Sunday, February 24, 2013

Economic Development Update

City of Scottsdale’s Economic Development Department

Scottsdale’s business attraction manager Bob Tunis reports that there continues to be robust interest in Scottsdale from a number of companies looking to relocate to Scottsdale.
While the vacancy rate in the Airpark continues to hover around 24%, Scottsdale has begun to see some positive absorption of space in Class A and B real estate and commercial real estate brokers report that business has begun to improve. Improvement does not imply a return to the glory days for property owners and a great deal of new development, but the market has seen some redevelopment of existing properties.

Scottsdale General Plan
Rick Kidder, representing the Chamber, was chosen to participate in the City sponsored town hall to work on the community values and vision statement for the General Plan. The previous version failed at the ballot for a number of reasons, among them charges from some members of the community that the General Plan had not received the appropriate level of community input and scrutiny prior to being placed on the ballot.
Roughly 100 members of the community from remarkably diverse backgrounds and perspectives under the leadership of the Arizona Town Hall gathered for three half-day sessions designed to come to consensus on the community values and vision statement, the basis for the General Plan document.
The consensus approach is challenging but is designed to filter out personal agendas and fringe concepts to arrive at place where essentially the group agrees. The Arizona Town Hall has no vested interest in the outcome and the process produced a widespread support from the attendees.
Documents and events related to the vision and values and other news and information related to the General Plan can be accessed through the city’s web site at

Friday, February 22, 2013

Public Policy Update

City of Scottsdale’s Public Policy Department

The Chamber’s commitment to advocating for policies that support the business community and the residents of Scottsdale, the region and the state is very strong. We are members of the East Valley Chamber of Commerce Alliance, a group of seven chambers in the east valley that allocate resources to work with our lobbyists from the Dorn Policy Group to support worthy bills or defeat challenging bills at the State legislature. The East Valley Chamber of Commerce Alliance is the largest business lobbying group in the state.
Chamber CEO Rick Kidder regularly testifies at City Hall on issues of importance before the City Council, Boards and Commissions on behalf of the business community. The Public Policy Advisory Council of the Chamber, chaired by Steve Helm, is the body through which most policy issues flow and serves as a recommending body to the Board of Directors on issues of significance.