Category Archives: Newsletter

Councilmember Roland Winters Newsletter

November 2019 • Newsletter

Well hello again to all the residents in this great city we call home and we have the good fortune to live in, Surprise. October started off for me with a bang with our City Council Meeting with a large agenda. Wednesday evening, I went to a Community Outreach Meeting, at Western Peaks Elementary School, to discuss the new development called Mesquite Mountain Ranch III. The development will be located off of Sun Valley Parkway on the western edge of Surprise, with great views of the White Tank Mountains. This family community will have amenities to include a pool for the residents.

On Thursday evening, I attended the Construction Board Meeting in the Council Chambers to hear all of the changes in our building codes, which need to be updated.

On Saturday, October 5, the Human Service and Community Vitality Department, in partnership with the Veterans, Disability, and Human Services Commission, put on a Care and Share Expo in the courtyard and parking garage at City Hall. They had many vendors with information, candy, gifts, and food for the visitors that attended.

Tuesday, October 8, I spent the morning at a company in Phoenix, called MSS. They look for people who have made advancements in their respected fields. I nominated Kathy Chandler, of Northwest Valley Connect, for all of her work getting transit started in the West Valley since coming down from Flagstaff about four years ago. The winners will be announced at the Governor’s Awards dinner on October 24th at the Phoenix Convention Center. On Wednesday, October 9, I attended a transportation update meeting at City Hall.

The morning of October 10, I spent two hours on a conference call with the other members of the Maricopa County Human Services Committee trying to find a solution for those folks in the West Valley who have fallen behind in paying their APS bills after our hot summer. The Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) directed APS not to turn anyone’s electricity off until after October 18 and also to set up a payment schedule for those customers to pay off their large bills.

On Friday, October 11, I attended the Friends of the Surprise Libraries meeting at a conference room at City Hall. These folks did some great things to help educate our young citizens with free books, donation of funds, and support from many volunteers. That same night, I had my regular monthly meeting at the community center at The Retreat in Arizona Traditions. We had a good crowd.

Of course, Saturday night, October 12, was Fiesta Grande. There was great attendance and many good entertainers. I think the crowds were the biggest we have had, maybe because it rained last year, and we could not have it. If you have never been, give it a try next year. The selection of classic cars varied. Thanks to those folks for sharing their vehicles.

On Monday, October 14, we had a meeting with some members of the Board of Saguaro View in the northwest part of my district to discuss what streets the city can maintain. However, the problem is that we do not have the right of way in which the city needs to maintain them. We have gotten some rights signed off to us in recent weeks, so we are making progress. Of course, on Tuesday October 15, we had our City Council Meeting at 6 p.m.

On Wednesday, October 16, we had a groundbreaking for Auviana Medical Development, located at 14753 W Mountain View Blvd. A number of medical buildings are being constructed.

I was invited to the Northwest Ranch HOA meeting, and they wanted to discuss the speeding on North West Ranch Parkway, so I asked our police chief Terry Young to attend and he was very helpful. The other concern was the need for some plants along North West Ranch Parkway, so I am pushing to get some funding for some plants and trees to be put in along the road.

Friday, October 18, at 6 p.m. was another art opening at the West Valley Arts Headquarters, right next to City Hall on Paradise Lane. Bernadette Carroll and her team always do such a good job at these art shows with a nice space.

An artist paints at the West Valley Arts Headquarters art show.

The family and I have been going to the Ottawa football games regularly this season, and we have a great time every Saturday night. Last year they went to the Victory Bowl. If you have not been to a game, try and get one next season. The beautiful field is worth the trip. So, Saturday night, October 19th, they won again.

On Sunday, October 20, over at Beardsley Park in Sun City West, North West Valley Connect had a great fundraiser on this beautiful day. I ran into a former City Councilman of Surprise and a friend of mine, Jim Biundo, with his classic car entry in the car show. There were also a number of vendors and entertainers.

Wednesday, October 23, you found me in a meeting at City Hall, then another conference call with the Maricopa Human Services Commission for another couple hours. That same day I greeted a company and their audience at the Christ’s Church of the Valley in Surprise. The organization will help people or companies bring their dreams to realities. Mission Create is a nonprofit incubator helping leaders successfully start their mission. They help launch your idea and support you with fundraising, legal compliance, and mentoring, so I welcomed them to Surprise.

On Thursday, October 24, I spent the day and into the night in Phoenix. I had my Valley Metro meeting located at 101 N 1st Ave in Phoenix. The agenda was full with a good discussion about the Tempe Street Car (the newest transit addition to the Phoenix Area). Since the folks voted for the expansion of the light rail, we can go forward with it. My next stop that night was to the Phoenix Convention Center for the Governor’s Award Program to acknowledge those businesses that made great technological advancements. Sorry to report the North West Valley Connect did not win top spot, but I did get to talk to the Governor.

Friday, October 25, at 7 a.m. you found me at the grand re-opening of the Sam’s Club on Bell Road. I was happy to say a few words to thank Lyle, the manager, for the eleven-million-dollar investment in the remodeling of the interior of the entire store to serve the residents better.

On Saturday night, I was at Mark Coronado Park for G.A.I.N. Night. I hope you made it out. I believe it was the largest turnout ever (over two thousand residents). The highlight of the evening for me was the releasing of three rehabilitated owls by our Police Chief Terry Young, Councilmember Chris Judd, and Public Works Director Mike Gent. To see those owls soar away was quite a sight and maybe one of them are now perched in the trees of your backyard. Of course, all the little residents of our city got their share of candy.

Vice Mayor Winters with Surprise Chief of Police, Terry Young, who holds a rehabilitated owl.

On Sunday, October 27, my wife and I attended the Neighborhood Block Party in Sun City Grand. Since I was elected Vice Mayor in January, I have been trying to get to all of the HOA block parties and/or neighborhood get togethers throughout our city. What an enjoyable afternoon it was with the residents on and around Patagonia Way having a meal with Gregg, Lynda, Bonnie, Jenn, Gerry, Chuck, and all the good folks there. The Mayor and Councilwoman Hayden (District 2 representative) were also there.

On Monday, October 28, was my monthly meeting with Mayor Hall. We meet once a month to check with each other as to how things are going or discuss our concerns. Tuesday, I had a transportation meeting at City Hall to discuss the construction on Waddell, Cactus, and Greenway roads, the progress and completion dates.

On Halloween, the last day of the month, you found me at a block party on W Lisbon St. in the community of Royal Ranch. All the homes were decorated with the owners best Halloween décor. John and his wife, as well as Patrick, Amy, and many others were great hosts to us and had lots of treats for the little trick-or-treaters.

Well, I will close for now and wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving. Have a great day with your family and friends, so be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Roland F. Winters Jr.

October 2019 • Newsletter

A big shout out to all the residents in this beautiful city we call home, and Happy Halloween. Before we get started on what I have done and where I have been in September. I just want to let my friends in Bell Point know that you will be getting some new neighbors, as you probably noticed on the east side of Bell Point. It is going to be called Bell Point II South. They cleaned off all the vegetation and turned the dirt over in two days for some new homes.

Wednesday, September 4, we had a Central Arizona Project (CAP) Dinner meeting and were brought up to speed on the CAP. With Surprise having annexed about 200 acres in the northwest part of my district, the CAP now runs through Surprise.

