Tag Archives: SRP

srp

Residential Customers Rank SRP Highest In West, U.S.

Salt River Project’s electric customers continue to give SRP high marks for customer satisfaction. In a report issued by J.D. Power and Associates, SRP received the top score for residential electric service in the Large Utilities segment in the western United States for the 11th consecutive year and the highest total among the nation’s largest utilities for the fourth year in a row.

SRP’s ranking was bolstered by sweeping the No. 1 spot in the survey’s Large Utilities segment in both the West region and nationally for all six survey components, Power Quality and Reliability, Billing and Payment, Corporate Citizenship, Price, Communications and Customer Service. SRP also earned the highest ranking in the nation of all 126 electric utility brands for the Billing and Payment category.

Among all large utilities across the nation, SRP scored highest in customer satisfaction for the seventh time in the 14 years J.D. Power and Associates has conducted its study of residential customers. With a Customer Satisfaction Index score of 700 on a 1,000-point scale in this year’s ranking, SRP is the only electric utility that has been ranked among the top 10 in the U.S. in all 14 years.

It is the 13th time in the last 14 years that SRP scored the highest in the West among large electric utilities (500,000 or more residential customers), sweeping the top spot in all six performance categories just as it did in the Large Utilities segment. The average score in the West large region, which covers utilities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, was 638.

“Earning these high marks from our customers year after year never gets old, and it only reinforces the fact that all of our employees play a role in receiving this significant recognition,” said SRP General Manager Mark Bonsall.

“For example, one of the main categories in the J.D. Power studies is Power Quality and Reliability. Our performance there is the result of the high standards set by employees in the areas that keep electricity flowing to customers and by restoring power as quickly as possible during an outage,” he said. “Another example is our high Corporate Citizenship rating, which is derived from SRP’s reputation as a resource steward, water as well as power, and the hundreds of hours of volunteer work in the communities we serve put in by employees from all parts of SRP.”

The 2012 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study was based on responses from more than 104,000 online interviews conducted from July 2011 through May 2012 among residential customers of the 126 largest electric utility brands across the nation, which collectively represent more than 93 million households. More information on the J.D. Power and Associates’ study can be found at www.jdpower.com/library/index.htm.

SRP is the largest provider of electricity to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, providing electric service to more than 950,000 customers.  SRP also is the metropolitan area’s largest supplier of water, delivering about 1 million acre-feet to agricultural, urban and municipal water users.

For more information on SRP, visit SRP’s website at srpnet.com.

Power Outage Map

SRP’s Expanded Power Outage Map Available In Time For Monsoon Season

The monsoon season can produce potentially dangerous storms and worrisome moments for Valley residents.

To minimize uncertainty during bad weather or power outages all SRP customers can now visit the SRP website at any time to check on the status of a power outage. During its pilot launch last summer, the website feature was available during storm activity only to customers with a MyAccount ID.

“With the newly expanded power outage map, SRP customers, Valley media and concerned residents can easily obtain outage facts by scrolling over yellow pushpins on the map that share information such as the affected area, number of people impacted, and expected time of repair,” said Glen Traasdahl, SRP’s director of Technology Services.

Valley resident also can access the power outage map from a smart phone or tablet, and get the same information regarding each outage area.

“In addition to being able to look at the power outage map 24/7, SRP customers can now be alerted via email or text when their home is in an area where an outage has occurred by signing up for a notification on My Account,” added Renee Castillo, senior director of customer services. To learn more, visit www.srpnet.com and search My Account.

SRP also would like to remind Valley residents of these summer safety tips:

  • Try to remain indoors during a storm.
  • If caught outdoors, stay at least 100 feet from any downed power line.
  • Never try to help someone trapped by a power line.  The line could be energized and endanger your own safety.  Instead, immediately call 911 for help.  Then call SRP’s emergency number, (602) 236-8811, to report the incident.
  • If a power line hits your car while you are in it, stay inside the car until professional help arrives.
  • If your vehicle catches fire and you must leave it, avoid making contact with the vehicle and the ground at the same time.  Jump from the vehicle, landing with both feet together.  Shuffle or hop away, keeping both feet in contact with each other until you are at least 100 feet from the vehicle.  This may avoid making your body a ground path between energized and grounded areas or objects.
  • Do not shower during a storm. Lightning can travel through pipes.
  • Do not swim during a storm. Lightning can strike bodies of water.
  • Lightning can travel through electric lines and damage electronic equipment.  Therefore, when practical, unplug the power cords to all electronic equipment to provide total protection from lightning-induced damage.

SRP routinely posts updates and outage information on Twitter and Facebook during major storms. To get connected, follow @SRPconnect on Twitter or “like” SRP’s Facebook page. During a power outage, SRP customer service representatives can be reached at (602) 236-8888.

SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving nearly 945,000 electric customers in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.

cragin reservoir

SRP, Payson Water Co. Reach Deal On Cragin Reservoir

Salt River Project’s Board of Governors has approved an agreement with Payson Water Co. to sever water rights from the C.C. Cragin Reservoir, formerly Blue Ridge Reservoir, and transfer them for use to the Mesa Del Caballo water service area near Payson.

The agreement is the first of what potentially could be several deals between SRP and smaller Rim Country communities to bring water from C.C. Cragin Reservoir. It is also one of the many benefits that resulted from the passage of the Arizona Water Rights Settlement Act of 2004, which authorized up to 3,500 acre-feet of water from Cragin Reservoir to be used in northern Gila County.

The town of Payson secured 3,000 acre-feet of Cragin water in 2008 through an agreement with SRP. The remaining 500 acre-feet of water has been designated as a future water solution for the smaller Rim communities. Deliveries to Mesa Del Caballo are anticipated to be made via the town of Payson’s future pipeline, which will move Cragin Reservoir water to Payson’s water treatment plant adjacent to Mesa Del Caballo. Both the pipeline and water treatment plant are scheduled to be operational in the spring of 2015.

The agreement allows for the severance and transfer of an average of 70 acre-feet per year of Cragin Reservoir water, with a maximum annual delivery amount not to exceed 82 acre-feet.

Steve Westwood, a Water Rights & Contracts senior analyst, said SRP has been working with a number of water providers and community water systems since 2005 to identify opportunities to establish agreements for C.C. Cragin water.

SRP has also been very concerned, he said, that continued well pumping on the Verde and Salt watersheds to meet growing water demand is negatively affecting the water supply of SRP shareholders.

“The opportunity to protect our shareholder’s water rights, supplement water supplies in the northern Gila County region and achieve water settlements to provide certainty for a long-term sustainable water supply and resolve water-rights claims has been a major focus of our efforts,” said Westwood.

“This agreement sets the stage for a framework for other small water companies to partner with SRP to ensure an adequate and renewable water supply and resolve water-right claims.”

The northern Gila County region is located within the Salt and Verde watersheds, which provide the water supply for SRP shareholders.  The region, which includes Payson, is a future growth area where surface water is fully appropriated and groundwater is overused, Westwood said.

SRP’s acquisition of the Cragin Reservoir in 2004 identified the town of Payson and other Rim communities such as Mesa Del Caballo as potential customers.  SRP operates and maintains Cragin Dam and Reservoir for the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

“This agreement clears the way for a reliable, long-term water supply for Mesa Del Caballo, which for many years has had repeated water-shortage issues due to unsupportive geology and underperforming wells,” said Robert Hardcastle, president of Brooke Utilities Inc., the parent company of Payson Water Co., a private regulated utility.  “This agreement also provides the community certainty by resolving any water-right conflicts with SRP.”
Payson Water Co.’s agreement with SRP generally covers the allocation and access of water from Cragin Reservoir, while the delivery and treatment of the Cragin water will be made through another agreement with the town of Payson.

SRP is the largest provider of water and power to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.

For more information on SRP and its agreement regarding the Cragin Reservoir, visit SRP’s website at srpnet.com.

runoff season

2012 Runoff Season Was 16th Driest

If the 2012 runoff season seemed a lot like the previous year, it’s because it was. In fact, thanks to a rare second consecutive La Niña winter, the January-through-May 2012 period provided very similar runoff season totals.

This year’s snowmelt runoff from the Salt and Verde watershed amounted to only about 193,474 acre-feet, which puts the 2012 runoff season as the 16th driest among 114-year-old records kept by Salt River Project water managers. The runoff from 2011 was 223,916 acre-feet, the 22nd driest on record, and less than half of the 30-year median runoff of 534,336 acre-feet.

Typical of La Niña winters, the storm track is located over the Pacific Northwest with dry, calm conditions over the Southwestern US. The winter of 2012 followed this pattern with the Salt and Verde watershed receiving only 4.75 inches of precipitation between December and March — 62 percent of normal. Even drier was the January-though-March stretch, which was the 11th driest on record.

The good news is that even after back-to-back dry winters, the reservoirs on the Salt and Verde rivers today stand at about 61 percent full with 1.4 million acre-feet stored entering the heaviest-use period of the year. At this time in 2011, the reservoirs were 83 percent full thanks to a 2010 runoff season that was the 20th most productive ever.

Charlie Ester, SRP’s manager of Water Resource Operations, said SRP shareholders can count on full water allocations this year despite the second consecutive dry winter. The likelihood of a normal 2013 runoff season, maybe even one boosted by the hint of the potential for an El Niño condition forming in the Pacific Ocean, would be most appreciated, he said.

“As the final numbers show, 2012 and 2011 were very similar in that runoff was almost non-existent for days at a time,” said Ester. “The only real difference between the two years was that we had more runoff on the Salt than the Verde this year. We received very little runoff from the snowpack this year, simply because most of it came in December and then over a two-day period in later March.”

With all of Arizona — including the Salt and Verde watershed that supplies the greater Phoenix metropolitan area with the majority of its water — in some type of drought condition, Ester said the Salt and Verde reservoirs are still in good shape and are doing exactly what they were designed for: capturing runoff in wet years such as 2010 and storing it for the dry years such as 2011 and 2012.

SRP continues to emphasize the importance of water conservation, Ester said, and he encouraged Valley residents to watch SRP’s Together We Conserve website at www.TogetherWeConserve.com for updates and for easy way to conserve water.

SRP is the largest raw water supplier in the Phoenix metropolitan area, normally delivering more than 1 million acre-feet annually.

For more information on Arizona’s runoff season, visit SRP’s Together We Conserve website at TogetherWeConserve.com.

small business training

W. P. Carey School & SRP Host Small Business Leadership Academy

Small businesses play a key role in our economic recovery, creating jobs to help get our community back on track. The W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University is offering a program to help small business owners and executives learn how to improve efficiency, streamline operations and raise profits. The fifth annual Small Business Leadership Academy is available to the leaders of small and diverse local businesses.

“We’ve had phenomenal feedback from business owners who attended the academy over the past several years,” said Dawn Feldman, executive director of the W. P. Carey School of Business Center for Executive and Professional Development, which hosts the program. “Classes are held just one night per week, so they fit right into busy executives’ schedules, and they’re taught by top professors from the highly ranked W. P. Carey School. Participants not only take away great business knowledge, but also a new support network of peers that will exist long after the program is over.”

