Where is that Audit of the Rio Nuevo Program ?

Anyone remember this story?

The Tucson City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to look into seeking a detailed, outside audit of Rio Nuevo.

In case you forgot, the date of this article was March 24, 2009.  Well, guess what, today is October 20th and there is still no audit.  A call to the offices of the 7 dwarfs reveals that the audit process has not even been started.  So after you voted for the audit, you refuse to start the audit (at least until the elections are over).

Councilwoman Nina Trasoff, who heads the now-suspended meetings of the Rio Nuevo subcommittee, voted for the audit proposal after saying that she thought it [the audit] was unnecessary and likely costly.

No Nina, losing the Gem Show is costly; losing the baseball teams is costly; losing our bond rating is costly.  Keeping you and Karen and Dick in office is in all, too costly.  Say Bye-Bye.

The Third World – The World without Business

The Third World is impoverished. This poverty is not because of one country taking from another, taking too much of the “fixed pie,” as Left “Progressive” thinking asserts, but is a result of a hostile environment for the planting, germination and nurturing of new businesses and for the expansion and healthy maintenance of existing businesses. With lack of businesses, comes a lack of employment as the business sector offers a nearly unlimited flexibility and potential for more opportunities for employment and self-employment by the hour, by the day, by the week, by the month, by the year, providing individuals far more access to earning income starting with little or no experience and working one’s way up to higher levels of responsibility and productivity than any rigid governmental employment structure can ever provide.

Businesses are the manifestation of productivity in a society. Business is one outlet through which people express natural human creativity in creating and producing goods and services for the community. Businesses are the fruit of human imagination and problem-solving, and are borne of an awareness of the needs of the local society and how these needs can be met.

Businesses can be as small as a carpenter fashioning one table at a time, a gardener employing two people to care for fifty clients’ yards, a babysitter who provides services to two families. Many businesses are as simple as a chauffeur saving up his money to buy a two room lodging, one half to live in, the other half to rent out. He raises his family’s standard of living modestly, but measurably and enhances his children’s chances to higher achievement in the future. Instead of a renter himself, he is now an owner of a small, income-producing asset which he can sell later if he chooses. Another fellow makes his start by hawking drinks on the street. He saves enough money to pay for a kiosk so he doesn’t have to stand in the sun, wind and rain anymore, and sell more drinks, and he’s noticed people like a certain type of biscuit so he adds that to his inventory. In year of this, he has saved up enough money to build a small room, where he can stock fifty items, matches, tea, tomato paste, the staples he’s discovered the local community will buy. To make a sale, he’ll break sets, sell half-packages, whatever he perceives his clients can and will buy.

This natural identification of a need and a solution to addressing that need happens every day. It’s impossible to suppress and shouldn’t be suppressed. In the midst of a refugee camp of displaced people, 10,000 of them, chased and beaten out of their homes with hardly more than the clothes on their backs, within two days, while government and humanitarian aid agencies sat in meetings to discuss the emergency, hawkers had already figured out how to get small goods into the guarded camp and were wandering through selling items which people needed. People require goods and services to live and to function, and other people are willing to do the hustle to make those necessities or luxuries available. The two, consumer and provider, are brought together, they exchange payment for goods and they both depart satisfied.

In America, this free market tradition has brought the nation and the individual great comfort and wealth, yet many people in America do not perceive themselves as wealthy. But a comparison of the standard of living of an American carpenter versus an African, or South-Asian (Indian) carpenter dramatically displays the difference between an American carpenter’s comfort and a Third World carpenter’s comfort. An American carpenter, one of the trades, owns a car, owns a truck, owns a house. There is nothing noteworthy in America to see a Middle Class carpenter in a three bedroom house, with two full baths, a half bath and a garage, in fact it is expected and the norm, usually with much more. In the Third World, a carpenter is of the Middle Class, with a trade by which he can produce a regular income. His transportation is a bicycle. His family lives in a nine by twelve foot rented room, and shares a toilet with up to ten other families also renting rooms alongside his. A single room is his home – kitchen, salon, bedroom for the whole family in one. The major feature is a sturdy locked door to keep the thieves out at night. He’s admired. He has a nice little sofa, his wife has a decent set of cooking pots, a nice tea server for guests, and underneath the embroidered dust cloth is a second-hand TV, which can be used when the electricity is on. His wife fills their family jerry cans with water from the communal tap at the end of the building. She knows when to fill as the water is rationed through the city, on in her neighborhood for certain hours of the day only.

