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The Conservative's Corner
Featured Editorials
2018 Scrum

Monday I announced my campaign for President, and ever since, I've been under constant attack.

Will you chip in $5 -- or even $35 -- to help me fight back?

You see, the liberal media has called me every name in the book -- attacking me for everything from announcing my campaign at a Christian university to listening to country music.

I want you to see a few of the headlines and just how truly desperate the Left is to discredit and destroy me:

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The United States Supreme Court's refusal to hear the challenge against Wisconsin's Voter ID law this week is a victory for common sense, democracy, and the one-person, one-vote principle that anchors our democracy.

When voters cheat and try to cast multiple ballots, it hurts everybody. It cheapens our elections, throws the results into doubt, and tarnishes our democracy.

If you agree, please stand with my conservative grassroots campaign. Your contribution of $10, $35, $50, $100, $175, or even $250 will put you in the front ranks of the growing movement that is doing its utmost to get Wisconsin -- and our nation -- back on track.

Americans feel like we are fighting for our lives. Obama-style Big Government has infiltrated every corner and cranny of our lives. From the government takeover of healthcare to micromanaging our economy, Americans are suffering from too much government. By supporting my campaign, you will say in a loud, clear, conservative voice that Big Government's days will soon be over.

The Liberals' love of Big Government knows no bounds. But every day, conservative leaders prove that small, smart, limited, and Constitution-based government works much better. As Governor of Wisconsin, I took on the Big Government Labor Bosses and we won. Our Walker Administration took on the Democrats' overspending, overtaxing, overregulating, and over-borrowing and we won. Every time the Obama-Clinton Liberals tried to pull us in the Big Government direction, we pushed back hard. And we won

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The Fight for Educational Choice!

AFC is pleased to announce James Carville and Mary Matalin as keynote speakers during the 2015 National Policy Summit May 18-19 in New Orleans, Louisiana!

As residents of Louisiana, Carville and Matalin have seen firsthand the power of educational choice in New Orleans. The husband-wife duo will discuss the importance of choice and challenging the status quo to generate the best outcomes for students.

Register for the 2015 National Policy Summit today to secure your seat at the Summit and to hear from this dynamic duo.

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By Sal DiCiccio

Teachers vs Trains: 22,222 new teachers is how much just $1 Billion of the $33 billion transit tax could fund

 

Results of a newly released poll show the majority of the public is aware of a $33 Billion boondoggle tax, but also believe that funding education is a higher priority than the gargantuan cost of one mile of rail ($161 million/mile). Having a liberal Mayor and liberal majority on the Council does not bode well for the future of fiscal responsibility in the City of Phoenix.

"Those who want to increase funding for K-12 education should oppose the City of Phoenix's rush to the ballot for an increase in its sales tax for transportation...K-12 education should get first dibs on a sales tax increase, even if how and when a proposal might arise is uncertain. Phoenix should stand down." - (Robert Robb, Arizona Republic, 3/1/15)

 Here are the poll results in their entirety: Poll

(Question 6 on a head to head has me 2 points ahead of Mayor Stanton)

Please share this message with others.

Follow me on  Facebook ,  Twitter  and now  Instagram .

From my family to yours,

Sal DiCiccio
Phoenix City Council
District 6

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Over the past several months I’ve spent a fair amount of time with governors from both parties.  The advice from all of them has been consistent:

"No matter what, get your state’s budget balanced first. Once that’s accomplished then you can tackle everything else.”

Working with the Arizona Legislature we did that this week, passing a budget that puts us on the path to structural balance for the first time since 2007.

It wasn’t easy.  We made real reductions to government spending and accomplished permanent decisions that reform government – rather than just biting around the edges.

Not only will we have a leaner government; we’ll have a better one, more accountable to the taxpayers.

And we did all this WITHOUT raising taxes.

Naturally, the spending lobby and special interests don’t like it. They just assume government gets bigger and spends more.

I happen to believe government shouldn’t spend money that doesn’t exist.

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Governor Scott Walker will sign legislation to make Wisconsin a "Right to Work" state, prohibiting employees from being forced to join a union against their will. It's the right thing to do for job creators and employees alike.