Salt River Project (SRP), the program’s founding co-sponsor, is offering a number of scholarships to its current suppliers and small business customers.

“The academy offers an outstanding opportunity for small business owners to gain knowledge from highly acclaimed professors and establish lasting relationships with other community small business owners, all in a well-structured academic, but practical environment,” said Carrie Young, senior director, corporate operations services for SRP. “The partnership we have with ASU, coupled with the sponsorship and scholarships we offer to the academy, is a natural fit for SRP in supporting economic development within our own community.”

As part of a larger partnership with ASU focused on small business support, JPMorgan Chase is also joining as a top sponsor, providing 15 scholarships to the academy.

“As Arizona’s number one SBA lender, we know how important small businesses are to our economy,” said Joe Stewart, chairman and CEO of JPMorgan Chase in Arizona. “Entrepreneurs who participate in the Small Business Leadership Academy will get the best of ASU in a format that fits their busy schedules.”

The 10-week academy will run on Wednesday nights from Aug. 29 to Nov. 14. The curriculum will cover business strategy, team-building, negotiations, procurement and competition through service offerings. Program applications are due July 13.

Participants must come from companies that have:

  • Been in business for at least three years,
  • Annual revenues between $1 million and $10 million,
  • Fewer than 100 employees.

Applicants must be able to attend all scheduled classes and related activities. Those who complete the program will receive four Continuing Education Units (CEUs) from Arizona State University. These units are widely used as a measure of participation in non-credit, professional development courses.

Other sponsors of this year’s program include the Arizona Lottery, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, U.S. Bank and the Hahnco Companies. These firms are also sponsors of the school’s Spirit of Enterprise Awards, which recognize some of the state’s best businesses. The W. P. Carey School’s Spirit of Enterprise Center helps hundreds of small businesses each year.

For more information about sponsoring a scholarship or applying to the small business leadership program offered through the nationally ranked W. P. Carey School of Business, call (480) 965-7579, e-mail wpcarey.execed@asu.edu or visit www.wpcarey.asu.edu/sbla. Current SRP vendors can also contact Art Oros, SRP procurement services manager, for information about this year’s SRP scholarships at (602) 236-8773 or Art.Oros@srpnet.com.

Navajo Tribal Utility Authority Solar Investments

SRP Buys RECs From Navajo Tribal Utility Authority For Solar Investments

In an effort to support solar for more residents of the Navajo Nation, Salt River Project has agreed to purchase solar photovoltaic Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) from the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA), an enterprise of the Navajo Nation. The $220,000, five-year purchase agreement will be used to acquire additional off-grid systems for tribal residents.

A REC is proof that 1 megawatt-hour of electricity was generated from a renewable-energy resource. Once the electricity is generated and the provider has fed the electricity into the grid or the off-grid user has utilized the electricity, the RECs can be sold on the open market as a commodity.

“This is an opportunity that we see as a direct benefit for our solar energy customers,” said Navajo Tribal Utility Authority General Manager Walter Haase. “With this partnership, SRP is helping us help families who otherwise might not be able to have any access to electrical power. This program will provide that basic access.”

Since 1999, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority has offered solar photovoltaic power systems to its low-income residential customers who do not have access to the electric grid. Currently, NTUA rents 263 solar photovoltaic systems to Navajo tribal members.  NTUA is also adding solar systems adjacent to some of its facilities. The system in Chinle is completed and the systems in Crownpoint, Fort Defiance and Shonto are expected to be completed later this year.

In February 2012, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority also initiated a partnership with the owners of the Navajo Generating Station (NGS), of which SRP owns a 21.7% share, on a project to extend electrical power to families living within the LeChee area.  The project will bring electricity to more than 62 LeChee-area homes over a three-year period and will be joint-funded between NTUA, NGS, and the LeChee Chapter, with NGS owners contributing $2 million in funding over three years beginning in 2012.

“SRP is excited about the opportunity to partner with NTUA in providing more people on the Navajo Nation with access to electricity,” said Charlie Duckworth, Senior Director of SRP Energy Management. “The purchase adds to the number of distributed photovoltaic systems available on the Navajo Nation and improves the welfare of the Navajo people by providing more tribal members access to electricity.”

For more information on Navajo Tribal Utility Authority, visit Navajo Tribal Utility Authority’s website at ntua.com. Visit SRP’s website at srpnet.com.

renewable energy projects

REIF Awards $1.3 Million For AZ Renewable Energy Projects

The agencies that oversee the Arizona Renewable Energy Investment Fund (REIF) have awarded eight Native American organizations with $1.3 million to build renewable energy systems in their communities. The renewable energy projects include wind and solar facilities for schools in Leupp and Kayenta, solar power for an assisted-living facility in Moenkopi and solar panels for a housing project in Peach Springs.

REIF is managed by Tempe-based Salt River Project, Tucson Electric Power and the Grand Canyon Trust. REIF was provided with $5 million in funds after the expansion of the Springerville Generating Station in 2009 to support projects that reduce pollution and benefit Native American communities across Arizona and in northwestern New Mexico. With the latest grant awards, REIF has now distributed more than $2.2 million for various community wind and solar projects.

“We received a number of extraordinary applications seeking an opportunity to create renewable energy projects that support opportunities for sustainable economic development,” said Roger Clark, program director for the Grand Canyon Trust. “In the end, we selected eight well-planned proposals from organizations that provide essential services to their communities.”

“Investing in renewable energy projects is not without its challenges for smaller businesses and non-profit organizations in Indian communities,” said Lori Singleton, SRP director of emerging customer programs. “REIF helps these agencies achieve their goal to reduce energy costs by using sustainable energy systems.”

The eight proposals to receive the latest awards from REIF were selected based on a number of criteria, such as their ability to generate renewable energy, cost effectiveness and the ability for the project to be completed.

“We look forward to the launch of these exciting projects from this round of awards, including a number of projects that will support renewable energy education opportunities in tribal communities,” said Jim Arwood, a member of the REIF board.

The Grand Canyon Trust is a leading regional conservation organization with offices across the Colorado Plateau.

Salt River Project is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving more than 950,000 electric customers in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.

Tucson Electric Power, a subsidiary of UNS Energy, provides safe, reliable service to more than 404,000 customers in the Tucson metropolitan area.

Find out more about the organizations who received funds for renewable energy projects at Grand Canyon Trust. Visit Grand Canyon Trust’s website at grandcanyontrust.org.

srp installs solar energy systems

SRP Installs Solar Energy Systems – Helps 3 Nonprofits

A New Leaf Inc., Boys & Girls Club of Metropolitan Phoenix and Hospice of the Valley are getting some of their electric needs directly from the sun thanks to donations of solar energy systems from Salt River Project customers.

The three nonprofits were chosen to receive solar energy systems by SRP EarthWise™ Energy customers who voted for their favorite charities. The solar energy systems, valued at about $63,000 each, enable the nonprofits to offset their electricity usage and save money on their monthly electric bills. The savings they will see will help them direct more funds to the communities they serve.

“Partnering with SRP to help our Clubs become more energy efficient really allows us to maximize every dollar for programs and services,” said Amy Gibbons, President & Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Phoenix of the system installed at the facility located at 7th Ave. and Southern.  “The solar energy systems from SRP is a great complement to our efforts to help kids build Earthwise, energy-smart habits that will follow them into adulthood and we’re thrilled to be chosen as a recipient of this wonderful program.”

In addition to saving money, the solar energy systems will result in a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions. A typical 10-kilowatt solar electric system helps to avoid the release of almost 20,000 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions annually, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

“During these times of economic recovery, the SRP EarthWise Energy solar system will save precious dollars, allowing A New Leaf to invest back into the East Valley Men’s Shelter and the men who call it home,” said Michael T. Hughes, A New Leaf CEO of the system installed at a facility in Mesa. “We extend our humble thanks for this generous gift.”

The solar donation benefitted the Lund Family Hospice Home in Gilbert, a facility of the Hospice of the Valley.

“The SRP photovoltaic system will provide our first opportunity to experience the benefits of solar power,” said Diana Murray, vice president of facilities and purchasing for Hospice of the Valley. “We are grateful for the support and generosity of SRP and EarthWise Energy customers.”

The remaining four finalists, Homeward Bound, Fit Kids Inc., Junior Achievement of Arizona and Mountain Health and Wellness each received a solar water heater for their facilities that will also help to offset electricity usage.

SRP EarthWise Energy is a voluntary program that SRP customers can participate in for as little as $3 per month, with 100 percent of the funds used to provide solar photovoltaic (PV) systems to Valley nonprofit organizations.  In addition to helping nonprofits save money, the program contributes to the growth of solar energy in the Valley and educates customers on the importance of renewable energy.

Since 2007, the voluntary fees paid by SRP EarthWise Energy customers have funded solar PV projects for community-based programs including Sunshine Acres Children’s Home, 18 Habitat for Humanity homes, Maryvale YMCA, the Phoenix Zoo, Rio Salado Audubon Center, Desert Botanical Garden, Arizona Recreation Center for the Handicapped, The Center for Habilitation, Sarah’s Place/Glencroft and Chandler-Gilbert Community College.

For more information about solar energy systems or to sign up for SRP EarthWise Energy, please visit www.srpnet.com/earthwise.

save on summer utility bill

How To Save On Your Summer Utility Bill

When Darcy Small’s 4-year-old twin daughters go off to college, they’ll have a stash of cash that came directly from savings on their family’s annual utility bill. The Small family moved from Oregon to Arizona a year ago and went from not using an air conditioner to having a summer utility bill that topped out at $600 a month. Small learned of SRP’s Time-of-Day Price Plans and out of necessity signed up for SRP EZ-3™.

“We were probably just like typical customers, running our air conditioner all day to keep it comfortable,” Small explained. “We then got an insert in our SRP bill about price plans, and our perception was, ‘I don’t want to be hot for three hours during the day.’ But then we gave it a try for one month, and we were sold.”

With high summer temperatures approaching, SRP is once again offering customers a guaranteed way to save money. The two Time-of-Day plans are designed to accommodate a variety of lifestyles and are popular with customers who can be flexible with energy usage. The more flexibility customers have, the more they can save.

“It’s actually quite easy once you figure out exactly how to do it,” Small added. “During the hotter months, our thermostat is set at 72 degrees during the day, which is most comfortable for us. At 1:30 p.m., the thermostat is set to go down to 62 degrees, and then at 3 p.m., it turns off. From 3 to 6 p.m., the air conditioner doesn’t run. So by 6 p.m., it’s usually 79 degrees, which is starting to get a bit warm, but then it kicks back down to 72 degrees.”

SRP Time-of-Day plans offer lower prices during off-peak hours to encourage customers to use less energy during on-peak hours, when the cost to produce electricity is highest. From now through Oct. 31, 2012, residential customers who switch to either EZ-3 or SRP Time-of-Use™ are guaranteed to save by shifting energy usage to the lower-priced off-peak hours.

