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May 3 - 16, 2014

Cops ‘N Kids Chandler inspires love of reading BY ALISON STANTON

During his long career as an educator in Chandler and Wisconsin, Roger Bonngard saw first-hand how reading helps with literacy and a love of learning. When Bonngard, who is active in the Rotary and other community

organizations, read about the Cops ‘N Kids program last fall on the Racine, Wis., Rotary website, he knew right away that he wanted to bring the program to Chandler. SEE COPS ‘N KIDS PAGE 4

HAPPY TO HELP: When Sage Pierce heard about Cops ‘N Kids Chandler, she donated more than 75 books from her personal collection. “I love kids and I love reading and I want those kids who are less fortunate to be able to have books like I do,” she says. Submitted photo

Chandler man organizes 200-mile charity run BY ALISON STANTON

In June, Chandler resident John Mahnke will travel to Wisconsin to take part in a nine-day, 200-mile charity run called Treatment Trail. Mahnke was inspired to organize the inaugural event after the teenage son of close family friends was diagnosed with a brain tumor. During his cancer treatment, Christopher “Teo” Lorona made the 200-mile journey from his home in Sister Bay, Wis., to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. Lorona made the trip countless times with his parents, Mahnke says. Lorona is now cancer-free. When Mahnke and his wife, Lory Ruiz, spent the Christmas holidays with the Loronas in 2012, their friends told them about an organization called the GO BO Foundation that helps families of seriously ill children with financial support.

Students honored for art, writing

INSPIRED TO HELP: John Mahnke has organized a 200-mile, nine-day run as a way to raise money for an organization and a hospital in Wisconsin that helped the teenage son of family friends after the boy was diagnosed with cancer. Submitted photo

Mahnke says he was so impressed with the GO BO Foundation—which SEE RUNNER PAGE 8



Emily Woodward-Shaw immediately saw the photogenic beauty of Arizona when she arrived in the Valley two years ago from the Village of Cheshire in England. The 13-year-old middle school student didn’t hesitate. A photographer since the tender age of 3, she took her camera everywhere, snapping moments in time with unique angles. Visions that gained her recognition among the most talented young artists in the nation as part of the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. “I like to capture the parts people don’t usually see in things,” says Emily, an eighth-grader at Athlos Traditional Academy in Chandler. “A side angle. The details you choose to focus on. I like taking pictures over here, because I’m not used to the cacti. I’m used to cold trees, dead flowers. I want to capture a moment that nobody else understands.” Last year she won a Gold Key, this year an Honorable Mention for her photographic impression of the Van Deren cabin in Sedona she saw on

HONORED: Eighth-grader Emily Woodward-Shaw has won honors for her photography as part of the Scholastic Arts and Writing awards. She displays her first two years’ of honors in the program. Submitted photo

a Pink Jeep Tour with her family. She zoomed into the wood details—all the cracks and abrasions—to carry capture the soul of the cabin, known as haunted, she

Roxanna Donan and Reyna Hively of Dignity Health have fun showing the correct way to brush teeth. STSN photo by Nick Bartlett


See more photos on page 58

F E AT U R E STO R I E S Bowling benefit to help defray transplant costs. . . . . . . . . . . . COMMUNITY . . . . . . . . . . Page 9 UCR Health relieves chronic, acute pain. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BUSINESS . . . . . . . . . . . . . Page 17 Chandler teen nearly ‘Masters’ golf tourney. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . YOUTH . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 29 Chandler firefighters featured in steamy novel. . . . . . . . . . . . . NEIGHBORS . . . . . . . . . . Page 49 Flamenco guitarist to make debut at CCA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ARTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Page 59

SanTan Family Fun . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Center Section

More Community . . . . . . .1-15 Business . . . . . . . .16-27 Youth. . . . . . . . . . 28-38 Opinion. . . . . . . . 47-48 Neighbors. . . . . . 49-58 Arts . . . . . . . . . . . 59-66 Spirituality . . . . . 67-69 Directory . . . . . . 70-72 Classifieds. . . . . . .73-74 Where to eat . . . 75-78


