By Maricopa Historical Society
Throughout the last 100 years, the tractor has played a significant role in agricultural practices around the world. Maricopa Historical Society wants you to experience the last century’s agricultural heritage of farm tractors by seeing the current exhibit at the Maricopa Public Library.
The exhibit focuses on some of Maricopa’s farming families that go back several generations. One display, a photo from the Casa Grande newspaper, shows a Maricopa cotton family taking delivery of their new Allis-Chalmers HD-11 Crawler in 1960.
Another longtime Maricopa family has on display the original 1943 application submitted to The United States of America War Production Board to purchase one Victory Model TD-9 International Tractor. The purchase price was for $3,700.00. The request was returned, stamped “REQUEST DENIED” from the War Production Board.
In the exhibit are photos of the eight John Deere trademarks since 1836 and 13 toy replica tractors. There are also antique tractor photos of John Deere, Case and Farmall. Some are still in use today.
Maricopa has a rich history in farming and there is no better place to take a time warp back to the time of antique tractors and farm equipment. Prior to the introduction of the farm tractor, people used animal power to plow and harvest their land. Tractor engines were able to pull heavy loads, which reduced the costs associated with maintaining animal labor. The earliest mechanical tractors were developed using portable engines, or steam engines, that were able to move farm equipment.
This exhibit will be on display at the Maricopa Public Library until Sept. 19.
Dallas Smith, 42, of Maricopa, received the maximum sentence for committing sexual acts on two girls.
Pinal County Superior Court Judge Joseph Georgini gave Smith 24 years in the Department of Corrections. Georgini also sentenced him to a lifetime of probation and ordered him to register as a sex offender upon his release from prison.
Smith sexually assaulted an 8-year-old girl and a 10-year-old girl on a number of occasions between 2011 and 2013. In June 2015, the defendant pled guilty to the charges of molestation of a child, a Class 2 felony, dangerous crimes against children, a Class 3 felony, and to two counts of attempted sexual conduct with a minor, also Class 3 felonies.
“Despite the fact this defendant received the maximum penalty, the harm caused to these young girls may last much longer,” Pinal County Attorney Lando Voyles said. “Knowing that, I promise our Pinal families to continue fighting for maximum penalties when the facts support such penalties. Thank you to Judge Georgini for recognizing this as one of those cases.”
Assistant Fire Chief Maricopa Fire Department – Community Services,
Hometown: Des Plaines, Illinois
Family: Wife Lynn, sons Patrick, 27, Andrew, 25, and Eric, 22; daughter Michelle, 20; step-daughters Jordan, 21, and Addison, 6. My sons are all serving in the Air Force, my daughter attends University of Arizona, my step-daughter attends San Diego State University. I married the woman of my dreams on March 21 of this year.
Education: Bachelor’s degree in management, Benedictine University (Lisle, Illinois); master’s degree in public administration, Northwestern University (Evanston, Illinois).
Hobbies: I love to golf and fish.
Years on the job: 25 years in the fire service, 24 for the Wilmette (Illinois) Fire Department and 16 months for the Maricopa Fire Department.
Why did you decide to be a first responder? I was working for United Airlines when I started my family and was looking for a more stable job. United went bankrupt not long after I left, [so it] turned out this was a good decision. I spoke with my father about testing for the police department – my father was a 33-year veteran of the police department – and his advice was to test for the fire department. In his words “everyone loves the firemen and you can’t beat the schedule.” Both turned out to be totally true!
What element of your job has been the biggest surprise to you? The biggest surprise to me over my career has been the true appreciation of the public of the efforts of all first responders, including police officers. No matter how bad people’s situations, it seems the worse it is for them personally the more appreciative they are for our efforts. The perfect example of this was early in my career we worked on a young pregnant woman who was not breathing and had no pulse. We worked feverishly on her as did the emergency room staff. Sadly, our efforts failed, but the husband could not thank us enough for trying our best. It has sat with me all these years that this guy lost two family members and he made sure he thanked us repeatedly. This example has been my motivation to do the best always because we are truly appreciated whether it is expressed or not.