If a customer’s first three bills exceed what would have been paid on the residential Basic Price Plan, the customer can call SRP within 30 days of the third utility bill to be credited the difference and returned to the Basic plan at no charge. To learn more, go to savewithsrp.com/prices or call (602) 236-8888.

SRP also offers a Time-of-Use Plan for Business customers. For more information, call the Business Contact Center at (602) 236-9632 or log on to savewithsrpbiz.com/prices.

“It’s the easiest money you will ever save,” Small boasted. “Give it a try for one month, and I can almost guarantee you won’t go back to the regular plan. The extra money goes straight into our children’s college accounts … that’s about $500 every year. So over 18 years, it’s a pretty decent college fund.”

For more information on how to save on your utility bill, visit SRP’s website at srpnet.com.

geothermal plant

SRP Taking Power From New Geothermal Plant

Salt River Project is now receiving a significant amount of renewable energy from the just-completed Hudson Ranch I geothermal plant located in California’s Imperial Valley. Retired Vice Adm. Dennis V. McGinn, president of the American Council on Renewable Energy, provided the keynote address during the dedication ceremony for the plant on Friday, May 18.

SRP executed a 30-year agreement in 2007 to purchase 49 megawatts of geothermal energy from Hudson Ranch I. The utility-scale plant, developed by EnergySource, is now providing enough energy to power about 26,000 average size Valley homes. The facility is located in one of the largest and highest-temperature geothermal resources in North America – the Salton Sea field in Imperial County.

Last year, SRP signed another agreement with EnergySource for the purchase of an additional 49 megawatts of geothermal from Hudson Ranch II. This second 30-year agreement calls for SRP to purchase power beginning in mid-2014, when the plant is expected to be completed. SRP will arrange transmission of the energy from the point of delivery to Arizona.

A geothermal power plant produces electricity from naturally occurring heat below Earth’s surface.  Geothermal energy is considered renewable energy because no fuel is consumed and the energy is from a naturally occurring source. Unlike other forms of renewable energy such as solar or wind, geothermal power plants produce energy continuously, irrespective of the time of the day or weather conditions.

Under SRP’s Sustainable Portfolio goals, SRP must meet 20 percent of its retail electricity requirements through sustainable resources by the year 2020. The goal increases each year until 2020 and, currently, SRP has exceeded its 5 percent goal while providing more than 9 percent of retail energy needs with sustainable resources such as wind, solar, geothermal and biomass energy, hydro power, conservation and energy-efficiency measures.

Headquartered in El Centro, Calif., EnergySource is an independent developer, constructor, operator and owner of utility-scale geothermal power generation projects in southern California’s Salton Sea resource, selling wholesale base-load renewable power and environmental attributes to Western utilities subject to requirements to purchase energy from renewable resources.

SRP is the largest provider of electricity to the greater Phoenix area, serving nearly 950,000 electric customers.

For more information on the Hudson Ranch Geothermal Power Plant, visit Landmark Geo-engineers and Geologist’s website at landmark-ca.com.

ab-digitalissue-featured

AZ Business Magazine May/June 2012

Arizona Business Magazine May/June 2012

EVER-CHANGING ECONOMY

Michael GossieIn 2007, when SRP commissioned its Metro-Phoenix Business Study, just 1 percent of those business owners and executives surveyed cited the economy as a challenge or obstacle they had to overcome in the previous two or three years. When the same study was released this year, 56 percent of the responses cited the economy as a major challenge that they had to be overcome. Times have changed. We’re entering a new, more optimistic, yet significantly more cautious era. Despite enduring a tumultuous four years, 50 percent of those businesses surveyed for the 2011 SRP study anticipate their financial position will improve in the next 12 months. This issue of Arizona Business Magazine reflects that simmering optimism. Our special report shows that manufacturing, technology, healthcare and bioscience are leading the charge in Arizona job growth. And our Arizona Energy Consortium supplement introduces you to the folks who are drafting a comprehensive and cohesive energy plan that will create a brighter future for Arizona literally and figuratively. We have sunny days ahead, and not just because we live in Arizona.

Michael Gossie Signature

Michael Gossie, Managing Editor

Read more articles from this issue on AZNow.Biz.

Take it with you! On your mobile, go to m.issuu.com to get started.

Banner Estrella Mtn

Banner Estrella Recognized As An Energy Star Facility By EPA

Banner Estrella Medical Center is the first and only hospital in Maricopa County to be labeled an ENERGY STAR® certified building by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

There are just four hospitals in Arizona and 150 hospitals nationwide have the EPA-certified ENERGY STAR label. ENERGY STAR certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent less carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. Fifteen types of commercial buildings can earn the ENERGY STAR certification, including office buildings, K-12 schools and retail stores.

“We are excited to see that the dedication of our Facilities Department, and our relationship with our utility company, Salt River Project (SRP), has resulted in this honor from the federal government,” said Deb Krmpotic, Chief Executive Officer of Banner Estrella.

The hospital’s Facilities Department worked with SRP over a 12-month period to track key metrics in ENERGY STAR’s Portfolio Manager™, such as energy intensity and costs, water use and carbon emissions, to reach the required benchmarks for the ENERGY STAR label. The benchmarks take into account the number of staffed beds and workers and the types of services offered at the hospital to compare it with like facilities. Commercial buildings that earn the EPA’s ENERGY STAR label must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide and must be independently verified by a licensed professional engineer or a registered architect.

One of the major contributing factors to achieving this recognition was the energy savings the hospital realized as a result of its participation in the SRP Retrocommissioning Solutions program. This program enhances existing systems through a tuneup, rather than relying on major equipment replacement. SRP collaborated with Banner Estrella’s Facilities Department to evaluate the chiller plant, HVAC fans, air handlers and reheat components and get them back to running in tiptop shape. As a result of the findings, the hospital saved more than $100,000 in energy costs the first year.

“Banner Estrella is a leader in the health care industry when it comes to energy efficiency. We look forward to many more successful projects with Banner Estrella, as well as other Banner Health facilities, in the future. It’s wonderful to see the hospital recognized on a national level,” said Debbie Kimberly, Director of Customer Programs & Marketing at SRP.

Launched in 1992 by the EPA, ENERGY STAR is a market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. This year marks ENERGY STAR’s 20th anniversary. Over the past 20 years, with help from ENERGY STAR, American families and businesses have saved about $230 billion on utility bills and prevented more than 1.7 billion metric tons of carbon pollution. Today, the ENERGY STAR label can be found on more than 60 kinds of products and more than 1.3 million new homes.

For more information on Banner Estrella Medical Center, visit Banner Estrella’s website at bannerhealth.com.

energy star - recycling symbol

Banner Estrella Medical Center Recognized As An Energy Star Facility By EPA

Banner Estrella Medical Center is the first and only hospital in Maricopa County to be labeled an Energy Star certified building by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Currently, only four hospitals in Arizona and 150 hospitals nationwide have the EPA-certified Energy Star label. Energy Star certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent less carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. Fifteen types of commercial buildings can earn the Energy Star certification, including office buildings, K-12 schools and retail stores.

“We are excited to see that the dedication of our Facilities Department, and our relationship with our utility company, Salt River Project (SRP), has resulted in this honor from the federal government,” said Deb Krmpotic, Chief Executive Officer of Banner Estrella.

The hospital’s Facilities Department worked with SRP over a 12-month period to track key metrics in Energy Star’s Portfolio Manager™, such as energy intensity and costs, water use and carbon emissions, to reach the required benchmarks for the Energy Star label. The benchmarks take into account the number of staffed beds and workers and the types of services offered at the hospital to compare it with like facilities. Commercial buildings that earn the EPA’s Energy Star label must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide and must be independently verified by a licensed professional engineer or a registered architect.

One of the major contributing factors to achieving this recognition was the energy savings the hospital realized as a result of its participation in the SRP Retrocommissioning Solutions program. This program enhances existing systems through a tuneup, rather than relying on major equipment replacement. SRP collaborated with Banner Estrella’s Facilities Department to evaluate the chiller plant, HVAC fans, air handlers and reheat components and get them back to running in tiptop shape. As a result of the findings, the hospital saved more than $100,000 in energy costs the first year.

“Banner Estrella is a leader in the health care industry when it comes to energy efficiency. We look forward to many more successful projects with Banner Estrella, as well as other Banner Health facilities, in the future. It’s wonderful to see the hospital recognized on a national level,” said Debbie Kimberly, Director of Customer Programs & Marketing at SRP.

Launched in 1992 by the EPA, Energy Star is a market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. This year marks Energy Star’s 20th anniversary. Over the past 20 years, with help from Energy Star, American families and businesses have saved about $230 billion on utility bills and prevented more than 1.7 billion metric tons of carbon pollution. Today, the Energy Star label can be found on more than 60 kinds of products and more than 1.3 million new homes.

For more information on the EPA’s Energy Star Program, visit Energy Star’s website at energystar.gov.

EnerNOC

EnerNOC Extends 50-Megawatt Demand Response Contract With SRP Through 2015

EnerNOC, the world’s leading provider of demand response applications and services, today announced that it has extended its contract to implement a demand response program for Salt River Project (SRP) through 2015. Under its existing contract with the Phoenix-based public power utility, EnerNOC manages a network of commercial, institutional, and industrial facilities that agree to reduce electricity usage during peak periods through EnerNOC’s DemandSMART demand response application in exchange for year-round payments. This three-year extension of the SRP PowerPartner™ program continues that service agreement, which was originally executed in 2009, and will continue to help Salt River Project provide reliable and affordable electricity in Arizona.

“Over the past several years, EnerNOC has been a strong partner in helping us to achieve our peak management goals,” said Debbie Kimberly, SRP Director of Customer Programs and Marketing. “They have maintained a strong track record for customer satisfaction, as well as performance, and our customers value their user-friendly technology. We are excited to continue this relationship to ensure that demand response remains easy and rewarding for participating customers, while also a reliable resource for us to manage.”

“Businesses and organizations throughout SRP’s service territory have taken advantage of the bottom-line benefits that demand response presents. We’re excited to continue this relationship so that they can continue to be rewarded for smart energy management practices,” said EnerNOC Chairman and CEO Tim Healy. “Our work with SRP has helped to manage peak load when the Southwest grid is strained, keeping the lights on—and the A/C working—at homes and businesses throughout the region.”

To date, EnerNOC has enabled a broad variety of businesses to participate in demand response in SRP’s service territory, including commercial property, data centers, hospitals, and manufacturing sites. Customers receive smart metering and control equipment free of charge, as well as real-time visibility into their energy usage through EnerNOC’s DemandSMART application. EnerNOC’s automated demand response solutions can respond to SRP’s calls for load reductions within minutes.

2012 Annual Economic Outlook

Industry Experts' Forecast On 2012 Economy

Recovery is on the horizon, but industry experts are cautious in their forecast as the 2012 economy slowly bounces back. 

Looking at Arizona’s recession-starved commercial real estate industry as a whole, 2011 was flat and 2012 is trending just slightly better. So say local experts.

