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Pearce allies OK legislation to pave way for recall reimbursement

Allies of former senator Russell Pearce secured a critical step in pushing for legislation that creates the framework for reimbursing officials who face recall elections.

The proposal could pave the way for Pearce getting a reimbursement of more than $260,000 — the amount his campaign spent defending him last year, when he was ousted from the senate in a recall election.

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GOP compromise budget gives $450M to rainy day fund, $7M to tourism (access required)

As Republican lawmakers begin to receive briefings on the budget deal that GOP leaders and the Governor’s Office agreed to in principle April 25, details are beginning to emerge.

The major sticking point between the two sides has been revenue projections — not just for the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1, but also for the following two years. Though Gov. Jan Brewer had been unwilling to adopt the Legislature’s more cautious revenue estimates, it appears she had a change of mind.

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Patterson resigns before expulsion vote (access required)

Following the damning news that the House Ethics Committee formally recommended his expulsion, Tucson lawmaker Rep. Daniel Patterson resigned his seat today, before the full House could take a vote on the motion to expel him.

With no fanfare, House Speaker Andy Tobin announced that he accepted Patterson’s resignation.

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Redistricting redux? Tobin wants special election on new district maps (access required)

Republican lawmakers’ dormant war with the Arizona Independent Redistricting Commission is flaring up anew, as House Speaker Andy Tobin has introduced a host of measures that would set a special election so voters could decide whether to use legislative and congressional maps drawn by the Legislature instead of those approved last month by the volunteer panel.

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County attorney wants lobbying laws overhauled after Fiesta Bowl scandal

Maricopa County Attorney Bill Montgomery, who is wrapping up an eight-month investigation into the Fiesta Bowl scandal, will ask lawmakers to overhaul the state’s lobbying laws, saying financial reporting requirements are confusing and out of touch with what he believes the public demands of its elected officials.

“If it’s too much of a burden for an elected official to keep the public informed … they shouldn’t be in office,” the county’s top prosecutor told the Arizona Capitol Times. “If you don’t want to do this, then go do something else.”

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