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Trusted local news leader for Prescott area communities since 1882
11:03 AM Thu, Aug. 16th

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Howard Fischer, For the Courier

Stories by Howard

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Gov. Ducey doubles down on gun provision of school safety plan

MESA — Gov. Doug Ducey is doubling down on his push for a law to let judges take guns from some people considered “dangerous’’ even though it was that provision that killed pretty much his entire school safety plan earlier this year.

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Education tax initiative hinges on ‘percent’ vs. ‘percentage’

The question of whether Arizonans get to vote on a tax hike on the wealthy to raise $690 million a year for education could depend on what a judge thinks of a math teacher’s explanation of the difference between “percent” and “percentage point.’’

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Ducey confident about getting opioid crisis under control

Gov. Doug Ducey is claiming progress on getting the opioid crisis under control even as the rate of overdoses shows no sign of abating.

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Gov. Ducey rejects Pope’s view on death penalty

Gov. Doug Ducey said he will obey Arizona law and not Pope Francis, who has now declared that the death penalty is unacceptable in all cases.

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Governor says Arizona law trumps papal decree on capital punishment

PHOENIX -- Gov. Doug Ducey said he will obey Arizona law and not Pope Francis, who has now declared that the death penalty is unacceptable in all cases.

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‘Ballot harvesting’ suit questions 2016 law; activist calls it violation of her rights

PHOENIX — Attorneys for a Democrat activist told a federal judge Friday, Aug. 10, there is a legal and constitutional right for her and others to deliver someone else’s ballot to polling places.

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High court water ruling could impact development in rural areas

The Arizona Supreme Court has given the go-ahead to new development in and around Sierra Vista even if it could dry up the San Pedro River — and even if it turns out that the home buyers later end up with nothing but sand coming out of their faucets.

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Gov. Ducey doesn’t consider media ‘enemy of the people’

PHOENIX — He said it isn’t always a smooth relationship.

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Federal court rules mother of teen killed by Border Patrol agent can sue

PHOENIX — A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday the mother of a teen shot by a Border Patrol agent through the fence has a legal right to sue him — and, by extension, the federal government as his employer — in U.S. courts for wrongful death.

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Anti-adoption rules for Native children 'racist,' attorney says in wake of ruling by 9th Circuit

PHOENIX — A court has thrown out a bid to void a federal law that challengers claim is racist because it places the desires and rights of Native American tribes over the constitutionally protected best interests of children.

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Arizona’s 2 GOP gubernatorial candidates differ on numbers

PHOENIX — The decision for Republicans on who to nominate for governor could depend on whose numbers they believe.

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#InvestInEd group says lawmakers misleading voters in education tax

PHOENIX — Saying voters are purposely being misled, organizers of the #InvestInEd initiative asked a judge on Friday to force lawmakers to recraft the description of the measure that will go to voters.

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Attorney for border patrol agent, who killed teenager, argues against retrial

PHOENIX — The attorney for a Border Patrol agent, who killed a teen by firing through the fence, contends his client can’t be retried after a jury deadlocked on the question of whether he is guilty of manslaughter.

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Study: Arizona schools continue to rank low

New study from WalletHub comes as education takes center stage in political races

PHOENIX — Arizona schools are near the bottom of the barrel nationally when academics, class size and even student bullying are considered, at least according to a financial advice website.

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Arizona predicted to add 540,000-plus jobs by 2026

State economists predict Arizona will add 542,975 new jobs by 2026.

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Democrat gubernatorial debate focuses on Ducey’s shortcomings

The three Democrat gubernatorial hopefuls worked Thursday night to refute Doug Ducey’s narrative that job and population growth shows what a great job he is doing.

Judge won’t block renewable energy vote

Arizonans can’t be blocked from voting on a renewable energy proposal solely because organizers may have violated some state election laws, a judge ruled Tuesday.

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ACLU drops lawsuit against Gosar for blocking voters from social-media accounts

PHOENIX — The American Civil Liberties Union has dropped its lawsuit against Congressman Paul Gosar, saying it now has assurances that constituents won't be blocked from posting comments on his Facebook page he does not like.

Sweeping number of new Arizona laws kick in Friday, Aug. 3

A number of new Arizona laws, which will kick in Friday, Aug. 3, take aim at a wide range of issues in the state.

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New Arizona laws take effect Friday, from abortion and credit scores to eggs and child marriage

Come this Friday, women who want an abortion will be asked new questions; consumers can have their credit frozen for free; Grade A eggs can stay on the shelf longer; and 15-year-olds won't be able to legally marry.

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Democrat gubernatorial candidates debate immigration, education

PHOENIX -- Kelly Fryer lashed out at her Democrat gubernatorial foes Tuesday for talking about ways to improve border security rather than dealing with the issue of immigration as a humanitarian problem.

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Arizona utility, California billionaire battle over renewable energy measure

PHOENIX — The attorney for the state’s largest utility said Monday that Arizonans should be precluded from voting on a renewable energy mandate because they were not told when signing petitions that a California billionaire is behind the measure.

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Judge to rule on Clean Elections ballot wording

A claim that lawmakers are giving voters a flawed explanation of a measure on the November ballot drew a skeptical reaction Friday from the judge hearing the case.