Surpirse City Managers and Councilmembers at the Central Arizona Project Dinner meeting.

We had our Council Meeting on Thursday, September 5 due to the holiday. That morning, I was at Rio Vista Park in Peoria to see the Vietnam Moving Wall that stayed there for three days. That is quite a sight.

On Saturday night, September 7, Council attended the Ottawa University game at their home football stadium on Tierra Buena. If you have not seen the football stadium yet, it is worth the trip over there. Who would have thought that Surprise would have their own football stadium with press box and the whole nine yards?

Monday, September 9 found me at the groundbreaking ceremony for Fire Station 304. This Fire Station is located on 163rd Avenue in the northwest part of District 1. It will be the largest Fire Station in Surprise when finished and will replace the temporary station, which has been in use for 17 years. Our firefighters and our residents in that area deserve a permanent fire house.

Then, I was off to a Chamber of Commerce Luncheon Meeting with Congresswoman Debbie Lesko at WESTMEC; that school is really growing. Congresswoman Lesko announced she is moving her office to Surprise from Glendale so it will be centrally located.

Congresswoman Debbi Lesko speaking at the Chamber of Commerce luncheon meeting.

Legacy School, near Marley Park, had a wonderful ceremony in honor of Patriot Day (September 11). The ceremony included the Surprise Police Department as well as the Color Guard raising the flag. There were many parents, students and elected officials in attendance.

Vice Mayor Winters, Councilmember Hayden and Councilmember Judd at the Patriot Day ceremony near Marley Park.

Friday, September 13, found me at my Friends of the Surprise Libraries meeting, and their latest project is getting a book return deposit built into the side of the new library at Asante Park. This would help residents since they would be able to drive up and return books without getting out of their car. That same night, I held my monthly meeting at the Community Center in Arizona Traditions. I had a discussion with one of my constituents last month, and she told me that since Arizona Traditions is a gated community, she can’t get in. Well, that cannot be further from the truth. When you arrive at the gate, just inform the guard that you are here to attend the District 1 meeting held by Vice Mayor Winters. Everyone is always welcome!

Tuesday, September 17, was Constitution Day. I was at Canyon Ridge Elementary School along with Mayor Hall and Councilman Sanders. Every year, this school puts on a nice program along with the Sons of the Revolution. I ended my night with our bi-monthly Council Work Session and Council Meeting.

I attended the Veteran’s Summit on Wednesday, September 18. This meeting works to get all of the individual veteran organizations to work together. The main project we need to concentrate on is a Veteran’s Hall. This would allow veterans to have a place to meet and gather. That same afternoon, I was on a conference call to discuss our budget.

On Thursday, September 19, I was at my Valley Metro Meeting in Phoenix. Some of the discussion was the fact the residents approved the continuous building of the light rail. That evening, I was at the Post 96 Meeting at the Neighborhood Center in Arizona Traditions. During this meeting, four young men from Willow Canyon High School were recognized for their completion of the NAU Boys State program where they learned about civic engagement. Mayor Hall and Councilmember Hayden were there to support these young men. Thank you to Post 96 for sponsoring this event each year.

City of Surprise Coucilmembers and Willow Canyon High School students outside the Post 96 meeting at Arizona Traditions.

Friday, September 20 (my birthday), found me at Gaines Park in the Original Town Site for a neighborhood picnic. The Mayor and Councilmember Remley were in attendance. It was a beautiful day for this event.

On Saturday, I was at the celebration of placing a Peace Pole at City Hall, across the street from the Police Department. This piece of art was donated to the city by the Surprise Rotary Club in collaboration with the Surprise Arts Commission. Thank you to Jay Likus from the Rotary Club for being the emcee for the event. The beautiful piece of art has a friendly reminder on there to be Peace on Earth in four languages. I was able to thank the Rotary Club and the Arts Commission on behalf of Mayor and Council.

Monday, September 23, found me at Dysart Unified School District’s dedication ceremony for Freedom Traditional School. It was certainly a big celebration with many students, parents, staff and elected officials. This school took the place of the old Parkview Elementary School.

Surprise City Councilmembers at Dysart Unified School District’s dedication ceremony for Freedom Traditional School.

That same evening was my Maricopa County Human Services Commission Meeting in Phoenix, and if you remember, that was the night it was raining like crazy. The discussion that night was about people in low income brackets who may have their electricity turned off. The issue was at what temperature does it need to be for the company to not be allowed to turn off power.

The next morning was beautiful with no more rain, and I was at Fire Station 305 to celebrate the donation of a fire truck to Valley Vista Fire Science Program. It was a great event, and the students were also in attendance.

That evening, I attended the Community Outreach Meeting at Asante Prep in regards to the Austin Ranch Development in the northwest part of my district. This community is going to be very nice.

On Wednesday, September 25, we had a nice tour and ribbon cutting for SeaCa Packaging. This is one of our newest manufacturing plants, which brought in 65 phase one jobs. This company is family owned and operated since 1889. If you have a chance, you can read about the wonderful history of the company and family online at www.seattlebox.com/seaca.html.

Surprise City Council tour the SeaCa Packing facility.

That same night, there was a special showing of the Peanut Butter Falcon at the AMC Theater on Litchfield Road. This whole event was set up by Charles Collins, a resident who lives in my district who has a special needs daughter. I want to also thank the manager of the AMC Theater for the special showing for those special clients of One Step Beyond, located on Reems and Bell roads. This was a very nice event.

Vice Mayor Winters at a special showing of the Peanut Butter Falcon at the AMC Theater on Litchfield Road.

On Thursday, September 26, I was at the Northwest Valley Connect Meeting – mainly to hear what the new Chief Operation Officer for Total Ride had to say. Total Ride is one of the providers for Ride Choice. They are trying very hard to get their act together.

That same day, I had my monthly meeting with our City Manager, then my monthly meeting with Mayor Hall. At 5:00 p.m. I had my last meeting of the day with Kendra Pettis and Joe Bertoletti from Sports and Tourism. This meeting was to kick around some ideas for events in Surprise.

On Friday, September 27, I spend 2 ½ hours at the Dysart Unified School District Main Offices filling out a survey and breaking into groups to learn how to solve problems. That same afternoon was the ribbon cutting for Trimaco, another great manufacturing facility in Surprise. They specialize in paint supplies and will bring lots of jobs to our city. The owner came to this country with very little money but climbed to the top with a very successful company. I got to the ribbon cutting a little early so I was given a private tour of the facility. Trimaco is located at 13600 W. Sweetwater Ave.

Mayor Hall prepares to cut the ribbon at the Trimaco grand opening ceremony alongside City of Surprise Councilmembers.

My first stop on Saturday, September 28, was the grand re-opening of the Westside Total Fitness Gym with Keith and Julie. They have a great place at 16630 W. Greenway Road. We cut the ribbon in the morning, and I was able to welcome them to Surprise on behalf of the Mayor. Councilmembers Hayden and Sanders were present as well. I wish the new owner of Westside Total Fitness lots of luck.

