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Award-winning local news from Arizona and metro Phoenix | The Arizona Republic in the streets 🗞️, @azcentral in the tweets (and online) | Instagram: azcentralSource
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Navajo Nation's Jill Jim named to President-elect Joe Biden's COVID-19 Advisory Board

Navajo Nation's Jill Jim named to President-elect Joe Biden's COVID-19 Advisory Board

Arizona Republic Dr. Jill Jim, executive director of the Navajo Department of Health, has been selected as a member of President-elect Joe Biden's COVID-19 Advisory Board, according to the Biden transition team.For the past 18 years, Jim has served in nonprofit, state and federal agencies, the Biden team said in a news release. Jim became a Cabinet member in the Navajo Nation in 2019.  According to the news release, Jim has dedicated her career to "preventing chronic diseases and addressing health care and health disparities among American Indians/Alaska Natives." The Navajo Nation while...

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3d ago
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'I will not close my business': Scottsdale gym owner balks at COVID-19 closure order from health officials

'I will not close my business': Scottsdale gym owner balks at COVID-19 closure order from health officials

Arizona Republic State health officials have ordered Self Made Training Facility in Scottsdale to close for violating rules aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19, but owner Jeffrey Mahaffey says he is keeping the business open.Mahaffey said he has been cited dozens of times by Scottsdale police since summer for disobeying the governor's executive orders. Now, he refuses to comply with the state order, which he says is overreaching.He said he tore down the closure notice that the Arizona Department of Health Services hung in his gym's window on Wednesday, and he won't stop doing business...

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Jul 8
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Florence prison unit locked down after hundreds of inmates rally day before Thanksgiving

Florence prison unit locked down after hundreds of inmates rally day before Thanksgiving

Arizona Republic The Cook Unit of the Eyman prison in Florence was locked down on Wednesday after hundreds of inmates rallied around staff and refused to leave, according to the Arizona Department of Corrections, Rehabilitation and Reentry."Several hundred inmates grouped together around staff and refused to disperse," department spokesperson Judy Keane said in a statement. Officials responded and "deployed nonlethal munitions" on the inmates to get them to comply, Keane said. No staff or inmates were reported to be injured, she said. The unit was still on lockdown as of Thursday...

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5d ago
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Pass the THC: Marijuana-infused Thanksgiving meals available

Pass the THC: Marijuana-infused Thanksgiving meals available

Arizona Republic If anyone is looking for herbs beyond the traditional sage and rosemary for their Thanksgiving meal, The Mint Dispensary has them covered.Marijuana-infused gravy, cornbread, cranberry sauce and a pumpkin dessert roll are available for medical-marijuana cardholders in Arizona at the Guadalupe dispensary.A limited number of heavily dosed Thanksgiving meal kits are available for pickup at the shop on Thanksgiving Day. The first 40 orders will get a free turkey as well, which will not be infused with marijuana.The Mint has made a name for itself with its marijuana kitchen at...

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7d ago
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Trump campaign announces Arizona public hearing on election, but lawmakers say none is planned

Trump campaign announces Arizona public hearing on election, but lawmakers say none is planned

Arizona Republic President Donald Trump’s campaign announced Tuesday that the Arizona Legislature would hold a public hearing on Nov. 30 about the election, but legislative leaders said they had not authorized any such meeting.The campaign touted the hearing as one of three in battleground states where it is disputing Trump’s defeat.It was reportedly scheduled for the same day officials are set to certify Arizona’s election results. But the campaign did not offer any details, such as the time of the hearing or the name of the legislative committee that will convene.“News to me,” Senate...

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7d ago
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Suns agree to unique deal with Morris twins

Suns agree to unique deal with Morris twins

Paul Coroazcentral sports Put two teen brothers on opposite sides of the dinner table with a pile of 20 $1 bills between them and leave the division of that cumulative allowance to them after a week of working.Any chance of a peaceful, expeditious solution? At the Morris household, the situation would have made sense.Marcus and Markieff Morris opened negotiations for contract extensions with the Suns on Friday and signed two days later after an unprecedented negotiation.Because the twins' lives are so intertwined to the point of basketball unity, Suns President of Basketball Operations Lon...

azcentral.com
Sep 29
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No one knew who took this viral mystery photo in the Petrified Forest. Now we do

