His last day as chairman of Maricopa County Board of Supervisors was not uneventful. Clint Hickman, in one of his final statements as chairman, said, “It is disappointing the Diamondbacks are suing their fans who helped build Chase Field. The team simply wants out of the contract that makes them stay and play through the 2028 season. Saying the facility is in disrepair is outrageous. The Maricopa County Stadium District has spent millions during the off-season on concrete and steel work that keeps the stadium safe and looking great for each baseball season.

“The Diamondbacks have expressed dissatisfaction with county ownership over the past year, yet when presented with a potential buyer last summer, the team didn’t have the courtesy to meet with them. It seems the team just wants a new stadium now. Maricopa County is committed to keeping the Diamondbacks at Chase Field through the term of the contract. That is good for the taxpayers who made the investment that brought Major League Baseball here.”

Hickman, a fourth-generation Arizonan from one of the West Valley’s most prominent families and businesses, was appointed to the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors March 21, 2013. Hickman was elected in 2014 to finish out former Supervisor Max Wilson’s term. He won re-election to a four-year term this past November. Hickman vowed to emulate Wilson’s integrity, decency and fairness – and to serve “as a real taxpayers’ friend.”

Hickman brings many years of business and community experience to public service. He is vice president of sales and marketing at Hickman’s Family Farms, Arizona’s largest egg producer, a West Valley landmark business that started in 1944 on Grandmom Nell’s backyard porch with 50 hens. Hickman Farms now houses four million hens.

New chairman of supervisors

Maricopa County District 1 Supervisor Denny Barney was elected unanimously Jan. 4 as the Chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors for 2017.

Barney pledged to focus on managing taxpayers’ money wisely, calling it “the number one responsibility that we have.”

Barney outlined his priorities for the next year.  They include creating a regulatory environment where businesses can succeed and families can thrive; evidence-based justice initiatives to improve a jail system that sees 100,000 inmates come through each year; and workforce development to engage and reward the best of the more than 13,000 who work for the people of Maricopa County.  

Barney also laid out specific plans to improve the way in which citizens interact with the county. Among them, a new county website to be launched in the coming months; an overhaul of the aging Durango Jail, with a groundbreaking set for this spring; and, a repurposing of the Madison Street Jail for the county attorney’s office for spring 2019.

“There’s a lot to celebrate,” Barney said.  “There’s certainly a lot to do.”