Boyd Dunn: As we enter 2010, we face many of the same challenges that last year brought, including an economy that continues to lag. These are indeed difficult times, but we can all hope that the new year will bring a renewed prosperity to the community and nation.
It hardly seems possible that 2009 is almost behind us. This is a good time to reflect on the days that have passed, and a better time to look forward to what the future might hold.
As we enter 2010, we face many of the same challenges that last year brought, including an economy that continues to lag. These are indeed difficult times, but we can all hope that the new year will bring a renewed prosperity to the community and nation.
Chandler is in the midst of its budget process, and in February we will hold several public meetings to gain your input on how the city utilizes taxpayer dollars. You can find out more about those meetings at www.chandleraz.gov, and hopefully you will be able to attend and provide us with feedback.
Looking beyond the current economic matters, there are some exciting things ahead in the coming 12 months. In May, we are expected to open Innovations, Chandler's technology incubator located at Stellar Airpark in west Chandler. This facility will be made available to smaller, start-up science and technology companies. It's another move that keeps us well-positioned in the global marketplace and better prepares us as we eventually begin to move out of the recession.
Work continues on the Intel expansion in south Chandler at the tip of the Price Corridor, and plans continue to be worked out at the former Motorola site along the corridor as well. Downtown should also continue to see new development that will include the second phase of town houses for the San Marcos Commons project.
In October, the new City Hall should be complete, making it easier to do business with the city through a consolidation of services at one convenient point of contact. Combined with the new Council Chambers, Vision Gallery and other office buildings, the new municipal complex will add new energy to an already vibrant city core.
We will also be busy with a number of continuing initiatives that include the update of the city's Transportation Plan, a noise study at Chandler Municipal Airport, and work on new and existing parks. Chandler youth will also enjoy the new Boys and Girls Club in 2010. Having just opened its doors, the club is a great new amenity to the community.
While it is hard to ignore these hard fiscal times, we must continue to move forward, keep our focus and our vision to retain Chandler's solid reputation as a great place to live and work. With that said, some of our neighbors are struggling this holiday and may require a little help to get by. Chandler has several agencies that can facilitate a holiday donation through their many worthy programs. If you are able to offer assistance, contact a favorite service agency of your own, or call the United Way at (602) 631-4869 for information on other human service organizations in our community.
Also, the Chandler Acts of Kindness program, or A-OK for short, gives residents an opportunity to donate $2 (or more) with their utility payment each month. These contributions support a variety of human service programs. On behalf of the City Council and city staff, I wish all of you a safe and joyous holiday season. Remember to "Invest Wisely, Shop Chandler," through the holidays and throughout the year.
Boyd Dunn is the mayor of Chandler.