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Judge won’t block regulators from seizing control of utility company

A federal judge refused Thursday to block state utility regulators from seizing control of Johnson Utilities, at least for the time being.

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Court: Arizona couple owes $15M in taxes for sale of radio stations

A nearly two decade-old sale of some Tucson radio stations is coming back to bite the former owners in the wallet.

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Arizona Chamber of Commerce sues to stop education tax proposal

The fate of whether voters get to decide on an income tax on the wealthy to help pay for public education could depend on what math a judge decides is appropriate.

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Ducey’s call to end legislative immunity gets chilly response

PHOENIX — A call by Gov. Doug Ducey to repeal the so-called “legislative immunity’’provision of the Arizona Constitution is getting a chilly reception from several senior lawmakers.

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APS parent company looking to block voters from imposing renewable energy mandates

The parent company of the state’s largest electric utility filed suit Thursday in a bid to block voters from deciding if they want to impose new renewable energy mandates on power companies.

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Arizona jobless rate increase stays put for now

Continued strong growth in the construction industry helped keep the state’s jobless rate from increasing last month.

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Ducey: Troopers must cite, arrest bad-driving lawmakers

Saying legislative immunity is being abused, Gov. Doug Ducey directed that police officers under his control have the authority to cite -- and if necessary arrest -- lawmakers whose bad driving is more than just simple speeding.

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Reagan: Arizona has election system it can be ‘proud of’

The contest for secretary of state could boil down to whether voters believe that things are being better run now in the office than they were two years ago.

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Pinnacle West files suit to block renewable energy vote

The parent company of the state’s largest electric utility filed suit Thursday in a bid to block voters from deciding if they want to impose new renewable energy mandates on power companies.

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Anonymous-spending group leaders file lawsuit to block anti-'dark money' initiative

Campaign contributors attempting to block voters from making the practice illegal

Officials of two organizations known for anonymous spending on political campaigns filed suit late Thursday to keep Arizonans from voting on a measure that would make the practice illegal.

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Judge approves ‘clean elections’ measure for November ballot

Arizona Supreme Court to be asked to intercede

Arizonans will get a chance to vote in November on whether they want to alter the powers of the Citizens Clean Elections Commission.

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Pinnacle West, APS spend millions to influence elections

The state’s largest electric utility already has set aside close to $11 million to make elections this year come out the way it wants.

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Influential groups pay for Arizona ballot measure arguments

Arizona voters will be inundated with nearly 500 arguments about why they should support or oppose the seven different measures that will be on the November ballot.

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Ducey raises nearly $791K in recent quarter

Incumbent Gov. Doug Ducey continues to accumulate campaign funds in his bid for another four years in office.

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Judge declares mistrial in former utility regulator’s bribery case

A federal judge declared a mistrial Tuesday in the Arizona Corporation Commission bribery case.

Initiative aims to tax wealthy for K-12 education money

An initiative proposing to pay for education improvements by hiking taxes on only the most wealthy.

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Juror’s actions could lead to new Corpcom trial

PHOENIX — The admission by a juror in the Arizona Corporation Commission bribery trial that she made some notes at home and brought them to deliberations could lead to a new trial even after all the testimony has been heard.

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Initiative aims to tax wealthy for K-12 money

An initiative proposing to pay for education improvements by hiking taxes on only the most wealthy also appears to remove a small income tax break available to those with fewer financial resources, who are just trying to keep their income even with inflation.

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Hearing officer urges Corp Comm to take over Johnson Utilities

A state hearing officer is recommending the Arizona Corporation Commission seize control of Johnson Utilities away from the current management, at least temporarily, and install its own manager.

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Court: USGS not liable in fatal 2012 copter crash over Verde

The failure of a federal agency to mark an overhead cable does not make the government liable for the death of a helicopter pilot who flew into it, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Friday.

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Judge to decide on voting law measure

A judge will decide whether lawmakers have an absolute right to ask voters to approve two changes in law in a single act, even if they may only want one of them and not the other.

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Shooter wants documents from sexual harassment investigation

An ousted state lawmaker may be able to get documents from a sexual harassment investigation that House Speaker J.D. Mesnard has so far refused to make public.

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Ducey touts achievements at border

With a staged backdrop of seized guns, drugs and even DPS officers with dogs, Gov. Doug Ducey brought together federal, state and local law enforcement Wednesday who praised his leadership on border security.

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State attorneys ask Arizona Supreme Court to toss petition law challenge

Attorneys for the state and Republican legislative leaders are asking the Arizona Supreme Court to rebuff efforts by various organizations to void a statute that could make it harder for voters to propose their own laws.

Anti-discrimination law challenged by Christian law firm in Arizona Supreme Court

A Christian law firm is making a last-ditch effort to convince the state’s high court that businesses — at least some of them — have a constitutional right to refuse to sell their services and products to gays.

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Reshaped Supreme Court could leave Arizona abortion laws up to governor

PHOENIX — The president’s choice for a new Supreme Court justice Monday means the ability of Arizona women to terminate a pregnancy likely depends on who is elected governor in November.

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U.S. Supreme Court to start next session with Arizona age-discrimination case

The ability of a tiny Arizona fire district to fire its two oldest employees takes center stage in Washington as the U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments the first day of its new session, possibly with a new justice already seated.

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