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UPDATE: At Last!! Miami May Have Reached Its CAG Survey Goal

UPDATE_Jan 22: “It looks like we did it,” proclaimed Utilities Coordinator Tash Jerrols, saying that the Town of Miami recently received preliminary good news from Central Arizona Governments (CAG).

“You’ve gotten far enough to make the income survey work,” CAG’s Community Development Manager Alan Urban said recently.

Town council members and staff recently made one final, post-holiday push to gather the completed, one-page surveys that might help the Town get nearly a quarter of a million dollars to pave its streets and complete other projects.

Urban explained that while the Arizona Department of Housing (ADOH) usually wants 75% of the sample list, it would probably willing to accept the 70% the Town had gathered.

“I have plenty of extra surveys to get to the 75%, but they would be more substitutes,” he said. “I’d rather not if I don’t have to. I like to keep the substitutes at a minimum.”

Urban asked Town staff to continue to send him any completed income surveys that might still come in.

“It would only take a few more of the sample list (like seven) to get the 75%,” he said.

The “substitutes,” to which Urban refers, were used after CAG originally generated a random list of names for surveying, using the Town’s active sewer account list. Unfortunately, some addresses turned out to be commercial buildings or unoccupied homes, neither of which would count toward the survey results.

To replace the ineligible buildings, Urban instructed Town staff to use homes “on either side of the listed addresses or directly across the street and either side of that address,” which gave five options per address. Jerrols said last month that the Town would not any completed surveys,  as that resident’s home might replace a building that did not qualify.

Urban recently told Town staff that he would review his calculations once more before submitting them officially to ADOH.

Referring to the total number of completed surveys at the Jan. 13 council meeting, Town Manager Joe Heatherly, “We think we’re going to be okay,” adding that the Town was waiting on official results from Urban.

The next town council meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27, in council chambers, 500 W. Sullivan St., Miami.

_________________________________________________________________________________   Below is the original article posted in December


Town still at risk of losing $244,000 in federal funding from HUD

Closer, but not there yet.

That’s how Town Manager Joe Heatherly described the number of income surveys collected so far in Miami.

Residents now have a couple more weeks to complete and return the one-page income survey that might help the Town get nearly a quarter of a million dollars to pave its streets and complete other projects.

To date, the Town received 306 completed surveys but not all of them qualify, Heatherly said at the Dec. 23 Town Council meeting. 

Of the 306 completed surveys, 264 of them can probably be used, but that still leaves the town 64 surveys short of its goal of 328.

Giving a breakdown of the 264, Heatherly said that while 184 respondents were on the original list the other 80 were not, but “I think we can use all 80 of those,” he said.

Of the 306 completed surveys, 42 of them were “duplicates, triplicates, fourplicates, quadruplicates, etc,” said Heatherly, drawing laughter from those attending the meeting.

Additionally, two respondents were from out-of-town, so their completed surveys would not qualify, either, he said.

Town staff and council members made Herculean efforts in getting more completed surveys by the previous Dec. 16 deadline—such as going from door-to-door and speaking on local radio stations. Heatherly and Councilwoman Patty Bringhurst staffed a booth at the Dec. 14 Small Town Christmas event in Miami Memorial Park so that residents could complete surveys while there. 

After the holidays, Town staff plans to go door-to-door again, first targeting three main streets in Miami—Sullivan Street and Prospect and Chisolm Avenues, Heatherly said.

After that, they will visit residents on Rose Road, Smith Street, Canyon and Elwood Avenues and El Maguey Trailer Park, he said.

The Town is still offering the incentive of two months of free trash and sewer service to respondents submit their completed survey in by deadline and who qualify to be part of the 328 total.

Not knowing for sure when the next deadline is, the Town will continue to collect surveys for as long as possible, Heatherly said at the Dec. 23 council meeting.

Miami Town Manager Joe Heatherly. Photo by Carol Broeder

Miami residents who did not receive a survey may get one from Miami Town Hall, 500 W. Sullivan St., and are asked to bring it back as soon as possible.

To clear up a misconception—the Town itself is not conducting the survey, but rather collecting them for CAG (Central Arizona Governments) which is collating the information for HUD (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development). 

It was CAG, not the Town, that generated a random list of names for surveying, using the Town’s active sewer account list.

Some addresses turned out to be commercial buildings or unoccupied homes, neither of which would count toward the survey results.

To replace the ineligible buildings, CAG’s Community Development Manager Alan Urban said to use homes “on either side of the listed addresses or directly across the street and either side of that address,” which gives five options per address.

The Town is not rejecting any completed surveys, as that resident’s home might replace a building that does not qualify, Miami Utilities Coordinator Tash Jerrols said earlier this month.

Being 64 surveys short is still an improvement in the last month. As of Dec. 9, the Town was 141 surveys short of receiving $244,000 in federal funding from HUD. Unfortunately, some misreporting about privacy concerns threatened to torpedo the effort.

To clear up some misconceptions—the survey does not ask for the resident’s social security number and Town staff does not match the name with the survey information.

Should the Town get this money, it will hold public meetings on how best to spend it—streets, housing, economic development, etc. 

The HUD survey asks residents to provide information such as income range and basic household information to justify the release of funds. The survey doesn’t include personal information.

There is no name or address on the survey portion, but it does ask residents who receive it to fill out a “receipt” form with their name and address confirming that real people responded.

While HUD views the two forms completely separately, they were unfortunately printed on the same page. Hence, the privacy concerns. 

Respondents may separate the survey and receipt forms with a scissors before turning in the completed survey, which may then be dropped off at Town Hall or mailed in separate envelopes.

To mail it directly to CAG, use the following address: 2540 W. Apache Trail, Ste 108, Apache Junction, Ariz. 85120

Those with questions about the survey or who have accessibility needs should contact Heatherly at (928) 473-4403 or Alan Urban, with CAG, at (480) 474-9300.

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