No one knew who took this viral mystery photo in the Petrified Forest. Now we do

Arizona Republic In the credit where credit is due department, the credit belongs to Patrick Fuchs. He's 41 years old and a graduate of Northern Arizona University. He lives with his girlfriend in central Phoenix, and he works at a locally owned pizza restaurant in Scottsdale. He's an amateur bird watcher and photographer (his Instagram account is ) and an avid hiker, which happens to be how he took perhaps the most famous photo that no one ever got credit for. Until now. The picture is of a piece of petrified wood that over the millennia has crystalized into a type of richly colored quartz...

azcentral.com
Nov 23
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Uber driver says company isn't offering him aid after passenger repeatedly kicks his face, breaks his nose

Uber driver says company isn't offering him aid after passenger repeatedly kicks his face, breaks his nose

Arizona Republic The year 2020 has not been kind to Miguel Ochoa.The 46-year-old suffered serious symptoms after contracting COVID-19 and lost his clothing store due to the pandemic.Ochoa began driving for Uber to make ends meet and was trying complete a quota for a cash bonus when he received a ride request near the Phoenix Rising stadium after 11 p.m. on Oct 24.He picked up two men. They were acting rowdy, and Ochoa said he could tell they were quite drunk. Though he was hesitant about serving those types of passengers, Ochoa said he was more concerned about reaching his quota.Ochoa was...

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Nov 21
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Last challenge to Maricopa County election results tossed by judge

Last challenge to Maricopa County election results tossed by judge

Arizona Republic A Maricopa County Superior Court judge tossed out a lawsuit on Friday claiming that the county denied one voter the right to cast her ballot and failed to properly process another voter's ballot, dismissing the last election-related case pending in Arizona.Judge Margaret Mahoney did not elaborate on her reasoning for throwing out the case at the end of the hearing but said she would issue an order in writing.Whatever Mahoney decided, the case — involving only two ballots — would not have changed the outcome of the election.But the judge's decision, after a daylong trial,...

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Andrew Oxford
Nov 20
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Maricopa County Board of Supervisors votes unanimously to certify election results

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors votes unanimously to certify election results

Arizona Republic Maricopa County's election results are certified and final.The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors, the elected body that oversees elections in Arizona's most populous county, voted unanimously on Friday to approve the results of this month's general election.The majority-Republican supervisors did so after spending hours on Friday afternoon asking election officials who oversaw the voting process numerous questions related to election fairness, security, technology and oversight.Before the vote, the supervisors, four Republicans and one Democrat, said they were satisfied...

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Jen Fifield
Nov 20
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Was the mysterious object that fell from the sky onto the Navajo Nation from outer space? Or is there a more earthly explanation?

Was the mysterious object that fell from the sky onto the Navajo Nation from outer space? Or is there a more earthly explanation?

Arizona Republic It's a bird, it's a plane, no, it's a satellite. Or maybe a weather balloon.Navajo Nation officials say it fell from the sky on Wednesday and landed in a remote area of Dennehotso, a community about 25 miles east of Kayenta.Tully Begay, vice president of the tribe's Dennehotso Chapter, told The Arizona Republic the object landed about 1,200 feet from his home while he was away in Tuba City.He said he began to get calls from relatives at about 1 p.m. on Nov. 18 saying they witnessed the crash and captured it on photo and video.One of the photos was later The gray object in...

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Nov 19
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Interstate highways displaced thousands in Phoenix. The consequences were long-lasting

Interstate highways displaced thousands in Phoenix. The consequences were long-lasting

Arizona Republic Stella Pope Duarte grew up to the sound of construction and the smell of dirt.Through adolescence, she watched workers construct miles of roadway to form Interstate 17’s Durango Curve. It was about half a mile south of her home. Meanwhile, the street where her home sat was unpaved. “I could see the I-17 from the house,” Duarte said. “I remember it going up when I was a child.” The construction was constant, but she said people still went outside. They were “walking people” who tended to their gardens and often traveled by foot to their local corner store or to visit...

