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 email@example.com 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!
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 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 email@example.com.
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.