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What’s happening in your city? Get answers at the D3 Meet & Greet!

Hello Neighbors,

There are a lot of great things going on in Surprise, and I have two meetings coming up where you can get updates and ask questions!

My D3 Meet and Greet is this Saturday, February 10 at Jim’s Burger and Eggs, 17019 W. Greenway Road. I will be there from 10 a.m. – Noon and would love if you could stop in and chat for a bit. This is an informal way for me to learn about the issues that are important to you and help answer any questions you may have. Can’t make this one? I host my D3 Meet and Greets every second and fourth Saturday of the month at the same time and same location.

Then, on Thursday, February 22 at 6 p.m., I am hosting my D3 Quarterly Meeting at Larry H. Miller Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram, located at 13165 N. Autoshow Avenue. This meeting includes presentations from various city staff. The agenda is as follows:

  • Water Company Acquisition Election
  • Economic Development Update
  • Community Development Update
  • General Obligation Bond Status Update

I look forward to seeing you! Plus, you can always reach out to me at or 623.222.1323. Additionally, you can connect with me on Twitter at @Surprise_D3 and Facebook at

Patrick Duffy
Councilmember District 3

City begins FY19 budget discussions

The City of Surprise Fiscal Year 2019 budget-building process kicked off at the City Council’s Work Session, 4 p.m., Tuesday, February 6.

This was the first in a series of presentations regarding the overall development of the budget. The first presentation provided a general overview of the city’s budget, including revenue sources, city funds and expenditures.

The presentation also highlighted outside issues that influence the outcomes of the budget process. View presentation.

Future Council Work Sessions and Regular Meetings will include additional presentations related to budget development, including topics on Capital Improvement Projects and continued operating budget discussions. The Recommended Budget is scheduled for release in April, followed by months of Council and public review that will result in the adoption of a balanced FY2019 budget in June. FY2019 begins July 1, 2018.

Council agendas are posted online at at least two business days before the meeting. City Council meets the first and third Tuesdays of each month. Work Sessions are at 4 p.m. and Regular Meetings begin at 6 p.m. All meetings are carried live on Surprise TV for cable customers and streamed online at

January 25, 2018 • D3 Quarterly Newsletter

Happy New Year to each of you! Great things are on the horizon for us in Surprise this year. With the passing of the Decide Surprise GO Bond, several major projects- that have been on the drawing board- will begin to take shape. City Council has been working hard to lay a strong foundation for new jobs and thoughtful development. You will continue to witness the work of the Council this year. With the New Year comes a sense of renewed energy and optimism. I hope you share that optimism with me!

This month, I will start hosting bi-monthly meetings so we can get to know each other. These meetings will be held at Jim’s Burgers and Eggs, 17019 W. Greenway Road, beginning at 10 am. My first meeting will be held on this Saturday, January 27.

In addition, I will continue to host my District 3 Community Meetings. My next meeting will be held on February 21st at 6 pm. Staff will accompany me and provide city updates. If there are any particular topics you’d like to see addressed, please let me know. I look forward to seeing you soon.

Decide Surprise General Obligation Bond Information

Last November, registered voters in Surprise graciously approved the three General Obligation (GO) Bond questions in the areas of Public Safety, Traffic Congestion Mitigation and Pavement Preservation. The three questions represented 10 capital improvement projects.

The city has established a webpage to update our voters on the projects so you will see when and how the investments are made. This website will be updated regularly through 2022, when all projects are expected to be complete.

The city recently released the anticipated procurement schedule for some of the projects. The complete schedule, project timeline details and additional information is available at view the formal bid posting please visit Anticipated Procurement Schedule for Bond Projects.

Water Company Acquisition on May Ballot

Surprise voters will decide whether or not to authorize the purchase and acquisition of a water service company in a Special Election slated for May 15. City Council approved sending the question to ballot at their November 7th Regular Meeting.

Circle City Water Company (CCW) is a small water service company in the northern part of Surprise’s planning area and future water service area. This acquisition would provide Surprise with the company’s existing water infrastructure and grow the city’s allocation of Colorado River water by more than 38 percent.

Colorado River water is currently the only renewable surface supply available to Surprise. Having a right to more surface water will help the city meet future demands and shortfalls. The purchase of CCW would be funded through the sale of current and future water portfolio assets.

