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Economists: Arizona is recovering, albeit slowly


Economists who advise Arizona's independent legislative budget analysts said Thursday that residents who have hunkered down through years of tough economic times may finally have reason to be a little more perky this year, but the economy won't meet Gov. Jan Brewer's expectations.

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State prepares for debate on costly Common Core educational standards (access required)


Those who support Arizona’s new Common Core standards for math and English education say they help turn students into better thinkers and prepare them for college and the workforce.

Those who question the new standards say they could create added expenses for public schools, including new textbooks, teacher training and the need for new technology. They say the price tag, still undetermined, could be astronomical.

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Q&A with House Speaker Andy Tobin (access required)

House Speaker Andy Tobin (Photo by Josh Coddington/Arizona Capitol Times)

As one of only three representatives in their fourth and final term in the state House, Speaker Andy Tobin, a Republican from Paulden, has more institutional knowledge than most. He has risen through the ranks from freshman, to the majority whip, to majority leader, to the top position in the House. Tobin, who because of term limits is unable to run for re-election to the House, has seen the state through surplus and deficit. Looking back on his time in the Legislature, he is determined to leave the state in better condition than it was when he was first elected.

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Seeking a legacy: Governor presents her 2014 budget (access required)

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (Photo by Ryan Cook/RJ Cook Photography)

After the years of tough times, things are getting better for Arizona. Now, Gov. Jan Brewer is looking to improve on the recovery she’s so proud of.

Brewer has big plans for education and health care and economic development. And despite the continued economic growth Arizona has seen for the past couple years, the governor wants to do more to stimulate the economy in 2013.

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Campbell offers comprehensive plan to reduce gun violence (access required)

Arizona House of Representatives Minority Leader Chad Campbell, D-Phoenix, speaks as he offers a plan to push a $100 million school and community safety plan that would triple funding for school resource officers, add money for mental health treatment and require background checks on all buyers at gun shows, at the Arizona Capitol Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013, Phoenix.(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

House Minority Leader Chad Campbell’s ideas for preventing a mass school shooting in Arizona include more cops in schools, more money pumped into the public-health system and stricter gun laws.

With a school resource officer and an award winning school counselor to help him make his case at a Jan. 9 press conference, Campbell said the cost of his 12-point plan would be $261 million. That would come from cutting a prized school-choice program favored by Republicans - the School Tuition Organization tax credit – as well as changes to tax laws and money from a $676 million budget surplus.

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