But you know how it is: It threatens the power the Big Government Labor Bosses crave and they are going to come after him with everything they've got.
These are the same union bosses who mounted a multi-million dollar recall race against Governor Walker in 2012. As much as they did to crush him then, now, they will do even more. We are once again rallying help from conservatives across the country. Please stand with Governor Walker with a contribution of $10, $35, $50, $100, $250, or whatever amount is right for you today so that he has the resources to fight back and respond with the truth.

Governor Walker is a conservative champion. He is a bold reformer who dares to take on the Big Government Labor Unions and he wins. He has taken the reins of power away from the bosses and put the taxpayers back in charge.

The results are there for all to see: more jobs ... lower taxes ... a balanced budget ... effective government. What bothers the Big Government Labor Bosses the most is that Governor Walker says what he means, does what he says, and gets great results.

Now the attacks he will face will be unlike anything you have ever seen before and he needs your help more than ever.

Show him you support his "Right to Work" effort all the way. Help him move Wisconsin -- and America -- forward. Your financial leadership is critical, Jason. Please make your contribution right now for $10 or $100 or even $1,000.

Anything you can do would be a big help and greatly appreciated.

Team Walker

P.S. Enacting big bold reforms takes guts. Taking on the Big Government Labor Bosses takes courage. Governor Walker knows that making Wisconsin a "Right to Work" state is the right thing to do. Tell him you agree with a generous contribution today.

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Old people like to drink too.  That was manifested in Scottsdale for many years at a place called Chances Are.  There it sat on Miller Road, just south of Camelback and across from a lot of residences.  It became to septuagenarians in the area what Studio 54 once was to the Big Apple.

Back then we didn’t hear many complaints about bars in that part of town.  Maybe that’s why city leaders wisely called for siting more bars and clubs in an “Entertainment District” east of Scottsdale Road, not too far from Chances Are.  Such would leave  downtown neighborhoods to the west of Scottsdale Road more for dining establishments.  The locale of places like Jetz, Stix, Planet Earth, The Works and Anderson’s Fifth Estate would be no more.   It seemed to be wise planning.  And everyone signed on.

Then something impressive happened.  Small business people started creating compelling places for younger people like Axis, Radius, El Hefe, Maya, W Hotel, Martini Ranch, Maloney’s, DJs and many others just where the city wanted them.  Scottsdale’s Entertainment District started resembling the Gaslamp Quarter in San Diego.  The planning worked.  Too well for some as it turned out.

Soon the calls to revoke permits and deny more small businesses in the area occurred.  It’s as if they were Soviets, not Smith as in Adam.  We don’t want to be sleepy or sensational so let’s just be injudicious. 

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We have opined before that one of Scottsdale’s great strengths over the years has been an enduring, mature governing majority. While Scottsdale’s political schizophrenia often yields a Littlefield or Zraket it doesn’t usually flush sanity or common sense when decisions come to the dais.

This can be difficult when neighborhood unrest is significant. But it’s in those times having a council consisting of accomplished individuals makes all the difference. Scottsdale isn’t Glendale. They know having succeeded in business and life what it takes to move an organization forward. And despite political turbulence from time to time keeping the ship steady and prosperous is more important to the community’s quality of life than being a lurch for a loud, micro-minority.

The upcoming decision on Rancho Paraiso is a case in point. West of Scottsdale Road and along Cactus a new ranch is being proposed on six acres. Keep in mind this is an area of horse properties. Keep in mind it would hardly be Scottsdale’s largest ranch. Keep in mind the neighbors closest to the site including Arizona Diamondbacks’ legend Luis Gonzales support Rancho Paraiso. At a time of Scottsdale recently losing Greasewood Flat, Pinnacle Peak Patio and other “western” elements the case on its surface has all the making of an easy, unanimous council vote. Indeed, it SHOULD be a unanimous vote.

Yet, a separate contingent of neighbors despite living amongst horses don’t want more of them. The whole thing is odd.

But in the governing tradition mentioned above Scottsdale City Councilwoman Linda Milhaven has been attempting to mediate a compromise. She’s tough, she’s independent and she has a particular view of what drives Scottsdale forward. Voters must like her approach. She was rewarded as the top vote getter in the 2014 city council elections despite being targeted with negative advertisements.