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May 3 – 16, 2014


Cops ‘N Kids is a national initiative founded by Julia Burney Witherspoon, a police officer from Racine. The goals of the program—which involves police officers keeping books in the trunks of their patrol cars to hand out to children—are to connect kids with free books, to help to inspire an interest in reading, and to encourage positive relationships between kids, the police and the community. “I’ve always been concerned with people who are in need of help, and I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to help serve the underserved children in Chandler,” Bonngard says. After speaking by phone with Witherspoon about the program, he met with the former Chandler police chief Sherry Kiyler, who was very supportive of the idea. “I want Cops ‘N Kids Chandler to be all about community involvement,” Bonngard explains. “I don’t want to use state money or federal funds; I want to go out and collect gently used and new books and give them to children, who in many cases do not have any books of their own.” In addition to having local officers carry books in their trunks, Bonngard also hopes to create a Reading Room in Chandler where kids can come to pick up a free book, and also read to a volunteer and/or hear a story. Bonngard also plans on hosting Celebrate Reading events for local

BOOK DONATION: Roger Bonngard beams as Sage Pierce displays a few of the many books she donated to Cops ‘N Kids Chandler. Submitted photo

families to attend. “We will bring out thousands of books, and the children can pick out whichever book they want for free,” he says. Volunteers at the event will add a “to and from” label inside every book. “The label will say something like

‘To Alyssa, from Roger,’ and the child will know ‘this other person cared for me, and gave me a book that I can keep.’” Cops ‘N Kids Chandler’s goal is to distribute thousands of books a year. Bonngard has met with local nonprofit organizations, who agreed

to be donation sites. In addition, he recently finished a book drive, and he welcomes local groups and organizations like Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops to host book drives of their own. “By April 1, we had collected around 1,700 books, mostly by word of mouth,” he says. Becky Jackson, president and CEO of ICAN: Positive Programs for Youth in Chandler, says that when Bonngard contacted her about helping with Cops ‘N Kids Chandler, she readily agreed to be one of the founding board members. “Right now our goal is to collect as many children’s books from age 0 to 13 years old and categorize them, then develop a plan with each agency on how to work together with that agency to bring more opportunities for every youth in our community to have a book, if they want one,” Jackson says. Bonngard says he is thrilled to help kids discover the joy of reading. “Reading and literacy are both so important for their future.” For more information about Cops ‘N Kids Chandler, including donation sites and how to host a book drive, call Bonngard at (480) 223-3958 or visit Alison Stanton is a freelance writer who lives in the East Valley. She can be reached at

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says. “I really enjoy any part of art. I feel it’s a great way to express yourself, and to discover what you want to do. And you can make really good friends doing it. It’s just amazing.” Haley Lee, a 16-year-old senior at BASIS Scottsdale, just achieved a victory that younger students like Emily are preparing for with their annual submissions: A $10,000 portfolio scholarship for her writing and poetry portfolio. Of more than 255,000 submissions from across the nation in grades seven through 12, Lee is among only 16 nationwide to win the portfolio scholarship. “Three years ago I started to submit,” Haley says. “Ever year you can win an award, and senior year you can win money.” A fan of John Steinbeck, Haley says she’s inspired to write her poetry and short stories by “ordinary observations. Or even something I see on the news and read about and feel strongly about. I think at some point it would be great to have a novel published. I’ll just see where this takes me. “I think everything is about human relationships or life. It’s really important not to just write, but to write with purpose of spreading awareness of something you care about. Something you want to convey.” Hundreds of local students took home regional and national honors for poetry, journalism, essays, humor writing, photography, drawing, painting, jewelry,

WINNER: Haley Lee, a Scottsdale senior, receives a $10,000 scholarship for her portfolio submission of poetry and writing. The awards program aims to encourage and support artistic students. Submitted photo

sculpture and film, with some taking home multiple honors. The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards honors put them among ranks of visionary artists among the program’s alumni, including Andy Warhol, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, Philip Pearlstein, Sylvia Plath and John Updike. Chandler High School’s Cindy Tran achieved eight Gold Key awards for her jewelry portfolio, the highest regional honor. Margarita Lizcano, a Chandler

High School student, won eight Silver Key regional awards for her art portfolio which included drawings, paintings, sculptures and photography. Navya Dasari of BASIS Scottsdale took home 11 honors, including a national Silver Medal in poetry. Several other students from the school won honors. Virginia McEnerney is executive director of the Alliance for Young Artists and Writers, which runs the event and encourages every student with a love of art to get involved. “The opportunity to submit work to the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards is available to every student in grades seven through 12 from public, private, charter or magnet schools, homeschools or students who are in American schools abroad,” she says. “We welcome all teenagers who want to share their original, creative works which can be submitted in the program’s 28 categories of art and writing. “We saw incredible work from Arizona students this year and hope even more local students will submit this coming year because regardless of results, students learn valuable skills through participating in the Awards,” McEnerney adds. “At the same time, we continue to grow opportunities we provide to students through scholarships, exhibition and publication.” The 2015 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards opens its call for submissions on Sept. 15, at Beth Lucas is a freelancer for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at news@

