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Proposed Glendale entertainment district on workshop agenda

Glendale City Council will discuss more details on a proposed Entertainment District for downtown at its workshop 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 4 in Council Chambers, 5850 W. Glendale Ave.

  • Shopping center looks to boost Sun City presence

    On the southwest corner of 107th and Grand avenues lies the Grand Avenue Shopping Center, which is host to a number of stores and restaurants.The center has been around since the 1970s, but places have come and gone along with time. On the other side of 107th Avenue is a Fry’s Food and Drug supermarket, which is Sun City’s southernmost grocery chain store. In August, the Starbucks on the corner of the Grand Shopping Center opened, replacing Marino’s Auto Repair which closed in 2013.Based on Maricopa County Department of Transportation data, the last traffic counts taken on 107th Avenue — north and south of Grand Avenue — were in January. The traffic count numbers were:107th Avenue, north of Grand Avenue: 20,234 vehicles per day107th Avenue, south of Grand Avenue: 11,159 vehicles per day.Owners and employees of three of the businesses reflected on either the change of the area, what it is like now and how the center might improve its presence in the southern portion of Sun City.

  • Governor to approve state-run retirement for private workers

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown is scheduled to sign legislation Thursday to automatically enroll nearly 7 million people in a retirement savings account, an attempt to address growing fears that many workers will be financially unprepared to retire.The legislation creates a state-run retirement program for workers who don't have an employer-sponsored plan, many of them working in lower-wage positions. It requires employers to automatically enroll their workers and deduct money from each paycheck, though workers can opt out or set their own savings rate. The account could also be carried from job to job.Supporters of the concept hope that requiring workers to affirmatively opt out will make them less likely to do so, allowing them to set aside a retirement nest egg over time so they don't have to rely solely on Social Security in their post-work years. A third of all American workers — and two-thirds of part-time workers — don't have access to a retirement plan through their employer, the Pew Charitable Trusts reported in September, relying on U.S. Census Bureau data.The financial services industry aggressively lobbied Brown for a veto, warning that the proposal is built on shaky financial assumptions and may create overwhelming political pressure for taxpayers to bail it out if it hits hard times.California lawmakers voted in 2012 to study the idea of creating a publicly run retirement plan for private-sector workers. After lawyers and financial analysts said the program was likely viable, the Legislature this year decided to implement the plan.The move has been closely watched due to the $1 million California spent researching and refining its proposal and the state's sheer size, with 12 percent of the U.S. population. Oregon and Illinois are working on implementing similar programs, and studies have been ordered in several other states.The U.S. Department of Labor gave the green light in August to retirement plans run by states and large cities or counties, putting to rest questions about their legality and removing a major hurdle.California's plan, SB1234 by Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, requires employers that don't offer retirement accounts to automatically enroll their employees in the state-run plan. Unless workers opt out, a percentage of their earnings would be deducted from each paycheck and held in lower-risk investments. The plans would stick with workers as they move from job to job, allowing them to accumulate larger balances in a single account.Like a standard individual retirement account or 401(k), the investments would be subject to the ups and downs of financial markets, including the potential for losses.Secure Choice, as the program is known, would be overseen by a board with authority to make decisions about investment options, the default savings rate and benefit payouts in retirement. Financial consultants recommended a default savings rate of 5 percent, which would rise by 1 percent a year until it reaches 10 percent of pay.The cost to the state is unclear, as it depends how many employees participate, but could reach up to $134 million over the first several years, according to the legislative analysis. The program is expected to eventually fund itself with fees on workers' deposits.But Paul Schott Stevens, president and CEO of the Investment Company Institute, which represents mutual funds and other investment products that comprise a large share of traditional retirement savings accounts, said in a letter to Brown that the program underestimates the risks and is based on unrealistically rosy assumptions about the rate of savings.With so many financial pressures facing lower-income workers, many are likely to opt out or withdraw their balances early, he wrote, and the cost to administer millions of small accounts would be higher than proponents assume. Moreover, he said, the state's obligations under securities law are uncertain, and the political pressure for taxpayers to backfill investment losses would be intense."It simply would be imprudent to move forward with the program without much further study and far greater assurance that its costs are fully understood and accounted for," Stevens wrote.