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Nov 18
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Ducey says he 'will accept the results' in presidential race — but only when lawsuits are over

Ducey says he 'will accept the results' in presidential race — but only when lawsuits are over

Arizona Republic Gov. Doug Ducey will accept the outcome of the presidential race only after all related lawsuits are resolved, he said during . "There are legal claims that are being challenged in court, and everybody on the ballot has certain access, rights and remedies," he said. "Once those are adjudicated and the process plays out, I will accept the results."Ducey would not comment on the merits of the  — one involving Maricopa County's audit process and another involving the Election Day experiences of just two voters — despite their unlikeliness to affect election results. A judge...

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Nov 19
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Judge throws out Arizona GOP lawsuit on Maricopa County vote audit, rejects request to delay canvass

Judge throws out Arizona GOP lawsuit on Maricopa County vote audit, rejects request to delay canvass

Arizona Republic A Maricopa County Superior Court judge on Thursday dismissed an  and denied the GOP's request to delay certification of election results.The decision appears to leave just one election-related challenge — which will not affect the results of any races — pending in Arizona.The Arizona Republican Party had filed its suit last week, alleging Maricopa County officials violated state law when they conducted a hand-count audit based on vote centers, open to any voter in the county, instead of assigned precincts.The results of the vote center audit, which had bipartisan...

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Nov 20
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Gov. Ducey orders COVID-19 test sites at Arizona airports. Here's what we know so far

Gov. Ducey orders COVID-19 test sites at Arizona airports. Here's what we know so far

Arizona Republic Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey ordered the state's Department of Health Services to work with Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport and Tucson International Airport to arrange to offer rapid COVID-19 testing on-site for travelers arriving and departing Arizona.The announcement came during the governor's press conference addressing the rise in COVID-19 cases in Arizona, during which Ducey from states that have recently been hit hard by the virus.Ducey said testing would be voluntary but is a way to provide more resources to the airport and...

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Nov 18
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'I gave it my all': Sen. Martha McSally says goodbye to the Senate in final floor speech

'I gave it my all': Sen. Martha McSally says goodbye to the Senate in final floor speech

Arizona Republic Defeated for the second time in three years, Sen. Martha McSally delivered her farewell speech on the floor of the U.S. Senate Wednesday, thanking Gov. Doug Ducey for appointing her and sounding like someone who knows her political career is over.McSally, R-Ariz., thanked her staff and the people of Arizona, whom she represented during her career on Capitol Hill for the past six years. She choked up at times while recalling her unconventional path to the Senate, the people she’s met along the way, and her decision to publicly discuss in a Senate hearing her experience with...

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Nov 18
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Court challenge could delay certification of Maricopa County election results

Court challenge could delay certification of Maricopa County election results

Arizona Republic An attempt by the Arizona Republican Party to force a new hand count of Maricopa County ballots could throw a wrench into the planned certification of election results by Friday, according to county attorneys.The lawsuit, one of two pending challenges to Arizona's election results, alleges county officials violated state law when they conducted a hand count audit based on vote centers instead of precincts.The results of the vote center audit, which had bipartisan oversight, matched electronic counts exactly. But the GOP wants a new, precinct-based hand count — even though...

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Nov 16
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3 reasons why Gov. Doug Ducey won't acknowledge that Joe Biden won the election

3 reasons why Gov. Doug Ducey won't acknowledge that Joe Biden won the election

Arizona Republic Did I miss Gov. Doug Ducey’s offer of congratulation to President-Elect Joe Biden?Perhaps it is unrealistic in these divided times to expect any show of good will or call for unity when the “other guy” wins.Perhaps it is simply asking too much that the Republican governor of a state that voted for Biden acknowledge that a Democrat has won the highest office in the land.Perhaps it’s better these days just to turn a deaf ear when the people have spoken. But it seems odd (to me, at least) that Arizona’s governor would decline to offer his best wishes to the man elected to lead...

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Nov 15
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Who is the 'Latino voter?' 2020 election showed Latino voters are diverse and vary region to region

Who is the 'Latino voter?' 2020 election showed Latino voters are diverse and vary region to region

Arizona Republic Ana Paula Cortes and Claudia Montijo share a common cultural background.Both are Latina women of Mexican descent. Both are in their 20s. And both are professionals. Cortes is a freelance writer in New York City who was born in Chula Vista, California, but grew up nearby Ensenada, a port city in the Mexican state of Baja California.Montijo, the daughter of Mexican immigrants, is an accountant who grew up in Nogales, Arizona, and now lives in Scottsdale.But their political views couldn't be further apart.Cortes is a diehard progressive who voted for Joe Biden because she...