Educational public meetings will be scheduled ahead of the May 15 Special Election. Meeting dates and locations will be posted on Additionally, an Information Pamphlet will be mailed out in April to all registered households in Surprise.

Economic Development Update

We have some new businesses and developments in District 3 and Surprise! A new retail development located at Waddell Road and Loop 303 is under construction. This 9,000 square foot retail center will include a Sprint Store and American Best Contacts. Destiny Springs Behavioral Hospital is also under construction, at Bell and Dysart roads, behind Cobalt. The 70,000 square foot hospital will support 125 jobs. Thompson Thrift, located at Bell Road and Civic Center Plaza, continues to grow. They are currently completing tenant improvements, but in the very near future, we will see the openings of Tokyo Joe’s, Starbucks, Menchie’s Yogurt, and Pieology. In-N-Out Burger will also be opening soon, immediately next door to these restaurants, in their new 6,000 square foot restaurant. Hilton Garden Inn is building a 78,000 square foot hotel, south of Bell Road and west of Bullard Avenue. Recent new businesses that have opened include Greulich’s Automotive, Raising Cane’s and Milam Glass, to name a few.

Community Development Update

As you have most likely noticed, District 3 continues to grow. With regards to Community Development, there are several projects in various stages. Zanjero Trails final plats, located at the southwest corner of Cactus and Perryville roads and the northwest corner of Peoria Avenue and Perryville Road, are under review. This project would consist of 361 lots. City Council will be considering this project in the next few months. Avilla, which is located at the northeast corner of Reems and Waddell roads, has 127 units in building plan review at the moment. This multi-family project rezoning request and site plan were approved by both the Planning & Zoning Commission as well as the City Council.

Other projects in various development stages include Toll at Prasada which will be located west of Cotton Lane between Peoria and Cactus roads. This plat includes 2,207 lots over 792 acres in several phases. Heritage Farm rezone and preliminary plat, located at the southeast corner of Waddell Road and 175th Avenue, will consist of 137 lots on 33 acres and the Rancho Trugold rezone and preliminary plat, located north of Sweetwater between Cotton Road and 175th Avenue, will consist of 240 lots on 63 acres.

Surprise Stadium Box Office Is Now Open

The Surprise Stadium box office, Spring Training home of the Texas Rangers and Kansas City Royals, is open for ticket sales. The 16th Annual Surprise Spring Training season will begin Saturday, February 24, featuring the Kansas City Royals against the 2017 National League Champions Los Angeles Dodgers. Surprise Stadium will host 31 games this season which include matchups against all teams in the Cactus League and two double headers March 12 and March 17.

Box Office Hours Through February 16:
Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday: 8 a.m. – Noon

Box Office Hours February 17 – March 25:
Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Saturday: 8 a.m. – Noon
Sunday: 8 a.m. – half-hour after end of game

Season ticket packages and single-game tickets will remain on sale online and by phone at 623.222.2222.

Add to your baseball experience, and purchase your Surprise NCAA College Baseball tickets for 2018! Surprise Stadium will host two NCAA College Baseball tournaments, featuring teams from the BIG 10, Mountain West, and PAC 12 conferences, including perennial power Oregon State. Individual game tickets and tournament passes will go on sale January 6.

Tournament Schedules:

College Baseball Classic Feb. 16-19 – featuring Oregon State, New Mexico, Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo and Gonzaga

BIG 10 – PAC 12 Baseball Challenge Feb. 22-25 – featuring Oregon State, Nebraska, Utah and Ohio State

College individual game tickets and tournament passes may also be purchased over the phone by calling the box office at 623.222.2222. For questions or more information, please check our website at

Sundays in the Park

The City of Surprise, in coordination with State 48 Brewery and Food Truck Friday West, continues to present Sunday in the Park Food Truck Festival with live music! All events are held at the 8-Acres Park, 15960 N. Bullard Avenue. Event admission is free; food and drink are available for purchase. There is always a variety of delicious food trucks, as well as an assortment of craft beers and wines provided by State 48 Brewery. This is a great opportunity to enjoy live entertainment and unique food trucks that the whole family will love. Don’t forget a blanket or a lawn chair. Dogs must be on leashes.

