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AZ legislative salaries may be on ballot after 6-year hiatus (access required)

AZ legislative salaries may be on ballot after 6-year hiatus <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

For the first time in six years, Arizona voters may get a chance to approve higher salaries for legislators. If history is a guide, any proposed increase in lawmakers’ salary of $24,000 a year, plus per diem, will be handily defeated. Voters haven’t approved a pay raise since 1998, when they raised the salary from $15,000 a year.

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Jeans, boots and country music: Republican candidates in CD1 vying to run against Ann Kirkpatrick (access required)

Jeans, boots and country music: Republican candidates in CD1 vying to run against Ann Kirkpatrick <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Country music plays in the background as state House Speaker Andy Tobin tells Graham County Republican Party leaders at a Safford restaurant he has spent seven years fighting for them at the Legislature, and he’s ready to take the fight to Congress.

Farther north, freshman state Rep. Adam Kwasman rallies a rowdy crowd at a Show Low Tea Party event, telling them to stay focused on the project at hand: nominating him to take on the Democratic incumbent in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District.

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Dark Money (access required)

Dark Money <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Specter of anonymous campaign spending looms over 2014

Next year’s elections are shaping up like 2012 — organizations with generic names, big checkbooks and secret contributors spending millions to influence Arizona’s elections.

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Splitting the House (access required)

Splitting the House <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Shope eyes smaller districts for state representatives

Rep. T.J. Shope wants to cut Arizona’s massive House of Representatives districts in half.

The first-term lawmaker hasn’t completed his plans yet, but is strongly leaning toward a proposal that would split the House districts in half. Rather than have each legislative district elect two House members at large, Shope’s plan would create two separate House districts that would be contained within each Senate district.

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Rail and roads (access required)

Rail and roads <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

The iArizona Committee is headed by Mesa Mayor Scott Smith and backed by a broad coalition of local politicians, construction contractors and business interests. Their ultimate goal is to boost Arizona’s economy and status as a transportation hub connecting Los Angeles, Dallas and Mexico, as well as linking Arizona’s manufacturing and economic hubs to one another.

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$11 million in the bank (access required)

$11 million in the bank <span class="dmcss_key_icon"><img alt="(access required)" src="/files/2013/12/lock1.png" border=0/></span>

Gallardo: HB2305 unnecessary, election problems could be solved with leftover HAVA money

Several provisions of HB2305 were drafted in direct response to problems in the 2012 election, when it took 11 days to call a close congressional race and an all-time high number of voters were forced to cast provisional ballots.

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