Also on Saturday, I was invited to the HOA Picnic for Surprise Farms II at the Fire Truck Park. Ervin from our city’s Neighborhood Services team was there, and he is the number one disc jockey of the Surprise Block Party Trailer. This community is making the big change-over to First Service Management Company. The hot dogs and hamburgers were great and so were the residents. I even got a few, “you’re doing a great job” comments, which is always nice to hear.

To wrap up the month, I had a meeting Monday afternoon. It was a very busy month.

So be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Your Vice Mayor

September 2019 • Newsletter

A big shout out to all the citizens who live in this great city we call Surprise, and a happy September to you all (it’s getting cooler). August 6 at 4 p.m., you found me in the Council Work Session and then Council Meeting at 6 p.m. Surprise has had so much going on the last couple of years, I wanted to show you the size of the book that Councilmembers have to read, study, and comprehend for the Council Meetings (this fork is for scale).

Councilmembers' information book for Council Meetings.

On August 8 at 6 p.m., I was back at City Hall to sit in on a presentation that Scott Phillips made. Scott is the Vice-President of Care Free Partners, which is the company who is working on our city center development. What a presentation it was.

The next day, August 9, I was in the Friends of the Library meeting back at City Hall, and I am always amazed at the great work they do for our school aged children, especially the younger ones.

I had a good meeting on my regular second Friday meeting of the month, and Scott Phillips was a guest speaker. He did a great job again talking about our soon to be downtown. We had a good crowd with approximately 30 people in attendance, and a big thank you to all you folks who took time out of your busy schedules to be there.

I have been getting many emails and phone calls to come out and look at the beautiful dog park at Dick McComb Park, and what a difference it is now that all the lights have been installed. I went over there Saturday, August 10 to see the lights and also visit with the people who go there with their pups. Everyone was so happy with how it turned out, so thank you to Donna Miller, Paul Frie, and the rest of the city’s Parks & Recreation team for a great job. A special thanks to Jeff Martin (one of our city engineers) for being the project manager on the job. I don’t want to miss Rita for keeping me up to date on the progress over there.

On the evening of Wednesday, August 14, my wife and I went to the Veterans Disability and Human Services Commission meeting, which meets in the City Council Chambers on the second Wednesday of each month. I don’t usually go to the commission meetings, but they had good speakers talking about special needs kids; and they were invited to speak by Chuck Collins, who is the parent of a special needs little girl. He also lives in my district, and I am proud to call him a friend.

On August 14, I was honored to be at an awards luncheon for the people who work for the city of Surprise. This get-together recognizes those employees who have served in an exemplary manner, above and beyond their usual duties. Years of Service pins are also given out. We have some great people who work to keep your city clean, safe, and self-sufficient. Great job folks. It was a wonderful luncheon.

Tuesday, August 20 through Friday, August 23, I was at the League of Cities and Towns Conference with elected officials from the 91 cities and towns across the state. We had many classes to go to, from topics on homelessness to recycling programs and everything in between. So, we didn’t have much free time, but I did get a chance to talk to our Governor, Senator Martha McSally, Senator Kyrsten Sinema, and all the hard working and intelligent elected officials.

Councilmembers Ken Remley, Nancy Hayden, Mayor Skip Hall and Vice Mayor Roland Winters at the League of Cities and Towns Conference.

Monday, August 26, found me in my monthly meeting with Mayor Skip Hall, who makes the time to talk to every Councilmember to find out what is important to them and their individual districts because each district’s residents have their own concerns and problems. My time in that meeting is about an hour.

The next morning, the Surprise Chamber of Commerce sponsored a visit for Congresswoman Debbie Lesko at 7 a.m. at the WestMEC facility on Grand Avenue and Dysart Road. I have known Debbie since she was a State Representative. She is a nice person, and we were all filled in on what is going on in D.C and the different bills she has presented and/or sponsored. Thanks to the Chamber for bringing Congresswoman Lesko to Surprise. Finally, Debbie is moving her office to Surprise!

Congresswoman Debbie Lesko speaking at the Surprise Chamber of Commerce.

The same afternoon, I had a meeting with some staff and the folks in the northwestern part of my district to see how we can help maintain the roads up there. The major problem is there are so many private landowners, and we have a difficult time trying to get right of ways to get up there and work on those roads.

On Wednesday, August 28, I attended Councilmember Remley’s meeting at Rio Salado College, on Smokey Drive in the Original Town Site. Scott Phillips was also the guest speaker there about our downtown development.

On Thursday August 29, I was at my Valley Metro Board Meeting, only that day we needed to get there early because we had a work shop at 10 a.m. to help us become better board members. Our meeting started at noon, and one of the good things we did was to vote for some transit for our folks in the county. So, starting on October 1 of this year, the county will have a Paratransit system much like the City of Surprise system in which people with disabilities can ride to medical appointments or work. This new program will be delivered by Transdev, the same company that Surprise uses. County residents can look for additional details as October 1 draws near. This does not impact the Surprise program.

On Friday, August 30, you found me at Surprise Funeral Care to attend services for a Surprise police officer, Steven Reppert, who was a Detective Sergeant with Surprise for 22 years, and before that in the Air Force for eleven years. It was a sad time for his wife, Terry, his daughter, Victoria, and his son, Brock. Steve also left two grandchildren, Coltin and Dean, and many other relatives and friends. It was also a sad day for the Surprise Police Department and Surprise as a city lost a very good cop. He will be sorely missed. At fifty years old, he was taken much too soon.

Well, until next month, be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Sincerely,

Vice-Mayor
Roland F. Winters

August 2019 • Newsletter

A big hello to everyone in this great city we call Surprise. I hope you are all holding up in this heat. Of course, most of you know, we do not have council meetings in July, but we certainly have other meetings and things to do.

On Tuesday, July 3, I had meetings with Kathy Chandler, CEO of Northwest Valley Connect; Audra, CEO of Chance Shelter; and the owners of an upcoming coffee shop, Spencer’s Place, to discuss the good work they do in Surprise. I also gave each organization a donation to help carry on their missions.

July 8 at 8:00 a.m. found me at the grand opening of Growing Minds Preschool, 17999 Surprise Farms Loop South. It is a beautiful facility, and the folks at the Dysart Unified School District worked very hard to remodel and renovate the building, which has been vacant for several years. At the ribbon cutting, there were words from Assistant Superintendent Jim Dean, Mayor Skip Hall, and others. I wish I could have been there when the children saw the “village”, which is a huge room made up to be a city, including shops, a fire house, police station, city hall, and more.

Mayor Hall with Vice Mayor Winters and Coucilmembers Sanders and Hayden at Growing Minds Preschool.

On Tuesday, July 9, there was a great turn out at Raising Cane’s for a fun night of Lemonade with a Cop (the lemonade was free). Thank you Raising Cane’s, located at 14385 W Bell Road. I was happy to meet Deborah Luder, one of my constituents who lives up in the northwest part of my district. Chief Young could not make it, but Assistant Chief Geoffrey Leggett was there, along with many others of our finest in blue. Another constituent of mine, Charles Collins, from Surprise Farms II was also there.

Thursday July 11, you found me in a meeting with the folks from the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) with their CEO, Chris Camacho. Most of the councilmembers were there, including our Mayor. Also our Economic Development Department, including director Jeanine Jerkovic, was in attendance. Our economic development team is the best. GPEC helps us to find sites in our city for commercial and industrial business wanting to locate in Surprise. They are a great help.