Both men have the same trade. They both are solidly representative of their respective nations’ Middle Classes, but the American carpenter has benefited from a business environment that his Third World counterpart does not have.

The Third World has several critical flaws that make it Third World, a World without Business.

The chauffeur mentioned earlier is real. He lives in the country of Guinea in West Africa. He is a professional driver who works for one of the international organizations, so he’s had a steady, decent-paying job, so with part of his earnings he built a small building. His family lived in one 9 by 12 foot rooms and he rented out the other 9 by 12 to a tenant. It took him years to be able to save up enough to shift out of renter to min-home-owner and mini-landlord. He began to enjoy a bit more income to send his kids to a better school. His home/rental was situated in a busy, growing neighborhood about three miles out of downtown Conakry and he was poised to expand to rent out a second room to add a little more again to his monthly income. But today, his income is only his salary and he must rent a place for his family. Why?

The chauffeur pointed out to us what happened, indicating a restricted construction area we were passing by one day. The government decided that the square mile community was in the exact location they absolutely needed to put up new governmental and international agency buildings. The entire neighborhood was razed to the ground, not a person of the thousands in it had any say in the matter and not a soul was compensated. After years of saving, plus the hard work of construction, the chauffeur was wrecked, his home and rental, destroyed. He’s older, and has fewer years of income ahead before mandatory retirement; his investment for his family and his old age is gone. Instead of having some buffer and cushion, he is back to the scramble of his early days, but with more mouths to feed. Every business and residence in that area, including scores and scores of small kiosks and shops and services, was literally wiped off the map. The investment of the wealthy, government-connected were enhanced by the government taking that land and handing it to contractors and politically-connected landowners who then had the guarantee of years of lucrative leasing to international organizations, but the investments of thousands of little guys was destroyed. A fraction of those micro-investors had the resources and drive left to start over, wary to invest in anything that could be taken away again.It wasn’t Big Corporation that hurt the little guy, it was Big Government, and what was destroyed was Business. The people moved on to more squalid living, and just make do, because they had no choice. But many of them have lost heart to start another business, to invest again because of the disappointment and discouragement of their loss of years of sacrifice. They are unable to raise their standard of living. They remain at hardly more than a subsistence level of economic activity. Every time they try to improve, their efforts are knocked down. First World “experts” tsk and shake their heads, decrying the local people’s woeful lack of initiative as the barrier to development, without a glimmer of understanding as to why a universal, natural in-born human trait was missing. Yet, immigrant Africans are amongst the fastest-rising immigrant achievers in America. If these people had no initiative because of their culture, how come they flourish in America? Initiative hadn’t been missing, it had been punished. Likewise, international corporations learn the same brutal lessons about the wisdom or futility of investment efforts when their companies are overrun, their employees threatened, and their assets are seized by national governments made up of political officials scheming to enrich themselves on other people’s work.

A survey of Third World businesses will reveal a pattern of cynical adaptability. With confiscation a real threat, businesses large and small are stripped to the bare bones. Warehouses and factories appear dilapidated, lest – by being neat and well-kept, and noticeably prosperous -they catch the eye of a covetous government official. Not a penny of investment which can be gone without goes into maintaining the infrastructure – just enough to keep it from falling on everyone’s heads, no more. No paint, no improvements, just mildewing plaster. Private businesspeople in the Third World have an emergency plan, which includes their passports in one hand at all times, so they can abandon the country within hours if they have to, to literally walk away from everything they own there, and everything they own was deliberately chosen to be expendable. One Third World writer complained a few years ago, “At least with the old days, the “corruptocrats” would invest their money locally. But with the Socialists, Communists and Dictators seizing property and banks, the rich folks don’t dare keep their money in country. They move it out immediately to foreign shelters, so local investment is practically dead.”

At the micro-level, it is the same. Third World streets are lined with rough, scrap-board tables so unattractive, they appear ready for the junk pile, but they are in service during the day holding the stock for sale of the small vender. When the police are sent out by the government-connected shop owners to remove the low-overhead competition, there’s not much to smash, and if it does get smashed, a few nails and another cross-support usually does the trick , and the goods are on display again after a discreet waiting period.

