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Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services

Stories by Howard

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Ducey tries to pressure lawmakers on teacher raise

Unable to stop educators from walking out, Gov. Doug Ducey now is trying to pressure members of his own Republican Party to approve his pay hike proposal -- and his plan to fund it largely through anticipated economic growth.

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Teacher protection bill proposed by House Majority Whip Kelly Townsend

With a strike today, a key Republican lawmaker is moving to give legal protections to teachers who say they don't want to walk out.

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GOP ‘unease’ over revenue for teacher pay raises

PHOENIX -- Top Republicans are huddling to see if they can reach an accord over the issue of teacher pay ahead of Thursday’s strike deadline, potentially forestalling or at least undermining the walkout.

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School gun safety plan riles opposition

Foes say there is 'glaring loophole,' does nothing to help existing laws

A Senate panel voted 4-3 Thursday to allow judges to force some people to surrender their weapons -- but only after a multistep process that supporters say will protect due process rights.

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Ducey: ‘Our teachers have earned this raise’

Governor attacks members of his own party on teacher pay

Already fighting with educators over his pay hike plan, Gov. Doug Ducey opened a second front Friday, this time attacking members of his own Republican Party.

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AZ teachers vote to walk out of classrooms next week

'This is undeniably and clearly a mandate for action'

PHOENIX -- Claiming overwhelming support, leaders of the #RedForEd movement called Thursday night called for a strike -- but not for another week.

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Arizona PTA withdraws support of governor’s plan to boost teacher salaries

Calling the governor’s plan not financially sustainable, the Arizona PTA has withdrawn its backing for Gov. Doug Ducey’s teacher pay hike plan.

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Voting process underway to decide Arizona teacher strike

Empowered by successful walkouts in other states, Arizona teachers began three days of voting Tuesday on whether to follow suit here.

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#RedForEd to vote this week on teacher strike

PHOENIX -- Calling the governor's proposal inadequate, leaders of the #RedForEd movement have scheduled a vote this week to decide by Friday whether to strike.

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Governor pledges major pay raises for Arizona teachers

Arizona Educators United not ready to abandon protests

PHOENIX -- Lack of details of where the money is coming from and what the governor’s plan does not include has Arizona educators pannin

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New state law limits legal debates to English language version of insurance documents

Better make sure you understand the coverage documents you’re given in English. That’s because it soon won’t matter whether the copy or explanation you got in another language says something else.

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State seeks clampdown on online alcohol sales

The way Attorney General Mark Brnovich sees it, you can’t get on your computer and order booze between 2 and 6 a.m., even if you’re not planning to have your order delivered until more reasonable hours -- and even if that order is going out of state.

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Arizona unveils school safety strategy

PHOENIX -- Hoping to corral the votes for his school safety plan, Gov. Doug Ducey has agreed to some changes in key provisions that would allow judges to take away someone’s guns, at least on a temporary basis.

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Ducey won’t meet with teachers on salaries

Gov. Doug Ducey won't meet with the leaders of two teacher groups to talk about salaries and related issues even as they are taking the first steps toward a walkout.

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Governor sends 338 National Guard soldiers to border

Gov. Doug Ducey is defending his decision to deploy 338 National Guard soldiers to the border, saying it's not about politics even as he boasted there is finally an administration in Washington that cares about the issue.

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Supreme Court: No tuition break for 'Dreamers' in Arizona

Thousands of dreamers are going to have to pay more next year if they want to attend any of the state's three universities or community colleges.

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House vote would require women to provide reason to get an abortion

Saying they're protecting women's health, the state House voted Monday along party lines to require hospitals and clinics to ask patients the reason they are seeking an abortion.

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Snowbowl lawyers want ruling allowing tribes to sue over snow overturned

Attorneys for Snowbowl are warning the Arizona Supreme Court that if they don't overturn a ruling allowing the Hopi Tribe to sue over artificial snow they are opening the door to a flood of litigation.

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Humane Society pulls plug on banning ‘trophy hunting’

Arizona voters won’t see proposal on November 2018 ballot

Arizona voters won't get a chance to outlaw "trophy hunting'' in the state, at least not this year.

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Teachers seek 20 percent raises, call on state to restore per-pupil funding

Unwilling to wait on promises by the governor that things will get better eventually, teachers and their allies rallied at the Capitol Wednesday to demand a 20-percent pay hike.

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Judge Rules Gov. Ducey funding plan for schools unconstitutional

PHOENIX -- A federal judge ruled Monday that the funding scheme used by Gov. Doug Ducey to increase aid to schools is unconstitutional.

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Governor OK's extension of education tax to 2041

Gov. Doug Ducey inked his approval Monday to extending the 0.6-cent sales tax for education until 2041 as an education group which helped pressure for legislative action is mapping out what it plans to do to get some new money into classrooms -- including a possible strike.

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Ducey defends position on background checks

The governor said Wednesday he believes the big hole in the system of background checks is not that it does not apply to person-to-person sales, including at gun shows, but that information is missing in the database that federal firearms dealers are required to use to determine if someone can possess a weapon.

