Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Capitol blog: rally for schools, HB2595, UA hearing

Mar 5 at UA will be the 9th legislative Dems budget hearing, and 7 more are planned.

UPDATE, 3/6: We had a strong turnout last night at UA, and stayed late listening to Arizonans' concerns about education, help for seniors and people with disabilities, medical cannabis, health insurance, small business, early childhood programs and other issues. Thanks, everyone, for participating.

PHOENIX -- Quick update from the capital city.

I'm happy to report my anti-fraud Arizona False Claims Act (HB2595) passed out of committee today. I thank members for their support of this common sense public interest bill.

GOP Rep. Doug Quelland's Bikes Safe Yield Act (HB2479), which I was supporting, went down in committee, but all Democrats on the committee supported it.

Thousands of education advocates protested powerfully today in favor of stronger state support for schools. Governor Jan Brewer is showing a lack of leadership so far, and did not present a solid plan today to help Arizona's economy, jobs or education.

The pro-business Southern Arizona Leadership Council did show courageous leadership by coming out in opposition to HB2073, the proposed permanent repeal of the state education equalization assessment. If the legislature simply does nothing on the issue this year at least $258M in much needed revenue will be gained for schools.

Thurs. eve House and Senate Dems continue our statewide budget hearings tour with a stop to listen at the University of Arizona in Tucson, 6:30-9pm. I'll be there.

More budget hearings across Arizona are upcoming: Nogales: Friday, March 13th, 2009, 4–6:00 p.m. City of Nogales Council Chambers, 777 N. Grand Ave., Nogales.

Also planned: Maryvale/West Phoenix (3/18/09); Ahwatukee/Chandler (3/25/09); ASU West Campus/Northwest Valley (3/30/09); Ajo (4/06/09); Anthem (4/07/09); and in Mesa (4/16/09). Details will be released as they are available.

For more information, contact: Cynthia Aragon, 602-926-3591 or caragon(at)azleg.gov

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