Category Archives: Newsletter

Councilmember Chris Judd’s Newsletter • June 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623.222.1326.

Arbor Day Tree Donation

Thank you to the Surprise Rotary Club for donating funding for a new tree at Dick McComb Park near the splash pad. Our contractors planted the tree on Arbor Day, April 29. As a thank-you, the City of Surprise presented a plaque to the Rotary Club.

Surprise City Council presents an arbor day plaque to the Surprise Rotary Club.

City Pools Now Open

Surprise Aquatic Center and Hollyhock Community Pool are now open for limited-capacity swim lessons and open swim. Open swim fees are $2 for youth residents (6 months – 17 years) and $3 for adult residents; the non-resident fee is $5 per swimmer. Children 10 years and younger must be accompanied by a guardian 16 years or older. For more information, please contact the Parks & Recreation Office at 623.222.2000 or visit surpriseaz.gov/aquatics.

Gaines Park Dedication

A baseball with a Floyd Gaines Park logoA 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.

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

2021 Surprise Retail Survey results summary

Senior Center 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. A new enrollment packet will be required when returning to in-person participation. Pick one up at the Senior Center or online at surpriseaz.gov/seniorcenter. Membership is $12 per year for Surprise residents and $15 for non-residents. Fees are due with membership forms.

Connect with District 6

Please check out my new District 6 Facebook page, Councilmember Chris Judd – Home | Facebook! Be sure to click the “follow” button to get District 6 news and updates. Please also visit my District 6 webpage at d6.surpriseaz.gov where you can subscribe to my Notify Me email list to receive important District 6 updates.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will take place on Tuesday, June 15 at 6 p.m. and will be open to the public for in-person attendance. You can also watch live at www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 also carries the meetings live. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.

If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on June 23 at 6 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard, 14029 W. Waddell Rd. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov for updates to my meeting schedule.

Councilmember Chris Judd’s Newsletter • May 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns, or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

White Tank Proclamation

I joined Mayor Skip Hall, Buckeye Mayor Eric Orsborne, Youngtown Mayor Mike Levault, and several other elected officials to celebrate White Tank Wild Day at the beautiful Skyline Regional Park. Proclamations were given by Surprise, Buckeye, Goodyear, and Peoria, declaring “White Tank Wild Day” on April 22. It was undoubtedly fitting on Earth Day!

Water Wise

Surprise 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 a 20 years, with an official drought declaration in June 1999. Drought is a normal occurrence in the desert southwest. 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’s water customers? A Tier 1 shortage declaration will have no effect on Surprise’s water allocation or its deliveries to customers. Although there will be no immediate impact to municipal water supplies, Surprise remains committed to water resource management and its 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, it is important for water users to follow water efficient practices to protect our precious resource. For more information about drought and how it affects Surprise’s water customers on our Drought Resiliency and Preparedness website: surpriseaz.gov/3867/Drought-Resiliency-Preparedness.

If you would like to learn more about this or have any other questions about Surprise Water, please Join me for my Meet and Greet on May 25 at 6 p.m. at Venue Taproom, 13699 N. Litchfield Rd. Staff from the City’s Water Department will be joining me to have your questions answered about Surprise water.

You may be wondering how you can save water. Here are some water-saving tips:

  • Visit Surprise’s water conservation page surpriseaz.gov/waterconservation for water saving guides, tips, and advice.
  • Surprise customers can track their water use through a WaterSmart portal and use real-time tracking to establish a water use baseline and set leak alerts. Customers can access the WaterSmart portal through the “pay my bill” option on Surprise’s Utility Billing website surpriseaz.gov/1503/Utility-Billing-Rates.
    WaterSmart Software logo

The Boyer Bakery Ribbon Cutting

Mayor Skip Hall and I joined Jim and Liz Boyer, owners of The Boyer Bakery, for the ribbon cutting of their new bakery in Surprise. It is located at 13681 N. Litchfield Rd., Suite #136. Please join me in congratulating them on their Grand opening, and best wishes for much success!

Ranked #6

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

Local Economic Activity

As Amazon completes construction on its 143,000 square foot last-mile delivery station in Surprise, the project is a capstone to a more than five-year run of development in the city’s two square miles suburban industrial park. The railplex is bounded to the north at Waddell Road, south at Peoria Avenue, east by Dysart Road, and west by Litchfield Road. The amenity-rich Surprise Railplex development has Arizona’s first and only BNSF Railway-certified sites totaling over 250 acres. The Surprise Railplex recently welcomed JBugs, SeaCa Packaging, Trimaco, National Indoor RV Centers, Skyway Commons, and Milam Glass, as well as the Level Crossing speculative flex industrial development – in just the past few years. In addition, IRIS USA is celebrating its upcoming 5th anniversary in Surprise! The US-headquartered operation of the Japanese-owned company located off Cactus Road along the rail, built over 400,000 square feet on 45 acres, allowing additional land to expand into the future. IRIS USA also donated more than 30,000 masks to the community in 2020. The Surprise Economic Development Department is actively marketing the BNSF certified sites for large employment-generating projects and just completed a virtual tour video being promoted across their international industry network. The video can be viewed by visiting: youtube.com/watch?v=jiK2i1gIrZg

A map of the Surprise Railplex area.

Small Business Resources

The City of Surprise Economic Development Department has teamed up with the Arizona Small Business Association (ASBA) to offer even more support to the Surprise small business community. In recognition of the continued small business recovery process resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, Surprise small businesses can sign up for a free year of membership with ASBA. Benefits include connections to thought leaders and entrepreneurs throughout the state, business education opportunities, professional connections, mentors, marketing tools, access to data, discounted business benefits, and advocacy for a pro-business environment. Please visit asba.com/surprise before May 10 to claim your membership.

City of Surprise Property Tax Rate

We’ve been receiving some question about the City 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

Veteran Resources & Support Services

Veterans, service members (active duty, Guard, and Reserve), 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.

Surprise Day of Service

Vice Mayor Duffy and Councilmember Judd get bags to fill with pinto beans.The City of Surprise Annual Bean Bag Day event was held during National Volunteer Week on Saturday, April 24. Volunteers helped to bag 6,000lbs of loose pinto beans for distribution to those in need through the Valley Community Food Bank. A big thank you to Seeds of Hope International Ministries for purchasing the pinto beans! If you are looking for a way to volunteer in our community, please consider helping out at the next Day of Service event scheduled for May 26. To volunteer, or for more information, contact Larry Garcia at larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov, or call 623.222.1522.