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State extends education sales tax another two decades

With more than enough votes, the state House and Senate agreed Thursday to extend for another 20 years the 0.6-cent sales tax first approved by voters in 2000. Without that action, the levy would self-destruct on June 30, 2021, taking with it the more than $670 million a year it now raises.

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Governor Ducey: New Florida gun laws not part of Arizona agenda

PHOENIX -- Gov. Doug Ducey is nixing enacting the same new restrictions on guns to control school violence that fellow Republican and Florida Gov. Rick Scott just signed into law.

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Rep. Noel Campbell takes Democrats to task over student protest over school shootings

PHOENIX -- A Prescott Republican lawmaker lashed out at Democrats Thursday, accusing them of being more interested in political “theater’’ than solving the question of gun violence in schools.

Construction industry on rebound in Arizona

PHOENIX -- The state’s beleaguered construction industry is finally showing some consistent signs of life.

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Legislative plan could provide $8.7 million statewide for classroom supplies

PHOENIX -- A measure to help teachers pay for classroom supplies cleared a critical hurdle Thursday as state lawmakers resurrected it from political death.

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AS FRUSTRATION MOUNTS ... School teacher strike not out of the realm of possibility

PHOENIX -- The head of the statewide teachers union said Wednesday a strike may be necessary to get salaries closer to where he believes they should be.

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Auditor General reports marked improvement in classroom spending by Arizona schools

A large infusion of new cash has finally resulted in the first increase in years in the percentage of dollars that schools are putting into the classroom.

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Ducey lays out new rules for driverless cars

With hundreds of them already on Arizona roads, Gov. Doug Ducey is laying out some new -- and stricter -- rules for autonomous vehicles.

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Arizona House OK’s bill exempting online goods from state taxation

PHOENIX -- The state House voted Wednesday to forego ever collecting sales taxes on digital products and services even as more and more of what Arizonans buy moves online -- and untaxed.

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Lawmakers push for tougher penalties on animal cruelty laws

PHOENIX -- State senators agreed Monday to boost the penalty for intentional abuse or killing of pets over objections from a lawmaker who said it could make criminals out of ranchers protecting their herds.

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House Speaker wants voters to revisit Prop 206 to level field between employers, workers

Measure would change language, help businesses in court

PHOENIX — State lawmakers are moving to make it harder for workers to claim retaliation if they are fired in the wake of claiming they were denied wages or legally entitled time off.

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Searching for common ground on gun issues

Gov. Doug Ducey isn’t interested in arming teachers as a way to deal with school violence

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Lawmakers push to make it harder for workers to claim retaliation

State lawmakers are moving to make it harder for workers to claim retaliation if they are fired in the wake of claiming they were denied wages or legally entitled time off.

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Judge won’t delay decision on school funding

A judge won’t delay deciding whether the state is violating constitutional requirements to adequately fund school capital needs while lawmakers decide what -- if anything -- they are going to do about the problem.

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Ducey: Protect Second Amendment; don't 'politicize' Florida school massacre

PHOENIX -- Three years into office, Gov. Doug Ducey said Tuesday he has no clear idea of how to prevent mass shootings at schools.

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Counties may get chance to ask voter approval for road tax

PHOENIX -- Unable to get the votes to hike the gas tax, a Mesa senator is settling for what might be a weak second best: Allowing counties to raise their own cash for their own road needs.

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Voters may get chance to change age restriction for state-office candidates

PHOENIX -- Arizona lawmakers don't want to share their power with 18 year olds.

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Punish doctors who prescribe weed too easily?

Could get year in prison for not conducting a full medical exam first

State lawmakers are moving to make felons of doctors who don’t follow all the rules when recommending that a patient be allowed to use marijuana.

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Weapons-on-campus legislation on way to Senate

Students, faculty, staff and visitors are a step closer to being able to carry some kinds of weapons on the campuses of public colleges and universities.

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State lawmakers appear ready to regulate sober living homes

Arizona lawmakers appear finally ready to regulate “sober living’’ homes statewide. In 2020.

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Libertarian Vann Gutier seeks recall of John McCain

A Libertarian who concedes he was never a supporter in the past is launching a drive to recall John McCain.

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AG gets no help from Trump to deny driver's licenses to 'dreamers'

Attorney General Mark Brnovich is getting no help from the Trump administration in his last-ditch bid to deny driver's licenses to "dreamers.''

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Judge rules Burns can't trump majority vote on APS political spending

A judge won't help Bob Burns force Arizona Public Service to disclose the money it has spent -- and may spend in the future -- to elect candidates of its choice.

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State lawmakers look to tighten noose on teen marriages in Arizona

A House panel voted Wednesday to restrict the ability of teens younger than 18 to marry in Arizona -- but only after creating a couple of ways around that.

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Arizona targeted for clean energy initiative

A national group led by a billionaire hoping to impeach Donald Trump is helping to fund an effort to force Arizona utilities to get half their energy from renewable sources by 2030.

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GOP senators want minimum wage issue back on ballot

Voters got it wrong first time?

PHOENIX -- Calling the voter-approved measure morally wrong, a Republican-controlled Senate panel voted Monday to ask voters to reconsider the 2016 measure which is set to hike the minimum wage to $12 an hour by 2020.

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