Right after that meeting, I had my monthly meeting at 2:30 p.m. with our City Manager to go over what is happening in Surprise, and he usually asks how he can help me. It’s nice to have his support. On Friday, July 12 at 10:30 a.m., I was in the Friends of the Surprise Libraries meeting at the Chamber of Commerce building. I have been drafted into the organization since Mayor Skip Hall was elected. As a councilmember, he sat in on these meetings, but now he has his hands full as our Mayor, and it is very difficult to say no to Alyson Cline. Mrs. Cline and her team do a great job making sure our kids are literate by giving books to our schools, helping our teachers, and working with the nonprofit organization Altrusa to make sure every child can read by the third grade.

I want to wish Lynn Peratt a happy retirement. Lynn was our receptionist at City Hall for many years. She always had a smile and was ready to help anyone, including me many times. I told her she could not leave, but she said no. Have a great retirement Lynn, you deserve it.

I had my meeting on Friday night at the Retreat Community Center in Arizona Traditions and had a large showing. I hope I cleared up some confusion with my friends in the northwest part of my district concerning the Lone Mountain Ranch project. That part of the recent annexation process was to bring the acreage of Marisol Ranch into the city so that property will belong to Surprise when the developer starts building. The Lone Mountain Ranch land is not sold to anyone yet, so any development is years down the road.

While I’m on the topic of my monthly meeting, I want to remind everyone that my August meeting will be on Friday, August 9 at 7:00 p.m. in the Retreat Community Room at Arizona Traditions. A special guest, Scott Phillips, will be in attendance. He works with Surprise Center Development Company, the developers of our City Center project. This is a chance to share ideas about what you would like to see in our future downtown. We will have cookies!

Moving on now, I did my Council Conversations television taping on Monday, July 15, and it was a two-part show. First with Sue Larkin of Altrusa International of the West Valley, then part two is with Donna Miller, Director of Parks and Recreation. The show is now running on Channel 11 if you have Cox, or on the city website, https://d1.surpriseaz.gov/2019/07/25/new-council-conversations-altrusa-international-and-asante-library-update/. The first portion of the show focused on reading programs and how involved our city is with ensuing children are able to read. During the second part of the show, I talked to Donna Miller about the new library being built up in my district at the city park in the Asante neighborhood.

Wednesday, July 17 found me at the Community Room at City Hall for a Valley Metro meeting concerning extending the Paratransit program that Surprise has now to the entire Maricopa County area. There are no proposed service changes for Surprise at this time. I went to a similar community outreach meeting in Mesa last month. Even though it is a county project, I felt as a Valley Metro Board Member, and as a Paratransit user, I needed to be there. Our Mayor was also at the Wednesday meeting, along with other Councilmembers.

Mayor Hall, Vice Mayor Winters and Councilmembers Hayden and Remley at the Valley Metro Public Hearing.

On Friday, July 19, I had a much anticipated tour of the Asante Branch Library construction site. The Mayor, and Councilmembers Hayden and Remley were also on the tour. I would like to thank Adam with Haydon Construction for doing the work and the tour; and thank you to Jeff, one of our city engineers. It is going to be a beautiful building with meeting rooms and glass walls for natural light.

Mayor Hall, Vice Mayor Winters and Councilmember Hayden at the Asante Library construction site.

Monday, July 22, I was in Phoenix at my Maricopa County Human Services Commission Meeting. Maricopa Human Services Department does some good things for people who are not as fortunate as most of us in Surprise. They help people pay their utility bills, rent payments, etc.

Wednesday, July 24, you found me on a tour at the One Step Beyond organization. They do a great job helping developmentally disabled folks get educated, find jobs, find housing, among other things. They are located right here in Surprise on Reems Road. This tour was organized by a constituent who lives in Surprise Farms II, Charles Collins, who has a special needs daughter.

Vice Mayor Winters on tour at the One Step Beyond organization.

A quick update sent from a constituent on the Dick McComb Dog Park. The lights are installed and working properly. Thank you Donna Miller and the Parks and Recreation team as now I know my residents can enjoy the park at night when the weather is a bit more tolerable.

Residents and their dogs at the newly illuminated Dick McComb Dog Park.

Some good news for my northwest district residents. The intersection of 163rd and Jomax will begin construction on Phase 1. This phase will include traffic signals and turn lanes. Fire Station 304, which is south of Happy Valley on 163rd, has also begun construction. I appreciate your patience during the construction times and know that this will benefit our residents greatly.

Well, I’ll close my newsletter for August, and will talk to you next month again. Be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Roland F. Winters Jr

July 2019 • Newsletter

A big shout out to all the residents of this great city of Surprise. Our population is quickly growing, and I believe we will easily reach 150,000 in 2020. June was a pretty busy month.

On June 4, we had our City Council Work Session at 4:00 p.m., followed by our City Council meeting at 6:00 p.m. There was a lot going on, not the least of which was the annexation of over a thousand acres in the northwest part of my district. There were many residents at the meeting who were opposed to it, and I can certainly see some of their issues.

Wednesday, June 5, I was at the ribbon cutting of a new phase of Marley Park. This is a great development with large houses, huge pool, nice community center and a basketball court. There is also a number of models to choose from.

Mayor Hall prepares to cut the ribbon alongside Vice Mayor Winters at the new phase of Marley Park ribbon cutting event.

Thursday, June 6, found me at the Boards and Commissions Selection Committee meeting at 5:00 p.m. This meeting was held to choose a candidate for a newly opened seat on the Veterans, Disability and Human Services Commission. I serve on this committee, alongside Councilmembers Remley and Sanders. The committee made their selection, and Council approved Larry Brown to fill the seat.

On Saturday, June 8, there was a great event for Jo Jo Collins, who is the daughter of a constituent, Charles Collins. Jo Jo has a rare disease called PURA Syndrome. She is in a wheelchair and is non-verbal. The event was set up to raise awareness for the special needs community, as well as to pull together the resources that are available in our city that connect special needs groups. If you are interested in being involved, please contact Charles at charlesl.collins@yahoo.com.

On Thursday, June 13, I was at a ribbon cutting with Councilmember Judd. We welcomed a new dental office, Breez Dental, which is located at 15331 W. Bell Road. The grand opening had a number of people in attendance. Welcome to Surprise, Dr. Whitney Sebree.

Friday, June 14 at 10:00 a.m. found me in the Friends of the Surprise Libraries meeting where I gave a presentation on the progress of the new Asante Library. This library is going to be a beautiful building located in the northwest area of my district. I am looking forward to seeing the finished product.

As long as we are talking about new buildings going up in District 1, how about our new Abrazo Community Health Center which will be located next to Winco? This small micro-hospital will offer a 24-hour emergency department as well as minor surgery, imaging, labs, pharmacy and other outpatient services. It is scheduled to open in spring of 2020.

We had another great ribbon cutting in the afternoon of Friday, June 14 with the opening of the Hilton Garden Inn on Young Street. The entire City Council attended. This is our first full service hotel in Surprise, and it is a good option for dinner. Needless to say, there was plenty of food at this event.

Mayor Hall prepares to cut the ribbon at the Hilton Garden Inn grand opening event along with Vice Mayor Winters.