Business as a natural human endeavor needs certain basic conditions to survive and flourish. The lack of these five conditions produces the reality of the decrepit Third World economy:

1) Security. No one can run a business of any sort when rebels or armies or bandits rule the streets. Bullets, bombs and robberies are the results of two different failures of security: First, national security against all manifestations of foreign or domestic aggression which undermines and endangers normal societal functions; second, local security of a professional and competent police force. Effective local policing for a time in Lagos, Nigeria, abruptly and effectively brought a halt to massive robberies, where bandit gangs would start at one end of a street and rob every single house to the other end of it – dozens and dozens of frantic calls to the police unanswered, plus the alarming highway bridge robberies where in broad daylight, thieves would set up a roadblock at the two-mile long stretch of lagoon bridge, trapping hundreds of vehicles over the ocean waters so the thieves could rob each car, and everyone in them, one after the other. No police.

2) Property Rights. People of high and low classes will invest generously if they are guaranteed to be able to keep their investment. If their investment is not protected by law, subject to confiscation by government or by covetous competitors, people become discouraged and defeated in hopes of moving up the economic ladder. If ownership cannot be proven or protected, people are unable to buy or sell any asset with confidence.

3) Infrastructure. Expansion of business and increasing sophistication of business activity requires good roads and other transportation modes, plus reliable utilities like electricity and water, and communications. Commerce, and all business suffer greatly in Kenya due to the horrible state of the nation’s roads. Potholes, the infamous “Kenyan Massage” known here in Arizona as “washboard,” crumbling tarmac, and narrow routes cause accidents, loss of life, loss of property, vehicle damage, and delay, delay delay, with high transportation losses that hamper trade and reduce profits. Nigeria, an OPEC country, has fuel shortages as endemic as malaria thanks to government artificially setting low prices. Government officials commandeer cheap gasoline and diesel from the refineries and sell them in the neighboring countries for many times the Nigerian official price. Not much is left over for Nigerians. Cars queue for a week at the filling stations. The employee or boss cannot sit a week in a line at the gas station, so a driver must hold the place, sleeping in the vehicle, ready to move ahead the moment the tanker rumbles in to refill the station’s empty tanks. Nigerians, in order to maintain some semblance of continuity of working must horde gasoline and diesel. Explosions are common, thanks to poorly stored fuel. As the days without gas increase, so the number of cars on the roads decreases. People with enough money buy generators to provide electricity when the city power goes out, hours of a day, or two-three-four days in a row. This is a constant drain on productivity, and increases all costs on everything in the country.

4) Reasonable Taxation. Overtaxed people have no money to invest. Overtaxed businesses are a double tax ; first on the individual, then on the business. Businesses have to pass expenses on to the consumers in the calculations of the pricing for goods and services. There is point where more and more consumers cannot pay the increases, and the buy and sell activity slows or halts. Businesses cannot employ people if they can’t sell anything, and bribes to government officials to stay in business without harassment are simply another form of taxation.

5) Human Resource Development: Business can only expand as far as the ability to recruit competent people. Effective schooling to improve the productivity of people is key to an upwardly mobile population. Uneducated or poorly educated people are not effective in their ability to take on work or take on higher responsibility once employed.

Government doesn’t have to be the enemy of Business, but through human history the trend is that governments set themselves at every opportunity to shackle or destroy natural human business interaction and activity, through heavy taxation, confiscation, dereliction of security and disrespect for Rule of Law. America’s innovation was to clear the playing field, to recognize the importance of the merchant and the producer, to allow Human Business to flourish.

The Third World is right across the horizon. It can be reached in a day from any place on the planet. What excuse then is there to ignore or dismiss the reality of how these nations remain in poverty and human stagnation? What excuse is there is to claim that American Business has not served Americans well when the standard of living for the American Middle Class has exceeded the Middle Class of every other nation in every measure since American Independence, and the evidence is openly verifiable? Government is best when it provides a few key neutral functions which enable human beings to express their aspirations through their own hard work and initiative. It is at its worse when it covets all human productivity while being crushingly jealous of the human natural cooperative, social drive for business. Actions have consequences. America, indeed no country, is immune from becoming part of the “Third World,” a moribund and aspiration-crushing nation-state of being – The World without Business.