May 3 – 16, 2014

Local winners SanTan Sun News-area students are some of the most talented young artists in the nation, earning Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. Here are the Chandler winners: Javais Adams (Painting Honorable Mention), Hira Ali (Flash Fiction Honorable Mention), Samantha Baumann (Digital Art Silver Key), Sean Cygan (Ceramics and Glass Honorable Mention), Toni Gagliardi (Painting Honorable Mention), Ileeyah Hoeck (Drawing Honorable Mention), Sue Kim, (Writing Silver Key), Grant Knight (Writing Honorable Mention), Margarita Lizcano (Eight Art Portfolio Silver Keys), Brigitta Mannino (Writing Silver Key and Honorable Mention), Elizabeth Milchak (Drawing Honorable Mention), Emma Paunil (Ceramics and Glass Silver Key and Honorable Mentions), Andrew Rangel (Short Story Silver Key), Anam Saeed (Painting and Drawing Honorable Mentions), Safiya Shaikh (Ceramics and Glass Honorable Mention), Cindy Tran (Eight Art Portfolio Gold Keys), Connor Williams (Ceramics and Glass Honorable Mention), Emily Woodward (Photography Honorable Mention), Justin Zhu (Two Writing Silver Keys). The Town of Gilbert boasted a few winners itself. Among them are: Riley Evanson (Writing Honorable Mention), Anthony Mirabito (Two Writing Gold Keys, Four Writing Silver Keys), Bailey Vidler (Humor Writing Silver Key).



May 3 – 16, 2014



May 3 – 16, 2014




May 3 – 16, 2014



was named after Bo Johnson, a Wisconsin teenager who lost his battle with cancer—he knew that he wanted to do something to show his appreciation to the foundation and the hospital that treated Lorona. “I remember thinking I’ve got to do something to help pay it forward, and say thank you to the staff that helped my friends so much,” he says. It didn’t take long for Mahnke, who has run in several marathons, to come up with the idea of organizing a run that would honor the GO BO Foundation and the hospital, as well as two young boys from Door County, Wis., who fought life-threatening illnesses. “We thought about having a fundraising event in Milwaukee, but then I said ‘I’ve got a crazy idea—why not trace the drive that the Loronas made, and we can run the 200 miles from Milwaukee to Sister Bay?’” Mahnke says. He quickly realized that most people do not want to run that far. “So then I said, ‘Let’s host 5K races in different cities along the path, and then if people want to join me, they can also run the distance to the next city along the path.’” The nine-day run will begin on June 14 in Wauwatosa, Wis., with a 5K run/ walk event. After completing the 3.1 miles with the other participants, Mahnke will then run to Port Washington, Wis., where there will also

be a 5K event. “People can sign up for whatever they want to do, and I will be happy to have them join me as I also run between the stops on the Treatment Trail,” Mahnke says. When Ruiz heard about her husband’s plan to run 200 miles in honor of the two young teens, she admits thinking the idea would eventually go by the wayside. But after he was still talking about it two months later, she knew it would really happen. “I honestly think he’s crazy and amazing,” she says, adding that she is proud of her husband’s dedication to giving back to the organization that helped their dear friends. Mahnke says he is just honored to help commemorate and recognize two teenage boys who fought hard against their illnesses, and to raise money for the places that helped them and other children in Wisconsin. “We can all do something that helps someone else out; I’m just glad to know I was able to help.” For more information, visit www. Alison Stanton is a freelance writer who lives in the East Valley. She can be reached at

