Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Governor signs Cardenas’ bill to help National Guard members go to college

Governor signs Cardenas’ bill to help National Guard members go to college

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – The governor recently signed a bill Rep. Mark Cardenas, D-Phoenix (District 19), introduced that will help National Guard members cover a portion of their college tuition.

“Arizona was one of only three states that provided no educational assistance to guardsmen,” Cardenas said. “This affects recruitment efforts because educational benefits are among the most sought after by potential recruits.”

HB 2240 creates a tuition waiver program for Arizona’s National Guard members who want to attend in-state, public universities. The waiver will be available beginning in 2017, provided that universities have funding available to cover the cost.

“In recent years, we have seen fewer continuing military education opportunities, although members of the armed forces are required to graduate from college in order to qualify for some promotions,” Cardenas said. “Without career advancement, some guardsmen may not stay in the service. By signing this bill into law, the governor has helped ongoing efforts to better serve those who serve our country.”


Monday, April 13, 2015

Gabaldón receives Community Leadership Award

 Gabaldón receives Community Leadership Award
In recognition of her contributions to improve the region

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – The Pima County Board of Supervisors recently presented Rep. Rosanna Gabaldón, D-Sahuarita (District 2), with a Community Leadership Award for her positive efforts to contribute to the region. 

“It is an honor to serve my community,” Gabaldón said. “This is my home and I want to ensure that it is a safe place, with strong neighborhoods, vibrant schools and sustainable employment opportunities.”

Gabaldón received the award at a recognition ceremony on April 11 at the Mulcahy YMCA in Tucson.

“It was wonderful to receive this award, alongside many other community leaders and volunteers.”


Republicans rush into bad decisions, leave destructive legacy

Republicans rush into bad decisions, leave destructive legacy

Throughout the legislative session, the Republicans showed that they prioritize special interests (like private, for-profit prisons) over ensuring a prosperous future for our state.

Arizona lags behind the rest of the country’s economic recovery, and that is because the Republican leadership in this state refuses to invest in education or job creation.  Just last week, all three Arizona universities proposed additional fees and tuition increases for some students to offset the nearly $100 million Republicans cut from their budgets.

The Republicans rushed into bad decisions this session and created long-term damage  that did not go unnoticed. Here are just a few pieces written about the poor choices made by the Republican leadership:

A budget is a statement of values, and so is a legislative agenda. The Republicans have shown that they do not value public schools, universities or the economic stability of our state.

We can do better than this. House Democrats remain committed to finding innovative ways to improve neighborhood schools, make higher education more affordable and ensure that there are sustainable, high-wage jobs here.

If you have ideas about how to move Arizona forward, now is the time to get involved. Click here to find ways to make your voice heard.

Rep. Steele Works to Move #AZFORWARD

Friday, April 10, 2015

Joint statement from Arizona House Democratic Leaders on the passing of former Governor Castro

Joint statement from Arizona House Democratic Leaders on the passing of former Governor Castro

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Democratic Leader Eric Meyer, D-Paradise Valley (District 28), Assistant Democratic Leader Bruce Wheeler, D-Tucson (District 10), and Democratic Whip Rebecca Rios, D-Phoenix (District 27), released this joint statement regarding the passing of Raul H. Castro, Arizona’s first Latino governor.

“Governor Castro leaves a legacy of impeccable public service and inspiration. In his varied roles as ambassador, judge and executive, he contributed to the betterment of the state and the country. Governor Castro’s life and work are an indelible part of our history. He will be greatly missed, and our thoughts are with his family.”


Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Governor signs Rep. Steele's HB 2553

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Governor signs delayed birth certificate bill

Governor signs delayed birth certificate bill

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – The governor signed a Senate bill identical to the one sponsored by Rep. Albert Hale, D-St. Michaels (District 7), which will codify recent action by the Arizona Department of Health Services to make it easier for Native Americans to obtain a delayed birth certificate in the state.

“This is a very important issue to all Native American communities in Arizona. I am grateful that the governor and my legislative colleagues made correcting this hardship a priority,” Hale said.

The law makes permanent the Arizona Department of Health Services policy that streamlined the process for Native Americans to receive delayed birth certificates. Previously, getting a delayed birth certificate required producing multiple forms of verification that a person was born at a specific time and place.  Many Native Americans are born at home and do not get a birth certificate issued at the time of birth, and securing the necessary documentation is often difficult. A birth certificate is important documentation for receiving social security and other benefits.

Hale recognized the efforts of Coconino County Supervisor Lena Fowler in crafting the legislation.

“Without her efforts, this change would not have been possible,” Hale said.

Fowler highlighted the difficulties people face trying to collect the documentation currently needed.

 “This legislation will improve the quality of life for Native Americans in all 22 tribes in Arizona, and it will allow many people to prove their citizenship and their eligibility for services.”

The law will go into effect on July 3, 2015.

Rep. Hale is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation. He was born in Ganado and raised in Klagetoh, Arizona. He is Ashiihi (Salt), born for Todichiini (Bitter Water). His maternal grandparents are Hanaghani (Walk About clan). His paternal grandparents are Kiyanii (Tall House clan). He is a 1969 graduate of Fort Wingate High School, a Bureau of Indian Affairs boarding school located east of Gallup, New Mexico. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona (1973), and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of New Mexico School of Law, Albuquerque, New Mexico (1977), and an honorary Juris Doctor degree from Phoenix School of Law (2012).  He is the former President of the Navajo Nation.