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Gambling pitched as Arizona’s budget salvation

The struggling Arizona racing industry is hoping it can sell lawmakers on a proposal to help racetracks stay open and give the state hundreds of millions of dollars in new revenue. But the idea faces resistance on several fronts, as it would expand gambling by allowing "racinos" and by lifting limits on tribal casinos.

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Lawmakers inch toward special session

Lawmakers are inching closer to a special session as Senate leadership proposes that the Legislature convene to fix the budget woes of state agencies affected by the governor's veto. House leadership was polling members to see if they support the idea, Senate President Bob Burns told the Arizona Capitol Times on October 22.

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Tyne’s ouster a sign of things to come

Kevin Tyne's tenure as Gov. Jan Brewer's most loyal and trusted adviser came to an end as the governor announced that budget chief Eileen Klein would replace him as her chief of staff. Lobbyist Chuck Coughlin described the move as a "collaborative decision" between the Republican Governors Association, Brewer and Tyne that would allow Tyne to continue assisting the governor if she seeks a full term. More moves could be in store.

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Report ranks Arizona ninth nationally in state, local reliance on sales taxes

Arizona ranks ninth nationally in its reliance on sales taxes to fund its state and local governments, according to a report by a nonpartisan tax research organization. The Washington, D.C.-based Tax Foundation found that 48.4 percent of Arizona's tax base came from general sales taxes and from selective sales taxes on motor fuel, tobacco, insurance premiums, public utilities, amusements and alcoholic beverages.

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Brewer pushes for change in mental health services

Gov. Jan Brewer on Oct. 20 proposed a policy shift that would steer the mental health care of thousands of Arizona residents to the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System and away from state-contracted private care managers. The recommendation came ...

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Pearce: Stemming illegal immigration is Arizona’s top priority

Sen. Russell Pearce, the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee said illegal immigration is his top priority, even as Arizona grapples with the largest budget deficit in state history. "I just don't know what it takes to wake people up," Pearce, a Mesa Republican, said during a press conference on Oct. 21.

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DES would drop to ’04 funding levels if faced with 15% cut

A 15 percent cut at the Department of Economic Security would take a heavy toll on the vulnerable populations Gov. Jan Brewer has spoken so often of protecting. According to a report by the Department of Economic Security, a 15 percent reduction in the agency's budget would drop it down to 2004 funding levels.

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