Work Sessions and Regular Meetings will include presentations related to expenses and department operation budget development. The Recommended Budget is scheduled for release in April, followed by Council and public review. The final budget adoption is scheduled for June 1. Fiscal Year 2022 begins July 1, 2021.

District 4 Community Meeting

My monthly Community Meetings are typically held on the fourth Wednesday of the month from 6 – 7:30 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N Hollyhock Street. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are currently unable to conduct these meetings, but I look forward to meeting again when we are able. Please check the city website at www.surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Please call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

Councilmember Ken Remley February Newsletter

Thank you for signing up to receive my notifications and monthly newsletters. I hope that you find this newsletter informative, and know that I am always available for any questions or concerns via email at ken.remley@surpriseaz.gov. You can also find me on Facebook for regular updates.

Gaines Youth Baseball Field Fully Funded

The City of Surprise has experienced better-than-expected one-time revenues in Fiscal Year 2020 thanks to strong growth in housing permits and retail sales collections. As a result, Council voted to fund more than $8 million in park-related projects that will advance the City’s Parks and Recreation Master Plan goals. Gaines Youth Baseball Field will now be fully funded ahead of the original timeline! The project, which includes a lighted youth ballfield, restrooms, lighted and paved parking lot, netting, and fencing, is anticipated to be completed this summer! Also funded is a new eight-acre park at Greenway Road and Parkview Place that will provide additional programmable and rental field space, and a $3 million dollar budget to provide enhancements to the Surprise Community Park. Enhancements could include adding a restroom, improving dog park drainage, and exploring new lighting; however, the final project list will be determined following the design and submittal of actual costs.

Senior Center Activities

Valentine’s Day Canvas Decorating is scheduled for February 12 at 9 a.m. During this virtual event, participants will create a love-inspired canvas using everyday household items. To reserve your canvas, please call 623.222.1500.

America’s Pastime Spring Training Party takes place on March 3! Members can pick up a bag of baseball surprises and then join the virtual party at 1 p.m. To participate, please call 623.222.1500.

Surprise Day of Service

If you are looking for a way to give back to your community, please consider volunteering for the Surprise Day of Service on February 20, from 8 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at St. Mary’s Food Bank, located at 13050 W. Elm Street. To volunteer, please call 623.222.1522.

“Keep it Beautiful, Surprise!”

The City of Surprise has launched a campaign encouraging residents to “Keep it Beautiful, Surprise!” This anti-litter campaign reaffirms that the City of Surprise takes pride in being a safe, clean and attractive city, where residents and businesses can thrive and visitors are impressed. Please check out surpriseaz.gov/KeepItBeautiful for videos and information on how you can help!

Home Beautification Award

I am proud of our residents and their work to keep Surprise a clean and safe community. My Home Beautification Awards are a way for me to thank you and recognize the hard work and pride you have put into your home. This year, I will be continuing the program by awarding homeowners with a “Home Beautification Award” and an A-frame sign to display in front of their home. Be on the lookout for winners!

Holiday Trash Collection Schedule

Please note that Presidents’ Day is Monday, February 15, and city-serviced sanitation customers will have their trash pick-up postponed by one day.

Spring Training 2021

Spring Training returns to Surprise on February 27! The Texas Rangers will take on the Kansas City Royals at 1:05 p.m. to kick-off the season. A complete schedule of games can be found at SurpriseStadium.com.

Surprise Stadium is working hard to develop protocols to protect the health and safety of fans. Ticket details and safety precautions are developing and more information will be coming as we get closer to the start of the season. Due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, Spring Training schedules and start dates are subject to change. For questions and updated information, please visit SurpriseStadium.com, or call 623.222.2222.

Surprise City Academy

The Surprise City Academy is going virtual this year! Residents, students and business owners can learn about the City directly from the Mayor, Councilmembers, City Manager and upper-level city staff. The Academy begins on February 22 and is free to attend. Classes will meet via WebEx from 6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m on Mondays through April 26. Registration is required. To register, please visit surpriseaz.gov/cityacademy, or call Lord Garcillano at 623.222.1647.