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Chandler City Council meeting recap for April 24 The Chandler City Council met at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 24, and took action on 30 agenda items, including: Adopted a resolution authorizing a voting membership in the Industry/ University Cooperative Research Center, which gives the City full access to research and reports published by the Water and Environmental Technology Center (WET). WET’s mission is to develop technologies and methods to better manage contaminants in water supplies. WET has completed studies on water treatment, sustainability, reuse, recharge, forest fire impacts on water quality, taste and odor causing compounds in the canal system, and personal care products in source water. The membership costs $15,000 annually. Adopted a resolution authorizing the issuance and sale of Street and Highway User Revenue Refunding Bonds, in an amount not to exceed $10 million. In addition to reducing the amount of debt service expenses, this refinancing will provide additional funds to be used for street related purposes. Depending on the final issue size, this refunding is expected to generate a net debt service savings to the City of approximately $400,000. Approved a recommendation by the Parks and Recreation board to induct former Mayor Coy Payne and the Chandler Lions Club into Celebration Plaza at Tumbleweed Park. The plaza honors

Chandler residents, living or deceased, who have displayed outstanding civic commitment, leadership, innovation, public outreach and service to the City. They will be honored at an induction ceremony this fall. Approved a contract amendment to pay Otto Logistics LLC up to $219,885.80 per year to transport bulk sludge waste from the Recycling-Solid Waste Collection Center and the Ocotillo Brine Reduction Facility to the Waste Management Butterfield Landfill in Maricopa. Approved a final plat for a Circle K fuel station and convenience store on the southeast corner of Riggs Road and Arizona Avenue. The council also held a second public hearing on the Alternative Spending Limitation, or “Home Rule Option,” and voted to place the measure on the Aug. 26, Primary Election ballot. Chandler voters have approved the Home Rule option eight consecutive times since 1982, with the most recent Home Rule election approved in November 2010. Vice Mayor Rick Heumann welcomed a new restaurant, Original ChopShop Co., into downtown Chandler. Councilman Kevin Hartke placed a spotlight on the Cinco de Mayo Celebration and Chihuahua Races on Saturday, May 3, and the ICAN 5K Color SEE CHANDLER COUNCIL PAGE 15






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May 3 – 16, 2014


Bowling benefit to help defray transplant costs BY MEGHAN MCCOY

Patricia Mays knows a thing or two about mother’s intuition. When her then-13-year-old son James Luis came home from playing in an orchestra concert and a baseball game, she knew something wasn’t right. Luis, as he’s called because Patricia named all her sons James, went to bed and had a hard time sleeping and breathing. So Patricia jumped into action, taking him to the nearest hospital. Doctors revealed that Luis’ blood pressure was about 160 over 110. “They couldn’t believe how high the blood pressure was,” Patricia says. “He was rushed up to the ICU.” Luis had double kidney failure, and was in intensive care for nine days and had as many surgeries. “We almost lost him,” Patricia says. “But by the grace of God, he made it through.” Luis was on dialysis every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday for two years, before he received his kidney from his dad, James. “I’m glad he is alive,” Patricia says. “He has dealt with it with a smile on his face. He is just a good kid. He kept on.” She says right before Christmas his kidney began showing signs of rejection.

Luis goes to the hospital monthly and will be on medication for the rest of his life to ensure his transplant is working properly. To help defray costs of kidney transplant-related expenses, the family is hosting a fundraiser from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 17, at AMF Chandler Lanes, 1900 N. Arizona Ave., Chandler. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the event will be donated in Luis’ name to the Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA), a nonprofit organization. “They will help Luis until he is a young adult,” says Patricia Mays. “It will be there for the medical expenses. It has helped us extremely.” She says although her son will probably need another transplant when he is about 24 years old, the family is hoping his kidneys will last longer. “This organization will be there for him to help him if he needs the transplant at that time,” Patricia says. Tickets for the Bowl-A-Thon are $15 per person or $10 per person with a lane sponsorship. The platinum lane sponsor is $200; gold is $150 or more; silver is a $100 donation or more and a bronze lane sponsor is up to a $99 donation. To purchase tickets in advance contact James Mays at (480) 205-

FUNDRAISER: A bowling fundraiser is being held on Saturday, May 17, for Luis Mays, who received a kidney transplant almost two years ago. Submitted photo

9296 or Tickets can also be purchased at the door. “I’m feeling good,” Luis says. “I’m trying to get back in shape. A month

after the transplant I couldn’t walk long distances. I would get light headed. Now I can sprint a mile.” Patricia says her son has to make sure he drinks plenty of water and takes his medication at the same time every day. “He can’t play any contact sports because he has to be careful with his kidneys,” she says. Luis, a junior at Dobson High School, plays the string bass in the orchestra. Patricia says she is really proud of her son, her family as a whole, her extended family, friends and coworkers for being there and helping them through their journey. She says she wants to especially thank her older son who has been very strong and helpful throughout her son’s treatment. “He has driven him to dialysis and waited in hospital rooms and keeping him company when he is sick,” Patricia says. Meghan McCoy is the Neighbors and Business section editor for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at