The next events will be held on:
Feb 11th, Noon – 4 pm
March 11th, 4 – 8 pm
April 8th,4 – 8 pm

Be sure to check out these other awesome events!

  • For Teens: Outdoor Laser Tag Tournament – Saturday, February 24th 5-9 pm Surprise Community Park
  • Spring Eggstravaganza – Saturday March 31st on the Kansas City Royals Practice fields. Gates open @ 7:30 am. First egg hunt starts at 8:20 am. Mr. and Mrs. Bunny, face painters, food and inflatables and more!
  • The Royals are holding an adaptive baseball clinic on Saturday, February 24th at 4:30 pm at Dreamcatcher Park.
  • CRS is currently offering registration for a Spring Break Soccer Camp that will be held March 20-22 for ages 7-12. Registration is also ongoing for baseball, softball and volleyball leagues, along with baseball and softball skills classes.
  • Spring Break Camp will be held March 19-23 from 6:30 am-6 pm at Sierra Montana Recreation Center. The City of Surprise Spring Break Camp will keep your child busy during the school break in a fun, supervised environment. Children will enjoy games, crafts and field trips. Please have your child bring a sack lunch, and afternoon snack will be provided. Space is limited, so please sign up early to secure your child’s registration.
  • Cal Ripken Day Parade of Teams will be Saturday, March 24. Coaches and players from the City of Surprise Cal Ripken and Babe Ruth Softball leagues will be recognized in a parade of teams into the stadium onto the field before a major league spring training game.

National Citizens Survey Coming Soon

What do you love about living in Surprise? What services do you value most? What can the city do better to improve the quality of life in our hometown? You can share your thoughts in the 2018 National Citizens Survey (NCS)! What you tell us in this survey helps to identify priority projects for Surprise and indicates where limited city funding should go in order to provide the services you most desire.

This mailed survey, conducted by the National Research Center of Boulder, Colorado, examines residents’ responses on topics ranging from traffic flow to public safety to senior and youth services. The scientific survey sample equals 1,500 surveys that will be mailed to homes throughout the city.

All survey results are anonymous. The city does not know which addresses have been selected by the third-party surveyor and only receives the aggregate results.

Beginning January 29, postcards will arrive at the selected addresses advising that the survey is on the way. The survey itself, along with a postage-paid return envelope, will arrive February 5. To be sure that selected residents receive their survey, a second survey will be mailed as a follow-up on February 12. Residents who complete and mail the first survey can simply recycle the second one. Selected households will also receive instructions for how to complete the survey online.

The last NCS the city conducted was in 2015, and 90% of residents indicated they would recommend Surprise as a place to live, a rating that is “much above” surveyed cities of our size. Residents told us Safety, Mobility and the Economy were most important to them.

Respondents said we need to work on improving transportation/transit options, local job choices, education and resident volunteer opportunities.

Since the 2015 survey, the city, in partnership with the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT), completed the Bell-Grand Intersection Improvements; Greenway Road was widened; residents passed a General Obligation Bond to fund projects in Public Safety, Transportation and Pavement Preservation; and our Human Service and Community Vitality Department continues to grow volunteer opportunities, most recently hosting nearly 400 volunteers during the city’s 2nd Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Celebration of Service.

On the education front, Ottawa University opened a campus at City Center; West-MEC’s new northwest valley campus opened last summer and Highland Prep began classes last fall. Additionally, more than 3,000 new jobs were created in Surprise since our last survey was conducted.

If your household receives a survey, please take the time to complete it and mail it back. By participating, you are helping to make Surprise an even better community! Results are expected by early summer and will be shared online at

Surprise Youth Council

Our Surprise Youth Council (SYC) has been busy! They will host their 2nd annual rooftop party for local high schools students at City Hall. This year, Youth Services has secured additional funding from the Surprise Youth Foundation in order to increase the atmosphere and number of activities from last year’s successful event. Attendees will enjoy music, arcade and lawn games, street tacos, and more! The event will be held on February 24 from 7 until 10 pm.

