Archive for November, 2010

30th November
2010
written by Arizona Kid

It’s important to keep vibrant downtown Phoenix vision alive
by Don Brandt and David Roderique - Nov. 27, 2010 05:48 PM
Downtown Phoenix Partnership
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Twenty years ago, a small group of business and governmental leaders had a vision to create a vibrant city center that would become the hub for commerce, entertainment, arts and culture.

Jerry Colangelo, Neil Irwin and Richard Mallery were a few of the farsighted civic leaders who realized that to be a truly great city, Phoenix needed a strong and vital downtown. A vibrant city center would not only attract new employers but would increase sustainability, deter sprawl, create a stronger sense of place and serve as a point of pride for the entire metropolitan community.

They created a business-improvement district, managed by the Downtown Phoenix Partnership, to oversee 90 square blocks in the heart of downtown. This simple act started in motion the dramatic transformation of our state’s urban core.

Work began on a handful of cornerstone projects that would create reasons for people to come downtown. These early projects were difficult. There were many skeptics, and financing and tenant commitments were tough to secure. But their efforts ultimately succeeded, and the renaissance began.

First came projects like the Arizona Center, US Airways Center and the Herberger Theater. These early victories took courage, commitment and roll-up-your-sleeves leadership.

Next came Chase Field, a second life for the Orpheum Theatre, a new City Hall and courthouse, Collier Center and the Arizona Science Center.

In recent years, the pace accelerated with the addition of light rail, ASU Downtown, the Biosciences campus including TGen and the University of Arizona Medical School, streetscape transformations, an expanded convention center, the Sheraton Hotel, major residential projects like Orpheum Lofts, 44 Monroe and the Summit, the Downtown Public Market and Civic Space Park.

All these and more contributed to making downtown Phoenix our state’s most significant economic-development success.

Today, downtown Phoenix is the business and governmental hub of the Valley with more than 80,000 jobs. It is the place to go for sports, arts and culture, entertainment and dining, conventions, education and research. It’s one of the safest and most vibrant places in the metro region.

On busy weekends, more than 100,000 people visit for events and activities. Thousands of new residents call downtown home. More than 30 new independent restaurants have opened in the past year. More than 10,000 students, staff and faculty add to the energy and excitement.

And with numerous venues, including the Comerica Theatre, the Children’s Museum and First Friday Art Walks, to name a few, downtown is the arts-and-cultural center of the region.

In the past year, the skyline has been further enhanced with the headquarters for Freeport McMoRan and the new Westin Hotel, along with CityScape, a mixed-use urban center that adds exciting new dimensions to downtown’s many restaurants, shops and community events.

While we mark this moment as an opportunity to celebrate the transformation that has taken place over the past 20 years, the work is far from complete. Investing in our downtown should remain a priority as the state climbs out of the economic downturn. The opportunities to enhance the economic and social well-being of our community are ever-present.

An achievable dream
So, what will it take to keep downtown Phoenix moving forward?

– First and foremost, people are the key to a vibrant downtown. We need to attract more employees, visitors and residents. We can do this through the development of key projects such as the expansion of the UA Cancer Center, the relocation of the ASU Law School, the renovation of the old Professional Building into a new boutique hotel and the development of a new entertainment district on the southern side of the US Airways Center.

– Now that major anchors and the supporting infrastructure are in place, we must make a significant commitment to the street-level experience. A pedestrian-friendly focus, including ground-level shops and restaurants, shade, additional streetscape amenities and a variety of housing options, is important. How downtown “feels” to the people who live, work and play here needs to be incorporated as we develop any project.

– Continuing to enhance transportation access, especially through the development of additional light-rail lines, is important to the long-term success of downtown Phoenix.

– Finally, it takes strong leadership and vision and continued partnerships between the public and private sectors. City leaders can work creatively on zoning and regulatory issues to make it easier to continue the momentum, while the business community can work to optimize the investments in the ground and to move forward with the ones being envisioned.

We should remember it is people, not buildings, that make a downtown great. If we do this right, we will be able to look back 20 years from now and realize we rallied the collective courage, vision and innovative thinking to continue the resurgence of our downtown.

Let’s do it together and make the next 20 years even more exciting.

Don Brandt, chairman and CEO of Pinnacle West Capital Corp., is chairman of the Downtown Phoenix Partnership. David Roderique is president and CEO of the Downtown Phoenix Partnership.
Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/viewpoints/articles/2010/11/27/20101127downtown-phoenix-vision.html#ixzz16lyJS8sZ

28th November
2010
written by Land Lawyer

You know the neighbor that put up a roof full of solar panels? You bought em. At least about half of them.
Looks like the Democratically controlled Corporation Commission (soon to be under a new direction in January when Pearce and Burns are seated), put in aggressive measures to provide incentives to move Arizona to a solar player. The problem is the ACC is actually hurting the Arizona consumer.