Surprise Retail Survey

Surprise retail survey thumbnailThe 2021 Surprise Retail Survey is now open! Tell us what shopping and dining establishments you want to see in Surprise – plus, vote for current favorites so we can recognize the local businesses you love! Click on the link to take our 2021 Retail Survey by May 9: surpriseaz.gov/retailsurvey.

Passport services return to City Hall

Passport services return to 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. To make an appointment, or for questions, please visit surpriseaz.gov/passport or call the City Clerk’s Office at 623.222.1200.

District 6 Roadwork

  • Public works will begin sidewalk repair and maintenance in the Veramonte subdivision the first week in May. The project is expected to take approximately two weeks.
  • Waddell Rd. (the north half from 140th Ave. west to Bullard Ave.) was milled and re-paved in early April. Permanent pavement markings will be installed by the second week of May to complete this roadway project.

Itty Bitty Beach Party

Surprise Beach Party thumbnailThe Itty Bitty Beach Party is back! It will be on May 28 at the Surprise Aquatics Center. This party offers guests games, prizes, crafts, and more, for children ages 10 years and younger! Enjoy the slides, cool off in the water, and hang out with our resident mermaid! The cost to come party is $5 for residents and $10 for non-residents. Event registrations are accepted in-person at the Surprise Parks & Recreation Department office, 15960 N. Bullard Ave., online, and over the phone. For more information, contact the Parks & Recreation Department at 623.222.2000.

Surprise FY 2022 Budget

The City of Surprise proposes a budget focused on maintaining our current level of service 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 are scheduled for the May 4 Regular City Council Meeting, with final budget adoption planned for the June 1 meeting. To learn more about the budget process, please visit surpriseaz.gov/budget.

Property Maintenance Ordinance (PMO)

Thank you to those who have submitted comments for the draft Property Maintenance Ordinance (PMO). The goal of the PMO is to keep the City of Surprise safe, healthy, and blight-free. Public comment was requested & accepted from March 3 through May 2, 2021. If you would like to learn more about the document, please view the March 2 City Council Work Session.

A presentation and vote on the item is scheduled for June 15, 2021, at Surprise City Council Meeting. If adopted, the PMO will be effective that day.

State of the City Video

State of the City thumbnailCOVID-19 impacted so many last year, and in this video, we highlighted the resilience of our community. It captures how our strength, effort, and strategic planning place the city’s trajectory toward future success. Watch the video here: surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/watch?v=-KGUE2MFrlc

Connect with District 6

Please check out my new District 6 Facebook page at Councilmember Chris Judd! Be sure to click the “follow” button to get District 6 news and updates. Please also visit my District 6 webpage at d6.surpriseaz.gov where you can subscribe to my Notify Me email list to receive important District 6 updates.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will occur on Tuesday, May 18 at 6 p.m. and will be open to the public for in-person attendance. You can also watch live at surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 also carries the meetings live. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.

If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on May 25 at 6 p.m. at Venue Taproom, 13699 N. Litchfield Rd. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Councilmember Chris Judd’s Newsletter • April 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns, or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

Surprise’s Face Covering Mandate Lifted

Mayor Skip Hall has signed a proclamation terminating the face-covering mandate in Surprise. You can read the full proclamation here.

Please note that based on the Governor’s Executive Order 2021-06, there are some exceptions.

The City retains the right to set and enforce mitigation policies in our city government buildings and public transportation. Wearing of face coverings/masks is recommended within city facilities, except for Surprise City Court, where they are required.

Per the Governor’s order, private businesses may institute and enforce face covering policies and retain the right to refuse service to those who do not comply with their policies.

Per federal mandate, face coverings are still required while riding public transportation.

Governor’s Order 2021-06

With the state of Arizona hitting several crucial public health benchmarks, Governor Doug Ducey announced several updates to the state’s COVID-19 measures on March 25, including on events, businesses, and local ordinances.

Several key data points contributed to these changes:

  • Mass distribution of the vaccine: 3,041,773 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been administered to 1,927,278 individuals in Arizona, including 1,185,986 who have been fully vaccinated.
  • 10 weeks of declining cases.
  • Hospitalizations at the lowest level since the end of September/beginning of October.
  • Opening of vaccine appointments to all Arizonans 16 years of age and older.
  • A recent evaluation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that ranks Arizona among the best states in the nation for getting the COVID-19 vaccine to vulnerable communities.
  • President Biden’s recent promise that every American will be able to be vaccinated by May 1.

Under the changes announced by Governor Ducey:

  • Events of more than 50 people will no longer need the approval of local governments. These events should continue to follow safe practices and CDC recommendations, including physical distancing. This includes youth sports.
  • The business guidance will transition from requirements to recommendations. Governor Ducey is providing businesses with the ability to continue requiring masks and social distancing.
  • Bars have already been allowed to operate as “dine-in” at full capacity. They will now be allowed to resume regular operations, with the ability to require social distancing and masks.
  • Unlike some other states, Arizona never issued a statewide mask mandate, and instead encouraged personal responsibility with an aggressive educational campaign — resulting in more widespread mask usage than states with mandates. Some local governments have implemented “mandates,” however, they have rarely, if ever, been enforced. Under this latest action, those local mandates will be phased out. Mask usage is still encouraged, especially in groups that are not vaccinated.

View the Governor’s Executive Order HERE.

City Hall Re-opens!

City Hall and other city administrative buildings will re-open to the public on April 12! In addition, City Council and board and commissions meetings will re-open to in-person attendance effective that date.

My Nail Spa & My Barbershop Ribbon Cutting

Mayor Hall and I had the privilege of attending the Grand Opening Ribbon Cutting for My Nail Spa and My Barbershop, located at 13983 W. Waddell Rd, suite 102 & 103. Thank you for inviting us to be a part of your celebration!

Mayor Hall and Councilmember Judd cut a grand opening ribbon at My Nail Spa My Barbershop.

State of the City Video

State of the City thumbnailTune in on April 13 at 6 p.m. for the 2021 State of the City Video Premiere, live online at surprisetv.surpriseaz.gov/. The City of Surprise 2021 State of the City will reflect on our community’s resilience and look at what’s in the future!

COVID Relief Funding

For over a year now, the City of Surprise has been working hard to support residents and businesses impacted by COVID-19.

Our City has been fortunate to receive federal, state, and county financial assistance to provide meals, rental/mortgage payments, and utility assistance through our Senior Center and Surprise Resource Center.

Here is a snapshot of how $10.88 million in federal funds has helped our community during the COVID crisis:

A snapshot of the allocation of 10.88M in federal funds.

The Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program provided billions of dollars in payroll assistance funding for businesses through two rounds of funding.

