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Author Archives: The Associated Press

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Hard times lead to more power cutoffs in Phoenix

Two Phoenix area electric utilities cutoff power to more homes in June of this year than in June of 2008. Hard economic times and higher rates led consumers to fall behind in their bills. APS raised average household monthly rates about $4.50 in December, and SRP raised its average bill about $4.70 in October.

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Mesa gets stimulus cash for cops

MESA - Mesa is set to receive about $6 million in stimulus cash to hire up to 25 additional police officers. However, City Manager Chris Brady and Mayor Scott Smith have concerns that even though the grant pays for the initial hire and some other related costs, it may create a burden on the city's budget.

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Former Ariz. cop revisits ‘hitman’ days in book

For Jack Ballentine, balancing work and family was sometimes a life-or-death struggle. The former Phoenix undercover officer remembers a "client" calling during his son's batting practice. As several kids waited nearby, the detective launched into his hitman persona, discussing how he could help his client wipe out his targets with two pounds of C-4 explosives.

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More older volunteers heed calling of Peace Corps

After a lifetime of work, 62-year-old Hazel Powell decided to leave her comfortable Scottsdale home and family behind for 27 months of deprivation and a hard job in Eastern Europe. The recently retired teacher left for Bulgaria, where donkey carts outnumber automobiles. She hopes to make a difference in the lives of the poor villagers she will live with.

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Capitol Christmas tree to come from Ariz.

ALPINE - This year's Capitol Christmas tree will be an 85-foot blue spruce from Arizona's White Mountains. Ted Bechtol, superintendent of the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, made the final selection this week after reviewing 10 candidates from the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest.

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