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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                
February 13, 2014    

Contact: Mike Sakal, Public Information Officer            

Office:  623-882-7053;

Goodyear’s process focuses on large, small business needs

    The city of Goodyear has a reputation for being business friendly in the region, but city officials are putting processes in place to make it friendlier.

    As more developers come before city leaders with plans of setting up shop or expanding, it is providing all of its planning services under one roof and hiring a small business advocate to focus on retaining and help them succeed.

    Improvements such as providing an online option to submit planning applications and permits for engineering and tenant improvements, and the ability to pay for permits by credit card has sped up the process by weeks and reduced walk-in  traffic by 70 percent, said Goodyear Development Services Director Sheri Wakefield-Saenz.

    Wakefield-Saenz spoke during a council meeting on Feb. 10, and provided an update on the improvements in the last 18 months and a timeline for those that need to be put in place. The department is overseen by Wakefield-Saenz, which also includes a deputy director, economic development managers, city planners, building safety and code compliance officers with a fire inspector, providing a “one-stop shop” for the development community and residents.

    “It’s made a big improvement,” Wakefield-Saenz said of implementing the electronic options for planning applications and permits. “Once we get more comfortable with the process and the development community gets more comfortable with our process, we hope to increase the size and number of permits we can do (online).”

    Development Services also plans to place attention on business retention by reaching out to existing ones at least once a year to address concerns and focus on success of small businesses through its programs provided by the city and others, Wakefield-Saenz added. 

    City Manager Brian Dalke, who formerly served as the city’s economic development director said, “It is critical that we communicate to the development community. The one thing that we were sorely missing was general information from our process. We needed clarity and consistency to take care of the customer, it saves time and money.”

    To apply for permits online:, or


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City of Goodyear • 190 N. Litchfield Road • Goodyear AZ 85338 • Phone 623-932-3910 • Toll-Free 1-800-872-1749