All posts in "Bills, Legislation & Policy"

US Court Upholds Uranium Mining Ban Near Grand Canyon

 

Via mining-technology.com

A US appeals court has upheld a ban imposed by the previous federal administration on new mining claims around the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

In 2012, the US Department of the Interior under the rule of former US President Barack Obama enforced the ban on new uranium mining claims across one million acres of public lands adjacent to the Grand Canyon for 20 years.

Soon after the ban was adopted, mining companies resorted to legal action to overturn it.

 

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Arizona Courts Rule In Favor Of Pima County And World View Enterprises

 

Via insidetucsonbusiness.com

Pima County’s deal with space balloon company World View Enterprises can move forward after the Arizona Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the lease agreement, overturning the lower court’s February ruling.

The Phoenix-based Goldwater Institute, a conservative think tank, sued the county in April, saying the deal with World View didn’t follow the competitive bidding process required when leasing property.

Pima signed a 20-year lease with World View in April 2016, which included the county promising a $15 million investment on a launch pad and 135,000 square-foot facility on county-owned land.

 

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Arizona Court To Consider Taxation Of Leased Solar Panels

 

Via journalgazette.net

PHOENIX (AP) The Arizona Supreme Court has agreed to review lower courts’ rulings that the state cannot require companies leasing rooftop solar systems to homeowners to pay property tax for the systems.

The state Court of Appeals last May upheld a trial judge’s ruling that state Department of Revenue was wrong when it determined in 2013 the leased rooftop solar systems should be subject to property tax as electricity generating systems.

Leasing companies SolarCity Corp. and SunRun Inc. sued the department, and a Maricopa County Superior Court judge ruled in their favor.

The high court’s order Monday says the justices will hear oral arguments on the case.

 

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Proposed Legislation Could Make AI Illegal In AZ

 

Via tucson.com

Sen. John Kavanagh, R-Fountain Hills, wants to make it a crime to use any computer or software that conceals its real identity “to simulate or impersonate the action of a human.” Violations would be a felony subjecting the owners or operators to a year in state prison.

What Kavanagh is trying to outlaw are computer “bots” that can log into sites and do things that it would normally take a human to do.

“I’m told that it’s a real issue with concert tickets and sporting event tickets,” he said, logging into computer sites the minute tickets go on sale and buying up all the tickets. Kavanagh said that can be done even if there are limits to individual sales, with computers quickly making multiple purchases.

 

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State Overturns Local Liquor License Denials

 

Via azdailysun.com

In the four previous years, the board denied a total of 26 applications, compared with the 77 licenses that municipalities around the state recommended for denial.

A city or town council serves as an advisory body to the state board, recommending denial or approval of licenses that are then decided on at the state level. If the council chooses to recommend denial, the applicant can then make his or her case to the state board, which makes the final decision.

The board can also choose to deny an application that was recommended for approval by a city or town. That hasn’t happened in 2017, but occurred six times between 2013 and 2016 for applications throughout the state.

 

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U.S. Environmentalists File Lawsuit To Overturn Approval Of Canadian Copper Mine

via mining.com

Save the Scenic Santa Ritas, the Center for Biological Diversity, the Arizona Mining Reform Coalition and the Sierra Club’s Grand Canyon Chapter have filed a lawsuit in federal court in the hope that it rescinds the U.S. Forest Service’s approval of Hudbay Minerals’ (TSX, NYSE:HBM) Rosemont Projectin southern Arizona.

The $1.5-billion Rosemont Project is an open-pit copper mine in the Santa Rita Mountains, about 50 km southeast of Tucson. It is expected to be the third-largest copper mine in the United States, accounting for approximately 10% of the country’s total copper production, and it received a Final Record of Decision from the Forest Service back in June, 2017.

But before Hudbay reaches such big production goals, it has to deal with environmentalists’ concerns and legal actions. In the case of the recent lawsuit, the four organizations involved allege that the mine would violate nearly a dozen state and federal laws, threaten water resources and destroy Coronado National Forest land.

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Bill Introduced To De-Regulate Hair Styling

via azcapitoltimes.com

Ugenti-Rita said she was approached by lobbyists for Drybar, a decade-old national firm that specializes in quickie blowouts. That can include everything from a shampoo to simply putting someone’s hair up with pins.

The firm already has three locations in the state.

Only thing is, to do even just that in Arizona requires a state license, something Ugenti-Rita said could cost close to $10,000.

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Arizona Farmers Can’t Find Workers

 

Via kvoa.com

Arizona farmers and ranchers are coming up short in their search for workers. Many Americans are not attracted to the remote lifestyle, manual labor and long hours the job demands.

Farm operators have turned to H2-A visas, which allows farmers to employ foreign, temporary agriculture workers.

There are about 20,000 farmers in Arizona. There are less than 5,800 certified H2-A workers. One complaint from farmers is that the application demand is higher than what the government allows.

 

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As Nafta Unravels, AZ Pushes Ahead

 

Via kdminer.com

PHOENIX – As a border state, Arizona plays a dual role in some of President Donald Trump’s policy proposals. It wants the border to be shielded from drug smuggling and undocumented immigration, but still be open for trade with Mexico.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, a Republican who endorsed Trump during his campaign, has distanced himself from the president’s stance on the North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA. Trump called it “the worst trade deal” ever to be signed and has threatened to end it numerous times.

When asked about the border wall in a radio interview earlier this year, Ducey said “a wall in certain places certainly benefits Arizona,” but he added that he wanted “to make sure that we maintain the relationship we have with our trading partners.”

 

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South-Side Development Makes Way For Aerospace Industry

 

Via news.azpm.org

South of the Tucson International Airport, Raytheon Parkway has served as a main commute for workers at Raytheon Missile Systems.

That road is now being extended past Aerospace Parkway, creating access to land put aside by Pima County for the Aerospace, Defense and Technology Business and Research Park.

The road is key, according to Nancy Cole, the project manager for Pima County.

 

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