Supervisor Barney took the oath of office on January 7, 2013. Having already organized his office, he hit the ground running, working on both the issues that you brought to his attention and applying the fiscal conservatism, transparency, and improved communication between governments that he advocated for on the campaign trail.
Since taking office, Supervisor Barney has worked with other elected officials, county staff and department leaders to develop ways to meet our critical needs and statutory mandates while decreasing the tax burden. A big part of the solution to our county budget crisis is to apply private sector and free market business principles. He and his staff are taking an in-depth look at the county budget and feel confident that a combination of budget cuts and increased efficiencies will not only maintain our current services to the public, but actually improve them.
Our next update will focus on a detailed look at the county budget as well as useful information to better understand your property tax bill.
Supervisor Barney hosted a luncheon for key District 1 Arizona State Legislators including Sen. Andy Biggs, Sen. John McComish, Sen. Bob Worsley, Sen. Katie Hobbs, Rep. J.D. Mesnard, Rep. Eddie Farnsworth, Rep. Warren Petersen, and Rep. Justin Pierce. He was able to share Maricopa County’s top 2013 legislative priorities, which include eliminating county general fund dollars paying for state programs over which we have no control such as care for sexually violent persons, and allowing the county medical examiner quick access to Arizona Child Protective Services records when investigating the death of a child.
Supervisor Barney’s testified on State Representative Warren Petersen’s bill HB 2578 which sought to prevent government regulators from going outside their scope of authority when dealing with the public.
One of Supervisor
Barney’s first steps was to meet with Maricopa
County Assessor Keith E. Russell. “Supervisor Barney and I have spent time
together going over property valuations and the operations of my office.
Denny has a keen insight into the fiscal health of the county and in his short
time on the Board understands this multi-billion dollar government
structure. It has been a pleasure to work with Denny!” said Mr. Russell.
Supervisor Barney sponsored
the formation of the Queen Creek County Islands Fire District. “Both county
island volunteers and Queen Creek Mayor
Gail Barney and his town staff have worked hard toward making this
agreement a reality. This change will increase public safety within this
community,” Supervisor Barney said. Click
here for more information.
and Steve Chucri met with Mayor John Lewis and the Gilbert Town Council
to strengthen relationships and find common ground on priorities and
challenges. Joint issues discussed at the meeting included tax revenues and
budget constraints, the cost of county jails and a proposal to eliminate the
construction sales tax
Supervisor Barney and
Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny have
agreed to work closely together to improve library services and the streets and
roads in the county/city. As a result, county
library and transportation staffs are working with their counterparts in the
City of Chandler to find solutions.
Supervisor Barney and
Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell serve
together on the Greater Phoenix Economic Council and share a commitment to
strengthening economic development and governmental cooperation in the region.
If you saw a bright
yellow tandem bike on the streets of Phoenix earlier this month, it just might
have been Supervisor Barney. Supervisor
Barney invited Phoenix City Councilman Jim
Waring to join Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton and County Manager Tom Manos in
the joint Maricopa County and City of Phoenix “Bike to Work” day. Over 250 employees
rode from Park Central to Phoenix City Hall and then participated in a BFIT
Expo. Councilman Waring and Supervisor Barney road the yellow tandem bike and
were heard to have said, “If you can’t bike to work, at least carpool!”
Supervisor Barney met
with members of the Maricopa County Farm
Bureau at an annual “Farm-City Partnership Breakfast” to discuss the
important contributions and concerns of the agriculture community. We
appreciated Jeff Foshee hosting the gathering at his farm.
Supervisor Barney and
Mayor Gail Barney hosted a site tour and presentation of the Pozos de Sonoqui
Archaeological Site in Queen Creek. Prior to Maricopa County Department of Transportation finalizing roadway construction plans for a new three-mile
eastward extension of the Riggs Road corridor through the Town of Queen Creek
and the Salt River Valley, local archaeologists presented to the media their
finding of recovered items relating to the life and ways of the former southwestern
desert dwellers known as the Hohokam.
many groceries can you bag in one minute? Supervisor Barney participated with Gilbert town officials in the “Gilbert Feeding Families” kick-off event
in support of the United Food Bank. He took first place in the event’s “Bag
Off” competition which pitted elected officials against each other to see who
could bag the most groceries in a limited time period. To participate in
helping collect 50,000 meals during the month of May, click here.