Why Maricopa? After completing my 24 years in Wilmette and completing my master’s degree, I noted many advancement opportunities were out West. Maricopa was the perfect fit for many reasons. The executive staff is absolutely the best that could be put together. I also enjoy the challenge of working for a department of a growing Arizona city.
Favorite part of the job: Definitely the people I work with. Secondly, is interacting with the public whenever I get the opportunity.
Least favorite part of the job: Sounds corny, but I really can’t think of a least favorite part.
Scariest moment: The scariest moment of my career was being caught in a flashover during firefighting efforts in the basement of a home back in Illinois. The basement went from complete blackness with tons of heat to a complete fireball in about two seconds. Luckily we were just behind a door in the basement which saved our lives. We had other crews down to help us almost immediately, but for a few seconds the thought did occur that the outcome might not be good.
Bravest act you’ve witnessed: I watched some guys from my department go into a second floor window of a burning second-floor house fire to get to a trapped 8-year-old girl and her father. The whole second floor was on fire and these three guys went in to find the two trapped people without the protection of a hose line (which was being stretched at the time they entered the second floor). They found both people and were able to successfully remove both from the house. Most courageous and work-intensive act I have ever witnessed due to the father being over 300 pounds and they removed him on a ladder unconscious.
What you wish all residents knew about your department: I wish all residents knew that this group of firefighting personnel are the best in the state. I also wish the residents knew how these personnel work so hard to keep the residents and everyone who plays and works in Maricopa the safest they can possibly be.
Pinal County Sheriff’s deputies arrested four men on marijuana charges in the Stanfield area Monday, and a fifth man on Papago Road faces theft charges.
Ramon Aguirre del Sid, 43, and Jermaine R. Padillas Gonzalez, 29, were arrested near Stanfield Road and Interstate 8. Both were charged with possession of marijuana for sale and transporting marijuana. They were booked on a $150,000 bond each, with a preliminary hearing set for Aug. 18.
Marcila Aguirre Rico, 49, and Marcon Thobourne Jiminson, 20, were arrested on Stanfield Road and charged with possession and transportation of marijuana. Both were booked on $150,000 bond and were scheduled for arraignment Aug. 18.
Argel Ramon Vega Castillo, 24, was arrested just before 10 a.m. on West Papago Road on a warrant for two counts of theft and a charge of failure to appear. He was given a bond of $535 on the latter charge, but no bond on the theft charges.
By Roberta Cianciosi
Since summer vacation began, a Maricopa boy has been making daily visits to the site of the future Our Lady of Grace Church, which is scheduled to open in early 2016.
His name is Matthew Sabetta, and when you meet him you’re immediately touched by his kindness and enthusiasm. Matthew turned 13 in July, and his visits to the worksite make his days complete.
“It’s a special treat for me,” Matthew said. “I see cement trucks, pumper trucks and I get to talk to people.”
Last spring and summer, he and his grandmother Melanie Warthman watched workers complete the infrastructure for the new church and joined in the celebration of the Lighting of the Lights ceremony. He was already planning then to visit the site once work began on the project.
“This is our home away from home,” Warthman said. “We come each day and stay awhile watching the men work to complete the project.”
When parishioners joined Rev. Marcos Velásquez for the groundbreaking in March, Matthew arrived with his hard hat and met several members of the team building the new church. Dean Schifferer, the general manager of Redden Construction, presented him with one of the ceremonial shovels marking the occasion.
With the exception of a short respite to Disneyland, he hasn’t missed a day. His enthusiasm is so infectious that he and his grandmother were at the site before sunrise to watch the pouring of the cement floor. When he visits, Matthew’s favorite spot is the observation deck on the south side, which eventually will be the sanctuary.
“We missed him while he was away,” foreman Carl Utz said. “He makes us stay on top of things, especially with the cement trucks. He’s very pleasant to have around.”
“Mr. Utz has given Matthew a lot of special treatment and he’s been just awesome,” Warthman said.