SYC recruitment is right around the corner. Recruitment will be ongoing during February and March through numerous outlets. For more information, please visit

In closing, thank you for your continued support. I am always available for my constituents. You can email me at or call me at 623.222.1323. Additionally, you can follow me on Facebook at

October 27, 2017 • D3 Quarterly Newsletter

Last month, I had the honor of being appointed to represent the residents of District 3. I have lived in Surprise for eight years with the last two years in District 3. I was appointed to the Surprise Municipal Property Corporation Board earlier this year and through my city service, I have been part of numerous Community and Recreation Services events. I have lived in Arizona most of my life and I hold a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Arizona State University. Go Sun Devils! I look forward to meeting you and serving you in this capacity. Together, we have a mutual passion for this city and a desire to see it succeed!

I hosted my first D3 quarterly meeting on Tuesday, October 24, at the Sierra Montana Recreation Center. For those of you who were able to attend, thank you! For those of you who were unable to attend, I wanted to be sure you received the same update.

Economic Development Update

It’s a fact that Surprise is one of the safest cities, but did you know it is one of the fastest-growing as well? Residential growth aside – the City of Surprise has also been growing jobs and services! More than a million square feet each year of non-residential – including retail, commercial, industrial, medical, education – buildings have been constructed in Surprise each year for three years in a row.

For a relatively young, new community, Surprise has come a long way – from a population of only 7,122 in 1990 to 132,677 today (Source: US Census). Much has been accomplished in recent years, and many more opportunities are ahead for us.

Ottawa University

This year, Surprise officially transitioned from a bedroom community to a university town with the February 2017 announcement of the new residential campus of Ottawa University, located at Surprise City Center next to City Hall! Their first class welcomed 434 enrolled new students, many of which are involved in the 21 intercollegiate athletic teams on the new campus. The new athletic field has been constructed, and their first phase of construction on an initial 13 acres of land is in progress. The school plans to grow to more than 3,000 students over the next 10 years.

Shop Local Campaign Kicked Off!

In September 2017, Surprise City Council approved a pilot program with the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce to deploy a citywide “Shop Local” program based upon the best practices of the 2016 award-winning “Shop Bell and Grand” digital marketing campaign. Starting next month, those who opt into the citywide program by texting the word “ShopSurprise” to 85100 will receive digital discounts for restaurants, services and products throughout the City of Surprise. The program will launch in time for the holiday shopping season.

AZ TechCelerator – Tech the Halls

Mark your calendars from 5 -7 PM on December 7th, when the City of Surprise business incubator, the AZ TechCelerator, located at 12425 West Bell Road, celebrates its second annual “Tech the Halls” event! Meet the innovators growing their businesses, play games, enter to win ‘tech’ raffle prizes – and check out the space that offers entrepreneurs in Surprise a place to grow their dreams.

The AZ TechCelerator has assisted the direct creation of more than 250 tech jobs, 32 new businesses, and two of the most successful incubator graduates in Arizona. Flagship telemedicine startup MD24 House Call graduated into 15,000 square feet of office space in Surprise and employs more than 150 people. Additionally, the first AZ TechCelerator tenant, Athena Wireless, was acquired by Google; Athena’s founder is now mentoring a second venture at the AZ TechCelerator called Me On A Bike.

New awards for global excellence in Economic Development

The Surprise Economic Development team won three international awards on September 19 at the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) conference in Toronto – and the following week was recognized by the Global Chamber of Phoenix as the “Global Business City of the Year!”

The IEDC awards recognized Surprise, in the population category of 25,000-200,000, for the following:

  • Silver Award for Partnerships with Educational Institutions – Ottawa University
  • Bronze Award for Entrepreneurship – AZ TechCelerator
  • Bronze Award for Business Retention & Expansion (Single Event) – City of Surprise Bridge-to-Business Program / Bell & Grand Campaign

The Global Chamber of Phoenix awarded Surprise the Global Business City of the Year distinction this year because of the city’s international economic development strategy in place to attract companies, in addition to wins to the city like Ottawa University, IRIS USA, and Rioglass Solar.