There is often natural
friction between government regulators and the private individuals or
organizations they regulate. One of Supervisor Barney’s goals has been to reduce this friction and open up positive channels of
communication to resolve problems.
Streamlined County Dust Permit Application
Maricopa County is slicing 36 pages from its dust permit application under a new online permit system that became available last week. The significant reduction in paperwork – from 43 pages to 7 – represents months of work by the Air Quality staff and other stakeholders who gave input on ways to improve the process and reduce the regulatory burden on industry, agriculture, and small business.
“Improving this process was a top priority of mine upon taking office in January and I’m pleased to see the progress we have made in such a short amount of time,” said Supervisor Barney. “We want to create a better, easier process for our stakeholders and citizens. And we won’t stop here, with one reform.”
For more information on the revised application, click here.
how common it is for taxpayers to get stuck in a quagmire of bureaucratic red
tape, it’s not often that we ask Government to “slow down.” However, that is exactly what we are doing
with Maricopa County’s new Enhanced Regulatory Outreach Program. This new
approach to streamlining government regulation is a concerted effort by the Air
Quality, Environmental Services, Planning and Development and Transportation
departments, as well as the Flood Control District, to provide a simple, yet
comprehensive process that allows multiple opportunities for stakeholder input
regarding the adoption and amendment of all regulatory requirements.
new website has been created to serve as a central place for interested parties
to participate in all county regulatory changes, including instructions on how
to sign up to receive notices of all new or proposed changes, as well as the
process by which any comments or complaints can be addressed.
new site will allow those who are affected by changes in regulation to have a
greater say in the process, and will help stakeholders and government
regulators better understand the outcomes and impacts associated with those changes,”
said Supervisor Barney.
For more information, click here.
In November 2011, Maricopa County launched Maricopa County “OpenBooks”, a single transparency website that enabled citizens to check county revenues, budgets, expenditures, tax bills, bond ratings and other data with a few clicks of a mouse.
Going a step further, this year on February 6th, Supervisor Barney voted to merge the county database into the larger, state-run Arizona financial transparency portal, Arizona Open Books. Maricopa County is the first county government in Arizona to appear on the state transparency website.
A little known fact
about Maricopa County is that many of our departments receive and accept
donations of time, money or consumer goods from generous members of our
community. All of these donations, large and small, are important and
allow the county to fulfill its statutory obligations while keeping taxes
Recently, the Board
accepted a very generous donation from PetSmart
Charities and Friends of Animal Care and Control in support of the Alliance for Companion Animals Strategic
Plan. The strategic plan aims to significantly reduce the number of
abandoned and unwanted pets in Maricopa County through increased free
Please visit the Animal Care and Control Website
to learn more about their programs and
Maricopa County has a number of boards and commissions made up of volunteers working for the betterment of all residents. Supervisor Barney can nominate residents of his district to serve on these panels. Currently, District 1 has the following openings:
Travel Reduction Program Regional Taskforce
Employers with 50 or more workers in Maricopa County are obligated by State law to implement a Trip Reduction Plan to encourage alternate ways for their employees to commute to and from work. The objective of the Maricopa County Travel Reduction Program (TRP) Regional Task Force is to review, approve, enforce and make recommendations to the annual Trip Reduction Plans submitted by such employers. If you live in District 1 and have an interest in public service and cleaner air, please contact us at the number below. Visit the TRP Regional Task Force page for more information.
State Board of Equalization
Members of the State Board of Equalization meet as necessary to hear and decide property owners' appeals of property valuations set by the Maricopa County Assessor’s Office. If you have recent experience in property valuation, property tax appeals or appraising real property and do not hold another public office, please contact us at the number below. More information can be found on the State Board of Equalization page.
If you have interest in volunteering for these or any other positions, please contact Supervisor Barney’s office at the number below.
Please let us know how we can better serve you.
Denny Barney, District 1
Maricopa County Board of Supervisors