She and Matthew brought lunch for the crew one day, and, as a reward, Matthew was given a tour of the work being completed. His initials will forever be a part of the floor of the new church’s sanctuary.
“I met Matthew during one of his visits to the site with his grandmother,” Doug McInelly said. “He’s always excited when someone takes the time to talk with him. Our crew really appreciated the time he brought lunch for everyone on the site. It was a special time when we took a picture of all of us with Matthew after lunch. It’s wonderful to see how interested Matthew is in everything every day.”
Visiting each day is special for him, and he even says a prayer for the workers beginning with the Our Father and adding “keep them safe and don’t let them fall.”
“Matthew exemplifies the pure joy and excitement that the parishioners and the constructors have, or should have for the church,” Schifferer said. “We can all be inspired and encouraged knowing that all the challenges will be worth it, when generations to come will be blessed by a wonderful church.”
“It’s exciting to see that level of interest from Matthew,” Project Manager Eric Peterson said. “I have never seen such excitement and interest in all my years of construction. I think we can all learn from his enthusiasm.”
Matthew is going back to school, but that doesn’t mean the visits to the site will stop. He’s planning to stop by before school, and he’ll be there on half-days as well as days off.
By Pat Lairson
It is an exciting time in real estate for the city of Maricopa. Overall the market is moving and profitable for most people who want to sell and also a good investment for those who want to buy. Let me give you an overall market view and then talk to you about some homework you should do if you are thinking about listing your home for sale.
There are only 40 active listings for rent. This is an all-time low for rentals available in Maricopa, which has caused an increase in monthly rental prices along with fewer homes to choose from to rent.
There are approximately 325 active single-family homes for sale in homeowners association subdivisions in Maricopa. The lowest-priced home is listed for $99,500 and the highest priced at $459,000. From June 1 to current, there are approximately 264 homes under contract either pending, closed or about to close. The average time a home is on the market has gone down to about 82 days in Maricopa.
So you can see the market is moving.
If you are thinking of selling your home this is a great time to do so. Do some homework first, though, before you sign a contract.
1. Get a market analysis done on your home. Realtors will do this for free and send you a comparative analysis on like homes in your subdivision so you can see the range of what your model will sell for. Your home can’t be priced accurately though until a Realtor actually visits your home.
2. Once you go over the analysis and if you want to list your home, go look at a couple of homes in the price range you think your home is valued at. This will give you some ideas on how to present your home and even price it accurately. Homes painted in neutral colors, de-cluttered and smoke- and pet-smell-free sell much faster.
3. There are costs involved in selling your home. Your Realtor can provide you with a cost sheet so you know exactly what you will net.
4. Make any repairs to your home before you list your home. Most buyers will hire an inspector. A report that comes back with a long list of repairs can scare a buyer off. As a seller, often you know of some items that need to be fixed in your home. Fix these items before you list. You can also get a free termite inspection before you list. Also get an HVAC tune-up and keep the receipt to give to your buyer, patch any outdoor drywall cracks and touch up paint if needed.
5. Find out how your home will be marketed. The Realtor you choose will tell you what they plan to do to sell your home and how they will follow up with potential buyers. They will also advise you on how to prepare your home the best way possible to sell it quickly.
Pat Lairson is a Realtor with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.
By Julia Romero Gusse
Within the last year military veteran unemployment rates have dropped but for the most part vets are having a harder time than non-veterans finding jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Post 9/11, Iraq and Afghanistan veterans are the group with the highest unemployment compared to their civilian and veterans of previous conflicts. Many employers and organizations have committed to hiring veterans and a few are providing veteran hiring preferences.
It makes good business sense to hire a veteran. Most companies are hiring vets not just because they want to help them readjust to civilian life but also because of what they bring to the business table. Most veterans learn faster because they have been trained to follow directions in a short period of time, their loyalty and teamwork skills are like no others’, and their commitment and discipline in getting the job done allows them to excel.