On Monday, June 17, I had the honor to be in Goodyear for the swearing in ceremony of their newly elected councilmember, as well as returning councilmembers. Goodyear is a nice city, just a short distance to the south of us, and they seem to attract large companies to join their ranks.

Tuesday, June 18, was the afternoon of our City Council Work Session and evening of our City Council meeting, where action is taken.

Thursday, June 20, found me in the Valley Metro Board of Directors meeting at 101 N. 1st Street in Phoenix. This board is made up of a number of Mayors, Vice Mayors and Councilmembers from various cities and towns throughout Maricopa County. One agenda item was the election of officers. Councilman Jon Edwards, from Peoria, was appointed treasurer.

Monday, June 24, was another great ground breaking ceremony at Surprise Regional Library for the Veterans Reflection Circle in honor of Brian Mancini. We had a ceremony inside, and it had a large turn out with comments from those who knew Brian, companies that volunteered their service to build the memorial, and comments from Mayor Hall. There are going to be over 30 companies or individuals donating time, effort, and skills to accomplish this project. Following the ceremony, we all went outside to the actual groundbreaking. The committee that planned the memorial, Honor House, wanted it by the lake because Brian liked fishing and loved the outdoors. It will also have a garden and benches so anyone can come relax and reflect.

On June 25th at 9 a.m., I was at Red Mountain Active Adult Center in Mesa to listen to a presentation from Valley Metro. They want to start a Ride Choice System similar to the system we have in Surprise. While this is commendable, and I support this program, I only hope it will be more effective than ours has been.

That same day, I attended a celebration at the café in City Hall, to celebrate Dr. Dennis Tyner on his newly accepted role as President of OUAZ. He really works hard for that school, and deserves the promotion. I look forward to the future of Ottawa University and congratulate Dr. Tyner.

City Manager Michael Frazier, Mayor Hall, Councilmember Sanders, Dr. Dennis Tyner, Chief Terry Young, and Vice Mayor Winters.

I found myself at another ribbon cutting on June 27 at the Office Max store on Bell Road. Office Max and Office Depot (same company), formed a partnership with Lenovo California Computer Company, and they had a display right in the front part of the store. Councilmembers Nancy Hayden and Ken Remley were also present. Mayor Hall had a conflict in his schedule, so I welcomed Lenovo to Surprise. I think the Mayor would have done a better job. This arrangement is called a store within a store; there is only one other like it in Florida.

On the same afternoon, I was at yet another ribbon cutting at the Park at Surprise, which is a large independent living facility on Parkwood Drive. A crowd was there with plenty of food for all.

Friday June 18, I had a great tour of the O’Dell Athletic Center at Ottawa University, along with Councilmembers Judd and Hayden, and Mayor Hall. Thanks to Haydon Construction and Patrick (our tour guide) for the opportunity to see the interior of the athletic center before it is completed. From the outside, it does not look very large, but inside, it is huge – with a fitness center, and basketball courts with concert lighting and a stage that can transform the space for events. Thanks to Ottawa University for transforming the City of Surprise.

My next meeting will be on July 12 at 7:00 p.m. in the Community Center at Arizona Traditions, 18250 W Weatherby Drive. Please press 0000 and tell the guard you are going to my meeting, and he will open the gate.

My August meeting will be on August 9 at the same location and same time. It is an opportunity to give feedback on what you would like to see in our new downtown. Scott Phillips, the Vice-President of the Property Owners Consortium, will be there to guide us through the process and answer questions you may have.

One last thought I will leave you with, and that is thanks to the citizens of Surprise for allowing me the honor of being your Vice Mayor. Be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Roland Winters Jr.

June 2019 • Newsletter

Hi to all our residents in Surprise. As we experience the heat of the summer months, just remember, Bell Road has less traffic. The month started off with a large attendance at the Surprise Area Interfaith & Golden Rule Community Breakfast, hosted by the Salvation Army, on May 1. There were many religions represented and all had an opportunity to pray together for peace and civility in this world.

As always, the first and third Tuesday of each month hosts our City Council workshop and regular meetings. These meetings are where we take action on items.

Friday, May 10, found me in the Read on America meeting with Alyson Cline and her team. They do great things with the schools to help make sure all of our kids can read. That same night was my meeting at the community room, located at 18250 W. Weatherby Drive. There was a good crowd.

On Saturday, I was invited to a picnic that was hosted by Chance Shelter. This was a fund raiser, and I met the board members. As you probably know, they will build a no kill shelter in Surprise as soon as they get more funding. This is a great group of people, and I wish them the best of luck.

Vice Mayor Winters attending the Chance Shelter picnic.

Monday, May 13, found me at a meeting in the newest hotel, the Hilton, for a housing project going up out off of Sun Valley Parkway, called Mesquite Mountain Ranch.

I was at a meeting on Tuesday, in Sun City Grand, listening to some folks from Epcor. They are going to give some money back if you live in the Agua Fria District. For more information on the Epcor rate changes, offers or programs please visit www.epcor.com/assistance.

Since I am on the Valley Metro Board, I was in downtown Phoenix for a workshop beginning at 9:00 a.m. which was followed by the board meeting at 11:00 a.m. Once the meeting was over, I had to come back to City Hall for another meeting.

Friday, May 17, found me and my family at the Police Awards Dinner held at CCV. The church has been a great partner for the city whenever meeting space is needed. It is always nice to hear all those stories of bravery and of our finest men and women literally saving lives. Stories of kindness are happening everyday within the Surprise Police Department. For example, when one officer found that a resident was not going to have a nice Christmas for her and her children, due to lack of money, he took up a collection at the station. Donations from other officers and himself, allowed him to deliver gifts to their house.

The next day, Saturday May 18, I was invited to help celebrate the light rail extension to Gilbert Road in Mesa. It is a great project, but very expensive. Its cost is approximately $40 million a mile.

On May 21, you could find me at the council workshop followed by the regular council meeting.

Then on Thursday, May 23, I had a meeting with a developer who wants to build a tract of homes in my district, just to the east of Grand Ave, called Copper Canyon South. It will contain very nice homes.

On the same afternoon, I had my once a month meeting with the Mayor. These meetings are requested by the Mayor as he likes to keep the councilmembers up-to-date on city updates, and he also likes to get D1 updates from me.

Saturday morning, May 25, all councilmembers met at the World War II Memorial. The memorial honors the pilots from Luke who lost their lives during the war. There was a large crowd which included veterans and civilians. Thank you to George Van de Langeryt for organizing the event, and to the riders from VFW Post 96.

On Memorial Day, I gathered at the Nicky Bacon Memorial, which is in the courtyard at City Hall. A wreath was laid in his honor. Nicky Bacon won the Congressional Medal of Honor for his bravery in Vietnam, saving many lives and going on to become the City Manager of Surprise. It was a great day honoring his service with the Bacon family.

On Wednesday, May 29, I was honored to participate in the ground breaking of Heritage at Asante. This will be a 1500 home, gated and age restricted, development. The community will include pools, lakes, a community center, putting green and much more. The home site will contain many different models and opportunities. It will be a beautiful place to live, and I would like to thank Mr. Jones and Lennar Building.

Vice Mayor Winters and Councilmembers at the Heritage at Asante ground breaking ceremony.