Backers of the ranch proposal are well known Phoenicians. And when it comes to superb equestrian facilities this isn’t their first rodeo. They can be seen at the couple’s Promontory community in Park City.

At the suggestion of a neighbor who used to be an opponent but who is now a supporter the applicant has significantly reduced the number of horse stalls for the ranch to 48 with an additional requirement that it only be allowed to gain that number if it is fulfilling all promises, and is in compliance after one year. Until then the number of stalls is 38. Sounds pretty reasonable since there are much larger ranches east of the 101 on the Cactus Corridor. New stipulations have also been agreed to at the request of other neighbors.

But in a middle finger flip to Milhaven and the spirit of compromise some neighbors have responded with requests that look something like it was proffered by the Castros in Cuba not common sense near Cactus.  

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What the Thunderbirds are to the Waste Management Phoenix Open the Charros are to Scottsdale spring training.

They put on great events and raise ridiculous sums of money for local charities.  They are civic service at their best. Dennis-Pic

That’s why we were pleased to read this story recently in the Scottsdale Independent about Dennis Robbins becoming the new executive director of the Charros.

If there were ever a person to match the organization’s benevolence it would be the former Scottsdale City Councilman. Look up “good guy” and there you will find Robbins’ picture.  Scottsdale may have lost a councilman when he was surprisingly defeated in the 2014 elections but it just gained a lot more.

In fact, we can’t think of a better fit, unless it’s baseball and beer, something Robbins will help oversee now at Scottsdale Stadium every March.

 

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As we have written about before there is much to be excited about if you’re living in or focused on south Scottsdale.  From exciting new redevelopments at 64th Street and McDowell to the success of Sky Song and even a relatively new microbrewery the marketplace is abuzz about this revitalizing area.  The location is superb, proximate to recreational and transportation amenities.  The housing stock, both old and new, is diverse. Indeed, the new residential options coming into the area from cool apartments to new single family at the old Paddock Pools site on Thomas Road will bring the additional customers that have been needed for years for new stores and restaurants.

Yet, southern Scottsdale residents have felt a bit disenfranchised over the past two decades because rarely does one of their own sit on the council dais.  Oh, there was Kevin Osterman who did win one election before losing another some 12 years ago.  And some will remember Robert Pettycrew defying the odds in 1994.  City_of_Scottsdale_Script_Logo.svg

That’s two people in 22 years.  This year all members of the Scottsdale City Council live Shea or northwards.  That doesn’t mean the southern city doesn’t get due attention.  It clearly does as described above. But why not discuss and debate how city representation can get even better?

Well, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane did just that today with an announcement that he wants to reform city governance with a new, dedicated south Scottsdale council district. And have one for the distinct personalities of the central and northern part of the cities too.

He’s calling it a “hybrid” district system that would leave the Mayor and the three remaining members of council to be elected at large.  Here is a Scottsdale Independent article on Lane’s plan. 

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We believe Arizona voters should pass Governor Ducey’s landmark Proposition 123 on May 17th to settle lawsuits over the state’s K-12 public education system.  It’s a $3.5 billion injection of new money without raising taxes.  The new revenues come from future sales of state land.

The measure is an impressive, bi-partisan compromise.

Yet, some who have jumped on board, primarily from the left, want to hold it hostage as they ratchet up the rhetoric against an effort in the Arizona State Legislature to expand school choice.

Pass expanded student options they say and we may – or will – abandon support for Proposition 123 their threats go. 

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Arizona State University is coming to downtown Mesa, after it already helped revitalize downtown Phoenix.

A big new regional park is coming to Gilbert, following the resurgence of its downtown.

The expansion and enhancement of Margaret Hance Park in Phoenix is impressive.

It begs the question does Scottsdale still need big ideas of its own to move the community forward?  There’s a good argument it does not for it already boasts the likes of a massive preserve, recreational wash, renowned special events, the state’s best shopping mecca and a dynamic downtown.

But there are other smart opinions that no community can rest on its laurels because as Ricky Bobby might observe, if you’re not first you’re last.

A coterie of tourism leaders often point to the Desert Discovery Center as one such idea for Scottsdale.  We view it more as innate inertia.  Just because an idea has been around awhile doesn’t make it good, or novel.  We have a Desert Botanical Garden.  The McDowell Sonoran Preserve and its trailheads are already amazing.  Do we really need people and buildings to preach what nature and wildlife already make obvious?  After all, people don’t go to the Grand Canyon for the Hopi House.

To spark a discussion on what could or should be the next big thing in Scottsdale next we proffer several ideas:

*Taliesin West, the winter home of Frank Lloyd Wright, is already one of the great tourist attractions in Scottsdale and indeed, the state.  It is currently pursuing designation as a World Heritage Site from the United Nations.  Look up the list.  To be included with such giants as the Taj Mahal and Pyramids would mean instant additional prestige for the city, as well as significant economic impact.  The city should be doing everything it can to assist the process.

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He Chuckled Like Jabba The Hut Before He Killed Citizen Rights

Avid Star Wars fans will remember Jabba The Hutt’s laughter at the beginning of Return of the Jedi.

That’s the way many probably feel after reading former Scottsdale City Councilman, defeated State Legislative candidate and current Scottsdale Mayoral candidate Bob Littlefield’s recent tome.

After resembling Grumpy during the early days of his quixotic quest to join his wife on the Scottsdale City Council, Littlefield proffers a sunnier disposition outlining some of the things that are good about Scottsdale before assigning responsibility alone to residents – not businesses – who helped make them happen. Jabba_the_Hutt

President Obama is in Cuba this week.  Littlefield’s reasoning reminds us a bit of Che Guevara. Or Bernie Sanders, who was in Phoenix this week.  People good.  Business bad.  It sounds more like Sweden than Scottsdale. 

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As soon as Willard “Mitt” Romney was elected Governor of Massachusetts he began running for President.  After losing the GOP nomination in 2008 he immediately started running again.  After being the nominee in 2012 he lost a winnable general election.  Then he started calling upon his inner Adlai Stevenson (a 3-time loser for the Democratic nomination for President) and quietly embarked on plans for a third Oval Office run. mitt-romney-35df95759d8b8e46

But then the early Jeb Bush juggernaut – to be confused with the later “low energy” WASP -- scared him out.

But that hasn’t stopped the wily Willard, always on the look out for himself.  After enthusiastically embracing Donald Trump in 2012 Wily Willy now sees opposition to him as a bank shot to the banks of the Potomac. These efforts continue on the eve of Arizona's presidential primary as well as one in Utah.  

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By Scottsdale City Councilwoman Suzanne Klapp

There is little about City Council meetings that I cannot tolerate. I support freedom of speech and welcome people to come to the City Kiva and express their opinions about many subjects. My patience is very well established. klapp

Fault me if you want, but enough is enough when a Satanist group, not even based in Scottsdale, wants to disrupt our meetings by giving an invocation to the entire Council meeting audience. And it is certain this will be a disruption.

The group applied to come to the meeting in April, then backed off when the city administration approved the request. It was obvious the group was just testing our response. We had a slight reprieve, until they came back with another request recently and were given July 6 as the date to be at the Council meeting.

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By Former Scottsdale City Councilwoman Betty Drake

Scottsdale, the “West’s Most Western Town,” is a place with a long tradition of welcoming and supporting the horse community. From its earliest days, there were horse ranches, horse shows, polo, rodeo, horse communities and horse trainers, many right in the middle of residential areas. Horses are part of Scottsdale’s image and culture.

Today, people lament erosion of the horse community in Scottsdale, as horse ranches leave and equestrian properties are subdivided. Areas of the city where traditionally horse ownership was high and local trails maintained are being eroded, with people moving in who block off the trails, do not own horses and often object to those who do.
The neighborhood where the Najafi Ranch is proposed has been a treasure for horse-lovers. Many people keep horses on their properties. There’s a community horse arena at Mescal Park and remnants of the internal trail system. Throughout the neighborhood, though, horse properties are being replaced with homes you could find anywhere in town. The area is in danger of losing its unique history and identity.

There have been many horse ranch and training facilities located within residential areas of Scottsdale. I have kept horses at some of these and have taken lessons at others over my 45+ years in the Valley, 30 of those years spent in Scottsdale. Look at Flying Fox Farm, Heitel Ranch, Jeffrey Wilms Training, and Camelot Farms. Looking along the Cactus Corridor.

Sandspur, at Cactus and 93rd Street, is a large facility that has been there many years, with arenas right next to single-family non-horsey homes. I boarded there and it was wonderful to be able to drive less than 10 minutes to ride. At one point it was rezoned as a subdivision but a horse-loving individual bought the property so the equine uses could remain. Other properties along Cactus have not been so lucky.

Pretty Penny Ranch was a large boarding and training ranch located in a residential area. When Pretty Penny announced that it was closing so the land could be turned into a subdivision, the horse community was up in arms.

Piece by piece. Property by property. The horses are being squeezed out of Scottsdale.

I’m a life-long horse person who just plain hates to see this happen. I can’t understand why the horse people aren’t storming the public hearings demanding that the Najafi Ranch be approved. Sure, 52 horses sounds like a lot on paper, but go look at a training barn with that many horses. It’s a reasonable number. It’s two barns.

I’ve known Francis Najafi for over 20 years. He’s a guy who does things right. There will be state-of-the-art dust control, fly control, construction and maintenance. As is typical of training ranches, a capable, professional manager will live on-property to assure that the highest standards are maintained. Najafi Ranch will be a magnificent, showcase facility, a considerable investment in our horse community and a statement that the City is committed to preserving Scottsdale’s signature horse culture.

 

 

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Are all developer requests for rezonings good?  Of course not.  But nor are they all bad as Scottsdale’s current and former councilmembers Kathy Littlefield, Bob Littlefield and Guy Phillips often wax ineloquent.

Take this article in today’s Scottsdale Republic.  The revitalization of McDowell Road has perplexed city planners and authorities for years.  But progress is finally at hIMG_0604and.  From SkySong to Fate Brewing Company to this new effort at 64th Street and McDowell to transform shuttered car dealerships into a mixed-use project.  What an exciting time for the corridor.

The developer behind the Entrada plan and property is one of Arizona’s wealthiest individuals.  He’s realizing as others have understood that this parcel, this area, is both blessed and underappreciated.

A quick shot west on McDowell takes you to the Loop 202.  A bit further east is the 101.  Across the street is Papago Park.  And the Desert Botanical Garden.  And the Phoenix Zoo.  And the Papago Golf Course.  Just further south is the old Phoenix Municipal Stadium and the new home of ASU baseball.  Mill Avenue is a short drive away as is the energy of downtown Scottsdale.  Be in the middle of it all isn’t a marketing slogan, it’s reality. 

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*The property currently housing The Saguaro Hotel in downtown Scottsdale may be on the market

*His new Mission?  Chef extraordinaire Matt Carter is said to be joining forces with Scottsdale restaurant and bar Hall of Famer Mark Drinkwater for a new venture at Scottsdale & Lincoln

*Want to live at the new Ritz-Carlton Paradise Valley?  The project’s first advertisements debuted locally last week

*With State Representative Justin Olson’s decision  to challenge Senate President Andy Bigg’s run to replace retiring U.S.Congressman Matt Salmon it means Governor Doug Ducey will have all-new legislative leadership to deal with next year as Olson was the presumptive Speaker to be. 

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By Virginia Korte

There is no bigger success story in the city than the resurgence of our downtown area.  It is truly inspiring.

Not long ago people joked that we rolled up our downtown sidewalks at sunset.    It was a short 15 years ago that our downtown had boarded up buildings and tumbleweeds were literally blowing down the street.  I even remember when the canal banks were just dusty trails full of trash.

All that has changed.

Today, galleries, restaurants and entertainment venues have created a vibrant area full of energy morning, noon and night. Downtown has grown from what was once only a tourist attraction to where people now live, work, enjoy the finest restaurants and experience fine arts and culture (not to mention the best shopping in town!).

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It's been my honor serving as Paradise Valley Mayor these past fifteen months. Together with other elected and non-elected volunteers, staff and participating residents we've had significant achievement and are making progress on things that are important to Paradise Valley residents.

Today I proudly volunteer to serve as your mayor for another two years!

I hope that I have earned your support. My performance and actions as your mayor, vice mayor, council member, and planning commissioner are well documented. I've provided examples at PVMayorCollins.com. You can watch my performance first hand on archived town council meeting videos.

Please do me three favors if you support my re-election as Paradise Valley Mayor.

  • REPLY to this email saying that you support my re-election.
  • SIGN MY PETITION. You can only sign one candidate's petition for mayor.
  • RE-ELECT MICHAEL COLLINS for Paradise Valley Mayor.

That's it. I'm not fundraising and I won't flood you with political advertising. My actions and achievements in office these past fifteen months should speak for themselves. I am a businessman not a politician. I seek no other office and feel that serving as your mayor is the ultimate honor that no other office could compare to.

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PHOENIX —  Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio today endorsed Proposition 123 because it's a conservative plan that invests in our teachers and students, and will ensure Arizona's kids have the funding they need to receive a great education. 

“We can make Arizona safer by better educating our kids," Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said. "We need to invest in our teachers and students. That’s why I’m proud to support Prop 123. It’s a conservative plan to put $3.5 billion into public schools, and it doesn’t raise our taxes.”

"Sheriff Arpaio's endorsement furthers the argument that Prop 123 is a common sense solution to funding our schools," Sharon Harper, chairman of the Let’s Vote Yes for Arizona Schools said. "This initiative will put $3.5 billion into our classrooms over the next 10 years without raising taxes. It's a creative solution that even the most conservative Arizonans are supporting. Join Sheriff Arpaio and me on May 17 as we vote YES on Proposition 123."

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By Ken Bennett

I’m sure you’ve seen some of the news coverage regarding the presidential preference election on Tuesday. Numerous voters experienced long lines and waited hours to cast their vote, many staying at polling locations close to 11 PM. As Arizona election officials found out, conducting elections is a complicated and challenging task. Being Secretary of State isn’t easy.

Serving as the highest election official in Arizona is one of my proudest accomplishments. As Secretary of State, we efficiently conducted two primary, two general and a successful presidential preference election while ensuring we maintained the integrity of elections. I fought hard to protect voter ID laws in Arizona to prevent fraud and abuse all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. I reduced our budget while maintaining efficiency and protected domestic violence victims with our “Address Confidentiality Program”.

But of all the things we got done during my time as Secretary of State, I’m most proud of our commitment to service. I was speaking with a former employee of mine recently and she told me what impacted her most was my decision to remove all automated menus from our telephone system. I made that decision because I was committed to ensuring every voter spoke to a live person when they called our office - because that’s the level of service voters deserve!

I am committed to providing that same spirit of service to you as your Congressman for Arizona’s First Congressional District. I will fight for you, each and every day, to make sure we get America working again.

God Bless,

Ken

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PHOENIX — State Senator Bob Worsley has endorsed Proposition 123 citing the massive influx of new dollars for K-12 public schools without raising taxes.

“$3.5 billion in K­-12 funding without raising taxes and nearly unanimous Senate and House support — It doesn't get any better than that," State Senator Bob Worsley said.  "Kids win with this plan. Join me in supporting Prop 123.”

“Our schools need more funding, and a YES vote on Proposition 123 will not only give them funding now, but it will provide our K-12 public schools stability for the next decade,” Sharon Harper, chairman of the Let’s Vote Yes for Arizona Schools said. “This initiative will help teachers and students across the state succeed in the classroom, and we are thrilled to have Senator Worsley's support.”

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PHOENIX — Flagstaff Mayor Jerry Nabours has endorsed Proposition 123 citing that the measure will help Flagstaff schools succeed in the future. 

“Personally, I think Prop 123 is the right thing for Flagstaff and the state," Flagstaff Mayor Jerry Nabours said. "In the last four years the city of Flagstaff has purchased $8.1 million of state trust land to preserve as open space. It is great to see that money invested in the land trust, and see some of that money come back to our schools in Flagstaff and other schools around the state. Prop 123 will distribute 3.5 billion dollars to teachers and students without raising taxes.  I'm voting yes."

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