First the ACC isn’t supposed to be taxing bodies and by adding a solar tax on each rate payers bill to pay for a few solar panels they are in effect taxing me to pay for someone else.

Second because the state is throwing these tax incentives panel installers have popped up everywhere installing cheap solar panels. The real money should be put into technologies, R&D and finding a way to make solar more effective and survive without almost 50% incentives to make the numbers work out.

Third, you’d think our geniuses at the state would have learned after the natural gas conversion program in the early 2000’s.  The tax credit to ‘convert’ your car to natural gas was so rich that the rebates put the states budget in jeopardy. How many natural gas suburbans are you seeing on the roads today? 

Just because solar is the fluffy new feel good idea don’t get sucked it. It doesn’t return on the investment and the efficacy  is marginal at best. Let’s hope the technology catches up to the hype. My prediction is when the Obama administration is out of office, possibly in 2012, solar will be dropped until the technological break through hits.

Why don’t greenies like nuclear?

Arizona Public Service Co.’s renewable energy plan for 2011, calls for a slight bump in bills while laying the groundwork for more solar installations.

The plan, OK’d by the Arizona Corporation Commission, also calls for incentives and development of $96 million in renewable projects, rooftop solar and other items.

Homeowners will see a 59-cent increase on their bills for a total surcharge of $4.05. Businesses also will seen an increase depending on how much power they use. The approval clears the way for APS to begin funding incentives for residential and commercial solar projects. The utility has been hammered by requests and cut incentives this year before running out of money in October.

The new plan puts the incentives at $1.75 per watt for now, down from the current rate of $1.95. APS’ initial plan called for a gradual drop in the amount. If the utility has commitments for 50 percent of its incentive money by July 1, the amount will drop to $1.60. If it’s at the 75 percent mark, the amount will drop to $1.45 per watt.

The commission rejected a proposal that would have allowed applicants to accept a lower $1 per watt incentive and move to the front of the line.

Read more: APS renewable plan boosts rate, projects | Phoenix Business Journal

27th November
2010
written by Arizona Kid

Business owner says she is city retaliation target

By Joe Pangburn, Inside Tucson Business
Published on Friday, November 26th, 2010

Shelby Hawkins says she and her business, 5 Star Termite and Pest Control, are being targeted for retaliation by Tucson city officials since she became the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit claiming the city violated the state constitution by gifting taxpayer funds to tenants in the Historic Depot, 400 E. Toole Ave.

But Hawkins insists she won’t back down.

In the last five weeks, city inspectors showed up three times at her business, 1002 S. Pantano Road. Each time she was away. Print this story

The first time it was a city plumbing inspector who wanted to check a backflow gage. The inspector told the manager the business was in violation.

In the second visit, two inspectors said they were responding to a complaint filed about political signs on the property. That time the inspectors said a wall on the property and containers being stored for the Boy Scouts were in violation.

The third visit was from a fire inspector, who told Hawkins’ daughter, the city routinely conducts fire inspections every three to five years.

“I bought that place in 1994 and I have only had one inspection since that time,” Hawkins said.

Out of all the inspections, only the fire inspector left a card for Hawkins with contact information.

City Manager Mike Letcher’s office turned the matter over to Albert Elias, director of the department of housing and community development, for comment.

“Our Code Enforcement Division has one open case for this property,” Elias said. “The fence was built without a site plan approval. This was based on the aerial photos from 2002, 2005 and 2008 plus today’s condition. The inspectors are trained to look for more than just what the complaint addresses. When there’s a site plan issue improvements that don’t follow up with approved site plans it is not unusual to lead to multiple inspections.”

Elias said he couldn’t comment on the backflow check because he didn’t have a record of that. He also said it’s unusual for inspectors to not leave information about how to contact them.

“If they think I’m going to be intimidated or get nervous, they don’t know who they’re dealing with,” Hawkins said.

Contact reporter Joe Pangburn at jpangburn@azbiz.com or (520) 295-4259.

27th November
2010
written by Arizona Kid

Region needs an effective MTCVB
EDITORIAL

By Inside Tucson Business staff
Published on Friday, November 26th, 2010

Now it’s the Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau’s (MTCVB) turn to be in the spotlight for a public grilling.

To be sure, these days every entity that spends money — especially taxpayer money — needs to be scrutinized. And in true, typical Tucson fashion, we already have Pima County Supervisor Ray Carroll likening the MTCVB’s situation to the city’s squandering of $230 million on Rio Nuevo downtown redevelopment with nothing to show for it, as was found in a state audit released a month ago.

The MTCVB isn’t Rio Nuevo. For starters MTCVB has had some successes, though lately maybe not so much. Print this story

The economic recession has taken its toll on tourism. Just the perception of holding a meeting at a resort brings a negative connotation. The calls for an economic boycott of Arizona over passage of the state’s anti-illegal immigration law squarely hit the tourism industry.

Still though, tourism is a vital component to the economy of the Tucson region, responsible for $2.3 billion a year in economic impact, according to a 2006 study by Nichols Tourism Group in Phoenix. Chances are that number is down as a result of the economy and the boycott but even if you go back to a 1996 study done by the University of Arizona, tourism brought in $1.9 billion to the region’s economy.

Unfortunately, the tourism industry is one that cloaks itself in a certain mystery. Some of it is probably rooted in the idea that tourism and traveling is fun. It’s play time. And those involved must also be having fun schmoozing.

That makes it hard to track specific data.

For instance, when certain groups talked of canceling meetings at Arizona resorts during the call for an economic boycott, large resort chains negotiated with the groups to try to persuade them to stay with the company but maybe go to a different location. If you won’t come to the Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, how about the Loews Coronado Bay in San Diego? If you won’t come to the Westin La Paloma Resort and Spa, maybe the Westin Diplomat Resort and Spa in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., will fit your needs.

Loews, Westin, JW Marriott, Hilton and others don’t like to talk about the business they lost because maybe corporately they didn’t lose it. But local managers know they lost business at their establishments.

It’s that same competitive situation that’s playing out in the public spotlight trying to hold the MTCVB accountable. Just what are the hard number metrics that determine what makes a convention and visitors bureau effective? Some of the answers have to be nebulous — what’s an article in a travel magazine worth? But numbers for such things as conventions and meetings should be available.

As a side note, Inside Tucson Business used to publish a list of upcoming meetings and conventions but stopped two years ago when the MTCVB said it could no longer supply the information, saying many meeting planners didn’t want the information made public. At the time, we asked other regional business journals if they had similar situations. Those that wanted it said the information was readily available from their convention bureaus.

That kind of information shouldn’t routinely be secret, especially for an organization with a budget that is 87.7 percent funded through public money.

It’s right to ask questions but it’s important they be the right questions. Tucson needs an effective and accountable MTCVB.

Copyright © 2010 Inside Tucson Business

21st November
2010
written by Arizona Kid

Mixed impressions

When President Barack Obama signed it into law in February 2009, supporters hoped the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act would serve almost as a second New Deal to pull the economy away from the abyss.

The stimulus did pump life into the economy.

The White House estimates that by the end of the year the stimulus will have saved or created 3.5 million jobs.

Social Security recipients got one-time $250 payments.

And workers got those $400 tax breaks, what Princeton University economist Alan Blinder called “possibly the worst advertised program in the history of the republic.” He predicted that workers who didn’t notice they were getting them will notice when they’re not.

Arizona benefited in various ways. More than 90 percent of the $76 million in stimulus funding for Arizona wastewater and drinking-water system projects has been received. Thirteen of the 46 projects are completed. The projects have directly funded more than 800 jobs around the state, and because the projects got under way, hundreds more jobs are funded using the state and local dollars that also help pay for the work.

But the stimulus hasn’t brought a windfall of jobs. And as goes the stimulus, so too will many of the jobs that came with it.

Mike Markham, chief operating officer for Markham Contracting in Phoenix, said his company has won a half-dozen stimulus contracts worth $35 million, some of which is shared with subcontractors. Even so, since 2008 his family-owned company has cut two-thirds of its workers, about 200 layoffs.

“Seventy percent of our work has been stimulus work this year,” he said. “We would have had to reduce our company even more without the stimulus.”

Markham’s last stimulus project, widening Grand Avenue, currently funds 18 of his workers and about the same number of subcontractors, too. It is expected to end in March.

Earlier this month, a South Carolina company that manages a former nuclear-weapons complex told its workers that 1,400 of them will soon lose their jobs. Of those, 800 were funded by the stimulus.

One stimulus program divided $1 billion among the states to partner with the private sector to provide jobs to welfare recipients who wanted to work. The program helped create about 250,000 subsidized jobs nationwide, according to estimates by the nonpartisan Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a Washington-based think tank that advocates for the poor and middle class. Funding for the program expired in October.

Since its inception, Obama’s critics cast the stimulus as a colossal waste. That view now predominates in public-opinion polls.

In early October, an ABC News/Washington Post poll found that 68 percent of people surveyed viewed the stimulus as a waste compared with 29 percent who see it as money wisely spent.

One reason for that perception may be a belief that government spending was growing even more rapidly than it did.

Between January 2009 and July, federal government spending increased about 10 percent, according to data tracked by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. But cutbacks by state and local governments in the same period meant that overall federal, state and local spending climbed just 3 percent.

That’s largely because, unlike Congress, state and local governments generally have to balance their budgets. As tax revenue plummeted, so did governments’ ability to maintain services and employee levels.

Also undermining the popularity of the stimulus were delays in some programs, which dampened the intended economic jolt.

The $5 billion home-weatherization program, for example, stalled for months while state and local officials around the country waited for a ruling from Washington on fair wages for the projects.

Now, the projects are midway to a use-it-or-lose-it deadline, and states are working urgently to keep the funding. As of early November, more than $3 billion, or 64 percent, of all the money remained unspent, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. In Arizona, 68 percent of the $61 million awarded for weatherization remained unspent.

Obama himself has offered a measured defense of the legislation.

In October, he called the stimulus “the most serious investment in our infrastructure since President Eisenhower built the interstate highway system in the 1950s.” A day later, the New York Times published an interview in which he said “there’s no such thing as shovel-ready projects,” a concession that the pace of the stimulus hasn’t matched need.

Up to private sector

Going forward, the onus will be on the private sector to revive the economy.

The private sector has added jobs 10 straight months, a welcome change after seeing losses in 23 of the 24 preceding months.

Real gross domestic product, the broadest measure of economic output, has grown five straight quarters. Before that, it had declined four straight quarters.

Even so, economists say the growth is tepid and far too modest to bring down the unemployment rate, which has remained stuck between 9.5 percent and 10 percent nationally for the past 15 months.

Blinder, the Princeton economist, predicts the likely loss of stimulus measures, along with other social-safety-net items like extended unemployment insurance, will hurt the economy noticeably. The outcome will be far worse if the Bush-era tax cuts also expire at year’s end, he said.

“If everything runs out and the stimulus expires, this is a potentially catastrophic outcome for the U.S.,” said Blinder, who has served as vice chairman of the Federal Reserve System’s board of governors.

In Arizona, the job numbers have improved in recent months, but there are still 50,000 fewer people working now than when the stimulus began.

That helps explain why the state’s budget remains a problem.

The trouble only worsened after voters rejected referendums that would have allowed lawmakers to tap funds from the early-education program First Things First and from a land-conservation fund.

Without those dollars, the state is left with about $500 million less than what lawmakers had hoped by now.

And sales-tax revenue, the state’s primary source of cash, is $74 million below forecasts.

Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/news/articles/2010/11/21/20101121stimulus-funds-near-end.html#ixzz15wEfuIo5

21st November
2010
written by Downtown Dudette

Josh Brodesky hit the nail on the head – FINALLY – from the AZ Star.  He correctly reports the politician shuffle going on around Rio Nuevo and the recent audit.  He actually names names – about time.

Now that the Rio Nuevo audit has come out – which confirmed the Star’s reporting that more than $230 million was spent with little oversight or management – accountability is the big buzz word downtown. But let’s be honest – the city has no desire for real accountability.

If it did, the public wouldn’t be put through charades like Finance Director Kelly Gottschalk’s performance at last week’s council meeting. Gottschalk said the $900,000 Rio Nuevo paid to demolish the buildings for Bourn didn’t actually count as spending on that project – which the audit said was improper – since the project was never built.

Really?

Meanwhile, Councilwoman Shirley Scott bemoaned how Rio Nuevo’s critics have used the audit to Monday-morning quarterback the council’s decisions.

Scott, along with Councilwomen Karin Uhlich and Regina Romero, co-authored a recent editorial in this paper saying the council must demand accountability. But apparently accountability doesn’t involve looking in the mirror.

Scott has been on the council throughout Rio Nuevo’s mismanagement, but won’t take responsibility for any part of this mess.

“We are not CPAs. We are also not hoteliers,” she said, explaining that the council makes decisions based on advice from city staff.

Instead, Scott said the responsibility falls on “former managers” and their senior staffers. But just as the Rio Nuevo audit didn’t do, Scott didn’t name anyone.

“I prefer that I do not name them so I don’t have liability,” she said.

In fact, Scott said it was significant the audit didn’t name anyone.

“I thought that the Rio Nuevo audit came out with no smoking guns, so I don’t know what you would go after,” she said.

Since downtown is the place were delusions happen, I thought I’d engage in one of my own: real accountability.

I’d like to see the rest of the Rio Nuevo money spent on a tin-plated plaque at the would-be Mission Gardens site.

“Welcome to Rio Nuevo,” the plaque would read. “Made possible by: Bob Walkup, Nina Trasoff, Mike Hein, Greg Shelko, James Keene, Karen Thoreson, Fred Ronstadt, Steve Leal, Regina Romero, John Updike, Karin Uhlich, Shirley Scott, José Ibarra, Alexis Faust and all of their enablers.”

Contact Josh Brodesky at 573-4242 or jbrodesky@azstarnet.com.

21st November
2010
written by Downtown Dudette

RIO NUEVO — WHO KNOWS WHERE THE MONEY GOES

Not I says the Mayor who smiles real wide, we live in Paradise he says with pride.
200 Million Bucks gone for good, he don’t know where and don’t think he should.
Elected for his business acumen he can’t say where the money was spent.
If he don’t know at all, why should he take the fall?

Not I says the councilwoman with her eyes wide open,
I resent the implication that I was moping.
Although I approved every plan, I certainly should not be canned,
I just checked off what was given to me by the City Manager, don’t you see.
He’s the one that caused the loss — don’t nail me on no stinkin’ cross.
I didn’t do anything at all, why should I take the fall?

Not I says the Manager it wasn’t me — the Council sets the policy.
I work for them don’t you see, they have the majority.
If you want to blame someone heres where to go:
look for the last guy who went through this door.
The last Manager is the one to get — he’s responsible for all the debt.
I was only second in command, and I never saw his slight of hand.
He’s the one really at fault — I shouldn’t have to take the fall at all.

Not I says the ex-Manager, Mr. Homeland Security. I was the epitome of purity.
I did whatever I could, just to help out the neighborhood.
They’re the ones with all the power — it’s not my fault if it all went sour.
I really hate to be so blunt, but they shoulda let me do what I want.
I was just trying to do some favors — by the way, can I see your papers?

Not I says the activist from the neighborhood. You can’t blame US for this dud.
I might have got elected the ones who rule, but I was just taken for a fool.
It’s the real estate brokers and the engineers, and the planers and all their piers,
the University too had a piece of the pie, believe me ’cause I wouldn’t lie.
You can’t blame me for all this fuss — we were just demanding what was coming us.

And the Auditor General, too, took a look. And couldn’t find a single crook.
Just bad decisions is what they said, now let’s put all of this to bed.
They all just play the very same game: if we’re all at fault there is no one to blame.

And all that missing dough from the taxpayers pocket?
And we can say is “Ah, (ch)uck it.”

RIO NUEVO — WHO KNOWS WHERE THE MONEY GOES

My words, feel free to pass on.
M.L.

19th November
2010
written by JHiggins

If the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists – to protect them and to promote their common welfare – all else is lost.”

- Barack Obama

Do you trust your elected officials? At all levels of government there is a genuine distrust of the motives, promises and actions of politicians. The million dollar question after this month’s contentious mid-term elections is: How does government win back our trust?

In Southern Arizona, we witnessed two hard-fought Congressional races: incumbent Raúl Grijalva versus Ruth McClung and incumbent Gabrielle Giffords versus Jesse Kelly. They were two of the ugliest races in more than a decade as ideas and solutions took a backseat to attack ads and comments taken out of context in blatant attempts to scare voters.

This week, we’d like to tackle the notion of why trust in government is lost and what those who won in this year’s elections can do to regain it.

Federal government

The Obama administration came into Washington, D.C., riding a wave of hope and change. In two years, campaign promises have fallen by the wayside. Barack Obama the candidate, pledged to drop earmarks back to 1984 levels of $7.8 billion. Instead, they hit $15.6 billion last year, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense.

Candidate Obama, on “ABC This Week,” promised, “we will have in the first year an immigration bill that I strongly support and that I’m promoting.” Instead it took the hoopla surrounding Arizona’s SB 1070 law just to get immigration on the nation radar.

But Obama wasn’t alone in breaking promises. The 635 electeds in Congress were complicit.

Gallup opinion polls taken just after this month’s elections, give Congress a 17 percent approval rating.

U.S. Sen. John McCain faced a tough primary challenge. His campaign had to spend $24 million to win it and the general election to return to Washington. Can we trust him to work on the illegal immigration issue this time?

Giffords and Grijalva beat back candidates who ran on pro-business issues. Can we trust them to work on programs that will help improve jobs in their districts?

Arizona government

Although Pima County remains a blue island, Arizona’s map of legislative districts is bright red after Nov. 2. Taking a hard-right turn, voters have packed the next Legislature with super Republican majorities as well as a complete sweep of the top statewide elected officers: governor, secretary of state, attorney general, treasurer, superintendent of public instruction and even state mine inspector and the two seats on the Arizona Corporation Commission.

State Sen. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, the man who brought us SB 1070, is the new president of the senate. He has reminded Gov. Jan Brewer she owes her election victory to the anti-illegal immigration law. But now it’s time to set the table for business in this state. Can we trust the new Legislature to focus on creating jobs, diversifying  the economy and to start paying attention to our state’s fiscal house?

As state Sen. Frank Antenori, R-Tucson, put it, “we need to create more taxpayers and less tax-eaters.”

City of Tucson

Swimming against the tide, Tucson city voters cast ballots favoring Democrats, but even the pandering liberal agenda couldn’t carry with it a proposal to raise the city sales tax by another half-cent. The vote on Proposition 400 came down to a question of: Do voters trust the city with their money? The answer was an overwhelming NO.

On the heels of an audit that reported the city spent $230 million on downtown redevelopment with nothing to show for it, and the movement that finally convinced the city council to stop an ill-conceived $190 million public-funded hotel, who would have thought voters would have done anything else?

It’s time for elected officials to take charge in re-establishing trust in government. Whether newly elected or a career politician who was re-elected, politicians need to remember this year’s campaign. Look at the big picture. Be candid with voters. Make the tough decisions.

Business leaders do this every day. It’s the new normal. Politicians should be expected to do the same.

Contact Joe Higgins and Chris DeSimone at wakeuptucson@gmail.com. They host “Wake Up Tucson,” 6-8 a.m. weekdays on The Voice KVOI 1030-AM. Their blog is at www.TucsonChoices.com.

Copyright © 2010 Inside Tucson Business

18th November
2010
written by Arizona Kid

Arizona’s Top 20 Most Influential Lobbyists (from CivilArizona.com)

“Lobbyist play an important role in the crafting Arizona public policy as they have a special combination of institutional knowledge and understanding of exactly how policy changes will impact important constituencies.

Civil Arizona involves the top Arizona lobbyists by enabling them to present legislative proposals and to comment on the merits of other proposals on behalf of their clients.

To foster policy development transparency, I am presenting a “Top 20 Most Influential Arizona Lobbyists” list” to help focus efforts to seek out legislative ideas and concerns from major stakeholders across the state.”



Michael Preston Green
Fennemore Craig
(602) 916-5000

Business: Anheuser –Busch, AZ Capitol times, AZ Land & Cattle Co., Boeing, QWEST, Southwest Airlines, Viad Corp., Visionquest National

Associations: AZ Alarm Association, AZ Financial Services Association, Bankruptcy Trustee’s Association of AZ, Consumer Data Industry Assn, LDS Family Services, Manufactured Housing Communities Assn.

Governments: AZ Sports & Tourism Association, Town of Payson, State Bar of AZ

Gambling: AZ Racetrack Coalition, Turf Paradise Racing

Energy: Rio Verde Utilities, Trejo Oil, Western States Petroleum

Medical: Alzheimer’s Association Desert Southwest Chapter, AZ Assisted Living Association

Educational: Aramark Educational Services, Bridgeport Education



Kevin DeMenna
DeMenna & Associates
(602) 252-5155

Business: AAA Cab Service, Advantage Capital, Alamo Rent a Car, Avis, Avondale Live Studio, Budget Rent a Car, Discount Cab, Hertz, Waste Management of AZ

Associations: American Subcontractors Assn of AZ, AZ Society for Certified Public Accountants, AZ State Contractors Coalition

Governments: City of Phoenix, Industrial Development Authority of Maricopa County, Pima County Sports & Tourism Authority

Gambling: AZ for Preserving the Lottery

Energy: Clean Energy, Pickens Fuels

Education: AZ Child Care Assn. Gilbert Unified School District, grand Canyon Unified School District, Maricopa County Community College District, Smart Schools Plus

Insurance: Fox Insurance, ING American Insurance Holdings

Health Care: American Cancer Society, American Lung Assn. of AZ, Assn. & Society Insurance Corp., AZ Heart Foundation



John Kelly
Triadvocates
(602) 229-5527

Business: Collier Center, McGraw Hill, DirecTV, DISHE Network, EBay, Frito-Lay, Hewlett-Packard, Intel,, Microsoft, Revenue Discovery Systems, Verizon Wireless, Wells Fargo Bank, WESTCOR Partners

Associations: AZ Water Quality Assn., AZ Beverage Assn, Greater Phoenix Leadership, Satellite Broadcasting & Communications Assn.

Governments: City of Mesa, Phoenix –Mesa Gateway Airport Authority, City of Sierra Vista

Gambling: Tohono O’odham Nation

Energy: AZ Power Authority, Assn.

Education: AZ Business & Education Assn., Care for Kids of AZ, Eastern Arizona College, Gila County Community College

Health Care: Epilepsy Foundation of AZ, LaFrontera, Medtronics, Southwest Dental Group, Vanguard Health Systems, Western Dental Of AZ Services

Community: Central AZ Shelter Services



John Kaites
Public Policy Partners
(602) 234-9775

Business: COX Arizona Telecom

Associations: AZ Assn. of Realtors, AZ Hotel and Lodging Assn., AZ Technology Council

Governments: Maricopa County

Gambling: Gila River Indian Community, Global Spectrum

Energy: Sempra Energy, Blue Marble Energy Solutions

Insurance: American Life Star

Education: Deer Valley Unified School District, Education Financial Reform Group, Higley Unified School District

Health Care: Magellan Health Services, Physician Network Assn, PMT Ambulance

Public Safety: Professional Firefighters of AZ, Public Safety Personal Retirement System



Don Isaacson
Isaacson & Moore PC
(602) 274-2200

Business: Bank of America, Sprint/Nextel

Associations: American Resort Development Assn., AZ Licensed Beverage Assn.

Governments: Central AZ Water Conservation District

Community: YMCA

Health Care: Aging Services of AZ, AZ Ambulatory Surgery Center, AZ Optometric Assn., Gilbert Hospital, Pfizer, Rural/Metro, Southwest Ambulance

Public Safety: Fraternal Order of Police

Education: Independent Colleges & Universities of AZ, University of Phoenix

Insurance: State Farm Insurance, Teachers Insurance Annuity Assn and Retirement Equity Fund



Michael Grant & Deb Gullett
Gallagher & Kennedy
(602) 530-8000

Business: Arizona Cardinals, McDonalds

Associations: Alliance Beverage Distributing, Consumer Lending Alliance, Greater Phoenix Economic Council, Valley Partnership

Governments: City of Phoenix

Energy: AZ Clean Fuels Yuma, AZ Electric Power Cooperative, Denison Mines, Freeport McMoran Copper and Gold

Education; Every Child Can Learn



Kristen Boilini
KBR Consulting
(602) 294-0202

Business: Correctional Services Corporation, KAI Farms

Associations: AZ Commercial Mortgage Assn. AZ off Highway Vehicle Assn., Southwest Leaseholders Coalition

Governments: AZ Fairs Assn, City Of Glendale

Gambling: AZ Indian Gaming Assn, Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation, Arizonans for Tribal Government Gaming

Energy: AG Electrical Power Coalition

Health Care: AZ Assn of Community Health Centers

Education: Cochise College, Navajo County Community College District



Jeff Sandquist
Veridus
(602) 229-1129

Business: American Express, Clear Channel Outdoor, Recovery Audit Specialists, Robson Communities, Robson Ranch Mountains, Saddlebrooke Development, SCI AZ Funeral Services

Associations: AZ Assn. of Community Mangers, AZ Bankers Assn., AZ Trucking Assn., Gold Industry Assn., Motion Picture Assn of America, United Dairymen of AZ, United Services Automobile Assn.

Gambling: Phoenix Greyhound Park (American Racing)

Energy: Tucson Electric Power Company, Pima Utility Company, Southwest Solar Technologies, Willow Springs Utility Company

Insurance: Cigna Healthcare of AZ, American Insurance Assn.

Education: AZ Charter Schools Assn., AZ Early Childhood Development & Health Board, Learning Maters Educational Group, Teach for America

Healthcare: CVS Caremark



Matt Salmon
Upstream Consulting
(602) 300-5243

Business: AZ Parking Solutions

Associations: AZ Community Assn Bar Assn.

Gambling: Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community

Energy: El Paso Corporation, Solar Alliance, US Energy Partners

Healthcare: AZ Alzheimer’s Research Center, AZ Ambulance Assn., AZ Healthcare Assoc., Secure Medical

Education: Arizona State University, Grand Canyon University



Stan Barnes
Copperstate Consulting
(602) 229-1010

Business: American Traffic Solutions, First United Realty, TechAmerica

Associations: Community Financial Services Assn., Southern AZ Homebuilders Assn.

Energy: AZ for Electric Choice & Competition, AZ Clean Fuels Yuma, Griffin Energy, LS Power, Nextlight Renewable Power, Stirling Energy Systems

Health Care: AZ Kidney Foundation, Rural Metro, Southwest Ambulance

Education: University of Arizona



John Mangum
Law Offices of John Mangum
(602) 252-5222

Business: Cash America, Eli Lilly, Metal Management, Millers-Coors, T-Mobile, Turf Paradise, Walgreen

Associations: AZ Assn of Realtors, AZ Food Marketing alliance, AZ Investor & Trustee Assn., AZ Pawn Brokers Assn., AZ Scrap Recyclers Assn.

Education: AZ Private School Assn., Brookline College



Chuck Coughlin & Doug Cole
Highground Inc
(602) 528-3684

Business: Correctional Corporation of America, American Outdoor Advertising, Salt River Project, Fiesta Bowl, Wyndham Hotel

Associations: AZ Housing Assn

Governments: AZ League of Cities and Towns, Maricopa County, City of Tucson, City of Yuma

Gambling: Pascua Yaqui Tribe



Barry Aarons
The Aarons Company
(602) 253-1821

Associations: Americans for Tax Reform, Arizonans for Responsible Lending, AZ Tourism Alliance, AZ Construction Trades Coalition

Governments: Apache County, Greenlee County, City of Scottsdale

Education: Winslow Unified School District

Energy: AZ propane Gas Assn., AZ Public Service Company Health Care: AZ Assn. of Chiropractic, AZ Osteoporosis Coalition



Chris Herstam
Lewis & Roca.(602) 262-0801

Associations: AZ Board of Accountancy, Wine & Spirits of America

Gambling: Navajo Nation

Energy: Abengoa Solar, First Solar

Insurance: AZ Dental Insurance Service, Progressive Insurance

Health Care: AZ Assn of Area Agencies on Aging, AZ Public Health Assn., AZ State Board of Nursing, Banner Health, Blood Systems Inc., Donors Network of AZ, Health Management Systems

Community: United Way of Greater Tucson

Education: University of Arizona



Kurt Davis, Barry Dill,
Wes Gullet, Marcus Dell’Artino

FirstStrategic Communications
(602) 266-6565

Business: AZ Cardinals, AZ Science Center, Quest, Robson Communities, Robson Ranch Mountains, Saddlebrooke Development

Associations: AZ Assn of Realtors, AZ Automobile Dealers Assn., Home Builders Assn of Central AZ

Governments: City of Phoenix, City of Tucson

Energy: Pima Utility Company, Salt River Project, Starwood Energy Group, Willow Springs Utility Company

Education: Chandler Unified School District, Phoenix Children’s Hospital



Mike Williams
(480) 974-6550

Business: Citigroup Management Corp., Quantum Technology Sciences, Redflex Traffic Systems, Scottsdale Hospitality Group, Taser International

Associations: Distilled Spirits of US, United Fireworks Safety Council

Governments: Citizen Clean Elections Commission, Town of queen Creek, City of Tempe

Health Care: AZ Assn of Nurse Anesthetists, AZ State Dental Hygienists, Correctional Medical Services

Public Safety: AZ Police Assn., Phoenix Law Enforcement Assn.



Tom Dorn
Dorn Policy Group
(602) 606-4667

Business: Ace Cash Express, United Road Services

Associations: AZ Planning Assn., East Valley Chamber of Commerce

Gambling: San Carlos Apache Tribe

Energy: American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, Peabody Energy



Ron Ober
Policy Development Group
(602) 274-4244

Business: Correctional Corporation of America, Lifelock, Motorola, Toyota, Tucson Iron & Metal

Associations: AZ Home Inspectors Coalition

Governments: City of Tucson, City of Nogales

Energy: El Paso Corporation

Healthcare: Scottsdale Healthcare Corp



Courtney LeVinus
Capitol Consulting
(602) 712-1121

Business: First United Realty

Associations: AZ Building Owners & Managers Assn, AZ Multihousing Assn., AZ Real Estate Investors Assn., AZ Rental Properties Owners & Landlords Assn., AZ Central AZ Chamber of Commerce

Advocates: AZ Sportsmen for Wildlife



Sandy Bahr
Sierra Club – Grand Canyon Chapter
(602) 253-8633

Research on Arizona Lobbying:

“Government Lobbying Payments Exceed $9 Million”
Mark Flatten, April 21,2010


Video Feature:

“In The Lobby”: Arizona Leading Lobbyists
Arizona Capitol Television, February 12, 2009


Video Feature:

“Best Lobbyist – Don Isaacson”
Arizona Capitol Times


Video Feature:

“Best Political Operative – Chuck Coughlin”
Arizona Capitol Times

 


Quote:

“It actually shows who runs the place down here. I don’t know if it is the legislature. I think it is the contract lobbyists.”

Senator Ron Gould (R),
On A Movie Industry Tax Credit Vote, April 5, 2010

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