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Brewer places moratorium on bills until budget done

Talks on the budget may be on the verge of breaking down, as Gov. Jan Brewer today told Republican legislative leaders that she will not sign any more bills until the budget is done.

Republican lawmakers and Brewer have been at loggerheads over a budget deal all session. The governor called for increased spending in education and some social programs, but Republicans have said she wants to spend too much money.

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Legislature on verge of missing session adjournment goal

A year ago, the Arizona Legislature was just days away from adjournment of its annual legislative session, having already approved a state budget that included painful cuts to state services. But while lawmakers missed their self-imposed 2011 adjournment target of 100 days by just five hours, there's little chance the Legislature will come near as close this year.

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Pierce says contraception bill probably not coming back (access required)

Senate President Steve Pierce doesn’t think legislation allowing employers with religious objection to deny contraception coverage to workers will return for a second vote. Pierce previously indicated he was willing to cast the required 16th “yes” vote to pass the bill last week if supporters could get 15 senators to support the bill.

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Border Bound: Immigration hawks take battle south — push for fence, militia

During the past several years, the Republican-led Legislature has passed some of the county’s toughest laws aimed at driving illegal immigrants from the state and deterring them from entering it. For the most part, those laws have focused on enforcement within the state’s boundaries.

Now the strategy has shifted, and immigration hawks in the Legislature are taking their fight directly to the border.

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Brewer, lawmakers end budget stall, reopen talks

The Governor’s Office and legislative leaders have reopened lines of communications involving the state budget, signaling a thaw over how to craft the state’s spending plan in the next few years. Gov. Jan Brewer, Senate President Steve Pierce and House Speaker Andy Tobin met Thursday. After the meeting, Pierce said staffers from both sides could start working together as soon as this weekend.

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