Surprise City Council candidates election Q&A

What is Surprise’s biggest recent missed opportunity?

By Independent Newsmedia
Posted 7/13/20

Surprise City Council candidates answer questions leading up to the Aug. 4 city election.

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Surprise City Council candidates election Q&A

What is Surprise’s biggest recent missed opportunity?


What is Surprise’s biggest recent missed opportunity?

A sixth in a series of Q&As with candidates who have qualified for ballot for the Aug. 4 Surprise city election, as well as two candidates who have qualified as official write-ins:

MAYOR — Skip Hall

We were a finalist with a company, but it was under a code name. So, I can’t tell you what the company was. [It was between] us, a city in Texas and a city in Nevada. It went to a city in Texas. We’re finalists with two other companies right now. It’s just a matter of time.

DISTRICT 2 — Alyson Cline

The Economic Development staff in the city works, based on annual community surveys, to meet the needs of our residents. Opportunities may have been delayed but not missed while they work with wanted businesses and overcome any challenges.

DISTRICT 2 — Wendell Fountain

We should have attracted Honeywell’s expansion that went to Phoenix. The company added to its manufacturing base N95 masks. We could have easily incorporated that activity into the functions of the West-MEC Training and Development Center, or for that matter, a different business activity. This is really unfortunate because that would have provided us with an additional 500 well-paying jobs. If I were a member of the Surprise administration, I would still negotiate with the CEO of Honeywell to consider transferring that light manufacturing function to Surprise. We are an excellent fit.

DISTRICT 3 — Patrick Duffy

I have been very vocal about the missed opportunity recreation faced as it was removed from the bond project vote. When the bond first failed as everything was lumped into one bond, recreation unfairly took the blame. When the bond was itemized for the second try, the recreation facility was left off. This was a very needed project for the families and youth in our city and has now resulted in the city falling behind in the amount of recreation facilities and fields per our population.

DISTRICT 3 — Greg Norberg

Several large corporations have relocated to the West Valley but not to Surprise. We’ve missed out on the opportunities to bring in head of household jobs and the revenue that prevents increases in taxes.

DISTRICT 4 — Ken Remley

[Mr. Remley is running unopposed and did not submit an answer.]

DISTRICT 5 — David Sanders

We need to continue to capitalize on our assets and make sure that we aren’t missing any opportunities to promote Surprise with regards to economic development and sports/tourism. Also, we need to promote the city’s assets such as our Foreign Trade Zone for more economic development and our sports fields for more sports and tourism events.

DISTRICT 5 — Jack Hastings

Last year, the city removed [curbside] recycling. In addition, the city removed Fire Engine 305 from our busiest fire station here in Surprise District 5. The biggest issue with this was that there was no public discussion before these decisions were made. We need to return Fire Engine 305 to service and bring back recycling. In addition, Surprise needs to give residents the chance to have a say in these types of decisions before they are made.

WRITE-IN — Cheryl Packham, mayor

The city of Surprise has missed an opportunity by not effectively and efficiently promoting the incentives to attract development and businesses into the Surprise Heritage District (a designated Opportunity Zone). I believe, had this be done, there could be much development underway creating a unique and walkable part of the city that could focus on our culture and history, while making a wonderful destination in the city that would create a community-driven atmosphere that would be great for both locals and tourists.

WRITE-IN — Kawika Henderson, District 5

Procuring and attracting national and international business [i.e., Microsoft, google, Nike, etc.]

NEXT WEEK:What is Surprise’s single biggest need?