May 3 – 16, 2014



May 3 – 16, 2014

Gilbert chamber to host tourney

Leadercast comes to Sun Valley

Chandler residents can help support local high school students at the fifth annual Scholar’s Golf Tournament, to be held at Superstition Springs Golf Club Friday, May 9. A portion of tournament entry fees and silent auction proceeds will be dedicated to the scholarship of 15 students to participate in the chamber’s Student Entrepreneur Institute, a ninemonth program designed to develop students’ entrepreneurial goals and creativity in the community by educating and developing individual entrepreneurs. The chamber hopes to support a majority of the annual program tuition for 15 students, including dual credit hours at

Chandler residents can view the annual leadership event, Leadercast, broadcast live from Atlanta, Ga., at Sun Valley Community Church in Gilbert on Friday, May 9. More than 100,000 leaders from around the world are expected to attend the Leadercast event to hear from dynamic speakers who will share inspiring, encouraging, and motivational messages. Attendees will learn how to improve leadership skills and will have the opportunity to network with other leaders in Gilbert. This year’s speakers include: • Laura Bush, First Lady of the United States from 2001-2009 • Simon Sinek, Leadership expert and best-selling author • Randall Wallace, screenwriter, director, producer and songwriter • Andy Stanley, Leadership author and

Campo Verde High School and ChandlerGilbert Community College, through partial proceeds from the tournament and additional business sponsorship. Registration begins at 11:30 a.m.; with a shotgun start at 1 p.m. and an award ceremony and dinner at 5:30 p.m. Tournament entry is $150 per golfer and includes lunch, dinner and an official 2014 tournament golf shirt. This event is presented by San Tan Ford with additional sponsorship by Benjamin Franklin Plumbing and the East Valley Tribune. To register or for more information, visit or call (480) 8920056.


communicator •Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Laureate and human rights activist • Malcolm Gladwell, award-winning journalist and best-selling author • Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric • Laura Schroff, former advertising sales executive and best-selling author • Dr. Henry Cloud, clinical psychologist and business consultant Leadercast will be held at 7 a.m. Friday, May 9, and will be hosted by Sun Valley Community Church, Gilbert Campus at 465 E. Ray Rd. Balcony seating is $79 and floor/table seating is $89. Admission includes breakfast, snacks and lunch served on-site. To learn more or purchase tickets, visit leadercast-2014.

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BENEFIT GOLF TOURNAMENT: Support local high school students at the fifth annual Scholar’s Golf Tournament at Superstition Springs Golf Club on Friday, May 9. Submitted photo

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The Chandler City Council honored military men and women upon their return from active duty on Monday, April 21. Four local veterans were recognized: Spc. Mason D. Christensen, Yeoman First Class Petty Officer Holly M. Granillo, Chaplain, Col. (Select) Michael D. Sproul, and Spc. Adam Webber. CDR Martin Sepulveda, recognized in the inaugural Operation Welcome Home Chandler ceremony, emceed the event, which included a procession escorted by the Arizona Patriot Guard Riders to Chandler City Council Chambers where Chandler City Council recognized and thanked each individual.

OPERATION WELCOME HOME: The Chandler City Council recognizes military men and women at the annual Operation Welcome Home ceremony. Submitted photo.



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May 3 – 16, 2014


Police seek bank robbery suspects

Chandler council to review budget

Chandler police are seeking the public’s help with identifying four black males who allegedly robbed the Compass Bank at 3075 W. Chandler Blvd., at 1:30 p.m. April 14. After collecting an undisclosed amount of cash, the suspects fled the bank east, to the area of the Chili’s, where they had parked their getaway vehicle. The suspect vehicle is described as a black Chevrolet HHR with tinted windows and a temporary tag. Officers located the suspect vehicle driving northbound on the Loop 101 Freeway from Ray Road. When the suspects saw police they fled at speeds of up to 100 miles per hour and began driving recklessly. Officers backed off and did not initiate a pursuit. The vehicle was last seen northbound on Price Road BANK ROBBERY SUSPECTS: The individuals pictured are through Guadalupe where the suspects ran a red light. being sought by Chandler Police in the robbery of a Compass Bank in Chandler on April 14. Submitted photos. Anyone with information regarding these suspects should contact the Chandler Police Department at (480) 7824130.