While these programs have helped, the City identified some funding gaps in meeting specific needs and, in some cases, noticed some needs were not being met at all.

On September 1, 2020, and November 2, 2020, the Surprise City Council approved resolutions to support $555,000 for Surprise COVID Community Relief Packages for addressing community and business needs because of the prolonged nature of the pandemic. Utilizing some of our AZ CARES ACT dollars, we were able to allocate $180,000 to address the following human service needs:

AZ CARES ACT funds allocation.

The remaining $375,000 supported the Surprise Small Business Relief Grant, disbursed over two rounds:

Surprise small business relief grant funds allocation.

The City will continue to explore additional needs as we anticipate another round of funding through the American Rescue Plan Act in the future. We have a good plan in place to monitor where the needs are and address as appropriate.

Small businesses are encouraged to review updated COVID business resources available on www.surpriseaz.gov/businesshelp or to reach out to the Surprise Economic Development Department at econdev@surpriseaz.gov.

Community Resources are available at www.surpriseaz.gov/communitycare, or call the Surprise Resource Center at 623.222.1600.

Coming soon to Surprise

  1. Crumbl Cookies will soon be at the southwest corner of Litchfield and Waddell, at the “Marley Park” corner!
  2. Amazon now has their sign on the building. We expect the facility to start operations in the 3rd quarter of 2021 and bring over 300 jobs to Surprise!

Property Maintenance Ordinance (PMO)

Would you like to learn more about the City of Surprise Property Maintenance Ordinance and have an opportunity to ask questions and provide comments? If so, please join the public meeting that is scheduled for April 13 at 6 p.m. in the Surprise City Hall Community Room or online. To join the public meeting online, please visit surpriseaz.gov/PMO. To access the public meeting or to leave a comment on the document, please visit surpriseaz.gov/PMO.

The Property Maintenance Ordinance is a guiding document that establishes the minimum standards for all property throughout the City. The goal of the PMO is to keep the City safe, healthy, and blight free. Public comments are also being accepted through Sunday, May 2, 2021 via an online comment box at surpriseaz.gov/PMO.

Surprise Day of Service

The next Surprise Day of Service is on April 24, 2021 to help benefit the Valley View Food Bank. The day begins at 8 a.m. and goes to 4 p.m. with volunteers working in two-hour shifts. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Larry Garcia at 623-222-1522.

Budget Retreat

FY2022 Budget thumbnailCity Council will be participating in a budget retreat on April 16, beginning at 9 a.m. The retreat is a part of the development of the Fiscal Year 2022 City Manager’s Recommended Budget. The retreat will be open to public attendance and will be televised for public viewing on surpriseaz.gov/surpriseTV, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at facebook.com/cityofsurprise and Cox channel 11.

Arts & Culture Grant Program

The City is now accepting applications for a new Arts & Culture Commission-led grant program that intends to assist community organizations that are pursuing arts and cultural events or activities that benefit City of Surprise residents. To apply, you must be a 501 (c) 3 organization or partner with a 501 (c) 3 verified agency. The application, program details, and eligibility requirements are available online at surpriseaz.gov/artsgrant. Applications will be accepted until Friday, April 23, 2021.

Connect with District 6

Please check out my new District 6 Facebook page at Councilmember Chris Judd! Be sure to click the “follow” button to get District 6 news and updates.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will take place on Tuesday, April 20 at 6 p.m. and will be open to the public for in-person attendance. You can also watch live at www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 also carries the meetings live. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.

If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on April 28 at 6 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Councilmember Chris Judd’s Newsletter • March 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

Local Favorite

One of my new favorite places in Surprise is Venue Taproom. They are a fantastic new restaurant located in the Uptown Alley Parking lot at Litchfield and Waddell roads. The menu is excellent, the staff is very friendly and the owner, Sam, is almost always on hand to make sure that you have a good experience. If you drop by, please say hello to Sam for me!

Now Open!

Player 1 Arcade had its grand opening Friday, February 19th. Go visit them for games and pinball and for a throwback to the 80s! They are located at Bell and Litchfield roads behind Buffalo Wild Wings. Check them out at www.p1arcade.com. Welcome to the City of Surprise!

FY 2022 Budget Kick-off

The fiscal year 2022 budget process began on February 2, with a presentation to Council at the Regular Council Meeting. The City of Surprise Finance Department will be giving a series of presentations at Council Work Sessions and Regular Meetings leading up to the proposed budget release in April. If you have not had a chance to watch the meetings, you can view the previous finance presentations at surpriseaz.gov/budget. The Final Budget adoption is scheduled for June 1, 2021. Fiscal year 2022 begins July 1, 2021.

Recycling Struggles

Our staff is continuing to search for ways to reboot our recycling program here in Surprise. As you probably know by now, Recycling has hit roadblocks nationwide. One hurdle is finding manufacturers that will actually use recycled material. Without enough manufacturers using recycled plastics, much of the plastics that make it to a recycling facility are being routed to landfills.

You can help reduce the quantity of plastic heading to the landfill by reducing your consumption of single use plastics. Examples of single use plastics include water bottles and plastic grocery bags.

What’s Happening On That Lot?

Now Open:

  • My Barbershop and My Nail Salon, 13983 West Waddell Road

Approved:

  • EOS Fitness Marley Park, 13632 N. Litchfield Road
  • Goodyear Chiropractic, 15411 W. Waddell Road
  • AZ Angels, Skyway Commons, 11470 N. Dysart Road
  • Desert Builders, Skyway Commons, 11470 N. Dysart Road
  • Central Garden & Pet (23,000 SF expansion), 12000 N. 132nd Avenue
  • United Construction Group, 3 buildings/22,000SF, 13784 W. Desert Cove
  • Boyer Bakery, 13681 N. Litchfield Road (tenant improvements)

Planning:

  • Self Storage Facility at Litchfield Road and Sweetwater Avenue
  • 3 Minute Express Car Wash, Marley Park, 17043 West Waddell Road
  • Etico Construction Group, NE corner of Solar Canyon Way and Desert Cove Road – Main Offices, Warehouse and Yard Space for Etico Construction – 3.24 acres

Surprise Day of Service

If you are looking for a way to help others, please consider helping out during the Surprise Day of Service on March 20, from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Projects will be located all throughout Surprise. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Larry Garcia at Larry.Garcia@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.1522.

