Today has been a very enlighten morning, why one might ask? While attending a Republican meeting the question was asked: What can we do to change the optics and trajectory of Maricopa? This wasn’t just my personal opinion but included possibly 20 other individuals.

After only a few minutes reviewing the major shareholders that impact Maricopa and decisions surrounding the growth and why Maricopa isn’t obtaining the necessary job opportunities. Referring to Casa Grande and other cities in Pinal County, the facts of such nonprofit, private and government funded agencies are supported by only a few individuals.

Let us visit Pinal Partnership. The chairperson is a previous mayor of Maricopa and Pinal County supervisor and board of directors are influencers in government and private industries that hold the power to develop certain areas that are beneficial to major businesses. Examples: Copper mining, EV development factories, water companies, Union Pacific RR, city mayors of Casa Grande, A.J., Coolidge, Ak-Chin Tribe and even a Maricopa City Council member. The interests of Maricopa are the chairperson and council member, yet Maricopa’s fixation on building apartments and lagging on infrastructure development is abundantly clear.

Time to shift focus to Maricopa Economic Development Alliance. The chairperson is also a previous mayor of Maricopa. This project is a nonprofit whose board of directors is similar to Pinal Partnership. Without much research, the directors include five current and past Maricopa City Council members, Global Water CEO, MUSD school superintendent and current Maricopa city manager. Granted, these individuals are unpaid as currently posted, but I do find it curious the same individuals who are making business decisions are the same people influencing the city of Maricopa building decisions.

Now the statement elevated on an earlier email is becoming more defined: “Rubber Stamped projects.” When each project is scrutinized in conception stages and somehow comes to voting and passing approval are done by the same influencers sitting on the City Council.

The question remains: Who is funding MEDA and Pinal Partnership organizations? Did the City of Maricopa develop and implement MEDA’s financial beginning and current budget?

Terry Clark
Maricopa Homeowner


  1. Credit to George Carlin (abbreviated):

    It’s a big club, and you ain’t in it. You and I are not in the big club. And by the way, it’s the same big club they use to beat you over the head with all day long when they tell you what to believe.

  2. Terry, glad you asked about the Maricopa Economic Development Alliance (MEDA), though I’m confused why you just didn’t email, call or ask me directly? How many years have we known each other, like 10+? Regardless, let me do my best to quell the conspiracy innuendo. So MEDA was formed 14 years ago now by the same brilliant individual who formed the number one economic development group in the country, the Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC, 36+ yrs ago). GPEC and MEDA (separate organizations) are both public private 501c3’s non-profits, who sole purpose is “Business Attraction” to the areas they represent.

    In this case MEDA has one purpose: to attract large scale business, industry, manufacturing, headquarters, etc to the City of Maricopa region. As you know I have been at the helm of MEDA for under 11 months. For the past 12yrs, the organization has been entirely funded from PRIVATE donations. In the past 2 years, MEDA has been “contracted out” with the City to do this type of large scale economic development has only in the last 11 months ramped it up to a whole new level of business attraction. By doing it this way, the city is saving the taxpayers hundreds of thousands by not having to pay “city workers” as staff and all the in house benefits that go along with those employees, to do the job the MEDA is doing with help from the private sector – again a public private partnership.

    Furthermore, with the private sector helping to fund this organization, its staff, and all of the time, travel, materials, etc etc that go into the job of business attraction, this one stop shop that is one step removed from government, but having an all hands on deck approach, creates a very attractive environment/city for an industry that is looking to deal with all of the players that a business needs work with in order to pull a several hundred acre footprint industry or manufacturing facility out of the ground…all in one place. This makes the City and MEDA VERY UNIQUE…and being UNIQUE is how you get noticed!

    For example, all of the Educational Institutions are represented on the MEDA board – this is critical to prove a workforce and a workforce development path for companies that will need a large scale manufacturing facility here, like a Lucid or Proctor & Gamble or Tesla or LG, etc, etc. It is also important that we have all of the utilities (Electric, Water/sewer, Gas, Communications, etc etc) as there isn’t a company out there that can operate without these.
    It important to even have the large landowners represented on the board so that they can understand the value of not only working together to drive business here, but so that they can learn first hand, the value in using their 100 -1000+ acres for big industry, not just another home development.