Az Governor’s Key Political Advisor Declares War on Goldwater Institute

In the interests of debate and education, I am posting this piece for our readers to review. A bit of background, HighGround (Chuck Coughlin) is best associated with John McCain’s tenure in office; former Governor Fife Symington who was given the boot forcing Jane D. Hull into the Governor’s office; and former Attorney General Grant Woods. Most recently, Chucky is best remembered for heading up Jan Brewer’s transition team and, perhaps being one of the luminaries behind Jan’s popular tax war with the Legislature…. So, with that in mind … here’s Chuck in his own words.

ChuckCoughlinJoker

The Goldwater Institute is Hurting (Not Helping) Our Economy

by: J. Charles Coughlin

In the worst economy in recent history, the Goldwater Institute is looking for ways to ensure that cities and towns will be even more strapped for cash. Their latest salvo, from Nick Dranias, attacks development incentives and touts reforms to end one of local government’s most successful economic tools.

At the very heart of economic incentives is the notion that growth should pay for itself. Dranias would like you to believe that cities are handing out sacks of taxpayer money to developers who agree to come to town. The Goldwater Institute’s public relations campaign surrounding their litigation relies on that age old propaganda rule, that if you repeat a lie often enough it becomes the truth.

The truth is, not a single dime of taxpayer money has been spent on City North, nor are the taxpayers of Phoenix at risk. In fact, City North has already generated over $6.5 million in development fees and commercial, restaurant, construction, retail and residential-rental taxes (Az Rep 7/26 Fairbanks op/ed). All of this at a time when Phoenix and the State are most strapped for cash.

The reality is that cities are using these economic incentives to encourage and leverage private investment.

Development incentive agreements require that developers risk all of their own capital to get a project underway and performing before a portion of the revenue generated by the project itself is returned as compensation for the infrastructure already built.

Without being reimbursed for a portion of the five parking garages, CityNorth’s developer would pursue a less capital-intensive design. This would likely result in approximately half of the development being taken up by surface parking lots, thus limiting the number of sales tax-generating businesses and resulting in a less environmentally attractive, sustainable, pedestrian-oriented, economically viable and desirable project.

The agreement ensures that CityNorth will be of sufficient density to maximize the City’s ability to generate revenue and jobs. In fact, the City will receive as much as $900 million in new net revenue with the incentive agreement. That’s a significantly better deal for Phoenix – especially in these tough economic times when the city is struggling with cuts and searching for long-term revenue sources.

I agree with Dranias when he says, “Local government fee and tax revenues are plummeting and we just can’t afford to have our cities giving away the tax money that should be spent on vital public services like law enforcement.”

The difference is, the real drain on tax dollars is coming from the Institute’s assault on cities, who must defend themselves in order to preserve the economic tools that allow them to grow and build their economy. The Goldwater Institute’s witch hunt against economic development incentives doesn’t save taxpayer money – it creates even more uncertainty in an already troubled marketplace.

Their efforts to eradicate effective, longstanding economic development policies are economically and politically irresponsible for an organization that is supposed to be dedicated to “economic and educational freedom.”

Dranias and the Goldwater Institute’s harmful efforts to destabilize critical revenue sources for cities portray an organization that does not understand current development policies in Arizona – policies that work to ensure that growth pays for itself. It seems that the Goldwater Institute is not “for” anything, outside of costly lawsuits used for their own publicity and fundraising efforts.

They certainly are showing no interest in finding long-term solutions to revive Arizona’s economy.

http://www.azhighground.com/?p=293

Online Blogger Debate at 7 PM

Cox7InnovateAZ

Don’t forget to visit Cox 7 at 7 PM to watch Donna Gratehouse of Democratic Diva and myself go head-to-head over the State Budget and the last legislative session. The debate is only 30 minutes long and our answers were short but it’s a good chance to see your local activists go at it.

PR: Goddard Leads All Republicans for Governor; Martin Strongest GOP Hopeful

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wed. October 21, 2009

Democrat Goddard Leads All Republicans for Governor; Martin Strongest GOP Hopeful

GOP Gubernatorial Primary Shaping Up

PHOENIX- Arizona Attorney General Terry Goddard outpolls all potential GOP candidates for governor by double digits – except State Treasurer Dean Martin, according to a new poll released today by the Arizona Chapter of NAIOP, which represents commercial real estate development.