But broken down into its various components, there is a wide divergence of attitude and optimism for the rest of this year.

AZRE tapped key players from a variety of real estate-related disciplines to check their crystal balls and predict whether commercial real estate will soar, slump or stagnate in 2012, and what factors could turn the tide.

Investment
A plethora of CMBS properties will come due in 2012, and private owners of distressed properties may be more willing to sell, says Jennifer Pescatore, who oversees commercial real estate loans for Bank of Arizona.

There is plenty of money available for the right property in the right submarket and investors with the right credentials, she says.

But except for the multi-family sector and some industrial opportunities, Pescatore isn’t sure values have slipped enough to generate a significant number of sales or new development in 2012.

She’s anticipating relatively small loans — $2M to $15M — on income properties as standard 2012 fare.

But substantial job growth and improvement in the global economic picture could change that relatively pessimistic outlook, says Ryan Suchala, Bank of Arizona president.

“Arizona offers a unique opportunity, and it’s a great place to do business,” Suchala says.

This year could be better than expected, Suchala notes, but for measurable improvement in real estate values and transactions, 2013 is a more realistic time frame.

Economic development
Economic development directors by nature are always upbeat about the future, and Chandler’s Christine Mackay has reason to be.

“Activity level since the first of the year has gone through the roof,” she says.

Intel is constructing a new fabrication plant scheduled for completion in 2013 but already keeping a virtual army of construction workers busy. And when Intel ramps up, so do the tech giant’s customers and clients, Mackay adds.

Other healthy growth signals: EBay/PayPal is expanding, building out the fourth floor of its Chandler facility.

In January, San Diego-based developer Doug Allred Company broke ground at the NEC of Price and Willis roads in Chandler for Park Place, the Valley’s first spec office complex to rise from the dust of the recession since 2009.

Phoenix has a lot more old office properties to fill up before any spec projects are likely to appear on its planning agenda, but virtually all the big warehousing/distribution center space has been snapped up, and the city is actively looking for “shovel ready” spots where developers can build more, says Bruce MacTurk, deputy director for economic development.

It’s a good news-bad news scenario, he says.

By mid-January, five large industrial users were looking at Phoenix, but the city had only two buildings with more than 500,000 SF of space available.

There’s even some good news about Phoenix’s languishing retail centers as owners are renovating to reposition the sites, MacTurk says.

While economic development leaders like MacTurk and Mackay are focused on job creation, the fallout from job growth is a healthier, more vibrant residential and commercial real estate scenario, they say.

Construction
“Compared to this time last year, it feels much better,” says Bo Calbert, McCarthy Building Cos. Southwest president. “There are a lot more opportunities to pursue.”

McCarthy’s revenue is up 10%, he says. Key drivers for that spike are healthcare, renewable energy, schools and Native American projects, especially in hospitality and gaming.

But Calbert says he believes there is “more pain to come” before Arizona’s construction industry is back on a solid uphill track.

“To be an Arizona-only contractor is not sustainable,” he says. “There is promise, and more opportunities are coming, but not enough.”

D.P. Electric vice president Scott Muller says he has a backlog of healthcare and military projects to keep workers busy in 2012 — primarily technology upgrades.

And the company is detecting more interest from local property owners and developers, some hoping to entice California data centers and manufacturing operations ready to make a move.

“We’re excited about 2012,” Muller says.

“Those in the real estate and construction industry understand that the current market, compared to three or four years ago, has created a great opportunity to build, move or expand at a significant cost savings,” he says. “In 2012, we’ve seen an increase in our Design-Build/Design-Assist projects because this is where the best value is brought to the owner/developer.”

Architecture
Data centers, specialized healthcare facilities and military installations are also on Mike Medici’s 2012 hot list.

“Technology is constantly pushing the limits of existing buildings,” says Medici, managing director of SmithGroupJJR Arizona Architects. “And a lot of hospitals are positioning for the future or catching up from the past.”

Architects are tapped for new projects at the conceptualizing stage, and Medici sees good news coming for all commercial real estate sectors, even if the bounty won’t happen in 2012.

“We are seeing several developers looking at mixed-use office/retail/multi-family, especially along the light rail line,” he says. “It’s not as much activity as in 2004, 2005 and 2006, but there are opportunities bubbling up. For two years previously developers were not talking to us. Now modestly they are coming out of the woodwork.”

LEO A DALY architectural firm just completed the Casino Del Sol Resort in Tucson and is currently working on a project with Davis-Monthan Air Force base, says senior architect Rod Armstrong.

There is no pent-up demand for shopping centers or new office buildings, Armstrong says, but the international architecture firm is “always in business development mode,” and the signs are positive.

“We feel the increased level of commitment with potential clients. People are loosening up, and things will happen quickly. We’re hopeful for 2012,” he says.

Multi-family
While interest in and financing for new development remains limited in Metro Phoenix, one sector finding favor is multi-family, fueled by a limited supply and the single-family housing market collapse, says Tom Simplot, Arizona Multihousing Association president.

“Apartment owners are cautiously optimistic due to a rebound in values and rents,” Simplot says.

He doesn’t envision a lot more product coming online in 2012, but in select markets — in Scottsdale, Ahwatukee, and along the light rail line — some projects are moving forward and could be under construction this year and available by 2013.

Luxury condo developer Optima is betting Scottsdale is ready for more downtown-living opportunities.

“Optima Sonoran Village is in an advantageous position because it is the first new residential development in several years and builds on the economic, architecture, and marketing success of Optima Camelview Village,” says David Hovey Jr., Optima vice president. “Construction has started on Optima Sonoran Village with occupancy second quarter of 2013.”

Hovey says financing is still tight and mixed-use projects are iffy because of existing over-supply of office and retail components, but, if there is “only a gradual increase in new product over the next few years, the luxury unit market will remain healthy.”

Healthcare
Medical facilities needing upgrades or expansions to keep up with changing technologies, aging baby boomer needs and unsettled health coverage issues, are providing work for local real estate trades — a trend that will continue throughout 2012.

Cancer- and pediatric-focused projects are already in progress, as are several clinics and rehabilitation centers aimed at bringing cost-effective healthcare into communities, says Sundt Construction’s Russ Korcuska, who has been piloting hospital construction projects in Arizona for two decades.

Still, some of the big players will “sit on the sidelines until the (November) election because of the tremendous effect that could have on healthcare and Medicare. The new congress will be pivotal,” Korcuska says.

Some upgrades can’t wait.

“Healthcare construction is tied to population, and there is a great need to accommodate the baby boomer generation,” says Steve Whitworth, Kitchell’s Healthcare Division manager.

Healthcare construction will see a “slight increase in 2012, as larger organizations prepare for healthcare reform,” he says.

Whitworth predicts a sharper focus on cost-cutting delivery methods and energy efficiency in 2012 both in new development and upgrades to existing facilities.

“Healthcare will remain healthy,” he says.

Solar
Solar power was Arizona’s red-hot growth topic a year ago, with government leaders proffering incentives and touting the state’s virtues to the clean-energy companies looking for a place to grow and prosper.

Then mid-year, solar panel makers Solyndra and Stirling Energy Systems failed, and in December industry giant First Solar said it would slow progress of its under-construction Mesa plant.

So how do some of the state’s solar experts envision their industry’s 2012 prospects?

SRP sees strong demand for solar upgrades in both commercial and residential uses even though it “slowed somewhat” from 2011 when monetary inducements were greater, says Debbie Kimberly, director of customer programs and marketing.

“It’s encouraging to see this demand even at reduced incentive levels,” Kimberly says.

She says she expects interest in solar to continue apace throughout 2012, especially in leased rather than purchased systems.

And APS’ 2012 outlook for solar is “overwhelmingly positive” based on continued strong customer demand, says Barbara Lockwood, the utility company’s director of energy innovation.

“We asked our customers,” she notes. “The customers want solar.”

Installers could second that.

“Our forecast is 100 percent growth over last year,” says Gary Held, Harmon Solar sales and marketing manager. “And last year was the biggest year we ever had on the commercial side.”

But that’s from the perspective of the companies that purchase and distribute solar energy.

While solar demand remains strong, supply is growing faster as solar producers and manufacturers ramp up, boosting competition and sending prices plummeting, Lockwood says.

The growing global glut in solar manufacturers is squeezing the industry from that perspective, she says, as evident by First Solar’s slowdown and some companies folding.

Lockwood predicts prices will stabilize in 2012, and solar supply and demand will reach equilibrium.

Brokerage
Nobody has a handle on the intricacies of the local commercial real estate industry like the brokers who buy, sell, market and lease properties. Their outlook for 2012 is guardedly upbeat, depending on the type of property and its location.

Phoenix’s overbuilt office market remains too over-supplied for new development, says Craig Henig, CBRE senior managing director.

In 2011, 1.8 MSF of office space was absorbed, dropping the vacancy rate to 25.5%, Henig adds.

And overall there was 5.9 MSF of “gross activity,” as plummeting rents prompted tenants to move to classier digs.

Most of the Valley’s Class A offices filled up in 2011, and Class B and C space could see an occupancy boost in 2012, whittling away at the surplus supply, says Chris Jantz, Cassidy Turley/BRE Commercial vice president of research.

But neither Henig or Jantz envision a big drop in overall office vacancy this year.

Empty industrial space was gobbled up in 2011, and that could spur development, Jantz says, but new properties likely won’t come online until 2013.

Retail real estate has been the big laggard throughout the recession, and while Henig doesn’t expect much overall absorption in 2012, he foresees “musical chairs” as retailers reexamine their footprints based on recent consumer trends. For example, the surge in online sales may result in smaller, or at least different, brick-and-mortar space usage and bigger warehousing needs.

Henig also predicts that Phoenix area retailers will take advantage of still-sinking rents to move into better locations in 2012.

Tucson’s prospects are rosy.

“All signals are pointing up for Tucson in 2012,” says CBRE Tucson managing director Tim Prouty. “Our vacancies have improved. We see a positive absorption in industrial certainly, office probably, and some improvement in retail as well.”

A recent University of Arizona study predicting 2.35% average job growth in Tucson for the next five years — a boost of more than 52,000 jobs overall — is nurturing Prouty’s confidence.

And Tucson’s successful wooing of biotech businesses, such as Roche Group’s planned major expansion, “will be a big story in 2012,” Prouty says.

Land
After bottoming in 2009, land sales nationally picked up modestly in 2012 and remained level in 2011, according to Grubb & Ellis.

Through 3Q 2011, land sales were just about even with the same period in 2012 at $13.6B, but the sales mix was different. Through 3Q 2011, industrial land sales were up 133% as the industrial leasing and user-sale market improved to the point where developers began ramping up for the next expansion cycle.

In 2012, according to Grubb & Ellis, expect a modest increase inland sales led by development sites for multi-family projects and distribution centers, which are further along the recovery cycle.

Key concerns
While all the players envision a slight, if spotty, up tick in Arizona’s commercial real estate market, they say job growth and the global economy are key concerns determining 2012′s prospects.