Spring Break Camp Registration

Spring Break CampThe City of Surprise Parks and Recreation Department will be offering Spring Break Camp March 15-19, 2021 from 6:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. at Sierra Montana Recreation Center. Campers from kindergarten to 6th grades will enjoy arts and crafts, games, sports and more! To register, download a registration packet from surpriseaz.gov/recreation. Once the packet is complete, contact the Parks and Recreation office at 623.222.2000 to schedule a time to come in and register your child. For pricing and additional information, please visit surpriseaz.gov

Spring Training

Surprise Stadium logoKansas City Royals and Texas Rangers Spring Training has begun! An updated schedule of games is available on SurpriseStadium.com. Fan safety is a top priority. The following health and safety protocols will be in place:

  • Limited seating capacity of under 2,000 fans per game
  • Physically-distanced seating pods
  • Required face coverings, unless eating/drinking
  • Reduced touch points (contactless ticketing, cashless transactions)
  • New intensified cleaning protocols

For ticket information, please visit www.surprisestadium.com.

Greenway Road Closure

The Greenway Road improvement project will close down Greenway Road between Legacy Park and Northwest Ranch Parkway for two weeks starting 5 a.m. Saturday, Feb 27, to 5 a.m. Sunday, March 14.

  • Motorists heading eastbound along Greenway Road from Loop 303 can expect a single lane until they reach the closure at Northwest Ranch Parkway, allowing access to be maintained to the business complex east of the Loop 303.
  • Left turn movements will be maintained for drivers traveling east on Greenway Road to Northwest Ranch Parkway.
  • Motorists driving south on Northwest Ranch Parkway will be able to make a right turn to go west on Greenway Road.
  • Westbound traffic along Greenway Road will be reduced to a single lane beginning at Reems Road. Local traffic will be able to continue to the hard closure at Legacy Park Boulevard.
  • Drivers traveling west on Greenway Road will be able to make the left turn to go south on Legacy Park Boulevard.
  • Motorists traveling north on Legacy Park Boulevard will be able to turn right to go east on Greenway Road.

The Greenway Road improvement project will add two travel lanes and eliminate areas where multiple lanes merged into one lane, from approximately Cotton Lane to Sarival Avenue.

Community Resource Guide

Front cover the the Surprise Community Resource Guide.The Community Resource Guide is a quick reference for anyone that may need assistance with food, shelter, homelessness, domestic violence, and many other local resources. An electronic version of this document is available at supriseaz.gov/HSCV.

Connect with District 6

Please check out my new District 6 Facebook page at Councilmember Chris Judd – Home | Facebook! Be sure to click the “follow” button to get District 6 news and updates.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will take place on Tuesday, March 16 at 6 p.m. Council meetings are currently closed to in-person attendance. To watch live, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513 will also carry the meetings live. Public comment will be accepted by phone and email. Instructions for public comment will be included on each meeting agenda. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.

If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on March 6 at 9 a.m. at Spencer’s Place, 15341 W. Waddell Road. Vice Mayor Patrick Duffy will also be joining me for this Community Meeting! In addition, I will be hosting a Meet and Greet on March 24 at 6 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Councilmember Chris Judd’s Newsletter • February 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

APS West Valley Central 230KV Connection Project Update

APS is currently in the process of conducting technical analysis to determine the potential routing options for the new 230kV power lines. Another round of public comment will be solicited following the determination of a preferred route. More information should be available at the end of February. Please continue to check my website, newsletters, and Facebook for updates!

2021 Surprise City Academy

The Surprise City Academy is going virtual this year. Classes will begin on February 22 and will happen weekly on Mondays from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. through April 26. The Surprise City Academy is a great way to learn about city government structure, get updated on local issues, and get to know your city leaders! The class is FREE, but you must be registered. To register, please visit surpriseaz.gov/cityacademy or contact Lord Garcillano at lord.garcillano@surpriseaz.gov or 623.222.1647.

Keep it Beautiful, Surprise!

Keep it beautiful, Surprise! logo.Help Surprise stay a safe, clean and attractive city! Litter can be found on city streets and public spaces, and we’d like to focus on cleaning it up before it becomes a growing issue. How can you help?

  • Throw your trash away
  • Pick up Litter
  • Secure your load
  • Clean up after your pets
  • Volunteer for a community cleanup
  • Help spread the word by encouraging others to #keepitbeautifulsurprise

Day of Service

If you are looking for a way to help others, please consider helping out during the Surprise Day of Service on February 20, from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Volunteers will help with various projects, including landscaping, painting, trimming of shrubs, debris removal, and more. Projects will help neighborhoods and homeowners who may not be physically or financially able to maintain their homes. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Larry Garcia at Larry.Garcia@surpriseaz.gov or call 623.222.1522.

Holiday Sanitation Schedule

City offices are closed on February 15 in observance of Presidents’ Day. Please note that the holiday sanitation schedule will be in effect.

Spring Training

Spring Training 2021 is scheduled to begin on February 27. The Texas Rangers are set to take on the Kansas City Royals on February 27 at 1:05 p.m.! For a complete schedule of games and updated information on ticket sales and safety protocols, please visit SurpriseStadium.com or call 623.222.2222. Due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19, the Spring Training Schedule and information is subject to change.

What’s Happening on that Lot?

  • Amazon construction is moving along and expected to be completed by April 2021!
  • EOS Fitness Marley Park, located at 13644 N. Litchfield Park
  • Horizon Aviation & Machining, located 11267 N. 132nd Avenue
  • Ancona at Surprise Pointe 33, located at the NWC of Dysart Road and Sweetwater Avenue. This 27 acre site will house two industrial buildings, one 84,300 sq.ft. and the other 72,000 sq.ft., each containing 12 spec suites.

Fire Station 308 Update

Construction is continuing on Fire Station 308, located at the southeast corner of Litchfield Road and Cactus Road.

Business Resource

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has reopened for new borrowers and certain existing PPP borrowers. Summary information on the PPP is available on www.surpriseaz.gov/businesshelp, under Business Resources.

Connect with District 6

Please check out my new District 6 Facebook page at Councilmember Chris Judd – Home | Facebook! Be sure to click the “follow” button to get District 6 news and updates.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will take place on Tuesday, February 16 at 6 p.m. Council meetings are currently closed to in-person attendance. To watch live, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513 will also carry the meetings live. Public comment will be accepted by phone and email. Instructions for public comment will be included on each meeting agenda. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.

If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on February 13 at 9 a.m. at Spencer’s Place, 15341 W. Waddell Road, or on February 24 at 6 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues and answering any questions you might have.

Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Vice Mayor Chris Judd’s Newsletter • January 2021

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

New Park!

A new eight acre park at Greenway Road and Parkview Place will begin design in June of 2021! This new park will provide more programmable and rental field space.