Social Service Resources

Salvation Army – FREE breakfast drive-thru Mondays and Thursdays. 8-9:30 a.m. Seniors or those who are food insecure. Food boxes are available. 17420 Ave of the Arts, Surprise. 623-977-1084.

Dysart Community Center– FREE Food Drive-thru. Monday-Friday, 3-5 p.m. 14414 N. El Mirage Rd, El Mirage. 623-249-3812.

Hope Women’s Center – Support for women & children, bill/utility assistance. 623-875-4549.

Radiant Distribution Center – FREE food and clothing Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9-11 a.m. at Radiant Church Sun City 10701 W. Boswell Blvd., Sun City. 623-975-2662.

St. Mary’s Food Bank Surprise – 13050 W. Elm St. 602-343-5631.

Valley View Food Bank – 10771 W. Peoria Ave, Sun City. 623-933-3358.

Mortgage Assistance for Surprise Residents – Surprise CARES Housing Stability Program. www.surpriseaz.gov/housing

Surprise Senior Center Hot Lunch Program – FREE. Call 623-222-1500 two days in advance to order a meal for pickup Monday-Friday at noon.

Society of St. Vincent de Paul – Food, Rent, Utilities & More. St. Clare of Assisi Conference (Surprise residents). Call Help Line at 623-975-5617. Our Lady of Lourdes Conference (Surprise & El Mirage residents). Call 623-344-7267.

Housing for Heroes Program – Supportive Services for Veteran Families – The National Community Health Partners are offering temporary assistance to Veteran families to help with rent, utilities, security deposits, moving costs, and child care. Call the Maricopa County Veteran Service Office at 480-361-0177.

Phone Pals Program for Seniors with Benevilla – Phone Pal volunteers provide wellness checks and meaningful relationships to community members who may find themselves alone. For information on how to sign up to receive calls, or to volunteer, please call 623-584-4999 or visit www.Benevilla.org

AZ Humane Society Resources for Pet Owners – A program for struggling pet owners. A trained social worker can help pet parents navigate resources to help keep pets in their homes. Call 602-997-7585 ext. 3800 or email resourcenavigator@azhuman.org.

Council Meeting Schedule

The next regularly scheduled Council Meeting is February 16 at 6 p.m. In an effort to protect public health amidst rising COVID-19 case numbers, City of Surprise public meetings have reclosed to in-person public attendance until further notice. Council meetings are broadcast live on Surprise TV at https://surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/ and carried on Cox channel 11. Check the agenda, when posted, for instructions on public comment.

District 4 Community Meeting

My monthly Community Meetings are typically held on the fourth Wednesday of the month from 6 – 7:30 p.m. at the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N. Hollyhock Street. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are currently unable to conduct these meetings, but I look forward to meeting again when we are able. Please check the city website at www.surpriseaz.gov for updated information on my meet and greet schedule. Please call or email me in the meantime with any questions or concerns you may have.

Mayor and Councilmembers in Districts 2, 3 & 4 sworn in

The first Regular City Council Meeting of the New Year included the swearing-in ceremonies for mayor and three councilmembers. 

Skip Hall was sworn in as Mayor after winning the seat in the August Primary Election. He previously served as Mayor by appointment, following a mayoral resignation in November 2018. 

Newly elected Councilmember Aly Cline was sworn in as District 2 Councilmember.

Re-elected Councilmember Patrick Duffy was sworn into office to serve District 3.  

Re-elected Councilmember Ken Remley took the oath of office to serve District 4.

Each elected official was sworn in to a four-year term. 

District 5 Councilmember Jack Hastings was sworn into office in November, per state law, after defeating an appointed councilmember for that district in the August Primary Election. He will serve a two-year term.

For more information about each of the councilmembers, please visit their websites: 

https://mayor.surpriseaz.gov
https://d2.surpriseaz.gov
https://d3.surpriseaz.gov
https://d4.surpriseaz.gov
https://d5.surpriseaz.gov

Council will select a Vice Mayor at the next regular Council meeting, scheduled for January 19 at 6 p.m. City Council meetings are televised on Surprise TV and streamed live on the internet at www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv.