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Author Archives: Jeremy Duda

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Few see increase in civility following Giffords’ shooting (access required)

The January shooting in Tucson, which occurred just two days before the 2011 legislative session began, inspired soul searching among rattled and emotional lawmakers, who pledged a new era of civility across the partisan divide. Others vowed drastic changes to Arizona’s laws on guns and mental health in response to a mass shooting carried out by a man with documented-but-untreated mental health problems.

But while some lawmakers say the lessons of Jan. 8 stayed with them through sine die, most have seen few changes.

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UpClose with Gov. Jan Brewer: Touts openness, says vetoes represent decision not to ‘blow a hole’ in budget (access required)

After two chaotic legislative sessions, things settled down a bit for Gov. Jan Brewer in 2011.

Having won an overwhelming voter mandate in November, Brewer no longer was the governor who simply inherited the job. And with her hard-fought battle for a sales tax increase won, she was no longer the Republican governor who spent most of her time feuding with her own party.

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Border security laws may not secure very much (access required)

Like a fancy new car that just sits in the garage because the owner can’t afford to pay the insurance, cash-strapped Arizona may not have many opportunities to use two border security measures the Legislature passed.

Senate Bill 1495 authorizes the governor to establish the Arizona State Guard, which would be independent from the Arizona National Guard and under the exclusive control of the state, for any reason. And SB1406 gives a border security committee the green light to raise private funds to build a fence along the border.

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Brewer backing away from special session talk (access required)

Lawmakers may not have to return to the Capitol this year after all.

Gov. Jan Brewer told the Arizona Capitol Times that she had no specific plans for special session and played down the possibility of calling legislators back, just weeks after she first said she was considering the idea for her state employee personnel reform plan.

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