Goddard, who is widely expected to be the Democrat candidate for Governor in Arizona in 2010, has a 15 point lead on current Arizona Republican Governor Jan Brewer, 48.3% to 32.8%, according to a poll of 600 likely voters conducted Oct. 2 through Oct. 8 which has a margin of error of 4%.

The potential Democrat nominee also handily beats potential GOP candidates including former Governor J. Fife Symington (53.8% to 28.8%); Secretary of State Ken Bennett (46.2% to 31.8%) and Tucson Attorney and former Arizona Regent John Munger (46.7% to 28%).

However, against current Republican State Treasurer Dean Martin, Goddard’s margin of victory drops to less than 7 points, 42.8% for Goddard to 36.3% for Martin.

The poll was conducted before former Governor Fife Symington announced he would not be a candidate for Governor.

What appears to be hurting Republicans in the general election match-up against Terry Goddard is the fact that 60% of respondents feel the state is on the wrong track and only 24.1% say the state is on the right track.

While many political pundits say 2010 may be a bad year for Republicans in the state of Arizona, the polling data suggests otherwise.

When voters were asked generically what party they would vote for in 2010 for governor, Republicans came out on top, 35.3% to 29.3% for Democrats, with 9.8% for an independent, 8.5% other party, and 17% undecided.

Registered Republicans were also asked for their preference in the Republican primary. The results were: 16.2% for former Arizona Governor Fife Symington; 15.8% for current Governor Jan Brewer; 14.3% for current Arizona Treasurer Dean Martin; 8.5% for Arizona businessman Robert Graham; 6.6% for current Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker; 5.9% for current Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett; 3.3% for attorney and former Arizona Regent John Munger; 1.5% for former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters; and 27.9% either none, undecided, or refused.

As a follow up, these same voters were asked “If your first choice were not running for Governor, who would your second choice be for the Republican nomination for Arizona Governor?” The results were: 11.8% for current Governor Jan Brewer; 11.0% for current Arizona Treasurer Dean Martin; 7.0% for current Secretary of State Ken Bennett; 6.3% for former Arizona Governor Fife Symington; 4.4% for attorney and former Arizona Regent John Munger; 3.3% for Arizona businessman Robert Graham; 3.3% for former U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters; 2.9% for current Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker; and 50.1% either none, undecided, or refused.

When Republican likely voters are given a first and second choice among eight potential Republican candidates, Governor Brewer pulls the most combined support closely followed by State Treasurer Dean Martin.

NAIOP is a national association of 15,000+ members and an extensive network of 58 chapters that represent the interests of developers and owners throughout North America. The Arizona Chapter of NAIOP is the trade association representing the commercial real estate industry in Arizona. With over 630 members, NAIOP-AZ is currently the 8th largest chapter in the nation.

PR: Wnuck Prepares for Third Town Hall in Series of Seven

Eric Wnuck

For Immediate Release: October 20, 2009

Wnuck Prepares for Third Town Hall in Series of Seven

Scottsdale, AZ (October 20th, 2009) — Congressional Candidate and Scottsdale businessman Eric Wnuck continues with the third in his series of seven Town Halls in Congressional District 5. This Town Hall will focus on various issues related to healthcare reform, related costs, and the impact of proposed legislation.

The third Town Hall will be held Saturday, October 24th at the Fountain Hills Community Center, 13001 N La Montana Dr, Fountain Hills, AZ 85268 from 10:00 – 11:30am. Wnuck will be joined by Dr. Byron Schlomach, Director of the Center for Economic Prosperity at the Goldwater Institute, Dr. Jeffrey Singer, Treasurer for Arizonans for Health Care Freedom and a member of the Board of Directors of the Goldwater Institute for Public Policy Research, and Len Gilroy, Director of Government Reform at Reason Foundation, a nonprofit think-tank advancing free minds and free markets.

The first two Town Halls were a great success. “Our campaign is really building momentum within the district. The residents of Congressional District 5 that I have spoken to feel they are being ignored by the career politicians in Washington,” stated Wnuck.

“Our current Congressional representative has not only failed to serve his constituents, but has become a puppet for Nancy Pelosi and the special interests in Washington. The people of Congressional District 5 have been ignored: as Americans, we have a right to voice our opinions freely, which is why I am hosting these town halls. We have reached a vital cross-road in the history of our country and I am listening to the voters in CD-5 because Harry Mitchell has failed to do so. Mitchell is only concerned with representing the wishes of Nancy Pelosi and has lost touch with the residents of our district.”