  • US consumer confidence jumps in September

    WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence in September rose to the highest level in nine years, a hopeful sign that economic growth will accelerate in coming months.The Conference Board said Tuesday that its consumer confidence index rose to 104.1, up from 101.8 in August. It was the strongest reading since the index stood at 105.6 in August 2007, four months before the beginning of the Great Recession of 2007-2009.Private economists had been forecasting the index would drop in September after a strong August reading. Many analysts expected that recent volatility in the stock market and some subpar economic readings on auto sales and manufacturing might lead consumers to feel less confident.They also thought that increased uncertainty revolving around the presidential campaign might weigh on consumers."It appears that steady job gains, low volatility in equity markets and subdued gasoline price pressures are helping consumers' outlooks," analysts at Contingent Macro Research said in a note to clients.Consumers' views about current economic conditions and expectations about future economic conditions both rose in the survey, a development which economists said should help boost consumer spending and the overall economy in coming months.

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  • Surprise offers hazardous waste collection for residents Oct. 8

    If you’ve been holding on to unwanted paint, electronics and other hazardous waste, mark your calendar for the City’s next Household Hazardous Waste Collection Event on Oct. 8.This event is free and for Surprise residents only. Residents are asked to bring a driver’s license or utility bill to show proof of a Surprise home address.Drop-off is from 8 a.m. to noon at the Public Works Maintenance Yard, 13433 W. Foxfire Drive (from Bell Road, turn north on Dysart and follow signs to the entrance off Foxfire).Acceptable items list:• Antifreeze, car batteries, motor oil, gasoline, diesel and fuel additives• Brake-transmission-power steering fluid, degreasers

  • Bails, Hayden will be interviewed Tuesday for Surprise council vacancy

    Two Sun City Grand residents put their name in the hat for the Surprise District 2 City Council sat vacated when Jim Biundo resigned Sept. 9.The process for filling this opening will nearly take as long as the person appointed will serve the remainder of Biundo's term. The city began advertising for the opening Sept. 13 in the Daily News-Sun and accepted applications through Tuesday.Former councilwoman Martha Bails and Jim Hayden, who won the Aug. 30 primary for the District 2 seat and will begin his term Jan. 1, applied. They both will be interviewed by the council during a special 4 p.m. meeting Tuesday."I was a little surprised (someone else applied)," Mr. Hayden said Thursday.The council is scheduled to announce who will serve the remaining two and a half months of Mr. Biundo's term during its Oct. 18 meeting. The choice will be seated that night.Ms. Bails moved to Surprise in 1999 and served soon after on the city's Planning and Zoning Commission. She was elected to the Surprise City Council in 2003 and launched unsuccessful bids for mayor in 2007 and 2011.

  • Brookdale Sandridge provides Shred-A-Thon in Sun City West

    Brookdale Sun City West Sandridge wiil offer a Shread-A-Thon from 8 to 11 a.m. Oct. 7 in the parking lot in front of the community, 13810 W. Sandridge Drive, Sun City West.A shredding truck will be on-site and assistance with unloading documents will be provided. The event is free but donations will be accepted for the Alzheimer’s Association and the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.Refreshments and tours of Brookdale are also free.For information about the Shred-A-Thon or Brookdale Sun City West Sandridge call 623-584-2338.Sherri Williams is the sales and marketing director for Brookdale

  • Lakes East course on target for Oct. 22 opening

    The Lakes East Golf Course, 10433 W. Talisman Road, is on target to reopen Saturday, Oct. 22 following the renovations there.The course was in final stages of clean up at the end of August. Palm tree trimming at that course will be delayed until after the overseeding Oct. 17-22. The course is still going through the grow-in period, making the too wet for the large trucks used in the trimming process.Lakes East homeowners are reminded plantings will take time to establish and will appear sparse in the meantime. As the plantings mature, the final design will materialize.

  • SCHOA board considers adding custodian of records position

    Sun City Home Owners Association officials want to clean up their record keeping, but the agency board stopped short of hiring a full-time person to oversee it — at least for now.The SCHOA board created an ad hoc Records Management Committee in June to research options for record keeping and maintenance. The association is required by federal and state law to retain certain classes of records. But it does not have a records retention policy in place, according to Don Thompson, SCHOA board member and Records Committee chairman.“The committee was charged with evaluating where we are with the records and where we need to go,” he said.Other committee members are Tom Wilson, SCHOA general manager; and SCHOA board members Ben Roloff, Sharon Major and Pam Schwartz. Carole Studdard, SCHOA marketing director, is a non-voting member of the committee.The board, in its Sept. 27 meeting, approved an amended resolution calling for adoption of a retention schedule, pending certification by legal counsel, and establishing a position of custodian of records. The person filling the position would have the responsibility to administer the retention schedule.However, authorizing the search for someone to fill the post was removed prior to the vote. As envisioned by the committee, the custodian would be a new full-time position for SCHOA, according to Mr. Thompson.

