Warm Southern Breeze

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Posts Tagged ‘AZ’

Arizona Voters Approve Adult Recreational Use of Cannabis

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, January 23, 2021

In November, Arizonans voted overwhelmingly to legalize recreational sales of cannabis to adults.

By a margin of 653,982 votes, or 50.2113%, Arizona voters in that state’s General Election approved Arizona Proposition 207, known as the “Smart and Safe Arizona Act.”

The state’s fiscal analysis stated that “Annual state and local sales tax collections on these purchases may reach $88 million in the next several years. The initiative also requires a one-time transfer from the Medical Marijuana Fund of $45 million for the Department of Health Services, a university tuition program, and an impaired driving program.”

Among other provisions, as stated in its purpose, the “Act permits limited possession, transfer, cultivation, and use of marijuana (as defined) by adults 21 years old or older; protects employer and property owner rights; bans smoking in public places; imposes a 16% excise tax on marijuana to fund public safety, community colleges, infrastructure, and public health and community programs; authorizes state and local regulations for the sale and production of marijuana by a limited number of licensees; requires impairment to the slightest degree for marijuana DUls; transfers monies from the Medical Marijuana Fund; permits expungement of some marijuana violations; and prescribes penalties for violations.”

Distribution of taxes collected upon its sale would be as follows:
• 33.0% to community colleges
• 31.4% to local law enforcement and fire departments
• 25.4% to the state and local transportation programs
• 10.0% to public health and criminal justice programs
• 0.2% to the Attorney General for enforcement

The state estimates that “based on a projected tax base of $1 billion, total state and local tax collections would be $254 million, including $166 million to the Smart and Safe Arizona Fund.”

“In its Medium-Series Population Projections, the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) estimates that Arizona’s population will have reached 7.59 million by 2023. Given the $137 estimate for per capita sales, the OEO population estimate implies Arizona would have $1.04 billion of recreational marijuana sales in 2023.”

$254,391,600

Their revenue and sales estimates are based upon western states experiences, and they wrote that, “Arizona marijuana sales may increase further after the third year. States with more than 3 years of sales data have experienced continued growth in years 4 and 5. In Colorado, Oregon, and Washington recreational marijuana sales grew by a weighted average of 20.5% in year 4. In Colorado, the only state with 5 full years of data, sales grew by another 11.2% in year 5. We do not attempt, however, to project past the third year due to the speculative nature of long-run forecasting.”

The Arizona analysis also examines the cost associated with expungement, meaning the legal elimination of any criminal record associated with whatever record is being expunged. They cited a Pew Charitable Trusts analysis in November 2017, which stated in part that, “California only had 1,506 applications for expungement its first year of legalization and Oregon saw only 1,206 petitions combined between 2015-2017. Furthermore, the 192,000 estimate includes all convictions for marijuana possession, whereas the initiative provides the expungement option only to those who were convicted of marijuana possession of 2.5 ounces or less.”

They also note as well, that “the initiative does provide a revenue source for DPS administrative costs. The initiative authorizes DPS to collect a “reasonable fee determined by the Director” for costs to “correct the petitioner’s criminal history record” unless the individual is indigent.”

Control, or rather, elimination of the illicit black market is also a strong motivator for government in the legalization, taxation, and regulation of cannabis, especially and particularly for Adult Recreational Use. To that end, Arizona’s fiscal analysts wrote that, “If the limited number of retail locations authorized under the initiative is insufficient to meet demand, then current marijuana users may be more likely to continue to purchase illegally or from medical dispensaries, potentially decreasing the size of the legal market.”

Elimination of the illicit black market was also a very strong motivating factor in Oklahoma’s recent liberalization of cannabis laws, particularly and especially for medical use. See Oklahoma Has Become A Free Market Utopia For Weed,” published 11/2/2020 for more details. Of course as well, an “unintended consequence” for ALL states which have liberalized their cannabis laws, is an INCREASE in private enterprise, and entrepreneurship – the veritable “holy grail” of most Republicans… and Democrats, if folks would be honest about the matter.

Arizona’s fiscal analysts also acknowledge a very important, yet almost-overlooked matter: It is of local regulation. They write that, “the proposition grants Read the rest of this entry »

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Trump Administration Making Roadway For Illegal Aliens In Desert

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, December 11, 2020

Dynamite raises clouds of dust above Guadalupe Canyon, near the New Mexico-Arizona border. The Diamond A Ranch, which is located next to the construction site, has sued the government, claiming the blasting has sent “car-sized boulders tumbling down onto ranch property.”
Image by John Kurc

The Trump administration is making it easier for illegal aliens to come into the United States.

The route along the U.S./Mexico border in Arizona and New Mexico has some of the most ruggedly inhospitable, and treacherous terrain in the nation. It is only barely accessible by foot, or mule, and is range for numerous wild animals, such as the jaguar, and ocelot – large cats – and a longtime wildlife migration corridor.

Construction crews using tons of explosives in a technique called “pioneering,” are leveling mountains and cliffs to make roadways for heavy equipment to access the area.

