Kids Care Revived

Yesterday the House revived Kids Care restoration by amending the necessary language on to one of Senator David Bradley’s (D-Tucson) bills, SB1457, which previously dealt with empowerment scholarships.  Representative Regina Cobb (R-Kingman) offered the amendment and the measure passed 38-21.  It is currently being heard in the Senate where it is expected to pass with bipartisan support.   Notably, there is no cost to the state General Fund to implement it and Arizona is the only state that hasn’t done so yet. 

Jones Announces Bid for CD5

After a month of speculation, 2014 gubernatorial candidate and former GoDaddy exec, Christine Jones, announced her candidacy for Congressional District 5.   Jones is joining Senate Pres. Andy Biggs, Representative Justin Olson, and former Maricopa County Supervisor Don Stapley for the Republican primary in August.  

Guns in Public Buildings Bill Fails in Senate

Yesterday the Senate killed a bill that would have allowed individuals with a concealed carry permit to bring their weapon into public buildings.  SB1257, sponsored by Senator John Kavanagh (R-Fountain Hills), would have changed statute to say that operators of government buildings would have to have security guards and metal detectors at entrances if they did not want guns in the building.   Senator Debbie Lesko defended the measure.  “If there’s a little sticker on the outside of a public building that says you can’t have a gun, I don’t think that the bad guys that want to kill somebody inside are going to be stopped at the door and say, ‘Oh, my, there’s a little sticker there, I’d better not go in.’ People with ill intent will go in.”   It may still be brought back for reconsideration at some point today.

Brnovich Issues Opinion on APS Election Spending Request

On Wednesday Attorney General Mark Brnovich released his opinion on Corporation Commissioner Bob Burns’ request to see APS’s spending in the 2014 elections.  Brnovich ruled that while an individual commissioner may inspect the books of a public service corporation and question employees under oath, but they may not compel them to submit their spending records. Only the Commission as a whole may do that.  The opinion is somewhat of a win for both APS and Burns.  It implies that should it be the will of the whole commission, they could.  However, it isn’t likely that will occur.  Commissioners Doug Little and Tom Forese have shared that they don’t believe there is any reason to investigate.  “Rather than skate out onto the thin ice of campaign finance investigations with inherent First Amendment issues, I believe this Commission should stick to its core missions: regulating utility rates, regulating securities dealers, and enabling efficient registration of corporations,” said Little.