  • Shopping center looks to boost Sun City presence

    On the southwest corner of 107th and Grand avenues lies the Grand Avenue Shopping Center, which is host to a number of stores and restaurants.The center has been around since the 1970s, but places have come and gone along with time. On the other side of 107th Avenue is a Fry’s Food and Drug supermarket, which is Sun City’s southernmost grocery chain store. In August, the Starbucks on the corner of the Grand Shopping Center opened, replacing Marino’s Auto Repair which closed in 2013.Based on Maricopa County Department of Transportation data, the last traffic counts taken on 107th Avenue — north and south of Grand Avenue — were in January. The traffic count numbers were:107th Avenue, north of Grand Avenue: 20,234 vehicles per day107th Avenue, south of Grand Avenue: 11,159 vehicles per day.Owners and employees of three of the businesses reflected on either the change of the area, what it is like now and how the center might improve its presence in the southern portion of Sun City.

  • Half of speeders in Sun City West are residents

    Speeding on R.H. Johnson Boulevard in Sun City West continues regardless of increased enforcement by the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office with patrols in marked and unmarked cars.The PORA Roads and Traffic Committee visited the issue Sept. 28 after discussion on speeding and safety for golf car drivers was addressed by a Sun City West resident.The speeding issue was brought to the forefront by James Devaney who is concerned about golf car drivers’ safety.Mr. Devaney was clipped from behind by a car a few years ago, and even though the damage to the golf car was not extensive, it threw him out.“Please, we’re getting older in this community,” said Mr. Devaney as he addressed the committee. “We need a little more help to get around.”Mr. Devaney wants to continue to drive his golf car.

  • Brookdale Sandridge provides Shred-A-Thon in Sun City West

    Brookdale Sun City West Sandridge wiil offer a Shread-A-Thon from 8 to 11 a.m. Oct. 7 in the parking lot in front of the community, 13810 W. Sandridge Drive, Sun City West.A shredding truck will be on-site and assistance with unloading documents will be provided. The event is free but donations will be accepted for the Alzheimer’s Association and the Walk to End Alzheimer’s.Refreshments and tours of Brookdale are also free.For information about the Shred-A-Thon or Brookdale Sun City West Sandridge call 623-584-2338.Sherri Williams is the sales and marketing director for Brookdale

  • Surprise hosts on-site prostate screenings Oct. 6

    Prostate On-Site Project will lead prostate cancer screenings in Surprise in conjunction with the city from 7:30 to 11 a.m. at 16081 N Civic Center Plaza, Surprise.Prostate On-Site Project, a medical mobile service, will provide affordable prostate cancer screenings to men 40 years and older or younger if a history of prostate cancer runs in the family.Prostate Cancer frequently presents itself without any signs or symptoms. One in six men will develop the disease in their lifetime; if detected early, the course of treatment is less evasive and survival is nearly 100 percent possible.The event provides a PSA (prostate specific antigen) a non-fasting blood test, DRE (digital rectal exam), Testicular exam and physician consultation by a board certified urologist.Times maybe extended, or shortened as needed due to participation. Walk ups are welcome but registration is encouragedPOP accepts Blue Cross Blue Shield/Cigna/UnitedHealthCare. Specialist co-pay fees may apply. Medicare is not covered.

  • Glendale brings back focus on community-oriented policing

    It is back to the basics for the Glendale Police Department, which is sending its officers out into the community building bridges with residents and merchants.Community-oriented policing is the way to go, given Ferguson, Baltimore and most recently Charlotte, which erupted in riots after black men were shot to death by police.“Policing is not just crime reduction,” interim Chief Rick St. John said at last week’s Diversity Dialogue event at City Hall. “We have a bigger role in the community than just reducing crime.”The chief said when he first became an officer in the mid-1990s community-oriented policing was the way of doing business. But with the advent of technology, police departments nationwide began relying on crime data to deploy resources to hot spots, neglecting other areas of the community where things are happening that needed to be addressed, he added.“We spent the last 10 to 15 years being data-driven,” he said. “We got to change that but it’s going to take time.”The department has created more beats, 16 in the city’s four zones.