A couple of local legislative issues also factor into the mix, says Nick Wood of Snell & Wilmer.

Tax assessments paid in arrears for commercial structures built in the mid-2000s that experienced severely plunging values in recent years could hamper sales and renovations of languishing real estate, Wood says.

“If you look at values for 2007, some offices have lost 60% to 70% of their value, and there hasn’t been a corresponding reduction in taxes,” Wood says.

And recent revisions to government property lease excise tax (GPLET) rates for new commercial structures can act as a deterrent to economic development, especially in downtown areas, he says.

AZRE Magazine March/April 2012

SRP Study Reveals How Businesses Reacted, Adapted To Economy

SRP Study Reveals How Businesses Reacted, Adapted To Economy

The “2011 SRP Metro-Phoenix Business Study: New Strategies for Success” reveals how businesses have survived and adapted operations during the economic slowdown.

“The past several years have been economically challenging for families, businesses and every level of government. Everyone felt the pinch of our recent economic downturn,” said Mark Bonsall, Salt River Project (SRP) general manager and chief executive officer. “As a company doing business in Arizona for more than 100 years, SRP knows the vitality of our community is directly related to the success of our local businesses.”

SRP, Arizona State University and WestGroup Research conducted the study to determine how businesses have adapted during the economic slowdown.

Phoenix-area businesses were asked to name the top challenges faced in the past two or three years. Fifty-six percent cited the economy as their biggest challenge, followed by cash flow (14 percent) and finding/retaining customers (11 percent).

A similar study was done in spring 2007. The top challenges cited before the economic slowdown were cash flow (21 percent), finding/retaining employees (18 percent), finding/retaining customers (14 percent) and marketing (7 percent). Only 1 percent mentioned the economy.

Despite enduring a tumultuous four years, 50 percent of businesses anticipate their financial position will improve in the next 12 months; 12 percent expect their situation to become worse. In addition, 46 percent expect to expand within their next planning cycle, and another 46 percent plan to remain the same size.

In addition to partnering on this report, SRP also created the Business Resource Center (BRC) at srpbizresource.com. The BRC is a free, online, one-stop information center that offers important business information, resources and advice to help take businesses to the next level.

“SRP wants to be part of the solution that keeps the Valley moving forward,” Bonsall said. “We believe this study and our Business Resource Center are steps in the right direction. We view both as tools to move us closer to a stronger and more prosperous Phoenix economy.”

SRP-CFLbulbs

SRP Offers Free CFL Bulbs To Help Customers Save

Salt River Project (SRP) is giving away a half-dozen compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) at no cost to customers to help them start the year saving energy and money.

To participate, SRP customers need to go to savewithsrp.com and complete an online form. SRP will then mail customers two A-shaped, two globe and two T2, or “spiral” bulbs at no charge. Supplies are limited and given on a first-come, first-served basis. Delivery will take up to 8 weeks.

ENERGY STAR qualified CFLs use up to 75 percent less energy and last up to 10 times longer than standard incandescent bulbs. Customers can save energy immediately by installing the free CFLs in lamps and fixtures they use most. The living room, bedrooms, ceiling fans and bathrooms are ideal spots to start. Lighting accounts for about 10 percent of energy use in Valley homes, and CFLs save about $30 or more in electricity costs over each bulb’s lifetime.

In addition to the giveaway, SRP offers customers discounted prices for energy-efficient lighting at retailers throughout the Valley. Visit savewithsrp.com to find participating retailers, or when shopping for lighting, look for SRP signage that indicates an immediate discount.

According to ENERGY STAR, if every home in America replaced one incandescent light bulb with an ENERGY STAR qualified CFL, in one year, enough energy would be saved to light more than 3 million homes.

Homeward Bound

Valley Residents Help SRP Give Homeward Bound A “Water Makeover”

Salt River Project has launched a contest that has Valley residents making their community more water-efficient. The contest, in which participants pledge to conserve water by submitting their best water-saving tips, could result in a “water makeover” for Homeward Bound’s Thunderbird Family Village Campus.

If SRP reaches its goal of 5,000 pledges, it will help Homeward Bound conserve water at several of its transitional housing facilities with a $5,000 grant from SRP that will be used by Homeward Bound to install high-efficiency shower heads and water fixtures in its 80-apartment campus located in north Phoenix.

“This process highlights the importance of everyone doing their part to conserve water,” says Sally Smith, Homeward Bound’s director of facilities. “We look forward to the conversion, saving water and the money we’ll save in the process.”

Homeward Bound is an organization that works to break the cycle of homelessness and domestic violence. They help families with children achieve economic independence by providing long-term housing that is secure and safe.

Started in 1990 with one family and one house, Homeward Bound now manages 155 housing units and helps nearly 600 people, 400 of which are children. In 2000, Homeward Bound opened the Thunderbird Family Village, a five-acre, secured campus with 80 two-bedroom housing units.

The pledge contest and the Homeward Bound “water makeover” is one of several initiatives created by SRP to extend and enhance the Together We Conserve campaign, a multimedia campaign to raise awareness of water conservation.

Participants of the Together We Conserve pledge contest will automatically be entered into a drawing to win weekly prizes that includes everything from smart irrigation controllers to movie passes.

For more information, visit togetherweconserve.com.

 

Future of Technology - AZ Business Magazine January/February 2012

The Future of Technology In Arizona: Where Do We Go From Here?

The future of technology: Science and engineering turned Arizona’s first 100 years upside down, so where do we go from here?


Think about the achievements in technology that came during Arizona’s first 100 years.

  • The first transcontinental telephone service between New York and San Francisco (1915).
  • The world’s first radio broadcasting station goes on the air  (1920).
  • Television has its first successful demonstration in the United States (1927).
  • James Watson and Francis Crick at Cambridge University describe the structure of the DNA molecule (1953).
  • The microchip is invented (1959).
  • The first test-tube baby is born (1978).
  • IBM introduces its first personal computer (1981).
  • Cellular telephones are introduced to consumers (1982).
  • Development of the World Wide Web begins (1989).
  • Dolly the sheep becomes the first mammal cloned from an adult cell (1996).
  • Apple introduces the iPod (2001).
  • Facebook is launched (2004).
  • Scientists discover how to use human skin cells to create embryonic stem cells (2007).

They are all innovations that have changes the way we lives our lives and do business.

Where will technology take us as Arizona enters its second century? How will it affect our lives? Here are technologies and scenarios that some of Arizona’s best and brightest minds see playing out in the state’s next 100 years.


The Future of Technology In Arizona


Future of TechnologyMark Bonsall
General manager and CEO
SRP

If I had to pick one technology with the potential to truly revolutionize the industry it would be finding affordable ways to store energy on a very large scale.  This would increase the value of intermittent renewable resources like wind and solar and could transform electricity into a more common commodity.  It isn’t clear that this is possible, but with the growing focus on electric vehicles and other storage technologies, it is certain there will be significant gains over the next century.


Future of TechnologyMark Edwards
Vice president of corporate development and marketing
Algae Biosciences, Inc.

Algae-based food, fiber, feed, fertilizer, fuels, and advanced medicines will transform those industries, as we know them today. The current serious problems of waste and pollution will be solved with sustainable algae-based production that recycles and reuses nutrients, water, and energy while regenerating air, water and soils. Our children’s children will have sufficient natural resources to produce the food, energy and transportation they will need.

Algae Biosciences is Scottsdale-based and focused on discovering and unlocking the powers of algae to resolve critical human issues – nutrition, health, energy and environment.


Future of TechnologySteve Sanghi
President and CEO
Microchip Technology Inc.

If I had to pick one (technology that will have biggest impact on Arizona’s next 100 years) it would be the renewable-energy complex of technologies. For Arizona, the primary renewable-energy opportunities can be broken into three categories—measurement, conservation and harvesting.  The world’s oil supply will eventually run out, and Arizona has more days of sun than most areas.  We must continue working to tap into this ever-present energy source.  At the same time, we must focus on developing the technologies that will enable individuals and companies to both measure and conserve their energy usage.  For example, Arizona has the potential to play a key role in developing the technologies that will be employed at the home, industrial and utility levels to make the burgeoning “smart grid” work.


Future of TechnologyJohn Lefebvre
President
Suntech America

The amount of energy generated through renewable sources like solar power has the potential to surpass that derived from fossil fuels in the next 50 years. We’ve already seen remarkable technological innovations in the solar field to increase efficiency, develop solutions for energy storage, and further reduce costs, with further improvements on the horizon. With over 300 days of sunshine, Arizona is naturally poised to take advantage of these advancements and its abundant resource by generating clean electricity without carbon and greenhouse gas emissions.


Future of TechnologyDiane Brossart
President
Valley Forward Association

The biggest issues facing Arizona over the next 100 years are managing a finite water supply and transitioning to a clean energy economy. Green technology and innovation will create economic and environmentally sound solutions, making Arizona the leading destination for living wisely and sustainably in a desert.

Valley Forward Association promotes cooperative efforts to improve the environment and livability of Valley communities.


Future of TechnologyKelly Mott Lacroix
Graduate research associate
Water Resources Research Center in Tucson

We do not have a silver bullet to solve our water supply and demand challenges The state and its water issues are too diverse.  Rather, there are many smaller pieces from the simple and small scale, such as rainwater harvesting, to the large and complex, such as increased reclaimed water use, that when taken together will constitute a solution.


Future of TechnologyBill Hubert
President and founder
Cology, Inc.

Universal, personal-application based technology in general, and highly-sophisticated, profile-driven applications that help consumers (students and parents in our industry) not only gain access to a broader spectrum of programs and services available – but an interactive relationship with providers that will help both sides of the “economic equation” benefit from the transaction.

Scottsdale-based Cology, Inc. is a leading provider of end-to-end private student loan origination and repayment servicing solutions for lenders.


Future of TechnologyCR Herro
Vice president of environmental affairs
Meritage Homes

In the next century, climate will take the lead role in transforming Arizona and its buildings into energy-producing solar collectors. Arizona has the ability to become the largest producer of renewable, clean energy nationwide. In residential construction, that has already started.  The first cost-effective solar communities debuted in Arizona. Meritage Homes introduced the nation’s first net-zero homes in Arizona, saving owners both energy and money. And Arizona utilities lead the country in sponsoring energy efficiency and renewable energy programs.  Arizona is shaping up to be a state powered by the sun in every way imaginable.


Future of TechnologyCatherine Niemiec
President
Phoenix Institute of Herbal Medicine & Acupuncture, College & Clinic

Technology will be used to not only focus on the tiny gene, but to see the bigger picture of the bio-energetic field of the body. Not unlike what you would see in a Star Trek movie, technology would be used to assess and heal both the body and mind, taking into account the bio-electric system. Acupuncture and Oriental medicine has been focused on individualized medicine for thousands of years, with each treatment and formula specifically adapted to an individual, changing as the person changes and moves toward health. Thus, this dynamic medicine is the forefather of modern “individualized medicine” and can work well to make modern biotechnology more effective.


