Q&A with Vice Mayor Vincent Manfredi

InMaricopa visited with Maricopa Vice Mayor Vincent Manfredi to discuss the leadership transition in the City of Maricopa necessitated by Mayor Christian Price’s resignation.
What are your thoughts on serving with Price?
I knew Christian before he was mayor and before I ran for council. I worked my tail off to get him elected in 2012 because I knew his passion for Maricopa and his work ethic would produce results. We have had a great eight years working together, but it’s not over. We will continue to collaborate daily to get more done and move the city forward. The next four years are going to be hectic with tons of growth, and who we pick to take the reins from Christian has some big shoes to fill.
Are you interested in serving as mayor long term?
No. I am happy as a council member and love doing that job. I run a small business and do not have the hours in the day to serve as mayor for a full term.
What are your goals as interim mayor?
My goals are to remain a steady hand and work with our council to set the policy for our city manager and staff.
What are the biggest challenges facing the council?
Arizona Legislature recently passed a bill (HB2749) surrounding a real estate practice known as Prime Contracting. The new law changes the way tax revenue is collected when people make improvements to their homes. Instead of that money being reinvested in our community, it could be invested elsewhere. The ultimate impact to Maricopa may be upwards of $1 million annually. Another proposed Senate bill also hurts Maricopa. It is aimed at residential rental taxes and will have the same negative impact on our city’s overall tax revenue.
Knowing we face shortfalls in revenue because of legislative actions means we must continue to keep a laser focus on spending. We have cut property tax rates in Maricopa year after year, and since I joined council, we have not increased our primary property tax rates. This year, we spent less money than we spent last year and cut rates again, but the Legislature and high inflation caused by irresponsible federal spending is having a huge impact on the city.
In the long term, transportation is the No. 1 priority. A close second is economic development. Utilizing MEDA to bring more jobs to Maricopa will help alleviate some of the traffic woes, but regardless of how many jobs we can create in Maricopa, the SR 347 must be fixed. My plan called M.O.V.E., which is an acronym for More lanes, Overpasses and interchanges, Violation enforcement and Education, can get that done. I will ensure we will always have a voice when it comes to transportation. Our goal is to be the “squeaky wheel” when it comes to transportation, and everything we see as a need for our constituents.
Editor’s notes: This Q&A was first published in the May edition of InMaricopa magazine. Vincent Manfredi is co-owner of InMaricopa.