Veterans and non-veterans have had a difficult time finding employment since the recession hit and this is evident if you attend any job fairs. The Arizona Workforce Connection’s job fair was held at Harrah’s Ak-Chin a few weeks ago. I attended this fair as a representative of a local veteran non-profit organization (VetIT).
Of the 40 employers that I interviewed, only the Ak-Chin enterprises offer veteran hiring preferences. It is evident the Ak-Chin Indian Community values veterans and is committed to hiring veterans.
Another employer present who indicated a desire to hire veterans was Walmart and, according to their website, on Memorial Day 2015, Walmart and Sam’s Club strengthened their commitment to hire 250,000 veterans by 2020.
For those of you who were unable to attend job fair, I have included 40 of the 52 employers present at the local job fair. Hire a veteran!
Maricopa Unified School District has six elementary schools, two middle schools and one high school. The city has two K-12 charter schools and other charters for elementary-aged children. Charter schools are tuition-free public schools. Central Arizona College offers dual enrollment for high schoolers. CAC is the Pinal County community college system.
Central Arizona College: Maricopa Campus
Maricopa Unified School District #20
Grades K – 12
District Office: 4150 W. Maricopa-Casa Grande Highway, Maricopa AZ 85138
Superintendent: Steve Chestnut – firstname.lastname@example.org
— Maricopa High School
— Maricopa Wells Middle School
— Desert Wind Middle School
— Santa Rosa Elementary School
— Santa Cruz Elementary School
— Saddleback Elementary School
— Pima Butte Elementary School
— Maricopa Elementary School
— Butterfield Elementary School
Stanfield Elementary School District #24
Grades PreK – 8
515 S. Stanfield Road, Stanfield AZ 85272
Superintendent: Melissa Sadorf – email@example.com
Principal: Christopher P. Lineberry – firstname.lastname@example.org
Sequoia Pathway Academy
Legacy Traditional School
Leading Edge Academy
Holsteiner Agricultural School
The Board of Supervisors, sitting as the Pinal County Flood Control District, unanimously approved the participation with the Army Corps of Engineers on a feasibility study for the Lower Santa Cruz River Watershed.
“This is a huge step forward in eventually being able to come up with a plan to address the flooding that occurs nearly every year on the Santa Cruz River,” Supervisor Anthony Smith said. “It seems that every time the Santa Cruz goes over its banks, there is major property damage. I am looking forward to the day when it does rain you won’t be thinking in the back of your mind ‘how bad will this get?'”
In the past, flooding on the Lower Santa Cruz has destroyed small farming communities along the river and damaged critical infrastructure, as well as caused significant damage to the towns of Maricopa, Casa Grande and Arizona City.
The feasibility study is the second stage in a formal process carried out by the Army Corps of Engineers. The first stage was a reconnaissance study that was completed in 2014. This study found federal interest in developing a potential solution to the flooding problem. The Army Corps of Engineers also gave the recommendation to proceed with the feasibility study.
The study is expected to be completed within three years at a total cost of no more than $3 million. The agreement with the Army Corps of Engineers will have the Federal Government and County split the cost of the study, including in-kind contributions from the county.
“The study is a necessary and important step in the process,” Supervisor Smith said. “When it comes down to it, this is a critical part of our economic future. Working proactively on a comprehensive solution in partnership with stakeholders, the Congressional Delegation and Corps will help position the County for economic growth and it sends a message to businesses that the County is serious about creating the conditions for their success.”
The feasibility study is also good news to the nonprofit Lower Santa Cruz River Alliance. The group is comprised of 20 public and private entities who advocate for a comprehensive, regional solution to the flooding on the Lower Santa Cruz. Supervisor Anthony Smith is an executive committee member of the Alliance.
“We are delighted that the County and the Corps have entered into this agreement to conduct the study and ultimately protect from flooding one of the country’s fastest growing and most dynamic regions,” said Steven Bloch, president of the Lower Santa Cruz River Alliance. “The President, Congress, Corps and local stakeholders have all recognized the importance of this project and together they have helped advance it to the study phase.”
A Maricopa man wanted on suspicion of domestic violence turned himself in today after a search of a Glennwilde neighborhood Monday.