New Opportunities:

  • Medical project growth is on the rise in Surprise! Just as Mainstreet Rapid Recovery Center cut the ribbon and opened their doors to their new 100-bed facility this month, Destiny Springs Behavioral Health Hospital began construction on its new $25 million facility near Dysart Road, north of Bell Road, not far from the new Cobalt Medical Rehabilitation Hospital. Additionally, the new Banner medical building located at Statler and Litchfield Road is almost fully leased.
  • Advanced Manufacturing Growth: At the Southwest Rail Plex, where four companies call Surprise their headquarters, Milam Glass is nearing completion of their 22,000 square foot office/warehouse building, which broke ground in May of this year. While the Surprise Economic Development Department actively markets the rail-shovel-ready land sites remaining in the advanced manufacturing park for new ground-up operations, four buildings of new speculative industrial space totaling almost 200,000 square feet are currently under construction for those businesses looking for existing space.
  • Retail is booming:
    • Now Open: Popeyes Louisiana Chicken, Wendy’s, Pure Physique PilateZ, Dysart Mini Storage, Subaru Superstore of Surprise Dealership (our 9th auto dealer!), Salad & Go, 3 Minute Car Wash, Indulge Froyo, PT Noodles, Boba Craze
    • Coming Soon: At City Center on Bell Road, watch for In-N-Out Burger (the City’s #1 most-requested Surprise restaurant!), in addition to Tokyo Joe’s, Starbucks, Menchie’s, Piology, Raising Canes; at the Stadium a new Hilton Garden Inn has submitted plans for construction. At the Bell Road/303 area, a Cornerstone Car Wash, and restaurants Hayashi and Sonic. Also check out Surprise Comics at Cactus Road and Reems as well as Scooter’s Coffee, which is under construction on Bell Road east of Grand Avenue.
    • The Surprise Most Wanted: The Surprise Economic Development Department continues to pursue all most-wanted retailers voted as most desired by the residents of Surprise – including Costco and Hobby Lobby! Additionally, the team in Surprise announced on October 23rd that it had submitted a proposal along with a video to attract the most-wanted-employment-project-in-North America, the new $5 billion Amazon second headquarters project.

Surprise as one of the Safest Cities:
Fastest growing city:

Community Development Update

Community Development Director Eric Fitzer provided attendees of my meeting with an update. You will begin to see even more development in our district. It’s an exciting time to live in D3!

The Prasada Toll Brothers development preliminary plat just completed second review and the Minor PAD Amendment is in review. This project consists of 792 acres in 10 phases with a total of 2,350 lots. Phase 1 will consist of 459 lots. This development, planned in the Prasada area along the 303, is set up to accommodate a Master Plat and subsequent lotting plats as the market dictates.

Carsense Automotive, a pre-owned auto dealership is in concept review. Once approved, it will be located on the vacant lot adjacent to Toyota.

Another preliminary plat located at 175th & Sweetwater is in rezone review with the city. The preliminary plat includes 44 single-family lots on 10 acres.

Heritage Farm, a development at the southeast corner of 175th & Waddell, is under review. This development will require a zone change. It includes 137 lots on 33 acres.

We have a development in review that is located at the northwest corner of Cotton & Sweetwater – North side of Sweetwater from Cotton to 175th. This development will include 240 lots on 63 acres.

Highland Prep Academy, which is located at the northwest corner of Reems & Hearn has completed its first phase of construction. Their second phase is under review.

The Zanjero Trails development, located in the southwest corner of Peoria Avenue, east of Perryville Road continues to move forward. Several parcels have been platted in the vicinity of the Shadow Ridge High School on Peoria Avenue. Builders such as Beazer, Woodside, and Meritage Homes have model home complexes in operation and several under review. In addition, south of Cactus, several parcels are under review for final plat. Richmond American Homes is in for review for home product and model home complex.

Sierra Montana Crossings located at the southwest corner of Greenway Rd and Cotton Lane is coming along. This commercial center has three (3) projects:

  • Sonic Drive Thru (currently seeking certificate of occupancy)
  • Shell building with drive thru (currently under design review)
  • Shell building (had concept review, awaiting submittal)

Acoma Court development is located at the northeast corner of Acoma Drive and 159th Avenue. The home product and model home complex are being reviewed on this infill residential development.

Greer Ranch, located east of Sarival Avenue and south of Cactus Road, continues to expand. Taylor Morrison and Richmond American Homes are in for review for home product and model home complex.

Retreat at Sycamore Farms, located west of 165th Drive and South of Cholla Street, has a model home complex open by Richmond American Homes.


Currently the city is developing the Walking and Biking Map for each individual Dysart Unified School District (DUSD) school which includes Sonoran Heights and Sunset Elementary. This project will also combine all the maps into a citywide walking and biking map that can be utilized online or printed.

