The issue will significantly impact future initiatives but is also important to both supporters and opponents of this year’s initiatives. It is especially relevant for the Invest in Education citizens’ initiative; a legal challenge to the initiative asserts that the petitions did not properly describe the impact the measure would have on income taxes. This case resulted in the Maricopa County Superior Court ruling that the strict compliance standard is unconstitutional; supporters of the strict compliance standards say they will take the issue to the Arizona Supreme Court.
In the News
This week, Governor Ducey reiterated his commitment to his school safety plan that would create a Severe Threat Order of Protection process to allow judges to remove guns from individuals thought to be a threat. The federal government issued a reminder that Arizona may need to implement water conservation measures if Lake Mead water levels continue to decrease, and a judge heard arguments in a legal challenge to Arizona’s prohibition against turning in someone else’s ballot.
The Arizona Attorney General said that funds from the state’s medical marijuana program can be used for addiction treatments, and the Arizona Department of Education got federal approval of a plan to address the millions of dollars for special education programs that were misallocated.
The Arizona Supreme Court established a new committee to continue to evaluate recommendations and best practices for mental health and the judicial system, and upheld a decision to remove an Arizona Senate candidate from the ballot because of fraudulent petition signatures.
State Releases New Report on Opioid Abuse
The Arizona Department of Health Services released its 2017 Arizona Opioid Emergency Response Report
this week, highlighting the state’s progress to decrease deaths from the use of opioids. DHS Director Dr. Cara Christ described the total of 949 overdose deaths last year as “alarming, but not unexpected,” and she outlined her agency’s plans
to reduce opioid abuse in the state.
On the Bright Side…
The fight against opioid abuse got more funding this week: Blue Cross Blue Shield announced a $10 million investment
in a “Mobilize AZ” grant for efforts to innovate, educate, and improve access to treatment.
2018 Election Resources
For an audio version of The Arizona Clean Election Commission’s Voter Education Guide, call (877) 361-8821.