Future of TechnologyDanny Murphy
Airport director
Sky Harbor International Airport

With the explosion of mobile devices, coupled with high speed wireless networks, there is a new generation that will live their lives on mobile technology, using smartphones, touchpads and other mobile devices.
In the past we used to print so many information pieces about the airport. And while we still provide printed materials to an extent, our focus is on providing information via the web and for mobile units.


Future of TechnologyDr. Grace Caputo
Director
Phoenix Children’s Hospital/Maricopa Medical Center Pediatric Residency

Moving to a system where we utilize electronic medical records will really give us the ability to shape and improve health care across the board. Pediatric healthcare will be heavily impacted as we have just started to unravel genetic bases diseases. In the future, we hope to understand the genetic process of diseases so we can treat them and ultimately prevent diseases with wellness and lifestyle changes.


Future of TechnologyCatherine Anaya
Anchor
CBS 5 News

I think the internet technology we currently use to help in our news gathering will become a bigger factor in how we do things. Smart phones  (or whatever replaces them in the next 100 years) will replace cameras and studios creating more intimacy and accessibility. That accessibility will make it much easier to hold those in power more accountable for their actions which I hope will have a positive impact on how the state’s laws are created, shaped and enforced.


Future of TechnologyMahesh Seetharam, M.D.
Medical oncologist and hematologist
Arizona Oncology

Personalized medicine through whole genome sequencing (genomics), proteomics and noninvasive imaging will pave the way for the future.  Current research to evaluate for circulating cancer cells, and evaluation for cancer in urine samples are already being studied, and holds promise for the future.


Kenneth J. Biehl, M.D.
Radiation oncologist
Arizona Oncology

Immensely precise and conformal radiation treatments in the form of stereotactic radiation, high dose-rate radiation and molecularly targeted radiation will allow radiation oncologists surgical precision in assisting the people of Arizona to improve cancer cure and control. Just as the technological advances in the past have allowed women diagnosed with breast cancer to pursue breast conservation therapy rather than mastectomy, and have allowed men to preserve erectile function with prostate cancer, future advances will allow more Arizonans diagnosed with cancer to enjoy a better quality of life along with improved cure rates.


Michael Crow
President
Arizona State University

The biggest single technology to impact the future of Arizona will be individualized learning technologies that allow individuals to master subjects in ways customized to their particular types of intelligence and learning modalities.  This technology will allow people to learn more quickly and more deeply and more broadly. Those places, hopefully like Arizona, that enable and empower this kind of learning will see tremendous positive impacts from this technological development.


Where to invest in technology

Patricia Ternes, a financial advisor with RBC Wealth Management in Scottsdale says these are the four technology sectors to invest in going into Arizona’s next century:

1. Water 
Growing imbalances in global water supply and demand are well documented. Within that heading, the companies involved with water fall into four categories: (1) activities and technologies that increase supply; (2) the building of the necessary water structure; (3) processes that help reduce demand; and (4) water management.

2. Agriculture
When you look at the growth of the world’s population companies that are involved in agriculture and food production will continue to be attractive and important.

3. Health
Another important sector will be health care services and life sciences tools and services that provide better quality of life for the aging population.

4. The unknown
The fourth sector doesn’t exist yet.  Advances are happening so fast that something new will be created that will change our lives.


Arizona Business Magazine January/February 2012

ACC Awards 2012

ACC Awards 2012 Finalists: A-G

Effective corporate counsel has never been more important than it is now. Arizona Business Magazine is recognizing the important and vital role that in-house counsel plays in the success of a business with the Arizona Corporate Counsel Awards, ACC Awards 2012. The 27 finalists and winners were honored Thursday, January 12 during a ceremony and dinner at the Ritz Carlton Phoenix. Here are the finalists in alphabetical order, A through G.


ACC Awards 2012 Finalists, A through G:

Jane D. Alfano
Corporate counsel
SRP

ACC Awards 2012Alfano joined SRP in 1979 and became the first female to hold the position of corporate counsel. Her strategic vision and application of the law, coupled with her ethical values and professionalism, epitomize the best of the legal profession, colleagues say. Alfano manages a law services teams that includes 12 attorneys and 20 law firms that augment SRP’s legal team. Alfano’s leadership philosophy of delivering value to the SRP executive team by providing legal remedies to meet their business strategy and goals through partnering with SRP attorneys has resulted in strong alliances with executives, SRP communities and SRP customers.


Andrejs K. Bunkse
General Counsel
Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc.

ACC Awards 2012Bunkse joined Redflex in 2009 to create a legal department for the company, which has customers in 22 states and Canada, representing more than 250 cities — each operating under its own unique set of laws. Redflex’s products have been scrutinized and have been subjected to a heavy defense litigation practice. Under Bunkse’s management of a staff of six and a wide network of lobbyists, lawyers and consultants, his department furthers Redflex’s efforts in setting positive legal precedent, improving legislative positioning, as well as defending a diverse set of external and internal legal challenges.


Clarissa Cerda
Senior vice president, general counsel and secretary
LifeLock

ACC Awards 2012Cerda manages LifeLock’s legal, compliance, government affairs, and human resources functions. She brings more than 19 years of experience in lawyering and negotiation, effective management, and strategic advising in fast-paced, technology corporations, leading law firms and even the White House. She currently sits on the board of directors of the Minority Corporate Counsel Association. Previously, Cerda held national positions on the American Bar Association (ABA), including the co-chair of the ABA’s Science and Technology Law Section’s Privacy Committee. Cerda graduated from Harvard College with an B.A. in government. She earned her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.


Rebecca Collins
Associate general counsel
General Dynamics C4 Systems

ACC Awards 2012Collins was responsible for all employment law aspects in establishing General Dynamics C4 Systems — which has its roots in Motorola’s military business — as a separate legal entity. Through the last decade, Collins has handled the employment law aspects of approximately eight acquisitions, along with major internal reorganizations. Combined with organic growth, this resulted in the workforce increasing to almost 11,000 employees. Collins has managed the significant employment law challenges associated with rapid growth, and is now managing the issues associated with workforce reductions necessitated  by economic conditions and reductions by the Department of Defense.


Laurence De Respino
General counsel
AMERCO (part of U-Haul International)

ACC Awards 2012In the 11 years De Respino has worked in the legal department of AMERCO, he has been responsible for sweeping changes in every facet of the legal department’s operations. Some highlights:
* He has grown the department from five to 17 attorneys.
* He values diversity, providing opportunities for women and minorities and a staff that is split equally between genders.
* He has created specialties within the legal department, adding attorneys with expertise in product litigation, class actions, insurance, business, labor, employment, and intellectual property.
* He created a discovery unit to draft requests and responses, cutting discovery costs by 50 percent in the last three years.


Brad Gazaway
Vice president and corporate counsel
The Dial Corporation

ACC Awards 2012Gazaway is a former corporate and securities attorney for Snell & Wilmer (1998-2003) and a 1992 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy. He graduated in 1998 from the University of Iowa law school. While working with Gazaway, other attorneys are impressed not only with his professional demeanor and practical approach, but with his passion for the company and the pride he takes in the company’s accomplishments. Both Gazaway and Dial value community involvement, opening their headquarters for a United Way tour, with Gazaway sharing his personal interest in helping those less fortunate with those who toured.


David Glynn
Chief administration officer and general counsel
OneNeck IT Services Corporation

ACC Awards 2012Glynn has built the legal department at OneNeck from scratch into a small, efficient, well-rounded department that assists and ensures the success of the company. Among his accomplishments:
* He was the leader in the buyout of OneNeck from the publicly held parent company in 2001, including capitalization.
* He has led the acquisition of three private companies in 2003, 2007 and 2008.
* He led the $95 million sale of OneNeck to a publicly held telecom provider in 2011.
* He has converted all legal files electronically, allowing the department to have quick and easy access to all records.


Go Daddy Group
In-house legal department

Go Daddy LogoIn the past 10 years, the Go Daddy legal department has grown from a one-woman show to a staff of nearly 100, with 55 percent of them women. This unique department, which encompasses legal, network abuse, domain services, compliance, privacy, and government relations departments, extends its reach far beyond traditional legal issues. With guiding mantras of “do the right thing” and “know your client,” the legal department is intimately involved with its clients’ operational aspects. The department serves as an industry leader, drives public policy in the Internet realm, and still finds time to vigorously promote inter-departmental interactions.


Lukas Grabiec
Corporate counsel
Intel Corporation

ACC Awards 2012Despite being a junior-level attorney, Grabiec has taken on significant responsibilities and acts as a counselor for high-level Intel executives. In the past year, Grabiec has earned multiple Division Recognition Awards from Intel for his work on important and ground-breaking projects. Some examples:
* Grabiec seized an opportunity and drove Intel’s participation in the first Poland-Silicon Valley Technology Symposium at Stanford, marshaling Intel resources and laying groundwork for future collaboration with the Polish government and university officials.
* Grabiec completed negotiations for the funding of a major high-performance computing program with a large research-based U.S. government agency.


Arizona Business Magazine January/February 2012

50 Largest Employers in Arizona - AZ Business Magazine January/February 2012

50 Largest Employers In Arizona

These are the 50 largest employers in Arizona, including public and privately held companies and not-for-profit corporations, ranked by the number of employees based on full-time equivalents of 40 hours per week and based on industry research.


50 Largest Employers in Arizona

Walmart Stores Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 30,634
Employment change since 2010: Added about 300 jobs
2010 revenue: $421.8 billion
Company’s focus: Discount retailer
Year founded: 1962
Headquarters: Bentonville, Ark.
Phone: (479) 273-4000
Website: www.walmart.com

Banner Health

Arizona employees in 2011: 28,353
Employment change since 2010: Added about 600 jobs
2010 revenue: $4.9 billion
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1911
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (602) 747-4000
Website: www.bannerhealth.com

Wells Fargo & Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: About 14,000
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $93.2 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1852
Headquarters: San Francisco
Phone: (800) 411-4932
Website: www.wellsfargo.com

Bank of America Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 13,300
Employment change since 2010: Added about 2,000 jobs
2010 revenue: $150.5 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1904
Headquarters: Charlotte, N.C.
Phone: (800) 944-0404
Website: www.bankofamerica.com

McDonald’s Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 12,770
Employment change since 2010: Added about 955 jobs
2010 revenue: $22.7 billion
Company’s focus: Food service
Year founded: 1955
Headquarters: Oakbrook, Ill.
Phone: (800) 244-6227
Website: www.mcdonalds.com

Apollo Group Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: About 12,000
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 460 jobs
2010 revenue: $4.9 billion
Company’s focus: Educational services
Year founded: 1973
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (480) 966-5394
Website: www.apollogrp.edu

Kroger Co. *

Arizona employees in 2011: About 12,000
Employment change since 2010: Added about 400 jobs
2010 revenue: $76.7 billion
Company’s focus: Grocery stores
Year founded: 1883
Headquarters: Cincinnati
Phone: (623) 936-2100
Website: www.frysfood.com
* Includes Fry’s Food Stores and Fry’s Marketplace