Below you will find the Safe Routes To Schools (SRTS) grants for Sonoran Heights and Sunset Elementary schools. We will begin encouragement efforts and the SRTS study for Sonoran Heights early next year. The Sunset Elementary efforts will begin in January 2020. Each plan will work with the individual school and include participation of parents, students and DUSD staff.

Year TIP ID Location Work Federal Local Total
2018 SUR18-701 Kingswood, West Point, and Sonoran Heights Elementary SRTS Support Activity Project $15,677 $948 $16,625
2018 SUR18-703 Kingswood, West Point, and Sonoran Heights Elementary Safe Routes to School Studies $73,000 $4,413 $77,413
2019 SUR19-702 Kingswood, West Point, and Sonoran Heights Elementary SRTS Support Activity Project $21,740 $1,314 $23,054
2020 SUR20-703 Kingswood, West Point, and Sonoran Heights Elementary SRTS Support Activity Project $27,811 $1,681 $29,492
2019 SUR19-705 Canyon Ridge, Cimarron Springs, Sunset Hills, and Western Peaks Elementary Safe Routes to School Studies $94,300 $5,700 $100,000

Surprise Arts and Culture Master Plan Update

The city is at a crossroads when looking at the growth and presence of visual art and cultural events and how they will influence our city’s future. The community is invited to help shape the city’s first Surprise Arts & Culture Master Plan. The plan will provide strategic direction for arts and culture in Surprise including topics from public art to performing arts, festivals, and music.

All residents are invited to take our online survey, which helps focus and clarify the public input for the Plan. The survey can be found at and it closes October 31.

The next formal community outreach will begin in January when the first public draft will be distributed and discussed.

Public Works Update

Pavement preservation in District 3 and around the city continues, with Spring Lane, Verde Vista Drive, and Acoma Drive within the Sierra Montaña neighborhood scheduled for resurfacing in the next few months. Almost every road in the Sarah Ann Ranch neighborhood is scheduled for treatment next fall (2018).

All of the traffic signals on Bell Road are undergoing a hardware upgrade as part of a multi-agency Adaptive Signal Technology project that will allow greater synchronization and optimization of traffic flow on Bell Road between the western city limits of Surprise all the way east to Scottsdale.

The Bullard Avenue Traffic and Pedestrian Safety project is scheduled to begin construction in May 2018. This project will resurface the entire roadway between Greenway Road and Peoria Avenue; add a second vehicle lane in each direction; install a landscaped median between Greenway and Waddell roads; modify the existing median between Sweetwater Avenue and Cholla Street; install a buffered bike lane in both directions between Greenway Road and Peoria Avenue; and install full traffic signals at the Acoma Drive and Sweetwater Avenue intersections. Less than 6% of the total costs of this project will be paid with local tax dollars.

Staff and I are often asked, “Why wasn’t the section of Waddell Road, between 175th Avenue and Cotton Lane, included in the proposed Waddell Road traffic congestion mitigation project being considered by voters in the November 7th bond election?” Here is the answer:

Candidly, the proposed traffic congestion mitigation projects in the bond election issue do not resolve all of the necessary transportation improvements in the City of Surprise. In preparing the bond proposal, City Council and city staff gave careful consideration to the priority needs, the project costs and the impacts this secondary property tax would have on residents, if passed.

The section of Waddell Road (175th Avenue to Cotton Lane) is clearly a gap in the city’s transportation network. It is incomplete with multiple lanes being forced to merge into a single lane, it’s missing sidewalks, street lights, stormwater mitigation, and other design features included in a complete street. However, the bigger need currently is the section of Waddell Road between Cotton Lane and State Route 303. It has been fully-built out and traffic counts are approximately 35% greater in this section than in the section between 175th Avenue and Cotton Lane.

Human Service & Community Vitality Update

Neighborhood Grant Program Application Now Available

The Surprise City Council approved funding to support the Neighborhood Grant Program that provides eligible neighborhoods with small grants to fund neighborhood events, functions or even some community improvements. Recognizing an opportunity to encourage community engagement and further build strong relationships with communities in Surprise, the city designated $10,000 to support the grant program for FY18.