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Oct 14
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Republican leaders in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin throw cold water on ploy to flip electors to Trump

Republican leaders in Arizona, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin throw cold water on ploy to flip electors to Trump

Bob Christie and Nicholas RiccardiThe Associated Press Republican leaders in Michigan and three other critical states won by President-elect Joe Biden say they won't participate in a legally dubious scheme to flip their state's electors to vote for President Donald Trump. Their comments effectively shut down a half-baked plot some Republicans floated as a last chance to keep Trump in the White House.State GOP lawmakers in Michigan, Arizona, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin have all said they would not intervene in the selection of electors, who ultimately cast the votes that secure a candidate's...

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Nov 10
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'It's time to get to work': Mark Kelly prepares to be sworn into Senate in early December

'It's time to get to work': Mark Kelly prepares to be sworn into Senate in early December

Arizona Republic As a retired Navy combat pilot and NASA astronaut, Mark Kelly has navigated treacherous airspace and commanded a space shuttle. As a retired Navy combat pilot and NASA astronaut, Kelly is used to hazardous journeys. But his training didn’t prepare him for navigating the complex corridors, cloakrooms, and centuries-old traditions of the U.S. Senate when he traveled to Capitol Hill to see the chamber where he will serve for the first time. There Kelly entered the intimate chamber, along with other incoming senators, for an up-close look at the space he will occupy to...

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Nov 14
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In Arizona, the final votes and the final call go for Biden

In Arizona, the final votes and the final call go for Biden

Arizona Republic After Thursday evening's voting results left no path to victory for incumbent President Donald Trump, the Friday tallies essentially ended the count.The national news organizations that hadn't already called Arizona for President-elect Joe Biden — NBC, CNN, CBS, The New York Times and The Washington Post — projected his win Thursday night. By Friday morning, Biden led Trump by about 11,000 votes in the statewide tally — a margin greater than the estimated number of ballots remaining to be counted in Arizona. Counting essentially wrapped up later in the day. Election...

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Caitlin McGlade
Nov 14
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Martha McSally concedes Arizona Senate special election to Mark Kelly more than a week after winner declared

Martha McSally concedes Arizona Senate special election to Mark Kelly more than a week after winner declared

Arizona Republic Sen. Martha McSally, whose race against Democratic challenger Mark Kelly was decided more than a week ago, has conceded, days after it became clear that it was mathematically impossible for her to catch up.Her concession marked the end of a fierce, year-and-a-half-long race to fill the remainder of the term won by the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who died in 2018. McSally, R-Ariz., called Kelly on Friday to congratulate him on a hard-fought race, she said in a written statement released by her campaign."With nearly all the votes counted, I called Mark Kelly this...

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Yvonne Wingett Sanchez
Nov 13
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Maricopa County GOP chair resigns after skipping election equipment verification test

Maricopa County GOP chair resigns after skipping election equipment verification test

Arizona Republic Rae Chornenky, the chair of the Maricopa County Republican Party, has resigned from her position after Democrats called her out for skipping a meeting ahead of the election where the county’s ballot tabulation machines were tested. Chornenky, an attorney backed by the state's more establishment Republicans, had long clashed with the further-right-leaning figures within the state’s Republican Party.Calls for her to step down started after Maricopa County Democratic Party chair Stephen Slugocki reminded the public in a Twitter post that in October she had not attended a logic...

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Nov 12
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Arizona election updates: Counties' hand audits of ballots find no or minor discrepancies

Arizona election updates: Counties' hand audits of ballots find no or minor discrepancies

Arizona Republic A Maricopa County Superior Court judge on Thursday will weigh claims that some poll workers "incorrectly rejected" votes cast in person on Election Day. We'll keep the post-election updates coming.Follow along for news throughout the day from Arizona Republic reporters.SEE WHO WON:  All counties that have conducted required hand-count audits of a sample of their ballots found no or minor discrepancies, county audit reports submitted to the state show.The audits, required by Arizona law, check a sample of ballots to ensure tabulation equipment is accurate. The audit process...

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Oct 21
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