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Commerce quandary: Sharp differences over picking winners and losers with state money (access required)

The man who was hand-picked by Gov. Jan Brewer to oversee a new agency charged with re-igniting Arizona’s struggling economy is set to collect a whopper of a paycheck. But Don Cardon’s idea of how to guide the Arizona Commerce Authority may run contrary to the governor’s own philosophical leanings about how the quasi-public group should go about luring new business to the state.

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Don Cardon, Arizona’s million-dollar man (access required)

The CEO of the fledgling Arizona Commerce Authority will collect a base salary that will nearly double his pay compared to when he was the director of the now-defunct Arizona Department of Commerce.

The salary package, approved today by the Arizona Commerce Authority board of directors, came over the objections of House Speaker Andy Tobin and Senate President Russell Pearce.

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Protecting flows of Colorado River protects local economies

By the very nature of a desert climate, much of the West is challenged to get adequate access to life-giving water. Certainly with the ballooning population growth we’ve experienced in the Southwest, our largest source of water — the Colorado River — has become severely over extended. Add climate change and an 11-year drought, and the entire Colorado River basin is under siege like never before, with demand far exceeding supply and water storage reserves almost half empty.

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Protect clean air, develop clean energy

By supporting a transition to new, clean energy projects in our state and ensuring that existing coal plants reduce their pollution, we can restore and protect the clean air and scenic views that attract visitors to the Grand Canyon, Petrified Forest, and other now-polluted parks in the region.

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