According to the Maricopa Police Department, James Brandon Austin,34, went to his attorney’s office in Phoenix, where he was arrested at approximately 2 p.m.
“He is currently being processed and will be transported to the Pinal County Adult Detention Center and booked on several felony charges under the domestic violence statute,” MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said.
MPD officers were called to a location on Porter Road around 4:30 p.m. Monday on a report of an aggravated assault. The address is listed as 18700 N. Porter Road, which is Leading Edge Academy. Officers later found the Nissan Cube belonging to Austin on a Glennwilde street and searched the area.
No one in the neighborhood reported seeing Austin, and MPD could not locate him until they were contacted Tuesday.
MPD released no more details about the case.
A fund has been set up to help the Maricopa family of two children killed in a traffic accident on Interstate 10 Sunday.
Laureano Ocho Rivera set up the “Garcia & White Family Fund” on GoFundMe.com with the humble goal of $1,000. In one day, more than $5,000 was raised, and donations and condolences continue to come in.
The money is intended to benefit the family of Luis James Garcia, 15, and Mercedes “Sadie” Garcia, 11, who died in the rollover crash.
“Luis and Sadie were taken from us far too soon,” Rivera stated on the fund page. “The pain is felt by an entire community and beyond as this family has touched many of us in one way or another be it from Pee Wee football to Ak-Chin baseball. Please help us help the family. We love you Adam and Della.”
Nine people were in the Chevy Tahoe that flipped after apparently blowing a tire. Maria Almadelia Farias Cervantes, 23, of Phoenix, died of her injuries later at a hospital. The Garcia children were pronounced dead at the scene.
Six others, including the driver, were injured. One teen has life-threatening injuries.
Maricopa Unified School District Professional Development Coordinator Heidi Vratil responded to a call for presentations at the National Teach to Lead Summit. The project proposal was one of 26 selected from over 100 submissions.
The proposal addressed an important issue for MUSD and for the state or Arizona – a significant number of new teachers leave the district or the profession each year. The proposed project is designed to address this issue by providing training and mentor support for MUSD student teachers and encourage partnerships with major Arizona universities.
MUSD staff members attending the national summit in Washington, D.C., July 22-23 were Vratil, Dr. Jen Robinson, Jennifer Miller, Treva Jenkins and Aidan Balt. This team will work to implement the project during the 2015-16 school year with the goals of helping MUSD teachers to be more successful with students, and remaining longer in the classroom.
In 2014, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan met with teachers and administrators from across the country to develop the Teach to Lead Initiative. This initiative was co-sponsored by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards to improve student learning and expand opportunities for teacher leadership.
Regarding the closure of Interstate 10 in California, Arizona Department of Transportation reports westbound traffic can get as far as Blythe.
Though it was the eastbound bridge at Desert Center that collapsed Sunday due to heavy rains, the westbound bridge also remains closed for inspection. The area is about 50 miles west of the Arizona border.
One person was injured in the bridge collapse when his vehicle went over the side. “Bystanders quickly used straps from their trucks to secure vehicle to guardrail to prevent it from washing away,” Riverside County Fire Department reported. “Fire resources used tools underwater and performed the patient extrication in rapidly rising water with pieces of asphalt and debris falling.”
California and Arizona officials have been re-routing traffic to Interstate 8 and Interstate 40.
According to the Associated Press, inspectors plan to assess more bridges along a 30-mile stretch of the interstate after another bridge showed signs of damage.
No time frame is being given for the reopening of westbound traffic on the I-10. RCFD described the westbound bridge as “undermined.”
For updates, follow ADOT on Twitter at @ArizonaDOT
This week there are events for people of all ages in Maricopa for learning and entertainment, from a cowgirl at the library to an opportunity to find a job.
Fall Marching Band Camp for the Maricopa High School Marching Rams will be each day from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., starting in the band room behind the Performing Arts Center.
Cowgirl Jan will be at Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road, at 10 a.m. brining stories, magic, audience participation and lots of rootin'- tootin' good times for pre-school and younger.