Remaining Town Hall Schedule:

HealthCare Forum – Fountain Hills

Date/Time: Saturday, October 24th, 10:00AM to 11:30AM

Location: Fountain Hills Community Center, 13001 N La Montana Dr, Fountain Hills, AZ 85268

Border Security Forum – Mesa

Date/Time: Saturday, November 7th, 10:00AM to 11:30AM

Location: Mesa Community College, 1833 W Southern Ave., Mesa, AZ 85202

Healthcare/Economy Forum – Tempe

Date/Time: Monday, November 16th, 6:00PM to 7:30PM

Location: Pyle Center, 655 E Southern Ave. Tempe, AZ 85282

Healthcare Forum – Ahwatukee

Date/Time: Saturday, December 5th, 10:00AM to 11:30AM

Location: Ironwood Library, 4333 E Chandler Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85048

Healthcare Forum – Chandler

Date/Time: Saturday, December 12th, 10:00AM to 11:30AM

Location: Chandler Public Library, 4930 W Ray Rd, Chandler, AZ 85226

Wnuck believes face-to-face meetings and forums on these important issues are a necessity. “I am becoming increasingly concerned with the massive expansion of government, the proposed takeover of health care, the ownership of the automobile and banking industries, and the mounting deficits and colossal bailouts. The average American has been overlooked by Washington. We have the inherent right to voice our opinions and elect representatives who listen to voters, act based on the best interest of their constituents, and uphold the principles of our great Constitution. I look forward to each of these Town Halls; Arizonans want results and I am running because Washington bureaucrats have failed us time and time again, and in this election, voters will hold them accountable at the polls.”

PR: Dana Kennedy, Partisan Charity or Personal Enrichment?

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Questions About Personal Enrichment Via Partisan Charity Emerge For Phoenix City Council Candidate Dana Kennedy

PHOENIX, ARIZONA. OCTOBER 20, 2009. While it’s unknown if U2 will sing “Vertigo” at University of Phoenix Stadium tonight, it’s almost certain Phoenix voters will catch a case of political vertigo after learning of council candidate Dana Kennedy’s personal enrichment via a partisan charity.

“Emerge AZ,” a charity run by Kennedy, was founded to train liberals running for political office. But tax records show that it is Kennedy herself who seems to be winning the most.

In the most recent tax filings available over half of the charitable monies raised were used to pay Kennedy herself. Only $1,000 was spent on “training,” the supposed intent of the charity, while some $6,000 were spent on parties.

Additionally, Kennedy appears to have failed to disclose her position as a board member for the same charity, creating even more questions about her conflicts of interest with the charity and reasons for hiding it.

“Creating jobs and providing remedies for the city budget situation are the two biggest challenges facing Phoenix today. But creating a job for one’s self via charitable donations is not effective or appropriate experience for helping Phoenicians getting jobs in this recession. And if Sal Diciccio’s opponent cannot ethically manage a small charitable budget how in the world would she be able to help with the second largest budget in the State of Arizona?” said Sal Diciccio for Council supporter and Phoenix neighborhood leader Alex Tauber.

For copies of the most recent tax records or additional comment please contact Jason Rose.

Following Arizona’s money

by Byron Schlomach, Ph.D.
Goldwater Institute
 
Nine hundred and twenty dollars per second. That’s how fast Arizona’s state government spends our tax money. Following the recent update of the Goldwater Institute’s spending clock, people asked how we arrived at that particular number. Allow me to explain.

Nine hundred and twenty dollars per second is $29 billion divided by 31,536,000–total state spending divided by the number of seconds in a typical 365-day year. The media always talk about the state’s General Fund spending, which is officially budgeted at $9.4 billion this year. But when you add up all of the funds available for state government to spend, the total grows to $29 billion.

The General Fund consists of money mainly from state sales and income taxes and can theoretically be used for any purpose at the discretion of the legislature. There are other appropriated funds, such as licensing fees, that the legislature also has discretion over, currently budgeted at $3 billion. Yet another category is “non-appropriated” spending, much of it in somewhat self-supported government functions like universities and state parks, where spending is estimated at $6.8 billion. Then, there is federal funding. This year, federal money passed through the state is expected to total $10.4 billion.