The private landowners complaint and lawsuit states that crews must first “make a level road, with the necessary grade and ability to support the weight of construction vehicles, and ultimately the wall itself.”

In a combined Federal lawsuit filed by private landowners near the Arizona-New Mexico border known as the malpais, or badlands, the owners of Read the rest of this entry »

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More Religious Sex Abuse Cases Emerge. This time, it’s Mormons.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, December 1, 2020

The Federal government under this administration has recently re-activated the Death Penalty, and has argued also for adding other methods of execution to the mix, which is now only comprised of lethal injection, including firing squad. Hell… why can’t they just give ’em some fentanyl?

I have no pity, and no mercy for such individuals as referenced in the story below. I have none for any members of a faith organization who abuse their children. NONE WHATSOEVER.

And though I oppose the Death Penalty on pecuniary principles exclusively – it’s simply far too costly to execute (bad pun… I know) the law – we could, perhaps, make exceptions for cases like this.

Once a jury finds them guilty, or they plead guilty, march their sorry asses to some place and give ’em the fentanyl.


azcentral.com

Lawsuit: LDS Church officials, teacher knew of abuse but kept silent

 by Mary Jo Pitzl, The Arizona Republic

A lawsuit filed Monday charges that two Mormon bishops and a teacher failed to report a Bisbee, Arizona father’s repeated sexual and physical abuse of three of his children, despite a state law that makes reporting such offenses mandatory.It argues that the “clergy-penitent privilege” in the law, which keeps confessions confidential, does not apply to such cases. The teacher, a former border-patrol agent as well as the children’s Sunday school teacher, had a clear duty under the law in both of her roles to report the abuses to police, the suit alleges.

“Each of the Defendants had personal observations of the abuse, and also knew of the abuse outside of any confidential communication,” the complaint, filed in Cochise County Superior Court, alleges. The father’s abusive practices were discussed by church officials in routine meetings, and led to his excommunication in 2015 after church officials learned of his abuse of his daughter, then age 5.

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of three of the six children of Paul and Leizza Adams, details Paul Adams’ repeated sexual abuse of his daughters over a seven-year period, including the rape of his infant daughter. Paul Adams was indicted on 11 counts of child sexual abuse in 2017 and was awaiting trial when he hanged himself in his prison cell later that year.

Leizza Adams, the mother, was convicted for child abuse in 2018 and was released from Perryville state prison in early October, state records show.

The children have since been adopted by various families and have different last names than their parents.

The suit names the Corporation of the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints as well as the Corporation of the Presiding Bishop of the Church.

In a statement Monday, an attorney for the church, Bill Maledon, wrote:

Read the rest of this entry »

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Kyrsten Sinema Makes Arizona & American History

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Arizona Representative Kyrsten Sinema D-CD9, has won the Senate race against opponent AZ Representative Martha McSally, R-CD2.

Arizona Representative Kyrsten Sinema, a Democrat who represented Congressional District 9, has won election over Representative Martha McSally, a Republican who represented the state’s Congressional District 2.

Her election is historical for at least two different reasons, the first being that she is the state’s first female US Senator, and second, she will be the first openly bisexual Member of Congress. She is also the first Democrat Arizonans have sent to the Senate since 1995 after Democrat Dennis DeConcini’s loss to Republican John Kyl.

Following the death of Republican Senator John McCain, who since 1987 was the state’s longest-serving senator, Republican Arizona Governor Doug Ducey temporarily appointed Kyl in September 2018 to fill the remainder of the term of that vacated seat. In a press conference following Governor Ducey’s announcement, Mr. Kyl said he would not seek re-election for the remainder of the term in the 2020 Special Election to fill the seat.

Reps. Sinema and McSally were campaigning for the seat vacated by Read the rest of this entry »

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Voting Problems Exist Because There’s No National Uniform Voting Standards Law

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, November 10, 2018

Cindy McCain, widow of late Arizona Republican Senator John McCain (1936-2018)

Cindy McCain, widow of late Republican Arizona Senator John McCain, on Thursday, November 8, 2018 criticized the Arizona GOP about a state GOP-initiated lawsuit over counting mail-in ballots by Tweeting, “ I am one of those mail in ballots. I was under the impression my vote was always counted.

Her Tweet was in response to the Arizona GOP’s efforts to get a judge to issue orders to stop counting mail-in ballots in the race for US Senate to fill the seat being vacated by Jeff Flake, a Republican. The two candidates, Republican Martha McSally and Democrat Kyrsten Sinema find themselves in extremely close competition.

 

 

Both candidates are also Arizona Congressional Representatives. Democrat Kyrsten Sinema has represented the 9th Congressional District, while Republican Martha McSally has represented the 2nd Congressional District.

https://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/415894-cindy-mccain-rips-arizona-gop-for-suing-over-counting-mail-in-ballots-i-am

In court Thursday morning November 8, 2018, state Republican leaders were challenging mail-in ballots in Yuma, Navajo, Apache and Maricopa counties after the GOP parties in those counties filed a lawsuit challenging the way counties verify signatures on mail-in ballots that are dropped off at the polls on Election Day. The lawsuit did NOT allege any type of fraud.

