Arizona Eagletarian

Arizona Eagletarian

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Redistricting -- more money drama

As you know, on Friday, Redistricting Commission director Ray Bladine sent a letter to state Treasurer Doug Ducey and Dept. of Administration director Scott Smith pointing out the legal issues surrounding the game of chicken the legislature is playing in the IRC funding saga.

The Yellow Sheet Reports that Ducey says:
My first responsibility as treasurer is to safeguard taxpayer money. If I cut a check every time someone sent me a letter, Arizona would have no money in the bank. The Treasurer's Office, just like your bank, can only access funds when instructed by the account owner. As it relates to the IRC, the Constitution designates the legislature as that account owner. Only when and if the legislature approves an additional appropriation will I make those funds available.
Of course, a case can be made that the PEOPLE of ARIZONA are the account owners and it is perhaps reasonable to characterize Ducey's response (given to a reporter, not to the IRC, by the way) as flippant. However, it's likely Ducey figures he would get sued either way, so why not just stay out of it and let the IRC duke it out with the legislature.

Regardless, the current status of the supplemental appropriation bills, according to the legislature's website, is that SB 1533 has not been voted in the Senate Rules committee, which must take place before it is heard in the Committee of the Whole (COW). The House version, HB2862 has been heard in both the minority and majority caucuses, which is the step immediately before COW.

Apparently, tomorrow (Wednesday) is a key day in this game of chicken. We'll see where it goes from there.


  1. Steve,

    Do you get the impression that the Republicans in the Legislature want the AIRC to sue the Legislature? Maybe the Republicans see it as a "win/win" situation. If the AIRC sues the Legislature to force the Legislature to do its constitutional duty and the Legislature loses, the Republicans can claim that an "out of control" judiciary is forcing them to fund a "spend happy" AIRC.