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State needs new policies, especially on government transparency

As Arizona faces the most challenging economic times since the Great Depression, I believe the Legislature needs to recognize that it is time for more than just the same politics that helped get us into this mess. Instead, it is a time to reflect on long-term ways to ensure Arizona will have the resources to invest in education, job creation and sustainability.

One thing about tough times is that they can be an opportunity to reassess priorities and a time for self reflection. I believe the Legislature should be subject to open meeting laws the same way that every other local government is in the entire state, including governing boards like the one I serve on. If the state operated in such a fashion, everything would be open and transparent, people could deliberate and then vote without a veil of secrecy, deal making or constant fear of retribution. If people cannot talk about things openly, then there likely is the possibility that something shady is going on.

I have lived in Arizona since 1976, and I know it has so much opportunity. If we can change the way state government operates, we can build a business plan that voters can be a part of, and we can reduce the bitter partisan bickering that prevents Arizona from reaching its full potential.

- Aaron Jahneke is a Governing Board member for the Washington Elementary School District and a candidate for the House of Representatives in District 10

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