The US Census Bureau estimated the 2017 population of Apache County as 71,606; Navajo County as 108,956; Yuma County as 207,534; and Maricopa County as 4,307,033. Maricopa County is location of the PhoenixMesaGlendale, AZ Metropolitan Statistical Area. Together, those four counties comprise 66.9% of Arizona’s 7,016,270 estimated 2017 population.

Maricopa County Judge Margaret R. Mahoney

Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Margaret Mahoney ruled that the counties should continue doing what they’re doing, and set another hearing for 2 p.m. Friday. And as of Friday morning, Sinema had a 9,000 vote lead over McSally. However, by Friday afternoon, her lead had expanded to over 20,000 votes.

When the two parties met in court, there was little fanfare, no grandstanding, and no contentious sparks flew, so it made for very poor political theatre, though others nationally attempted to inject false explosive allegations and deceptive narratives into the matter by deliberately gross mischaracterization.

The primary point of the suit involved a much more mundane matter, and specifically, the legal challenge was focused upon on a lack of procedural consistency in the time frame that counties allowed voters to correct signature “issues” on mail-in ballots.

And in only a matter of minutes after the AZ GOP held a grandstanding news/press conference in which they made accusation saying, “The Democrats are stealing the election and we’re not going to allow it,” and immediately before the court hearing, all of the counties and the Republican groups had come to an agreement, which Judge Mahoney approved with no fanfare.

The settlement, was that all of Arizona’s 15 counties would allow voters to verify the signatures on their ballots through 5 p.m. on Nov. 14.

Martha McSally, R-AZ

Kyrsten Sinema, D-AZ

And the overriding irony of the matter, is that the counties whose election practices they ended up changing, were largely run by Republicans.

As of Saturday, 10 November, the Democrat Kyrsten Sinema still had about a 20,000 vote lead over Republican Martha McSally, according to The Arizona Republic, online as AZCentral, which is the state’s most-widely circulated newspaper.

There were also an estimated 360,000 outstanding ballots still being counted statewide. Of those, an estimated 266,000 are from Maricopa County.

For now, Sinema is leading in Maricopa and Pima counties by a net 83,652 votes. McSally’s lead in the state’s other 13 counties is 65,113.

Arizona’s protracted vote-count is due in large part to the need to verify signatures for those who vote by mail, which represents the bulk of ballots.

So far, the Democrat Sinema is winning the Republican-leaning Maricopa County by 3.3 percentage points.

One reason the race and ballot count is so hotly contested, is because the Republicans are in jeopardy of losing a Senate seat in the state for the first time in 30 years. As well, what also makes this race particularly interesting, is that Maricopa County has traditionally been a GOP stronghold, where Republicans outnumber Democrats by 130,000.

But, in essence, here’s a nut of what’s been happening not only there, but in other states, as well.

In some states, there are so-called “exact match” laws, rules, or regulations concerning the signatures of voters who cast absentee, or mail-in ballots, and in essence, those “exact match” laws, rules, or regulations give broad discretion to anyone counting those ballots to exercise their personal opinion – untrained, non-expert, unscientific independent judgment – about someone’s signature, specifically, whether they believe it was signed by the person who attested to signing it, or not. In other words, no expertise is required.

That is problematic for several reasons, not the least of which is that Read the rest of this entry »

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AZ Congresswoman Shot; 6+ Tucson fatalities

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, January 8, 2011

Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords shot in head

Posted by Max Brantley on Sat, Jan 8, 2011 at 12:38 PM

U.S. REP. GABRIELLE GIFFORDS

  • U.S. REP. GABRIELLE GIFFORDS

U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.) was shot in the head at point blank range in Tucson today and several staffers were wounded. She was at a public event at a grocery store. The shooter was tackled by a bystander and is in custody.UPDATE: A sheriff’s spokesman has said that Giffords has died, one of at least six fatalities, and at least 12 people were shot. But a variety of sources are saying at 2 p.m. Little Rock time that the congresswoman remains in surgery in critical condition. CNN says one may have been a federal judge.

The New York Times quotes a witness who said the gunman fired at least 20 shots. He was described as a white male in his 20s who was shabbily dressed. The article notes that her House office was vandalized hours after the House approved health care reform legislation, which she supported. She told MSNBC then that she was not afraid, despite numerous threats. “Our democracy is a light, a beacon around the world” because it effects change at the ballot box, not by violent acts.

Regards a topic addressed earlier today, just for the record from opencarry.com

Arizona is one of our “Gold Star” open carry states. There is complete state preemption of all firearms laws, open carry is common and law enforcement is well educated as to its legality.

People with guns may be asked to store their firearms or leave places open to the public in Arizona Though Giffords has supported some legislation supportive of concealed carry, she earned a D from the NRA for overall voting record, such as support for background checks of gun purchasers at gun shows. There is, of course, no way to know if the shooting today was related to gun issues or other hot-button issues that roil Arizona, such as …Continue reading…

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