The Chandler City Council will hold a series of public meetings in May and June to review and adopt the City’s proposed 2014-15 budget, which begins July 1. The meetings will include presentations and discussions about the proposed budget, including projects and programs that will be funded as part of the City’s 10-year Capital Improvement Program (CIP). Each meeting will include opportunities for the public to comment on the proposed City budget. As part of the budget development process, the City’s Budget Office conducted an online survey of residents in December and January and presented the results to Mayor Jay Tibshraeny and the members of the City Council for their consideration. In addition, Budget Connect, an interactive Community Budget Meeting, was held in February to allow public input prior to the preparation of the proposed 2014-15 budget. Additional meetings being held in public forums are as follows:





Budget Amendment Discussion with the City Council 7 p.m. Monday, May 19 Chandler City Council Chambers, 88 E. Chicago St. Tentative Budget Adoption by the City Council 7 p.m. Thursday, May 22


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Chandler City Council Chambers, 88 E. Chicago St. Public Hearing regarding the adoption of the final 2014-15 Budget, 2015-2024 CIP, and 2014-16 Property Tax Levy with vote on final Budget and CIP adoption 7 p.m. Thursday, June 12 Chandler City Council Chambers, 88 E. Chicago St. Property Tax Levy adoption by the City Council 7 p.m. Thursday, June 26 Chandler City Council Chambers, 88 E. Chicago St. Many of the services provided to Chandler residents are financed through the General Fund. This fund will be a primary focus of the budget meetings and is used to support many of the services residents rely upon most, including police and fire service, libraries, maintenance of city streets, parks, and other infrastructure. General Fund revenues largely come from local city sales tax and state-shared revenues. The proposed budget is available for review online at budget and at the following locations: Downtown Chandler Library, 22 S. Delaware St. City Clerk’s Office, 175 S. Arizona Ave. For more information, call the City’s Budget Office at (480) 782-2252.


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May 3 – 16, 2014


Transportation engineers in the spotlight Engineers from the Chandler Transportation and Development Department (T&D) are stepping out from behind their desks and in front of the camera to help inform the public of several upcoming road improvement projects. An eight-minute video entitled “Roadwork Ahead” is being streamed on the City’s website, transportation, and will begin airing on the City’s government access Chandler Cable Channel 11 soon. The video features Chandler engineers Dara Griffith and Paul Young, as well as T&D Director R.J. Zeder, and highlights three major street improvement projects scheduled to begin this summer in southeast Chandler. “We thought our residents might like to hear about these projects from the people managing them; the ones who oversaw their design and will monitor the construction,” Zeder says. Griffith and Young are seen in the video discussing the planned widening of three Chandler roadways—Gilbert Road between Chandler Heights Road and Hunt Highway, McQueen Road between Ocotillo and Chandler Heights roads, and Ocotillo Road between Arizona Avenue and McQueen Road. Construction of the improvements will begin this summer and widen the streets from two to four lanes and

ROADWORK AHEAD: City engineer Dara Griffith steps in front of the camera to help produce a video to keep residents informed on recent city road updates. Submitted photo

include bike lanes, sidewalks, curbs and gutters, street lighting, turn lanes, traffic signals, storm drainage, medians, landscaping, and utility relocation. More than $12 million in grants from the federal Surface Transportation Program and Highway Safety Improvement Program is enabling Chandler to move forward with the projects, which were pushed back several years due to the sluggish economy and declines in revenue

from property taxes, impact fees and Proposition 400 funding (the voterapproved half-cent sales tax for transportation). Having several major arterial streets so close together under construction at the same time is not ideal, but the federal funding comes with tight timelines for expenditure which make the concurrent construction necessary. For more information, visit www.