I had two meetings at City Hall on May 30 followed by the Board and Commission Selection Committee meeting. The committee meeting allowed the members to choose a candidate to fill the Veterans, Disability and Human Services Commission opening. This committee includes myself, Councilman Remley and Councilman Sanders. We had a total of 13 applicants so the meeting took quite a while.

On the last day of May, I had to go to a League of Cities meeting in Phoenix. I am a member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee for the League. This committee is a cross section of Mayors and Councilmembers throughout Arizona. The purpose is to bring forth resolutions and/or ideas to the conference. This year, the conference will be held in August down in Tucson.

Well folks, I am going to close for now.

Be good to yourself and be good to each other. Also, try and stay cool.

May 2019 • Newsletter

I would like to begin with a big shout out to all of my friends who are as blessed as I am to live in this great city called Surprise.

April was another busy month for me and the whole council. April 2 started off with our council meeting, both work shop and council meeting, where we take action.

On Wednesday, April 3, there was the dedication of the mural painted on the wall of the Northwest Valley Connect building in Peoria. This was an award winning painting. This event was topped off with refreshments and great camaraderie.

mural painted on the wall of the Northwest Valley Connect building

Tuesday, April 10, I had a meeting with the City Manager to go over some things in our budget. April was all about the 2020 budget. All items will be voted on in June, and updates will be sent.

Friday, April 12, found me in the Surprise Chamber of Commerce Conference Room attending the Friends of the Library Board meeting.

That same night, I had my monthly meeting in the Arizona Traditions Community Center. The Surprise Today newspaper had the address wrong as the location is on Weatherby Drive. We had a good crowd that welcomed some new folks as well. I answered a number of questions and had good conversation with residents.

The next day, Saturday April 13, I was invited to a picnic at Veramonte Park, 12741 N. 140th Lane. This event was hosted and attended by our deaf residents. Everyone had a great time, especially the kids. I even managed to get by without one water balloon finding its mark, so I stayed dry all day. A big thank you to all my friends.

On Sunday, April 14, I attended a great HOA party celebrating Easter with an egg hunt for the little residents and also photos with Mrs. Bunny. Thank you Paula Lefeure for planning all of this!

On Tuesday, April 16, I attended our council workshop at 4:00 p.m. followed by our council meeting where action is taken.

I was invited to join the celebration of the new circulator transportation system in Peoria on April 22. The City of Peoria has one circulator traveling clockwise and another going counter clockwise around the city to pick up passengers at no charge for riders. The system is called Peoria on the Go (POGO) and is in partnership with Valley Metro. Hopefully, someday Surprise will have such a program. For more information on POGO go to www.peoriaaz.gov.

The Mayor and I visited the new Dysart preschool located at 17999 N Surprise Farms Loop South. The name is “Growing Minds” and they will be opening soon. Visit www.Dysart.orgfor more information.

Council member and staff of Growing Minds facility

Our Surprise Youth Council had a great event at the Arts HQ venue at City Hall on Tuesday night, April 23. The displayed photos were equipped with a smart phone app that allowed the photos to actively speak and tell about the individual students.

Vice Mayor Winter with SYC members

On Wednesday, April 24, I was invited as a Valley Metro Board member to the opening of the 50th street light rail station on Washington Street in Phoenix. It was a great celebration that included Congressman Greg Stanton, State Senators, State Representatives as well as Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego. The new station is centrally located which is great for the thousands of citizens with disabilities who visit downtown.

After that celebration, I headed back to Surprise for a meeting with Friends of the Library at City Hall.

On Thursday, April 25, I found myself at the Northwest Valley Connect meeting at Benevilla. This organization tries to get rides for people who have no other way to get to doctor appointments, dental appointments or even the grocery store.

Following that meeting, I headed to City Hall for my bi-monthly meeting with our City Manager. This meeting is important as it offers a chance to catch up on happenings in the City of Surprise.

My last stop of the day was a Valley Vista High School where an art show, sponsored by Congresswoman Debbie Lekso, was happening. The young people of Surprise have some great talent.

Of course our big event in April was the naming of our bridge that goes over Grand Avenue to Veterans Bridge. The weather was pretty warm that day, but the number of residents that came out in support was overwhelming. Veterans filled the tent, and we thank them for their service. God bless them all. It was a great celebration that brought Governor Ducey to Surprise. Thank you for being so gracious as to stay for photos with the residents and helping to honor our veterans.

Well, before I close my newsletter for this month, I want to thank all the folks who help make this newsletter possible. My new assistant, Jenna Bowen, who is learning my unique penmanship, the Communication Department, headed by Diane Arthur, the IT Department and all you folks who read my newsletter. Take care!

Be good to yourself and be good to each other,

April 2019 • Newsletter

A big shout out to all the residents of this great city we have the privilege of living in. I should direct my newsletter comments to the entire city since I am your Vice Mayor now, and it is an honor to serve you.

March was a busy month for me, and I started out by reading to the children in Mrs. Guevarba’s 2nd grade class at Countryside Elementary School. This is one of my favorite things to do as a member of the Surprise City Council. The children are so young and innocent with their whole life ahead of them, and I can’t help but ask myself, “What are these little people going to be when they grow up?” In three or four days, I received many wonderful ‘thank you’ notes from the children. Thank you, Mrs. Guevarba, and your class for giving me more than I gave you.

Councilmember Winters reads to Mrs. Guevarba’s 2nd grade class

That same afternoon, March 1, I found myself at the Surprise Stadium in the VIP tent to meet and greet some developers and business people and let them know why they should invest in our city. The entire council wants good businesses located in Surprise so our residents can find good jobs in the city they live in and we can make Surprise a self-sustaining city.

Monday, March 4, at 6:00 p.m. found me at the City Academy class at City Hall, telling the class members what it is like being on the council and what my duties are. If you have never taken the City Academy class, I urge you to do so. I took the class even before I was a councilmember and learned a lot. Ruby Sitea runs the class, the HOA Academy and many others, and she does a great job. The best part is all of these classes are free. For more information, please contact Ruby Sitea at 623-222-3242.

Tuesday, March 5, was of course our council workshop at 4:00 p.m., followed by our council meeting at 6:00 p.m. when action is taken. Sometimes the council goes into executive session meeting, all of which can make for a long day.

This time of the year, leading up to our final vote on our city’s budget, we have many meetings on various parts to break down the total budget. On Wednesday, March 6, I was in just such a meeting. We, as a council, need to know what departments need funding and how much. The recommended budget is scheduled for release this month.

To my friends at Surprise Farms III, thank you for your invitation to the HOA picnic. We had a good time at your beautiful HOA park, and I extend my thanks to your community manager Santos, your board president Mark Novak, Vice President Ray, and the rest of the board: Delilah, Mark Miller and Jerry. Next time you have a get together, let me know ahead of time, and I will make sure the police and fire show up. My best to all the residents at Surprise Farms III for a great day on Saturday, March 9.

On Monday, March 11 at 10:00 a.m., I was at the Cimarron Center in Sun City Grand for some more community outreach meetings to ask you, the residents, what would you like to see in our downtown near City Hall. We have been getting many good ideas for that piece of land. The city’s development partner has hired a designer to make up a master plan. This council is determined to plan and build our city downtown led by our Mayor. Scott Philips, who represents the city center land owner, has been working very hard at these community meetings and there will be more, so let’s attend these meetings and tell us what you would like to see.