In addition to the new park, Council voted to provide additional funding to the Gaines Youth Baseball Field, to allow for completion ahead of the current timeline, and established a $3 million budget for enhancements to the Surprise Community Park. Enhancements will be determined following the design and submittal of actual costs, but could include adding a restroom, improving dog park drainage and exploring new lighting. The City of Surprise has continued to see growth in housing permits and retail sales collections, and as a result, Council voted to fund these parks projects.

We are still in the beginning phases of planning for a larger city park (75-100 acres). If you have any ideas on what you would like to see included, please reach out to me at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Rocket League/Among Us Tournaments

Surprise Parks & Recreation and Bravous Esports are teaming up to offer online video game tournaments. Gamers participate from the comfort of their own homes in a competitive, elimination-style tournament. The registration fee for Surprise residents is $10. Register online at https://bit.ly/3gClzDN.

  • Rocket League “Back to School” Tournament
    (7-17yr) – January 9, 4-9 p.m.
  • Among Us Unmasking
    (7-17yr) – February 20, 4-9 p.m.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Celebration & Service

In honor of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. the city will host a virtual program celebrating his life, leading into a day of community service. Please join us on January 16, beginning at 9 a.m. on the City of Surprise social media channels & Surprise TV to see a variety of local musicians, performers, and speakers. Community service projects are also being coordinated. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Larry Garcia at larry.garcia@surpriseaz.gov. In order to adhere to COVID-19 gathering limitations, advanced registration is required.

What’s Happening on that Lot

Fire Station 308, located at the southeast corner of Litchfield Road and Cactus Road, broke ground on December 7. This nearly 16,000 square foot facility will house an Engine Company, Hazardous Materials Response Team and future ambulance. The fire station was funded by the voter-approved 2017 Decide Surprise General Obligation Bond.

Other projects currently in development review:

  • EOS Fitness Marley Park, located at 13644 N. Litchfield Park
  • Kiff Enterprises-JBUGS, southwest corner of Sweetwater and Dysart Road
  • Level Crossing Phase 2 PAD Amendment, an extension of the property for industrial and commercial mixed use, located at 13700 N. Dysart Road.

New Commercial Permits were recently completed for:

  • Skyway Business Park Bldg. H1, located at 11304 N. Dysart Road
  • Skyway Business Park Bldg. H2, located at 11180 N. Dysart Road

Economic Development

The Surprise Small Business Relief Grant program provided grants to local businesses impacted by COVID-19. The Council, using CARES Act funds, funded two phases of this program. Through this funding, the city was able to help 79 local businesses and retain 483 jobs! Our Economic Development Department continues to work hard to help our local businesses find resources to be successful. Please visit the COVID-19 Business Resource page for a list of other resources available for local businesses.

A chart displaying use of funds.

To view the full Small Business Relief Grant report, please visit surpriseaz.gov.

Possible APS 230kv Power Lines Down Cactus or Peoria roads

APS accepted public comments on the siting process for new 230kv power lines from October 20-November 20. In a summary of public comments provided by APS, public comment included opposition to the new transmission lines routes along Cactus Road and Peoria Avenue near residential areas. Currently, there is no information on where the lines will ultimately be sited. More information regarding this project should be available in early 2021. To learn more about the project, visit www.apswestvalleycentral.com.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meeting will take place on Tuesday, January 19 at 6 p.m. Council meetings are currently closed to in-person attendance. To watch live, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, or the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise. Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513 will also carry the meetings live. Public comment will be accepted by phone and email. Instructions for public comment will be included on each meeting agenda. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior. If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on January 27 at 6 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues, and answering any questions you might have. Please note that my Meet and Greet, scheduled for January 9 at Spencer’s Place, has been cancelled.

Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Vice Mayor Chris Judd’s Newsletter • December 2020

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

City of Surprise Public Meetings will Reclose to In-person Attendance

To protect public health amidst rising COVID-19 cases, beginning December 1, and until further notice, City of Surprise Public Meetings will close to in-person attendance. This includes meetings of City Council and all city boards and commissions. These meetings will be streamed and broadcast, and public comment will be accepted by phone and email. To watch live, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/surprisetv, the Surprise City Gov Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cityofsurprise, or Cox channel 11 and Century Link channel 8513. Instructions for virtual public comment will be available on the meeting agendas at www.surpriseaz.gov/agendas.

Interested in Parks?

Tune into our December 15 Council Meeting where we will be discussing options to improve or expand our parks.

Also, we are in the beginning phases of planning a new city park. A city park is typically 75-100 acres. If you have ideas on what should be included in a new city park, please let me know! Email me at Chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov

Surprise Party 2020-At Home Style

Surprise Party at HomeWhile we can’t host our Surprise Party in person this year, we have many exciting virtual events planned. Join us for a virtual tree lighting ceremony, virtual cookie decorating with Mrs. Claus, virtual bingo-holiday edition, Zoom calls with Santa, virtual holiday arts & crafts, a Santa drive-thru, and the Light up the Night House Decorating contest. Please see the schedule of events below, and for more details check out surpriseaz.gov/surpriseparty.

Surprise Party – At Home Activities

Schedule is subject to change.

DATETIMEEVENT
Fri, Dec. 4 7:00 p.m. Virtual Tree Lighting Ceremony**
Mon, Dec. 7 6:30 p.m. Virtual Cookie Decorating with Mrs. Claus**
Surprise has partnered with Boyer Bakery to provide 150 cookie decorating kits to the first 150 decorators. Kits will be available for pick up on Saturday, December 5 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. or Monday, December 7 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Parks & Recreation Office, 15960 N. Bullard Ave.
Tues, Dec. 8 6:30 p.m. Virtual Bingo – Holiday Edition (must pre-register)
Space is limited; secure your spot by signing up for this Special Event online at surpriserec.surpriseaz.gov.
Wed, Dec. 9 5:30-8:30 p.m. Zoom Calls with Santa (must pre-register)
Space is limited; secure your spot by signing up for this Special Event online at surpriserec.surpriseaz.gov.
Thurs, Dec. 10 6:30 p.m. Virtual Holiday Themed Art & Craft featuring WHAM**
Craft kits will be available for pick up beginning Monday, November 30 to Thursday, December 10, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., at the Parks & Recreation Office, 15960 N. Bullard Ave, while supplies last.
Fri, Dec. 11 6:00-8:00 p.m. Santa Drive-Thru at Surprise Stadium
Download a colorable letter for Santa at surpriseaz.gov/surpriseparty. Participants must remain in the car during this event. Santa’s helpers will hand out goodie bags to the first 200 participants.
Sat, Dec. 12 –
Sun, Dec. 13
Evening Light up the Night House Decorating Contest w/ map

**Denotes a video event

Please note that video events will be aired at the times noted above on Surprise TV online and the City of Surprise Parks and Recreation Facebook Page. On-demand video playback will be available for recorded events, so please visit surpriseaz.gov/surpriseparty to view a video recording at your convenience.

