Goldwater Institute Files Lawsuit to Remove ‘Misleading’ Healthcare Debt Initiative from Ballot

Eight ballot initiatives are on the Arizona ballot this fall, with three still waiting for approval after submitting petition signatures. One of those three is the Protection from Predatory Debt Collection Act (PPDCA) which is being challenged by the Goldwater Institute over its description that will appear on the ballot, which the think tank alleges is “inaccurate and misleading.”

Filed on Aug. 8, the lawsuit states, “The Arizona Protection from Predatory Debt Collection Act would institute sweeping changes to debt collection in Arizona that extend far beyond the measure’s purported purpose of limiting the interest rate on medical debt.”

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Recent Report Reveals How Public School Spending in Arizona Surged During Pandemic

The Arizona-based Goldwater Institute recently shared that a report from Matt Beienburg, Goldwater’s Director of Education Policy, reveals how spending surged in Arizona’s Public School system, but not for the actual needs of students.

“The COVID-19 pandemic ushered in an era of unprecedented spending on public K-12 schools, yet available evidence suggests that the bonanza of federal spending was almost entirely avoidable and that much of it will likely serve a very different purpose than the one originally sold to policymakers and the public,” according to Goldwater Institute.

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Goldwater Institute Grills the University of Arizona After Refusal to Release Public Records of ‘Bias Reporting’ on Campus

The Arizona-based Goldwater Institute this week contacted the University of Arizona (UA), demanding it grants a reporter’s public record request for copies of complaints filed under UA’s Bias Education & Support Team (BEST).

“College campuses should be places of free and open exchange, where students can respectfully discuss opposing viewpoints and think critically about the major issues of the day. But instead, progressives are using bias response teams to implement their own, illiberal agenda across the country,” wrote Goldwater Institute Legal Programs Manager Kamron Kompani.

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Arizona Mother Fights Prosecution by Department of Child Safety to Defend Right to Due Process

An Arizona mother, Sarra L., filed a lawsuit Wednesday, jointly represented by the Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) and the Goldwater Institute, against the Arizona Department of Child Safety (AZDHS) to protect her right to due process and clear her name.

“Due process and the separation of powers should have protected Sarra from the Department of Child Safety’s abusive prosecution. DCS has a track record of ignoring due process that should protect innocent parties from severe punishment,” said Adi Dynar, an attorney for Pacific Legal Foundation. “Sarra is seeking to right the wrong done to her and prevent other parents from facing a similar fate in the future.”

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Beacon Center of Tennessee Files Brief in Tennessee Supreme Court in Support of Attorney Denied Admission to State Bar

The Beacon Center of Tennessee filed a brief in the Tennessee Supreme Court supporting Violaine Panasci, an attorney who was denied admission to the Tennessee Bar.

Panasci was denied admission to the Tennessee Bar, according to Beacon, because she went “to the wrong law school.”

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Gov. Ducey Signs 12 Bills, Including Banning Unions from Politicking on the Taxpayers’ Dime, and Stopping Religious Discrimination in Adoptions

As the 2022 Arizona Legislative season winds down, Gov. Doug Ducey is signing a slew of bills. On Wednesday, he signed 12, including the Goldwater Institute’s Release Time Reform Act and a bill protecting religious freedom in adoptions and foster care.

The Goldwater Institute (GI) drafted SB 1166, which was sponsored by State Sen. Vincent Leach (R-Tucson), to address the problem where public employees at the local, state, and federal level are “released” from their government responsibilities and instead are assigned to work for a private union — all while receiving full government pay, benefits, and retirement. 

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Arizona Could Stop Cities from Seeking Union Labor Preferences Before Granting Permits

New legislation in Phoenix would keep cities from nudging private businesses and others into a union shop before giving permission to build.

Although explicitly requiring union labor is illegal in Arizona, an amendment to Senate Bill 1191 would block cities from limiting a zoning permit, zoning variance, rezoning application, general plan amendment or other permit or land use requirement to those who promise to use union labor or only use contractors paying union wages. If enacted, it also would ban public works projects from having similar requirements or disclosing union ties in a bid.

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Goldwater Institute Issues Report Showing Arizona School Boards Are Being Forced to Fund Critical Race Theory at Taxpayer Expense

The watchdog Goldwater Institute has discovered that the Arizona School Boards Association is controlling much of the teaching within Arizona’s K-12 public schools, which includes Critical Race Theory. Schools are locked into the agenda, because if they try to opt out, the ASBA will accuse them of copyright infringement for using their own previously adopted policies or replicating those of other public bodies.

According to a new report the Goldwater Institute put out about the problem, the ASBA uses the messaging of “equity,” asserting that it is not CRT. But “retreating to the less revolutionary sounding term ‘equity’ reflects a distinction without a difference.” The purpose is still the same, “replacing the principle of legal equality with practices and government mandates forcing people to treat their fellow Americans differently based on race — inflicting racist policies on people today in order to balance out the racism of centuries past.”

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Goldwater Institute Challenges Ruling That Raises Taxes for Arizona Shooting Ranges

The Goldwater Institute is challenging an Arizona Court of Appeals ruling that shooting ranges qualify as “places of amusement,” subjecting them to higher tax rates.

The court ruled in April that shooting ranges are “comparable” to “amusement parks.” The Goldwater Institute filed a friend of the court brief last week, arguing that shooting ranges are not circuses but places where people can go to learn a new skill and practice self-defense.

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Groups Urge Adoption of Universal Occupational Licensing Recognition in Ohio

Several pro-business groups have banded together to urge Gov. Mike DeWine and Ohio lawmakers to quickly adopt universal occupational licensing recognition.

The move could help the Buckeye State as it rebounds from the COVID-19 pandemic, The Buckeye Institute, Americans for Prosperity-Ohio and the Goldwater Institute said in the letter. The state is in the midst of a record number of cases, and Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has threatened to shut down restaurants and bars if the number of cases continues to climb.

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