Raytheon Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 11,500
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 600 jobs
2010 revenue: $25.2 billion
Company’s focus: Missile manufacturing
Year founded: 1922
Headquarters: Waltham, Mass.
Phone: (520) 794-3000
Website: www.raytheon.com

JP Morgan Chase & Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 10,500
Employment change since 2010: Added about 600 jobs
2010 revenue: $102.9 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1799
Headquarters: New York
Phone: (602) 221-2900
Website: www.chase.com

Honeywell International Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 9,716
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 700 jobs
2010 revenue: $33.4 billion
Company’s focus: Aerospace manufacturing
Year founded: 1952
Headquarters: Morristown, N.J.
Phone: (602) 231-1000
Website: www.honeywell.com

Intel Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 9,700
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $43.6 billion
Company’s focus: Semiconductor manufacturing
Year founded: 1968
Headquarters: Santa Clara, Calif.
Phone: (480) 554-8080
Website: www.intel.com

Target Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 9,300
Employment change since 2010: Added about 500 jobs
2010 revenue: $65.4 billion
Company’s focus: Discount retailer
Year founded: 1962
Headquarters: Minneapolis
Phone: (612) 304-6073
Website: www.target.com

US Airways

Arizona employees in 2011: 8,926
Employment change since 2010: Added about 150 jobs
2010 revenue: $11.9 billion
Company’s focus: Airline
Year founded: 1981
Headquarters: Tempe
Phone: (480) 693-0800
Website: www.usairways.com

Catholic Healthcare West

Arizona employees in 2011: 8,291
Employment change since 2010: Added about 500 jobs
2010 revenue: $9.9 billion
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1986
Headquarters: San Francisco
Phone: (602) 406-3000
Website: www.chw.edu

Home Depot Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: About 8,000
Employment change since 2010: Added about 350 jobs
2010 revenue: $66.2 billion
Company’s focus: Home improvement
Year founded: 1978
Headquarters: Atlanta
Phone: (714) 940-3500
Website: www.homedepot.com

Walgreen Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 7,750
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $63.3 billion
Company’s focus: Retail drugstores
Year founded: 1901
Headquarters: Deerfield, Ill.
Phone: (847) 940-2500
Website: www.walgreens.com

Safeway Stores Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 7,500
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $41.1 billion
Company’s focus: Grocery stores
Year founded: 1926
Headquarters: Pleasanton, Calif.
Phone: (480) 894-4100
Website: www.safeway.com

American Express Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 7,465
Employment change since 2010: Added about 200 jobs
2010 revenue: $30.2 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1850
Headquarters: New York
Phone: (623) 492-7474
Website: www.americanexpress.com

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: About 7,000
Employment change since 2010: Added about 935 jobs
2010 revenue: $19 billion
Company’s focus: Mining
Year founded: 1834
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (602) 366-7323
Website: www.fcx.com

Pinnacle West Capital Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 6,900
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 earnings: $330.4 million
Company’s focus: Electric utility
Year founded: 1985
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (602) 250-1000
Website: www.pinnaclewest.com

Bashas’ Supermarkets

Arizona employees in 2011: 6,641
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 1,800 jobs
2010 revenue: Unavailable
Company’s focus: Grocery stores
Year founded: 1932
Headquarters: Chandler
Phone: (480) 895-9350
Website: www.bashas.com

Scottsdale Healthcare

Arizona employees in 2011: 6,556
Employment change since 2010: Added about 55 jobs
2010 revenue: Unavailable
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1962
Headquarters: Scottsdale
Phone: (480) 882-4000
Website: www.shc.org

UA Healthcare

Arizona employees in 2011: About 6,000
Employment change since 2010: Added about 2,050 jobs
2010 revenue: Unavailable
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1971
Headquarters: Tucson
Phone: (520) 694-7737
Website: www.u.arizona.edu

Circle K Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 5,690
Employment change since 2010: Added about 590 jobs
2010 revenue: $16.4 billion
Company’s focus: Convenience stores
Year founded: 1951
Headquarters: Laval, QC, Canada
Phone: (602) 728-8000
Website: www.CircleK.com

General Dynamics

Arizona employees in 2011: 5,026
Employment change since 2010: Added about 1,810 jobs
2010 revenue: $32.5 billion
Company’s focus: Defense, communications
Year founded: 1952
Headquarters: Falls Church, Va.
Phone: (480) 441-3033
Website: www.generaldynamics.com

Boeing Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,800
Employment change since 2010: Added about 100 jobs
2010 revenue: $64.3 billion
Company’s focus: Aircraft manufacturing
Year founded: 1916
Headquarters: Chicago
Phone: (480) 891-3000
Website: www.boeing.com

Carondelet Health Network

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,690
Employment change since 2010: Added about 124 jobs
2010 revenue: About $601 million
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1880
Headquarters: Tucson
Phone: (520) 872-3000
Website: www.carondelet.org

Mayo Foundation

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,522
Employment change since 2010: Added about 138 jobs
2010 revenue: $7.9 billion
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1864
Headquarters: Rochester, Minn.
Phone: (480) 301-8000
Website: www.mayo.edu

CVS Caremark Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,500
Employment change since 2010: Added about 50 jobs
2010 revenue: $96.4 billion
Company’s focus: Pharmaceutical services
Year founded: 1993
Headquarters: Nashville
Phone: (615) 743-6600
Website: www.caremark.com

Salt River Project

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,346
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 392 jobs
2010 revenue: $2.7 billion
Company’s focus: Utility supplier
Year founded: 1903
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (602) 236-5900
Website: www.srpnet.com

Costco Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,151
Employment change since 2010: Added about 951 jobs
2010 revenue: $76.2 billion
Company’s focus: Membership discount stores
Year founded: 1976
Headquarters: Issaquah, Wash.
Phone: (602) 293-5007
Website: www.costco.com

Abrazo Health Care *

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,089
Employment change since 2010: Added about 951 jobs
2010 revenue: $1.5 billion
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1997
Headquarters: Nashville
Phone: (602) 674-1400
Website: www.abrazohealth.com
* A division of Vanguard Health Systems

Albertsons Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 4,000
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 450 jobs
2010 revenue: $5.9 billion
Company’s focus: Grocery and drug stores
Year founded: 1939
Headquarters: Boise, ID
Phone: (602) 382-5300
Website: www.albertsons.com

FedEx Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,918
Employment change since 2010: Added about 330 jobs
2010 revenue: $34.7 billion
Company’s focus: Delivery, copy centers
Year founded: 1971
Headquarters: Memphis, Tenn.
Phone: (866) 477-7529
Website: www.fedex.com

Southwest Airlines Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,857
Employment change since 2010: Added about 259 jobs
2010 revenue: $12.1 billion
Company’s focus: Airline
Year founded: 1971
Headquarters: Dallas
Phone: (602) 304-3983
Website: www.southwest.com

Marriott International

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,522
Employment change since 2010: Added about 722 jobs
2010 revenue: $11.7 billion
Company’s focus: Resorts and hotels
Year founded: 1927
Headquarters: Bethesda, Md.
Phone: (301) 380-3000
Website:  www.marriott.com

Qwest Communications Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,200
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 190 jobs
2010 revenue: $12.3 billion
Company’s focus: Telecommunications
Year founded: 1896
Headquarters: Denver
Phone: (800) 244-1111
Website: www.Qwest.com

United Parcel Service

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,170
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 48 jobs
2010 revenue: $49.5 billion
Company’s focus: Package delivery
Year founded: 1907
Headquarters: Atlanta
Phone: (888) 967-5877
Website: www.ups.com

John C. Lincoln Health Network

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,166
Employment change since 2010: Added about 539 jobs
2010 revenue: $551 million
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1927
Headquarters:  Phoenix
Phone: (602) 870-943-2381
Website: www.jcl.com

USAA

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,045
Employment change since 2010: Added about 74 jobs
2010 revenue: $17.9 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1922
Headquarters: San Antonio
Phone: (800) 531-8111
Website: www.usaa.com

Charles Schwab & Co. Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 3,001
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $4.2 billion
Company’s focus: Financial services
Year founded: 1974
Headquarters: San Francisco
Phone: (800) 435-4000
Website: www.schwab.com

Freescale Semiconductor

Arizona employees in 2011: About 3,000
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $4.5 billion
Company’s focus: Microchip manufacturing
Year founded: 1953
Headquarters: Austin
Phone: (512) 895-2000
Website: www.freescale.com

IBM Corp.

Arizona employees in 2011: About 3,000
Employment change since 2010: Stayed about even
2010 revenue: $95.8 billion
Company’s focus: Technology services
Year founded: 1924
Headquarters: Armonk, N.Y.
Phone: (800) 426-4968
Web site: www.us.ibm.com

Cox Communications Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,997
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 67 jobs
2010 revenue: $9.1 billion
Company’s focus: Telecommunications
Year founded: 1962
Headquarters: Atlanta
Phone: (623) 594-0505
Website: www.cox.com

TMC HealthCare

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,966
Employment change since 2010: Lost about 84 jobs
2010 revenue: Unavailable
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1943
Headquarters: Tucson
Phone: (520) 327-5461
Website: www.tmcaz.com

Verizon Wireless

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,901
Employment change since 2010: Added about 201 jobs
2010 revenue: $63.4 billion
Company’s focus: Wireless provider
Year founded: 1984
Headquarters: Basking Ridge, N.J.
phone: (480) 763-6300
Website: www.verizonwireless.com

Cigna HealthCare of AZ

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,865
Employment change since 2010: Added about 401 jobs
2010 revenue: $21.3 billion
Company’s focus: Health care
Year founded: 1972
Headquarters: Philadelphia
Phone: (602) 942-4462
Website: www.cigna.com

Grand Canyon University

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,818
Employment change since 2010: Added about 537 jobs
2010 revenue: $385.8 million
Company’s focus: Educational services
Year founded: 1949
Headquarters: Phoenix
Phone: (602) 639-7500
Website: www.gcu.edu

Starbucks Coffee Co.

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,783
Employment change since 2010: Added about 1,003 jobs
2010 revenue: $10.7 billion
Company’s focus: Food service
Year founded: 1971
Headquarters: Seattle
Phone: (602) 340-0455
Website: www.starbucks.com

Go Daddy Group Inc.

Arizona employees in 2011: 2,754
Employment change since 2010: Added about 441 jobs
2010 revenue: $741.2 million
Company’s focus: Internet services/technology
Year founded: 1997
Headquarters: Scottsdale
Phone: (480) 505-8800
Website: www.GoDaddy.com

These are the state’s 5 largest government employers, ranked by the number of employees.

State of Arizona: About 49,800 employees
City of Phoenix: About 15,100 employees
Maricopa County: 12,792 employees
Arizona State University: 11,185 employees
Mesa Public Schools: 8,376 employees

Arizona Business Magazine January/February 2012

SunPower Solar Power

SunPower Solar Power Plant Planned For ASU Polytechnic Campus

SRP and Arizona State University (ASU) have teamed up to build a 1-megawatt, solar power plant on the Polytechnic campus in Mesa. The plant will feature the first commercial deployment of SunPower C7 Tracker technology. This solar photovoltaic tracking system concentrates the sun’s power seven times and is designed to achieve the lowest-leveled cost of electricity for solar power plants available today.