‘Tree City USA’ communities recognized In honor of Arbor Day, the Arizona State Forester Scott Hunt is pleased to announce that 25 Arizona communities—including Chandler—have received the Tree City USA recognition. Cities and towns also achieving this honor include: Avondale, Buckeye, Casa Grande, Coolidge, Florence, Gilbert, Glendale, Kingman, Lake Havasu City, Litchfield Park, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Patagonia, Peoria, Phoenix, PinetopLakeside, Prescott Valley, Quartzsite, Scottsdale, Show Low, Snowflake, Tempe, Tucson and Yuma. The Tree City USA program is sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation, USDA Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters and provides among other things, national recognition for greener communities. The requirements to be a Tree City USA community are a tree board or department, a tree care ordinance, a commitment to a community forestry program and an Arbor Day observation and proclamation. Becoming a Tree City USA and achieving the program requirements will create a healthier sustainable urban forest that reduces energy costs and consumption, boosts property values, builds strong community ties, and honors the community. For more information on the Tree City USA program visit programs/treeCityUSA/.

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May 3 – 16, 2014

Gilbert Road improvements update

Dash on Saturday, May 17. Councilwoman Nora Ellen thanked the community for supporting the second Operation Welcome Home event that honored four local veterans and their families on Monday evening, April 21. The next OWH event will be in November and nomination information is online at patriotism. During a study session on Monday, April 21, Mayor Jay Tibshraeny, Councilman Jeff Weninger and the rest of the council recognized four City employees for their years of service, including: Holly Granillo (15 years), Ramon Granillo (15 years), Ariane Francis (10 years), and Mark Hullinger (Retirement—23 years). In addition, Tibshraeny proclaimed May 11 through May 17, 2014, as “National Police Week” and May 15, 2014, as “Peace Officers’ Memorial Day.” He also proclaimed April 25, 2014, as “Arbor Day in Chandler.” The mayor also accepted a Bicycle Friendly Community award from the League of American Bicyclists. The next City Council meeting is a study session at 7 p.m. Monday, May 5. Council meetings are aired live, as well as replayed, on Chandler Channel 11 and streamed on the Web at Note: These are not official meeting minutes of the City Council but rather a brief recap of the Council’s actions provided as a courtesy of the Chandler Communications and Public Affairs Department. The City Clerk’s office posts official meeting results the morning following Council meetings. For a complete list of actions taken, visit www.chandleraz. gov/agendas. Throughout the agenda, items are posted in red to signify any changes made at the meeting, and who voted no, or abstained. For past city council meeting minutes visit www., or contact the City Clerk’s office at (480) 782-2180. For any other information, contact the Communications and Public Affairs Department at (480) 782-2000.

Construction is complete for improvements to Gilbert Road, from Queen Creek Road to Ocotillo Road, as part of the Gilbert Road Improvements Project. Construction has begun for the next phase of improvements, the widening of Gilbert Road, from Ocotillo Road to just south of Chandler Heights Road. It should be noted that, while the widening extends to just south of Chandler Heights Road, construction will be taking place as far south as Riggs Road for installation of water, sewer and reclaimed water pipeline. The first phase of the project widened Gilbert Road between Queen Creek and Ocotillo roads from two lanes to six lanes (three lanes in each direction), and included landscaped medians, bike lanes, curb, gutter, sidewalk, and extensive work on water, reclaimed water and sewer pipelines. The current phase of the Gilbert Road Improvements Project includes: • Widening Gilbert Road to four lanes (two lanes in each direction) from Ocotillo Road to just south of Chandler Heights Road, transitioning to three lanes north and southbound at the Gilbert Road/Chandler Heights Road intersection. • Widening the Gilbert Road/


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Chandler Heights Road intersection to two lanes in each direction for Chandler Heights Road. • Remaining improvements at the Gilbert Road/Ocotillo Road intersection. • Improvements will also include landscaped medians, bike lanes, curb, gutter, sidewalk, and any

The deadline for news and advertising is 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 7, for the May 17, issue of the SanTan Sun News. All news must be submitted to by that day to be considered for the next issue or by filling in the “submit a news release” form on the newspaper’s website at To send an item for consideration in the SanTan Family Fun, email it directly to Send advertising files and information to account reps or contact Ads@SanTanSun. com. For deadline information, visit and click on “About us” and call (480) 732-0250 for advertising rate details.


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utility relocations necessary for the improvements. • Dedicated right turn lanes, bike lanes and Americans with Disabilities Act improvements, such as installation of handicap ramps at corners, in the project area. • Excavation of retention basins in the project area to accommodate stormwater flows. • Access to homes and businesses will be maintained throughout construction. Drivers are asked to be cautious when driving through construction zones, and continue to patronize local businesses during this construction. For additional project information, visit www. or call (480) 898-4100.


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