Arizona’s GDP in 2008 was $249 billion. That means about 12 percent of the state’s GDP is determined by spending through state government, a sector that hotel and casino magnate Steve Wynn recently pointed out is not the productive part of our economy. Arizona must reduce state government and give private, more productive sectors the opportunity to grow our shrinking economy.
 
Byron Schlomach, Ph.D., is the director of the Goldwater Institute’s Center for Economic Prosperity.

Politics on the Rocks event Nov. 12th

Republicanville.com National Launch Party at The W Hotel Scottsdale Thursday, November 12th, 6:00 PM

http://www.republicanville.com/home.php

http://www.starwoodhotels.com/whotels/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=1736



http://www.politicsontherocks.com/ CLICK HERE FOR MAP & DIRECTIONS

Many of Arizona’s most influential politicians will be on hand for this event and there will be $6 cocktail and $4 beer specials during the event. Also, we will have a live DJ for entertainment!

Come join Politics on the Rocks, Arizona’s largest Republican & Conservative networking group, as we celebrate the national launch of Republicanville.com. aims to change the political landscape. The site is founded on the core principles of fiscal conservatism, smaller government, low taxes, stronger defense, and capitalism.

Republicanville provides individuals and political leaders a social network that is strictly for their political involvement, where everyone is free to speak their mind with others who share the same political interests and voting goals. This unique virtual nation will allow everyone to connect instantly and personally with friends, elected officials, candidates, and organizations.

Branded “A social network of the people, by the people, and for the people,” this online social network will give citizens and politicians FREE networking tools to advance their political views and communicate with their constituents. Members can make new friends and express what’s on their mind using blogs, videos, pictures and social linking. Members can also start groups, post events & jobs and chat live. In the works are a number of amazing features and applications to assist in connecting individuals with their elected officials and vice versa.

One of the most interesting features of the social network is that you can handle all your tweets, followers, and search twitter without ever leaving the site. Another great feature is that you can invite all your friends from Facebook, LinkedIn, email accounts and other networks all inside republicanville.

We look forward to seeing everyone on Thursday, November 12th 6:00 PM at The W Hotel Scottsdale.

Regards,
Politics on the Rocks Executive Board



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REMINDER: Republican Professionals 2-Year Anniversary Party Tonight!

RP Logo

Scottsdale, Arizona – The popular networking group, Republican Professionals, will be celebrating its two-year anniversary at the renowned Scottsdale Plaza Resort on Tuesday, October 20, at 6pm. This month’s special event features remarks by three highly accomplished women from Arizona’s political scene.

Brenda Burns, one of the honorees, was the first woman to become Arizona House Majority Leader and repeated her remarkable feat as the first woman to be Arizona Senate President.  Joining her will be Laura Knaperek, who served eight years in the Arizona State House, and Starlee Rhoades, the Vice President of Communications at the Goldwater Institute.  All three distinguished guests will discuss their experiences and the important roles that many women perform, in public service.

In addition, leaders from the Dodie London Series, which seeks to increase the number and influence of Arizona’s Republican women in government and politics, will be in attendance.

The Republican Professionals milestone is going to be celebrated with a champagne toast, silent auction, and party favors.  Thousands of people, over the last two years, have attended the Republican Professionals’ free networking events.  Elected officials, political candidates and business professionals have enjoyed coming together to meet and discuss ways to help make the Republican Party grow in Arizona.  Prominent guests of honor at previous events include Jan Brewer, Ken Bennett and Joe Arpaio.

The event will be held at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort’s Cypress Court from 6pm to 8pm.  The hotel has arranged food and drink menu specials for the invited guests of Republican Professionals.  Given the popularity of past events and the buzz generated by our anniversary announcement, Republican Professionals highly encourages you to RSVP.

Republican Professionals hosts free networking events, each month, in the Phoenix metropolitan area.  For more information, and to RSVP, contact Thomas Galvin, Executive Vice President, at thomas@republicanprofessionals.org.  The group’s website is www.phoenix.republicanprofessionals.org/

The purpose of Republican Professionals is to increase the participation of Republicans in the political process, further the goals of the Republican Party, and bring Republicans together so that they may network, volunteer, organize and communicate with fellow professionals.

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