Issue 11 - March 27, 2015

Legislative Overview

Today marks the 75th day of the First Regular Session of the 52nd Legislature. The only committees to meet this week were the House and Senate Appropriations Committees, both of which had a significant number of bills on their agenda. There was also a significant amount of floor activity as members make a push to close out session before the 100 day deadline.

Municipal Elections

Early this week, both the House and the Senate voted unanimously to pass HB 2214 majority vote calculation; municipal elections and send it to the Governor for approval. The bill prescribes a formula for determining the majority of votes cast in municipal elections for the office of mayor or city council. The League supports the provisions, as it is a League Resolution that will save taxpayer dollars by eliminating unnecessary elections. We are grateful to Representative Michelle Ugenti (R-Scottsdale) for sponsoring the original bill (HB 2543) in the House and to Representative Warren Petersen (R-Gilbert) for also championing the issue after it was bogged down by procedural hurdles.

Guns in Public Buildings

On Tuesday, the Senate Appropriations Committee passed HB 2320 firearms; permit holders; public places by a vote of 5-3. Sponsored by Representative Brenda Barton (R-Payson), the bill requires public buildings and events to have electronic screening devices and security guards at all entrances if the public entity decides to deny entry to an armed person with a valid permit to carry a concealed weapon. The League is opposed to the bill since implementing these procedures is very costly. The bill now moves to the Rules Committee.

Pawnbrokers, Gold, and Fees

The Senate Appropriations Committee also passed HB 2419 (now) municipalities; gold; prohibited fees. The committee initially failed to pass the bill with a 4-4 vote, but did pass the bill by a vote of 5-3 upon reconsideration. The bill was originally sponsored by Representative Warren Petersen (R- Gilbert) but the strike everything amendment was offered by Senator Don Shooter (R- Yuma). The bill prohibits municipalities from imposing a fee, tax, or assessment on a pawnbroker or person in the business of buying gold in connection with any reportable transaction. The League is opposed to the bill as it threatens successful policing tools that help locate and return stolen goods to owners. Pawnbroker and gold dealer transaction fees are directly tied to programs that fund police detectives and computer systems that solve crimes and help pawnbrokers comply with state law. The bill now moves to the Rules Committee.

Waste Collection

On Tuesday, the House passed SB 1187 services outside municipal boundaries; requirements on Third Read (56-2). The bill adds requirements for cities or towns that provide landfill services and recycling collection or processing services outside of their boundaries. The League has been working closely with the sponsor, Senator Gail Griffin (R-Hereford), and its proponents on an amendment to clarify the intent and resolve the unintended consequences. The House adopted those amendments before voting to pass the bill. It now proceeds to the Senate for consideration of the House changes.

Legislative Bill Monitoring

(All bills being actively monitored by the League can be found here.)

HB 2142: water infrastructure finance authority; prepayment

HB 2315: financial information; comprehensive database; posting

HB 2383: contracting; TPT; land value (S/E: invalid annexation; return procedure)

HB 2410: municipalities; traffic citation quota; prohibition

SB 1072: local planning; residential housing; prohibitions

SB 1079: solid waste collection; multifamily housing

SB 1090: neutrality agreement; apprenticeship agreement; prohibition

SB 1169: fire code requirements; fire watch

SB 1241: AHCCCS; contractors; providers (S/E: energy measuring and reporting; prohibition)

SB 1300: law enforcement officers; body cameras

SB 1339: public records; unduly burdensome requests

SB 1342: responsibility of payment; utility services

SB 1344: organization of county; private property (S/E: municipal lobbyists; fiduciary duty; disclosure)

SB 1368: municipalities; additional business licenses; prohibition
Legislative Bulletin is published by the League of Arizona Cities and Towns.
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