  • Proposed Glendale entertainment district on workshop agenda

    Glendale City Council will discuss more details on a proposed Entertainment District for downtown at its workshop 1:30 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 4 in Council Chambers, 5850 W. Glendale Ave.Included in the discussion of the Entertainment District is a survey of responses to the proposal that would allow businesses such as wine bars and liquor stores that locate within the proposed district boundary set up shop close to a church or school. State law prohibits issuing certain types of liquor licenses within 300 feet of a church or school but allows cities to approve an exemption from the restriction if the business is located in a designated Entertainment District.In the survey, 56 percent of all respondents reported they favored the proposal. Of the 151 survey responses received, 85 indicated theysupported the proposal, 45 indicated that they did not support the proposal, 17 indicated that they were undecided, and 4 provided no response.Further evaluation of the survey data showed that there were differing levels of support among different constituency groups with 92 percent of business community respondents, 56 percent of resident respondents, and 36 percent of church/school/parent/student respondents in support of the proposal.Those in favor generally discussed the opportunity to draw more people into downtown, the opportunity to attract more diverse businesses, the increased entertainment options it would offer for Glendale residents and visitors, and the opportunity for increased economic development and downtown revitalization. Common issues raised by those not in support included concerns about drunken driving, undesirable behavior and fights, the closeness to schools, and a desire to keep the quaint, family-friendly environment currently in downtown Glendale.

  • Chabad of the West Valley provides High Holiday services in Glendale

    Chabad of the West Valley, the local branch of the largest Jewish outreach organization in the world, presents its High Holiday services option, providing “No membership? No problem,” free Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur services this month.Services are as follows:• Rosh Hashana is from after sundown Sunday through nightfall Tuesday Oct. 3-5 at Arrowhead Country Club, 19888 N. 73rd Ave., Glendale.• Yom Kippur begins after sundown Oct. 11 and lasts until nightfall Oct. 12 at Renaissance Glendale Hotel & Spa, 9495 W. Coyotes Blvd.Chabad’s services feature song, commentary and the use of English-Hebrew prayer books, enable those of all levels to become active participants in the services. A children’s room with supervised care and children’s prayer service will run throughout the morning with games, stories, snacks and holiday fun.“The Lubavitcher Rebbe, of righteous memory, insisted that Judaism is accessible to all Jews. During the Jewish High Holidays, accessibility can translate into different factors for different people, such as a non-judgmental atmosphere, affordability of the services, or the ability for a beginner to follow along. Our goal is to lower the barriers of entry, and encourage each and every Jew to actively participate in these most holy and introspective days,” Rabbi Sholom Lew said.

  • Peoria plans to acquire Pinnacle Peak parcel from county

    Peoria will try to acquire a parcel of land at the northeast corner of Pinnacle Peak Road and Lake Pleasant Parkway associated with the Pinnacle Peak Road, 99th Avenue to 102nd Avenue Improvement Project.It has been the city’s intent over the years to acquire this triangular-shaped parcelowned by Maricopa County. The city has improvements within the land that were constructed as part of the Lake Pleasant Parkway project with permission from Maricopa County.Early in the design phase of the Pinnacle Peak Road project, city officials determined that acquiring parcel was needed in order to construct the improvements that will correct the alignment of Pinnacle Peak Road crossing Lake Pleasant Parkway.Officials said Maricopa County is agreeable to the sale of the parcel.

  • Peoria police seek information on sexual assault attempt

    Peoria police are asking the public's help in finding a male suspected of attempted sexual assault.On Wednesday Sept. 28, Peoria Police responded to an attempted sexual assault in the area of 27000 Silverado Ranch Road in Peoria. The female victim was injured while an unknown male attempted to sexually assault her. This occurred in a housing development where homes are currently under construction. The victim is recovering and has been unable to provide further details of the incident.Detectives responded to the incident and have been identifying witnesses and developing further information. They are following up on leads and have increased their patrol presence in the area.Officials are continuing to obtain a possible suspect description and will release that information as soon as it is available. In the meantime, they are seeking public assistance with obtaining any information regarding this incident. If anyone has noticed anything, anyone or any suspicious vehicles in that area please contact the Police Department.Anyone with information regarding this incident is encouraged to contact the Peoria Police Department at 623-773-8311.

  • Shopping center looks to boost Sun City presence

    On the southwest corner of 107th and Grand avenues lies the Grand Avenue Shopping Center, which is host to a number of stores and restaurants.The center has been around since the 1970s, but places have come and gone along with time. On the other side of 107th Avenue is a Fry’s Food and Drug supermarket, which is Sun City’s southernmost grocery chain store. In August, the Starbucks on the corner of the Grand Shopping Center opened, replacing Marino’s Auto Repair which closed in 2013.Based on Maricopa County Department of Transportation data, the last traffic counts taken on 107th Avenue — north and south of Grand Avenue — were in January. The traffic count numbers were:107th Avenue, north of Grand Avenue: 20,234 vehicles per day107th Avenue, south of Grand Avenue: 11,159 vehicles per day.Owners and employees of three of the businesses reflected on either the change of the area, what it is like now and how the center might improve its presence in the southern portion of Sun City.

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