What’s Happening on that Lot

The Amazon last-mile delivery station at Litchfield Road and Soledad Street is making progress on construction.

Boyer Bakery, at 13681 N. Litchfield Road, is currently in development review, and will be opening at the former “Pinkabella” location.

There will be 63,000 square feet of flex space at Skyway Commons opening soon, located on the southwest corner of Dysart Road and Rioglass Solar Road!

DevelopNEXT

The city’s DevelopNEXT effort to simplify and modernize its development and design standards is nearing the finish line! The final draft will be presented for consideration and action at the December 15, 2020 City Council Meeting. The final draft was developed after several rounds of draft documents were posted online and presented at stakeholder meetings to address questions and gather feedback. The document has also been available online for public comment. The Land Development Ordinances (LDO) will replace the current Surprise Unified Development Code (SUDC). In addition, the City is also updating and consolidating the separate design and engineering books into a single Planning and Engineering Design Standards (PEDS). For more information, please visit surpriseaz.gov/developnext.

Possible APS 230kv Power Lines down Cactus or Peoria roads

More information regarding this project should be available in early 2021. To learn more about the project, visit www.apswestvalleycentral.com.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meetings will take place on Tuesday, December 1 and December 15 at 6 p.m. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior. If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on December 12 at 9 a.m. at Spencer’s Place, 15341 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues, and answering any questions you might have. Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Vice Mayor Chris Judd’s Newsletter • November 2020

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

Veterans Day Tribute Video

We would prefer to have 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 will be making a video and decorating Bullard Avenue. The compilation of community video messages will be featured on Veterans Day on the Surprise TV cable channel, our Parks & Recreation social media pages (Facebook and Instagram), and the City of Surprise website at surpriseaz.gov.

Remember to take a drive down Bullard on November 10-12. Decorated signs, provided by City of Surprise residents, will be on display with messages of thanks for our Veterans!

Possible APS 230kv Power Lines down Cactus or Peoria roads

How would you like some nice, tall 230kv power lines in your backyard? APS needs 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 our last council meeting:
https://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.

Additionally, two Live Virtual Town Hall meetings will be hosted on Wednesday, November 4 and Tuesday, November 10, 2020. Both are from 6-7:30 p.m. You can register here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/APSlivechat

APS map of the 230KV Connection Project study area.

Restaurants – Permits to expand outdoor dining are now free!

Local restaurants can now apply for a Temporary Expansion of Premise (TEP) permit to allow for expansion of their dining areas in order to serve more customers while maintaining social distancing. Since the intent of the TEP is to curb the financial impacts of the pandemic on restaurants, there is no application or permit fee. In addition, the TEP process includes a streamlined application process and expedited staff review. Approved permits will be valid for 180 days with an option to renew. If your restaurant is looking to expand the service area for alcohol, review and approval of the Arizona Department of Liquor Licenses and Control is required. To learn more about the TEP permit and download the application, please visit surpriseaz.gov/specialeventpermits.

Marley Park Overseed Schedule

You may notice some brown turf for a short time as the City and the Marley Park HOA work together to create a sustainable and turf healthy management program that also considers water conservation. This Fall, no overseeding will take place at the city park in order to rest the turf. Please see the schedule below, for future overseeding plans. Please note that this schedule will be reviewed annually and adjusted based on turf conditions.

Fall 2020—No overseeding (entire park)
Fall 2021—Overseeding (south side only)
Fall 2022—Overseeding (north side only)
Fall 2023—START OVER—No overseeding (entire park)

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Parks and Recreation Department at 623-222-2000.

What’s happening on that lot?

  • At the southeast corner of Litchfield Road and Waddell Road, Boyer Bakery will be opening at the former “Pinkabella” location, and Venue Taproom has opened its doors, taking over the former “Under Review” location.
  • Walls are up and construction is underway at the new Amazon last-mile distribution center at Sweetwater Avenue and Litchfield Road!
  • Expanding in the Rail Plex: Horizon Aviation is growing and Milam Glass is adding a new parking structure.
  • Skyway Commons along the west side of Dysart Road, south of Cactus Road, has nearly completed an additional 63,000 square feet of speculative industrial space for new business attraction.
  • A new Goodwill store opened at Cactus Road and Reems Road on October 23rd

Congratulations to our Economic Development Team!

With all of these great projects going on, it should be no surprise, that the Surprise Economic Development Team recently received five awards from the International Economic Development Council:

  • Gold Award for the Community Partnership with Ottawa University
  • Silver Award for Costco Retail Attraction Campaign
  • Silver Award for its Economic Development Week Campaign
  • Bronze Award for the Virtual Ribbon Cutting Campaign
  • Bronze Award for the COVID-19 Business Help Website

In addition, the City of Surprise partnership with Ottawa University was recognized with an Innovation Award at the WESTMARC Best of the West Awards on October 22!

Thank you, Councilman David Sanders

November 2nd, 2020 will be Councilman Sanders’ last meeting. Dave came on the council a few minutes after I did and was a great resource for our city. I had the great pleasure of working with Councilman Sanders on many different agenda items and budget items over the past two years.

Thank you very much for putting your life on hold these past two years and for the service you have given to your community. You led by example, you are extremely thoughtful in your approach and you are always a pleasure to be around. Just because you are leaving the council, you are not off the hook — I still expect to see you involved in our great community.

Holiday Schedule

Please note the following holidays this month will result in a change to the trash pick-up schedule for city of Surprise sanitation customers: November 11 in observance of Veterans Day, and November 26 and 27 in observance of Thanksgiving. City Hall remains closed to the public due to COVID-19.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meetings will take place on Monday, November 2 (moved to Monday due to Election Day) and Tuesday, November 17 at 6 p.m. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior. If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Council meetings have been reopened for in-person participation. In order to adhere to CDC guidelines, in-person participants will be required to wear a facial covering when entering and exiting the chambers, but may remove it while seated, if they so choose. Capacity will be capped at 50 people, and physical distancing measures will be in place.

If you are not yet ready to attend in person, instructions for how to comment virtually are listed on the agenda. Agendas can be viewed at www.surpriseaz.gov/agendas.

Meet and Greet

Please join me for my Monthly Meet and Greet on November 14 at 9 a.m. at Spencer’s Place, 15341 W. Waddell Road. I look forward to discussing the latest City issues, and answering any questions you might have. Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Vice Mayor Chris Judd’s Newsletter • October 2020

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

Business in District 6

Firestone Complete Auto Care opened a new store, located at 13475 N. Litchfield Road, on August 21. Mayor Hall and I had the privilege to cut the ribbon. Welcome to Surprise!