To be considered, projects must meet the following program criteria:

  • Provide a public benefit
  • Result in a product, which benefits a neighborhood or the larger Surprise Community
  • Be feasible for completion by June 2018
  • Involve the benefiting neighborhood in project identification, planning and execution
  • Emphasize neighborhood self-help; or be educational, community-building, or a public physical improvement
  • Final report due and presentation to the Sub-Committee on Community Outreach, Partnerships and Grants on June 13, 2018

Additionally, a minimum of five neighbors within the residential area must sign the application and support the idea. Neighborhoods governed by a homeowners association (HOA) must have HOA approval.

Interested communities should deliver the complete Neighborhood Grant Program application to City Hall, attention Jodi Tas, by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, November 10. For more information about the grant, visit Neighborhood Grant Program or contact Jodi Tas, 623.222.1330.

Decide Surprise GO Bond

On Tuesday, November 7, Surprise residents will consider three separate General Obligation Bond questions to fund 10 capital improvement projects in the areas of Public Safety, Traffic Congestion Mitigation and Pavement Preservation. You can see what the projects would look like, and what needs they would address, in three new videos that cover each of the bond questions. The videos are available on the Decide Surprise website at Also on the Decide Surprise website, find information on the projects and the associated costs.

If any of the bond questions are approved by voters in November, the cost to residents would be administered via a secondary property tax. Currently, Surprise does not have a secondary property tax.

If you prefer to drop your ballot off, rather than mail it, ballot drop-off is available at Surprise City Hall – City Clerk’s Office now through Election Day! If you lost your ballot, replacement voting begins Saturday, October 28 through Election Day, Tuesday, November 7.

The Clerk’s Office will be open for ballot-drop off or replacement voting 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., all week, including weekends, and offer extended hours on Election Day, Nov. 7, of 6 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Again, I look forward to serving you. Please feel free to reach out to me at or 623.222.1323. Additionally, you can connect with me on Twitter at @Surprise_D3 and Facebook at

Meet your new District 3 Councilmember Oct. 24

Hello, fellow District 3 residents!

I am honored to be your new District 3 council representative and would love to get to know you at my first community meeting on Oct. 24, 6 pm, at the Sierra Montana Recreation Center,14861 N Spring Ln, Surprise.

I’ll be sharing a little about my passion for the city and why I chose to apply for the D3 Council position. I have also invited city staff to come and share updates on different things happening in the city.

You can expect presentations on the upcoming bond election and the Arts & Culture Master Plan that the city’s creating; you’ll also hear about what’s going on in Economic Development, Community Development and Public Works, including an update on traffic near Paradise Honors.

I hope you can make it, but if you can’t, you can always reach out to me at or 623.222.1323. You can also connect with me on Twitter @Surprise_D3 and Facebook at

I am looking forward to representing you!


Patrick Duffy

City of Surprise Community & Recreation Services receives National Accreditation

The City of Surprise Community & Recreation Services Department has received accreditation by the National Recreation and Parks Association.  The Association recognized Surprise’s efforts to provide high quality parks and recreation services and experience to its residents and visitors.

The Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies (CAPRA) has issued a five year accreditation to the city’s Community & Recreation Services Department after meeting more than 140 standards ranging from hiring practices to marketing techniques, from park planning to program implementation.

Community and Recreation Services Director, Donna Miller said the department is “excited for the accreditation”, which came after a preliminary application, self-assessment study and an onsite visit by peer review performed by a CAPRA visitation team.  The three-member visitation team spent several days evaluating the departments administrative and operation practices.

“The accreditation stamp reaffirms that we are among premier agencies in the country,” said Miller.  We have proven that our department follows proper practices and procedures in the administration of our parks, facilities and programs.”

The application and accreditation process was intensive, lasting more than 14 months.  The final step was a hearing through the commission in September.  Immediately following the hearing city staff received the good news and are thrilled to be recognized for following these important standards.

The public will benefit from the accreditation by knowing that the city is adhering to best practices in the field of parks, facilities and programs.  It also shows partners, potential funders and the public that Surprise operates under such standards.

“The best part of this process is that all of the staff was involved, which provides ownership and pride in the programs and services in which they offer to the residents,” said Miller.

Council appoints Duffy to fill D3 vacancy

The Surprise City Council approved the appointment of Patrick Duffy to represent the residents of District 3 at their Tuesday night Regular Council Meeting.

