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Operation Los Tusa dismantles marijuana syndicate

The Arizona Attorney General's Office announced Oct. 26 that it has indicted 21 people in connection with a marijuana-smuggling operation based in Pinal County. Attorney General Terry Goddard, along with Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, sent out a media release noting that Operation Los Tusa has dismantled a syndicate responsible for smuggling thousands of pounds of marijuana into Arizona during the past three years.

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Burke to head up immigration subcommittee

U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke will chair a subcommittee on border and immigration law enforcement that will advise U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Burke, who was recently confirmed as the U.S. attorney for Arizona, on Oct. 26 was named as the chairman of the Border and Immigration Law Enforcement Subcommittee.

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Budget gap grows as result of ‘unrealized savings’ (access required)

Legislative budget analysts said last week that $165 million of the state budget deficit is due to "potential unrealized budget savings" that were assumed as part of the spending plan, which was designed to bridge a $3 billion shortfall. In short, several savings measures won't work as planned.

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US researchers will study Verde River

PRESCOTT - U.S. Geological Survey researchers plan to study how changes in the flow of the middle and upper Verde River might affect plant and animal life and water quality. Lower stream flows could be caused by global warming or groundwater pumping and affect the viability of some fish and bird species.

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Wildlife group highlights 24 Arizona species threatened by climate change

The desert tortoise thrives in intense heat and can go a year without water, but it's among the species threatened by climate change, an wildlife group says. Looking toward events Oct. 24 calling attention to carbon emissions and their role in warming the planet, the Tucson-based Center for Biological Diversity released a report highlighting 350 animal and plant species it says could vanish due to climate change. Of those, 24 are Arizona locals.

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