Mayor Hall and Vice Mayor Judd cut a purple ribbon outside of Firestone Complete Auto Care.

Congratulations to T.E.A.M. for kids therapy on winning the virtual Ribbon Cutting Contest! The City of Surprise Economic Development Department hosted a five-week long contest, featuring 101 local Surprise businesses celebrating reopenings after closing temporarily because of COVID-19. Residents were asked to vote on their favorite ribbon cutting video, and T.E.A.M for kids won the grand prize! Check out all the amazing videos at flickr.com/photos/cityofsurprise/.

Mayor Hall, Vice Mayor Judd and Economic Dev Director Jeanine Jerkovic give thumbs up to T.E.A.M. 4 Kids.

Mayor Hall and I were honored to join Jeanine Jerkovic, the City of Surprise Economic Development Director, to deliver the winning trophy.

What’s happening on that lot?

  • Amazon’s 145,000 sf Delivery Station is now under construction at the northeast corner of Sweetwater Avenue & Litchfield Road.
  • The Skyway Commons Buildings H1 &H2, located at the southwest corner of Dysart Road and Rioglass Solar Road, are nearly complete and will bring 63,000 sf of new speculative flex industrial space to the Railplex.

Small Business Relief Grant

The Small Business Relief Grant program seeks to distribute $250,000 to businesses in Surprise with fewer than 25 employees and less than $2 million in revenues, who have experienced economic distress and loss of revenue due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and have had closures compliant with Governor Ducey’s Executive Orders. To apply for the Surprise Small Business Relief Grant program, please visit www.surpriseaz.gov/smallbusinessgrant. Applicants will need to create an account with the Arizona Community Foundation and will need a Surprise Business “Registration” License and a W-9 form. The deadline to apply is October 16.

AZ CARES money distributed to the City of Surprise provides the ability to offer these programs.

Donation from Ottawa University

Thank you to Ottawa University and their students for donating facemasks and personal letters that will be distributed to community members by our Human Services & Community Vitality Department. The students included return addresses in their letters in the hopes of creating “pen pal” acquaintances with those receiving these gifts. Ottawa’s mascot “Fang” was also on site to celebrate this incredible donation!

7th Annual Fiesta Grande celebration goes virtual

Celebrate our city’s cultural heritage at the seventh annual Surprise Fiesta Grande – To Go style! This virtual celebration, presented by the City of Surprise Parks & Recreation Department in partnership with 101.9 FM Radio La Campesina, is happening all this week! Enjoy authentic Mexican food, cooking and dance classes, crafts, games and more! The schedule of events is as follows:

  • October 5 at 6:30 p.m.: Holy Guacamole & Salsa Dippin’ Virtual Cooking Class. While this virtual class has already premiered, you can still watch it at surpriseaz.gov/fiestagrande
  • October 6 at 6:30 p.m.: Virtual Folklorico Class/Performance (view at facebook.com/SurpriseRec and Surpriseaz.gov/SurpriseTV)
  • All day on October 6, Let’s Taco ‘bout a Good Meal! Where local restaurants will be offering discounts!
  • October 7 at 6:30 p.m.: Nacho Average Virtual Bingo. Register at surpriserec.surpriseaz.gov by clicking on ‘Special Events’ by 12 p.m. on Wednesday 10/7 for a chance to win fun prizes!
  • October 8 at 6:30 p.m.: Virtual Arts and Crafts, featuring WHAM (to participate, pick up your craft kit at the Parks & Recreation office, Monday 10/5 through Thursday 10/8 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. 15960 N Bullard Ave Surprise, AZ 85374).
  • October 9 at 5 p.m.: Fiesta Foodtruck Friday & Swag Bag (Foodtruck, and swag bag pick up are at Villanueva Recreation Center, 15660 N Hollyhock St, Surprise, AZ 85378. Register for a swag bag athttp://surpriserec.surpriseaz.gov by clicking on “Special Events”).

For updates and more information, please visit surpriseaz.gov/fiestagrande or contact the Parks & Recreation Special Events Division at 623.222.2000.

If you happen to miss any of the virtual activities, videos will be available at surpriseaz.gov/fiestagrande after the event.

Veterans Day Tribute Video

Unfortunately, the City of Surprise will not be able to put on a Veterans Day parade this year due to COVID-19. In order to create a virtual alternative to families lined along a parade route, or parade participants displaying signs of gratitude, the City of Surprise Parks and Recreation Department will be compiling community messages to veterans sent in by you, the residents! To participate, record a video tribute, no longer than 15 seconds, thanking our veterans, then upload it to surpriseaz.gov/veteranvideo. This compilation of community messages will be featured on Veterans Day on the Surprise TV cable channel, our Parks & Recreation social media pages (Facebook and Instagram), and the City of Surprise website at surpriseaz.gov. Entries must be received by October 29 at 5 p.m. You can also participate by creating a sign that will be displayed on Bullard Ave. near the Surprise Stadium, November 10-12. Blank signs can be picked up at the Parks and Recreation Office, 15960 N. Bullard Ave., from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday October 12 through Friday, October 30. Decorated signs, should be returned to the Parks and Recreation Office by 5 p.m. on Friday November 6 for inclusion in the display. For more information, please contact Steve Castillo at 623-222-2267, or by email at steve.castillo@surpriseaz.gov.

Southwest Gas

Southwest Gas offers flexible payment plans, payment assistance programs, and income qualified rate assistance for their customers in Arizona. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Southwest Gas has ceased all service disconnection, and late fees for nonpayment, since March. While this moratorium is still in place, they would like to urge customers to also explore the various assistance programs that they offer, to avoid large payments after the COVID-19 crisis improves.

Low Income Ratepayer Assistance (LIRA)
Customers who have recently lost their job, or are receiving unemployment benefits, may qualify for a reduced energy rate through the LIRA Program. This program helps customers save money by providing a yearly 30% reduction in the monthly basic service charge and a “per therm” rate discount. The “per therm” discount is applied each month from November 1 through April 30.

Energy Share Program
Southwest Gas has $1 million available to customers experiencing unexpected financial difficulties, such as the loss of a job or medical emergency related to COVID-19. The Energy Share program allows customers facing financial hardship who qualify, to receive assistance towards paying their Southwest Gas bill. Customers do not need to meet Federal Poverty Income Guidelines to qualify.

Deferred Payment Program
For customers who can demonstrate a hardship and have outstanding bills, the deferred payment plan allows them to pay their bill over an extended period of time. The company also make referrals to government or local social service agencies.

