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Chandler mayor's speech highlights housing, parks, public safety

Chandler’s mayor took on housing criticism in his recent State of the City address.

“We are not the ones hindering, opposing or slowing down housing,” said Mayor Kevin Hartke.

He and other local officials have been pushing back on proposed state legislation that would limit cities from regulating what kind of housing can be built where. 

Hartke suggests tax incentives to encourage housing on vacant retail sites, “We'd love to see legislation that offers cities tools to address underperforming retail centers and housing while also preserving the rights of residents to have input in the decisions.”

He said Chandler manages more than 300 single family homes and apartments for low-income residents and administers hundreds of federal vouchers to cover rent in private rentals. Hartke pointed out that construction is scheduled to begin this year on a project that will include more than 150 lower-income housing units, with more redevelopment proposals underway. 

On the issue of water, Hartke said the city’s infrastructure and systems are reliant, secure and efficient.

“Water conservation rebates offer incentives for water efficient technology and grass removal. We saw a 900% increase in homeowner applications in the first 60 days of this new program,” he said.

 Chandler will add a sports complex at Tumbleweed Park, along with an 18-court pickleball complex. In the coming years, the city will use voter-approved bonds to build a police forensic science facility.

As a senior field correspondent, Christina Estes focuses on stories that impact our economy, your wallet and public policy.