www.yourwestvalley.com | Surprise Today | WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 21, 2013 SUN CITY Election LD21 Dems learn how to boost membership STAFF REPORT The chairman of Democracy for America, Maricopa County, will give a presentation at Monday’s meeting of the LD21 Democrats. Joe P. Murphy VII will explain how to build an active membership base, said Dianne Nesvig, district chairwoman. The meeting will be at the Menke Community Room, 10307 W. Coggins Parks >> From page A1 partment’s capital improvement projects. Coronado said a decision is likely in November or December. But Surprise Farms resident Andy Cephon saw the tour and meetings in the fall as window dressing and a waste of time. Since the bulk of construction in Arizona takes place in fall or spring, this process will only cause residents to wait longer for what their parks need. “There’s amenities that people have been waiting ive, eight or nine years for. This whole dog-and-pony show about a new public input process is ridiculous,” Cephon said. “Most of these commissioners have served multiple terms. They’ve talked about these issues for years, and nothing has changed.” Surprise Farms parks lack planned amenities including an aquatic center, a dog park, play structures, ramadas and restrooms and water fountains in all but the westernmost parcel. Resident Connie Brisson has been at the forefront of the issue since moving to Surprise Farms nine years ago. She said residents, while requesting the amenities promised, are making the best of what they have. Surprise Farms will have its third annual party in the park later this month. “We’re going to hire a porta-potty,” she said. Other parks on the tour also need upgrades, including: • Veramonte Park in southwestern Surprise is a developer partnership featuring a soccer ield, modern playground and a ramada. But the park lacks a parking lot, with only a patch of gravel nearby. Drive, in Sun City at 6:30 p.m. A social period begins at 6. “The project to build the base of the active membership of the Democratic Party is necessary for the future election success of our party from local school boards to city, county, state and national elections,” Nesvig said in a release. “The methods for building party participation are proven, and some of the programs have been adopted by other states to build their parties.” Murphy, a longtime Arizona resident, is an arborist with a local business in central Phoenix. He has been chairman of Democracy for America, Maricopa County, since 2011, is LD24 irst vice chair and a state committee member. He was elected chair of the MCDP Party Building Committee in 2013. • The city’s signature space, Surprise Community Park, also needs a parking lot and could use another restroom. • Three Star Park may be the oldest in the city. This small park on the east end of the Original Town Site is underutilized, Coronado said, and will need more modern amenities. • Gaines Park, also in the town site, needs repaving. • Bicentennial Park, the third park in old Surprise, has seen major upgrades in the last decade and more could be on the way. It has softball, basketball and soccer facilities, and the Lizard Run trail links the park with Benevilla and Rio Salado College. In the public comment portion of the CRS meeting before the tour, Step Higher Foundation CEO Anthony Chavez proposed building a skate park in the town site, either near Benevilla’s community garden or behind the Villanueva Recreation Center. “My heart is in the Original Town Site because I live close. Gaines and Three-Star park are well-kept secrets,” Rose Garden resident Vicki White said. “I’m partial to Bicentennial Park. I work at Benevilla and I’ve been very active in the community garden. Some more amenities can be added in that area.” White and others were impressed with Asante, Heritage and Sierra Montana parks. All three are collaborative efforts. Surprise spearheads the park’s design, the developer builds the park and maintains it in the early years before handing it over to the city. For example, Asante Park will enter Surprise’s maintenance schedule in April. Of all the parks on the tour, Asante may be the biggest head-scratcher. With ields for youth baseball and softball tournaments, four basketball hoops, soccer ields. miles of walking trails, picnic areas, playgrounds and even a World War II memorial, Coronado labels the park “a hidden jewel.” But the park is in a remote area of northwest Surprise and is surrounded by barren lots of what once was a planned upscale development and is now in the state of lux. Surprise Farms has the opposite problem. It’s mostly built out, but lacks adequate places to play. Matt Voegtli also spoke before the meeting, proposing the idea of a disc (Frisbee) golf course in Surprise. After looking at all the parks, he said Surprise Farms is the closest to ideal site because of its unused green space and the low cost of building disc golf courses. Whatever the city decides to add at Surprise Farms or elsewhere, Cephon hopes work starts soon. “Stuff needs to be done now,” Cephon said. “The communities understand that it’s going to be limited in the irst year and second year and going to be accelerated after that. But they want to see some progress.” >> From page A1 Nov. 5 general election. Two-candidate races in District 1 (Ted Cimino and Roland Winters) and District 5 (Skip Hall and Cammie Marceaux) will have races resolved in the primary. The District 6 contest, with three candidates (Randy Miller, Lou Provenzano and Todd Tande) and no incumbent, is the most likely to stretch to November. In any case, sweeping changes are coming to a City Council that led Surprise out of its financial hole in the last two years. Two new members are guaranteed, with a third possible if Marceaux defeats Hall. Plus, the council will choose either Danny Arismendez or Rachel Villanueva to replace the late Roy Villanueva in the District 4 seat — likely at Tuesday’s council meeting. Results were not available at press time. Mayor Sharon Wolcott said while change is inevitable, there’s a clear framework set by the council and city leaders this time around, which should make the adjustment period less volatile than in prior election cycles. “Right now what we have is a plan moving forward. We’ve made it very clear and it’s been a publically vetted strategic plan that we’ve voted on and approved by the council,” she said. “Those people coming in will need to be educated on the strategic plan and all emerging issues. That’s one of the reason I set up working groups that work on emerging issues. Then in the future, when we have a report to the council, the council can decide on whether any of those issues are relevant to a change in policy.” Wolcott endorsed Cimino, Hall and Tande in their respective races. “I look forward to working with the new members and helping them get up to speed quickly. We’ve directed staff to make certain there is a robust orientation process so everyone understands the issues they will be voting on,” Wolcott said. This is the first Surprise election to use the district boundaries approved by the council in 2011. Here’s a look at how each of the three districts have changed: District 1 — The section of Sun City Grand west of Loop 303 previously dominated voting in this district. Now, all of Grand and most of Arizona Traditions are in District 2 — though Winters’ section of 16982045 Your newspaper. Your community. Your planet. Please recycle me. 16857540 A5 Arizona Traditions is in District 1. The redrawn district includes a sliver of Arizona Traditions and all of Happy Trails, but skews younger. Surprise Farms is the largest development in the district by population, with Northwest Ranch (where Cimino resides) and more sparsely populated expanses on north and west Surprise included as well. District 5 — Sun Village and its resident Councilman Skip Hall moved into this district, which is largely commercial (Surprise Marketplace and Towne Center) and administrative (the City Hall complex, Surprise Stadium and Community Park). Built-out neighborhoods like Kingswood Park (home of Marceaux) and Mountain Vista Ranch, as well as part of Westpoint Town Center. District 6 — Miller, Provenzano and Tande are vying for a spot representing fairly recent developments such as Copper Canyon Ranch (home to both Provenzano and Tande), Kenly Farms (Miller’s home) Marley Park, Royal Ranch and Veramonte. All of the district, including the more established communities of Ashton Ranch, Countryside and Rancho Gabriela, is geared toward families.
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