    Without this understanding their land usage may not be as strategic as may have been hoped. In short, having all of the heavy hitters in one place, working together, learning together, investing together, working through exterior problems or even problems with each other means that a newly locating business has the VERY BEST chance to get out of the ground here in Maricopa. Not to mention that in my own personal observation of the way investments work, when people that have their own money at risk, when they have literally put their money where their mouths are, they want there to be a successful outcome….in this case – New Businesses coming to Maricopa – providing jobs, incomes, revenues, services usages, etc, etc. That seems reasonable….

    So the only question left really is, why impugn 2 former Mayors who gave everything to this city? Not to mention that while working on the peoples behalf as instructed by the voters, they gained the requisite knowledge on how to best help the city they love, that will get Maricopa the best and fastest results. It seems illogical to look to employ someone who just moved to Maricopa/Pinal County, yesterday, and to expect them to know more of how everything works with the Feds, AZ, Pinal County, City of Maricopa, the business in the area, who the major landowners are, what needs to be done, what hurdles there are to overcome and who best to work with, in order to solve the inevitable trials of business location? Is an outsider going to know more than 2 former Mayors? Are you saying that you would prefer to pay someone new just to “get started and to pay them for years” the years just to get through the learning curve, waiting for them to make the relationships necessary in order to do the job? Are you saying you would rather put the city’s hard earned reputation on the line
    for a newbee to the time it takes to learn where the landmines of this business are? Of course that could always be used as an option, but I believe that applying the “reasonable human standard here” – any reasonable person would conclude putting an outsider in a position where relationships and knowledge of the area and how things work or don’t work, would take FAR LONGER and COST FAR MORE to get the results being expressed as desired here. So I’m confused….

    So forgive me if I’m wrong here, but as I read into this, this really isn’t about the ‘value proposition’ of what Pinal Partnership or MEDA bring to the table here; but rather this is a deflection or an outcropping of anger towards the city and its “perceived prioritization” of apartments that are locating in the city….plain and simple. Strangely, today’s conservative values usually dictate a desire for a free market system and less government intervention; so why then is there frustration and hostility when, the free market decides to operate in Maricopa? After all, it was the market place who said: “With the change in the rising market conditions I can afford to build apartments now in Maricopa (not just homes), wherein, the need exists and if/when, I, as a private business owner in the development/construction field, fill that needs, it will be a win-win. The new teacher, or police officer, firefighter or early 20 something graduate, will have an option to live locally, that is within what they can afford. They will buy local goods, pay taxes, eat at restaurants, use local services, add to the necessary workforce that helps convince bigger companies to locate to Maricopa – and myself and my investors will make some money for doing the work to help provide this.”

    – Seems like a free market system to me…

    Terry if you disagree with capitalism and the free market system, that’s ok. You have a right to that opinion. But here is the simple truth of the matter – growth, building, people, large & small businesses alike – drives infrastructure…not the other way around. And here’s the best part about it, because it works this way….it saves the taxpayers millions!! You see, when the private sector helps to fund & build all of the new infrastructure that is needed and required by state law and city code, it helps all of us that already live here and by sharing this burden it doesn’t cost the local government as much money (remember that money comes from you!) So you save money.

    It also helps drive momentum for other industries that are watching what is happening in Maricopa and are thinking about locating here. After all if they are going to spend a BILLION dollars to open a manufacturing facility here they are going to want as many if not all of their of their employees to live here or nearby. Remember there are more than just executives that work for a large company. As such, there are a variety of salaries paid and various life style affordability’s that exist within the corporate ecosystem. After all if we want more restaurants to frequent and more stores to shop at and more convivences & luxuries that come with increased expendable incomes, then this city should want and frankly NEEDS all of them! As they each pay taxes, go out to the doctor, buy groceries, use the local photographers or the local bounce house proprietor for their daughters birthday party, etc etc.; all of this contributes to making our economy, our society, and our city more robust and more economically well rounded.

    Terry if you’d like to learn more about real economic development, how long it takes, what goes into it, what are the right and wrong ways to do it, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I’d love to sit down with you and explain even more in depth about some of the really cool things that are happening here and what is literally on the near term horizon getting ready to come to the surface. This city is just hitting its stride, there is BIG investment on the move here and these next 5-10-20 yrs in Maricopa is going to be one of the most amazing ever. That’s saying a lot after witnesses the last 20 from the front row. So I hope this helps clarify a few things and leaves you being a lot less ‘perplexed’ on how things work. 🙂