To learn more about these programs, please visit the Southwest Gas website at www.swgas.com, or call 1-877-860-6020.

Southwest Gas also wants to remind you that they will never contact customers, or show up in person to demand payment with the threat of disruption of service. Any calls that demand immediate payment should be considered a scam. Do not provide any person information and hang up. To verify the legitimacy of any calls or visits you receive, please call 877-860-6020.

Possible APS project in District 6

In the near future, there may be a new APS power line in District 6. Please watch my Facebook account and newsletter for additional information. I will share it with you as soon as it is available.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meetings will take place on Tuesday, October 6 and Tuesday October 20, at 6 p.m.  Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior.  If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern.  I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Council meetings have been reopened for in-person participation. In order to adhere to CDC guidelines, in-person participants will be required to wear a facial covering when entering and exiting the chambers, but may remove it while seated, if they so choose. Capacity will be capped at 50 people, and physical distancing measures will be in place.

If you are not yet ready to attend in person, instructions for how to comment virtually are listed on the agenda. Agendas can be viewed at www.surpriseaz.gov/agendas.

Meet and Greet

For the month of October, I will be hosting two Meet and Greets. Please join me on Saturday, October 17, at 9 a.m. at Spencer’s Place, 15341 W. Waddell Road, and on October 28, from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road, Surprise, AZ 85379. Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.

Vice Mayor Chris Judd’s Newsletter • September 2020

Thank you for signing up to receive my newsletter and updates. It is my goal to ensure you receive a monthly newsletter containing important city updates as well as upcoming events. You can also find me on Facebook for frequent notifications. I am always available to hear your comments, questions, concerns or complaints! You may reach me anytime at chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov or 623-222-1326.

Revised Development & Design Standards

Members of the public and community stakeholders now have the opportunity to provide comments related to the Land Development Ordinances (LDO) and the Planning and Engineering Design Standards (PEDS). You can review and make comments on the documents at surpriseaz.gov/developnext. Several meetings will also be held before the end of the year to present changes and gather comments.

The following is the timeline for those meetings (dates are subject to change):

  • Development Community Stakeholder Meetings – held virtually in August and September
  • Public Outreach Meetings – held virtually in September with advanced public notice of date and time
  • Planning & Zoning Commission and City Council Presentations – Several presentations in September, October and November
  • Public Hearings – at Planning and Zoning in November, and City Council in December (for final action).

The DevelopNEXT update is important to the City because it will allow us to align ordinances and design standards with the values described in the City’s General plan 2035, it will help us to implement new state statues and federal guidelines, and improve the city’s standards for site, open space and architectural design. In addition, the City’s design standards and guides will be able to be consolidated into one document, and it will simplify and clarify the structure and organization of the documents and the rules within them.

To learn more about DevelopNEXT, please visit surpriseaz.gov/developnext.

Road Work Update

The Litchfield Road Improvement project was completed on August 19th! This project was approved through the 2017 General Obligation Bond. The Litchfield Road improvement project, widened the stretch of road from Waddell Road to Peoria Avenue, added two additional travel lanes (for a total of four), sidewalks, a bicycle lane, street lighting and landscaping.

This project delivered the full design and construction of Litchfield Road, as this was the only remaining undeveloped section of the roadway.

An aerial view of the intersection of Litchfield Road and Sweetwater in Surprise.

Construction will begin soon on Greenway Road from Sarival to Cotton Lane. This project will eliminate areas that have multiple lanes merging into one lane in each direction. These improvements will provide matched lane configurations on Greenway Road in and around the SR Loop 303/ Greenway Road interchange to accommodate the anticipated traffic volume, improve traffic flow and reduce congestion along Greenway Road. The completion of this roadway segment will also provide relief to the eastern and western city ingress and egress points; with a goal of improving commute times, mitigating congestion and improving air quality. Completion of this roadway should also relieve traffic from other east/west arterial roadways.

The specific improvements within this segment of Greenway Road will include two additional travel lanes (for a total of four), provisions for drainage, sidewalks, bicycle lane, street lighting, landscaping, and turn lanes. This project will also include the relocation of existing Maricopa Water District infrastructure.

Roadwork is scheduled to begin in late September or early October, and is expected to continue until early 2021. You may notice some utility work taking place on the roadway in advance of the project.

Community Resources

The City of Surprise has housing assistance resources available to help individuals, families and social workers in finding housing help.

The Surprise CARES Housing Stability Program is one program that is available. This program provides financial assistance for up to three consecutive months of rental or mortgage assistance, and up to three consecutive months utility assistance if in conjunction with rental/mortgage assistance. The purpose of this program is to assist low-income households who have had loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Rent or mortgage payments will be made directly to the landlord or financial institution. To see if you are eligible, please visit https://www.surpriseaz.gov/3823/CARES-Housing-Stability-Program to complete an eligibility assessment.

For additional programs and information, please contact the Neighborhood Services Division at 623.222.1550 or the Surprise Resource Center at 623.222.1600.

Esports Video Game Tournaments

Surprise Parks and Recreation and Bravous E-Sports are offering four different video game tournaments during the Fall 2020 sports season for participants ages 7-16. Tournaments will include Rocket League, Fortnight, Madden 20 and Super Smash Bros. Register online at https://secure.rec1.com/AZ/surprise-community-rec/catalog.

Surprise Aquatic Center Mural

The mural on the Surprise Aquatic Center has been completed! Voters had a chance to vote between two concepts, and chose “Swimming with Porpoise.” The mural was painted by street artist “Bacpac.” The Surprise Aquatic Center is located at 15831 N. Bullard Avenue. Thank you to everyone that voted!

A mural of swimming dolphins.

New Business in District 6

Firestone Complete Auto Care opened a new store, located at 13475 N. Litchfield Road, on August 21.

Council Meetings and Agenda

The next regularly scheduled City Council Meetings will take place on Tuesday, September 1st and Tuesday September 15th at 6 p.m. Agendas are always posted online at a minimum of two days prior. If you see something on the agenda that concerns you, please reach out before the meeting, so I have time to address your concern. I may even ask your questions during the City Council presentation. The best way to reach me is chris.judd@surpriseaz.gov.

Please note that City Hall is closed Monday, September 7, in observance of Labor Day.

Meet and Greet

My next monthly Meet and Greet is tentatively scheduled for September 23, from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. at Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, 14029 W. Waddell Road, Surprise, AZ 85379. Due to COVID-19, there may be changes to my Meet and Greet schedule. Please check my webpage at https://d6.surpriseaz.gov/ for updates to my meeting schedule.