The SunPower solar power plant will utilize the C7 technology, but it won’t be the first solar power plant on the ASU Polytechnic campus. Two plants have already begun construction thanks to the SRP EarthWise Solar Energy Incentive Program.

“There are two other solar systems in construction at this time by Ameresco Southwest, a 298 kWdc and 511 kWdc,” says Jean Humphires, director of design and support services in the ASU Capital Programs Management Group. “Design of these systems began in August 2011; they will be operational by the end of March 2012.”

The ASU solar plant will be the third commercial-scale solar facility in the Valley of the Sun to provide energy for SRP, producing approximately the energy needed to serve about 225 SRP customers’ homes. The Polytechnic solar power plant will require minimal water use and supports ASU’s renewable energy goal to achieve 20-megawatts by 2014.

SunPower is engineering and constructing the plant on the southeast corner of the ASU Polytechnic campus and will operate and maintain it. Under a purchase-power agreement, SRP will buy the entire output of the solar plant from SunPower and, in a separate agreement, ASU will purchase all of the energy attributable to the plant for use at its Polytechnic campus, estimated to be more than two million kilowatts per year.

According to Humphries, 17 percent of the ASU Polytechnic campus peak load will be covered by the solar power plant, and the SunPower solar plant will be operational by the end of 2012.

The C7 Solar Power Technology

The C7 Tracker combines single-axis tracking technology with rows of parabolic mirrors, reflecting light onto 22.8 percent efficient SunPower Maxeon solar cells. The technology uses mirrors to reduce the number of solar cells required to generate electricity and will lower the levelized cost of electricity by up to 20 percent compared to other technologies. For example, the 1-megawatt C7 Tracker power plant at ASU will require only 172 kilowatts of SunPower solar cells.

“The SunPower C7 Tracker leverages SunPower’s depth of experience developing reliable tracking systems and delivers bankable technology with guaranteed performance,” says Howard Wenger, SunPower president. “We applaud our partners on this project in selecting this advanced technology platform that will deliver cost-effective renewable energy for the long-term.”

Integrating Solar Power Into Polytechnic Programs

There are four related educational and research programs on the Polytechnic Campus:

  • Undergraduate and master’s programs in alternative energy technologies and environmental technology management
  • An alternative energy focus area in the Technological Entrepreneurship and Management program.
  • The Photovoltaic Reliability Lab, directed by Dr. Govindasamy Tamizhmani, which is focused on real-world and simulated-condition aging and testing of in-field PV components
  • The Arizona Center for Algae Technology and Innovation (AzCATI) test bed overseen by Milton Sommerfeld and Qiang Hu

“The learning environment at the College of Technology and Innovation on the ASU Polytechnic campus is distinguished by a hands-on, project- and team-focused curriculum developed and delivered by faculty with extensive real-world experience,” says Mitzi Montoya, Vice Provost and Dean of the College of Technology & Innovation at Arizona State University. “Existing and new facilities on campus, like the Polytechnic solar plant, give our students opportunities to become more deeply engaged in their learning by providing applied context to classroom lessons.”

For more information about SunPower, visit sunpowercorp.com.

2012 ACC Awards Reception

Arizona Corporate Counsel Awards Reception (PHOTOS)

Nearly 300 in-house counsel attorneys and professionals congregated at The Ritz-Carlton in Phoenix on January 12, 2012 for the first annual 2012 Arizona Corporate Counsel.

Attendees from ON-Semiconductor, Grant Thornton, Ogletree Deakins, LifeLock, Barrett-Jackson and many more notable law firms and businesses shared a wonderful evening with AZ Business Magazine and AZ Big Media, where we recognized and celebrated the winners in each category for extraordinary legal skill and achievement across a full range of in-house responsibility, exemplary leadership and their contributions to the Arizona community at large.

We hope everyone enjoyed your evening, and we look forward to next year’s event.

Thank you to our sponsors and presenters,
and congratulations ACC Award winners!


Photos from the 2012 Arizona Corporate Counsel Awards reception:

[slickr-flickr tag="acc-awards-party" items="29" type="slideshow" id="54004193@N04"]

View this album on Flickr.

Arizona Corporate Counsel Awards 2012 Winners

In-House Counsel of the Year in the Government/Public Sector:
Jane Alfano, Senior Executive for SRP Agricultural Improvement and Power District

In-House Counsel of the Year – Nonprofit:
Cindy Sehr, Chandler Regional and Mercy Gilbert

In-House Counsel at a Small Private Company:
Virginia Llewellyn, Barrett- Jackson

In-House Counsel for a Large Private Company:
Christopher Kevane, Rural/Metro Corporation

In-House Counsel of the Year for a Small Public Company:
David Glynn, OneNeck IT

In-House Counsel of the Year for a Large Public Company:
Mark Rogers, American Corporate Counsel – Arizona Chapter Arizona

Intellectual Property Attorney of the Year:
Clarissa Cerda, LifeLock

Litigator of the Year:
Mark Larson, Honeywell

Up-and-Comer of the Year:
Lukas Grabiec, Intel

In-House Law Department of the Year:
ON-Semiconductor

Solar Panels - AZRE Magazine July/August 2011

Solar Panels And Installations Make Good Financial Sense

Figuring out the bottom line return on investment figures for installing solar panels on commercial buildings is a bit like hitting a moving target. Incentives from utilities are apt to change and sow uncertainty in the market, thus access to capital can be iffy in these challenging economic times.

But some business owners who have installed systems in the past year agree: The right incentive package from Arizona Public Service or Salt River Project, combined with federal and state tax incentives, makes solar a good financial — as well as environmental — bet.

Here is a snapshot of two businesses that managed to put the right ingredients together.

Cowley Companies and APS

Cowley Companies, a Phoenix real estate investment firm, placed one of the largest commercial rooftop solar arrays in the country on one of its warehouses near 25th Avenue and Buckeye Road.

The project cost $11.5M and includes 7,872 panels, which generate about 2.4 megawatts of power. According to CEO Mike Cowley, the solar array is producing half of the electricity needed in the 850,000 SF building, which includes tenants with industrial refrigeration requirements. His annual bill had been running about $1M.

Cowley says he had to sign a non-disclosure agreement with APS and cannot reveal what the utility company is paying him per kilowatt hour, but the agreement obligates APS to pay incentives until 60% of the project costs — the amount he borrowed to finance the project — is paid off. The incentive payments cover the loan payments. Cowley estimates that will take about 12 years.

He’ll recoup 30% of the cost through a federal tax credit. Additionally, tenants now reimburse him for power used. With that mix of incentives and payments, he calculated his self-financed portion of the project, about 10%, will be paid off in about six years.

With a 25-year warranty on the panels, the decision to erect the array made good financial sense, Cowley says.

In 2009, APS established a reverse-auction system that requires commercial entities to bid for an incentive package. Spokesman Steven Gotfried says APS scores each application and awards the bid to those who produce the most electricity for the lowest incentives.

APS’ calculator takes into account the system size, the amount of energy it is expected to produce, the incentive requested and years of payment. The lower the score, the smaller the incentive per kilowatt hour requested. Incentives are then awarded starting with the lowest score. This continues until all the funds are allotted. It’s a competitive, market-driven process designed to lower incentives.

Lower incentives, Cowley says, would have made his deal less feasible.

“People are not going to get excited about a 20-year payback,” he says. Businesses may even “be waiting for SRP and APS to bring the rate back up to where solar makes sense again.”

Gotfried says APS is trying to find the right balance between offering too few and too many incentives, with a finite pool or resources.

“The goal at the end of the day is to drive down the cost of solar,” he says. “The incentives weren’t meant to go on forever, they were meant to get things started.”

The price of solar panels has dropped 50% in the past three years, says Lee Feliciano, president of the Arizona Solar Energy Industries Association and a solar developer with CarbonFree Technology.

There may come a time, he says, when the industry no longer offers incentives for the panels, but that day is not yet on the horizon.

“The incentives are there to position the industry,” Feliciano says. “A lot of the biggest industries in the country would not be here without incentives.”

Even with incentive amounts dropping, installing solar panels on a commercial building can still be a good deal, says Gary Held, sales and marketing manager with Harmon Solar, which worked on the Av-Air project.

With incentive rates running around 10 cents to 12 cents per kilowatt hour, someone with access to capital can have a system paid off in about eight years. With a 20-year production-based incentive, that still makes financial sense, he says.

An owner who leases a system can see the end of lease payments in about 12 years and have eight years of incentives.

“We shout from the rooftops: If you are a commercial business owner with cash or access to capital with good credit, putting solar on your rooftop is a sound investment,” Held says.

Av-Air and SRP

“I am extremely satisfied with the way it is turning out for us,” says Bob Ellis, president of Reason’s Aviation, the parent company of Av-Air, a Chandler-based company that offers aftermarket parts and services to the airline industry.

Harmon Solar of Phoenix installed a 151,800-watt photovoltaic system made up of 550 solar panels on Av-Air’s rooftop, which is equivalent to about 20 residential-sized systems.

Ellis says the total cost of the project was $808,000. About 30% of the cost was covered by a federal grant and $25,000 will come back to him as a state tax credit, which is available to companies whose solar systems are operational this year.

The solar array covers 100% of his energy needs and SRP, he says, is paying him an incentive of 21.4 cents per kilowatt hour for 10 years, which comes out to $6,000 a month. Add that to the approximate $4,000 a month his tenants pay him for solar generated electricity and the fact that he’s no longer paying an electric bill, and the decision to go solar was “a no-brainer.” Ellis says it will take him about four years to pay back his $560,000 in up-front, out-of-pocket expenses.

The only downside to the process occurred when none of the four or five banks he does business with would lend him money for the out-of-pocket expenses, saying they were too unfamiliar with the incentive process.

Ellis also concedes it may be difficult for companies today to replicate Av-Air’s circumstances because SRP’s incentives are much less generous than they were in 2009.

“It was a really good deal and I got in on it just at the right time,” he says.

Both SRP and APS have production based incentive (PBI) programs for medium- and large-sized commercial customers. PBIs pay a customer over time based on the amount of energy produced, as opposed to the up-front incentives given to homeowners or small-business owners.

SRP now offers a PBI of 12 cents per kilowatt hour for 20 years for the first two megawatts of power applied for, but lowers the funding to 11 cents and then 10 cents respectively for each successive two megawatts. Its annual pool is for six megawatts.

Lori Singleton, SRP manager for sustainable initiatives and technology, says the utility simply has a finite set of resources and is trying not to over-subsidize an emerging industry.

“As the cost of solar decreases and demand increases, we have restructured our solar incentives to reflect that,” Singleton says. “It has been our intent from the beginning to reduce the rates as prices come down, so one day the industry can stand on its own without incentives.”

Reducing incentives also allows SRP to provide them to more customers, she says.

For more information about solar panels and incentive programs, visit srpnet.com or aps.com.

AZRE Magazine July/August 2011