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  • 📰 Peeking into 2024: Gilbert's Election Buzz, Rail Retreat, Stock-Savvy Gifts and More!

📰 Peeking into 2024: Gilbert's Election Buzz, Rail Retreat, Stock-Savvy Gifts and More!

Issue #72 - January 2, 2024

📰 Gilbert’s 2024 Outlook: Key Elections, Community Safety, and Financial Challenges Ahead

🚉 Gilbert Steps Back from Active Role in Phoenix-Tucson Commuter Rail Planning

💹 Gilbert's GiveAShare.com: Turning Stock Gifting into a Tool for Financial Literacy

🎈 Discover Local Events Coming Soon

And more…

Gilbert’s 2024 Outlook: Key Elections, Community Safety, and Financial Challenges Ahead

In Gilbert, 2024 is shaping up to be a year full of significant developments that will shape the community's future. The August Primary will see key political positions up for election, including Mayor Brigette Peterson's seat, which faces challenges from Council Member Scott Anderson and Shane Krauser.

Peterson's tenure has been marked by controversy, including a vote of no-confidence and numerous ethics violation complaints, though she has been cleared of these by independent investigators. The council seats also draw a range of candidates, promising a lively election season.

The community remains concerned about the "Gilbert Goons," a group of teens implicated in violent attacks, including the fatal beating of 16-year-old Preston Lord. The police department, led by Chief Michael Soelberg, has faced criticism for its handling of the situation and is reviewing cases to determine any links to the group. The issue has led to increased police patrols and public demonstrations calling for action.

On the economic front, Gilbert residents are bracing for proposed rate hikes in water and trash/recyclable services. The Council plans to vote on these increases in February, with the aim of funding necessary capital projects. Additionally, the Council is considering a combination of bonding and sales tax increases to finance further infrastructure developments.

Education also remains a focal point, with seats on the Gilbert Public Schools and Higley Unified School District boards up for election. These elections follow a series of bond rejections, leading to a reevaluation of funding strategies.

State politics will also play a significant role in Gilbert's affairs. Senate President Warren Petersen, representing Gilbert, is engaged in a legal battle with Governor Katie Hobbs over her bypassing Senate confirmations. Petersen also faces the challenge of addressing a substantial budget deficit in the upcoming legislative session.

Gilbert Steps Back from Active Role in Phoenix-Tucson Commuter Rail Planning

In Gilbert, the prospect of Amtrak establishing a stop as part of a potential Phoenix-Tucson commuter rail service has met with a neutral response from local officials. The town has not actively advocated for or against a rail stop, a shift from its previous supportive stance in 2022. Back then, the council considered a feasibility study for transit stations in the Heritage District and Cooley Station, but the plan was tabled until the new council was seated in 2023.

This change in approach follows a period of public pushback against rail services in Gilbert, with concerns about crime and tax increases. The town has since adopted a ban against using town resources for light rail, although the ban proposed by new council members on commuter rail discussions did not pass.

ADOT, handling the study efforts, received a $500,000 federal grant to augment $3.5 million in state funds for planning passenger rail service. The environmental impact statement from 2016 had listed a potential station in Gilbert, but no final decisions have been made. A more detailed Tier 2 environmental study is required to finalize specifics, including station stops. Currently, there is no scheduled construction or identified funding for the rail service.

Should Gilbert take advantage of a commuter rail service?

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Peacock Wine & Book Bar

Schnepf Farms

Archer’s Bikes

Pixie Sticks Boutique

Romeo’s Euro Café

Sip & Shop

Gilbert's GiveAShare.com: Turning Stock Gifting into a Tool for Financial Literacy

In Gilbert, Arizona, Leslie Roman and her husband Rick have created a unique way to inspire financial literacy, especially among children, through their online venture, GiveAShare.com. This innovative platform allows customers to purchase actual shares of stock from a range of 150 companies as meaningful gifts. Originally conceived as a tool to educate children about investing, the Romans have found that their service appeals to a broader audience who appreciate the tangible and lasting nature of such a gift.

Leslie recounts a touching story of a grandfather who bought Disney shares for his granddaughter, echoing a similar gift he had made to his daughter years ago. The daughter's stock eventually helped her secure a down payment for her house. This story epitomizes the potential long-term impact of a single share.

The ordering process on GiveAShare.com is straightforward, requiring just the stock selection, recipient's details, and a choice of frame for the stock certificate. The company handles the registration and delivery of a framed certificate, making it an easy yet impactful gift. For younger recipients, an adult custodian's name is required.

The Romans' journey into stock gifting began with their own family. Bryan's interest in stocks was sparked by a gift of Topps stocks as a child, and later, the couple gifted shares to their nephews and daughters to instill financial awareness. The Romans value the educational aspect of their service, highlighted by Rick's book, "I'm a Shareholder," which teaches children about the stock market.

GiveAShare.com also caters to collectors who value stock certificates, particularly those signed by notable figures like Warren Buffet or Steve Jobs. For companies that have gone paperless, the Romans create personalized replica certificates. The Romans themselves have an intriguing history, both having worked at Motorola and sharing a deep interest in finance.

Today, their daughter Erin Clerici is being groomed to take over the business, continuing the legacy of this unique family venture. With Christmas as their busiest season, GiveAShare.com operates from the Romans' guesthouse with a small but dedicated team.

Spotlight Your Business!

Would you like us to spotlight your local business in front of thousands of Gilbert area residents in an upcoming issue of Gilbert Thrive?

We ❤️ Local Businesses!
We know our community is brimming with businesses that have fascinating stories and big hearts. If you're a local business owner making waves, crafting unique experiences, or simply putting a smile on our faces, we want to chat with you! Gilbert Thrive is eager to shine a light on the unsung heroes of our town. Let's collaborate and let the community know what makes your business special. Send us a message, and let's celebrate the spirit of Gilbert together!

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