Duffy replaces John Williams, who resigned from Council on August 15, 2017.

Duffy is a Financial Advisor for Merrill Lynch and for the past 9 years has worked part-time as a City of Surprise Recreation Leader 3. He has lived in Surprise for eight years, two of them in D3. Duffy was a member of the Surprise Municipal Property Corporation Board and through his city service has been part of numerous Community and Recreation Services events including Spring Training support, Relay for Life events and Cal Ripken All-Star games. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Arizona State University.

Duffy will be sworn into office at the next Council meeting on October 3.

The term expiration for the appointment will be December 31, 2018; and the remainder of the four-year term will be placed on the next scheduled Council election in August 2018.

Seven apply for D3 seat; Council interviews on Sept. 5

The Surprise City Council will meet to interview the seven applicants seeking the vacant District 3 council seat in a Special Meeting, September 5, at 3 p.m., in City Hall- Council Chambers.

The names of those who filed their applicants by the 5 p.m., August 30th deadline are:  Paul Daly; Patrick Duffy; James Hodge; Randal Kidd Jr.; Kevin Loken; Gisele Norberg; and Gary “Doc” Sullivan.

Paul Daly (withdraw application) has lived in D3 for two years, after living in Scottsdale for 25 years. He is retired from the residential mortgage industry. He served on an informal committee for Greer Ranch North to explore traffic concerns in the neighborhood near the Sonoran Heights Elementary School.  He served on the Board of Directors and as President of the Franklin Park, IL Chamber of Commerce 1976 – 1980. He has an Associate Degree in Marketing Mid-Management from Triton College.

Patrick Duffy is a Financial Advisor for Merrill Lynch and for the past 9 years has worked part-time as a City of Surprise Recreation Leader 3. He has lived in Surprise for eight years, two of them in D3. Duffy was a member of the Surprise Municipal Property Corporation Board and through his city service has been part of numerous Community and Recreation Services events including Spring Training support, Relay for Life events and Cal Ripken All-Star games. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Arizona State University.

James Hodge has lived in D3 for seven years and is an Assistant Manager at Discount Tire Direct. He has served as a youth baseball coach, youth flag football coach and volunteered as a score keeper for numerous city rec tournaments. He founded and operated the Sandra Lynn Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit that assisted families with funeral expenses through fundraising events.

Randal Kidd a Transition Specialist with the Arizona State Schools for the Deaf and Blind- Phoenix Campus. He has lived in Surprise for eight years. He is Vice President of the Deaf Community of Surprise and participated in the Surprise City Academy this spring. Kidd holds an Associate of Applied Science in Information & Computing Studies from Rochester Institute of Technology and is working towards obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Urban Planning from Arizona State University (May 2018).

Kevin Loken is a District Supervisor at XPO Logistics and had lived in D3 for less than a year. He has a Master of Arts in Management from National University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from Cal-State Fullerton. His grandfather, Carlo Leone has served on the Peoria City Council for nearly 20 years.

Gisele Norberg is a member of the Surprise Planning & Zoning Commission and has lived in D3 for nearly two years. Norberg is the owner and independent distributor of AdvoCare International. Her family’s construction business provided her with experience in commercial and residential development. Norberg ran unsuccessfully for the D3 Council seat in 2016. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Washington State University- Vancouver with a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Psychology.

Gary “Doc” Sullivan is a former Surprise City Councilmember (2003 – 2007), serving one of those years as Vice Mayor. He was a member of the former Surprise Economic Development Advisory Board. He has lived in Surprise for 17 years. Sullivan is retired and previously worked in sales for Cox Communications.

Learn more about the applicants here:

This meeting is an interview-only meeting, council will not take action. Public comments will be received at the public hearing and may also be submitted to the City Clerk through the close of the business day on Tuesday, September 12. Comments received in these ways will be sent to the Council and posted online by the end of the next business day.

Per city code, a district candidate must be selected by the Council no later than the second regularly scheduled council meeting following the public hearing, which is scheduled for 6 p.m., September 19.

The term expiration for the appointment will be December 31, 2018; and the remainder of the four-year term will be placed on the next scheduled Council election in August 2018.

All Council Meetings are carried live on Surprise TV; online at and on Facebook Live at