The New Family Roundup starts at 5 p.m. at Santa Rosa Elementary School. New families in SRES will get a chance to tour the school and talk to staff.
Chamber 101 starts at 5:30 p.m. at Maricopa Chamber of Commerce, 44870 W Hathaway, Suite 5, and is an orientation to the services available through the chamber to local businesses.
Maricopa City Council Work Session is at 6 p.m. at City Hall. The council will hear a presentation on key initiatives from the Greater Phoenix Economic Development Council and a presentation from Electrical District #3 General Manager Bill Stacy about changes in solar policy.
Maricopa City Council Regular Session is at 7 p.m. at City Hall. The agenda includes a presentation from the Canada Arizona Business Council and agreements with Global Water for service to the new Public Works facility on Edison Road and the Copper Sky Police Substation.
The Volleyball Mini Rams Camp is 6-8 p.m. both days in the Ak-Chin gym, 46753 W. Farrell Road. It is designed for boys and girls ages 7-14 interested in developing their skills. The Maricopa Volleyball Booster Club and players will be facilitating the camp with Coach Holley. Cost is $30.
The Maricopa Job Fair runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Harrah's Ak-Chin Casino Ballroom, 15406 N. Maricopa Road, hosted by Arizona Workforce Connection with the Maricopa Chamber of Commerce.
Biz Ed Seminar starts at 8:15 a.m. at UltraStar Multi-tainment Center, 16000 Maricopa Road. Maricopa Deputy Fire Marshal Eddie Rodriguez will present "Disaster and Emergency Preparedness Planning."
Pinal County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Casa Grande man on suspicion of fraudulent schemes around the county, including in Maricopa.
Randy Thompson, 34, was taken into custody July 10 and is held at the Adult Detention Center on a $75,000 bond. He is accused of being part of a scam claiming to offer mobile auto repair, taking money up front and then not completing the repairs.
Because he is believed to be part of a larger operation, PCSO is asking anyone who feels they were victims of the scheme to contact PCSO or their local police. PCSO began investigating complaints on April 1.
So far, losses to Pinal County residents are in the thousands of dollars. Reports have come from Maricopa, Casa Grande, Arizona City, Mesa and unincorporated areas of Florence.
Maricopa Community Theatre’s summer camp is drawing to a close, and you’ll soon see the fruit of their labor when “Annie Jr.” hits the stage.
Performances will be July 24-25 at Acts Christian Center, 19756 N. John Wayne Pkwy, Suite 108.
The Friday performance begins at 7 p.m. There will be two performances Saturday, 2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.
Tickets are $8 for students and $10 for adults. Tickets will be sold at the door, or you can reserve seats by emailing email@example.com.
In an online poll at InMaricopa.com, readers indicated their favorite omelet was dished up at 347 Grill’s brunch buffet. But other restaurants had their devotees, as well.
“Our omelet is simply the best because we use fresh ingredients consisting of fresh spinach, homemade sausage, fresh peppers and onions, fresh diced tomatoes, fresh cooked bacon and other fine ingredients with fresh cracked eggs. Our chefs make our omelets with pride and love.” — Executive Chef Frank Abeyta, 347 Grill, UltraStar Multi-tainment Center
By the numbers:
347 Grill (UltraStar) brunch buffet 157
Sunrise Café 113
Agave's at Harrah's Ak-Chin 27
Arroyo Grille at Southern Dunes 27
Silver Spur Grill at The Duke 17
The Buffet at Harrah's Ak-Chin 16
July is National Hot Dog Month. Here are some fun facts about an American staple.
1. Baseball fans consume more than 21 million hot dogs a year at Major League Baseball parks, according to the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council.
2. Los Angeles consumes more hot dogs than any other American city. (More than 39 million annually.)
3. On the Fourth of July, Americans eat approximately 150 million hot dogs.
4. Americans spent about $2.5 billion on hot dogs in 2014.
5. Hot dogs are made from meat trimmings, fat, salt and preservatives like sodium nitrite.