Tuesday, March 12, I was at the Benevilla Appreciation Brunch for their annual recognition to their benefactors. The Arrowhead Lexus Dealership won the business leadership award and Birt and Louisa Kellam won the Bill Wolfrey Award. Birt had a restaurant named after him, “Birt’s Bistro”, maybe you have heard of it.

That same afternoon I had some more meetings on our 2019-2020 budget which took me well into the afternoon.

On Tuesday, March 14, I found myself back at the stadium to meet the folks from Hines, a developer that Economic Development is encouraging to consider Surprise for future investment opportunities.

On Saturday, March 16, I was invited to a HOA picnic by my friends in the community of Desert Oasis at their own HOA park, and it was a very nice day (little windy, could not keep my hat on). It was a great reception and there were good hamburgers. For those of you who don’t know where this community is, take 163rd off of Grand Ave and go North. There are many new homes going up there. While I was there, I visited our new Dollar General store that just opened, and I talked to a number of residents up there, and they like the new store. They were so happy that there is finally a store close by.

Councilmember Winters in front of new Dollar General

March 19 at 4:00 p.m. was our workshop, which was followed by our council meeting at 6:00 p.m.

On March 20 at 4:00 p.m. I had a ribbon cutting at a new business, Avenir Behavioral Hospital, located on Parkview Place. The Mayor was also there. The owner of this facility has several others in Surprise.

On March 21, I was at my Valley Metro Board Meeting in Phoenix, which I attend monthly. We want a seat at the table so we can have some kind of transit in Surprise, hopefully sooner than later.

That same evening, I was back at the stadium to meet some possible investors.

On March 26, I had a meeting with 5 members of the Surprise Youth Council. We discussed their goals and their future education plans. All of the members seemed mature and were very much aware of what they wanted to do and what they had to do to get there. We talked for over an hour. The future seems to be in good hands.

That same night, I had a meeting at St. Clare of Assisi Catholic Church in Surprise with another great group of youth, Pack 40 of the Cub and Boys Scouts. It seemed that day was my day to interact with the young people. The scouts had an endless list of questions and some of them were working on their civic badge, so they had many questions about the city. A great time was had by all, even the scout leader.

Wednesday, March 27, I attended a ribbon cutting at Rise. I was called upon to say a few words as Vice Mayor. It is located at 18640 N Parkview Place. They have day programs for developmentally disabled residents. I observed a very caring group of people working there. Their motto is “Creating opportunities for and with people.” For more information, please call 480-430-4546.

Right after the above ribbon cutting, I attended another one at Ottawa university, which is located across the courtyard from City Hall. This ribbon cutting was for SpotRX, a new prescription station, and I was please to share this experience with some of my colleagues.

SpotRX at Ottawa ribbon cutting

Thursday, March 28 found me at the Radisson Hotel for an update on the Desert Diamond Casino in Glendale. This should be completed in approximately 240 days, and we all can’t wait for that day! Once I left the update, I went to another budget meeting back at City Hall.

To finish off March 28 was our State of the City Address and celebration of the City Hall building which reached 10 years. The State of the City was great, and if you missed it, it is televised on Channel 11 and also on the internet at www.surpriseaz.gov/SOTC. It was a great celebration and every director from the city, and many employees, did an amazing job. Kuddos to our Mayor for thinking out of the box. A State of the City should be enjoyed by all the residents of Surprise and the residents should be able to participate in the celebration free of charge. I think the citizens of Surprise were surprised! What a way to finish the month!

Before I close, I would like to inform you that the Dick McComb dog park lights project has a projected finish of mid-May. This is perfect timing for our spring and summer nights.

The 163rd Avenue and Jomax Road project will deliver the full design and construction of the ultimate intersection at this location. This includes storm water and drainage improvements, traffic signals, street lights, sidewalks and landscape. The project also includes two 500 foot lanes in each direction on Jomax Road and three 500+ foot lanes in each direction on 163rd Avenue.

Additional widening projects on 163rd Avenue are being planned adjacent to the areas being developed and will occur at the same time as those properties are improved.

In closing, I thank each of you for your continued support. Be good to yourself and be good to each other.

March 2019 • Newsletter

A big shout out to my constituents in District 1 and everyone who lives in this great city called Surprise. I must first apologize for being late with my newsletter this month as it just rolled by.

I want to start off with a little unscientific survey. I would like to get some feedback from all of you who use our Ride Choice program or the City’s Trans Dev program, both of which are our way to help people get around Surprise and the region. These transit systems started in December, and I would like to know how they work for you, so call me at 623-594-5952, email roland.winters@surpriseaz.gov, text 714-315-0840 or mail a letter to Surprise City Hall, 16000 N Civic Center Drive, Surprise AZ 85374, ATTN: Councilmember Winters. Thank you in advance.

February 4 found me in the Mayor’s office at our monthly meeting, which is very helpful, so we can exchange information and I can be brought up-to-date on some things that I may not know.

Of course, our Council workshop was on February 5, followed by the City Council meeting where we take action.

We had a ribbon cutting at our newest hospital in Surprise at Destiny Springs on Dysart Road at 4:00 p.m. This is a behavioral health center for those in need of help with a variety of behavioral health conditions. It is a very nice facility with good architecture.

Destiny Springs Ribbon Cutting

On February 8, I had a meeting with Clark Landrum II, the manager of the Waste Management Recycle Center on Deer Valley Road in District 1. I was invited to tour the facility and what a tour it was! All the trash going into that plant gets sorted out and all recyclable materials are separated, bailed up and shipped out of the plant to final users.

Friday night, February 8, was my meeting for my constituents and there was a good turnout.

Wednesday, February 13, I had the honor to be in Sun City Grand when an Army Veteran received a home, free and clear, from the Homes for Heroes organization as well as Chase Bank.

Home for Heroes

The same day at 2:00 pm, we held our board and commission committee meeting and chose two candidates for the CRS Commission, the full council agreed on the recommendations.

On Thursday, February 14, I attended the WESTMARC meeting at the Gila River Arena in Glendale. The message was positive by Sintra Hoffman that the time is now for the West Valley to generate commercial growth.

There was a great ribbon cutting for Spooner’s Physical Therapy on Friday, February 15. It is located at 16968 W Bell Road. Most of the council members attended this ribbon cutting.

Spooner’s Physical Therapy Ribbon Cutting

Audra Colson, who is the contact for Chance Shelter, put on a great fundraiser on Saturday, February 16 at the Bingo Parlor on Bell Road. There was a great turn out, so I am hoping they fattened up the building fund for Surprise’s first shelter for our furry friends. The exact location of the future shelter has not been confirmed, but as soon as it is, I will inform you all.

February 19 was a workshop and council meeting day.

On Wednesday, February 20 the Council and Mayor had a nice meeting with Congresswoman Debbie Lesko. We talked about a number of things that she can help with in D.C.

