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Cronkite/Eight Poll: Most Arizonans happy with their insurance but want health care revamped

Most Arizonans think the U.S. health care system needs revamping even though the majority are satisfied with the health insurance they have, according to a Cronkite/Eight Poll released Tuesday (Sept. 29). Fifty percent of those surveyed said the health care system needs major changes and 31 percent said minor changes would do, while 12 percent said the system is fine as is.

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Supporters: Law raising microbrewery production limit good for Arizona firms, jobs

Jim Scussel and his partners started Four Peaks Brewing Co. 13 years ago as a brewery and tasting room, rolling out kegs of Scottish Ale, Four Peaks Ale and Arizona Peach to restaurants and bars. Four Peaks later opened a restaurant at its brewery in Tempe and another in north Scottsdale. And consumers now can purchase Kilt Lifter and its other brews at grocery and convenience stores around the state.

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Efforts underway to make Pinal County an economic hub (access required)

Pinal County, roughly the size of Connecticut and ranging from Chandler to just north of Marana, has long seemed a vast, dusty, sparsely populated region of small, bedroom communities. However, the recent economic downturn combined with a new mentality and focus among local leaders is ready to change that reality and perception.

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Wanted: new revenue (access required)

Lawmakers will be facing quite the conundrum in 2010 - how to raise more revenue for the cash-strapped state without raising taxes. The Republican-led Legislature stymied attempts by Gov. Jan Brewer to put a sales tax increase on the ballot, and outright rejected the idea of passing a tax increase itself.

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Report: State deficits loom despite stimulus

The federal government paid out all but $1 billion of the anticipated $49 billion in stimulus money for states and localities for fiscal 2009, a Congressional watchdog reported Sept. 23. But while stimulus dollars helped states patch holes in their budgets, "states will continue to be fiscally strained," the U.S. Government Accountability Office said in its latest bimonthly report of how 16 selected states are using and tracking their recovery money.

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Brewer: Arizona’s international trade a strength despite recession

Aggressive, agile, smart. Arizona needs to be all of these to build on international business growth that has defied the economic downturn, Gov. Jan Brewer said Sept. 22. "Exports create jobs, and I encourage and applaud businesses that are ready to enter the global marketplace," Brewer said in her International State of the State Address to the Phoenix Committee on Foreign Relations.

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Financial Institutions agency seeks self-funding (access required)

The demands placed on the Arizona Department of Financial Institutions grew rapidly with the state's booming housing market, and haven't abated much with the subsequent bust. What's more, the state's crippling budget crisis has stripped the department of some of its resources at a time when it needs them most.

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