Only my second meeting since I was appointed to the Valley Metro Board was on Thursday, February 21 at the Valley Metro Headquarters in Phoenix. There is some light at the end of the tunnel as far as our transit because we are talking about the bus that stops at Arrowhead Mall to continue on to Surprise City Hall. We are hoping to have this in place and operating by 2022, providing we can get financing. Each jurisdiction must pay their fair share for the bus so that would include Sun City, Sun City West, Peoria and Surprise.

Clint Hickman made an appearance at Sun City Grand Wednesday night, February 27, and I attended to hear him speak. I also got the opportunity to talk to him for a few minutes.

I have been asked a couple of times what is being built next to Winco in District 1. So if you were wondering, it is a hospital! It is going to be an Abrazo Hospital. We have many projects going on in Surprise as you have noticed. I will close for now. Be good to yourself and be good to each other.

Vice Mayor Roland F. Winters Jr.

February 2019 • Newsletter

Hi to all the residents in the great city of Surprise. Wow, what a month January 2019 was for the city, for my district, for the residents and for me personally. The city has attracted new businesses, has a new mayor, a new city manager, a new assistant city manager and our Economic Development Department, with Jeanine Jerkovic at the helm, is drawing more commercial prospect to Surprise. District 1 was so fortunate to get Fellowship Hall within our boundary, which brings an $85 million investment to Surprise. We celebrated the ribbon cutting on Thursday January 24th. Also in the district, there are a number of developments going on in the northwest part including a Dollar General Store.

I hope the residents see all the good things that are going to happen in Surprise with our new council and not that we must agree on everything; we don’t. For me personally, at the January 3rd council meeting, I was sworn in for my second term on the council. Thanks to the voters for that. At the January 15th city council meeting, I was appointed by the council to serve as your Vice Mayor, and it was a unanimous vote. I am very thankful and humble to be in this position.

Tuesday, January 8th, I was in our Board and Commission Selection Committee meeting going over the process to choose some nominees for the new commission we formed. Many good candidates were interviewed.

On Thursday, January 10th, we held a special public meeting with our full council at City Hall to discuss our Council-Manager form of government. Very useful information, not only for the residents and new council members, but also for those of us who are in our second or third term. All of our individual responsibilities and obligations in this complex city government were outlined by our city attorney.

I held my regular 2nd Friday night meeting of the month on January 11th, and we all had an interesting conversation about drones. One of my constituents (I will not give his name out of respect for his privacy) knows a lot about drones, and the discussion was timely because the council recently gave our Police Department the go-ahead to purchase a couple of drones.

Saturday, January 12th found me on a bus tour of all 13 parks in the city along with various recreation centers. This was to helpful for council to become familiar with where the parks are in our various districts. We also evaluated the need for any additional improvements to the parks. While I am on the subject of parks, as most of you know, in November I was able to convince the council there was a need to install lights at the Dick McComb city dog park. That work is now underway; measurements have been taken, engineers are evaluating how many poles need to be erected, and the type of lighting, so it should not be long now.

Tuesday, January 15th was, of course, our council meeting at which time Vice Mayor Remley nominated me to be the Vice Mayor for 2019, and I was elected unanimously by my peers. I would like to thank the entire council for having that kind of confidence in me.

Vice Mayor Winters being sworn in by City Clerk

On Wednesday, January 16th, my wife and I were invited to hear Governor Ducey’s State of the State Address, and it was very positive. In the Governor’s upbeat speech, he said our economy is growing rapidly; he promised more money for schools; and said he is taking positive steps to deal with our serious water shortage.

Vice Mayor Winters and wife with Governor Doug Ducey at the State of State address

Our new mayor (Mayor Hall) has appointed me to the Valley Metro Board of Directors, and the first meeting I attended was Thursday, January 17th at Valley Metro Headquarters in Phoenix. I came away from that meeting with some good news and some bad news. The good news is the 170 bus that travels westbound on Bell Road from Phoenix, but stops running at the mall in Peoria, will continue to run west to Surprise City Hall. The bad news is it will not happen until 2022. I suggested 2021, but that did not fly too well. I will take note that the professionals that work for Valley Metro know what they are talking about when it comes to transportation.

We celebrated the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Celebration & Service on Saturday, January 19th (two days before Martin Luther King Jr. Day) with a lot of song, celebration and prayer. This was our third year doing this in the courtyard at City Hall, and it gets bigger every year. All of the council was there, as well as the father of our newest council member, David Sanders. Our Human Service and Community Vitality Director, Seth Dyson, and his team do a great job on this every year.

Vice Mayor Winters at the 2019 MLK celebration

That same day, my family and I paid a visit to Fire Station 304 up in the northwest part of my district. It was an open house that day for this fire house; one of the two fire stations in my district. There were a lot of residents up there visiting and all are excited about the new fire house coming, including the firefighters. When finish building the new Fire Station 304, it will be the largest fire station in Surprise.

When we left the fire station, I went to check out the Dollar General store being built on Jomax near 161st. The construction is really moving right along; it is a good size piece of property with a nice parking lot. I know not everyone liked the idea of that kind of store going in there, but at least the folks up there can get milk and bread at the store, instead of having to drive down to Reems and Grand. Also, my thought was that if we get some kind of commercial in that area, some more will follow; so let’s hope that will happen.

On Sunday, January 20th, we went to Valley Vista High School Performing Arts Center to see the Surprise POPS Band. If you have not seen them perform, it is well worth your time. The cost to see is show is a can of food. Watch for their next show.

Surprise Pops Band

I attended a meeting at Avondale City Hall with Valley Metro staff and representatives from Surprise and other municipalities on Wednesday January 23rd to discuss the possibility of circulators and a bus service for the area.

Vice Mayor Winters at the Valley Metro Meeting

Thursday, January 24th, found me at my Northwest Valley Connect (a 501C3) meeting at Benevilla. Northwest Valley Connect will try and find someone a ride to a doctor appointment or shopping trip if they cannot find one. This is at no charge. Right now we are doing a transit study to see where the need is.

That same day, we attended the ribbon cutting at Fellowship Square on Sarival. This is a huge community for independent living, assisted living and memory care. As mentioned earlier, an $85 million investment in Surprise.

Surprise Vice Mayor Roland Winters and Surprise Councilwoman Nancy Hayden at Fellowship Square with Jay Trottier, Facilities Manager, John Norris, Executive Vice President, Kathy Loscheider, Excutive Director and Lori Wilson, Marketing Director
Surprise Vice Mayor Roland Winters and Surprise Councilwoman Nancy Hayden at Fellowship Square with Jay Trottier, Facilities Manager, John Norris, Executive Vice President, Kathy Loscheider, Excutive Director and Lori Wilson, Marketing Director

On Saturday January 26th, I attended the meeting at the AZ TechCelerator on Bell Road for a veterans event headed up by Chris Flowers who is the CEO of Vets 4 Biz. He will help Vets find a job and brings Vets together. If you are a Veteran and need a job, call Chris Flowers at 623-308-9732.

Monday evening, January 28th, I was in my meeting with my fellow board members of the Maricopa County Human Services Commission where we try and help those less fortunate with money for rent, food and utilities. We get grants – federal and other grants – that we have the responsibility to put where it will do the best.

Finally, there was the grand opening of My Goodies bakery at 15170 W. Bell Road.

So as you can see, things are happening in Surprise. I will close for now, so be good to yourself and be good to each other.